5 Ways to Freshen your Kitchen for Spring

May 4, 2015

The weather is warming up and we’re all excited for springtime!  I’m sure you plan to work on spring cleaning your home and I have a few suggestions for areas to pay a little extra attention to in your kitchen.

  • Tea towels, dish cloths and scrubbies

I opened my linens drawer yesterday and couldn’t help but notice how dingy, threadbare and smelly my cloths and tea towels were.  Spring is a fantastic time to toss out the old and fill your drawer with new, fresh and functional linens.

If your towels are in good shape but could use a freshening up try washing them with vinegar.  Add 1 cup of white vinegar to the wash load and any musty or mildew smells will be gone.  Make sure they’re rinsed well and dry as usual.

To avoid smells lingering on your new towels make sure they are hung to dry well between uses.

  • Room Fragrance

I love choosing a new room fragrance for spring.  It’s time to replace the spruce and spicy winter scents with fresh and springy lilac, rose and lemon scents.

Along with your room fragrance, consider swapping hand soaps and lotions with spring scented ones as well.

  • Bar Keepers Friend

If your sinks are scaly and your stainless appliances are less than sparkling then it’s time to grab some Bar Keepers Friend.  Use it to get the soap and hard water off your stainless and chrome surfaces.

This product also does an amazing job on your backsplash tiles and grout.  If your grout has become stained and you’re wondering if it’s time to re-tile, stop and try this first.  You’ll be surprized what it can do! Bar keepers friend is also perfect for scraping up any stubborn bits from your glass cooktop.

  • Replace Filters

Spring cleaning leads to hot weather and hot weather means drinking lots of water.  It’s time to prepare your appliances for all that extra use by replacing their water filters. Many coffee pots, water jugs, fridges and more now include built in water filters and really they’re a great idea for our area where the water is usually on the hard side of the scale – meaning there are many minerals that can gunk up lines and can leave drinks and coffee tasting off.  These filters should be replaced regularly and spring cleaning time is a great time to do it.  Add this to your yearly routine and not only will your beverages taste better but it helps save wear and tear on your appliances too.

  • Clean your Fridge

There are probably things in your fridge that aren’t fit to be consumed any longer.  Every year when we start up the bbq I discover a jar of relish that is long expired and am then sad I can’t have relish on my first burger of the season.  Now is the time to toss out all the old stuff, restock and wipe down your fridge.  Get those crispers ready for farmer’s market season and update your condiments.

Following these suggestions will ensure your kitchen is bright and fresh for the upcoming summer entertaining season.  Once it’s all complete I hope you enjoy some springtime sun!scrubbies


Undercover Cauliflower

June 2, 2013

If you have ever tried to feed kids cauliflower, it can be quite a challenge.  Alex made this amazing dish the other night and I wanted to share it because I thought it was so good.

Ingredients:

4 Potatoes

1 Cauliflower

2 Leeks

1 Yellow Pepper

1-2 Cloves of Garlic

1/4tsp Paprika

125g Butter

250g Cheese (We use lactose-free cheese)

Salt & Pepper to Taste

*Gluten free/*Vegetarian

  1. Cube and boil in salted water, the potatoes and cauliflower.
  2. Dice the leeks and pepper. Fry them in a blob of butter with a clove or two of garlic and add the paprika.
  3. Mash potatoes/cauliflower and add the 125g of butter.
  4. Add the leeks and pepper to the potatoes/cauliflower.
  5. Add 250grams of grated cheese to your mixture.
  6. Add salt & pepper to your personal taste.

Feeds 4 Adults or 2 Adults and 4 Kids.

Ratings from our kids:

Aurelia (8yrs.) – “It was great!” – Rated it 4.5/5 – Took her 10min to eat.

Imogen (7yrs.) – “It was so good” – Rated it 5/5 – Took her 10min to eat.

Osias (4yrs.) – “It’s not my favourite… eggs benny is” – Rated it 2/5 – Took him 25min to eat.

Cyra (2yrs.) – Can’t talk yet, but ate a huge bowl (bigger than Osias’)of it in under 5min. = 5/5

Hope your family likes it as much as ours did:)

Claire20130521_183616 20130521_184525


Kitchen Boutique Christmas Catalog 2012!

November 20, 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

https://kitchenboutique.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/kitchen-boutique-christmas-catalog.pdf


A Must Have For Caesar Lovers!!!

August 12, 2012

As a new staff member and customer at the wonderful Kitchen Boutique this Trudeau 2-In-1 Glass Rimmer was one of the first things that caught my eye and was an immediate must have!                                                                                                        

This 2-In-1 Glass Rimmer is perfect in all ways: a deep rimmer, allowing you to rim any size glass with your favorite mix, (mine is Montreal Steak Spice and celery salt) as well as an integrated juicer.  In the past I have used two separate saucers, one with my steak spice mix and one with lime juice.  Now that I have this new glass rimmer, that, along with constantly refilling my lime juice and wasting my rim mix, is a thing of the past.  I can now serve Caesars to my friends that look as if they were prepared at the local pub, save my rim mix ( the rimmer snaps shut for easy storage!!!) and never worry about refilling my silly saucer of lime juice!!! And if that all wasn’t enough to have me hooked, the reasonable price definitely was.  I am one happy Caesar drinker!

I will leave you with my favorite Caesar Recipe for your enjoyment:

THE CLASSIC CAESAR

1 1/2 oz Vodka

2 Dashes Worcestershire Sauce

1 Dash Tabasco Sauce (or more if you like it spicy like I do)

4 oz Clamato Juice

Mix of Montreal Steak Spice and Celery Salt to Rim Glass

Lime

Pickled Bean, Asparagus, Celery or a Pickle

Rim Highball Glass by first dipping in fresh squeezed lime juice, then steak spice and celery salt mix. Add ice, vodka,Worcestershire sauce, tabasco and  Clamato juice.  Stir,  garnish glass with a lime wedge and a pickled bean (or your choice of garnish).  Enjoy!

JNewms🙂


Best Teacher Gift – Fruit Bouquet

June 26, 2012

Fruit Bouquet – great for teachers, summer parties, house-warming or simply a new way to eat more fruit!

I’ve been trying to figure out what to do for my kids’ teachers present this year and stumbled upon “Edible Arrangements” – Fruit bouquets and decided to give them a try myself. Except for a lot of prep work, they are really easy and both of my kids (6 & 7 years old) were able to help make them.

If you don’t have time to make them, check out their website: http://www.ediblearrangements.ca  and simply order one of these fantastic bouquets!

What you will need:

FRUIT:

Apples, pineapple, melon, watermelon, cantalope, grapes (both green and red), strawberries and blueberries.

I don’t recommend using bannana as it goes off really quickly and can fall off the skewers really easily.

Cake Mix x 1 (This will make two small bouquets)

Cellophane& ribbon (optional)

Chocolate candy melts (optional)

Melon baller

Skewers – for this I used 6″ and 10″ skewers, but if available, I would also recommend some 8″ ones too.

Small Flower pot x2 (or you can use the inside of the pineapple also)

To get started, you need to bake the cake mixes in any pans you want… don’t worry what shape – because you are just going to smoosh them inside of the flower pot or pineapple. This makes it look like dirt:)

Then once your cake is inside your pots, you are ready to start building your bouquet…

Try different combinations of skewers, but in the very middle, I would put a flower skewer.  To make the flower, all I did was cut an apple in slices (cut with the top and the butt in between your hands and slice across – you’ve done it right if you get some that have a “star” in the middle) – then I took my paring knife and cut it out to make flower petals.   By alternating some fruit on the stick: grape/pineapple/grape upto the top, I then added the apple flower and a rounded piece of melon (using the melon baller tool).

Add as many skewers as you like until the bouquet is full.

I did some skewers dipped in chocolate.  I used the Wilton Candy Melts (which can just be put in the microwave to get them to be melted quickly) and dipped my strawberries and pineapple in them and put them aside separately so that the chocolate would dry before putting them in the bouquet.

Once they are all finished, you can wrap them in cellophane and tie with some ribbon, or you can just leave them out.

Deliver as soon as possible.

Cheers,

Cbreeze


Picnic Anyone?

May 20, 2012

Today seems like a great day for a long-weekend picnic in Kananaskis Country – we’ve got a ton of really great picnic items… they come in all sorts of shapes and sizes…

and we even have some really great picnic blankets…

These picnic blankets have a water-resistant PEVA side to put down on top of wet grass and a fuzzy/cuddly side to stay warm and dry on.  They fold nicely into an easy-to-carry tote.  With a variety of colour/pattern options they make for a great gift.  I love them personally to take to the kid’s soccer practice or for simply sitting out on the lawn.

Also check out this fab Party Cooler with Umbrella stand…

It is so nice to have spring/summer arriving… I hope the weather continues – knock on wood!

Happy Picnicing!

Cbreeze

 


Cake Pops – The Basics

March 16, 2012

Cake Pops!!

What are they, you ask? They are only the most delectable and cutest cake treats in bite-size form!! These adorable desserts are becoming the talk of the baking town but not all of us are sure of how to make them.  Have no fear, after you are done reading this, you too, can make creative and delicious cake pops!  I am going to give you the steps you need to make a basic cake pop.  Once you have the basics down, you can try many different shapes and designs and techniques.  Lets get started:

What you will need:

1 Box of Cake Mix (your choice)

1 Can of Frosting (your choice)

1lbs Wilton Candy Melts (any color/flavor you desire)

*I used two bags of Wilton Yellow Candy Melts for this demo*

Wax Paper

Cookie Sheet

1 Package of Lollipop Sticks

Decorations of your choice

Optional: (but helpful) Cookie scoop

Steps:

1. Bake cake according to directions in a 9×13″ baking pan.  After cooked, let cool completely.

2. Crumble cake (using your hands) into a large bowl.

3. Add a can of frosting to the crumbled mixture using the back of a large spoon to mix the icing into the cake mix. Add a few tablespoons at a time as to not over saturate the cake.  The consistency when the cake is ready should be similar to that of a ground beef mixture when making meatballs.

4. Once you are happy with the consistency, you can then use a spoon or a cookie scoop to measure out equal amounts of cake and roll using your hands, to make balls.

5. Place your rolled cake balls onto a wax covered cookie sheet and place in the fridge or a cool place for 10-15 minutes.

6. Once chilled, you can prepare your candy melts by microwaving in a microwave safe bowl. Make sure your bowl is not too deep as it will make it more difficult to keep your pops on their sticks.

7. Once your chocolate is melted, take your cake pops out of the fridge, and dip the end of each lollipop stick into the melted chocolate.  This will ensure the stick and cake ball stay together when rolling in the chocolate.

8. Once all your lollipop sticks have been put in all the cake pops, you must chill them for 5-10 more minutes. (Make sure to not let the cake pops get TOO cold. If they are too cold, they will crack the layer of chocolate once rolled.

9. After chilling for a few minutes, you may now dip your cake balls in your chocolate melts.  Use a spoon if you need to cover the top of the pop.  Once you have taken the pop out of the chocolate, tap the end of the lollipop stick gently to shake off any excess chocolate on the pop.

10.  If you prefer to have the cake pop fully round, you can insert the lollipop stick into a block of Styrofoam to hold it upright while it dries. For this demonstration, I have placed the cake pops directly upside down onto the wax paper.

11. Once your cake balls are all covered in chocolate, you can cool them for another 5-10 minutes.  Once they are cool, you are free to decorate them however you please! I choose to make little yellow baby chicks since Easter is on its way and so is SPRING!! I used the leftover melted chocolate to adhere the decorations to the pops.

For the cute baby chicks, I used Wilton’s Edible Candy Eyeballs for the eyes, mini gingerbread men sprinkles for the feet and 1/2 of a orange chocolate sunflower seed for the nose. The arms are made out of mini edible yellow chocolate sprinkles I had found in my pantry – but there are lots of different decorations you can use that look just as great.

I hope this helps many of you who have always wanted to make Cake Pops but didn’t know how. There are a few steps involved but the first bite makes every step worth it!!

HAPPY EASTER EVERYONE

&

HAPPY CAKE-POPPING!!