Sunday, December 4, 2011

Keepsake ornaments & Down South Barbecue in the Crock Pot

First real attempt at this crafty-cooky-bloggy thing. Here goes nothing.

Christmas confession: I'm kind of obsessed with these things-

It's probably because they're so much like me- classy, yet versatile (again, jokes.. more like transparent, easily broken, and uncooperative). But whatever the reason, as I was working on a Christmas present involving one of these suckers the creative juices started flowing, and this little memory-and-space-saver was born.

The 3.5 followers of my other blog might recall that I was buh-lessed with the opportunity to be a bridesmaid in one of my best friend's wedding in October in my soon-to-be home state of Georgia (you can read about it here). The whole thing was so full of thought and details that made every aspect of it special and personal, right down to each individual bouquet carried by the bridesmaids. The bride-to-be took the time to choose a special little charm-thing (not sure what to call it.. anyone?) that represented her relationship with each girl and presented it to us the night before the wedding. We tied it to our bouquets so that there would be no confusion as to whose was whose in the craziness of the wedding day. What a good idea! They definitely did their jobs well, because when the room we were getting ready in ended up looking like the aftermath of a hurricane, things got a little hard to sort out.

The bouquet was made out of silk flowers (another great idea to any brides-to-be out there), which means each of us took ours home to remember that awesome weekend.. but instead mine has been getting squashed and misshapen in an over-stuffed packing box ever since. I've wanted to display it somehow because it holds so many great memories.. but what? It doesn't it fit with any of my room's decor, and even if it did, it's not a tiny thing and my room is anything but spacious. How could I make this glorious thing fit in my land-locked locale?

The answer? It was a no-brainer.

I know there are about fifty-eleven tutorials for crafts like these floating around in cyberspace written by much more well-versed instructors, so mine's going to be short and sweet.

Keepsake Ornament

Line the bottom of the ornament with a leaf from the bouquet, using a stretched-out paper clip or something similar to get it into the desired position. I was using my pinkie at first, but the ornament's opening has some stinkin' SHARP edges, resulting in a nasty cut. I think there might even be some blood in the ornament, but I don't recommend getting that personal with yours. Just sayin.

Then fill it with a variety of whatever else was included in the bouquet.

I replaced the ornament topper and tied the actual tulle that was wrapped around the bouquet's stems to it, finishing it off with the special little charm-thingy hot glued to the center. BOOM. Roasted.

How easy was that? Is your mind not running rampant with what else you could stuff into one of these? I wonder if actual rose petals could be dried right there inside the ornament. Valentine's Day/Anniversary keepsake, anyone? Hmm....

Oh the possibilities!

Now on to some good old-fashioned crock pottery. A few nights ago I was perusing my mom's kitchen looking for things to steal borrow for my new apartment when I came accross this oldie-but-goodie:

And opened it right up to this:

I'm a sucker for anything a) circa 1960s and b) southern, so this little guy instantly stole my heart (sorry SBoM.. you may have some competition ;)), and since I just so happened to have bought a pork roast that was on sale at Walton's Market (Wal-Mart.. you've gotta classy-ify that place somehow) the other day I thought'd I'd give it a shot.

Down South Barbecue

The instructions and pictures below show how I did it. The recipe at the bottom is what came out of the booklet

It was as easy as...

1. Gathering the ingredients:
Ingredients for cooking the meat-
Onion powder

Ingredients for the sauce-
Minced onions
Bottle of BBQ sauce

2: Setting up the crock pot:

- I sliced up 1 onion and placed it in the bottom of the Crock Pot,

- Poured 2 cups of water over the onions,

- Took the mesh wrap off of the roast (what is that for anyway?), added the 3.5lb. roast to the pot, poked 6 cloves into the top of the meat, and shook on a generous amount of onion powder*

- Cooked it for 6 hours,

- Removed the meat from the pot, cut off the visible fat, shredded the meat, and returned it to the pot,

-Poured the 16oz. bottle of BBQ sauce in the pot and topped it with a tablespoon of minced onion,

-Cooked for another hour and a half, stirring every 30 minutes,

3. Dinner is served!

Easy, healthy, and delish.. my kind of meal :)

Recipe for Down South Barbecue from the 1967 Good Housekeeping's Rival Crock-Pot Cookbook:

2 Onions (I used 1 onion and about 1 T. onion powder), sliced
4-5 lb. pork roast, or fresh picnic ham (I used a 3.5lb. shoulder roast)
5-6 cloves
2 cups water

Put half the onions in the bottom of the CROCK-POT, then add meat and other ingredients with remaining onion on top. Cover and cook overnight or 8-12 hours on low (I cooked mine for 6 on medium)

16oz. bottle of barbecue sauce
1 lg. onion (I used the equivalent amount of minced onion)

Remove bone and fat from meat. Put meat back in CROCK-POT. Add chopped onion and barbecue sauce. Cover and cook an additional 1-3 hours on high or 4-8 hours on low (I cooked mine for 1.5 hours on high), stirring 2-3 times. Serve from CROCK-POT or on large buns.

It was really  great paired with Paula Deen's apple baked bean casserole: 

The finished product. So good!

And these onion roasted red potatoes:


The finished product. I can't ever seem to get my potatoes to
roast evenly. Some were completely burnt and some were
still raw. So frustrating! Any suggestions?

Crock Pot, you never let me down. You're a keeper for sure.

Speaking of not being let down, here's the song has been singing to my heart for the last few days- Down by Mat Kearney. The chorus gives me chills. I ask it a lot..  
"Can you hear when we call, be there where we fall, standing our backs against the wall? Top of our lungs, 'hallelujah!', where pain and love bleed into one. Baby when all you see is darkness, we all need forgiveness"
But man... I am so grateful that His answer's always the same

"Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified.. for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you." (Deuteronomy 31:6)
Praise Him.

1 comment:

  1. Kelly, I loved this post. It pleases on many levels. I'm new to your blog, but I will be back. You've created a great sport for your readers to visit and I really enjoyed the time I spent her. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary