Sunday, September 15, 2013

I LOVE Fall!!!

So we had an unexpected bonus this year.  We have apples on our tree!!  It usually only produces every other year, or every couple of years.  We had a TON of apples on the tree last year and I posted about all of the apple butter I was able to make (and we still have some!!).  You can see that post here!

Last year, my grandson picked apples with me and apparently loved doing so.  He's been talking about picking apples since this spring.  At that time, I wasn't even sure we'd have any.  But the apples are growing on the part of the tree that didn't produce any last year.  And when I was looking at the tree this morning, I realized that it looks like 4 thees that have actually grown together.  So... we have apples!!!

I think I've been picking a apple a week for the past month or more to check to see if they were 'done' yet.  Yesterday, the apple was good!!  They are DONE!!  They'll keep getting redder but now they are big and juicy and YUMMY!  It's time!!

This morning, Mr. Inspiring and I picked a 5-gallon bucket full.  I was soo excited!!  I found a canning recipe for Apple Pie Filling!!  You can see it here!  The Pocket Change Gourmet even includes some super-cute labels.  Go visit her and give her some love.  The recipe is soo easy!!  I followed the recipe exactly, except I must have used more apples and less syrup in the jars because I was able to get 7 quarts from one recipe.  I then made 3/4 of the syrup recipe and was able to get 5 more jars.

I made a total of 12 jars of apple pie filling!!   Aren't they pretty??

As I was making my labels and putting them on the lids, I found that one of the jars didn't seal.

Dang it.............  (yay!!!)

I had to go ahead and bake something with it.

And what better recipe than my all time, FAVE O RITE, super-yummy, positively D-LISH, most awesomest (yes, that is a word.) recipe for Apple Crisp.

I'm now going to share that recipe with you.  You can thank me later...........

Keep in mind this is the full recipe.  Tonight, I only made the topping.

Apple Crisp

1 Tablespoon flour
1 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
6 medium Granny Smith Apples, peeled and sliced

Combine well and place in greased 9 x 13 pan.  (I usually use my Pampered Chef stone for this and it keeps it warm for a while..............  well, long enough for seconds)

1 cup flour
1 cup oats
1 cup butter flavored Crisco
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 cup sugar

Mix very well with a pastry cutter or fork and sprinkle over the filling.

Bake in 350 degree oven for 45 minutes.

Serve warm - and add a dollop of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Heaven in a spoon!!

I really wish someone had already invented computer scratch n sniff so you could experience this heavenly dish!!

It's calling my name so I'm signing off...................

Hugs ~~ Suz

Friday, August 30, 2013

When One Door Closes

Hi, it's me, Suz!  This is my second post in a week!!  What can I say?  I missed you!!!

This is a project that I've been wanting to post, but I never have had my bedroom all finished with all the cute accessories like I see a lot of y'all doing.  After 2 years, I figure my room probably isn't going to get accessorized any time soon, so I'll just show you what I did!

I made a headboard out of a door I picked up on Craigslist.  The guy bought the door unfinished and just hung it like that.  When I got it from him, it was basically a new door, just dirty!  It even still had the plastic on the windows.

I wanted the headboard to look old and worn.  I thought about what colors had been popular during the past 20 or so years.  I decided to paint a coat of hunter green all over it, and then a coat of navy blue.  Then I took some dark brown paint and some turquoise paint and painted random spots on the door with those colors.  After all that was good and dry, I painted a couple of coats of a nice, creamy off-white.

When all that was dry, I became a distructive little crafter!  I jabbed it with a screwdriver, and scratched it all up with a brush.  I even carved our wedding date and our names into it.  Then I sanded a lot of the edges.  It's pretty cool because you can see the paint layers as if it really were an old door!!

I mixed up a very thin concoction of water and dark brown paint and wiped the whole door down.  The wood was very fresh looking where I was trying to make it old, and this helped age the wood and create the look I wanted.  After all that was dry, I put 3 coats of polyurethane on it.  Mr. Inspiring added a crystal looking old door knob.  That was what it needed and I love how it turned out.  Mr. Inspiring loves that I made it special for us.

What do y'all think?

If you have any questions on anything I did with this, just let me know!!

Hugs ~~ Suz

I'm joining these fun parties!!

Friday, August 23, 2013

When Life Hand You Tomatoes!

I honestly don't know what my deal is.......... I hate that I only post once in a while.

 Why??? Why can I not post on my blog??

 I love blogging and visiting all my blog buddies (that's a real term!! I'm sure of it!)....

This past week, a co-worker gave Mr. Inspiring and me 2 5-gallon buckets of fresh ripe tomatoes and a bunch of green peppers, banana peppers, and jalapeno peppers....... So.... what did I do?? I made SALSA, of course.

 And yes, this post will reveal how sorely out of practice I am with my blogging......

 No. During. Pictures...........

 BUT -- - -- (I say, hoping for redempetion)

 I can share my recipe....................

 Salsa    (De Susanna - haha!! )

6 quarts peeled & chopped fresh tomatoes
3/4 cup white vinegar
5 jalapeno peppers, chopped (remove the seeds for less heat)
5 banana peppers, chopped
1 medium green pepper, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
3/4 tsp minced garlic
1 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp cilantro flakes
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 can black beans, drained
1 small can tomato paste

 The easiest way to peel tomatoes is to cut an 'x' in the bottom of the tomato and make a couple small slits by the stem, then drop them in boiling water. As soon as the skin cracks/splits, remove the tomato from the boiling water and drop into a bowl of ice water. It peels off so easily.

Core the tomatoes and then chop them up. Put into a large stock pot and add the remaining ingredients. You'll need to let the mixture cook for at least an hour, to cook down and get thick.

When I made mine, I added the beans and paste after it had cooked for about an hour. The tomato past helps thicken it up, and also adds a sweetness to it.  (I also added a few squirts of lime juice into the second batch..... I think it helped cut some of the sweetness of the tomatoes.)

After it's cooked down, spoon it into clean, dry canning jars and cover with your 2-piece lids. Water bath can it for 40 minutes, at least. Remove the jars from the boiling water and let cool. As it cools, your lids should ping as they seal. I usually let the jars cool overnight and then check them in the morning. If the lids have any give or pop when you push them, you didn't get a good seal and you'll have to refrigerate those jars and eat them first.

This recipe is very east and you can add or subtract the peppers and seasonings for your personal tastes.  We like our's on the hot side.

Mr. Inspiring's exact words:  I never want salsa from the store ever again!!

I hope y'all enjoy the recipe!!

Hugs ~~ Suz