Sunday, September 30, 2007

September edition of the Daring Bakers! And my first try as a member too!

They were super easy, though time consuming, as all get out. Mainly with all the down time it took to let the dough rise.

I made both sticky buns and cinnamon rolls! However I changed it up a little and added 2 parts cardamom to one part cinnamon for the rolls in general, and on the sticky buns I used dried cranberries and already candied pecans that I ground to a fine texture using my new mortar and pestle.
They came out so beautiful! I didn't have much time though to take proper pictures. My oven broke so I had to borrow a friends kitchen and ended up staying over rather late, so I was trying to get out as quickly as possible, then headed straight to my college's anime club meeting where I passed out the goodies. They were gone in five minutes and everyone said they were lovely!

I didn't get to taste a cinnamon roll, however I snagged a sticky bun.....the taste was so mellow and oh so sweet, the cranberries were refreshing too. It was like delicious spice cake versus overly cinnamon-y. They fell to bits in my mouth and were light and fluffy. I'm definately going to make these again.

I had no real problems, I just followed all the steps exactly and it came out just fine! However it was definately an afternoon event.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Girl Has Got To Be Insane

So my oven is still broken down, but I've got SO MANY PLANS! Most involving baking!

I am now officially a DARING BAKER! and I have my september challenge, and I am so so so READY! I have actually been craving to have these, so having an excuse to make them is divine!

I'm also thinking about taking place in a cupcake challenge, to become the NEXT CUPCAKE HERO! The theme is limes! :) I already have several cute ideas, in my head.

Then finally it's my birthday on September 10th! And I am going to make my own, crazily tasty birthday cake. From THIS recipe. I've wanted to make this cake for awhile, and what better excuse than to celebrate my birth? Unfortunately, there is no place in town that sells organic roses. So I'm having to order some candied petals from . Going to have to watch myself, make sure I don't go too crazy! I really want to though! :D

Also......and most exciting of all. I'm looking into culinary school. Yep. Le Cordon Bleu program in Austin. I may be going on to become a pastry chef....I'm excited on SO MANY LEVELS!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Bento, Bento Baby

One of my true loves has to be bento box lunches. I collect bento boxes, I think I have about ten now and there is nothing I like better than filling them with artistically arranged tasty food. It's a real obsession. I have bento'd in awhile because for the unpracticed, it's rather daunting, and I don't like to do it, unless I can do it super cute. I even draw out each bento design before I do it!

But I am VERY amatuer compaired to some people! Check out, her stuff is truly awe-inspiring.

I love the idea behind bento. A nutrious meal on the go, that is pleasing to the eye, as well as the stomach.

Here are a few of my old bento creations.

This one is my very first. Bottom: A bed of steamed short grain rice, with nori heart cutouts, a pineapple gummi, some light garlic and onion cheese, and some candied papaya. Middle tier: Two crab rolls, a lot of japanese candies! YUM! Top tier: A fortune cookie hiding under the lide, some yummy baby corn with almond slivers, and some salmon with a mandarin orange marinade.

My second and cutest! A pirate themed bento box. Bottom tier, steamed short grain rice, with "sand" made from toasted sesame, nori stars, and a little curry powder. So tasty when mixed into the rice! Chocolate coins make buried treasure, and a little food color used on really clean foam stamps make a cut sun and crab. Middle Tier: Chocolate and mint fudge, next to that is more baby corn and almond slivers, a sliced up mini cheese wheel (That's the red) bluberries, more candied papaya, and a koala's march cookie. One pineapple gummy in package. TOP tier: A delicious stir fry with these neat noodles I got at the asian mart, crab and bamboo shoots, topped with sesame, almonds, and a nori skull and cross bones.

This is a few more bento's into the future, I didn't record the others for some reason. X( I made two this round, this one is for me and catered more to my tastes.
Left to right, clockwise: A yummy mochi cake filled with red bean paste! YUM! Gummies (kiwi and pineapple, I'm obsessed) and wasabi peas. I love the burn. The next section is filled with chicken ticka masala, topped with 2 fried spinach cheese puffs, and some cilantro. Next a baby cheese wheel, two caramel filled hershey kisses, and some fresh red declicious apple slices and organic fruit gummies. A delightful bed of curry flavored couscous with several picks of steamed edameme on top! Oh my goodness this was such a good dinner!

My boyfriends version of the last dinner! This was the box I made to cater to his tastes. Green container, my beloved fruit gums, and mini cheese wheel. Fresh sliced asian pear with organic fruit chews, and lady fingers filled with nutella. Mmmyum. Blue container: Chicken Tikka Masala Cilantro for garnish. Yellow container: Curry Couscous with sushi grass as garnish, little nori flower cutouts, and grape tomatos made into little flowers. Looks like a garden, yeah? I love the colors on this one!!!

I have a lot more, but these are the ones that were particularly tasty and or pretty. :3

It begins: An Overview

Well, if you don't know me, my name is Lex. I'm a 25 year old graphic designer, that's just about to finish my second degree, after six painful years in college. I'm an aspiring artist, both traditional, and comic book. I'm a big, huge, colossal geek. I love all things nerdy, and intellectual. I have more books than my tiny flat allows, and more artwork than I have walls for.
My children are a hyperactive Shih Tzu and a very angry Betta fish. I'm in love with a very strange hairy man, who is also my best friend. I love anime, and I belly dance. I collect kimono and make stained glass windows. I'm O.C.D. and hate mess, but am always a mess.

That paragraph above makes it really sound like I've got the whole "knowing myself" thing down right? But I am at war with myself in the kitchen.

I LOVE to cook. Not just a little, but a lot. Recipes taunt me for days until I purge them from my system by cooking them. I have no training, other than some cooking lessons from my grandma and the experience I've gotten undertaking adventures in my kitchen.

The problem is I struggle with my weight, but my all time favorite thing to bake are SWEETS! To top that off, I hate trying to make sweet things "lite". They never seem to taste right unless they are naturally low in fat.

So after haunting so many food blogs, and making many food related posts in my personal journal, I decided to seperate the two.

And focus on my kitchen duality, delicious healthy food and sinful sexy treats.

There will be a mixture of modified recipes, a few originals (I'm still new at this) and a lot of recipes I got elsewhere (all credited) that I try to make, and share my experiences as a Newbie cook on how well they went.

Stick around, and please let me know what you think of my mixture of good for you, and good for the soul foods!