Monday, May 31, 2010

red white blue

I love a good cupcake recipe.

Vanilla Cupcakes
1 1/2 sticks softened butter::1 cup sugar::3 large eggs::1 1/2 cups cake flour::1 TBLS warm water::2 tsp. vanilla extract.
Place oven rack on lower-middle position and heat oven to 400˚. Line 12 muffin tins with cupcake papers. Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Starting and ending with an egg alternate adding eggs and flour, beating until each is thoroughly incorporated. beat in water and vanilla until just incorporated. Divide batter evenly among prepared cups. Bake until fully cooked and golden, 15-17 minutes. Let cupcakes stand a couple of minutes then cool on wire rack.
Cream Cheese Frosting
4TBLS softened butter::8 ounces of cream cheese, softened::3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
Beat butter and cream cheese until smooth and fluffy. Beat in confectioners' sugar.

I also love a long weekend.
Enjoy yours.
Knitting soon, I promise.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

cinnamon scones

They're cinnamon chips. And they are so good. I mentioned I had just used my last bag and was having a hard time finding them in my area. A sweet friend mailed me a big box so this (along with chocolate chip cookies) has been my "go to" cookie the last few weeks. Not really a cookie, but I make them small, cookie size. Have them ready for after school snacks. And pack them in lunches the next day.
The dough is sticky.
So when you roll it out, make sure you use enough flour. And roll to about 1/4" thickness.
I was brushing with egg and sprinkling the cinnamon/sugar on each one individually. Until my mom was here when I made a batch. "Brush and sprinkle the entire surface and then cut", she said. Genius.
They are light and fluffy. And biting into the cinnamon chip is, well, yumm. And do you know what they go really well with?
Yarn!

Mini Cinnamon Scones
::2 cups all-purpose flour::2 TBLS sugar::1 TBLS baking powder::1 tsp salt::1 1/2 sticks cold unsalted butter, diced::2 extra large eggs, lightly beaten::1/2 cup cold heavy cream::1 cup cinnamon chips::1 egg beaten with 2 TBLS water, for egg wash::1/4 cup sugar mixed with 1 tsp cinnamon for top. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Blend in cold butter and mix until batter is in pea-sized pieces. Combine the eggs and heavy cream and add to mixture. Combine until just blended. Add cinnamon chips. Roll out onto floured surface to 1/4" thickness. Brush with egg mixture. Sprinkle with cinnamon/sugar mixture. Cut into squares and then cut each square diagonally. Place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake at 400˚ for 12-15 minutes.

Enjoy your weekend.

Monday, May 17, 2010

two

Jeez. Didn't mean to hold a contest and make you wait for results. Sorry about that. I ended up packing up the kids and the dog and taking a road trip to New York to visit my sister. Two full days for the cousins to get together, for the dogs to meet, and for my sister and I to enjoy it all. One day in the city and one day in the country.
It couldn't have been more perfect.
Speaking of two. I begged and pleaded and thought about offering my first born (no, not really) in order to get more books. I really wish you could all win. I ended up getting another book so there are two lucky winners!
I had the random generator choose numbers out of 1-293. A little confusion, because when I clicked on the comments it shows that there are 351 comments. But trust me (I counted three times!) there are 293.
#24 - Suzanne
Please shoot me your address and I'll make sure the book lands in your hands.
Have a beautiful day!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

60 quick knits

Twenty hats, twenty scarves, twenty mittens in cascade 220. Yep, an entire book devoted to one yarn. I like that. I also really like cascade 220. I find it to be a good quality yarn, affordable (it looks like webs is having a sale), and comes in just about every color under the sun. And speaking of the sun, I find these small "tote around" projects to be the perfect projects for summer knitting.
I'm absolutely head over heals for those plaid mittens. They sort of remind me of a vintage thermos. Mittens for adults and children. Fair Isle mittens, bird cage mittens, cable cuff mittens, bunny mittens, tweed mittens, checkered mittens, the list goes on.
Libby has been wanting me to make her a beret and I think I finally found a pattern she likes. (It just so happens I have a hank of off white in the stash.) Hats for adults and children. Hats with bobbles, cables, patterns and stripes.
Fingerless gloves fall into that mitten category. I have always wanted to make myself a pair of those flip top mittens. I think I found the perfect pattern.
Twenty scarves, too. Scarves for adults and children. Stripes, cables, stripes, ruffles, eyelet and a pocket scarf. Again, the list goes on.

And you guessed it. Tara over at Soho publishing is offering this book to one of my readers.
If you are interested, leave your name by Friday the 14th at 12pm EST. I'll draw a name.

Monday, May 10, 2010

who knew?

How come no one informed me that I wouldn't want to do anything but hang out with Trouble? Who knew? Who knew that I would find absolutely everything about this dog wonderful. Who knew that I would find it charming and sweet when on her walks she sits down when you turn around to make it home, with that "who me?" look on her face telling you that she just wants to walk more and she absolutely won't budge until you walk her more. Who knew that my heart would ache a little when she takes 5 minutes every morning to make it down our hardwood stairs. Testing each step with her paw as if she is testing the temperature of water.
Last week I finally managed to sew together my 12 square's. Who knew that I wouldn't mind finding a comfortable Trouble when I returned with my camera. I think she is adjusting quite well.
Glad to hear that so many people have done or are doing the green smoothie challenge. Hope it is going as well for you, too. And for those that asked... no, kale does not make as smooth of a smoothie as spinach. I guess you just have to embrace the chunks. Maria has some great information/recipes on her blog.
Happy Day.