May the Fourth Chewbacca Oreos

May the Fourth Chewbacca Oreos

May the Fourth Chewbacca Oreos

Happy Star Wars Day!

May the Fourth Chewbacca Oreos

May the Fourth Chewbacca Oreos

May the Fourth be with you!

May the Fourth Chewbacca Oreos

May the Fourth Chewbacca Oreos

It’s the little things in life, especially when you’re in quarantine going on day 50, yes 50 days of sheltering in place.  I might be a tad stir crazy.

1 bag chocolate candy melts

Oreos

candy eyes

chocolate jimmies

1 bag black candy melts

small sugar pearls

1  Melt candy melts according to package directions.  Dip an Oreo in the melted chocolate with a spoon and shake gently to remove excess chocolate.  Carefully place dipped Oreo on wax paper lined cookie sheet.

2  Place two candy eyes on the dipped Oreo then shake chocolate jimmies over whole cookie to cover top.  Repeat with desired number of Oreos.  Place in fridge until chocolate is set.

3  Melt a small amount, maybe 1/2 – 1 cup, of the black candy melts according to package directions.  Pour melted black candy melts into a sandwich baggie and snip off a corner.  Squeeze a line out for Chewbacca’s utility belt and place sugar pearls on top of the belt line.  Place in fridge until chocolate is set.

idea from The Awesome Muse

Traditional Sourdough Bread

Traditional Sourdough Bread
Traditional Sourdough Bread

And there it is!  The first loaf of sourdough bread from my homegrown sourdough starter.  It tasted just as good as it looks.  I guess some good has come from being in quarantine, I’ve always wanted to grow a sourdough starter and have never had the time.

3 1/2 – 3 3/4 cups flour, divided

1 1/2 cups warm water, 105 – 115 degrees

1 cup sourdough starter, room temperature, recipe for starter here

1 tablespoon salt

1  In a large bowl, stir together 3 cups of flour, water, and sourdough starter until smooth.  Cover bowl with wax paper or plastic wrap.  Let rise at room temperature for 4 hours.  Place in fridge and chill overnight.

2  Stir in salt and remaining flour.  Turn dough out onto a floured surface.  Knead in enough flour to make a smooth dough, 2 – 3 minutes.  Place in a greased bowl, turning dough to grease entire surface.  Cover and let rise at room temperature about 2 hours or until slightly increased in size.

3  Line large baking sheet with parchment paper.  Turn dough out onto a floured surface and divide in half.  Shape each dough into an oval loaf.  Place loaves on prepared baking sheet and cover with greased plastic wrap.  Let rise at room temperature about 2 hours or until nearly double in size.

4  Preheat oven to 425.  Using a sharp knife, make 3 – 4 diagonal cuts across the top of each loaf.  Bake 25 – 30 minutes or until the bread is golden and sounds hollow when lightly tapped.  Remove loaves from baking sheets and cool on wire racks.

recipe from Better Homes and Gardens

Sourdough Starter

Sourdough Starter
Sourdough Starter

I love sourdough bread, it’s one of my favorite things to eat and I’ve always wanted to make my own sourdough starter but it requires some time to get going and I’ve never really had that kind of time until now.  Quarantine time is the perfect time to make a sourdough starter so I did!  The first one I tried ended up in the garbage but this second one worked really well, you just have to be patient.

1 cup all purpose flour

1/2 cup water, room temperature

1  Stir together flour and water in a large bowl.  Cover with plastic wrap that covers the whole surface of the bowl but don’t press it down or seal it tightly, let it breathe a bit.  Set in a warm (70 degrees) place and let stand for 24 hours.

2  Stir in another 1 cup flour and 1/2 cup water.  Cover as directed above and let sit for another 24 hours.  Repeat this process for 5 – 7 days until mixture is bubbly and aromatic.

3  At this point your starter is ready to use.  I had a lot by this time so shared with some neighbors (4 to be exact) giving them each 1 cup and the instructions that I had been following.  I also made bread at this point which I will post about tomorrow.  (Spoiler alert – it was awesome!)

4  You can store the starter at room temperature and feed it everyday.  It will grow quickly and you can make a lot of bread or pancakes or waffles or whatever or you can  share it.  To slow it down, you can store it in the fridge and feed it once a week.  Let the starter come to room temperature before using.  When using, remove amount needed and then feed it.  Let it stand at room temperature for 24 hours before chilling again.  If your starter gets to be too much, discard half before feeding.

See?  Not so bad, you just have to be patient.

Stay tuned tomorrow for the sourdough bread recipe!

recipe from Better Homes and Gardens

Triple Chocolate Scones

Triple Chocolate Scones

Triple Chocolate Scones

Here is the next and third entry in the Quarantine Scone Off.  These were really good, really chocolatey but not very sconey so I would put them in third place.

Triple Chocolate Scones

Triple Chocolate Scones

However, I would make them again because of the chocolate factor!

2 cups flour

1/2 cup cocoa

1/3 cup brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup cold butter

1 cup mini chocolate chips

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup dark chocolate melts

1  Preheat oven to 400.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

2  In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

3  Cut butter into small pieces and add to bowl.  Using a pastry blender or two forks cut butter into flour until mixture comes to coarse crumbs.  Stir in chocolate chips.

4  In another bowl, whisk together egg, vanilla and buttermilk then stir into flour mixture just until it comes together.

5  Divide dough into two equal parts.  Place each ball on baking sheet.  With floured hands, pat dough balls into two 6″ rounds.  Cut each round into 6 pieces.  Let sit in fridge for 15 – 30 minutes.

6  Bake for 15 – 20 minutes then let cool.

7  Melt chocolate melts according to package directions.  Place melted chocolate into a Ziploc bag and snip corner off.  Drizzle over scones.  (I had some chocolate ganache in the fridge so used that.)

recipe from Inside Bru Crew Life

Octopus and Shark Cupcakes

Octopus Cupcake

Octopus Cupcake

I had some fun yesterday making these octopus cupcakes,

Octopus Cupcake

Octopus Cupcake

and also some shark cupcakes.  Gotta find some fun in this quarantine life.

Shark Cupcake

Shark Cupcake

I made 3 dozen chocolate cupcakes from this recipe here and some buttercream icing from this recipe here which I colored blue to look like the ocean.

The octopus are easy to make, just take 4 gummi worms and cut them in half then glue eyeballs onto a gum drop with a tiny dab of frosting.  Put the gumdrop in the center of the frosted cupcake and place “legs” around the head, pushing into frosting to secure in place.

For the sharks, the hubs took an Oreo cookie and broke it into the shape of a shark fin, make sure to leave enough cookie to stick it down into your frosting.

Happy Birthday to my neighbors Addi and Alex!

And Happy Birthday to Maya and happy quarantine to Ryder, Drew, and Brooks!  (We’re bonus grandparents!)

idea from Made to be a Momma

“Our Home is still a Castle even though we don’t have any Grass” Birthday Cake

Our Home is still a Castle even though we don't have any Grass Birthday Cake

Our Home is still a Castle even though we don’t have any Grass Birthday Cake

It was my friend Anna’s birthday yesterday and her husband Kent texted asking if I’d like to drive by and wish her a Happy Birthday, crazy times right?  A drive by birthday hello.  So I asked if I could make her a birthday cake and Kent said that she’s been wanting sod laid at their new house and could I make a sod cake?  I said I’d have to thing about it.  How do you make sod visually pleasing on a cake?  My daughter and I put our heads together and came up with this which I think is pretty funny.  It made Anna laugh too so I guess it was a win!

Our Home is still a Castle even though we don't have any Grass Birthday Cake

Our Home is still a Castle even though we don’t have any Grass Birthday Cake

The cake is made from this recipe here.

The “dirt” is granola ground up in the food processor.

The rolls of sod are green fondant.

I made chocolate ganache to go with the cake and you can find that recipe with the cake recipe, see link above.

Happy Birthday Anna!

Bakery Style Cream Scones with Milk Chocolate

Bakery Style Cream Scones with Milk Chocolate

Bakery Style Cream Scones with Milk Chocolate

Here is entry #2 in the Quarantine Baking Scone Off.  These beat out yesterday’s by a slim margin because there were a little lighter, not quite as dense as yesterday’s entry but they weren’t as quick and easy to make as yesterdays.  There will be at least one more entry in the scone off so stay tuned.

Bakery Style Cream Scones with Milk Chocolate

Bakery Style Cream Scones with Milk Chocolate

2 cups flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

2 teaspoons sugar

1 teaspoon Kosher salt or 1/2 teaspoon table salt

4 tablespoons cold butter, cut into 1/2″ cubes

1 cup milk chocolate, I used milk chocolate chips because it’s what I had on hand

3/4 cup heavy cream

turbinado sugar or sugar crystals

1  Preheat oven to 400.

2  Whisk together flour, baking powder, sugar and salt.  Add butter and toss to coat butter pieces with flour mixture.  Using a pastry cutter or two forks, blend butter into flour mixture until your mixture looks like coarse meal.  Add chocolate and toss to combine, then stir in milk and cream to form a soft dough.

3 Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and pat into a 7″ round.  Cut into 6 – 8 wedges, sprinkle generously with sugar crystals and arrange on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Bake until puffed and golden, about 25 minutes.

recipe from Serious Eats