Saturday, November 23, 2013

Cabin Bound!

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This was the view through my windshield as I headed up the highway toward Wilkesboro, NC.

The mission today?  STOCK THE CABIN with all the fixings I need for a week with family.  That’s ME – and 4 men all over 6’2” tall!  And they can EAT!

I started out at Sam’s Club – what a DUMB idea on the Saturday before Thanksgiving, but it couldn’t be helped.  I got there as early as I could, and I did okay – the lines weren’t too long.  My basket filled quickly and I was back out to the parking lot, loading everything for a week away into the back of Shamu, my van.

There are some things you just can’t get at Sam’s –or you can, but you don’t want to.  Seriously.  I do not need a GALLON of cranberry sauce.  Or a two pack of jumbo sized salad dressing --- so I headed up to Wilkesboro and stopped.  At the Wal-Mart.  Big mistake!  But on that main drag there are only 2 grocery stores, and I needed some things that were NOT groceries, so I thought I could do the one stop shopping routine ---

Me and every other person that lives within a 20 mile radius of Wilkesboro!

I remembered ALMOST everything on my list --- but this was stop #2 and STILL – NO PEARL ONIONS!

My dad has made a special request.  Both of his parents are long gone, his brother has also passed.  He is missing family and wanting pearl onions – in cream sauce.  I didn’t think it would be that hard to find them, but it took another trip to another store – and I kept my fingers crossed as I scanned the aisles of the frozen section at the Lowes Foods across the street from the Wal-Mart.Grocery stop #3 for the day.

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I FOUND THEM!  And they were Buy 1 Get 1 Free!

Thanksgiving dinner will now be complete!

For those wondering –here’s the recipe:

  • 1 bag frozen pearl onions.
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup heavy cream or half-and-half
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 cups coarse fresh white bread crumbs (from 1/4 lb bread with crusts removed)
Put onions and 1 teaspoon salt in same pot and add fresh water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, until onions are tender, about 20 minutes. Drain well in colander and transfer to a buttered 2-quart baking dish.

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F.

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a 1- to 2-quart heavy saucepan over moderately low heat, then add flour and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add cream in a stream, whisking, and bring to a simmer, whisking. Simmer sauce, stirring occasionally, 2 minutes. Stir in pepper, nutmeg, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pour sauce over onions.

Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a 10-inch nonstick skillet over moderately low heat, then add bread crumbs and cook, stirring, until golden, 3 to 5 minutes.

Sprinkle toasted crumbs evenly over onions and bake until sauce is bubbling, about 30 minutes.
Note: Creamed onions can be assembled (without bread crumbs) 1 day ahead and chilled, covered. Bring to room temperature before adding bread crumbs and baking.
Onions found, I headed further west, climbing in elevation as I reached the mountains, finally arrived at the cabin --- boy is it windy up here and quite a bit chillier than it was down in the valley.
Groceries put away, I unpacked the two goodies I brought home from my antiquing day in Fort Worth!
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Sweet Doily!
When I saw this hand crocheted doily with its adorable variegated pansy edging, I knew it had to come adorn the top of Betsy Ross’s Treadle Cabinet!
I also fell in love with another larger doily that I thought would look great on the dining room table for Thanksgiving dinner:
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Only ONE small ((VOLCANIC!)) problem!!!
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How did I not see this at the antique mall!?
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Thinking that wetting and re-blocking might help, I soaked it in hot water in the kitchen sink.
After rinsing and sqeezing excess moisture out with a towel ((NO WRINGING!))  I have it laid out on the living room floor, patting it into place, and hoping to get it to lay a bit flatter:
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Still a bit poofy!
Oh well….there is always the solution of a REALLY BIG CENTER PIECE to hide that sucker! LOL!
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Lookie what else I found at Sams?  Regularly $49.99 –the 3 set of lit pumpkins was $19.99!
There will be a nap in my near –VERY NEAR ---future.  And some hand sewing tonight.  And tomorrow ---I’ll go back home. 
All is ready here.
I can’t wait to come back up on Monday!

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Ann Sheehan said...

Well done on the shopping. Have a wonderful thanksgiving. Hope your brother is doing ok. xx from Ireland

Ivani said...

Hi Bonnie, try to starch and press the crochet towel for the dining table. Cabin ready for Thanksgiven. Have a great week with family! Hugs

Anonymous said...

Happy Thanksgiving from New Zealand! Your cabin sounds like the perfect destination :) Rose, Christchurch, NZ

Lois said...

I was at a seminar focused on antique linens and doilies. The instructor lets them soak in Biz and hot water for several days. She drains the water and adds more hot water and Biz and they have restored with remarked difference. Good luck.

Tami C said...

It's looking very lovely Bonnie!

Gretchen quilts said...

The lit pumpkins on the hearth look so festive! You are putting your own special touches on your cabin. Have a lovely first Thanksgiving there with your family!

Melinda said...

The creamed onions brings back memories.....one of my Dad's favorite dishes.

Carol Hemmingsen said...

We grew up on peas and pearl onions!! My dad like them too. Just no cream sauce.

dorothy said...

Seeing those doilies, makes me think I should get out some of my grandmothers's, but if I had to wash them, I don't think I could EVER get them as starched stiff as her's were!

Eileen S said...

Steam, steam, steam, iron....."usually" helps those pesky volcanoes. Good luck and have a wonderful Thanksgiving at the cabin, beginning your new holiday tradition.

PalmerGal said...

My husband's family always had creamed onions as well, and I find that my grocery store carries them only at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

And my mom and grandmother always crocheted; your doilies brought back memories. Theirs were always starched. We had some that had large ruffles that were dunked in liquid starch and dried around drinking glasses to maintain the ruffles.

Enjoy your holiday at the cabin!

PalmerGal said...

Liquid starch is what my mom always used.

mascanlon said...

Fabulous pumpkins, just perfect for Thanksgiving dinner. Enjoy the days and the preparation too, cooking with family is so much fun!

Mary said...

Awesome finds on the Doilies. I hope that the peak in the center flattens out. Glad you could get your stuff all op to the cabin safe. All done shopping here too I think. Ready for #1 Clue next week.

Sue Monsey said...

I have packed my Outback to the top and overflowing into the front seat for family holidays at the beach house - never thought about making a trip over a couple of days ahead of time ... duh! We have had our house for about 15 years now and it is still relaxing to go to - now there is more room in the car since we won't be taking a dog in a crate (we had to put our baby down last week - 14+ years old). At one time, there were two crates and the back end of the Subbie was pretty much full ...

I will never forget the day we had to unload the back end to get to the spare tire - we looked like the Hillbillies sitting there by the road ... then the regular tire would not fit back into the spare tire spot and one of the kids had to hold it in their lap for about 12 miles ... memories!

Mavis said...

Have an amazing first Thanksgiving at Quiltvilla with your fellas! I've never heard of the Pearl Onions dish. Sounds interesting. Your Dad will be thrilled. Blessings!

Sharon Hughson said...

My mother made a pansy doily. Love it. Also I think you can press the volcano out. It's cotton thread after all. You can use a press cloth too if you want. Or stretch damp and pin to the shape you want.

Anonymous said...

I love all your old fashioned doilies...they are beautiful and your food sounds just wonderful too. Have a good time together.

Judymc said...

I love all those antique linens & doilies! But I would just put a heavy or large centerpiece over that volcano! Enjoy your Thanksgiving--I love those pumpkins on the hearth!

Centergranny said...

Well you took the sunshine with you from Ft. Worth! It is 39 degrees and FALLING! Have a great Thanksgiving with your dad and family.

Carole Y. said...

When it is clean, you soak it in liquid starch (you can use diluted white fabric glue if you live in a damp temperature region), press it in a towel to take out the excess liquid and stretch it while it is still damp on a carpet (or stretch board) covered with a cotton sheet and pin (use pins that do not rust) it to the right shape. You can use a hair blow dryer to speed the drying. We usually don't press it with an iron, because the thread will look flat and loose its fluffyness.

Mary Ellen said...

I was just about to post some advice about the ecru volcano doily, but read Carole's advice first. Starch is the way to go and stretch that sucker to get it flat, then pin it down to the carpet, just as she describes. Old timey ladies used to get the doilies really stiff with sugar water. That sounds like an invitation to every insect, beetle, and moth within 50 miles to come and have dinner. I would never use sugared water, but I must admit, the results are very impressive as far as stiffness!

Allison in Plano said...

I loved reading about your preparations. You make quick work of it all since you are so focused. The pumpkins on the hearth made me smile -- such a deal finder you are. The doilies from your jaunt at Montgomery Antique Mall are perfect for QuiltVilla. Have a lovely Thanksgiving with your Dad and your fellas. Hugs, Allison

kathy said...

Bonnie, loved the comment about the creamed onions. My family has always had them but we are now where they do not have them in readily most stores. You have given me the encouragement to seek and find for turkey day. waiting for turkey day and the release of Celtic Solstice.

Nancy said...

How ironic are your comments about pearl onions since I had to search for them today too and finally scored! I use them in a sweet potato casserole with cranberries, apple and brown sugar and butter over the top. I used to find them jarred. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!!

Pat O said...

Oh!!!!! Creamed onions!!! Haven't had them in years, and never had them BAKED!! They look so yummy, but I think I'll be at the beach with my daughter and two granddaughters, so no creamed onions for another year! I also love them with tiny baby peas added!! Happy Thanksgiving, Bonnie and family. Blessings to you all! Now, Bonnie, please REST, just a little bit?

Deanna W said...

Gotta love it when a plan comes together! Enjoy your holiday and time with family!

Julia Phillips said...

What little I can see of your cabin - it looks gorgeous - especially the quilts in the last picture :) This is exactly the type of get away that I would love to have in the future - thanks for the sneak peek!

LizA. said...

Creamed onions--haven't thought of those in years. My mother used to make them every Thanksgiving only she would add cheese to the top. I will never forget the first Thanksgiving my DH had at my parents house.....he doesn't like onions and didn't realize what the dish was when passed to him--all he saw was the cheese.....I might just have to add this dish to the menu--Dad will like them.