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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Sweet Garlic Chicken Breasts

Looking for a quick, simple last minute dinner idea like I was just last night? Well I have found a delicious solution to that search thanks to Food . Com Home of the Homecook.

Sweet Garlic Chicken Breasts

6 Boneless Chicken Breasts
10 Cloves Garlic, Minced
8 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
2 Tablespoons EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil)

Warm your oven to a toasty 450º.

In a small frying pan saute your garlic with your EVOO until golden brown and soft.

Remove your garlic from the heat and chop up even smaller if you like. I find it easier to chop at this point than when it is raw.

Mix it in with the Brown Sugar until combined thoroughly.

Line a baking dish with foil and spray down a light coating of EVOO.

Place your chicken breasts in the foil dish and cover with your brown sugar topping.

Bake in the oven uncovered for 30 minutes...cook times will vary upon the thickness and size of your meat. I usually check them with a slice through the middle of the thickest cut and look for white meat...we don't want any pink when it comes to chicken.

Once done, pair with some rice, a veggie and some bread and you are set to enjoy a delicious, quick and simple last minute meal.

Now Go Be Brave...and try a new way to make chicken today.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Everyone Could Use a Little LOVE....

Just this morning BabyBear informed me that it was LOVE DAY... and for this reason she wanted us to make heart chocolate chip cookies for everyone. She let me know that we could make half of them with brown chocolate for the Papa and Jr Bear and the other half with white chocolate for me (due to my Crohn's I am unable to have anything with caffeine in it). I thought that I would put aside my idea for a post and instead fill our space with our version of her love cookies....

Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies (Adapted from Created by Diane)

1/3 Cup Melted Butter 
2 Cups Brown Sugar
2 Teaspoons Vanilla
3 Eggs
2.5 Teaspoons Baking Powder
3 Cups Flour
3 Cups Chocolate Chips

Start with preheating your oven to a toasty warm 350º.

Cream together your melted butter and brown sugar. To that add in your eggs one at a time, mixing well in between each addition. Next in to the bowl is your vanilla...mix well.

Time to add in your baking powder and flour...mix until combined.

Last to join the party is your choice of chocolate chips and blend.

Now this is where we really start to differ on our preparation choices. I tried the flour on the counter top, roll out and cut method. I ended up with a sticky mess all over my counter.

SO...BabyBear and I pulled it all up off the counter and put it back into the bowl and then into the fridge to chill for 10 minutes before attempting our method...

Place parchment paper down on your cookie sheet with a cookie cutter on top...

Scoop a golf ball size section of dough, roll it in your hands slightly and place inside the cookie cutter...

Dipping your finger tips into a bowl of water, slightly wet your working ones...

Press your dough into the cookie cutter until it is completely, evenly flat and in the shape of the cutter....

Remove your cutter by pressing slightly on the dough around the inner edges and pull it off.

You will most likely need to reshape the cookie dough on the edges but not too much.

Place in your oven to bake for 10 minutes and ENJOY!!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Moldable Sand Dough

With an almost Kindergartener in the house we try to keep an array of imagination filled activities on hand. BabyBear not only enjoys the playtime part of these activities but also taking part in the creating part of them. This is the reason why I LOVE the blog Growing a Jeweled Rose. I highly recommend you visit this site...you will find MORE than an array of fun filled kids activities to keep your kids busy for months. Not just busy but always learning and using their creative gene to the max. Sometimes I think I have just as much fun if not more doing this type of play with BabyBear.

Today's kid friendly play project only requires three for sure ingredients with one optional ingredient ...

Moldable Sand Dough (Adapted from Growing a Jeweled Rose)

Baking Soda
Food Colouring
Salt (optional)

Pour your Baking Soda in to a large container.

Add in your 12 drops of food colouring.

To this add in your water...VERY SLOWLY...stirring as you go.

Finally sprinkle in some salt. I found that in order to create this...

We used 1 container of Baking Soda and roughly 1/4 cup of water with 12 drops of food colouring mixed in and salt added to feel. I think that I will make a larger batch at some point but for now this was enough to get started.

We tossed in some mini dinosaurs, some plastic bugs and a few aquarium decorative plants and BabyBear was off on a prehistoric adventure.

In order to store this for future play, place the dough into a zip loc bag that has been sealed tight with air sucked out of it. Then pour in to an empty container when you are ready to play with it again.

Once you are finding that your dough has seen better days...do not throw it out as there are 2 more projects you can create with this that will keep the imaginations flowing. Check back very soon for those posts, where I will show you how to create dinosaur eggs and little treasure balls.

For Now...

Go Be Brave.... and create your prehistoric adventure today!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Super Duper Ooper Smooper Easy Biscuits

Many a time you just want that extra side for your meal but realize you don't have any buns on hand in the freezer nor the time to run to the store to pick them up. Besides who doesn't prefer the taste of homemade? Well thanks to Marissa of Rae Gun Ramblings we now have access to the Quickest Tastiest Biscuits you will ever find...

Biscuit Recipe

2 Cups Flour
1 Tablespoon Baking Powder (Feel free to click the link to make your own)
1 Teaspoon Salt
1 Tablespoon Sugar
1/2 Cup Chilled Shortening
1 Cup Chilled Milk

Heat your oven to a toasty warm 425º.

Start by mixing all your dry ingredients together in a bowl.

To this combination cut in your chilled shortening and slowly stir in your cold milk.

Don't be like me and realize at this point you forgot 1 Cup of flour...
if you do don't worry it added in just fine at that point :D

On a floured surface press your dough into a rectangle shape...and like we did with our Rough Puff Pastry; press your rectangle in on itself in thirds...

Press again in to a rectangle and roll slightly flat. Try to do all of this as quickly as possible so as to not heat up your dough with your body heat.

Cut your dough into the shapes you want. I used a circle cutter that gave me a total of 14 biscuits.

Place them on a parchment covered baking sheet and place in the oven for 12-15 minutes...or until you see the outside browning slightly.

Remove and ENJOY!

Thank you Marissa!

Now Go Be Brave...and surprise your family with homemade biscuits today!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Hair Tip Tuesday!

One thing that I cannot stand is walking into a bathroom that is covered in hair...whether it be on the floor, in the sink or in the shower; it grosses me out. For this reason I am forever wiping down the floor and clearing out the sink whenever I have been using it. Having mid-back length hair means that I shed constantly when I am working with it in the bathroom. I have been using a square of toilet paper to gather it all up until the light bulb went on just this morning...

Used Dryer sheets...DUH!

Not sure why it took so long to figure this one out since I have been using dryer sheets on a swiffer mop for years...well until I received my beloved Norwex mop that is.

So that is my tip for you today...simple and good for the environment... I must warn you the next few pictures may cause cringing and gagging if you are anything like me...be warned!

Nasty Picture of my Floor after doing my Hair...EEWW!

Wow...I am just full of nasty pictures today...My Apologies!

Just pull them from your dryer laundry pile, place them in a basket or plastic bag, keep them under your bathroom sink for easy access next time you need to clean.

Now Go Be Brave...and reuse a dryer sheet today.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Flib Flab FLUBBER!!!

Although we would all love to have some Flubber like this....

Without the help of  "TV Tricks" as BabyBear calls them; I am sorry to say we will have to settle for the next best thing...Found on Live.Craft.Eat via my online love Pinterest ....

Homemade Flubber:

3/4 Cup Cold Water
1 Cup Liquid White Glue
Liquid Food Colouring
1/2 Cup Hot Tap Water (Not Boiled)
1 Teaspoon Borax (Found in the Laundry Isle ...and NOT BORIC ACID - they are not the same thing)

In a bowl mix together your cold water and glue.

To that add in your food coloring and mix well.

In a separate bowl combine your hot water and borax, stirring until the borax has completely dissolved.

Slowly pour your borax mixture into the glue mixture and combine well. You will find that there is some extra water leftover ...just remove your flubber and pour out the excess water.

Become a kid again, squish, squeeze, drip, drop...

and of course you can't forget the TOOT!


Now Go Be Brave...and make yourself some Flubber while watching Robin Williams in Flubber!

Monday, June 3, 2013

To Die For...

Trust me after tasting this caramel you will NEVER, EVER want to go back to eating store bought again. Anyone who knows me well, knows that caramel is my downfall. I believe that it is due to the fact that I cannot eat chocolate so I have replaced that love with caramel. I put it in my steamed milk in the winter, crushed ice with milk in the summer...and always a double shot. I eat it in candy form and drizzled on my ice cream. Caramel and I definitely have a love affair on the go. Most recently I had a cake customer request a salted caramel cupcake. I had not ever attempted to make this myself at home yet so I went on the search for a recipe that someone was raving good things about. Enter Linda Jean of "Frosted" ...the pictures of her cupcakes made my mouth water and trust me so did the end result.

Ready for some of your own mouth watering caramel that you can put on anything...I do dream of that sometimes...caramel all over the place.

Ingredients needed:

2 Cups White Sugar
1 Tablespoon Water
12 Tablespoons Butter (the recipe calls for unsalted but all I had was salted and it worked just fine)
1 Teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
1 Cup Heavy Cream, at Room Temperature (or like me Who Forgot to Pull it Out in Time... Warmed in the Microwave for 20 seconds)

Now you are probably thinking...1 Tablespoon of water only, I know I was but I followed the recipe in that regard and let me tell you it works out in the end. Pour your sugar and eek! 1 Tablespoon of water in to a pot set to medium heat (number 5/6 on my dial) and stir constantly until the sugar liquefies. When we say constantly...we mean CONSTANTLY otherwise the sugar WILL BURN. Burnt sugar is nobodies best friend and I don't want you to get discouraged with this recipe and miss out on homemade caramel.

Once the sugar has completely dissolved, add in your butter and vanilla extract, stirring them until they are thoroughly mixed together.

With your sugar, butter and vanilla all combined remove your pot from the heat and slowly whisk in your heavy cream until you see a deep, golden caramel brown colour and then set it aside to thicken for 5 minutes. After it has cooled and thickened slightly place your caramel in the refrigerator for 20 minutes or more to help it thicken further but not before taking a spoon to that delicious river and tasting it for yourself...

OH MY GOODNESS!!! Who knew caramel could be this sweet? I was and still am we ALL are in LOVE!

Feel free to add to taste this caramel mix to your butter cream, drizzle it on top of cupcakes, ice cream, strawberry shortcakes...or just plain straight in to your mouth...SO GOOD that you will NEVER go back to store bought again. Once you have used up what you want, you can store the remainder in your fridge in a sealed container for future uses or midnight dips...Shhhh! I won't tell if you won't.

Here are the cupcakes and cake I created using this caramel in the butter cream...it gives the icing a nice ivory colour...

In my absence this past month I have been busy with BabyBears 5th birthday party and sculpting her cakes....

The pony cake was done for her party...she only wanted one sculpted pony and the bottom 3 are her toys:D

Can't have a rainbow party pony party with out rainbow insides :D

The Minion cake was one she had here at home with just us Bears:D

Now Go Be Brave... and create some homemade Caramel today.

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