I am a wife, a mom of three, and the kitchen is my favorite place in the house. I read cookbooks in my spare time and enjoy getting kitchen appliances for presents :) I love preparing delicious and healthy food for my family and here are a some of what graces our table each week.

Email Me for any of the recipes :)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Chicken under a brick…kinda

This is an adaptation of Anne Burrell’s Chicken Under a Brick.  I used the same cooking method as I always do and cranked up the oven to 500F for about 40-45 minutes.  You can see that the garlic burned a bit on the top, but it didn’t make a difference.  I could have swallowed this bird whole.  I am trying to clear out my pantry to get ready for Passover so I made some kasha/buckwheat.  It’s a bit of a weird process, you have to sauté the grains in egg first and then simmer them in the cooking liquid.  I didn’t mind them, but Danny thought they were bland – duh, they are whole grains…

I think I have mentioned these cute little chickens before that come from Costco and I am (a little too) happy that they are Kosher for Passover! I am going to stock up on a few and cook three or four at the beginning and just have them, cut up, in freezer to pull out for lunches, chicken salads, etc.  Lucky for me, Danny liked the other way I prepared them even better – salt/pepper/paprika and that’s it! Yum :)

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Sunday, February 7, 2010

Birthday Cake #2 – Candy Melts Galore

I got the idea to do candy melt decorations from Bakerella and her WOW MOM cupcakes.  They were so much fun to make and the fact that I made them an entire week in advance made the final cake prep so much easier.  Here’s how I did them…

They have light pink candy melts, but I wanted hot pink, so I melted white and used rose dye to get the color I wanted.  When I was done with the hot pink, I melted more white in the same measuring cup and got a lighter version.  The squeeze bottles are a dream, the kids use them to decorate cookies with royal icing and they make candy making so easy that anyone can be creative…

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Bakerella turned her flowers over and used the flat side, but I didn’t like how they looked with the dots and squiggles so I melted them again and used the “right” side of everything, they looked better that way.

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How cute are these letters?

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The final collection…how hard to do you think it was keeping these tucked in the fridge for an entire week??

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I baked two 8 inch rounds and two 6 inch (maybe) rounds and kept them in the freezer for a few days.  I tried to use up the frosting from Cake #1, but had to make some extra for each layer.  One day I will make just enough frosting so I don’t have too much or too little…

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I used the icing tip again, but this cake was giving me major issues.  It was as crumbly as can be and the frosting just lifted right off everytime I tried to spread it.  Grrrr.

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I have the fanciest of tools….an upside down salad plate worked great for the little topper.

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The topper was a piece of the 6 inch cake, I just wanted a little place for the candle and Amelia’s name…

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My candy stash…

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The letters go on with a tiny bit of frosting…

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The hot pink frosting comes out…

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The star tip comes out, loved every minute of making this cake…

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The final result…

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I even decorated the candle with candy melts, Amelia didn’t like the yellow/green/blue look that it had.  Next time, I think I will do small cupcakes with large candy pieces on top since the kids gobbled those up and left most of their cake – doh! :)

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Birthday Cake #1 – Cupcake Cake

Amelia is lucky to share a birthday week with her Bubbie (grandmother) – Amelia’s is on the 5th, Bubbie’s is the 7th.  Amelia was actually due on my Bubbie Molly’s birthday, the 4th, but stuck it out (literally) for an extra day. Amelia is named after Bubbie Molly, whose full name was Amelia, so it’s all very special.  Anyways, we celebrated Bubbie’s and Amelia’s birthday at my sister, Becca’s house this past Friday night, and I wanted to make a cake for the two of them that reflected them and their unique relationship.  After baking and ruining a number of square cakes, I decided to do a cupcake cake and save me any more trouble – grrrr.  I did a little research on the “cupcake cake” and didn’t find much, except that anything goes really and you should glue your cupcakes to the board before frosting – quite valuable info, by the way.  I went through way too many pastry bags at the beginning, but once I got the hang of things again, it went really smoothly.  I loved making this cake, especially trying out my new star tips (big and small).  I really had fun decorating this cake and everyone loved eating it ;) 
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Lots of parve “butter”cream frosting – 2 c. shortening, 2 lbs powdered sugar and 1/2 c. or so liquid.  I used soy milk and vanilla to taste…

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I used yellow cake and red velvet cake and had an assortment so that everyone would be happy…

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The glue…

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A border…

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Using my new icing tip, made this job so easy…

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All smooth…

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I marked where I wanted the lettering with a toothpick or I would have never been able to make it straight…

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The letters were done with the small star tip.  I tried a big butterfly in the middle with the small round tip, but it didn’t look good so off it went – buh bye…

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I went with smaller butterflies using the small star tip and was much happier with them.  I did the border design with the larger star tip…

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I made the little antennae using a toothpick and the black dye and it looked cute, but wasn’t thrilled with the size of the butterflies and how much white was on the cake. 

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I did a larger wing and loved how it came out.  Amelia said she was the yellow butterfly and Bubbie was the purple one :)

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