Friday, May 29, 2009

took the midnight train...

At-home-Fridays are always nice... the roommates are usually out and about, and I get to bake in relative peace.

So, after coming across another Jam Thumbprint Cookie recipe from EvilShenanigans, and seeing the recipe be similar to the Boysenberry Cream Cookies I've made many times in the past... I decided to try it out and see the difference! (Plus I was in luck. I still had cream cheese in the fridge).

I doubled the recipe since these cookies are in high-demand at work.
8oz ( 1 package) Cream Cheese (or neufachatel, as I used)
1C unsalted butter
1C powdered sugar
2 Egg Yolks
2-1/2C AP Flour
Yielded approx 32 cookies

The most distinct difference is the LOOK of the cookie. STILL SO DELISH! But not as pretty. The cookie isn't as smooth-looking. And only the bottom of the cookie will turn golden. While baking, it doesn't spread much either.
Taste-wise... as far as I can recall... this recipe isn't quite as sweet. I definitely relied on the jam to bring out a bit of sweetness.

IN COMPARISON, Kelly's (evilshenanigans) cookies don't look quite so... bumpy, lumpy and looking like a battlefield.

I guess I have issues. Her cookies look nice and rounded and smooth... with a nice tidy little pool of jam. Check out her pics, then come back to feel sorry for me.

I've been meaning to try this way of filling these cookies... it's a bit of an over-kill. But did make it easier and neater than using a teaspoon. Oh, messy me.

The jam seemed to run down and seep into the edges of the "thumbprint". Must be due to the bumpy dough surface?

What the center looks like... I've tried to bake these longer to see if it baked "completely"... and...

a darker bottom, with not much more "doneness" inside. HMMMMMMMMMMMM.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

not as bad, but close enough

Due to annoying (non-serious) health issues, I took off early from work, thus racing through work and not eating a lunch. So, by the time I got home from the doc's I was STARVING.

5 Dumplings and 5 Dino Chicken Nuggets later... still hungry.

This is where it gets bad.

Cheese Cubes on a paper plate. (Not as bad as eating a whole rotisserie chicken outta the plastic container).

But then of course, since I was still hungry (a few hours later), I redeemed myself with whole wheat penne with tomato sauce and turkey meatballs.

Meanwhile, in the baking realm, I am looking for vanilla cookie recipes to test out the 4 "specialty" vanilla extracts I have sitting in the cupboard. So more cookie experimentation to come soon!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

been gone so long...

I feel like it's been FOREVER since i've gotten a chance to post. Haven't done much baking... perhaps that's why.

SO. Friendly gatherings are of course one of the main times to bust it out! Food, cake, drinks... all that hooplah!

My contributions to our Memorial Day BBQ consisted of:
Rainbow Cake
Chicken Yakitori
Spinach-Cheese Swirls

And now... pictures! (I followed the recipes, so not too much for me to narrate.)

I decided to try making cake with soda! (New concept to me!) To my surprise, the Rainbow Cake baked like any other cake would... but just super duper dense. Cake was still edible, but not a delish as if it was a regular white cake with the eggs, oil, and water. But it was a nice experience. I now know that rainbow-ing a CAKE is way easier than rainbow-ing a CUPcake. The gel colors definitely came out AMAZING. I left the top unfrosted since it was so pretty! (I decided for it to be more for looks than taste for people at the BBQ.)

For the chicken yakitori, very easy and cooked up super quick on the bar-bee. I skewered it with green onions too. Note to self: soak skewers longer next time.

The Spinach-Cheese Swirls I made mainly to use up the puff pastry that's been sitting in the freezer. It was harder than I thought to cut these swirls and not smush the whole thing.

Now I have 1 more sheet... what to do what to do...

The rest of the grub:

Ila's rice balls!!! ALWAYS DELISH.

I missed a few things... burgers, beef kebobs, and sausage kabobs. By the time I got around to inhaling everything, I suffered a severe food coma, and forgot to document.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


I forget why I don't make this more...

I decided to make a chicken dish for dinner tonight... after changing my mind about an omelet. For once, I had all the ingredients!

Oyakodon recipe found on Kitchen Monkey

Here's my exact version although its pretty damn near close to the original:
2 cubed chicken breasts (that's what came in each freezer pack)
1 onion, sliced
3 beaten eggs*

1.5C water + 1tbsp dashi no moto
2 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp mirin
3 tbsp granulated sugar*

Mix dashi no moto with water, soy sauce, mirin, sugar - heat in pan. Add sliced onions.

Add cubed chicken. Cover and cook through.

Pour eggs over the top. Let cook. I covered the pan with aluminum foil since the lid was too small to cover everything at the point. (I don't have matching pan/pot lids.)

DONE! (minus one or two patches of egg that didn't cover everything)

Served over brown rice that you can't see. MMMM.

Notes: Ok. I said I had all the ingredients. Wellllllll. not caster sugar. So i just used regular granulated sugar. It did taste kinda sweet after a while. But was still good. It brought out the sweet onion flavor.
I shoulda used maybe one more egg. The 3 didn't cover the pan entirely. Or I should use a smaller pan.

Oh and I baked these again:

Monday, May 18, 2009

The end of all ends

GuacaMOLE! Finally made some with the 1.5 ripe avocados. So easy! I followed this recipe... more or less. It was yummy... I almost ate it all for dinner.

I should be having more time this week to do at-home cooking... hopefully!
This past week has been crazy busy (for some reason)... but it ended in a flourish on Sunday (my one day off this week)!

patchwork #3. First time I've heard about it, and it was so worth the major sunburns.
A chickiepoo I used to be in art class with was vendor-ing there... so I had to stop by! I ordered two lace totes from her... DARLING STUFF!
Check her out etsy shop! bybelinda

Annoyingly, but not surprisingly, I ran short on cash. So I mainly had to purchase from vendors that took credit card.
The damage:
Bungalow360 - 1 fabric tote bag (reversible!)

Free: Yelp pin and chapstick (passionfruit... yum!) - attached to my other Bungalow360 tote

2 Rings from ohhellofriend

Ring from someone, I forget.

Ring from MyFriendRoze

Fabric Coasters by Lucky Find Designs (machine washable!)

Can't wait 'til patchwork #4... in November!!!

Thursday, May 14, 2009


So I ate an early dinner and didn't want to eat any more tonight...
but I touched an avocado and it was ready!
I didn't have anything to make some guac, so I decided to just eat it as is over a fried egg with tortilla chips.

Yeah. No. Not all that satisfying, and actually kind of weird.

I fried the egg with some crumbled chips. Then sliced the avocado on top.

It was fun though slicing the avocado open, taking out the pit using the "knife chop" method, and (almost) cleanly scooping it out.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Chicken Boob

I went to Costco and bought the multimillion pack of chicken breast. packed into 2 packs for convenience.

So... after seeing Reeni's post for Asian Chicken Salad... I attempted to make it too.
However, I had no romaine, and when I pulled out a cucumber... it was sad and broken and squished. No bueno. I also didn't have ALL the ingredients. I flubbed this recipe... but it was still yummy!

Instead of the fresh ginger, I used about 1 tsp. of ground ginger. I think that was actually PLENTY. I didn't have any seasame seeds, so I just skipped that. And the soy sauce I have is just regular old soy sauce - I would definitely do the low-sodium one next time.

My FAVORITE part though is the caramelized sauce... SO good. It turns into that sweet teriyaki that we all know. It was lots of fun running the chicken breasts around the pan to get each and every bit of that sauce.

I wish I had a cucumber to go with it... or romaine. Something to complete the "salad" part of the recipe.

Monday, May 11, 2009

giada's brownies - gianjuda bars

I forget exactly what/why these are called gianduja bars (is it a play on Giada's name?)... anyways. it is like a semi-homemade recipe.

totally easy. and delish.

I skipped out on the hazelnuts, since I tend to not like nuts in my brownies.
But otherwise... I just baked the brownies, spread on nutella, then sprinkled mini chocolate chips.

The chips didn't really MELT... but I guess that's ok.