January 2011


EMPTIER HOUSE

It’s been 2 weeks since the wedding, since Older Son and Fiance both moved out of our house for good, and the impact of it is starting to settle in.

They will come to visit, yes, but they will never live with us again.  They are gone, and nothing will be the same.

This is what our house looks like:

Empty More space in the closet

Empty More space at the table

Empty More room on the towel rack

Empty Free drawer space

 

Bitter Sweets Indeed

Advertisements

STILL HAVING FUN WITH MERINGUE

Because my Younger Son and I are gluten-free, and because we knew of six other wedding reception attendees who are gluten-free, it was suggested that I create a table of gluten-free goodies just for our own selves.

It was a lot of work.

It was kind of like planning for a whole ‘nother reception, without the “going-to-Sam’s Club-and-getting-food-that-was-already-made” part.

As it so happens, it was also extremely well received.  At the last minute, I added food for someone very allergic to poultry/eggs and then too, five more gluten-free people emerged at the reception!  This was something I had not planned, but fortunately, we had enough.

Here is what we had:

meatballs in a special sweet sauce
ham roll-ups
shrimp and sauce
sausage cheese balls
banana bread
fruit and veggies
spiced pecans
cookies–shortbread, Cocoa Pebbles, peanut butter kisses, meringue
cupcakes
brownies with mint frosting
eyeball candy
cheeseball with crackers
cheesecake
rice

Here is what the table looked like a few hours before the reception (with the refrigerator items missing):

 

Now, the something special that was going to grace the reception table–the beautiful and impressive dessert– was another and new variation of meringue.  I have been having a grand time with meringue in the last year or so (click on the FOOD TABhere at my blog to find some recipes) and I was excited to surprise my friends with the latest:  meringue cookies with cream filling.  Part of the idea came from a magazine I saw at the doctor’s office.

These are terribly good, and they come close to being a grand substitute for cream puffs.  But when the wedding was over, I lamented these were all gone by the time I got to the table.  I supposed so, anyway.  My Younger Son didn’t remember having seen them either.  I wondered….

Today, 8 days after the wedding, I stopped at the reception hall, opened the freezer door, and…there were the meringue cookies!  All of them untouched from the time I put them inside.  Ah well; I didn’t get to show them off, but my Younger Son and I enjoyed them very much and very quickly. 

CHRISTMAS CREAM MERINGUES

Make meringue cookies (here is my favorite recipe) with the following exceptions:

1.  Use almond flavoring instead of vanilla
2.  Don’t put anything else in the cookies (such as chocolate chips)
3.  Pipe it (using either a decorator frosting bag or a ziplock bag with the corner
    snipped out) into Hershey Kiss-like mounds about 1 1/4″ in diameter

When the cookies are finished, make the Cream Filling by mixing these together:

8 oz. cream cheese
8 drops red food color
1/4 C. strawberry preserves (try to find some without large lumps)

Assemble cookie sandwiches this way: 

1.  Spread some cream filling on the bottom of a cookie/kiss.
2.  Take another cookie/kiss and attach the bottom of it to the cream.

How to eat them:

The cream filling does make these cookies weep quickly.  So you must eat them fairly soon!  For the wedding, I intended to keep them in the freezer up till the last minute so they wouldn’t have time to get soft.

Also, you yourself can ponder what method you would like to use in actually biting them.  It’s a bit tricky trying to bite a little bit off at a time, in a dainty way.  The best method we have here at our house is to put the entire cookie in your mouth all at once:  not a pretty picture.

 

FLOWERS FOR THE WEDDING

My new daughter-in-law gave me her bridal bouquet five days ago, and it still looks wonderful!  I have been cutting the stems afresh every day, which really seems to help.

We put together our own flowers, which saved heaps of money, though I never thought we would dare try such a thing.  The internet made it easy for my flower team:  my sister-in-law and her two daughters.

First, they watched information about how to loosen up tight rosebuds (although in practice that didn’t go over too well):  Rebecca Cole’s “How to Force Rosebuds to Open”

Next, they made 14 corsages and boutonnieres out of roses and hypericum berries, using a photo I found on the internet along with Kara Beckett’s videos for “Wiring and Taping a Rose for a Boutonniere” and “Add Accent Flowers and Greenery to Your Boutonniere.”  

The corsages and boutineers were exactly the same.  Here is my sister-in-law showing one of the finished ones.

And here is my son wearing his own.

The bride carried a bouquet made of short-stemmed roses, made with the assistance of Crystal Nassar’s video.

And the bridesmaid had a bouquet of gerbera daisies.  They’re such exciting flowers we were afraid they would eclipse the bridal bouquet!

All told, it took the team about 3 hours to put these together and I’m so proud of them!  (the flowers AND my relatives)