Thursday, October 30, 2014

Carrot Cake & Cream Cheese Frosting--for any occasion!

Okay, so I know I gave you a little tease on the media for socials last night. And I'm okay with that.

I was baking for a coworker's baby shower and I thought, "Why not share this recipe with your readers?" So, that's exactly what I'm going to do.

**confession...I'm not so good at taking photos of the ingredients and process. Sorry!**

So although I do have a sparse amount of photos, they'll have to suffice.

And without further delay, I present to you:

Grandma Sharon's Delicious Carrot Cake Cupcakes
(She usually makes a giant pan of cake/bars...but I like frosting cupcakes more.)

6 eggs, beaten 
2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
2 cups flour
1 cup coconut
6 cups carrots, shredded *Mine were frozen--I thawed them and they added more liquid to the batter*
1 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda

Grandma's directions say to beat 6 eggs for a minute or so. I had them in the Kitchen Aid* for 2-3 minutes--I think the cupcakes ended up a little more fluffy that way. Then, add the sugar and beat for another 2 minutes (or until all mixed together). While your Kitchen Aid* is mixing the eggs and sugar together, mix your dry ingredients in a separate bowl. (save your carrots for a little later) After your dry ingredients are all mixed together, alternate adding the oil and dry ingredients to your eggar (that's eggs and sugar mixed together) mixture. After everything is all mixed in, add your 6 cups of carrots. If you're using frozen, shredded carrots and your batter is too runny--don't panic! It's okay. Mine was that way too. It will set as it bakes.

"Bake at 350 degrees until done"
Honest, that's what the recipe says! But mine were done in about 25 minutes.

So I wasn't sure how many cupcakes I would end up with...I was hoping for 2 dozen.





*Sorry for the low quality photos...I'll work on that* 

3 dozen cupcakes later and this is the final product:


Cream Cheese Frosting:

1 package of cream cheese
1 stick of butter
powdered sugar
vanilla extract


I was doing some reading about cream cheese frosting yesterday. So when it was time to make the frosting for these cupcakes, I was prepared. Check out Joy the Baker's Cream Cheese Frosting 101. Love her.

So, per her instructions I let my cream cheese and butter sit out so it wouldn't curdle. Then, I pretty much did my own thing.

I whipped the cream cheese for a few minutes in my Kitchen Aid*. I then added the butter and whipped it real good. Anyone?

As for the vanilla, I probably only added 1/2 teaspoon. I'm too spacey to buy white vanilla when I'm prepping for a bake-a-thon, so normal Mexico vanilla was my weapon of choice.

And the powdered sugar...here's the thing. Look back to Grandma's directions for baking..."until done"... I'm kind of the same way. I just added powdered sugar until it was creamy and sweet enough, but not too sweet. Sorry for those of you who need a specific number!
PS. I doubled the frosting recipe for the cupcakes. I couldn't risk running out!

I then piped the frosting on top of the cupcakes and took a break from being a housewife. It's tough work, I tell ya! If you want to take the really fancy route, add a few edible pearls and all will be right with the world.

*A Kitchen Aid isn't necessary...a hand blender would work...so would your good old arm power.*

As always, if you try out a recipe, please let me know how it turns out. I love to hear variations on recipes. Enjoy!


Monday, October 27, 2014

A favorite coming your way!

Alright, I took a look at my recipe page last night and it looked awfully sparse. So I decided that today I would share our plans for supper with you.

Unfortunately the mr. is not feeling well tonight, so he'll be out on both times we've had this meal. But my brother loved it last time. It's a wonderful comfort food.

Tonight I'm making Kentucky Hot Brown Bake. I found it online around 6 months ago, pinned it, and there it sat. Until September.

Now it's October and we're having it again. Winning in the Entzel house!

Click on the link above to see the original recipe. Below, I'll share how I made it last time and how I'll make it again tonight.

**If you read this post before I make supper tonight, stay tuned for photos.**

Ingredient list:
• 1 tube crescent rolls
• 1/2 lb turkey deli meat
• Pepperoni (as much as you'd like to layer--we like pepperoni in our house)
• 8 slices Provolone cheese
• 4 Roma tomatoes, sliced thin (I used 2 tomatoes per layer)
• 4 eggs, beaten (When preparing the eggs, I whipped up two at a time so I wouldn't over-use and run out)
• a pinch of oregano

Directions:
1. Unroll the crescent dough and separate into 2 squares
2. Place one square in bottom of 8" pan that is greased or lined with parchment paper
     I really liked the parchment paper method--easier clean up!
3. Press 1 dough square to fit pan
4. Layer with half the turkey, pepperoni, cheese and tomatoes
5. Pour half the eggs over the top.
6. Repeat the layers.
7. Top with remaining dough square.
8. Pour remaining eggs over top.
9. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, covered with foil.
10. Remove foil and bake for another 20-25 minutes.
11. Let sit at room temperature for 15-20 minutes before serving.

**We served it with marinara sauce for those who aren't fond of straight tomatoes.


-If you try this recipe and use a different variation, I'd love to hear how it turned out!



Sunday, October 26, 2014

A Contest

I was thinking on my way to work this morning...a dangerous activity since I hadn't yet had my coffee.

But as I was thinking, I was trying to decide what I wanted to write about today. There are so many things. You may have read my post about our most recent house hunting developments. And you may have decided that I was suuuupppeeerrrrr boring interesting, so you'd come back! Well...welcome. And here's what I schemed up for today.

A few weeks ago I had my students write 5-7 pet peeves on a post-it note. I then wrote them on the board in a random order. They then had to guess which pet peeve belonged to each of their classmates. So I thought I'd give you that same opportunity today...or similar.

I've thought up five...not seven...of my real pet peeves and two (totaling seven) fake pet peeves. Can you figure out which ones are the fakes?

A prize to the first reader who guesses correctly!

1. I get annoyed with people who DO.NOT.CARE. about moving forward in life. Are you reading to learn something new? Are you thinking about life differently? Are you appreciating what you've been blessed with? Are you trying to make the world a better place? Are you trying to make yourself better in some way?

2. I dislike when people chew with their mouths open. Gross. Flying food? Bleck.

3. I hate clashing colors. Really? Those pants with that top?

4. People who DON'T use their blinkers. Enough said.

5. Crunchy leaves.

6. Smelly people who don't shower and you can tell.

7. When I realize how attached to my phone I am.


So...now it's your turn! Let's see how well you do!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

A House Hunting Update

Well, what can I say?

We've looked.
We've loved.
We've offered.
We've negotiated.
and negotiated.
Ultimately,
We've lost.

And you know what I say about that?

Bring it on.

For reals, though. Even though we loved the house we put an offer in on, we know God's in control. Clearly, (as hard as it is to recognize and move on) that's not the house He has in mind for us. And while I struggled with that (for quite a while), I've come to accept that fact. Not only accept that we now are looking for the house for us, but rejoice for our friends.

You've gotta be thinking, "Say what?!"

Yep. Some of our good friends had their offer (for the same house we wanted) accepted! So even though we won't be living in that house, we still get to visit. :) And maybe our children can play together one day. (No we don't have children, nor will we in the near--10 months-ish--future) But one day!

Now, we're back to square one. Finding a house we love that suits our needs. And ultimately, finding the house that God has for us. It'll just take a little patience.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Can you smell it?

I can smell it. Change is coming.

Fall Break.

Dun dun dun.

Mere hours separate us from Fall Break. Here we go, By the Numbers.

1 more sleep.
2 classes I will have.
3 times I'll eat.
4 times I'll recheck my suitcase.
5 times I'll check my school mail.
6 students to see.
8 times I'll go to the bathroom
10 times I'll check my email.
12 times I'll push "Snooze".
15 times I wish I were sleeping.
18 assignments to grade.
19 hours until we are (hopefully) on the road.

I can't wait.



Thursday, October 9, 2014

Help! What should we do?

Okay okay okay. I know you've been dying to know how our House Hunting, but I'm sorry to tell you--"You'll have to wait a little longer..." I know, I know...the suspense is killing you.

BUT! I do have some exciting news! Aubrey, over at Be.Do.Say.Go (in Bangkok), and I are contemplating a new challenge for the new year.

STOP.RIGHT.THERE.

I know what you're thinking, "But for real...it's not even winter yet...don't talk about 2015 yet."

But hold on to your horses. We are wanting to start a blog book club. Sweet Bonnie, over at The Life of Bon, has a virtual book club. You can check it out here. It's pretty great.

I tried to join in last month...and I really fell behind. So, Aubrey and I were thinking we'd trade off months of hosting. 

So, this post is a cry for help from YOU! Yes, my dear readers. You can help us. Please send us one (or five) books you were supposed to read in High School, but never did. You can comment below, give us a shout-out on twitter (see my sidebar to follow me), a tag on Instagram (again...see sidebar), or even on the good ole Book of Faces. Hit us up. Let us know what you "read" in High School (I put read in quotations because your teacher thought you read the book, but you really didn't. Sorry Laurie,  Mary, & Patty!) and we will post a list in the next few months (before Jan.1, scouts honor) so you can join along.

Whew! That was a rough paragraph. My apologies. So...now that I've bored inspired you to think back to High School, good luck!

And don't forget to contact us, PLEASE! I really do love hearing from you! 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Summer...is it too soon?

I know, I know, I know...it's only fall. But as we've been house hunting, I've been looking forward to next summer. I REALLY want a garden next summer. I also just REALLY want a house. So...this is my list of things I'm looking forward to about next summer. By the Numbers.


Hydrangeas are some of my favorites!

--a garden

--spending time at a lake

--going to Duluth

--seeing family in Denver

There are so many things I want to do next summer. I'm hoping that we'll be able to do all of these things. But more than anything, I'd love to make more salsa, jelly, and apple butter!


I'll add updates as necessary. Have a happy Monday tomorrow!



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