Monday, December 28, 2009

My mom's favorite thing to bake.

Hello, Happy Holidays, and Happy New Year!

Hope everyone is enjoying this special time of year, filled with twinkling lights, laughter, and that "ok sure, I'll have another" outlook to the appetizer/dinner/dessert tray. It's totally allowed. 

The main reason that these wonderful indulgences are much more justified at this time of year is this when everyone breaks out their special [fill in name of food here]. That recipe they only make one or very few times a year, that one you really really love. 

My mom's fudge falls into that category. 

Every year I watch for a varying amount of time while she makes it, always fleeing while the sugar dramatically boils (which she says is her absolute favorite part), always excitedly tasting the end result. I've never actually made it, but this year, I did take a few pictures of the process. 

And yes, I did stay in the room the whole time. 

Haven't I become so brave?


Bubble bubble bubble

Looks good


Happy eating!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

It's beginning to feel a lot like winter.

Perhaps you heard about (or experienced) what happened in my area this past weekend. 

it snowed.

It snowed. A few inches - unremarkable to many; disappointing to children (and adults) wanting to build snowmen but finding the covering way too powdery to even make a good snowball; generally annoying to yours truly. 

snowy shrubs.

I'm not really a fan of snow. Well, if it stays out of my way and does not affect the road quality, it doesn't really bother me.

snowy leaves

Actually no, I still don't like it then either. 

branches in the snow

But I will give snow this - freshly fallen, untrampled and unplowed, glittering in the is pretty. 

I didn't spend this entire weekend being annoyed at cold crystalized water, however. I began assembling cookies for various holiday gatherings (began being the operative word here).

The first batch of cookies was the shortbread cookies first seen on Mothers Day. This time I kept everything but the raspberry jam, making a basic shortbread cookie with a special holiday touch of whimsical icing. 

same cookies, assorted glaze patterns.

Personally, my favorites were the happy faces, the swirls, and the squiggles. 

a batch of shortbread cookies.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Hole in the middle of the bread egg (or, "Hey! Not dessert!")

My dad taught me about this recipe years ago, cutting holes in the middle of bread and adding an egg in the subsequent hole. And snacking on the leftover circle of bread.

A critical, crucial step.

I'm not kidding here. 

So in my house*, this is called Hole in the middle of the bread egg. Actually, I used to (up until about, oh, 3 months ago) call it "hole in the middle of the egg bread". It still sounds more pleasing to my ear, despite it not making much descriptive sense. 

Let's go!

Create a hole in the center of the bread using a cup. Obviously, the more brightly colored cup you use, the better your end result will be. Duh.

Cutting the hole

Eat the piece of bread. Do it. 

Feel free to snack

Add butter to a pan, and add the center-less bread. 

Into the pan

Is anyone else reminded of Death Becomes Her? Such an awesome movie. 

Add the egg, and salt and pepper if you wish (or any other egg accompaniment you desire).

Egg, salt, pepper



I have to admit, this was a bit of a nervewracking moment for me. Usually when flipping eggs, I have a fairly low success rate. With camera in hand, I felt even less prepared for the big moment. Surprisingly, it went pretty well. 

And, eat. 


*Other people know this dish by the name "Egg in a basket," "Birds nest," or a bunch of other names. I prefer to avoid the artistic terms for "bread" and "egg", and use the straightforward name for this straightforward dish. Up to you. 

Thursday, December 3, 2009


Unsure of how much longer the crispy crunchy leaves will still be speckled amongst the grass, I decided to take this opportunity to take another close look. 


Sunny day


Fallen pine needles

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Good morning!

Originally uploaded by Kitchenphobe

I'm not really sure what to say about this sunrise...

It's not the most colorful one I've seen recently (always witnessed while the camera is far enough away that by the time I get to it, the sky has morphed into its daytime shades).

But its still pretty.

Good morning, December! Happy to see you!