Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Rosemary, Blackberry, Camembert Grilled Cheese, Drizzled With Balsamic Glaze

I am ridiculously and madly in LOVE with grilled cheese...who isn't...really?? There is something about buttery toast melted, cheese and flavorful toppings that make for a delectable combo. There are tons of yummy and unique grilled cheese recipes out there and I thought I would make a recipe of my own! This is so easy and works great as a main course or as an appetizer. 
and be prepared for yumminess!!

For the homemade balsamic glaze (heaven in your mouth) the picture below! 

I enjoy it lightly sprinkled with salt! Much like in design, when it comes to food, I like a good blend of colors and textures that hit all five senses. This recipe is salty, sweet, tangy, creamy and crunchy!

 Buon Appetito!

Linking Up To:

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Nom, Nom, Nom Balsamic Glaze Recipe

Somebody hold me back...Seriously, this stuff is Yum Town, USA... I could drink it. Balsamic glaze is awesome on EVERYTHING, pizza, flank steak, bruschetta, creamy polenta, salad, crispy chicken, as a marinade for meats and fish, drizzled over grilled veggies, to sauté mushrooms with, on pasta and the list goes on and on... In fact, I will be sharing a few recipes with you over the next few days that you can use your homemade balsamic glaze with! 
Such as this beautiful cucumber and strawberry salad that I saw on the Oh Sweet Basil Blog. The balsamic glaze is perfect on it!

It is also the perfect topping on the Molly McCulloch version of grilled cheese.

Now, I am no expert on cooking (or anything for that matter), but I know this is easy and yummy. This is not only finger licking good, but is seriously the perfect recipe for those of you who are lazy and like your recipes to be simple...or if just too busy with life to to make fancy things. This homemade sweet balsamic glaze makes a great gift too! Be prepared to impress your friends and family.
Use your... 
For the absolute best results! Click the picture above to get the's stupid easy.

Alright, I will stop gabbing about it, here goes it...

I even made you guys some labels to put on your vinegar bottle, so it looks extra fancy! Feel free to print them up and use them! Or, if you want to make your own label, head on over to The Graphics Fairy Blog (where I found these awesome vintage frames) and make your own! 

Ours doesn't have a label yet because our printer isn't working (insert sad face).

I hope you like this sweet and tangy, savory treat! 
Stay tuned for recipes to use the glaze with! 
Have a fab day folks!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Insanely Delish Homemade Brown Sugar

Well, howdy there! I hope you are enjoying your Memorial Day weekend as much as I am! I have been up to loads of fun projects! What about you?
Something I really enjoy is Balsamic glaze... It is so yummy on EVERYTHING! Seriously you guys...I think I may be addicted. Anyway, yesterday I went to make some yummy, thick, and sweet balsamic glaze and to my surprise, we were out of one of the two ingredients I needed to make it...brown sugar. Since everything is closed on Sundays here in Germany, and we live pretty far from base, I decided to make my own. It is waaaaaaaaay better than the store bought junk. I am pretty sure I will never buy brown sugar again (unless I am feeling lazy that is). The homemade version is just too darn delicious!

Yup folks...It's really that easy. Go make some right now, you'll need it for the balsamic glaze recipe coming up! Also, How incredible will this sugar taste in Oatmeal, Baked goods, homemade BBQ sauce   and in a zillion other types of foods?!?! Yum.

Before I leave to work on some more fantastical projects, what do you think of my tea cup scoops?? I LOVE them. They are just vintage tea cups that measure 
8 oz. exactly... I think they are darling!

 Happy Memorial Day! And DON'T forget all those who gave their lives for our precious freedoms! xo

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Our Shabby Vintage Cabinet

Happy Memorial Day weekend!! I want to remind you (while you BBQ and travel) what this holiday is really about... I m so grateful for the men and women who gave their lives so we can live freely. I am so proud to be an American! With that being said, in honor of Memorial Day, I wanted to show you a ridiculously, Studly-Mcstudlerton Vet, my grandpa. He was a B-24 Navigator in the South Pacific during WWII.  These shots were taken during his modeling days! Work it, Grandpa!
Sorry ladies, he's taken...

I wanted to share with you what I did to our DIY wine cabinet that is actually a vintage sheet music holder. While the rest of home is pretty subtle as far as colors go (besides our wildly bright, giant, vintage map, that is), I am having a blast playing with colors in our cozy little barn kitchen! In fact, I have made so many changes to our kitchen, I am going to have to post an updated kitchen reveal soon! 
This is what the wine cabinet looked like before... I love it in black, but thought the soft green suited the kitchen better. It sure brightened up our space!            
 Here it is in the soft green!

The paint color is Annie Sloan Versailles Green with a clear wax finish.

I am having so much fun mixing and matching funky fabrics and colors... our barn kitchen kinda has an anthropologie feel to it, which is just what I was going for. The green color is actually a little more subtle than it looks in these photos. Painting antiques in bright, fun colors and bringing in modern fabrics and patterns is a great way to make your antiques look updated while still keeping their vintage charm! 

If you haven't met our new roomie, Chuck, click the picture below! 

What projects are you working on this weekend???

Linking Up To:

Home Stories A2Z

Friday, May 24, 2013

DIY Faux Taxidermy


There is a long list of reasons I LOVE faux taxidermy...
1. We live in a barn.
2. It is a fun twist on a very traditional style.
3. It goes with almost any style home.
4. It's whimsical...and the list goes on and on.

My friend, Liz found these funky, faux, taxidermy heads at a local German shop called Thomas Phillips  and they were only 20 Euro! I had to grab one for myself. I know there are tons of cheesy animal heads. figurines, taxidermy out there for cheap, ya just gotta look through yard sales and flea markets. If you can't find one, have no fear, click here for an awesome tutorial on how to make one from scratch! You could also use an old Christmas reindeer head as well!!
I liked the burlap look on my new deer friend, Chuck, but his face was really crooked and kinda creepy... I had to do some plastic surgery on poor Chucky stat. Also, the black, gothic lipstick is not a good look for him...
 I decided I wanted to cut up one of my favorite tea towels (which is a modern, navy blue and white Ikat dot) and cover him with that. It ended up being the perfect amount of fabric. I cut the fabric in a ton of small strips...
 Took a champagne break, then moved forward...
I dipped the fabric in watered down Elmer's School Glue. The ratio is 2 parts glue to one part water.
 I wrapped the fabric all around his head, neck and beady little eyes, being careful to push down all the edges. I left the burlap ears the way they were to give it a rustic look.
 I let the fabric dry overnight then mounted the dear, deer head on a wood mount that I painted a soft green. I was originally going to replace the antlers with branches, but decided I liked the look of the antlers just as they were. I think the deer head is a perfect addition to our barn kitchen! I see more faux taxidermy projects in my future...What do you think??
Meet the new and improved Chuck!

Imagine all the different looks you could get using different materials like sheet music, paint, pretty paper, book pages etc!

Post-Op update: Chuck is loving his new life and home. He is feeling confident, sassy and like he can do anything! His owners think he has let his new look go to his head. 

Linking up to:
Liz Marie Blog
Home Stories A2Z  The 36th Avenue

Sunday, May 19, 2013

DIY Chocolate Syrups

That's right folks... all those decadent and delicious flavors for your coffee, milk and ice cream in minutes! Yeaaaaaa! Not only do we not get decent iced coffee in my area of Germany, but the cafes (which I LOVE) don't offer seasonal drinks. This is my simple solution to that! 
Here is a base recipe for simple, delicious and inexpensive milk chocolate syrup.

Milk Chocolate Sauce
3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder (like Hershey's or Ghiradelli)
1 1/2 cups sugar
A pinch of salt
1 tsp Vanilla
1 cup water

In a small saucepan, gently whisk together the sugar, cocoa, and salt. Add the water and bring the mixture to a boil and be sure to stir it occasionally. Reduce heat and let your syrup cook for one minute. Remove from heat and add the vanilla. Store in the refrigerator and drizzle it on EVERYTHING.

For other flavored syrups, use the same recipe and instead of using vanilla use these flavors! I found that the perfect amount of flavor for this amount of chocolate syrup was (almost) a teaspoon of the extracts... You can add more or less to suit your taste. Drizzle the syrups in milk or coffee, over ice cream or blend to make a milk shake or frappe. 

Coconut Mocha (my personal fav)
(almost) 1 tsp coconut extract. Mixed with iced coffee, it tastes like a toasted coconut mocha! Garnish with whipped cream and toasted coconut.

Butter Rum
(almost) 1 tsp rum extract
Garnish with whipped cream.

Thin Mint
(almost) 1 tsp mint extract
Garnish with whipped cream crushed thin mints.

Almond Joy
1/2 tsp almond extract and 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
Garnish with whipped cream and toasted coconut.

Chocolate Hazelnut
(almost) 1 tsp hazelnut extract
Garnish with whipped cream and toasted, crushed Hazelnuts.

(almost) 1 tsp almond extract
Garnish with whipped cream and crushed biscotti.

Shazaam! You now have yourself some delicious, homemade syrups! They make beautiful gifts too!

I like mine over ice-cold Illy coffee topped with whipped cream... It is HEAVEN!

What is your favorite flavor???

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