Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Tomato Basil Parmesan Soup

This is taken from www.365daysofcrockpot.com. I was looking for a delicious soup recipe after sampling a flight of soups at Soup Spoon Cafe in downtown Lansing for Valentine's day.  It was so yummy, and exactly what I needed for these cold winter days.  And on top of that, it is a crockpot recipe, so a lot of the work can be done ahead of time.

picture taken from 365 Days of Slow Cooking blog
 but I plan on taking my own picture as soon as I can

2 (14 oz) cans diced tomatoes, with juice
~1 cup finely diced celery
~1 cup finely diced carrots
~1 cup finely diced onions
1 tsp dried oregano or 1 T fresh oregano (have some extra in case you want to add more seasoning later)
1 T dried basil or 1/4 cup fresh basil (have some extra in case you want to add more seasoning later)
4 cups chicken broth
½ bay leaf (dried or fresh)
½ cup flour
1 cup Parmesan cheese
½ cup butter
2 cups half and half, warmed
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper

1.  Add tomatoes, celery, carrots, chicken broth, onions, oregano, basil, and bay leaf to a large slow cooker.
2.  Cover and cook on LOW for 5-7 hours, until flavors are blended and vegetables are soft.
3.  About 30 minutes before serving prepare a roux. Melt butter over low heat in a skillet and add flour. Stir constantly with a whisk for 5-7 minutes. 
4.  Slowly stir in 1 cup hot soup. Add another 3 cups and stir until smooth. 
5.  Add all back into the slow cooker. 
6.  Stir and add the Parmesan cheese, warmed half and half, salt and pepper.  
7.  Add additional basil and oregano if needed (the slow cooker does a number on spices and they get bland over time, so don't be afraid to always season to taste at the end). 
8.  Cover and cook on LOW for another 30 minutes or so until ready to serve.

Grandma's Refrigerator Rolls

A recipe passed down from my grandma.  My mom uses this recipe to make delicious cinnamon rolls.


*½ c warm water
*4 t sugar
*3 pkg dry yeast (not rapid rise)
*Mix above ingredients and set aside to proof

4 c hot water
3 tsp salt
1 ¼ c Crisco shortening
1 c sugar
Mix previous 4 ingredients until sugar dissolved and
Crisco is partly melted and partly in very small “chunks”
When Crisco mix is cooled to lukewarm then add yeast mix
and stir together then:

Add 4 eggs – beat in one at a time

Then add about 12 –14 cups of flour.

Knead to make a dough that is soft but not sticky. You
will likely have to knead it on a board to get all the flour in.
Don’t add so much flour that the dough gets stiff – should be
spongy and “stretchy”.

Put in one or two LARGE tupperware containers with cover –
put in fridge until needed. Check it every few hours to make
sure it hasn’t “sprung” the cover. This will last about 3 days
in the fridge. When you want to make rolls just take out, roll
out rolls, let rise for a few hours in warm place and bake at
350 for about 15 minutes.

* This recipe “tripled” (you have to make it 3 times – not just
triple the ingredients) will make 100 large dinner rolls.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Text on Textiles

I recently discovered the website SpoonFlower.com and I am going to have fun with this!  It is a website where you can design you own fabric and order it and sell it.  I've decided to start with my designs from my 2012 calendar and go from there.  Should be fun!  Here is a sample of my calendar print...can't wait to see the fabric.  More pictures to follow I am sure!

copyright Rebecca Bartlett 2012

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Jot it Down!

The journals that I sell on Etsy have been one of my most successful items.  I recently created a new design for my journals including extra features like a reinforced book spine and ribbon bookmarks.  I love the yellow plaid color!

Visit my etsy shop if you are interested in seeing more designs!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Travel Photographs

A few photos I have take over the years, in the various locations I have been in...

Bayeux, France
Bath, England

San Francisco, USA
Mesa Verde, USA

Redwood National Forest, USA
Bath, England

copyright Rebecca Bartlett 2011

Monday, February 6, 2012

Vegetarian Chili (reblogged from thecurvycarrot.com)

Vegetarian Chili
Servings: 4
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped fine ( about 1 cup)
  • 1 large red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and chopped fine (about 1 1/4 cups)
  • 8 medium cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon plain ground cumin (or cumin whole seed)
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • ~ 2-3 12 oz cans of  beans, drained and rinsed 
  • 1 cup frozen (or canned) corn kernels, thawed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • Cheese, optional
  • Sour cream, optional

  1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat until about shimmering.
  2. Add the onion and cook until translucent and slightly softened, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add the red pepper and cook until it and the onion are soft and slightly browned around the edges, about 3 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  5. Push the vegetables to the perimeter of the pot so that the center of the pot is clear.
  6. Sprinkle the cumin seeds (or ground cumin) into the center of pot and cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
  7. Stir the cumin and vegetables together and let cook until the cumin is fragrant, about 1 minute.
  8. Add the chili powder and cayenne pepper and stir to coat the vegetables.  Cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  9. Add 2 cups water and stir well to combine, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot.
  10. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
  11. Stir in the tomatoes, oregano, and brown sugar, and bring back to a simmer.  Simmer until slightly thickened, about 25 minutes.
  12. Add the beans and corn and stir gently to incorporate.
  13. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in salt, cilantro, and lime juice immediately before serving.