Sunday, February 28, 2010

From Scarry Clock to Fab Frame

A few (okay many) posts back I showed you all the great stuff I found thrifting. This lovely clock was among the wreckage, I mean great finds.
Although it wasn't working for me in it's present state I saw some potential. It took a while, but I found that potential and well. . . see for yourself.

See ya clock face...

Hello black spray paint!

Courtesy of my crazy talented sister in law I have this fun picture of me and my husband.

I'd rather look at his face than the old broken clock hands. It now resides in our room that is finally getting some much needed attention.

Stay tuned for more master bedroom makeover projects!

Monday, February 22, 2010


A good fudgy brownie is the chocolaty thing I crave the most. Usually I want just a brownie. Dark, chewy, and loaded with chocolate. With ice cold milk. Very important.


Sometimes I like to get a little crazy with the brownies. The idea of pairing rich chocolate with other flavors is just sooo good!

Like marshmallow brownies smothered in whipped ganache. By the way that is homemade marshmallow, it's just SO GOOD (and easy, don't freak out). But I guess you can go with store bought, it's your brownie.

Or how about Peanut Butter Heavenlyness? This one REALLY works for me.

Any orange chocolate fans out there? Maybe raspberry chocolate, those are awesome. Sorry I don't have a picture! Are you noticing the chocolate chunks in these brownies? That is very important.

Out of them all this is my favorite. Snickers brownies.
Fudgy brownies layered with peanut caramel, peanut butter nougat and drizzled with fudgy chocolate. Got milk? This is a two glasser.

Get a little creative with your next pan of brownies. The possibilities are endless!

My Favorite Brownie Recipe

This is a tweaked version of the brownies my mom made when I was a kid.

1 C butter
1/2 C cocoa (I like to use a heaping 1/2 cup)
2 C sugar
3 eggs
1 t vanilla
1/2 t salt
1 C flour
1/2 t baking powder
1 1/2 C chocolate chips

In medium saucepan melt butter. Remove from heat. Add cocoa and sugar. Stir with wooden spoon until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla. Stir until combined. Add salt, flour and baking powder. Stir just until combined. Be careful not to over stir. Stir in chocolate chips. Grease a 9 x 13 pan. Spread batter into pan, bake at 350 for 25 minutes. Don't over bake. Checking with a toothpick doesn't work with brownies. If you bake them until the tooth pick comes out clean you over did it. Bake until center is set and not raw. Allow to cool completely, especially if you plan to add extra layers of good stuff.

2 Envelopes unflavored gelatin
1/2 C. Cold water
3/4 C. Corn syrup
2 C. Sugar
1/2 C. Hot water
1 t. Vanilla
Sprinkle gelatin in cold water,
set aside. In 2 qt. pan combine corn
syrup, sugar, and hot water. Bring to a boil
stirring until sugar is dissolved. Boil
without stirring until 240 is reached.
Pour into large mixer bowl. Beat on high
speed adding gelatin mixture, one Tablespoon at a time.
Add flavoring , beat till soft peaks form. 5-7 minutes.

Half of this mixture can be spread on a pan of brownies. (All of it would be about and inch thick.) The rest of it can be poured onto a cookie sheet that has been heavily covered with powdered sugar. Let set, dust top with powdered sugar and cut into squares.

Peanut Butter Layer

1/2 C butter softened

1/2 C peanut butter

4 C powdered sugar

6 Tablespoons milk

Whip it all together and spread on brownies.

Orange Cream layer

1/2 C butter
1 (7 oz) jar marshmallow cream
3 C powdered sugar
1/2 t orange flavoring (the candy oil, not extract)

Food coloring
Cream butter in mixer until fluffy. Add marshmallow cream, flavoring and food coloring, cream together. Add powdered sugar, slowly, whip for 1 minute. Spread on brownies.

What's that chocolate fudge layer on top you ask? Don't flip out, you asked.
1 can sweetened condensed milk
3/4 c semi sweet chocolate chips
Combine together in microwaveable bowl. Cook for 1 minute at 50% power. Stir, repeat. Repeat until mixture is completely smooth. Spread on peanut butter or orange layer. (Or whatever other layer you want!) It's like pure fudge. So.good.

Snickers Brownies

3 1/2 C Sugar, divided
2 Cubes butter
2 3/4C Corn Syrup, divided
2 C Half and Half
1 1/2 t. Vanilla, divided
2 C roasted salted peanuts
1 egg white, room temperature
1/½C water
3/4 C creamy peanut butter

First make the layer of peanut caramel. Combine 2 C sugar, butter, 1 3/4 C corn syrup, and half and half. Bring to boil stirring occasionally. Cook until caramel reaches 238 degrees. Remove from heat, stir in 1 t. vanilla and peanuts. Pour half of the caramel onto brownies, the other half into a buttered pan. (extra to enjoy later) While caramel is setting prepare nougat. In medium saucepan combine remaining 1 1/2 C sugar, 1 C corn syrup and water. Stir constantly over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Continue to boil the syrup until it reaches 246 degrees.
While the sugar syrup boils place the egg white in the bowl of a large stand mixer. Whip the egg white on high speed until it forms stiff peaks. Stop the mixer once stiff peaks form so that the egg whites are not over beaten and crumbly.
Once the sugar syrup reaches 246 degrees remove it from the heat. Turn the mixer to high and slowly stream the sugar syrup into the egg white. (This will take a few minutes) Whip the mixture for two minutes. Add the peanut butter and remaining 1/2 t. vanilla Mix until combined. Pour nougat over peanut caramel layer. Drizzle with chocolate.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Cupcake Party

This week I taught a cupcake class for the ladies at our church.

We had a B-L-A-S-T!

Over 60 ladies showed up to make cupcakes!!

This was my tasters table. Every single one of these puppies were gone by the end of the night.

Each of the ladies made 6 cupcakes to take home. 2 chocolate cupcakes topped with peanut butter frosting and adorned with a heart shaped Oreo truffle, 2 Berry Cheesecakes, and 2 red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting.
I'm hoping to acquire some more photos of the fun event soon. Stay tuned!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Pretty In Pink

I always love a new challenge. In fact I crave them. This project hit the spot!
This creation was made to celebrate the most vibrant and lively 90 year old woman's birthday.
She loves pink, lace and roses. If you look closely you can see that her dining room wall is even pink! (I love it!)
After some negotiating we settled on a cupcake tower crowned with a small cake, all laced up and topped with gum paste roses.
I loved every minute of this project!
(Sorry for the yellow glow, I forgot to turn off the flash...sigh)

Each cupcake has it's own gum paste rose. So sweet!
Thank you for the opportunity!