Tag Archives: baking

The Summer of not training for anything BIG!

18 Jul

Well I am not sure how July has come and almost gone. Where does the time go!!

I had almost nothing on the schedule after Victoria. I have Hood To Coast at the end of August and RNR Vancouver 1/2 marathon. I really wanted to do another 70.3 but I didn’t really know if I wanted to keep training. This was my “fun” year after all. I also liked the idea of doing a short race. Maybe doing some speed work?!

After some thought I picked an olympic race that also had a sprint race because Dan wanted to train for a short race. So I had 6 weeks to recover and get some speed training in to “race” an olympic.

Well it was good thinking. I haven’t really trained like I wanted to. Don’t get me wrong but I have been training but I pictured it going a little bit different!!
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We have one more “big” training day tomorrow, we will taper this week and race next weekend! I am excited we are going to camp for the weekend. I have heard it is an awesome smallish race. Excited!

It has also been crazy wedding season. We went to 3 wedding 3 weekends in a row.
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We found Young & Hungry to watch on Netflix. We watched the first 2 seasons. It was awesome. It was like an old school sit-com with a laugh-track. Kind of like Three’s Company. I probably liked it more than Dan but he tolerated it!! 🙂
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What else do you when you don’t have to spend the entire weekend working out?!

Go to brunch!
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Go to the farmers market!!
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Go to the movies! Train wreck!! Funny!!
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Cooking and Baking!
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broccolini pasta
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coconut chocolate chip cookies
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peanut butter chocolate overnight oats

If anyone is in need of NUUN use: NuunSummer15 for 20% off most items at Nuun!

What have you been up to this summer? Has anyone seen Young & Hungry?

The Big D

14 Oct

I have a friend (Ashley but we call her Matchin) who lives in a Dallas ‘burb. The same friend who I have visited in San Antonio before. (She moved this year). I also have a friend in DC (Mandi) and a friend in Phoenix (Abbey) and we all try to get together every year or two.

The plan was to meet in Dallas and then head to the lake for the weekend. We all arrived safe on Thursday and checked out Grapevine. On Friday we headed to Lake Texoma.

Road trippin'

Road trippin’

We had a wonderful weekend full of food, laughs, and fun. We hit up the grocery store on the way and bought lots of food and drinks.

It was super nice when we got there so we took the kayaks and SUP out on the lake. It was windy and choppy. I got up on the SUP pretty good. I got down on my knees a few times to navigate the swells. (Also the paddle was too short for me which made it a little more difficult) 🙂
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Matchin!

Matchin!

Abbey!

Abbey!

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Our afternoon snacks:
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We had lots of food. We grilled veggies, portobello mushrooms, chicken and tofu the first night.

We let Mandi and Abbey have rein over the kitchen. As much as I like to cook it is easier to let them do the cooking then all of us being in the kitchen! Matchin and I were on clean up duty.
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The second night Abbey made Eggplant Parm and Mandi made a caprese salad. Delicious!

I co-made the fire each night and was resident s’more maker.
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The second day was much much colder than the first so there was no water activities. We did check out the nature preserve and went on a 4 mile hike. Which was a nice way to break up the day.
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We headed back toward Dallas on Sunday, picked up the boys (Matchin’s hubs & kiddos), and headed to the Texas State Fair. (I am doing a separate post on that) but since I arrived Connor had been wanting to bake cookies. (I made cookies with him last summer.) After eating our weight in fried foods at the fair we went home and made cookies.

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Another fun trip to the south!!

Baking Extravaganza Weekend!!

23 Mar

I am just going to get right down to it. Bars, cookies, and a cake were on tap for this weekend. We had a birthday party to go to Friday night that I would have liked to take a cake to. BUT it was at a restaurant with 15 people. I just thought it would be to hard to cart the cake down there. Get plates, knives, and extra forks (it was a sushi place). I decided to just go with some bars. Not just any bars. Toffee Shortbread Bars.

Hello DELICIOUS!

Check out the recipe here —–> Toffee Shortbread Bars

Super easy recipe.
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Shortbread layer.
Sweetened condensed milk.
Chocolate chips.
Toffee.
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EASY!!

Erica loved them. She had 3! 🙂
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Saturday. We had a dinner party. Like an adult dinner party. So.much.fun!

We went to a cooking class for Valentine’s Day. This was our first test to see if we could re-produce what we made in the class. (only the bruschetta and risotto)
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Apps: Bruschetta. (mozzarella, basil, & lemon zest; olive tapenade & goat cheese; roasted red bell pepper & basil; rosemary loaf)
Dinner: Butternut squash risotto. Turned out really great.
Kale salad. I am going to do a separate post on this. I have some really great recipes!!
Dessert: (Most importantly) Mocha almond fudge cookies. Turns out I made this last year at about the same time. Oops. They are super easy and I had all of the ingredients at home already! I also halved the recipe because we I did not want left overs!! 🙂

Tomorrow is Dan’s birthday and I found this gem —->Snickers Brownie Peanut Butter Ice Cream Cake for his family celebration tonight.

A bit of a problem right off the bat. You cook the brownie first. You are supposed to 1/2 the mix into 2 pans. I tried to spread 1/2 into the first pan and I thought it would be too thin. I thought what the heck. I will just do the entire brownie with the “ice cream” on top and not layer it.
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Second problem was I decided it was thick enough to cut it in half. (She warns us this is hard to do). I thought I had done a good job. Well I took them apart and (you see from the above picture) I was totally wrong!

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Turned out great. BUT the last problem was: you are supposed to layer it in a springform pan. The brownie was cooked in a smaller pan. I thought it will be fine to just layer it on the plate. Wrong again. It would have been fine if the brownie layers were even!

You can see that it is cracked here!
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This is the cracked side. All of the “ice cream” was not staying in place! 😦
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Everyone loved it.
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Looks a little different from the recipe page but it was delicious!
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I would recommend all of these recipes! Happy Baking!!! Hope everyone had a great weekend!!

Baking Disasters!

26 Jan

I love baking! You know I love baking! I am not a super huge perfectionist in this department. I don’t care what it looks like just as long as it tastes good!! Right?! Would you agree?!!

Here is an example:
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This was the cake that I made for my Brother’s wedding rehearsal dinner! I think part of the reason this cake looks so funny is because the frosting was melting/melted! It was May in Vegas and it was already hot that year! It tasted delicious! Everyone loved it.

I have never really decorated a cake with one of these:
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I go old school and just use a spatula. But my friend Kamie always uses one. (She is going to kill me for putting this up here!!) 🙂

When we were in Phoenix last weekend she was having a 3rd birthday party for her son. She was made cupcakes Friday afternoon. We went to dinner. Then she was going to frost them after dinner. We get back and Matt(her husband), Kru(her son), Dan, and I watched a movie and relaxed. She was having quite the time making frosting. The Kitchen Aid was on and off and on and off. I finally checked on her and this was the frosting station:
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This picture really doesn’t do it justice. There was powdered sugar EVERYWHERE.

Kamie had it all over her:
Me: Where is your apron?
Kamie: I forgot to put it on.
Me: Big mistake huh?

When Matt and Dan saw the powdered sugar everywhere, they assumed this is how she started the frosting: image

While they were laughing, I was trying to help to relieve the situation.  The frosting was made of cream cheese and powdered sugar.  But it was super runny and would not go in the “frosting decorator.”  When went to Google to try and find ideas.  Nothing helped.

She had frosted them but wanted to do a fancy flower on top.

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She sent Matt to the store at midnight after multiple bags of powdered sugar and blocks of cream cheese were ruined used to get more supplies.

I used some of the runny frosting to put a better layer on top of the cupcakes and put them in the refrigerator.

Kamie: I am going to totally start over.
Me: Absolutely not! Who knew you would be like this?
Kamie: We are dental hygienists. We are perfectionists!
Me: Ohhh True.  But you have 15 more years to make his cupcakes perfect!  Think about it! I am going to bed!

NEXT MORNING:
Kamie: I am NEVER using room temp cream cheese EVER again.
Me: They look super cute and you did not even have to start over!! (I didn’t get a pic of the final product)

Although this seemed like a disaster it all turned out in the end!! I always use room temp cream cheese and I have never had a problem. You live and you learn. The moral of the story is when you are using a cake decorating tool use COLD supplies! I guess I am going to have to get one and try it out! The more I thought about it the more I knew my frosting probably would NOT work in one of those. 🙂

After this happened….a couple days later I was baking…and…

I was asked to make these Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies with Sea Salt for a dinner I was going to on Thursday night.

The recipe says that you need to refrigerate for 2 hours before you bake. I take that as I can make the dough Tuesday night and bake them Wednesday night. Well that was not the case.
The dough looked great:
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But when I took it out of the fridge on Wednesday night. It was hard as a rock. I thought Shit! What would my mom do?! I ended up putting the bowl into a hot water bath. It thawed it but then it was room temp again! Damnit!!!!!!!!
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I baked them anyway. I used peanut butter instead of Nutella in half of the cookies.
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Mistake #2: I used large and mini chocolate chips. It was hard forming the dough with the large ones. It worked ok. I tried baking a few to see what would happen.
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They just spread out (like all-butter cookies would.) I think that if they had been cold (like they were supposed to be) it would not have been a problem. They were delicious. I got plenty of compliments.

Another disaster intercepted!

Happy baking friends!!
Do you have any good baking disaster stories??