Friday, December 30, 2011

Chocolate lollipops!

Hey guys, What are you Doing New years eve? really? sounds fun!! No seriously that is today's song. Nancy Wilson's rendition,one of my fav's,its been done soooo many times,what is your favorite rendition?

Todays recipe is yet again inspired by Ina Garten...I saw her do this and I said "I wanna do that"  so I made some chocolate lollipops.Now I completely forgot to take pics for the during process and all of my measurements are guestimated but you'll be able to gage from my recipe and tweak it as you'd like!Here's what you'll need:

1/2 c of shredded sweetened coconut
8oz semi sweet chocolate
8 4in craft sticks
1/2c heavy whipping cream

1)Set up a double broiler for boil some water on medium in a pot and put a heat resistant bowl on top.

2) Chop up the chocolate,roughly does not need to be neat.Dump in the chocolate stir it around dont over stir,let it melt.

3) When the water begins to boil stir a bit more constantly,pour in a lil under half of the cream and stir. Use a nice heavy spoon,DO NOT use a whisk.The chocolate is thick and it will get stuck.

4) Pour in the other half of the cream and turn the heat off.Stir constantly till smooth (about 4 mins),now let it cool for about 10 mins and take it off the stove.Take this time to a charger big enough for the pops ooorrr use a cookie sheet and some foil.

5)Now take a spoonfull of chocolate and pour it onto the foil,get the craft stick and turn it over into the chocolate.Now top it off with a few pinches of coconut.Let it harden for about 10 mins then they go into the freezer for 1hr & 15 mins.
Then they look like this!

You'll want to gently use a metal pie scoop to lift the lolli off the charger.Now if you have nothing else to do and you love crafts you will get tissue paper and ribbon and wrap the lolli up to look like this:

Then you will put these into a takeout carton you got from Michaels,and give them away as gifts!
 This will be my last post of the year,have a happy and safe new year and thank you all sooo much for reading and commenting!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Bangers N' Mash!

This song is just the cutest song ever.Leavin  by Jesse McCartney,is a totally cute,bubble gum pop,12 yr old girl appropriate song. In this world where so much of the music is vile and degrading,I find this song boppy & and perfect for my kids.. if I had any.

How was Xmas guys?? Mine was pretty dern good,I think I may have eaten to much but I'm still ticking.Anywhoslebees,yea you read the title right I made bangers and mash.Last week I needed something to eat for dinner and I didn't want to go grocery shopping,because I knew with Xmas I'd have a fridge full of food and I didn't want to add to that. I looked at what I had and realized I could make bangers n'mash.So,lets go to the fair!! Here's what you'll need:

All of this + a clove of chopped garlic

You'll need all these too.
1) Peel,chop & boil the potato till fork tender,then but the chorizo in the oven on 400 for about 20 mins.
2) I used two grn onions and 2 slices of bacon and sauteed them,then set them aside.
3) Now it should be time to mash the potato..mash it slightly then add in a 1 tblspn of herb butter and 1/2 c heavy cream,mix then continue to mash.After all is mashed,stir in 1/4th c of colby cheese,garlic,few dash's of salt & pepper and garlic pepper.Stir well.
4) Now the chorizo is ready to come out,pile up the potatoes,cut the chorizo in half and style in upon the potatoes,then sprinkle the onions and bacon on top.

Ohhh it was sooo good.It may not be the typical British dish but when do I ever do anything typically??

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Cheese & herb loaf

If ever there was a country diva who could sing her ass off its Faith Hill,love,love her.I've always been a fan of her Breathe is quite simply everything to me.It's very hard to describe it really has soo many meanings...its just pure awesomeness Faith Hill at her best.

So today were talking about cheese and herb bread.What had happened was I went to Michaels and they were having this awesome sale and I got a cute lil loaf pan for a single dollar.Oh yea I got a bunch of other stuff to!!I say that to say I got home and thought "I'd like to use this loaf pan,like right now". Just as I was going to thumb thru some of the apps on my iphone I had another thought " oh my poor cookbooks have been abandoned,I don't use them as much as I used to". I went a found one of my very first cookbooks and found a great recipe for cheese herb muffin...then I remixed it!! Wanna hear it,here it goes,here's what you'll need:

1 tspn rosemary
1 tspn basil
2 eggs
1/2c milk or quarter of a c heavy cream
1/2 c cubed cheddar or colby
1&1/2 c flour
4 tblspns butter
1 tspn paprika
2 tspn baking powder
2 tblspns sugar

Now students lets begin!
1)Sift together dry ingredients +herbs.The rosemary should be roughly chopped,DO NOT mince it,you will not get the correct flavor.

2)Melt butter then combine wet ingredients.Add wet to dry then stir until just moistened.

 It will look like this,dip your finger in it...ya'll know you want to!

3)Grease loaf pan or cupcake liners,pre-heat oven to 350.

4)Spoon a portion of the mixture in to the pan,then scatter about 7,8 pcs of cheese on then spoon on more of the mixture.

5) Now the oven is preheated all you have to do is put these in and wait for 20-25 mins.I'll need a bigger muffin pan,these loaf puffed up quite beautifully.
PS. If your making muffins it makes about 10!

It's really good,rub the outside of it with herb butter,just do it!I can't wait to make more for Xmas! On that note happy holidays to all of you my sister will be in town soon so it will be a while before I'm back blogging! Not to worry,I can't wait to tell you all about my Christmas duck!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Vanilla Cupcakes & Chocolate buttercream

Neither One Of Us will go down in history as a song I hold so very near and dear to my heart.It is in my opinion one of the most beautiful ballads out there.I recall a certain relationship that always makes me think of this song.You know the aren't happy he isnt happy,but you think there maybe some hope..some light at the end of the tunnel.Well there isnt,and you have got to cut the cord,farewell my love.

Ok remember the cupcakes & buttercream I made.Well the cupcakes turned out great! You can find the recipe here oh and I swapped out the sour cream for vanilla yogurt.
My grandma never allowed me  to eat/taste all the batter w/the raw egg in it...well grandma wasn't here...   

I used an apple corer to take the middle out so that I could fill it with butter cream.Just be careful not to go all the down with the corerer in the cupcake, does that make sense?

 They were really for the icicng...

Here is the icing recipe I followed it to a tee,I promise.It just wasn't thick enough then I added more sugar to it...and it didn't work.The taste was just fine,delicious but the consistency was all wrong! Help me out guys what did I do,do you think I beat the butter too much??You can look at the pic above and tell that the icing is runny.If ya'll have any suggestions I'd appreciate it..or am I just doomed to use store bought buttercream for the rest of my life?

Friday, December 16, 2011

Ladies Night!!

I must have been about 14 yrs old by the time I realized that Greensleeves was considered an Xmas song,is that odd??Haha in our house my father damn near worshipped Coltrane so this was a song we listened to whilst eating our chili gumbo on a cool evening in March.It really never dawned on me it was a Christmas song.
PS I know Coltrane is the start here but really listen to what McCoy Tyner is doing!

My ladies night was this past wknd and it was a lot of fun.Everyone made their own pizzas and bought their fav bottle of something.This was an economical way for me to have some fun.Since I'm not employed right now but I really wanted to do something and have ppl over this was perfect.I only had to make the toppings,a few desserts,grab some wine and prepare the just add water crust.I will in a later post share the cupcake and buttercream recipe...ugh I'm beginning to think I was not made to make buttercream from scratch.Here are some pics to recap our night!!

 I took alot of pictures...these are the toppings:top-homemade sauce & spinach and a special seasoning mix just for the crust;middle-olives,chicken chirozo,mushrooms & onions;bottom-mozz,cheddar & parmesan cheese.

 I just loved this lil bulbs so cute...and cheap,surrounded by choc chip cookie recip I shared a few wks ago.
Above is microwaved popcorn I just tossed it in a simple cheese sauce I'd made,the Hershey's kisses are always a nice touch and there are cookies'n cream.Oh yea and they're lies the cupcakes with the buttercream from hell!

I had 2 poinseittas because they were on sale,and a great table decoration!

Some of the wine
 I think the top pizza was mine,and the bottom must be Tiauna's because she puts spinach on EVERYTHING.

 We call this eggnog happy!
Sharing a lovely moment!

It's meeee!I've been practicing my Adele eyeliner,can you tell?

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

My 1 yr Blogaversary!!!(un-edited)

I am not a big fan of Corinne Bailey Rae but this song is IT!! Closer mixes sass with a bit of the big band sound and a bit of the friday evening wind down. Corrine has the perfect voice to float over every note,never over any doing anything,it's just right.

Well kiddies today marks one whole year that I've had this blog!! Can you believe it?? I can all of the blood sweat and tears agonizing over starting the blog,then mapping out exactly what I wanted this blog to be like.Let's take a journey back to last year and where I was when I started this blog.

The first thing that comes into mind is the devastation that I was going thru as I started this blog. I do believe thats alot of the reason I started the blog...I needed something to keep me company...something to keep my mind off of my devastation. I digress...
My boyfriend had broken up with me out of nowhere. I was completely surprised and never saw it coming. I was soooo convinced that he was going to be my husband,I had never felt a sadness like I did when that happened.For the life of me as hard as I tried I could not make myself ok.

I was incredibly lonely,barely had any friends and the man I was convinced God had sent to me had left me,with out a care as to how I felt.I was MISERABLE,but no one could tell because I don't show or express any type of feeling or emotion because I really don't like to let ppl into who I am.

I needed an outlet,I needed something to do to take my mind away from:the man God had teased me with then taken away from me, my career which I felt was going nowhere and my life which I felt was chugging along waaayyy to slowly.

I started my blog as a way to escape everything that I was feeling and to maybe even generate more revenue. This blog kept (and still does) me company,but especially back then. I researched blogs for a good 4 wks,read a bunch of food blogs and finally one day decided I was going to do it. I actually drew out how I wanted the blog to look. What pic's were gonna go where,all that good stuff.I remember being sooo geeked when I got my very first comment! I don't even remember what post it was on,but that finally meant that someone was reading my blog.Lets be honest though,in the beginning this blog was for me. I needed this,to give me an outlet. Then others started reading the posts and I realized that there are other ppl who are actually quite interested in my recipes.

So as I sit here a yr later and recall upon all the things that have happened within this year:I wound up getting back with  my ex in May of this year we broke up again in July.I had never gotten over him and I realize that I needed to get back with him for God to show me what kinda asshole he really is. It hurt but had we not gotten back together I woulda gone to my grave thinking that he was the one.Yes ya'll it was that bad.I'm un-employed, no longer working in an office that I DESPISED.My grandfather died and I'm just starting to realize how much I miss him.I have no security and I don't know what tomorrow brings,oh but its been a decent year.Every experience has brought me somewhere,closer to me and closer to God.

Thank you all for reading this blog and for all your comments,I might forget to respond sometimes but I read them and they are sooo encouraging.Oh and I've decided to finally go to culinary school.I don't know exactly where yet but I will finally be enrolled by at least the summer of 2012!!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Breakfast cupcakes

Well today is another Xmas song cause I'm in that kinda mood. We've all heard The Christmas Song done a zillion different ways,well this is Babyface's rendition,and I really enjoy it.Did I ever tell you guys that I wanted to marry Babyface until I was about 7yrs old?? HAHA How weird is that?? Most girls had a things for BoyzII Men or Bell,Biv,Devoe and I did to,but I was determined to marry babyface. Yea I know I'm crazy!

Well today I have brought to you the awesome breakfast cupcake!! This was made for me by a dear friend a few weeks ago,when I went home. He used sausage,I used bacon but same thing.There are many variations you can do with this,thats why I like it! Here's what you'll need:

4 eggs
4 pcs of bread (no particular type)
4 pinches of butter
4 pcs of bacon
1/2 c cheddar cheese
Pinches of salt & pepper

1) Grab the muffin pan and spray the insides with butter.Then grab a cup or a jar and cut the bread into little circles,use a knife for precision!
2) Put the bread into the muffin pan and put a slab,pinch of butter on top.

"Now your cookin with oil" as my grandfather would say! 

 Opps I forgot to tell you to cook the bacon....Cook the bacon the cut it in half and put in on the bread.

 Then add the cheese,and pack it down so that the egg fits.Now pre-heat the oven to 400,its almost time!!

 Now top the cupcake off with the egg,yea it will be messy and it might run.Thats fine get another pan and put it under the muffin pan.Then sprinkle some salt & pepper on top,now put them in the oven for 20mins.

Take this time to clean up,apply for jobs and pour yourself a mimosa! Then before you know it .....

My friends looked neater..but I think he put the cheese under the meat,anyway they turned out well.Next time I think I will used actual sausage,maybe a chorizo...mmm yummmm!!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

How to Avoid the extra Holiday pounds!

Ok we all know and love this song. All I want for Christmas will forever go down as a classic. Now Justin Bieber has re-done it or something but this will always be Mariah's song.It never gets old and I never get tired of listening to it.

Well recently as I was reading thru some articles on yahoo's shine and I found a great one about not gaining what I call the "Holiday 15". These are all amazing tips,that I will try to follow.Haha be sure to tune in later this week so I give you all the details of my ladies night this weekend!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Lucky Platter

Today we'll be Rockin Around the Christmas tree with Brenda Lee. I do sooo love this song. Whenever I hear about it I think about the part of Home Alone where McCauley Caulkin has been left behind and he sets up a bunch of cardboard statues so that the theives will think he's having a party.So needless to say I have a special dance I do when I hear this song....I'll spare you!

A few weeks ago I had lunch with my brother at this funkily creatively decorated place called The Lucky Platter in Evanston IL.It was kind of a weird looking place but the food was on point,am I going back? Hells yeah!

The decor was something else!!

Yep thats foil on the ceiling...I dont know why,LOL!

  Yep that's a colander being used as a chandelier!

My french toast was amazing! it was covered with cornflakes! How cool is that,and they used a really fluffy cinnamon bread,yummness.

 The potatoes...ahh they were so tasty,I couldn't finish them I had them for breakfast next morning!Oh yea and they had cilantro on top,yall know how much I love cilantro!

Can you believe all this delicious food was only like $9??There are some really great brunch places in Evanston...exploring is soo much fun!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Perfect Cornish hen!

Today's song is a song of inspiration. Anthem Of Praise is what I like to call a battle song by Richard Smallwood. I find it very soothing whenever I'm going thru something really tough,it really gets me amped up and reminds me that I can get over any hurdle!

Soooo I made a corninsh hen for thanksgiving dinner.I used to bake these alot in college but I hadn't in a while. I saw 2 on sale for $2 so I HAD to buy them!So I marinated the hen for about 24hrs then baked it on 400 for about 35mins.Here's what you'll need:

I used 1.5 c's olive oil
.5 c's white wine
Half of the lemons juice
2 tspns salt& garlic pepper
1 tblespn rosemary,chopped
Whisk it all together then put the lime in the coke you nut! No really put the hen in the bowl,put that in the fridge,making sure the lid is on tight.

Then 24 hrs later you bake the hen on 400 for about 35 mins...Now heres the part I'm kind of embarrassed about...after the baking and taking out of the oven I was so hungry I forgot to take a pic of it,LOL.I just started cutting and eating,haha.Here are the pics I do have:

It looks good doesn't it??

And here lies the I didn't eat it all at once,I carved the meat off and put it away so that I could throw all that away.The hen was pretty good! Next time I want to do something kinda spicy and smokey,hmmm I'm excited!