Monday, July 26, 2010

Wedding cakes you can make/ Nutella Cake

A few months ago I got this book from the Library and I LOVE it. It's Wedding cakes you can make by Dede Wilson. And it is great. The cakes really do seem do-able and beautiful.
I attempted one on Sunday when we had company over and it turned out great. It was my first time doing tiers. I skipped the cake boards and dowels just because it was so small. Next time I will probably get them. It is obviously not as beautiful as the ones done by professionals, but I was proud of it for a first timer.

I took a few short cuts,
  • I make the cake from a box and not from scratch
  • I made the top tier with a large cookie cutter. I cut it out of the bottom tier and filled the whole with a foil wrapped can of tuna to keep the cake from falling.

Some of my problems/things to change for next time:

  • because of the hole in the center, the bottom layers all broke into pieces and I had to piece them back together. That is why the sides of the bottom layer are so slanted.
  • There are chocolate covered hazelnuts around the edges, but I think that we could come up with something better. this is because the Hazel nuts were expensive and didn't taste all that amazing to me. I'd say replace them with Chocolate covered raisins because I LOVE them. But I think they are too small to make an impact on such a large cake.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Orange Sauce Chicken

I am not normally a fan of asian food, but every once in a while I am put in a tight spot and have to eat it. I ate this at a church lunch'n last year and LOVED it. I laughed really hard when I found out it was something I always claim to not like. here is the original recipe. They changed it just a little by adding 1 cup of craisins when the sauce was done. (The recipe is BIG, so you'll probably want to cut it in 1/2 and only add 1/2 a cup of craisins.)

Monday, July 19, 2010

camping books

Last year I took the teenage girls at church out camping for a week. Luckily I am not in charge of that this year (I twas SO fun, but lots of work) However, we are going to go camping with my parent's, siblings and nephews in august and realized that there were some books I wanted to post about so I didn't forget how wonderful they were.
this first one is the BEST book about dutch Oven cooking that I found. (And I got A LOT from the library to figure out how to feed those girls.) The thing that I liked about it the most was that each recipe not only said how many briquettes needed to be used, but it broke it down to how many needed to be on the top and how many needed to be on the bottom, so I didn't have to figure out the separation in my head. I also really like the informational section.

The roughing it easy Series was also a good read. Dian Thomas has several books about camping, backyard entertaining and recipes for outdoor cooking. they are worth checking out.

Finally, the other book in the gazillion I searched though was Cooking for Crowds for dummies. It had a one or two great charts that helped you decide how much food you will need depending on the number of guests you have.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

tablecloth sign

My brother-in-law's wedding was this past week and we had a great time. I didn't end up making the flower girl dresses because, like most events, plans continually change. So we focused our energy and time on other details. My tasked changed to included yard work for a garden wedding, and this sign. It was simple and easy to do. Here's how to do it.
What you will need:
  • 1 large red rectangular plastic tablecloth from the Dollar store or a party supply store.
  • 3 garlands of flowers or some other item to add visual interest to the sign.
  • LOTS of push pins
  • permanent marker (I used black)
  • printer, computer and paper so you don't have to free hand the lettering.

How I did it:

  1. Write your message out in a word document and experiment with the font.
  2. Make a text box as big as the page, bigger if possible and raise the size of the font to be as big as the page. Don't worry if the whole word fits, just make sure that the individual letters will fit from top to bottom.
  3. Print out the letters, then tape them into words.
  4. Figure out what word you want to have in the center of the sign. Start with that and work out. Place the word under the tablecloth and trace over it with the marker. Fill in any gaps. Continue with each word.
  5. When hanging the sign, fold over about and inch at the edge of the tablecloth so it has double thickness before you push in the pins. this will help to prevent the thin plastic from tearing.
  6. Once the sign is hung, use the remaining push pins to place the flower garlands around the upper edges.