Festive Fun On The Patio

October 28, 2017 Outdoor Celebrations

Getting in the holiday spirit for any occasion  can be both fun inside and outside!  Get inspiration from this neat video we found by Southern Living.  Click the video below!

And no Halloween party is complete without some spooky snacks! Click the image below for 10 freaky recipes! 

And complete your haunted Halloween with some cool pumpkin carving ideas!

 

 

Recipe of the Month: Grilled… Dinner, Sides & Desserts

October 27, 2017 Outdoor Cooking

Slow Cooker Beef Stew on the Grill

Ingredients

2­3 lb. chuck roast (cut in bite size chunks)

1 large white onion (chopped)

6 whole carrots (chopped)

6 celery stalks (chopped)

3 cups kernel corn

12 large white mushrooms (chopped)

6 medium baking potatoes (chopped)

4 cloves garlic (minced)

1 package brown gravy mix

1 package au jus mix

2 1/2 cups water

3 tbsp. corn starch

Salt Pepper

Slow Cooked Beef Stew

Serves 10 ­12

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

Here’s hearty and savory blend of beef and vegetables that’s sure to warm you up on a chilly day. If you haven’t used a Dutch oven in the past you’re in for a treat. Leave uncovered for the first 30 minutes to infuse a mild, smoky flavor to the stew. Serve with fresh warm bread and butter.

Directions

Set up the grill for indirect cooking and heat to 300°F (149°C). In the 7 quart Dutch oven, add 2 cups of water, stir in the gravy and au jus mixes. Add all the ingredients (except the corn starch). Salt and pepper to taste. Fold with a large spoon to mix the ingredients. Place the Dutch oven uncovered in the grill and allow to cook for 30 minutes (to add smoky flavor). Cover and allow to simmer for 3­4 hours. Mix the corn starch with 1/2 cup of water and whisk until thoroughly blended. Add to Dutch oven and fold ingredients. Allow stew to simmer for another 30 minutes. Serve immediately with warm bread and butter.

Grilled Rosemary Sweet Potato Fries

Ingredients

2 lbs. medium­ sized yams

3 tbsp. unsalted butter

1/4 cup good­ quality maple syrup

2 tsp. Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced

Salt

Pepper

Grilled Rosemary Sweet Potato Fries

Serves 4

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Sweet potatoes have gained popularity as the new french fry. These smoky sweet potato wedges are the perfect complement to any burger or steak dish.

Directions

Place the yams in a pot of cold water; add 1 tbsp. of salt. Cook until the potatoes are just tender when pierced with a knife, about 15 minutes. You can also microwave the yams whole, until just tender. Let cool slightly, and then cut each yam into four or six 1/2­in. thick wedges (depending on the size of the yam). Combine the butter, maple syrup, Dijon mustard and rosemary in a small sauce-pot. Season the mixture with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then remove from the heat. Heat your Twin Eagles Grill to high heat. Brush the yam wedges with the butter mixture and season with salt and pepper. Grill the wedges until lightly golden brown, turning often, about 5 minutes. Remove to a platter and drizzle with remaining butter mixture.  Serve hot.

Grilled Corn on the Cob with Chipotle Maple Glaze

Ingredients

2 chipotle chilies, from a can of chipotles in adobo sauce

2/3 cup maple syrup

1/2 stick (2 oz.) unsalted butter

1 clove garlic

Salt

Pepper

8 ears of corn, husks pulled back and cleaned

Grilled Corn on The Cob With Maple Chipotle Glaze

Serves 8

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

The smoky heat of chipotles and the sweetness of maple syrup are absolutely delicious when combined with the flavor of grilled corn.

Directions

Finely chop the chilies, using a food processor or by hand. Place the minced chilies in a small saucepan along with the maple syrup, butter and garlic. Season liberally with salt and pepper. Place the pan over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring often. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Remove the glaze from the heat and let rest at room temperature. Preheat your Twin Eagles Grill to medium heat. Rinse the cleaned ears of corn with water and place them directly on the grill. Grill, turning often, until tender and slightly charred in spots, about 10 minutes. Brush the corn with the glaze and continue to grill for about 5 minutes more, turning often.

 

Fire Roasted Cherry Cheesecake

Ingredients

Crust 1/2 cup butter, cubed

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1½ cups gluten free allpurpose flour mix

1/2 cup cocoa powder

pinch of salt

Fire Roasted Cherry Topping

1 lb. fresh black or red cherries, (or 1 bag of frozen cherries)

1 tbsp. melted coconut oil

pinch of sugar

1/4 cup water

2 tbsp. brown sugar or maple syrup

pinch of cinnamon

Cheesecake

2 (8 oz.) packages of cream cheese

(250 g packages or 1 cup each)

Fire Roasted Cherry Cheesecake

Serves 10

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Fire Roasted Cherry Cheesecake is another cheesecake to add to our growing collection of cheesecake recipes.  This cheesecake is completely gluten free, and totally awesome! Try it yourself.

Directions

Preheat your grill to 375°F, preparing for indirect grilling. Line a sheet pan with foil and spread the cherries on it, drizzle with coconut oil and sprinkle with sugar. Grill over indirect heat while the grill is preheating, (and while you make the crust and cheesecake,) between 15 and 25 minutes. Once they’re split, juicing and bubbly, remove the cherries from grill and transfer them to a saucepan. Set aside. Bring the cream cheese to room temperature while you make the crust. Using a stand mixer, or by hand, cream together the butter and sugar for the crust. Add the flour and cocoa powder, using a pastry cutter or two butter knives to cut the sugar mixture in to the flour and cocoa powder until you have a crumbly mixture that will stay together when pressed. Cut the cream cheese into squares. Blend them with the sugar, flour, and vanilla, using a hand or stand mixer. Add the eggs and yogurt, beating on low, until smooth. Warm the cream until steaming. Pour the cream over the chocolate chunks, stirring until melted. If the chocolate doesn’t all melt, use the microwave in short 15­ second bursts until everything is melted.

2/2 1 cup Greek yogurt, plain, vanilla or cherry 1 cup sugar 2 tbsp. gluten free all purpose flour 1 tsp. vanilla 2 eggs 1 cup solid dark chocolate, broken into small chunks 1/4 cup of cream Pour the filling into the crust lined pan. Swirl in about half of the dark chocolate. Bake at 350°F for approximately 45 minutes. You can test the doneness of your cheesecake by carefully jiggling it. If the center‐inch still moves like jello, you’re ready to pull it out. Cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, then remove the sides of the pan and cool another 15 minutes. You can serve still warm, or chill for at least an hour. Do not put it in the freezer. While waiting for the cheesecake to cool, add the water, sugar, and cinnamon to the cherries. Bring them to a simmer. Allow to cool, or keep warm. When you’re ready to serve, top the whole cheesecake with the fire roasted cherry mix

Texas Custom Patios Is Growing

October 28, 2017 Patio Contractor

We are so excited to extend our patio living space to make room for some new Texas Custom family members.   We are like a family here, so when we welcome new people aboard, we want you to meet them!  Here’s the new crew from our new Dallas/Ft. Worth office.

From left to right: Josh Miller, David Elliot, Crystal Morgan, Collin Jarrell, Lilia Alvarez, Joshua Murray (Not pictured: Gavin Minnis)

Josh Miller – Project Developer
Josh is a West Texas boy that loves the outdoors and helping others enjoy it also.
I have a background in customer service and sales, most recently in the oil and gas industry.  I love the quality that TCP brings to the table. It’s not your average patio covering, it’s a custom built extension of the original home for the homeowner to enjoy an amazing outdoor lifestyle.  Fun fact… I love going to national parks and took a 2 month camping road trip hitting 6 major national parks in the western US with lots of smaller ones in between.
David Mitchell Elliot – Project Developer
David originally from Minnesota is an avid golfer who moved to Texas 3 years ago with his wife, Betty.
I’m a former pastor, philosophy teacher and concrete company owner.  I love the personality of the Texas Custom Patios and the organization itself.  The product we produce is awesome!  Fun fact… I played pro basketball in Europe in the early eighties.
Crystal Morgan – Office Manager
I was born and raised in the DFW area!
My entire career has been in office management ranging from advertising to country clubs. I  love working with TCP because I am able to see complete, beautiful outdoor living transformations! It’s absolutely amazing to see all kinds of projects from start to finish.  Fun fact… I’m a huge animal lover!
Lilia Alvarez – Office Assistant 
Lilia was born and raised in Dallas,Texas!
I enjoy all of the wonderful customers I get to speak with and seeing the finished projects the designers work so hard on.  Fun fact… I enjoy working on DIY/ fixer upper projects on the weekends!
Joshua Murray – Project Developer
I love creating awesome backyard experiences for homeowners and working with a good team!
Collin Jarrell – Lead Project Developer  
 Gavin Minnis – Project Developer (not pictured) 

Recipe of the Month: Burgers with a Twist

September 28, 2017 Outdoor Cooking

This month we are taking the tried-and-true “burger” and giving it some kick!  This will be your new go-to recipe for your football watching weekends!

 

Ingredients

1½ pounds ground beef

1/2 tbsp. Kosher salt

1/2 tsp. black pepper (or more/less to taste)

Hot Pepper Jelly

Guacamole

Bacon

Rolls

Greens (lettuce, spinach, etc.)

 

Directions

In a bowl, toss meat with seasoning. Form into patties and place on a large plate or baking sheet (about 7­-8 patties). Cover and chill 2 hours or overnight. Allow burgers to come to almost room temperature before grilling. Season all sides of the burgers with additional salt and pepper.  Clean, oil and heat grill. Once hot, place burgers onto the grill and cook until done to your liking. Once you flip the burger, baste the cooked side with some of the hot pepper jelly, when you remove the burgers, baste the other side. Assemble burgers with guacamole and bacon. Add an additional dollop of jelly on top of the burger and top with the other half of the bun. Smush it down a bit and dig in!

 

For more great recipes like: wild mushroom and blue cheese stuffed burgers, grilled lobster tail with Baja butter, apricot glazed pork kabobs, grilled sausage stuffing, blueberry dumplings or grilled pineapple with coconut caramel glaze … taste here!  

 

 

And The Winner Is …

September 28, 2017 Uncategorized

Texas Custom Patios!

We are proud to announce we are recipients of The Texas Association of Builders 2017 Star Awards.  We had two gorgeous projects make it to the finals and took the title for Best Outdoor Living Space Remodeler for our Project of the Month featured in July.

 

 

The Texas Association of Builders (TAB) announced and presented the 2017 Star Awards winners on Thursday, August 3 at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas. The highly-coveted Texas Star Awards are given annually in conjunction with the Sunbelt Builders Show™ to recognize excellence in all areas of the home building industry.

In 1992, the Texas Association of Builders launched the Star Awards – the only statewide tribute to excellence in the home building industry. The 2016 Star Awards recognized the outstanding work of builders, remodelers, architects, designers, sales professionals, marketing professionals, construction professionals and industry leaders in Texas and the Southwest.

Entries were judged by a distinguished panel of industry experts. Winners will be featured in the September/October issue of Texas Builder magazine. For more information about the Star Awards, please visit www.TexasBuilders.org.

 

 

Recipe of the Month: Helping with Helpings

August 31, 2017 Uncategorized

If you are one of the blessed ones that did not lose everything, opportunities are open everywhere to help those that did lose it all.  A devastating amount of people in the Houston area are without homes, beds, clothing, but most crucially they are without nourishment.  While some shelters and disaster relief sites are at capacity and turning people and donations away, the Houston Food Bank is welcoming donations with open arms.

The Houston Food Bank has a history of providing disaster relief, but has never seen devastation on this scale.

They will provide food and supplies in the short term and for many months to come to residents in southeast Texas who will struggle to rebuild their lives.  The Food Bank will work closely with their network of partner agencies to ensure food is getting to those who need it most.  They also find ways to connect offers of help with those who are providing help.

If you need help
Call our helpline at 832-369-9390
Call 2-1-1

If you want to help those hit by Harvey

Donate Money
The best thing you can do to help the Houston Food Bank right now is to make a donation of money designated for disaster relief.

Our neighbors urgently need assistance.  The Houston Food Bank’s greatest need is for funds that will help us provide relief and continue recovery efforts.

Donations will be used for disaster relief until this year’s needs are met, and the remaining funds will support ongoing hunger-relief efforts.

Volunteer
Please register first so we can make sure you have a productive
experience
> Regular volunteer shifts apply, open daily (including Sunday)

Donate Food and Supplies
Drop off curbside at 535 Portwall
Now through Saturday, September 9
8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. Monday – Friday
8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Saturday/Sunday

Most Needed Items

> Canned ready-to-eat items with pull tops: vegetables, fruit
> Protein in pouches or pull-top cans: tuna, beef stew, chili,
canned chicken
> Peanut butter
> Snacks: granola bars, breakfast bars, etc.
> Toiletries
> Paper goods
> Diapers
> Cleaning supplies: mops, mop buckets, brooms, bleach wipes,
bleach, garbage bags, bug spray

 

After the Storm

August 31, 2017 Outdoor Safety

After the Storm Resource Guide

A resource guide to help you get back on your feet after you have braved the storm United Way of Greater Houston has created After the Storm for you to use as a resource toward rebuilding your life. Whether you are trying to provide basic needs like food, shelter, and clothing, or you are struggling with the stress that is a major part of crisis recovery, you will find important and helpful information in this booklet. The entire content of this booklet is also available on the web HERE —for your convenience. The 2-1-1 Texas/United Way Helpline is always available, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Let 2-1-1 be your first call when you don’t know who to call. Trained HELPLINE specialists are always available to listen to your questions, understand your needs and help you identify resources that are tailored for your specific situation. There are no words that can ease the losses you have experienced. Please know that there are many resources that can help you take those difficult steps toward recovery. United Way heals the past, shapes the future and makes today better for us all. Please know that United Way is here to help.

Very truly yours,

Anna M. Babin President and CEO

After the Storm

Hurricanes…tornados…earthquakes…tropical storms…floods…when the forces of nature are unleashed, the results are often devastating. There is little anyone can do to prevent or reduce the power of these natural disasters. This booklet is intended to serve as a guide along the path to recovery.

When a Crisis Strikes

Living through a major crisis produces many different types of feelings. You may feel anxiety, depression, confusion and tension. These feelings may cause a breakdown in our usual coping mechanisms. You may find it hard to function, behave in unexpected ways or have trouble making decisions. Although a crisis can result in a sense of anxiety, pain or hopelessness that makes it hard to cope, these same feelings can serve as motivation to look for help and develop new coping mechanisms. That’s where this guide comes in…we hope you will use it to guide your steps as you begin the rebuilding process.

The United Way put together these checklists as a guide during  recovery.

Things You Can Do for Yourself and Others

Get Into a Routine During this difficult period, it is especially important that you take care of yourself. As quickly as possible, resume your usual activity patterns. Establishing a regular routine will help you and other family members begin the recovery process.

Take Care of Yourself

Try to eat properly. Choose foods that include the basic food groups and offer a balance of fruits, vegetables, protein, carbohydrates and other essential nutrients. Limit junk foods, especially for children, and drink plenty of fluids. Healthy eating will help you rebuild your strength during the trying times ahead. Sleeping away from familiar surroundings can be very difficult. Make every effort to get as much sleep as possible so that you will be rested and able to face each day’s challenges. Return to regular sleeping times as soon as you are able to do so. This will help your body refresh and restore itself.

Take Control

Although it may seem that fate has taken charge of your life, it is essential that you reassert control as quickly as possible. Begin to plan for your recovery, even though you may feel that there is little you can do. Assess the damage you have experienced and identify resources that are available to storm victims. Make a list of tasks each day so that you can celebrate small successes as you build up to larger accomplishments.

Communicate

Share your feelings with others. Everyone affected by the disaster has a story to tell. Do not hesitate to share your experience and be a good listener for others who need to talk. Be open about your concerns, ask questions and express your emotions as they surface.

Tune In to Your Children

You know how overwhelming the disaster has been for you as an adult. Be sensitive to the fact that your children may be particularly in need of your love and attention. Encourage them to talk about their fears. Acknowledge their losses and allow them to take an active role in the recovery process. The structure of a regular routine is especially important for children. Be sure they eat properly and get enough sleep just as soon as conditions permit. At times like these, lots of extra hugs and kisses can be very therapeutic for you and your children.

 

A Roof Over Your Head

The experience of homelessness for those who have been forced out of their homes as a result of a natural disaster is particularly devastating. Suddenly, in spite of years of careful planning and saving, you may have lost your home and its valued contents. You may have lost treasured mementos and cherished possessions that are an important part of your history. If this is the case, you have reason to grieve. While no one can truly recapture all that you have lost, there is help available to help you begin again. FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) If your area is declared a national disaster, you may qualify for financial aid. You are encouraged to apply for FEMA assistance or aid, regardless of the extent of the disaster you experienced. People who suffered damages from the storms are eligible for assistance through various programs offered by FEMA. If you are a renter, you may be eligible for a grant from FEMA to cover Short term rent assistance at a new location. The process involved in applying for FEMA may seem time-consuming. However, you may be missing an important source of financial assistance if you fail to take advantage of this opportunity. When you apply, please have the following information available: † Social Security number † Current and pre-disaster address † Telephone numbers where you can be contacted † Insurance Information † Total household income † A routing and account number from your bank (only necessary if you want to have disaster assistance funds transferred directly) Call the FEMA Helpline or check online if you need additional help or have questions. You can also learn the status of an application, additional services, or the location of specific services.

FEMA Application Line . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1-800-621-FEMA (3362)

TTY # . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1-800-462-7585

You can also apply online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov.

Additional Resources

The American Red Cross and the Salvation Army are two organizations that offer a variety of resources, particularly during the early stages following a disaster. Be sure to contact both to determine whether their services meet your current needs.

American Red Cross. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1-877-500-8645 866-526-8300 (Local Houston Office)

Salvation Army . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 713-752-0677

TEXAS UNITED WAY HELPLINE  … 2-1-1

Recipe of the Month: Frozen Hot Chocolate

July 29, 2017 Outdoor Cooking

To keep in the spirit of our Project of the Month (Christmas in July) … we decided we would cool things down with a sweet twist on a traditional holiday treat.  July (and really the next few months to come) are too hot to drink anything other than something ice cold.  Enjoy this month’s recipe poolside, and before you know it the holidays will be here to enjoy the real deal.

Frozen Hot Chocolate

Ingredients

  • 6 fluid ounces milk
  • 1/2 cup hot cocoa mix (or two packets)
  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups crushed iced cubes
  • Whipped cream

Directions

Pour milk into blender.  Add hot cocoa mix and ice.   Blend first at low speed and then high speed until ice is finely crushed and slushy. Pour into a tall glass and top with whipped cream and a dusting of hot cocoa mix.  Serve with a straw and enjoy!  Happy hot holidays! ;)

Have a project in mind? We work throughout the Houston and Dallas - Fort Worth areas.

Our Customers Love Us

Texas Custom Patios did an amazing job on our outdoor living space! Everything from the initial meeting to the finished product has been wonderful! Steven listened to our ideas, asked questions, and then came back to us with a design that was even better than we dreamed! The crews that came to work on our project were incredible. The final result is an outdoor living space that looks as if it has always been a part of our home… not something that was added on. We would definitely recommend them to anyone looking to add outdoor living space to their home!

© 2017 Texas Custom Patios