Monday, November 18, 2013

Canning Jar Winter Votive Holders + Shrimp Alfredo Recipe

At my HP "Warm Up Your Walls" party we had several crafts. One of them was to decorate mason jars with a nice design to make them festive votive holders. I was inspired by this jar that I saw on Pinterest:
That looked simple enough. Star with a colored mason jar, some new puff paint and evenly spaced marking on the jar. I have done lots of things like this before, so I thought it would be easy. I was very wrong. My attempt was bad enough that I ended up pulling all of the puff paint off of the jar. There were several problems; the biggest and most obvious one was my inability to render the designs in a way that made them match. I could also not make lines small enough to make my design look delicate and lace-like that I admired on the sample. In the end I decided to go with a design that did not have to be matched up or meet up anywhere on the glass. I also found that I could add glitter right after drawing on the design as the puff paint was still wet enough to allow the glitter to adhere to it. Finally, I found that it took MUCH LONGER to dry that I had expected. In the end we did decorate some jars with fun designs. I simply had my friend leave them at our house so that they could dry successfully. The actual jars are a lot more fun in real life than they look in the photograph above.

We enjoyed a nice dinner this evening:

Better Than Olive Garden Fettuccine Alfredo
via: Cooking Classy Blog
Yield: 4 Servings
(recipe slightly modified)


1 1/2 cups heavy cream (I used 3 cups of half and half instead of the heavy cream and the milk)
1 1/2 cups whole milk
3 large egg yolks
2 tsp cornstarch
1/4 tsp garlic powder (you can add an additional 1/4 tsp for more garlic flavor)
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
2 oz freshly, finely grated Parmesan Cheese (1/2 cup)
2 oz freshly, finely grated Romano Cheese (1/2 cup), plus more for serving
2 oz freshly, finely grated Mozzarella Cheese (1/2 cup)
Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish (optional)
1 lb Fettuccine Pasta, uncooked

Cook pasta according to directions listed on package, scoop out and reserve 1/4 cup pasta water into a small bowl before draining.
In a large saucepan combine cream and milk. Scoop out and reserve 1/4 cup cream mixture into a small mixing bowl. Scoop out and reserve another 1/4 cup cream mixture into a separate small mixing bowl. Bring cream mixture in saucepan to a simmer over medium heat (a gentle bubble just below boiling). Reduce heat to medium low. Add 3 egg yolks to one of the small mixing bowls containing 1/4 cup cream mixture and stir egg yolks until very well blended, about 30 seconds. Add 2 tsp cornstarch to separate small mixing bowl containing remaining 1/4 cup cream mixture, whisk mixture until well blended and smooth. Add 1/4 cup hot cream mixture from saucepan to egg yolk mixture and blend, then add 1/4 cup hot cream mixture to cornstarch mixture and blend. Pour both mixtures into hot cream mixture in saucepan. Cook mixture over medium low heat for 3 - 4 minutes, stirring constantly until mixture has thickened and coats the back of a wooden spoon. Reduce heat to low and sprinkle in garlic powder, onion powder, salt and finely grated cheeses. Cook, stirring constantly until cheese has melted. Thin sauce, if desired with pasta water that was reserved (I only add 2 Tbsp pasta water, just add to your desired consistency).
Pour Alfredo sauce over drained pasta, toss to evenly coat. Plate and garnish with additional grated Romano Cheese, optional chopped fresh parsley and sprinkle with fresh cracked black pepper. Serve immediately.

Garlicy Shrimp

1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tbsp lemon pepper seasoning
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tea. Basil (I used dried)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter

Melt butter in large skillet over medium-high heat adding in the garlic and basil. Toss shrimp with lemon pepper seasoning and olive oil. Add to the skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 3 minutes. Or, until the shrimp turn pink and begin to curl. Add the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds. Place shrimp on top of pasta, and top with chopped parsley.

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