Monday, February 18, 2013

Icing on the Apron

After eating some heavenly cake, 
Mom gave me this 1945 brochure to take home.

I don't normally publish recipes, but if the cookbook is out of print, I'll make an exception.

Here is the frosting recipe that my sister sent to me:

I discovered a new white fluffy frosting recipe in an old version of Joy of Cooking. I’ve made it twice so far and it’s just great. Better than the filling on the inside of a twinkie. It even stays soft for days and doesn’t get crusty like 7 minute frosting. Gotta have a candy thermometer. It’s fairly quick recipe and super yummy!

In a heavy pan, stir till dissolved:
½ cup water
¼ t cream of tartar
1 cup sugar

When boiling, cover and cook 3 minutes. Uncover and cook till 238-240 degrees (soft ball stage).

In an aluminum bowl, beat 3 egg whites till fluffy, about 5 minutes. While beating constantly, very gradually pour in the hot sugar mixture. The hot sugar will cook the egg whites. Beat until cool and ready to spread.

Normally I would suggest using the Kitchenaid mixer since you have to beat the eggs so long, but the bowl my mixer had was too pointy, and the 1 mixer attachment wasn’t good enough to mix in the molten sugar water and some of the molten sugar went straight to the bottom and didn’t mix into the meringue. I recommend using a regular hand mixer with 2 beaters and slowly dribbling the hot sugar water on or near the beaters. I had to do it slowly as my wrist got tired from holding the pan while pouring the hot stuff. Works best with 2 people – one to dribble and one to mix. To frost cupcakes, I just dunked them right in the frosting and made curlycues. 

Give it a try! -Sally

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Marjorie vs. Betty Cream Wafers, Round 2

Betty Crocker sent out a tweet with their recipe for Cream Wafers.
Hmmm. Did Betty get their recipe from Marjorie Johnson? Or visa versa?  
Nearly identical. I didn't have heavy cream, so I used half&half. 
Worked fine but I'm sure heavy is better!
In the frosting I used almond flavor instead of vanilla. 
See my earlier attempt for other rolling and frosting tips.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

I think I need a Margareta!

A November trip to IKEA yielded this cool piece of fabric.
It's called Margareta. But what to do with it? I went to Pinterest for inspiration. I saw that Apartment Therapy had just written a post on it. 
Some had attached it to a board or made a rod pocket to hang it from. I decided just to pin it to the textured wallpaper in my entryway. I smoothed it with an iron.
 I liked the exposed salvage edge.
But what to decorate it with?
I used the biggest circle paper punch I had. If you turned it upside-down, you could position it just right.
Cards and photos printed on heavier papers got stuck in my cutter. 
This is a sticker i found on the back of an envelope.
Many cards have tiny art on the back side.
I also cropped out signatures, too. Some are from relatives that are no longer with us. Now how should I attach to the tree?
I decided to make a crocheted garland. I punched holes and found some green yarn to use.  It's just a simple chain stitch. Chain 8, add a circle with a double crochet, chain 8. Repeat. I tried 10 stitches but that was too spacey.
Here is my first test. Dang...half of the circles are backward! Good thing I caught that early. 
Here's another attempt:
You can see it's still not right. But their position on the branches is right and I now have the correct counts for adding circles (except for the last 2 rows).  
When you start your chain, you add 6 circles right side up(?), and then you have to add the next set upside down(?) so it all faces up. Knitting or crocheting is not really my thing, so consult better sources if you need instructions.
By now it was after New Year's. For the 3rd time, I unraveled it all and stuck my yarn, circles and numbered sketch in a Ziploc till next year. 

So now it's February. Or FebruANY? Most of the decorations inside of our house are put away. The bear and penguin? Still outside. That's wintry. If it were a baby Jesus scene, that would be different. 
MARGARETA was still bare and needed a new look:
These are hearts I made in the 90s from an unfinished quilt top my grandma had made that didn't lie flat.
Just sandwich hearts with batting and hand stitch around the edges. The less perfect the better. Add some bent wire for hanging. I used to give them away for teacher's gifts. The kids would write a message on the back.
Happy Valentine's Day!

PS So how long did this project take? I'd say 15 years and 5 minutes to hang the hearts.