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Showing posts from March, 2011

Miniatures: Pumpkins

I started making these one fall in the hopes of putting them on Etsy before Halloween.  Fail.  Anyway, here are my mini-pumpkins. They are about 3/4" in diameter, and the bottom right one is sitting on a quarter. 

Miniatures: Donuts, Cake & Pie

Before you get excited, these are inedible.  Sometimes I like to play with Sculpey and then I make miniatures with it.  However, I don't know what to do with these once I'm done.  I was thinking of trying to sell them on Etsy, since there are lots of miniatures for sale there, but it seems like a lot of work.  Does anybody want these for a few bucks? :)

Six mini-glazed donuts and a super-mini glazed donut.  Yes, that's a quarter and the big ones measure about 3/4" in diameter, and the tiny one is 1/2". Mini apple pie and cake with a slice cut out. Both are a little less than an inch in diameter.

Strawberry Cream Crunchies

I wanted to make something easy, new, and a little different.  I recently bought some freeze dried strawberries from Trader Joe's so I opted for trying a new experiment.

Stacey's Strawberry Cream Crunchies Ingredients:
0.5 oz freeze dried strawberries
11.5 oz Chocolates El Rey White Chocolate Discos
2 c crisped rice cereal (I get the kind without high-fructose corn syrup from Trader Joe's or Whole Foods)

Mortar and pestle
Baking sheet lined with plastic wrap

First I started tempering the white chocolate - working temperature is usually 86F, but since I'd be adding the strawberries and the cereal, I started using it at 90F.
While tempering the chocolate, I used the mortar and pestle to crush the freeze dried strawberries into a powder.
Boyfriend, the scientist, demonstrates the proper way to use a mortar and pestle.
All ground up! I added the strawberry powder and the cereal to the melted white chocolate. Then I stirred everything up with my silicone spatula.   Once everythi…

Ocean Rain Soap

I still remember when I knew nothing about making soap and didn't know where to even find the ingredients to do it.  Now I've successfully had to run from my kitchen to escape lye solution fumes countless times, made stinky soap trying to mix my own essential oils, created such wretched soap colors that you feel dirtier when you use the bars, yet created some soaps that are so creamy that friends can't believe it was home-made (myself included), so I think I can consider myself an amateur soaper.

I prefer cold process because it doesn't require babysitting, but hot process definitely is better if you have less patience and want your soap now, NOW, NOW! (now, NOW, NOW in soap time = 6 to 8 hours)  Cold process takes a month of agonizing waiting... unless you forget about your soap, like I often do, and then find it again in your garage where it's curing as a pleasant surprise a month or two later. 

This is my most recent recipe to try out my new Ocean Rain fragranc…

Almond Mochi Cake

I had a little get-together to go to on Saturday, so this was my contribution. This was sort of an experiment to see how many almond-type things I could get into a single cake.  I thought about making a whip cream with some amaretto in it too, but I got lazy.

Stacey's Almond Mochi Cake Ingredients:
1c brown rice flour
1c almond meal
3 oz marzipan, chopped

1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/3c agave nectar
1/3c honey
2 tsp vanilla bean paste
1 egg, organic
1/2c heavy cream, organic
1/3c water
1 tsp almond extract


8x8" glass baking dish



First I preheated the oven to 350F.  Then I mixed all the dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl.  I chopped up the marzipan into little cubes and then added that to the dry ingredients.
I added all the wet ingredients on top and mixed everything up.    I poured everything into the baking dish, and then baked it for 15 minutes on the second from the top rack.  Then I rotated the dish 180 degrees and baked it for 10 more mi…

Guinness Truffles

Happy St. Patrick's Day!  It's amazing, even though work has been crazy, I was able to dedicate a bit of time to making my second St. Patty's Day treat.  In addition to the Bailey's truffles, I opted for Guinness truffles. I'd been wanting to make these two truffles for St. Patrick's Day for a couple years now, and this is the first time I actually achieved my goal.

Stacey's Guinness Truffle Ingredients:

6.5 oz heavy cream, organic
2 oz glucose
3 oz Guinness Draught
5 oz Guittard 38% milk chocolate couverture
25 oz Guittard 64% dark chocolate couverture
1 oz (2 tbs) butter, salted, organic (softened, not melted)

For rolling and dipping:
Cacao Nibs (maybe 1 cup?)
2.7 oz Guittard 38% milk chocolate couverture
1.5-2 lbs (~32 oz) Guittard 64% dark chocolate couverture
Baking sheet lined with plastic wrap or parchment paper

I always start tempering the chocolate first, because that takes the longest.  I put the milk and dark chocolate in my Pyrex bowl and start…

Bailey's Irish Cream Truffles

Wow... there were a LOT of pictures for this post.  I hope you enjoy them. :)

I haven't made slabbed chocolate truffles in a while, but I thought I'd try again in honor of St. Patty's Day.  When I used to do this commercially, I'd use a 12x12" frame, but this time I'm making a smaller batch and using my 10x10" cake pan.

Stacey's Bailey's Irish Cream Truffle Ingredients:
6.25 oz heavy cream, organic
3 oz glucose
30 oz Guittard 38% milk chocolate couverture
3 oz Bailey's Irish Cream

Pyrex measuring cup
Pyrex mixing bowl
Parchment paper
10x10" cake pan
Scraper 
Dipping fork
Additional Guittard 38% milk chocolate couverture for slabbing and dipping (maybe 2 lbs?)

First I measured out my chocolate and started putting it in the microwave at 30 second intervals to temper it.
While my chocolate was heating, I measured out my cream and added the glucose to it. I thought it looked really neat on the bottom so I took a picture. I started heating the cream/…