Stew Beef & Mushrooms Over Egg Noodles!

I adapted this recipe from a Beef Stew recipe from Once Upon A Chef. The recipe was so tasty, but while eating it, I was thinking how good it would be minus the potatoes and carrots on top of egg noodles.

Let me tell you. This is an excellent recipe. It’s easy, makes the house smell amazing, and is so good. It’s one of those recipes that you will make over and over. Perfect for cooler weather! It would be pretty topped with fresh parsley. I just topped with salt and pepper. That little dollop of sour cream adds such a nice touch! I have also used Greek yogurt (plain) and it was equally as good!

Click HERE to print the recipe…

Stew Beef & Mushrooms Over Egg Noodles

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

1 pound stew beef (I used lean)

Salt & Pepper to taste

1 tablespoon olive oil

~Dry stew beef pieces, sprinkle with S&P. In large heavy pot, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat until hot and you can see it shimmering. Add the stew beef pieces and brown, turning with tongs (be careful not to overcrowd the pan, or the beef won’t brown. It’s OK to get brown crusty bits on the bottom of the pot, they will enhance the flavor once you add the beef stock).  Browning usually takes 5-8 minutes (browning, not cooking through). Remove from pan and set aside.

1 small yellow onion, chopped

1 garlic clove (I use microplane), chopped small

1 Tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar

~Add ingredients to pan and cook for 5 minutes.

1 ½ teaspoons tomato paste

~Add tomato paste and cook 2 minutes.

1 ½ teaspoon all purpose flour

~Add browned stew beef back into pan, sprinkle with flour, cook 1-2 minutes or until flour dissolves.

3 cups(+) beef stock

1 cup water

~Add stock and water to pan, loosen the brown bits on the bottom of the pan. 

1 small bay leaf

Dried thyme (a sprinkle)

1 pinch of sugar

Mushrooms, washed and cut in chunks (I used an 8 oz pkg. of Cremini)

~Add to the pan, the cover and transfer to preheated oven for 2 hours.

Serve on top of Egg Noodles, cooked using directions on package. (I used ½ package) 

Topped with a little dollop of sour cream – Perfection!

Fresh parsley would be pretty sprinkled on top, if you have it.

My recipes are a guide… add more of what you like, and less of what you don’t – or substitute for something that appeals to you!

Catch you back here tomorrow!


Featured Artist: Haidee Jo Summers!

The Artist Felicity House Painting in Venice  24x30cms  Oil

Haidee Jo Summers – WOW! Her paintings are perfection! The perfect balance of looseness, the subjects are all interesting, colors are wonderful and she nails it every single time!

What a wonderful painting (above). This artist’s face is perfection – you can how she’s concentrating on what she’s painting. This is amazing!

Evening Light Polperro Harbour by Haidee Jo Summers  30×32″  Oil (Sold)

To me, this painting is pure magic. The stillness in the water and the beautiful reflections. The boats sitting so serenely in the water. Those little pops of orange that just make me love this painting even more. And those little touches that make it sing, like the orangey color underneath the tented canopy on the sailboat in the foreground, the shadows from the boats in the water and that wonderful sky! It’s perfect!

Read a bit about Haidee, from her website:

Awarded Artist of the Year 2012 by the Society of All Artists and one of the few artists chosen by the BBC to paint the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant from the Millennium bridge, Haidee-Jo is a full-time professional artist known for painting landscapes and seascapes ‘en plein air’.                            

Her work can be seen regularly at the Mall galleries London where she exhibits with the Royal Society of Marine Artists, the New English Art Club and the Royal Institute of Oil painters of which she is a full member. Haidee-Jo writes regularly for The Artist magazine and has recently started work on her first book on oil painting with Search Press, having previously produced a large body of work for the Encyclopaedia of Watercolour Techniques. In recent years she has been invited to take part in UK and international plein air events whilst winning many prizes for her work which features fresh and vibrant brushwork coupled with keen drawing and observational skills, resulting in paintings that glow with light and sing with colour.    

Haidee-Jo gained a degree in illustration following an art foundation course and graduated in 1994. She has been exhibiting and teaching ever since, in recent years having cut back on teaching commitments to focus on painting. She believes very much in continuing to grow and develop all the while striving to express her personal voice in paint and to do so more and more succinctly.  

In June 2014 Haidee-Jo was awarded the £1800 The Artist purchase prize with her painting ‘Sails up in harbour’, a prestigious award selected by Ken Howard OBE RA. In September she won the £5000 Buxton Spa prize for her plein air painting ‘Walking through buttercups’, and in October won the first prize of £1000 for her painting ‘Work to be done, Elm Hill’ at Paint Out Norwich. In June 2015 she has been awarded the Great Art Award by The Artist magazine in association with Patchings for her painting ‘The thaw, Drove allotments’ and in June 2016 for her painting ‘The old milking parlor’. Continue Reading HERE

Now… go check out Haidee Jo’s website! It’s fabulous!

🎨All images via, used with permission…
Images are not for reproduction, they are property of the artist.

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Window boxes in Charleston, SC!

The beautiful window boxes in Charleston, SC are out in full force. Each so different and some so lavish it’s amazing.

This is an amazing house – love the sky reflected in the windows!

Keeping Charleston beautiful, one window box at a time! Enjoy your Sunday!


Charleston, SC!

Another morning walk downtown Charleston, SC – the gates and the columns are just gorgeous.

Such history in this beautiful city! Happy Saturday!


Featured Artist: Judy Joy Nocifora! [Workshop Alert!]

Charlie by Judy Joy Nocifora   12 x 12″   Oil

Judy Joy Nocifora. A wonderful artist that has quite the following when it comes to workshops. From her blog, it looks like her students really have fun and learn at the same time, is there a better way? I think not!

Judy did a demo of Charlie, our Jack Russell. From an image she was able to capture his essence so well. Not an easy task to paint this dog, he’s got hair going every which way, and for it to really look like Charlie it takes some doing! It’s a beautiful painting – she’s even got his funny sit that he does. This is Charlie – lover of the sun, sits in the sun and follows it throughout the house all day. He sits and his eyes get heavy until he can’t take it anymore.

Judy is teaching an oil painting workshop specifically for animal lovers – it begins April 4 (2017)! Interested? Here’s the information, but be quick, I’m sure her workshops fill up quickly! Be sure to check out her website and blog as well!

Oil Painting Workshop for Animal Lovers  
with Judy Nocifora
Tuesdays & Fridays, April 4, 7, 11 & 14, 2017
9:00-12:30 pm at Memphis Botanic Garden

Professional oil paint and medium is provided. There is much to be learned in this workshop that will apply to all that you paint: i.e, brushwork, color mixing, etc.
There will be demos each day and a lot of personal instruction.
Registration and payment due by Tuesday, March 28, 2017.

Call Laurie at 901-6364128.

Read a bit about Judy, from her website:

Artist Statement: I awake each day to the gift of life and the unending beauty that surrounds me. I thrill to the challenges and surprises that develop in each painting. The privilege of sensing life and letting it flow through my fingers and onto canvas is joyful!

The artwork of Judy Joy Nocifora has unfolded through many years of an insatiable desire to create. In her teens, she began studying formal oil painting with a highly regarded local instructor and she continued a keen interest in the arts and in the creative process through years of teaching in a program for gifted students. 

Upon retirement, Judy embarked on a serious commitment to study intently and diligently with artist whose work she admired in order to become a professional artist. She has had the great pleasure to study with master artists, Jeff Legg, Dawn Whitelaw, Jennifer McChristian, Peggi Kroll Roberts, John Pototschnik, Roger Dale Brown, and Camille Przewodek, and Lori Putnam, to name a few. One of her great joys is to share what she has learned with others as an oil painting instructor for Creative Aging of the Mid-South and at the Memphis Botanic Gardens. 

Today, Judy travels extensively to paint and she loves to share the beauty that she finds everywhere through her oil paintings. Her artwork has been juried into local and regional exhibitions. When at home, you will find Judy painting in her studio or plein air painting in her hometown of Germantown, Tennessee. 

Judy is a member of Oil Painters of America, American Impressionist Society, American Women Artist, Memphis/Germantown Art League, and Artists’Link of Memphis. She currently serves on the Board of Memphis/Germantown Art League as Publicity Chair. 

All images via Judy Nocifora, used with permission…

Images are not for reproduction, they are property of the artist.

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Hiking Monhegan…

Hiking Monhegan Island, Maine. Is there anything better? The island is small so we can cover a good amount of territory and then stop for lunch, head back out then come back in time to get ready for dinner or meet up with friends.

The peace and quiet in these woods is immeasurable. We are not used to such quiet.  When we’re out hiking I will stop… “JUST LISTEN to the silence!” – I love it. Fresh air, silence, peace. It’s like no place on Earth.

Blessed to be able to visit!

Like Fred says… “this is my happy place”, me too Fred! Me. Too!



A license plate on the Monhegan Trucking truck.

A welcome site when you arrive to the island and need your bags taken to your location. It’s cool how the few trucks line up ready to take your bags. The Island Inn, the Monhegan House, Monhegan Trucking and others picking up mail, packages, etc.

They have it down to a science!

Back to normal posting next week – catching up after a week of being out with a cold. Back to the land of the living, woohoo!