Tuesday, March 26, 2013

New York City Eats

So two weeks ago I went to New York City! While my visit was only about 24 hours, I had a blast! I finally got to see Wicked! All I can say is it was amazing! It was the first play/musical that I was not bored for a single moment! The singing was incredible, and I may or may not have mouthed words to the songs along with them (my sister had gotten the soundtrack a few years ago and I was hooked once I heard it)! Besides seeing this wonderful production, I also ate and shopped my way through NYC!

For dinner before the show we had dinner at Chez Napoleon per the recommendation of a friend! This was my first visit to a French restaurant, crazy right?! I decided to forgo the calve's brain and went with the chicken cordon bleu, tender chicken stuffed with delicious cheese and ham! For dessert we ordered chocolate mousse and the cherries jubilee! I am going to be honest, I was a little disappointed with the desserts. The mousse seemed like it was made either that morning or the day before and just pulled out of the refrigerator. I understand why restaurants do this, but it's so disappointing to the diners. The mousse had good flavor, but it tasted old. And as for the cherries jubilee, it didn't light on fire, but the ice cream and cherries were outstanding!

No fire
The next morning we walked to Rockefeller Center and had breakfast at Bouchon Bakery! Holy macaron this place it sugar heaven! I enjoyed a grilled cheese and a mango macaron for breakfast! The grilled cheese had the perfect amount of crunch and ooze! Can't wait to go back! I also had my first macaron! The texture is unlike any baked good I have ever had so I am not really sure how to describe it to you other than to go try one yourself and you will know what I mean! At the end of the bakery there is window into the making of the all the delicious goodies! Besides the food, the atmosphere and decor of the bakery is divine! I would love to base a kitchen off it, ahh what a dream it would be to cook and bake!

We also hit up a big name bakery that I was terribly disappointed by, we were rushed into and out of the place. My cupcake was dry and tasteless. My single cupcake was almost seven dollars! SEVEN DOLLARS! I could make 24 tastier cupcakes for that much! Sorry big name bakery, but I will not be rushing back anytime soon!

Also I saw this guy while walking down the street! I was like WHOA, you you you were in Bridesmaids! I didn't stop because I was kind of starstruck (first celeb encounter) and he was talking with some other people!

That is all for now! Coming soon a new Boston eats post! What are your favorite NYC eats?

I was not gifted any part of this trip, it was paid for by either me or my family. And I just wanted to share my honest opinions of these places! 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Stuck In a Rut

Howdy y'all (no idea where that came from)! While I had hoped my next post would include a recipe, I just felt I had to lay this all out and get your opinion. Also my cooking of late had been terrible, there were the failed sugar cookies, the kind of good banana bread, another batch of failed cookies and the bitter brownies. Anyhoo, let's get to the main point of this post. So, I am currently stuck in a rut, and it's really bothering me. I am going to apologize for the rambling that is going to occur in this post, but I really need your help with this.
So here is the thing, I for some reason am bothered by my blog name...ugh I know, I just went through this and had to change all of my accounts. I also I am kind of wigging out over my template, sorry Kailyn! I just love things one moment, then I move on...I think it might have to do with ADD. I don't want to have to change everything all over, and you probably don't want to experience that either. Also this all kind of came about today, hopefully I will get over it soon. Also I am horrible at making decisions, even simple ones like what I want to eat or where I want to eat.
I wonder if I change things again, will this just become a pattern? Will I keep wanting to change things up?
I guess this post is a pity party and I am really sorry for that. Also sorry for the rambling incoherence. I am pleading with you here, I know many of don't comment for one reason or another, but can you take one for the team and do me one. Can you help me and talk some sense into me? Please.
Kind of how I am feeling about this.
I did give up Reeeses though...only a few more weeks!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

I just wanted to take a moment to say "Happy St. Patrick's Day"! Here are some photos of chocolate shamrock cookies I made! I am not quite ready to share the recipe yet, I need to tinker with it a little bit more! Have a great night!

I like to call this one "The Ring o' Kerry"

Friday, March 15, 2013

The Weekly Scoop 3/15/13

Haven't done one of these in a long while...here goes! Let's get right into it! 

1. So recently I made cookies and I even bought special and slightly expensive sprinkles for them, and I am really disappointed with the results. Can anyone say over priced food fail? Oh, and about two weeks ago I had another food fail, but this time it was an epic and expensive food fail. I made homemade Nutella, I even roasted and shelled all of the hazelnuts. I also bought a really pretty jar just for photographing the results. I guess you could say I was really excited about this project! Well, my fancy jar decided it hated me and decided to fly out of my hand with my prized homemade Nutella inside go splat on the floor, shattering the jar. I still am upset. Have you had any food fails that were expensive, or that still bother you to this day?

2. You may have noticed some big changes 'round these parts lately. The new layout comes courtesy of a giveaway from Sealed With A Kissed via Travel Babbles! I have entered countless blog giveaways and to have finally won one, I was beyond excited! Also I added Ads, I am sorry to do this to you, but girl has got to do what her bank account tells her to do! I hope they are not too intrusive. What are your thoughts on the new changes?

3. Normally I don't go for blue nail polish and if I do, very soon after I am itching to get it off! So, I was hesitant to buy another little bottle of blue lacquer, but I caved. I bought "Pacific Blue" and I am digging it! It has been 24 hours so far...we shall see how long it lasts. I usually favor pinks and more neutral beiges for my nails, but I like to mix it up sometimes. What are your favorite nail polishes? Got any colors I should try?

4. Last weekend I picked up some Girl Scout cookies, and I decided to try some of the new flavors. I bought a box of the Dulce de Leche and the Savannah Smiles. Now I am going to be brutally honest, I did not really like either of them. The Savannah Smiles had a very synthetic lemon taste that I did not find at all palatable. They were also very tart, but not tart in a good way. While I initially did not like the Dulce de Leche cookies, I kept finding my hand reaching into the box for more! They were very sweet and crunchy. I felt as though I had tasted a very similar cookie before, but I can't remember from what.... Anyhoo I will be sticking with good ol' Thin mints, frozen of course!

5. Yesterday was Pi day and in my head I had great aspirations to make an incredible pie. Surprise, surprise you know who didn't pull through for you. While I did not get to make you a fancy schmancy pie, I did make "pie fries". A long time ago I had seen the idea on Pinterest, so I saw it, then I pinned it, and then I did it! And here is another surprise (not), the pie fries were all eaten before I got to photograph them. To make your own pie fries all you do is cut a pre-made pie crust in to thin strips, then brush the strips with milk, sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar, then bake at 350 degrees F for about 10-12 minutes. Then serve with pie filling, jam or lemon curd.
Now the award for worst blogger ever goes to...me!

6. Have you done anything exciting lately? I recently went to New York City and saw Wicked! It was AMAZING, I loved EVERY moment of it! I would highly recommend you see it! Also I will have to share my NYC eats in a post! I visited some fabulous bakeries and my first ever french restaurant! Wish I could be back there, sigh.

7. Here are my bookmarks of late:

Sunday, March 10, 2013

One Bowl Wonder Chocolate Cake

If you were scrolling through Pinterest would you be enticed by a pin showing "Crazy Cake" that is made with no butter and no eggs? I was intrigued by this cake, I think it was mostly the fact that it did not have eggs. Win, no cracking eggs! I have this weird aversion to cracking eggs. Once I opened the refrigerator and the eggs came flying out at me and went splat on the floor, yuck. Even before this, I was always bothered by cracking eggs because I feared I would find something else in there other than yolk. Is anyone else afraid of cracking eggs? If anyone is, let's start an egg-phobic support group.

And if you are not with me on the egg cracking, here is some chocolate cake that is made without eggs for ease, not out of fear. Originally this cake was called "Crazy Cake", but I wanted to change the recipe a little bit so I renamed it One Bowl Wonder Chocolate Cake!

I enjoyed this cake without frosting, but it also paired well with a "schmear"of Nutella or ice cream! It was delicious either way!

Also you should note that I doubled the recipe, but it certainly can be halved and baked in an 8x8 pan.

One Bowl Wonder Chocolate Cake
3 Cups all purpose flour
6 Tablespoons cocoa powder
2 Teaspoons baking soda
2 Cups granulated sugar
1 Teaspoon Salt
2 Teaspoons white vinegar
3 Teaspoons vanilla extract
10 Tablespoons coconut oil, melted (plus more for greasing the pan)
2 Cups water (about room temperature)

1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 13x9 pan with coconut oil.
2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder and baking soda. Stir in the sugar and salt. Make three wells in the dry ingredients, make one well larger than the other two. Pour vinegar into one well, vanilla in another, and the coconut oil into the largest well. Pour water over the wells. Mix by hand until smooth.
3. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick come out clean, let cool completely before frosting or dusting with powdered sugar.

Click Here for Printable Recipe 
Recipe Adapted from Sweet Little Blue Bird

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Oatmeal Cherry Chocolate Chip Cookies and My 50th Post!

 Can you believe it? Believe what you say...why that this is my fiftieth post of course! Well I can't believe it and boy do I have some cookies for you! Cookies are probably my favorite thing to bake and they are one of my favorite sweets to eat. Usually I like my cookies mega chewy, but occasionally I go for a cakey cookie.

These are not cakey at all, so if you are a cakey cookie fan, then hit that little 'X' in the corner and come back in a few days for my next post! These cookies are all chew, no cake and taste best after "marinating" for two days after baking in an adorable cookie jar!  I may or may not have eaten five of these a day, they were just so delicious! To be honest when I first tasted them, I did not really like them, but after two days in the cookie jar, my oh my these climbed near the top of my favorite cookie list! Patience is a virtue my friends, and the wait is totally worth it!

What is at the top of your favorite cookie list? My absolute favorite would have to be original chocolate chip cookies, but these are a very close second!

Oatmeal Cherry Chocolate Chip Cookies
Click Here for Printable Recipe
1 and 1/2 Cups all-purpose flour
1/2 Teaspoon baking powder
1/2 Teaspoon salt
1/2 Teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup Unsalted butter, softened
1 cup Packed light brown sugar
2 Large eggs
2 Teaspoons vanilla extract
3 Cups old fashioned oats
1 and 1/2 Cups semi-sweet mini chocolate chips
3/4 Cup dried cherries

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, and line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Set this aside.
3. With an electric mixer on medium, cream together the butter and both sugars for 3 to 5  minutes, until light and fluffy. On low speed, mix in the eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl as necessary. Then mix in the vanilla extract.
4. In a few additions, mix in the flour mixture with the mixer on very low speed. Then stir in the oats, chocolate chips and cherries.
5. Scoop the dough using a small cookie dough scoop, roll into balls, then place on baking sheets, leaving adequate space between them. Using the palm of your hand, gently flatten the dough.
6. Bake the cookies for 6 minutes then rotate baking sheets and bake for an additional 5 to 6 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown, while the middles are still pale. Cool the cookies for 2 minutes on baking sheet, then cool on wire rack for 30 minutes. Store in an airtight for 5 days.

Recipe Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker