Showing posts with label baking. Show all posts
Showing posts with label baking. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Christmas Recap in January

With the new year well underway, I thought I would carry on my tradition of being late to the party. After the whirlwind of the holidays, I was just too exhausted to even think about posting. My fibro kicked in with a vengeance and I spent a few days relaxing, reading other’s blogs and planning the many sewing projects I want to do.
We had a wonderful family filled Christmas, with lots of good food, great company and merriment.

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My granddaughter MacKensie decorated gingerbread cookies for the first time, and was quite thrilled with the outcome!

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There were Christmas concerts at church,

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Please forgive the awful picture quality, quick pictures with my phone were all I could manage. MacKensie is second from the left in the top row. They were all so adorable, singing Jingle Bells while shaking their bells. They all wore their jammies for the performance, adding to the cuteness!
I hope your holidays were as wonderful as ours, and I wish all the best for you and your families for the new year!
Happy Stitching!
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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

MMM, Cake!

I meant to write this post just after my birthday, (in March!!) but never got around to it.  My oldest son baked me a cake!  Not just any cake, but an honest to goodness scratch cake!  I was thrilled, and so proud of him.  I’m not sure what recipe he used for the cake itself,  just a simple white cake that he then filled with real whipped cream and loads of fresh strawberries.  The crowning glory was the topping.  Marshmallow fondant.  I had never heard of it before.  Again, I’m not sure of the recipe he used, but it was pretty much the same as this one.  He said it was really very easy to make, and tasted delicious.  It was also much easier to work with than regular fondant. Enough talk, on to the pictures!

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I was in my sewing room when he gave it to me.

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And the inside……

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Would you like a piece?

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I tried to get a picture of him smiling into the camera, but it just wasn’t going to happen. He is just too shy.

Didn’t he do a fabulous job? You would never guess it was the first one he had ever made.  He had so much fun doing it that he has made a few more for other occasions.  He also loves to cook, and often makes dinner for the family.  Isn’t he wonderful? Thanks again Adam, I love you!

Thanks for reading!

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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Boston Cream Pie Cake?

Ok. I will be the first to point out that this cake isn’t pretty.  In fact, it may be the ugliest  cake I have ever made.  Of course, if I had taken my time, and waited for the ganache to completely cool and set, it would have looked much better.  AND, the chocolate would actually be on the cake, gracefully dripping down the sides. Oh well, better luck next time. And believe me, there WILL be a next time! This cake is awesome.  Well, here goes, a picture of my poor cake. (the faint of heart  may want to turn away now)
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See what I mean?  But, as you can see, it didn’t bother my family at all…
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They even scraped the ganache off the plate!  This was so easy to make, and tastes fabulous. This is what you need,
One golden two layer cake mix,  made using package directions
two vanilla pudding cups
Bake your cake and let it cool completely.
While your cake is baking, make your  ganache. It is super simple to do. All you need is one cup of heavy (whipping) cream, and one package of chocolate chips. (I used milk choc chips, but you could use anything you like. This recipe is also great made with white chocolate chips) Place the cream and chocolate in a medium sized GLASS bowl. Put about two inches of water in a saucepan and put the bowl on top, making sure the bottom of the  bowl is at least two inches away from the water. You are in essence creating your own double boiler. Bring the water to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, stirring the cream mixture carefully. Be extra careful, steam will escape around the bowl, and can cause severe burns.  It won’t take long for the chocolate to melt. Continue stirring gently until all of the chocolate and cream are incorporated. Do not allow the cream to get too hot. Remove from heat. (don’t touch the bowl with bare hands! It is very HOT! Believe me, I found out the hard way!) Once the bowl has cooled, you can place it in the fridge to speed up the cooling process. Stir occasionally. 
When your cake is completely cool, place the bottom layer on your serving plate, and spoon the pudding onto the top of the layer. Spread it around so that it just reaches the edges. You can use as much or as little pudding as you want. Now. GENTLY place the second layer on top. push it down slightly, just enough for the layers to stick together. Obviously I pushed too hard. That’s why my pudding squished out the sides so much.   Now you are ready to spoon/pour your ganache onto the top. Let it drizzle down the sides too! You don’t want to miss a bit of it! If your ganache has set up a bit too much, just let it sit on the counter for a few minutes to soften.  That’s it! Hopefully your cake turns out prettier than mine. But, if not, at least you know it will taste great! Now I’m off to have another piece….


Take a look at all the great parties I'm linking to on my party page!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Chocolate Chip Cookie Heaven

I did sew today, but I haven't finished it yet. Sometime during the afternoon, I got a craving for chocolate chip cookies. So, I had to make some! But, these are not just any cookies. They are the very best. Trust me. I mean, come on, have I ever lied to you? I found the recipe ages ago, on Allrecipes. (love that site!) It is the only chocolate chip recipe I'll ever make.


Award Winning Chocolate Chip Cookies
by Debbi Borsick on Allrecipes

Ingredients

  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 cups butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 (3.4 ounce) packages instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 2 cups chopped walnuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Sift together the flour and baking soda, set aside.
    In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar. Beat in the instant pudding mix until blended. Stir in the eggs and vanilla.

    Blend in the flour mixture. Finally, stir in the chocolate chips and nuts.(if desired)

    It will look something like this,



    For this batch, I used mini M&M's, instead of chocolate chips. I use a mini ice cream scoop to put them on the baking tray, so that they are all pretty much the same size.


    Pop them in the oven for 10-12 minutes. Cool on a wire rack (if they get that far), for a few minutes. At least until the chocolate won't burn your tongue. Nothing ruins a good cookie feast like a burn in your mouth! Then, make yourself a cup of tea and grab a plate. If you are lucky, you will have two or three before anyone else realizes they are ready. (ok, that may just be wishful thinking on my part)


    Honest, no one took a bite out of that cookie. A piece fell off, and I had to taste it! I wanted a crisper cookie this time, so I cut back almost half a cup of flour. When the recipe is followed correctly, the result is a lighter, more cake like cookie. (which are also fabulous!) The beauty of this recipe is the pudding mix. You can use almost any flavor you like, and vary the chips to suit. This recipe is also quite large. It makes 6-7 dozen, which is perfect if you have a large family of cookie monsters! So, the next time you need a chocolate chip cookie fix, try these. I know the whole family will love them!

    Anne

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    Tuesday, July 20, 2010

    Peanut Butter Crumb Cake

    While blog hopping recently, I came upon the cutest little baking site, called Ur Baking Me Crazy! , hosted by Hanni, who is just sixteen years old! She has several recipes listed, with lots of pictures for each one. I settled on making Peanut Butter Crumb Cake, (although there is a chocolate cheesecake recipe with my name written all over it!) because my family is nuts about peanut butter. The recipe is incredibly easy, and whipped up in no time at all.
    As I mentioned in my last post, I picked yesterday to bake, thinking that the weather was 'cooler'. Big mistake! As I was assembling the ingredients and such, the sky was overcast and a storm seemed imminent. There was even a nice breeze floating through my kitchen windows. As soon as the first ingredients made it into the mixing bowl, the clouds parted and the blistering sun appeared! The humidity increased to stifling proportions and the breeze disappeared. Now, any normal person would have given up and put everything away.(especially since we don't have air conditioning!) But not me. I plugged along, determined to have cake with my tea later in the evening! So, without further ado, on to the recipe!

    Peanut Butter Crumb Cake, ingriedients

    One yellow cake mix (two layer size)
    1 cup smooth peanut butter
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1 cup water
    1/4 cup vegetable oil
    3 eggs
    6oz chocolate chips

    Method -

    Beat dry cake mix, brown sugar and peanut butter together, until crumbly. Reserve 2/3 cup of mixture for topping.


    Add remaining ingredients, and beat until smooth. Scraping bowl often


    This is where I made a slight change. Hanni suggests just sprinkling the chocolate chips on top of the cake before baking, but with the multitude of chocoholics in my family, I decided to add them to the mix as well.

    TIP - To prevent the chocolate chips from sinking to the bottom of the cake during baking, toss them with a little flour before adding to the batter. I have no idea why this works, but it does!


    Pour batter into greased and floured 9 x 13 pan. Sprinkle with reserved dry mix and more chocolate chips.


    Bake at 350 degrees for 40 - 45 minutes.

    Note - Don't go downstairs and do laundry while it is baking! You run the risk of not hearing the timer on your stove, like I did. My youngest son was being helpful and took it out of the oven, and it wasn't quite cooked. So unfortunately my version turned out slightly heavy. But, it stills tastes awesome! I would definately recommend the recipe! Enjoy!



    Don't you just love the saucer? It belongs to a set of dishes that were my grandmother's. I have a place setting for twelve, including dessert plates and fruit nappies! I just love them. My grandmother used them as her everyday dishes for sixty-five years. When she received them as a wedding present, the were already twenty-five years old. She and a few of her sisters all received a set as wedding gifts from their parents.
    Have a great day everyone! Anne

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    Monday, July 19, 2010

    Up-Cycled Petal Skirt

    Another stinkin' hot day in Southern Ontario! Who would have thought? The temperature itself isn't that high, but the humidity is a killer. It started out cooler this morning, so I hoped we'd have a bit of a respite from the heat. But, no luck. And in my infinite wisdom, this afternoon, I decided to bake a cake. The sky was overcast, and there was a breeze, so I thought to myself, it won't be too hot to bake! Ha! As soon as I started mixing, the blistering sun came out. Naturally. Foiled again. But I plowed ahead anyway, and by the time I was ready to put my cake in the oven, it was hot enough in my kitchen to cook it on the counter. ( I put it in the oven anyway, since it was already on, lol) It is baking now, and the delicious smells wafting from my kitchen make a little (little?) suffering worthwhile. I will be doing a post with the recipe later today or tomorrow, depending on how it turns out!
    Now, on to the main attraction of my post. A few weeks ago, my good friend Connie, gave me several pieces of fabric. Amongst them was the remains of a vintage sheet. Part of the sheet had already been cut into strange (she got it that way) large 'pocket' shapes. I have no idea what the original owner was doing with them, but I knew I could come up with something. I also had a white, eyelet trimmed pillowcase in my stash, just begging to be used. After a few days of brainstorming, I came up with this. I call it 'The Petal Skirt'.


    Unfortunately, neither my camera, nor my picture taking skills have improved, so we're stuck with another blurry picture! I thought the skirt turned out fairly well. I added the yo-yo flowers and ribbons as an afterthought, because the skirt was kind of boring without. I know you can't really see it, but the center of the flower is actually a shiny bead, the same dark pink as the stripe. It twinkles in the light, which I thought little girls would appreciate!
    Here are a couple pictures of the back.


    Here you can see the pillowcase 'slip' under the petals.


    This skirt was so easy to do, I'm sure I'll be making more. This one is a size seven, and will be posted in my etsy shop soon!
    My newest sewing projects are matching outfits for twins! My friend Connie's daughter is expecting a boy and a girl in mid-October. D already has a three year old daughter, so she will be incredibly busy! But I know that Connie, being the fantastic Mom and Grandmother she is, will be there to help as much as possible. I will post the outfits later in the week, possibly on Sunday, the day after the shower.
    Have a great evening everyone! I'll be back tomorrow with the recipe for Peanut Butter Crumb Pie!
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    Tuesday, June 1, 2010

    Wordless (full) Wednesday

    It is wordless Wednesday again, and I thought I would share some of my 'sweet' pictures today.

    First, something that my sweet daughter made.


    Doesn't that look yummy? She made them for a friend's birthday. Unfortunately, her friend lives in Toronto, which is a good two hours away. So, Hillary packed them up in a tin and took them on the greyhound bus with her. She sat there with them on her lap for the whole two hour trip! They were in perfect shape when they arrived. Needless to say the Birthday Girl was thrilled!

    Next, we have my son Taylor working on his pride and joy. His car. He bought this car two years ago when he was seventeen. This past winter and spring, he tore the entire car apart, from the wheels up, and restored it. He even tore down the motor and rebuilt it himself. You can understand why he was offered his mechanics apprenticeship at nineteen! As you can see in the picture, our dog Mercedes was never far away. Taylor calls her his 'helper dog'.


    Last August, my brother, his wife, and their two little girls visited from Saskatoon. I went with them to Marine Land in Niagara Falls. It was a great day, so much to see and do. One of the girl's favorites was the petting zoo.


    It was a long day, and the youngest was exhausted. She was too tired to get undressed, but insisted on wearing her slippers and sunglasses!


     Isn't she the sweetest thing?

    So there you have it. I don't think it is possible for me to be wordless. But you don't mind too much, do you?
                                                                                                                                           Anne