Jul 14, 2011

Smore's Brownies

After the 4th of July weekend... I had some extra smore's supplies... and a craving for brownies. There are tweaks to be made, I definitely want to try them with homemade graham crackers... but....

Take the Chocolate Brownies recipe get to the batter stage and add
1 cup coarsely crushed graham crackers
6 marshmallows quartered

Stir together gently. Place in a greased and floured pan. On top of batter place 12 marshmallows cut into halves. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes. When you do the toothpick check make sure you haven't speared a marshmallow. There should be some crumbs on your toothpick with you take it out, but no wet spots. The graham cracker tends to get kind of soaked up into the batter so next go around I think I will do an entire layer of graham crackers through the middle of the brownies.... and see how that works out.

Smores Brownies
Before baking.

Smores Brownies
After baking.

Happy 4th of July!

I know this is late... I apologize profusely.... but.... here was my 4th of July mani. AND the few days thereafter. :D

july 4th
This mani started out with Orly Winter Wonderland as the base, I then did a gradient with Color Club's Sexy Siren (blue) and Art of Seduction (red).

july 4th
The next day I added Essie's Matte About You topcoat

july 4th
AND THEN I added OPI Navy Shatter

Thanks for looking!

OPI Miss Universe Collection

Wow! This collection is a stunner! No real application problems, all vibrant rich colors. I am a fan. For serious. I am definitely a creme girl at heart, but these shimmery polishes have won me over!

Onto the swatches!

Congeniality is My Middle NameAnd berry-wine shimmer is what I do best!
 OPI Congeniality is My Middle Name
OPI Congeniality is My Middle Name
This was sooo difficult for me to capture. It is definitely a berry shimmer, but the shimmer is bordering on being  a hidden shimmer. In some lights it is a bit more burgundy. I used two coats and in my opinion, it could have used another. In the second picture you can see the shimmer in the bottle, but not as much on my nails. A gorgeous color, might not be one I reach for often, but I did enjoy it when I wore it.

It’s MY YearIt’s about time for this champagne-rose to shine!
OPI It's MY Year
Oh this is a beauty. It is similar in finish to the Serena Williams OPI color Rally Pretty Pink. I actually loved this more than I thought I would. It is a gorgeous purple with strong gold sparkle. This is two coats and it covered well.
It's MY Year vs. Rally Pretty Pink
OPI Rally Pretty Pretty Pink vs OPI It's My Year (middle)
OPI Rally Pretty Pink vs OPI It's My Year (T, M, P)
OPI Rally Pretty Pink vs OPI It's My Year
Rally Pretty Pink on Index and Ring.

Crown Me Already!
A sassy silver sparkle that knows what it’s worth.
OPI Crown Me Already! 1 coat
One coat
OPI Crown Me Already!
OPI Crown Me Already!
Oh this is beautiful! The glitter! In the first picture I used just one coat, in the other pictures two. I could live with wearing it that way, but would probably use one more. This has larger silver hex glitter in a standard silver glitter base. It is very reflective and I love it!

Swimsuit…Nailed It!
An itsy bitsy teenie weenie vibrant shiny-blue bikini.
OPI Swimsuit... Nailed It!
OPI Swimsuit... Nailed It!
OPI Swimsuit... Nailed It!
Hands down my favorite of the collection. Bet you didn't see that coming did ya? This is a lovely saturated blue with an almost foil like finish. These pictures are once again two coats, and I think I could have gotten away with one, had I been a bit more careful with my application.

What do you think of this collection? I love Swimsuit... Nailed it! It makes a GORGEOUS pedi color as well. :D

Chicken Cacciatore

Cacciatore (English pronunciation: /ˌkɑːtʃəˈtɔəriː/) means "hunter" in Italian. In cuisine, "alla cacciatora" refers to a meal prepared "hunter-style" with tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, herbs, often bell pepper, and sometimes wine. Cacciatore is popularly made with braised chicken (pollo alla cacciatora) or rabbit. The salamino Cacciatore is also a small salami, popular amongst Italians.

There are many different variations of this dish based upon ingredients available in specific regions. For example, in southern Italy, cacciatore often includes red wine while northern Italian chefs might use white wine.

Oh so many things to say about this... but I will let the recipe speak for itself. This is a very basic cacciatore recipe. If you want to vamp it up, go right ahead, but the flavors in this really speak for themselves. My pictures are sans mushrooms... because I ended up not having any when I thought that I did. Oops. It is amazing mushrooms or not.

1 1/2 c flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
garlic powder
onion powder
dried basil
4 lbs of chicken cut up (you can use breast meat, thighs, an entire chicken, whatever your heart desires)
Olive oil
1 large onion, roughly chopped
3 or 4 shallots, finely chopped
4-6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 large green bell peppers, roughly chopped
1 6 or 8 oz can tomato paste
1 tomato paste can of water
1 28 oz can dices or crushed tomatoes
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
Salt and Pepper
1/2 c red wine (optional)
2 cups mushrooms sliced or quartered

Chicken Cacciatore
Combine first 6 ingredients in a bowl.

Dredge your chicken pieces.
Chicken Cacciatore
In your large pot heat some oil and brown up your chicken. Feel free to do this in several batches, you want your chicken to be able to brown and crisp up, overcrowd and that won't happen right.
Chicken Cacciatore
Once all of your chicken is browned and removed from the pot add in your onion, garlic, and green peppers.
Chicken Cacciatore
Saute until softened and starting to carmelize.
Chicken Cacciatore
Add in your tomato paste and let the heat melt it into your veggies. Then add in the can of water and tomatoes. If you are not dredging you chicken omit the extra can of water. The flour coating on the chicken helps to thicken the sauce considerably.
Chicken Cacciatore
Add in your cooked chicken, oregano, basil, salt and pepper, and wine if using.
Chicken Cacciatore
Chicken Cacciatore
Cover and simmer about thirty minutes. Add in your mushrooms and simmer another ten minutes.
Chicken Cacciatore
Chicken Cacciatore
Plate and serve! I served mine with orzo pasta, but you can eat it alone, or over any type of pasta. You can also add in potatoes and other items to make it more stew like. Enjoy!

Jul 4, 2011

Sally Hansen CSM Barracuda

Wow! I love this blue! 
SH CSM Barracuda
I had great application with this, as I usually do with the CSMs. I have absolutely no problem with the giant brushes... because I have giant nail beds. If you have very small nail beds, expect a bit of cleanup.