Thursday, May 5, 2016

Oven Fried Asparagus

This recipe is pretty amazing. Maybe it's even magical. I really loved the result. Although, that's not why I'm so impressed with this recipe. I like lots of things. You know what is worth all this fanfare? My one year old and three year old ate these too. Yep, my kiddos were gobbling up asparagus!

*The picture is awful, I know. I almost didn't post because of that reason. Ignore the picture, make the recipe, and enjoy your veggies. 

Friday, April 29, 2016

Growing Out a Curly Pixie, Twists

I'll have another growth update in a couple of weeks, but I thought I'd show what I've been doing to tame the mane lately. 


Sometimes I do one, but, on this day, I did four (two on each side). 

I let the back stay wild. What I can't see doesn't matter as much to me as the front. I know other people see it, but I'm pretty sure no one else is going to stress out about the back of my hair. So, why should I? 

I have a haircut scheduled for the end of next month. I'm hoping to get a mid-way cut. I read this post by It Keeps Getting Better and felt inspired. 

Friday, April 22, 2016

Happy Earth Day

I've been some kind of weird mood lately.  Today I doodled this crazy cactus woman...

It's not news at this point that coloring and drawing can be therapeutic, but this is what it was for me. Even simple sketches are enough to bring me into the present for a sec. Now, back to the kids that are biting my ankles. :) 

*The glasses are a "sticker" from an app. 

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Katharine Hepburn's Brownies

After an exhausting day at the dentist, I decided to make brownies for myself...sticky, rich brownies with pecans. I don't know why I would want something sweet after the dentist? Maybe I'm deeply rebellious. Anyways, I found a great recipe by Katharine Hepburn. Yep, the Katharine Hepburn. Kind of appropriate for my post-dentist, rebel snack. Don't cha think? 

I love one bowl recipes, but this recipe requires two. No big deal. Other than that  detail, it's very tidy to make. Only a few ingredients are required, and you don't need a scale to weigh ingredients. So many brownie recipes require you to weigh the chocolate, but this recipe uses cocoa powder. FWIW, I don't mind weighing things, but for humble brownies I'm bothered when I need a scale. 

The brownies are PDD (pretty damn delicious). They are very fudgy. Sometimes I want a fluffier brownie, but these are what I wanted today. Make sure you let them fully cool. If you don't, you'll have a mess of a time cutting them. If you are alone and eating with your hands, that's okay. If you might be seen, trust me, let them cool. 

Here's the link to the recipe on the New York Times' site.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Chocolate Ganache 2:1

Chocolate ganache is super easy to make, sounds fancy, and is delicious in so many forms.  Chocolate ganache is made by melting chocolate in heavy cream. By changing the ratios of chocolate and cream you can tailor the ganache to your dessert needs. 

In this post, I wanted to show what you can do when you have 2 parts semisweet chocolate to 1 part heavy cream.  Here is the result once the ganache has almost cooled to room temperature...

It's super glossy! It's spreadable and will loosely hold its shape.  I like to work with it at this temperature.  Once it has cooled completely it will become firm.  If you chill it, it will be a truffle consistency.  More on that in another post. 

You can spread it on a cake and keep it in the fridge. Here it is on my gianduja mousse birthday cake last year...

You can spread it on chocolate eclairs...

You can top off your Bete Noire or chocolate cheesecake...

If you whip the 2:1 chocolate ganache you will get this result...
It's not quite as glossy, and it's lighter in color. The texture is also more sturdy. It holds its shape enough to frost a cake or cupcakes. Once it is completely cooled it will also be more stable, but you would still be able to slice through it on a cake. I like this frosting for a casual layer cake.  If you like the frosting to be softer, you can always up the cream, but I really like a thick, fudge-like frosting.  

I made a video to show you guys the way the 2:1 ganache performs. First up is the ganache that has been cooled to almost room temperature. The second part is the same ganache, but it's after the ganache has been whipped. I'm hoping this will clearly show the texture differences so you can confidently choose the best ganache for you. 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Growing Out a Curly Pixie, 5 Months

An update on my personal growth...hehe.  Here's a link to the pictures of the first four months.  I know this is titled "growing out a curly pixie", but I wanted to show the length when it's straight.  I like the way it looks, but I don't really feel like myself with straight hair.  When my daughter saw me after I fixed it, she said, "Whoa! You look like a mermaid!"  I'll take that as a compliment. :)