Monday, October 31, 2011


I adore Piccata. The white wine and lemon goodness makes me jump for joy. But, being broke makes chicken hard to come by, so I made a veggie version instead. I used a few different vegetables, so I'm calling it Ratatouille-Piccata. I've made this twice now, I the key ingredient is the white wine. Make sure it is a wine you want to drink and that it's not overly sweet.

Roughly chop 1 medium sized onion, put in pot over medium heat with 1 tbsp butter, 1 block chicken bouillon, splash of hot sauce, 1 tbsp (or more if you like) capers, and 1 tbsp minced garlic. Cook until onions start to become translucent.

Add three roughly chopped roma tomatoes and one and a half or so pounds of roughly chopped zucchini. Keep the juice that comes out of the tomatoes and add it in. Cook until zucchini is fork tender.

Add the zest and juice of half a lemon, 1 cup white wine, and 2 tbsp cream cheese or Neufchâtel cheese. Stir until combined, then remove from heat. Toss with Angel hair pasta and serve immediately. 

Delicious. Enjoy!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Beer Bread

This is the simplest bread to make and it provides a WORLD of possibilities.

1 (12oz) can or bottle of beer
3 cups self-rising flour
3 tbsp granulated sugar
Grease the vessel, and I recommend adding some Pam or butter to the tops to promote browning.
350 degrees for 15 or so minutes if in a muffin pan, 25 to 30 for a loaf pan or lump on a cookie sheet for a "rustic" loaf (an X cut on the top of the loaf is not necessary).

That's it. Seriously.

I tried Heinekin, Guinness, Strongbow and Blue Moon. All the beer taste basically disappears, which, I'll admit disappointed me. I was hoping for a more BEER bread than beer BREAD. However, I did notice a few things, the lighter, cheaper beers produce a more sugary bread and thus would make good sweets, like cinnamon oatmeal with raisins, etc. But I put chunks of golden delicious apples in the Strongbow batch and the apples held the moisture better and tasted a touch more like cider.

I recommend you play with the recipe to see what you like.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

About my new job... Ironically, NSFW

I bet no one will be able to tell where I'm working now... Most days are pretty mundane and hardly interesting. I've made some cute designs but nothing yet that was worth a dedicated post. I've been told that we once decorated a cookie cake with a teddy bear holding a rose that read, "Sorry Mom, I like boys." Coming out to your family with a cookie cake is the funniest cookie cake story I'd heard... till today.

So this guy comes in and starts to order a cake, but is being confusing and coy about it. Wondering why we're asking so many questions about what he wants for the design and why do we need to know what the occasion is/ who it's for, NORMAL questions. Then he says he wants the Superman logo. I tell him it's copyrighted and I can't do it, but I can use a different initial.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Candy: Tootsie Fruit Roll Midge Roses

Since some of my friends are Catholic, there's been Easter candy every where. I tried an old candy, but new to me, for the first time and couldn't help but play with them. You know how I am, gotta play with my foodstuffs. From what I've gathered, the Tootsie Fruit Roll Midges are available a few times a year.

Super easy, and a fun "trick" to show your friends. As you can see from the photo, it's super shiny. That's because the rolls try to dissolve in your hands if your hands are warm, or say, you live in Florida and it's been high 80's low 90's ALL DAY. So, for those of you in colder places, this won't be so bad.

Since I was the only one eating these, I didn't wear gloves. If you're gonna put them on cupcakes or something to that effect, wear gloves or wash your hands very well. Now check my MAD "MS Paint" skillz, yo.

Get one of the green midges and cut some flattened squares off. Apply to the finished rose. TA-DA! Bring on the left over candy, we can take it.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Peachy Chicken, adapted from Heinz Malt Vinegar

I was in an Irish Pub getting deli sandwiches for lunch with my friends eons ago, and found this recipe. I straight up LOVE malt vinegar. It's the best thing every. If I can, I add equal parts ketchup and malt vinegar with a splash of Texas Pete to smother fries. So while I was inhaling some serious eats, I see this:

Gotta make that! Then I did. The end.

Step 1: Cut up the 2 1/2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breast.

Step 2: Brown in a medium size skillet.

Step 3: Add the reserved liquid of a 15oz or 16oz can of peaches, 1/2 cup (thawed) frozen orange juice concentrate, 1/4 cup malt vinegar, 1 tbsp brown sugar, 1 tsp dried basil leaves, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp cracked black pepper, 1 tsp powdered garlic, and a splash of Texas Pete. Drop to medium low temperature and clamp the lid on for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and falls apart.

Step 4: Add the peaches and heat through.

Step 5: Use 2 tbsp of the remaining orange juice concentrate and 2 tbsp of corn starch create a paste. Add to the low boiling liquid in the pot. Boil one minute until thickened, then remove from heat.

Step 6: Serve over rice with a side of broccoli. Enjoy the love.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Thank you for following my blog and checking in to see what's new. Last night the blog hit 1,000 page views! Literally from all over the world, people have seen the cool stuff I've made in Florida. The internet is an awesome place, and for that I thank you for all your support.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Easter Candy: Peanut M&M's Cake with Peanut Butter and Dark Chocolate Frosting

This cake tried to foil me at every turn. But I was determined to win, and delicious it was! The mother of the recipient of this cake told them they should marry me. But no worries, ladies, I'm still on the market. Lol.

I used the boxed cake mix for the cake. It made a dozen cupcakes and a small bake pan, I think 8in X 8in.

Prepare as directed. Then drop peanut M&M's in the bottom of the batter. Swirl the batter till they're covered.  The pans should be coated in spray oil and flour.

Here's where I ran into some trouble... The M&M's sink to the bottom, and then sort of melt into nothing. This left the bottom of the cake super moist. and the cupcakes fell apart. I did some of them with cupcake liners, and those came out fine.

I used the peanut butter frosting recipe from The Brown Eyed Baker, and the chocolate frosting recipe from Wilton. 

Put 1 cup confectioners’ sugar, 1 cup creamy peanut butter, 5 tbsp unsalted butter (at room temperature), 3/4 tsp vanilla extract, and 1/4 tsp kosher salt in a bowl with an electric mixer. Mix together until well incorporated. Then add 1/3 cup heavy cream and mix until light and fluffy.

Frost the cupcakes in the peanut butter frosting. Dump out the cake from it's pan and frost half of the cake in peanut butter frosting. 

Cut the cake in half and put the layer on top of the other one. Dump even more peanut butter on the top and frost the sides as well.

Now for the chocolate frosting. I didn't take any pictures of the frosting for some reason. So here's the recipe: beat 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening and 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened together until light and fluffy. Add 3/4 cup dark chocolate cocoa powder and 1 tsp vanilla extract, mix until incorporated. Add 4 cups confectioner's sugar, one cup at a time. Add 3 to 4 tbsp milk, adding one at a time until desired consistence is reached. Frost the cupcakes and the cake.

Add some peanut M&M's on top to decorate.


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Cheddar Cheese Twists

I made some picnic food for my friend the other week and thought I'd share some of the recipes. This one is super easy and free-styled.

Get a roll of the premade, croissant dough from the refrigerated section of your grocery store. Open them up into the triangles.

Sprinkle on shredded sharp cheddar cheese, a dash salt, fresh cracked black pepper, and Parmesan cheese. Pat into dough just a little bit. Roll the triangles into croissants. Take the widest side and roll towards the middle point.

Add a sprinkle of Parmesan onto of the rolled doughs. Pat gently.

Bake as directed. In the last two minutes, pull out the tray and add more cheddar cheese on top. It'll try and roll off, so place carefully. Continue baking.


Friday, April 8, 2011

The Naked Gardener's Very Merry Unbirthday Cake or Zebra Striped Cake with Cherry Chutney

I found this technique on one of my favorite blogs a while ago. I made it right away because it's so easy! I made this for an Alice in Wonderland style surprise "Very Merry Unbirthday" party. My friend over at The Naked Gardener was the Unbirthday girl, and she LOVES animal prints, hence the pink zebra cake.

Rather than use the cake mix recipe on the blog post, I used box White Cake mix. It's thicker than the other batter, so I got less layering, but it's entirely up to you which one you want to use. Make the mix as instructed on the box. Split it in two bowls, dye one your desired color.

Grease your pan. Begin spooning alternating colors on top of each other, beginning in the center of the pan. Mine was a little off center, which spiraled out of control rather quickly, so be careful. I had to shake the whole pan, jiggling it back to the middle. It worked enough, but I should have been more careful.

Bake as directed. Make sure a toothpick inserted in the tallest part of the cake comes out clean.

For the cherry chutney, I just sort of winged it. Lol. Begin with a 12 oz (340g) bag of frozen, pitted, dark sweet cherries put over medium heat.

You won't need to add more water. Add 1/2 cup of granulated sugar, 1/2 cup brown sugar, splash vanilla extract, and a splash of lemon juice. If it becomes too runny, add a tablespoon of cornstarch that's been melted in a couple tablespoons of cold water. Boil for a minute, then cool. If it's too thick, add some water, a tablespoon at a time.

This boiled like crazy and I couldn't get a photo without steaming up the camera, lol.
Cover the slices in the chutney and have at it!