Hello again my lovely readers! I missed a day of posting yesterday so I thought I would double up on both prompts. Goals for the month and my go to summer recipe. I have one main goal for this month which, if you’ve read my previous posts you’ll already know what that is, but for those who are just reading this, that is to not spend on anything frivolous this month. That is to say, no spending on any of the things I tend to buy needlessly like washi tape or more stickers when I have plenty. Alan (my hubby) and I decided to spend only on the necessary things such as food and toiletries and on things pertaining to my stationery business Walks in Beauty Paperie on Etsy, mainly materials such as ink for printing and paper.
Another goal for this June is to try and use more of my craft supplies to create both things to send to my pen pals in creative mail or things to sell. I have a few ideas combining mixed media up my sleeve. Also, we both have the goal of exploring more of the art studios in our local area during the Dorset Art Weeks which is a nice free outing and allows us to mingle with local artists and fellow creatives, see what they are doing and support them. We usually tended to go to St. Michael’s Trading Estate for the studios there but have discovered there are some other studios dotted about town or within walking distance in other nearby villages that might be worth going to check out. There is at least one open studio during the Arts Week in the North Mills area I’d like to check out (photographic art) and one in the village of Symondsbury which I am dying to go and explore again. The arts weeks end on 12th June so we should be able to check out many different studios between now and then. Today we saw some beautiful quilt art at Becca’s Fabric Larder, most of the pieces were by either Becca Balazs herself or another very talented quilter, Janet McCallum. This was a private viewing which we were invited to but many of the art studios around there were also open and we could have gone in. Supporting local artists and crafters is a big goal of mine. I want to support them more and the big chain shops less. We are fortunate enough to have quite a variety here in Bridport which is a huge plus!
Now, on to today’s prompt: My go to summer recipe…well, I think that would have to be homemade salsa! I love the stuff! I am not a fan of spicy salsa so I make mine very differently from most people but it’s such a refreshing salad and goes well on tortilla chips or even as a side with meat. We made some last night to go with our lovely nacho salad (something I used to eat at home with my parents in Florida pretty regularly and was craving) and it turned out amazing! So, I thought I would share the recipe for those who are more into a mild and refreshing salsa.
Homemade Mild Refreshing Salsa
- 2 medium sized tomatoes, chopped
- half a white onion, chopped or 2 large spring onions chopped (green tops and white bits)
- half a large English cucumber, chopped
- juice of one lime
- quarter of a red bell pepper, chopped
- three sprigs lemon thyme, chopped
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro or more
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- salt & pepper to taste
- Chop all of your ingredients that need chopping and place them in a medium to large bowl as you go.
- Once chopped, mix and squeeze the juice of one lime over the salsa mix.
- Add salt and pepper to taste and mix together.
- For best results make this a day in advance, mix and cover and place in refrigerator overnight so that the juices work their magic.
I hope you enjoy this recipe and if you try it out do let me know!
Most of you know how much I love to cook and share recipes when I can and here I have decided to share at least one recipe a week with you. Not sure yet if I want to feature it always on a Sunday (might do it more for a weekly Monday post) but for this week I shall be posting this one today. This recipe is adapted from a recipe found on the back of an A1 steak sauce bottle. Anyone in my family knows how much I love steak sauce and here in the US A1 is my favourite brand. However, for the sake of making it easier on anyone reading this blog, your favourite brand of steak/brown sauce will do well to substitute if you can’t find A1 in your local supermarket or grocer’s. So, feel free to use Heinz or HP sauce to substitute. The recipe in its original form is rather simple but I like to add a little more to such things so I will share with you my own take on this simple but delicious dish.
CHEDDAR POTATO PIE
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Cook Time: 30 minutes
- 1 lb lean ground beef
- 1 onion, choopped
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
- fresh or dried oregano
- splash of Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce
- 2 cups hot mashed potatoes
- 1 cup shredded red cheddar cheese
- Heat oven to 350ºF .
- Saute mushrooms, onion and garlic over low to medium heat and add meat and season with salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce to taste. Once onion is slightly translucent in large skillet; drain. Add steak sauce and bring to a boil. Remove from heat.
- Spoon into 1 1/2 qt. baking dish and spread evenly.
- Spoon prepared mashed potatoes on top and spread evenly over meat mixture.
- Sprinkle cheddar cheese on top and sprinkle mixed dried herbs over the cheese.
- Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until heated through (165ºF).
It’s really quite an easy recipe to follow and a quick meal to prepare. Just a few notes on my personal preparation; for the hot mashed potatoes I used some nice red potatoes and made my mash from scratch. I dislike packaged potatoes but if you’re pressed for time or don’t like to make your own mashed potatoes you can always use the package variety. I don’t recommend it at all as fresh ingredients are always the healthier option and more flavourful. Regarding the herbs I also used fresh herbs in the meat mixture. If you’re vegan or vegetarian, perhaps a nice vegan meat substitute (vegan mince) would work very nicely for this pie and as for the cheese I would use the Daiya brand over others but any other cheese alternative would probably work as well. If you’re not a fan of ground beef, chicken, turkey, lamb or pork would be other alternatives for this simple style pie.
I’d love to see what you do differently if you decide to adapt this recipe yourself or if you use it as is please share a photo on Instagram or Twitter using the hashtag #wlksinbeautyrecipes. I’d love to see who’s making food they find here.
I served this with a nice summer vegetable medley and had a glass of cranberry-raspberry juice with it.
Photography by: Nadia M. Perez Bugler
Recipe adapted from: A1 Sauce Bottle
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED ©MMXV
Yesterday was my mom’s birthday and I believe she had a very nice time of it. Relaxing day and very congratulated. I’m glad I was here for it as for her past two birthdays, as with Mother’s Day, I’d been away on travels in Europe. I baked a lovely Lemon Chiffon Cake yesterday using a recipe I found on Cake Journal and decorated it with strawberries all around.
Everyone loved it! Even our friends from Thailand who dropped by in the evening enjoyed it and they’re not much for sweets usually. My mother got several beautiful cards for both Mother’s Day & her birthday plus my hubby and I got her some flowers which were delivered yesterday while I was baking the cake.
My beautiful mom above with the roses we got her. What sorts of things do you do for your mom on her birthday?
Links from the blogosphere:
Where is My Mind: http://whereismymindgone.blogspot.ie/2015/05/some-things-about-me.html?m=1
Blogger Mumma: http://www.bloggermumma.com/2015/05/mummy-mondays-poolemamma.html?m=1
Bug, Bird and Bee: http://bugbirdbee.co.uk/2015/04/23/the-crafty-hen-craft-party-with-laura-ashley-crafts-event/
As Alan and I continue my visa application process I’m happy to be able to say that I finally have gotten to spend Mother’s Day with my mom today after two years of not having been home for the occasion. Two years ago on Mother’s Day I was in the Netherlands and on my way back to the UK for a bit and last year I was with my hubby in the UK. So, today I made a recipe from the Smitten Kitchen blog which I’d seen posted on their Facebook page yesterday. I altered the cooking method slightly as it is way too hot to turn the oven on today in Florida so I cooked it on the stove top (hob for my UK readers). The recipe I used was Deb’s Spinach and Cheese Strata. I didn’t make it ahead but rather made it on a heavy & deep pan which worked really well and cooked through only partly covered so that it cooked evenly as it wasn’t going in the oven. *Word of caution: cook on a low heat setting and watch it like a hawk as mine got slightly burnt on the bottom because of the bread and cheese. Still, it turned out very tasty and I think I may make another one again soon! I made this for a Mother’s Day brunch to share with my folks.
Spinach and Cheese Strata
After we had our lovely brunch, my mom opened her card I’d made her and gifts I got her. She really enjoyed the card with our picture on the front from when I was around or nearly a year old. What did you all do for your mothers? Perhaps later today we will watch a film or something but so far it is just a chilled day.
Card and gifts for my mom
I hope all the mother’s celebrating today will have a beautiful day and will be very spoilt indeed! Happy Mother’s Day 2015!
PHOTOS BY: Nadia M. Perez Bugler
TAKEN WITH: iPhone 5s, VSCO Cam App
TITLE GRAPHIC: Mother With Sleeping Child from a 1920 Children’s Song Book via The Graphics Fairy
One of the nicest things one can do for a friend is welcome them into your home with some freshly baked goodies.
Today my friend Kiki will be arriving at SRQ to visit with me for the week and I decided to make her some Ginger a Snaps following Livin’ It Bekah Style‘s recipe which she posted in her blog recently.
The smell of the cookies is intoxicating and hearkens recollections of drinking tea with friends with some lovely snacks to accompany it.
I halved Bekah’s recipe for today because I only had enough of certain ingredients to make about half the amount. These cookies literally melt in your mouth when freshly out of the oven and are exquisite in form.
I really hope Kiki, who is also a blogger, will enjoy them as much as I’ve enjoyed making them. If you’re a baker you should give these and Bekah’s other many lovely recipes she shares on her blog. Click on the link in the second paragraph and it will take you to the recipe for these gorgeous cookies.
Every now and then one comes across a place that makes the perfect cup of coffee that, as much as one wants to keep it to herself, she just can’t. Amid Giants and Idols is one such place. From the moment I had my first cup I was hooked and I can’t wait to return to Lyme Regis on the outermost western edge of Dorset. Alan and I first came across them while walking along the promenade at the end of August when we saw their little stand and I had a sudden hankering for coffee. Well, I’ll tell you, that first cup was memorable for two reasons: first, it was a damn good cup of joe but secondly, as I went to reach for the sugar to put in the latte I’d ordered the proprietor stopped me and told me to taste it without sugar first. So, I did and boy was I amazed! Turns out that a good roast needs nothing extra. Their roasts are just incredible. That first cup set my head to whirling and a couple of weeks later when I went into Lyme on my own and waited for Alan to meet me, I went in search of the shop and settled in for a nice cup of liquid pleasure.
A beautiful latte which I enjoyed slowly, taking in my surroundings, the beauty and subtlety of it all. Creamy and luxurious are the words that come to mind when I recall this gorgeous drink. Have a look at Amid Giants and Idols beautiful interior…
Having a cup of coffee in this spot is like sitting in your own living room, listening to the music and watching the passersby. The proprietor is very friendly and more than willing to chat about the different varieties of roasts available and what sets their artisan coffee apart from your run of the mill coffee joints.
One last cup…of espresso that is, tangy and robust in flavour, this was a shot of silky seduction. Enjoy!
Yesterday was a bank holiday Monday and a very rainy one at that! So, we stayed indoors, did laundry, took part in the ALS ice bucket challenge, baked and more…here’s our day in photographs. Enjoy!
Eggs and soldiers for breakfast, a first time British traditional treat for me!
Ice buckets ready for Alan and I to do the challenge! Boy, ice melts quickly when there’s lots of water in the bucket!
Baking cookies from a recipe I found on One Crafty Mumma’s blog.
Lunch was simple but delicious, mushrooms on toast! Yum!
Baked two different varieties of shortbread (cocoa and M&Ms ones, almond and craisin as well).
Lastly, Alan baked a scrumptious lasagne and we ended the day watching a few episodes of The Tudors. Sometimes life really is that simple.