Saturday, December 3, 2011

May the Force Be With You (Part 2)

So, by my last post, you can tell that the birthday party at our house is a Star Wars theme.  That requires a Star Wars cake.  Most years, I would be breaking out the buttercream, but not this year.  One of my son's best friends has food allergies, so he chose to have rice krispie treats for his party instead of cake.  He really is a great kid!

So, Rice Krispie Yoda it is!  I just made regular Rice Krispie treats (recipe found here).  It took 1 1/2 batches to get the amount I needed.  I added green food coloring to avoid frosting.  This really may be the easiest cake I have made yet.

I started by lining a cookie sheet with waxed paper.  It is going to make serving the cake 10x easier.

Then I made the first recipe of treats and put them in a well-greased 9" cake pan.  I let it cool a few minutes and turned it out on the cookie sheet.  That's when I learned a lesson...if you don't let them cool long enough, they fall completely apart!  SO, I squished it all back in the pan and let it cool longer.  This time it worked.

The second half-batch I just turned out on waxed paper and made a little brick.  This was my sculpting pile.

I started by making the ears, which were really pretty easy.  Just sort of big triangles stuck to the side of the circle.  I then used the remaining treats to make a nose, wrinkles, a mouth.  I basically just played with it until I was happy.

I used a big marshmallow and a chocolate chip for each eye, and have (I think) a pretty darn good Yoda cake!

Today is the party, and the boys are going to be making lightsabers (I'll post about that later), playing Star Wars, eating Yoda's face, and opening presents.  What more could a 7 year old ask for???

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

May the Force Be With You...

Tomorrow is my son's 7th birthday.  Wow!  That went fast!  And with each birthday comes the annual tradition of snacks for the classroom.  This year, he begged me to make cupcakes.  Alright.  Not too hard.  For cake, I forgo my no refined flour/sugar policy.  The boxed mixes are just so much easier than making 30 cupcakes from scratch!

But wait...those cupcakes have to be decorated.  And what are the 1st grade boys at our school really in to right now?  Yup.  Star Wars.  Is that just here?  Or is Star Wars huge with 7 year old boys everywhere?  Anyway, Star Wars cupcakes it is.

Now, if you haven't read my first post, let me explain that I love to craft and cook and bake, but I don't always have great ideas.  The internet, however, is full of them!  So, I googled star wars cupcakes and found a couple that I was able to use for my inspiration.

I decided to do two different flavors - white with white frosting for the Yoda cupcakes, and chocolate with chocolate frosting for Vader (the dark side...).  Then I had to make the faces.  I used fondant, which I bought at the store, and tinted green and black.

I used a small circle biscuit cutter to make the heads for Yoda.

Then I used a knife and cut some triangles to make the ears.

I attached the ears to the heads, and had pretty good looking Yodas.

Then I used a toothpick to make the indentations for the face, and white and chocolate frosting for the eyes.  I got the "pattern" for the face here.

I plopped those down on the white cupcakes and they were done!

For Darth Vader, I used a bell shaped cookie cutter - hey, it's almost Christmas.  That box of cookie cutters had to come out anyway.

Then I used white frosting and the smalled decorator tip I have to make the face, using the idea I found here.

Vader went on top of the chocolate cupcakes.  Done!!

Hopefully all the kids in the class will appreciate the love and effort that went into making these cupcakes.  Ha.  Who am I kidding.  At least my son will be happy!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The BEST Oatmeal Cookies EVER!!

OK, so it's not a craft.  But I made it myself, so I think it should count!  I just made the most amazing oatmeal cookies ever.

Now, first I have to tell you about my "eating habits".  Some of you may think I'm a bit weird, but really I'm just trying to eat healthy.  I've made a big effort recently to not eat processed foods.  No preservatives, nothing artificial, which can be hard sometimes, but not bad.  This particular recipe is kind of a mish-mash of a couple of recipes.  I took one that came from the diet program I use, changed a few ingredients to meet what I had on hand, made a few more changes for personal preference, and voila!  The best oatmeal cookies ever!

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Coat two cookie sheets with non-stick spray.  (You could use parchment paper if you have it.  I didn't.)

In a mixer, cream together:
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
3/4 cup evaporated cane juice (you can use granulated sugar if you prefer)
2 Tbsp water
1 tsp vanilla extract

Add 2 eggs, one at a time until blended.  Beat on high-speed for 3 minutes, until well combined.

In another bowl, combine:
1 1/2 cups old fashioned oatmeal (do NOT use the quick cooking oats)
3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
3/4 cup raisins
1/2 cup walnuts (chopped)
1/2 cup flaked coconut (you can leave this out if you don't like coconut, but I think it adds something)
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon

Mix the wet ingredients into the dry until combined.  Drop dough onto baking sheets 2 inches apart.  There should end up being 24 cookies when you are done.  Bake both sheets for 7 minutes, then switch the top sheet with the bottom sheet in the oven.  Bake for an additional 7 minutes.  Cool completely and enjoy!!!

Monday, November 28, 2011

I have a problem...

The first step is admitting it, right?  Well, then I admit that I have a problem.   I am an addict.  I am addicted to crafting.  And cooking.  And *sigh* finding too many crafts and recipes online that I MUST try, but have no "good" reason to.

So I started a blog.  Now I have a reason to find new crafts and recipes to try! :)

I started a little late, but I recently joined Pinterest.  If you haven't joined yet, I warn you, it is addicting!  There is so much cool stuff on there!  It is feeding my habit.

So, here is my plan...I'm going to give my crafting habit a new outlet.  When I find something I want to make, I'm going to do it.  Then I'll post the pictures and instructions so that you can do it along with me.  I'll probably throw in a few recipes along the way.  Then you can tell me what you think.