Restored table

Have you ever driven past a discarded object on the curb and decided you HAD to have it? That is where the story of this table begins.  I was driving to work, when I noticed two tables. I immediately turned around, to get them. However, my car doors were too small for the large table so, I was only able to take the small one.

The table is made of walnut, so my neighbor says. It has 3 tiers, two of which are glass. I instantly knew that it would be used in my bedroom, for all of my nail supplies.  Why? Because every time I do my nails, I drag so many supplies out, and then leave them scattered all over the house. It is a horrible habit that I am sure D will appreciate its disappearance.

This is the third piece of furniture that I have restored this year.  I love the way that old furniture holds up.  We have many hand-me-down pieces at FroHHill, in all kinds of conditions. But how do you start?

 

I begin each project by removing any hardware. Remove any knobs or fixtures that may get in the way of sanding.  I usually like to leave the project in one piece, I don’t want to create any new holes or problems down the line.

 

Next you want to sand it down.  We really like our Ryobi sander. It is lightweight and affordable. Make sure you sand off any old varnish or paint, if it is left on, the stain will not take.

 

Next, wipe down the surfaces to remove any dust. On this particular project I hosed it down and then let it dry in the sun for a few hours.

 

Once it is dry, recheck all surfaces to make sure you have removed any previous coating.  If it is all off you can begin staining.

 

When staining wood, you simply brush it on. I personally like the foam brushes, the tend to cut back on the dripping. I made sure to cover the top of my glass, as well at the edges with painters’ tape. Once you have brushed the stain on, and it has set for about 5 minutes. Take an old towel and wipe it away. Make sure you use a clean section of towel each time. The longer you let the stain sit, the deeper the color.

There are a variety of colors that you can choose from today. Typically, the small cans are enough for one project. We got the pint, and It has been used on all three pieces that I have done this year. And I still have enough for one more project.

After the wood is stained and dried, you can then add any painted detail.  For this projected, I chose a copper hammered metal look for the bottom tier, as well as the wood you see under the glass.  I felt that this would be a nice addition to the project, and that it would brighten it up.  The hammered metal paint is supposed to be used on metal, but it worked just fine on the wood.

After all of the detailing is completed, you can then add a layer of polyacrylic. It is important that you do not shake this. If you shake it, then bubbles will appear on your surface, and it will not be easy to remove. Paint it on in a smooth fashion, and with the grain of the wood.

Once the first coat has dried, lightly sand it down, and remove any dust.  You are then ready to add your next coat. Again, keep it smooth, remove any drips as soon as you see them.  Repeat the process until you are satisfied.

I decided to add wheels to the table. I found some that fit the legs at the hardware store for about $5. They are able to swivel, but do not have a lock. The important thing to note, make sure you drill the hole deep enough.  I made sure the wheel was flush before securing the socket.  Once the hole was deep enough, I gently hammered the socket in, and then pressed the wheel into place.  The first one I placed, was not deep enough, and when I tried to drill it further, I bent the socket. Don’t do that 😊.

And that is it.  To recap, you need to find your project. Sand it down, remove dust, add stain, seal it, and enjoy.

Happy Creating

-R

Everything Pita Bites with Lox

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Do you love everything bagels smeared with cream cheese and lox? I know that I do, but what I don’t love, is all of the unnecessary carbs that are present.  I decided to get my fix, using pita crackers that I found.  This recipe is super easy, it also makes for a quick 5-minute appetizer if you have a party coming up.

Ingredients:                                                                                   Calories

12 Townhouse Pita crackers                                                     140

2 tbsp light cream cheese                                                          60

1 oz Lox or smoked salmon                                                       55

Everything bagel seasoning                                                       5

 

The above amounts are what I used to make a decent snack for myself.  It may not be the healthiest option, but it is way better than a WHOLE bagel.

Preparation:

Smear cream cheese on to the pita crackers. Add a 1/4th inch of the lox and sprinkle the everything bagel seasoning over.  That is it!  Like I said, this is a super easy, yet delicious recipe.

If you want to get really fancy, you can use fresh carrot chips or celery.

 

Enjoy

-R

Ranchy Chicken Salad

The other day, I made a whole chicken for dinner.  But, after a while you get tired of eating the same chicken day after day.  This recipe is a great way to take the left over chicken to the next level, while still being healthy. When I have made this recipe in the past, I always used mayo or ranch dressing to hold the chicken together. I have even used an avocado, leftovers did not look pretty. This recipe uses shredded zucchini.. weird I know, but stick with it, it does work. I promise!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cooked chicken – diced
  • 2 cups zucchini – shredded
  • 2 tbsp ranch powder
  • Additional spices from the herb garden- basil, oregano, rosemary
  • pepper

Preparation:

  • In a medium bowl, mix zucchini, chicken
  • Add in ranch powder and additional spices
  • Additional veggies can be mixed in as well, we liked tomato or carrots for a crunch.
  • Enjoy on a sandwich, with Ritz or club crackers, or on fresh veggie slices.

 

Have a great day!

-R

Crunchy “pasta” salad.

Its the middle of summer, which means vacations, cook outs, and pool parties.  Are you running out of “healthy” side dishes to serve?  This recipe may be the one for you!

This recipe was first created as a way to clean out the refrigerator.  A few days before I made it, I had made a Zucchini Tomato Salad ( Recipe to post later), this bright recipe is full of herbs, especially dill, spices and dill. Super easy to make.  But I wanted something extra.  Since I had spaghetti squash already cooked up, I just mixed them up. And it was FANTASTIC, and one of my go to recipes now.

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Ingredients

  • Vinegar to taste- start with 1/4th a cup.
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • fresh or dry herbs- try a mixture of basil, rosemary, oregano, and dill.
  • 2 cups cooked spaghetti squash – cut in to bite size
  • diced vegetables- carrots, tomato, broccoli, olives … anything else you may have around

 

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Preperation

  • Mix the vinegar, oil, and spices in a small bowl
  • wash and cut vegtables
  • in a large bowl, mix squash and vegetables
  • pour vinegar mixture over the vegetables and toss to coat.

If you want to spice it up even more, try adding cheese or pepperoni.

I hope you ( and your guests) enjoy this healthy pasta salad.

 

-R

 

 

 

 

 

Sweet and Spicy Sauce

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This sauce was something quick that I threw together. I wanted something to dip my egg rolls in, but we didn’t have anything.  The amounts listed below can be adjusted to make more. The current amount was enough for 2 people.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp hoisen
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp ketchup
  • 2tbsp rice wine vienagr
  • Optional – ½ tbsp red pepper flakes for spice.

 

To give this sauce an extra kick! You can add pineapple ( I am allergic).  I feel like it will give the sauce an extra sour boost.

Baked Egg Rolls

 

 

Hey Friends!

The other night D and I wanted to have some Chinese food, but rather than take out we made Beef and Broccoli  with Crab Ragoons at home.  But that left me with a ton (OK 10) wanton wrappers. So today I decided to make some egg rolls.  This recipe is super simple, and you can make a bunch with in 45 minutes.  Which is great for kiddos in the summer, or for when unexpected guests stop by.   I will post the other recipes later!

Ingredients

  • Cabbage- can be precut, think coleslaw mix
  • 1 bag
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp hoisin sauce
  • ½ tbsp sesame oil
  • Grated ginger
  • ½ tsp ( or a few shakes) of ground cinnamon
  • Precooked ground sausage if desired.
  • Wanton wrappers ( I find these near the produce section)

Preparation

  • Preheat oven to 425.
  • On stove top, warm olive oil.
  • Add cabbage, stir to coat
  • Add in soy sauce, hoisin sauce, sesame oil, ginger and cinnamon. Stir to mix.
  • If adding sausage, make a hole in the center of pan. Push cabbage mixture to edges.
  • Once sausage is warm, mix throughout cabbage.

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  • Place 1 wanton wrapper on a clean cutting board, corner pointed towards you.
  • Add a spoonful (about 1/4th cup) of cabbage mixture on to wanton.
  • Fold corner up, then the 2 sides. Making sure the filling stays inside, roll the wanton.
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  • On the upper corner, dab water to help seal edge. Place on foil lined baking tray
  • Repeat until all of the cabbage mixture is used.
  • Spray both sides with cooking oil of your choice.
  • Place in oven for 10 minutes,
  • Flip each role to the other side, cook for an additional 10 minutes.
  • Remove from oven, let cool and Enjoy!

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*Tip, pair this recipe with the Crab Rangoon for a fun Asian night.

Makes 10 medium egg rolls.

Feel free to comment  or ask questions!

 

Need a dipping sauce?  Check out this recipe https://creativelyserved.com/2018/07/11/sweet-and-spicy-sauce/ .

 

-R

Hassled Zucchini

We had several large zucchini taking up room in our refrigerator and I wanted to try something new with them.  We typically cover them in oil and various spices, and then grill for about 10 minutes (or until tender). I briefly saw an incredibly unhealthy version on my Facebook feed and decided that I could do it better.  In addition to a zucchini, I am trying this method with a yellow squash. So here it goes, once it is finished, I will post pictures.

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Slice and coat with oil and garlic.
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Cook for 10 minutes, then add cheese.
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Let cool and enjoy!

Hassled Zucchini

Ingredients:

  • Medium zucchini – one per person
  • Olive oil – 3 tbsp (more or less can be used for preference
  • Garlic – 1/2 tsp powder 1tsp minced
  • Parmesan cheese – finely grated
  • Salt and pepper

 

Preparation:

  • Preheat the oven to 400F. Wash zucchini.
  • Slice zucchini accordion style – aka not all the way through.
  • Mix olive oil and garlic in a small bowl. Using a brush, brush mixture on outside of zucchini. Carefully coat between the slices. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • Bake for 10-15 minutes, on a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Remove from oven, and cover in parmesan cheese. Use a fork or knife to get cheese in between the slices.
  • Return to the oven for 5 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
  • Keeping the zucchini in the oven, turn the broiler on for 5 minutes or until the cheese begins to brown.
  • Remove, let cool and  enjoy!

Sesame Carrots

Ingrediants

  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1/4th cup water

 

  • Wash and peel carrots, cut into slices. For a fancier style cut at an angle.
  • Mix sesame oil, honey, garlic,pepper, water and other desired spices.
  • Toss carrots in sesame oil mixutre
  • Cook carrots  covered in a small cast iron skillet on the grill for about 20 minutes. The stove top may also be used.

Foundations

The Foundations section is basic recipes and skills that I will use over and over. This section will include the basic instructions to prepare other recipes.  In this section you will find how to cook a squash, make hummus, or begin a crafty project.