Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Before and After: Lamps from Value Village




So I finally finished a project which I started weeks ago, giving some sweet lamps I found at Value Village an update. I found these god-awful gold lamps for $7.99 each and envisioned the perfect before/after project. Needless to say I have been following http://www.designspongeonline.com/category/before-and-after which has so many projects on it, it makes me want to repaint/cover everything in my house. In fact, I have been surfing Craig's List like a nut looking for anything with potential. Sadly nothing has come out of that yet, but I'm sure I'll find something. In the mean time, I would have to say my first little make over project went well, and I'm pretty happy with the results. The total cost was about $35 including new lamp shades from Target, craft paper from Paper Zone and a half gallon of paint which I used about a quarter of. Not bad eh?

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Mom's Pesto

I finally got around to making my mom's pesto recipe, something which I've been meaning to make for a long time. She has always told me how simple it was to make, but I honestly didn't believe her. Needless to say, I had two huge basil plants and the night off so I decided to give it a whirl. The first thing to recognize when making pesto is it's going to take you about 5 times the basil that you think it will. Our plants were about 2 feet high and are now reduced to stumps after the pesto phenomena.

What I love about getting recipes from my mom thought is how much guessing is involved. Nothing is ever measured in cups and teaspoons, but instead is given in measurements of "a ton", "a little" or "you know, just taste it". As frustrating as that may seem, I actually enjoy it. It teaches to not just read a recipe, but to really figure it out on your own. In this case, the "recipe" is simple and the end result is amazing.

Start with a "ton" of basil, chop as finely as possible, mix with a "good amount" of chopped almonds (much cheaper than pine nuts and just as good), a "shit load" of garlic, a "good amount" of olive oil, a "good amount" of salt, and a "little bit" of pepper. Then honestly, taste it, see what more is needs, and blend it on chop mode for a few minutes to get everything blended together a bit better (something my mom doesn't believe in, but hey), and mix in a parmesan cheese.

Seriously, the easiest and most delicious pesto ever. Serve with a salad, bread and wine (or Rainier if you prefer) and you have a "damn good" dinner.