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Spooktacular Chili Cook-Off

This is the second year for the downtown Oshkosh Chili Cook-off and it promises to be better than the last. I was pretty impressed with last years event, but they did run short of chili very early on.  I think it may have been underestimated how much we love our chili and are so willing to try different types. I will suggest getting here right at 12:00 which is when sampling begins. Last year there was anything from cranberry chili to chocolate chili. I can’t wait to find out what there is this year.  This event was sponsored last year in hopes of continuing to support the Day By Day Warming Shelter  in Downtown Oshkosh. Please make a difference in the community event by giving back. 
Not only will you get to experience unique chili samples from over 30 amateur chefs, but local  beers will also be on tap, along with a DJ and children’s activities. This will also be the last outdoor Farmers Market for the year. The Farmers Market will go from 8:00-12:30 and sampling will begin at 12:00.  So come on down Opera House Square on Saturday, October 26th in hopes to grow our downtown community. Sampling begins at 12:00.

There is still room to register if you think you have what it takes to win or just have fun. Register here.

Amateur judges will be awarding in categories of “Best Traditional Chili”, Specialty Chili”, and a “5 Alarm Chili”.

 

 

Crockpot applesauce

I just realized I posted this recipe last year, but without any pictures. So instead of just adding a picture to last years post, I decided to post it again since it is not only easy, but really good!

My apple and pear trees are bursting with apples this year. They are too firm to eat, but perfect for baking. I have made two batches of apple crisp, caramel apple cupcakes and two batches of applesauce already. I have a long list of other recipes I would love to make and share with you, but whenever I can share a canning recipe that is so darn easy and something you can enjoy all winter long, I want to get it out as soon as the season hits, even if it is more than once. Come back and visit the next few weeks for more great apple, pumpkin and possibly pear recipes. We will see how much time I can grab before the season is over.

Apple Tree- 1 of 5 in our yard

 

Crockpot Applesauce

Peel, core and slice apples. Fill our crock pot full of apples. Add 1 cup of water, 1 cup of sugar, I TB cinnamon and I TB lemon juice. Stir a and turn your crock pot on low for 5-7 hours or high for 3-4 hours. Stir when through. I like a chunky apple sauce so I go ahead and jar them up (after I have washed my jars and lids). If you like a smooth applesauce, you can cook a little longer and stir until it’s the consistency you like or puree your applesauce in a food processor. Enjoy right away or can for later.

 

I added as many apples as I could fit into my crock pot. Add the water, sugar, cinnamon and lemon juice. Gave it good stir, put the lid on and set it on low for for about 6 hours.

 

I like my applesauce a little chunky, so after 6 hours I stirred it and immediately poured it into my hot glass jars and within 5 minutes they were sealed. I got about 6 – 12oz. jars and 2 – 6 oz jars of applesauce out of 1 batch.

applesauce

 

Connecting Wisconsin

It has been a long time coming, but Oshkosh is connecting Wisconsin one trail at a time.

Be the first to walk, run or bike across Lake butte Des Morts on Saturday, October 12th. from 11:00-2:30 as the Tribal Heritage Crossing of the Wiouwash State Recreation Trail crosses Lake Butte Des Morts along the Highway 41 Causeway.

This event will be held at the North end of the causeway near the driveway of Ecklund Motor Sports at 2794 Marine Dr. There will be street parking with people helping you on where to go.

At 11:00 AM there will be a formal dedication and ceremony with our own Governor Scott Walker being present. From 11:30-2:30 there will be an open house for a fun run/walk and dog walk. You can register the day of for a 5K non competitive run/walk with or without your pooch. You will receive “first across” commemorative pin, and be able to visit displays along the crossing, which includes one of each of the Wisconsin Indian Tribes.  Experts will also be on hand to talk about fishing opportunities on the trail as well.

Everything Cookies

This recipe inspired me by one of our guests. Tom visits us every October, however this October, he has to attend a wedding on the same date he usually stays with us. I guess where I am going with this, is that I got thinking about him the other day and craving these cookies that he usually brings with him. Since I won’t be seeing him this year, I thought I would try to recreate these yummy cookies. I don’t think I did too bad, but they don’t compare with Toms. I am thinking if I made them a little larger and didn’t bake them as long, I might be pretty darn close. I am going to keep working on it, but I wanted to share with you anyway since I have eaten about a dozen of them.

 

 

Everything Cookies-001

Everything Cookies – 42 cookies with a 4 oz. scoop

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

1 C brown sugar, 1/2 granulated sugar, 2 sticks of butter, softened, 2 C flour, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. baking soda, 3 C old fashioned oatmeal, 2 eggs, 3 TB heavy cream, 1.5 TB vanilla, 1 C craisens, 1 C dark chocolate chunks, and 1 C pecan or walnuts

Cream both sugars and butter until light and fluffy. Set aside.

Combine flour, salt, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and oatmeal. Set aside

Mix eggs, cream and vanilla together. Add gradually to butter and mixture. Add dry mixture and mix until it just comes together. Fold in craisens, chocolate chunks and nuts.

Scoop cookie dough out onto cookie sheet and bake 10-15 minutes.

Oshkosh Oktoberfest

Oshkosh Oktoberfest will be kicking off their celebration again with German food, music and culture on  Saturday, October 5th. This year the festivities will be held at the Dockside Tavern parking lot.  Oshkosh Mayor, Burk Tower will be tapping the ceremonial keg at 2:00 PM.

There will be many great events held this year like the 2K Bier run and costume contest, starting at 11:00 AM. The run/ walk will be utilizing the new Riverwalk while making a loop with four beer stops. Of course you have to have proper ID, so be prepared! You will also walk away with a commemorative Oshkosh Oktoberfest beer stein and shirt (while supplies last). Oktoberfest is a free event, however there is an entry fee of $15.00 prior or $20.00 the day of the run to participate.  You can register at Dockside Tavern, Barely & Hops or at Run Away Shoes. All proceeds go to Cerebral Palsy of Midwest Wisconsin.  Everyone participating is encouraged to dress in costume (preferably German, but definitely tasteful). Prizes will be awarded for the best costumes, in both individual and group categories.

What you don’t feel like a run/walk on Saturday? How about Oktoberfest Olympics?  Several different competitive games, such as a Barrel Rolling contest, Masskrugstemmen (Beer Stein Holding) contest, Stein Relay races, Fraulein Carrying races, and a Frankfurter Eating contest. This is all great fun and all for a good cause with a chance to win some great prizes. German Wine Tastings and German Bier Tastings will be available for those of age. Children’s Playland Area, Cultural Displays, and Sheepshead games will be going on all day as well.

Of course there is also some great entertainment that will be provided by Blakapelle Milwaukee, Copper Box, and Greg Waters and the Broad Street Boogie from 2:00-11:00 PM. For  more information, you can go to http://www.oshkoshoktoberfest.com/

Raisin Bran muffins with Cream Cheese Filling

This is one of my all time favorite muffins recipes. Raisin Bran might sound a little to healthy and full of fiber for you, but the cream cheese really sets this regular, boring, old bran muffin apart from the rest.  In fact when I went to go tell a guest that they could find it in my blog, they couldn’t.  I couldn’t believe I had never posted this one before. Filled muffins are always a tough one to photograph. I want to show the ooey gooey filling in the middle, but then it just looks like someone dove into it. If I just take a picture of the muffin itself, it looks a little boring. So, until I can get a good photo, you are just going to have to settle for my favorite muffin recipe.

Raisin Bran Muffins with Cream Cheese Filling – Serves 15 jumbo muffins

Filling – 8 oz. cream cheese, softened, 1/3 c sugar, 2 TB flour, 1 tsp. vanilla. 

Batter – 2 1/2 C flour, 2 C sugar, 2 1/2 tsp. baking soda, 1 tsp. salt, 1 1/5 TB cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. nutmeg, 3 1/2 C raisin bran cereal, 2 large eggs, slightly beaten, 2 C buttermilk, shaken, and 1/2 canola oil.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Grease muffin tins or use paper liners. In a small bowl combine filling ingredients. Set aside.

For batter stir together flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large bowl. Add dry cereal and stir. Add egg, buttermilk and oil. Spook 1 heaping spoonful of batter into each muffin cup. Add a dollop of cream cheese filling over batter and then add more batter over filling. Sprinkle with sugar and bake muffins for 20-25 minutes.

Don’t over bake,  otherwise filling will dry up.

EAA September Swing

Saturday, September 28th from from 7:00-11:00, relive the excitement and glamour of the 1940s at EAA’s “September Swing!” This spectacular evening of big band dance located in one of the hangers at EAA will feature the sights and sounds of Ladies Must Swing, an all-female, 19-piece jazz band from Madison, Wisconsin. You can  learn to swing dance (or practice your skills) from 7:30 to 8 p.m. and then dance the night away amidst an authentic collection of World War II planes, vehicles, and artifacts.

There will be great music from the 40′s and  delicious hors d’oeuvres, which will make up this amazing evening event at the EAA AirVenture Museum. Vintage wear is encouraged, but not required. Prizes will be awarded for best period attire and best dancers.

Admission price includes museum entrance, hors d’oeuvres, live music, dance lessons, and much more. Wine, beer and cocktails will be available for purchase all evening. Tickets are available at http://www.airventuremuseum.org/activities/swing.asp

 

Strawberry Banana French Toast

This is a very light summery french toast recipe that you can prepare the night before.  I have noticed though that only woman are the ones that choose this option. I am not sure if men typically like the savory choices like my husband or they are just unsure if this will satisfy. Served with bacon though, I think they would be pleasantly surprised.

Strawberry Banana French Toast – Serves 4-6 depending on portion size.  strawberry banana ft

 

 

5 eggs, 3/4 C milk, 1/4 tsp. baking powder, 1 TB vanilla, 1 loaf french bread, cut into thick slices, 1 ( 20oz ) bag of frozen strawberries. I also used fresh in combination though too, 4 sliced bananas, 1 C sugar, 1 TB apple pie spice, and 2 TB cinnamon sugar.

Mix eggs, milk, baking powder and vanilla. Lay sliced french bread slices in a 8×10 pan. Pour milk mixture over bread and let soak overnight.

In the  morning preheat oven to 450 degrees. Combine strawberries, bananas slices, sugar and apple pie spice. Put in a greased 8×10 baking dish and top with prepared bread slices from the evening before. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Bake 20-25 minutes. Spoon strawberries and bananas over bread.  Drizzle maple syrup over the top and sprinkle with powdered sugar. Served with bacon and cheesy hashbrowns would make the perfect combination.

Fanny Pack Disco 5K

If you have not heard about this event, tell me it does not intrigue you?

Saturday, September 28th from 10:00-1:00 Pm is the Fanny Pack Disco 5K. This is a benefit for the MACC Fund (Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer). Fanny Pack Disco is a 5k run, a dance party, and a fashion statement all rolled into one. Sport a Jammy Pack and a Silent Storm Sound System wireless receiver, you’ll help form a mobile, surround-sound mob as hit after hit is blasted through the speakers around your waist. A Jammy Pack is a fanny pack with speakers and the Silent Storm Sound System wireless receiver allows it to send music to the Jammy Pack over an FM airwaves. With your registration, you get to keep your Jammy Pack, as well as our participant t-shirt and race bib! All you need to do is run and they will take care of the tunes. They will keep your ears’ attention by changing up the genre several times throughout the course. Whether you’re into Top 40s, 90s, oldies or Hip Hop, you’re sure to hear something you’ll like! The trail will start at Menominee park. Registration is $35.00.

Still can’t imagine what this could consist of. Check out this You Tube Video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UGMnFAY-cO4

Tomato Basil Quiche

You know when you have guests that return once every 3 months that you are bound to be friends. So much so, that when I know they are coming, I will save them a room, but it will always be a surprise to them when they show up, since it will be whatever room is left over. Also, time for breakfast? That also gets thrown out the window. They usually like to eat with others, unless its too early, so I usually just tell them what time they are eating. I still ask them what they would like to have for breakfast, unless they have a request from a previous time. That is except for last weekend. We had some guest that told me at the last minute that they could not have pork, so I whipped up this tomato basil quiche. I wasn’t sure how it would turn out, but I was pleasantly surprised. This will now be on my vegetarian menu for others in the future.

Tomato Basil Quiche – Serves 6

1 unbaked pie shell, 1/2 plus 2 C shredded mozzarella or Havarti cheese ( I used both), 5 tomatoes, 1 C loosely packed fresh basil leaves or 1/2 C dried basil, 4 garlic cloves, 2 C mayo, 1/3 C grated Parmesan 1/4 tsp. pepper and 1/8 C chives

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place pie crust into a 9″ quiche dish or deep pie pan. Line entire crust with foil and bake 8 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 4-5 minutes. Remove from oven and reduce heat to 375 degrees.  Sprinkle with 1/2 C mozzarella cheese. Cut tomatoes into wedges and lay on top of cheese. Combine basil and garlic in a food processor. Sprinkle over the tomatoes.

In a mixing bowl combine 2 C mozzarella cheese, mayo, Parmesan and pepper. Spoon mixture over basil mixture and spread to cover. Sprinkle with chive and bake approx 35 minutes until lightly browned on top.

 

 

Fall Fest on the Fox

Trying to plan a weekend getaway for this Fall?  How about coming to Oshkosh the weekend of of October 20-22?  Everything is walkable from Brayton B&B. Leave the car parked all weekend and celebrate Fall Fest on the Fox.

Starting off on Friday is the 13th annual Friday Fish Fry on the Fox. The Fish Fry on the Fox is a community celebration featuring an all-you-care-to eat buffet dinner, live jazz, caricature artist, horse-drawn tours of campus, face painting and so much more.

Tickets for the fish fry may be purchased online at www.uwosh.edu/fallfest.  Tickets are $10/advance & $12/door for adults;  Beverage, gratuities, tax and included. Free parking at the Blackhawk Commons, UW Oshkosh from 4:00-7:00 PM.

Afterwards why not walk down to the Time Theater where admission is free for a series of classic horror films from 8:00-11:00 PM.

Saturday morning is the Oshkosh Saturday Farmers Market.  With over 130 vendors every Saturday morning. There is a wonderful variety of products from  fresh fruits and vegetables (exotic and heirloom), fish, meats, sausage, jerky, poultry, cheeses, eggs, honey, cut flowers, perennials, shoots, prepared foods including egg rolls, kettle corn, hot dogs and brats, crepes, breads and bakery, chocolate covered soy beans, and crafts. All from 8:00-12:30.

Starting at 9:00 until 4:00 PM is the 8th annual Dragonboat Race and Festival. This is a FREE family festival at the Leach Amphitheater and Riverside Park.  Watch 40-foot long canoe-like boats race down the Fox  River.  Family festival includes live performances every hour, arts and crafts, family activities, caricatures, concessions and more.

Sunday, awake at your leisure to a full breakfast. Not ready to go home? Hop on a bus just blocks away and let Ratch and Debs Pizza shuttle you to Green Bay to watch the Packers. It is away game against Cincinnati but you can hang out at the Curling Club and watch the game while they feed you in the comforts of big screen televisions and cozy chairs. All for $30.00 per person. Call for more details and reserve your room and space on the bus.

 

Cinnamon Peach Bread

What do you do when you have an abundance of peaches? You come up with goodies for your friends, family and in my case, guests. So out of all the peach jam, custards, cobblers and kringles, I really like this cinnamon peach bread the best.

cinnamon peach breadCinnamon Peach Bread – 2 loaves

3 C flour, 1 1/2 C sugar, 1/2 C brown sugar, 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, 1 tsp. baking soda, 1/2 tsp. nutmeg, 1 tsp. salt, 2 peaches, peeled and chopped, 4 eggs and 1 C vegetable oil.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two loaf pans and  line with parchment paper since they will be very moist.

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda an salt.

In another bowl, beat eggs and oil until blended. Add peaches and gently stir.

Add peach mixture to flour mixture and stir until well blended. Spoon batter in to pans. Bake 50-60 minutes. Cool in pans at least 10 minutes before removing to cool.

Tough Mudder

If you have not heard about the Tough Mudder event coming to Oshkosh Air Venture grounds on September 6-8, where have you been?

Tough Mudder, you ask? What is such an event? Tough Mudder events are a hardcore 10-12 mile obstacle course designed to test your all around strength, stamina and mental grit. Only 78% of entrants successfully complete each challenge. Over 700,000 people to date have participated in this event worldwide. This is a fun event, not be compared to a marathon or triathlon type events.   As hardcore as the courses are, participants meet at the finish line with a beer, a sense of accomplishment with the new pals you make and a live band. Why not celebrate? You are covered in mud and just finished an obstacle called ‘Just The Tip’. There is  mud, fire, ice-water, and 10,000 volts of electricity that you will need teammates for, to pick you up when you think you had enough.  To get over 12 foot walls and through underground mud tunnels, you will need those teammates to give you a extra bit of encouragement. Tough Mudders are team players who make sure no one gets left behind. All tough mudder participants pledge the following:

  1. I understand that Tough Mudder is not a race, but a challenge
  2. I put teamwork and camaraderie before my course time.
  3. I do not whine-kids whine.
  4. I help  my fellow mudders to complete the course.
  5. I overcome all fears.

Wow, this sounds tough and fun all at once. We are currently full September 6-8 for this event but  if you are interested in giving this a shot, you have until August 31st. to register. You can also still volunteer and cheer on others as they crawl to the finish line.

We are overjoyed that this event has come to Oshkosh and hopes that they may be here to stay!

 

Apple Pie French Toast

Apple Pie French Toast- Serves 4 healthy servingsApple pie french toast

1 16 oz loaf of Hawaiian Bread, 4 eggs, 1/2 C heavy cream, 2 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, divided, 1/4 C sugar and 3 C apples

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Spray an 8×8 pan  and set aside.

Mix eggs, cream and 1/2 tsp cinnamon.  Break bread into med. size pieces and add to the egg mixture.  Toss to coat well.

In a small bowl mix remaining cinnamon and sugar.

Peel, core and slice apples into thin slices. Add 1 1/2 C apples to bottom of dish. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Cover with 1/2 of the soaked bread pieces. Layer with half of the remaining apples and more cinnamon sugar. Repeat.

Bake 50-60 minutes. Drizzle maple syrup over the top and garnish with whipped cream.

New video to match our website.

I don’t know about you, but this summer has flown by. It even seems more so these last couple of weeks with Fall school sports practices beginning, school registrations, physicals, hair cuts, pictures, school shopping…I am giving myself a headache just rethinking about all the running around I have been doing plus still trying to run a bed and breakfast.

If I can add one more thing to the mix, we are having a new video shot tomorrow for our website. Laurie Marie Photography will be coming in and taking some pictures and video of guests checking in, enjoying wine and cheese, socializing and having breakfast. I think she may even add in me making breakfast and the joys of keeping the inn in tip top shape. We are really excited to update to our video since our website was just updated over the Spring and we want our new video to have the same type of fun vibe that our website carries over. It will be a few weeks before it is completed, but I promise you, once its done we can’t to show you.

Apple Potato Sausage Scramble with Apple Cider Syrup

I wasn’t going to post this recipe for a couple of reason. The picture doesn’t represent well. I should have pictured it in the frying pan. Also, it is really just a combination of what I had left over in the refrigerator. However, the flavor is really good and you can take out or add whatever you have laying around. The apple cider syrup recipe comes from my candy apple french toast recipe originally posted May, 2011.  Since I had some left over from a previous breakfast, I thought I would try drizzling it over my eggs. Great combination!

Sausage scrambleApple Potato Sausage Scramble with Apple Cider Syrup – Serves 5 healthy portions

Apple Cider Syrup – 1/2C sugar, 1 1/2 tsp, bisquit mix, 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, 1 C apple cider, 1 TB lemon juice and 2 TB butter.

Mix all ingredients except butter in a saucepan. Cook stirring constantly until thick. Boil 1 min. Remove from heat and stir in butter. Leftover syrup with last a few weeks in the refrigerator. Set aside until sausage scramble is done.

Sausage Scramble – 2 TB plus 2tsp. olive oil, 2 large potatoes peeled and cubed, 1 small onion, diced, 2 Lg apples, peeled and cubed (granny smith works well), 1 bag of sausage crumbles or 6 sausage links sliced, 1/2 red pepper, diced, 1/4 C shredded cheese, 5 eggs, salt and pepper to taste parsley for garnish.

Heat 1 TB oil in skillet over med. heat. Saute potatoes about 7 minutes. Add 1  more TB oil to skillet and saute onions and peppers with potatoes another 5 minutes until golden. Remove potato mixture and set aside.

Heat 1 TB oil in the same skillet over med. heat and cook sausages.  Scramble eggs and pour in the same pan as sausages. (Drain grease before hand if any).   scramble eggs with sausages until just slightly under done. Salt and pepper and add to potato mixture when done.

Add remaining 2 tsp. oil to skillet. Saute apples over med. heat about 5 minutes. stirring to prevent burning. Add your potato  mixture to apples and stir to mix together. Add shredded cheddar and stir gently. Saute everything together about 5  minutes.

Serve. Drizzle apple cider syrup over potato  mixture and sprinkle with parsley.

 

 

Roasted Red Pepper and Horseradish Hummus

I have overindulged this past week with EAA. I tend to try everything I make, just to make sure that before it goes out for others to enjoy, that it tastes like I think it should. This is not a problem usually, but this week, I had several left overs. I tended to make more than what I should in fear that there would not be enough. Therefore, I had several of my own breakfasts and desserts. Therefore, this week is the a good week to try to get back on track. Hummus is a great way to do that.  I like to throw everything in the blender so it gets nice and creamy without too many lumps. You can literally throw whatever ingredients in the blender you like from french onion dip, hot sauce, buffalo wing sauce, etc. just depending what you mood is. Listed below is one of my favorites since it really is the beginning to all great hummus recipes. Go ahead and mix in other things after these or delete them all together. Your call.

Horseradish and Red Pepper Hummus

 

Roasted Red Pepper and Horseradish Hummus- 

 2 cans garbanzo beans, drained,  ½ cup tahini, ½ cup extra virgin olive oil,  2 TB lemon juice, ½ bunch cilantro ½ cucumber, peeled and cubed, 1 red pepper, chopped, 1/2 jalapeño pepper, seeded, 1 TB granulated garlic, 1 TB horseradish and salt and pepper to taste.

Throw all ingredients in a blender. Blend well and serve with pita chips or whatever you like.

Phew… EAA…What a week!

I look forward to EAA every year. I get to see a great group of people usually only once a year and get to meet some amazing new people in the process. We get calls for lodging for Air Venture up two years in advance to the day of to before the week is through already for next year. Our process is somewhat different than most for EAA. The people that stay with us for instance this year, already get dibs for next year. I call each and everyone in January to confirm. If plans change for them at that time, I pull the next person on our waiting list. However, if someone that stayed with us cancels anytime after January, and they want to come back lets say in 2015, they would have to go on our waiting list. Therefore, they lose their spot. It gives our regulars priority, but also gives someone new a chance to come.

For instance, this year we had a new couple from Austria visit us for the week. Dr. Helmut Huber and his lovely wife Petra. They have never been to Oshkosh before and loved it! They were on the bus by 9:30 AM and were never home before 12:00, I don’t’ think.  They are already thinking about their trip next year and we can’t wait to see them again.

We also had a guest that had to depart early, so I opened up their room online and it was immediately filled by a wonderful couple from Arkansas. They have always wanted to come and had  never had the chance. At the last minute they said, “lets try getting into Oshkosh for AirVenture” which is how they found us. We are overjoyed to make new friends and enthusiasts of EAA.

Paul is a Kitfox vendor who stays with us every year. We have become wonderful friends and plan on visiting him hopefully next Spring or Fall in Idaho where he flies people  into dude ranches. He has totally convinced us that this is what we need to do, so our next years family vacation is being planned as we speak. Paul introduced us to the owners of the company of Kitfox who are equally amazing! So much in fact that they took us up in their plane. I have to admit, I was a little leery at first since I had never been up in such a small aircraft. I really had to convince our daughter Chase that she should really experience this adventure as well.  Needless to say, we both loved it! A video was also shot of us landing on a grass air strip near Neenah. Thanks Tom for doing that!

 

 

 

 

 

 

We were also blessed to be able to be on the EAA grounds this year to experience the sound of Chicago and Gary Sinise and the Lieutenant Dan Band along with the Premier of the movie Planes, witness the night air show and hot air balloons. Whew… I am exhausted, but flying high!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Following are a few of our other guests that frequent us with their planes. I love showing them off. They are beautiful!

 

Cucumber Salsa

Okay, I admit it, my garden looks like a weed bed. Some things are growing but nothing I could eat. That is until I found a cucumber the size of a football. I wasn’t sure if it would be woody tasting, but it wasn’t too bad. Then my friend Gretchen gave us some from her garden since my daughter can’t get enough of them right now. It was so much sweeter and jucier. I hope she has more. Wink wink! I decided to throw together some cucumber salsa. Yummmm! Very refreshing. I didn’t have any tortilla chips so I nibbled on some wheat thins with them. I actually like it that way better. Oh, by the way because it has Greek yogurt in the mix and not sour cream- very good for you too. Eat as much as you like.

 

Cucumber Salsa – About 2 1/2 C cucumber salsa

2 C cucumber, peeled and chopped, 3/4 C tomato, chopped, 1/4 C red onion, 2 TB parsley, chopped, 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped, 4 1/2 tsp. cilantro, chopped, 2 tsp. minced garlic, 1/4 C non fat Greek yogurt, 1 1/2 tsp. lemon juice, 1 1/2 tsp. lime juice, 1/4 tsp. cumin seed, and 1/4 tsp season salt.

In a med bowl combine the first seven ingredients. In another small bowl combine the Greek yogurt, lemon juice, lime juice, cumin seed and season salt. Pour over cucumber mixture and stir together. Don’t worry if it seems a little dry. After it sits for a bit the juice blend nicely together. Serve immediately, or let chill.

 

Keep it up, Paine Art Museum and Gardens

I am always bragging up our convention and visitor bureau for how hard they work to bring so many great events to Oshkosh. I also give kuddos to our city for keeping it clean, beautifying it with flowers and putting Oshkosh on the map when it comes to our riverwalk and expending our waterways with new business.

This week though, I would like give a big thumbs up for the Paine Art Museum and Gardens. First off, the Chihuly exhibit that they have featured is utterly amazing. The pieces are exquisite, unique and  I can’t even imagine how they were shipped and set up. Wow! If you have not seen this exhibit, get in there now before it leaves on October 13th.

I have also received two other events at the Paine that made me want to be a part of what they are offering and go so badly that I just had to share it with everyone.

The Paine is launching a new group to foster the next generation of cultural enthusiasts. The group is called “The Contemporaries” and focuses on connecting people ages 21-45 with the Paine and one another to enjoy and learn about art and gardens. The group’s first gathering is Saturday, August 10. Guests will enjoy a private viewing of the Chihuly exhibition followed by croquet and cocktails in the gardens. Tell me this does not sound like so much fun! RSVP by August 5.

Next is the Swing So Cool, and Sway So Gentle Jazz in the Gardens on September 7th. from 5-9

Set amidst the Paine’s radiant gardens, the evening is inspired by the style and sounds of Palm Beach and features fine wine, seasonal foods by Zuppas and live jazz by Lighthouse Big Band, an eighteen piece ensemble. Reservations are now being accepted. 

 

 

Bruschetta Cups

I am finally getting some tomatoes in my garden, but they are all still green. However, the the farmers market where I have been getting my share have been wonderful!

I have to do a little bragging. I think I make the best bruschetta topping. If you don’t believe me, try this recipe of mine and tell me what you think. I took this recipe and put it in some Tostidos scoops. The only problem with this though is sometimes the tortilla cups get a little soggy if you go overboard on the balsamic (which I do sometimes, since It is soooo good). You can leave the bruschetta topping though on the side for your guests to add to their cups or on toasted baguettes.

bruschetta cups2Bruschetta Topping

1 C grape tomatoes, 2 TB virgin olive oil, 2 TB shredded parm cheese, 1 TB Balsamic vinegar, 1 TB fresh basil, 3/4 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. pepper and 1 garlic clove.

Place all ingredients except garlic in a food processor. Chop coarsely. Transfer to a small bowl and add garlic. Stir. Seve  on toasted french bread or a pepper cheese bread, scoops.

You will also see tomato skewers around the outside of the platter here. I skewered halved cherry tomatoes, and fresh  mozzarella pearls and then drizzled a reduced balsamic vinegar over the top and sprinkled fresh, roasted basil.

 

AirVenture 2013

It is that time of year again when the sound of the jet engines fly high above the Oshkosh skys. You will be noticing as each day passes this week, the sky will become more brilliant with the different types of planes coming in for AirVenture which begins July 29th for one week.   Many air enthusiasts, arriving in Oshkosh, say that it is a thrill to be one of more than 10,000 aircraft flying into Oshkosh and landing at what becomes the busiest airport in the world for one week. Whether you have never been to AirVenture or have been coming for many years, there is something for everyone whether its an informational group session, or entertainment such as daily air shows, aerobatics, pyrotechnics and even an opening day concert from the well known group, Chicago and a Saturday night air show. There are activities such as workshops, demonstrations, Theater in the Woods and even KidVenture to give everyone something fun to do.  All this is included in your daily admission.

From sun up to sun down, AirVenture brings back attendees year after year and is something everyone needs to experience.

Photo courtesy of Oshkosh Convention and Visitors Bureau

Photo courtesy of Oshkosh Convention and Visitors Bureau

 

Individual Key Lime Pies

I am a big fan of key lime pie but sometimes they are too sweet or too tart. These are just right and just the right size too. Being as hot as it has been, these little treats are so refreshing and so easy to make as well.

Individual Key Lime Pies

1 1/2C graham cracker crumbs, 3 TB sugar, 1/3 C melted butter, 3 eggs whites, beaten, 2 (14oz) sweetened condensed milk, 3/4 C lime juice, 1T lime zest, and 1/3 C nonfat greek yogurt.

mini key lime pies

 

Mix graham cracker crumbs with melted butter and sugar. Press 1 TB graham cracker mixture into the bottom of a cupcake liner or mini pie pan. Bake for about 8 minutes.

In another bowl, mix together egg whites, condensed milk, lime juice, zest and greek yogurt.

Fill cupcakes or pine tins about 3/4 full with mixture. Bake for 13-15 minutes and cool completely.

Top with a whip cream topping and then garnish with a lime wedge to decorate.

Backyard Remodel at Brayton B&B

We have been busy remodeling the back yard. The rain added on a few weeks and then there was the tree roots and curb that ran about 4 foot down that had to be removed to put up the fence. Man, the things you run into when doing a remodeling project. You would think we would know better, but no, we always wish for the best. Scott is just putting the finishing touches on adding lights and I am still adding a few more greenery items, but I wanted to give you a sneak peak. Great place for a wedding or family reunion.  A few guests have enjoyed breakfast out here last week and couple glasses of lemonade and wine have been served as well. We are really enjoying it and I hope you will come and visit so you can too.

 

Rock USA 2013

 

Compliments of Oshkosh Convention and Visitors Bureau

Compliments of Oshkosh Convention and Visitors Bureau

Get ready for another great weekend of music in the Event City at the Ford Festival Grounds for Rock USA! I have to admit some of these groups I have never heard of, but others I am big fans of. Some of the headliners are Van Halen and Twisted Sister.  Some of the sideliners are just as good though like Buck Cherry, and Great White. Saturday should be a kick butt day though with Ratt, Jackyl, Dokken and Road Trip. I only hope they have better weather than Country USA when it got pretty wet most days and muddy in the beginning.

There is plenty of parking, great camp grounds and is only a short 10 minute drive from us. I don’t know if we will be able to make it this year, but I am sure I will hear all about it. Last year was fantastic!

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