Seven for Saturday

1.What I’m Reading: The Terror by Dan Simmons. It’s a fictional re-telling of the Franklin Expedition of 1846. It’s a spooky read- aside from cold and starvation, there is something lurking out there on the ice that wants the sailors. I freeze while reading this

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2. What I’m Knitting: Richie’s beard club is hosting a cold weather clothing drive for their December meeting. I have some yarn I don’t love, so I’m just whipping up some simple scarves. I started on Wednesday and have one scarf finished

3. What I’m Watching: The Great Australian Bake Off

4. I found a new recipe in one of my cookbooks. It has half the ingredients of my buttermilk bread recipe, and it’s so much easier. Equally tasty too

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5. I made some lemon lime cupcakes over the summer, from this site. Citrus bakes are best during the warmer months. I also finally, finally nailed the icing. After giving the kitchen time to cool off after baking, I turned the thermostat down a couple of degrees, which kept the icing from melting

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6. Yesterday I made a cookie in the mug for the second time, but it was the first time the recipe actually worked. There was a calming masterpost making it’s way around tumblr, for people to help care for themselves after the election. I decided to try this recipe because I didn’t think I had enough ingredients to make a full batch of cookies and was too lazy to go out for more

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Life changing, you guys

7. And finally- just photos of Winter

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Week Five- Alternative Ingredients Week: Sugar Free Ice Cream

Today at the coffee shop, Andy said he finally saw my cat.

Me: Where?

Andy: Your blog

Me: Oh yeah. I forgot I had one.

 

Whoops. Sorry gang. Here we go.

 

I got this idea from the fifth episode of the sixth season of Bake Off. I had bookmarked a sugar free site before, and I went back to troll through those recipes. Because the bakers had to make dairy free ice cream with coconut milk, decided to make sugar free coconut vanilla ice cream.

 

Would you like to guess how well it turned out?

 

 

It didn’t.

 

 

I don’t know what the issue was. If it was because I had to use a blender instead of a food processor; or because I only used one can of coconut milk; or because I used vanilla extract instead of vanilla bean.

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It smelled weird, too.

 

 

Zombie and I cut our losses and went to Jack-in-the-Box for shakes

 

New Little Love

I know. I haven’t blogged in ages. I know. But I have a super good excuse, I promise.

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Meet our new son, Lord Winter Snowden. Winter for short. We adopted him from The Humane Society when he was three months old. His cage was across from the door when we walked in. He had been lying down (laying? I’m never sure) but he stood up when we came close. He followed my fingers and I could hear him purring through the glass. I knew then that this was my cat.

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He is very active and curious, and very affectionate, which I am fine with :o)

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He likes to help me knit. Which, while I appreciate the thought, is really not necessary.

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He’s found the 55 gallon fish tank. Or as my friend Tammy calls it, the sushi bar

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He and Richie get along (no matter what Richie says), which is nice. Richie is allergic (although his allergies don’t act up much) and he’s had bad experiences with cats. But maybe it’s because we adopted Winter together while he was a baby that helps with their bonding.

 

Have I turned into one of those people who constantly posts photos of their pet all over social media?

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Absolutely.

 

 

I’ll try to return to Bake Off blogging soon.

Week Four- Dessert Week: Whipped Cream Cake with Caramel Icing

This was a fun one, that came from one of my tea books

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It was relatively easy. Of course, because this one done three weeks ago I don’t really remember much about it

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The center filling was homemade whipped cream. I think I need to keep the apartment cool when whipping up creams and icings

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The caramel icing was pretty easy, although I had to keep an eye on it to make sure I didn’t burn it. I’ve learned that from Bake Off- it is very easy to burn caramel

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It’s a good cake- subtle and light- but the icing was too runny. But what do you expect from a St. Louis summer?

Week Three- Bread Week: Garlic Dough Balls

This recipe comes from Season Four Bake Off contestant, Ruby!

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I’m not sure where I went wrong with this recipe. The dough was too dry. Maybe I didn’t incorporate the flour all the way. But the dough was falling apart and I had to add more olive oil and more water to make it stick together. I got 30 balls out of the dough

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They were okay, but not my cup of tea. Wound up giving them all to Zombie. She loved ’em

 

(Speaking of tea, I just ate a lot of ice cream and need to settle my stomach. I’m off)

Week Two- Biscuit Week: Chocolate and Peanut Butter Biscotti

I know this was supposed to be fenugreek papdi chaat. I know. But the store was out of fenugreek leaves and I wanted to get the bake done that weekend so I went with biscotti.

I mean, peanut butter and chocolate!

Gathering the dry ingredients turned into cleaning out the refrigerator and hosing down the trash cans. As you do. But now I have a clean (practically bare) fridge. Woo!

 

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I wish more cookbooks would describe what dough should look and/or feel like. Having never made biscotti before, and only seen an episode on Bake Off, I had no idea what to expect

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It’s very nerve-wracking trying to cover up peanut butter so it doesn’t burn. And you can see that my dough is oddly misshapen. Awesome

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The taste was a bit more bitter than I was expecting. Maybe all the dark chocolate, or the peanut butter. Or maybe I’m just so used to sweet foods. It was still good and I’m glad I made it. The recipe called for way more biscotti than what you see (which is all that was made). BUT if I cut them any more narrower they fell apart. Maybe they weren’t cool enough or dry enough. Eh, it worked.

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(Pretentious aesthetic. The book is The Hours by Michael Cunningham)