About Dana

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I'm a dichotomy of blue jeans, pretty jewelry, frugalista, and Southern girl living the simple rural life. I want to live my life holistically, thoughtfully, economically, and most of all gratefully, and encourage other women to do the same.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Fall Fragrance in the Garden

The best smell in the garden this fall time of year comes from....

tea olive shrubs.

You wouldn't imagine an evergreen shrub with the most inconspicuous flowers could perfume the air all around it. I don't even have mine planted near my backyard patio. They are on the side of the house, but the smell wafts all the way over to my relaxing chair out back. In fact, the tea olive fragrance actually gets stronger if you move farther away from it. Stick your nose in the bush to try and take a whiff like you would treat a rosebush, and you won't get nearly the full aroma.

And you know what's so beautiful about them to me? They survived our HOT, DRY summer and the deer don't eat them. Woo-hoo for the country tea olive!

Plant one (or two or three) this fall or winter in your yard.


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Hot Prosciutto Panini

My husband takes a sandwich every day to his office for lunch. So on Saturday afternoon, he is none too eager to eat a cold sandwich for the midday meal. And often we all need something a little heartier in the midst of our yard- or housecleaning day. So years ago I came across a panini recipe in "Cuisine at Home" magazine, which I have adapted for our family's Southern tastes. Did I say "adapted?" I meant "made easier" for the chef.

Hot Prosciutto Panini
Ingredient list for one sandwich:
thinly sliced prosciutto (available in your grocer's deli aisle)
Havarti cheese (ditto above)
one large egg
two slices of your favorite bread (I like to use whole wheat or multi-grain)
Dijon mustard
sprinkle of dried chives
splash of almond milk (or cow's milk, or nothing at all if you prefer)
Beat the egg with a splash of milk (optional) and a sprinkling of chives. Spray a small frying pan with non-stick olive oil spray and heat for a few seconds over low heat. Pour in the egg mixture and cook until done on the first side; flip and cook until done on the other side (a total of about one minute).

While the egg is cooking, assemble the other parts of the sandwich. Spread the Dijon mustard on both slices of bread and layer on two pieces of prosciutto on one side of the sandwich-to-be.

Add sliced Havarti and top with the cooked egg mixture.

Put the sandwich together, lightly butter both sides, and cook in the same small frying pan on each side until toasty brown.

Serve with fruit for a complete, hot lunch. Time to eat!
I hope you love it as much as we do.