Friday, April 29, 2011

Mommy's little helper

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Dear



You give us great reason to go through a growth spurt!
  

You nourish us.  


You make our colors even more vibrant.  
(although the photographer clearly doesn't know how to capture that)


You have showered us with your love, made thunderous music for our ears, and impressive accompanying light shows for the past seven days. We love you. 

The cilantro and lettuce.  

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Family Photos


You didn't want to see a family of pancakes?
So, sorry to disappoint.


Well, we'll get to family pictures, but first a recap of the past few days.  


I'm not much into decorating for holidays, outside of Christmas; especially if it requires shopping for decorations or storing said decorations.  Call me crazy, I'm just not a big shopper.  Somehow though, "free" decorations are completely legit.

paint chip garland
inspiration here

In other news...

Someone learned a thing or two last week about mobility.
And I'm not talking about my shock/disgust/angst at the rising cost of fuel for either of our automobiles.




That's right, at 7 months exactly, Luke decided "advance scooching" was "so 6 months old".



Finally, after a great Easter service at church this morning, we celebrated over lunch.

Luke and Ivy playing together.





Triple threat: Ivy (5 mo), Landric (9 mo), Luke (7 mo)
I think somebody was trying to be the class clown...

come here you...

Vong, Landric, Wes 
Evan, Ivy, Kilby

Lynette, Luke, Matt 






Friday, April 15, 2011

The Growing Chair

Happy Tax Day everyone! 
That's right folks. 
Not only am I here to show you how much I've grown over the past month...I wanted to remind mommy & daddy that they can thank me for their return this year!  

Mommy & Daddy's #1 favorite tax deduction, 
Luke  

(and I'm going to mix it up on you guys a little and start from my younger days and work my way up.)

4 weeks


8 weeks






















12 weeks


4 months





















5 months 



6 months


7 months 








Thursday, April 14, 2011

Maple Twist Rolls

You want the Maple Twist Rolls recipe? 
I really don't understand why?
Drooling on your keyboard is much easier than making them. 
I promise.  


But, if you insist.  

Oh, you're trying to impress your significant other's parents.  
I understand.  
I did the same thing.  
So did my sister.  

Well it worked.  
We're on 2 years, and this kid. 



And my sister.  
They're one month shy of 15 years.  
I'll let you count the kiddos.  

Photo credit:  Whonsetler Photography


Maple Twist Rolls

Dough:
3/4 c warm milk
1/4 c soft butter
2 3/4 c -3 c flour
3 tbs sugar
1 tsp salt
1 pkg yeast
1 tsp maple extract (or maple flavor)
1 egg

Filling:
1/2 c sugar
1/3 c chopped nuts 
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp maple extract

1/4 c butter, melted 

Glaze: 
1 c powdered sugar
2 tbs melted butter
1-2 tbs milk
1/2 tsp maple extract 

Instructions
Dough: 
Mix milk, yeast, sugar together and let sit until it's nice and bubbly.  
Mix in remaining ingredients, adding enough flour to make a soft stick-to-itself dough.  
Knead for a few minutes, until it does what yeast dough should do. :)  
Then let it rise till it's doubled in size in a nice warm happy place (about an hour).  

Remove, and PUNCH the dough. (my favorite part!)
Separate dough into 3 equal size pieces.  
Roll 1 portion out to the size of your GREASED baking sheet (pizza pan is ideal here - not a deep dish pan though).
Here's where the filling comes in handy. 
Slather the first layer with some butter, and 1/3 of the filling. 
Repeat with the next two portions of dough.  

It will look like this goodness when it's all layered.  
(Feel free to lick all that yumminess off your fingers.  I won't tell.)


This is the fun part!  
Stick a juice glass in the CENTER of the pizza pan.  
And proceed to cut 16 wedges around the juice glass.  
(I cut halves, and then half the halves, and so on.)


Then twist each section 5 times.  


After your done twisting, place them in your warm happy place again for another 30-45 minutes.  
(At this point, I have successfully stored them in the fridge overnight, because I'm LAZY and if I want warm maple twist rolls for breakfast, I'm not getting up at 4am.)

Preheat your oven to 375. 
Bake for 18-22 min.  Until they are golden brown.  

Then, the absolute HARDEST part. 
Let them cool a little.  
Mix up the glaze, and then zig-zag pour it onto each twist. (see first photo).
If you don't let them cool long enough, the glaze won't look as pretty.  
And, after all the time you spent on these, you don't want to go and screw them up getting ancy with the glaze.  Just sayin.  


Recipe credit:  I wish I knew exactly.  Does anyone remember the Watkins man?  
My mom used to buy vanilla and maple extract from him.  Well, I'm pretty sure this recipe came from a Watkins publication circa 1984 (or something like that).  And, I do remember the picture had a rosette on it from the Kansas State Fair.  

Playing with grass

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Chip & Dip

Do you remember the Bun Off Run Off?  Well, it's time for the Chip & Dip recap!




Unlike my Maple Twist Rolls, I don't have a show-stopping go to, make you drool on your keyboard dip recipe.  So Matt and I waffled back and forth with a variety of ideas.  We seriously considered bringing our waffle iron and fondue pot.  Next time.  

I ended up making Jalapeno White Cheddar Hummus adapted from here.



Part of the fun for me was attempting to make pita chips.
To make pita chips, one must first make pita bread.
I've never succesfully made pita bread.
Why did I wait for a competition?
The same reason I always try a new recipe with guests.

I should have known from the start this wasn't going to work out so great.


Yes.  That IS a pita bread dough explosion in my fridge.



My pitas didn't really "puff".
Large blisters, yes. 
Big, puffy, chewy pocket.  No.



However - the chips turned out AMAZING!
I found this recipe for garlic cilantro infused olive oil pita chips.
Time consuming, yes.
Delicious, yes.
Totally worth the effort, yes.

But we didn't win.
To be honest, the hummus was lacking a kick.  I thought for sure with jalapenos it would have a nice kick to it.  I thought wrong.


Oh well - this corn dip was probably everything I wanted my hummus to be, multiple flavors definitely throwing a party in my mouth.  And well, it must have thrown a better party in the judges' mouths, because it won the "Best Overall".





















Watermelon Salsa. 
You're thinking, "weird combination". 
I did too.
Surprisingly it was a stellar combination! 
Voted, "Most Original".  




 Mediterranean Dip


Texas Caviar
A twist on guacamole.




Spinach Dip 


 Another Guacamole variation. 
With homemade chips.  















Old Family Recipe Dip
The prizes!


Looking forward to another competition between the Soderquist Center and the Business Division.