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Monthly Archives: June 2012

Custom Koozie

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Yep I live in Southeast Texas and tonight at a house warming party I found this fully custom made koozie. I get a kick out of this life. Of course it’s only cool if you have a good nick name like this to write on it.

Best swimming hole in Texas: #1 (Krause Springs)

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Some of the best things to do in Texas involve water because if you have been here you know it’s hot. Me and my physicist love to camp so I thought I would put a few of some of our best, most favorite, and beautiful places to camp and swim in Texas. It will be a work in progress but since we are here today camping I wanted to start with Krause Springs in SpiceWood Texas. It’s a private campground off a county road and it’s very laid back, unpopulated, and beautiful. It’s not hard to find and only about 45 min from Austin but it’s a secret even to most of the locals and it’s quite the hidden gem. It has a rock pool that bottles the springs at the top of the cliffs just steps from huge wind chimes that hang in ancient cypress trees and a butterfly garden equipped with water fountains and hammocks. The pool is man made and the cold spring run straight through the middle. Equipped with a rock carved diving board and ultra cool springs this is a must stop spot and on ultra hot days stay a little longer because since the pool is close to the source of where the springs come out its super cool actually a nice 62 degrees where the springs pour in. However you MUST MUST MUST proceed down the rock steps into the real attraction. One of the coolest spots in Texas. A breathtaking watering hole equipped with water falls, a rope swing, perfect rocks for sunning and even a cave. We floated around with an icy beverage on tubes and then would get out and sun ourselves on the big flat hot rocks. If you get too warm you could paddle over to the waterfall that is spring fed and lay on the rocks under it to get a super cool sprinkle. Feel free to bring anything you like to this cool spot because there aren’t many rules except no pets and no glass containers. There is no one peering over your shoulder and it’s a very relaxed environment. Awesome enough all sorts of people seem to mingle wonderful together. Young hipsters, family’s, tatted up 30 something’s, grandparents, a few preppy looking school age kids, 40 something’s all the way to infants. This place pulls a diverse crowd. It seems all you need to enter is a laid back attitude and a need to chill out. You can either stay all day or camp for a night or two. We got here around three on a Tuesday and paid to stay the night with plans to pay for a day pass Wednesday and float and leave that afternoon but when we went up they said we were good for the whole next day without paying any more, so pretty awesome! There are several bath houses and restrooms all over the place ranging from primitive to those that make you feel like your at a resort but they are ALL so nice and clean. There are primitive sites, sites with electric and RV pull ups. There are great day facilities with huge stone fire and BBQ pits, large rock picnic tables and cedar and rock pavilions around every winding corner. And i do mean every corner. They have done an excellent job at making sure there are benches and restrooms and pavilions around every little spring fed corner. Even in the dead of summer there always seems to be a breeze humming through the giant towering trees so there are tons of places to just sit and relax and enjoy it. Winding paths blooming flowers trickling springs, melodic wind chimes and if this all sounds too good to be true it’s in fact one of the few cases where it’s not. Go find out for yourself. From Austin: Take 71 to Spicewood TX turn at spur 191 go right to CR 404 turn right and then turn left at the metal gate named Krause Springs. Enjoy!

Of course our pictures from the trip will follow here is info:

http://krausesprings.net/

404 Krause Springs Rd
Spicewood TX 78669
United States
+1 (830) 693-4181

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Ok so I’m a new and learning cook, let me say that first off. So all things are new to me and I made this and still have no idea what piccata is. I picked this recipe because im on a diet (of course) and wanted fettucine but…well… ummm its like 800 calories, so i tried this. Its super good and totally fixed that craving. HOWEVER i am changing the directions because this took way too long to be practical in my everyday life.

So to start off get out three skillets and a pot and stick them on the oven. You may also want to turn your air conditioner up at this point because you are going to have all these burners going at once.
Pot for boiling pasta
pan or skillet for mushrooms
pan or skillet for chicken
pan or skillet for sauce mixture

START
in the pot put in water and past and start to boil.
in one pan put two teaspoons of light flavored olive oil – (for chicken) and turn heat to low
in another put one teaspoon of olive oil – (for mushrooms) and turn heat on low
in the last pan put sauce mixture. no heat yet

INGREDIENTS
6 ounces whole-wheat angel hair pasta – or whatever, I used bow tie because its what I had.
1/3 cup all-purpose flour, divided – or just pour a little in a bowl, (its just for dunking the chicken cutlets and then 5 teaspoons goes into the mixture part for the sauce.)
2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided – i just sprinkled salt when needed
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper – i just sprinkled pepper when needed
4 chicken cutlets, (3/4-1 pound total), trimmed – found a pack of four already sliced @ HEB -$3.00
3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided – 2t in one pan 1t in another
1 10-ounce package mushrooms, sliced
3 large cloves garlic, minced – or 1 teaspoon already minced
1/2 cup white wine – all I had was white Zinfandel and mine turned out great anyway.
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons capers, rinsed -TIP: found them at the grocery store on the isle w/ the olives
(most people probably already know this)
2 teaspoons butter – I only used 1 teaspoon to cut calories.

1. Start your pasta boiling.

2. In the pan with two teaspoons olive oil we are cooking chicken so get your cutlets and flip them around in some flour and put them in the pan on low. Make sure before you add them that the oil has been distributed around the pan to coat it. salt and pepper each side as it cooks. About 3 to 5 min on each side.

WHILE YOUR CHICKEN COOKS…

3. In the pan with one teaspoon of olive oil throw the mushrooms in on low, I just dumped the whole carton in.

4. While your chicken is heating up and your mushrooms are warming move to the empty skillet. Add the 1/2 c of wine and 1 teaspoon of minced garlic and start to simmer. Simmer until it reduces to about half.

5. STIR MUSHROOMS AND FLIP CHICKEN. The mushrooms will probably get done first so once they are nice and soft and brown pull them off and set aside.

6. Add to the wine and garlic 2 cups of chicken broth and five tablespoons of flour and 2 Tablespoons of lemon juice. Mix it together really good to dissolve the flour and start to simmer and stir.

7. Your CHICKEN SHOULD BE DONE, set it to the side.

8. Stir the sauce mixture till it begins to thicken, about 5 min. and then drop in 1teaspoon of butter, parsley and two tablespoons of rinsed capers. I didn’t measure my parsley I just snipped a little into the mixture till it looked pretty. Still till mixed and warm.

9. Drain your past (this was a typo I left because this is a good idea also but its supposed to be pasta). You may have already done this but if not do it now. After drained pour a little of the sauce over the top and toss.

10. Put it all together on a plate and eat it.

By cooking everything at once and mixing everything in the pots as I went along I shaved 28min off my first cooking time. Making the total time to cook and prepare now only 30 min. and it turned out just as good if not better!
about 340 calories per serving, makes four servings

here is the link to the original recipe.
Chicken Piccata with pasta and mushrooms

Specialness!

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Received this today via text message. What a nice warm feeling – pass it along please to someone special to you.

One More, Boston Harbor, snow

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Boston Common, Park Street Church

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Just getting a chance to go through the pictures from Boston in January and I liked this pair. I may edit it and add a poem to the left side and have it printed to hang in the living room. Or have it printed out and paint a poem on it by hand. Ideas would be appreciated. These are the doors of The Park Street Church in Boston Common. January 2012.

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How to Measure (when cooking)

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Another helpful page for beginning cookers.  I was never taught this so its good to know and especially for young or beginning cooks.

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