Saturday, November 29, 2008


Welcome to my Thanksgiving table. My favorite holiday of the year.... hands down, no question. Where we actually set aside a day to be thankful for what we have and reflect on those good things in our life. This has been a rough year for our family with the loss of a sister-in-law well before her time and the illnesses of both of our mothers. Somehow on Thanksgiving you still feel thankful for what is good, you know that you can cope with anything if you have family around you and of course enjoy a really good meal. These are my cherished "Tom Turkey" plates. The story about these goes like this. I really really loved these plates and my mother offered up a deal: Whoever would host Thanksgiving would get to keep the plates. I couldn't get my hand up fast enough and have been hosting this holiday ever since. I have become quite proficient over the years (not to be too braggy about it) and always add in some new dishes along with the tried and true traditional favorites.

My Thanksgiving mantle with a new red and white cloth that I found at the thrift store. I just love red and white.

Holiday centerpieces of mums, votives and mixed nuts. Cheap and easy.

I used a brown sugar and spicey mustard glaze on the turkeys this year and they came out spectacularly brown and really good with a sweet crunchy skin. I always cook two smaller turkeys (around 12 lbs each) instead of one large one. They are more tender and there are more drumsticks to share!

Roasted vegetable medley of sweet potato, parsnips and carrots

homemade rolls.... my favorite right out of the oven.

This was new this year from the Stonewall Farm Kitchen cookbook: roasted brussel sprouts with pancetta and a balsamic glaze... yummy!
I can't believe I didn't get pictures of the desserts but they were good.... trust me.
Hope you enjoyed my Thanksgiving celebration and that your holiday was wonderful...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Looking like Snow in November

I am busy getting ready for my open studio tour at the end of November. Every year I say I am going to get all this done in the summer and not rush around but it never seems to work out that way. Here are some deflated snow people in progress. I have gotten a lot of mileage out of this vintage popcorn chenille bedspread. I am almost at the end of it but it has yielded a nice population of snow people!And all finished....
Here are this year's troupe of Snow People posing for their photo op... they are quite cooperative.

I made a snow lady this year and I love her pink cashmere neck ruffle.

This guy reminds me of an old college sports fan. Making his wool felt top hat took me longer than I thought it would.

I like the way his head turned out... they all end up with their own personality. His neck ruffle is made from a vintage crepe paper Hawaiian lei.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Lobster Fest!

Here is the upside of a down economy: Apparently there is a glut of lobsters on the market and when I heard that on the news I ran right out to my local grocery and got these babies for $3.99 per pound!!!! I restrained myself and bought just three...two for the following yummy recipe below and one for lunch. Lobster for lunch on a Tuesday... that's what I call livin!

This recipe was given to me by a good friend and fellow artisan Barbara. She always serves it at our Artisan potluck dinners and it is always a big hit. It's rich and delicious.

Lobster Mac & Cheese

14 ounces small macaroni
4 TBLSP. chopped onion
salt & pepper
6 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
4 cups thin white sauce (see below)
meat (tails and claws) from two cooked lobsters (can also use the equivilent of frozen lobster)
2 TBLSP butter

Heat oven to 375. Cook mac as directed on box. Place half the mac in ungreased 9x13 casserole. Sprinkle with half the onion, lobster & cheese, repeat. Pour white sauce over casserole. Dot with butter. Cover. Bake 30 minutes. Uncover, bake 15 minutes longer.

White sauce
For each cup of sauce:

1 TBLSP. butter
1 TBLSP. flour
1 cup milk or 1/2 & 1/2 (I used the half and half)
Melt butter in saucepan over low heat. Blend in flour, salt & pepper. Cook over low heat, stirring until mixture is smooth & bubbly. Remove from heat. Stir in milk. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute.