Ice Cream Cupcake Surprise

Ice Cream Cupcake Surprise The Rowdy BakerIf this dessert doesn’t make your Valentine worship you, nothing will! Inside the chocolate coating is a serving of rich chocolate cake, cherry vanilla ice cream, and…(surprise) a chocolate covered cherry.

To make this extra-easy, by all means, use a cake mix and store bought chocolate shell! You could even (*gasp!*) buy a dozen cupcakes and scrape the icing off. But you know me; I have to play with my food…so I’ll give you my recipe for rich chocolate cake and homemade chocolate shell, just in case you choose to go all out and create these desserts from scratch.

You’ll need:

  • One 1.5 quart container of ice cream. (Don’t get me started on the shrinking ice-cream container conspiracy.) I used Cherry Vanilla. Yum!
  • 12 chocolate covered cherries
  • 12 chocolate cupcakes
  • 2 bottles (7.25 ounces each) of chocolate shell (or Magic Shell), usually found in the ice cream aisle. OR you can make your own – I’ll give you the recipe below.
  • sprinkles, if desired

 

It’s important not to overfill the cupcake liners, because a high dome won’t hold the ice cream well. Fill them just a tiny bit over half full. But if they dome too much, you can always level them later…and eat the scraps, of course.

Start with chocolate cupcakes. (And yes...the cake on the right has too much of a dome.) I shall have to operate!

Start with chocolate cupcakes. (And yes…the cake on the right has too much of a dome.) I shall have to operate!

This chocolate cake recipe makes 12 cupcakes. You may have a tiny bit of batter left, but not much.

Rich Chocolate Cupcakes
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Author:
This is a small recipe, making approximately 12 cupcakes. You can easily double it. If you do, use 3 eggs.
Ingredients
  • 1¼ cups cake flour
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ cup oil (I use avocado or peanut oil)
  • ½ cup strong coffee
  • ½ cup buttermilk (I prefer a thick, Bulgarian buttermilk for this)
  • 1 egg
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 350 F. Place liners in cupcake pan.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the cake flour, cocoa, sugar, salt, baking soda, and baking powder.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the oil, coffee, and buttermilk.
  4. Gradually beat the liquids into the dry ingredients. Beat for 1 minute.
  5. Add the egg and beat just until it is completely incorporated.
  6. Fill cupcake liners just a little more than half full.
  7. Bake for approximately 18 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the middle of one cupcake.
  8. Allow cupcakes to cool on a rack for 10 minutes, and then lift them out onto the rack to finish cooling.

 

Cake ingredients

Cake ingredients

Fill liners just a little more than half full.

Fill liners just a little more than half full.

Remember, we're going for a subtle dome!

Remember, we’re going for a subtle dome!

Now – to assemble the cupcakes:

Slice a thin piece off the top of each cupcake, to level it.

Let your ice cream soften a bit, and then press a chocolate covered cherry round side down into a scoop of softened ice cream. If the ice cream is too firm, you can use a spoon to make a hole for the candy.

Sink a cherry into softened ice cream, round side down.

Sink a cherry into softened ice cream, round side down.

Drop scoops of ice cream (and embedded cherry) onto frozen cupcakes and smooth with a table knife.

Drop ice cream onto cupcake and smooth with a knife.

Drop ice cream onto cupcake and smooth with a knife.

Place cupcakes in the freezer for at least 3 hours.

You saw that, right? Don’t skip that step, or your ice cream will fall off into the coating!

Shake one bottle of chocolate shell thoroughly and pour contents into a small bowl. One by one, dip the cupcakes into the chocolate, all the way to the wrapper. Allow excess to drip off, place on a tray or baking sheet, and decorate with sprinkles.

You’ll need one whole bottle and part of the second. Or…if you want to make your own shell:

HOMEMADE CHOCOLATE SHELL:
10 ounces of good quality dark chocolate
2 level tablespoons coconut oil (I use expeller pressed so it doesn’t taste like coconut.)

Break chocolate into small pieces. In a cup or small bowl in the microwave (or in small pan on the stove) slowly melt chocolate and coconut oil together. It’s important to melt it very slowly at low heat. Stir well.

Dip frozen cupcakes and ice cream into chocolate shell mixture.

Dip frozen cupcakes and ice cream into chocolate shell mixture.

 

frozen goodness!

Once the coating has hardened, pop the cupcakes back into the freezer until ready to serve. If you will be keeping them in the freezer for more than a few hours, cover them with foil.

Ice Cream Cupcake Surprise The Rowdy Baker

This would be such an easy recipe to adapt for other holidays. Exchange the cherry for a mint truffle and mint ice cream for St. Patrick’s Day, or a peppermint truffle and peppermint ice cream for Christmas. I’d suggest a small Cadbury Cream Egg for Easter, but….euwwww. Anyhow, you get the idea.

Everyone loves ice cream cakes, but they’re awfully messy to cut and serve. Individual cakes are the way to go!

Lorinda

 

Thanksgiving Treasures

Thanksgiving ideas from The Rowdy Baker

Thanksgiving ideas from The Rowdy Baker

My love of Thanksgiving has less to do with it being the beginning of the holiday season than with the warm memories and traditions our family created when I was young. The anticipation of Thanksgiving was almost as exciting as that of Christmas.

In elementary school I loved the songs we’d sing: “We Gather Together”,  “Come Ye Thankful People Come” “Over the River and Through the Woods”,  “Now Thank We All Our God”. (We were allowed to sing hymns in public school way back then.) My mother would sometimes make us torture entertain our guests with our wobbly renditions of these songs before dinner.thanksgiving songs

(Um, yes, I may have “forgotten” to return this book in 6th grade. I believe the statute of limitations applies here!)

We always had company, often foreign exchange students from the nearby college, grandparents, or any strays that my folks could coax into coming. The more the merrier! When we were very young, we’d hear my mom in the kitchen before it was light, preparing for the feast. As we got older, we were right there beside her, chopping celery and onions, and reaching our small hands into the (eeeeuwww) turkey cavity to pull out the neck and giblets that would go into her stuffing and gravy.

Crisp white linens, the good china and crystal (well, except at the “kids’ table”), candles, and the gravy boat were all placed carefully on the table. My father usually carved and served, and the wait was agonizing.

Now it’s my turn. Although I have my own style, I still produce the standard dishes…and then some. Beginning the week before Thanksgiving my kitchen becomes a whirlwind of flour that doesn’t settle until Christmas Eve.

Autumn banner

I’ve collected a few of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes together in one spot, each with a short description, photo, and link. Since this is a baking blog, I’ll leave the green bean casseroles and turkey to someone else and stick with rolls and desserts. Some are easy, some are more challenging. I hope you’ll find that all are festive and delicious.

Acorn Rolls in an edible cornucopia

Acorn Rolls cascade abundantly out of an edible cornucopia. Here’s a centerpiece for your table that won’t drop leaves, get knocked over, or block your view of the person across from you. Make a simple version or turn it into your own personal creative masterpiece.

Autumn banner

pumpkin cream cheese dessert edited

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Dessert (aka: dump cake!) This dessert just may become a new tradition in your home. Warm, creamy, crunchy, and fragrant…this is seriously good. AND it has received more views on my blog than any other recipe. Ding-ding-ding…it’s a winner!

Autumn banner

pumpkin dinner rolls
Pumpkin Sandwich Bread makes beautiful dinner rolls, too. The pumpkin flavor is mild, making the rolls perfect for turkey sandwiches the next day.

Autumn banner

 

humble pie
Humble Pie is a pumpkin pie with pastry depictions of all the things you’re grateful for dancing around the top crust. This takes a bit of time, but you can always narrow it down to a few important choices if you’re short on time.

Autumn banner

caramel corn

Triple Trouble Caramel Corn, dumped in a pretty bowl, will keep the hungry hoards from sneaking into the kitchen to swipe olives, dinner rolls, and the bacon from the top of the turkey. (What? You don’t put bacon on top of your turkey? Oooh, you should try it. Just a few pieces draped over the top will baste your bird and add a little extra flavor.) This caramel corn can be made days ahead, which is always nice. It has bacon, maple, and pecans in it – perfect for Fall.

I have lots of cookie recipes that would be perfect for the occasion too, but I think I’ll save those for a separate post.

I guess this should have been named “Thanksgiving Carbs”, huh? Pfffft. Don’t think about that – just enjoy.

Lorinda

 

Apple Butter & Rum Cheesecake



apple butter & rum cheesecake2Imagine a creamy cheesecake swirled with apple butter and adorned with a brown sugar rum topping, and you’ll understand how self-indulgent I felt when I dipped my fork in for that first bite…especially since it was only 9:00 in the morning. Hey – you have to get photos when the lighting is good, and I couldn’t let that slice of heaven go to waste, right?



Apple Butter & Rum Cheesecake coverThis is true company fare, guaranteed to get some “oohs” and “ahhs”. I’ll admit right now that I’m not much of a cheesecake lover (this is my first cheesecake blog in 3 years) but I absolutely went crazy over this. The subtle sweetness of the apple butter counteracts the tangy cheese flavor, and the topping? Well, I could just eat it with a spoon.

Scooping leftover topping out of the pan and into my mouth.

Scooping leftover topping out of the pan and into my mouth.

If you don’t have any apple butter on hand, you can do what I did and use a jar of applesauce to make your own. Just add sugar, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice to taste, and then cook it down slowly on medium low heat, stirring often. I usually get impatient and crank up the heat after a while; this works well, as long as you have a tall pan and a long spoon (because the mixture will spit) and you’re willing to stir constantly for 5 minutes or so. Cook it until you can run a spatula on the bottom of the pan and the apple mixture doesn’t fill in the space you created.

Fuzzy picture - sorry! But you can see it needs to be pasty, not juicy.

Fuzzy picture – sorry! But you can see it needs to be pasty, not juicy.

Try some on one of the leftover graham crackers.

Try some on one of the leftover graham crackers.

The goal of making a cheesecake is to have it chilled and plated without a single crack. I’m not a perfectionist; that’s what toppings are for! This didn’t crack, but the spots where I brought the swirled apple butter to the surface sank just a bit. This isn’t a problem though, because the whole thing is covered with a thick layer of topping. See? No pressure.Apple Butter & Rum Cheesecake3

Apple Butter & Rum Cheesecake
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Author:
Ideally you will want to use a springform pan that is 8-1/2". If you like a thinner cheesecake, use one that is 9-1/2" (as pictured in this post).
Ingredients
  • GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST:
  • 2 cups crushed graham crackers
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • CHEESECAKE:
  • 24 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons frozen apple juice concentrate (thaw, but don't add water!)
  • 2 teaspoons flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup apple butter
  • TOPPING:
  • 1½ cup brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup milk
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • ½ cup rum (I used dark, spiced rum)
  • 3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 350 F. Place one rack near the bottom and one in the middle or just above middle.
  2. Grease an 8-1/2" springform pan. (You may use a 9-1/2" pan - cheesecake will not be as tall.) Place a strip of parchment around inside ring, trapping it with the bottom of the pan if possible before latching.
  3. Combine graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and melted butter until thoroughly combined. With the help of a flat-bottomed glass or measuring cup, press the mixture firmly and evenly into pan.
  4. Place in upper rack of oven and bake for 8 minutes. Remove carefully and place on a rack.
  5. Fill a large cake pan with 1 inch of hot water and place on bottom rack to heat while you are mixing the cheesecake.
  6. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese well - for at least 2 minutes.
  7. Add the sugar and beat for an additional 2 minutes, scraping the bowl often.
  8. Add the apple juice concentrate, flour, salt, and the sour cream, beating until combined.
  9. Add the eggs one at a time, beating just until each is incorporated. Don't over-mix!
  10. Pour mixture over crust in pan.
  11. Put the apple butter in a pastry bag (or plastic zipper bag with tip cut off) and swirl throughout the cheesecake mixture, bringing the tip from the bottom to the top of the batter several times.
  12. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
  13. After 15 minutes, WITHOUT OPENING THE OVEN DOOR, lower the heat to 325. Bake for 1 hour. don't remove the cheesecake, but wiggle it gently. It should be just slightly jiggly in the center.
  14. Turn oven off and prop door slightly open (I use a wooden spoon handle) for 1 hour.
  15. Move cheesecake to a rack and cool completely.
  16. Move to the refrigerator and chill for at least 4 hours. (Overnight is better!)
  17. Remove the ring of the pan. Use a long flat spatula to loosen the crust from the bottom pan and slide it onto a serving plate.
  18. Generously pour warm topping over the top. You can serve the cheesecake as soon as the topping is firm, or refrigerate it for later.
  19. TOPPING:
  20. In a tall pan, combine the brown sugar, milk, and butter. Stir over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Cook at a low boil for 2 minutes.
  21. Remove from heat and wait a minute for the bubbles to calm down. Stir in the rum.
  22. Add the powdered sugar and cinnamon and whisk briskly until mixture thickens and a spoonful drizzled over the top keeps its shape for 10 seconds. (About 5 minutes.) It should be thick but pourable.

Line the sides of the greased pan with parchment.

Line the sides of the greased pan with parchment.

Press the crust firmly and evenly into the pan.

Press the crust firmly and evenly into the pan.

Use a pastry bag to swirl in the apple butter.

Use a pastry bag to swirl in the apple butter.

Baked and chilled, ready to add topping.

Baked and chilled, ready to add topping.

Boiling the topping.

Boiling the topping.

Add booze and powdered sugar, then briskly whisk (I love saying that!) until a drizzle holds its shape for 10 seconds.

Add booze and powdered sugar, then briskly whisk (I love saying that!) until a drizzle holds its shape for 10 seconds.

Pour topping over chilled cheesecake. Dump it on generously!

Pour topping over chilled cheesecake. Dump it on generously!

Spread gently to the edges, adding more if needed. Let it drip!

Spread gently to the edges, adding more if needed. Let it drip!

It's okay if it drips over the sides!

It’s okay if it drips over the sides!

Let the icing firm up and cut yourself a big slice. Add a dollop of whipped cream if you’d like…or even a spoonful of vanilla ice cream. It will remind you a lot of apple pie.

Mmmmmm.

Mmmmmm.

And just so you know, the recipe for the topping is very generous. If you have some left over you can:

  1. Eat it with a spoon, directly out of the pan
  2. Reheat it (add a little rum if it’s too thick) and pour it over ice cream.
  3. Stir it into boiling water for an improvised hot buttered rum. (Leave a little space for more rum!)
  4. Stir it into sauteed apples and sprinkle with chopped pecans.
  5. Eat it with a spoon (oh, did I say that already?)

Cheers! Lorinda

Patriotic Fruit Pops

When my blogging group decided to go with a traditional red, white, and blue theme for our recipes this month, the thought of turning on the oven made me break into a sweat, so I opted for frozen fruit bars for the 4th of July, and for the hot days ahead. Easy instructions are below, and you’ll also find the links to the other bloggers’ posts. Hope you’ll check each one out!



Patriotic Fruit Pops closeBlended strawberries, lemon, and blueberries are layered in molds for a red, white, and (mostly) blue ice pop. Lightly sweetened, these are a healthy alternative to store bought frozen treats.

Before I give you instructions, I have a few tips:

  • I originally wanted to use pineapple and coconut milk for the white layer, but it took too much pineapple to achieve a flavorful mixture, which made it yellow…and I really wanted white.  So, lemon and coconut were my Plan B, which worked beautifully. You could also add a bit of Greek Yogurt if you’d like. Heavy cream will curdle. (Ask me how I know.)
  • You can make these without the gelatin, but they will be a little bit icier. Your call!
  • The blueberry layer is blended, and has a bit of a pulpy texture. I don’t mind it at all, but if you do you can try straining it before adding the gelatin mixture – and then add a little juice or water to make at least 6 ounces.
  • Speaking of blueberries, I used my favorite frozen Wild blueberries, which were a lot more burgundy than blue…more the color of huckleberries. Try using regular blueberries for a truer blue color.
  • Make sure you give each color adequate freezer time before adding the next layer, and keep the molds level. That will give you nice, crisp lines between each layer.

Here’s how I made these refreshing pops:

Patriotic Fruit Pops
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Author:
This recipe makes six 3-ounce frozen pops. There may be a little of each flavor left over. If so, pour it into a paper cup or ice cube tray and freeze just as you would the pops. These are great to drop into a glass of sparkling water! You will need less than 1 package of gelatin for all three flavors. Gelatin may be omitted, but the frozen treats will have a slightly icier texture.
Ingredients
  • RED:
  • 1 tablespoon cold water
  • ¼ teaspoon powdered gelatin (like Knox)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons hot water
  • 1 cup strawberries, fresh or frozen
  • WHITE:
  • 1 tablespoon cold water
  • ¼ teaspoon powdered gelatin (like Knox)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon hot water
  • Juice of 1 large lemon
  • coconut milk added to lemon to equal ¾ cup
  • BLUE:
  • 1 tablespoon cold water
  • ¼ teaspoon powdered gelatin (like Knox)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons hot water
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice (optional)
  • 1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen
Instructions
  1. RED:
  2. In a small bowl or ramekin, sprinkle ¼ teaspoon gelatin over 1 tablespoon cold water. Allow mixture to sit for 5 minutes.
  3. Add sugar and hot water and stir thoroughly. Microwave on high for 10 seconds. Stir and set aside.
  4. In a blender or food processor, blend the strawberries until smooth. Add the warm gelatin mixture and blend briefly. If mixture is too thick to pour or spoon into molds, add 1 tablespoon water and blend.
  5. Fill molds ⅓ full and freeze for 2 hours, or until firm.
  6. WHITE:
  7. In a small bowl or ramekin, sprinkle ¼ teaspoon gelatin over 1 tablespoon cold water. Allow mixture to sit for 5 minutes.
  8. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar and 1 tablespoon hot water and stir thoroughly. Microwave on high for 10 seconds. Stir and set aside.
  9. Put lemon juice in a measuring cup and add gelatin mixture. Add coconut milk to equal ¾ cups liquid.
  10. Remove molds from freezer and add about the same amount of lemon mixture as the strawberry. This should fill the molds approximately ⅔ full.
  11. Freeze for approximately 1 hour. The object is to have it firm but not totally solid, so the handle or stick will be able to penetrate the second layer if necessary.
  12. BLUE:
  13. In a small bowl or ramekin, sprinkle ¼ teaspoon gelatin over 1 tablespoon cold water. Allow mixture to sit for 5 minutes.
  14. Add sugar and hot water and stir thoroughly. Microwave on high for 10 seconds. If you are using lemon juice, add now. Stir and set aside.
  15. In a blender or food processor, blend the blueberries until smooth. Add the warm gelatin mixture and blend briefly. If mixture is too thick to pour or spoon into molds, add 1 tablespoon water and blend.
  16. Remove molds from the freezer and add blueberry mixture to the "fill" line. Add handles or sticks.
  17. Freeze until totally firm - overnight if possible.
  18. Remove pops from molds, running molds under warm water if necessary to release the treats.

 

Soften gelatin in cold water.

Soften gelatin in cold water.

 

Blend the strawberry mixture and add to molds.

Blend the strawberry mixture and add to molds.

Combine lemon, coconut milk, and gelatin mixture.

Combine lemon, coconut milk, and gelatin mixture.

Add lemon to frozen strawberry.

Add lemon to frozen strawberry.

Blend the blueberries.

Blend the blueberries.

 

Not blue...but pretty. For a true blue, don't use wild blueberries!

Not blue…but pretty. For a true blue, don’t use wild blueberries!

Yeah, baby!

Yeah, baby!



Patriotic Fruit Pops horizontal watermarked

red white blue collage

Now, for some other great Independence Day ideas, take a look at THESE posts:

(Links will be live on June 29th.)
From Crumbs in My Mustachio: Star Spangled Cannoli
From Tampa Cake Girl: Red, White Chocolate, and Blueberry Cheesecake
From Moore or Less Cooking Blog: Easy Butter Cake With Berries
From Cooking From a Stay at Home Mom: Patriotic Pie

Baked Alaska-licious!

A trip to Alaska is sounding awfully good right now! It is only June 1st, but it feels like July here in Eastern Washington. Whooeeee.


Baked Alaska cut horizontal
As the temperature rises, I get a craving for cold, bright desserts…and popsicles don’t count!  When my favorite group of bloggers decided to put together a group of ice cream desserts, Baked Alaska was the first thing I thought of. You can make it with any flavor of ice cream or cake you desire, and you can make it a couple of days ahead, pop it back in the freezer, and then appear to produce it effortlessly after just a few minutes in the oven, impressing friends and family with your mad skills.

Here are the other delicious goodies you’ll find in the links at the end of the post!
frozen desserts collage

If you’ve read my blogs before, you’ll be familiar with this disclaimer: You’ll find my recipes for cake and ice cream below, but feel free to simplify things by using (gasp!) store bought ice cream and a cake mix. I understand – I do!

I made small, individual desserts the first time, to great enthusiasm here on the home front. Next I made a large dessert using a half gallon (though we all know – even if the bastards at the ice cream companies think they’ve pulled one over on us – that they aren’t actually half gallons anymore) of store bought ice cream and it was perfect for the large dessert. My ice cream recipe yields a little less (I have a small, wimpy ice cream maker) so if you’re making the large dessert using my ice cream recipe, it will change the ice cream to cake ratio a bit, but it will still be beautiful.

For best results, start your Baked Alaska-licious a couple of days before you plan to serve it. It takes a while to freeze the ice cream into a bowl shape, and will be much easier to “frost” with meringue if the ice cream is rock hard.

I made a lemon-blueberry ice cream that was killer good, and used my Luscious Yellow Cake recipe for the base of the dessert. (It makes two large 9-inch round cakes, so you’ll want to cut the recipe in half or eat/freeze the other half.)

Baked Alaska-licious!
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Author:
Makes 6 small desserts or 1 large dessert.
Ingredients
  • 1 9-inch round yellow cake
  • ICE CREAM:
  • 3 cups fresh or frozen wild blueberries
  • 1½ cup sugar
  • Juice and zest of 1 large lemon
  • 1½ cups heavy cream
  • 1½ cups whole milk
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • MERINGUE:
  • 8 egg whites, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 2 cups superfine sugar (Baker's sugar)
Instructions
  1. In a large saucepan on medium heat, stir together the berries, sugar, and lemon. Bring to a low boil and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and cool until lukewarm.
  2. Add the cream, milk, and vanilla, stirring well. Chill in the refrigerator overnight.
  3. Make ice cream according to your machine's instructions. (If you have a small ice cream maker, you may need to make this in 2 batches.) While the ice cream is churning, prepare molds:
  4. To make single serving desserts, use a jumbo cupcake pan, lining 6 cavities with plastic wrap.
  5. To make a large dessert (using a double batch of ice cream (or a 1-3/4 quart container of store bought ice cream) line a medium bowl (about 8 inches across) with foil or plastic wrap, smoothing the liner as much as possible.
  6. Scoop churned ice cream into mold(s) and freeze until solid - at least 3 hours.
  7. MAKE MERINGUE:
  8. Using a squeaky clean bowl and beaters, beat egg whites on medium speed until foamy. Sprinkle the cream of tartar over the egg whites and beat until soft peaks form. With mixer on medium, slowly drizzle the sugar into the egg whites, stopping occasionally to scrape the sides. Don't rush this! When all of the sugar has been added, turn up speed to medium high and beat until firm peaks form. The meringue needs to be firm; sloppy meringue will just slide off the ice cream. But don't go past firm peak stage or the egg whites might collapse.
  9. For single serving desserts, cut 3 circles of cake the same size as the jumbo cupcake cavities. Slice each horizontally to make four thinner rounds. Place on parchment lined baking sheet. Turn 1 molded ice cream onto each cake round and peel off the plastic.
  10. For a large dessert, place the 9 inch cake onto a round of parchment on a baking sheet. Flip the ice cream out onto the cake and remove the plastic or foil. Cut away any excess cake around the bottom with a sharp knife.
  11. Spread meringue over dessert(s), covering completely, and swirl with a knife.
  12. Return to freezer until ready to serve, up to 2 days.
  13. Heat oven to 450 F.
  14. Place baked Alaska(s) in the oven and bake for approximately 5 minutes, turning once for even browning. Watch them closely - oven temperatures vary. You want the meringue to turn golden with dark brown peaks.
  15. Serve! Slide a large dessert (on its parchment round) onto a serving platter. Lift small desserts with a spatula and serve on dessert plates. The large dessert may need to sit for a few minutes to soften before serving, but the individual size desserts will be ready to go. Expect the meringue to be crusty on the outside and a little creamy on the inside.
Make a 9-inch yellow cake.

Make a 9-inch yellow cake.

Combine berries, sugar, and lemon to make ice cream.

Combine berries, sugar, and lemon to make ice cream.

Add cream and milk to cooled berry mixture.

Add cream and milk to cooled berry mixture.

Glop on the meringue!

Glop on the meringue!

Ready for the oven.

Ready for the oven.

Individual serving Baked Alaska-licious.

Individual serving Baked Alaska-licious.

Large size Baked Alaskalicious.

Large size Baked Alaska-licious.



Go ahead, have a bite!

Go ahead, have a bite!

I’ve given you a generous amount of meringue. Nothing is worse than trying to make pretty swirls in thinly spread meringue.

When baked, the meringue will be crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. If you are concerned about eating or serving egg whites that aren’t thoroughly cooked, I recommend making a cooked Italian Meringue; there are lots of recipes for it on the Internet. It’s a little more work, but it will remove any worries about egg safety that you might have. I know where my eggs come from (my front yard…thank you, girls!) so I’m comfortable with regular meringue.

That’s it – a fancy dessert that is impressive but not that hard to make. Go wow ’em!

And don’t forget to check out the links below for some drool-worthy cold treats.
Lorinda

From Crumbs in My Mustachio: Waffle Ice Cream Sandwiches
From Tampa Cake Girl: Peanut Butter and Chocolate Avalanche
From Moore or Less Cooking Blog: Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream
From Cooking From a Stay at Home Mom: Easy Chocolate Ice Cream
From Hun, What’s for Dinner: Brown Sugar Cinnamon Ice Cream Sandwiches

Brownies for a Crowd

brownie croppedThe other day I needed to make lots and lots of brownies…enough for 60 women. And because “good enough” just doesn’t cut it for our Homemakers’ Club annual spring tea, I also felt the urge to gussy them up and make them pretty.

brownies for tea watermark

I usually use a mixture of oil and butter in my brownies, but I wanted these to be rich and decadent, so I skipped the oil and used lots of butter. They turned out even better than I’d hoped, with enough height to look impressive, and a density somewhere between fudge brownies and cake brownies.

If you don’t have a crowd to cook for, you could cut the recipe in half of course. But I’d go for the full recipe and freeze some if I were you; they’re that good!

 

Brownies for a Crowd
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Author:
Makes approximately 72 brownies, 1½-inch by 2-inches each.
Ingredients
  • 6 cups sugar
  • 2¼ cups (4½ sticks) butter, melted
  • 9 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup "Special Dark" cocoa powder
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts (more if desired)
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 350 F.
  2. Lightly grease two 9-inch by 13-inch baking pans, line with parchment, (the grease will hold the parchment in place) and spray lightly with an oil/flour combination spray like Baker's Joy.
  3. In a very large bowl, combine the sugar and melted butter. Stir well.
  4. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs and vanilla until frothy. Add slowly to the sugar mixture, stirring well.,
  5. Add the cocoa powders, flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Stir just until combined.
  6. Gently stir in the chocolate chips and walnuts.
  7. Divide evenly between baking pans, spreading with a dough scraper or offset spatula.
  8. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick in the center of the brownies comes out clean. If it has batter on it, bake in 3 minute increments until done. Don't overbake.
  9. Cool COMPLETELY in pans on cooling racks. Remove the brownies by lifting the edges of the parchment. Mark and cut as desired. Since they are thick and rich, I found that 1½-inch by 2-inch pieces were perfect.

Spreading batter. (I used one huge pan, 13" x 18")

Spreading batter. (I used one huge pan, 13″ x 18″)

I was so busy slam-dunking this project, I failed to take pictures as I went. But the decorations were pretty simple for the most part. A swirl of chocolate buttercream icing (ganache would be great, too!) a few buttercream roses and leaves, and nifty little edible flowers and butterflies I got from Sugar Robot. There is no sugar in them, so they were perfect as decorations for the batch of sugar-free brownies I also made.

jelly bean beeThe little bees were simple and fun to make. To make a bee I used two jelly beans – a yellow one for the body and a “ginger ale” jelly bean for the head and wings. (White would do nicely, too.) I melted a little white chocolate in a small dish to use as glue, then cut the end off of one of the lighter beans for a head and glued it to the end of a yellow bean, using the white chocolate. Then two more thin slices of the light bean were attached to the sides for wings. You will need to hold them in place for a few seconds to let the white chocolate dry.

Melt a small amount of dark chocolate in a plastic zipper-type bag and snip a teeny tiny bit of one corner off. Dot eyes onto the head and then stripes on the back of the yellow bean. (The reason my stripes look a little wimpy is because I thought I’d try painting them with black paste food coloring. Not recommended!) That’s it. Let them dry for a few minutes before moving them onto the brownies.

Here’s how I know these brownies are the best I’ve made: usually, I prefer them with lots of chocolate icing, but I had some leftovers that didn’t get decorated, and I actually preferred them plain. Irresistible!

Happy spring…

Lorinda

Drunken Leprechaun Balls



leprechaun balls vertical with boozeYes, you read that correctly; I’m posting a recipe for Leprechaun Balls. There are so many jokes that will be left unsaid…probably.

These green confections are quite (ahem) firm – a cross between fudge and cookies. To make them you will need to bake a batch of green shortbread cookies, but trust me…the cookie recipe is very easy, and the balls are a slam dunk! What more could you ask for this St. Patrick’s Day?

My shortbread recipe makes a little more than you’ll need, so you should end up with 6-8 extra cookies to munch on. I tried rolling the dough out on a cookie sheet and baking it in one piece, which worked pretty well, but it’s harder to get the center of the dough cooked completely that way. So…I recommend you make cookies, even if they’re just squares of dough. You’ll be crushing most of them, so the shape doesn’t matter.

Drunken Leprechaun Balls
Print
Author:
Green shortbread is baked and crushed, then blended with Irish Cream Liqueur and Whiskey for a tasty adult treat. Makes about 36.
Ingredients
  • SHORTBREAD:
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • green food coloring
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon milk (if needed)
  • BALLS:
  • 3 cups crushed green shortbread (recipe above)
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • pinch salt
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup
  • ¼ cup Baileys (or other Irish Cream Liqueur)
  • 2 tablespoons Jamesons (or other whiskey)
  • powdered sugar and green sugar for rolling cookies in
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a large bowl (use a stand mixer if possible; this is very stiff dough) beat the butter until soft and creamy.
  3. Add powdered sugar and mix well.
  4. Add egg yolk and enough food coloring to create a deep green color, beating until mixture is light and fluffy. Scrape the sides of the bowl often.
  5. Add dry ingredients. (If using a stand mixer, you may want to switch to your dough hook.) The mixture will be very dry and stiff, but should come together into a dough. If it isn't cooperating, add milk a little at a time until the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl and you can form it into a ball.
  6. Roll dough out to about ¼-inch thick and cut into cookie shapes. (You can also form into small balls and press with a cookie stamp if you prefer. ) Place close together on baking sheets and bake for approximately 10-12 minutes. If you see a tiny bit of brown along the bottom edges, they are done. Don't overbake them, because green cookies turn an unpleasant color if they brown.
  7. Cool cookies on a rack and crush in a bowl until you have 3 cups. Eat the rest!
  8. BALLS:
  9. Combine the crushed cookies, nuts, and powdered sugar in a medium bowl.
  10. Add the remaining ingredients and stir well.
  11. Roll scant tablespoons of dough into balls and roll them in a dish of powdered sugar and colored sugar.
  12. Refrigerate until firm. These can be served chilled, which will give them the texture of fudge, or at room temperature, which will make them a little softer.
  13. I'm sure you know this, but just for the record: DO NOT SERVE TO MINORS.

Combine dry ingredients, then stir in wet ingredients.

Combine dry ingredients, then stir in wet ingredients.

Roll the balls gently in your palms, then dust with sugar.

Roll the balls gently in your palms, then dust with sugar.

leprechaun balls vertical
By all means, improvise. Use walnuts instead of pecans, switch the booze around and use 1/4 cup of whiskey and 2 tablespoons of Irish cream (you may have to add a little more crushed cookie in this case), or roll them in coconut or sprinkles. Pop Rocks? Hmmmm.

Enjoy! And…hello? Keep ’em out of the reach of kiddies, of course.
Lorinda

For each petal on the shamrock this brings a wish your way. Good health, good luck, and happiness for today and every day. (Irish Blessing)

 

 

 

 

 

Valentine Treat Collection



vday collageI thought that while you were waiting anxiously for me to produce my promised Valentine’s Day Petits Fours, I’d pacify you with a collection of past V-Day treats. While you’re making all of these, I promise I’ll be working on a new post for you.
rowdy logo from brenna valentines
Try these delicious deep chocolate cookies! Chocolate Oatmeal Raisin Cookies have a little kick of espresso and are filled with chocolate covered raisins.
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rowdy logo from brenna valentines

For a delicious homemade version of Mallomars, put your apron on and make a batch of Vallomar Cookies. They’re a little time-consuming, but soooooo good.

vdayroundup2

rowdy logo from brenna valentines

Valentine’s Day is on a Saturday this month, so you’ll have time to surprise your sweetie with these filled doughnuts. Sugared, glazed, plain…there’s nothing like a fresh doughnut! Jelly Doughnut Hearts
vdayroundup3

rowdy logo from brenna valentines

Cinnamon Spiral Bread is great when toasted, used for special sandwiches, or made into french toast. Bake it in a heart shaped canape pan and slice into thin hearts.
vdayroundup4

rowdy logo from brenna valentines

Light and fluffy, these dainty angel food cakes will just disappear in your mouth! Chocolate Cherry Angel Cakesvdayroundup5

rowdy logo from brenna valentines

As if shortbread cookies aren’t rich enough, I added a chocolate ganache filling and topped them with raspberry jam. You’ve got to try these! Chocolate Raspberry Shortbreadvdayroundup6

Pretty as a Peach No-Bake Dessert

sept roundup

Each month I join a group of bloggers to bring you a series of themed recipes. This month we are saying goodbye to Summer fruits.

Summer is almost gone, and so are the luscious fruits I’ve been taking for granted. Berries, grapes, melons, peaches…I’ll miss them all this winter when we’re down to apples and oranges!

raspberriespeaches

For my last hurrah I made a no-bake dessert with berries in the bottom and peach slices around the sides. The filling is peaches, whipped cream, cream cheese, and sour cream…with a little Peach Schnapps. It’s good cold from the refrigerator, and a delightful treat when eaten frozen.


Peaches and Cream vertical2 watermark
So grab some peaches while they’re still ripe and luscious, and give this recipe a try. It’s not a slam-dunk recipe – you’ll have to put a little effort into it – but I can guarantee it will get lots of attention!


pretty as a peach slice watermark
You’ll need at least 4 large peaches for this dessert, and to really make it special, cover the bottom with raspberries or sliced strawberries before adding the filling. Non-dairy whipped topping may be substituted for the whipping cream – 4 cups for the filling, and 2 cups for decorating.

You’ll also need a springform pan (I used a 10-inch, but a 9-inch pan would be okay…it would take less peaches to go around the bottom and the filling would be higher) and enough time to allow the dessert to set completely.

Pretty as a Peach No-Bake Dessert
Print
Author:
Ingredients
  • Crust:
  • 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ginger
  • Puree:
  • ¼ cup Peach Schnapps (or substitute peach nectar)
  • 1 ¼ cup cold water, divided
  • 2 packages unflavored gelatin
  • 2 cups chopped fresh peaches
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch salt
  • Filling:
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1¼ cup powdered sugar plus 2 tablespoons, divided
  • 3 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 2 peaches, sliced
  • 1 cup raspberries or sliced strawberries, if desired
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, combine all of the crust ingredients. Press evenly into the bottom of a 10½ –inch springform pan. Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl or cup, combine Peach Schnapps and ¼ cup cold water. Sprinkle both packages of gelatin over the liquid and let it sit for 10 minutes to soften. Meanwhile...
  3. In a medium saucepan, combine 1 cup cold water, chopped peaches, and lemon juice. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to medium. Cook for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Cook for 1 minute.
  5. With a slotted spoon, scoop peaches into a small bowl, reserving peach juice in pan.
  6. Add the gelatin mixture to the hot peach juice in pan, whisking until completely dissolved. Allow to cool.
  7. With an electric mixer, beat the cooked peaches into a puree, leaving some small chunks.
  8. In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add sour cream, powdered sugar, peach puree, and cooled gelatin mixture and mix until combined. Chill until slightly thickened, about 10-15 minutes.
  9. Whip the 3 cups of cream until it begins to thicken. Add 2 tablespoons powdered sugar and beat until very thick. Reserve 2 cups of whipped cream for decorating, and gently stir the rest into the peach mixture.
  10. Cut 2 peaches into slices. Set along inside edge of the pan, round side up. If the slices are thin, you can balance a second layer of peaches on top of the first. If you are adding berries, place them in the bottom of the pan.
  11. Spoon filling into pan and smooth the top. Pick the pan up and drop it gently a few times to make sure there are no air pockets in the dessert.
  12. Pipe the remaining whipped cream onto the top. Cover and chill for at least 4 hours. (Overnight is better.) Before serving, decorate with sliced peaches or berries.

 

Press the crust into pan

Press the crust into pan

Sprinkle gelatin on schnapps and water

Sprinkle gelatin on schnapps and water

Cook the peaches

Cook the peaches

Mash the peaches

Mash the peaches

Add peaches, one or two slices deep. (The 3rd "layer" is just a reflection.)

Add peaches, one or two slices deep. (The 3rd “layer” is just a reflection.)

Add filling

Add filling

Top with whipped cream. Add peaches before serving.

Top with whipped cream. Add peaches before serving.

That’s all there is to it! Savor these precious flavors now, and maybe pop a little extra fruit in the freezer for the dead of winter!

Lorinda

Fly on the Wall – August

Fly on the Wall

Welcome to Fly on the Wall, where you get to buzz around and see what goes on in my home, and in those of 10 other bloggers. Little happenings that don’t warrant their own post, but may still be of interest. Things that may make you raise your little fly eyebrows! Come see, and then buzz along and visit the other blogs posted at the bottom.
fly1gifcropped
I bailed on Fly last month because my daughter and grandkids were here visiting. I figured they’d give me lots of good laughs for this month’s post, but I was so caught up in the visit I kept forgetting to write the good stuff down. I did manage to scribble a couple of notes, thank goodness! Here’s what I had:

Grandpa tried to “help” Sophie put makeup on. Said he’d get her ready for middle school. Sophie politely reminded him that she wasn’t going to clown college.

Taunee, looking at a pic of her mom on the wall: Mom, you were so pretty when you were little. You looked perfect. You looked just like me! (This child oozes confidence.)

Taunee had a prank planned for Uncle Dean Lord Voldemort, but couldn’t help dropping hints. When he started to question her, she told him it was a “surprise”. He told her she’d be surprised when the Turd Fairy left something under her pillow. I really wish I wasn’t such a visual person.

The girls: “Show us more skulls, Uncle Voldemort. Show us more skulls and bones.” Um, yeah. He has a weird collection. He did make Taunee happy by sending her home with a pair of shed deer antlers…I believe he’d had a bit to drink at the time, because he doesn’t usually part with any of his collection. My daughter’s new name for her brother is “Drunkle Dean Voldemort.”

Mr. Mack discovered “vroom vrooms” I love it! He’s been kind of a city boy, but Pa and me purt near took care of that!
mack on vroom vroom

fly1gifcropped

While they were here we had a really, really wild storm. It was brief, but intense. I may have shrieked when lighting and thunder hit at the exact same time and I was with the kids outside by the chicken coop. There was a lot of damage in the area, but we came out of it okay, except for the flour corn. It was just beginning to pollinate when the storm struck, so no cornmeal for us this year. It was very exciting for the kids, though.

fly1gifcropped

I dumped sand into a big tub, added a pile of loose change, and stirred. Instant fun. Here’s the best part: instead of fighting over the coins, I heard Taunee say to Sophie “there’s a quarter over there, by your hand”. How sweet was that? Better yet, Sophie’s response was “Here, you can have it”. Bravo, Mom and Dad – you’re raising those girls right!

Digging for gold.

Digging for gold.

fly1gifcropped

It was hot and smoky while the girls were here, due to all the wildfires in Washington State. Really hot.

C’mon, you know what you’re supposed to say.

“HOW HOT WAS IT?” you ask?

This hot.

This hot.

fly1gifcropped

russ breaks hammock dogs laughing edited

I’m pretty sure the dogs are laughing!

Our hammock had a tear in it (thanks to Otis, our yellow lab) and I thought I had repaired it pretty well before the kids got here. Oh, it was all fun and games…until Grandpa got in. Luckily, my daughter was right there with the camera when he fell through. On his bad back. Bwa ha ha ha ha. Snort. Can’t help it!
russ breaks hammock edited

fly1gifcropped

I’ve been curing my garlic on the back porch, and one batch was spread across a wicker basket for air circulation. Working at the sink I heard a weird rustling sound. Since this is snake territory, I was a little concerned and went out back to see. Someone had knocked the basket over because apparently it was the perfect spot to nest. I shooed her off, but an hour later she gave a repeat performance. She won. I love garlic chicken.chicken in the garlic

fly1gifcropped

So….fire, wind, flood, hail. Where are the locusts? Oh, wait – they’re in the garden…if you consider grasshoppers to be the same thing, that is. I opened the garden gates to let the chickens in so they could eat the hoppers, and they went straight for my buckwheat. That wasn’t the deal – so the gates are closed. I’ll pick and hand deliver the grasshoppers to the girls, I guess. They’re just so freakishly strong! It feels like something is exploding in my hand when I carry them. Eeeeuw.

fly1gifcropped

What was I thinking when I ordered 7 different types of green beans? Usually germination is hit-or-miss, so I planted extra in each row. I’ve picked over 60 pounds of beans. Some were given away, but most were trimmed, blanched, and frozen. Snapping or trimming takes time, so I did something unusual for me, and put in movies to watch while I worked. Not just any movies – musicals! Oklahoma, Hans Christian Anderson, My Fair Lady, Carousel. Terrible, wonderful musicals. The Man has spent a lot of time outside. We do, however, have bean security. And still they keep growing…

11 pounds. This is just 3 rows. I have 9.

11 pounds. This is just 3 rows. I have 9.

fly1gifcropped
Speaking of beans, The Man just turned 60 and here was his cake:

Happy birthday to youuuu.

Happy birthday to youuuu.

Just kidding. I made him a peach trifle.

Peach Trifle

Peach Trifle

Here’s the recipe, if you’re interested. You’ll need:

One angel food cake (if you’re feeling inspired, here’s my recipe:  Angelberry Cake)
Whipping cream – lots! About a quart
4-5 large peaches
One batch of “Peachy Creamy Pastry Cream” (below)

Peachy Creamy Pastry Cream
Print
Author:
Perfect for so many things! Layer it in a trifle, fill a cream puff, or eat it from a spoon 🙂
Ingredients
  • 5 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup lukewarm water
  • 4 egg yolks
  • ¾ cups heavy cream
  • ¾ cups whole milk
  • 4 tablespoons peach schnapps
  • 2 cups whipped cream
Instructions
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and sugar. Add the water and whisk well. Add the egg yolks and beat until combined.
  2. In a medium saucepan, heat the cream and milk until it is bubbly and just beginning to boil. Add half of the hot mixture to the cornstarch mixture while whisking.
  3. Whisk the egg mixture back into the pan with the simmering cream and milk. Cook and whisk on medium-low heat until thick. Whisk like you mean it! You don't want it to scorch.
  4. Remove from heat and add the peach schnapps. (Stand back - the fumes will get you!)
  5. Allow the cream to cool completely, stirring occasionally. Lightly cover with waxed paper while it is cooling so it doesn't form a skin on top.
  6. Once the pastry cream is cool, fold whipped cream into it.
  7. Keep chilled until ready to use.

To assemble the trifle:

  • Reserve 3/4 cup heavy cream for making the Peachy Creamy Pastry Cream. Whip the rest of the quart (about 3 cups) until thick. Add 1/2 cup powdered sugar and whip until stiff peaks form. Keep chilled until ready to use.
  • Make pastry cream.
  • Cut the angel food cake into small cubes (or tear it, if you prefer).
  • Peel and cut peaches into bite-size pieces, dipping them in lemon water (or Sprite…a helpful hint from my friend Cydnee at Tampa Cake Girl) to keep them from browning. (Reserve a few slices for the top)
  • In a trifle dish, layer CAKE, PASTRY CREAM, PEACHES, WHIPPING CREAM. Repeat. If you have room, top with a layer of cake and then pipe whipping cream on the top. Decorate with peach slices, if desired.

fly1gifcroppedI was making cookies and the man tried to snag one. When I explained I needed them for a photo shoot first, he said:
“You’re not nice to me, and it’s almost my birthday.”
“But it’s not your birthday. I don’t have to be nice to you until your birthday”
“Yes you do, you have to start building up. Nicer and nicer and nicer until my birthday, and then taper off slowly.”
Hmmmm. I didn’t know there was an actual protocol for this. I tried. Kinda.

Here’s what The Man got for his birthday. He calls it his Cabela’s Club Member coffin. It kind of creeps me out, especially when he folds his hands on his chest. tent cotruss tent cot

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The Man hurt his back and was flat on the guest bed (which is firmer, lower) calling for cookies, medicine, etc. I had just put a load of wash into the dryer when he yelled loudly for me and I went running.
“That comes right in the window when it’s open” he said.
I was drawing a blank. “What’s coming in the window?”
“The dryer”
“The dryer” He was taking pain meds, but really?? “The dryer’s coming through the window?”
“Can’t you smell it? The wet. The fabric softener”
I wasn’t using fabric softener, so…it must have been “the wet.”
I closed the window.

fly1gifcropped
My gardening pants have been slowly giving away in the back. Today was the day. The Man said “I think we need to go find you a patch kit”. I felt around, and…..oh, crap. And I’d been bent over weeding with my butt to the road. Lovely. At least I wasn’t wearing my polka dotted undies. At least I was WEARING undies.

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I usually get a real kick out of the search engine phrases people use when they find my blog. But…Oh, MAN! This one was either hysterically funny or disgustingly gross, depending on your tolerance level. I have to admit I mostly laughed.

I noticed that I was getting a whole lot of views on an old Fly on the Wall post from a certain group of people. The tough thing is, it will be hard for me to explain it to you without using words that will bring more people with this…uh…inclination to my blog.

I know!!! When I get to one of those words I’ll bold it and spell it backwards, okay?

I posted an appetizer last year in my Fly on the Wall. It was for a baby shower, and featured refried bean filled puff pastry ypoop srepaid. Apparently this was very attractive to a group of people who like to get together and change each other’s srepaid, and they were kind of excited about serving my appetizers. I’m pretty open-minded and tolerant, but this is a little over the top for me. The views have been tapering off, which is a very good thing. Whatever you do, do NOT Google “repaid parties”.

On that cheery note, (and I realize that since you’re a fly, that might not have been too gross for you) please go visit these other wonderful blogs!

Baking In a Tornado
Just a Little Nutty
The Sadder But Wiser Girl
Spatulas on Parade
Stacy Sews and Schools
The Momisodes
Someone Else’s Genius
Menopausal Mother
Go Mama O
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