Tuesday, May 26, 2009

TWD: Chipster Topped Brownies

Two words - Delicious Disaster.

This was supposed to be a layer of decadent brownie topped with chocolate chip cookies. Later, it would be covered two scoops of vanilla ice cream and smothered in hot fudge. But...

I heard tales of overbaked cookie/brownies so I shaved 5 minutes off the time. The result was gooey middle (part of which fell on the floor!). Oops. Oh well, the rest was YUM and got sent to school with hubs with a note that said "looks ugly, tastes great."

I think folks appreciated my hodge podge additions. I added all the random chocolate chips in the cupboard as well as half a bag of heath bits I had left over from something. I will make this again but will bake for the full time. Oh, the lessons learned...

I wish I had photographed it before I took it out of the pan. It was golden brown and gorgeous! Pay no attention to these photos:

Head over to TWD to see how all the other bakers fared. You can also find a link to this week's featured baker and the recipe for this gem.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

TWD: Tartest Lemon Tart

I made this week's lemon tart and man, the name is totally appropriate. You use the entire lemon (minus seeds) for the recipe. This was one tart tart! I've noticed that citrus things have tasted extra tart during my pregnancy so this was too tart for me. (Something that's never happened to me before.) But, I took the tart with me to Mother's Day dinner and it got eaten, burnt edges and all.

The recipe called for use of a fluted tart pan with removable bottom and mine doesn't have a removable bottom so I used my springform. I spread the crust too thin by pushing it too far up the sides and it got really burned. My sweet MIL claimed she liked things burnt. She is so good to me!
Head over to TWD and see how all the other bakers fared. Hope all the moms and moms-to-be had a great day on Sunday! I'll see you all next week with mango bread. Sounds fun!

Monday, April 13, 2009


Hey guys, I'm giant stress monkey right now. Too much technology, too much stress. I'm going offline for a few days. No need to worry. I'll be back this weekend.

See you on the flipside!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Forgotten photos

I realized I never posted the pictures of the Coconut Butter Thins from a few weeks ago. Man, they were really yummy!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

TWD: Coconut Butter Thins

EEK! I forgot to finish my draft write up for these delish cookies and I just realized I never posted my blueberry crumb cake. Write-ups are coming tonight after work. Thanks for your patience!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

TWD: French Yogurt Cake

I'm too pooped to write too much but this week's recipe was very good. Apparently, every French person over the age of 4 knows how to make this cake so thank goodness I was able to get it done without any major issues. My pan wasn't quite the right size so my cake was shorter than some of my fellow bakers but it tasted amazing, especially after I trimmed the edges off. They were a little too done for me.

I used orange marmalade as the glaze since I couldn't find lemon. Next time, I might even skip the glaze. The cake is the really star of the combo.

Head over to TWD and see how all the other bakers did this week. There was a fancy option for this cake and some folks really did it up. I, of course, opted for the basic option. Hey! Sometimes simple is just better. But, you can judge for yourself. And if you want the recipe pop on over to My Cookbook Addiction and say hi to Lilliana.
I'll be making this one again!

Sunday, March 15, 2009


Wow! So much has been going on recently that I've really been neglecting my blog. Sadly, I don't think that will change anytime soon since things don't really seem like they will slow for a while.

I've gotten a lot of questions about the big announcement. The hubs and I are expecting our first child sometime around 9/28. We don't know the gender of the baby yet but we do hope to find out when it is time. I am now in the 12th week and feeling pretty good. I had about three weeks of morning (er, all day) sickness but thankfully, that seems to be gone. I still get pretty tired and when I can, I take a nap at lunchtime. If I get in a good 30-40 minutes of sleep, it really makes a huge difference for the rest of my day. I'm getting a tummy pooch but don't really think I am 'showing' yet. Though, my body is definitely changing (especially the girls). We are obviously super thrilled about the baby and just hoping for a happy healthy bundle in just a few months.

My sister is still moving out to live with us and should be here in late July. She's a great girl and I am so happy she'll be around when the baby is born though I've told her many times that we don't expect her to be a baby slave. It will be so nice to have some of my family nearby since all the rest live 1500 miles away. The hubs family is close by and I know they will be a huge help. I really do have the best inlaws.

We are in the house hunting process though I probably won't talk about it much online until the deal is done. I am preparing myself for a long and stressful journey so I don't get too disappointed when we don't get the first thing we love. Our agent warned us that the market now is tricky and patience is key. However, it is hard to have patience when I need a place for my kid to sleep in just a few months!

Anyway, we have some big changes afoot for 2009 and they are all good things. I'll try to keep you all posted with updates and if you have any questions, post 'em and I'll do my best to answer.

Hope you guys have a great week!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

TWD: Lemon Custard Cups – Citrus Flan in disguise!

Happy Tuesday everyone! This week's Tuesday with Dorie recipe was lemon custard cups. With just a handful of ingredients, this recipe was a cinch to whip up. However, there was plenty of opportunity for some good techniques to practice - whisking, straining, and baking with a water bath. I enjoy worked on my skills.

I LOVE lemon and citrus but this recipe wasn't my favorite. When many of the TWD bakers commented that they thought the taste was too eggy, Dorie responded by letting them know that custards are supposed to be eggy. I'm glad I read the posts or I would have been expecting lemon pudding and this wasn't pudding at all. The flavor was good and the consistency was flan-like and jiggly but it just didn't rock my world.

Growing up, my Mamaw and Poppy would take me to Luby's (or Furr's) cafeteria and my Poppy always got either flan or tapioca pudding for dessert. I think he would have liked this week's choice. I pretended I was sending it up to heaven when I tossed out the remaining cups. Hope you liked it Poppy!

Head on over to Tuesdays with Dorie to see how the other bakers fared and if you love citrus and/or custard, drop by The Way the Cookie Crumbles by Bridget and get the recipe! You can also find it in Baking from My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan.

My deepest apologies for not taking a photo!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Does a picture have to be worth a 1000 words?

Or is one word enough?

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

TWD: Floating Islands

OK, I've been singing "Islands in the Stream" since I saw that this was the recipe for this week. (Man, I love Dolly!) Shari from Whisk: A Food Blog selected this week so I blame her that my coworkers are totally annoyed with me. Maybe they would have been less annoyed if I had made a treat for them this week. Unfortunately, I did not. The whole dessert seemed like a textural challenge for me. So, I'm passing.

If you want to see how Floating Islands are done, hop on over the Shari's site. She has the BEST photography.

Then, make sure and check out the TWD blogroll and show the other kitchen wizards some love.

Also, I have a totally 3rd grade joke that could go with this post. It's bad. But, if you want to hear it leave a comment and maybe I'll post it.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Amano y Amano

A really long time ago, I was selected as a lucky duck winner of two amazing bars of Amano chocolate from Blake Makes (a totally awesome food blog). Amano sent me the bars and well I just had to tell you guys about them.

First, let me state that I am a complete moron and took no pictures of the actual chocolate. I figured the Superbowl was a perfect time to let the chocolate duke it Amano y Amano. So, I let our Superbowl guests share the goodness. I guess I picked an appropriate day to share because once I put out the 4 oz of dark deliciousness, it was like penetrating my own defensive line just to get a nibble, much less a photo.

Anyway, here's the summary of our analysis:

Handcrafted Madagascar Dark Chocolate (70% Cocoa)
Definite citrus flavors, smooth and buttery, tangy

Handcrafted Jembrana Dark Chocolate (70% Cocoa)
Sweet, mild coffee flavors, super yummy!

I would love to use this amazing chocolate in a recipe. But, I am glad that we were able to taste it just as it was in order to really savor it. Head over to Amano and order yourself some. It's worth it!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

A lifetime of food memories

On a recent trip to visit the hub's grandparents, I snapped this quick photo of Grandma's recipe box. (Isn't it cute?!)

Doesn't it just look full of yummy-to-my-tummy home cooked recipes? I wonder what food memories are filed away in that box. Hubs and I have only been married since July 2007 but I hope as time goes by, I'll get to experience a good number of those food memories, too. So fun!

I'm such a sentimental sap!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

TWD: You want a peace of this?!?

This week's TWD recipe was selected by the lovely and talented Jessica of Cook Book Habit. She selected the most adorably named treat, World Peace Cookies. You can find the recipe on her site.

The cookies were a snap to mix up but I did have trouble forming the "log" required to slice and bake. I ended up forming said log with the help of wax paper lined drinking glasses and that worked OK but not great. It really didn't matter because the dough was so crumbly that I ended up smooshing it together between my palms anyway.

Despite the unique shape of my cookies – hey no one said Peace came in a perfectly round shape! – they tasted amazing and had that perfect salty sweet combination required by tastebuds the world over. The hubs felt that they went particularly well with vanilla ice cream and he did let out the most peaceful sigh once he'd scarfed his ice cream cookie concoction down. And if that doesn't say it all, I don't know what does!

Don't forget to check out the TWD blogroll and see how the other peace keepers fared this week.

Next week, floating islands. (Yeah, I don't know what that means, either!! Can't wait to give it a try!)

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Bummer times, man

This week, my work issued layoff notices to 14 people. I still have a job but I feel so bad for those who were affected that I don't really feel relieved.

I really hope the CA big wigs get their acts together soon so the cities don't become worse off. A $42 billion shortfall is beyond ridiculous, CA!!And by the way, I can't wait to get my IOU for my state tax refund. I bet if I owed CA a few hundred bucks, I would get into deep doodoo for sending Arnold an IOU. He'd probably terminate my a$$ or something.

Ugh. I'm cranky.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Still here!

I haven't forgotten you all. No excuses, just no time. I will be back by the end of this week with some twd catch ups and some updates.

Happy humpday!

Thursday, January 8, 2009


I think I just felt my first earthquake!

UPDATE: Yep! It was a 5.0 near San Bernardino. I hope no one was hurt but I am glad I finally felt one.

Monday, January 5, 2009

TWD: French Pear Tart - AKA the day my taste buds danced

I hope you are wearing your Tuesday best, dear reader. We have company today. ::whispering:: You know, the fancy kind. ::clearing throat:: Now, go wash your face and put on a skirt. Dorie's in town!

Yes, Ms. Bakey McBakerson herself chose this week's recipe and leave it her to pick a gosh darn winner and one that is perfect to serve to company. You can find the full recipe on her site or in her amazing book, Baking From My Home to Yours.
This week, TWD celebrates one year of baked fresh weekly goodies. I joined on Feb 19 and have been getting my bake on ever since!
::TWD high five, ya'll::
This week's recipe, French Pear Tart, seemed pretty overwhelming at first glance: a crumby crust filled with fresh almond cream topped with poached fruit and baked until golden bubbly?! Whoa.

Then I remembered that I've made the crust before as well as the cream. The only new thing was poaching the pears which if I totally bombed, I could pretend I never tried and go with canned instead. Well, no fake-outs needed here. I poached those babies and they were delicious!
Poaching pears

The recipe did take a bit of time but hey, what are holiday weekends for? Between the tarts and the amazing tacos I made, I think I spent about 8 hours in the kitchen on Sunday. Well, it was all totally worth it!

I didn't have the right size tart pan so I used mini tart pans instead. I made four and had a bit of dough left over. I should have had some cream left over but I spooned it all in and the pans overflowed onto the baking sheet a bit. Oh well! I suppose that's why Dorie suggested using it. She is such a smartie.

After I made the crusts and cream and poached the pears, I was ready to assemble. I couldn't decide what design to make with my pears so I varied it on all four tarts. Like I mentioned above, the pans bubbled over but that part just came right off and no one was the wiser.

The final result was that the tarts all looked cute and the one I ate was really tasty - not too sweet, just a bit nutty, perfectly poached (if I do say so myself) and delicious!

I will most definitely make this one again. Now, head over to the TWD site, click the links and show my fellow bakers some appreciation. (They could use a foot rub, too!)

This week's song is T A R T (L-O-V-E) by Nat King Cole

T is for the way you taste to me
A is for the almond cream I need
R is really, really extraordinary
T is totally more than any tart that you've adored
treats are all that I can give to you
tarts are more than just dessert for two
tart in tummies (yum!) can make it
burn my tart and I'll hog the blankets!
tarts were made for me and you

Ok I changed my mind

I decided I am making a new years resolution. I am going to unsubscribe to all the random email lists I have gotten myself on over the years. Once a week, I sort my inbox by sender and delete a frillion emails from bluefly, American airlines, old navy, the tyra banks show (never even seen it!!), bankrate, and about two dozen more senders that I never even open!

No more! I resolve to take a moment to unsubscribe and rid my self of junk email, once and for all!

Whew. That felt good. Now if only I could stop signing up for online contests...

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Happy New Year!

Howdy and Happy 2009!

Whew. The last few weeks have been busy, very busy. I've started about 10 updates but haven't finished them. Ugh. So much for starting a new year with a clean slate (though I am starting with a 'do!). Oh well, I'll get to the updates when I can. In the mean time, I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and New Years.