August 7, 2011

A Dream Kitchen...Blissful Blues!

When we opened the doors to The Maine House, I redecorated our Master Bath from green, to a soft shade of blue....the color I chose is called Morning Mist!
How calming, serene and soft!
 I had also purchased a soft blue toile tasseled valance to place over the bathroom window!

I love the idea of carrying over a similar color scheme into a new kitchen and of course, with a background of toile! Whether you choose, blue, black, red, pink or brown, toile is a great way to enhance any kitchen, especially if you like the shabby chic or cottage looks. If you're looking to redo your kitchen, think about repainting those outdated cabinets with a fresh coat of soft white and add new door handles in an antiqued or brushed silver.

A Maine House Mosaic

If we go for a shabby chic kitchen, I think we would paint the walls a soft white or wedgewood blue. I sometimes refer to this as "Williamsburg Blue!"
An antique or distressed white table is the perfect base for a beautiful shabby chic toile setting. I have been able to use fabric to create new seat covers to spice up old chairs in the past, so how beautiful would blue toile fabric look on the kitchen wrought iron barstools? If you like to sew, you can  have a ball sewing up linen napkins and table runners in coordinating fabrics like stripes or pale solids.

 The Divine Miss M uses fresh florals she picks up from the grocery in her kitchen. It creates such beauty and drama tucked in little corners of her Tuscany style Atlanta kitchen. I believe I would choose a centerpiece of vivid pink, bright orange roses or  white Queen Anne's Lace in order to add a touch of romance to the dining table setting. And to accent the kitchen windows, perhaps balloon valances in blue toile fabric accented with an underlayer of battenburg lace cafĂ© curtains! Now, that's country french of a different color! Hmmmm...be still my heart!

This dish is a perfect accompaniment dish with a rotisserie chicken!

Baked Lemon Pasta
1 pound Thin Spaghetti
4 Tablespoons Salted Butter
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 cloves Garlic, Minced
1 whole Lemon, Juiced And Zested
2 cups Sour Cream
½ teaspoons Kosher Salt, Or More To Taste
Plenty Of Grated Parmesan Cheese
Flat-leaf Parsley, Chopped
Extra Lemon Juice

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook spaghetti until al dente. In a skillet, melt butter with olive oil over LOW HEAT. When butter is melted, add minced garlic. Squeeze lemon juice into the pan. Turn off heat. Add sour cream and stir mixture together. Add lemon zest and salt. Taste, then add more salt if necessary. Pour mixture over drained spaghetti and stir together, then pour spaghetti into an oven safe dish. Bake, covered, for 15 minutes. Then remove foil and bake for an additional 7 to 10 minutes. (Don’t bake too long or the pasta will dry out.) When you remove it from the oven, squeeze a little more lemon juice over the top. Top generously with Parmesan cheese, then chopped parsley. Give it a final squeeze of lemon juice at the end or feel free to add as much as you like.

Estelle's Lemon Topped Cheesecake
2 cups sugar, divided
1 cup matzo meal
 1 cup chopped slivered almonds
1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted
4 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon grated lemon rind
 2 teaspoons grated lemon rind 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Stir together 1⁄4 cup sugar, matzo meal, chopped slivered almonds, and melted butter; press mixture into bottom of a lightly greased 10-inch springform pan. Bake at 350° for 13 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool crust on a wire rack. Reduce oven temperature to 325°.
Beat cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Gradually add remaining 13⁄4 cups sugar, beating well. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Stir in 1 tablespoon grated lemon rind and 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice. Pour mixture into prepared crust.
Bake at 325° for 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes or until cheesecake is almost set. Turn off oven; leave cheesecake in oven 15 minutes. Remove cheesecake to a wire rack; run a sharp knife around edges of pan to loosen. Cool completely. Cover and chill at least 8 hours. Place cheesecake on a serving platter or cake stand; release sides of springform pan, and remove. Spread Lemon Curd evenly over top of cheesecake.


  1. I love the blue toile tasseled valance! Where did you purchase it?

    1. I purchased this valance at Country Curtains!

  2. Estelle,
    Found your blog searching for toile valances ideas for my home and I discovered so much more!!
    Your decorating, recipes, and beautiful thoughts blew me away!!! Wish you were closer to help me with my home !!
    Thank you for your awesome sentiments. I especially love your garden quote. You have inspired me!!!
    I must go back and read more of Ralph Waldo Emerson.
    Eleanor Marino


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