02-13 Avocado Soup - Fabulous Fundamental Fat

Fat is good for you! Well, some fat anyway. The fat in avocados is one of those "good for you" fats and I have a delicious way to serve it on today's show! Avocado soup - here's how: 
You'll need: 
2 avocados
4 potatoes
1 cup vegetable stock
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
Curry powder to taste 

Start by cubing and cooking your potato until it's soft. While it's cooking you can cube your avocado. When the potato is cooked and ready, put about a quarter of it into your blender along with a quarter of your avocado. Blend them up with a bit of your vegetable stock. Continue in this fashion until all the potato and avocado has been blended. Season with the salt, pepper and curry powder. You can heat this soup up or it can be served cold.

02-12 Jeffrey and the Biscuits

Hello all, it's that time again! This week on the show you'll meet my friend Jeffrey. He's from North Carolina, or "Norf Cakalakee" as he likes to call it. He and I went shopping for some things for his home. This would have been absolutely delightful, had it not been for the fact that we have extremely different ideas about what's beautiful. We went to two shops: Nial Smith, an antique store that features beautiful heirloom pieces and The End of History, a shop that has a collection of more colorful stock from the 1950's through the 1970's It's infinitely more fun to watch than it was to experience. Mary Ellen can attest to that. She tagged along. 
In addition to that Jeffrey showed me his biscuits. Well, that is to say, he demonstrated his grandmother's biscuit recipe for us. Here it is: 

You'll need: 
2 cups flour
1Tbs. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
2/3 cup milk 

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt and place in a large bowl. Cut the shortening into the flour mixture until it's nice and crumbly. Add the milk by degrees, mixing together until you have a sticky, loose ball. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead lightly a few times, then roll the dough out to approximately 1/2" thick. Using an inverted drinking glass, cut the biscuits out and bake on an ungreased baking sheet for approximately 12 to 15 minutes. 

They're just delicious - light and flakey.

02-11 Give a Little Head for Valentines Day

Hello people! Love is in the air - It's almost St. Valentines Day and I have some ideas for you. This week on the show I'm demonstrating a charming craft project - Topiary Heads! They make delightful gifts for your valentine and are such fun to put together. Here's how:

You'll need:

A paper mache flour pot
Plaster of Paris
An 8" diameter Styrofoam ball
Raffia in black or brown
An 18" wooden dowel
Pink tint floral spray
Craft paint in brown, red or pink and blue or violet
Ribbon in pink and red
Red and white heart shaped paper doilies
Red metallic poster board
Pink poster board
Artificial flowers
Pink or white netting or tulle
Floral wire
Tiny red pompons
A glue gun and glue sticks
Scotch tape
Wire cutters
A paint brush
White glue

Start by setting the dowel in the bottom of the flour pot so it stands upright with the plaster of Paris. Then you can create the head. Give the ball a light dusting of the floral spray, concentrating it a little more where you want the cheeks to be. Paint a face on the Styrofoam ball using the craft paint, then use the raffia to create an attractive hairstyle, pinning it to the ball using the floral wire. Use the ribbon to tie the hair into pony or pig tails, or as an attractive headband. Mount the head on the dowel. Next, create a bow for the neck by gathering up a length of tulle and holding it together with a length of floral wire. Leave the tails of the wire sticking up. Attach an artificial rose to the bow with wire or hot glue. Then insert the tails of wire up into the base of the ball to mount your bow at her neck. Now it's time to create the hat. Cut a large heart out of the metallic paper board. The heart should be larger than either of the doilies. Next create a truncated cone of pink paper board. Cut half inch deep tabs into the top edge of the cone and fold them down to create a surface to glue your heart to. Mount the heart on the cone and, once dry, you can glue your doilies, one on top of the other, down to the red heart. Mount a pouf of tulle with an artificial flower on top of the doilies using floral wire through all layers and leave the tails. Use the tails to mount the hat on the head by inserting them into the Styrofoam.

Trim the dowel by winding ribbon around it spirally from top to bottom. Tape it to the dowel to secure it in place. Your finishing touch is to fill the flower pot with tulle and stud the tulle with the pompons using your hot glue gun. Congratulations! Your Valentines Day gift is complete!

02-10 Spring in February - Cure the Winter Doldrums

This week on the show, banish old man winter with the cheerful trappings of spring! 
Force bulbs for fresh spring blooms. This is easily done by finding bulbs for forcing at your local garden store or nursery. Plant them in pots as directed on the package, then give them a 6 to 8 week winter in a fridge. Bring them out into your warm living room and watch them burst forth with beautiful blooms! 

Welcome the birds with a charming birdfeeder. Here are plans for one we made on my Style network show. You can make a handy funnel for your bird seed out of a gallon milk jug. Just cut the bottom off and use the pouring spout as the bottom of the funnel. 

Home accessories are the perfect way to brighten your home during the depths of winter. You'll notice I've propped perky pillows up on my chaise in the introduction and wrap up of this week's show. These are the spring pillows from my forth coming line of products for Felix Populi. Look for them in stores and online soon!