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1  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / octopus + cupcakes. on: July 07, 2008 09:49:00 AM

i made this for the cupcake swap, but i am completely in love with it and had to post it here.  it gave me the chance to combine two of my absolute favorite things.

you can't see from the picture, but it's on a canvas tote bag.

2  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / pork chop recipes? on: May 27, 2008 11:30:11 AM

so, lately i've been craving pork chops... which really makes no sense since i have not had them in 10+ years (just started eating meat again).

but now that i've been talking about them so much, i've been enlisted to make them for dinner tomorrow.  however, i've never made them.  ever.

i found a few basic recipes on the internet, but wanted to see if anyone here had a tried and true recipe.  i want something pretty simple since buying/cooking meat still scares the crap out of me.

3  COOKING / Dessert / chocolate strawberry 4 layer cake. on: May 17, 2008 11:37:09 AM

my friend's birthday was a few weeks ago, and i was in charge of the birthday cake.  she wanted a chocolate cake with strawberries, and left the details up to me.

this is what i ended up with:

it's a 4 layer chocolate cake (martha stewart recipe).  two layers were filled with whipped cream with sliced strawberries.  the center layer was filled with chocolate ganache with diced strawberries.  the whole cake was covered in ganache.  the top was covered with a layer of buttercream frosting and decorated with strawberries and chocolate covered strawberries.

the cake weighed in at 5 pounds.

the process:

whipped cream layer:

ganache layer:

chocolate covered strawberries:

i really wanted to get a shot of the cut cake, but it was eaten at a bar and the lighting just wasn't on my side.

4  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / lyrics, a skull, and some roses. on: May 12, 2008 06:12:42 PM

a cross stitch i finished a few months ago for my friend.  it's a saves the day lyric, because we never stopped listening to what we liked in junior high and it's in our top 5 road trip CD picks.

5  COOKING / Dessert / 72 cupcakes. on: May 11, 2008 10:22:40 PM
for my roommate's birthday the plan was to fill both my cupcake trees - approximately 48 cupcakes.  there were some minor snags.  first, recipes made more than i realized they would (probably should have paid more attention to these things), so i ended up with 72 cupcakes.  second, during my cross country move i must have misplaced the posts that set up one of the cupcake trees... we just worked around it for the final presentation.

but the cupcakes tasted great, and that's all that really matters.

the workspace:

after about 8 hours of work... trying to find the strength to finish:

chocolate stout cupcake with stout frosting:

peanut butter cupcake with chocolate ganache and mini peanut butter cups:

chocolate cupcakes with cream cheese frosting and chocolate shavings:

cupcake tree with apple cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese buttercream frosting:

my roommate with her birthday gift:

it was a lot of fun, but i definitely needed a break from cupcakes after that!
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