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January 2014

Grand Christening Cake

I know, I’ve been off in crazy land for the last week and a half…not on purpose I assure you.  I’ve been working on so many projects, as well as starting to plan for a shower and bachelorette party for a friend getting married this summer.  On top of that, I definitely strained my neck, so I’m just a huge ball of pain and grumpiness.  A couple weeks ago we were contacted to make a christening cake for a little girl.  It came out beautiful especially considering it was ordered last minute and came with some last minute changes.

In the end, I hope the parents and they little girl loved it.

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The lazy mans Matzo Ball Soup

Before I started dating Dan, I had never heard or even had Matzo Ball Soup until I attended Passover at his grand parents house. After that, I was hooked. One day at the local grocery store, I found a Matzo Ball soup mix and its been in our rotation ever since.

With this whole “artic vortex” that will not leave the area, its been freezing. We were debating what to make for dinner. Then I came across a box of the Matzo Ball mix and boy did it hit the spot. Although I should note that we do tend to add more than what is traditionally in a Matzo Ball Soup. But it sure did hit the spot, AND we have leftovers for tomorrow…which means I don’t have to cook after the gym tomorrow night…*happy dance*.

I suggest you try this recipe, it does not disappoint.

Ingredients

1 package of Manischewitz Matzo Ball and Soup Mix

2 eggs

2 Tbs oil (I used extra virgin)

10 cups of water

1 package of frozen mixed vegetables (for the soup tonight I used was supposed to be for a stir-fry)

2 chicken breasts cooked and shredded

Steps

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1) Follow the instructions on the back of the mix (take packet no. 1, mix with two eggs and oil). Mix and put into fridge for 15 mins.

2) Take packet No. 2 from the mix, pour into pan, and combine with 10 cups of water.

3) Put frozen vegetables and chicken into pot and cook for 10 mins to unfreeze vegetables.

4) Take mix out of fridge and roll mix into multiple matzo balls. Add them to the mix.

5) Boil soup mixture for 20 mins and serve.

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Don’t get me wrong, Im sure there is a way to make this all from scratch, but this is just as good. I hope you enjoy!!! Happy Wednesday everyone, talk to you all on Friday.

Ghetto Fuddruckers Hamburger Buns

Dan and I have been trying to eat healthy. But if you ask him I’m trying to slowly kill him because I took away most of his red meat and replaced it with chicken. He is a huge fan of Fuddruckers and there closest one is an hour away. Needless to say we don’t get out there very often. Since Dan has been working so hard on the bathroom, I decided to give Dan a treat by making him hamburgers. I attempted to make Dan a Fuddruckers replica hamburger. I Googled a bunch of recipes and found one.

I attempted to make this in my bread machine. That was a bad idea, the ingredients didn’t mix completely and didn’t exactly rise as it should have, but in the end they turned out pretty good. Even if you don’t use these as hamburger buns, warm these puppies up and put some jelly on them…nom nom nom.

Below is the recipe…I suggest you follow the recipe instructions and don’t pull a me…

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Fuddruckers Hamburger Buns

2 cups whole milk 1/4 cup warm water (105-115°F)
2 (1/4-oz) packages active dry yeast
1/4 cup plus 1/2 tsp sugar, divided
1/2 stick unsalted butter, cut into Tbsp pieces and softened
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 Tbsp salt
6 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 large egg mixed with 1 Tbsp water for egg wash

Steps

Bring milk to a bare simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat and cool to 105 to 115°F.

Meanwhile, stir together warm water, yeast, and 1/2 tsp sugar in mixer bowl until yeast has dissolved. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. (If mixture doesn’t foam, start over with new yeast.)

Add butter, warm milk, and remaining 1/4 cup sugar to yeast mixture and mix with paddle attachment at low speed until butter has melted, then mix in eggs until combined well. Add salt and 4 cups flour and mix, scraping down side of bowl as necessary, until flour is incorporated. Beat at medium speed 1 minute.

Switch to dough hook and beat in remaining 2 cups flour at medium speed until dough pulls away from side of bowl, about 2 minutes; if necessary, add more flour, 1 Tbsp at a time. Beat 5 minutes more. (Dough will be sticky.)

Transfer dough to a lightly oiled large bowl and turn to coat. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm draft-free place until doubled, about 2 1/2 hours.

Butter 2 large baking sheets. Punch down dough, then roll out on a lightly floured surface with a floured rolling pin into a 14-inch round (about 1/2 inch thick). Cut out as many rounds as possible with floured cutter and arrange 3 inches apart on baking sheets. Gather and reroll scraps, then cut out more rounds.

Loosely cover buns with oiled plastic wrap and let rise in a draft-free place at warm room temperature until they hold a finger mark when gently poked, 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

IMG_1997 Preheat oven to 375°F with racks in upper and lower thirds.

Brush buns with egg wash and bake, switching position of sheets halfway through baking, until tops are golden and undersides are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped, 14 to 20 minutes. Transfer to racks to cool completely.

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Cooks’ notes:
•If you don’t have a stand mixer, stir ingredients together in same sequence with a wooden spoon until a dough forms. Knead dough on a floured surface, incorporating just enough flour to keep dough from sticking, until smooth and elastic, 7 to 8 minutes.
•Buns can be frozen, wrapped well, up to 1 month.

Mind you they didn’t taste EXACTLY like Fuddruckers buns, but they were still fun to make. These make a great base for our hamburgers and let the taste of the burgers and topping come out a lot more than normal.  I think I will keep this in my recipes and will be following the instructions better next time. I hope you enjoy and happy Monday.

Happy Friday everyone! You made it to the end of the week. Things have been busy here, we just booked another wedding cake for June, and we get a nice road trip out of the deal. Im looking forward to the adventure with my cake partner, Jodes.

I am a huge foodie, I love going to new places, especially of the bakery kind. A couple of years ago I got to go on a business trip to Memphis and LA. While I was in LA I had to check out Sprinkles Cupcakes. I’ve always seen them all over Food Network and had to go and see them in person…I thought their cupcakes were super yummy and even brought Dan back some. As a souvenir, I saved the bag, wooden forks and printed out a picture of the store front…yes I was THAT person.

I decided to make a shadow box to display my excitement of going to Sprinkles!! It took me years to actually print out my photo of the front window of the shop, but I finally got around to it. I can now cross this off my list…*happy dance*

I will be putting this in my kitchen and I can’t wait to add more shadow boxes to my collection.

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I’ve decided that 2014 is going to be the year to accomplish all the things I’ve been putting off. On Pinterest I’ve a board entitled “things I want to accomplish”. So far this year I’ve knocked off two of these, the dotted beer glasses from a couple of weeks ago and the Mirror quote. As Dan and I get closer to finishing rooms in our place, I get to decorate. I’ve been itching to do some decorating since I moved in with him 5 years ago.  Personally I’d rather make things for our place than buy it. Its a win win for me, I get things cheaper than if I bought them in the store, I can personalize it to my taste and it means more to me because I did it myself.

This was one project I saw on Pinterest and had to have. I picked a quote that interested me…”Imagination is the only weapon in the war against reality”. I want to put this in my kitchen because my kitchen is my escape from reality. Imagination is one of the best ingredients you can add into any meal. Therefore I feel this quote would be appropriate for my kitchen.

I think that I will be making more of these because it was very easy.

Mirror Quote

Supplies

1 Mirror (I got mine from the dollar store)

1 can of spray paint (double check to make sure the paint will stick to glass)

Sticker letters (make sure to double check your quote before you go shopping for letter so you don’t have to do out and get more…like me)

Steps

1) Put stickers on mirror

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2) Spray paint mirror and let dry.

3) Peel off stickers and enjoy!

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I hope you all enjoy this easy project! Have a good rest of the week and talk to you all on Friday.

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