October 29, 2007

party time!

my friend kaaren throws the best parties. always guaranteed a good time. this past saturday was no exception... mexican theme hallowe'en party. one of the first costumes we thought of was the mexican bee from the simpsons, but unfortunatly we couldn't find it anywhere and i wasn't about to make one. while out shopping for her own costume, my sister picked up a very large sombrero. derek already had a sarape and i painted his face like a sugar skull. i, myself, went as frida kahlo.

as a gift for our gracious host i laboured over my counter making a sugar skull cake. i used the best chocolate cake recipe i have (i'll post that another time) in my betty crocker dome cake pan. i'm still not fully convinced about the pan though, it tends to dry out the outer layer of the cake when you've got the centre filled. inbetween the layers i used some dulce de leche. i carved the skull shape with a big serrated knife and then covered the whole thing in a very thin layer of buttercream, called a crumbcoat.

then more buttercream, and fondant rolled out smooth.

last, and most labour intensive... the decorating with royal icing.

October 20, 2007

chocolate chip cookies

it's raining out. the kids are going nuts. what do we do? bake cookies! mmm, warm from the oven chocolate chip cookies...

1 cup unsalted butter, room temp
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
2 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 cups chocolate chips

pre-heat oven to 350 degrees, line cookie sheets with parchment or silpat.

in a medium sized bowl sift or whisk together the flour and baking soda, set aside. in the bowl of an electric mixer ,fitted with the paddle attchment, on medium cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy, scraping down sides with a rubber spatula as needed. add eggs one at a time, incorporating well. add salt and vanilla. add flour mixture until just combined and then toss in the chocolate chips. do not overmix.

drop dough onto prepared sheets about 2" apart and bake for 8-11 minutes. cool on sheets for one minute and then transfer to wire rack to cool.


October 12, 2007


i literally stumbled onto this site called buy costumes and holy crap what a fantastic site! i think we spent about 2 hours yesterday looking at everything from sally from the nightmare before christmas to a banana. in the end derek and i decided on wonder woman and the flash for the kids.

and johanna picked out a tootsie roll for her little tootsie roll.

this is going to be awesome!