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Dear Jennifer Beer,

As my most devoted reader, it’s time for my bi-annual blog post! This post is brought to you via Crissy who gave me a copy of the Milk Bar cook book at Christmas and then subsequently had a birthday in August which gave me an excuse to have people over for dinner and serve them this…

ImageWhile you are used to baking insanely complicated things all the time (piecaken comes to mind), this was my first foray into multiple recipe/many hour baked goods.

Altogether this cake is made up of four separate recipes, the confetti crumbs, the vanilla birthday cake, frosting and a milk soak that goes on the cake. The key to the birthday cake flavour is in the secret ingredient of artificial vanilla flavouring and lots of it.

Image

The cake rounds are cut out of a quarter sheet cake and soaked in a milky vanilla solution. Between the cake layers is a layer of crumbs sandwiched between two layers of frosting. The whole cake is built in a contraption of acetate strips wedged into a ring mold. 

I think the whole cake took me about 9 hours from start to finish. I have resorted to a future life where I buy rainbow sprinklImagees in bulk.

 

I am happy to be participating in Foodie Penpals for the first time this month.  Foodie Penpals is a fun program started by Lindsay at The Lean Green Bean to connect foodies (both bloggers and just plain foodies) to exchange some delicious treats once a month.  It gives you the opportunity to connect with some new people, try some yummy things that you may not have ever seen before.

I received an extremely thought package from my with my Foodie Penpal, Lisa, in Calgary. Who sent me a package of savoury and declicious snacks and teas that she loves. If you want to learn more about the program and possibly join, see the information at the bottom of this post.

First to go were the Pop chips. They are super delicious. She also included some whole grain Kashi crackers, trail mix and banana chips from Trader Joes! There are also some prezels, soya nuts and nut/seed bars as well as the tea. My favourite part of the package was this little kitten.

Thank you so much Lisa, it was really great to have you as my first penpal.

The Lean Green Bean

If you are interested in playing along, here are the guidelines.

-On the 5th of every month, you will receive your penpal pairing via email. It will be your responsibility to contact your penpal and get their mailing address and any other information you might need like allergies or dietary restrictions.
-You will have until the 15th of the month to put your box of goodies in the mail. On the last day of the month, you will post about the goodies you received from your penpal!
-The boxes are to be filled with fun foodie things, local food items or even homemade treats! The spending limit is $15. The box must also include something written. This can be anything from a note explaining what’s in the box, to a fun recipe…use your imagination!
-You are responsible for figuring out the best way to ship your items depending on their size and how fragile they are. (Don’t forget about flat rate boxes!)
-Foodie Penpals is open to blog readers as well as bloggers. If you’re a reader and you get paired with a blogger, you are to write a short guest post for your penpal to post on their blog about what you received. If two readers are paired together, neither needs to worry about writing a post for that month.
-Foodie Penplas is open to US & Canadian residents.  Please note, Canadian Residents will be paired with other Canadians only. We’ve determined things might get too slow and backed up if we’re trying to send foods through customs across the border from US to Canada and vice versa. So, I’m going to keep two separate lists and match US w/ US and Canada w/ Canada!

If you’re interested in participating for June please CLICK HERE to fill out the participation form and read the terms and conditions.

You must submit your information by June 4 as pairings will be emailed on June 5!

I received a copy of Christina Tosi’s Milk Bar cookbook in December. So far I’ve made three of the cookie recipes and a scattering of the other recipes throughout the book. This is the fourth time in as many months that I have made the Confetti Cookies. They are perfect.

One of my favourite things about the book is a section at the beginning that explains some of the ingredients and methods and why they are used.

The first time through this recipe I accidentally grabbed cake flour the opposite of the bread flour that the book recommends. This produced a very large flat cookie. Subsequently I made a batch with the bread flour called for and also all purpose as  a test. I found I actually preferred the thinner, flatter version of this cookie.

I would not risk this on the Cornflake marshmallow cookies. I think they would just spread out to much and be ruined but it really seems to work for the confetti cookies.

You can find a copy of the recipe pretty much all over online but better yet I recommend picking up a copy of the book. The recipes are a challenge, definitely but oh so worthwhile!

 

Mostly due to Pinterest, I’ve been discovering so many new and beautiful food blogs. As a result, many of the things I’ve been cooking lately have been recipes from these bloggers. Now that the weather is beautiful and we can eat outside (and there is light enough for photos) I thought I should attempt to keep a record of what I’ve been making and also to keep the recipes travelling around the internet.

Tonight I tackled Greek Turkey Burger and Tzatziki from the Novice Chef. The burger was adapted from: Erin’s Food Files originally from Picky Palate and the recipe for the tzatziki is a Novice Chef Blog original.

I followed the recipes almost exactly except that I could not find ground turkey anywhere and had to settle for chicken. Even with the less flavourful chicken and the burgers being over cooked (faulty meat thermometer. Grr) they were still delicious. I served the burgers with a side of a cold wild and brown rice salad with a red wine vinegarette.

Hi Jennifer Beer!

Pink is my favourite flavour

cupcakes! delicious!

Easter can be for athiests too, at least if you are looking for an excuse to bake cupcakes!

pre-baking
Blue Cupcake

A bird laid some eggs on this one.

yum

yum

10:59pm Erin

it would be unwise of me to buy a case of astronaut ice cream off of ebay, wouldn’t it?

11:01pm Sarah

Do you know where it’s been?

11:02pm Erin

does it matter? It’s freeze dried and vacuum sealed and all mint chocolatey chip goodness.

11:04pm Sarah

You are totally going to do it, aren’t you?

11:08pm Erin

it’s $40 that could probably be better spent elsewhere. Still it’s 20 packages, so really, kind of a deal actually.

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