Tuesday, December 9, 2008
not the singer. the missing. in.action.
i'm super busy and just don't have it in me to blog this month. all 4 of my readers are saddened, i know. i have lots to blog about and many recipes and crafts to show, but they will have to wait until after december. i am spending time looking at new baby pictures and rolling around in my christmas decorations.
check back with me when my love actually dvd burns out.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
i've seen these whoopie pies popping up all over the web...a variety of "cookie" flavors forming sandwiches around whipped frosting. from vegan chocolate to the ones i used from peabody, these pies are making a come back. unless they never really left, in which case they're just still here.
these whoopie pies are pretty easy, but for every 2 cookies you get only 1 "pie", so plan ahead. as i linked above, i've used the recipe from culinary concoctions by peabody...which she lists as being from a cookbook called baked.
pumpkin whoopie cookies
3 c flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp ground nutmeg
1 c sugar
1 c dark brown sugar, firmly packed
1 c canola oil (i substituted with applesauce)
3 cups chilled pumpkin puree
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1. in a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and spices
2. in a separate bowl, whisk sugars and oil (applesauce) together
3. add pumpkin puree and whisk to combine
4. add eggs and vanilla and whisk until combined
5. sprinkle flour mixture over the pumpkin mixture and whisk until completely combined
6. use a small scoop with a release mechanism to drop heaping tbsp of dough onto baking sheets, about 1 inch apart
(i used a regular tbsp measuring spoon with decent results)
7. bake at 350F for 10-12 minutes, until the cookies are just starting to crack on top and a toothpick comes out clean
8. remove from the oven and let cool completely
before and after
maple syrup cream cheese filling (again, peabody)
3 c powdered sugar
½ c unsalted butter, at room temperature
8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
3 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1. beat the butter until smooth with no visible lumps
2. add the cream cheese an beat until combined
3. add the powdered sugar, maple syrup and vanilla and beat until smooth
to assembly these little cake cookie sandwiches, turn one cookie upside down and pipe frosting to cover the base. grab another cookie and place it flat side down onto the filling. repeat until you've matched up all cookies with their mates. refrigerate for 30 minutes to set before serving (if you can wait/if you care).
stay tuned for how to use cranberries three times in one week.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
husband and puppies
not something totally made...but i'm stretching the rules. it's my blog!
Sunday, November 9, 2008
baby shower pin-ons!
i made husband accompany me to michael's (it was his family baby shower i was attending, afterall) and we searched for the cutest things we could find that didn't have any lace. i came across these baby turquoise blue felt animals with contrast stitching and settled on them. we then found coordinating polka dot ribbons and finished by selecting matching stardream papers. husband searched for the pins and i found a perfectly dotty hole punch. it was pin-on heaven.
these were simple to assemble. i cut out the paper and punched the bottom edge. the animals were sticky, so i placed them with room for the bows. i hand tied the ribbon and hot glued to a corner of the paper. a final strip of glue to the back to affix the pin, and i was done! i made 32 pins plus one for the mommy-t0-be (using a "boy!" sticky cardboard thing).
in case you were still wondering, the pin-ons serve as a game. our game was as follows: everyone gets a pin. if you say baby (or a buzz word of your choice) and someone hears it, that person can take your pin(s). as you collect pins, others around you become more cautious. if you hear someone say baby, you get all of their pins! at the end of the game you an either name the winner as the person with the most pins or (in this case) have the pin marked with a dot - done before the game - be the winner. while people thought they were collecting the most pins, the winner could be someone with just one pin...but the right one! baby shower games are so exciting.
if you were also wondering, the baby made his entrance to the world earlier this week.
Labels: paper/graphic design
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
bundt roasted chicken
1 whole roasting chicken
butter, melted (you measure!)
olive oil (you measure!)
herbs (fresh or dried will do; i used herbs de provence)
salt & pepper
1/2 c chicken stock, beer, or white wine (base this on your seasoning)
bundt pan and foil (i wouldn't normally list the pan, but you can't do this without it)
1. cover the center of the bundt pan with foil
2. coat the bird with a mix of melted butter and olive oil; rub it inside the skin layer, too
3. generously season with herbs, salt and pepper
4. set the bird atop the bundt pan, tucking legs and wings in
5. pour liquid into bottom of bundt pan
6. roast at 425F for 15 minutes, lower to 375F and cook until internal temp is 175/180F (cover top with foil if browning)
when you remove the bird from the pan, i warn you, things will not be pretty. oh no. this is violation central right here, folks. you don't bring this guy (gal?) to the table. carve in the kitchen and bring out lovely slices on a platter. ok? because you don't want your guests/children/grandma to see this:
this chicken was good, but if i'm going to shove something up the cavity, i'd rather it be a beer (grapefruit soda) can or lemons, onions and garlic. or maybe i could do this again and add those things (not the can) plus potatoes and chunky carrots to the base? it was good, but it wasn't blow your mind juicy or savory. i don't necessarily blame the cooking method, so i can't be sure. but mom, i hope you're happy.
Labels: real food
Monday, November 3, 2008
in story book manner, i will tell this tale of savory pumpkin bread making. i'm only doing this because i took a billion photos (and none with a flash!) and need some where to put them. first, i went out and bought all of my ingredients (see above). then i got to work. i'm actually not going to post the recipe here for two important reasons. one: there are a lot of photos and it's already really long. i haven't even typed down there ↓... two: my office is really cold and i have a combination of mouse-hand (frozen digits due to long exposure to mouse holding) and house-hand (frozen hands due to long exposure in the frigid, tundra-like apartment i call home).
kneading the dough. photos credit husband.
i check the dough after an hour. it's barely changed in size. i realize the dough should be in a warm place. ha! have i mentioned this old apartment and it's old joke a of a heating system? i mean, we could turn it way up and sure, it would get kinda warm. but then i wouldn't be blogging anymore. or taking pictures. or eating. i would have to sell everything and live out of a cardboard box because it costs too much to turn it way up. and then i certainy wouldn't be complaining about my fancy-pants focaccia not rising. so i turn the heat a little up and put the bowl near the heat duct. i give it another hour and success! large ball of dough. i punch, i divide, i make 8 inch discs. i even use a ruler. (i'm not kidding, i measured.)
and then it was done! i let it cool for 15 seconds and cut a piece out of the walnut one. i had that one on the top rack and of course, it got darker than it should have. stupid oven. but the insides were still good and even the toasted top was still ok. but, oh, ouch. coarse cornmeal + regular human teeth = damage. so i scraped as much as i could off both loaves.
that would be one of two warnings i have about this recipe. one: use finely ground corn meal. two: watch the loaves so they don't get too dark. i was watching mine and bam, then they were brown. (my cursor is missing right now and on top of mouse/house hands i am struggling to type this...i can't freaking find my place!)
i have no idea how the office felt about this bread, but i liked it. i liked the plain gruyère better than the one with walnuts, but that may have been because it wasn't as "done". the bread wasn't too pumpkin-y and had little pockets of cheese inside. it would be great in a panini as the original recipe suggests. i consider this bread a success.
Labels: real food
Saturday, November 1, 2008
um, i've been a bad, bad blogger. i've just been so busy, then sick, and now here i am trying to catch up. i've got lots to post about and i'll be doing more of that soon. look for some craft posts and more food! until then, enjoy our household's last-minute-carved-at-7 pm-on-halloween pumpkin.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
i don't participate in blogrolls or baking challenges (well, not online), but i do read a lot of cooking blogs and can't help but notice the recent(or not so?) love, and perhaps even obsession, for dorie greenspan. and it's not just online. i was at a party some months ago and saw her dimply plum cake for dessert. i promptly used this observation as party fodder and told my surrounding event-goers all about dorie, based on my very limited firsthand knowledge and supporting web "research".
so for what i believe is my first dorie recipe, i tried my hand at these fall-friendly bars. i like apples, i like raisins, and i like rum (although, i omitted this because i was bringing them to work) so i knew they would probably be good. plus, with dorie's loyal followers tattooing her name all over their bodies, i trusted that she might know what she doing. i mean, no one gets a tattoo that doesn't really mean something to them, right?
applesauce spice bars (recipe by dorie greenspan - not a direct book copy)
1 1/4 c all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter
1 c light brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
1/2 c unsweetened applesauce
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp applejack, brandy, or dark rum (optional)
1 baking apple, peeled, cored and chopped
1/2 c plump, moist raisins (dark or golden)
1/2 c chopped pecans (i didn't use these due to a nut allergy at work)
2 1/2 tbsp heavy cream
1/3 c light brown sugar, packed
2-1/2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tsp light corn syrup
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1. preheat oven to 350F, butter and flour a 9x13 baking pan and place on a baking sheet
2. whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt
3. in a medium saucepan, melt butter over low heat
4. add brown sugar and stir with a whisk until melted and smooth (about 1 min)
5. remove pan from heat and slowly whisk in eggs one at a time until well blended
6. add applesauce, vanilla and liquor and whisk until smooth
7. with a spatula, gently add dry ingredients, mixing only until combined
8. add apple, raisins and nuts
9. pour into prepared baking pan, smooth top and bake for 23-25 min (until pulling in at sides)
10. while cooling, prepare glaze by whisking together cream, sugar, butter and corn syrup over medium heat
11. bring to boil and whisk frequently; allow to simmer and cook for 5 min
12. remove from heat and add vanilla
13. pour hot glaze over cooled bars (in baking pan*)
14. allow to cool and cut into square to remove from pan
*dorie suggests to remove bars from pan, then glaze...i prefer a thicker glaze that doesnt run over the sides. you do what you want.
this recipe was easy and from what it seems, the bars came out perfectly. i say from what it seems because i've seen blog post upon blogpost featuring these bars...and mine fit in with their online friends. i am glad that i kept the bars in the pan to glaze because many people describe a loss of great proportions when the bars were removed.