Posts by Flamenco Lady

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  • VOTE: What are the best and worst Christmas songs of all time?

    12/21/2011 9:30:33 AM PST · 120 of 207
    Flamenco Lady to Libloather

    We like all styles of music and like to play a wide variety of Christmas songs. We have way too many favorites at my house. Here are just a few of our favorites that come to mind:

    The Prayer sung by Andre Bocelli
    Bach/Gounod Ave Maria
    O Holy Night
    Silent Night
    Ring those Christmas Bells
    Silver Bells
    I sure do love those Christmas Cookies (reminds me of my dad and hubby stealing the fresh baked cookies as soon as they come out of the oven)
    Santa Clause is coming in a Boogie Woogie Choo Choo Train by the Tractors (this is just plain fun!)
    Baby it’s Cold Outside by Dean Martin
    White Christmas sung by Bing Crosby
    Because of Christmas Day by Rasputin (not sure if this is the right name for it, but we love this version of the song)
    Fiesta de Navidad by Celia Cruz
    The Christmas Song by Nat King Cole

    We also like the Hawaiian Christmas song by Bing Crosby,
    Dominic the Donkey by Danny Kaye, Suzy Snowflake sung by Rosemary Clooney and the Marvelous Toy. This is primarily because our children used to sing and dance to them all over the house when they were little. Fond memories have endeared these songs to our family.

    And lastly I want a Hippopatumus for Christmas (Because my daughters performed this when they were little for a school show at ages 5 & 7 and it accidentally turned into they best comedy performance you have ever seen.)

    Imagine two adorable little girls dressed in red skating outfits trimmed in white maribo with santa hats on, wearing white tights and black tap shoes. They had a well polished and perfectly rehearsed song and dance routine. Each child had their own microphone until the actual performance when one of the school microphones broke, so they ended up having to share a microphone.

    What ensued was the two girls each vying for the one lone microphone and gently trying to get the other child to move over. The audience burst into laughter and the younger child inspired by the laughter really worked the audience upstaging the older sibling. After several gentle attempts to share the microphone with her younger sister, the older daughter finally shrugged her shoulders and rolled her eyes and shook her head at the audience and attempted to do the routine as rehearsed with the younger daughter doing the routine and laughing as she sang and danced totally hogging the microphone.

    I think the actual performance turned out to be even more entertaining to the audience than the original routine would have been if everything had happened as rehearsed. This routine took place 10 years ago, and the parents of their school friends still mention to me how cute it was every Christmas. The performance ended up being quite reminiscent of the comedy routines that Danny Kay or Bob Hope would do with others where they joked around while singing together.

  • School turns heating off to ‘save planet’

    12/06/2011 6:44:15 PM PST · 31 of 46
    Flamenco Lady to Free ThinkerNY

    Hmm. Now I am wondering if the boiler outage at my daughter’s school yesterday was due to a malfunction or because some idiot turned it off. My daughter said she was so cold she was wearing her coat, scarf, and gloves in the classroom yesterday. Since we live in a liberal part of Oregon, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was another stunt like this.

    When I was a kid, they would cancel school if the boiler went out, but apparently now they would rather kids catch more colds instead.

  • Quitting Smoking - update and reassurance needed

    12/04/2011 6:17:17 PM PST · 79 of 86
    Flamenco Lady to Marie

    I quit a number of years ago. I found that chewing gum, or sucking on a piece of hard candy such as a tic tac or even a small square of dark chocolate, a small snack of nuts, celery or carrots or something similar really helped me over the hump. When I am around smokers I sometimes have a piece of nicorette gum.

    I have been cigarette free now since about April 2004!

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Dec 3, 2011

    12/03/2011 3:04:51 PM PST · 15 of 29
    Flamenco Lady to rightly_dividing; All

    This is a recipe I got from my mother in law’s sister. She used to send us one every year when she was younger and it was excellent. She is in poor health now and unable to bake them every year, so I asked her for her recipe. This fruit cake is my favorite fruit cake. Even those who normally don’t like fruitcake love this one!

    Fruit Cake

    Ingredients:
    1lb. Candied Cherries (red and green)
    1 lb. Candied Pineapple
    1 cup sugar
    5 eggs
    ½ lb. butter
    2 cups flour
    1 oz. (1 small bottle) vamilla extract
    1 oz. (1 small bottle) lemon extract
    5 cups chopped nuts: (2 cups pecans, 2 cups walnuts, 1 cup mixed brazil, almonds, and hazelnuts)

    Cut cherries in half or quarters, chop nuts, add all candied fruit and nuts with 1 cup of flour toss with flour.

    In a separate bowl mix butter and sugar together add eggs and beat in with sugar mixture. Add the remaining 1 cup of the flour to the mixture. Mix together well, slowly add nuts and fruit to mixture. Add lemon and vanilla to the mixture. Mixture will be thick. Preheat oven to 300/325 degreea. Grease and flour angel food cake plan. Bake 1 hour to 1 ½ hour. Use a tooth pick to check for stickyness. 1 hour is best for lower altitudes, but many need the extra ½ hour at a higher elevation. Use tin foil to cover cake if top is browning too quickly.

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/15/2011 4:36:40 PM PST · 150 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to Netizen

    No we make it just as Arroz con Pollo (rice with chicken) or as Arroz con Pavo (rice with turkey). My stepson does not handle tomatoes very well, so I refrain from using tomatoes with rice except for when we make this dish.

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/13/2011 5:15:27 PM PST · 120 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to libertarian27; All

    All the talk about banana bread reminded me. Our $1 Halloween pumpkin that my daughters wanted to cook up after Halloween turned out great. We drew the face on this year instead of cutting it into a Jack O Lantern, so we could still cook it up later. The pumpkin yielded us 3/4 cup of roasted pumpkin seeds and 21 cups of pumpkin puree to use toward our pumpkin bread, pumpkin pies, etc., for this holiday season.

    I haven’t checked the prices on pumpkin puree this year, but I am certain we wouldn’t be able to buy 21 cups worth of pumpkin puree for anywhere near $1, and roasted pumpkin seeds are really expensive here considering how easy they are to cook.

    I posted how to roast pumpkin seeds on an earlier thread, so I won’t repeate that here. I will tell you all how we made our pumpkin puree. It is really easy to make yourself. While there are several ways you can make it, I think the roasted version has more flavor.

    Homemade Roasted Pumpkin Puree

    Cut pumpkin in half and scoop out the seeds and the strings, reserving the seeds to roast. (For a large pumpkin you may want to cut it into four chunks instead of two.) Place the pumpkin on a cookie sheet skin side down and sprinkle with salt. Roast in a 400 degree oven for about 45 minutes until fork tender.

    Remove from the oven and let cool. Peal the skin off the outside, and cut the pumpkin into small chunks. Use a food processor to process the cooled pumpkin in batches into a puree.

    I package up any of the pumpkin puree I am not going to use within the week in pint size freezer containers (about 2 cups each) and freeze them, so we have it to use for any recipe using pumpkin puree.

    If any of you have any great recipes using pumpkin puree to share, please do so as I have lots of it to use! I would especially like to find some recipes for pumpkin muffins or cupcakes.

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/13/2011 10:16:17 AM PST · 117 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to magslinger

    My oldest daughter was in the mood to bake today, so she was looking at the various apple cake recipes all of you had posted as well as a recipe she had saved for Chocolate cheese danish she saw Giada make on TV this past week. She decided to make Giada’s pastries for dessert with our dinner tonight and the Easy Apple cake for a breakfast coffee cake.

    She substituted pears for the apples since we had 4 large pears we needed to use up. The easy apple cake recipe worked perfectly with the sliced pears instead of the apples and was a real big hit at our house. It was absolutely scrumptious!

    Here is the link to the Chocolate Cheese danish she made today:

    http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/chocolate-and-cheese-danish-recipe/index.html

    We tasted one of the extra danish and thought they were so chocolatey that they needed to be topped with a sprinkling of powdered sugar and a dollop of whipped cream. At they very least they need a big glass of milk with them! They are delicious too!

    I guess we better be on diets for the rest of the week!

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/12/2011 2:47:41 PM PST · 83 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to libertarian27

    I picked up some country style ribs last week that are very different from any of the country style ribs I have purchased before. These have very large bones in them, unlike the ones I used to be able to buy that were almost completely boneless. Does anyone know if they just stopped cutting off the bone, or if this is another one of those new cheaper cuts that they have started having in the stores.

    I think I am going to braise these tomorrow for dinner, unless any of you have a better idea on how to use them.

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/12/2011 12:55:34 PM PST · 72 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to illiac; All

    Sale prices seem to be especially high on meats, poultry, and even pork lately. Just wondering what kind of prices all of you are seeing for turkey’s this year. Last year I picked up my turkey’s for 23-26 cents per pound. This year the best price I have seen so far has been 99 cents per pound.

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/12/2011 12:30:17 PM PST · 70 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to rightly_dividing

    Thanks to the rest of you for posting more apple cake recipes. Each one is different, so I will have lots of different recipes to try.

    I have been trying to have some kind of fruit filled muffin, cake, or bread in my house this year at all times as it seems everyone is heading different directions at different times in the morning and none of my family gets up early enough to eat breakfast before they leave. This way I can at least get a little bit of fruit in them as they head out the door in the mornings, since it is easy to take a piece with them as they head out the door.

    I also have been trying out recipes for biscuits filled with bacon or sausage and cheese in them as another alternative, but those don’t seem to go over as well with the sweet tooth’s in my family. At least the fruit filled cakes, muffins, and breads they will grab with them on their way out the door, and it gives them a little something to tide them over until lunch.

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/12/2011 11:09:52 AM PST · 51 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to griswold3

    Wow! Thanks to all of you for all the apple cake ideas. I have been getting a bit tired of making apple crisps and pies when I have some apples around that are starting to get soft.

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/12/2011 10:58:44 AM PST · 45 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to illiac

    Thank you! I knew that someone here would have a good apple cake recipe. I have tried several recipes I found on line in recent years, and they all seemed a little on the dry side. This one sounds like it would be nice and moist with the applesauce in it.

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/12/2011 10:25:21 AM PST · 25 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to libertarian27

    Does anyone have a good apple cake recipe?

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/12/2011 10:20:35 AM PST · 23 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to libertarian27

    I came up with this recipe last week as a way to use up some leftovers and some fresh vegetables I had in the refrigerator. The family loved it and it was really simple to make.

    Sausage, Rice, and Squash Bake

    3/4-1/2 lb of Italian Sausage
    olive oil or cooking oil (if needed)
    1 onion, diced
    1 can mushrooms or the fresh equivalent sliced
    2-4 cloves of garlic, finely minced or grated (to taste)
    2-3 cups cooked rice
    1 zucchini, cut in bite size chunks
    1 yellow squash, cut in bite size chunks
    2 cups grated cheese (anything you have on hand would do, I used a combination of mozzarella and cheddar)
    3/4 cup heavy cream
    1 egg, beaten
    1 tsp. Italian seasoning
    Salt and pepper to taste
    Grated parmesan for topping
    Chopped Parsley for topping

    Brown Italian sausage and remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel. Saute onions garlic and mushrooms in the same pan using the grease from the sausage (add additional oil if needed). Set aside.

    Add the cream to the beaten egg and mix thoroughly. In a large bowl (if you wish to do this separately) or directly in a greased casserole dish, combine the sausage, onion mixture, 1/2 the cheese, the egg mixture, and seasonings.

    Spread the mixture in a large casserole dish and top with the remaining cheese. Sprinkle the top with a little grated parmesan cheese and parsley. (You could also easily top this with some breadcrumbs as well if you like.)

    Cover and bake the casserole at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes or until heated through completely. Remove the lid and cook an additional 15 minutes until the top is slightly browned. Enjoy!

    Note: This casserole is very versatile. It is more a method rather than a hard and true recipe. It could easily be made with pasta instead of rice, any combination of meat or vegetables you might have around or need to use up, and you could easily substitute condensed milk, milk, or even a can of creamed soup instead of the cream. Seasonings could easily be substituted as well for a different seasoning blend.

    I experiment a lot with casseroles like this to use up leftovers and fresh veggies I need to use up. Sometimes I use rice and sometimes I use pasta for them. Small pene pasta, bow tie pasta or even some kind of spiral pasta would be great in this dish.

    An example of another combination that I think would be equally good would to combine the rice with leftover chicken or beef fajita filling (onions, peppers, and meat or poultry), with taco or fajita seasoning, and cheddar cheese with perhaps even some cheddar cheese soup instead of the cream. You could garnish the top with sliced black olives and serve salsa, guacamole and sour cream on the side if you like.

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 12, 2011

    11/12/2011 9:33:17 AM PST · 10 of 177
    Flamenco Lady to smokingfrog

    Ooh, I haven’t seen those yet. I bet they would make awesome Rice Krispie treats!

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 5, 2011

    11/11/2011 8:39:54 AM PST · 42 of 44
    Flamenco Lady to hoagy62; All

    I often do something similar with leftover mashed potatoes. If the potatoes need to be thinned a bit or if you are out of sour cream a little buttermilk or regular milk will also thin the leftover potatoes down a bit. Sometimes I add some grated cheese, chopped chives, and/or crumbled bacon to them as well.

  • DNC chairwoman joins food stamp challenge

    11/09/2011 6:52:02 AM PST · 40 of 41
    Flamenco Lady to Bruinator

    Wow, and I thought I was doing well by feeding my family of 5 for $200 per month! Please ask your wife to sign up for the Weekly cooking thread to share some of her recipes and ideas for low cost meals. We would love to have her join us! Here is the thread from this last week:

    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2803056/posts

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 5, 2011

    11/06/2011 5:28:13 PM PST · 38 of 44
    Flamenco Lady to Flamenco Lady

    Oops, I did it again! I down’t know why I have such a hard time typing the word cauliflower.

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 5, 2011

    11/06/2011 5:25:23 PM PST · 37 of 44
    Flamenco Lady to Mountain Mary; All

    Maybe this one will sound good to you. One of my daughters wanted me to make Potato Leek soup this weekend and the other daughter wanted me to make a Califlower soup that she saw on TV recently. After much discussion we decided to combine the two ideas together, and came up with our own soup recipe that turned out absolutely delicious. Here is our recipe:

    Potato, Leek and Califlower Soup with Bacon

    1/2 pound of bacon, chopped into small pieces
    2 leeks
    About 2 quarts of chicken stock
    8 medium size russet potatoes, peeled and cut into bite size pieces
    1/2 head of califlower, broken into small flowerettes
    1 cup heavy cream
    salt and pepper to taste
    Fresh chopped parsley and or chives for a garnish

    Saute bacon in a large dutch oven. Add in the leeks and saute with the bacon for a few minutes. Add in the potato and califlower and cover with the stock, scraping all the brown bits off of the bottom of the pan for added flavor. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer and cook until potatoes and califlower are fork tender. Put about 1-2 cups of the soup in a blender and puree it, and then add it back to the pot to thicken the soup a little. (You could puree all or just part of the soup as we did, and either way would be delicious) Add about 1 cup of cream just before serving.

    This soup turned out great, so much so that I don’t think there will be any leftover for my lunch tomorrow and we made a large pot of soup!

  • FR Weekly Cooking Thread *Recipes* Nov 5, 2011

    11/06/2011 5:55:30 AM PST · 33 of 44
    Flamenco Lady to libertarian27; All

    I am late to the thread, but here are a couple of pasta dishes I have made recently that my family loved. I am trying to get my family to eat more vegetables and these went over very well.

    Blush Pasta

    1 lb. pasta (You can pick your favorite kind)
    1 lb. Italian Sausage (I like to use hot)
    3-4 cloves of garlic finely chopped
    1 48 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
    Salt and pepper
    1/2 tsp crushed red pepper (optional)
    2 tablespoons fresh basil or 1 tablespoon dried basil
    1/2 cup heavy cream
    1 cup frozen peas
    Parmesan Cheese for garnish

    Brown sausage in a large skillet or dutch oven. Add garlic and saute with the sausage for a few minutes to release the flavor of the garlic. Add tomatoes and heat to bubbling and then reduce to a simmer. (If I have any fresh tomatoes that I need to use up before they spoil, I sometimes dice them up and add them to the sauce at this time.) Taste sauce and add salt and peppers to taste (beware of adding too much salt as the sausage, canned tomatoes, and the parmesan cheese are all quite salty). If using dried basil I add it now, if using fresh I add it with the cream toward the end of the cooking.

    While sauce is simmering, start cooking the pasta according to package directions. Add cream, peas, and basil to the sauce about 2 minutes before the pasta will be done and stir to combine. Drain pasta when cooked to your taste and add it to the sauce and stir together. If you like add a handful of the parmesan cheese to the pasta at this time, or serve it on the side for those who want it on their pasta.

    Italian Sausage Pasta with Vegetables

    1 lb. Italian Sausage
    1 lb. of your favorite pasta
    1 onion, thinly sliced
    3-4 cloves of garlic, finely minced
    1 zucchini, thinly sliced
    1 yellow squash thinly sliced
    1/2 pint of cherry tomatoes, cut in half
    1/2 cup of parmesan cheese divided
    1/2 cup cream, warmed on the stove or in the microwave
    Salt and pepper

    Put water for pasta on to boil. Brown sausage and remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel. Add onions to the same pan and saute until golden. I start cooking my pasta at this point acording to the package directions, add garlic and squash and saute until just cooked. Drain pasta and combine with the sauteed vegetables, tomatoes, cream and 1/4 cup of the parmesan cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste (I rarely need to add salt because the parmesan cheese is so salty, but I like a healthy dose of black pepper).

    Note: At my local grocery store, it seems that Italian sausage frequently is sold in packages that are 1 1/2 - 1 3/4 pounds. I usually divide these packages in half so I am often using a little less than 1 full pound of sausage in my recipes and it works out just fine.

    Hope you all enjoy these recipes!