Tuesday, March 25, 2014

How-To Tuesday Stuffed Shells Recipe

In an effort to eat more like an adult and learn to make food I wouldn't be embarrassed to serve my friends I have been playing around in the kitchen. Generally I like to eat foods that are low in fat and carbs and high in protein, but am a really picky eater so it makes it hard to strike a balance. This dish definitely fits the bill packed with ground turkey and beans with just enough pasta to satisfy. It's pretty easy to make so that's a bonus too :)

First brown your meat. I like to use ground turkey or turkey Italian sausage. But ground beef or pork works well too. If you are not using sausage, add some seasoning for flavor-I used and Italian seasoning with basil, rosemary, garlic and thyme.

Next boil the pasta shells till they are "al dente", usually 8 min or so. Once they are cooked, transfer them to a bowl of ice cold water. It will keep them firm and make them easier to fill. Put them in the fridge while you do the next step.

With the pasta shells cooling in the fridge, finish preparing the filling. Combine the meat, veggies, ricotta, and pasta sauce in a large skillet and mix it while it is simmering. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

 Remove the pasta shells from the fridge and start filling. Place the filled shells in a baking dish. Pour leftover pasta sauce over the shells and top with some shredded mozzarella and parm. Bake for 30 mins.

You will need:
1 box (12ozs) Jumbo Shells
1lb Italian sausage (casings removed) or ground meat of choice
1tbsp minced garlic
16oz Ricotta cheese (I like to use the reduced fat kind)
10oz package frozen spinach-thawed and squeezed dry
1c grated cheese (I used a 50/50 split of mozz and parm)
1 jar of pasta or marinara sauce-use half for the filling and half to pour over them to bake
Seasonings-either use a pre-made Italian seasoning, or use fresh chopped basil, rosemary and thyme

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Spring It On!

Finally! After a never ending, relentless winter, Spring is here! I am SO ready for it! To get you in a Springy state of mind, here are some great picks from our fellow Etsy Dallas members!

Print from DawnMPhotography

Fabric Banners from In Your Bones

Print by YLK Photography

Crochet Flower Pattern by The Crooked Hook

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

DIY Dog Cookies

It should come to no surprise to anyone that both my sister and I are big time dog lovers. Like in a my dog is my furry child and no one messes with my baby sort of way. :)

Last year there was a huge ordeal of dog treats made in China that were making dogs sick. So after immediately tossing lots of treats, we started looking for good ole made in the USA treats. But they are a little harder to find than one would think. Green Pet in Bishop has several options, but the way my 100lb dog snaps them up I was going to go broke! So my sister decided (after much Pinterest searching) that we could make our own.

We have landed on two recipes that have our dogs drooling (pun intended). And even though it may not be too hard to impress a dog with food, I do have to say that both our pups really do prefer the homemade versions over the store bought. Like crack. Doggy crack-no joke.

So here is the recipe for Opie's favorite cookies:

They are super easy, with only 5 ingredients!

I didn't have any dog bone cookie cutters, but I did happen to have a squirrel one (not as random as you may think!), which I thought was still pretty fitting for a dog biscuit. He gobbles them up so quickly, I have since resorted to just cutting the dough up into 2x1 inch rectangles to speed up the process.

Cookie please! Look at that smile!

Here is what you will need to make them:
2 Eggs
1/2 c Canned Pumpkin
1/2 tsp Salt
2 tbs Powdered Milk
2 1/2 c flour (I used whole wheat flour)
water as needed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Add water as needed to make the dough workable, but make sure it is still pretty dry and stiff. I found that kneading it with your hands works best. Roll out the dough to approx 1/2" thick and use a cookie cutter to cut shapes (or just slice it up into rectangles if you don't care if they are cute). Bake for 20 min flip them over and bake for another 20 min.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Happy Pi Day!

Here are Pig and Peacock we admit that we are geeks. And that's why we are excited that it's π Day! Woo Hoo!

And what pray tell does one do to celebrate π day? Well we are having a π Day sale! Enter code PiDay at checkout for 10% off your entire purchase! Perhaps you could start  your π Day shopping with some π Soap!

Etsy is full of cool handmade π items, check out our treasury below to see more great items!

Know what the best way to celebrate π day is? Eat actual Pie-apple, key lime, lemon meringue (my personal fave), any pie will do!

Another great thing you could do on π Day is actually learn about Pi. Ya know, because learning is awesome.
Here are some fast facts:

  • π is the most recognized mathematical constant in the world. Scholars often consider π the most important and intriguing number in all of mathematics.
  • We can never truly measure the circumference or the area of a circle because we can never truly know the value of pi. π is an irrational number, meaning its digits go on forever in a seemingly random sequence.
  • If the circumference of the earth were calculated using π rounded to only the ninth decimal place, an error of no more than one quarter of an inch in 25,000 miles would result.
  • Computing π is a stress test for a computer—a kind of “digital cardiogram.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Top O the Mornin' to Ya!

It's almost St. Patrick's Day and we thought we would share a quick and easy craft that you could give as a gift or make for a St Pats Day party for people to snack on. This one is pretty simple and could be easy and fun to do with kids too.

Gold at the End of the Rainbow Jar

What you'll need:
Rainbow Skittles (includes red, yellow, green, purple, orange)
Easter Skittles (if you are an over achiever and want to add more colors)
Gold Coin Chocolates
Mason Jar
Green Decorations (option, think green ribbon, fabric, or a hat like below)

Step 1-Sort the skittles...It took me about 5 min while watching TV.

Step 2. Start layering. Starting with the gold coins, then purple, then the blues if you got them, then green, yellow, orange, and red.

Step 3. Decorate. I added a little hat to mine to keep it simple, but you could add ribbon, fabric, stickers, beads or whatever else you can find in your craft drawer.

P.S. I'm kind of a perfectionist and it really bugs me that I didn't have blue-but it was too cold and I was too lazy to walk to the store (two blocks away) to get the Easter Skittles. I may have to go get them and re layer them! :)

Saturday, March 8, 2014

National Craft Month

March is National Craft Month and the Craft and Hobby Association and Cre8time want you to devote more time to creative expression doing the things you love! For the month of March, use the #Cre8time hastag on your Facebook and Instagram posts, as well as your tweets and pins. AND you can enter to win $500 when you submit a photo of how you are celebrating National Craft Month to Cre8time's Facebook page.

Whether you decide to learn a new craft, or dust off your scrapbooking paper, what will you Cre8time for?

Need some inspiration? Here are some of my favorite sites:

Pinterest (Duh!)-The most obvious and possibly most popular source of DIY inspiration with tutorials. If your interested in what inspired us here at Pig and Peacock, you can follow us @pigandpeacock

Craftgawker-Before there was Pinterest, I could spend hours on this site (as well as it's sister site FoodGawker). Most of what you will find here is super beautiful, it's awesome for inspiration, but iffy on the tutorials.

Etsy-Need some fresh ideas in your medium of choice-look no further than what others are producing on Etsy. You won't find tutorials here, but with hundreds of thousands of sellers, you are bound to get some fresh ideas and inspiration.

Craftsy-Want some more in depth learning? Head over to Craftsy and you can enroll in online classes that will give you more than just a 4 picture how to.

Martha Stewart-Lets face it, because she is the queen of DIY and crafts.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Calling All Crafters!

Let's get ready to SHOP + PARTY + ART + CRAFT:

    * The best shopping experience featuring handmade art & craft from Dallas and beyond
    * Free DIY crafts to make and take
    * Bars and restaurants on-site
    * Party tunes
    * Photo Booth benefiting a local charity
    * Free admission, wheelchair/stroller accessible, plenty of free and secure parking
    * Free collectible Bash Bags™ for the first 50 adult shoppers in line at 11 am, chock full of handmade goods from artists and sponsors:

A crowd favorite, the Etsy Dallas Spring Bash will offer up the popular and highly coveted Bash Bags™ for the first 50 adult shoppers in line when we open to the public at 11 a.m. These reusable tote bags – chock full of handmade products – have become a thing of legend, and shoppers have been known to arrive three hours early to stand in line for one!

Applications for the 2014 Etsy Dallas Spring Bash are open! Visit the Handmade Bash website to learn more and apply! Don't forget to mark your calendars for April 26th and we'll see you at the Shops at Park Lane!