Tuesday, August 19, 2014

A Cooking Blog?

For this week my blog is being published as a cooking blog.  We had the most amazing experience of a three day wood burning oven cooking class held up in the wine country near Napa, CA.  We’ve had a wood burning oven for about seven years and have always wanted to expand our cooking to include more than pizza. 

Well….this was exactly what we needed.  It was three days of cooking everything from cinnamon rolls for breakfast to baking peach cobbler and bread pudding for desserts.

The adventure begins…..across the Golden Gate Bridge to the charming town of Healdsburg.


We built our first fire and started to cook.  We had six wood burning ovens for our use so there was a lot of cooking.


These were some of our creations.  Can I just say “incredible”?   Do you see how beautifully our flame is burning over the roof of the oven?  Pizza and empanadas are done when the oven is the hottest - 650* on the floor.


As the oven cools you can go into the roasting stage which is 550* on the oven floor.  Different areas of the oven will register different temperatures so it is a lot of playing around.  Baking is done when the oven floor reaches 450* and after removing the hot coals.  These are SOME of the foods we made.

Prosciutto wrapped scallops on rosemary skewers.
Peach cobbler before baking
.....after baking
Sweet stuffed peppers.
Singaporean style shrimp
Zucchini blossoms
Zucchini blossoms stuffed with ricotta
Wood roasted eggplant parmigiano
Pan seared lamb chops marinated in garlic and rosemary
Our appetizer table presentation.
Rotating the bread loaves.
Finished rustic bread loaves.
Zucchini gratin with tomatoes and Gruyere.
Roasted peppers.
Halibut Ligurian style.
Beef tenderloin.
Chicken -done under a brick
Parsnip fries.
Limoncello Bread pudding.
Our class with our delightful teacher, Andrea Mugnaini, in the center.
It was such a fun and busy few days made even better by meeting up with a dear friend (and our daughter’s Godmother) for dinner at her home in Healdsburg.  We have shared so many wonderful times together. 

I had a lovely squishy package in the mail when we arrived home.  I had won a giveaway from Tudy at Tudy’s Craft Cupboard and she sent me some of her exquisitely made items.  I have always admired her crochet and I am thrilled to have some of her work.  Can you say “pretty”? 


I have been doing a bit of sewing, but I can’t share it yet.  Hopefully, I will be able to on my next post.

Monday, August 11, 2014

A Wee Bit Busy

It seems like the busyness of summer is a common lament around blogland lately.  Life around here is no different.  Summer is always packed with fun and exciting events, putting up the products of the garden and trying to maintain a bit of sanity at the same time.

This week has been a bit busier than normal as we added four grandchildren to the mix.  Mommy and Daddy went to Hawaii for the week and had a wonderful trip with only minor rain from the hurricanes.  Life was not boring with a 1, 2 1/2, 4 and 5 1/2 year old in the house.  We loved it, but it was really nice to have some quite time yesterday once everyone left. Can you guess that I was also missing from the blogging world?

I have missed my sewing time lately so I slipped away to my creative room and left the cleaning until today.  My Spider Web leader and ender project has been so close to being finished so I did the last two blocks and then sewed it together.  It ended up to be about 70” square. 


Today was so quiet.  I missed the early morning snuggles with the little ones, but it felt good to have clean floors and windows!!  Winking smile How could you not miss these faces?


The two year old went to Costco with Grandpa on Saturday and picked out a bouquet of flowers for Grandma.  Doesn’t this just look like something a 2 year old would choose????


We had a little excitement while the children were here.  Our tortoise eggs started hatching.  The little ones kept a close eye on the activity although the process is quite slow.  Two out and three more to go…..


Some of the grandchildren headed back to school today.  How can that be?  The rest go back next week.  Where has the summer gone?