Tuesday, January 25, 2011

~Tasty Tuesday~

Risotto.  Scary, right?  I thought so too until I made this recipe.  We have a favorite dish from a local restaurant, Basil's, called Razorback Risotto.  It is a creamy risotto with morel mushrooms, spinach & dried cherries topped with a piece of braised pork.  It is to die for...and we were bound to duplicate!

This is Giada's Basic Risotto Recipe.  Do not be intimidated...if you can stir you can make risotto!

4 Cups Reduced-Sodium Chicken Broth
3 Tbs Butter
3/4 Cup Finely Chopped Onion
1 1/2 Cups Arborio Rice or Medium-Grain White Rice
1/2 Cup Dry White Wine
1/2 Cup Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Pepper

In a medium saucepan, bring the broth to a simmer.  Cover & keep the broth hot over low heat.
In a large, heavy saucepan, melt 2 Tbs butter over medium heat.  Add the onion & saute until tender but not brown.  About 3 minutes.  Add the rice & stir to coat with the butter.  Add the wine & simmer until the wine has almost completely evaporated, about 3 minutes.  Add 1/2 cup of the broth & stir until almost completely absorbed, about 2 minutes.  Continue cooking the rice, adding broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly & allowing each addition of broth to absorb before adding the next, until the rice is tender but still firm to the bite & the mixture is creamy, about 20 minutes total.  Remove from heat. Stir in the parmesan cheese, the remaining Tbs of butter & the salt/pepper.  Serve immediately.

You can add just about anything to risotto to make your own variation.  Giada recommends either cooking the additions separately or in the same pan but removing them before you add the rice so that the long cooking time of the rice doesn't overcook your additions.  This meal was so good, filling & even better tasting because it was shared with family!
If you are looking for a good way to have a "more luxurious" dinner party, try splitting up the cooking.  It makes for a low stress meal when you are only responsible for a few ingredients rather than all of them!


Monday, January 24, 2011

*Snow Day!*

Snow!  I love it & last Thursday we got some dumped on us!  The girls had a blast playing, rolling & jumping in the snow!  If it weren't for the fact that it was SO cold out...they probably would have stayed out all day had we let them!

I had to add the picture of Bferg at the end because he was so Arkansan here!  A razorback beanie, Carhartt jacket & camo gloves...looking good babe!

Love a good snow day!  (Even when it cancels school on my ONE day without kids! :)


Friday, January 14, 2011

4" Heels

Lily Katherine.  She is a joy & a true delight to parent!  She has personality & is s.t.u.b.b.o.r.n.!!!  (I have NO idea who she got the stubborn gene from!?!?!?  Ha! :)  She is funny, cute as a bug & yes, she knows it!  :)  Part of her daily routine it to play in my closet.  She selects a pair of shoes & a purse & then parades around the house.  It is so funny & so very entertaining for her!  I caught her in these the other day & let me tell you; the girl has talent!  She is 22 months old & can navigate a 4" heel with ease!

Oh Lily...just saying your name makes me smile!  I wish I could keep you little forever!  I know all to soon you will be wearing your own heels! 


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

My Crooks & Crannies

I could just sit here and totally re-type all of Oswald Chambers' My Utmost for His Highest today!  It was so very convicting & relevant to my life.  Instead, I will give some of the highlights & challenge you to read the rest for yourself.

"When they were alone, He expounded all things to His disciples."  Mark 4:34

"God is making us spell out our own souls.  It is slow work, so slow that it takes God all time & eternity to make man & woman after His own purpose.  The only way we can be of use to God is to let Him take us through the crooks & crannies of our own characters.  It is astounding how ignorant we are about ourselves.  ...We have to get rid of the idea that we understand ourselves, it is the last conceit to go.  The only One Who understands us is God.  ...As long as we are not quite sure that we are unworthy, God will keep narrowing us in until He gets us alone.  Wherever there is any element of pride or of conceit, Jesus cannot expound a thing.  ...We listen to many things in classes, but they are not an exposition to us yet.  They will be when God gets us alone over them."  Oswald Chambers

Oh that I may be broken!  Broken to the point that my crooks & crannies are exposed and made whole again by the only One who can do that.  I pray that I will not try to "hurry" the process because of the temporal discomfort that it may cause to my ego.  I pray for true change that reflects my Saviour!


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

~Tasty Tuesday~

One of my New Year Resolutions this year is to try a new recipe every month.  That may sound like an easy one, but as a stay at home mom I find myself pulling out the classics week after week & quickly I get bored.
Bferg & I tried this recipe New Years Day (month one=done! :)  I have only had Shrimp & Grits once before & it was the BEST dish!  We were in Orange Beach sitting on the pier overlooking the bay...the atmosphere was perfect & the grits were to die for!  This recipe is pretty close to the original & surprisingly easy to make.

Shrimp & Grits
2 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Med Onion, minced
1 Clove Garlic, minced
1 Pound Andouille or Chorizo Sausage, cut in chunks
1/4 Cup Flour
2 Cups Chicken Stock
2-3 Bay Leaves
Pinch of Cayenne Pepper
1/2 Lemon, juiced
Salt & Pepper
4 Green Onion, sliced
1-2 Pounds of peeled & de-veined Shrimp

Grits (I just used the quick cooking kind & added about a cup of shredded gouda cheese...cheddar would work too.)
Heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add onion & garlic, cook until soften.  Add the sausage.  Cook until browned.  Without draining the fat add the flour to make a roux.  Slowly add the chicken stock.  Add bay leaves.  Stir continuously to avoid lumps.  Once liquid comes to a simmer add the shrimp & poach for 2-3 minutes, until the gravy is thick & smooth.  Add the cayenne pepper, season with salt & pepper, stir in the lemon juice.  Spoon over grits & garnish with green onion slices.  Serve immediately.

Eating this dish took me back to the pier!  It was delicious & the left overs reheated really well!


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Sugar Bowl

The Sugar Bowl.  No, I am not referring to the companion to the creamer.  No dainty little spoons.  Not even discussing silver or crystal.  I am talking BCS!  Ohio State vs University of Arkansas.  January 4th, 2011...the day all of AR & Razorback fans everywhere have been looking forward to since the bowl games were announced.  It will be the very first BCS bowl game appearance for the Hogs in school history & you can feel the excitement in the air! 

I have NO idea who is favored.  I don't know the "spread".  I just know that if you aren't in your HOG gear today than you are not a true fan.  Period.  Let's go HOGS!  Whoo Pig Sooie!  Or WPS!  (For all you saavy Razorback fans!)

And, just in case you were wondering since it it after all Tuesday.  Tonight's game menu is home-made calzones stuffed with ricotta, motzarella & other yummy goodness!

Let's go HOGS!


Monday, January 3, 2011


9 "...To ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom & understanding, 10 so that you may walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work & increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness & patience; 12 joyously giving thanks to God the Father be the glory forever & ever.  Amen."  {Colossians 1:9-12}

One of my favorite passages of Scripture.  One that I pray over my children daily.  One that today struck a cord in me as I start this new year.  This passage from Colossians encompasses everything that I want my life to be in 2011. 

I desire to be filled more deeply with His knowledge...to seek His will.  I want my steps to be worthy of the Lord & the Gospel.  Lastly, I want to attain steadfastness & patience.  (Doesn't every stay at home mom! :)  But, this year I am more fully desiring HIS patience...realizing that it cannot come from me but through Him.

I am fully Yours Lord.  Use me!


Saturday, January 1, 2011


Happy New Year!  As the countdown began last night I could hardly believe that another year was coming to an end...where did the time go & how old am I now!  :)
A year in review Ferguson Style:
January: SNOW!  And lots of it...so much fun. But, SO cold!  (One full week of temps in the single digits!)
February: Officially have a walking baby!  (How fast did that go?!?!)  Happy 31st to Bferg!
March: Happy 1st Birthday to Lily Katherine!  Bferg ran his first marathon in Little Rock & we had one more early spring snow!
April: Easter on Aunt Lindsey's farm (The Sarratt's...aka Farmer John & Miss Tammy) it was so fun to hunt for eggs on the vast green lawn!
May: Papa & Grammy come to visit & Papa brought his tools...8 hours later a swingset was completed!  Lots of fun & laughter came from the backyard the rest of the summer!  OH, and HELLO LAKE!!!!  (How we have missed you!)
June: Fun at the Tulsa Zoo, fun in the sun & fun at the Lake!  Happy 7th Anniversary to us!  (Sunset boat ride on...yes, the Lake! :)
July: Fireworks on the Lake & renting a house with Nani on the Lake!  (Do you see the resounding theme of our summer yet?!?!)
August: Happy 3rd Birthday to Aubrielle Raye!  A mini vacation to Pomme De Terre Lake with Bferg's family finishes out an amazing summer spent on the water!
September: Aubrielle & Lily start pre-school.  Aubrie breaks her arm & gets a very PINK accessory.  Aubrie gets to experience her first Arkansas Razorback game! WPS!
October: Picking pumpkins.  Surprising Papa in MO.  Cast comes off! :)
November: Happy 31st Birthday to ME!  One last (chilly) trip to the Lake complete with a picnic lunch & fishing.  NYC!!!!!!!!!!!
December: First trip to see Santa = Fail.  Second trip = 50% success.  Reading books with Mrs. Claus.  Seeing the lights of Fayetteville.  Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!  2011...we are looking forward to you!