Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Eating for One

I like to cook but find cooking for one to be a bit boring. Most nights I throw the food pyramid to the wind and scrounge up whatever I find in the house. Mac & Cheese with canned tomatoes mixed in, check. Cheese quesadilla, check. Granola bar, check. But sometimes, like tonight, I get it right. I boiled up some small red skinned potatoes (skin on) and mashed them with some Earth Balance butter, sour cream, black pepper, dill, and cumin. While the potatoes where boiling away I steamed the head of broccoli I bought in an attempt to make myself eat more healthy. Next up, I pulled a roll of chickettes out of the freezer and fried some up. Here is the end product. I not only got dinner tonight, but two batches of leftovers so I have lunch for the rest of the week.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

I Made That

(I posted this at Memphis' 1Thing blog earlier and though it would fit nicely here as well. ) Once a year, usually around Mother's Day, I invite the youth group from my church over to the house to make some crafts. We've made scented lotions, chocolates, soaps, etc. This year we made lip balm. I got the recipe from my herb loving mom who makes some for stocking stuffers at Christmas time. This is a quick and easy project that will help keep your lips protected all summer long.
Honey Lip Balm (makes 16 -18 containers)

4 ounces extra-virgin olive oil

3 ounces grated or shaved beeswax (or beads)

1 ounce honey ½ capsule Vitamin E, 400 IU or 1 ounce Vitamin E oil

A few drops of essential oil (Optional, I used peppermint)

Chopstick or wooden spoon

18 small bead storage jars

1. In a microwave or top of double boiler, melt the beeswax and oil together using a Chopstick or wooden spoon. Do not boil. If the mixture starts to boil remove from heat and allow to cool. (You can remelt it) Once the beeswax and oil are blended, stir in the honey. Then pierce the vitamin E capsule with a needle, squeeze out half of the contents, and stir in. Add in any essential oil you want at this point and stir in. Pour the resulting mixture into clean containers with tops. (I found it cooled very quickly, so pour it immediately before it has a chance to thicken too much.)

2. Let the lip balm sit at room temperature for 48 hours until it arrives at the proper consistency for spreading. You can carry a small container of lip balm around with you during the day, but you may find it keeps better in the refrigerator overnight.

I like to add a couple drops of essential oil for variety. Peppermint is cool and soothing. Lemon or orange taste good. You can add food coloring, but I like mine natural. Use your imagination and make a fun label for your products. Small plastic bead containers with screw-on tops work well for this if you can’t find lip balm holders. They make great gifts!