Sunday, August 11, 2013

A CopyKat you'll want to have for dinner

Stephanie Manley of Kingwood is a copy cat. Look her up at for recipes of what your favorite restaurants make. That’s why “Dining Out at Home Cookbook 2” begins with a note to readers: eat out more! Patronize mentioned restaurants to see how close these recipes come to the original.
Armed with this book you can whip up Benihana Fried Rice, P.F. Chang’s Lettuce Wraps, Luby’s Pecan Pie and pages of stuff to make your mouth water. A little knowledge may be a dangerous, and delicious, thing. I love her little introductions to each recipe and beings as she’s a Texas girl, I can tell I’d love to visit in her kitchen.

Maybe everybody knows how to bake a potato, but to get the skin crispy like Outback Steakhouse does, rub vegetable oil over each potato and sprinkle with kosher salt. No need to pierce the skin, she writes. Keep the moisture in to make it nice and fluffy. You’ll never go back to your old ways, she adds.

I’ve grew up with my parents taking me to both the downtown Beaumont Picadilly on Sunday mornings and later the Parkdale Mall one on Saturday nights. The author says everything tastes like your grandmother made it. That’s why, of all the recipes in the book I could share, I pick this one:

Cream Gravy from Picadilly Cafeteria
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 ¾ cups whole milk
½ teaspoon salt
ground black pepper
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the butter and flour. Cook the butter and flour together until they form a nice paste, stirring constantly. When the paste develops a nutty, fragrant smell, 2 to 3 minutes, slowly add the whole milk. The mixture will begin to thicken. Once all of the milk is added, turn the heat down to a simmer, and season with the salt and pepper. Allow the gravy to reduce by one-third, about 15 minutes. Yields 1 /14 cups.

Playing Footsie
Tea tree oil has got it going on. I love that cool, natural sensation to perk me up on a hot day. It instantly lifts my spirits in any form, and I found a new one. Foot Therapy Tea Tree Oil Foot Spray is organic and the Footsie Foot Brush is, you love it, shaped like a foot, and offers pure bristles. It’s supposed to be the ultimate to get a foot massage from someone else, but a sprits of this is something you can do all by yourself. Look up for more good stuff for your body.

Even though I walk daily, comfortable shoes is about my only thought toward “gear.” After supporting the Pleasure Island Bridge Half Marathon, set for Nov. 9 this year, I’ve learned a bit about what passionate runners deal with. I’ve heard them talk about Body Glide, which looks like a little deodorant stick, but is dubbed as the original anti-chafe balm. Now there’s a Body Glide for Her with pink packaging that says right there it’s good for bras, thighs and feet to soothe under arms, stop burning and hot spots. No oils go on you and its sweat and water  resistant. The tag line is “Use it now, no worries later.” On my level, it falls into the category of things you didn’t know you needed. But now that you know it’s out there, don’t you want to walk/run a little faster? Glide over that turf.

Wipe out
I wouldn’t have imagined a saline wipe could feel so fresh. We’ll all want Fresh Faces after everything from a long day at the office to a long night at the club. If you’re a work out woman, pack some in the gym bag.
Little Busy Bodies created Boogie Wipes, saline-infused products under the Puffs brand. Now Puffs Fresh Faces present moiste saline tissues in Fresh Scent, Light Lavender, fragrance-free and with a touch of Vick’s. I love the lavender and I know I’m not the only one who associates a touch of Vick’s with healing. That saline touch does wonders on a stuffy nose and can prevent that raw feeling from constant nose blowing.
For makeup removal, Fresh Faces combines the power of makeup remover, soap and moisturizer.

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