Archive for December 24th, 2007

The new couch for the guest suite has arrived. The delivery guys were very concerned about getting it downstairs…I have to admit, I didn’t even think about it. It’s a regular sized door, with regular sized stairs and no major turns – UGH. They had to remove the outside door, and take the legs off the couch, and we squeezed it in, just barely! Phew! That was close. We would have been up the creek without a paddle!

We had it covered in a canvas like fabric (hate that micro fibre stuff) in a dark chocolate brown. It’s quite soft. The chaise lounge side is completely reversible, and they even gave us an extra sofa cushion in case we wanted to just use it as a sofa instead of a chaise lounge sectional! Wow! I’m quite happy with it.


Jt on a test run: it works!


Our next purchase for the ‘guest suite’ is going to be the Malm bed from Ikea. I am waiting for their bedroom sale in January (hopefully), plus we won’t have anywhere to store the old futon until the spring anyway!


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This recipe came from the PC Crispy Rice box, with alterations by your’s truly!


  • 4 cups mini marsh mellows
  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine
  • 6 cups crispy rice cereal
  • 1/4 cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 1/2 chocolate chips

Directions (I make this in my microwave)

  1. Butter a 9″ x 12″ pan and set aside.
  2. Melt butter, chocolate and mini marsh mellows until liquid.
  3. Add Peanut Butter stirring well.
  4. Add crispy rice cereal.
  5. Pour into the prepared pan and fill to edges, pushing down firmly.
  6. Allow to cool. Cut into desired portions.
  7. Eat.

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Save the failed Torrone!

Torrone is an Italian nugget made from stiffly beaten egg whites and honey, cooked to a hardish candy temperature. Most of the recipes on-line are good, but they don’t tell you the correct temperature to reach on a candy thermometer (or we are all idiots and can’t cook, which is a possibility). Lots of failures, including my last batch. What happens is the nugget never sets and it remains a gooey mess. But because I am cheap, and the ingredients were costly (almonds, candied fruit, sugar and honey) I put my failed torrone into the freezer to ponder what I might make of it. It slowly dawned on me…Ice Cream! Imagine, Torrone ice cream! Wow, the decadence of it all!
Photo from Foodtv.ca


Torrone Recipe (Christine Cushing, Foodtv.ca) Yield: 36
It took me a few tries before I was satisfied with this recipe but the end result made it all worthwhile. Try it with a mixture of nuts (try hazelnuts along with the almonds) and/or candied peel (orange, lemon or lime). Yield is 36 pieces.


  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 3 large egg white
  • 1 cup honey
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 2 cups whole almond (I also use candied citrus peel for added flavour, but you may use any of your favorite candied fruit!)


  1. Line a 13-by 9-inch pan with parchment paper.
  2. Sprinkle a cutting board with cornstarch.
  3. In a medium saucepan, combine honey and granulated sugar and put over medium heat.
  4. When a candy thermometer registers 315 degrees F (this seems to be too low, go to a hard stage), remove pan from heat.
  5. Put egg whites in a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
  6. Start mixer on medium.
  7. When egg whites are stiff add icing sugar, scraping down the sides.
  8. When the honey mixture temperature has gone down to 300 degrees F., pour honey into egg whites while mixer is running.
  9. Increase speed to high until mixture thickens, about 2 minutes.
  10. Fold in nuts with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon.
  11. Scrape mixture onto cutting board with cornstarch.
  12. Knead for about 4 minutes.
  13. Press mixture evenly into pan.
  14. Cover with another piece of parchment and let cool.
  15. Cut into 36 squares with a hot knife.
  16. Serve.

Make your own vanilla ice cream (which I did) or buy some ready made. Cut the torrone into small bit sized pieces and fold into ice cream. Freeze for a couple of hours. Serve cold.

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Since the passing of my Mom, we’ve been doing Christmas Eve Dinner at my brother’s place since it’s easier with the kids. I am looking after the hors d’oeuvres (like we really need this much food), the Hungarian Cherry Soup and the dessert, traditional Yule Log (entirely home made of course!) with meringue mushrooms!.



The two boys on the right and the guy are neighbours of my brother’s. Jack is the kid standing up and Annie is kneeling!

I won’t bore you with all the Christmas photos, so if you want, check them out at Shutterfly! Yes, I am still resisting Facebook!

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