Tuesday, 15 January 2019

Planes Trains and Automobiles at Cardz 4 Guyz

It's time for our first challenge of the year at Cardz 4 Guyz  - we didn't really want to start one on New Year's Day  so we had a break. Our first theme of the year for you is Planes, Trains and Automobiles. You could just pick one of the three, or two, or the whole lot as I have done.

I've used the toppers from the Hunkydory Planes, Trains and Automobiles topper deck  and a paper from the matching pad. I chose the toppers carefully so that a man who turns 90 during 2018 might well remember seeing, or at least reading about, the vehicles in his boyhood, and added the 3-d foam numerals to make a very quick and easy card for a 90th birthday.

I'm making a second visit to Allsorts - Milestones with Numbers with this card.

Sunday, 13 January 2019

Happy 18th birthday

Here in the UK, the legal age for buying and consuming alcohol in a bar is 18, so boozy 18th birthday cards are very popular, despite the fact that most young people have either been sneaking into bars for a couple of years by their 18th birthday or, increasingly, not bothering to drink at all (they probably still drive their parents to drink though!).

So here's a birthday card for an 18 year old boy, made with stamps, dies and an embossing folder that came with a magazine last year. I'm not sure which but probably Papercraft Essentials.

I'm sharing this with
The Male Room - Anything Goes/optional beverages
Allsorts - Milestones with numbers

Owls and more owls

These lovely owl dies are supposed to be for Christmas, hence the Santa hats included in the set, but I think they are far too sweet to keep just for one purpose!

Here they are in their festive regalia:

The owls, branch and hats are all cut from snippets, of course, with a subtle snowy background and a Christmassy sentiment.

I am sharing this card with
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Feature a creature
Addicted to Stamps and More - Holiday

Now, I don't know about you but I always smile when I see an image of birds standing on each other's heads. I don't know why, perhaps because it's so unlikely to happen in real life? Anyway, I really wanted to make my owls do that, and I also wanted to use up this very last snippet of a piece of 12 x 12 paper that I've eked out so frugally it's lasted me about 5 years!

I am sharing this with
Watercooler Wednesday - Occasions

And now here are the two cards together

Because I have used copious amounts of snippets, I am sharing with
Pixie's  Snippets Playground -  Challenge 343
and of course, the motivating force behind these cards,
Twofers - Birds

Saturday, 12 January 2019

Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers challenge #126 - Books

Our new challenge at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers, picked as always by the gorgeous Edna, is Books

Edna's really living the dream - my dream anyway - comfy chair, mug of tea and a massive pile of books! And funnily enough I've combined tea and books in my card too.

I've used a Bugaboo image called Big Books Girl, an assortment of backing papers from my stash and  the books, tea and toadstools image printed out from the Polkadoodles CD "Winnie in Wonderland" and fussy cut.

The sentiment is computer generated and continues on the inside:

Now why not head on over and see what the other Sistahs have created and share your own bookish makes. You could be crowned Queen or Princess of Snark!

Friday, 11 January 2019

Thank You, Thank you

I have been playing with this big bold flower stamp and my first thought was that it would look great as a white-on-kraft card.

However I wasn't very happy with the result - perhaps my kraft is rather too absorbent for heat embossing and slurped up too much of the ink. So this time I stamped and embossed it on white card using black Versafine ink and ultra detail powder.

Much better! I used water based markers to add some bold, bright colour.
And just to compare, where are the two together.

I am playing along with 

Little Red Wagon - Thank you very much 
CAS on Friday - Flowers

RECIPE: Alsatian Onion Tart

I don’t think there's anything genuinely Alsatian about this, it's my own version of a dish that originally appeared in The Pauper's Cookbook back in the 1970s and I've been cooking and tweaking it ever since, trying to keep the quicheyness (is that a word? If not it should be) while capturing some of the flavours of northern French dishes I've experienced over the years. I wouldn't call my version a pauper's dish - butter, cream and Emmenthal aren't cheap - but the bulk comes from onions which are still a bargain.

You will need a 23cm uncooked shortcrust pastry flan case, and if you are using bought pastry make sure it isn’t the sweetened kind. If you are making your own, 120g flour and 60g of your chosen fat should give you the right amount of pastry.

You will also need quite a lot of time. Not that you will be spending hours slaving over a hot stove, but there's some long, slow cooking with occasional stirring involved, so keep this to make on a wet afternoon when you don’t feel like going out. Pop a good film on the TV and remember to give it a stir in each commercial break.

For the filling you will need
1kg onions, peeled and roughly chopped
6 sprigs of thyme
100ml cold water
30g butter
3 large or extra large eggs
50ml double cream
50g Emmenthal cheese, roughly grated

Place the onions, water and leaves from the thyme in a heavy, lidded non stick pan. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat to very low and cook for about 2 hours, until the onions are extremely soft and just about melting, stirring frequently to make sure they don’t catch. Keep an eye on the liquid and add more if necessary.

When they are really soft, increase the heat to high and continue cooking, stirring very frequently, until all the water has been driven off. Stir in the butter and reduce the heat to medium. Continue cooking for 10 minutes until you have a rather unappetising looking brown mush like that in the photo below. During this 10 minutes, stir a few times but do allow a few places to catch slightly to give a hint of “fried onion” taste.

Set aside and allow to cool slightly. You can do this in advance and use it completely cold, but in any case it needs to cool enough for the eggs not to scramble when you add them.

Heat the oven to 220C, 200  fan, 450 F, gas mark 8.  While it is heating, beat together the eggs, cream, a little salt and a good grinding of black pepper. Stir this into the onion mixture along with about half the grated cheese, turn the whole lot into the flan case and level the top, then sprinkle over the remaining cheese.

Bake for 15 minutes then reduce the oven temperature to 180C, 160 fan, 350F, gas mark 4 and continue cooking for 45 minutes to an hour until set and browned. If it starts to look too brown before it is fully cooked, drape gently with a sheet of greaseproof paper.

Best allowed to stand for half an hour before eating, so it is tepid rather than hot.

Serve with green salad and a few new potatoes. Hazelnut mayonnaise ( use your favourite mayonnaise recipe replacing half the olive oil with hazelnut oil) makes a delicious salad dressing to serve with this.

Thursday, 10 January 2019

Winter scene

You'd think after the last few weeks we'd all have had enough of making Christmas cards, wouldn't you? But it's only 11 months until the next lot of Christmas cards need to be in the post, you know! No slacking allowed!

For this card I stamped the image on a scrap of spare card, using a Kaleidacolor pad and a  stamp from a recent issue of Creative Stamping. Then I used a water brush to draw the colour into all the shapes and to soften the distant outlines, and picked up a little more colour from the pad to colour the sky. I then stamped the sentiment on the card using the next "segment"  of the pad along from the ones used on the image. I die cut the image and added it to the card, covering the join with a scribbled wreath die cut from silver mirri card.

I am sharing this with
CASology - Frozen 
Shopping Our Stash - Winter Blues
CAS Watercolour - Winter
CAS Christmas - Blue and silver