Saturday, July 31, 2010

butter-cream cheese frosting

i decided to throw a party for my boys and my husband so i had to get my hands dirty and bake a cake. it may not be my hubby's favorite theme, but for him, it's what's on the inside that counts! he loves rainbow chip cake with vanilla custard filling...to that with a pirate theme and voila! you now have the perfect cake for a 4 year old, a 6 year old and a 32 year old.

here's some pix and a recipe for my favorite butter-cream cheese frosting. i am absolutely a frosting fanatic and if i am making a non-decorated cake, I love the real cream cheese frosting. it's so ooey and gooey and yummy...my mouth is watering right now. anyway, it's super hard to decorate with so i came up with a compromise and i have to say it's pretty darn good!

my cheater vanilla custard tip. {JELLO vanilla pudding made with half and half with 1/2 cup less liquid that the pudding recipe calls for on the side of the box.} sooo good...

for the cake itself, i use betty crocker...no easier way i know to get rainbow chip cake and it's yummy. betty knows her bakin'!



aaarrrggg!

butter-cream cheese frosting

{enough to ice and decorate a 1/4 sheet cake...need less? cut it in half}

ingredients

2 cubes butter {room temperature}

4 oz cream cheese {room temperature}

2 lbs powdered sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 tablespoons milk

pinch of salt

directions

beat together the cream cheese and butter until all the lumps are worked out.

add milk, salt, and vanilla.

mix in {1 cup at a time} powdered sugar. beat about five minutes until smooth.

ice cake, or just eat on graham crackers. yummm.

*keeps in fridge about 10 days or in freezer for about a month.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Funny Story

It was a nice, relaxing evening in the backyard with the boys and Aaron was wearing his green frog rain boots. A bit warm for summer, I know, but he LOVES to wear them. Anyway, he is running around, swinging on the swing set and going on the slide. Then the boys decide to play pirates and run around some more. Basically, quite a bit of time goes by when Aaron says there is something in his boot. Jeremy and I think it's a piece of bark or something and watch him take it off , but with great haste. Then he throws it out of his tree house and says "Can you please get that lizard out of my boot...it's botherin' me!" I go to check it out and laughed my head off! There was indeed a quite large and completely freaked out lizard inside. That poor thing went around in the toe of his boot for quite a while...talk about the ride off his life. :0 When we let the poor thing out of the boot, he ran right toward Ty. He basically jumped a foot and screamed like a little girl. Man I wish I had my video camera! LOL!!!

chicken apple sausage hoagies with carmelized onions

this is one of my hubby's favorite dishes. lucky for me it's super easy and delish.

ingredients

4 chicken apple sausages {i use lou's famous from whole foods. it's skinless and yummy.}
2 medium yellow onions sliced thinly
4 oz. dark beer
4 crusty hoagie rolls or sliced crusty bread {the crustier the better}
3 tablespoons butter {divided}
4 sprigs fresh thyme
4 slices cheese {optional}
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 cloves minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 tablespoon bourbon {optional}

instructions

heat medium skillet over low heat for 30 seconds.
melt 2 tbsp. butter, add onions and brown sugar.
cook, stirring occasionally for 20 minutes until onions are partially browned.
season with salt & pepper.
add sprigs of thyme.
add sausages. you can do them whole or if they are already cooked, you can slice them up. cook, stirring occasionally until browned, about 15 minutes.
add chopped garlic and cook until you can smell it, about 2 minutes.
add beer; reduce heat and cook covered for about 15 minutes. *if you don't have any beer on hand you can use apple cider or juice. it changes the flavor, but it's still pretty good.
remove pan from heat and stir in remaining butter and bourbon. *if you are serving the kiddos, you can boil a bit longer to burn off the booze.
remove the thyme sprigs.
serve on your crusty bread with a slice of cheese.
try not to make too much of a mess of yourself, serve with lots of napkins. enjoy!

Monday, July 26, 2010

peanut butter fudge (aka crack!)

OK so here is my first recipe post and let me just warn you, it's a doozy!
This stuff is HIGHLY addictive and so super dooper good I'm not joking when I say it is like crack.
It is really easy to make.
It's one of those recipes that comes in handy when you volunteered to bring a desert somewhere and you forgot until you are ready to walk out the door. :0 You know we have all done it! Happy cooking...enjoy.



Stuff you'll need
  • 3 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 6 tablespoons butter (the real stuff)
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup half and half (milk works too)
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter (i prefer chunky)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

What to do

Measure out the powdered sugar into a large bowl. You could also use a standing mixer if you have one. Let it sit for a bit.

Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat.

Stir in the brown sugar and milk. Bring to a boil while stirring.

Don't stop stirring and allow to boil for a full two minutes...I know I said it before, but don't stop stirring! Muy importante!

Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and peanut butter until combined.

Pour this bubbly mixture over your powdered sugar.

Beat until smooth...it should just take a minute.

Pour into a 8X8 pan and cool in the fridge for 5-10 minutes until it gets firm. While waiting for the fudge to firm up, it's always a good idea to test the quality of your creation by eating any scraps left over in the bowl. ;)

Once firm, cut into bite size squares and prepare to share your yumminess...

*Tip: If you happen to be going to a party with one of those chocolate fountains (sinful contraptions), instead of pouring into the pan take small pieces and roll into balls. Chill until firm and serve with toothpicks. Dip away...it's like a gourmet reeses pb cup and your fiends will love/hate you for bringing them.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Summer Fun

Here are some fun summer pix. A bit random , but some cute shots...

"You really think you can mess with me? Aaarrrggg!!!"

Mr. Potato Head


Yummmm....

I bought this great little blowup pool last summer for twenty buck at Target and it has been worth every penny. Not only do the boys LOVE to play in it, but now when the water drains, a kajillian worms come up to the surface of our grass. The boys think this hysterical and play/torture them for hours. As if this is not enough, the birds roll in when they are done and clean up what ever is left...Poor little worms...


aaahhh...gotta love summer...

So You Think You Can Dance...

We have been watching a lot of So You Think You Can Dance lately and Aaron definitely thinks he can. We got this musical card for Jeremy's Birthday from Great Grandma Grosser. It play that Tim McGraw song Live Like You Were Dying (which I love). It looks like Aaron's chosen style is contemporary...
video

Happy Birthday to my Sweetie pie!!!



Gotta give a great big HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my main squeeze! Jeremy is such a truly fabulous man and I am so thankful to have him as my husband. He is a wonderful father and his boys adore him. He takes such good care of us. I am a very lucky woman...We love you Jeremy!