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Chicken Cacciatore

“We know, for instance, that there is a direct, inverse relationship between the frequency of family meals and social problems. Bluntly stated, members of families who eat together regularly are statistically less likely to stick up liquor stores. blow up meth labs, give birth to crack babies, commit suicide, or make donkey porn. If little Timmy had just had more meatloaf, he might not have grown up to fill chest freezers with Cub Scout parts.” Anthony Bourdain

As I have state before, the crock pot has become my stay at home assistant. Oh, how I love to make the food in the morning, and come home to a cooked dinner.

If you don’t already have a crock pot that browns your food, it’s better to start browning the chicken.All-Clad 7 Qt Gourmet Slow Cooker with All-in-One Browning What else are you going to need?

4 chicken breast     1 can of crushed tomatoes     2 cloves of garlic  1/2 red onion

1 cup of wine        bell pepper,  salt, pepper, oregano, and Italian parsley and fresh Rosemary

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After you brown the chicken, you are going to take them out of the crock pot for a few minutes, while you add the other ingredients.

Add your two cloves of garlic, and 1/2 red onion into the crock pot. You want your onions and garlic to be translucent. After this happens to your garlic and onions, add your chicken back into the crock pot. Add one can of crushed tomatoes, one cup of wine, your diced bell pepper, and your spices. Some people like more spices and some like less, but at least add 1/2 teaspoon of each.

Here’s the best part…IMG_9719

Let it cook low for 4 hours. It will automatically go to warm. Then when you get home you will have a delicious meal waiting for you. Add some real parmigiana cheese to the top if you like, and a rosemary on the side for beauty.  You are going to love it!

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Alphabet Fun

“New friends may be poems, but old friends are alphabets. Don’t forget the alphabets because you will need them to read the poems.” William Shakespeare

When my children were young every week we worked on a different letter of the week. The letter would be the focus for all our subjects. Cooking, Crafts, Botany, Zoology, Arts, Language and Fun were all center around one letter for each week. I started making plans for 3 years, so this would give us flexibility and would allow each week to be different.

Here is the alphabet cookie cutters we used…   These are stainless steel, and can be used for cooking and crafts. A great pleasure is they come in a canister, and then you can put them away! I love that!

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Come and Go

“Every oak started out as a couple of nuts who stood their ground” Henry David Thoreau

It’s always sad for us when we loose a tree. One of our oak trees that stood beside the house had to be cut down, and sawed to pieces. The ground squirrels made too many homes under the tree, and she became weak. She became so weak that one of her limbs just came crashing down on the sidewalk. Thank God, no one was around the house at the time. I came home to find the limb was just dead inside. We had someone come out to take a look at her, and tell us if she had a chance of survival.

The damage had already been done the tree was dead all the way though to the trunk. The best thing we could do is cut her down, and saw her to pieces. We did just that, and now the logs are still sitting on the farm.

I want to rent a chipper, put everything we can in there, and utilize the chips in the chicken houses. The chickens can use it as fluff material, then our old tree will become compost, eventually ending up fertilizing something on the farm…making her life come full circle, giving life to others organisms on the farm. IMG_9625

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Morelli Family Sunday

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This is one of our favorite meals. The potatoes are really easy, peel your potatoes, set your oven to 400, add olive oil to the cookie sheet, some onions and red peppers and cook until tender. Cook your potatoes first!

The pork rolls are made from pork should cut in long thin strips, add your favorite seasoning. We prefer Tuscan or Italian seasoning, but plenty of cumin. Add bacon on the out side and inside of each strip, then roll tightly. Toothpick the roll together and bake them in the oven for about 30 mins at 400 degrees. You don’t want to make the roll too thick or the meat will not get done on the inside. Add red onions and sweet peppers to cookie sheet and you have a nice meal.

If I was going to have a wine with this one, I would choose our Merlot. Our Merlot is fruit forward and compliments the peppers and pork very nicely.

 

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Brand Recognition

“Wine is constant proof that God loves us and loves to see us happy.” Benjamin Franklin

We are out and about these days. Just a few weeks ago Sunni and I were in San Francisco. We are out there to make sure people know San Marcos Creek Vineyard and Winery. We recently scored a gold medal, 95 points and Best in Class for our Cabernet Sauvignon at the Los Angles International Wine Competition. Not too shabby!

This week is no different, we have four events to attend this week. My highlight is going to be the Mac and Cheese Festival. Several chefs all over the area are making their own special Mac and Cheese dish, then submitting it to the judges.

 

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Templeton Farmers Market

“The farmer is the only man in our economy who buys everything at retail, sells everything at wholesale, and pays the freight both ways.” John F. Kennedy

Recently, I was at the Templeton Farmers Market. I loved seeing all the farmers there selling what they grow on their farm. I haven’t got to the point that I can sell my wares at a Farmers Market, but I did have our wine there to taste for that day.

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Before I actually set up, I was walking around the outside of the perimeter of the park. When I look at the prices of items that are for sale, I just can’t believe that the prices were pretty on par with super market prices.

 

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Behold, my friends,

Behold, my friends, the spring as come; the earth has gladly received the embraces of the sun, and soon we shall see the results of their love. Sitting Bull

The beginning of spring was a great time to celebrate. We had our “Primavera” dinner. We had a nice turn out with people that were members, some were staying at the inn, and a few were all the way from Iowa. Our dinner was a catered event Slo’s Finest Catering took care of the wonderful spread. The appetizers were so scrumptious. The crap cakes were a favorite of mine. Each course was paired with our delectable wines, and made the meal so much more elegant.

If that wasn’t enough, Julie Beaver serenaded us with her violin skills. The music was soft enough to hear others talking, and just enough throughout the evening. Everyone was pleased with the food, conversation, and music. We even had a debut of the wines from Sam Balderas. We tasted the chardonnay and the pinot. The accolades from the party were overwhelmingly fantastic. Everyone is looking forward to buying cases of our new releases.

Here are some pre-party photos…