Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Just a little tipsy: A no-stick way to roll out your dough

Even my 3-year-old can do it. . .may she never know the pain of a sticky rolling pin!
Wishing I got this one out before the holidays to save some of you fabulous people the frustration of a nicely battered rolling pin during the throws of holiday panic baking. . .11 months to practice for next year!  ;)

Something about the idea of using a rolling pin is fabulously domestic.  In reality, however, my experiences actually rolling out dough are usually two parts profanity and one part feelings of inadequacy.  Why can't I just roll the darn dough?  No amount of flour or freezing the pin can prevent the mess I inevitably create and I am often left scraping the dough from the rolling pin and then squooshing it back together Humpty-Dumpty style.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Tasty Bites: Peppermint chocolate & white chocolate brownies

This one's a holiday treat I am certain to be making year-round, although I'm not even going to pretend it's healthy. I think it's worth the splurge, however, since it pulls together two of my favorite flavor combos: salty and sweet with chocolate and mint. Totally delicious. In fact, I think I'll go have another taste. . .

Yep, still delicious.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Tasty Bites: Pecan pie (sans corn syrup) with whole wheat crust

Pecan pie is my new favorite pie to bake from scratch.  If you're like me, you have probably always assumed that pecan pies are difficult to make.  I don't know why but the pecan pie has always seemed somehow out of reach to me. . .too classy and high brow for my mediocre baking skills.  Maybe it's because the pecan is such a fancy nut?  It feels sinful to ruin a pecan while I'm willing to commit all sorts of culinary atrocities to the common peanut.  Some of you, however, have been holding out on me, keeping this well-guarded secret---pecan pie is ridiculously easy.  It's almost a stretch to call it baking.  And so, in the spirit of the giving season, allow me to share with you this slice of deliciousness composed of my own variations of Rachael Ray's perfect pie crust and Chef Eddy's pecan filling, corn syrup free.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Fun-kid-elic Activities: Homemade Pine Cone Swag

Siena's really into "making collections" these days, most of which are usually composed of variations of found objects. The back seat of my car is full of twigs and I live in a world where it is not uncommon to find a stash of rocks under my pillow. So when it came time to start brainstorming holiday crafts this year, I decided to embrace the little hoarder in my life, letting her loose to scavenge anything that caught her interest during our morning run. The results: lots of pine cones, sticks, leaves and acorns.