Cupcakes and Roses

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I have never had the urge to bake as bad as I did this week. The reason? I watched Cupcake Wars. Seriously.
I don’t usually watch food stuff cause it makes me hungry… I am more of a HGTV person. Ya know, House Hunters, Love it or List it, those kind of shows. But one day I found myself flipping channels and something caught my eye… SUGAR!!!

More importantly, CUPCAKES!!
Watching these people create and decorate cupcakes, seeing their passion and love for what they do, it’s impressive.

OUCH!
And the Baking Bug bit me!

Not just baking though, decorating too.

I pulled on the ol’ apron and baked!

I was super sure that I had a box of cake mix, but after tearing apart my pantry to find it, I turned to my cute lil’ cupcake book!
This cute thing was a gift from Cathy (my mother-in-law). They are decorations mostly, organized by color. They do have some recipes though for simple, everyday cupcakes to fun new cupcakes!!
The cool part, the recipes make 8-12 cupcakes! So much better than a whole 24-30 that lie around the house begging to be eaten!

I also learned a few things!
1. The difference between all purpose flour and self rising flour! The difference is the latter has baking powder and salt in it! The proportion is for every 1 cup all purpose flour, add 2 tsp baking powder. You can add a pinch of salt to!

2. Add powdered sugar (confectioners sugar) to your store bought frosting to make it stiffer. This will make it easier to decorate with.

3. How to make frosting roses! I went online and found it.

The short version is to start with the center bulb, then apply the 3-5-7 pattern. Use the tip that is large rounded at the bottom and pointed at the top. I can’t remember the number…

Start with your cupcake. 🙂
You can put this on a metal stand thing for decorating, then remove the rose by snipping it with scissors, or straight on the cupcake
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This is the center bulb.20140204-234438.jpg

3 Petals 20140204-235453.jpg
5 Petals 20140204-235631.jpg
7 Petals 20140204-235714.jpg

Pretty Simple.
The first couple I tried I didn’t do so well…20140204-235819.jpg
I had to go back and rewatch the video again and the other ones turned out better 20140204-235918.jpg

Now to share the cupcake joy!!
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Garlic and Brown Sugar (and Onion) Chicken. And some PO-TAY-TOES!!

Yum Yum Food Time!! Wiiiiith BECKY!!!!!

I got very much used to Brandon cooking meals. Which was awesome! But as all things change, so did this. (You mean I have to get off the couch and be a grown up!?)
And I got tired very quickly of hearing “what’s for dinner?” every night.
“What’s for dinner?”
“Food”
“What kind of food?”
“The good kind of food”
“What good kind of food?”
“The kind you eat.”
“What good kind of food that you eat?”
“The kind you are gonna get.”
“What is it?”
“Food.”

And so on and so forth…
Till he got tired of asking.

He still does cook. Mostly meat. Especially steak.
I love it when he cooks. Sometimes he surprises me.
Like yesterday.
The menu was grilled cheese and soup. It was a blustery, rainy, grey, perfect day for grilled cheese and soup.
He surprised me by making chicken noodle from scratch!
Then he surprised me again when he said he didn’t know how to make grilled cheese…
Apparently he is unsure which side of the bread to butter…
The complexity of buttered bread is always a mystery to mankind….

Today’s meal choice is was vague… chicken and potatoes…
Good job Becky… vague chicken and potatoes.

I didn’t want to take a whole lot of time with it though. SO for your enjoyment, a quick dinner. About 10 minutes prep, 30 minutes cook time (At the most)

Ingredients:
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast
3 tsp. Olive Oil
4 Garlic Cloves, minced
4 Tbs. Brown Sugar
(I added onion, cause I love onion)

Saute garlic (AND ONION!!!) in the olive oil till tender.
20140129-213206.jpg Olive Oil looks so pretty in swirls… 🙂
20140129-213300.jpg Freshly chopped!
20140129-213405.jpg I have a nice jar of pre-minced garlic. LOVE IT!!
Remove from heat and stir in brown sugar.
20140129-213638.jpg Love how it melts!
Lightly grease baking dish and cover chicken with brown sugar garlic (AND ONION) mixture.
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20140129-213811.jpg Look at that yummy-ness!!
Add salt and pepper to taste. Bake at 500 for 15-30 minutes! And done!
20140129-213922.jpg Look at that deliciousness!! YUUUUUUUUUUUMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!!!!

SIDE DISH!!

Fried Potatoes

Easy peasy side dish. Thank you to my dear friend Hannah for this awesome recipie.

CHOP!
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OIL!
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FRY!!!
20140129-214213.jpg (I added some extra something-something! It’s…..something….I forget which something)

BE CAREFUL!!!!
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Seriously. Be careful. Grease spatter hurts.

Yum Yum Seriously.
Look at that
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That’s all.

Have fun!
DFTBA

Becky

The Green Machine

Hello there friends…Have i introduced you to my friend?
No?
Well here meet my friend!
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It’s my little Green Machine!

I love this little guy! He’s so Yummy!

I lnow what you mught be thingking that that drink is GREEN!
I used to be like you…the green really threw me off…but don’t be a COLORIST! Lol! jk!

It’s super tasty.
What’s awesome is this is so customizable! You can use different fruits and veggies and make it your own! I’ll give you all approximate amounts, but really you can add as much as you want.

Step 1: A BLENDER!!! (LOL)

Actually, A Banana! 20131127-224804.jpg
Slice, or just break it into chunks.
AAAAAAAANNNNND Note! If your banana is black-ish, you will taste it in your smoothie. Just Saying….
And I suppose you could use any soft fruit here or skip it if you want, but I think the banana really helps thicken it up.

Step 2: Add Juice! (1/2-1 cup)
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I prefer a tropical blend, but you can use whatever. Make sure that it’s a fruit that will blend well with the other fruits you put in your smoothie….
Oh and the top of this carton says: 20131127-235839.jpg Yeah…LOL’s…. It’s like my mom trying to make a social reference…

Step 3: Spinach!! (A handful….or whatever)
20131127-230021.jpg There are like A TON of different greens you can use in this step! Like Bok Choy, Parsley, Kale, Cucumber, Avacados (ok that’s not a leafy green thing, but you get the idea)

Step 4: Yogurt! (About 1 cup)
20131127-230655.jpg The suggestion was originally plain greek yogurt. Yuck. No Offense. On the Plain, not the Greek.
I use Vanilla yogurt. You can use what ever you like. And if you do choose to use plain yogurt, of any kind, and you find it’s not sweet enough you can add honey.

Step 5: Frozen Fruit! (About 1 cup….I Think….)
20131127-231347.jpg Again you can use what ever kind you want. Use frozen fruit because it will make your drink cold and ice-y without the ice. Ya know how sometimes blended ice will float to the top and make it more slushie-ish? Well frozen fruit wont. 🙂

Step 6: Blend!20131127-231746.jpg Sometimes you gotta push the ingredients around if it isn’t blending well.

And Voila! Smoothie!!20131127-232513.jpg It’s super good!! And works a meal supplement.

So go have fun and make your own smoothie!!

OH! And Hey! Here’s a teaser!!
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Know what all that is!? All my fall stuff!!!
You know what that means?!
Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess.

DFTBA
Becky!

Fastest Way To A Man’s Heart PART 2!

So here is part 2 of my baking adventure!

Did I mention I was in a new home? We moved to Astoria last month. So far it’s been really nice here! People are friendly here, the weather has been pretty nice so far. We supposedly get more storms so that’s awesome! We are in 3 times the space which is crazy. but awesome.
Most people who have lived here a while say we get a lot of rain and it gets depressing. And I say well, we live in Oregon.

So back to baking. The other chocolate recipe I made was Flourless Fudge Chocolate Chip Cookies.
A total hit with people!
For this one I did use my FABULOUS Kitchen Aid Mixer. I love that appliance!
WHisk together 3 cups pwderews sugar, 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, and 1/8 tsp salt.

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One of my fav things in my kitchen utenisl drawers are the Demarle measuring cups and spoons. First they are blue, second they are magnetic and stick togehter in the drawers and third they have a Dash, Pinch, and Smidgen measurement! A dash is 1/8 tsp! Did you know that?!

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Whisk in 1 Tbsp Vanilla (Store bought is fine) a 2 egg whites at room temperature.

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In my years of baking expereince I have learned some things. One is that notheing is better at sepperating egg yokes and whites than the egg shell itself. Seriously.
Also that when a recpie gives speific directions its for a reason and should always be followed. And whena recipie gives specific directions its for a reasone and doesnt’ always have to be followed.
It really comes down to knowing why it calls for one thing and not another. Or why it’s in a certain order, or someting has to be a certain temperature or consistancy. In this recipie, room temperature eggs go into the batter smoother, and the egg whites only because it creates a divinity type hard shell on the cookie. which is FABULOUS!!

My real advice is to bake a lot. Baking is chemistry, and you need to know the ingredients. It’s not like cooking where you can add, take away and change a lot of things. You need to be more careful and more precises on measurements or htingsh wotn turn out right.

COntinuing on… Beat until hte batter is moistened. You;re looking for a brownie-like substance. Thick and fudgy! If it’s too thick add another egg ehite.

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PARCHMENT PAPER YA’LL!!!
Scoop 1 Tablespoon full, leaving room. These cookies spread to a perfect circle, which is awesome cause I am horrible at perfect circles. and they spread big so don’t make the cookies too large!

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Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 min! OR until the tops area glossy and slightyl cracked.

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I realized when i was all done that i had too much egg white, I added a third egg, so they were much crisper than I like. But if you like crisp cookies then it would be fine with you!

You are really gonna want a glass of ilk with these. Plus…no gluten!!!

I’m gonna post both recipies here on the bottom, since I forgot yesterday. :/
Becky

Chocolate Zucchini Bread

2 Cups Sugar
1 Cup Oil
3 Eggs
3 tsp Vanilla extract
2 1/2 Cups all-purpose Flour
1/2 Cups Baking Soda
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Baking Powder
2 Cups shredded zucchini
Chocolate Chips

In a large bowl, beat sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla until well blended. Combine the flour, cocoa, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and baking powder; gradually beat into sugar mixture until blended. Stir in zucchini. Transfer to parchment lined loaf pans.
Bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to wire racks to cool completely.

Flourless Fudge Chocolate Chip Cookies
3 Cups Powdered Sugar
2/3 Cup Chocolate Cocoa Powder
1/8 tsp. Salt
2 to 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
1 Tbsp. Vanilla Extract
1 1/2 Cups Chocolate Chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set aside 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar with cocoa powder and salt. Whisk in vanilla and egg whites starting with just 2. Beat just until the batter is moistened. You’re looking for a brownie-like, thick and fudgy batter consistency. If it seems too thick, add another egg white.
Stir in the chocolate chips. Scoop the batter by the tablespoon full onto the prepared baking sheets. Leave enough space between each cookie for them to spread. Bake for 12-14 minutes, until the tops are glossy and lightly cracked. Let the cookies cool completly on the baking sheet and store in an airtight container.

Yummy Yummy Deliciousness.

Hello my beautiful blog. I miss you

You are like a friend sitting in the darkness of my attic. You have collected a little dust and are kind of sad and lonely. There’s at least a box or two on top of you and you look a little dented on the sides.

Today I am climbing up into the attic though to get you out. I’m brushing off the dust and straighten your corners out.  I’m gonna give you a big hug, tell you that I’ve missed you too and fill you with sweet words and pictures.

And I will start with a delicious looking MEATLOAF!!

I have heard many people say, many guys say, ok two guys say, that they have never liked meatloaf. (Especially their moms…sorry moms) What they have told me is that the meatloaf is usually runny or soupy and not firm enough. Not my mom’s though. Like most everything my mom does, her meatloaf is wonderful!  I don’t know how she does it but she does it well.

Now I did not make my moms meatloaf but found one in a lovely book I got from Mom Kraft. Technically it’s not one loaf, but six. Six mini loaves. Six mini loaves of delicious meaty goodness.

If you have made meatloaf I suppose that this recipe is not much different than any other recipe you would use. The thing that I really liked about it, besides the mini portions, oh and the non-soupiness, OH! And the tastiness, is the way you prep it.

IN A PLASTIC BAG!

Genius! It’s like one of those ideas where you go “Now why didn’t I think of that?!”

So you add in all your ingredients in the bag placed in the bowl, zip up the bag and mash it!

Place it on your foil lined sheet and mold into an 8×8 square. I’m bad at making squares so I kind of just guessed it.

Cut it into 6 smaller squares and form into six mini loaves.

Bake for 30 min at 350.

When it’s done add ketchup on top and let it set for 10 minutes before eating.

That’s it. Brandon pretty much did a jig when he got home and I pulled out the meatloaf from the oven just like a good little house wife.

Lol. Jk. And if I hear any smack from you men I will come after you!!

Here’s the recipe for those of you that would like it.

You can also make it as just a full loaf too.

 

Ketchup-Glazed Meat Loaves

2 eggs, lightly beaten

1/3 cup ketchup

½ cup fine dry bread crumbs

1 envelope (1 oz.) dry onion soup mix

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 ½ pounds ground beef or pork

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Line a baking sheet with foil; set aside. Place a resalable plastic bag in a large bowl. Put all the ingredients in a bag. Zip the bag closed and kneed with your hands.

Place on the foil lined baking sheet and form into an 8×8 square. Cut into 6 pieces and form into loaves about 4 inches long and 2 ½ inches wide.

Bake uncovered for 30 min. remove from oven and spoon about 1 tablespoon ketchup on each loaf and let set for about 10 min.

LARGE LOAF DIRECRTIONS: Prepare as above. Pat meat mixture into an 8x4x2 inch loaf pan. Bake uncovered for 1 to 1 ¼ hours. Remove from oven, carefully drain excess fat. Spoon 1/3 ketchup over loaf and let stand for 10 min.

 

 

Hello world

November 27

Hello blogging world! Oh I have missed you!!
I have been thinking about you. Yes it is true. And I have missed you all so very much.
I have many wonderful things bouncing around in my head and I want to share them all with you but as I ride in the truck and type this I am unable to completely share all that is in my heart and head.

So for now I will tell you I miss you and I love you and I hope that everyone’s thanksgiving was a good one!

We spent this year with Brandon’s family and it was a very lovely day! One of my favorite things is that his mon always makes little goodie bags with special treats and cute little labels that she stamps herself! Here is this years goodie bag!

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And here is the most delicious food ever!! Yum yum yum! I think I gained 30 lbs. And I didn’t want to eat the rest of the day!

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And as a teaser for upcoming posts here are some things i will be featuring,
Cookie recipes
Children’s Christmas specials
Growing up
Food
Family life
Kittens!!

Um… Yes I think that’s a good outline for what I have planned!

Becky

Halloween Treats

So I have a friend.
And her tradition has become doing a Halloween party after Halloween.

It’s pretty much awesome.

My treat I brought this year was deviled eggs. But not just any deviled eggs.
Oh no.
I added some Halloween pizazz to them!!

Buwah hahahahahahahahaaaaa!!!

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Behold!!! Deviled spider eggs!!!

Thank you to my hub-bub for pealing the eggs and slicing the olives… I mean… SPIDERS!!

As is required at any awesome Halloween party, such as the one we attended, costumes are excepted.

An in the vast sea of costume choices, it can become difficult to pick one. Should I go classic? Scary? Cliche? Easy? I was really at a loss. What I needed was inspiration.
And I found it!

If you haven’t seen this music video yet, you need to!

Seriously! Stop reading and watch this! The Creep

So here we are!!

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We just couldn’t help but be a creep!

Creeping on Sarah.

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Creeping on me.

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Creeping on Brandon.

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Pretty much just creeping.

Between all our creeping our lovely hippie host Hannah taught us a new game.

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While the prim and proper house wife Sarah dished up some delicious banana splits!

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We had an awesome time!
And since you guys are do awesome! And I’m suffering from a post Halloween sugar high! Here are some photos for your enjoyment!

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