Time to Take Out the Garden Pots

This is one of the best times of the year for working in the yard. As Winter seems to drag on, it’s often we forget the sensations late Spring can bring, such as enjoying the warmth of sunshine on your back, inhaling the aromatic floral scent a light breeze can bring, and remembering all the beautiful garden pots that get to compliment your landscape. I love finding my favorites buried in the garage, and bringing new life to them when the happy flowers are nestled back inside of them. The #12 English Planter in Saffron is one of my top favorites. The hand detailed elegance balances the rustic qualities the old milk can brings and helps convey the eclectic theme I enjoy. If you have any Rowe Garden Pots planted with your favorite annual favorites, I’d love to see them! Happy Planting!#12 English Planter in Saffron

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Rainy Day Beef and Barley Soup

Looking for a healthy version of comfort food on an upcoming rainy weekend? Look no further as this recipe will fill you up and make you feel warm and cozy all over.

Ingredients~
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Approx 1 pound beef bottom round, cut into 3/4″ cubes
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1 large onion, chopped
8 ounces cremini mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
2 tablespoons minced garlic, approx 4 cloves
2 tablespoons tomato paste
3/4 cup dry red wine
4 cups chicken stock
3 cups water
3/4 cup hulled or pearl barley, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Let’s get started~
1. Heat 1 tablespoon in a large pot over medium high heat. Season beef with teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and brown on all sides, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a plate using a slotted spoon.

2. Reduce heat to medium. Add remaining tablespoon oil, and cook onion, carrot, and mushrooms until golden, stirring occasionally, 12 to 15 minutes. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt.

3. Add garlic and tomato paste, and cook, stirring, until caramelized, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat, and add wine. Return to heat, and bring to a boil, scrapping up brown bits from bottom using a wooden spoon. Cook until reduced by half, about 5 minutes.

4. Return beef to pot, and add stock and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour.

5. Add barley, and cook, covered for 20 minutes. Uncover, and cook until beef and barley are tender, 20 to 25 minutes more. Stir in parsley. Transfer soup into the Rowe Pottery New Soup Tureen to serve with style, and serve in Provincial Porringers. Enjoy!

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A Simple yet Substantial Breakfast in 90 Seconds

Mornings can be bittersweet; they appear peaceful and serene as the sun beams through the windows and birds chirp happily as they begin their day, yet if you look past appearances, tend to be a weekly whirlwind of mental to do’s, packed lunches,  dog(s) fed, clothes flying and supplies gathered. It’s often difficult to squeeze the extra time for breakfast when you’re usually watching the clock, but if it only takes 90 seconds for a healthy and substantial meal that will help you mentally focus and take on the day, it’s worth the time!

All there is to it:

Only Ingredients Used:

1 Egg- Organic Free Range Local Preferred, use two if you’re usually hungry in the a.m.
Splash of Milk- roughly 2 tbsp.
Dash Salt & Pepper
Dash of Garlic Salt

Mix all of these ingredients in a small microwavable bowl until you get an even yellow consistency. Even though this is a rushed breakfast, I still prefer having it in a gourmet looking bowl; it just makes it more enjoyable. The Rowe Pottery Avignon Dessert Bowls are the perfect size. Microwave 45 seconds. Stir. Microwave 45 Seconds. Eat. That’s it.

It sounds ridiculous it’s so easy, but often, we think of eggs as messy as we get out the spatula and pan, and too much work. Think again. Grab a piece of fruit or whole grain toast to accompany the meal, and you’ll be set through the morning! Go concur the day now!

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“Pitcher” Perfect Sangria- Enjoy!

“Pitcher” Perfect Sangria

This refreshing sangria is full of fruit and deliciousness, and makes the perfect substance to sip while enjoying your patio.  Plus, don’t underestimate the power of the fruit, it can be potent!

Ingredients:
1 bottle red wine
1 can Sprite Zero (or 1 1/2 cups of any diet lemon-lime soda)1 cup Cranberry Juice (or another similar flavor)
1 cup sliced strawberries
1 small orange, peeled and chopped
1/2 apple, chopped
Half a slightly under-ripe banana, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup pineapple chunks
* Optional yet wonderful, is 1 cup lemonade added to the mix!

Directions:
Place fruit in a large container that will not stain easily (like a glass pitcher or a high-quality plastic one). Cover fruit with wine and cranberry drink, and give mixture a good stir.

Cover and refrigerate for at least 10 hours. (It’s worth it, no griping!)

Once ready to serve, add soda and lemonade and give it a good stir. Pour into the 2012 Mother’s Day Pitcher, and be sure to get a nice amount of fruit included. Enjoy!

P.S. Feel free to adjust the portions to suit your tastes, or double the recipe if you’re expecting more guests! This currently makes approximately 6 servings.

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Pie Plate Pancake

In the test kitchen this week, I experimented with a breakfast recipe. This particular recipe was entitled “Puffed Pancakes.” I loved the sound of it, as there’s nothing better to me for breakfast, than a fluffy blonde pancake that almost takes on the consistency of vanilla white cake. Forget the thin overly browned ones that many are accustom.

I set forth with the recipe, and found, with only six ingredients, was definitely a cinch to whip up in the morning before rushing off to start the day. I added five of the ingredients into a Teaberry Batter Bowl, mixed, and poured the mixture into the Spring Bird Pie Plate – baking for approximately 12 minutes. It came out looking surprisingly NOT puffy with curled edges. At first I was skeptical of this pancake imposter, and knew the name certainly didn’t fit the dish. However, it did smell quite good, so I added some maple syrup and took a bite. It had the texture of a bread pudding, and tasted similar to french toast – both not bad things to be comparable to. There’s no resemblance to the puffy blonde pancake, but in a quick pinch in a morning rush, this is satisfying, sweet and curbs the hunger pains. If you experiment around with it, and make it your own, feel free to post your recommendations!

Ingredients~
2 free range eggs
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup flour
dash salt
larger dash cinnamon
1 tbsp. butter

Preheat oven to 425˚ with pie plate in the oven with the 1 tbsp. butter inside to melt.
Whisk together eggs, milk, flour, salt and cinnamon in the batter bowl.
Carefully take pie plate out of oven when butter is melted. Swirl the butter around in the pie plate to evenly coat. Pour the batter into the pie plate.
Bake 10-12 minutes until firm and edges are puffed.
Serve with butter, maple syrup, fresh fruit or jam.

Happy Baking!

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Buffalo Chicken Dip

This Buffalo Chicken Dip was brought in the studio one day by our Accountant, Mary. There wasn’t one person who wasn’t raving that it was a top contender for the best dip they’ve ever had. She served it in the new 1 Qt. Lidded Casserole Dish; not only did it look great, but it stayed warm for hours.  She was kind enough to pass along the recipe, and although I had to tweak it a bit, based on what I had in my pantry, it worked out impeccably. This recipe is a keeper, and I can only describe it as she did as, “chicken wings without the mess!” If you’re expecting guests popping in for a visit, this is a no fail recipe that comes together quickly. Interestingly enough, it also verifies that even the number crunchers who work here at Rowe Pottery have a creative side! Happy Baking!

Ingredients~
1 tbsp olive oil
8-10 ounces of organic free range chicken breasts
1/2 cup Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
1/4 cup spicy or chipotle barbecue sauce
2- 8 ounce cream cheese packages
1 cup buttermilk ranch
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Get Baking~
1. Add olive oil to a large skillet with a handle over medium heat. Dice up chicken into small chunks and add to oil in skillet. Saute until cooked thru, then add Frank’s Red Hot and Barbecue sauce until heated thru.

2. Add both cream cheeses to the skillet and continue to stir and break apart into smaller cubes until completely melted. Add Buttermilk ranch and stir until mixed together. Add shredded cheddar a handful at a time and stir until melted together.

3. Pour skillet into Rowe’s 1 Quart Lidded Casserole. This went surprisingly smooth as the mixture tends to stay together due to the cheese bonding it. It will fit perfectly, and you can always reheat the dip in a microwave or oven if needed.

4. Serve warm with veggies, chips or pretzels. It’s hard to go wrong; enjoy!

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Cauliflower and Mushroom Gougere

I had never heard of the label “gougère” until recently, when our Ceramic Engineer and Master Potter, Glen Cutcher told me about a recipe he and his wife enjoy that fits impeccably into the Rowe Pottery Deep Dish Pie Plate. Glen always has an eye for new twists on existing and ordinary items, so I scanned the recipe and read the ingredients– cheese, egg, cauliflower and mushrooms. I had read enough to know it was going to be attempted.

I was impressed when it was time to open the oven, and it looked wonderful. It really looks a lot more impressive than it is difficult to make, but very fulfilling and a nice change of pace from the norm. Thanks Glen!

Here’s how it’s done:

Ingredients~
1 stick butter
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
4 eggs
6 ounces of finely shredded cheddar cheese or Gruyère
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
salt & pepper to taste

Filling Ingredients~
1 small head cauliflower
12 oz can tomatoes
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. butter
1 onion, chopped
6 ounces button mushrooms, chopped
fresh thyme leaves

1~ Preheat your oven to 400˚F. Use butter to grease the Rowe Pottery Deep Dish Pie Plate. Place 1 1/4 cups water and the butter together in a large saucepan and heat until the butter melts completely. Remove from the heat and add all the flour at once. Stir aggressively with a wooden spoon for about 30 seconds, until smooth. Cool slightly.

2~ Beat in the eggs, one at a time, and continue beating until the mixture is thick and glossy in appearance. This requires a little muscle, so feel the burn! Stir in the cheese and mustard and season with salt and pepper. Spread the mixture around the sides of the oven proof dish, leaving a hollow in the center for the filling.

3~ For the filling, cut the cauliflower into florets, discarding the hard woody stalks.

4~ Puree the tomatoes in a food processor, then pour into a measuring cup. This should make enough for about 1 1/4 cups of liquid.

5~ Heat the oil and butter in a non-stick frying pan. Saute the onion for 3-4 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook for 2-3 minutes longer. Add the cauliflower and stir-fry for 1-2 minutes. Add the tomato liquid and thyme. Season with salt & pepper. Cook over low heat for 5 minutes.

6~ Spoon mixture into the hollow in the deep dish with a slotted spoon to discard any extra liquid. Bake for 40 minutes, until the pastry has risen and turns golden brown.

Serve as a main dish, or a side. Serves approx. 4-6.

Happy Baking!

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