Saturday, January 29, 2011

Chocolate Chunk Pizza Cookie

Been avoiding baking calorie-laden snacks lately for fear of tempting myself...but with four kids still on vacation, a mom's got to give in sometime, right?

Enjoy this chocolate chip cookie with a's like pizza!

CHOCOLATE CHUNK PIZZA COOKIE (recipe adapted from Good Housekeeping)

1 cup plain flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter, melted
1/3 cup white sugar
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks (I used a combination of dark and white chocolate chips)
1/2 cup cashew nuts or walnuts, coarsely chopped

1.  Preheat oven to 190 deg C / 375 deg F.  Grease or line a baking sheet.
2.  In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt.
3.  In a separate bowl, combine melted butter, sugars, vanilla and egg. Mix in the flour mixture, chocolate chunks and nuts.
4.  Place the mixture at the center of the baking sheet.  Flatten and spread into an 8-inch circle using a spatula.
5.  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until cooke is golden brown along the edges.  Cool for 5 minutes then slice.

Crunchy edges, chewy center!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Baby bib crazy

As soon as I learned I was going to a baby shower next week, I was excited. Not quite excited for the shower itself, but rather, for the prospect of handmaking something. There were tons of projects to choose from...burp cloths, receiving blankets, baby washers, diaper pouch, changing pad, nappy bag, nursing cover. The wisest choice in the end though was baby bibs. Having everything already on hand - assorted printed fabrics, cotton towelling, flannel, snaps - meant no new expense. Perfect.

I downloaded the small bib pattern from here. My initial plan was to make 5 bibs. Then I added one more...and then another....and then I just had to make it 10.

You can never have too many bibs anyway, can you?

These were addicting to make. So fun and easy!

I added a flannel middle layer and used cotton towelling for the backing for extra thickness and absorbency.

Of the ten, my favourites are these 2...

Made from Moda charm squares (PURE by Sweetwater and It's a Hoot by MoMo) and natural linen.

I especially adore this one because it aptly describes what babies are...

Pure and simple...pure happiness...pure laughter...pure joy...pure excitement...pure bliss...pure love...pure grace...

I enjoy making baby stuff cause I never got to make anything for my kids when they were newborns. I didn't have the resources then. I really wish I did.

So now that I have most things within my reach, I am more than happy to jump at every opportunity to sew up anything for a baby. Hmm...I just might make something else before the baby shower.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


I wish I could have done a better job.  After all, this cake was for my eldest son. 

Francis turned 17 today.  I decided to make a basketball-themed cake for him since basketball is his favourite sport and it is the sport he plays.  Last year's one was an Orlando Magic cake.  This year, I wanted him to be the "star" of the cake. 

Basketball-themed birthday cake
That's him with the #6 jersey he wears for his local basketball club.

The gumpaste centerpiece was all right.  More than just all right in fact.  It wasn't the problem.  My problem was the chocolate frosting.  It was too soft and it curdled.  I am not sure if I didn't beat it enough or if I beat it too much. 

My idea was for the top of the cake to look like a basketball and the sides like a basketball ring (with net).  But because of difficulties with piping, I ended up making a mess and had to cover up my mistakes with stars. Not at all how I originally planned it.

Basketball-themed birthday cake

Oh well.  It still tasted good despite.  We still enjoyed it. 

Happy birthday, Francis!

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Errand Clutch

Didn't expect me to be back so soon, did you?  Even I suprised myself!

I tried my pouch again today.  And...I am happy to say that this time, it turned out just as I had envisioned it. 

I love this fabric!  It's even much more beautiful in person.

Looks small but is actually quite roomy.  The flex frame closure will keep everything secure inside.

The bottom is darted rather than boxed.

I think I got it right with this one...from the shape down to the size.  Just right for bringing along keys, mobile phone, driver's license and some cash for those quick trips.

Now, to work on my pattern...I think I'm going to call this my Errand Clutch.  Be back with that soon!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Where has the sewing mojo gone?

I promised myself I wouldn't be posting again until I come up with a new sewing project.   I have really been wanting to find some use for a bunch of flex frames I had.  I was hoping today would be the day I would do just that.  I tried....spent a few hours making a simple pattern, cutting up fabric, ironing, and sewing. 

But, alas, I think my sewing mojo is gone...

I was uninspired.  I was impatient to get it over with.  My finished project was lame.

I wanted  this pouch to be sort of an errand bag, like what you can bring when you just need to make a quick trip to the supermarket or the bank or when taking the kids to school.  I suppose it's not as bad as I think but still...

I will do this again...hopefully soon.

At least, my cakes are still turning out well.

I whipped this up for my birthday last week.   It seemed like I've been waiting forever for the price of mango to go down this summer.  If it hadn't been for a trip to Costco, I could not have made this cake.

Hope to be back with my confidence up.