Thursday, April 30, 2009

MEXICAN CILANTRO AND LIME RICE

It was great as a side dish, but also great as a filler for a burrito!
The following receipe is from Closet Cooking and it is tweaked copycat/upgraded version of the lime rice in Chipotle's burritos.
I had to tweak it further as I used quick rice and have dried instead of fresh cilantro and the second time I made it did not have any fresh garlic so I had to use chopped garlic from a jar.
It was great as a side dish, but also great as a filler for a burrito!
This recipe make about 4 side dish servings (note, in some of the pics are from the second time I made this and I tripled the recipe)
Ingredients:
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1/2 large onion or 1 small onion
  • 1 clove garlic (chopped) or 1 TBSP of chopped garlic from a jar
  • 1 cup quick cook rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro (chopped) or 1/4 cup dried cilantro
  • 1 TBSP lime juice or juice and zest of 1 lime (zest is optional)
  • 1 TBSP Kosher or Coarse salt (like the kind used on the rim of margarita glasses)

Heat the oil in a pan.

Add the onion and saute until tender, about 5-7 minutes, then the garlic and saute until fragrant, about a minute.
Add the rice and toast in the oil for a few minutes. Add the water, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 2-3 minutes, then remove from heat. Cover the pan and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
Mix in the cilantro
Add in lime juice (if you use juice from a bottle, 3 capfuls is 1 TBSP) and zest.
Stir in the salt

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

NEMO FROM A PLASTIC EASTER EGG

I made this for as part Eggcellent Upcycling competition that starts May 1st at Craftster where you make something creative out of plastic Easter Eggs. I tried to take pictures as a I went for a how-to, but as I basically figured it out and tweaked it as I went along, there are some instructions without pictures. He can be used soley for decoration and possibly play for older children over 3 as the 9001 craft glue is pretty sturdy (if you were going to make for children under 3, I would recommend painting the eyes on to avoid a choking hazard). The egg still opens up, so you could place something inside him and use him as a party favor or even a make and take project at a Nemo themed birthday party, or to hold a special treat; for now, mine is perched on the lid off of laundry soap and holding jewelry findings.

Items used:

  • 1 large orange plastic easter egg
  • 1 square each black and orange felt
  • 2 large googly eyes
  • 9001 Craft Glue
  • Scissors
  • Black fabric paint
  • White acrylic or fabric paint
  • Red fabric paint (for the lips)
  • Glitter fabric paint (to paint the lines on the fins)
  • Popsicle stick (optional)

Cut out 2 of each of the following from the square of orange felt

- Small under developed side fin - Regular side fin - Tail - Top fin (not pictured in top picture) Paint lines on each of the fins with the glitter fabric paint and allow them to dry. Lay one each of the fins on the edge of the black fabric and cut around about 1/4 inch from the edge on each. Put glue on the top edge of one of each of the fins Put the glued fin edge on the black piece of felt allowing 1/4 inch to peek over the top. Apply glue to the rest of the fin excep for 1/4 inch at the bottom of each and glue the side together Bend the unglued edges away from each other Apply glue to the bent edge on each fin and glue the fin to the bottom half of the egg. On the top half of the egg, apply black fabric paint around the egde and allow it to dry. Then take white paint and apply it directly above where the black paint was applied as indicated below. I didn't have any white fabric paint, only acrylic paint, so I put a dap on a piece of cardboard and used at popsicle stick to apply a line of white.
After the layer of white paint is dry, paint a line of black next to the edge.
Repeat the black, white, black painting sequence on the bottom of the egg near where the tail is attached.
Next place a dab of glue on each googly eye, then apply it to the top of the egg
Draw lips on the top of the egg down about 1/2 in and centered between the eyes and allow to dry, then outline with black (the red blends into the orange to much unless you ouline the lips with black).

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

DATE PUDDING

My Mom and Grandmother used to make date pudding for holiday meals and this was the first time I have ever made it myself. I never got the family receipe so I went in search of one on the internet and found this one at Receipezaar. I increased the ingredients as I made mine in a 9 x13 cake pan as that was what my Mom and Grandmother always used.
This receipe turned out wonderfully gooey and good and dare I say it, better than what our family receipe was.
If you have never had date pudding, the closest thing I can think of that is similar is pecan pie, except there is no crust, you use walnuts instead of pecans and it is more like a rich gooey cake than pudding and is wonderful served warm with whipped topping.
http://www.recipezaar.com/Date-Pudding-78429?scaleto=12
Ingredients 2 cups packed dark brown sugar, divided into 1 1/2 cups and 1/2 cup 1 1/3 cups water 4 tsp. margarine 1 1/3 cups flour 2 2/3 teaspoons baking powder 1 pinch of salt 2/3 cup milk 1 1/3 cups chopped dates 1 cup walnuts (I used walnut halves, receipe calls for chopped walnuts) whipped cream
Preheat oven to 350°.
This make 12 large pieces of pudding/cake In a saucepan combine 1 1/2 cup brown sugar, water, and bring to a boil, cook for 3 minutes.
Remove from heat and add the margarine - this will make a syrup mixture
In a bowl combine flour, baking powder, salt, 1/2 cup sugar. Stir in milk until smooth.
Add dates and walnuts
Thoroughly mix the dates and walnuts in
. Pour syrup mixture into the pan
Add batter and push the batter down into the syrup mixture until fully and evenly distributed across the bottom of the pan. Bake for 35 minutes.
Serve warm with whipped cream.

Monday, April 27, 2009

PITCH BLACK GLOW-IN-THE-DARK NOTEBOOK

This is a notebook that I decorated with the "Pitch Black" movie theme (one of my fav movies) and to make it different, I used glow-in-the-dark paint on the center portion to make it look more like what how the creatures in the movie would see Riddick. This is what it looks like in the dark without using any flash; in person it is much easier to see the outline of Riddick's face, but it just doesn't photograph well. This cost under $1 to make. The materials that I used:
  • Notebook
  • Reduced photocopy of a small "Pitch Black" poster (have similar images on the internet though)
  • Scribbles Glow-In-The-Dark 3-D fabric paint
  • Scribbles Glittering Crystal 3-D fabric paint
  • Scribbles Shiny Black 3-D fabric paint
  • Glue Stick

Go over the back of the photocopy with the glue stick, be sure to get all edges as well as the inner perimeter.

Turn the photocopy over and press it firmly to the front of the notebook and smooth out.

For the face area, I put a dab of the glow in the dark paint and smoothed it over with my finger, then used the paint to paint rays away from the face and on one of the rings of the planet. I allowed it to dry and dabbed small bits of the shiny black paint to better define Riddick's face.

For the movie credits area, I used the Glittering Crystal paint and smoothed the paint over with my fingers around the entire area. I also put small dots of the same paint around the top of the planet to look like stars.

For the lettering at the top, I outlined the lettering with Glittering Crystal paint and let dry, then went around that paint with the Shiny Black Paint. I also used same paint to cover up the purple from the notebook on either side of the the picture and around the planets.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

MS. PACMAN BOOKMARK

My all time fav video game is Ms. Pacman so I decided to create this bookmark out of piece of junk mail.

Items used:

  • Junk mail envelope
  • Scissors
  • Yellow highlighter
  • Red Marker
  • Pen
  • Glue Stick
  • Large cup (from a fast-food place) to make the half-circle -optional

I used a large cup from a fast-food place to draw the half circle on the corner of an envelope then drew a bow to the side on the envelope.

Just cut it out, color it, draw on eyes with a pen or marker, draw on red lips, then glue the bow on and she is ready to keep mark you pages.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

GLOW IN THE DARK UFO

I made this for as part Eggcellent Upcycling competition that starts May 1st at Craftster where you make something creative out of plastic Easter Eggs. This is one of the few craft projects my son thinks is cool and it has now taken up residence in our bathroom as it hangs on light fixture in there because you can close the door and turn off the lights and it glows.
For this project I used:
  • Top of plastic Easter Egg
  • Tealight battery operated candle from the Dollar store
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Cardboard (I used cardboard from a 24 pack of soda pop)
  • 2 old CDs
  • Glue Gun and glue
  • Craft glue
  • Heavy Duty Scissors (I used Kitchen Scissors from the Dollar store)
  • Thumbtack
  • Crochet thread
  • Glow In the Dark acrylic paint

As I had all of the items on hand already, it did not cost me anything out of pocket to make.

Use craft glue to glue the two CDs together with the shiny side of each disc facing away from each other (if you have CDs with writing on the top you would glue the sides with writing together) Draw a circle on cardboard using the plastic egg, drawing around the egg and then about an inch out from the edge all the way around and then cut out the circles and put it on the egg flush against the edge.

Use the hot glue gun to glue all around the edge of the egg on at the top to glue the cardboard securely to the egg.
I then cut a length of crochet thread about 24 inches long and thread it through the battery case of the tealight, centering the thread and then tied a loose knot. You then put hot glue all around the top of the tealight (around the flame, but not on it) and put the flame through the hole in the CD and turn it upside down and firmly press the CDs in place and let dry.
Next make a hole in the top of the egg using a thumbtack and work it around so the hole is big enough that the thread can be pulled through it.
Thread the crochet thread through the hole (note - this picture is to show as an example and is from another project, the thread for this project will have the tealight/CD attached)
Cover the egg with aluminum foil (poke a hole in the center and thread the crochet thread through first and then glue it around the edges inside on the underneath side.
Paint the top and the bottom of the disc with glow in the dark paint - I used several coats and at least and hour between coats and painted each side separately. To turn the tealight, you just lift the top of the egg up and flip the switch.
***UPDATE***
I posted the How-To at Cut Out And Keep and this was featured on 4/27/09 for Kids Craft Roundup