Monday, November 28, 2011
Tri Level Brownies
1 cup quick cooking rolled oats
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 egg, lightly beaten
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 oz unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 oz unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 Tablespoons butter
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. For bottom layer, in a small bowl stir together oats, the 1/2 c flour, brown sugar, and baking soda. Stir in the 1/2 c melted butter. Press evenly into bottom of an ungreased 11x7x1 1/2-inch baking pan. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, for middle layer, in a medium bowl stir together egg, granulated sugar, the 2/3 c flour, milk, the 1/4 c melted butter, the 1 oz melted chocolate, the 1 t vanilla and baking powder until smooth. Fold in walnuts. Spread evenly over bottom layer. Bake about 25 minutes more or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Place pan on a wire rack.
3. For top layer, in a medium saucepan combine the 1 oz chopped chocolate and the 2 T butter. Cook and stir over low heat until melted. Stir in powdered sugar and the 1/2 t vanilla. Stir in enough of the hot water to make a mixture over middle layer. Sprinkle with the 2 oz bittersweet chocolate. Cool completely. Cut into bars. Makes 16 to 24 brownies.
This picture is to show the layers. It's not a great picture, but you can kind of pick out the oat layer, the brownie layer and the chocolate layer.
I decided to shop at local shops, I think it's more fun than going to stores everyone has access to. One store I went to is called Worldly Goods, it has handmade ornaments from countries all over the world. It's a fair trade organization (I think that's what it's called), where all the money from the things they sell goes right back to the people who made them. I loved the 2 paper stars, and the "Joy" is actually cut from a coconut shell.
Here's what she sent me:
These really brightened up my apartment.
Monday, November 21, 2011
Creamy Peanut Butter Bites
3/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
21 bite-size chocolate covered peanut butter cups, halved
unsweetened cocoa powder
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a large bowl combine butter and peanut butter. Beat with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, baking powder, and salt. Beat until combined, scraping side of bowl occasionally. Bead in egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour. If necessary, cover and chill about 30 minutes or until dough is easy to handle.
2. Shape dough into 42 balls, each about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Press a halved peanut butter cup into each ball and shape dough aroung peanut butter cup to enclose. Place cookies 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
3. Bake in preheated oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are firm and bottoms are lightly browned. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; cool. If desired, sprinkle cookies with cocoa powder.
I love this recipe, I am not a big fan of peanut butter, but these are great. I didn't get 42 cookies out of it, I got about 28. Maybe I made my dough too big, I don't know.
Saturday, November 19, 2011
This is one of my 'trees', it's actually part of our Japanese lilac tree, we had to cut it out because it was dead, so I took it and stained it. I think it's pretty cool. I love the Santa troll in this pic. There's also an Italian glass snowman, a Russian snowman, and a cool Christmas palm tree.
I've been drawn more to different and unique snowmen lately, mostly because I have so many. Like I said, I like mostly winter things, since I collect snowmen. I do have a few just Christmas ornaments in my house, but not many. I like seeing snowmen that are 'artists' or have artsy things with them, I love ones with my name on them.
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
I am so ready for a day off from working. I get next Thursday (Thanksgiving) off. By that time I will have worked every day for a month between my two jobs.
I'm just so ready for a break. Even when I'm in my house, I can't just read in peace because my dad has his stuff up so loud underneath me.
Hurry up and get here, Thanksgiving.
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
These next 3 pictures are from a bag of linens,
I love that blue and white flower
Monday, November 14, 2011
What if I were to get pregnant?
I would not be happy, I am not a big fan of kids, and would probably have an abortion.
What if I could have any job in the universe?
I would love to get paid for my artwork.
What if I had the day to myself?
I'd probably just go shopping downtown. I have lots of days (well, not the whole day cause I work, but generally afternoons) to myself, and I have so much fun wandering through stores. I would love to just wander through an antique mall, unfortunately, ours is closing tomorrow.
What if I could get married?
I changed this one (it said all over again, I'm not married), I admit it, I never planned my wedding as a kid. I do love checking out the bridal magazines and looking at the dresses. I think it'd be cool to have a handmade wedding, course I'd have to have a boyfriend first.
What if I could live anywhere in the US?
I'd take Okoboji, IA. I love going there on vacation, unfortunately, I think being there all the time would make it less fun.
What if you could have any talent in the world?
I like the talent I have now, my art.
What if you met me in real life?
I'd love to meet some of my followers in real life. I like to think I don't really hold much back, so hopefully, you'd like me.
What if I went back to school?
I would totally take some of those anthropology classes I wanted to take, and maybe some art ones.
What if money weren't an object?
I wish. I could move to my own house, have a room just for my crafting supplies, have a dog, spend as much as I wanted on crafting supplies and clothing.
What if I could meet one celebrity?
I'm not big on meeting celebrities, but I'd love to meet the guys from Supernatural. Of course, I'd probably just grin and blush and not say anything.
What if I could shop at one store for the rest of my life?
Micheals. Hey, it doesn't say what kind of store. I love going to Micheals, they have so many cool things there. Thankfully, the closest one is 45 minutes away, so I don't get there very often.
What if I could choose any pet?
A dog, totally. I love hanging out with my friend when she brings puppies to town. I'd love to have another guinea pig too, maybe some day. I miss my pig.
What if I could go on a trip right now?
If money still weren't an object, Hawaii. I loved it when we were there a few years ago, I would love to explore more of the islands.
What if I had to choose between a house cleaner and professional chef?
Totally take that cleaner. Only thing is, I can find everything in my messy house. Maybe they could just clean up the bathroom and kitchen. I'm trying to get better at cooking/baking, so that would totally kill that.
What if I had the option to get plastic surgery?
Maybe get some of my fat shaved off, course if I exercised more, I wouldn't need that.
Saturday, November 12, 2011
Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 pouch Betty Crocker sugar cookie mix
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/4-1/2 teaspoon mint extract
6-8 drops green food color
1 cup creme de menthe baking chips
1 cup semisweet chocolate chunks
1. Mix cookie mix, butter, extract, food color and egg in bowl, until soft dough forms. Stir in creme de menthe baking chips and chocolate chunks.
2. Using small cookie scoop or teaspoon, drop dough 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.
3. Bake at 350 degrees F for 8 to 10 minutes. Cool 3 minutes; remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Serve warm or cool completely. Store tightly covered at room temperature.
This is supposed to make 36 cookies, when I mixed up the dough, it looked very small, so I made 2 batches, and now I have tons of cookies. I used 1/2 t mint extract in the first batch and thought it was very minty, but after tasting the cookies when they were done, they weren't overly minty. I used 1/4 t in the second batch, and haven't tasted those yet, but with the creme de menthe chips, I bet they're still fine.
I used the 8 drops of food coloring and liked the color.
I didn't realize that creme de menthe baking chips are actually just Andes mints chopped up, I used a leftover bag of chocolate chips instead of chopping up chocolate.
Tuesday, November 08, 2011
Sunday, November 06, 2011
I decided to make a different recipe every weekend (starting the first weekend in November) until Christmas. This week it was Chocolate Revel Bars:
I will post a picture and the recipe here for anyone who reads this to enjoy as well. All my recipes are coming from 100 Best cookies by Better Homes and Gardens. It's a magazine I bought last year.
Chocolate Revel Bars
1 cup butter
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 cups quick-cooking rolled oats
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate pieces
1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cups chopped walnuts or pecans
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Reserve 2 T of the butter for filling. In a large bowl beat the remaining butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar and baking soda. Beat until combined, scraping side of bowl occasionally. Beat in eggs and 2 t vanilla until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour. Stir in oats.
2. For filling, in a medium saucepan combine the reserved butter, chocolate pieces, and sweetened condensed milk. Cook over low heat until chocolate is melted, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Stir in nuts and 2 t vanilla.
3. Press two-thirds (about 3 1/3 c) of the oat mixture evenly into bottom of an ungreased 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Spread with filling. Crumble the remaining oat mixture evenly over top.
4. Bake in preheated oven about 25 minutes or until top is lightly browned (filling will still look moist). Cool in pan on wire rack. Cut into bars. Makes 60 bars.
To Store: Cover pan and store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze up to 3 months.