While Visions of Sugar Plums Danced. . .

While Visions of Sugar Plums Danced. . .

Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year Feast

Kim Chee

Meat Pies

Pecan Pie
Potato Cakes

Some photos from our feast last year~

Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas Sun Bread

Christmas Sun Bread, originally uploaded by m.gifford.

The nice thing about these breads is the variety of things you can do with the dough.

Here is the note that goes with this bread:

"Swedish/Norwegan Yule Kaka. I started with this Christmas bread recipe. I don't like raisins though so I used chopped up apricots. I was also cooking this for my sister's party so I used rice milk rather than the milk and some extra water, oil & baking powder for the egg replacement. As I remembered the bread was fun to make, and it was certainly eaten up quickly at the party. Pretty good for a holiday vegan bread."

Christmas braided bread

Christmas braided bread, originally uploaded by goodlookingcorgi.

An interesting "twist" to the braided loaf~

The photographer says:

"For some reason my family stopped in a bakery before Christmas. We saw colored braided bread and got it out of curiosity. To our disappointment, the different colors didn't have different flavors;; it's just food coloring. Pretty good bread still."

Cranberry and Walnut Celebration Bread

Another pretty loaf.

Photo note and book suggestion:

"My friend Cheryl gave me a copy of the Breadbaker's Apprentice book from Ten Speed. They had a great formula for a holiday bread. It was perfect."

Чесница/Christmas bread

Чесница/Christmas bread, originally uploaded by Pelagija.

I need to make a few loaves of bread for our Christmas Eve services, and I'm now looking for just the right recipe. This is a gorgeous loaf, and I'm thinking I may stick with the traditional round shape. I'm intrigued with the pattern!

Photo note:

"This is my Chrismas bread (Чесница). I rushed it a bit (and kept telling my kids you can't rush baking) but it turned out very crusty and tasty."

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Knitting gingerbread man

Knitting gingerbread man, originally uploaded by iknitlondon.

I couldn't resist!

Someone was having fun~

Doggie themed Christmas gingerbread house, base had dog bones encircling it.

Okay! This is the last one!


"Another gingerbread house from Circlefest, there were tons of them... each one cuter than the next."

It was just to cute to pass up~

Gingerbread Houses

Gingerbread Houses 5, originally uploaded by aka_banan.

Just one more. . .

Photo note:

"Each year we go to the Sheraton Hotel downtown Seattle to see the Gingerbread houses designed by local architects and built by local chefs. Quite fun!"

2008 National Gingerbread House Competition - Grove Park Inn


Photo note:

"2008 National Gingerbread House Competition at Grove Park Inn in Asheville, NC

Mary Beth has made Gingerbread Houses for 50 years. She is adorable.


2008 National Gingerbread House Competition - Grove Park Inn

I'm in awe. This gingerbread house is amazing - what I can see of it.

Photo note:

"2008 National Gingerbread House Competition at Grove Park Inn in Asheville, NC


Gingerbread House

Gingerbread House, originally uploaded by organicpixel.

This gingerbread house is so wonderfully colorful~


"One of Miranda's Birthday activities; assembling and decorating a gingerbread house."

Christmas Craft Festival Gingerbread House Competition

Photo note:

"This weekend is the big gingerbread house competition I photo nearly every year. As those seem to be some of my most popular photos, I thought this might get folks excited! ~.^ If I'd thought, I would've reminded people sooner in case anyone nearby could go! >.<>

Gingerbread Houses - Seattle City Scape

Close to home!

Photographer's note:

"At work, they gathered up all the Gingerbread Houses that the teams did and placed them in a conference room. It looks like a Seattle city scape done in food and candy all spread out on a conference table.

Click here for my Blog."

Favorite Gingerbread House

Favorite Gingerbread House, originally uploaded by Flower Child.

Wow--they just keep getting more and more interesting.

Here's the note on this gingerbread house:

"Walking to Skytrain, Bob and I noticed the Hyatt displaying Gingerbread Houses. There were so many, and in so many different styles and themes. This is my favorite, and I have included side views and interior views as well."

Alaska (Gingerbread) House

Alaska House, originally uploaded by Angela Wagner.

This is cool! Having just been in Alaska, it's very fun to see this.

Photo note:

"Gingerbread House contest, Grove Park Inn 2007"

Gingerbread House * under glass

Photo note:

This house is "blogged here:

Gingerbread houses Nov 29 2008 027

Photo note:

"Just a Wilton kit----did the piping first, before it was assembled. Piping inspired by Oasis Arts in the Gingerbread House Showcase. Hers is just beautiful!"

Gingerbread house

Gingerbread house, originally uploaded by ineedathis.

Looking at these gingerbread houses makes me think of the Lego conventions my son and I have attended - so much variety!

Photo note:

"2003 Gingerbread house, the candy cane posts are 14" high, all the figures made with gum paste, the little posts have lights in them, I made about 6 years ago and used it every year, that is the only ornament I ever kept was made from royal Icing,"

Gingerbread House - Woodcutter's Cabin

This is very cute, and I love the pretzel fence.

Photo note:

"Another woodcutter's cabin. There are a few non-edible things on this gingerbread house. Can you find them?"

Gingerbread House 2008

Wow! I can't see the gingerbread! This is amazing. . .

Photo note:

"I had so much more planned for this gingerbread house but ran out of time. This year I thought it would be neat to put it on a lazy susan so it would spin, which is why there are handles. It won the people's choice award! Yay!"

My first Gingerbread House

This is the time of year to create the gingerbread house. Maybe from a store-bought kit, and maybe you make your gingerbread from scratch. In any case, it can be a fun activity to do yourself, with friends, or your kids.

Photo note for this gingerbread house:

"EXPLORED on September 18, 2006

Last night I finished decorating the Gingerbread House. Not bad for a first time."

Not bad at all!

christmas cookies 041

christmas cookies 041, originally uploaded by hello naomi.

Very elegant, very pretty. Holiday Cookies~

christmas rolo cookies.

christmas rolo cookies., originally uploaded by Chri*C.

I'm a sucker for details, and these cookies look great. Just look at the sharpness of the sugar crystals. . . very tasty.

Photo note:

"These are the best damn cookies ever!!!

Each cookie has a rolo rolled into the center, and then I roll them in sugar before going into the oven. MMMMMM. So yummy!"

Doesn't that sound excellent?

christmas cookies

christmas cookies, originally uploaded by Lilly Bean Play Food.

How fun! And very low in calories.

Photo note:

"These felt Christmas Cookies are avaliable at my webstore www.lillybeanmarket.com around Christmas time!"

christmas lined cookies

christmas lined cookies, originally uploaded by UniqueCookie.

These are quite lovely, too.

Photo note:

"White lined chocolate christmas cookies"

Nice detailed work, and these cookies would look beautiful on a party table, or as special gifts.

chocolate christmas pudding cookies

Don't these look great? There's a note and link to go with:

Recipe here: Triple Chocolate Christmas Pudding Cookies

Monday, December 14, 2009

Blueberry Breakfast Smoothie

From D's "Healthy Livin’ Kitchen":

I asked my friend, D, to share with me some of the healthful things she, as a diabetic, likes to make that are not too over-loaded with carbs. And this one looks very good!

Blueberry Breakfast Smoothie

1 c. Coconut Kefir
1 c. Frozen Blueberries
1 Banana
1 pkt. Vanilla Whey Protein

Blend until smooth.

Monday Cup

Cuppa Joe, originally uploaded by wme133.

A sweet little art piece for this Monday's Cup of Java.

Artist's note:

"More torn paper painting. I'm starting to think that this may be my favorite style of collage work.
This is my first attempt at something other than a cupcake."

I think it turned out well~

Friday, December 11, 2009

Italian Wedding Soup (Escarole Soup)

The photographer says:

"Check out our food blog: www.weareneverfull.com

Check our post and recipe out at: www.weareneverfull.com/you-dont-have-to-be-italian-or-at-..."

Turkey Soup, Wedding Soup: a Facebook Conversation

My status: " __________wants to make Wedding Soup. Marianna had some at the Poulsbohemian the other day, and it was damn good."

M said:
"On the F after Thanksgiving, Dolly's cousin Alice decided to invent soup with the turkey carcass. Onions, garlic, carrots, celery, carcass, water... add turkey meat... add teeny turkey meatballs she invented (ground turkey, egg, ground parmesan cheese) plus 1 pkg frozen spinach. Ooh! Serve with large homemade garlic crouton cubes and more parm. Double ooh!"

To which I replied, "Ooh, I like the addition of the turkey meatballs. The rest of the soup sounds like the one I do. It's different every time, sometimes with noodles. The best turkey soup I ever made was on the wood stove years ago. . ."

D said, "what is wedding soup?"

I looked it up. So far I've found Italian Wedding Soup, Shotgun Wedding Soup, Greek Wedding Soup. . . I'm going back to the Poulsbohemian today (in Poulsbo, WA), to see what Marianna has for soup. There are always two kinds. . . and when I find out which kind of Wedding soup she had last Friday, I'll let you know.

Meanwhile, if you have a little turkey left over. . . try making your soup over the wood stove. Mmmm...

Monday, December 7, 2009

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays!, originally uploaded by Lara Ferroni.

Mmmm. . .

Photo note and link:

"Linzer cookie recipe on Cook & Eat"

Viennese Hazelnut Crescent Holiday Cookies

Seeing this photo brings me back to when I was in grade school, my own Viennese grandmother making almond crescents for my 3rd grade class, almost 40 years ago. . .

Photographer's note and links:

"My favorite cookie I made this year. It melted in your mouth and was light. Although a bit of work to make, well worth it!

Candy Cookies

Candy Cookies, originally uploaded by Whipped Bakeshop.

These cookies are amazing!

Photographer's note:

"Sweet candy-shaped cookies in fun patterns - a delicious part of my holiday Sugarplum Cookie Series!"

Holiday Party Cookies

Holiday Party Cookies, originally uploaded by erincooks.

These cookies look fabulous, too.

This baker/photographer tells us:

"Blogged at: erincooks.com/2008/12/04/holiday-party-cookies/

Holiday Cookies

Holiday Cookies, originally uploaded by Up Late Cakes.

These look tasty, and great for a holiday plate.

Photo note:

"These are some of the cookies I made for family, teachers and my husband. I also made a few dozen Earl Grey Tea cookies but he and his business associates ate ALL of them in one day!

I made:

Martha's Checkerboard Cookies
Martha's Snickerdoodles
Martha's Citrus Cornmeal Shortbread
Martha's Gingerbread Snowflakes
Martha's Earl Grey Tea Cookies "

Monday Cup

Caramel Hazelnut Latte, originally uploaded by KelvinSnaps.

"Caramel Hazelnut Latte

Outside Italy, a latte is typically prepared with approximately one third espresso and two-thirds steamed milk, with a layer of foamed milk approximately one quarter inch thick on the top.

The drink is similar to a cappuccino; the difference being that a cappuccino has half the amount of milk."

cow print cupcakes

cow print cupcakes, originally uploaded by Love to Cake.

What a kick!


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Soup Week: Tuesday

Soup Week: Tuesday, originally uploaded by Michael Bojkowski.

Photographer's note:

"Spicy Tomato & Meatball with a Garlic Baguette and it was lush."

Another Monday morning started with a good cup of cappuccino~

Photo note:

"It's gonna be a long day!
Happy Monday! :)"

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


I couldn't resist posting this photo. Great!

Photo note:

"Turkey cake made for Thanksgiving. www.KakeBakery.com"

How Do You Like To Cook Your Turkey?

Well, here we are. It's less than 24 hrs. before the big day. Do you have your turkey yet?

It's an away-day for us tomorrow. We're heading to my sister-in-law's place for Thanksgiving, and are now making plans for what to bring. They provide the turkey, and it is always good. Sometimes, feeling deprived by not having turkey left-overs here at home, I will make another dinner a day or two after the fact. And when I do, I have to think about what I'm going to do with it.

My usual method is to bake the turkey breast-side-down. Something I learned many years ago from a friend who cooks her chicken that way. During the last 30 minutes or so, turn the bird again, breast-side-up this time, to brown. This method, while far from looking like the cover of Saturday Evening Post, ensures moist white meat, for those like me who love that best. Throughout, I'll baste with a combo of butter and olive oil.

So, I'm curious - what is your favorite tried-and-true method for cooking your Thanksgiving turkey? Let me know, and I'll share it here~

Thank you for visiting, and enjoy your day!

4 Thanksgiving Turkeys by Mother and Son!

Photo note:

"This was a total thrill for me. I cooked this turkey (bottom left corner) per my son's directions. He cooked the other three at his mother-in-law's home where we all met for Thanksgiving dinner this year. Since my oldest son is a gourmet chef (and an executive manager as well) I was happy to have this opportunity to to have HIS guidance, ha ha!

I used to be a "brown paper bag" person for roasting my turkeys, since I wanted to make sure they stayed juicy. But I'm sold on his method. He slathers his turkey with a mix of softened butter mixed with mayonaise and you roast it uncovered. The picture at the top left is his smoked turkey, freshly drained from the brine. The turkey at the top right is being checked for a perfect temperature before he decided this one and the one below it were done.

If you really like to see cooking photos, you may enjoy seeing the original size version uploaded. There are notes added to this image, for those who really want details. And yes, it was a very happy Thanksgiving for our family this year!"

Wild Turkey

Wild Turkey, originally uploaded by amkhosla.

Photo note:

"Bill and I spent a fruitless day yesterday taking bad pictures of great birds (black-headed grosbeak, pacific slope flycatcher, missing wilsons warbler). So this turkey and his one female mate gave us a respite from chasing birds that were 100 feet directly above moving every 3 seconds.

Got to love turkeys. They just sit there and look magnificent."

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

sweet potato balls

sweet potato balls, originally uploaded by boo_licious.

Fried sweet potato balls

"Taste like getuk ubi but crunchy on the outside. i sprinkled with oat to add crunchiness."

sweet potato balls

sweet potato balls, originally uploaded by celestialkiddy.


Saturday, November 21, 2009

Twilight Cake

Twilight Cake, originally uploaded by ❀ℓєтιzια❀.

Just one more!

Twilight Cake

Friday, November 20, 2009

Vampire & Werewolf cupcakes

Vampire & Werewolf cupcakes, originally uploaded by Sevenmarie.

Photo note

"Made for snacks for tonight's bible study because a couple of us are ridiculously excited for New Moon. We don't really understand why we are, we just ARE!

24 white and chocolate cupcakes (white for vampire, chocolate for werewolf) made from a white cake mix--box of chocolate pudding mix was added to make the chocolate ones.

Vampire cupcakes have pureed cherry pie filling and butter cream frosting. Idea is from bakingbites.com/2007/10/vampire-cupcakes

Werewolves have butter cream filling and milk chocolate frosting (canned) and marshmallows for snouts. Idea is from the book "Hello Cupcake!"

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