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An Easy Way to Peel Garlic

If, like me, you love to cook with fresh garlic you will love this handy tip for how to peel multiple cloves in a few short seconds.  Lately, I've been buying the pre-peeled garlic being sold in produce departments that is packaged in sealed pouches containing six to eight garlic cloves.  I find it very handy to be able to reach into the refrigerator for a couple of peeled cloves to mince up quickly for a recipe.  Peeling garlic is not my favorite thing to do. The other day I went to buy one of those packages of peeled garlic loves at my local grocery store only to find that they were out of them.  "They are on the next shipment," I was told.  Hmpf, I've been told that before.  I had a couple of bulbs of garlic at home in the pantry, so home I went.  I needed some garlic for a slow cooker recipe I was making.  As I began to pull the cloves of garlic from the bulb I remembered a garlic peeling tip I had heard some time ago, but never tried. All you need in addition

I Remember

This month my parents sold the home where they raised their family, my two brothers, my sister and me.  It all happened pretty quickly.  Less than a year ago Mom and Dad decided to move to sunny Florida. Once the decision was made it took less than eight months to purchase a new home more than a thousand miles away, purge sixty years of accumulated possessions, resettle in their new home and say good-bye to the house that once nurtured their family.  Whew!  This was no small accomplishment for two people in their 80s. On the morning of the closing for the house I took one final walk through ostensibly to make sure all was in order for the new owners, but in reality to say good-bye.  As I walked through the empty rooms I remembered... I remembered that winter, long ago, when it snowed and snowed and snowed.  It snowed so much we were able to build an igloo with blocks of snow.  There's never been a winter quite like it. I remembered being sick, first with the mumps and

A Little Paint and A Lot of Determination

I decided a little over a month ago that it was time to refresh my three season porch.  You know what I mean.  All of a sudden the porch went from a place where I liked to spend my time to a place I never wanted to be.  It was time to fix that. My Porch Before All of the paint in the room needed to be refreshed.  I wanted to brighten the trim around the windows by painting it with Benjamin Moore's Atrium White (PM-13).  The previously white walls needed a little color.  I chose a light butter cream color called Palm Coast Pale (330) by Benjamin Moore.  I thought the sloped ceiling might benefit from a little color as well.  I chose Benjamin Moore's Spring Mint (2040-70). The Color Palette There was some water damage on the ceiling that had to be fixed.  I turned to YouTube for some how-to advice. Water Damage on the Ceiling I was careful and didn't rush the repair.  We also decided to add some trim work that helped to cover the worst of it.  Water Da

A Green Smoothie for Lunch

 Green Lunch Smoothie When I started drinking smoothies a few month ago I tended to favor the fruit smoothies.  After all, they are naturally sweetened by whatever fruit you are using and they look so delicious.  As I researched smoothie nutritional contents and looked for healthier smoothie options I discovered green smoothies.  Green smoothies are vegetable based.  I think of them as a salad in a glass. Green smoothies can be an acquired taste, especially if you have been drinking a lot of the fruit-based, yogurt enhanced smoothies.  I like my green smoothie because it is a surprise for my taste buds.  It contains half of a lime, skin and all.  It's the lime that adds that certain something that wakes up my mouth. As I have said before, a key to making a successful smoothie is your blender.  That is especially true with this vegetable-based smoothie because the vegetables really need to be pulverized to get the consistency you want.  One way to help your blender is to

Italian Cream Cake

Italian Cream Cake When Hubby had a birthday recently and I wanted to make him a special cake to commemorate his day.  I thought it would be fun to try a new cake rather than rely upon one of my tried and true cakes.  I've been saving cake recipes that look delicious on my Pinterest board, Let Me Eat Cake .  So off I went to see if there was a cake there that might fit the bill. There were two cakes on the board that I thought would tickle his taste buds.  The first was the Italian Cream Cake from lynn-southernwithatwist.blogspot.com and the second was a Coconut Cream Cake from life-as-a-lofthouse.blogspot.com.  I showed Hubby the pictures of the cakes and read the ingredients.  He chose the Italian Cream Cake. I had never heard of an Italian Cream Cake before.  Have you?   An online recipe search for Italian Cream Cake revealed recipe, after recipe, after recipe.  Where have I been all these years to have missed this cake?  All the recipes I found were very similar.  It

Making Spinach Artichoke Dip with Fresh Spinach

Fresh Spinach Artichoke Dip Do you love spinach and artichoke dip?  Me too!  I enjoy spinach and artichoke dip as a cold spread for crackers and as a hot, gooey dip with pita chips or French bread toasts.  What I don't like is the messy process of making it with frozen spinach.  No matter how hard I try it always seems like I end up with pieces of the frozen spinach from head to toe. The last time I made a spinach and artichoke dip I decided to experiment using chopped fresh spinach in place of the usual thawed frozen spinach used in most recipes.  It worked beautifully with no mess.  Now this is my preferred, no fuss method of making one of my favorite appetizers. If you are growing spinach in your backyard garden this recipe is a great way to use some of your spinach bounty.  If you don't have a backyard garden just grab a bag of baby spinach from the produce section of your grocery store and you'll be good to go. Donna's Fresh Spinach Artichoke Dip Us

How to Calm a Queasy Stomach

I woke up this morning with a bit of a queasy stomach.  It doesn't happen often, but it does happen.  I'm not one to take medications if I can help it, so instead of reaching into the medicine cabinet I went to my kitchen. First I decided to try one of my favorite green teas.  I like the hint of mint flavor in Tazo's Zen tea.  It is great tea for any time of day, but is especially lovely when you really need a bit of Zen in your life.  As the scent of mint tickles your nose you'll want to take a nice, deep breath and say ahhh. My Cup of Tea As much as I enjoy the tea, it wasn't enough to quell my queasy stomach this morning so I added a couple of slices of fresh ginger root to the steeping tea. It took two cups of this aromatic tea to do the job, but I'm happy to report I'm feeling as good as new. Add Sliced Ginger Root Studies have shown fresh ginger root to be beneficial in the elimination of intestinal gases, preventing motion sickness a