Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Fabulous Yeast Rolls


The centerpiece for my table is my childhood Easter basket.  I have such fond memories of this basket for my Mom always made the most beautiful arrangement of Easter candy.  My Mom carefully placed all my favorites in, with always a large cream filled egg in the middle.  I especially loved Russell Stover strawberry eggs, that used to be decorated with pretty flowers. 



Aren't these salt and peppers cute?


I filled my basket with raspberry colored tulips that match the fabric in my topper that I made.  The green fabric is a beautiful Spring green color and the contrasting black  has tiny floating flowers.  Do you see the bunny in the patch?  He's surrounded by cabbage, peas, greenery and forsythia.  A white radish is tied  on an end and a little bird is glued on the other end. 


I'm using my Mikasa Berry Delight plates, which pick up the raspberry color in the tulips and in the topper. 

These special rolls come from Marigene at  The actual name of these rolls is Spicery Rolls, which you can read about here at Marigene's blog.  There you can also get the complete recipe, which makes 36.  I opted to cut the recipe in half because of my mixer bowl size,  which still gave me a generous amount.  Here's the recipe:

3/4 cup boiling water
1/4 cup butter
3/4 t. salt
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup hot, but not boiling water
3 ounces evaporated milk
2 T. yeast
4 1/2 - 5 cups flour ( you can use some whole wheat, if desired)

In a large bowl of your mixer. pour boiling water over butter.  Add salt and sugar and stir well.  When butter is melted, mix in the additional hot water.  Stir in evaporated milk.  Slowly add flour and yeast.  Use the dough hook and knead about 10 minutes. 

Grease a large bowl and put the dough in and turn it over so the surface is well greased.  Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 30-45 minutes.

Dump the dough onto a well floured surface.  Divide the dough in half and then divide each half into 9 pieces to shape into dinner rolls.  The nine rolls fit well into two greased round 9" cake pans.

Let rise until doubled.  Just before putting them in the oven, brush with and egg/water wash.  Bake for 25-35 (mine were done in 20)  minutes at 375 degrees, or until the tops of the rolls are golden brown. 

Makes 18 large rolls.

NOTE:  These would also make wonderful cinnamon rolls!!  Just roll out the dough, spread with softened butter, sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon, roll up and slice. 


This Mama bunny has been living in our backyard with her baby.  I got a quick pic of her on  the patio.    They're so cute, but they are all over our neighborhood.  I can't even plant pansies in the ground because they eat them right down to the nub!

Happy Easter!!

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On the Menu Monday
Tabletop Tuesday                                                                          
Let's Dish!
Weekend Potluck
Seasonal Sundays

                Thank  you for visiting!  xo

Monday, March 25, 2013

Easter Sugar Cookies

For my Easter tea, I'm serving Easter cut-out cookies and some Blueberry Green tea. I'm using my bunny teapot again.


I've made my favorite sugar cookies found here.  As much as admire cookies with royal icing, I'd much rather eat one with a creamy one, found here, which is a simple powdered sugar one.  A sprinkling of sparkling sugar or sprinkles adds a special touch.  These cute cookie cutters were gifted to me from my friend,  Pat.



This adorable bunny planter was gifted to me by my friend,  Kathryn.  Doesn't the maidenhair fern resemble carrot tops??


This cute Easter mug was gifted to me by my friend,  Bea.  Isn't it a cheery scene?  Would you like to join me for tea and some cookies?  I'd love to share.


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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Smoked Turkey Chowder


I brought out some Spring décor to get ready for Easter.  It's coming before we know it!!



This bunny came from Homegoods, last year.  He's nested in an old basket surrounded by flowers. 



These polka dot plates came from Homegoods, several years ago. 


Here's a close-up of the machine quilted topper I made.  I love the cheery fabrics!


The inspiration for this recipe came from The Dallas Morning News and it is perfect for those chilly evenings in Spring.  My favorite grocery store, Market Street, smokes their own turkey to sell in their deli, and it is so good.  Here's my slightly adapted recipe:

1 T. olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups chicken stock
2 cans (15-ounce) great northern beans (divided use)
1 ( 7-ounce) can diced green chiles
1 (11-ounce) can white corn, drained
1 pound smoked turkey, chopped
About 1 ounce shredded Pepper Jack cheese + more for serving
Fresh cilantro, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven. Add onion and garlic and cook until soft. Add chicken broth and bring to a simmer.

Using a blender, purée half of one can of the beans, including liquid, then add to the Dutch oven. Reserve the remaining beans until later.

Add green chiles, corn, chopped turkey and cheese. Stir until cheese is melted. If serving immediately, add remaining beans and their liquid, and return to a simmer.

Stir in cilantro and season to taste.  Top with additional cheese, if desired.  For more spice, add some cayenne pepper and some diced jalapeño peppers.

NOTE:  I actually put everything in a slow cooker and cooked on low for several hours, while we went to The Dallas Arboretum.


One of the flower beds at Dallas Blooms at the Arboretum.  Happy first day of Spring!

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Monday, March 18, 2013

Tie-Dyed Pizzelles


 For a Spring tea, I decided to make some tie-dyed pastel Pizzelles.  They're always delicious with a cup of tea!  I used my basic recipe, found  here and divided the batter into thirds and used my gel colorings. Lynn, from  gave me this idea when she made some Irish flag pizzelles. 


I put a dab of each color in the middle of the pizzelle maker, slightly towards the back.  As you shut the pizzelle press, it moves the batter forward a bit. 


My sister sent me this pretty teacup for my birthday.  Isn't it perfect for Spring? 



Isn't this the cutest bunny teapot?  I don't even remember where I bought it, but I love it.


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              Thank you for your visit!  xo

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup

My St. Patrick's Day table is set for our Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup. 

I've used my lucky leprechaun that my sweet sister sent me from Ohio.   The harp vase was sent from a dear blogging friend.  The "Irish" blocks are from Hobby Lobby.

My shamrock light-up wall decor is from Target, years ago!

How about some Rosemary Bread, which is placed on a beautiful dish from our dear daughter?  The recipe can be found here. 

Our Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup is served in our English Ironstone Brentwood, by Adams, soup bowls.  I bought these back in the 1970's, loving the delicate shamrocks around the edges. 

When my dear hubby and I visited North Carolina this past August, we visited the town of Hendersonville. This town has so many good restaurants and one that we enjoyed was Hannah Flanagan's Irish Pub.   I ordered the Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup and loved the flavor.  While there, I quickly wrote down what the ingredients were in the soup and tried to duplicate it when we got home.  Here's my version of this delicious soup. 

1 onion, chopped
3 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 celery stalk,  chopped
about 3/4-1 lb. deli corned beef, sliced in 1/2"  thick slices and then chopped
1/2-3/4 green cabbage, sliced and chopped
2 boxes (32 oz.) chicken stock or broth
salt and pepper to taste

Put all ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on low for 8-10 hours, or on high for 4-5 hours.

There's always room for some chocolate covered almonds, served in a pretty shamrock candy dish from another dear friend. 

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Sunday, March 10, 2013

Mini Irish Soda Breads


For My St. Patrick's Day tea, I'm having some mini Irish Soda bread and some Irish breakfast tea.  Would you care to join me? 


My shamrock teapot was a gift from my dear daughter, found at TJMaxx, several years ago.  The sweet vase is from a dear blogging friend.  I found the tea mug at TJ Maxx that matches the teapot.

My lucky leprechaun was sent to me from my dear sister, from Columbus, Ohio.  Doesn't he look old and vintage-like?  Of course, he has his pot 'o gold and birdie, named "Lucky".


Usually for St. Patrick's Day, I make an Irish Soda Bread.  The beautiful plate is from my daughter, which she found at Target, awhile back.  This year I decided to try Ina's recipe and compare it to the Fanny Farmer recipe that I've made in the past.  Ina's recipe calls for orange zest, which I just can't seem to get enough of this year.  I made half the recipe and decided to make 8 mini loaves, which are always fun to serve.    Here's the full recipe version.  

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for     currants
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 3/4 cups cold buttermilk, shaken
  • 1 extra-large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest (I will add     more next time!)
  • 1 cup dried currants

  • Directions

    Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

    Combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the butter and mix on low speed until the butter is mixed into the flour.

    With a fork, lightly beat the buttermilk, egg, and orange zest together in a measuring cup. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture. Combine the currants with 1 tablespoon of flour and mix into the dough. It will be very wet.

    Dump the dough onto a well-floured board and knead it a few times into a round loaf. (This dough  is extremely wet!) Place the loaf on the prepared sheet pan and lightly cut an X into the top of the bread with a serrated knife. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. When you tap the loaf, it will have a hollow sound. I baked the mini loaves for about 25 minutes. 

    Cool on a baking rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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    Wednesday, March 6, 2013

    Smoked Gouda Mac and Cheese

    For my Irish setting, I'm using the topper I made several years ago, with a shamrock plant in a red basket to pick up the colors of the ladybugs  in the fabric.  The melamine shamrock plates are from Target and the red Cambridge flatware works well with the colors in the topper.

    Here's a close-up of the kissing Leprechaun couple.

     My Mom gave me the (very old) milk glass shamrock candle holders.  Aren't they pretty? 


    I love the fabric with the shamrock's and the cute ladybugs! 

    I wrapped my green napkins with a doily and tied with a freestanding lace shamrock that I embroidered on my sewing machine. 

    This pasta was found at World Market.  We usually eat Dreamfields pasta, but I just couldn't resist this, plus it was FREE because I had a $10.00 coupon that they sent me for my birthday!  Woo hoo!!!

    We visited the Biltmore Estate last August and somehow we go  on their mailing list.  They sent this
    recipe and I thought  it sounded good and easy!  It's even easier than this one.  Having the heavy cream as an ingredient eliminates the roux.  It's a delicious Lenten meal.  Of course, you can always add leftover ham after Easter. 

    2 cups macaroni, cooked (I undercooked a few minutes)
    2 1/2 cups heavy cream (I will use 1/2 cup less next time)
    1 cup shredded smoked Gouda cheese
    1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
    1 cup panko breadcrumbs (I omitted)

    Place cooked macaroni into baking dish. 

    In a saucepan, heat cream and add Gouda and half of the Parmesan.  Whisk vigorously over low heat, making sure not to let bottom scorch.  When cheese is melted into cream, pour mixture over macaroni.  Sprinkle panko and rest of Parmesan on top.

    Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes, or until brown. 

    Serves 4.

    I am sharing this with: 

    Weekend Potluck
    Seasonal Sundays

                   Thank you for your visit!  xo

    Monday, March 4, 2013

    Oatmeal Raisinets Cookies


    Would you like to join me for some Irish tea and Raisinets Cookies?  I kept a journal of our trip to Ireland that we took several years ago.  My shamrock plate is from Target and my hankie napkin is from a sweet blogging friend. 


    The sweet tea mug is from my Mom and sister.  The darling teapot I bought for $1.50 at our local monthly trade days.  The spout is chipped and there's lots of crazing, but I don't care!  It's from County Cork Ireland and I'm sure was well-loved by somebody, and now me.


    The bottom of my teapot.


    When my dear hubby was in the hospital, he received a goodie basket from some sweet friends and inside was a bag of Raisinets. When I was a kid and went to the movies, this was one of my all time favorite candies!!  Well, on the back of the bag was the recipe for these cookies.

    1 1/4 cup flour
    1 t. baking soda
    3/4 t cinnamon
    1/2 t. salt
    1 cup butter or margarine, softened
    3/4 cup sugar
    3/4 cup packed brown sugar
    1 t. vanilla
    2 eggs
    3 cups quick or old-fashioned oats
    1 (11oz.) package Raisinets
    1 cup chopped nuts, optional

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

    Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a bowl.

    Beat butter and both sugars and vanilla until creamy.  Beat in eggs; gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in oats, Raisinets and nuts.

    Drop by rounded tablespoon onto I greased cookie sheets.

    Bake for 9-11 minutes. Cool on Cooke sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to finish cooling.

    Makes 4 1/2 dozen.

    NOTE:  I made ice cream scoop size cookies and they took about 17 minutes.

    Years ago, my Mom gave me this  kissing leprechaun couple.

    This exquisite Irish lace was gifted to me by the same sweet friend that sent me the hankie.  I'm thinking of framing it to protect it's beauty.  

    I am sharing this with:

    Seasonal Sundays

                   Thank you for visiting me!  xo

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