Tuesday, January 29, 2013

How Do You Prepare Your Blog?

Putting together a blog takes time and fore thought. Whether you are writing details to a recipe, or the parts of a story, or letting your readers know of a good book you discovered. There are things you can do to make sure you capture all the pieces. Some people may keep journals; others may keep some sort of notes in folders. Everything depends on how you work. If you are struggling with putting together your own blog this may document may be of some help to you.
I call this document a Blog Preparation Form.  Here is how to use it:
Subject Line: This is where you place the title of your blog
Date: This is the date you intend to publish your blog
Publish Date: The actual Publish Date
Main Topic: This is what the subject of the blog will be about
Sub Topic: This is for any secondary subjects you may include that you want to include that may or may not have anything to do with the main topic. You may have more than one.
Image 1, 2, 3: Images - You may have more than 3 images but in general I just included 3 on this form.
Story: Here is where you may want to write down what story you wish to include in your blog, little or big. Something about how you ended up included this particular topic in your blog. How it is special to you. Maybe why you wanted to share. A way to make a connection to your readers.
Layout: It helps to draw out how you wish to layout your blog if you are doing a step by step process. Sometimes this can help you give you more of an idea of how to handle your images.
Ideas for Your Next Blog: I put this on this form because often when you are working on a blog you can come up with ideas for your next blog while you are working on your latest you.

I hope you find this information helpful. Here is the link to the document.

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Monday, January 28, 2013

Fettuccine With Salami And Zucchini

This dish is simple and rustic. The recipe comes from one of the first chefs I started watching on PBS - The Jeff Smith 'The Frugal Gourmet'. I was interested in the recipes and stories around the dishes he made. This, of course, is one of them.
This recipe comes from Jeff Smith's Uncle Vic. When his Uncle Vic fed him this dish he thought his Uncle just must be so wealthy. You don't have to be wealthy to eat this dish.

Fettuccine With Salami And Zucchini

2 small zucchini (I actually used organic yellow squash)
2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp. olive oil
1/4 lb. Italian salami, sliced thin, cut matchstick style (I bought a 6-oz Genoa salami stick)
1 tbsp. capers, chopped
Fresh ground pepper
1/2 c. whipping cream (1/2 a pint)
Salt to taste
1/2 lb. fettuccine, cooked
Grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
Slice the zucchini; put several slices together and slice again into matchsticks. Slice the garlic very thin. Saute the garlic in the oil until barely browned. Add the zucchini and saute for 3 minutes. Add the salami, capers, pepper and cream. Simmer until all is very hot. You will need little or no salt in this dish. Serve over the hot pasta. Top with the cheese.

It was pretty tasty!

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Friday, January 18, 2013

Baked Yogurt Chicken

As you can see from many of my recipes I eat chicken like it were here, there and everywhere. Sometimes the recipes I choose to make have to do with what I have leftover in the pantry. Other times I love to explore the vast wasteland of gourmet ingredients I have yet to try. After all, food is an exploration in new flavors to tempt and tantalize your taste buds.

The chicken recipe can be found on page 139 that I made in today's blog which came from Best Recipes by Ceil Dyer. This recipe more than likely came from Dannon.

Baked Yogurt Chicken
Serves about 4
1 cut up chicken, 2-1/2 to 3 lbs or more
salt and pepper
6 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons paprika
2 cups Dannon Plain Yogurt (although I used Lit and Fit) Vanilla Flavor instead
1/3 lb fresh portobello mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or parsley
Wash chicken pieces and pat dry. Salt and pepper. Melt 4 tablespoons of butter in a large pan and brown chicken on a medium high heat. While browning chicken butter a shallow baking dish. As chicken is browned take and place in buttered baking dish. Once all the chicken has been removed add flour and paprika to pan with grease. Mix well, do not leave pan on stove, take on and off frequently while mixing. Add yogurt and mix well on stove on a medium heat. Preheat oven to 325 F. Spoon sauce on chicken in buttered pan. Heat 2 tablespoons of butter in a pan and add mushrooms and lemon juice. Cook for about a minute or so, then take and spoon over chicken and sauce. Cover baking dish and place in oven for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until chicken is tender.
The chicken is tender and juicy, and slightly sweet due to the flavor of the vanilla.

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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Childhood: Cheerios in the Pantry

My Mother was not that big on sugary cereal. I remember many boxes of Cheerios in my mother's pantry. It was always in the pantry (although that may have been because it was on sale quite frequently).

When Cheerios came out with their honey nut, that was definitely a nice flavor. I was pretty happy when they came out with their whole grain also. Here is my breakfast this morning.
Cheerios is dependable in so many ways
1, Cheerios never get soggy
2. You can eat them as a snack
3. They are not to sugary
4. They have a nice savory flavor
Multi Grain Cheerios was a nice addition to the Cheerios flavors offered. When you want a simple cereal to serve with berries - this cereal makes the grade.
Honey Nut Cheerios is still an old favorite! I love the honey and the nut flavor.

All the cereals I mention have the same taste I grew up with, but also have enough of flavor they are advertising to keep me happy.

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Monday, January 14, 2013

Childhood: Growing up with Cream of Wheat

Growing up, one of my favorite breakfasts to have during the wintertime was Cream of Wheat. I make my cream of wheat on the stove. This may seem strange to some who make their Cream of Wheat in the microwave, but I like the consistency better on the stove and it takes little to no time to make it on the stove. In fact, now I make it with soy, almond or coconut milk.

To make it, I put a small pot on medium high heat with 1 and 1/4 cups of soy milk. I sometimes add a pinch of salt. Wait for the milk to come to a boil. Add 3 tablespoons of cream of wheat. Turn the heat down to low and whisk for one minute(whisking is the most important instruction because it does make a difference). Wait a couple of minutes for it to thicken, and pour into a bowl.

Growing up my family had a microwave. My Dad bought it for my Mom because I think the whole idea of heating up food fast was cool technology. Believe it or not that microwave worked for twenty years before my parents needed a new one. It was also very large.
I love the movie, Oliver! The Musical. The movie starts out with orphans in line for gruel. Because although I love Cream of Wheat, that is what I think of when I sit down to eat it. Cassandra is eating gruel.
So here is my gruel with some honey and blueberries atop, which I would be having with my orange juice, and a cup of tea.

Do any of my readers enjoy Cream of Wheat for breakfast? Or do you prefer farina made by another brand?

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