Monday, November 29, 2010

caramel apples (and raspberries)

caramel apples
Well.. I made these a month ago and then the pictures got lost into the unorganized mess that is my pictures folder. But since caramel apples are one of my favorite things in the world, I thought it was still worth a share. Roll them in crushed peppermint and its perfectly festive for christmas.

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Caramel apples
makes 4

1 cups granulated sugar
1 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


In a heavy sauce pan over medium heat combine sugar, corn syrup, salt and 1/2 cup of the heavy cream. Stirring constantly, bring to a boil. This will take some time.

Once the mixture boils add the remaining 1/2 cup of cream in a slow trickle so that you do not cool your caramel mixture and it continues to boil uninterrupted.

Reduce heat to medium-low and allow to boil for 5-6 minutes without stirring.


Add butter one tablespoon at a time, stirring after each melts. Clip on your candy thermometer and allow to boil over medium-low heat until the mixture just hits 250°F (Firm Ball stage) stirring occasionally. This should take about 30-40 minutes, if your temperature is climbing too quickly you might need to reduce heat all the way to low. By the same token, if you're not hitting 250°F by 40 minutes you might want to increase the heat a bit.

While waiting, clean apples and insert sticks.

Once you've hit the right temperature, quickly remove from heat. Stir in the teaspoon of vanilla and dip the apples into the caramel. Place on parchment paper to cool.

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I got a little carried away and started dunking raspberries in the left over caramel. It was out of this world good! I strongly recommend.
caramel raspberries
caramel apples

Saturday, November 20, 2010

sweet.

A sneak peak at a few of the delicious things I made for the next issue of Dujour Magazine.
This issue is stunning, and once again I'm super grateful to be apart of it. I'll let you know when its out!
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Also! A reminder that i have a little formspring i try and keep up with. I've answered quite a few questions over there.. take a peek if you want. And please feel free to ask, or tell me something! I love hearing from you guys..

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

daily

i like..


getting the sweetest packages in the mail from my dear friend. thats french macaron soap! its too cute, how am i supposed to use it??


a yummy breakfast. toast with coconut oil, oj, and greek yogurt with raspberries.


cupcake happy hour. and playing bingo for cupcakes.


the yummiest cinnamon ice cream. and an amazing read

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taking engagement photos. or any photos for that matter..




November has been good.. great even. I'm looking forward to sunday, not so much because its my birthday but its the day we put up our CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS. we don't buy into this "you've got to wait until after thanksgiving" hype.. Where did that come from anyway?? that logic bugs me.

but anyway, i have some things to share soon (ie: when i get around to it) like caramel apples, some exciting news for josh and i (not a baby), what i've been "working" on, and a pretty personal post i've been debating to share.

and pssst.. if you haven't downloaded josh's bands latest album, you should go do it. its amazing and free.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

who can know it..


Today josh's band releases their fifth album! Its called Who can know it? and it is available to download absolutely free on their website. (No signing up required!)

I know i am sort of biased, but its a pretty incredible album. (My favorite songs are number 5, 8 and 10.)

You should definitely check it out.

What does it sound like?? Well I'm bad at comparing music but early reviewers have said it sounds like weezer, REM, the eagles, flaming lips and MGMT.

Friday, November 12, 2010

3 years

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Yesterday josh and i celebrated our 3 year anniversary. It is absolutely crazy how fast time flies by.
(and this time last year we were in paris...!)
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(i went the lazy route and pulled these off facebook. very low res.. oops)


This year we opted to stay home and have a nice candle lit dinner. We like it better than going out, although i'm pretty sure we're in the minority on that one. I made vegetable potstickers, orange chicken (and tofu), brown basmati rice and steamed brocolli. And chocolate fondue for dessert. It was perfect.
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looking forward to many more!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

more california travelin

When i was in southern california i had the chance to visit some of my closest friends there. Their (two sisters) family was a second family to me and we rarely spent a day without seeing each other, so after five years of not getting to visit i was a tad excited to say the least!
A whole lot has changed in those five years.. we're all married. and one has 3 kids now. but it was just like old times.
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Their parents own the cutest self serve frozen yogurt shop and i filled mine to the brim and added a dozen different toppings.. (when its free, you load up!) it was fun to see the behind the scenes of a yogurt shop.
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And the reason i was in san diego in the first place, my cousin got married! I was wedding day coordinator, walkie talkie and all. It was such a beautiful wedding. Kim dreamed up every tiny detail and it was so dang cute. All her hard work with every DIY detail paid off.
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Thursday, November 4, 2010

grow your own wheat grass

wheat grass

Isn't it pretty?? Whether you want to grow it for home decor or to juice, you can in less than a week.
I bought some wheat berries in bulk at a grocery store for less than 50 cents. And here's what i did:
Fill a container with soil.

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Sprinkle wheat berries on top. And cover them with a thin layer of soil.
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Set containers somewhere that gets sun. And be sure to water everyday.
And in 5-6 days you'll have a huge thing of wheat grass.
your house with have some life. your cats will graze. and you can juice it.
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wheat grass

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

healthy rice crispy treats and xagave

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So i'm going to be sharing quite a few recipes in the coming weeks featuring agave.. and more specifically xagave. I have been a huge fan of agave for a long time now. I like to keep my diet free of refined sugar but i also have a ginormous sweet tooth. Agave is a lifesaver in so many recipes and it really can be "the complete sugar replacement" (thats xagave little catch phrase and i love it). There has been some controversy over the topic but i'm just here to tell you about my opinions and experiences with it.

When I am eating too much sugar, i can feel it. I get headaches, i have no energy, i feel spaced out all day, my skin reacts badly, and in the end i still crave more sugar. When I cut sugar out and use agave in its place there are no side effects. No sugar rush then crash. It's an amazing thing! And thats enough proof for me that its a healthy alternative.

Read more here about other health benefits
Read more here about how its safe for diabetics
And here for some FAQ


That aside, you can use it in everything (sauces, jams, ice cream, cake, cookies, ect) and i'll be showing you how!

The first recipe is a favorite of mine because it is so simple. (very similar recipe here)
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Healthy rice crispy treats

1/3 cup xagave
1/3 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups rice crisp cereal (trader joes sells a rice crisp cereal with no HFCS)

Heat agave and peanut butter over medium heat until it looks like a thick syrup, about 2-3 minutes. Add vanilla.
Spray a medium sized bowl with oil and add the rice cereal, pour syrup mixture on top, and mix until evenly coated and chocolate is melted in.
Press into oiled 9x9 dish. Refrigerate for 1 hour.


Other recipes i have using agave: chocolate peanut butter no bake cookies & breakfast parfait

halloween 2010

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This halloween i dressed up as a 1920's flapper.
I bought this dress last year for $14 to wear on new years or something special but it was never worn.. so it became this years halloween costume. (Although I might still wear it on new years eventually)
I bought a feather and the sequin trimming at a craft store.
And I was busy making caramel apples so i didn't have time to curl or do anything with my hair.
What did you guys dress up as??
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(pardon my "poses".. haha. it feels really awkward for me to have my picture taken by myself. i never know what to do with my hands! anyone else have this problem?? they always end up on my hips.. which feels ridiculous too)