Sunday, July 29, 2012

Dense Triple Chocolate Cake

I was in the mood for some delicious chocolatey cake a couple of weeks ago. I had seen a recipe on Pinterest for sour cream bundt cake that looked to die for. I decided I wanted to make something similar... sooo, I concocted Elizabeth Lou's Dense Triple Chocolate Cake! It's best served out of the refrigerator... and in a couple of weeks I'll share with you my favorite way to devour it!

Elizabeth Lou’s Dense Triple Chocolate Cake
For the cake:
   1/2 cup cocoa powder, plus more for dusting pan
   5 oz. semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
   1/2 cup boiling water
   1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
   3/4 tsp. baking soda
   3/4 tsp. kosher salt
   10 Tbsp. (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter
   1 1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
   3 eggs, lightly beaten
   2 tsp. vanilla extract
   4 oz. plain, non fat yogurt
   1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips or chunks
   ¼ cup milk chocolate chips or chunks
   ¼ cup dark chocolate or chunks

Preheat an oven to 325 degrees F. Grease the bundt pan and dust with cocoa powder; tap out the excess.
To make the cake, in a bowl, combine the 1/2 cup cocoa powder and the chocolate. Add the boiling water and whisk until the chocolate melts and the mixture is smooth and blended. Set aside.
Mix together the flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy, 30 to 45 seconds. Reduce the speed to low, add the brown sugar and beat until blended. Increase the speed to medium and continue beating until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 5 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until incorporated before adding more and stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Beat in the vanilla until incorporated.
Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the yogurt, beating just until blended and no lumps of flour remain. Slowly pour in the chocolate-cocoa mixture and beat until no white streaks are visible, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Gently fold in the chocolate chips then pour into prepared bundt pan.  Serve cold, drizzled with Chocolate Syrup- Enjoy!

Friday, July 20, 2012

A little R&R...

Friends... I will be spending the next week in Lake Winnipesaukee, NH with my family. I hope that you all don't miss me too much while I'm gone! I'll be back next week with a yummy recipe to share, a baby bump update and my favorite sewing essentials! Meanwhile... enjoy a little of the view I will be enjoying!!

If you'd like some good reading material while I'm gone, be sure to check out my Blogroll for all of the blogs I like to read!!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

How-To: Birdie Plush

I knew instantly that I wanted to make this adorable little plush birdie toy I saw somewhere in my blog/pinterest/etsy travels for Everleigh's nursery. There isn't really a "theme" however, one of the fabrics I used for her quilt has these adorable little love birds on it, so that is somewhat the theme I guess!

Anyway, as usual, I just kind of flew-by-the-seat-of-my-pants (what kind of an expression is that anyway?!) There is no pattern for this, however, if you'd like to make your own, I'd be happy to make something up for you...

1) I simply made a rectangle for the body,  a half circle for the head and wings, and long feet. You can see all my pieces below (I had already sewn the head onto the body and cut out the beak). You will need two pieces of fabric for each body part. Make sure when you cut them, you have right sides facing together.

2) The next step was to sew on the eyes and the beak. I simply used embroidery thread for the eyes, and outlined in pencil the shape that I wanted, then used that as my pattern.

3) The next step is to sew the wings and feet, right sides together, then turned them right side out and press them.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Coppa Cafe

I am usually not a huge fan of coffee desserts. Seeing as I don't like coffee to drink, I don't find that surprising. However, my MIL and FIL frequent a restaurant called "Villagio" in Peddler's Village, where once upon a time they had these delicious little desserts called Coppa Cafe. They consisted of a chocolate and coffee syrup that was poured into the bottom of a tall, but little, iced glass and then swirled up the sides... then they added soft serve vanilla ice cream... and some more chocolate/coffee syrup... AND chocolate covered coffee beans... and more soft serve vanilla... topped off with whipped cream... and more chocolate covered coffee beans.


However, I did say once upon a time... that is because they have been replaced by some strawberry version monstrosity.

So, for father's day, I decided to concoct my own. They were similar, and good, but still not quite as good as the original. I have no coffee in my house... nor a coffee maker. So rather than vanilla ice cream, I used coffee to incorporate that flavor. I also couldn't find chocolate covered coffee beans in a pinch, so I used mini M&Ms.

Here's what you'll need to make your own:

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Etsy Treasury- Vintage Purple

For those of you familiar with Etsy, you may have heard about their "treasuries". Treasuries are basically a collection of items put together by "Etsians" (people that buy and sell on Etsy). Treasuries can be used as a fun search tool to find items, as well as great advertising for the items that are featured. I made a treasury last night inspired by these amazing vintage knobs (which have unfortunately been sold).

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Nursery Tour- Part I

Hey Everyone,
 I wanted to give you a little sneak peak of what we have been working on for Everleigh's nursery! I had posted the inspiration picture a few weeks ago in this post:

I have videoed (is that a word!?) a little tour to show you our progress so far. We have been working on it pretty much since the day we found out what we would be having! I originally wanted to go with a bright poppy red and lighter shades of pink, but daddy wasn't a fan, he liked the lighter vintage colors, which surprisingly were what I had wanted before we were even pregnant! In fact, Last summer I came across this collection of fabrics:

from Dena Designs, called Leanika, and fell in love! I decided they were perfect for a little girl's nursery and called Kyle asking if I could spend close to $100 in fabric for a nursery... for a baby who wasn't conceived yet... and there was no guarantee would be a girl! I guess everything does work out in the end!

Please enjoy this little tour below!

**Please excuse the smallness of the video... my husband informed me I have to hold my camera horizontally for it to record in widescreen. Ooops!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Southwest Chicken and Rice Burritos

My husband tends to like Mexican food much more than I, so when he wanted to make this recipe- which I had flagged on Pinterest with him in mind, I was a little skeptical about the beans. I have a texture-thing with beans. I don't like the mushy mush they become after you bite into them. However, we had them a few months ago in chili and didn't really mind them. So, we decided to give this recipe a try. They are delicious! I love the crispiness of the wrap from using the griddle press (it's a Cuisinart all in one griddle and grill we got for our wedding- I LOVE IT!). We made our own little tweaks from the original recipe from Mel's Kitchen Cafe.

Southwest Chicken and Rice Burritos

Monday, July 2, 2012

Bump update- CrAVinGs

 My bump is getting larger by the week! I am also finally starting to have cravings... like pizza. We actually had to stop on the way home from work and pick one up last week! That's the first REAL craving I've actually had. I mean the kind where it's an inconvenience to obtain the food. I also am starting to crave blue box mac again... sounds like a great prenatal diet, right?! However, I am starting to get sick of cinnamon toast crunch... so that's some good news!

 I also am getting a little more hormonal (aka "bitchy"). Luckily it's short lived and my husband is pretty understanding! Just a general grumpiness that lasts for a few hours. I must say, I feel very blessed for how easy this pregnancy has been so far... hopefully the rest goes just as well, and I don't have to bite my tongue later!

We've started to work on the nursery and it's coming along nicely. The inspiration room is pictured below... I just love it!!

And next... a new bump picture! This was taken on Saturday, I was 22 weeks and 4 days. I'm finally starting to be able to fit into some maternity shirts!