Thursday, August 20, 2015

Dakota Bread

While visiting my sister in law Milly this last month, she introduce me to Dakota bread.  My favorite bread ever!  We got it at Great American Harvest.  After I got home I located one one hour away from my home and rushed over, only to find they were out of Dakota bread.  Bummer.  So then I became obsessed with getting that bread.  Thank goodness I found a recipe that makes a pretty good facsimile of that bread.  I have made two batches so far and thought it isn't as good, it still satisfies my cravings.
I found the recipe here.
The second time I made it I used loaf pans.  Didn't like that shape as much.
Diana

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Raspberry Truffles

I wanted to try out my new tempering machine and make some raspberry truffles.  These truffles were very flavorful because they use real raspberry puree instead of artificial flavoring.  So yummy. 
There is no cream in the recipe either.  I got it from  Couldn't Be Parve but I adapted it to a bit.
 Here is my tempering machine!  I selected the dark chocolate setting and melted about 1 pound of untempered chocolate.  More than enough for covering the truffle centers.  I only needed tempered chocolate for dipping, not for the centers themselves.  Those I could use untempered chocolate in. 
 On the left you can see the unmelted chocolate and on the right of the baffle you can see the melted chocolate.
 It can take a bit of time to melt the chocolate so while it did it's job I made the centers.
 First I made the puree, heated it and added it to the chocolate.  Using a small ice cream scoop I shaped the centers. (adapted recipe is at the bottom of this post)
Once they chilled a bit I formed them into spheres.
 Back to the tempering.  After the machine melted the chocolate I added the seed chocolate.  In this photo the clear lid is on.
 Here is a photo with the lid off.  Use large pieces of seed chocolate so it will be easier to remove any unmelted pieces after the tempering cycle is completed.  Once that beep sounds you remove any of the seed chocolate chunks.  Now all your chocolate is tempered and ready to use.  It will have a beautiful shine, snap and will harden quickly.
 Scooping a few tablespoons of tempered chocolate into the palm of my plastic gloved hand,  I rolled the truffle centers until fully covered.  I let them solid up on wax paper.  Once set I smeared a little melted chocolate on the top of each one and sprinkled jimmies on top.
 Because the chocolate was tempered and kept in temper, I was able to save the leftover for seed chocolate for my next batch!
 Next time I think I will double dip the chocolates.....some of my truffles had weeping issues.  But they were delicious.  The first day the centers were a little grainy but the second day they were much creamier.

Raspberry truffles

6.5 oz chocolate
1/2 cup raspberry puree (see below for recipe)
1 oz (2 tbs) vegetable oil
Mix raspberry puree with vegetable oil.  Heat it microwave until almost boiling.  Pour over chopped chocolate and stir until chocolate is melted.  Mixture will begin to thicken.  Chill until firm enough to scoop.

Raspberry puree
12 oz raspberries, fresh or frozen (defrosted if frozen)
Blend raspberries in a food processor or blender until pureed. Strain through a fine mesh sieve, using a spoon to press as much of the puree through as possible. Discard solids.  This will make more than you will need in this recipe.  Store any extra in the freezer.
Diana

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Pretty Sea Foam Green Quilt

I love the color combo on this quilt!  Made from a charm pack and solid moda yardage, it was fun to put together.
 But more importantly, the recipient of this sweet quilt is battling cancer.  She is going through her final rounds of chemo and we are optimistic that they will get it all.

I hope the bright cheerful colors and love sewn in will brighten her time recovering.
Diana

Friday, July 31, 2015

Sew Your Own Pastry Cloth

I have a love/hate relationship with pinterest.  Just when I have about caught up with my latest project someone posts a pin that has me gathering supplies from online stores for a new project that I may or may not get to.  Hence the pile of fabric, paint, and misc. supplies piled around my sewing room.
 But once in a while I have gotten so excited about a pin I actually start right in on it as soon as that wonderful brown truck leaves my driveway.  Like this pastry cloth from Cami from Tidbits  I saw a few weeks ago.  
HAD TO MAKE THEM!  Well actually had to make 5 of them.  I used to have one as a new bride but when it finally fell apart I never replaced it.  But my old one didn't have those cute red stripes down both sides that look like a vintage tea towel.  And it wasn't two layers thick either.  Cami walks you through the construction of the pastry cloth with pictures.  Yipee!  
You can't see it in this picture but the fabric paint I used has glitter in it!!!!!  That can't hurt you if it gets in the pie crust, right?  Maybe I better flip it over and use the unpainted side.  Though I have scrubbed at that red stripe and not one bit of glitter has come off.  Plus, one can never have enough glitter in one's life, even when one is elbow deep in bread dough.  Note the use of the royal "one".
 Check out these vintage cutters.  Love the wood handles.
 Unlike Cami from TidbitsI only used one row of top stitching.  Guess I'm lazy that way.
I made my clothes to a finished size of about 23x28 inches.  Just the right size for my counter tops. 
I also made some cute tags to give away with the cloths.  
Hope you feel inspired to make one (or 5) yourself.
Diana

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Chocolate Tempering Machine!!!!!

OH MY GOODNESS, I got a chocolate tempering machine! A ChocoVision c116minirev1
Why, you might ask......because I am obsessed with getting the perfect shine on my chocolate treats and that snap that only tempered chocolate will make when broken!
And because I couldn't get the chocolate to behave itself with the "by hand" method.  And because my husband got a new boat.....  It can do dark, milk and white chocolate.  It has flashing lights and beeps.  It is perfect.  I love it.  And it is small enough to fit in an upper cabinet which meant I had to rearrange my kitchen cabinets to fit it in.  Then I had to repaint my kitchen so the dishes that got moved to the plate rack would match.  So worth it. 
Sooooo, now I have this miracle of a chocolate tempering machine that works beautifully every time.
And I have perfectly shiny chocolate.
Diana


Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Mini Cake Pop Ice Cream Cones

Happy 4th Y'all!  Oh wait, the 4th was three weeks ago......so I'm a little behind with my posts.  No problem, you can make these cute treats anytime!  They are only about 3 inches tall, barely a mouthful.....well, maybe 2 mouthfuls.
 My sister-in-law/good friend Milly and I made these for a 4th of July block party in Idaho.  So fun.
 We got the mini cones at Michaels,  We made the cake ball small enough to look like tiny scoops of ice cream.  Keep in mind they will have a few coats of candy melts which will enlarge them.
We decorated the tops with stars and large red Sixlets!  Don't they look like juicy cherries?
Hint: dip rim of cone in melted candy melts and immediately place an uncoated cake ball on top of the cone.  Let harden.  Now you can hold on to the cone to dip the cake ball into more melts!  Any drips look like ice cream melting down the cone!
Diana

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Small Green Doily

Remember the other day when I was whining about how hard it is to read crochet patterns?  Remember when I asked why they couldn't include pictures?
Little did I know there is a form of pattern instructions that is done entirely in pictures.
Here is the finished doily.

Here is the pattern from Anabelia Craft Design.  And it doesn't matter that the blog is in another language cuz.........the directions are just one big picture!!!!!  Yippee.
Diana