It’s been a busy weekend for my kitchen. I had a charity event on Saturday that involved a cake walk, so I baked up a storm Friday night. I probably would have been fine just making one batch of cupcakes, but I found a few recipes that sounded good, so I bought supplies to bake 4 different desserts.
I also bought a package of 101 cookie cutters. I was looking for a stocking, but since it’s not Christmas time, I wasn’t sure I’d be able to find one. I thought the large package of cookie cutters would have something, but no – a reindeer, christmas tree, dreidel, snowman and gingerbread man, but no stocking. Oh well, I’m sure these will come in handy some day!
My first project was White and Dark Hearted Brownies from Smitten Kitchen. I saw these on her blog around Valentine’s Day and knew I would have to try them some day. You start by baking a set of brownies with chocolate chips and a set of brownies with white chocolate chips. You then take a heart shaped cookie cutter (this is where I would have liked to use a stocking) and cut hearts out of both the white and dark chocolate brownies, and then swap them.
I didn’t have my camera out yet, so this was taken with my iPhone. These brownies were more difficult to make than I expected (and I made a huge mess!) but I love how they turned out. Not only are they cute but they tasted amazing. I will definitely hold onto this recipe to use again in the future.
My next recipe was Hungry Girl’s Red Velvet Insanity Cupcakes. I followed the recipe exactly except for the frosting. I took the easy way out and just used store bought cream cheese frosting. I didn’t get to eat any of these, but the batter was delicious and HG has never done me wrong before when it comes to cupcakes 🙂 I doubled the recipe to make 24 cupcakes.
Don’t worry, I added the icing the next morning! Up next were Hungry Girl’s coffee cake cupcakes. I’ve made these once before, and they were a hit. Instead of using ground up fiber one cereal for the topping I used panko crumbs. I doubled this recipe too.
By the time I finished these it was after midnight and I was exhausted. I went to bed without making the final batch of cupcakes, which were going to be yellow cakes with a strawberry jam and cream cheese filling. One of my favorite recipes, but I’ll have to save the ingredients for another time!
I found my way back in the kitchen today. Pat and I went to Costco this afternoon (one of my favorite places), and they had samples of granola, which they told us was made right there in the store. Pat wanted to buy some, but after looking at the ingredients, I told him I could make it myself. So I did!
I based my recipe on this one by Alton Brown.
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.
Add to a bowl:
- 3 cups oats
- 1 cup chopped almonds
- 1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts
- 1/2 cup sweetened coconut
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 2 tbsp ground flaxseed
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1/4 cup peanut oil
- 1/2 tsp salt
Spread the mix onto a baking pan and put it in the oven for 1 hour, 15 minutes.
I couldn’t help myself from stealing a little bit of the mix before it went into the oven 🙂 It came out nice and crispy.
And on top of all that, I still made us dinner tonight. I was on a roll! I decided to go with a standard meal for us – tofu, veggies and risotto.
I started with the veggies: red bell pepper, orange bell pepper, onion and spinach, sautéed in olive oil, garlic powder and celery salt.
Tofu sautéed in olive oil, garlic, garlic powder and onion powder.
Mixed together for parmesan gooey goodness 🙂
I never get sick of this combination!
While I was busy in the kitchen, Pat was busy outside. First he bought a new hibiscus plant for the outside of our house. Our last one died in a freeze this winter, so it was time for a replacement. And our new plant already had a beautiful bloom!
He also planted new grass in our backyard and cleaned up the bushes on the side of our house. And while he was at it he cleaned my car 🙂 We took my car through the car wash this morning, but the tires were still very black. Pat scrubbed and scrubbed until they looked brand new!
The dirty rags…
I have the best hubby in the world 🙂
What did you do this weekend?