Friday, August 9, 2013

Green Goddess Wedge Salad (My take on Applebee's salad)


Iceberg lettuce
Crumbled Blue Cheese
Bacon, crumbled
Glazed Pecans
Green Goddess Ranch Dressing

I use nitrate free bacon and cook that until crisp and place on paper towels to drain before crumbling.  I like mine not to well done so I have to kind of tear it into pieces.  Quarter the head of iceberg lettuce and place one quarter into a salad bowl and add dressing, blue cheese crumbles, bacon and glazed pecans.

Now as far as the dressing you can approach it one of two different ways.  You can either make it (which I will provide a recipe) or you can mix Green Goddess dressing with Ranch dressing and a bit of sugar or Stevia to cut the tang.  I use Stevia as I have diabetes and have to be very careful with my sugar intake.

If you are in a hurry I use equal parts Green Goddess and Ranch dressing and add the Stevia to taste.  If you have the time and want to make the dressing from scratch here is the recipe.

2 tbsp minced fresh chives or scallions
2 tsp anchovy paste (or 1 tsp course salt)
1/8 tsp fresh ground pepper
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp white vinegar or tarragon vinegar (do not use cider vinegar it will not taste right)
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 small garlic clove, smashed and minced
Buttermilk or milk (optional)


In a large blender or bowl, whisk or blend all ingredients except buttermilk.  Add just enough buttermilk to thin to the desired consistency, if needed.  Pour into a jar with a tight fitting lid (I always save my glass jars just for this purpose) and refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to marry together.  Shake well before using and lasts up to 1 week in the refrigerator.

I hope you will try this salad as it is absolutely wonderful.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Easy Crustless Egg Cups

Nutrition is extremely important to me and so I am always looking for recipes or experimenting with ideas.  Here is one I hope you will try and enjoy as much as my family and I do.

Items you will need:  muffin pan (large = 12 muffins) and skillet

Heat oven to 350 (or 177 Celsius)

12 eggs (large, if you use medium you will have to adjust)
Milk (I use 1%, but it's your preference, I have not tried soy, almond or any of the others yet)
1/2 large onion, diced and sauteed
6 large mushrooms, sliced thinly and sauteed (white or mini bellas - again your preference)
6-8 small red, yellow and orange peppers diced and sauteed (I use the bag of small mixed peppers you can buy at your supermarket)
1/2 cup pepper jack or habanero cheese
1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 tbsp butter

put EVOO and butter into pan and heat.  While heating pan dice onion, slice mushrooms and dice peppers.  Saute onions first until soft and transparent over medium heat then add mushrooms.  Saute both onions and mushrooms until mushrooms are soft and then add peppers and saute for about 2 more minutes.

While onions are sauteing, mix together your eggs and about 1/4 of milk (add less or more to your taste, need it liquidy so that they will pour into pan well).  Then grate your cheese.  I use the grater for my Parmesan so that the cheese is a finer grate.

Add onions, mushrooms and peppers to the bottom of each cup and then sprinkle cheese on top.

then add egg mixture slightly below the top and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

I also use my Misto mister with EVOO in it to mist the cups prior to adding ingredients.  Even though it is a non-stick pan the added fine layer of EVOO helps them come out super easy.

Remove from oven let cool about a minute and then remove from pan and serve. 

They are super yummy and really good for on the go.  I hope you enjoy them and feel free to experiment with other ingredients.  I've used sliced grape tomatoes, fresh basil, and mozzarella and also Canadian bacon, the onion mushroom pepper mixture and habanero cheese.  All very tasty.  I like the spicy cheeses because they add a bit of kick, but you could add hot sauce to your egg mixture and use another kind of cheese.  These are just so versatile and you don't have the crust which is loaded with calories and flour (I try to be as gluten free as I can because my daughter has Celiac disease).

Blessed Be!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Chicken Cordon Bleu with White Wine Sauce

4 chicken breasts
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp paprika
4 slices ham
4 slices provolone
1 egg
1 tsp water
1 cup Italian breadcrumbs
3 tbsp butter
3 tbsp EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
1/2 cup Dry White Wine
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 cup Heavy cream
1 tsp Chicken broth granules


Pound out the chicken breasts to approximately 1/2" thick, so that it can be rolled.  Season both sides with the salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika.  Place 1 slice of Ham and 1 slice of Provolone on each breast and roll so that the the Ham and Provolone cheese are enclosed in the seam.  Close with a toothpick.

In a separate shallow bowl or pie plate make an egg wash with the egg and tsp water and place the bread crumbs in a separate dish.  Take each chicken breast and roll in the egg wash and then in the breadcrumbs and place onto a plate.

Heat the oven to 400 degrees and while that is preheating, heat a medium sized saute pan set at medium heat with the EVOO and butter.  Saute the chicken breasts for approximately 10 minutes rotating so that each side gets browned.  Remove breasts to a baking sheet and finish cooking for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown and juices run clear.

While the chicken is baking add the white wine, cornstarch, heavy cream and chicken broth granules to the pan that you browned the chicken in.  Whisk for several minutes to all the flavors to marry together and the sauce to thicken.  Pour sauce over the breasts and served with your vegetable of choice.

Bon Apetite

Friday, February 3, 2012

The Crone

While contemplating what I would post for my first Pagan Blog Project post I thought about what is going on in my life and I thought of the Crone. I’ve been going through many changes in my life and one of them is being premenopausal.  I feel as though I’m teetering on that rope between Maiden and Crone, not yet menopausal, but no longer able to bear children as I no longer ovulate.  I find myself wondering where I am and who I am at this time.  

The Crone; for some the picture of an old hag at her cauldron may come to mind and this is probably the most enduring image of the Wise Woman and a remnant of a time when women were the healers of their communities.  These Wise Women were shamans, witches, midwives, medicine women and priestesses of the Goddess.
The Crone is a symbol of wisdom.  She has lived through so much in her life, love, sorrow, hope, fear and happiness and through all of these experiences she has been molded into the strong, confident spirit she is.  She has learned the secrets of life and death and of the mysteries beyond this world.  She has watched those that she loved and cared for make the journey to the Summerlands before her and through her mourning she faces death, grows to understand it and become the gatekeeper between worlds.

The Crone is full of power.  Even though her body is no longer fertile, her mind is as sharp and able as ever.  Her power comes from within as she no longer bleeds, owning it without shame or fear.  She is a healer, in tune with Nature working with the elements to cure ailments and guide those ready to leave or enter this world.  She is selfless, yet she loves herself.  She is kind, yet she knows when to be harsh.  She is our elder, our Grandmother whose words are few yet full of wisdom and knowledge.

The Crone has often been thought of as something to be feared as she is a representation of death and its mysteries.  For so many, things unknown are feared and so we should work toward knowing the Crone and understanding her wisdom.  Surrender your fear and embrace her. 

She is associated with the element of water and the direction of west – land of the dead.  She is the mysterious old woman who possesses the knowledge of all worlds.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Lavender  (Lavandula angustifolia, or Lavandula officinalis)

When some people hear the word Lavender they may associate it with its use in soaps, shampoos and sachets because of its lovely aroma.  The name comes from the Latin root lavare, which means "to wash."  It is quite possible that Lavender earned its name because of its frequency in baths to purify the body and spirit among other things. Over the course of years, research has shown that when its scent is inhaled it produces a calming, soothing and somewhat sedative affect. 

Lavender is native to the mountainous zones of the Mediterranean; however, today it flourishes throughout southern Europe Australia and the United States.  Lavender is a heavily branched short shrub that grows to a height of roughly 60 centimeters (about 24 inches). Its broad rootstock bears woody branches with upright, rod-like, leafy, green shoots. The flowers are arranged in spirals of 6 - 10 blossoms, forming interrupted spikes above the foliage.  The oil in lavender's small, blue-violet flowers gives the herb its fragrant scent. The essential oil is extracted from the fresh flowers and used for medicinal purposes, aromatherapy and magickal uses.

For centuries Lavender has been used as an herbal remedy and does appear to have antiseptic, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-convulsive, and last but certainly not least - anti-depressant properties.
Lavender is believed to be beneficial for a multitude of problems if taken internally.  It is reported to help with stress, anxiety, exhaustion, irritability, headaches, migraines, insomnia, depression, colds, digestion, flatulence, upset stomach, liver and gallbladder problems, nervousness, loss of appetite and as a breath freshener and mouthwash. 

For issues such as relaxation and sleep, easing depression and reducing headache pain, inhaling the essential oil has been reported to work as well as some narcotics do.  Who wouldn’t want to use a natural remedy such as Lavender over a possibly addictive narcotic?  Simply boil 2 cups of water and add 2 drops of the essential oil and inhale the steam.

In regards to the internal usage you can find commercial preparations in the form of teas, infusions, tinctures, dried flowers, and oil.  As far as using the essential oil internally, unless you have a home still and the knowledge of the process to extract the essential oil, it is usually advised by most vendors to take in very small doses as it may cause you to become very nauseous.  My first rule of thumb when using essential oils is to always follow the manufacturer’s recommendations. On the other hand, the tea and dried flowers are wonderful for internal usage and I have included a recipe below that I hope you will try.

Lavender oil is one of the safest essential oils and can be used full-strength on the skin. It can be applied directly to cuts, scrapes, wounds, burns, bee, wasp and insect stings, rashes, muscle aches, rheumatism, arthritis, cold sores, canker sores, blisters, bruises, athlete’s foot and directly in the temples for headaches and migraine pain.

Magickal Properties:
GENDER : Masculine.
PLANET : Mercury.
POWERS : Love, Protection, Sleep, Chastity, Longevity, Purification, Happiness, Peace, Protection, and Sleep

Because of its lovely scent, Lavender has been used for thousands of years in love spells and spells for attracting money.  By placing Lavender flowers in a sachet or amulet and carried on your person, one might be able to attract spirits and also love, peace and good health.  Another way to attract love is to take the fresh flowers of the Lavender and rub them into the clothing.  Lavender is very useful for spell work and rituals, simply take the dried Lavender stalks and burn them just as you would incense.  You can also use them in spells to attract money, love, protection and success.  The flowers as well as the stalks can be burned, but they must first be dried. Should you desire to use Lavender for sleep divination either place a lavender sachet or lavender sprigs under your pillow before bed time while focusing your mind on your desire.  If during your dream you dream of anything related to your wish, you will get what you desire.  For peaceful sleep place a few drops of essential oil in a diffuser before bed.

The following are recommended doses for lavender:
  • Internal use: Tea: 1 to 2 tsp whole herb per cup of water. Allow to steep for 3-5 minutes or even up to 15 minutes. Soothes tension and helps insomnia.
  • External use: inhalation: dried flowers in 2 to 3 cups of boiling water; inhale vapors for headache, depression, or insomnia.
  • Topical application: lavender water can be safely applied. Pour 3/4 cups boiling water over 3 Tablespoons dried lavender flowers or buds. Let cool and strain. Can be sprinkled on your pillow for a good night's sleep, or applied to skin to cool, soothe and refresh.
  • Lavender Bath and Oatmeal: place into a muslin bag or multiple thicknesses of cheesecloth, two tablespoons each of lavender buds or flowers, and freshly ground oatmeal (whirl in blender). Tie tightly with a long piece of string or ribbon. Attach the bag to the bathtub spigot, so the bag hangs below the water level. While bathing, rub the bag on the skin to soothe dry, itchy, achy spots. Very relaxing!
Lavender Ice Tea Recipe
2 tbsp Lavender flowers (1 tbsp dry)
1 tbsp Lemon balm (1 tsp dry or one lemon slice)
1 tbsp Mint (1 tsp dry, applemint is best but spearmint works also)
3 tbsp Honey

Pour six cups boiling water on herbs and steep for ten to fifteen minutes.  Cool to room temperature.  Add lemon slice after cooling if you’re using it instead of the lemon balm. Add honey and stir.  Add crushed ice.  Enjoy!

If you would like to learn how to make sachets of your own, please check out this link.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Could This Be Love

I never thought I had any more to give
  Then I met you!
It feels like this could last forever
  Love is a wondrous thing
A thousand times I've seen you standing there
  Never had the courage to talk to you
Half the time it seems as though no one else is around
  You come to stand next to me, your hand gently touching mine
I look in your eyes, falling deep within their darkness
Is this the beginning, so much to say, somehow we find comfort in the silence
As quickly as you are there, you are gone.

You Are My Everything

There are just some things we don't talk about
People fall in and out of love
We're taught to keep feelings hidden
Can't you see my arms stretched out to you?
Don't let me go
I'm always yours
Let the feelings sweep us away
Hold on to me and feel the love
Shut out the world, it's only us
I'm your queen and you're my king