watermelon-habanaro granita… with tequila!

happy Friday, friends.  I hope y’all have fun plans this weekend. 

Whether you have plans or not, you need to try this.  You will by far be the life of the party if you bring it to a friends’. Or you can be like me and be the life of my own party on my deck. 

My dear friend, Celia over at River Cat Chili in the heart of Austin, Tx, send me ( actually she sent Ryan the habaneros).  She grows all of her own peppers! 

She sent him chocolate habanero.. Check this out! 


Let me tell you… These are spiceeeeey! 





watermelon-habanero granita. ( plus a bonus 😎)

2 cups seedless watermelon

Juice from 1/2 a lemon

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 thin slice habanero pepper 

Start by blending all ingredients in a blender. 

Pour mixture in freezer-safe dish and cover. 

Place in freezer.  Every 1/2 hour to 45 minutes, use the tines of a fork and scrape the top layer. ( mine took about 3 hours to be perfect) 


Serve I a chilled glass with a sprig of mint and or a squeeze of lemon or lime juice 

 You could stop here…. 

OR…  You can do what I’m going to do this weekend… 


I’m pouring that baby right over that glass and kicking my feet up! 

Enjoy your weekend!  

Ps… Another exciting giveaway coming up next week! 

simple addition


4 things~









happy birthday, Ali  I love you very much & am very proud of you!

mercury is in retrograde

I’ve been saying this for years and yet, I have no idea what it means. I actually have no idea where I even ever heard this term

And yet I use it often. What does it mean you ask? This is what I refer to when everything seems to be going well (or at least ok) and the BAM! out of the blue.. everything goes wrong at once. EVERYTHING.

I know you know what I mean.

Like when a certain cutie pie pup decides to eat the butter that you are about to bake cookies with…or when you spend an insane amount on material to make Halloween costumes for your daughter and her friends then spend 4 days crying as you work with it because the material is so dang slippery?

Clearly that was a long visit of Ms. Mercury to her beloved Retrograde..

(which reminds me.. Halloween is in like less that 2 months… eeik!!!)

must. get. thinking.

Truth be told, I don’t even know where I had even heard this term… perhaps from one of those many awesome *outdated-to-everyone-but-me* 80’s or 90’s sitcom?

Perhaps. Either way. It happens.

Yesterday, it rained. Like ALOT.

I really like rain. LIke more than sun (go ahead, gasp.. everybody does)

When it rains you can do this with your favorite girl in the world.

When it rains, I can spend the day in the kitchen (or curled up with a book or my fav blankie ) yes, at my tender young age I still drag my blankie from room to room with me.

don’t judge.

So it is more than obvious to me that as I entered the kitchen to play yesterday afternoon at that EXACT moment..

Mercury went into Retrograde.

It started by hearing a peeing sound coming from the living room.

nope. she was innocent.

it was my fireplace. I did the girly thing first & called mr. barefoot.

no answer. Darn ( I said something much more colorful than this.)

I put a bucket in the fireplace listened to it drip

and drip and drip.

I went upstairs to grab old towels to wipe up what had already puddled on the floor to realize that the windows were open in one of the bedrooms and the carpets were soaked.

duh? it never did occur to me to check windows as this beautiful N’oreaster ripped through my yard. nope.

Next was the call from Scott that he would be on the later train. again. C’la vie.

I cleaned up the multiple messes, cried to my friends on Facebook, poured myself a glass of wine and planted my patootiee on the couch with trashy TV.

Today is a new day and so for breakfast this morning I am making what should have been for dessert last night. I’ve been hearing about this combination for awhile, but it took me finding avocados at a wicked cool sale (I’m from Mass, I can say wicked) At the Whole Paycheck Store for me to be brave enough to try it.

adapted from Whole Living Magazine

Chocolate-mint pudding

3 avocadoes

6 Tbsp cocoa powder

1/4 cup raw honey

3/4 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/8 tsp mint extract

fresh mint leaves

sea salt

1) place avocado, cocoa, honey, vanilla, mint and a dash of salt in a food processor and puree until smooth.

Sprinkle with sea salt and garnish with fresh mint leaves. (those aren’t sprinkles, I used a new Himalayan pink sea salt.)

seriously.. I made pudding from avocado! The only thing that I will say is that because all the ingredients are room temp, the pudding was too warm. I fear that refrigerating the avocado or the honey prior to blending would change the texture in a not so good way, so this is a definite make-ahead recipe. Mine’s chilling as I type 🙂

The pudding itself has a wonderfully smooth texture. It is very chocolatey. I think next time I will add just a bit more cocoa powder. And perhaps stir in some dark chocolate chips? Or toasted almonds? or shredded coconut?


happy Tuesday!


I cheated.

And I lied.

Well sort of.

I made apple pie. Remember how I said that I wasn’t going to bake an  apple pie ???

Well, Ryan has been begging me to bake a pie.




So I finally gave in..homemade apple pie♥♥♥

with fresh cinnamon sugar whipped cream

and little cinnamon covered pastry hearts

My pie filling:

about 6 apples, peeled, cored & thinly sliced

( I’m not exactly sure what kinds they were *they were a mix, because when they opened the ropes last weekend to that part of the orchard, I made a mad dash & just picked)

3/4 cup sugar

2 Tbsp all-purppose flour

pinch of salt,

grating of fresh nutmeg & about 1 tsp of cinnamon.

I mixed these all together then poured into a pastry lined- pie plate & topped with a second pastry.

I poked purty little holes all around the top of the crust to let steam escape, brushed an egg wash allover the top of the crust & dusted with some cinnamon sugar. I used my pastry scraps to cup out little hearts, arranged them on top of the crust & then hit them with a little egg wash / cinnamon sugar action.

I used aluminum foil to protect the edges & baked it at 375 degrees using convection bake for about 45 minutes, ( 400 if you don’t have convection bake)

removing the foil after 1/2 an hour.

I baked off the little remaining heart toppers at the same temp, but they only took about 12 minutes.

The whipped cream was a pint of fresh heavy cream whipped with 1/4 cup homemade cinnamon / sugar mixture until thick. (refrigerating both the bowls & the whack prior to whipping helps it whip up much faster 😉 )

but here lies the deception.. I had already promised to make Swedish meatballs for dinner & since time is not always on my side, I had to take shortcuts.

I bought ( hold onto your seats here…) frozen already prepared meatballs from the freezer section of the grocery store; canned gravy & half and half !!

*I’ll give you a moment to regain your composure before I go on*

It gets worse..

ALL of this while I’m on the phone with Jason in Florida giving him my secret meatball recipe.

and I had frozen balls on my stove.

I suppose I need to hand my crown over at this point?

:here is where the lying part comes in:

Ry said, ” mom, you’ve outdone yourself, I love the way that you prepared these meatballs !”

Me: “thank you”.

Now technically I did prepare the dish… and I added bay leaves to the simmering fake-out meal, but since I didn’t actually make the meatballs well, that could be misconstrued as lying.

But they were happy with their meatballs and when all was said & done..

they had pie 🙂

and everyone was happy!

Now for the winner of the super-de-duper apple corer..

Christina!!! Congraulations!!  And thank you to all who participated.  I have a few more ideas for giveaways in the near future..

Christina..email me your information & I will get this baby shipped out to you 🙂

Casa Hagg is pleased to announce

our newest family addition….

YAY!! She arrived  Tuesday  afternoon and although it was touch & go there for awhile, (installation horrors) she is now up & running & doing us proud 🙂

( I obviously still need to paint behind where the previous stove had a higher backsplash)

Her first special job was to bake off some chocolate chip cookies, but due to the length of her arrival,  I had to hold the dough overnight & just make our planned dinner, chicken parmesan.

Ok, so this was not THE chicken parm that I made Tuesday night, ( same recipe, however) this is a picture from the birthday dinner that I made for Scott’s 40th ‘space themed’ party ( he was born 10 days after man first walked on the moon. Had he arrived those measly 10 days earlier, he could have gone to space camp for free.)

He has talked about this for his whole life, so we threw him a space party.

Here is the cake that Ali baked & decorated for him

Anyway…. I will post my chicken parm recipe soon, with photos as it is definitely a favorite here 🙂

I baked the cookies the next day & they came out perfect.

Basic chocolate chip cookies :

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar (packed)
2 large eggs at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup oats
2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

preheat oven to 350

Line  cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
Finely chop the oats in a food processor. Mix in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars in a large bowl until fluffy. Scrape down sides of mixing bowl. Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture in 3 parts and stir just until blended. Stir in the chocolate chips.
For each cookie, drop 1 rounded tablespoonful of dough onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing 1-inch apart. Bake until the cookies are golden , about 13 minutes. Cool the cookies on the baking sheets for 5 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely.

They baked beautifully!

Here is a picture of my sister, Jodie eating one right out out the oven
and lastly, one of my favorite variations of this recipe
I’m off to clean out the fridge… tomorrow’s CSA day!!
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