Sunday, January 22, 2012

Happy Birthday Dad and Caleb!

As you may have seen, I like making letter cakes. And as the month of January is special, in that it is my Dad and Caleb's birthdays, I made a special cake! I also have perfected cake balls. I cannot really take credit for those, I have been experimenting for a while, and my mother got me a book written by the lovely lady at Bakerella.

I am going to present these without caption.

Notice in that last one... there are still candles lit. That is because two guys could not blowing ~20 candles.

Boston Trip: Apartment Finding

This past week I took off to Boston to search for an apartment! I got there Tuesday evening and met up with Gwyn. She and I checked out the New England fare at The Squealing Pig (of course Fish and Chips). Wednesday was consumed with seeing apartments and driving around Lexington and the surrounding area. There was a clear winner though. I introduce to you: 'The Coat Factory'

There is a lot of fancy things about this place, granite counter tops, fairly high ceilings, new appliances, electronic keys, garage parking, so on and so forth. It is about 6-7 minutes from work and about 30 minutes to downtown Boston. I am stoked! It is going to be great!

That evening Gwyn and I met up with Ashley, one of Gwyn's friends. She goes to Harvard. Which means I had to try to drive to Harvard. That was exciting. But we did make it there and picked her up and headed off to Tupelo, a great southern place. Everything was amazing.

Thursday was spent checking out The School of the Museum of Fine Arts (as in the school, for the Museum of fine arts, I was so confused about the name all day) for Gwyn. She is looking to apply there for a masters program. It was a great visit, and she is really excited now.

The whole trip was great! Lots of sights, lots of cool stuff, and an apartment!!

Now I just have to coordinate with the moving people on how to get my stuff there.

Breakfast in a Cup

As you all may know I am a fan of muffin tins. Again, this might be because I was living in an apartment that only had muffing tins... hence the creation of bacon cups and Mini Pies. From experimenting with both of these, I wanted to aid in the consumption of bacon in the morning (not that you really need help to do that....).

There is a little effort in preparation, but the good thing is that you can do some of the work ahead of time, and can mass produce these little cups of glory.

Breakfast in a Cup

Aprox Prep: 30 mins
Aprox Cook: 30 mins
Servings: 6
6 strips of Bacon
5 links of Breakfast Sausage
1 Cup Cubed or Shredded Hash browns
5 Eggs
Splash of Milk
1/2 cup Cheese (optional)

Serves: 6

Note about amount: You need one strip of bacon for every cup you want to make. Everything else is relative... You can also leave out the sausage, hash browns and/or the cheese. You can use other meat too... any type of sausage or more bacon.

So first up cook the sausage. Either before or after cut in to small chunks. This is something you can do ahead of time and then refrigerate or freeze. At the same time start cooking up the potatoes. You also might want to spray the muffin pan with some cooking spray. 

In either the old sausage pan or a new pan start cooking the bacon. You are going to cook the bacon till it is just done. Just when it gets to that floppy soft bacon that I hate.... don't worry, if you like crispy bacon it will cook some more in the oven.
Mmmm..... bacon. (don't cut the bacon like this... )
Remove the bacon from the pan and pat dry with a paper towel. Very quickly, as in as soon as your fingers can handle the hot bacon grease, line the edges of each muffin hole with a strip of bacon. Try to press in to the shape of the cup, it will not be perfect, it is ok. When you add the other stuff it will fill out. 
It is ok if the bacon breaks a little.
Once the hash browns are cooked to your likeness (I like them well done) spoon a generous layer in to each cup.

Add two or three sausage pieces to every cup. 

Double up on the pork!
 In a large mixing bowl crack all of the eggs and add 1/4 - 1/3 cup of milk, mix well with a fork or whisk. You want this to be a homogeneous mixture, no eggy lumps. Shortly after mixing, pour egg mixture in to cups, try to keep the egg on the inside of the bacon. It is ok if the egg fills up between the bacon and the pan. Fill up to about the level of the top of the bacon.
Action Shot!!!
The Right is bacon-less (we ran out of bacon :( )

Throw the whole thing in to the oven at 350 degrees. Let it bake for 12-15 minutes or until the egg has just about set. Sprinkle cheese on to top of the cups and return to oven for 4-6 minutes or until melted.

I love Cheese. I love Bacon. I love eggs. I love potatoes. I love Sausage.
The goods.
Remove from pan and enjoy!
Bacon-less cups.
Bacon Morning Cups.
So the next experiment is to use pancake batter instead of egg. This would be for the people who cannot stand eggs (silly people). Anyway, have fun with muffin pans! Enjoy the little cups!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Skanda (Fan Art 1)

To what I am sure is going to be a long list of fan art submissions, Skanda has been a trend-setter by carving out this one:

If you could not tell this is:
"...a picture of a 15th-century [Scott] wearing a kilt, brandishing a short sword, holding [the Griffith] family sigil."

Some artists have #1 fans... I am Skanda's #1 subject. (and now it is creepy)

...Anyway... Keep up the good work Skanda!

For anyone else who would like to make it on this fancy new thing called the internet, draw up your best Scott inspired drawing, and I'll post it here. Ill even let you describe your work of art.

January Things...

I noticed today that I only posted two things before today. For that I guess I have to point out that I am on break! I am on vacation! I do what I want!

...but you are all loyal fans, and I have to keep you informed! So here is a little summary:

The holidays have been good. I have really enjoyed (possibly too much (nope, I know too much, but the scale in my parents bathroom)) the being home. I have been working on a little project, well not all that little, of teaching myself how to make a kilt. It is going super well! And I am really enjoying it, but it is taking a while, and it is a lot of thinking... and pinning. Other things have been continuing to get the kinks out of my parents entertainment system. I have been spending time with friends, Trivia Night, Cheering for Gonzaga... Speaking of the Zags, being home means I actually keep track of what is going on. I have been to more Women's Zags games this season than I did men's games the entire time I was an undergrad.

Oh, and I have been playing with this guy:

That would be Master Murphy and his Christmas Bone (that is still not eaten)
January Pluses: PJ pants
Hanging with the two best roommates

January Minuses: Blue Ray (more to come about this...)
No Snow :(
Sedentary Life (and it is showing (I just looked up how to spell 'sedentary' and landed here, I think I am going to make that my motivating home page...))

Coming Up! A Trip to B-Town. Yep, I am heading to Boston on Tuesday to look for an apartment! I am stoked! Another MIT funded trip, but this time I will be joined by Gwyn! She is going to back me up and give support (and look around for herself). I am excited to get this whole thing rolling.

After I get back, I will have to take care of getting all of my stuff to Lexington. That will be loads of fun... Oh well.

I think that my sedentary self needs to move from the couch (where I am now) to the bed (where I can sleep).

Pie Pockets

You may be thinking that I like pies... you are wrong. I love pies. I love eating pie. I love making pies. I love stories about pies (Pushing Daisies). So I was having a hard time naming this, I could not call them Mini Pies (already used), and they are similar to Pie-rogies, so they get to be Pie Pockets.

For Christmas my lovely Cousins (including my Aunt and Uncle) got me a mini pie press. It is a little red clam shell press that makes hot pocket sized goodies. In fact you could make hot pockets! Needless to say, I was super excited about using it.

I decided to start slow. We had some strawberries from new years (strawberries in sauce, heavily preserved), my mom had some frozen apple and cherry pie filling. To encapsulate in flaky goodness, I put together some of my pie dough. See the above mini pies and pierogies for the recipe.

(speak this next part in pirate) Here be the process:

Roll out dough.
Conveniently punch out nicely sized rectangles.
Lay down a layer in mold, fill with desired
Brush some egg wash for sealing, add another layer.
Fold and press. This got a little messy. Add an egg wash and cinnamon sugar.
Bake for 20 or so minutes at 400 degrees.
Take out of oven.
Enjoy little pockets of joy.
 One thing that would really help in this process would be to make little incisions in the top to let steam vent. I did not do this. So... that means that the seams broke and juice seeped everywhere. And then burned.

The pies turned out great!! Thank You Tomlinsons! Great Gift! Not that this should be interpreted as the reason for this, but you should receive a thank you note soon!

Sunday, January 8, 2012


I am sitting in my living room in Spokane, wearing my Steelers jersey... rooting on the black and gold. Luv dem Stillers.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy New Year!

First post of 2012! Yay!

I just finished up a game of Carcassone with my mother... she won with a 11 city, fully occupied (yep... that is right, all 7 dudes) pasture. It was a good game.

This evening I made my Orange Chicken for my parents! As before, it was a big hit. I am surprising myself with Asian cooking, no only do I not know what I am doing but as for 2 years ago I would not even eat it. Look at me all grown up. Now for the record: The only food that I am 'eh' about is fish. I will eat it. But I am not a huge fan of it. Certainly not for how expensive some of it is. Everything else, I enjoy! Contrary to popular belief, I really do love deserts, and pizza, and Pamelas (Gwyn and Skanda, I am looking at you...). So if anyone wants to make a food suggestion for me to make or try let me know!

In other news, I received the go-ahead from the security team at MIT:LL. It is official, I am not a traitor, and I am not going to become one. Thank you to all of my references who vouched for me. Now I can start the apartment looking search! I am excited, now with the experience of moving 3 times on my own, I know what to look for, and I am stoked.

My break so far has been really relaxing. So much so that I am not wanted to bore you all with the mentality of it. Today I sewed a patch on my bag, took down Christmas lights, watched Joyeux Noel (great movie!) and made dinner. Yesterday my mom and I went fabric shopping for 6 hours. (more on that later...) I have spent a lot of time with family, a lot of time eating (my waistline is going to like living on my own again), and a lot of time playing with Murphy. It is all I can ask for.

Now for some sleep... you know, because I need to be up an at-em tomorrow... whenever I decide to wake up.