Monday, September 27, 2010

Green Chile Stew

September to most people means apple picking, leaves changing, cooler weather, and pumpkins. To New Mexicans it means all that, plus GREEN CHILE! To describe the smell of Green Chile roasting is just something that cannot be done. It's simply wonderful.

My friend Kim (New Mexican in heart, Californian in body) wanted to know how I made green chile stew. (And since she's one of maybe five people that actually read my blog, her wish was my command. lol). There are hundreds of recipes out there for green chile stew. This is my version.

1lb. pork butt or beef sirloin (you could even use chicken or ground beef too)
1 onion, diced (i use red)
1 clove garlic, minced
6 cups chicken broth
4 average size russet potatoes
6 green chiles, roasted, peeled, and chopped (or more or less if desired)
1/2 tsp cumin
1 can tomatoes and green chile combo
salt to taste

Start by cutting your desired meat. I like to cut small pieces like so.

Take the meat and place in a bag with a Tablespoon or so of flour. Shake bag around until all the meat is coated.

Heat olive oil in a pot and add meat. Cook until browned, and remove from pot.

Chop onion and garlic and add to pot.

Cook onion for a few minutes until translucent and just starting to brown.

Wash, peel, and cut potatoes.

Add potatoes to the pot with onion and garlic. Add meat (including any juices).

Add all of the broth, cumin, and salt. I added a good amount of salt because of all the potatoes. But season to your taste and liking.

Add green chile and stir. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook on low for 1 hour, or until potatoes are tender.
Add canned tomatoes to mixture during the last 5 minutes of cooking.

Grab a tortilla and stuff your face. So good. So very, very good.

Now, I've had green chile stew with tomatoes and without. With cumin and without. They're all good in their own way. This is how I make mine. It's a good overall base on how to make it. But play around with what works for you. As long as you have some kind of meat, potatoes, broth, and GREEN CHILE. You're gonna have a delicious meal that's perfect for fall and all winter long.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Chiffon flower

Here is an easy little tutorial on how I made a little chiffon flower hair clip.

Start off with chiffon fabric. I used an 1/8 of a yard. I layered 4 sheets together.

Then I cut the large strip into 3 stacks of squares. Each square "stack" measured 5 x 5".

Next, just fold each "stack" in half.

I free-handed this petal template (on notebook paper, no less), and cut it out.

Trace onto folded "stack" of material.

Pin in place and cut out flower shape. (The material really shifts and moves while you're cutting, even when pinned. But don't worry, it just adds to the texture and fullness of the flower). Unfold.

Fold in half, and then in half again so you have somewhat of a triangle shape. Overlap the "tip" of each chiffon sheet like shown. Overlap as much or as little as you want, continuing around and around on top of each other until it is as full as you would like it. I used a total of 12 sheets for my flower. 3 "stacks" + 4 "sheets" per stack = 12 individual layers.
Hand-stitch together to secure and glue onto a barrette and you're done!

And because I'm cheap and relish in any bargain that I come across. I must let you know that the material was .62 cents. CENTS!!!! The lady at Hobby Lobby didn't shy away either by letting me know exactly how cheap I was. THANKS LADY! HA!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Mini caramel apples

It's almost fall time. I can't wait! Pumpkins, Halloween, chilly weather, and apples! Here's a fun and easy treat to utilize some of those delicious apples you might be going out and picking. Actually, it's a delicious treat you can do any time of year - but I find it appropriate for fall time especially.

Here's all you need.
Apples (I used granny smith)
lolli-pop sticks
melon baller
bowl (to melt caramel)
sprinkles (optional)
not pictured
1 T. water
granulated sugar
sheet pan
wax paper
lemon juice

Use your melon baller to cut balls out of your (clean) apple. I tossed the apple balls with a little bit of lemon juice to prevent browning. You should be able to get between 7-9 balls per apple.

Take your apple balls and stick onto your lollipop stick through the "skinned" end of your ball.

Dip apple ball into your melted caramel. (Place caramels in a microwave safe bowl with 1T. of water and microwave in 1 minute intervals until smooth and melted).

Place on a wax paper lined baking sheet that has been sprinkled with a little bit of sugar.

Or swap out the sugar for some candy bits or sprinkles.

Enjoy within one day - but i'm sure they won't last that long.

Note - Not intended for children under the age of two. Reason number 1) because raw apples and gooey caramel can be choking hazards....

...reason number 2) because this is what happens when you take it away!

Monday, September 13, 2010

design your own stuffed animal

I am extremely proud to be a first time aunt to the sweetest little boy Connor, who is 2 1/2 months old. I hate to admit it, but I haven't actually MADE anything for him yet. I know, I know, crazy! I've had a couple things in mind just nothing that has come to fruition......yet. Here's a little sumthin', sumthin' that this sweet angel can wrap his pudgy little fingers around...

I had Caleb draw a picture for Connor on some blank paper.
Caleb: "this is an alien mama, Connor loooooovvvves aliens!"

One alien stuffed animal - coming up!

After he was done drawing his "alien" I cut out the picture.
Place the fabric of your choice (right sides together), and trace the drawing.

Cut out fabric.

I used a zig-zag stitch to add the extra details that were in CalJ's drawing.

Sew the two pieces together using a 1/4"- 1/2" seam allowance, (leaving a 3" opening on one side).

Turn inside out and stuff your animal - [ahem] "alien", and sew closed. Add any embellishments that you like. Here we added felt strips for arms and used a freezer paper stencil for the eyes and nose.

Not the cutest creature, I admit. But a pretty special keepsake none the less because it was designed completely by his cousin.

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