Monday, February 28, 2011

diy? Try d-i-die.

From the beginning of wedding planning, I have decided to make a lot of things for this wedding myself; not all, mind you, but a lot of things. I like knowing that the ceremony and reception will have personal touches, things that I made specifically for Fiance and I's special day. And, let's be real here, I did like (okay, love) the idea of having control over things. If I make them and mess them up, my fault, try again! If someone else makes them and messes them up...bad news. So, so bad. Plus, I had over a year to make everything, right?

Oh, how wrong I was. Now, here we are, six months out from le wedding and what have I made? Uhmmm....nothing. I've purchased some things, but overall, the whole DIY thing isn't going too well.

This is where the panic sets in. I know it's probably too soon, but it's happening just the same. Gone are the days that I could claim I had a year to make things. Sigh.

So, my friends, if you get an invitation to a "super fun girl's night!" bring a glue gun, a paintbrush, some thread, and a good attitude. I'm putting you to work.

The good news? I have a dress, a venue, a caterer, an officiant, a photographer, a bomb set of bridesmaids, and a smokin' hot fiance.

Bring it on, September.

And because I know you're dying to's a sneak peak of some centerpiece ideas we're working on! And some fabric to be used elsewhere. And flowers from Fiance because he's the best. And my kitchen table, but we're not bringing that to the wedding. That would be just plain weird.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Contradiction Cookies

I've never claimed to be a simple person. As my Grandpa puts it, "Girl, you're what we call high maintenance." I think I'd have to agree.

I'm a woman of many contradictions, especially when it comes to food. Oranges? No thanks. Orange juice and Pellegrino? Sign me up. (Like I said, high maintenance.) Ham? I'd really rather not. Ham and cheese quiche? Yes, please! (Secret's out, Mom! I really do like it.) Cheesecake? Not so much. Debbie Thomas's cheesecake for Tea? Ohhhhhh snapppp, I'm in. Mexican food? My stomach hurts thinking about it. Cafe Elote? Get in the car, we're leaving now. (I blame this girl for dragging me along..and by dragging I mean I prayed for a snow day so I didn't have to go to work and could tag along.)

Well, my friends, I now present you with another food contradiction. I've never been a fan of anything mint flavored. To be honest, (nerd alert) it reminds me of asthma attacks. Anyone else have to suck a peppermint and drink warm water during an attack? Anyone? No. Moving on.

As much as I hate mint flavored things, I borderline despise mint and chocolate. It just plain weirds me out; chocolate needs to be enhanced, not funkified.

Here comes the contradiction: these cookies. Oh. My. Lanta. I first had these cookies about a year ago at Fiance's house. It's his Grandma's recipe, and his mom had made them for Christmas. The second I ate that cookie, I saw the chocolate and mint light: it all made sense.

And so, I share them with you. It's only right. But don't worry, I'll spare you the recipe Fiance sent me; I'll put it this way, it took me a while to decode. Daises=flour, etc. He's a goob, that one. But I love him.
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Andes Mint Cookies
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3.5 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Andes mint baking chips or Andes mints
Preheat oven to 375.

Cream together butter, both sugars, and eggs. Add water and vanilla, stir to combine. Then add flour, baking soda, and salt and mix together well. Now, here's the part where you can get creative! I add in about 3/4 a bag of Andes mint baking chips and mix it all up and love my life. But, since I'm generous, I'll give you some options. Also known as what I think is the original way of making them. If you want to make things look a little fancy, you can wrap the dough around half an Andes mint and seal the seam with a pecan. Mmm.

I used just scant of a cookie scoop and ended up with around 75 cookies. But don't worry, these things disappear like David Blaine. Okay, that's weird. Ignore that.

Bake for 8-10 minutes and love your life. Make sure you keep a secret stash for yourself. You won't regret it.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Cake lust

For some unknown reason, snow days always make me want to bake. A lot. More than usual, which is saying something because the "usual" for me is a borderline obsession. I got away this time with making Dulce de Leche Blondies (Heaven. In a pan. You'll get the recipe, don't you worry) but alas, my family does not appreciate the abundance of baked goods in a house we're forced to stay in. Weird, right? I know. Maybe I'll get to sneak some scones in later.

Okay, no I won't. I already asked and Dad said no. Saddest day of all days.

So instead of baking, I'm focusing all my energy onto looking at wedding cakes. This is something that I've struggled with. Mainly because I love cake. But wedding cakes are OUTRAGEOUSLY expensive. I mean really, over $900? For a cake without fondant? Ridiculous. But I digress. I struggle with this's cake.

Basically, I love cake. Fondant is icky. It tastes gross and they peel it off before they serve it anyway, so why pay for it? Stick with buttercream; the words I could use to describe my love for buttercream are just plain wrong, so I won't.

However, this is not to say that I don't enjoy and appreciate artisan decorated cakes. I do, I truly do. There's so much time and skill that go into them...I would never have the patience for it! I just think that for my own wedding cake, I would like something more...simple. And easily edible. I like cake too much to have one that's so gorgeous that I won't let anyone touch it.

Sufficiently confused? Welcome to my life.

Here are my top five favorite cakes so far. Let me know what you think!

This cake kills me. I've seen a lot of them lately, but I don't care. The ruffles! Ohh...I die.

And this cake....just. make. it. stop. So perfect. I want it in my life forever and always.

I. Love. This. Cake. Simple and elegant. I'm a sucker for flowers on cakes. Think what you want.

If I were having a candy bar, I'd be all over this one. Candy + cake= sheer brilliance.

I think this one might be my favorite, though. I'm a sucker for peonies.

So there you have it. The cakes I've been drooling over. And who knows, maybe I'll bake something within the next 24 hours to cure my affliction.

You hear that, Dad? Can I can I?

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Just trust me on this one...

Welcome to snowcation 2011!! I can't lie, I LOVE this weather. Being curled up with a book and some hot chocolate, sign me up!

The recipe I'm sharing today comes from Sage Culinary Studio here in Tulsa. This was, hands down, the staff's favorite recipe! It's easy to make, and for the most part you'll have these ingredients on hand. We made this for classes, but also for birthday parties for the kiddos. It was always a hit! If you're in Tulsa, I highly recommend checking out Sage! They offer classes for kids, and the adult classes? Forget about it. De-lish-us.

Now, when you see the title of this recipe, you might wince and shake your head in confusion. But listen, you have to trust me. This recipe is so simple and delicious, you might find yourself making it all the time! Okay, maybe not all the time, but pretty often. Enjoy!

Melting Tuna Calzone
Adapted from the recipe found here, on Sage's website. Scroll down to the bottom for a list of recipes. Check out the Chicken-Ooh-La-La. DIVINE. Seriously. Spring for the Boursin Garlic and Herb cheese and you won't regret it.
  • 1 can tuna in water, drained and flaked
  • 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup shredded carrot
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped celery
  • 3 tbsp. mayo
  • 2 tbsp. sliced green onions
  • 1/2 teas. lemon juice
  • 1/4 teas. dried dill weed
  • 1/8 teas. pepper
  • 1 package Pillsbury Crescent Creation (have you tried this stuff? Brilliant, I say.)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl until well mixed. Press out the crescent dough on a well-floured surface until it is roughly 16x11. Cut the dough into six squares and spoon the tuna mixture into the middle. Spread out the mixture slightly, but not to the edges; it will spread as it cooks, but you want to make sure that you don't get lots of dough on the edges. Fold the squares in half diagonally and use a fork to crimp the edges to seal. Once the edges are sealed, do not press the tuna mixture. Don't want it coming out the sides! Bake 12-14 minutes until deliciously golden brown. Serve with a veggie-loaded salad. Yum!