Scented Pinecones

I love the smell of those cinnamon scented pinecones, in the stores, this time of year. Did you know they are easy to make? Go for a walk and collect a bunch of pinecones. Place them in a paper sack for a day to get out any creepy crawlies in them. Microwave the cones in the bag for about 10 seconds. Allow to cool. Now grab a spray bottle and fill it with distilled water about 3/4 of the bottle. Add 30 drops of cinnamon essential oil, or any spicy scent you like, to the water. Shake gently. Spread the pinecones on a newspaper or foil lined old cookie sheet. Spray the cones with your mixture until damp but not saturated. allow to dry for a day or two. You can toss them in your fireplace for a nice scent or give them away as gifts in a nice basket. If you want your cones to have some color, then melt some crayons in the top of an old double boiler. Paint the cones with the melted wax and allow to dry.

Chicken Marsala

I recently visited Seaside, Oregon and ate a fabulous chicken meal in one of their restaurants. I decided to make my own version of Chicken Marsala and it turned out delicious. These are the ingredients I used:

  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 pound of chicken breast, skinless
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 can golden mushroom soup
  • handful of dried cranraisins
  • butter, 4 tablespoons

In a bowl, add flour, salt, and pepper. Stir together. Dredge the chicken breast in the mixture, then put aside on a platter. In a large skillet, melt the butter. Cook the chicken on each side for two-three minutes until it’s a golden brown. Remove the chicken, but keep the juice in the pan. Add the wine and allow it to boil. Keep stirring. Add the chicken stock until blended. Add the cranraisins and allow it to cook for a minute. Add the golden mushroom soup and stir until blended. Return the chicken to the pan and turn heat down to simmer. Spoon the sauce over the chicken. After about five minutes, turn the heat down to low and cover pan. Allow to sit in juices until ready to serve.