Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Starting Seed Pots from Newspaper

I am sure most of us like to save money.   

I found this really neat idea to help save money if you start your seeds for your garden.

You will need newspaper, a glass and masking tape.

Cut each full sheet of newspaper in 4 pieces.

Fold each square into thirds

Roll the folded paper around a small juice glass with 1" overhanging the bottom.  Tape the edges with a small piece of masking tape, which will decompose along with the newspaper.

To form the bottom, fold the newspaper down and tape in place.

Press down to flatten the bottom.

Remove the pot and you're done!

This is a great way to recycle newspaper !!!

Any thoughts?

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Spring Offerings at Cozy Expressions

We experienced a snow/ice storm last night into this morning.    Temperatures are rising and it will all change to rain today.   When my husband left for work this morning, I could hear the ice crunch under his footsteps.

So just possibly, spring is on its way now?   Here in NW New Jersey, we really did not have much of a winter at all.  One 31" snowstorm to speak of all winter.

Here are some SPRING items in our shop

Shamus our Leprechaun

Shamrock's !!

Mini accent pillow


Bella Bunny

Nice sized Primitive Carrots

SPRING pillow      

I wish you a wonderful day  :)

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Corned Beef and Cabbage

Next up is the main course for your St. Patrick's Day menu.  I have tried numerous recipes for Corned Beef and this one, by far, is the best !

Corned Beef and Cabbage

This will serve 6-8 people.   Use flat cut corned beef brisket, not point cut.  Flat cut is more uniform in shape and will cook more evenly.    When slicing the cabbage, do not cut into the core, it will keep the cabbage in tack during the cooking.

You will need:

1- 4-5 pd corned beef brisket roast, rinsed, fat trimmed to 1/4" thick
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
4 cups water
12 carrots, peeled (3 chopped, 9 halved crosswise)
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 onion, peeled and quartered
3 bay leaves
1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
1 teaspoon whole allspice
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 pounds small red potatoes
1 head green cabbage ( about 2 pounds) cut into 8 (2 inch wedges)

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 300 degrees.   Combine beef, broth, water chopped carrots, celery, onion, bay leaves, peppercorns, thyme and allspice in Dutch oven.  Cover and bake until fork slips easily in and out of meat, 4 1/2 to 5 hrs,

Transfer meat to 13x9 baking dish.   Strain cooking  liquid through fine mesh strainer into large bowl, discard solids and skim fat from liquid.   Pour 1 cups cooking liquid over meat.   Cover dish tightly with aluminum foil and let rest 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, return remaining cooking liquid to dutch oven add butter and bring to simmer over medium high heat.   Add potatoes and simmer until they begin to soften about 10 minutes.   Add carrot halves and cabbage, cover and cook until tender 10 to 15 minutes   Transfer vegetables to serving platter and season with pepper to taste.  

Transfer beef to carving board and slice against the grain into 1/4 inch thick slices.   Serve with vegetables.

Recipe from Cooks Country  

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

St Patrick's Day Menu

Irish anyone?

My husband is Scottish/Irish......all the way though.   :)  and his birthday is March 16.    Each year his birthday dinner consists of a typical Irish dinner of Corned Beef and fixins.  It took me a few years to find recipes that I actually liked.  Yes it is some work, but it is SO worth it.

The next few weeks, I will be sharing with you the recipes I use to create our
St. Patrick's Day 
dinner starting with the fixins.

Colcannon - serves 8

2.5 lbs potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 slices bacon
1/2 small head of cabbage, chopped
1 large onion
1/2 cup milk - warm
salt and pepper
1/4 cup butter, melted

Place potatoes in a saucepan with enough water to cover.  Bring to boil and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, until tender.   Drain the cooked potatoes, mash with milk and season with salt and pepper.

Place bacon in a large, deep skillet.   Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown.   
Drain, reserving drippings crumble and set aside.   In the reserved drippings, saute the cabbage and onion until soft and translucent.   Putting a lid on the pan helps the vegetables cook faster.

Fold the bacon into the cabbage and onions then add to the potatos.   Melt butter in microwave of small sauce pan.   Transfer the mixture into a large serving bowl, make a well in the center and pour in the melted butter.