Thursday, December 23, 2010

Hot Cocoa Recipe

I was slammed with questions about the recipe for the hot cocoa mix I made! (Not really, I think my mother is the only one who asked, but that's enough.) I had a few minutes today while I watch Nate play Cabela's Big Game Hunter. You might want to read that last part again.
We are lovin' the snow covered ground up here! It was so pretty driving last night.
Anyways, here is the recipe for our spicy hot cocoa. Nate really enjoyed the test batches I did and he let me know when it was just right. I adapted this recipe from my kitched bible, I mean The Joy of Cooking. Seriously, I love reading that. I used what they had, but I juiced it up and added nutmeg.

Crow Rd. Spiced Hot Cocoa
The mix
1/2 C cocoa powder
1/2 C sugar
2 t cinnamon
1/2 t ground cloves*
1 t nutmeg

mix about two tablespoons of the mixture with 3/4 milk
stir constantly over medium heat until hot
let it cool**
enjoy it in your favorite spot

* I'm not sure what is available clove-wise. It has been a while since I went spice shopping. You could probably use whole cloves and strain them out. I used whole cloves that I ground in a coffee grinder. I wouldn't recommend that because they are so oily it was a mess to clean. But it sure was yummy!

** Since it is milk you're heating you might get a skin on it. Just skim it off.

I will have A LOT of crochet projects to display after I gift them in the next couple days. The fingers have been busy!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Mixed bag of winter goodness

This is only the beginning of the loot we will have received from my in-laws before winter is over. Nate's parents did a huge garden this summer. All the potatoes in that bin are those that we brought back with us after Thanksgiving. We have used about a quarter of them. My parents picked up those butternuts for us in Amish country, so they aren't home-grown from someone I know. The onions were a give from above, and by above I mean Harps. Harps is one of my favorite grocery stores ever, and we have a brand-spanking new one in the "city" that is close enough for us to go to with some regularity. Hallelujah!

But I digress. More Ohio goodies. The winter squash in this bag are also from the in-laws. It is a mix of butternut, dumpling, pumpkin, and "other things I don't know" squash. I'm really excited to have all these veggies that will keep for a while, and its great to know that most of them came from my family.

Stay tuned for a post-Christmas entry featuring more canned and frozen things than I will know what to do with. From both of our parents. I think it will be fun to see how long we can survive without going to the grocery store.

These are the veggies. Carrots are from the store. I think that little squash is a dumpling squash. I would like a new peeler that will be useful on squash, suggestions?

My red fiesta turns burgundy when its in the oven, does anyone else's? The oven needs cleaned too, oh well.

I scraped the squash out and stirred it in with the rest.
We had this with grilled chicken kielbasa hoagies.

That's not a vegetable...

I also put together spiced hot cocoa mix to give as little Christmas/hostess gifts. I used cocoa, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground cloves. All that stirred in steamed milk. It was super good and pretty easy.
The presentation left a little to be desired, but I did these at the last minute and didn't get a chance to go into the "city" so I found these things at DG just down the road. I think the little containers are kinda cute.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Christmas decorations

To kick this off I am going to post the various decorations that the husband and I have made to get in the spirit of the holiday season. We are not going to be around our house for Christmas so we did not go ALL out, but we did some things that were easy and consists mostly of things that we already had lying around.
These pictures are not awesome, so you'll have to fill in with your imagination.

1. Front door wreath
First up, the husband makes things! He made a beautiful wreath for our front door out of cedar branches and pine cones. I was so impressed.2. Our china cabinet.

I just put Christmas bulbs, fabric scraps, and pine cones in bowls and glasses on the shelf.

3. Christmas boughs in a vase, with a side of kitty.

"Oh me? I'm doing nothing up here."

4. Christmas yarn projects.

I made a yarn wreath using a styrofoam wreath and balls, all covered in yarn. I also crocheted a single poinsettia blossom (pattern from The Fabled Needle) and mistletoe, from my brain.

I also made a garland with granny square inspired shapes. The star I got from here.