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Christmas Mantel Before & After

It really is the most wonderful time of the year. Christmas is almost here! It’s time to bring out all that sparkles and shines, all the red and the green, all that smells like gingerbread and pine… I can’t help it, I love this stuff. So when I was contacted by Wayfair to share the transformation of our mantel from drab to fab, plain to off-the-chain (or in reality- just everyday to holiday), I was like, “Count me in!”

I really wish I could have shown you an awesome shot of my autumn-themed mantel, (that wasn’t in existence) before our Christmas transformation. We technically did have a couple small pumpkins that sat on the mantel that I removed right before my youngest son’s birthday party. Actually, I also had to remove the “Minion” balloons to get the following picture. But it gives you an idea of what our mantel might look like on any given day.

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I’ll admit, it looks a little minimalist.

And now with a sprinkling of Christmas cheer! (Drumroll please…)

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You know those picturesque Christmas cards that feature the stockings hung by the chimney with care? Of course, I have to do that too. (Side note: I actually didn’t grow up with a fireplace in our home, and my mother always made it feel like a Christmas card.) Our mantel is a collage of new and old. It’s playful and colorful for the kids, but holds nostalgia for the adults in the house. (I could probably give a small historical account of each item.) Mostly what I love about this decorated area is the sentimental attachment, starting with the fact that my grandpa made this mantel for my grandmother with his own two hands. And I love that this fireplace is a part of all of my childhood Christmas memories and now I get to share that with my children.

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My mom used to hang this plate in our house during the Christmas season over 30 years ago. It actually was in a set of three Christmas dishes that made a regular appearance. I always thought it was so cute. Every dish told it’s own story (in not so many words), the kind of imaginative story you create in your head. There’s no reason not to keep that custom alive. If you’re looking to start one, check out the dishes found here!

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The wooden nutcrackers are part of a tradition my husband and I have started with our children. My oldest son loves to change the numbers for the Christmas countdown. Of course all of the kids love to open their mouths (pull their beards) and adjust all moveable pieces. Classic.

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I know you remember those Santa Bears from the 80’s. We had them. That’s what this bear reminds me of, except the originals were white with those red knitted hats, but every bit as cute and fluffy. This little drummer bear belonged to my husband’s family. I honestly don’t know how the bear became so intertwined with Christmas… but it’s a thing.

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My in-laws gifted us this globe last year. It was an instant favorite. Everyone needs a Christmas globe that comes to snowy life after you tip it upside-down and place it backside-right. If you don’t have one yet, click on the link to check out this must-have! (And if you look closely at the one in this picture, you can see our pool closed for the winter. Like magic… but not.)

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My great-aunt Shirley made this a few years back. She used to make quilts, and had given one to our family when I was young. When I went away to college, it was the only blanket I wanted to bring with me. I guess it just reminded me of family. So, this little handmade tree is priceless; it embodies the spirit of Christmas that just can’t be bought.

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I’ve always loved the Charlie Brown Christmas story (hence all of the stuffed characters). It’s just such a part of my Christmas heritage. (And by the way, Wayfair has a plethora of related options… I’m particularly crazy about the painting of Linus with a wreath.) My parents recorded their voices reading  A Charlie Brown Christmas a couple years ago. It’s the most wonderful/awful gift they have ever given. Of course they had in mind that it will live on after they are gone; so I cry every time we listen to it. (They are still alive and well. I’m ridiculous, I know.) I’m also scared to death that my kids are going to accidentally push a button and erase the whole thing. So on the mantel, out-of-reach, it stays.

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Thank you Wayfair for allowing me to share our Christmas mantel transformation with you! Season’s Greetings!

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Loving Lately ☃️

It’s no secret that I’m off my game lately. It was cold season, then the holidays… I wrote a children’s book. I can’t believe I missed my Thursday edition of Loving Lately! I’d like to say it was because I was doing laundry.

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No, but really… I’d like to say it’s because I’ve been sampling all of the hot chocolate recipes I can find. For example, the Nutella Hot Chocolate pictured above from Café Delights. I whole-heartedly wish I was chewing on one of those marshmallows this very moment. Or the Champurrado (Chocolate Atole)  from Muy Bueno Cookbook in the epitome-of-cocoa-greatness featured image. I don’t believe I’ve ever had hot chocolate thickened with masa harina (corn flour) before… but oooh, the cinnamon, star anise and brown sugar make it sound like it’s just the right thing to do.

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And I really wouldn’t mind having a cup full of this French Hot Chocolate by wellplated.com. I don’t think an explanation is necessary. But, I’ll tell you why… because someone (I assume one of my children) turned the heat off in my house. They just flipped the switch on the thermostat to off! It is literally freezing outside, and I am inside with numb toes and numb fingertips… so numb that it is difficult to type. (Because as I already admitted I am off my game, and it literally took frozen toes for me to check the thermostat.)

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What would I give to be the person in this picture right now holding that warm London Fog Hot Chocolate with Maple Whipped Cream wearing an oversized sweater? (Courtesy of The Kitchen McCabe) …Let’s just say I would give A LOT!

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I can pretty much guarantee that I WILL be making this Crockpot Coconut Hot Chocolate from Rachel Schultz this afternoon. Look at the crushed graham crackers on that rim! I want in.

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Of course, if you’re feeling experimental, you could try the Jalapeño Hot Chocolate by The Pioneer Woman. I like a little heat in my hot cocoa now and then, but I’ve only tried chile peppers. Who am I to limit your heat options? Go for it!

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And if you want to make it cute for the kiddos, you could always add the marshmallow snowman taking a soak in a chocolatey hot tub (which sounds amazing). I’d love to give this genius credit… but to no avail, I will just credit Pinterest (also genius).

Cheers friends!

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Laundry Day

You know when it’s time to do laundry… but you woke up feeling like you’re just zapped and you have done all of the laundry that you are ever going to do? But then somehow you doubtfully convince yourself that you will feel better tomorrow. Then the next day comes around and you’ve got an attitude about it, and you’re like “There is no way I am doing laundry today.” So when day four approaches you have to prioritize, and you say to yourself “We are out of bread and milk, I can’t do the laundry! I have to go to the grocery store- like now!” Then on day 6 you look at the mountain of laundry and admit defeat. And you’re kind of depressed because you know in your heart of hearts that you can’t possibly do all of that laundry. That’s it, your kids are never going to have clean clothes again. And you’re at least thankful that one of them just had a birthday because they should get like two more good days. It’s about the next day when you just have to suck it up, because giving up is really not in your nature; so you do like 10 loads in one day? Well, I would have no idea what that is like.

Okay, I lied. I wrote this about me.

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Recovery

What’s the allotted amount of time for holiday recovery? Specifically 2 Thanksgiving dinners, a four day weekend with the kids,

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and a birthday party?

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Because Minion Bob and I are beat.

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Sadie’s Thanksgiving

I love Thanksgiving. It has always been a cherished and celebrated holiday in my family. My traditions have changed throughout the years; loved ones have passed, families have grown, houses have been sold and people move… But some things have remained the same; I still get dressed up even though we are just meeting up with family and friends. We don’t take for granted how blessed we are to be together and share in our feast. And I’m from Michigan, so there’s always a Lion’s game.

Many of you know how it goes. Children grow up and get married. They incorporate both sides of the family and coinciding-ly make new traditions. Sometimes parents are divorced, so there are even more houses to visit. If your blessed with grandparents still alive, many holiday routines include a visit to their house. Often those married couples begin to have children of their own… All of the sudden you feel like you’re spending the holiday in the car, and getting your baby and self in and out of it- so you need to reevaluate your traditions. (Maybe that last part is just my experience?)

Of course, I’m truly thankful I have places to go with people who love me and my family. And I’ve learned to accept change throughout the years too. We usually don’t have dinner at the cabin pictured above. (I really wish we did.) This photo was taken the first year, I believe, of owning the cabin and the first Thanksgiving spent without my grandmother. We had always gone at some point during the day to have Thanksgiving dinner at her house, even after I was married with baby in tow; a tradition I had followed since childhood and one that admittedly I miss. At this time, I was pregnant with my daughter and we spent the holiday in the woods with my parents and my sister’s family. It was a beautiful way to transition into new holiday experiences. It also gives you an idea as to the traditional American food we eat. Food that was prepared without a conventional oven that the cabin was missing at the time, I might add.

Confession: I have never made a roasted turkey. Although I have graduated from sitting at the kid’s table, I have yet to actually host a Thanksgiving dinner. Therefore, I have never made the prized turkey. That said, I do feel like I make an important contribution to the annual feast, namely desserts and any side dish with which I may want to experiment.

Here is a sneak peak into what I’ll be bringing to Thanksgiving dinner this year (for the available recipes I have included the link):

For the last, I don’t know, how many years I have been bringing my Cranberry Pecan Pumpkin Bread. It is a sweet bread that we eat with dinner along side the rolls. And if any is leftover, it makes for a great treat with coffee the next morning.

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I love pecan pie in all forms. Here is a Maple Pecan Pie that has become a part of our Thanksgiving tradition, that I will be bringing again this year. (Side note: I can’t wait to update this photo!)

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In addition to this pie I am going to make the “Ultimate Pumpkin Pie with Rum Whipped Cream” from the Barefoot Contessa’s Foolproof cookbook. Because if I can’t try something new, I’m not having fun. Also, let me take this opportunity to apologize to my dad in advance, because he is a pumpkin pie purist. Sorry pops, but keep an open mind! You might love it!

Lastly in the dessert category I am bringing my Pumpkin Cheesecake. And when I say “my” please note that it is not actually my recipe. But it is the same gorgeous creamy cheesecake with graham cracker crust that I love and have been making for years, that I wouldn’t change a thing about and have adopted as my own.

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I’ve also never made a green bean casserole. I’m not proud of that statement. But this is the year I make it happen. I’m just going to ease myself in by trying French’s Green Bean Casserole straight from their site. However, if any of you with experience know that I am making a mistake please feel free to leave me a link with your favorite recipe in my comments, I am open to suggestions… until this evening when I shop for my ingredients.

Lastly, I am making appetizers. But not appetizers for like before the meal, because everyone comes hungry (unless you’ve been to several dinners already 😉) for the Thanksgiving feast. These are really more like snacks for later because we are having a late afternoon feast this year (to accommodate several families) and when evening rolls around I doubt people are really going to be hungry when we wake up from our naps (just kidding… someone has to watch the children), but we may want to snack. So I am going to make The Pioneer Woman’s Festive Goat Cheese with dried cranberry and pistachios from her “Friends-giving” episode, and my Smoky Cheese Ball; which I usually ingest while watching the parade… maybe I’ll make two.

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There you have it! Have a great holiday friends and God bless!

Love,

Sadie

 

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Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies

In general I thinks kids young and old love chocolate chip cookies. And nothing compares with fresh baked, warm out of the oven, homemade chocolate chip cookies. My oldest son is always asking me to make them. Actually he is always asking if he can make them; which I know means that I will be making them. Making cookies from scratch seems like a large task until you start- and realize it’s basically throwing all the ingredients in one big bowl, mixing it up and dropping spoonfuls of batter on a baking sheet. We got this. It’s so worth it.

As organic as possible:

From the Better Homes & Gardens New Cook Book:

1/2 cup Shortening

1/2 cup Butter, softened

1 cup packed Brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated Sugar

1/2 tsp Baking soda

2 Eggs

1 tsp Vanilla

2 1/2 cups Flour

1 – 12 oz. package (2 cups) semisweet Chocolate chips

 

In a large mixing bowl beat shortening and better with an electric mixer for 30 seconds.

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Add brown sugar, granulated sugar, and baking soda. Sadie tip: I always round the granulated sugar! 😉

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Beat until mixture is combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in eggs and vanilla until combined. Sadie tip #2: I always splash in a little more vanilla! 😉

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Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining flour.

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Stir in chocolate chips.

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Drop dough by rounded teaspoons 2 inches apart onto an uncreased cookie sheet. I like to use an ice cream scoop, because we like big cookies. 🙂

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Bake a 375° oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.

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Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Woot woot! Eat ’em warm. Or whenever you want.

Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup Shortening
  • 1/2 cup Butter, softened
  • 1 cup packed Brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Baking soda
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups Flour
  • 1 - 12 oz. package (2 cups) semisweet Chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl beat shortening and better with an electric mixer for 30 seconds.
  2. Add brown sugar, granulated sugar, and baking soda. Beat until mixture is combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally.
  3. Beat in eggs and vanilla until combined.
  4. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining flour.
  5. Stir in chocolate chips.
  6. Drop dough by rounded teaspoons 2 inches apart onto an uncreased cookie sheet.
  7. Bake a 375° oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.
  8. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool.
http://sadiesnest.com/classic-chocolate-chip-cookies/

 

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Loving Lately 🎁

Loving Lately: Christmas Catalogs

I know, I know, I’m a little ahead of the game. Well, for me. I do know people that shop the sales after Christmas and stash gifts away for the following year. That’s not my style. I like to procrastinate- no shopping until after Black Friday (with emphasis on after, because I am not going out in that mess). But the kids are sick (again). And I’m sick (again). And these bright cheerful catalogs keep coming to the house. There is nothing like a Pottery Barn catalog to spark inspiration for the season. I’m getting the warm fuzzies thinking about the holidays; which is just what someone with an incessant cough and runny nose needs. That and some hot tea and a box of tissues.

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Can you smell the pine tree in the air? Seriously. Look at that table runner, those reindeer plates and that serving board. The antler serving spoon- over the top. Just stop. I can’t take it any more.

Here is something else for the table…

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This soapstone tray from uncommongoods.com is oven proof and retains heat for up to 45 minutes so you can keep food warm. It’s also can be refrigerated so you can keep food cold! Thats pretty cool right? If you haven’t checked them out, you should. Uncommon Goods has a ton of unique gifts- personal, for the kitchen and the home.

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They are also responsible for this “Berry Buddy” stoneware strainer. It’s handmade in Pennsylvania. It’s pretty enough to leave out! You know what they say, you pick out gifts based on what you like. Guilty.

I also fell in love with this decanter from Crate & Barrel.

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I don’t drink scotch or cognac. But they put this set in their catalog all shiny next to a Christmas tree with complimenting gold bulbs… And just like they intended, I started thinking about how pretty is was and what a lovely display it would make… I’m such a sucker.

I also received this awesome catalog from American Spoon full of artisan foods, handcrafted preserves and condiments made in Michigan. They show pictures of these perfect berries picked on an idyllic farm transported in iconic baskets and crates to the quintessential copper pots for small batches of what I imagine to be the ultimate preserves. But I’m like, you had me at the simple brown paper label with the nostalgic font.

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I understand what it seems like, but it’s not all about the kitchen. The kids are always on my mind. I wish they liked getting clothes as gifts. Look at these ridiculously cute ensembles from Janie and Jack.

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It just goes on and on. How am I supposed to get through Thanksgiving with all of this Christmas excitement? 😳

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Turkey Pot Pie with Cornbread Stuffing Crust

In the upper midwest it’s getting quite chilly, complete with a layer of frost on the roof in the morning. It’s been perfect weather for heating up the kitchen. I love it. Thanksgiving is right around the corner. Traditional and innovative ideas are flooding the internet and airwaves. I can’t get enough! My mother-in-law does this great chicken pot pie with a stuffing crust. So when my husband brought home some all-natural turkey breasts from the market, I had a lightbulb moment! This is like Thanksgiving enveloped in one dish. It’s delicious, fragrant, hearty, and warm. It’s perfect. It’s also a good way to use up those leftovers. 😉

 

Makes 2 pies

As organic as possible:

For the bottom crust:

(Tip: You can ready crust or eliminate this all together for time and preparation’s sake. There would just be no layer on the bottom. If you need further confirmation, The Pioneer Woman does a fantastic pot pie with only an upper crust.)

3 cups Flour

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 cup cold butter, cubed (1 1/2 sticks)

3/4 cup vegetable shortening

1 egg, beaten

5 Tbsp cold water

 

For the Filling:

2 large Carrots, peeled and diced small

2 large Celery stalks, rinsed, dried, and diced small

1 large yellow Onion, diced small

2 Tbsp Butter

8 oz. or 1 cup Peas (frozen, fresh… leftover)

8 oz.  or 1 cup Corn kernels (frozen, fresh… leftover)

2 cups Chicken or Turkey stock

Roux (1 1/2 Tbsp Butter and 2 Tbsp (rounded) Flour)

2 1/2 cups (rounded) cooked Turkey, about 2 breasts (see instruction)

1 cup heavy cream

1/4 tsp dried Sage (optional)

1 tsp dried Thyme

1 chicken bouillon cube (optional, but gives great depth of flavor)

1 1/2 tsp Salt

1 tsp freshly ground black Pepper

 

For Stuffing Crust

6 cups (approx) of prepared stuffing – I used 1 box of  Trader Joes Cornbread Stuffing Mix

 

Prepare crust by sifting flour and salt into a medium bowl. Add cubed butter and shortening. Using a pastry cutter or 2 butter knives blend into flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs. Add egg and water. I try to quickly use my hands (because you don’t want butter to melt) until all is combined. I shape it into 2 small discs, wrap with plastic and place in the refrigerator for at least 1/2 hour or up to a couple days.

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When ready to use, Preheat oven to 400°.

Roll out and place in deep pie dish. Crimp edges. Repeat for 2nd pie.

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We are going to pre-bake the pie crusts. To keep them from bubbling up on the bottom, cover the crusts with parchment paper and place dried beans or baking beads/pie weights on top of the paper. Bake for about 8-10 minutes. Set aside. Turn oven down to 350°.

Instruction on Turkey Preparation:

When boiling turkey breasts I prefer extra flavor so I boiled mine in 2 cups of chicken stock, then added water until they were covered. I also added a few sage leaves, sprigs of thyme and a bay leaf. Boil for 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool for handling then dice into bite-sized pieces. You can use plain water to boil. You can also used leftover roasted turkey, which would be yummy.

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Starting the filling:

Heat butter over medium-heat until melted and starting to froth.

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Add diced carrots, celery and onions.

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Sauté for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions start to turn translucent. Add stock and stir.

In a separate small sauté pan, over medium heat, melt 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter. Add flour and stir. The mixture will gather then soften. Allow to cook around 4-5 minutes stirring on occasion. This is a light roux, so remove from heat if it starts to brown. This is going to thicken your filling.

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If using frozen peas and corn, I like to give them a quick rinse in a colander.

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Add the roux to the sautéed veggie and stock mixture. Stir. Add the peas, corn, bouillon cube, heavy cream, cooked turkey, dried herbs, salt and pepper.

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Give a stir. And a smell. Allow to sit on a very low heat.

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In the meantime, prepare your stuffing according to box directions. Of course you can make your own.

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Taste the turkey filling mixture for seasoning and adjust accordingly. Use a ladle or large spoon transport the filling into the prepared pie crusts. I could honestly eat this like a soup, but the pot pie is amazing.

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Don’t be afraid to fill it to the brim. Then using half of the stuffing mixture, make an even layer across the top. You can pile it on high. Use the remaining stuffing to do the same with the other pie.

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Place them on individual baking sheets and bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes, until stuffing crust starts to brown.

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Allow to cool slightly. Serve warm. Scoop into a bowl or rimmed dish. So much to be thankful for!

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Turkey Pot Pie with Cornbread Stuffing Crust

Ingredients

  • For the bottom crust:
  • (Tip: You can ready crust or eliminate this all together for time and preparation's sake. There would just be no layer on the bottom.)
  • 3 cups Flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup cold butter, cubed (1 1/2 sticks)
  • 3/4 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 5 Tbsp cold water
  • For the Filling:
  • 2 large Carrots, peeled and diced small
  • 2 large Celery stalks, rinsed, dried, and diced small
  • 1 large yellow Onion, diced small
  • 2 Tbsp Butter
  • 8 oz. or 1 cup Peas (frozen, fresh... leftover)
  • 8 oz. or 1 cup Corn kernels (frozen, fresh... leftover)
  • 2 cups Chicken or Turkey stock
  • Roux (1 1/2 Tbsp Butter and 2 Tbsp (rounded) Flour)
  • 2 1/2 cups (rounded) cooked Turkey, about 2 breasts (see instruction)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 tsp dried Sage (optional)
  • 1 tsp dried Thyme
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube (optional, but gives great depth of flavor)
  • 1 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black Pepper
  • For Stuffing Crust
  • 6 cups (approx) of prepared stuffing - I used 1 box of Trader Joes Cornbread Stuffing Mix

Instructions

  1. Bottom Crust: Prepare crust by sifting flour and salt into a medium bowl. Add cubed butter and shortening. Using a pastry cutter or 2 butter knives blend into flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs. Add egg and water. I try to quickly use my hands (because you don't want butter to melt) until all is combined. I shape it into 2 small discs, wrap with plastic and place in the refrigerator for at least 1/2 hour or up to a couple days. When ready to use, preheat the oven to 400° in order to pre-bake the pie crusts. To keep them from bubbling up on the bottom, cover the crusts with parchment paper and place dried beans or baking beads/pie weights on top of the paper. Bake for about 8-10 minutes. Set aside. Turn oven down to 350°.
  2. Turkey Preparation: Place turkey breasts in 2 cups of chicken or turkey stock, then added water until covered. Add a few sage leaves, sprigs of thyme and a bay leaf. Boil for 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool for handling then dice into bite-sized pieces. You can use plain water to boil. You can also substitute roasted or leftover turkey, which would be yummy.
  3. For the filling: Heat butter over medium-heat until melted and starting to froth.
  4. Add diced carrots, celery and onion.
  5. Sauté vegetables until onions become translucent.
  6. Add two cups of stock.
  7. In the meantime prepare roux: In a separate small sauté pan, over medium heat, melt 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter. Add flour and stir. The mixture will gather then soften. Allow to cook around 4-5 minutes stirring on occasion. This is a light roux, so remove from heat if it starts to brown. This is going to thicken your filling.
  8. If using frozen peas and corn, give them a quick rinse in a colander.
  9. Add roux to sautéed veggie and stock mixture and give a stir.
  10. Add cooked turkey, peas, corn, bouillon cube, heavy cream, dried herbs, salt and pepper to mixture. Gently stir and reduce heat to low.
  11. Prepare stuffing according to box directions or make your own.
  12. Taste turkey filling for seasoning and adjust accordingly.
  13. Use a ladle or large spoon transport the filling into the prepared pie crusts. Fill to the brim.
  14. Using half of the prepared stuffing, make an even layer over one of the pies. Don't be afraid to pile it on high.
  15. Repeat with the second pie.
  16. Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes until crust starts to brown.
  17. Allow to cool slightly. Serve warm. Scoop into a bowl or rimmed dish. So much to be thankful for!
http://sadiesnest.com/turkey-pot-pie-with-cornbread-stuffing-crust/

 

 

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Stroopwafels

I know I’ve mentioned it before, my fascination and appreciation of the Dutch stroopwafel. Visiting that street vendor was a highlight of my trip to the Netherlands. New York has its hot dogs. Paris has its crêpes. And Amsterdam has its stroopwafels. If you haven’t tried one before, imagine being attracted by a similar smell of an ice cream shop that is making its own waffle cones. But instead of cones, they are making fresh waffled cookie type sandwiches with a thin caramel-esque syrup-y  inner layer that you can hold in your hand while you walk around the outdoor market or town. They can be purchased in different sizes, but the stroopwafels are globally known for their cup-sized roundness; because the idea is that they come back to life as they are warmed through while resting on the rim of your morning (or afternoon… or evening…) coffee or tea. And the unfortunate truth is that I haven’t had any stroopwafels since being stateside that tasted remotely like what I remembered in Holland. Until now. When these are fresh, they are incredible.

As found on Food.com

Waffle cookies

4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup unsalted butter
2 large eggs
1 (1/4 ounce) package active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water
Filling

1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup unsalted butter
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 tablespoons dark corn syrup

DIRECTIONS

Preheat a pizzelle iron. Or in my case a Belgian Cookie Iron.
To Make Waffles: Dissolve the yeast in the warm water.

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Cut butter into the flour.

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Mix in the sugar, cinnamon, eggs and yeast mixture.

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Mix well and set aside to rise for 30 to 60 minutes.

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Roll dough into 12 small balls.

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Squeeze each ball into the preheated pizzelle (or Belgian cookie) iron…

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and bake for about 30 seconds.

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Place the little beauties onto a wax paper.

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To make perfectly rounded edges, use a large biscuit cutter to trim off the excess. (Optional)

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Using a butter knife or the like, cut (or separate) the waffles into two thin waffles.

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Spread the filling…
To Make Filling: In a saucepan boil the brown sugar, the remaining one cup of the butter, cinnamon (this is a must-have ingredient), and dark corn syrup until it reaches the “soft ball stage” (234-240°F, 112-115°C), stirring constantly.

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To Assemble: Cut each waffle (or separate) into 2 thin waffles and spread with filling.

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I used an offset spatula and my fingertip table…

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Repeat this process until all the filling is used. If using store bought, simply spread about 1 tablespoon of filling on one waffle cookie, and place a second cookie on top.

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Makes about 12 servings. Look at these!!!

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Tip: Try eating stroopwafel by resting it over a warm cup of coffee or tea — the steam will warm these up just right.

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Stroopwafels

Ingredients

  • Waffle cookies
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 (1/4 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • 1?2 cup warm water
  • Filling
  • 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 6 tablespoons dark corn syrup

Instructions

  1. Preheat a pizzelle (or Belgian cookie) iron.
  2. To Make Waffles: Dissolve the yeast in the warm water.
  3. Cut butter into the flour.
  4. Mix in the sugar, cinnamon, eggs and yeast mixture. Mix well and set aside to rise for 30 to 60 minutes.
  5. Roll dough into 12 small balls.
  6. Squeeze each ball into the preheated iron and bake for about 30 seconds.
  7. To make perfectly rounded edges, use a large biscuit cutter to trim excess. (optional)
  8. Using a butter knife or the like, cut (or separate) the waffles into two thin waffles.
  9. Spread filling.
  10. To Make Filling: In a saucepan boil the brown sugar, the remaining one cup of the butter, cinnamon (this is a must-have ingredient), and dark corn syrup until it reaches the soft ball stage (234-240°F, 112-115°C), stirring constantly.
  11. To Assemble: Cut each waffle (or separate) into 2 thin waffles and spread with filling.
  12. Repeat this process until all of the filling is used. If using store bought, simply spread about 1 tablespoon of filling on one waffle cookie, let it cool about 1 minute, and place a second cookie on top.
  13. Tip: Try eating stroopwafel by resting it over a warm cup of coffee or tea -- the steam will warm these up just right.
http://sadiesnest.com/stroopwafels/

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Loving Lately 👚

Loving lately: Clothes Recycling
I love getting rid of stuff. Decluttering is like the best part of organization; which I think is directly related to my good mental health. 


I’m a part of this very well orchestrated system of clothes recycling. In a group of friends of mine, I have the oldest son and my sister has the oldest daughter. It all kind of branches out and braids back in from there. 


I pass the outgrown clothes of my oldest son to my sister’s son and likewise she passes her daughter’s clothing to my daughter. Then when her son outgrows the attire, they get passed back to my third child, my second son. After that, it starts to get fun because when my second son gets too big for his wardrobe, it is passed to my sister’s sister-in-law, Annie’s oldest son. 


When he’s finished they get pass back to my back fourth baby and final son. Anything that is worth passing, which always seems like a lot because things are always being added, gets moved to my sister’s other sister-in-law, Erica’s baby boy. I also pass anything from my daughter to Erica’s oldest child and daughter. 

She passes those close back to Annie who has a baby girl. And I’ll admit I feel very good about our system, because everything gets good use. For those of you keeping track, that is a total of 10 boys and girls. 


The kids have clothes. It’s a blessing. It’s also a big head ache. My basement is like a storage unit. I could probably use a better labeling system. But the best part of my organizational day is when I pass my only daughter’s or my last son’s clothing on- because I know they’re never coming back. What Annie and Erica do with the clothing after that, I don’t care. Good riddance! And sure there might be a day when I’m’s stricken with grief for times gone past about my kids who are all grown up and don’t fit into those baby clothes anymore. 

But today’s not that day. Today is the day I pass on totes or large plastic bags or even a little grocery bags with stuff that I don’t have to see again or at least isn’t taking up space in a drawer for a child who can no longer wear it.
(Healthy sigh of relief)

And thank you to my brother-in-law, Ryan, for many of these adorable pictures of all the clothed children.