Friday, September 28, 2012

28 on the 28th

Today is my birthday!

When I was younger, 28 was always an age that seemed so grown up to me, and felt so incredibly far off into the future. Now I am grown up and hurled into my future. Being 28 seems surreal to me.

I decided to take the day off of work (and Greg followed suit) to make a long weekend. I'm fully looking forward to celebrating with family and friends over the next couple days...enjoying lots of delicious food, and relaxing.

What's in store for you all this weekend?

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Thursday, September 27, 2012

Candy Wrapper Archive

The Candy Wrapper Archive is an amazing website that was started by a candy lover who liked to save their wrappers. Eventually it turned into this large database of sugar history and appreciation with wrappers dating back over the past 100+ years. The website is fascinatingly addictive to look through

Hershey wrapper from 1908

Reese's wrapper from the 1940s

Mounds wrapper from 1948

Snickers wrapper from 1989

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Monday, September 24, 2012

Culture Kitchen

I recently came across a really cool website called Culture Kitchen. This site sells different food kits that come with the perfect amount of spices and ingredients for three included recipes. That way you're not buying large amounts of unknown items and then have tons leftover that never gets used.

I think it's such a great idea to expand your cooking horizons (or something to keep on hand for if you hit a food rut). Some of their current kits include Iraqi and West Indian themed packages.

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Friday, September 21, 2012

Have a fantastic weekend!

Happy Friday everyone! And happy first day of Fall (tomorrow)! My favorite season is almost officially underway.

I am so excited that my iPhone 5 is out for delivery right now, I cannot wait to get my hands on it. I am so happy to not be waiting in any of the crazy lines.

Otherwise I am looking forward to quiet weekend. We'll be spending some of it at an apple orchard, some spent with friends around an outdoor fire to enjoy these cool nights, and some time will be spent in the kitchen, making yummyness with goodies from the orchard.

Bridge at Night

Do you all have any fun plans in store?

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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Dancers Among Us

"Dancers Among Us" is a project by photographer Jordan Matter. Matter has been photographing members of the Paul Taylor Dance Company all around New York. I find these images so fun and captivating, I just had to share.

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Monday, September 17, 2012

Blueberry Scones

I was craving a breakfast baked good that would be easy to grab and take to work (something other than muffins). So I thought I'd give scones a try.

The only change I made to the original recipe was  topping the scones with vanilla sugar instead of plain, and I swapped out the sour cream for plain Greek yogurt, because that's what I always have in my fridge, and it's a bit healthier.

Blueberry Scones (adapted from America's Test Kitchen)
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, frozen until very firm
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (Chobani is my favorite)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon grated fresh lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons butter, melted

Adjust oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Freeze, then grate 8 tablespoons of the butter over the large holes of a box grater. Keep frozen until needed. Place the berries in the freezer until needed. Whisk the milk and yogurt together in a medium bowl and refrigerate until needed.

Whisk the flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, lemon zest, salt, and baking soda together in a medium bowl. Add the frozen, grated butter and toss with your fingers until thoroughly coated. Fold in the chilled milk mixture with a rubber spatula until just combined (do not overmix)

Turn the dough and any floury bits out onto a well-floured counter. Lightly flour your hands and the dough and knead the dough gently 6 or 8 times until it just holds together in a ragged ball, adding additional flour as needed to prevent sticking.

Roll the dough out into a 12-inch square. Fold the top, bottom, and then sides of the dough over the center to form a 4 inch square (use these pictures for tips on the folding process). Transfer the dough to a lightly floured plated and chill in the freezer for 5 minutes (do not overchill).

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured counter and roll again into a 12-inch square. Sprinkly the berries evenly over the dough, and press them lightly into the dough. Loosen the dough from the counter with a bench scraper (or thin metal spatula), and roll into a tight log and pinch the seam closed. Lay the dough seam side down and press into a 12 by 4-inch rectangle. Using a floured chef's knife, slice the dough crosswise into 4 equal rectangles, then slice each rectangle on the diagonal into 2 triangles.

Place the scones on the prepared baking sheet. Brush the melted butter over the scones and sprinkle lightly with sugar. Bake until the scones tops are lightly golden brown, 18 to 25 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool for at least 10 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature

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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

iPhone 5

Today at 1 pm Eastern/10 am Pacific, the new iPhone is set to be unveiled, I am so excited because I am ready for an upgrade (I tend to upgrade every other release, so I skipped the 4S and am still on the 4)! Are any of you planning on getting the new iPhone?

MacRumors has a roundup of information available thus far on the iPhone 5 here. They will also be live tweeting the event here, it's really fun to follow along with all the new information right as it becomes available.

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Tuesday, September 11, 2012


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Monday, September 10, 2012

Coffee Cake

The other day Greg was musing about coffee cake, but not a cake to be eaten with coffee, instead one that tastes of coffee. Brilliance. I went hunting for a great recipe and made it immediately. And oh my goodness, was it good.

Coffee Cake (from The Pioneer Woman: Food From My Frontier)
2 sticks unsalted butter
3 tablespoons instant coffee crystals
1 cup boiling water
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 eggs
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons vanilla

Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour two 9 inch round cake pans.

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Once melted, sprinkle the coffee crystals on top and then pour in the boiling water. Let bubble for a few seconds and then turn off the heat.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar and salt. Pour coffee mixture in and stir to combine.

In a small bowl mix together the buttermilk, eggs, baking soda and vanilla, then add to the coffee and flour mixture. Stir until well combined and then pour the batter into the prepared pans.

Bake for about 20 minutes, or until set. Let the cakes cool for 10 minutes in the pans before removing them.

Allow to cool completely before frosting the cake.

Vanilla Buttercream (adapted from my mom's recipe)
3/4 cups unsalted butter, softened
4 3/4 cups confectioner's sugar
1 vanilla bean, scraped
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
whole milk

Place butter and vanilla bean seeds in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat until soft, creamy and well combined. Slowly add in sugar until the mixture starts to form clumps, then add in vanilla extract. Finally, one tablespoon at a time, add the whole milk until the frosting comes together in a creamy, spreadable texture.

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Friday, September 7, 2012

Shorelines and Sunshine

Happy Friday everyone! Today I am guest posting on Sarah's blog Shorelines and Sunshine as the Shoreline of the Month feature. Please take a moment and check it out.


Have a wonderful weekend! Are y'all up to anything fun?

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Thursday, September 6, 2012

Fictitious Dishes

Graphic designer Dinah Fried has created a series of photos featuring iconic meals from classic books. The series is called Fictitious Dishes, the photos really capture the essence of the scenes so perfectly.

Alice in Wonderland

Catcher in the Rye

Moby Dick

Oliver Twist


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Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Apple Brown Betty

If you are a fan of King of the Hill, you have heard of apple brown betty, the dessert speciality of Peggy Hill (see screen grab at left). However, the show doesn't really go into detail about what this dessert is, so I did some research and came up with my own rendition.

This is a delicious, sweet, buttery dessert that is perfect with crunchy pecans and tart apples.

Apple Brown Betty
1/2 a long baguette, or 1 short one, cut into tiny cubes- day old works great (yielding approximately 4 cups)
3 tart apples (granny smith or macintosh are my fave), peeled, cored and sliced
1 cups dark brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped pecans
6 tablespoons salted butter, cut into thin pats
1/3 cup water

Preheat oven to 375. Generously butter a 9 inch baking dish (I used a deep pie dish). Mix together brown sugar and cinnamon.

Scatter 1/3 of the bread bits into the baking dish, then layer on half of the apples, then sprinkle on half of the pecans and half of the brown sugar mixture. Repeat with 1/3 of the bread,  then the remaining apples, pecans, and brown sugar mixture.  Sprinkle on the rest of the bread and cover the top with thin pats of butter. Finish by sprinkling the top with 1/3 cup of water, one spoonful at a time.

Bake, covered with foil, for 45 minutes. Remove foil and then bake for another 15 minutes until top is nice and brown.

Serve warm with whipped cream, ice cream, or hard sauce, they're all wonderful.

this recipe can also be found at some of my favorite food blog hops

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