I love baking… and I love trying new recipes… and recently I have discovered that I absolutely LOVE dark chocolate!!!! So, with all of this in mind, I made a dark chocolate cake for Thanksgiving… Let me know if you want a slice 😉
Even though I enjoy the process, I don’t find myself in the kitchen as often as I’d like to see myself there. As a matter of fact, sometimes it takes someone placing a special request for me to really cook… like this past weekend when my aunt asked me to make dessert for a shin-dig she was throwing. Well, I pulled out the Kitchen Aid and got to work making a pineapple upside down cake and strawberry cupcakes with a banana frosting and some with a strawberry/raspberry frosting. Both desserts were hits – thank you Lord!!! Man, when you bake, there is not a large margin for error. Anyway, my own hunger and cheapness motivated me to cook on Thursday night when I made turkey chops, greens, cornbread, and mashed potatoes. Every so often, I must pay tribute to my southern roots! See images below!
The first time I went to New York City was back in 2003 with my college roommate, and she can attest that the Big Apple was not my cup of tea! I actually felt like I was in another country, even though at the time I had never been out of this country. Needless to say, these eight years later, I have more of an appreciation for the city. So when a friend of mine was recently in town, we planned a trip to this city that never sleeps, and she too felt like a foreigner her first night there. We stayed in the Manhattan area for our entire stay, and we ventured to Central Park, Times Square, this mall somewhere near the Trump Towers. Anyway, one of the highlights for me was when we saw these models doing a photo shoot in the middle of Central Park. Sadly, I was one of those nosy bystanders that stopped to watch all of the action! See photos from my trip below.
As yet another 4th of July rolls around, I am thankful for my country’s freedom from the rule of England, my freedom of speech, and my freedom to worship wherever I choose. But being a Texas girl, y’all, I am also thankful for an excuse to eat BBQ! Growing up, I remember eating ribs, hamburgers, and hotdogs at ever Memorial Day, July 4th, and Labor Day weekend. I remember eating BBQ during the summer after special church programs, in January for our housewarming, at the park when we had our church services out there, at my friends’ houses, and at family gatherings. My love for BBBQ was so deep that one of my favorite “Senior Lunch” spots was the Bill Millers BBQ, where I’d get a 99 cent chopped BBQ beef brisket sandwhich with pickles, a potato salad and cole slaw all for $3.00. Now, for any folks that are really from TX, I am not calling Bill Millers the best BBQ spot in town by any stretch of imagination, but back then it was good like McDonalds, and now it’s a taste that takes me back down memory lane! Anyway, I wanted to share my love of BBQ with you all today to celebrate this wonderful day! I hope y’all get a chance to chow down on some baked beans that you can scoop up with LAY’S potato chips, some hot dogs and hamburgers! And for those that still get down with the pig, get you some juicy ribs with enough BBQ sauce to make you run through at least 4 napkins! ENJOY! And Happy Fourth of July to you!
So, as one of my birthday gifts, I received a gorgeous mulberry-colored KitchenAid stand-up mixer. As I looked for opportunities to use it, I decided that I wanted my first experience with it to be memorable… So I scoured the internet for recipes for a strawberry pound cake. For whatever reason, I have some kindred connection to strawberry-flavored anything. Anyway, I came across a Paula Deen recipe, and to my surprise and delight, it only called for 2 sticks of butter. Now, I would normally decrease the sugar in the recipe (it called for 2 cups) because we Americans take in way too much sugar as it is, but since I planned on sharing my pound cake with others, I decided to make it as Ms. Deen suggested.
My mixer worked like a charm, and my little cakes were perfect! They did not even stick to the pan! See images below. By the way, if you have any suggestions for other dishes or desserts that I can make with my KitchenAid, please do share!