Rosemary in the Snow

It isn't really snowing, but it is December 11th and my Rosemary plant is still producing! I finally decided to move it and strip the remaining leaves from it.  I covered it and it might spring forth in a few months, but if it doesn't it has already don't its job very well!

I ended up with almost 2 cups of Rosemary, so I used part of it to make a bottle of Orange Rosemary Vinegar. I use it to make salad dressings through the winter and it is especially good on warm salads that include roasted beets.

To make the vinegar, bring 2 cups of vinegar to a boil and quickly add the peel of an orange and 2 heaping Tablespoons of Rosemary leaves.  Turn the vinegar off and push down on the orange peel and the leaves. That will bruise them and they will release their essence into the vinegar. Immediately pour the vinegar, orange peel and Rosemary into a clean bottle or jar and put the lid on it. The heat will seal the lid.  I store this in the fridge after I open it the first time.

To use this to make salad dressing, mix equal parts of the vinegar, oil and water with half a part sugar.  Shake vigorously and pour it over your favorite salad ingredients.

Chicken Fricassee One-Potter

I needed a Saturday with absolutely nothing to do, so I created one! I enjoyed a couple of TV movies and several hours of reading. Out came the pressure cooker and I made some creamy and delicious. Chicken Fricassee has  been around for centuries and was first written about in a medieval French cookbook in 1300.
The dish was one of President Abraham Lincoln's favorite foods!

It couldn't be easier and can be made for a crowd or for one. Here's how simple it is.  Use one large boneless chicken breast and cut it into thin slices. Dust the meat in flour and brown it in a little olive oil. I use my electric pressure cooker for this, so I truly use just one pot.

Now you need to add:
2 cups of chicken broth
1 large potato peeled and cut in chunks
2 large carrots cut in chunks
1/2 cup chopped onion
8 ounces of fresh mushrooms

Cook this under pressure for 10 minutes.  Let the pressure reduce so you can remove the lid and add 2 cups of uncooked egg noodles and 1 cup of half and half.  Season with salt and pepper and rosemary.  Cook for another 6 minutes and let the pressure reduce before opening the pressure cooker.

Everything is thick, creamy, tender and delicious.

Thanksgiving Dinner 2016

I've been really busy in the last several weeks with my new job ... weekends, too. I'm finally getting around to posting some pictures from Thanksgiving dinner. Our tablescape this year was really casual. I used a set of galvanized tin chargers that I received as a Mother's Day present and added a big galvanized tin pumpkin to the composed centerpiece.

I always place a take home favor at each place setting. This year Phoebe was finally old enough to take seriously the process of talking about all the things we are thankful for. She first reached over and hugged me and said she was thankful for her grandma! She sure keeps me going!
I love galvanized tin. I don't know why, because as a kid I hated anything galvanized. While my friends moms were getting new fancy plastic buckets to use mopping the kitchen floor, at my house we still used an old galvanized bucket. Considering that some of those old buckets are still around and the plastic ones and several generations after line our landfills ... my mom was pretty smart to keep what she didn't have to replace! I guess galvanized tin is comforting. My big pumpkin came from Hobby Lobby; the chargers were found at TJMaxx and the tableware is from Pier 1.  And, yes, if you follow my blog you know that I have several sets of Thanksgiving china including Johnson Brothers His Royal Majesty, but this year I splurged for something much more casual.

As always, the fireplace mantel was decorated for the holiday, but not too extravagantly! Phoebe and I had shopped our favorite junk shop a couple weeks before Thanksgiving and we found a basket filled with more corn husk dolls, so they found a new home on the mantel ... along with blown glass red and blue pumpkins and a chicken wire pumpkin.

By the time you read this post you will be well decorated for Christmastime! Hope you enjoy it anyway!

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