Monday, October 31, 2011

New Recipe: Apricot sauce for pork or chicken

Apricot preserves 3/4 cup
Dried apricots 10 or 12 halves
Slivered almonds 1/2 cup
Balsamic vinegar 1 teaspoon
Pinch of salt or 1/2 teaspoon chicken base

Place the preserves in a small saucepan on medium heat. Snip the apricots into small pieces with kitchen shears and add to pan. As the glaze starts to bubble, stir in the vinegar and whichever "saltiness" you are adding. The mixture can bubble on medium until it reduces, thickens, and darkens a bit. Taste and adjust the flavor. I added a dribble more vinegar to cut the sweetness a bit. Add the slivered almonds.

This recipe was shared by Linda on the APQS forum. She served hers with pork tenderloin slices. I'm oven roasting a chicken. Actually instead of preserves, I cooked up some dried apricots, pureed them and finished them in a small crockpot. I'm planning to use 3/4 cup of this and follow her recipe. Are you as hungry as I am? Enjoy...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Pumpkins in the Fall

Here it is!

All done except for the hand finishing of the binding. The quilting in this was inspired by some of my favorite designers. Anne Bright, Maple Winds; Deb Geissler, Lonestar Swirls diamond, pear meander, and Dancing Leaves; Patricia Ritter, leaves and acorns; and a couple of pumpkin arrangements by yours truly. One of my specialties is to take elements from the fabric in a quilt and make up my own quilting designs. I used the pumpkin fabric, the leaves and flowers and made an arrangement that would fit in a triangle for the center and the points on the center star. Of course it's almost invisible to the naked eye, but if you turn it over and look at the muslin backing, it shows clearly and vividly. Why do all that work for quilting that doesn't show? Well, as you can see in some of the pictures, when there is side-lighting, such as the morning sun beaming in the bedroom window, the quilting actually does show lovely with the highs and lows of the quilt sandwich. I did not use a highly visible thread either. That way the beautiful fall fabrics are not covered up with intricate designs. It is my favorite time of year and these are my favorite colors! Check out my Picasa Album for pictures. and ThankYou for looking. May you be inspired beyond your imagination.

Monday, October 24, 2011

NQR Comfort Food and Homemade Marshmallows

When people talk about dieting, I run the other way. Literally, walking is my favorite food! I could eat it all day, every day of the week! Don't talk to me about dieting! Talk to me about getting in shape and feeling good! Good health is a rare commodity these days. We just need to get our hearts pumping, our breathing faster, and a little sweat worked up. EVERY DAY!!!

Meanwhile, in the kitchen, I cooked up some comfort food---some really really really good comfort food---Homemade Marshmallows! One of my daughters sent me a link to a website called Pinterest and the first time I went there, there was this recipe for homemade marshmallows. I immediately wrote down the recipe---YES! I WROTE it down on a card, and put it in my recipe cabinet. Yesterday I felt a chill in the air, that first one of the season, and a forecast for frost this week. I saw Starbucks gourmet hot chocolate mixes at Costco, and guess I needed to make some marshmallows. Here is the link to my Picasa album with photos, step by step of how I did it.

Also, here is a link to an online video that is more professionally done than my little effort.

So, next time you get the notion in your head that you need to "lose weight", go for a walk and make some homemade marshmallows! Can't have one without the other!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Shop Hops and such...

My cousin and a friend and I drove towards the coast Friday on an adventure. Marilyn grew up in Warrenton and her parents are buried in the cemetery there. She wanted to put some fresh flowers on their graves so we turned it into a shop hop for the day. Since Sew Oregon 2011 is going on, we started with the passport, and picked up a copy of the Country Register to find other shops in the area. We visited half a dozen shops, ate fish and chips at Doogers in Warrenton/Astoria, and made it home by 7:00 pm before it started raining again. The day was perfect for a road trip. We even stopped at the Tillamook Cheese Factory to pick up some snacks, found an espresso wagon in Garibaldi, and toodled our way up the coast. I can't remember all the names, but we found quilt shops in Tillamook, Wheeler, Canon Beach, two in Astoria, Clatskanie, and then we dropped!

I'm busy with these two quilts, wedding presents for two sisters we've watched grow into womanhood and now holy matrimony. Actually one got married a couple years ago and I never finished the quilt. Now I'm making up for lost time. I'll be sure to post the finished pictures soon. This is a variation on Labyrinth by Calico Carriage, Debbie Maddy.

This one is a variation of Aspen, Marianne Elizabeth.

I hope you're having a classy fall, pumpkins and all! And don't forget the candy corn!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

A New Venue

Union Block Marketplace is in the building that used to house White's China many years ago. Newberg, Oregon, offers on the first Friday of the month, an Art Walk. Many downtown merchants host an artist in several locations for the general public to view in casual settings. There are choices of food, beverages, and entertainment. Surprisingly it's all free! Beginning at 5:00 pm, and ending at 9:00, friends gather much like a family reunion, all over the historical section of town. It's fun to get out and walk and window shop and listen to the sounds of a small town festival atmosphere. The Union Block Marketplace is filled with many vendors who sell antiques, jewelry, furniture, china, home decor, some for children, most for grown-ups, but quite a lot to choose from. New items are added daily. From now until the end of the year, you'll find a treasure of unique and one-of-a-kind items just waiting for a new home.

Nuts and Bolts Quilting Company now has a small display of products from quilts to table runners, gift bags, sewing kits, carry bags, and more to come in the days ahead. I hope you will find time to drop in and browse the shelves and racks and nooks and crannies in this new venue. Thanks for looking. Please have a look, humble pictures, I know. I'm not a professional photographer. Consider it a freebie! (smiley face)

I am Bonnie Russell, owner and quilter, and my business is making beautiful quilts and making quilts beautiful. NABQC came about as a partnership between the love of sewing and hazelnut farming. That's how the name was chosen. My husband, Fred, is the nut farmer, and I do the sewing using many bolts of fabulous fabric. My studio is located in Dundee, Oregon, the beautiful Willamette Valley, in the center of a hazelnut orchard. Experience came with 42 years of dress making, 40 years of marriage to my wonderful, loving, supportive husband (34 years of nut farming), 25 years of raising three daughters, and now we have seven grandchildren to mentor in Future Quilters of America!

With a Statler Stitcher and Gammill Optimum Plus longarm quilting machine, a 14 foot table, and the drawing program AutoSketch, no project is too big or too small. Anything from hand guided meandering to custom digitized designs can be applied to a project to complete that labor of love.

This blog is to temporarily serve as a source of information until a website is produced. It contains pricing, products, helpful hints, pictures, inspirations, and who knows what else will show up. Thank you for reading and I hope you will find it helpful.

Tale of a Dog