Who Is Anastasia?

My photo
New Castle, Indiana Zone 5, United States
When I was 55, I decided to embrace the things I love and hold precious and dear - regardless of anyone else's thoughts and opinion. I am a folk artist who loves flowers - my own flowers, grown by me. I love good, hearty, exotic foods, and I love to prepare them myself. I love the secret garden situated in my backyard, regardless of how junky it gets. No longer able to afford a vacation, this will have to be it for the time being. In the winter months, I still enjoy it. Anyway, here I am sharing my art, favorite recipes, cocktails, gardening tips, and just my usual vents and bantering. After all, I'm old enough to say whatever the heck I want to now ... Oh, the two pictures below are NOT of my garden, although the one with the pink French doors looks very much like the backyard I grew up with. I am searching for pictures of that wonderful place and will post soon.

JEWELS OF MY SOUL

JEWELS OF MY SOUL
My Book Available on AMAZON

Stacey Torres ART Prints

Stacey Torres ART Prints
A very limited selection of reproductions from my paintings can be found here

July 31, 2009

Old Fashioned Tips: Friday Recipes: Peaches

Old Fashioned Tips: Friday Recipes: Peaches

Surprises in the Garden Today










As always, I never know when SURPRISE LILIES are going to pop-up in my garden. I don't even remember planting the one lone bulb that came up four years ago. Today, there are 20 or more, standing proudly among a few Daylilies and Petunias. Across the tiny path is a mound of Blackeyed Susan and Purple Coneflowers, snuggled up in their bed.

End of July Blues


August is almost here, and once again I am faced with the fact that yet again, I've missed the summer. So many life events have occurred in my life this summer, that I was unable to enjoy the lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer. This week it was damp and rainy; much like October. A warm and hearty meal was in order that would make me think I was at a seaside resort, basking in the sun and being catered to ... hmmm. Here goes:

New England Cod & Scallop Casserole
Makes 4 servings.

1 pint fresh scallops, rinsed and trimmed
1/2 lb. fresh cod
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon thyme
1/4 teaspoon pepper
olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 can cream of shrimp soup
1 can heavy cream
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup extra sharp Cheddar cheese
1/4 cup Pepper Jack cheese
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan

Saute the cod in a little bit of butter, olive oil, salt and pepper until golden. Drain on a paper towel and set aside, reserving butter/oil drippings.
In a shallow saucepan, cover scallops with water, add seasonings, and boil gently until scallops begin to shrivel, 3 to 5 minutes. Drain, saving the water, and set scallops aside. In the same pan, add the pan drippings and blend in flour to make a roux; add more butter, if needed. Stir in 1 cup scallop liquid, then the 2 tablespoons of Parmesan + the Pepper Jack + the Cheddar cheeses, soup and the cream. Add scallops and cod and pour into a buttered dish. Top with bread crumbs and the 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, and bake at 350 degrees F for 15 minutes.

The Backyard --Today's Vacation Spot

The Backyard --Today's Vacation Spot
A simple garden meal in the shade. No, it's not my backyard, but it looks identical to the one I grew up with at our home in Queens. Looking for an original pic of it to post soon!

Old Fashioned Tips