Sunday, January 26, 2014

Butter and use it for more than just cooking!

And wax paper, and onions.....

1. Shine metals and leather goods. All it takes to bring luster back to your metal and leather goods is a dab of butter. Just rub it into surfaces with a cotton rag.
2. Remove ink stains from plastic. Rub any marks with butter and let the plastic items bleach in the sun for a few days.
3. Wipe out water marks from wood. Cover the area with butter and let it sit overnight; towel it off in the morning.
4. De-ice a snow shovel. Grease the shovel with butter — it’ll keep snow from sticking to it.
5. Silence a squeaky door. Forget WD-40 — just work a little bit of butter onto the hinges of a squeaky door.
6. Clean sap or glue off your hands. Rub some butter onto sticky hands to remove stubborn sap or glue.
7. DIY nonstick knife. Thinly coat a knife with butter to help it slide more easily through sticky foods like toffee, marshmallows or pies.
8. Prevent mold. Stop mold from forming on the cut edges of semi-hard cheese by rubbing them with a bit of butter.
9. Remove fish odors. After handling fish, rub some butter over your hands to remove any residual smell.
10. Keep an onion fresh. Apply some butter to the cut edge of an onion before wrapping it in aluminum foil to keep it fresher longer.
11. Prevent boiling over. Add one or two tablespoons of butter to a pot of water to keep it from boiling over.
 12. Restore a wax candle. Give dinged and dusty candles a new glossy sheen by rubbing them with a little butter.
13. Help with pill taking. Coat a large pill in butter — it will help the medicine go down easier. Just be sure to take with a big glass of water.
14. Soothe tired feet. Massage sore tootsies with butter then wrap them in a damp, hot towel.
15. Double as a beauty treatment. Use butter as shaving cream, to nourish dry skin or brittle nails, soften hands, even condition hair (and remove gum from it!).
16. Untangle a necklace chain. Rub the knot with a little butter so the links slide apart easier. Use a small pointed item to work out the rest of the kink.
17. Remove a stuck ring. Coat your finger with enough butter to lubricate it, then gently wiggle the ring to remove.
18. Prevent bruising. Massage butter into the affected area right after the injury. The phosphates in the butter will help prevent a mark from appearing.
Ellen Sturm Niz is an editor and writer working, parenting, and living in New York City. Follow her on TwitterPinterestTumblr, and Google+.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014


Another Winter Blues menu~
                            I did a party in Wisconsin a few years ago and here is what I made:


Blue cheese stuffed olives
                                                   Mexican rumaki                                                                       
Teriyaki/pineapple meatballs                 
Tenderloin sandwiches/pulled pork sandwiches
Peppered sushi tuna with soy dipping sauce
                             Chicken Empanadas with spicy salsa                                                
                         Thai Crabcakes with Cilantro peanut sauce                                   
Curried shrimp with cucumber dipping sauce
Asparagus, goat cheese and prosciutto
Gorgonzola with balsamic figs crostini
Minced chicken in lettuce cups
Mini blackened chicken tacos
                                                Brie and Mango Quesadillas                                                           
Mini cheese balls
Tart Tomato Chutney over cream cheese
Mini Cheeseburgers
Adobo Chips with Warm Goat Cheese and Cilantro salsa

During January and February I like to host dinner parties and what a better way than to come up with a theme- namely Winter Blues. I live in Winnetka, so my invitation says Winnetka Winter Blues.
Guests entered to a house darkened and lit with blue lights....the brighter light- it's from a curio cabinet.
Here is my menu:

Blue Point Oysters
Red Cabbage Empanadas
Blue Cheese Stuffed Olives

Blue Lagoon  -  Blue Hawaiin

Cream of Lettuce Soup with Blue Cheese Croutons

Green Bean Salad

Pork Medallions with a Potato and Goat Cheese Eggroll

Blue Cheese ice cream in a  phyllo nest with Blackberry and Apple Rosemary Compote

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Chocolate Caramel Tart (!?!)

Lottie  + Doof- a Chicago based blogger shred this disgustingly delicious chocolate Caramel Tart- I have to try this! The original recipe came from Claudia Fleming's Marlow and Son recipe but it also appeared in Saveur- whatever, it's delish!

Chocolate Caramel Tart (!?!)


Winter Blues Menu

I try and do a Winter Blues theme either for clients or friends, each year at this time. This year, due to the terrible economy, my husband and I hosted our own Winter Blues Party but expanded the title to Winter Blues, Blown Away. The purpose was to introduce shades of pink/red into the menu and ambience.
Here was our menu:
Blue Hawaiin/Ernest Hemingway Cocktail
Blue Point Oysters
Sushi Tuna on Blue Platter
Olives stuffed with smoked Blue Cheese
Sesame Cones with Red Pepper
Blue Cheese, Walnut and Red Cabbage Empanadas
Salad with Blue Cheese Croutons with a side of
Shrimp Ceviche served in Blue Martini Glass
Cream of Lettuce Soup
(variety of blue colored soup bowls)
Boders Cherry Muffin
Green Beans laced with Black Truffle Oil
Pork Manhattan
Roasted Garlic mashed potato

Blueberry Ice Cream
Blue Cheese Ice Cream
Raspberry Sorbet
When guests arrived they saw blue candlestick lights in the windows and blue flood lights on the house. Once inside, it was a burst of various colors and lights illuminated on the spiral staircase. The dining room was illuminated with black lights, and once it was time to start the dinner the dining room was lit with reds, pinks and yellow lights/votives. Fortunately with several dishwashers, all dishes were loaded and cleaned the next day. It was the glasses......!

Celebrity recipe week

For a twist, I thought I'd make a menu using recipes from celebrities. Last year I did a restaurant week where I made a menu using different recipes. It wasn't an easy thing- so many celebrities had cakes, or cookies.
But I did manage to put one together- take a look~
Hopefully pictures will be attached later.

Gene Autry Texas Chili
Joy Philbins Turkey Tacos
K.D. Langs Indonesian Salad
Lady Bird Johnson’s Famous Lemon Cake

Things we love about Italy"