Makin Whoopee

Pies of course.

Come on you guys! Minds out of gutters.

Holy Heck, I am listening to Ray Charles sing this song (Makin Whoopee) right now and it is killing me. I think I need a Ray Charles cd or something. If I had to pick 3 artists to sing to me on a deserted island I would pick Ray, Johnny Cash & Rick Springfield of course.

I have just this very second decided that I am going to listen to Ray Charles sing different songs the whole time I write this post. Every time a new song starts I’ll put it in parenthesis so you’ll feel closer to me. (Georgia on My Mind) His voice is so soothing. Especially considering my yelling kids and chewing, barking dogs which drive me so absolutely crazy that I had to mix up a little wine cooler to get through the rest of the day.

(My Bonnie) Since I last posted, I have survived a trip to Disneyland, taken another trip to Kingman where I fell over my sister’s fence and almost broke my kneecaps, had both of my love seat cushions chewed to bits by two naughty dogs and got chased by two coyotes (more on that next week in ‘The Great Coyote Attack of 2012).

So it just seemed that (What’d I Say) since I didn’t really have to leave the house today it would be a great reason to make whoopee.

Pies.

Again with the Pervy McPervesons…

This is what you’ll need for the pie (cake?) part.

Oh and some ‘sour milk’

Sour milk is simply 1 cup milk with a tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar added and mixed up in a Hamburgler glass.

You need a holy lot of Crisco for this recipe. (Hit The Road Jack)

Cream the Crisco and white sugar together. SO snowy white. Like the blizzard last week in Wisconsin. Hellooooo. It’s March.

Then you add the eggs and the sour milk and it kinda looks like Cream of Wheat, but grosser.

Is grosser a word or should I have said “more gross’?

Then you mix up your dry ingredients EXCEPT the baking soda in a separate bowl. (I’ve Got A Woman)

Add the dry mix to the Cream of Wheat.

Stir it till your arm falls off.

Or till it looks like this.

Have I mentioned that my kids drive me crazy?

Now take your baking soda and add a cup of HOT water to it. Hopefully you are fortunate enough (like me) to have the hottest tap water in the world so you won’t have to microwave it or anything.

I have eaten soups that were cooler than my tap water.

Add the hot water mixture to the fudgy batter (Mess Around)

Super shiny batter because of the Crisco I think.

Go ahead and have a lick.

Drop by tablespoonfuls onto parchment lined cookie sheets. They come out kind of ginormous and I switched to heaping teaspoons by the third batch.

Now this first batch I used a new age, 21st century insulated bakeware type cookie sheet and these stinkers turned out flat like regular cookies.

The next batch I used my trusty (albeit not as shiny) aluminum pan from Nineteen seventy something.

They came out all puffy and PERFECT and then I had an epiphany. WHY would you make insulated bakeware if in fact the recipe is to be baked at a certain temperature? Why would your treats need to be insulated from the proper heat source needed to make them turn out like they are supposed to?

The evidence. Ok. So they don’t look all that different in the photo (probably due to my super photography skills) but trust me, huge difference.

I am DONE with insulated bakeware. (Somewhere Over The Rainbow-OMG Judy G. got NUTHIN on Ray)

As soon as I am done writing this, I am going on ebay and buying some old 1970 cookie sheets.

Perfectly Puffy. Large, but Puffy. This was before I switched to the smaller spoon.

Ok. Once they are all out of the oven and properly cooled off, you can start the filling.

More Crisco. Oh and a little milk and flour which I forgot to put in the picture and I was too super lazy to take another one. ( Your Cheatin Heart)

I know it seems all super weird to add flour to the filling but it totally works.

After the flour, powder sugar, milk and vanilla are all mixed to a creamy loveliness…….

You can use your new super most fabulous EVAH vintage Nineteen Sixty Something Sunbeam mixer to whip your egg whites!!!!

Whazzzzzzzup????

(You Are My Sunshine)

Confession. Recipe said ‘fold egg whites in’ but I totally used the low setting on my NOT vintage mixer.

And I totally know it was extra work to use two mixers but COME ON.

Look.

At.

Her.

Sigh. (America The Beautiful)

The recipe makes a ton of filling, so load them up. It is ok to completely ignore the instruction to use 1 tablespoon per pie.

Ok. Now stick them in the fridge for half an hour or so.

Use the time to put on your stretchy pants and do some jumping jacks or sit ups or something.

Anything.

Cause these will do some damage to your midsection.

Make Whoopee, Not War.

 

Whoopee Pies

1 cup shortening
2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup sour milk
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 cup hot water
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
Filling
1 1/2 cups shortening
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup milk
1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla extract
2 egg whites, beaten

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease or parchment cookie sheets.

In a large bowl, cream together 1 cup of shortening and white sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time then stir in the vanilla and sour milk. Combine the flour, cocoa and salt, stir into the creamed mixture. Stir together the baking soda and hot water then mix them into the batter last. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheet.

Bake for 8 minutes in the preheated oven, until firm but not overbaked. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheets for a few minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

To make the filling: In a medium bowl, cream together the 1 1/2 cups shortening with the confectioners’ sugar and 1/4 cup of flour until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in the milk and vanilla until well mixed, then fold in the egg whites. Sandwich at least 1 tablespoon of filling between the flat sides of two cookies.

For best results, refrigerate 30 minutes before eating. Store in refrigerator.

 

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Fast Valentine Update

Hope you all had an awesome Valentines Day! It appears that the curse of 1986 has been broken. (At least for this year)

I was living the Valentine Dream yesterday friends!

Nothing but sugar cookies and Reeses Peanut Butter hearts ALL DAY LONG!

Serious.

That’s all I ate.

Oh and some wine while I watched Real Housewives of the OC.

Mom of the year because I dyed the spaghetti noodles red, lit some cheap candles and ladled out the Strawberry Crush into tiny crystal wineglasses.

Bad light–sorry!

Off to Disneyland tonight for a fun filled 4 days!

And don’t even THINK about burgling my house because I have two vicious animals, a house sitter and Neighbor John standing guard.

Peace Out Valentines! Time to start working on the Leprechaun trap…….

 

 

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Love For Sale….Yummy, Happy, Vintage Love For Sale

OMG!

What a vintage weekend!

Went to Kingman to see my sister. LOVE Kingman.

I get my kicks.

60's Danish Modern Buffet. LOVE

On Route 66!

Kingman has Faaaaabulous junk shops and antique shops and the price is ALWAYS right!

I headed there with Mr. Right on Friday while the kids stayed with friends. My nephew was the star in the High School play and he was awesome. Took a nasty cut to the eye during a fake fight scene. Guess they should have wrapped more duct tape around the KNIFE they were using. I was thinking ‘Wow, great fake blood from the makeup department’.

Then Mr. Right headed back home on Saturday morning and I stayed with my sister to go junking, although first she made me go to yoga and I just want you all to know that I don’t love it.

Plus she is the yoga instructor (Yogi?) and so I felt pressured to also be good at yoga and I’m not. I know it looks all relaxing and super stretchy, non painful for old ladies kind of thing but seriously, I am still sore today.

Anyways…..

Was going to show you guys my treasures collected on my blog hiatus, but decided to save that for next Monday. Linking up again with my friends at Apron Thrift Girl for treasure sharing time!

Ok-on to the loot!

I paid $65 for the buffet. It is going in my room. I LOVE it. great shape, needs to be cleaned up with some orange oil. I got it at this place that is an old theater and it is just PACKED with stuff. Piles of stuff. Piles stacked upon piles. Literally. I could see boxes I could not get too and was having anxiety attacks.

I paid an additional $10 total for these next treasures. All from the same place.

Risked life and limb to get to this mixmaster. I saw it in a back room and it was precariously stacked on an end table with a couple other lamps but when I picked it up I realized it was actually an anchor weight keeping this stack of tables from falling down.

Much excitement while I held everything together and yelled for help.

But I got my mixmaster. And it works! Just need to find the large bowl that goes with. Will be checking ebay.

Love the speed settings.

Sweet yellow covered dish, not marked.

I think it is a lemon?

Saving these for St. Patrick’s Day!

I got these sweet Easter glasses at a different shop and I paid $10 for the set which is kind of high but you rarely see vintage Easter goodies.

My sister spied them first and it was touch and go for a few minutes about who was going to get them, but then I reminded her of the time I found the bird plates and relinquished them to her.

Love the colors!

Found these lovely yellow treats at the last shop we visited. Paid $5. I seriously wanted everything in that store. It was a little house built in 1924 and ‘remodeled’ in the 50’s and I wanted to move in and take possession of the formica countertops and the large jadeite collection.

But I left with my ice cream scoop and salt & pepper shakers instead.

In other news, I’ve been sick with upper respiratory junk for about a month, we are leaving for Disneyland on Wednesday and Mr. Right purchased a tent trailer camper thing which I was initially against, but he won me over with this line………

“Think of all the alone time you will have while the kids and I are camping’.

Have a great week!

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I’m Baaaaaaaack

Holy Scary Movies!

Redrum! Redrum!

Wow.

It has been like 3 months since I have posted. Not sure what was wrong with me. Just wasn’t feeling it. Maybe writers block, I don’t know. Maybe just lazy. I took some pictures, I swear I had every intention of posting and then, meh, nothing.

And of course, I don’t love January. Such a blah month. Hard to get inspired there. Like, why does it exist? It’s no fun. Unless you have a January birthday or something.

Which I don’t.

I have a GLORIOUS early September birthday.

I tried to really chill out over the holidays and not run around like a crazy headless chicken. I wanted to slow down and savor the season this year. I was semi successful at it.

I tried a few new recipes. One disastrous one for cinnamon roll pancakes. Great theory, but holy heck impossible to keep the cinnamon swirl INSIDE the pancake while flipping. Will just make regular cinnamon rolls next time.

This recipe for soft molasses cookies with white chocolate chips turned out MUCH better!

Completed my Primary colors mixing bowl set!!!

My sister gave me the smallest and most elusive blue bowl for Christmas. You have no idea how happy my mixing bowls make me. I have since found another yellow one, but I think it will be headed to ebay.

Found lots of thrift treasures! Will take some pictures this weekend and show them off on Monday, but her’s my favorite!

In other news, I am heading to Kingman, AZ tonight to see my nephew play Henry the 8th in the senior play. Hanging there with my sis until Sunday which means wine & junking trips!

Will catch up more on Monday! I promise.

Here’s a little taste of the last 3 months……

Taking pictures for our Christmas card. Quick Everybody, out in the backyard!

 

Sleeping by the Christmas Tree was super popular this year!

I think Max took this one.

Mr. Right & I ran away to the mountain for a night.

Super Sketchy Santa.....

Traditional making of the Gnocchis!

Christmas Eve

 

First Swim of 2012

 

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Red Velvet Brownies & Thanksgiving Traditions

Before I get into another waistline busting recipe, let’s just talk about Thanksgiving traditions for a minute.

Everyone has their holiday traditions. Every year we get up and watch the parade (upstairs) and football (downstairs) while I finish making the desserts. Around noon we head over to my sister in laws and hang out while dinner finishes. Every year I pray really hard when they put the turkey in the big deep fryer thing in the yard because it scares the bejeezus out of me.

After dinner we hang out then head home around six and my sis gets into town. We all watch Christmas Vacation and drink Tom & Jerry’s or Hot Buttered Rum.

Lovely fun Thanksgiving Traditions.

OH!

Almost forgot that EVERY year I go to the Smiths (Kroger for some of you) on Eastern a few days before Thanksgiving to get the stuff I need and yesterday was the day I went. Grocery stores a couple of days before Thanksgiving are like bars on New Years Eve, except instead of people who never go out all year they are full of people who never cook all year.

They clog up the aisles and wander aimlessly and distract me with their rookie cooking conversation. Really? Celery is NOT a canned vegetable. Try the produce section.

PRODUCE SECTION!

It’s the place where they sell fresh fruit & veggies, otherwise known as PRODUCE.

I avoid the turkey section like the black plague because there are generally 10-12 carts of people debating the merits of Butterball vs Foster Farms.

They are TURKEYS.

From a FARM full of Turkeys. They are not born and bred and AKC registered with weirdo names like Champion Billy Ray Red Feather’s Achy Breaky Heart.

Just a turkey that either ended up hatching (they are not born live are they?) on the  Foster Farm side of the tracks or the Butterball side of the tracks.

Another tradition is that I bring the stuffing/dressing/whichever you call it. I like to make it not from a box so every year (NO, really EVERY year) I struggle like a one legged spider to locate dry unseasoned crouton things. Now I suppose I could be all thrifty and toast my own bread and make my own croutons, but frankly I am lazy and the big bag of them is only $1.99 so that is the route I am going.

Folks, it is like looking for Willy Wonka’s Golden Ticket.

And of course it is the last thing on the list because I can’t FIND it anywhere so I have to maneuver my heavy cart around the store 4-5 times and WHY on earth would people buy the disposable aluminum turkey pans at the grocery store when the Dollar Store has them for, wait for it…..A DOLLAR.

Of course there are 13,476 extra employees crawling up your armpit and into your pocket asking if they can help you and guess what?

THEY CAN’T!

I know this because I finally broke down and asked.

They are NOT by the boxed stuffing, which is a logical first choice don’t you think?

They are NOT near the huge display of Thanksgiving-y things like chicken broth, french fried onions and mountains of jarred gravy.

They are NOT by the bread, another logical placement choice.

They are NOT by the bags of salad croutons, not so logical, but really, where would you look by now?

They are NOT by the gaggle of turkey debaters.

They are NOT by the flour, which is where two of the nice helpful employees told me to look. Close, because that’s where the bread CRUMBS are, but remember I am looking for croutons.

Every year friends. Every year.

And I am pushing my 5,000 pound cart and it is hot because once the temp hits 60 in Vegas people turn the store heat on and all these people are wandering around finding everything they need when they don’t even know how to cook and I am MAD.

And I want to screech out at the top of my lungs WHERE ARE THE !@^($%!@$ DRY UNSEASONED CROUTONS???

But I don’t. I press on and I really don’t want to ask any more employees. I even check the soda aisle on the off chance they might be there, but nope. So, I resolve to go to Albertson’s and find them there and I head to the liquor section for a bottle of wine because by now I am stressed out and red wine lowers your blood pressure I think, so I really needed some.

What do you think I found on an end cap in the WINE section?

Right.

On to happier things like the recipe for these delightful yummies which you will NOT find in a grocery store.

I have used up all my words for the day and I can’t think any more, so I am just posting the pictures and the recipe.

Have a great week!

RED VELVET BROWNIES

  • 1 (4-oz.) bittersweet chocolate baking bar, chopped
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 (1-oz.) bottle red liquid food coloring
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Small batch Cream Cheese Frosting (I used 1/2 stick butter, 4 ounces cream cheese 2 cups powder sugar-let butter and cream cheese get to room temp and then beat together till creamy. Add powdered sugar and beat till smooth)
  • Garnish: white chocolate curls (If you’re fancy)

DIRECTIONS

  • 1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line bottom and sides of a 9-inch square pan with aluminum foil, allowing 2 to 3 inches to extend over sides; lightly grease foil.
  • 2. Microwave chocolate and butter in a large microwave-safe bowl at HIGH 1 1/2 to 2 minutes or until melted and smooth, stirring at 30-second intervals. Whisk in sugar. Add eggs, 1 at a time, whisking just until blended after each addition. Gently stir in flour and next 4 ingredients. Pour mixture into prepared pan.
  • 3. Bake at 350° for 44 to 48 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out with a few moist crumbs. Cool completely on a wire rack (about 2 hours).
  • 4. Lift brownies from pan, using foil sides as handles; gently remove foil. Spread Small-Batch Cream Cheese Frosting on top of brownies, and cut into 16 squares. Garnish, if desired.

 

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North & South (Mostly South)

Do you remember that mini series? If you are over 35, you probably do. It probably sticks in your memory like the Waltons Christmas Special, Thornbirds and the original Footloose movie.

Kevin Bacon stories anyone?

So.

(By the way, I am trying something different and putting captions on the pictures.)

Step One. Mix Cake Guts.

Apparently this is a southern dessert and I am trying to figure out why all the REALLY great desserts come from the south.

Step Two. Boil this together and add to cake guts. Pink cup is 'fake' buttermilk.

 

Red velvet cake, pecan pie, Mississippi Mud pie, peach cobbler, anything Paula Deen even thinks about baking, etc.

How come the yankees got so ripped off? Is it because they won the war? I don’t get it.

This is what coca cola looks like when you boil it with butter and cocoa powder.

I think I should have been born in the south so that my love for their desserts could have been fully explored.

Here is the latest.

Coca Cola Cake.

Step Three. Add boiled coca cola goop to cake guts.

Now let me just tell you, if a brownie and a piece of fudge got married and had babies, I think the babies would taste like this cake.

AH-MAZING

Step Four (or is it five? Can't remember and too lazy to scroll back) Add eggs and vanilla.

Similar to Texas sheet cake (again-from the south) but better!

Genius.

Butter, coca cola and cocoa powder.

Bout 5 minutes before cake is done, boil some more coca cola goop, only THIS time after it boils, slowly add about 4 cups of powdered sugar.

I think next time I make it (which will be very soon-I am thinking Thanksgiving) I will use the Hershey’s special dark cocoa powder.

I cannot describe the goodness of this cake beyond the whole brownie fudge baby analogy, so you are just going to have to make it.

Don't over bake it! 30-35 minutes until the old toothpick comes out clean.

Today.

Pour the warm glaze right on top of the hot cake.

No, really. Make it.

Let it cool for what will be the longest hour of your life.

Right.

Now.

This is normally where I tell you to buy bigger pants, but this cake is so seriously good, I don’t think there are pants BIG enough to contain it’s goodness.

So just don’t wear any pants at all when you eat it.

Just kidding.

Sort of.

But not really.

 

COCA COLA CAKE

Mix:
2cups flour
2cups sugar
1/2tsp salt
1tsp baking powder
1/2tsp cinnamon

In a saucepan over medium high heat stir this up until it boils:
1 cup butter
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup coca-cola
1/2 cup buttermilk

Remove from heat and add that to the flour mixture & whisk until combined.

Then add:
2 eggs
1tsp vanilla extract

Mix, put in 9 x 13 pan, bake it for about 30-35 minutes. Don’t over bake!

About 5 minutes before cake is done, start mixing up the glaze in a saucepan over medium heat.
1/2cup butter
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup coca cola

Once that boils, remove and slowly stir in 4 cups of confectioners’ sugar. Whisk all the little white clumps out. You could add pecans or walnuts here if your kids don’t freak out about nuts.

Once cake is done and out of ovenpour this warm glaze right over the top of the hot cake!

Wait forevah!

Take off your pants.

Posted in Baking | 4 Comments

The Lighter Side of Apple Pie

 

From this…..

To this!

I found this on pinterest and thought it was the cutest idea EVAH.

Then I thought, who in the world has that much time on their hands?

Apparently I do, because I made these last night.

They were pretty good, but I have to be honest here and tell you they were a little too much on the healthy side for my taste. Maybe if I had served them with a side of ice cream and caramel sauce.

I don’t know.

I decided to post the recipe anyways, on the off chance that some healthy type people read this blog.

Plus they are pretty cute and they really don’t take that long at all. Your friends will be super impressed, probably not your kids or your spouse, but your friends, your friends will think they are awesome.

Especially if you ply them with wine prior to serving.

These would be great if you have friends with gluten allergies or friends who are diabetic or friends that wear their pants a little too tight.

You could sub out the regular sugar for splenda or another sugar substitute except I can’t think of the names of any other sugar substitutes. You could also use agave nectar in place of sugar, but I am not sure how to approximate the amount of that in the recipe because I have never actually purchased it and I am not sure I know anyone who has.

You could also leave off the top crust and top it with real whipping cream and slivered almonds.

Full of ideas today aren’t I?

Ok.

So chop off the apple tops.

Not to be confused with muffin tops, ok?

Apple tops = good

Muffin tops = not so good

Use a sharp little knife and a spoon to core out the insides. Don’t get it too thin and don’t leave it too thick. Get it just right mmm-kay Goldilocks?

Peel the apple tops and chop them up.

Toss with flour, sugar and lots of cinnamon. Or go one of the diabetic/gluten free routes I mentioned above and leave out the flour and replace the sugar with a substitute.

STEVIA!

I remembered another one.

Then you scoop the apply cinnamony yumminess back into the headless little apple bowls.

There will be about this much leftover.

Eat it.

Trust me.

Line the apples up in a parchment lined pan.

Now.

Quick make the pie crust.

I used this pie crust recipe. It’s my fave. I cut it in half for 5 apples and it was still way too much. Maybe cut the half in half. Got it?

Use a cookie cutter to make the crust tops. Poke a straw through the center to vent.

Bake at 375 for 45-55 minutes.

Serve with ice cream if you want to be completely satisfied.

And caramel sauce.

And wine.

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