Family Traditions

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    Family Traditions

    Foodies In Training – Crepes

    So Saturday night I made my first attempt at Crepes. Kyle took the kids to Home Depot to keep them out of my hair and while there decided to up the testosterone levels in our house by about 10 notches and brought home a chain saw. Fortunately, we didn’t need the chain saw for my crepes.

    The whole night was a bit of an experiment, but isn’t that what these Foodie Nights are for? I decided to prep all the toppings first and then make the crepes right before we sat down to eat. We made three savory ones and then sampled them and then went back for whatever seconds we wanted to try out. The first savory one was scrambled eggs, white cheddar, bacon, red pepper and chives. Very tasty and Kyle’s favorite savory.

    The second was filled with ham, asparagus and Swiss Gruyere. This one was good, but not anyone’s favorite.

    The final savory was filled chicken, spinach, sauteed mushrooms and red onions, sun-dried tomatoes and mozzarella, topped with fresh basil. SO amazing and definitely my favorite savory, especially with the sun-dried tomatoes.

    Then for dessert, we did the same thing, except with 5 variations instead of three. Because who wouldn’t want 40% more dessert than actual dinner? 🙂

    The hands-down winner was the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Banana filled crepe topped with Whipped Cream. The next day we added Nutella and vanilla ice cream to the mix. To.Die.For.

    We also tried the traditional Lemon Juice & Honey, a delicious Strawberry, Nutella, Powdered Sugar and Whipped Cream, a very tart Mixed Berry with Cinnamon & Sugar, and the kid’s favorite Vanilla Ice Cream with Butterscotch and Powdered Sugar. Really, they were all scrumptious! Such a fun meal!!

    I was surprised at how simple the crepe recipe and process actually was. I’m sure the French would find mine despicable as far as technique and texture, but for our experimental purposes it turned out very well. I used a little 8″ skillet, which worked well but I had a tendency to make them a little thick. Some turned out better than others. Kyle thought it seemed like a lot of work for the savory ones. Basically, he compares everything to steak and steak certainly takes less time and is just as delicious. But we both said that it didn’t matter how much work it took to make the Peanut Butter Chocolate dessert crepe, it was worth it and we would definitely make dessert crepes a regular at our house. Overall rating = 8.4.

  • Oct-bdays
    Family Traditions

    Dr. Seuss Cat Birthday Cakes

    Like I mentioned last week, one of our Family Traditions is Birthday Cakes. The kids get to pick out the subject/theme and I do my best to create a cake that lives up to their hopes. Jessie and Buzz have birthdays only 2 days apart and this year we were coordinating birthday celebrations with a visit from Grandpa Dan & Marmie, so we celebrated one on a Friday and the other on Saturday.

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    For her 3rd birthday, Jessie wanted a pink and purple cat cake. But since most of the 3D cat cakes I saw online looked fairly creepy, I decided the better route was a fun layer cake with cats on top.

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    Seeing her “cat cake” for the first time.

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    I made a 6 layer Neapolitan cake, using Sweetapolita as inspiration. I had my own favorite chocolate cake recipe, but used her strawberry and vanilla cakes. The vanilla cake was good, but the strawberry cake was OUT OF THIS WORLD! It’s made with real strawberries! So. Damn. Good.

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    As a side note, Jessie got a camera for her birthday. Other than the floor, Buzz is her favorite subject. I have no idea where she learned to walk around sticking her camera in people’s faces. 😉

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    Buzz 1st Birthday party was a Cat in the Hat theme. We thought it was fitting since we actually announced his pregnancy with the help of Dr. Seuss, not to mention there are some ridiculously cute Cat in that Hat ideas on Pinterest.

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    Having the two birthdays celebrated so close together worked really well for the actual cake baking. I ended up sharing cake batter and frosting between the two.

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    The bottom layer was more of our favorite chocolate cake, a 10″ round. Then the middle red and white section was a 4 layer strawberry and vanilla cake using an 8″ round, and then the top layer was more chocolate, a 6″ layer cake. For both cakes, I made my own marshmallow fondant. It’s so easy to make and so easy to work with, I can’t justify anything else.

    Although, I do have a question, does marshmallow fondant sweat more easily than the kind you can buy? Or is that just the nature of fondant? I tend to have very sweaty cakes and I can’t quite figure out why. I’m sure some of it is just condensation as it comes out of the freezer, but I haven’t yet figured out a better way for keeping it cool (and safe from prying fingers) while I work on it, usually over 2-3 days. I’d really appreciate any tips as I have a feeling the kids’ ideas will only get bigger and grander over the years.

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    We had such a wonderful time with friends and family, celebrating our littlest man’s first year. Cakes are a tradition that help build excitement for the kids, with or without a party. They’re a bit of creative outlet for me and Kyle, who is the true artist of the family, always improves them with his ideas. I don’t know if you’ve been counting, but that was 2 strawberry cake recipes, 2 vanilla cake recipes, and 3 chocolate cake recipes in 48 hours! You can see now why I’m in the market for a treadmill.

    Aren’t these two precious though? What great excuses to overload on sugar!

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