Monday, August 29, 2011

Sea Glass and Starfish Shadow Box

This little shadow box project kept the Seamaiden from going stir crazy during Hurricane Irene. I hope all my readers weathered the storm safely.

8" x 10" x 2 1/2" shadow box in white (or use flat white spray paint)
3 lb. glass gems with glass seashells by Marble Accents
12 oz. sea green glass gem/rock mix by Akasha
19 authentic or imitation pink sea glass shards in varying sizes
Large and medium decorative starfish by Panacea

Using goop, affix glass gem/rock mix around the front edges of the shadow box frame as shown. Let dry thoroughly.
Using goop, affix remaining glass gem/rock mix and sea glass shards to each side of the shadow box. To keep gems and sea glass shards from sliding, it is best to turn each side of the shadow box upright and glue on the gems and shards. Let each side dry thoroughly before beginning to work on the other sides.
Carefully arrange the glass gems with glass seashells onto the backing of the shadow box. Place the starfish on top of the glass gems and glass seashells. Carefully place the backing onto the shadow box frame and fasten in place.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Chicken Caprese with Bacon

A nice comfort food dish for riding out Hurricane Irene. Stay safe, my wonderful readers!

12 slices of bacon
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 small-medium tomatoes, sliced
8 fresh basil leaves
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 slices Provolone cheese

Place bacon in an ungreased baking pan. Bake at 400 degrees F for 10-12 minutes, until bacon is partially cooked but not crisp. Drain bacon slices on paper towels.
Place chicken in an ungreased baking pan. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Top with tomatoes, basil and garlic. Wrap chicken with three slices each of bacon.
Bake uncovered at 400 degrees F for 30 minutes, or until chicken is done.
Top chicken with cheese slices and bake for 1 minute, or until cheese is melted.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Staying Fit, Seamaiden Style

So just when the Seamaiden begins to mull over fun ways to stay fit after swimming pool season, Whitehouse Trading Company in downtown Bel Air comes through with the golden ticket. This adorable mermaid jump rope, priced at $8.95, will be the perfect way to stay seamaiden-svelte this fall and winter!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Grilled Marinated New York Strip Steak

This Seamaiden is ready to jump back into the ocean after experiencing a 5.8 magnitude earthquake here in Bel Air, Maryland. And this grilled marinated steak recipe should shake things up even more (but in a strictly flavorful way)!

1/2 cup Balsamic vinegar
3 tbsp. soy sauce
3 tbsp. honey
2 medium shallots, thinly sliced
3 tsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
2 tsp. dry mustard
1 1/2 lb. New York strip steak
1/2 lb. mushrooms, sliced

In a baking dish, combine the first six ingredients. Place the steak on top and coat with marinade. Cover and refrigerate for about 2 hours.
Remove steak from marinade and grill until it reaches desired doneness. Remove from grill.
Coat the mushrooms with the marinade. Place mushrooms in a grilling pan and grill several minutes until tender.
Serve the steak topped with mushrooms.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Fire Up Your Creativity at the Blue Dog Coffee & Arts Cafe

The Blue Dog Coffee and Arts Cafe has dreamed up one of the most charming cafe concepts the Seamaiden has ever encountered. You can choose from among hundreds of pieces of bisque and paint up a ceramic creation over coffee and sandwiches or dessert! The helpful staff will then glaze and fire your masterpiece.

I stopped in today and picked up a delish iced mocha and one of the yummy sandwich or wrap combinations (The Retriever--made of sliced turkey, Asiago cheese and pesto mayo) cleverly named after breeds of pups. And if I hadn't been pressed for time, I certainly would have conjured up a fine (or at least tolerable) work of ceramic art. If I find a mermaid among the bisque during my next visit, there will be no stopping me!

The Blue Dog Coffee and Arts Cafe is located at 802 Conowingo Road in Bel Air, Maryland. For more information about art classes and workshops or to make reservations for parties and events, visit the website or call 410-420-2371.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Seamaiden Crab Royale

This is a crab dish fit for a sea king or queen!

6 tbsp. butter
4 green onions, chopped
1 bell pepper, finely chopped
3/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 tbsp. chili powder
3 tbsp. flour
1 3/4 cups milk
1 cup mayonnaise
Dash Tabasco sauce
1 lb. lump crabmeat
6 tbsp. sherry
Panko (Japanese bread crumbs)

In a large skillet, saute the green onions and bell pepper in melted butter.
Sprinkle in the salt, pepper, chili powder and flour and mix well. Remove from heat.
Stir in milk gradually. Return to heat and cook until sauce is the consistency of heavy cream.
Blend in mayonnaise and Tabasco. Remove from heat.
In a separate skillet, heat crabmeat and sherry. Then add to sauce and mix well.
Place the mixture into a baking dish or divide into 6-8 ramekins or individual baking dishes. Sprinkle with Panko, dot with butter and sprinkle with paprika.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 15-20 minutes.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Grilled Shrimp with Seamaiden Dipping Sauce

The famous Maryland State BBQ Bash is in full swing in our hometown of Bel Air. But after an absolutely grueling week at work, the Seamaster and I are planning to chill at home tonight with a little ol' bbq bash for two. Oh, and the Seamaster told me to add that the Seamaiden Sauce is great on a salad, too.

1 cup fat-free sour cream
3/4 cup fresh parsley leaves
3/4 cup mayonnaise
1 green onion, chopped
1 1/2 tbsp. fresh dill leaves
1 1/2 tbsp. fresh tarragon leaves
1 1/2 tbsp. lime juice
2 garlic cloves
3/4 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 lb. cooked shrimp, tail on and deveined

To prepare Seamaiden Sauce, combine first 10 ingredients in a food processor or blender and process until smooth. Cover and chill at least one hour.
Arrange shrimp on a grill pan and sprinkle with additional sea salt and a bit of Old Bay, if available. Grill shimp until heated through.
To serve, dip shrimp in Seamaiden Sauce. You may garnish the sauce with parsley or dill sprigs.

Monday, August 8, 2011

A Sentimental Journey to Gettysburg This Halloween!

The Seamaster and I are over the sea, moon and stars to be taking A Sentimental Journey to Gettysburg this Halloween! Planted right in the heart of Gettysburg's historic district, A Sentimental Journey Bed and Beakfast sits on the property once owned by John Rupp, whose tannery was occupied by Confederate sharpshooters during the Battle of Gettysburg. The house also sits on the path that Abraham Lincoln rode to give the Gettysburg Address and looks out over the sycamore tree that bore witness to both the Battle of Gettysburg and Lincoln's iconic speech. Today, A Sentimental Journey offers walking distance access to the National Cemetery, Culp's Hill and Pickett's Charge, as well as all the restaurants, museums, ghost and bus tours and shops within the historic district.

After some ghost hunting, a candlelight dinner at the Dobbin House Tavern and a carriage ride, we will spend the witching hour in the Beautiful Dreamer room (how romantic is that?!) with its private entrance, kitchenette, bathroom with antique clawfoot tub and cozy Victorian decor. Take a video tour of the Beautiful Deamer room here.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Bay Scallop Crescents

The Seamaiden is always happy to add yet another scallop recipe to her seafood arsenal.

2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. minced garlic
1 lb. bay scallops
1 1/2 cups mushrooms, chopped
1/2 cup green onions, chopped
1/2 cup yellow bell pepper, chopped
1 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 pkg. (8 oz.) Neufchatel cheese, softened and cut into pieces
2 cans crescent rolls (8 crescents in each can)
2 tbsp. butter, melted
1/4 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
1 tbsp. chopped chives

In a large skillet, heat 1 tbsp. olive oil and minced garlic over medium-high heat. Add scallops and saute for several minutes until done. (I like to saute until the edges just start to brown slightly).
Remove scallops and set aside.
Add 1 tbsp. olive oil to skillet. Add mushrooms, green onions, bell pepper, sea salt, pepper and garlic powder. Cook until browned.
Reduce heat to low. Add Neufchatel and stir until melted.
Add scallops and combine until well mixed.
Remove skillet from heat and cool mixture for several minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
Separate crescents into 16 triangles and place on a surface for preparation. (I like to use wax paper.)
Spoon some of the scallop mixture along the long end of each triangle and roll up to make crescents.
Place each crescent on the baking sheet.
Brush each crescent with melted butter and sprinkle the tops with panko and chives.
Bake 20 minutes or until crescents are golden brown.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Honey-Pecan Cheescake Minis

These little cheesecakes are perfect for a party or just a short and sweet anytime treat.

1 pkg. cheesecake filling of your choice (I used Jello No Bake Cheesecake)
2 pkgs. mini fillo shells
1 cup chopped pecans
1/4 cup honey
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

Prepare cheesecake filling according to package directions.
Place 1 tsp. of cheesecake filling in each fillo shell.
In a small bowl, combine pecans, honey and cinnamon.
Top each cheesecake with a small amount of pecan mixture.
Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Makes 30 cheesecake minis.