I am Looking for a Bigger Coffee Maker

I love my cup of coffee,  I have one, maybe two cups a day and I want it to be good, really good.  I wake up excited for my coffee, sort of like my excitement for a glass of wine at the end of a long day, but todays post is all about coffee.  I like to make my own and it has to be strong.  Over the years, I have tried many coffee makers and brands of coffee.  Turns out, for me, expensive is not necessarily better. Currently at home, I am using Cafe 1820 – Costa Rican Ground Coffee 17.5 Oz – 500 Grams.  I discovered it a few summers ago while staying in Costa Rica and I buy it from Amazon.com.  It is a rich, delicious coffee.  YUM!

Lifestyle blogger, Ridgely Brode, is looking for a bigger coffee maker now that her son likes a cup too and is choosing between 6 models.

Lifestyle blogger, Ridgely Brode, is looking for a bigger coffee maker now that her son likes a cup too and is choosing between 6 models.

It use to be just me having coffee at home and now my oldest son seems to have picked up the taste and my trusty Cuisinart  4 cup with stainless-steel carafe with this gold tone filter is not going to cut it, especially when I use the whole carafe to fill my large cup!  I now make two rounds of coffee in the morning, one for me and one for him. And lets not even talk about this past weekend when we had guests, I think I made 6 rounds each morning…

Time to find a bigger coffee maker and buy more mugs!

Besides making good coffee, I would like the carafe to be dishwasher safe and sturdy.  I have lost many a glass carafe to the dishwasher and had a problem just getting a replacement carafe.  That is one of the reasons I have the stainless steel version now. I am interested in the BrewStation that holds the coffee in the machine and dispenses as needed (Check out the Krupp! Talk about an investment.. Yowzer).  Anyone have one of those?

Calling all coffee lovers reading this… Do you have one of the below 6 coffee makers?  Please let me know what you are using and love.. this coffee drinker (and son) would like to know!

Lifestyle blogger, Ridgely Brode, is looking for a bigger coffee maker now that her son likes a cup too and is choosing between 6 models.

to buy: 1. Black & Decker 12 Cup Thermal Coffeemaker  /  2. Cuisinart Black Steel Coffeemaker  /3. Hamilton Beach BrewStation   /  4. KRUPS Cup on Demand  /  5. BUNN HG 8 Cup Coffee Brewer  /  6. Mr. Coffee Optimal Brew 10 Cup

 

Ginger Cake

I have been craving ginger cake for the last few weeks, I use to get a piece every time I was down near Dean & Deluca in the city and have not had any since then. I searched around and, as luck would have it, my Mother-in-law had a recipe of her Mothers to share with me.  She gave me a splattered card of an old fashioned, well loved recipe… to me, that is the best way to get a new (old) recipe! I was so excited to make it!  It is just as I was hoping, rich with spices and flavor.  Our house smelled amazing when it was cooking and it tasted even better than it smelled (if that is even possible!)  I pretty much ate the entire cake myself… and am going to make it again this weekend.  It’s a snap to make and, if you serve it for company, they will think you are a culinary wiz!

With a craving for Ginger Cake, Ridgely Brode gets a delicious recipe from her Mother-in-law to share on her blog, Ridgely's Radar.

 

With a craving for Ginger Cake, Ridgely Brode gets a delicious recipe from her Mother-in-law to share on her blog, Ridgely's Radar.

 

Ginger Cake
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Ingredients
  • ¾ Cups Brown Sugar
  • ¾ Cups Baking Molasses
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Cup Melted Shortening
  • 2 Cups Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon Ginger
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon Nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon Allspice
  • 1 Cup Boiling Water
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350F
  2. Melt the shortening carefully in a pot on the stove. Watch it and take it off the heat when fully melted.
  3. Combine the brown sugar, molasses, shortening and eggs in a mixer.
  4. Place flour, baking soda and all the spices in a bowl and whisk to combine.
  5. Add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture in three parts. Blend well and be careful not to put mixer on too high and have the flour blow everywhere.
  6. When all mixed together, add in the cup of boiling water.
  7. Pour into a square baking dish
  8. Cook in the oven for 30 min test with cake stick to make sure done, remove from oven and cool on a rack.
  9. Serve plain or with whipped cream

 

Caraway Cheese Soft Pretzels from RawSpiceBar

A few months ago we were approached to try out RawSpiceBar, a monthly subscription that delivers 3 hand-picked, small batch, freshly ground spice blends.  Each RawSpiceBar’s monthly spice box contains 1-2 ounces of spice blends, that you use to create, with the included kitchen-tested, detailed recipes, three dishes for serving 8-10.

My husband and I love to cook but are always at a loss of what to make.  When I checked out RawSpiceBar, I thought it would be the perfect way to get us trying new recipes and enjoy meals we wouldn’t have otherwise thought to make.

We got the October spice box which included spices to make Caraway Cheese Soft Pretzels, Horseradish and Mustard Cabbage and German Chicken Schnitzel.. all perfect for a Oktoberfest meal.  We decided to jump in and make the pretzels for some friends coming over to watch football.  They were fun to make and really good. It was great to have a little inspiration and make something new.

At $8 for one month or $6/ month for 12 months it is such a fun idea and a great present for anyone on your list who like us loves to cook and has an adventurous palate!

Ridgely Brode makes Caraway Cheese Soft Pretzels from RawSpiceBar on Ridgely's Radar

 

Ridgely Brode makes Caraway Cheese Soft Pretzels from RawSpiceBar on Ridgely's Radar

 

Ridgely Brode makes Caraway Cheese Soft Pretzels from RawSpiceBar on Ridgely's Radar

 

Ridgely Brode makes Caraway Cheese Soft Pretzels from RawSpiceBar on Ridgely's Radar

 

Ridgely Brode makes Caraway Cheese Soft Pretzels from RawSpiceBar on Ridgely's Radar

Caraway Cheese Soft Pretzels from RawSpiceBar
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • RawSpiceBar's Caraway, Fennel & Anise Bread
  • 2 Tablespoon Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon Kosher Salt, more for topping
  • 4 Cups Unbleached All-purpose Flour
  • 1 Tablespoon Baking Soda
  • 1 Egg, mixed with 1 Tablespoon Water (for egg wash)
  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 2 Tablespoons Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 14g Dry Active Yeast
  • ⅓ Cup Butter
Instructions
  1. In a small pot over medium heat, combine milk and butter. Stir until combined.
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, yeast, sugar, salt and RawSpicebar's caraway, fennel and Anise Bread
  3. Combine wet ingredients with dry and knead dough for about 10 minutes.Dough should be soft and almost sticky. (we needed to add extra warm water to the dough to get a better consistency)
  4. Divide dough into 8 pieces. Shape each piece into a pretzel. Move to a warm, dark place and let the pretzels to rise until double in size, about an hour.
  5. Just before baking, brush pretzels with egg wash and sprinkle with cheese, remaining RawSpicebar's caraway, fennel and Anise Bread and salt
  6. Bake the pretzels for about 10 minutes at 485 degrees. Let cool on a wire rack.
  7. Serbe warm

to buy: RawSpiceBar: $5 off your first subscription or any 6 or 12 month gift order, code: RAKFLAVOR

How Amazing are these Adorable Mini Gingerbread Houses?

I am obsessed with the mini gingerbread houses I have been seeing all over Pinterest.  I can’t say I have had much success with our sons making gingerbread houses, or even eating our efforts, but we have gotten the kits in years past and made a huge mess putting them together.  They end up sitting on our kitchen table through the Holiday and then getting tossed.  Sadly, they have never lived up to the flavor and taste that I crave when I think of gingerbread.  Maybe that is because they were store bought kits??!  It is time, way past the time, that I made my own gingerbread houses. I think the mini ones are right up my alley. I love the idea of making them Gluten Free so that our son with Celiac can give them a try (I know he probably won’t, but it will make me happy that I tried to make something he could eat).  I found this lovely site Windsor B who is a gal after my own heart.  She has beautiful photographs, Gluten and Dairy Free recipes, and she took a few shortcuts to make her mini houses.  If you are looking for a non-gluten free option and directions here is another option for you.  Not in the mood to make them, you could always buy them here.  I love that they are such a festive and, hopefully, delicious treat!  I will report back after I try making them myself and, likewise, let me know if you give them a go.

How Amazing are these Adorable Mini Gingerbread Houses by Windsor B?

How Amazing are these Adorable Mini Gingerbread Houses by Windsor B

How Amazing are these Adorable Mini Gingerbread Houses by Windsor B

for the recipe please go to: Mini Gluten Free Gingerbread Houses by Windsor B

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving

All year-long I hunt for fabrics to use for tablecloths and this year I scored three remnants of fabric with a brown/ blue bird pattern.  I knew immediately it would be the inspiration for setting my Thanksgiving table. Luckily, when we sewed together the sections, the cloth fit our table perfectly.  I went hunting in my house for items to use for a centerpiece and pulled out the various sized brass candlesticks I had collected over the years from my Grandmother, tag sales and flea markets.  I  decided to forgo the laborious task of shining them all and left them in the original patina. I then went looking for pieces to compliment the tablecloth.  I borrowed three brass planters for the centerpiece from Found, a fabulous decorating and home store in New Canaan, CT and Juliska very nicely lent me the table settings.  It was so much fun pulling it all together and layering all the elements that I got a little carried away with the pictures but, to be fair, I wanted to give you lots of angles to see how it turned out. I hope you love it as much as I do…Now if only I could keep it as is for Thanksgiving!

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

 

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

How to Decorate Around your Tablecloth for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

to buy: Juliska Tortoise Knot Napkin Ring c/o /  Juliska Hemstitch Napkin c/o /  Juliska Bistro Gold Flatware c/o /  Juliska Bamboo Dinner Plate  c/o / Juliska Firenze Delft Charger c/o /  Juliska Arabella Clear Goblet c/o /  Tablecloth made from Vintage Fabric /  Brass candlestick collected over time / Brass Planters c/o  / Starlight Wire String Lights

->

5 Unique Ways to Decorate Your Table for Thanksgiving

One of my favorite things to do is set my table for a party, family gathering or holiday.  I look for ideas all year long and buy vintage fabrics when I see them to make tablecloths for different themes. I have bins of decorative items like pine cones, faux branches, gourds and pumpkins that I can use as filler for my centerpieces.  It may be a bit excessive, but I try to get them at the end of each season so they are on sale, but sometimes I don’t have a choice and buy them full price. I love browsing One Kings Lane, AmazonPier 1 Imports, and Home Decorators Collection for ideas and to add things to my stash.  Here are 5 unique ways to decorate your table for Thanksgiving:

  1. Thanksgiving Inspiration
  2. DIY Metallic and Glitter Gourds
  3. Glitter and Gold Thanksgiving
  4. Another centerpiece with the Metallic and Glitter Gourds
  5. Green and Silver Thanksgiving

5 Unique Ways to Decorate Your Table for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

 

5 Unique Ways to Decorate Your Table for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

 

5 Unique Ways to Decorate Your Table for Thanksgiving | Ridgely's Radar

Images top : Thanksgiving Inspiration  middle:  Glitter and Gold Thanksgiving  ( DIY Metallic and Glitter Gourds) Bottom: Green and Silver Thanksgiving