Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Spooky banner

I absolutely love my Silhouette sd! There are so many ideas out there that just work so much better with an electronic cutting machine. Its been awhile since I really got to use it for anything super fun and exciting. So when we were talking about doing a Halloween link party I knew I had to do something with my favorite toy!!!

For this project you need

Paper (8.5x 11 for my machine)
6 - Orange card stock sheets
7-8 Black card stock sheets

Halloween skull frame by Valerie Foster  bought in the silhouette online store for  $0.99.

On the program for the machine I simply made a matching sized solid background for the frame, chose my word, and other accents

I cut my square size at 5.78"
My letters were cut at 1.83"x 5.255"
The scarecrow is part of 4 halloween icons by Lori Whitlock and was cut at 3.27"x2.29"

After cutting I simply glued together and attached to some ribbon and hung up on the mantle!

 Now who's in a festive mood and ready for a linky party?? Come join me and THREE other bloggers on October 1st-10th and share with us your fantastic festive ideas!!

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Friday, September 20, 2013

Melted witches and pumpkin cupcakes

Halloween is right around the corner!!! Can you believe it? I mean as I am writing this post I am also searching for a cute costume for my daughter's 1st halloween!! So all your kids are having a party somewhere I am sure. And you want to take a treat of course! And yes the stores make fun looking cupcakes and they have plastic rings on them and they are easy to pick up and take to the party. But what if i told you that you could make your own fun looking cupcakes? Would you do it? I bet you would because you will do anything for your children just like me. Now hang with me this post might get a little lengthy but I promise the cupcakes are easy there are just a lot of pictures!

Ok so the cupcake its self I have posted before. Its my absolute favorite go to chocolate cupcake recipe. Now if you want to use box mix that is ok I like those too and probably could have used the time saving this time haha. The cupcake recipe comes from Glorious treats. Please check out her site she makes some beautiful things and her recipes all sound amazing!!

2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup  milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water

Line muffin tin with paper liners.  Heat oven to 350*F.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla.  Beat on medium speed for one minute, stir in water.
Fill liners 2/3 full with batter. I find a ice cream scoop works wonders
Bake cupcakes for approximately 20-22 minutes.
Cool completely on wire rack before frosting.

Ok now the fun part! I put a surprise in the center! I took some marshmallow fluff and died it orange! To do this i took the smallest ring in my biscuit cuter set and just took a small amount of cake out of each cupcake. filled with orange marshmallow fluff and put a little bit of removed cake back on to cover the hole. 


Frost the top of your cupcakes with chosen frosting. I bought cream cheese frosting and tinted it orange. 

For the topping you need 
Candy melts in orange, brown, and green
Oreo cookies
Hershey kisses or I molded tootsie rolls

Melted Witches came from  Confessions of a cookbook queen. Again another blog I love, not to mention she is super funny in her posts!

Melt your green and brown candy melts in separate bowls (they melt perfectly in the microwave). On a cookie sheet lined with wax paper make some circles with the green candy melts with the back of a spoon.  Take a knife and get a small amount of brown candy melts and swirl it into the green. For the hat simply take half an oreo cookie (with no filling) and use a small amount of candy melt to stick on a Hershey kiss. 


Orange,brown, and green, candy melts

I printed a pumpkin pattern on the computer but if you think you can do it with out go ahead! Place pattern under the wax paper on your cookie sheet. For the pumpkins I put my melted candy melts in a piping bag. Use the brown candy melts for the stem, faces or lines on the pumpkins. I used a little green for leaves. 

Have fun with candy melts!! I wrote out "Boo" and attempted a bat but I would have needed a pattern for that haha. Candy melts are fun and actually really easy to use. If you like these please see my Butterfly cupcakes!!

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Coconut Macaroons dipped in chocolate!

My husband loves coconut macaroons so I decided to be a nice wife and surprise him with some! Now let me be honest I thought these were going to be a lot harder than they were. I will say they are "easy peasy lemon squeeze". The hardest part was melting the chocolate, no joke. I mean why do I even try it in the microwave? I can never get it right...good thing I bought extra chocolate because the double boiler is always the best options for melting chocolate unless its candy melts those love the microwave.

What you need:
4 egg whites room temperature
1 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups sweetened shredded coconut
4oz chocolate for melting
1 tsp butter

In a bowl whisk together the egg whites, sugar, salt, and vanilla until sugar is disolved. Stir in the coconut until everything is well covered.  Place small mounds on a baking sheet covered in parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Bake in a 325° oven for  15-20 minutes. Place on wire rack to cool.
While cookies cool go ahead and melt together your chocolate and butter in your preferred manner, I like the double boil on my stove. Dip the top or bottom of each macaroon in the chocolate and place on a cookie sheet lined with wax or parchment paper. Let set up in fridge for about 20 minutes.

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Thursday, September 5, 2013

Baked Apple Cider Donuts

So the calendar might not say its fall yet but I decided that bloggers follow a different calendar. I am seeing fall things being posted all over the place and my friend and I are already in the middle of planning Halloween posts. So my first fall thing is something I am missing from my years in the Midwest. There was this great pumpkin patch that my husband and I would visit or I would take the boys I was nanny for, and every year I had to get their apple cider donuts. A couple months ago my mother-in-law gave me a doughnut pan and I have been trying to figure out what kind to make and then it just hit me APPLE CIDER!! These are yummy and so simple, I combined multiple ideas that I found online. Some were originally fried some had a glaze some used pumpkin pie spice others apple pie spice. So I just kind of picked  what parts of the all recipes I found that I liked and made up my own little mix. So now you can make these and help trick your mind a little bit into thinking its fall. Even if it has been in the 90's here in San Diego.

Yields  12 donuts.

2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
1/2 cup apple cider
1/4 cup milk (I used non fat)
2 eggs beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon melted butter

Preheat oven to 325° and spray your doughnut pan with no-stick spray Mix together all dry ingredients, then slowly mix in all the wet ingredients until a thick batter forms. Fill your pan 2/3 full and bake for 8-10 minutes.

3-4 tablespoons melted butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon brown sugar
12 teaspoon cinnamon

Mix together the sugars and cinnamon in a bowl. Take a cookie sheet and cover it with wax or parchment paper. Put your sugar mixture into a pile on the cookie sheet. Take a doughnut and spread  the melted butter on both sides and then dip in the sugar mixture. Repeat with each doughnut.

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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Creme brulee cheese cake bars

I feel like I have been holding this post hostage and its been trying to escape. So today I am setting it free!!

My husband makes a fantastic vanilla creme brulee! He uses Alton Brown's recipe from food network. And I think the real reason he loves making it is that it involves fire. I mean what is with men and anything to do with fire? So I came across these bars just before his birthday and that is what he wanted right away. It combines his 3 favorite things after all creme brulee, cheesecake, and fire.

These are so tasty but I would make some changes next time. First of all I would try harder to wait the 2 hours to chill haha and second for the sugar  I would use vanilla sugar it just seems to brulee better.

Creme Brulee bars
(From Handle The Heat)

~9 Graham crackers crushed finely (use food processor or put in bag and use rolling pin)
~1/2 stick of unsalted melted butter
~Line a 8x8 baking dish with foil making sure it has an over hang. This is VERY important as you will have to remove the bars from the dish.

Mix together and press into the foil lined 8x8 baking dish. Bake in a 350° oven for 10 min. Take out and cool. Turn oven down to 300°.


~2 - 8oz packages of room temp cream cheese
~1 Vanilla bean split and scraped (You use the the seeds scraped from inside)
~2 eggs
~1 egg yolk
~1 Cup granulated sugar (Next time I am using vanilla sugar)
~1/2 teaspoon salt (She uses fine sea salt but I just used plain)

Place cream cheese in your stand mixer and beat until smooth. Mix in the remaining ingredients until well combined. Poor onto your crust. bake for about 45 minutes. You want the filling to still have a slight wiggle to it. Cool completely on counter then chill for 2 hours (if you can hold out haha).

Using the foil that is overhanging remove the bars from the pan and place on heat proof surface. I used a cookie sheet. Cut into squares and sprinkle with more sugar. Torch the tops until you get that pretty amber color of crisp sugar. You can also do this in the broiler but watch them closely.

(You didn't think I was handling the torch did you haha plus its his birthday let the man have fire)

Now the important part ENJOY!!!!!

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