Sunday, April 15, 2012

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Conchas!!!

Well, the little masks really didn't work out as planned so nix the Teenage Mutant Ninja part and just focus on the TURTLE CONCHAS!!  haha--yum!

This is the recipe I always use when making Conchas-a Mexican Sweetbread found here in Texas everywhere. They are a yeast bread that isn't too sweet with a butter/sugar coating that is baked right on.  The design in the coating is made to look like a conch shell, hence the name Conchas.  I made a few little changes in my Turtles.

I used the McCormick FALL liquid food coloring for my nice dark green "shell".  I also added 1 1/2 teaspoons of Matcha Powder or Green Tea Powder.  Kinda mixing things up here just a little but the coating is really yummy with the Matcha and it is very good for you!!

I followed the above recipe exactly as written.  I've made them before and they've always worked very well for me!  Instead of making just round Conchas, I saw on Pinterest where someone made little turtles and I just had to make some too!  So, here are my little yeasty naked turtles before rising.

Then for the coating, I added the vanilla and the Matcha Powder to the butter, flour, sugar mixture and created the shells.  After mixing your "shell" ingredients together make little balls and flatten in your hand.  Lay on the top of your little turtles.  If you have some left over then gently press the extra pieces evenly among the turtles.  There are little gadgets to create the "perfect" patterns in the coating but I just use a knife and make any shape I want.  Swirls, turtle shell shapes and little squares.

Now let your little guys rest and rise for about 45 minutes before baking them.  See how the design "pops" after the buns have risen?  Yay!!

I had TOO many turtles on my cookie sheet and there was fusing!!  Doesn't change the taste at all and they turned out the perfect texture, density so I've got a happy tummy.  They won't be winning any beauty contests sadly but oh well. 

There is some green on the front of his head from the turtle shell in front of him.  Also, from this angle you can't see his little turtle legs but they are there.  No so purdy, but Oh So YUMMY!!  


Oven Roasted Salsa for 2!

Ever want yummy homemade salsa but not a Gallon of yummy homemade salsa?  Chris is a Pace Picante (Hot) guy so there is never a need to make more than a cup and I rarely ever go to the trouble.  I had 3 Roma tomatoes in the frig today though and they were screaming SALSA!  Since I also had FRESH HEB tortillas, I decided today was the perfect day!  So, here is what you do for a little salsa!

Preheat your oven to Screamin' hot.  The thermastat in mine is trying to decide if it wants to die or not and I am having a heck of time getting a true oven temp reading.  My little hanging thermometer said 450F.  Line a sided cookie sheet with foil.  Cut 3 Roma tomatoes into wedges.  Peel 2 garlic cloves.  Cut and wedge an onion.  Cut and quarter 2-3 jalapenos.  The seeds and veins are what make a pepper hot so toss 'em or leave 'em in, it is up to you.  For mine, I left the seeds in 1.  Drizzle with EVOO and a quick little sprinkle of Kosher Salt.  Pop the tray into the oven and keep an eye on it.  You want the veggies to get some color and soften up but you do NOT want CHAR. 

My garlic cloves were done a good while before the other veggies so really do keep an eye on it.  Your tomatoes will have oozed, keep it, after putting all the other stuff in the blender, pour the juice in. 

I know, dark picture but see the veggies, soft, a little color...just right.  Get your blender out!  Pile the veggies in with the juice from the cookie sheet. 

See, pretty huh?  Now blend!  It is just that easy!  Here's the To Taste part. I put in the juice from half of a medium lime. (Not a huge lime fan) A small amount of fresh cilantro (I AM a HUGE fan but Chris doesn't love it) some Kosher Salt and a little Cumin. Cumin is a personal choice here. I LOVE IT but you don't have to use it at all. TO TASTE. Add a little then taste. It is easy to add more of something and almost impossible to remove it!!!  This stuff will be HOT since you've just taken the ingredients out of the oven.  Let it cool!  You can even put it in the refrigerator.  Your salsa, it's up to you.  I like mine cold.  Even if you like it warm give it a little while for the flavors to marry and get happy with each other.  YUM!!  Serve with chips!  =)

Fresh Oven Roasted Salsa for Two

3 Roma Tomatoes
2 garlic cloves
2-3 Jalapenos (more or less to taste)
1 small onion or 3/4 large onion
fresh cilantro
1/2 a fresh lime
Kosher salt

Monday, April 2, 2012

Flippant Socks! It's That Time of Year Again!

I actually finished these in April of 2011 but never posted about them and they did turn out really cute.  These are called Flip Flop Socks.  WHAT?  You don't wear socks with Flip Flops...Yes, you can!  These are designed to keep that annoying toe thong from rubbing and they do a really good job of keeping the ball of your foot cleaner.  Here is Texas we wear (read I) flip flops all year long and these little guys are just great any time.  This is a FREE Ravelry download if anyone is interested in making a pair.  I used Premier Yarns Serenity Garden in Gems for these on size 2 needles. 

Cookie A Cauchy Socks!! Cookie A Sunshine Socks!! Water to Sky, OK, LOTS of Socks!!

I found a sock pattern book at Half Price Books and couldn't resist.  These are NOT Grace Ennis and there is no colorwork involved.  Lots of exciting texture though!  I do NOT like the way the colors of this variegated yarn pooled but I do like the design and they are nice and stretchy!  The yarn is TLC Baby Multi in Snookie.  Size 1 needles.

These are Cauchy Socks by Cookie A.  All of her sock patterns are interesting!  They look all complicated and intimidating but are actually LOTS of fun!   Here's a link to the Ravelry site but this is not a free pattern.  You can purchase it individually or (cheaper) just get the book!!  =)

These are called Sunshine and only one sock decided to make the trip into the office with me!!  I hope I didn't actually drop it somewhere between home and office to tell you the truth!!  LOL  Again, these are Cookie A from Sock Innovation.  The yarn here is Caron Simply Soft in Mango on size 1 needles.  Link:

These little ankle socks were an experiment at Toe Up construction.  I don't have any issues with the Toe Up part, or even the foot or leg but the toe up heel is totally beyond me.  There is Wrapping and Turning and blowing my mind!!  These are called Toe Up Socks with a Difference and I thought "what the heck?"  Still some wrapping and turning but I muddled through.  Don't look very closely at the heel because I'm sure I didn't do it right!!!  These are a FREE Ravelry download.  If you've never attempted a Toe Up sock then do so sometime.  The really great part about it is you can try your sock on without trying to squeeze your little fat foot between 3 pokey needles, oh wait, MY little fat foot, sorry...
The yarn here is Bernat Baby Jacquards Florals in Pansy on size 1 needles.

These are a lacy patterned "hidden" or "invisible" sock.  I made them using Hobby Lobby's Yarn Bee Snowflake Wool blend in Apple Blossom.  I wish you could see the pattern better because they are really pretty.  These are a FREE Ravelry download as well!  ENJOY!

And last but not least my Grace Ennis Graphic Knitting Patterns Hot Rod #7251 Socks for the Grace Ennis Group on Ravelry's KAL.  SLOW going but there is light at the end of the tunnel!!!  These are FUN!!  And Oh So CUTE!!  

This is where I stand to date.  But below is what the image looks like in case you were wondering!