Remy’s Ratatouille Recipe (Ratatouille)

Welcome back friends! This week we’ll be cooking Remy’s Ratatouille from one of my favorite Disney and Pixar films, Ratatouille!

This recipe is featured near the end of the film when Remy is preparing a meal for the food critic, Anton Ego. It is referred to briefly as a “peasant’s dish”, but Remy’s version ignores all labels and boils down to good food that comforts the soul.

Ratatouille is warm and comforting; the perfect main or side dish for a cool or cold day. The arrangement of vegetables within the baking dish is creative and fun to do, although give yourself enough time to mise en place before beginning! Anyone can cook, bon appetit!

INGREDIENTS

VEGETABLES

  • 2 eggplant, trimmed and very thinly sliced
  • 6-8 Roma tomatoes, trimmed and very thinly sliced
  • 2 yellow squash, trimmed and very thinly sliced
  • 2 zucchini, trimmed and very thinly sliced

SAUCE

  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, diced
  • Pepper, to taste
  • Salt, to taste
  • 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons of fresh basil, chopped

HERB SAUCE

  • 4 tablespoons of olive oil 
  • 2 tablespoons of fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons of parsley, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons of fresh thyme
  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Slice the eggplant, tomatoes, squash, and zucchini into approximately 1-mm rounds (I used a mandolin when possible), then set aside.
  2. To make the sauce, heat the olive oil in an oven-safe pan over medium-high heat. 
  3. Sauté the onion, garlic, and bell peppers until soft (about 10 minutes), then season with salt and pepper.
  4. Add the crushed tomatoes and stir until the ingredients are fully incorporated, then remove from heat, add the basil and stir again.
  5. Pre-heat the oven for 375 F.
  6. Arrange the sliced veggies in a repeating pattern (squash, zucchini, eggplant, tomato) on top of the sauce from the outer edge to the middle of the pan, then season with salt and pepper.
  7. To prepare the herb seasoning, mix together the basil, garlic, parsley, thyme, salt, pepper, and olive oil in a small bowl. 
  8. Brush the herb seasoning over the arranged vegetables.
  9. Cut a circle of parchment paper and place it over the vegetables in the pan, then bake for 40 minutes. 
  10. Remove the parchment paper, then bake for another 20 minutes, until the vegetables are softened.
  11. Enjoy!

Disney Dreamlight Valley – Recipe Guides

If there’s one thing I do when I play a game (besides trying to relax and enjoy myself), it’s look up information. I get curious or stuck, and I find myself turning to the internet for answers. There are a lot of good guides out there that are super helpful, but what I don’t see are an abundance of simple and clean visual guides that lay out all the information in one place.

I’ve been playing Disney Dreamlight Valley and I cannot get enough! To be able to befriend my favorite Disney characters and design a village for them to live in fills me with immeasurable happiness! Definitely a favorite cozy game for anyone who loves Disney and life sims!

One of my favorite things to do in the game is cook with Remy, and there are a lot of recipes to discover! If you want to learn every existing recipe, I’ve created guides to help!

These visual or infographic guides are divided into Appetizers, Entrees and Desserts and then organized alphabetically by the name of the dish.

Please let me know if you would like me to work on a guides for anything else within Disney Dreamlight Valley or if there are any games you would like to see visual information or guides for in the future! I love helping people, discussing games and organizing information!

Linguini’s Potato and Leek Soup Recipe (Ratatouille)

Welcome back friends! This week we are cooking Linguini’s soup from one of my favorite Disney and Pixar films, Ratatouille!

This is referred to as Linguini’s soup by the staff at Gusteau’s restaurant, but we all know Linguini made a mess of it and Remy couldn’t resist doctoring it up to make it more palatable before escaping from the kitchen.

It is never said what kind of soup this is, but judging by what Remy adds, we can conclude it is probably a variation of potato and leek soup! This soup is creamy and filling, the perfect cozy dinner on a cold night!

INGREDIENTS
  • 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 4 large leeks, white and light green parts only, roughly chopped
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 2 lb. of potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 6 cups of vegetable broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 cup of heavy cream
  • Chives, finely chopped, for serving 
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. In a large soup pot or dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat.
  2. Add the garlic, leeks, black pepper and salt. Cook, stirring regularly, until soft and wilted (about 10 to 15 minutes).
  3. Add the potatoes, broth, bay leaves and thyme to the pot, then bring to a boil.
  4. Cover the soup and turn the heat down to medium / low. 
  5. Simmer for 45 minutes, or until the potatoes are very soft.
  6. Remove from the heat, then remove the bay leaves and thyme sprigs. Purée the soup with an immersion blender until smooth. 
  7. Add the heavy cream, place back on the heat and bring to a simmer. 
  8. Taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking with salt and pepper. 
  9. Garnish with fresh herbs if desired and enjoy!

Travel Mug Cozy – Crochet Pattern

Welcome back friends! Do you crochet? I dabbled in crochet off and on for a few years, always fascinated, but never fully catching on. I kept at it, and suddenly, it clicked! I feel calm and cozy when I’m crocheting, and fiercely proud whenever I complete a project.

It’s that time of year for enjoying hot beverages! Let’s protect our hands from said beverages and add our own flair to the cups by crocheting our own cup cozy, or zarf!

SUPPLIES
  • Crochet hook (size 5.0mm)
  • Medium yarn (size 4)
  • Scissors
  • Yarn needle
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Create a slip knot and then chain 30 stitches.
  2. Careful not to twist the chain, bring both ends together and slip stitch into the first chain stitch to join them into a circle.
  3. Chain 1 stitch and then loosely slip stitch into the back bump of each of the 30 chain stitches, then join with a final slip stitch.
  4. Chain 2, then turn the work around so you’ll be working around the outside of the circle. Double crochet in each of the 30 stitches around, then join with a slip stitch.
  5. Chain 2 and front post double crochet in a stitch and then double crochet in the next stitch. Continue alternating around the circle, then join with a final slip stitch.
  6. Chain 2 and double crochet in a stitch, then front post double crochet in the next stitch. Continue alternating around the circle, then join with a final slip stitch.
  7. Repeat steps 5 and 6, four or five more times around and at the end of round 8 o 9, slip stitch to join.
  8. Chain 1 and loosely slip stitch in each of the 30 stitches around, join and tie off the yarn.
  9. Flip the cozy inside out and weave in the loose ends using your yarn needle.
  10. Flip the cozy right side out and you’re done! Enjoy!

*This pattern will fit a Starbucks reusable travel cup. Before getting too far into this project, I recommend slipping the joined chain onto the cup you are making the cozy for. If it doesn’t fit well, adjust how many chain stitches there are up or down to fit.

DIY – Tissue Paper Flowers

Part of the fun in raising Zoey is making things that delight her; I want to create fun, educational crafts for her that are made with love and will be loved! 

This week we’ll be creating paper marigolds in honor of their color and beauty, but also to begin educating Zoey on their significance this time of year. 

These supplies and instructions create two large paper flowers, but you can multiply and create as many as you like in as many color variations as you like!

SUPPLIES
  • 4 green pipe cleaners
  • 5 sheets of 20” x 20” gift-wrapping tissue paper (or similar)
  • Scissors
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Layer and align the 5 sheets of tissue paper, then fold them in half and crease.
  2. Cut along the crease line so you now have two groups of tissue sheets, 10” by 20” each.
  3. Keeping each group of tissue sheets layered and aligned, pleat the paper in an accordion fold.
  4. Holding the accordion fold closed, cut a half-circle shape from each end. (You could also cut a point or zig-zag)
  5. Holding the accordion fold closed, wrap the top of a pipe cleaner around the middle of the paper and twist it around itself to hold it in place. This will also act as the stem.
  6. Fan out the paper, then gently separate the first layer of paper from the rest, and move it up to form the top layer of petals.
  7. Gently separate the rest of the paper layers and fluff out your flower.
  8. To bolster the stem a bit more: Secure a second pipe cleaner around the existing pipe cleaner where it meets the flower, and wrap it around the existing pipe cleaner down to the base (start back up if you have extra).
  9. Repeat steps 3 through 8 with the second group of tissue sheets.
  10. Enjoy!

DIY – Bat Silhouette Pom Pom Painting

Part of the fun in raising Zoey is making things that delight her; I want to create fun, educational crafts for her that are made with love and will be loved! This week we’ll be creating pom pom paintings of bat silhouettes for halloween! 

I remember when I was a kid we made halloween crafts at school and my mom would bring them out every year as part of our halloween decor. It made me feel super happy and proud that she would take the time to save and display my art every year and that is the feeling I want to inspire in my own daughter.

Let’s get painting!

SUPPLIES
  • Bat silhouette pattern (see above)
  • Printer paper
  • Scissors
  • Scotch tape
  • Black cardstock paper (8.5 x 11”)
  • Clothespin(s)
  • Pom poms
  • Sunset colored paints (I used red, orange, purple and yellow)
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Print this bat pattern I’ve created and cut the bats out.
  2. Break off several small pieces of tape, roll them into cylinders, and use them to attach the bats where you want them on the black cardstock paper.
  3. Pour non-toxic sunset colored acrylic paints into a pie plate (or something similar) and set out a pom pom for each color.
  4. Use a clothespin to grab one pom pom at a time, or one clothespin per color.
  5. Allow your little one to dab the paint around and over the bats to their heart’s content.
  6. Allow the paint to dry and then gently peel off the bats to reveal their silhouettes!
  7. Hang it up and enjoy! 

DIY – Paper Bat Halloween Decorations

I am so bad at decorating my house for the holidays! I want to be better about it, but I’d like to create and/or collect decorations that are my vibe and that I’m proud of!

One of the looks I’ve always loved are colonies of bats flying across doorways and walls of a home. I’ve created my own bat pattern, so let’s create!

SUPPLIES
  • Bat pattern (see above)
  • 8.5 x 11 black cardstock paper
  • Scotch tape (or similar)
  • Scissors
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Print and cut out these bat patterns I’ve created, then cut each bat shape in half!
  2. Fold each piece of cardstock paper in half horizontally and lightly tape the body of the bat patterns to the fold of the cardstock paper.
  3. Cut out as many bat shapes as you like and attach them to the wall or walls around your home. **For added texture you can fold some or all of the wings up so they aren’t flat against the wall!
  4. Enjoy!

DIY – Ghost Pom Pom Painting

Part of the fun in raising Zoey is making things that delight her; I want to create fun, educational crafts for her that are made with love and will be loved! This week we’ll be creating pom pom paintings of a ghost for halloween! 

I remember when I was a kid we made halloween crafts at school and my mom would bring them out every year as part of our halloween decor. It made me feel super happy and proud that she would take the time to save and display my art every year and that is the feeling I want to inspire in my own daughter.

Let’s get painting!

SUPPLIES
  • Ghost pattern (see above)
  • Printer paper
  • Scissors
  • Scotch tape
  • Black cardstock paper (8.5 x 11”)
  • Clothespin
  • Pom pom
  • White paint
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Print this ghost pattern I’ve created and cut it out of it’s frame, then set the frame aside.
  2. Cut the eyes and mouth out of the ghost shape.
  3. Break off three small pieces of tape, roll them into cylinders, and use them to attach the eyes and mouth where you want them on the black cardstock paper.
  4. Pour non-toxic white acrylic paint into a pie plate (or something similar) and use a clothespin to grab ahold of a pom pom.
  5. Place the ghost pattern’s frame around the edges of your cardstock page and dab the pom pom in the white paint, then dab it around in the edges of the ghost’s shape to create a dotted pattern for your little one.
  6. Remove the frame and allow your little one to dab the paint away to their heart’s content.
  7. Allow the paint to dry and then gently peel off the eyes and mouth to reveal!
  8. Hang it up and enjoy!

Homemade Play Dough Recipe

Part of the fun in raising Zoey is making things that delight her; I want to create fun, educational crafts for her that are made with love and will be loved! I see much play dough in our future, and while buying it is always a viable option, how fun and cost effective is it to make some on your own?

So let’s make some homemade play dough!

SUPPLIES
  • Large saucepan
  • Wooden spoon
  • Wax paper
  • Gloves
  • Sandwich bags
INGREDIENTS
  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup of salt
  • 4 teaspoons of cream of tartar
  • 2 cups of warm water
  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
  • Food coloring
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Place the cream of tartar, flour, and salt in a large saucepan and stir to combine.
  2. Slowly add the oil and water, stirring until well incorporated.
  3. Cook over medium heat, stirring consistently, until the mixture thickens into a dough.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the dough to cool slightly until it can be handled comfortably.
  5. Divide the dough into equal portions based on how many colors you would like, and roll into balls.
  6. Put on gloves and press an indentation into each ball of dough, then add 15 drops of food coloring to the indentation of each ball to start, you can always add more later. 
  7. Knead each ball of dough until the color is well incorporated. If the color is not as bright as you want, you can add more food coloring and knead again.
  8. Enjoy!

*This can be stored in sandwich bags, one for each color. Just be sure to remove all the excess air for longevity of the dough!

Family Friendly Autumnal Activity Ideas

Welcome back Autumn! Every year I look forward to the Autumn and the warmth it generates inside my home and soul. Where I live, September and October are still rather warm on some days, and turn wet and cold as the months progress toward Winter.  I cannot get enough of the rain this time of year. The cold, wet weather begins to take over outside, driving us all inside to be together and warm. There’s nothing like cuddling up with people you love, reading a good book, watching a movie or playing a video game while the weather misbehaves outside.

I intend to spend a lot of time with my family this year and came up with some family friendly ideas I’d like to experience with Zoey! Follow along and try some of these activities for yourself, this is a time we should all enjoy!

We intend to:

  • Bake bread.
  • Bake cookies for family and/or friends.
  • Collect acorns and make art.
  • Collect leaves and make art.
  • Collect rocks and make art.
  • Make nature pressings or rubbings.
  • Donate to a food bank.
  • Go on a hayride.
  • Go puddling in the rain.
  • Have an indoor picnic on a stormy day.
  • Make a bird feeder.
  • Make Halloween decorations.
  • Go trick or treating!
  • Make fresh tortillas.
  • Make homemade play dough.
  • Make stovetop popcorn.
  • Pick apples.
  • Bake apple pie.
  • Drink apple cider.
  • Make caramel apples.
  • Pick out pumpkins at a pumpkin patch.
  • Give pumpkins a bath.
  • Carve, decorate and/or paint pumpkins.
  • Bake pumpkin bread. 
  • Roast pumpkin seeds.
  • Roast s’mores.