Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A lot of this and a lot of that...

Baked... check.

Painted... check.

Ate soup in bread bowls... check.

 Pumpkin Patch... check.

The cool weather made me so giddy this last weekend that I accomplished my entire 
Autumn To-Do List in two days!
Just kidding.
I DID bake and go to the Pumpkin Patch.
The painting and the bread bowl soup were done last week sometime... worth sharing though.

First...the recipes: 

Sweet Potato-Apple Crisp

2 Large Sweet Potatoes
2 Large Apples
Olive Oil
1 Teaspoon of Cinnamon
1/4 Teaspoon Cloves

1/2 Cup of Flour
1/2 Cup of Oats
1/2 Cup of Brown Sugar
1 Teaspoon of Baking Powder
1 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
Candied Walnuts*

Preheat oven to 350.
Slice potatoes and apples into small chunks and place in a roasting pan. Drizzle with olive oil and add cloves and cinnamon; mix together. Roast until potatoes are soft and the sugars in the apples begin to caramelize, about an hour or so. Prepare topping; mix all ingredients except candied walnuts. Once potatoes and apples are nicely roasted, remove from oven and place into a 9x9 (9x13 would probably work just as well). Pour topping over potatoes and apples. Place dish in oven and bake for about 20 minutes, or until topping gets crunchy. Remove from oven and sprinkle candied walnuts over entire dish.

*You can make your own candied walnuts by toasting about a cup and a half of walnuts in the oven (350 degrees) on a baking sheet; while these are toasting, pour 1/2 a cup of sugar in a saucepan and cook on medium heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar caramelizes and becomes liquid.  Remove toasted walnuts and pour into saucepan; stir to completely coat walnuts. Once coated, place walnuts back on baking sheet to cool. Sprinkle a little coarse salt on them for a nice little surprise when you bite into them.  Or don't.

We ate this as a side dish, but you could eat this as a dessert with a little vanilla ice cream... ooh, yum. Although if you have a sweet tooth, you may want to add a bit more sugar to the recipe as it's not a super sweet dish, as desserts should be.

Loaded Potato Soup

2/3 Cup of Butter
2/3 Cup of Flour
7 Cups of Milk
4 Cups of Potatoes
4 Green Onions
10-12 Strips of Bacon
1 Cup of Sour Cream
Salt and Pepper to taste
Bread Bowls*

Melt butter; stir in flour until smooth.  Gradually stir in milk until it thickened. Add potatoes and green onions. Stir constantly until soup bubbles. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, or until potatoes are soft. Mix in remaining ingredients and serve in bread bowls.
This recipe will feed 4 to 6 people. Sometimes I half the recipe and sometimes I just freeze the leftovers.

*I used the same dough recipe that I used here but shaped into four large balls instead of rolls. Once baked you just scoop out the middle and pour the soup in.

Second... the painting:
I'm sloooooowly redecorating my room 
(as in I have pieces that I want to put in there all over the floor and dressers, but haven't put them up!)
and wanted a shelf.
So, I made one from some wood 
(from MY stash of wood in the garage, Husband!)
 and some old iron brackets that I've used several different ways throughout the years. 
I am loving that translucent glaze on EVERYTHING, so it received a coat of that, too.
And I love it.

I found that baby cradle at my Dad's house... 
and just took it.
(Other people go to their parent's houses and just take what they want, right? Oh... just us? Hmm...)
It had pink sheep just kind of frolicking around on it... not really my style.
Hey, frolicking sheep are great, if that's your thing... it's just not mine.
So, it received a little TLC, a coat of gray paint, and a little sanding to beat it up a bit because it's going to get beat up anyway... believe me.  
My daughters are kind of baby crazy... they MIGHT get it from me.

We inherited those chairs (plus two more matching ones) from my in-laws when we were first married.  They're stained in a dark wood and, again, just not really my style.
And they needed to match this table:

(more on this to come)

And now they do.

And finally... 
(Yes, this post WILL have to end sometime... just keep telling yourself that!)
The Pumpkin Patch:
Like the Fair, 
I love everything about the Pumpkin Patch.
And we were the very FIRST ones there this year;
which means we did the zip-line first, slid down the slide first, jumped on the bouncing pillow first, ran through the corn maze first, rode the little train first, and had first pick of the crop
(Whoa...please remember I'm a first-born-only-girl-in-my-family brat as you read that last sentence).
It was awesome.
Aaaaaaand... we had lunch at Arby's afterwards 
(that one's for you, Becky!).

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