Friday, February 17, 2017

A Day Trip to Blanco, TX

One of the things that brings me back to Blanco each year is the annual Lavender festival where I have been introduced to some lovely products, but each time I go back, I remember what a wonderful town it is on its own.


Starting with the center square, Blanco is like any other old classic Texas town. The beautiful, almost intimidating County Courthouse stands tall and proud right smack in the center of it all. It's magnificently breath-taking on its own.

410 4th Street
A perfect stop for lunch, Redbud Café offers a plethora of soups, salads, and sandwiches. I lean towards the Reuben, the husband likes the French Dip, the Fish Taco is delicious, and of course there is always the Pimento Cheese. And during the lavender festival, they take it to another level with lavender dishes, both to eat and drink. The lavender tea is a must.

49 Main Street
Open every day of the week from 7am to 10pm, El Charro provides that classic Tex Mex comfort food that we all love. For breakfast you can get eggs any and every style. Lunch provides tacos, tortas, gorditas, and a few classic plates. Dinner offers just over 50 different options to choose from - enchiladas, flautas, fajitas, and more!

231 San Saba Court
And just right on the edge of the outskirts of town, make sure to stop in and visit the genius behind one of Texas's finest beers, Real Ale. Take a tour if you want, or just visit the tap room and enjoy some of their refreshing product on-site. Some of my favorites include the year-round Fireman's 4 Blonde Ale and Rio Blanco Pale Ale, or the seasonal Oktoberfest and Coffee Porter. Yum, yum, delicious!


So go to Blanco, walk the town square. Take in, enjoy, and indulge.


Friday, January 20, 2017

Loofah Scrubbers Soap

It's winter. Things are dry. Hands are dry. Skin is cracking. You need a fix.
 
Recently a friend introduced me to Loofah Scrubbers Soap by Bar Soap Brooklyn. It's soap with a loofah already molded inside, and it's amazing!
 
So, got dry skin? Go ahead, give it a try...
 
 

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Snowmen in the South

Down in Texas we don't get much snow in the winter, so we have to get creative...
 
 

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Bourbon Bombs

Recently I came across a new brand - No. Four St. James. A Texas brand with a London address? Sounds perfect for Slone Ranger! After all, we both share previous London Pride with current Texas true. Even cooler, catch the story of their name:
 
"We’re often asked about our name, and just as often we’re happy to explain. From 1836 to 1844, Texas was a proud republic—a country of its own. Like other sovereign nations, the Republic of Texas maintained foreign legations (small embassies) abroad. The Texas Legation in London, England was located at No. 4 Saint James’s Street. Nearly 170 years later, we’ve taken that address for our name."
 
 
But more importantly, their products are really cool. Especially the Bourbon Bombs, I'm not sure if Santa is going to be putting those in my stocking or my husband's - hopefully both!
 
 
 

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Christmas in Fredericksburg

The Christmas Pyramid
 
Fredericksburg, Texas is a German town, so it is only fitting that come Christmas time, the town decorates its main square with a 26-foot tall Christmas pyramid.
 
Christmas pyramids were initially used as a sort of woodworker's storybook, capturing attention in both children and adults alike. And watching the figurines go 'round and 'round on this magical tiered mountain truly is a delight. You have to see it to believe it...
 




Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Deep South Barrels



 
Looking for a cool Christmas gift? Check out Deep South Barrels. They're not just decorative, they're actually useful!

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Post-Thanksgiving Turkey Pot Pie

So what happens after Thanksgiving with all of that leftover turkey? Turkey pot pie, of course!

Ingredients
1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil
1 Onion, chopped
1/2 cup of flour
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon salt

3 cups chicken broth
1 cup of milk

1 bag of frozen peas and carrots, thawed
2 cups of turkey leftovers, chopped

Pie crust
2 cups flour
1 stick of butter, cold
1 Tablespoon of sugar
1 teaspoon of salt
1/4 cup of water

Directions
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Start by making the pie crust... Combine Flour, sugar and salt in a bowl. Cut butter into cubes, then add to the dry ingredients. Using your hands (or a mixer) blend together the ingredients - mixture will turn crumbly. Add the water and blend to form a dough. Divide dough into two balls.

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over the stovetop. Add the chopped onions and cook until browned and translucent. Add the flour, salt, and pepper and stir.

Add the chicken broth and milk to the saucepan and mix all the ingredients together. Lastly, add the peas, carrots, and turkey, and stir to combine.

Roll out one of the dough balls into a square or circle depending on your baking dish of choice. Place the crust into the bottom of the dish. Pour the turkey mixture filling into the dish. Roll out the second dough ball to cover the top of the pie. Crimp together the bottom and top edges of the pie crust. Cut holes, slits, or a design into the top of the pie to vent while cooking.

Bake in the oven for about 35 minutes or until the crust is golden brown. Remove and let cool. Happy Eating!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Grand Reopening of Hudson's on the Bend

*** UPDATE: As of February 14, 2017, Hudson's is closed indefinitely. ***

In a recent exchange of hands, Hudson's on the Bend has made a big come back!


Last week I was able to get a sneak peek at the soon to reopen Hudson's on the Bend and ya'll, the food was incredibly delicious! I don't even know where to begin, but I'll try...

First up, I was greeted with a Venison Tartare served atop a sweet potato chip with fermented chili and black lime. I've had my Tartares, but Venison?! It was truly Hudson's, and it was truly amazing.

Right behind the first tray was a second tray coming around with a tasting of a pop-in-your-mouth sized house Fried Okra. You can't get much more Southern classic than fried okra...
 
Or can you? Coming out of the kitchen next, hot from the fryer, was a perfectly salted buttermilk Fried Chicken. It was addictive, too addictive. And the accompanying tomato was just the right touch.

In true Texas style, another tray carried around a Corn Tamale stuffed with smoked short rib and drizzled in salsa verde and crema. A wonderful bar-be-que Tex-Mex marriage.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Simple Pasta Recipe

Inspired by a recent cover of Williams-Sonoma magazine, we decided to make our own homemade pappardelle.


Here's the deal folks, pasta made at home is actually super easy! And it's as fresh as can be. So careful, there's no turning back! But with something this simple that tastes so good, full speed forward ladies and gentlemen...

Friday, October 21, 2016

Mexican Embroidered Shirts






I'm not sure if it is Texas or the South, but these Mexican shirts are a hit!





I love the dresses too! Look at this adorable Mommy/Daughter combo:




2727 West Mockingbird Lane, Suite 103
Dallas, Texas 75235
 
 

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Stretching Dough at Due Forni


My birthday this year fell on a Thursday. So, in honor of Throwback Thursday, I was looking through old pictures and came across some from the time that I "stretched dough" (chef's words, not mine) at Due Forni, a restaurant that came to Austin from Las Vegas for a short tenure of less than 3 years.

A few years ago, my ever-so-thoughtful husband surprised me with a personal pizza making session. Chef Sean Zirkle was more than happy to oblige. From the second I walked through the door to the final moment of that first bite, I was warmly welcomed and in heaven. After all, I was surrounded by my first true love, pizza.

Chef Zirkle gave me a tour of the kitchen, pulled out a batch of well-rested dough, and told me the secrets to their success (sorry, I promised not to share!). He said that each chef had his or her own way to work their dough and you just had to do what was right for you. So he taught me his method, which I like to call the "stretch and turn". We would take the circle of dough, place our left hand down as a holder, pull the dough out with the right hand, turn and repeat.


Saturday, September 17, 2016

Oktoberfest 2016

Today marks the start of Oktoberfest and Real Ale has the perfect beer to celebrate.