Thursday, January 28, 2010

Foodie Friday: Tomato Basil Linguine

Lately I've been stepping outside the box a bit when I fix pasta, and trying to get away from the same old red sauce (although I love that too). This week I cooked some tomato basil pasta and then drained it and added some Irish butter (recently discovered this and LOVE it!). Once the pasta was plated, I then added some curls of parmesan, and it's that simple. Everyone loved it and asked for me to fix it again soon.

Mmm...more Irish butter on the bread...

Be sure and visit Michael at Designs By Gollum for Foodie Friday to see what she has cooked up for us this week, and to visit the other participants.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Tablescape Thursday

Welcome to Tablescape Thursday. Be sure and visit Susan at Between Naps on the Porch to see what beautiful table she's come up with this week, and to visit the other participants.

This week I decided to pull in the little blue bistro set from my backyard and set a table in our morning room. This room started life as a dining room, but since we don't have an eat-in kitchen (except for a couple of stools at the island), we use our dining room every day. And someone (I won't say who) bought a few extra pieces of furniture which could not be stuffed into the already cramped dining room. Since we rarely used the formal living room, we flip-flopped the two rooms, so now we have a large dining room. The sleeper sofa in our living room also serves as a second guest bed when we have more than one couple visiting, and this actually works out better as it's at the back of the house and affords more privacy than before.

I got these adorable cups and saucers from Horchow...

The little frog is so sweet...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Potato Soup

Recently, Mari at Once Upon A Plate posted some wonderful tomato soup in the sweetest little "tureens." It turns out that the tureens were actually covered sugar bowls. Mari was kind enough to share the pattern, Rose Chintz by Johnson Brothers. I bought some, and they worked perfectly this past weekend when I made potato soup for Mr. Maison and I.

Potato Soup: Saute onions, carrots and celery in olive oil. Then add water and diced potatoes and salt and pepper. Cook until the vegetables are done, and then add in butter and half and half (I have used regular milk or heavy cream also).
Since this post contains a tablescape, food and *pink*, I'm linking to Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps on the Porch, Foodie Friday at Designs By Gollum and Pink Saturday at How Sweet the Sound. Thanks to all three of these ladies who graciously host these events each week!

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Our cat Sophie went to the Rainbow Bridge tonight. I can imagine that she's found her sister Sassy and that they are frolicking about, pain-free, and restored to health and vigor.

Here's a couple of pictures of Sophie from a couple of years back. She was always such a teeny, petite little thing, with the longest tail...

This was Sophie with her human brother and sister, when they were all just wee babes, eight years ago when we bought our house and were in the middle of a remodel...

Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge. When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable. All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind. They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster. You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart. Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together.... Author unknown...

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Linguine with Clams

This week I made a simple linguine and clams dish that Mr. Maison and Young Maison raved about (Ballerina Maison ate it too, but she picked the clams out of hers...ha!).

I served it out of this huge Paula Deen Peony Patch bowl I bought at Tuesday Morning a few months back. Now that the holidays are over, I'm ready for a bit of spring, even if it is just in dishes.

To make this saute minced garlic and red pepper flakes in olive oil, being careful not to burn the garlic. Next add a cup of white wine to the pan and add clams and cover. Cook until the clams open up, discarding any that didn't open. Meanwhile, cook your linguine. When the pasta and clams are finished, mix together and add more olive oil and toss. If it's a bit too dry, you can add some of the cooking water from the pasta. Garnish with flat leaf parsley. easy and so good!
Stop by and visit Michael at Designs By Gollum to see what she has cooked up for us this week.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, everyone! Our evening started out as a quiet night at home, with my parents who are still visiting. Some friends called around 9:00 and we ended up having an impromptu party at our house. After all the cooking at Christmas, we decided to take the easy route for New Year's and just ordered in pizza. I did make some chocolate chip turtle cookie bars, though...yummy!

Click HERE for the recipe from the Betty Crocker website.
It's traditional to burn a bayberry candle on New Year's Eve. You're supposed to burn it down to the nub, and peace, prosperity and happiness will follow for the coming year.

Hope everyone had a fun and safe New Year's. Join Michael at Designs By Gollum for Foodie Friday.