Friday, January 20, 2012

New Hair:)

You can't really tell too much in this picture but I have gone lighter and put some blonde/caramel color in:)

A New Shelf and Front-room Table Tray

So I wish I took a before picture of this but for some reason did not think to. I found this shelf at the DI for 3 bucks and it was dirty white and faded. I spray painted it black and used sand paper on the edges. I think it turned out pretty cute:) only thing is I'm not sure where to put it?

 Next I bought this super ugly red tray from the DI for about 2 bucks. I painted it an antique white, and glued and modpodged paper in the bottom of it.

Perfect addition:)

Sugar Swirl Cookies, Gourmet Mac & Cheese, Homemade Reese's Cups, and Quick & Easy Homemade French Bread

Soo let me begin by apologizing for not blogging for quite some time. It's been nice to be able to get back in the swing of things since Christmas time! Kyle recently started school again, in which he switched majors to Business and Marketing. So far he likes his classes:)

So back in December, Kyle was in Washington for 2 weeks up until Christmas Eve. Meanwhile in sunny Mesa AZ we baked.

Sugar Swirl Cookies:
Start by making your favorite sugar cookie recipe. Split dough in half in two separate bowls. Color one chunk with red food dye (we used food gel instead of normal food coloring because it is supposed to be stronger?). Roll each out and lay one dough on top of other on wax paper:

 Begin rolling the dough lengthwise:

The ends are usually not straight so I just cut them off to make it all even:

 Use thread to cut dough it slices:

 Sprinkles on top and bake in the oven:)

So I found this Macaroni and Cheese recipe on Pinterest and had to try it. SOOOOO good!! It actually says to bake in a crockpot but we were wanting dinner sooner so I cooked the pasta al dente and then just baked it in the oven, worked like a charm:
1 1/2 cups milk
One 12 oz can evaporated milk (I used skim, evaporated milk keeps the egg and milk from curdling)
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted, cooled to room temp
3 large eggs
1/2 tsp salt
3 cups (12 oz) shredded cheese (I used an Italian blend, recipe calls for Italian fontina cheese)
1/2 pound elbow macaroni or mini penne tubes, par cooked and drained (this means cook them for about five minutes until tender but not completely cooked)
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Spray the inside of your slow-cooker with cooking spray or grease it with olive oil. Combine milk, evaporated milk, eggs, butter, and salt in slow-cooker and whisk until until smooth (or you can use an immersion blender to do the whisking for you).
Add the shredded cheese (not the Parmesan) and macaroni, sprinkle with black pepper (and whatever other spices you want to use). Stir gently with a spatula to coat evenly.
Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese on top. Cover and cook on HIGH for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, reduce the temperature to LOW and cook for 2 to 2 1/2 hours, until custard is set in the center and the pasta is tender. The macaroni and cheese may sit in the cooker on the KEEP WARM setting for 30 minutes before serving. Before dishing it up, I sautéed some bread crumbs with olive oil and sprinkled them over the top to make it a little fancier.
Serve and enjoy!

Now who does not like homemade Reese's Peanut Butter Cups? Sooo easy and amazingly good!
Molding Chocolate
2 c peanut butter
1 lb box powdered sugar (about 2 cups)
1 1/2 c crushed graham crackers
1 cup margarine (or butter)

Cream peanut butter and margarine. Add powdered sugar and crackers. Mix good. Poor a small amount of melted chocolate at the bottom of each paper cup. Drop small amounts of peanut butter in each cup and cover with chocolate. Let set room temp until hardened. SUPER EASY!

Soft Homemade French Bread (Quick and Easy!)

(I halved the recipe so it would only make one loaf for Kyle and I)

Seriously this recipe took less then an hour to make, rise, AND bake! So easy to make with a quick meal. The secret is the SAF Yeast. My mom and I found it at a bakery shop in AZ because they usually don't sell it at local grocery stores. Defiantly ask around to find it. It came in a big airsealed package but I just stored it in a airtight container in the fridge.