Tag Archives: Charles P. Rogers

Breakfast in Bed – Holiday Cookbook Giveaway

BIB Holiday Cookbook 4

by Alison Hein.

Today I have some important instructions for you – click on this link to the Charles P. Rogers FB page and “like” today’s post for a chance to win a Breakfast in Bed Holiday Cookbook! Go do it right now, then come back and read the story: 🙂

Several weeks ago, I received a call from Linda Klein, the President of Charles P. Rogers. Linda wanted to create a special holiday gift and had the idea to compose a cookbook from my Breakfast in Bed posts. She wanted to know what I thought.

“Are you kidding?”, I responded.  “I’m honored and delighted!”

So we gathered a small team and began work on the production process. Jeannine had the great idea to create a menu format, Olga worked with the photos and constructed the layout, and Jess went through it all with a fine-toothed comb. I just did whatever they told me to.

The finished product is a lustrous 8-inch square hardcover book, with vibrant, colorful photographs and menu options for holiday breakfast, brunch, or sweets and treats – the perfect holiday gift!

During our work on this project, we had lots of lively discussions regarding which recipes belonged in the book. Many made an appearance, then were dropped to make way for something the team liked better. But there was one that always remained everyone’s favorite – Million Dollar Pound Cake. And so we reprint that recipe here, and wish you much luck in the Charles P. Rogers Breakfast in Bed for the Holidays cookbook!

NOTE: Two cookbooks will be given away. You will have until midnight on Sunday, December 20, 2015 to respond. Winners will be announced on the Charles P. Rogers FB page shortly thereafter.

BIB Holiday Cookbook 2

Million Dollar Pound Cake

Mix together an obscene amount of butter, sugar, and flour; add a hefty slug of hazelnut extract. Bake for a little more than an hour and you’ll have a breakfast in bed that looks and tastes like a million dollars!

Ingredients

½ pound (2 sticks) butter, softened
3 cups sugar
5 eggs
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
3 cups flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 teaspoons hazelnut extract
Powdered sugar, to sprinkle on top of cake

Million Dollar Pound Cake 2

Preparation

Preheat oven to 325°. Generously grease a large tube pan and set aside.

Million Dollar Pound Cake 3

Add butter and sugar to a large bowl, and cream together until fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition, until batter is light and smooth. Pour milk into small bowl and stir in vinegar. Mix flour and baking soda together. Alternately add milk mixture and flour mixture into batter, stirring thoroughly after each addition. Stir in vanilla and hazelnut extract.

Million Dollar Pound Cake 4

Spoon batter into tube pan, smoothing surface with spatula. Bake for 60 to 70 minutes, until cake is golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool on rack for 30 minutes. Remove cake from pan and invert onto serving plate. Sprinkle top with powdered sugar.

Makes 1 large cake, about 20 slices.

Million Dollar Pound Cake 10

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Bedroom Design: 2016 Colors – Pantone’s ‘Rose Quartz’ and ‘Serenity’

Post by Tracy Kaler.

Pink and blue aren’t exactly cutting edge, but Pantone is the go-to source when forecasting color trends for the upcoming year. According to the color management gurus, blending “Rose Quartz” and “Serenity” is bound to create loads of chatter over the next 12 months.

Since we’ll be seeing a lot of baby pink and blue throughout 2016, let’s get a head start and preview some delicious rooms using these two proper and poised pastel colors. Spoiler alert: Yumminess lies ahead.

Besides the blue in the throw pillow, this gorgeous bedroom by Jennifer Ott keeps things pink. Barely rosy, the walls and floor add a sophisticated quality to this room without being too feminine. Plus, the upholstered chair, lampshades, and accent pillows contribute the perfect amount of pattern.

Calming and tranquil in every way, this space uses baby blue with white and introduces a touch of pale pink in the bedside lamps. Somehow, it’s the perfect amount.

Soft blue paisley wall covering acts as a lovely backdrop for this London bedroom. Notice the vase of soft pink roses on the nightstand, as well as a dash of pink in the artwork.

This chic family home in the Netherlands uses pale pink in a whimsical little girl’s room. The designer brought other rosy tones and white into the space, keeping the overall feel light and airy. Built-in storage keeps clutter at bay. This bright, cheery space could transition into an adult guest room with a few easy tweaks.

How do you feel about Pantone’s “Rose Quartz” and “Serenity”?

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Breakfast in Bed – Jeff’s Tico Breakfast

Tico Breakfast 10

Post by Alison Hein.

Do you remember my good friend Jeff, who, a couple of years back, cooked up a Proper English Fry-Up for us? Well he’s back, and he’s at it again. Only this time, we’ll be visiting Central America for a tantalizing Costa Rican breakfast!

People from Costa Rica (lovingly referred to as Ticos and Ticas) know how to create an impressive breakfast plate. Jeff recreated that Latin splendor, but, as always, added his signature sassy, creative twist. A thin corn tortilla piled high with a spicy red bean/chorizo paste anchored the dish. Two crispy fried eggs and a sprinkling of queso fresco were placed on top. On the side, Jeff added a heaping mound of the traditional Costa Rican red bean and rice mixture, affectionately called Gallo Pinto, or red rooster.

Tico Breakfast 2

Hang on – we’re not done yet. Jeff also peeled and butter-fried some ripe plantains, and served them warm with a dusting of cinnamon for a sweet breakfast take on Maduros. Then, to pretty up the plate, he halved a few avocadoes and filled them to the brim with spicy Pico de Gallo (rooster’s beak), made with fresh chopped tomatoes, onions, and a few more of Jeff’s secret ingredients. On the side, a small dish filled with rich, smoked paprika-dusted Crema was a lovely and flavorful condiment that added a creamy, refreshing finish to the dish.

Jeff is fast in the kitchen, as he races from fridge to stove to table, juggling ingredients and pans in a blur. So while I wasn’t able to decipher all his secrets, I did manage to document how he simmers his red beans, and how he makes his red bean/chorizo-topped tortilla, so you can recreate your own tantalizing Tico Breakfast in bed! Make sure you serve some fresh-squeezed juice and strong, black Costa Rican coffee alongside.

¡Buen provecho!

Tico Breakfast 5

Simmered Red Beans

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 small green pepper, diced
4 cups cooked red beans (cook dried beans according to package instructions)
2 plum tomatoes, finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh chopped cilantro
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper, to taste

Preparation

Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large, heavy pot. Add onion and green pepper and sauté until softened, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add cooked red beans, plum tomatoes, cilantro, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Reduce heat and simmer until flavors have melded, about 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Makes about 5 cups of simmered red beans.

NOTE: to make Gallo Pinto, mix simmered red beans with cooked white rice, about ⅔ rice to ⅓ beans.

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Red Bean/Chorizo Tico Breakfast Tortillas

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 spicy fresh chorizo sausages, casings removed
1 medium onion, chopped
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
½ teaspoon dried cilantro
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 cups Simmered Red Beans (recipe above)
8 eggs
4 soft corn tortillas, warmed in oven
¼ cup queso fresco
1 cup crema (or substitute ½ cup sour cream mixed with ½ cup cream cheese)

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Preparation

Heat one tablespoon olive oil over medium heat in a large, heavy pot. Crumble chorizo sausage and add to pan. Add chopped onion, garlic powder, cumin, smoked paprika, cilantro, salt and pepper.  Continue to cook until chorizo is browned and onion is cooked through, about 7 to 10 minutes. Add Simmered Red Beans to pan and mash mixture with a potato masher into a rough mash. Continue to cook until mixture has thickened and flavors have melded, about 15 to 20 minutes. Keep warm until ready to assemble tortillas.

In the meantime, heat remaining olive oil in large, heavy pan. Crack eggs one at a time into pan, leaving space for eggs to spread. Cook each egg until white is solid, but yolk is still soft, about 2 to 3 minutes.

To assemble, place one warmed tortilla on each of four plates. Spoon red bean/chorizo mixture to cover each tortilla, then top with two fried eggs. Sprinkle with queso fresco and serve immediately with a dish of crema on the side.

Makes 4 servings.

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Bedtime Stories: Newt’s Emerald

newtPost by Mark T. Locker.

Newt’s Emerald by Garth Nix

Over the years, I have judiciously reported on pretty much every book Garth Nix has written. He is a fairly diverse writer, covering the realms of both fantasy and sci-fi, plus some stuff that falls in between. His most recent novel forges into new territory for Nix: the Regency romance. For those unfamiliar with this genre, think young ladies in silken gowns looking forward to being presented so they can finally partake of the waltz, which is too risqué for a young lady. Think lords and manors and balls. Now give all this a Garth Nix twist; pepper the ladies and gowns and carriages with magical intrigue and you’ve got Newt’s Emerald.

Lady Truthful Newington is about to turn eighteen and celebrate her grand coming out in London. In preparation for the event, her father brings out the valuable magical Newington Emerald which will be given to Truthful when she turns 24. Suddenly, thunder cracks, everything turns black, and the emerald is gone! Lady Truthful has to go to London empty-handed. However, her great aunt, who is a skilled if eccentric magician in her own right, concocts a plan to find the emerald. As a young lady, Truthful cannot go out on her own to seek it out. But some training, some trousers and an ensorcelled mustache can give her the glamour of a rather convincing young Frenchman, and suddenly Truthful is the Chevalier de Vienne who is helping look for his cousin’s stolen emerald.

Full of quick changes, cheeky humor from the great aunt, and a love interest who may or may not be what he seems, Newt’s Emerald is a fun and utterly harmless story. It’s so unlike anything else Nix has written that it takes a minute to adjust but he tells a fantastic tale whatever the setting. And to be honest, I’m a sucker for magical Victorian young adult lit.

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Bedroom Design: How to Winterize Your Bedroom

Post by Tracy Kaler.

The long, warm days of summer have vanished, and winter’s temperatures have begun to take hold. Now that December has arrived, there’s no better time to cozy up at home and prep for the months ahead. Here are five easy tips to ready your bedroom for winter and create a respite from the cold.

Switch to flannel sheets
Crawling into a warm bed can make all the difference in relaxing and drifting off to sleep sooner. If your bedroom is chilly and you don’t overheat when you sleep, flannel sheets could be just what you need. Not a fan of plaid flannels? No worries, now you can find myriad patterns in flannel.

Add a wool throw
A toasty wool throw at the foot of the bed can bring your bed into the winter season, keeping your feet toasty too.

Warm up with accent lighting
Shorter days mean less light than other times of the year. Try adding an extra table lamp or two to brighten an otherwise dark room, making the days feel longer. No additional surface space? Try a floor lamp instead.

Try a wintry scent
Bayberry, cinnamon, and pumpkin are all terrific scents for the winter months. A candle or room spray can introduce the right amount of fragrance to your bedroom.

Reverse the ceiling fan
A quick, simple adjustment can make all the difference in your room’s temperature. In summer, your fan should rotate counter-clockwise to create cool air. In the wintertime, reverse the blades to move clockwise to draw cold air out, and warm a chilly room.

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