Monday, August 31, 2009

Ominous

The first fires started in the hills of Azusa, the first thing I though was great our new house is going to burn down! Well luckily that fire didnt come near anyone and is pretty much out as of today.

The big fire up in the San Gabriel Mts near La Canada spreading all the way to Acton is huge and seems like it will take weeks to contain. I feel for the fire fighters and appreciate all their efforts. My parents live North of Acton and we live to the South East, so we've been passing smoke back & forth the last few days, with the wind blowing one way or the other.

My dad has captured some amazing photos. The 55mph sign makes this look like an end of days scene from a sci-fi movie.


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Hells Kitchen~ Overconfidence




Overconfidence-->leads to mouthing off--->leads to not letting the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

Somehow I knew that this would eventually be Roberts demise, because I too have this affliction. I recognized it as soon as the new season started. He was way to comfortable. Too bad we were really cheering for him!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

TWD:Lime Cream Pie

It's about 8:30pm Tuesday night and I just finished making my filling. It's in the fridge chilling out.

It looks good, sounds odd... so the verdict will have to wait until we try tomorrow after dinner.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Cupcake Hero: September

In order to come to grips with my usual hatred of cupcakes (expressed here) I've decided to joined the Cupcake Hero nation. I know that sounds odd, to actively participate in something you dislike, hell I do that everyday when I go to work! But much like a phobia to heights or snakes I figure maybe I can overcome by immersing myself in the creativeness of it all.

So if the news hasn't hit you yet that Clara from I Heart Cuppycakes is bringing back Cupcake Hero please head to her site to get the down-low. The ingredient for September is Banana... apparently Clara is trying to overcome something too b/c she's not a banana fan.

Eh, I guess were all going for a little cupcake therapy.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

TWD: Apple Sauce Spice Bars

Holy smokes were these good! I had to try really hard not to eat them all myself and for something chocolate free that's saying a lot.

I did of course tweak the recipe a smidge to suite what I had around. No apple sauce, even if I did happen to have it in the house, I would have never bought unsweetened (ick). So I cut up two big Pink Lady apples and cooked them until tender, I scooped out 1/2 and pureed it with a stick blender to make up the 1/2 cup of unsweetened sauce reserving the remainder to mix in. For the spice I used the cinnamon and 1/8 tsp cardamom and a few grinds of nutmeg because I didn't have any allspice. I also subbed in 1/2 cup of oats for a 1/4 cup of the flour, just because I felt like it. I topped it off with a quick glaze of powdered sugar that I poured on right out of the oven.

My honey thought I was baking up french toast for breakfast but was not disappointed when he got his piece and he doesn't even like baked apples. I thought it tasted like apple fritters less the greasy dough-nutty feel and the dough-nutty guilt.

Superb Tuesdays with Dorie choice by Something Sweet by Karen.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Jim & Lina's Wedding Cake

This cake certainly got the best of me this weekend. I'm still exhausted. I think it turned out pretty even though I had a bitchy florist tell me the flowers were orange & not red, they matched the invitations, hers did not so :P Ah well the loved it no matter what and the hostest with the mostest my friend Elizabeth said everyone at the wedding had the best comments about the cake.

It was super stressful attending the wedding because I had a nice beeline view of the cake and from my vantage point it actually looked like it might fall forward. So I had to sneak over and look at the other side, level as ever, I guess it was an optical illusion, my need (and subsequent denial) for glasses or maybe the booze I had ingested at the party! You can see a few more closeups of the cake here.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

TWD: Brownie Buttons

These itty bitty chocolatey brownie bites called Brownie Buttons from page 106 & 107 had an important element going for them that made me eager to whip them up on Saturday morning. Not only did they look delicious and easy to make... they could fit in the toaster oven! Game on! No oven equals no roasty toasty house for the rest of the day!

I simply made mine according to the recipe (sans orange cuz orange & chocolate= yucky!) & topped them off with some toasted macadamian nuts after dipping them in the white chocolate.

You can find this easy recipe on Jayma's site Two Scientists Experimenting in the Kitchen. And be sure to check out the other creations on the Tuesdays with Dorie blog roll.

Friday, August 7, 2009

YWP: Mini Apple Pecan Pie

How do you make pie when its hot outside and you don't want to turn on you oven to save your life? Mini Pies!
Two fit snugly into my toaster-oven contraption and turned out perfectly without heating up the kitchen one bit. The recipe below makes two but they are big enough to share (no we didn't) and glutenous to enjoy by yourself (yes we did). The hubs is probably in a carbolicious sugar coma in his office right now......nope not yet I can still hear his spoon hitting the plate.

Thanks to Jacque from Daisy Lane Cakes for choosing the Nutty theme for this month's You Want Pie With That? it inspired a delicious pie!

Crust:
1/2 c Pecans
3/4 c Flour
2 oz Cold Butter
1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tbs Sugar
Filling:
1 giant or 2 reg sized Apple (I used a big Pink Lady)
1/4 c Chopped Pecans
2 tbsp Sugar
1 tbsp Flour
1/2 tsp Cinnamon

Wiz the crust ingredients in your food processor until it comes together in a doughy mass. Split it into third and press a third into two mini pie tins reserving the last third for the filling. Put the crusts into the fridge to chill out and chop up a big apple. Mix the remaining 1/3 of the crust mix the apples and remaining filling ingredients and fill the pie shells. Bake in a toaster-oven at 325 until they are done. I forgot to time it but I guess everyone's would be different anyways. I had to put a foil tent over them about 1/2 way through so the top wouldn't brown to much.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Caden's Cuppies

Saturday we celebrated the 1st birthday of the super cute bundle of boy-ness that is Caden. He's one of my favorite little munchkins and the son of my friend Jenn (from This Little Piggy's Life) & her hubby Seany. Just look at that mug, how can you not fall in love with that!

Jenn & Caden came over friday to help me make cupcakes for the big day. We mixed up a double batch of Buttermilk Country Cake from The Cake Bible page 41, simply delicious. And created some stars to top off the cupcakes in bright party colors and fun textures.










The morning of the party I topped each cupcake with fluffy teal swirl of Vanilla Mousseline Buttercream from page 244 then adorned them with the dried stars. This all worked out pretty well, the cake using the yolks and the buttercream using the whites. I also made Caden a little smash cake and I've never seen a kid go to town quite like he did... I hope they post the video and hopefully his photographer dad got some better shots of the cupcakes & smash cake too.