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Friday, May 21, 2010

friday!!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

favorite summer sandwich.

My current favorite summer sandwich:


fresh ciabatta bread, lightly toasted (or some other fresh bread)*
dill sauce (I made with cream cheese + plain yogurt + fresh dill)*
avocado*
tomato
cucumber slices*
sprouts
slice of swiss or cheddar cheese


The watery vegetables, dill, and yogurt make for a refreshing sandwich.

* = do not omit or your sandwich will suck

Friday, May 14, 2010

friday!



lots of packing and cleaning going on around here.

Monday, May 10, 2010

rosemary crackers and hummus





I love making rosemary crackers. They are so easy to make:

2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 cup warm water
1/3 cup olive oil

Preheat oven to 400. Lightly grease two cookie sheets. Combine flour, baking powder and salt. Stir in water, oil and mix until a smooth dough forms. I throw rosemary in at this point.

Flatten dough with your hands or roll out. Cut out your crackers and bake them 10-12 minutes (flipping them half way through).

Ridiculously easy. You can make them very thin so the crackers are crispy, but sometimes I don't make them quite as thin and they come out in an in between of pita bread and a cracker.

Nice pair with goat cheese or hummus. I made hummus because I had all the ingredients already.

Friday, May 7, 2010

happy friday!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Vanilla Cupcakes with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

I needed a way to thank the volunteers who are helping me give one of my finals, so I went with cupcakes. I've never put cream cheese frosting on any cake or cupcakes other than carrot, red velvet, and possibly chocolate..but these are delicious! And I love the recipe I used for the cake part.

the minis:




For the cupcake:

* 3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks)
* 1 1/2 cup sugar
* 2 eggs
* 2 1/2 cup flour [I used cake flour- so I added 2 extra tbsp of flour]
* 2 tsp baking powder
* 1/4 tsp salt
* 1 cup milk
* 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
* 1/4 tsp lemon extract

Preheat oven to 350ยบ. Bring the butter and the eggs to room temperature before mixing [Tips Below**$$]. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together using a hand mixer. Mix in the eggs one at a time. Then, stir in all of the dry ingredients until just combined. Slowly pour in the milk and the extracts while beating constantly. Line two muffin tins with cupcake papers. Fill 2/3 of each space with batter. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until the cupcakes are lightly golden on top and a toothpick inserted in the center of one comes out clean. Remove the cupcakes from the tins to racks to cool. Cupcakes should be completely cooled before frosting.

Makes around 18 regular sized cupcakes, but I split the batter up and made some minis.
--
** : Bring the eggs to room temp quickly by filling a bowl with warm water, and placing the eggs inside. (Do not use too hot, because then your eggs would cook! Think warm/hot bath temperature.

$$ : Room temperature butter is the same as softened. It's not melted, but if you poke it, your finger should slowly slide through the butter. I usually soften butter using the microwave (using 40% power and doing 40 sec intervals), but yesterday was so hot outside, I sat the bowl of butter outside for 10 minutes while I prepped everything else.
--

For the frosting, I never use a recipe. You can find plenty on the web if you need one. If I had to guess: around 8 oz cream cheese, 2 cups of powdered sugar, 2 tps vanilla extract, 3 tps lemon extract, and the rind of an entire lemon. And I added food coloring for fun.

These are delicious.

Oh and here's an idea: One part of baking cupcakes or muffins I hate is spooning the mixture into the individual wells. Batter usually spills over the edges and it just takes a while to do this part. So I used Amy's idea of filling up a bag with batter, cutting one of the corners off (still make a small cut!), and quickly squeezing the batter into each well (she used this idea for squeezing the filling into cookies). Much quicker and simpler. See bag below.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

oops

I missed Happy Friday.

This week has been incredibly busy with work. But, I did manage to make two videos. For one of the math classes I teach (the one designed for Humanities majors- who will never take any more math), I made a video for each section to show the last day of class.

The story behind these are: A student's grade in this class is based solely on exams and the final, so we offer quite a bit of extra credit to help cushion their grade since we don't grade homework or have quizzes. As an easy extra credit, I let my students make a video and one of the only requirements was to include at least one math topic from our class. Funny videos were strongly encouraged.

In return, I decided to make two cartoons videos for them (one for each section). Each is tailored to the inside jokes of that particular section, so some clips of the videos may not make sense.

section 1's video:

video

section 2's video:

video

enjoy.