..Miss Gracie's Sweet Shoppe..
Add a little sweetness to your life!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Chile Verde

Last Sunday afternoon was spent making Chile Verde and Homemade Tortillas... a good way to spend an afternoon if you ask me. :) Here are the recipes and a few step-by-step pictures:
  • 4 pounds pork shoulder, cooked in a slow cooker for at least 8 hours and chopped or shredded
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Flour for dredging
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 yellow onions
  • 2 green bell peppers, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 Anaheim or Poblano chiles, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2-3 jalapenos, seeds removed, and finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds tomatillos, roasted, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons coriander seeds, crushed and soaked in a scant amount of water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 bunch cilantro leaves, cleaned and chopped
  • 4 cups chicken stock


Drizzle a large cast iron skillet or dutch oven( or pot) with oil. Place the onions and peppers in the same skillet and sweat over moderate heat, stirring occasionally until limp, about 5 minutes. Add all of the chiles and cook an additional 3-4 minutes, then add the garlic and cook 1-2 minutes more.Add the Sauteed vegetables, chopped tomatillos, dried herbs and cilantro to the onion mixture, cover with the chicken stock and bring up to a boil and reduce to a slight simmer. Season with salt and pepper.

Puree mixture in a food processor in batches.

Place shredded meat in pot and pour 3/4 of the verde sauce over ( Reserve the remaining sauce to pour over burritos to serve). Simmer for 1-3 hours.

Place pork mixture and shredded Monterey Jack cheese in a tortilla. Pour verde sauce over top and sprinkle with some more shredded cheese. Serve and enjoy!

Homemade Texas Flour Tortillas
2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
3/4 cup warm milk

Mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and oil. Slowly add the warm milk. Stir until a loose, sticky ball is formed. Knead for 2 minutes on a floured surface. Dough should be firm and soft. Place dough in bowl and cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap for 20 minutes. After the dough has rested, break off 8 sections, roll them into balls in your hands, place on a plate and cover with a damp cloth for 10 minutes. ( It's very important to let the dough rest, otherwise it will be like elastic and won't roll out to a proper thickness and shape.)

After the dough has rested, roll out the balls on a lightly floured surface till very thin ( or thicker if you like your tortillas thick!) Immediately begin cooking them in cast iron skillets or a griddle heated to med-high. Cook each side about 30 seconds. Remove from pan and keep covered with towel until ready to serve. These are best if eaten within a few hours. Makes 8 tortillas.

As a side note... these tortillas are NOT the most authentic as they have baking powder in them and puff up quite beautifully the way I like them. :)

Monday, January 19, 2009

By Your Side

Why are you striving these days

Why are you trying to earn grace

Why are you crying

Let me lift up your face

Just don't turn away


Why are you looking for love

Why are you still searching

as if I'm not enough

To where will you go child

Tell me where will you run

To where will you run


And I'll be by your side

Wherever you fall

In the dead of night

Whenever you call

And please don't fight

These hands that are holding you

My hands are holding you


Look at these hands and my side

They swallowed the grave on that night

When I drank the world's sin

So I could carry you in

And give you life

I want to give you life


Cause I, I love you

I want you to know

That I, I love you

I'll never let you go

----Tenth Avenue North

By Your Side Video and Song Clip

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Lattes at Home

To warm these very cold winter mornings, I have been putting my parents new espresso maker to good use... yummy skinny lattes for me, chai lattes for Abigail and intense dark mochas for Mom.

The espresso maker did get the best of me this morning though... when it says to relieve the pressure before opening the top, it really means it... I now have a pretty nasty burn on my hand from the top coming of and extremely hot water spraying everywhere... beware of the espresso maker!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Here is my current reading list... reading... ah, the simple pleasure that I have neglected for much too long! Thanks to my new friend for starting me back up again. ;)

Read #1: French Women Don't Get Fat by: Mireille Guiliano... not your average diet book, because it isn't about a diet! Just some really smart ideas and tips for eating that I plan to follow.

Read #2: The Hidden Art of Homemaking by: Edith Schaeffer... I have read and re-read this book (some chapters more than others :) She has such a way of getting you excited for doing the basics such as cooking, decorating, etc....

Read #3: Saint by: Ted Dekker... this is the second book in the Paradise Series. I just finished Showdown and absolutely loved it, although I will admit it's probably not a book everyone will enjoy, as it was a little nasty and graffic in spots. I loved the creativity put forth by Dekker, it was simply amazing and a very intense read!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

A Jewel...

A wife of noble character
who can find?
She is worth far
more than rubies ...
Proverbs 31:10
God's beautiful Proverbs 31 woman is the sparkling jewel in her
husband's life! She brings the love, the color, the joy, the life, and the
energy to their home.... With a wife as a sparkling jewel, a man can find life bearable. In fact, with God's beautiful woman beside him, he posesses treasure untold! ~ Elizabeth George -
Beautiful in God's Eyes-
How can you... be that ruby to your husband? Or if you are unmarried like me... how can you practice, today, to be that treasure to those around you and practice for the day you will have a husband.... just some thoughts from me! :)

Saturday, January 3, 2009


I laugh as a re-read 2008's first post, I think: those were the days! The days of carefree thoughts. The days of thinking I really needed to learn how to make cake... that somehow cake was important to life!?

2008 was a year a year of big risks, of challenges, of perservering. I learned what it is to laugh and to cry. A year of volleyballs, german chocolate cakes, and microphones. Of blessings, responsibilities, stress, and heartbreak.

The girl who started out 2008 had worries... so she thought ( if worries could be catergorized as what dessert to make tonight, or why isn't my shot dropping in the basketball games).
The girl who ended 2008 got a little clearer glimpse of what worry means, even though she knows that she hasn't scratched the surface of it.

I accomplished things I never could have imagined...delivering graduation speeches, running 1/2 marathons, coaching a highschool volleyball team to victory, and playing the piano in a wedding. But you know why I never could have imagined doing these things? Because I imagined doing them on my own strength.

Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him. It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: "Let him who boasts boast in the Lord."

1 Corinthians 1:26-30
It is only by the Lords strength that I have done what I have done... He has humbled me in so many ways ( oh, have I forgotten to mention all the huge mistakes I have made this year, too? The mistakes of tuning out HIS voice, and following my own desires!? Or perhaps the pride that keeps getting in the way?), but the LORD has proved faithful to raise my head, over and over again. Every time I fall or begin to feel weary, He is still beside me, eager to restore me again...
O the marvelous, wonderful, but so indescribable love of
my heavenly FATHER!!!!
So here is to 2009... May I not forget all that has been done for me or the unfailing love of my Saviour!