The Most Complicated Sandwich. Ever.

One of my summer goals was to bake as much as possible. I decided to throw in a couple recipes that looked delicious, but were not baked goods. Here is one of my accounts.

Austin and I set out on a cooking adventure.

I found this recipe and knew that it needed to be made. Thankfully Austin was up for the challenge and we couple weeks ago we made them. Let me tell you, they were amazing. Ah-Maze-Ing. The breading on the chicken, topped with fired egg, prosciutto, and garlic-spinach aioli combined to be made into the most monster-est sandwich I have ever tasted.

Goal: Turn this into the best sandwich. ever.

We first ran to Lund’s to grab all of the ingredients. Our pantries pretty much had everything that we needed except chicken, proscuitto, and bread. Therefore that made this sandwich tasty and not that expensive. We breaded the chicken, baked the chicken, baked the proscuitto, fried the eggs, toasted the bread, and made the garlic-spinach aioli. the only issue we had was with the magic bullet to actually make the aioli.

Austin questioned why the magic bullet wasn't producing magic.

We tried and tried again to get the two pieces to fit together to no avail.

then we found the ring that kept the magic from happening.

 After that situation was sorted, we got the aioli made and put the sandwiches together to look like this:

our beautiful sandwich creation

1 recipe down. 245 to go.

Cherry Coke…in cupcake form.

Baking cupcakes has easily become one of my most favorite pastimes. My wonderful friend, Laura, held a cupcake camp a few months ago to teach me her ways in the cupcake baking department. I was unsure how well I would do at such task, but low and behold baking has risen to being a fun hobby that I’m not horrible at. This is good. The first time Laura and I baked together (with Hilary) was during her cupcake camp and we made Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes that had about a million steps and took more than 3 hours to complete. While they turned out very tasty, it was a process. We decided that it was time to create another cupcake masterpiece, one that was less involved. This time we tried Cherry Coke Float Cupcakes.

Cherry Coke Float Cupcakes

Cherry Coke cupcakes scared me at first because I was not sure what the taste would be like, however I become intrigued rather quickly. These cupcakes were great because they:
-were light and cola tasting
– were cutesy [and let’s get real, everyone needs a bit of cutesy in their lives]
-included whole cherries in the center of the cupcake and on the top. i used to could eat maraschino cherries as a whole meal.
-had whipped topping, my favorite ‘frosting’ besides cream cheese frosting.

The recipe for these cupcakes can be found at one of my favorite food blogs, Annies-eats.

Baking cupcakes makes me smile.

The Awesome of: 4th of July weekend

4th of July weekend was more than spectacular. I had the opportunity to go back to Oshkosh, Wisconsin and visit my parents. While their house is close to being a disaster zone due to their moving preparations, it was still the same cozy space that I grew up knowing. While my bed wasn’t assembled, I still had a place to rest my head in the corner of my parent’s bedroom on my old twin mattress. After sleeping on there for 4 nights, I realized why I asked for a new bed when I moved into my apartment this year. My days were filled with cleaning out boxes and tubs of old childhood memorabilia and laying poolside, trying to not be the palest individual in Minnesota. I think I’ve accomplished this goal. Needless to say, my weekend at home was pretty great. Here’s a recap of the awesome:

1.) Farmers Market on Main Street. Farmer’s markets are one of my very favorite things in life. I just love walking around and seeing all of the awesome stuff that people have grown and support local farmers. I am a wishful thinker and one of my dreams is to have my own garden one day, without killing it. Since I sometimes forget to feed myself, I don’t know if I’m in the right stage of life to have to care for something else, even if it is a garden. The Oshkosh Farmers Market has grown over the past year as they are now shutting down a section of Main Street in downtown Oshkosh to run this show. I came away with some delicious strawberries, yellow zucchini, and freshly baked bread, and of course we got our fair share of spring rolls. Some of the best are from Oshkosh. If all of these tasty finds weren’t enough, I also ran into some old friends and softball teammates. This was quite the surprise since I never see anyone in Oshkosh because I pretty much only have time to spend with my parents when I am home for a weekend. This was nice because I was able to make some plans with old high school friends to reunite and reminisce about our past and begin to partake in each others futures once again.

2.) Reconnecting with old friends. I had the opportunity to chat over a glass of wine with one of my good friends from high school, Brad. He’s amazing. Seriously, watch out for this kid because he’s doing his thing and won’t stop until he sees the world and makes a difference. He hasn’t lost his drive since high school, on the contrary, it’s probably deeper than it ever has been. Then on Monday evening, I had the chance to grab dinner with another good friend, Jenny. Since last time I’ve seen her, she’s moved twice and has gotten engaged. And probably by the time I see her next, she will be married, graduated from college, and moved to Madison. She’s flying-it’s amazing to see her building such an awesome life for herself and hubby-to-be. The one thing that I have realized is that no matter how long it’s been since I’ve spoken or see some of my high school friends, we can still get together and have a laugh about the past and look forward. While we’ve all built our separate lives from each other, we were all once apart of each others story and I’m thankful that they’ve helped me become who I am today.

3.) Poolside day and night. One of my favorite things about my parent’s house is the deck [built with the labor, love, and sweat of my very own Pops] and the pool. Our house doesn’t have air conditioning so as a trade-off, my parents decided to put a pool in the backyard. Awesome trade-off, if I say myself. This pool has gotten loads of use over the years with softball parties, graduation parties, cookouts, etc, so it was nice to be able to use it everyday while I was home. Like I mentioned before, I got some color. I’m no bronzed model, but I’m not the color of a polar bear any more! This is good.

4.) Grilling out. A summer favorite of mine is grilling out. On the menus for the weekend: ribs, barbecue chicken, potatoes and onions, grilled peaches with olive oil, Oktoberfest brats, and yellow zucchini. Yum. Yum. Yum. Of course there was pasta salad, [lettuce] salad from the garden, fruit salad…it seems to me that we are a salad family.

5.) Spending time with the best. I was enamored with the time I was able to spend with friends and family. Of course I hung out with Moms and Pops, Melissa, Megan, Holly, and Vicki, and a handful of others who make my life so sweet. We braved Dirtball Sawdust Days together, my parents danced to whatever bluegrass was playing, and sat and watched the fireworks show. Sweet memories with sweet people.

6.) Last, but certainly not least: Fireworks. I have decided [this weekend] that fireworks are another of my most favorite things in life. They are so loud you can feel it in your chest, so bright they make your eyes sparkle, and so awesome for a moment you lose yourself in the sight. The fireworks show in Oshkosh was fantastic. 45 minutes of booms, ahhhs, claps, and smiles. Pure awesome.

Do not let this picture fool you. I was actually not in New York this weekend, I was in Oshkosh, Wisconsin-or better known as "OshVegas".

So that was my recap of all things awesome over the 4th of July weekend. I hope that you had a blessed weekend filled with fun, friends, family, and food…oh and you can’t forget fireworks because you can never forget sparkly things.

baking fail

so i was blessed to be able to have dinner with some lovely friends of mine this evening. they made the best (seriously, the best) sausage roll that I couldn’t get enough of, and i said that i would bring dessert. now, i thought I’d try out one of the 154 recipes I want to master this summer, but something went seriously wrong. i brought cookie dough cheesecake bars (delicious-not the fail) and something that was suppose to resemble this:

well, it didn’t turn out like this. but in true minnesotan fashion, my friends were lovely and suggested that i try this with:

  • less peanut butter
  • nutella instead of peanut butter
  • more honey
I think I will give it another go as the summer goes on, but I am apple-peanut butter-tarted out. I think I might just go on vacation…Chicago & Northern Irish friends, here I come!

cherry limeade, but not from sonic.

I promise this isn’t turning into a baking blog, however I need to show you these cutesy cupcakes I baked on friday night. I was worried they weren’t going to turn out for various reasons. I’ll save you the sob stories, but just know that these turned out great! they were a bit more dense than what I was hoping, but good nonetheless. I’ve gotten the last two cupcake recipes from a food blog that my friend Laura got me hooked on: Annies-eats. Looking for new, fun recipes? Check it out.

cupcake camp :)

a few weeks ago, my friends hilary and laura got together to go on a cupcake adventure. i had asked laura to teach me her baking ways as i’ve never made anything not out of a box without the supervision of my mother. we made chocolate chip cookie dough cupcakes. definitely a good choice. they are a denser cupcake with cookie dough balls planted in the middle as an edible surprise when you bite into it. here are some pictures of our day at cupcake camp with laura.

Tonight, i decided to go on my own cupcake adventure. after learning many, many skills from cupcake camp, this was my time to shine. i decided on lemon blueberry cupcakes. they were a little easier than the cookie dough cupcakes above and less time-consuming, but delicious nonetheless. austin joined me in this baking adventure. our mishaps were minimal, my kitchen was messy, and our tummies were full of sugary goodness by the end of the evening. here are a couple of photos of the final product.

cherry limeade cupcakes are up tomorrow night.