Valentine Truffles

February 13, 2013
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Make your sweetheart feel extra special this Valentine’s Day and try your hand at truffles.  It’s too easy to pick up a heart shaped box of assorted chocolates.  It’s that home-made effort that really speaks the language of love.  It’s easier than you think, I’ll walk you through it. Going out to dinner?  Pop a […]

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Creative Valentine Gift Wrap

February 10, 2013
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Create a beautiful package for a loved one on Valentine’s Day. I started by making little clay ornaments from Springerle cookie molds. I detailed them with a little craft paint to highlight their romantic designs. I then used the ornaments and some pretty ribbon to embellish the pink, red and white wrapped boxes.   Gather […]

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Happy Chinese New Year

February 6, 2013
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Welcome to the “Year of the Snake”.  Chinese New Year falls on the first day of the first Chinese lunar month.  This year it falls on February 10.  I hope you already had your calendars marked, and booked a table at your favorite place, because your local Chinese restaurant will be packed with extended families […]

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Dress Your Santos for Winter

December 22, 2012
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My Santos, Esperanza, is always dressed for the season.  If you don’t own a santos, you might add some seasonal embellishments to a statue.  Angel statues are easy to dress up with just a little ribbon and greenery.  A stuffed bear can put on a sweater.  Tie a wide red ribbon around an outdoor reindeer […]

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Winter Fairy Garden

December 16, 2012
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Let’s visit a fairy house on a wintry afternoon, to see what the residents are up to.   Ahh, that hot chocolate hits the spot on a cold afternoon.  It even warms my elfin ears.   Hey, elf fairy, you were supposed to help me with the tree!   Sorry, Holly Fairy, time to go. […]

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Parmesan Chicken Tenders

October 20, 2012
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Chicken is a master of disguise.  It transforms itself into so many recipes, it’s difficult to keep track.  One evening it appears on the table whole and roasted, the following day it has morphed itself into a chicken salad with celery and onion and you are spreading it on bread for a tasty sandwich.  The […]

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Eggplant with Shitake Mushrooms

October 15, 2012
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Eggplants are a versatile vegetable. Stuffed, fried, baked, they conform to almost any recipe. Their deep purple glossy skin and sensuous shape make a pretty still life picture. But this shapely vegetable also comes in softer palettes of lavender, orange, white, and celedon green. First cultivated in China in the 5th century, it migrated to […]

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Autumn In My Garden

October 14, 2012
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The season I love most is autumn.  Or at least it used to be.  Growing up in New York, I enjoyed the splendor of nature as green changed to red, gold, and rust.  Summer humidity waned and the air breathed a crispness that signaled a change of season.  The rain was cold and days grew […]

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Esperanza Dresses for Fall

October 12, 2012
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Esperanza moved to the front entry to give an autumn welcome to all who enter. The change of season is subtle here in Southern California, so I like to gently coax some fall color into my decor.  I’m not a huge halloween fan but I do like the warm golden hues of this cooler season. […]

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Grilled Cheese and Mushroom Sandwich

October 7, 2012
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Just to prove you can add mushrooms to anything, I’m topping a classic grilled cheese sandwich with sliced portobellos.  Serve it on its own or with its famous side-kick, a bowl of tomato soup.  Who doesn’t love this combination?  The weather is finally cooling here in Southern California, so a hot sandwich and a bowl […]

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