Thursday, September 29, 2011

Free Mermaid Stories and Books for Kindle and Nook

One of the best perks of having a smartphone is being able to download Kindle and Nook apps. And the Seamaiden makes good use of both Kindle and Nook whenever she feels the need to dive into a good mermaid romance tale (or is that tail?). Here are a few seamaiden stories that are now available for free!

The Mermaid: A Love Tale
The Mermaid of Druid Lake and Other Stories (about a mermaid who once lived in the lake of Druid Hill Park in Baltimore)
Strands of Mermaid Hair
The Golden Mermaid, and Other Stories from the Fairy Books

Monday, September 26, 2011

Antipasto Spaghetti

Another pasta dish to savor on some cozy autumn evening.

1 medium red bell pepper
1/2 cup kalamata olives
1/2 cup almond-stuffed olives
3 oz. prosciutto, chopped
1 (6.5 oz). jar of basil pesto
1 (8.5 oz.) jar of sun-dried tomatoes with pesto, drained and chopped
1 (6 oz.) jar of marinated quartered artichokes, drained and chopped
8 oz. uncooked whole-wheat spaghetti
1/2 cup fresh Romano cheese, grated

Cook spaghetti according to package directions, omitting salt.
Cut bell pepper in half lengthwise, discard seeds and membranes.
Place pepper halves, skin side up and flattened, on a foil-lined baking sheet. Broil 8 minutes or until blackened.
Seal pepper halves in a plastic bag for 5 minutes. Peel and chop pepper and place in a large serving bowl.
Stir in olives, prosciutto, pesto, tomatoes and artichokes.
Drain cooked spaghetti and add to bowl.
Stir in 1/4 cup of grated cheese and toss pasta mixture to combine.
Sprinkle remaining grated cheese over each serving of spaghetti.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A Seamaiden's Secret Treasures: Mermaid in a Shell Teapot

One of my favorite tea-related quotes comes from Eleanor Roosevelt: "A woman is like a tea bag; only in hot water do you realize how strong she is." Well, when this Seamaiden feels like she has more than proven her strength, there is nothing more enjoyable than detoxing from my overbooked and overextended life over tea with friends. For me, calm conversation over fine bone china and aromatic peaches with flowers tea is the perfect prescription to achieve renewal, revival and plain old relief.

My next tea gathering will include this delightful Richard Parrington teapot, "Mermaid in a Shell," as a decorative centerpiece surrounded by seashells and water lilies. Parrington's teapots are highly collectible. Teapot Island dates this one back to 1981 and values it at $39.29-$111.59 (converted from the British pound). I snagged this one on eBay for a mere $10!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Marinated Beef Kabobs

The Seamaster and I dined on these scrumptious kabobs last night. We're doing our best to keep the summer grilling season alive as long as possible!

1 cup red wine
1/2 cup olive oil
3 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
4 tsp. Italian seasoning
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. seasoned salt
2 tsp. pepper
2 tbsp. fresh parsley leaves
1 1/2 lb. top sirloin beef cubes
1 pint cherry tomatoes
1 large red onion, sliced into 1-inch pieces
2 yellow bell peppers, sliced into 1-inch pieces
1 orange bell pepper

In a bowl, combine the first eight ingredients. Pour half the marinade into a large plastic bag. Add the beef and seal the bag. Turn the bag to coat.
Pour remaining marinade into another plastic bag. Add the tomatoes, onion and peppers and seal the bag. Turn the bag to coat.
Allow beef and vegetables to marinade for 2-3 hours.
Coat a grill rack with cooking spray. Drain the marinade from the beef and vegetables, reserving the marinade for basting.
Thread the beef and vegetables onto eight metal or soaked wooden skewers.
Grill until beef reaches desired doneness. Baste with marinade and turn occasionally.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Vintage Box Purse Now on Etsy!

This unbearably cute wood box purse is octagonal in shape and depicts a charming painted Main Street scene all around the panels--including a candy store, apothecary, firehouse, ice cream shop, church and more! It has a Lucite handle and moss green felt lining inside. Visit my Etsy shop to purchase today!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Seamaiden Pops

With all the rain that has deluged Bel Air recently, my time might have been better employed building an ark and rounding up two of every animal. But I just couldn't resist whipping up a few of these white chocolate seamaidens this afternoon.

To create your own Seamaiden Pops, simply place 4 squares each of two 4 oz. white chocolate baking bars into plastic bags and melt in the microwave for 40-45 seconds. (You will needs 4 squares of white chocolate for each mermaid candy mold.) Cut a corner off of the plastic bags and squeeze the chocolate into each mold. When the molds are half full, place a lollipop stick into the molds and fill the rest of the molds with chocolate. Carefully wipe away any excess chocolate from the molds. Refrigerate for 2 hours and then carefully remove Seamaiden Pops from the molds. Yields 4white chocolate Seamaiden Pops.

Visit Amazon to purchase this mermaid candy mold.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Grilled Shrimp Quesadillas

1/2 lb. mushrooms, chopped
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. butter
1/2 lb. cooked shrimp, peeled,deveined and chopped
6 tsp. apricot preserves
6 whole wheat tortillas
6 slices Havarti cheese
2 tbsp. butter, melted

In a foil grill pan, saute mushrooms and 1 tbsp. butter and olive oil on a grill until tender. Add shrimp and saute until heated through.
Spread 1 tsp. of apricot preserves on each tortilla.
Top each tortilla with 1 slice of cheese, shrimp and mushrooms.
Fold tortilla over and brush with melted butter on each side.
Grill quesadillas uncovered until each side is golden brown and cheese is melted.
Cut quesadillas into wedges and serve.