HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

I hope everyone is having an incredible holiday season with family and friends filled with laughter and joy.

Paper and Pi will start again after the New Year.  Sorry for being away for so long.  December was a very busy but exciting month.  I am looking forward for an incredible 2014.  I have a feeling it's going to be the best year yet.

Remember you can always follow me on Instagram to see what I have been up to.




Talk to you soon,
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Apple Picking

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


Here is the apple picking post I promised a month ago.  Sorry about that.  October was crazy busy.  We became extremely busy at work.  The waste water plant is almost complete.  JT's father is not doing so well.  Please keep him in your prayers.  Addison had a birthday and then Halloween.  I will post about Addison's cool birthday party at the farm later.  Of course, I had to put my crafty touch on it.  I will just say Camp Addison was perfection in any 13/14 years old boy.

Back to our apple picking adventure.  A group of us drove up to Mercier Orchard in North Georgia.  It is about an 1 1/2 hours from Atlanta.  The apple trees there aren't huge but the apples are delicious.  They have a lot of different varieties to pick from.  They also have a great shop that you can purchase anything like honey, apple butter, apple wine, and apple cider.  I always purchase apple cider and apple butter when we visit. We also did a wine tasting and purchased some really tasty peach wine.  We all of course got fried apple hand pies.  The have the best ones there.  Actually thinking about them right now makes me want to jump in the car and drive all the way up there just for a hand pie.  Not to self:  must perfect fried apple hand pies.  :)

That day was a little too hot for Autumn and apple picking but we all had a really good time.





Addison is at the age that he won't let me take pictures of him.  I got a couple of good ones but in most of them his hand was covering his face or his eyes are closed. Have I mentioned that I love him being a teenager?  I did not taking pictures of my son just so I can have the memories would be so difficult.  :)











Before we went apple picking, I started a pot of chili in the slow cooker.  I also made homemade vanilla ice cream and pie dough.   I also made this cute apple pins for the women that were going.





I had a plan that we would eat dinner when we got back and then make apple pies with the apples we picked.  But after we ate dinner, peeled the apples, cooked the apples, and watched Star Trek 2, we were exhausted.  I did end up making the apple pie the next day.  But, unfortuantly Jennifer and Jonathan did not get to have any of the apple goodness.  Jennifer and Jonathan, I owe you a pie.





I would like the share the pie dough recipe and the apple pie recipe that I used.  I think both are perfect and easy.

Williams-Sonoma's Basic Pie Dough

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 Tbs. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
8 Tbs. (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
3 Tbs. very cold water

Directions:

To make the dough by hand, in a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar and salt. Using a pastry cutter or 2 knives, cut the butter into the flour mixture until the texture resembles coarse cornmeal, with butter pieces no larger than small peas. Add the water and mix with a fork just until the dough pulls together.

To make the dough in a stand mixer, fit the mixer with the flat beater, and stir together the flour, sugar and salt in the mixer bowl. Add the butter and toss with a fork to coat with the flour mixture. Mix on medium-low speed until the texture resembles coarse cornmeal, with the butter pieces no larger than small peas. Add the water and mix on low speed just until the dough pulls together.

Transfer the dough to a work surface, pat into a ball and flatten into a disk. (Although many dough recipes call for chilling the dough at this point, this dough should be rolled out immediately for the best results.) Lightly flour the work surface, then flatten the disk with 6 to 8 gentle taps of the rolling pin. Lift the dough and give it a quarter turn. Lightly dust the top of the dough or the rolling pin with flour as needed, then roll out into a round at least 12 inches in diameter and about 1/8 inch thick. Makes enough dough for one 9-inch single-crust pie or one 10-inch galette.

To make a double-crust pie: Double the recipe, cut the dough in half and pat each half into a round, flat disk. Roll out one disk into a 12-inch round as directed and line the pan or dish. Press any scraps trimmed from the first round into the bottom of the second disk. Roll out the second dough disk into a round at least 12 inches in diameter and about 1/8 inch thick and refrigerate until ready to use.


Williams-Sonoma's Apple Pie

Ingredients:

2 Pie Dough
2 lb. Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into slices 1/4 inch
thick
2 lb. Pink Lady apples, peeled, cored and cut into slices 1/4 inch thick
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
4 tsp. cornstarch
1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
2 Tbs. cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 egg white, beaten with 1 tsp. water
2 tsp. granulated sugar

Directions:

On a lightly floured work surface, roll out half of the dough into a 12-inch round about 1/8 inch thick. Fold the dough in half and then into quarters and transfer it to a 9-inch deep-dish pie dish. Unfold and gently press the dough into the bottom and sides of the dish. Trim the edges flush with the rim of the dish. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

On a large sheet of lightly floured parchment paper, roll out the remaining dough disk into a 12-inch round about 1/8 inch thick.

Meanwhile, make the filling: In a large Dutch oven, stir together the apples, brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg and cornstarch. Set over medium heat, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the apples are just tender but not mushy, about 20 minutes. Uncover and cook until the liquid has thickened and become glossy, 5 to 7 minutes more. Remove from the heat, stir in the lemon juice and let cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.

Position a rack in the lower third of an oven, place a baking sheet on the rack and preheat the oven to 400°F. 

Transfer the apple filling to the pie shell, scatter the butter pieces on top, and gently add the top crust top over the pie. Trim the edges flush with the rim of the dish and press the top and bottom crusts together to seal.  Brush the entire top crust with egg wash and sprinkle with the granulated sugar.

Place the pie dish on the preheated baking sheet. Bake until the crust is crisp and golden brown, about 1 hour, covering the edges with aluminum foil if they become too dark. Transfer the pie to a wire rack and let cool for at least 1 1/2 hours before serving. Serves 8




The only problem is Addison never waits for the pie to cool, but it still is delicious.  I hope I have inspired you to bake some pies.  Especially since it is pie baking season.  I might have to making some delicious tonight.  Maybe a crumble?  We will see.

Talk to you soon,

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Crafting Autumn

Friday, October 4, 2013

How is everyone enjoying the change of the season?  Here in Georgia, we have had up and down temperatures.  It has been in the high 70s which is good enough for short boots but still not cool enough for tall boots.  But this week it is getting warmer.  This weekend it is going to be in the high 80s!  The high 80s!!!  Just when I was rotating my closet and brining out the good stuff.   :(

I am not going to let these high temperatures get me down.  We are going apple picking this weekend.  I plan to dress as Autumn as I can without sweating.  I plan to bake apple pie and make apple butter.  I plan on drinking apple cider and serve chili.  Oh and go on a wonderful hike up in North Georgia which I am praying the temperatures will be cooler.

I promise to share pictures next week of our Summer Autumn Apple Picking Adventure.  I hope everyone is wearing Autumn colors.  We will see how that goes.  :)

September and October hav inspired me to craft.  I have started making coffee coozie to celebrate my obsession with coffee, espresso and Pumpkin Spice Latte.  I am thinking of making ones for Autumn, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.

Here are the Autumn Ones:










Aren't they cute?  You can purchase them at my Etsy store here.

I have also started crafting Halloween decoration for the house.  I, of course, had that have some Halloween Bunting.



Now I am thinking a Halloween wreath and some other spooky decorations.  I will be crafting like crazy.  October, November, and December are my craftiest months.  I already feel like I am falling behind.  I do not even know what our Christmas card is going to look like this year.   And am I even going to make and send out Thanksgiving cards this year?  Maybe I can just send something Thanksgiving inspired to family and friends instead of a card.  Oh decisions.

I am also crafting invitations and decorations for 3 baby showers.  I am not complaining I love to be busy.

Well, I better go and start planning.  I need to make the pie dough so it will be ready after apple picking. I also need to make vanilla ice cream to go with the Apple Pie.    Everyone is going to be starving after everything.  It is going to be a great weekend.

Talk to you soon,

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French Meatloaf

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Today, I would like to share my favorite meatloaf recipe.  It was featured in Gourmet magaazine in 2009 but I don't remember how I came across it.  I actually think the recipe was in ELLE magazine over a year ago.  If it was just in Gourmet that means I made it 3 years ago and I am still thinking about it.  And I have to make it ASAP!

The hubby loves meatloaf but he likes the American version, a loaf of ground beef with bacon on top and a ketchup crust.  I don't mind that meatloaf but the french meatloaf has so many different taste and textures.  I promise it is incredible.  It ends up being a cross between meatloaf and pâté.  I know some will say GROSS when they hear pâté but I am sorry but pâté is good.  Oh and this recipe has 3 types of meat, chicken livers, pork, and veal.  Yes, I said chicken livers and it does not have ground beef. But HEY be adventurous and make this meatloaf.  NOW! You will not be disappointed.

PHOTOGRAPH BY ROMULO YANES



Gourmet Magazine's French Meatloaf  


RECIPE BY KAY CHUN

INGREDIENTS


1 cup fine fresh bread crumbs (preferably from a rustic loaf)
1/2 cup whole milk
3/4 cup finely chopped onion
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 lb chicken livers, separated into lobes, trimmed, and rinsed
3/4 lb ground pork
3/4 lb ground veal
1/4 cup chopped prunes
1/4 cup shelled pistachios (optional)
2 teaspoons thyme leaves
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley

ACCOMPANIMENT:
Dijon mustard

DIRECTIONS


Preheat oven to 475ºF with rack in middle.
Soak bread crumbs in milk in a small bowl.
Cook onion, garlic, and 1/4 tsp each of salt and pepper in oil in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Cool slightly.
Purée livers in a blender, then transfer to a large bowl. Add pork, veal, prunes, pistachios (if using), thyme, eggs, bread-crumb mixture, onion mixture, 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper and gently mix with your hands until just combined.
Transfer meatloaf mixture to an 8 1/2- by 4 1/2-inch glass loaf pan (see cooks’ note, below) and bake, covered with foil, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center registers 165ºF, 50 to 55 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes. Cover top of meatloaf with parsley before slicing.

COOKS’ NOTE: You can use a metal loaf pan, but the meatloaf will take about 15 minutes longer to cook.


Now I have to make this for dinner tonight because just thinking about it makes me remember how good it is.  All I want is French Meatloaf right now! I guess I need to get to the grocery store to pick up all the ingredients.  I am thinking of serving it with The Chosen One's Creamed Spinach.  Maybe I can try to take step by step pictures and share her recipe with you guys tomorrow.  We will see.

Talk to you soon,

Autumn Wardrobe and Anthropologie

Friday, September 6, 2013

Autumn is almost here and we all know it is my favorite season. Alamanac.com states the Autumn Equinox starts September 22, 2013 at 4:44 P.M EDT.  That is just around the corner so you know what that means.  SHOPPING!!!!

I love Autumn because of the clothes.  Long sleeve shirts and blouses, long skirts, hats, boots and sweaters.  It's cool enough for great clothes but not too cold that you have to cover yourself up and all your incredible clothes with a jacket.  I can already picture it, jeans tucked into fabulous boots!

I have mentioned before how much I love Anthropologie.  I decided to post some of my Autumn favorites so you can start adding to your Autumn wardrobe as soon as possible. 

Here are my two favorite buttondowns right now:




They are just beautiful.  I am loving the embroidery.  And they seem to be thin enough that you could wear them now (since it is in the high 80s in Atlanta still).

Look at these fabulous tunics:




I love tunics because you can wear them with jeans or leggings but they cover up what I want to be covered.  These are really cute and I feel like you can dress them up or down.  I think I am going to be wearing a lot of tunics this Autumn.  


Now let's talk skirts:

Merida Pencil Skirt

Loving these graphic skirts.  I am thinking I need to bottom one now and my husband needs to take me out in it.  I love the top skirt because you could wear with sandals or a pair of boots.  

I am fortunate to live in Atlanta so it doesn't get that cold here.  We can get away with wearing a cardigan or sweater through Autumn and half of winter.  My staple during Autumn is usually a short sleeved shirt, a cardigan,  a pair of jeans, and my favorite Frye boots.  

These cardigans would be a perfect addition to my wardrobe:

Stitched Flora Cardigan

Posey Patch Cardigan

They are truly beautiful!

Ok I am done with online window shopping for now.  I hope I got you excited about Autumn.

Talk to you soon,
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