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Archive for September, 2009

Easy Quiche

When I was in college living in a co-ed dorm and getting an education in things that had nothing to do with either my major or minor, a bunch of us girls got together and decided to have a nice party before we all left for the holidays. We all were supposed to contribute one thing to the meal and it needed to be “girlie” food.

I called Mom in  panic with no idea what I could make. She saved the day when she sent me this easy quiche recipe. It was a hit at the party, and every time I’ve made it over the years.

Wonderful for breakfast, brunch, luncheons or dinners, it is so good and simple to make!

Quiche
3 eggs

1 1/2 cups cream

1/4 tsp. salt

1 cup shredded cheddar or colby-jack

1/2 cup crumbled cooked bacon or diced ham

1/2 tsp. onion flakes

Prepared pie crust in 9 inch pie pan. Beat the eggs, add in cream and salt.  Sprinkle cheese and bacon over pie crust. Pour egg mixture over the top and bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until knife inserted comes out clean. Enjoy!

Do you have a favorite cooking memory from your college days? Share it here!

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Before 21 beforeA few weeks ago Julie Anne Jones and Krista Green teamed up to offer a fabulous free telecourse called “Organizing 101.” The class highlighted how to bring clarity from chaos in your office space.

Krista talked about how clutter is a stagnation of energy that prevents it from flowing and how our home office space should bring us positive energy.  I was so inspired by the call, I knew it was time to finally give my office the makeover it so desperately needed.after 3

Check out the before and after photos! I’m loving my “new” office space. It is peaceful and beautiful and a fun place for me to be.after 1

That got me thinking, so many people avoid entertaining because there is an area or room in their home that is a catch-all for clutter. Because of the chaos, they put off entertaining, waiting for the “perfect” time.

Here is the newsflash… there is no “perfect” time to entertain. So clean up the clutter, bring some new energy to your home and start inviting people over.  Remember that people are much more interested in spending time with you than noticing the things that are less than perfect in your home. If there is a certain area that is holding you back, fix it. Don’t squander the gift of time wishing your kitchen was painted, your living room redecorated or your office space decluttered. Declutter, paint, move some furniture around and start enjoying life!

If you want to get inspired to bring some clarity to your own space, Krista and Julie Anne are teaming up for a six-week “Chaos to Clarity” class that begins this Thursday, Sept. 17. For details, go to Julie Anne’s website here.

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Delicious Carrot Cake

We just celebrated Hubby’s birthday and every year he requests the same dessert – carrot cake. It is moist and delicious, especially when topped with cream cheese frosting.

This recipe for carrot cake comes from my grandmother. You could always count on finding some delicious baked goodie at Grandma’s house, especially when she baked carrot cake. It is easy to put together and makes the whole house smell yummy while it bakes.

Ingredients for Carrot Cake

Elsie’s Carrot Cake

2 cups flour

2 cups sugar

1 cup oil

4 eggs

2 tsps. baking soda

4 cups grated carrots

1 tsp. salt

1 cup walnuts, chopped

2 tsp. cinnamon

Cream together eggs, sugar and oil. Mix in remaining ingredients and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until edges begin to pull away from the pan. Top with Cream Cheese Frosting. Garnish with halved walnuts.

Ingredients for Cream Cheese Frosting

Cream Cheese Frosting

1 box powdered sugar

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup butter, softened

1 tsp. vanilla

Combine all ingredients until smooth and creamy.

Enjoy!

Carrot Cake - Yum!

Have a favorite recipe from your grandmother? Share it here!

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Dutch Babies

When Hubby and I have time for a leisurely breakfast, which doesn’t happen very often, among our favorite things to make are Dutch Babies.

Years ago we happened upon a restaurant in Spokane, WA,  that had the most delightful European breakfasts. That was the first time we tried Dutch Babies  and the quest began to find a recipe that recreated the tasty treat we had at the restaurant. After many taste tests, we agreed that this recipe is the closest.

Serve these warm from the oven with a generous dollop of freshly whipped cream and your favorite berries or sliced fruit.

Dutch Babies

3 tbsp. butter

3 large eggs

3/4 cup milk

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

2 tbsp. granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a 10-inch cast iron skillet, melt the butter. While the butter is melting, beat the eggs in a mixing bowl until they are light and pale. Add the remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly. Pour into the skillet and bake 15 minutes or until brown and puffed.

If you have a Dutch Babies variation, please feel free to share it here!

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invitationHave you ever received an invitation that asked you to RSVP and you:

1).  Ignored it.

2). Forgot about it.

3). Had every intention of calling the host but didn’t get around to it.

I think we have all been guilty of one of the above at some point in time. However good the intentions, the fact of the matter is when we are invited to an event and the host asks for us to RSVP and we don’t respond we cause all sorts of problems for the host and become one of those guests.

RSVP, Répondez s’il vous plaît, is a French term with a variety of definitions, but the most common is “please reply.”  That is what the host really wants – for the invited guests to please reply. I’ve seen hosts try everything from “Please RSVP” to “please call me with a yes or no” to try and get an idea of who will be attending their event.

Let’s walk through a scenario: you have decided to host a casual dinner party. You send out 20 invitations with “Please RSVP” two weeks before the event and get three  immediate responses. You send out an email reminder a week before the event and get two more responses. Two days before the party you make reminder phone calls to those you haven’t heard from and get one more response and leave a bunch of messages that get no return calls. So of those 20 invitations you only have six responses. How much food should you prepare? How many chairs should you have ready? How much service ware and table ware is needed? Hard to figure out, isn’t it?

When someone invites you into their home, it is truly a compliment. They are offering you a very special gift: of their time, of their food, of their home and their hospitality. It is our duty as recipients of that invitation to let the host know as soon as possible if we will or won’t be attending. If you are unsure due to a hectic schedule, tell the host up front. Then if your schedule works that you can attend, give her a quick call to say “I’ll be there.”

Hosts would rather hear your “no” or “maybe” than not hear from you at all. The next time you receive an invitation, be a good guest and respect the gift the host is extending to you. Whether you accept the gift or not, be courteous, say “Thank you for the invitation” and let her know your plans for attending.

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