It’s the Holidays! Yay!

So, it’s December 1… which means Christmas is coming soon. And I hope I’m not the only one out here who still needs to buy presents. For my family, Christmas season starts on Thanksgiving, after Santa has crossed Herald Square in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. But we’ll talk Christmas traditions in another post. For this post… it’s a gift suggestion post. For makeup lovers like me.

The¬† Buxom Cosmetics Samantha’s Smoky Eye Kit. You can get it at Sephora, I’ll post a link at the end. In this kit you get a Smokey Eye Stick in a Charcoal-ish black, a Buxom Lash Mascara in Black, a Buxom Lips Lipgloss in Samantha, a pinky nude color, and a smokey eye brush. The kit costs $42, but for that price, you get these four products, and no, they’re not those little sample sized products. They’re also not like the kits that have maybe one or two full-sized products among sample sized ones. All four products are full sized products.

This is the Smokin’ Eye Stick, with a built in sharpener.

After I smudged it out with the smokey eye brush. At the lash line it’s a good, soft black color. As it smudges out, it gets to a gray color, creating the perfect smokey eye that I can never do. I’ve already used the mascara before buying this kit, and it’s great. A nice dark black, and it really maximizes lashes. The brush shape is a sort of hourglass comb, it’s a rubber brush. And like the spaz I am I forgot to take a picture of the brush. D’oh! And the Smokin’ Eye brush is nice and plush, with good bristles. I’ve been using it daily since I bought it three weeks ago, or so, and I haven’t noticed any bristles falling out.

The lipgloss is a gorgeous nude shade. Peachy-pink and shiny. I’ve never found a good nude, but this is. Sadly it’s only sold with this limited edition kit. Buxom, give me this lipgloss separate, please! It tingles and feels cool when you put it on, like all the Buxom lipglosses do. A word of advice, don’t apply this stuff right before going outside in cold weather. Your lips will FREEZE! As to if it really does plump or not, I can’t say I’ve noticed a difference… my lips stay the same size, but that could just be due to my lips natural appearance. It’s got a little stick to it, but all lipglosses do. And compared to some, the stickiness isn’t that bad. It also lasts a long time.

Here’s the finished product. Sorry about the bad lighting… iPhone camera and all.

This is a great product, and a good introducer to Buxom, and even to those like me who can’t make a smokey eye on their own to save their lives. It’s easy to use, and there are simple instructions on the side of the box for the novice. And like I said earlier, the brush is really good, and the three makeup products are all full sized. Here’s the link: http://sephora.com/browse/product.jhtml?id=P273405&categoryId=C23621

It’s Christmastime!

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Cornbread Stuffing, Part 2

Not just for Cornbread Stuffing!

Okay, so this is a little late… if you haven’t figured it out by now, just so you know, I’m a terrible procrastinator. So let’s get to it!

So you take that lovely cornbread you made the day before, and crumble it into a bowl.

It’s okay to have some bigger chunks of cornbread.

Then take two pieces of whole wheat bread and toast ’em.

Then try not to eat them since you’re super hungry because you’re eating small meals until Thanksgiving.

Crumble that with the cornbread. It’s a carbolicious feast!

Take two eggs and crack them in a bowl and mix…

Unless you’re an airhead like I was when I did this, distracted by Orlando Bloom and all. Then you’re going to add the two unbeaten eggs directly to the cornbread and toast mix (thankfully, this did not affect the stuffing in a bad way at all… promise.)

Then you take two cups of Vegetable broth and add it to the mix.

Then add in two tablespoons of Soy Sauce… or if you’re like me, realize you only have about one tablespoon of soy sauce left in the bottle that is rarely ever pulled out. And then decide that it’s the night before Thanksgiving, and you’re not gonna ask a family member to risk life and limb at the grocery store, so you go with the one tablespoon (don’t worry, the taste is still nearly the same. Just a little less than it would be with two.)

Then add in three tablespoons of Poultry Seasoning. This adds in a little of the flavoring that you would most likely get with turkey (I don’t know, seeing as I’ve never had turkey. Vegetarian home and all.)

Then add in a sprinkling of salt…

…and a little bit of pepper. Please note the movie on the tv was Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. I do believe in the shot is Gandalf the White. And nail polish remover from the spray painting of the fake pumpkins and corn bronze. Got bronze spray paint on my nails, 100% acetone nail polish¬† remover takes care of that.

Here’s what it will look like once you’ve added everything in, but before you mix it.

This is what it will look like once it’s all mixed in.

And now for my less favorite part of it. The onion bit. Anyone else here sensitive to onions? Weep whenever you work with them? Because I always start crying halfway through this part.

Take three stalks of celery…

And one sweet onion (enough for about 2 – 2.5 cups)…

And dice them up… I used my mom’s awesome Pampered Chef Chopper thing. It contains some of that onion tear gas.

And put them in a separate bowl as you chop. By this time you may be crying your eyes out, so feel free to let this be the time when you sob out “I DID MY BEST!!” even though you’re not sad, just onion-related. (Name that comedian with “I DID MY BEST!!”

Okay, then take a frying pan and coat it with about three tablespoons of vegetable oil.

Add a sprinkling of salt to the celery and onions, and then saute them for about 7 minutes.

They’ll be nice and tender and juicy, not overdone and mushy. Forgive the quality… by this time I could barely see from the dang onions. Really, I have to work on my eyes with onions.

Then grease your Mama’s Le Creuset pot, or a 9×13 baking pan, and get ready to pour the stuffing in!

Put the celery and onions in with the crumb mixture, and then put all of it in the prepared pot or pan, and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, until its somewhat firm and crispy on the top. You don’t want to overbake… it’ll be dry.

It should look somewhat like this. Yum!

Here’s the recipes:

Cornbread:

-2 eggs

-1 cup buttermilk OR whole milk

-1/4 cup cooking oil

-3/4 teaspoon salt

-4 teaspoons baking powder

-1 cup white or yellow cornmeal

-1 cup unbleached white flour

 

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  • Beat together eggs, milk, oil, and salt until well blended.
  • Sift in the baking powder and whisk until foamy.
  • Quickly mix in the cornmeal and flour, beat until the batter is smooth.
  • Pour into an oiled 9-inch square pan OR cast iron skillet OR 10-inch round baking pan.
  • Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

 

Cornbread Stuffing:

-1 pan Cornbread

-2-3 slices whole wheat bread, toasted

-2 eggs, lightly beaten

-2 cups vegetable stock OR water

-2 tablespoons soy sauce

-3 tablespoons poultry seasoning

-Salt and ground black pepper to taste

-3 celery stalks, diced (about 1 cup)

-2-2 1/2 cups finely chopped onions

-3 tablespoons butter or vegetable oil

-pinch of salt

 

  • Butter a 9×13 baking pan or a 2-quart casserole dish.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Crumble the cornbread and whole wheat toast in a large bowl.
  • Stir in the eggs, stock, soy sauce, and seasonings, mix well.
  • In a frying pan, saute the celery and onions in the butter or oil on medium heat with a pinch of salt. Stir often or saute until the vegetables are tender and juicy but not mushy, about 7 minutes.
  • Add celery and onions to the crumb mixture and stir well.
  • Spoon the stuffing into the prepared baking dish and bake for 20 minutes until slightly firm and crisp on top. Don’t overbake.

Happy Holidays!

Recipes from Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant. Moosewood Restaurant does not know me, and I am not trying to steal their recipes. Just spread the yuminess around to others. No copyright infringement is intended through this.

Thanksgiving Food – Cornbread Stuffing Part 1

Happy day before Thanksgiving! Up above are all the cookbooks used at my house for the delicious meal. My mom is an awesome cook. And every year, I get to make one of my favorite parts (it’s been my favorite long before it became assigned to me to make) of this meal… the cornbread stuffing. It comes from a cookbook that I believe is called the Moosewood Lodge Cookbook (I’m not at home with all the books right now, I’ll check this for sure later); and is absolutely delicious. This morning I’ll be giving you the first, and most vital part of this recipe, the Cornbread.

Start with two eggs in a bowl.

Pour in a cup of buttermilk (okay, if you detest buttermilk you can use whole milk, but buttermilk really makes it that much better. And this is a savory cornbread stuffing, not a sweet one).

Pour in after that a 1/4 cup of cooking oil. And it’s important to use the same measuring cup you just poured the buttermilk in, after all, you’re lazy. Why rinse a cup out if it’s all going the same place anyhow?

Add a 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Stopping to admire the pretty purple on your nails. Painted on because it matched your top on Saturday night perfectly. And then was team-supporting on Sunday when you cheered on Joe Flacco, Ray Lewis, and all the other Ravens to a seriously awesome win. Then reflect that you’re also a Steelers fan at the same time, and wonder if you need help. Cooking is a process I tell you!

Once you’ve added all of those ingredients it’ll look like this. Then you want to whisk it together until it’s combined.

So it should look like this.

Now we’re going to sift some baking powder.

This is my mom’s sifter. She’s had it for years, since she got married. It was a wedding present with some other kitchen stuff. I call it a little vintage. It still works pretty good… a little faded, the cherries that were once bright red when I was a little girl are a little less red; but it’s a good sifter. Please note the tv on in the background. It is important to have Star Trek on in the background. It’s a classic Thanksgiving movie, did you know? The crew of the Enterprise is thankful that they defeated the Romulans, and I’m mighty thankful for Mighty Fine Chris Pine. See? Thanksgiving movie.

While measuring out the four teaspoons of baking powder, make sure to break the handle on the already broken teaspoon measurer. It makes things more fun, yay!

Whisk the four teaspoons of baking powder into the mix until it’s foamy.

Add in a cup of cornmeal (bad blur, I left my camera upstairs and was lazy, so I used my iPhone camera… didn’t always work well).

And a cup of flour. Then mix it all together until combined and thickened a little.

So it looks like this.

Next is an important step…

The pan. No, you don’t have to use your Mama’s (and Grandma’s before she gave it to your mom) cast iron skillet, but the skillet makes life better.

Pour it into a prepared pan. Greased, ready for action, all that stuff.

And pop it into a 400 degree oven for 20-25 minutes, or until you’ve inserted a toothpick and it comes out clean.

Your finished product should look something like this. Now let it cool, cover it with a towel so your dumb cat doesn’t think you’ve made it just for her, and let it set for a day… you want your cornbread a little stale for the stuffing. It just works better.

I’ll be back later to post the stuffing recipe! Once I’ve made the stuffing and all.

Disclaimer: I’ve never been to Moosewood Lodge, nor do they know me. I’m not affiliated with them, and I don’t have any ownership of this recipe. I just love it more than a lot of things and want others to experience the happiness that comes from Cornbread Stuffing.