Bake Fest 2012

bakefest For Christmas this year, I decided to dabble in baking a few treats…5, to be exact.  Usually, I just bake “Food for the gods” – a Filipino dessert.  This year, I made all 5 from scratch (except Red Velvet Cake Poppers.  I used boxed cake mix for that).  Clockwise from top left to right:  Cake Poppers, Sugar Cookies, Pecan Tarts, Dark Chocolate Mint Cookies and Food for the gods.

I have to say, they ALL came out prettttyyyy awesome.  I only made one batch of the Dark Choco Mint cookies so only a couple of people got those – pDaddy had a hard time sharing them…he loves his choco-mint.

This bake fest took about a week – baking one type of treat per day, but took OVER a week to ship out to my friends in NJ.  We did get hit w/a bit of a “blizzard”, afterall (and by blizzard, I mean we got crazy wind and a couple inches of snow in the span of a few hours, but nothing crazy like other parts of the country).  So, the goodies got to my friends AFTER Christmas, but still, it was enjoyed and I’m glad.  Look how pretty I packaged them too – with homemade tags and my “Kitchen of” seal.  Stuck these inside of boxes surrounded by those air bag type things and/bubble wrap (that pretty box below was reused…originally had my modcloth order – reduce, reuse, recycle y’all!).

Baked Goodies - Tag Untitled

I’m glad that I sent them out.  Having them here was too easy to eat and gain the calories.   I’m going to stick to probably just 2 next year and make a ton of both.  The girls LOVED helping me bake though, so that might change.

My Little Bakers :)

evil goodness

evil goodness

Another thing I made this year which I wish I never did?  Pumpkin Cheesecake.  Before this year, I never liked anything pumpkin.  Then, I saw pumpkin cheesecake at our grocery’s bakery aisle.  Now, everybody loves cheesecake – at least in my house they do.  So, I figured I’d give pumpkin cheesecake a try and I.LOVED.IT!  It was over $12 though so I thought I could try to make it myself and it will be cheaper.  Truth.  Now, why I decided to follow Paula Deen’s recipe of diabetic goodness, I have no idea, but it is good.  Just too sweet.  I made it a second time and lessened the sugar by 1/2 a cup and I’m thinking I could have probably lessened it by 3/4 of a cup.  I looked on myfitnesspal.com to see how many calories this baby had and I wish I looked it up sooner.  1/12 of the cake has 460 calories.  Now, I’m not sure if that’s some ready made one (does she do that?) or if it is based on following her recipe, but 460 calories?!?!?  Holy Cannoli, Batman! And to think, when I was in full-on holiday busy mode, I would sneak a bite here and there.  No wonder I gained weight so easily.  Needless to say, I won’t be making this again anytime soon.  It is too good to pass up, but too many calories and I really have to lose weight according to my doc.  Maybe by next Christmas Bake Fest, I will think about making this again.  But GASP!  Look:

pauladeen_pumpkincheesecake

(No, I didn’t have it for breakfast.  I just wanted to show you the #s breakdown).

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WW: Spicy Shrimp and Brussel Sprouts Stir Fry

Thank you Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food for this recipe…got my Everyday Food in the mail and also an email w/a link to a video 🙂  I pinned it on Pinterst and went off to the grocery to pick up some ingredients.  Got it all prepped and cooked and ba-zing!  Dinner 🙂  Quick and Healthy at that…think you don’t like brussel sprouts? Think again!

The most time consuming was shredding brussel sprouts, but you can use a food processor if you’d like – just like they say on the video and recipe.

Recipe from http://www.marthastewart.com/945719/spicy-shrimp-and-brussels-sprout-stir-fry?xsc=eml_edfsc_2012_10_23&om_rid=NsqEIZ&om_mid=_BQhpTmB8urPRKz#

Everyday Food, November 2012

  • Prep Time 20 minutes
  • Total Time 20 minutes
  • Yield Serves 4
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Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 pound brussels sprouts, trimmed and shredded
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 small green chile, such as Thai, thinly sliced *
  • 3 scallions, white and green parts separated and thinly sliced
  • 1 pound medium shrimp (41 to 50), peeled and deveined (tails left on)
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
  • Lime wedges, for serving

Directions

  1. In a large skillet or wok, heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil over medium-high. In 2 batches, saute brussels sprouts until tender, 5 minutes total; season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a platter. Add bean sprouts to pan and cook until heated through, 1 minute; add to platter.
  2. Wipe out pan, add remaining tablespoon vegetable oil, and return to heat. Add garlic, chile, and scallion whites and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add shrimp, season with salt and pepper, and saute until opaque throughout, about 4 minutes. Add to platter, drizzle with sesame oil, top with scallion greens, and toss. Serve with lime wedges.

Cook’s Note

A food processor makes fast work of shredding sprouts. Or, do it by hand with a sharp knife.

* didn’t have this on hand so I used a Filipino hot sauce “Mama Sita’s Hot Pepper Sauce – Labuyo”…worked well for us 🙂

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