Wednesday, August 9

Ode to Louis

My dad calls my husband and I D.I.N.Ks (double income no kids) and that's his nice way of saying that we've got nothing better to spend our money on except what we want. Well that's the funny part, we'll spend money on the house, the travel, we like to eat out and we drink too much good wine. BUT what we don't do is buy things because of the label or trend. That all came to an end this weekend, you see hubby went to Vegas and got momma a Louis. I've never had one, in fact, I've never been in the store.

No matter how good it feels let me tell you, it was the most uncomfortable I've felt shopping EVER. I felt when I walked in that suddenly, everything on my being wasn't good enough. And I had some sales person, talking to me about how personal Louis Vuitton bags are and how there's one for every personality. My internal dialogue is that they all sorta look the same?

That didn't stop me though, I got over that really quick and finally decided on this one, my new little baby, Louis.

Funny, I always thought my first baby's name would be John?

Tuesday, August 8

Ransom for a penguin

I need your help! This little guy is part of a training guide re-write, re-style we've been working on. You see, I haven't always had a passion for penguins. I mean I don't wish the little guys any harm, but I'm not part of any penguin activist group. That was until the creative services team at my company created this guy and mi corazon derritio.

Brainy penguin was the first one and to show my appreciation, sacrificed doing my laundry to make cinnamon cupcakes, freaking Martha Stewart cinnamon cupcakes. That's not easy people. She turns her damn cupcakes every 10 minutes in the oven so they cook evenly.

So now it's time that I need another penguin, I wanted one to put next to exercises the students would use to learn about our products. Look at what they came up with, I mean seriously, with his little stubby worthless wings just flapping away.

Here's the ransom part. I get a note on Monday at work that says that if I want to see more penguins I have to deliver brownies. Not just any brownies, but ones without nuts or any other junk. Just good old fashion brownies.

I did it...I made them freaking brownies to feed my sick-sick penguin addiction.


Monday, August 7

Willkommen KirschTorte

I'm actually learning a lot in this little venture of mine. I had a German cookbook I bought off the sale rack at Barnes and Noble for $6.99 and had a great forward that explained a lot of the agriculture in the region and what types of foods are staples in the recipe that caught my eye was the KirschTorte (kirsch= cherry and torte=cake). It looked like it had potential- chocolate, cherries and vanilla whipped cream.

Now that I knew where I wanted to start, I went searching for different recipe's to find the right combination. I came across one at, Andrea's Recipe Box, and what a coincidence is that she made one earlier this past week.

But my searching wasn't over, I had to find black cherries and I wasn't hopeful. When I was doing my staples run at Safeway, I found a jar of cherry pie filling to have just in case I couldn't find the right variety. I knew that if I was to have any luck, I'd have to go to my favorite overpriced gourmet grocery store, AJs.

Jackpot, you wouldn't believe what was on display when I walked in, freshly imported jars of black cherries! Can you believe my luck?

I got to cooking following Andrea's recipe and it took a lot of concentration. There were phases and steps and this before that and not this before that. Oy! The recipe calls for cooking one cake and cutting the cake into layers. I picked up a tip from our friend Martha. She says that if you place toothpicks around the cake, that will help guide your cutting. No more lopsided layers.

So the cake isn't as dense as a pound cake and isn't as light as a regular sheet cake, it's somewhere in the middle, you could call it a mittletorte (mittle= middle). The cake is actually quite pretty with the whipped frosting and chocolate shavings. I didn't take time to create the same decorative edge Andrea did and I didn't reserve cherries to garnish the rim. I'm not that advanced. It's hard enough for me to just get the steps in order!

Now that I got the most important part of dinner out of the way, I cooked a main dish, it was a leg of lamb with a gherkin sauce (gherkin= pickle). That sauce, it didn't look too appetizing, I must admit. Have you ever sauteed pickles, mixed in flour and then added broth? It made this lighter than mustard yellow gravy. Don't let looks deceive you, it was actually very good.

I had all this ready on queue for when my husband came home from a "conference" in Las Vegas. I must say, this "conference" really worked out for me, look what he brought home!!! It's my first Louis!