here and there

Monday, October 24, 2016

DIY Maleficent Costume for a Birthday Theme Party!

  • After hunting for a head piece for a dress that was perfect for a Maleficent costume and finding a head piece that cost seventy dollars, I decided to sew the head piece.  I had found DIY tutorials for making the horns out of cardboard, which was very involved and too detailed!  Too many steps for me!  After seeing the head piece made out of thick foam fabric, I decided "How difficult can this be" to sew!

    I had sewn all my children's Halloween customes when fabric was not expensive and  when it was cheaper to sew than buying pre made costumes.  And although I did use a pattern, most times the patterns had to be adjusted to what the children wanted or visualized the costume to be!

    Buying fabric is an experience now as there is only one fabric box store in the city.  While shopping, one realizes that sale prices apply only to Members and since I do not sew enough anymore, thirty dollars for a year's membership is ridiculous!   Checking out the discount area, the cost has gone up from $1.50 to later $2.50 to now a range from four dollars to eight dollars.  There was a dollar off all discount fabric but only for members!  Although, I only needing about a half a metre, I was told that since it was discount fabric, I had to buy a whole metre!  Unhappily I said I would take a metre, thinking of all the full boxes of unused fabric I had in the house.  The fabric had been cut by scissors resulting in a  irregular edge.  I asked the server to rip the fabric which resulted in me walking off with about a metre and half!  Oh great, I thought .."More Fabric", even though in total it cost me four dollars!

Sketching out the shape of a horn and cutting out 4 pieces of fabric for the horns, which were stuffed with polyfill stuffing. 

A pattern for a rabbit head bonnet was used. Since it was children's size, I increased it a bit for me. 

The back of the bonnet was gathered at the seam line using an elastic from the top of the seam to the bottom.. I had wished I had cut the length of the bonnet longer at the bottom to cover more of my hair.  I had also gathered in the middle of each side but this made the bonnet to small, so left on a little bit of the elastic.  I could have lined the bonnet but felt it would be too hot to wear at a house party.  The edges of the bonnet were hemmed. 

The next step was placement of the horns, which were sewn on to the bonnet. 

 Since the horns were only filled with Polypill stuffing did not sit properly on the head.  The solution was a leather strip that went around the bonnet and also was used to glue the horns in place so they sat firmly. 

Using the piece of fabric that had be cut irregularly for the head piece, I still had close to a metre left!

Although I had a perfect dress for the costume, I decided to wear a long black dress and sew a cape for the costume.  A trip to the Dollarama store in our neighbor found the prefect solution to a Maleficent cape.  The cape was trim with Pinking shears at the bottom, the top was gathered and trimed with a bais tape cut from the fabric to trim the edge and make a tie. 

My solution to making a stand up collar and supporting it on the cape was to buy a wired bat with sparkles and place the bat upside down so the wings were the ruffled top.. I did need feather but Dollarama no longer sold the Feather Boa!  

As one know the best critics of Disney characters are the children that have watched the movie! We dropped in to show the customes to our five year old grandchild. Her first reaction was shock which quickly followed to recognition after silence and a steady study, " You're Maleficent".  Yes, I had passed the test! 

My husband went as Sebastian, the Bad Butler!

  • On to the Theme Birthday Party!

    One never quite know what to except when you enter our friend's home for their Annual Birthday theme parties. Each room had been draped with fabric and lit with different lighting.

    This year the theme was Good Versus Evil!

The birthday girl! The Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland

In spite of their busy schedules. Hilary and Trump made an appearance.


What would a party be without food!

And a special cocktail just for me, Maleficent ! I understand it was delicious!

Now is Santa Good or Evil?

Someone wore her beautiful wedding dress that looked specutular in the Florescent Light! Not sure if this was Good or Evil!

Hilary drumming up support from Santa!

The Staircase to Heaven! With an angel at the base!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Frittata, Baked Omelette, crustless Quiche.

Sometimes recipes just evolve and lack a name, as this dish does.  This is a baked omelette or crustless quiche which is a great brunch or supper dish.  Basically an egg and milk based dish with a variety of ingredients added to it.  I like spinach added to dish and find the puck of frozen spinach perfect to add to this dish when thawed out.  I also like to add cottage cheese if I have this, or a handful of shredded cheese.  I find the amount of cheese added to recipes nowadays is over the top. Cheese was not a staple in my Mom's kitchen although Cottage cheese was used in some of her dishes, like Nalysnyskibaked bun with fresh dill and cottage cheese fillings, pyrohy.  I remember her being very disappointed with the taste of her Pyrohy the first time she used store bought cottage cheese instead of her homemade farm cottage cheese. 

To this 8inch Quiche dish, I have added 4 well beaten eggs, 1 cup of liquid, which can be cream or milk.

I like covering the egg mixture with thin slices of potatoes that have been tossed in Olive oil.  when the potatoes are arranged, dust with paprika.  This potato covering works so well with pot pies.  

Bake at 375 to 400 for 30 minutes until potatoes cooked.  

Everything tastes better with sun kissed tomatoes which are locally grown!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Stuffed green tomatoes with Adjika

I love Instagram as not only do I have dialogues with people i.e. Chefs all over the world, I love coming across new ideas.  I came across this idea to use up the last of the tomato harvest using the small green tomatoes. This I found intriguing as I had never heard of pickling green tomatoes.  I had a bowl of small green tomatoes and still had fresh herbs in my garden, that I decided to try this recipe.  

According to the Instagram posting on this pickle:

 "In my location it's very popular in autumn when they pick up last tomatoes in the fields and kitchen gardens. My adjika for stuffing is out of green and hot peppers, garlic, mint, celery, parsley, sage.  All stuffed tomatoes are put on celery and horseradish coat and pour with sweet and salt brine"

I have purchased Adjika from a European store that was a red pepper sauce that could be spicy or mild used to flavor food.  This adjika was green as I used jalapeño peppers, celery and garlic cloves along with fresh herbs from the garden, like parsley, mint and dill.  

To make the Adjika , the vegetables were coarsely pulsed through the Food Processor.   The aroma from everything pulsed together was great.  

I did have difficulty filling the split tomatoes, not sure how this filling will stay in the tomatoes once the brine is poured on to them.  

They certainly looked lovely, but do need a solution to keep the filling in the tomatoes! Maybe wrapping some thing around them like a horseradish leaf!

This morning, I tried the pickles after 2 weeks of fermentation.  They were intriguing tasting as with each bite there was an explosion in your mouth! Yes, I will be making them again!

Jalapeno Poppers ready for the freezer

In talking to my brother who is a certified Organic farmer in Northern Manitoba about the bumper crop of Jalapeño peppers and how hot they were, it reminded me to make Jalapeño Popper.  These appetizers freeze well and such a crowd pleaser. 

Thinly slice onions and sauté in olive oil until caramelized.  Adding a splash of vinegar and water to the onions and slowly cooking the onion covered to caramelize the onions quickly. 

Cream 8 oz cream cheese.
add the caramelized onions

Sauté ground meat like pork or chicken

Add to cream cheese mixture
And yes, do wear gloves to slice the half the Jalapeños and remove the seeds. 

I have seen bacon wrapped around the popper, but this is just as delicious.

The appetizers are frozen on a tray and then repacked to freezer longer.