December 28, 2013 by Jenn
This year Patrick and I went to his parents cabin in upstate New York. First of all, it’s GORGEOUS. Second, it’s so quiet. We had to put on a white noise app so we could sleep. We were there for 4 days and we actually had a white Christmas. (Then on the last day we all got the stomach flu that was going around but we won’t talk about that.) Highlights only.
We saw a spooky graveyard, LOTS of snow, I got new Minnetonka boots for christmas, and I got to shoot a crossbow!
Merry Christmas everyone!
December 21, 2013 by Jenn
You will need:
- 4 TBSP water
- 3 eggs, whisked
- 2 TBSP dark brown corn syrup
- 3/4 C plus 2 TBSP brown sugar
- 3 TBSP butter, melted
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 TBSP flour
- 2 TSP vanilla extract
- 1/2 TSP cinnamon
- 1/2 C pecans, crushed
- 1 C pecans, quartered
- 1 C pecan halves
- 2 C flour, a little extra for rolling
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 1 TSP salt
- 1 large TSP brown sugar
- 7 TSP very cold water
Combine flour, butter, sugar, and salt. Squish it together with your hands until it becomes coarse crumbs. Gradually sprinkle the cold water over the crumbs, stir with a wooden spoon until it becomes dough. Do not over mix.
Flour your work surface and flatten the dough with your rolling pin. (I always find it easiest to flour my rolling pin as well.) Roll out dough until it is an inch larger than your pie dish. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
For pie filling:
In a medium bowl mix together water, eggs, corn syrup, butter, brown sugar, salt, flour, vanilla, cinnamon, and the finely crushed pecans. Spread quartered pecans over bottom of refrigerated pie crust. Pour syrup into pie crust and gently place the pecan halves over top of mixture.
Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees. Let sit for 45 minutes before serving.
December 17, 2013 by Jenn
My mom still lives in south Florida and every December I go home to visit. This year I took Patrick and my bestie Kurt. Here’s a look.
1. 12 hours after leaving Baltimore we finally get to the border
2. First stop: Waffle House. Naturally.
3. 2nd stop: South of the Border. Naturally.
4. Spooky broken down hotel
5. Shark head.
6. Boys at the beach.
7. The illusive “sand face”
8. Me and the skyline
9. Patrick, victorious, after helping my mom seal cracks on her roof.
10. Emma the dog.
December 14, 2013 by Emily
The Christmas season always makes me flashback to my junior year of college when I was working at a store… that rhymes with Silliams-wanoma (I’m a master of concealing names right?!) I loved being surrounded by kitchen gadgests I couldn’t really afford, and the candles that smelled like pine tree.. and the room in the back full of samples! Being a clean freak that I am I actually volunteered to work in the kitchen that was in the store room, cleaning all the dishes and machines we used for demonstrations… but I also got to prep all the samples.
Including the peppermint chocolate bark. Good gravy, I wasn’t even a chocolate fan and I HATED peppermint…but it was SO.DAMN.GOOD.
I wanted to recreate the peppermint bark at home so I could bring it in as a gift for my coworkers, the recipe is super simple (and quick!) I was able to find everything I needed in the baking aisle and whipped this up in just a few minutes.
What You’ll Need:
1 pound of dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 10 ounce bag of white chocolate chips
1/4 teaspoon peppermint candy flavoring OR 1 teaspoons peppermint extract
15-20 crushed peppermint candies (I used the little round starlight mints, if your using candy cane 5-6 should work)
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper
Melt 3/4 of the dark chocolate in a double boiler over low heat, when the chocolate is melted remove from the heat and stir in the remaining dark chocolate until its melted (this will help the chocolate keep its temper) stir in the peppermint extract and spread evenly on the lined cookie sheet.
Allow the chocolate to set for at least 1 hour.
Repeat the melting process with the white chocolate chips then spread evenly over the dark chocolate layer, immediately top with the crushed peppermint candies, pressing gently to make sure they stick.
Allow the chocolate bark to set at room temperature for about 1 hour before breaking into jagged chunks, and then try not to eat them all.