Thursday, August 18, 2011

I am moving to a new blog  :o  Late night boutique was created as a business page blog. I hope I'm not disappointing you by giving up this blog.
I started a new blog called http://homewardfocused.blogspot.com/ it's a private/home centered  blog page. I will continue blogging and sharing my life and family with you here. As well as my recipes and sewing creations. I would love to see you move with me to this new adventure.

Thanks
Gabriele Mia

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Homemade Vanilla Extract

 Last year I found these bottles with instructions to make my own vanilla. Oh, once you make your own vanilla you won't want to go back to store bought vanilla. My baked goods taste so much better. I couldn't believe it.
 Here are the instructions, right on the bottle.

All you need is a glass bottle or a mason jar, 3 vanilla beans (at your local health food store) and vodka. That's it. You will save yourself so much money and really love the taste in your baked goods. 

 This bottle on the right I made four months ago. Try it you will love it.


Monday, August 15, 2011

Homemade Peach Cobbler Wheat/Gluten Free


 Oh my goodness! This is so easy,  but oh soooo delicious.
 Just out of the oven.
 My family loved it and had seconds.
1/2 cup coconut oil or butter ( I used coconut oil)
3/4 cup any type of milk (I used coconut milk)
1 cup cane sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup flour (I used spelt flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
5 peaches skinned and thinly sliced (you can use canned peaches, just drain)

Place the cut up fruit in a baking pan. Mix all your ingredients in a bowl, and pour over the cut up fruit. Bake in the oven at 350 for 1 hour. DONE

You can serve it with ice cream if you like  ;)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wheat Free Whole Speltflour Bread

 After many, many failed attempts to make a wheat/gluten free loaf of bread, I finally did it! Hurray!! Here you see my two loafs rising in the oven. Looking pretty good so far.
 This is how much they rose and now it's time to bake them. This is a 100% organic spelt flour loaf of bread I cannot tell you how excited I was when I saw how much they rose. No one was allowed in my kitchen during the bread-making process :) I did not want to take the chance of someone bumping my stove.
 Fresh out of the oven. It looks beautiful. My husband could not wait to taste it.
 Well he had the first slice while it was still hot and loved it. We all had a taste and there wasn't a dissatisfied customer in the house. 
 Best of all,  my wheat and gluten allergy husband had absolutely no problems eating this bread. Thank you, Lord.
 Here is the recipe:

4 to 41/2 cups spelt flour ( I used organic)
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
2 1/2 teaspoons yeast

3/4 cup water
5/8 cup milk any kind ( I used water )
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons honey

Sift your 4 to 4 1/2 cups of  flour with the sea salt. I used a bread machine, but you can do this by hand if you like.
Place all your wet ingredients (water, milk, oil, honey) in your bread machine bread pan. Add the flour with the salt on top. With your finger make a little dent in the flour and add the yeast. Let your machine knead this dough for exactly 8 minutes. Turn off the machine and let your dough sit in your bread pan, in your machine for 45 minutes.
Take your dough out of the bread pan unto a lightly floured surface, knead and shape your dough for only 30 seconds and place into a greased bread pan. Cover with a thin cloth napkin and let rise for 50 minutes. I let my breads rise in the oven so that I just have to remove the napkins and turn on the oven. The less you have to move your bread pans the better your dough will rise. Bake at 350 for 45 to 50 minutes.


Note:
 Don't over knead your dough it will become sticky and gooey. When this happens just add a little more flour to your dough knead it a couple more times and then let it rise.


Monday, August 1, 2011

New Round Pillows

 When I went to JoAnns fabric store to buy some yarn for my new project,  I saw this beautiful fabric. I thought it would be perfect for the two round neck pillows I recently purchased at a thrift store.



 I added the polka dotted fabric with some white rick rack to give it a little style. 

 Sooo Cute.  I think these pillows would look great on a white wicker chair.

 This is what the pillows looked like before. Just plain....



The strings were easy to make just fold and sew  :)

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Tristan and the Piano

video
If you have a child and you didn't know he could play the piano, raise your hand. If you could see me now you would see my raised hand. Here is the story:
I took my son Tristan and my daughter LilyBeth to a store called Habitat of Humanity. They were each allowed to pick one small item for a special treat. Lily and I were looking through some stuffed animals when I heard  someone playing the phantom of the opera on a piano. It sounded beautiful. Since there were three different pianos for sale I looked to see who was sitting on one and who was playing. It was my very own seven year old son. I just stood there listening. People began to stare at him playing; they began to ask me how many lessons he has had. One man came to me to tell me how hard the song he played really was. And, that he was using all of his fingers to play. The management of the store came towards me. It was then when I saw the signs on every piano .


I quickly and quietly asked my son to stop and come to me so I could explain what the sign said. The management told me that he could play on any piano he likes. They then asked me questions like " How long has he been playing?" When I told her he has never had lessons and that I don't own a piano, they almost didn't believe me. I was told from several customer as well as employees that I need to get him lessons and a piano. I said maybe in the near future we would be able to get him a piano but not right now. The prices on each piano was 300 dollars.
We continued shopping when the manager as well as two assistant managers came to talk to us. They said, "We would like for Tristan to pick out any piano he would like for 50 dollars" What??? I couldn't believe it.
I told them I would call my husband and see if this is something we could do. After I told him the story he said " Wow, what a deal. But, where are we going to put it?" I thanked them a million times. Tristan then looked at all three pianos. He played on each one of them. I was hoping he would pick the one that was perfect and had beautiful wood carvings with no scratches or dents. But, he picked the one that had plenty of scratches and needs much wood repair. A friend helped us bring it home. The sound of beautiful piano music played by my son has blessed our home. I can't wait to see what God is going to do next.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Venison Gulasch

Today we had this delicious Venison Gulasch for dinner. I invited my friend Sandy and her sweet little girls to share it with us; it was yummy and oh so tender.


Marinade
2lb venison meat 
1/4 cup olive oil
2 large garlic gloves; minced 
2 teaspoons sea salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
Cut the meat in bite size bites, place the meat in a bowl and add olive oil, fresh garlic, sea salt, pepper, paprika, and onion powder. Mix and cover and place in the refrigerator over night. This marinade helps the venison to become very tender.

The next day add 1/2 cup spelt flour(or any flour you have) to the marinated venison mixture. Combine well.

 2 lb venison meat(marinated)
8oz fresh mushrooms; sliced
3 tablespoons olive oil
6 cups chicken broth


 In a large sauce pan heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil and add the marinated venison. Brown on all sides then add the mushrooms, and sautée them for 3 more minutes. Then add your chicken broth; cover and simmer for 1 hour. You can thicken the gravy with arrowroot or cornstarch.

2 Tablespoons arrowroot powder
2 tablespoons water; mix and add to the gulasch as a thickener . 
Serve with salad and spätzle noodles or any kind of noodles you like. We had spätzle noodles, I took the picture after dinner and the spätzle noodles were all gone :)


 This dish really needs a very flavorful chicken broth.  Most chicken broths are very "blaaa." So I like to make my own.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Homemade Macaroni and Cheese

 We love macaroni and cheese. But, trying to be more health conscious, I came up with this version. Everyone loved it!!
 This cheese sauce is not very hard to make and is so creamy.

The steam is still coming off this freshly made dish. 


For the cheese sauce:

2 Tablespoons butter or any butter substitute
1/4 to 1/2 cup of flour any kind
1 to 2 cup milk, it depends on  how thick or thin you would like your cheese sauce to be ( I used unsweetened almond milk) 
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup shredded cheddar or any cheese substitute
fresh ground pepper to taste

In a medium sauce pan heat the butter until melted on medium high. Add the flour and stir until you have a thick crumbly mixture. 
Add the milk slowly to your crumbly mixture and continue stirring (I use a whisk) until you have a thick and creamy sauce,  you don't want to have any lumps in your cheese sauce :) Add your sea salt and shredded cheddar and stir until melted. 
Pour over any type of cooked noodles; mix and season with fresh black pepper .

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Baby Wipes are great Stain Removers!!




LilyBeth just recently walked right into our light tan rocker recliner with a blue marker. Oh NO!! First I started to scrub with water and soap, but it would not come out.  Then I remembered how often I got stains out of clothes with these baby wipes; and viola, it came right out. I keep a box of baby wipes in my car for messy moments. My husband has benefited from baby wipes as well: driving to work and spilling something on his dress clothes no longer requires him to change. Not only are baby wipes great stain removers, but they are safe for your little helpers.  They don't carry noxious chemicals , so there is no need for worry if your little ones join in on the cleaning.



video






Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Homemade Sloppy Joe

 When ever I can, I like to use my Crockpot. It's easy and convenient and saves me time in the Kitchen
 This recipe has been around for a long time and was given to me by my husbands mother. I changed some things in this recipe for a healthier version :)
1 lb ground turkey
1/2 cup celery; chopped
1/3 cup onions; chopped
3 medium tomatoes; blend in a blender or a can of tomato sauce (10 oz)
1 teaspoon sea salt; divided
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/8 teaspoon pepper

Brown ground turkey, onions and celery in a pot. Season while you brown with 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt, paprika and pepper until the meat is no longer pink. Drain
Add the tomato sauce and the 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt and simmer for 1 hour.

 *for the crock pot version, after browning cook for 2 hours on high, then add the followed mixture and simmer for one more hour on medium or low.

Mix together:

1/2 cup ketchup
3 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon of flour
1 teaspoon mustard
1 1/2 tablespoon vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tablespoon garlic powder
Mix and add to sloppy Joe mixture and cook for another 30 minutes.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Tristan and LilyBeth have been in vacation bible school this past week, leaving at 8:30 am and returning home at 12:45 pm. At first I thought, "WOW, How great is that!!" I can get so much done at the house." The first two days I got up, sent them off, and started to clean and organize much needed areas in our home. It was great!! No interruptions like potty time, "I am hungry", "I need help," "I just wanted to ask you tons of questions while you are doing this and that," "Can I sit on your lap while your sewing that?" "Oops, I spilled my drink," and "Can you hold me right now?"
Well, after the first two days I started to miss all that, YES I did! Sometimes I forget how blessed I am with these children and what a privilege it is to serve and teach them. Thank you Lord for the reminder :)
To be honest, I am so glad that VBS is over. I missed LilyBeth's sweet face and her need to help me in everything I do  :)
I missed Tristan, my peacemaker, and his ability to make me laugh at anytime. I almost felt bad that I was being so selfish, until my husband shared with me these same feelings. They had a wonderful time at VBS, but Tristan and Lily are also very glad to get back into there routine at home.
I was just reminded how much I love being a mommy and all the stuff that comes with it  :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Our Master Bedroom Make Over

It was time to paint our master bedroom!  For years we looked at these very "wake me up yellow " bedroom walls. I like the soft butter yellow we have in our kitchen and choose the same color for our bedroom.
My daughters Melanie and Stephanie are great painters and we had a lot of fun together.
The rolling Queen :)

Melanie is the expert for all the patient, detail paint jobs. I love her!!
Since we have high ceilings in our master bedroom, it was a challenge to reach the higher places.
My daughters rushed to get the camera to take these photos, to show their dad my foolishness  ;) standing  bare feet on the top of the latter. Holding the paint pan in one hand and the roller in the other.
And fully extended. It was foolish and my husband already gave me "the talk"
I will show  pictures of the finished Master Bedroom in a few days.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Chicken Salad wrapped in Iceberg Lettuce

 Chicken salad wrapped in lettuce leaves are so yummy and on hot summer days so refreshing. We like it with grapes on the side but you could just cut the grapes and add  them to your salad.

2 fully cooked chicken breasts  flaked or 2 cans of chicken breast; drained (12oz each)
1 cup mayonnaise  (I use vegenaise)
1cup chopped celery
1/4 to1/2 cup slivered almonds (optional; I make both, since some of us like it with almonds, and some of us without almonds)

Mix well and refrigerate. Serve on bread or on lettuce leaves.



 Here we have the shredded chicken breast.

 Just four simple ingredients. It is so simple and you can put this meal together in no time at all.

 With and without almonds. Oh, this is yummy!

 My Tristan (he is seven) love, love, loves chicken salad wrapped in lettuce leaves, it makes me so happy :)
 Try it, you won't regret it.
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