Monday, January 23, 2012

miscellany monday

Miscellany Monday @
lowercase letters

pinterest. a fail and a success.

and this was my first pinterest copy FAIL.

see how cute these rainbow pancakes are??

Source: via Manda on Pinterest

so yeah...i was all like i can totally do that...

ummmm, FAIL.

well. that's basically it. my rainbow pancakes sucked. HA!

BUT i do have a success story.

i saw this jewelry holder when i first got on pinterest and asked b to make it. he said he would.

it seriously took him FOREVER to actually finish it. but he finally did and i LOVE it!!!!! he's making another one for my bff. such a sweet husband.

tell me your success stories! i like the failure ones, too :)


Sunday, January 22, 2012

best brownies

i had mlk day off work but b didn't. so, i cleaned the house, got all the laundry done and put away, AND had brownies on the counter for him when he got home! can i get a manda wasn't meant to work?! ha. i kid, i kid. (sort of)

i've made these brownies before and LOVE them. i had some chocolate tub icing in the pantry (don't ask why...gross) so i used it instead of making the icing the recipe. bad idea but either way the brownies were still delicious!!

the best brownies.
source: hershey's

what you need-

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine, melted
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)

what you do-

1 Heat oven to 350°F. Grease 9-inch square baking pan.

2 Stir together butter, sugar and vanilla in bowl. Add eggs; beat well with spoon. Stir together flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; gradually add to egg mixture, beating until well blended. Stir in nuts, if desired. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan.

3 Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until brownies begin to pull away from sides of pan. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. Prepare CREAMY BROWNIE FROSTING; spread over brownies. Cut into squares. About 16 brownies.


what you need-

3 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
3 tablespoons HERSHEY'S Cocoa
1 tablespoon light corn syrup or honey (i've always used honey)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup powdered sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons milk

what you do-

Beat butter, cocoa, corn syrup and vanilla in small bowl until blended. Add powdered sugar and milk; beat to spreading consistency. About 1 cup frosting.



Thursday, January 12, 2012

elmo cake

I made this Elmo giant cupcake for my niece’s 2nd birthday. I was pretty nervous about it as I don’t think my decorating skills are that great yet but overall I was really happy with the way it turned out!!

I used the Pampered Chef New Design Easy Accent Cake/Cookie Decorator. I have had this tool for a while but had stuck it in a cabinet and not thought about it. I remembered it and pulled it out for this cake and I’m SO glad I did… it made making Elmo’s “fur” sooo much easier! I highly recommend it!

The birthday girl wore this super cute outfit made by a friend of mine. ADORBS!

Nothing exciting with the cake flavor…I just made ole chocolate…it’s always a crowd pleaser so I figured it was the best bet for little kids. :)

I've posted this recipe before but here it is again-

chocolate cake/cupcake
source: hersheys

what you need:
• 2 cups sugar
• 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
• 3/4 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa
• 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
• 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 2 eggs
• 1 cup milk
• 1/2 cup vegetable oil
• 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
• 1 cup boiling water

what you do:

Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans or cupcake pans.

Baking a one-pan cake: bake 35 to 40 minutes at 350° F

Baking cupcakes: line with baking cups. Fill 2/3 full with batter. Bake 22-25 minutes at 350° F

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Cast Iron Skillet Apple Pie

my mom made this apple pie first...brad and i recently had the pleasure of tasting it. so, i said it had to be on our new year's menu. it's so awesome and so easy! make it. as soon as possible. and eat with lots of ice cream. thank me later.

Apple Pie
Source: Southern Living, September 2011

what you need-

2 pounds Granny Smith apples
2 pounds Braeburn apples
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 (14.1-oz.) package refrigerated piecrusts
1 egg white
2 tablespoons granulated sugar

what you do-

1. Preheat oven to 350º. Peel apples, and cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges. Toss apples with cinnamon and 3/4 cup granulated sugar.

2. Melt butter in a 10-inch cast-iron skillet over medium heat; add brown sugar, and cook, stirring constantly, 1 to 2 minutes or until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat, and place 1 piecrust in skillet over brown sugar mixture. Spoon apple mixture over piecrust, and top with remaining piecrust. Whisk egg white until foamy. Brush top of piecrust with egg white; sprinkle with 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar. Cut 4 or 5 slits in top for steam to escape.

3. Bake at 350º for 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly, shielding with aluminum foil during last 10 minutes to prevent excessive browning, if necessary. Cool on a wire rack 30 minutes before serving. Serve with ice cream.


me, shannon, and karlie after our second bowl of apple pie and ice cream. karlie was good...she only had ice cream. (crazy, i know) but shannon and i were down with the pie AND ice cream. happy fatting new years day to us :)


Monday, January 2, 2012

Brown Sugar and Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin

growing up my mom always did a traditional new years lunch. you know- greens, black-eyed peas, rice, pork, etc. so now that i have my own family and house i have carried on the tradition. for the past few years brad and i have gotten together with friends to enjoy the awesome food! i may even be getting used to the greens...dare i say even starting to like them a little? hmmm. yep.

brad and i also eat pork tenderloins a lot. i was trilled when i saw this one on pinterest (who isn't thankful for pinterest?!) and since new year's was around the corner i thought i would give it a try. it was AMAZING and we loved it! super easy to make, too, so that's always a plus!

brown sugar and balsamic glazed pork loin
source: C+C Marriage Factory

what you need:
1 (2 pound) boneless pork tenderloin (or regular pork loin)
1 teaspoon ground sage
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 cup water

1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons soy sauce

what you do:
Combine sage, salt, pepper and garlic. Rub over roast. Place in slow cooker with 1/2 cup water. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. About 1 hour before roast is done, combine ingredients for glaze in small sauce pan. Heat and stir until mixture thickens. Brush roast with glaze 2 or 3 times during the last hour of cooking. Serve with remaining glaze on the side.