Dad’s Tacos

Every time I pull up to my parent’s (mom’s?) house, I wish that my dad was going to be inside. I sit in the car for a moment and try to understand my feelings. Memories quickly flash in my mind of my dad in his usual places: on the love seat watching Bonanza, in the back switching over laundry, or maybe he’s not in the house at all, but is out for a walk and I’ll go inside knowing I’ll hear the familiar jingle of his keys soon. But the most painful place to picture him is in the kitchen, getting stuff ready for tacos. I can picture him so clearly in that kitchen: chopping onions, lettuce, grating cheese and asking me how many tortillas I want that it makes me feel confused. How could he not be in there somewhere? 

I’m sure my dad was making some form of these for my entire life but I don’t really have memories of eating them until I was in high school. I probably thought they were gross before that. (fool!) In high school, Kara and I would eat them while sitting on the floor of my room. Taco Bell hot sauce was a must back then. Then there was college when I had communications class with Laura, Kara and poop-headed ex-boyfriend of Kara’s and we would eat these before class and I’d spend the whole night feeling self-conscious because I smelled like tacos. But I kept eating them week after week because they are worth the potential embarrassment. And there were countless times Hannah and Kate were there too. My dad always taking tortillas orders and always assuring that he would make extra just in case. Everyone LOVED these tacos. But why? They are just bean tacos and there’s no fancy surprise ingredients. The beans are just from a can. It’s hard to explain why they are so good but they just are.

From a analytic flavor standpoint what really “makes” these tacos is the lettuce mixture or soggy salad as I have recently found out it has an actual name. I never heard my dad say the words soggy salad, but my sister told me my grandma used to make tacos like this when my dad was growing up. I don’t know where I’ve been and how I didn’t know that. I like the name though. So soggy salad is just thinly sliced onions + shredded iceberg lettuce seasoned with vinegar, oil, garlic powder, onion powder and s + p. It’s flavor is distinct and adds a welcome freshness amongst the hearty bean trio (kidney, black + pinto).

All flavor analysis aside: they are just darn good.

I can’t say this recipe is exactly the proportions my dad used because he never wrote them down and I never watched closely enough to try to write it down for myself. When he got sick I was tempted to watch and ask more questions but didn’t for fear of it seeming like I was doing it because he was going to die. So I didn’t.

We’ve had a few taco nights this last year and have done a pretty good job at replicating. They are never quite the same and they probably never will be. But they are the same enough for me to feel close to my dad for a minute and to feel a similar feeling of confusion over his absence.

It sounds weird to say I channel my dad when I make them but it’s the best word I can use to describe how it feels. I didn’t know how much I knew about my dad till he was gone. The way his hands looked when he was chopping onions and grating cheese. Exactly the way he stood over the stove while flipping tortillas. Exactly the way his face looked when he asked me how many tortillas I wanted. How much he added to the house just by being in that kitchen and not even saying a word.

So when I make them, I get little pictures of these things and it feels kinda like he’s helping me make them right even though I never did sit down and take notes.

Oh and even though these are really more of a burrito when you use a flour tortilla, we just call them tacos. Period.

My dad loved pepsi 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 yellow or white onion (thinly slice 1/4 the onion, small dice the remaining)
  • 2 heaping tablespoons pre-diced garlic*
  • 1 can kidney beans
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can pinto beans
  • 1/2 head iceberg lettuce
  • 1/4 cup olive or avocado oil
  • 2 tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • sour cream
  • hot sauce(s)
  • Flour and/or corn tortillas
  • Butter or cooking spray

*Serves 6-8

*In all other situations I really dislike the pre-diced garlic stuff you get in a jar but this is what my dad used and really have no interest in trying these with real garlic.

Preparation:

I recommend grating your cheese, chopping tomatoes and slicing/dicing the onions first. Place toppings in small, mismatching bowls if you wanna be true to dad’s tacos. Place an array of hot sauces on the counter next to all the toppings. Now get started…

  1. Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and onion, saute until onion is translucent.
  2. While the onion + garlic is cooking, drain beans. Add to saucepan. Cover and cook for approximately 15 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low. Stir occasionally.
  3. Meanwhile, thinly slice lettuce and add to a bowl with the thinly sliced onion. Add oil, vinegar, garlic powder, onion powder, salt & pepper. Mix to combine and set aside.
  4. Cook the tortillas! This is how we do it: Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, add a dab of butter or cooking spray and place tortilla/s in pan and cook for approximately two minutes on each side. You are looking for nice little golden brown spots and a very pliable texture. Stack on a plate and cover with a lid.
  5. Top your tortillas with beans and all the fixings. Make sure you have a napkin or two handy. You will need it!
  6. I’ve gotten my taco down to a science: first slather sour cream for even distribution, beans (enough to make it full and juice drippingly good, but not so crazy that you can’t close it), next cheese (hope it gets a little melty), soggy salad, scatter tomatoes, then a few shakes of hot sauce, if you have avocado, now is the time. Mm I seriously want a taco now.

<3 Becky

The reason I smelled like tacos during class.

Chai Lime Spritzer

Whaaat? Chai + lime? It sounds crazy but it’s truly delicious. And REFRESHING. Many moons ago I found a recipe in Bon Appetite Magazine for this drink and made it obsessively for a month. For reasons unknown, I stopped making it and forgot about it for the last five years. I couldn’t find the recipe anywhere online so I did my best to remember the proportions and make this lovely little drink again. And I succeeded!

It’s hard to describe this drink. We all know what chai tastes like and we know what lime tastes like, but they don’t seem like things that go together so it’s hard to imagine, I know. Chai is usually a creamy and/or warming/spicy experience. Refreshing is not a word that usually comes to mind. But let me tell you: this is one of the most refreshing drinks I’ve ever had.

It’s sweet, it’s tangy, it’s bubbly and has such an interesting depth of flavor from the chai even though you probably wouldn’t figure out it was chai if you didn’t know. Then someone would tell you and you’d be like, whaaat.

Ingredients:

  • 2 chai tea bags (I like Tazo)
  • 3 TBSP + 1 tsp lime juice
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • club soda

Prep:

  1. Bring 1 cup water to a boil and steep two tea bags for 7 minutes. Add sugar, stir and allow to cool in refrigerator.
  2. Meanwhile, juice your limes.
  3. Add lime juice to chai mixture. Separate chai lime mixture into glasses (makes enough for about 3 servings). Add ice and top with club soda (1/4 cup per glass).
  4. Enjoy!

<3 Becky

Mexican Hot Chocolate Coin Brownies

So blogging is hard. In some ways. I’ve really been loving it though. I love the process of making things, taking pictures and putting a post together. But it is a lot of work.

I’ve read blogs for years now and have always thought “I could do that”. And I can! I am! Sort of. I’m trying at least. My photos are prob lacking by most standards, but I’m really proud of some of them. I’m trying my very best to write from the heart and not try to sound like anyone but myself. Sometimes that’s embarrassing because I’m weird but everyone is, right? And while I am doing this because I truly like it and am not doing it for any fame or glory, of course there is a part of me that hopes other people will appreciate what I’m doing here too. Who wouldn’t.

I was SO excited about my last post (Conversation Heart Cookies), I thought it was such a cute idea, I loved my pictures and I thought it was perfect timing. In hindsight maybe I was a little too early with Valentines stuff, but Target does it. I thought for sure that post would catapult me into food blogger stardom. Surprise surprise: it didn’t. And after being disappointed for a second, I realized: that’s truly okay with me and I’m just going to keep doing my thing here. I still love my pictures and the cookies actually are amazingly delicious. Not my recipe, but still, they are. And I still like doing this whole blogging thing even if no one cares. And no, I didn’t really think the post was going to make me a star, I’m not that big of a fool, but I guess I thought it would receive more interest than it has. That’s all.

So here I am making these mexican hot chocolate coin brownies. Inspiration for this came from two places: a mexican chocolate peanut butter stout that Ricky likes and the chocolate coins my mom gives me in my stocking every year that I never eat and feel bad about.

I mentioned last week that I was throwing out all the half-eaten candies and stale cookies from Christmas, but I never toss the chocolate coins that quickly. Because A: I never even touch the coins and I feel less guilty throwing away something that is half-eaten rather than untouched. Yeah, there’s not really a B, that’s pretty much it. I’d already had the idea of making mexican hot chocolate brownies and thought why not just throw the coins in the brownies?! Then I thought of the name which reminds me of the wheel of fortune puzzles that were like two phrases combined by one shared word and I dug it. (i.e. mexican hot chocolate, chocolate coin brownies = mexican hot chocolate coin brownies).

My vision for these was to have the coins showing in the final product with the chocolate ganache drizzles in a classy, but slightly messy zig-zaggy pattern across the top but it looked lame so I just slathered the ganache on the top and dang these were super duper delish. These are not a fudgy brownie, more cakey but I thoroughly enjoyed them. They were rich, chocolatey, and not sickening sweet like brownies oft are. Plus you get a nice bit of warmth from cinnamon + cayenne. They are also gluten free!

Oh and I just came home and said: I’m just going to make up a recipe on the fly and see what happens. I figured I’ve made brownies, cakes and cookies enough to know what to do without thinking about it too much. Pretty much goes against the principles of baking but I think of it as playing music by ear. My husband can do that and it absolutely amazes me every time. It’s truly a gift. I think cooking/baking is like that for me…. to a point. I wasn’t perfectly measuring, I wasn’t thinking about any science behind what I was doing or why, I was just doing it by feel. Not saying I can just whip up any kind of baked good without a recipe but I can do brownies.

Here’s the coins before I covered them

Knew I shoulda used a piping bag for the ganache.

Ingredients:

  • 2 sticks butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup oat flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • chocolate coins if you desire
  • For the ganache…
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 5 tbsp milk
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of cayenne pepper

Prep:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350˚.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine melted butter + coconut sugar. Add two eggs, whisk to combine. (Make sure the butter is cool so the eggs don’t curdle). Add vanilla, salt, baking powder, oat flour + cocoa powder and whisk to combine.
  3. Pour batter into a prepared, 8 x 8 baking dish, smooth out with a spatula if need be.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out mostly clean (moist crumbs = good, raw batter = bad). If you want to use chocolate coins and want them studded in the brownies, remove the brownies after 15 minutes, gently press the coins into the top of the brownies (they should be mostly set at this point), then return to the oven for 5 additional minutes.

While the brownies bake, make the ganache:

  1. Using a double boiler, melt chocolate chips with butter + milk, stirring frequently. Remove from heat add cinnamon + cayenne. Taste and adjust cayenne/cinnamon to your taste.
  2. Spread or drizzle over the top of the brownies 🙂

<3 Becky

Fancy Chocolate Milk

Top 3 favorite beverages: hot tea, sparkling water and duh! Chocolate milk! I order it from Starbucks all the time and usually walk away feeling like a five-year old. But then I get over it because I have a delicious chocolatey drink to consume.

I’m calling this fancy chocolate milk because well, it has a party hat on. But also because it’s homemade – no processed syrups here! It’s essentially like making hot cocoa from scratch. Laura (sister) tuned me on to it and I’m really grateful she did. It’s makes the milk creamier and has a more rich chocolate taste than typical chocolate syrup. I’m not anti-processed syrup or anything, but it’s nice to have options.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tsbp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
  • nice pinch of sea salt
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp milk

Directions:

  1. Measure cocoa powder, sugar, vanilla + salt into a microwavable glass. Add 2 tbsp milk and stir with a mini whisk. You don’t have to use a mini whisk but it will be a huge help in minimizing any lumps of the cocoa mixture. It comes in handy for matcha too.
  2. Microwave for 20 seconds. Whisk vigorously again till mixture forms a smooth paste. Add 1 cup milk, stir. Add ice + whipped cream if you feel like it. Enjoy!

*serves one

<3 Becky

*This post contains an affiliate link

Conversation Heart Cookies

Today is the day I throw out the half-eaten boxes of candy, stale Christmas cookies and random goodies from whoknowswho. Even the wrapped stuff. I just want to get rid of all of it and start fresh. It’s 2019! New year new treats.

Now let’s talk about Valentine’s day! I know there are a lot of haters out there but I happen to like it. It’s just a fun/cute little holiday in my eyes. I like hearts and I like getting/giving little gifts like nail polish + pens. I don’t need roses or fancy restaurants. In-n-out and a brownie will do just fine thank you. Oh annnnnd conversation hearts! I always loved reading the weird things they put on those and I actually like eating them. But I like these cookies way more.

So, these cookies. I am not going to lie: these are not the easiest to make. Sugar cookies = easy. Icing = easy. Putting those blasted words on the cookies = not easy. BUT it is doable! And cute! And worth it! How is it done????

I used this sugar cookie recipe and it is great. They are soft and you don’t need to refrigerate the dough. Very much appreciated. So I googled a recipe for the sugar cookie icing and it was horrendously inaccurate. The ingredients were there but the proportions were not. The recipe I used left me with a giant lump of powdered sugar held together by corn syrup + milk. I continued to add corn syrup and milk by the teaspoon until it was about the consistency of elmer’s glue. Maybe a little thicker. I lost count and I’m sorry. If anyone is reading this (hi!) and really wants exact measurements, let me know and I will make it again and figure out exactly how much of everything I used. Or if you have a good recipe for sugar cookie icing already, just use that. This one sounds about right.

About the letters. These are the exact letter stamps I used but there are others. They come with a little tray you can arrange the words in but I didn’t use it. I found it too difficult to get each letter to come out that way. I stamped letter by letter. The biggest challenge is getting an even coat of food coloring on the stamp. I put about a 1/2 tsp of red food coloring on a food storage container lid (one that wouldn’t absorb the color). Added a little corn syrup and smeared it in as thin a layer as I could. I let it sit for a bit until it started to get a more sticky consistency. Not very scientific, I know. It is also a very good idea to sacrifice a cookie to use to practice on. I pretty much test-stamped each letter right before I used it. See below for the tools you will need, links to the recipes and general advice!

See my tester cookie?

Tools:

  • Cookie stamp
  • A lid or plate that won’t absorb food coloring
  • Heart cookie cutter set
  • Wilton tip no. 2
  • 1 piping bag for each color you want
  • Food coloring. If you want the same colors as me, you will need: yellow, red, blue + green.

Sugar cookies:

  • Use this recipe, I added the zest of 1 lemon to the dough and was very happy with that decision
  • Make the cookies and ice them the night before you plan to do the lettering. You want the cookies to be completely dry and you also want to save your energy so you can focus on the lettering.

Icing:

  • Try this and double it.
  • Once you have your icing the right consistency, separate into individual small bowls for each color (roughly 1/3 cup per)
  • 1 drop red + 1 drop blue = purple
  • 1 drop red = pink
  • 1 drop green = light green, 1 drop yellow = light yellow 🙂
  • I only have one no. 2 tip so I did each color on its own then cleaned out the tip to fill a new bag with the next color.
  • Once your bag is filled and ready to go, outline the edge each cookie you want that color. Then fill inside the line, it doesn’t need to be perfect. Spread the even out the filling with a butter knife. Repeat with each color and let the cookies set overnight.

Lettering:

  • Place 1/2 tsp red food coloring on a lid or plate (one that won’t absorb the color!) and 1/2 tsp corn syrup, mix and spread out in a thin layer (as best you can).
  • Allow it to sit for about 30 minutes. You want it to start to dry a little so that you can get an even coating of the color on each stamp.
  • Designate a test cookie
  • Check the consistency: dip a stamp in the color! TEST the stamp on your tester cookie. Is the color pooling in the edges or holes of the letter? Is it giving you an even coat? If you are getting a lot of pooling and the letter isn’t evenly coated, it may not be dry enough yet. Spread it around again and leave it a little longer.
  • The letters won’t look perfect but that’s okay! Actual conversation hearts are perfect either. Have fun!

<3 Becky

*This post contains affiliate links

Hearty Earth Bowl

Happy New Year! We had a really calm new years that involved puzzles, uno and just four additional guests. It was exactly what I wanted. I’m also really into puzzles now. Me and Ricky did another one tonight! There is something so satisfying about snapping those pieces together. I wasn’t planning on making a new years specific post but I guess this recipe qualifies since its healthy.

Some most people would probably look at this recipe and say this is a buddha bowl or a bliss bowl. And really, I think it is (although I don’t really no what the exact qualifications are for those). But I didn’t realize that until I started writing this post so I’m sticking with the title that came to me, Hearty Earth Bowl. It is pretty earthy after all. Root vegetables, cauliflower, peppers, brown rice… yeah, it’s earthy.

I’ve seen bliss bowls and buddha bowl recipes but those are not what inspired me to make this meal. It was this book! It’s not a cookbook per se, or your typical how-to book with tear-out check lists and stuff but it is full of good ideas and beautifully written suggestions on how to eat and cook well. There is also a theme of minimizing waste which I really appreciate.

In the chapter titled How to Stride Ahead, Tamar Adler talks about how she cooks a boatload of vegetables at once in order to use them throughout the week. I’m pretty sure she would never use the word boatload but she writes about her process for preparing all her vegetables for the week and gives little glimpses into how she might use them- sautéed greens + cream = gratin, roasted veggies can be thrown on a sandwich, used for soup, made into a warm roasted vegetable salad, etc. etc. etc. The chapter reinforced for me something that I already knew but sometimes forget: good food does not have to be complicated. With a little care and attention, something as simple as cauliflower and rice can become a beautiful and deeply satisfying meal.

I really loveeee meals like this. I sometimes refer to it as peasant food for its relative cheapness, un-flashy appearance and humble ingredients.

Nothing fancy here.
I want this right now!

So I’m going to give an ingredients list and directions to make a bowl just like mine, but like any grain/bliss/buddha/earth bowl, you can pretty much customize it however you want. Use different veggies, couscous instead of rice, a different drizzle, different cheese! Just a disclaimer- the pesto I used is not homemade, its Trader Joe’s vegan kale pesto. It’s so good and highly recommended.

Ingredients to make four bowls:

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 3 small sweet potatoes
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups jasmine brown rice
  • 2 tsbp butter
  • grated parmesan (to use for adding to rice + topping in each bowl)
  • olive oil
  • salt, pepper, crushed red pepper
  • vegan kale pesto

Preparation:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400˚.
  2. Cook rice according to package directions or use a rice cooker to prepare rice. *When rice is finished cooking, add 2 tsbp butter (and salt if you wish) and stir to distribute.
  3. De-core, and slice cauliflower. Remove outer leaves and discard or save for stock. To cut: cut in half lengthwise, cut each half in half again, then remove the core by making a lengthwise cut at a diagonal angle. Cut florets into 1/4 inch slices. Arrange on baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt + pepper. Arrange in a single layer. Bake for 25-30 minutes, periodically testing for doneness.
  4. Cut sweet potato into one-inch pieces. Cut bell pepper into one inch squares. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt + pepper and bake for 20-25 minutes.
  5. Divide rice evenly amongst 4 bowls. Sprinkle each with parmesan and stir (best if the rice is still hot so it melts the cheese). Top each bowl with veggies, pesto, more parm and red pepper.

Notes:

  • Make this vegan: omit parm and butter.
  • I like my cauliflower to be very tender. Like no crunch at all and that’s what these directions will give you. If you like more bite, cook it for less time.

<3 Becky

Zucchini Egg Boats

Hi! My name is Becky and I love breakfast.

I eat eggs pretty much everyday so I try to mix things up and eat them in different ways. These were also born out of laziness since I usually feel like in order to eat veggies with eggs the eggs need to be scrambled. But sometimes I really don’t want to dirty that extra dish or wait for veggies to soften and boom this idea was born.

I also really love shredded zucchini. I’ve just been grating all of it at once then using it throughout the week. I add it to pasta, pizza, soups and salad. It cooks in like two minutes so you can just throw some in a pan with a little olive oil and it’s basically done. It also just seems classy.

Don’t ask me why I’m calling these zucchini egg boats. It just felt right and that’s all I can say.

Doesn’t look like a boat, I know.

The most important tip I have regarding these is: DRY THE ZUCCHINI BEFORE COOKING. I’m not yelling, just if you’re scrolling through because you’re bored already, I want you to see that if nothing else. Just lay it out on a paper towel before cooking and press the top with a paper towel. If you don’t it will get watery and don’t no body want watery eggs.

These are everything I want in a veggie-filled egg breakfast. Aside from being quick and super easy, they are delicious (very important) and feel kinda fancy (not important, but fun).

I got these plates from an antique store that was going out of business. There’s like 10 of this size, 10 small ones, tea cups and a saucer and the lady gave them to me for $10!!
Couldn’t eat my last few raspberries because I was savoring my egg boat.

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup shredded zucchini (sounds like a lot, but it shrinks!)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • grated parmesan (about a tbsp, but really whatever you want)
  • salt, pepper, crushed red pepper to taste

Preparation:

  1. Shred zucchini and shred on paper towel to remove moisture
  2. Heat olive oil in a small skillet over medium-low heat. Add zucchini and cook for 2 minutes. Lightly season with salt and pepper.
  3. Make a “well” for the egg. Not so much that the egg will be on the bare pan, but enough to give it a place to nestle in and stay put. Crack the egg and add to the pan.
  4. Cover, turn heat to low and cook until white is set. About 5 min. The yolk will still be runny. If you don’t want it to be, after the 5ish minutes, poke it, then gently flip.
  5. Top with parmesan, more salt + pepper and crushed red pepper. Enjoy!

<3 Becky

Chai Spice Cinnamon Rolls

I decided I hadn’t had enough sweets over the holiday so I made cinnamon rolls last night/this morning and I’m so glad I did. I really wanted to use this ADORABLE bakeware my sister got me and was also bored because I got a Christmas cold and ended up spending most of the day at home yesterday. Who wants cinnamon rolls made by a sick person? No one? Okay cool because I’m eating them all.

I used Molly Yeh’s overnight cinnamon roll dough recipe. (side note: added the egg at the wrong time and they still turned out purrrfect). I made the dough then realized I was out of cinnamon from making Minimalist Baker’s caffeine-free chai spice mix. A split second of despair turned into fiendish delight at the thought: why don’t I just use this spice mix in the cinnamon rolls?! Muahahaha.

These were some of the best cinnamon rolls I’ve ever eaten. Chewy + soft, as they should be, with cinnamon + cardamom + ground ginger + black pepper + nutmeg + clove keeping things really interesting with lots of warming spicy flavors.

I made the icing myself. Yay me!

Sprinkles! 🙂

I just used powdered sugar, butter, vanilla + hemp milk! So these are basically a health food now.

Make them make them make them.

To make my icing:

  1. Beat one stick of softened butter + 1 tsp vanilla + 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar + 1/4 cup hemp milk with an electric mixer or fork and spread over the rolls while still slightly warm.

<3 Becky

Christmas Baking Traditions

So Christmas is over. I like Christmas, but as mentioned in a previous post, it’s not my favorite and when it’s over I’m usually ready for it to be. So why the heck am I posting about Christmas stuff? I really am ready to move on (as usual); however, I have this special tradition with a dear friend and I want to document it + collect the photos I have taken over the years in one place.

We pretty much always make the same things: pecan balls, biscotti and apricot cream cheese tarts. Sometimes other things are thrown in but those are the standards. The tarts are the most special because it’s a family recipe that is actually top secret so I won’t be sharing it here. Just the pictures. Sorry! They are also the cutest thing so most of these pictures are of them. We make the recipe from an old, stained + faded index card written by her grandma 🙂

These are reminding me of nipples. Weird. This is a 2018 photo.

Anyways, I’ve been baking with my friend Nicci on or around Christmas Eve for the past five years and it really makes my Christmas festivities feel complete.

2016
2015. Nicci has amazing lighting in her kitchen. I’m jealous.
2014. We always use this same little wooden table. I love this table!! It folds aways so nicely compact and has two stools underneath.
and 2013

These is no 2017 because we did skip that year. We were sad about it so we made sure it happened this year.

2018. The first year I took a picture of these babies cooked. There’s some leakage but that’s okay!

The end. See ya next year, Christmas!

<3 Becky

Strawberry Cake

I made a strawberry cake for Kate’s birthday. It turned out all right looking but really really good tasting. I used Sally’s recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction

Whenever my mom asked me what kind of cake I wanted for my birthday, I always picked strawberry. Partly because I just wanted to be different but I also really liked it. These days I am kinda grossed out by boxed strawberry cake. It’s too sweet and unnaturally pink in a bad way. And most importantly it doesn’t taste like strawberries. Not this cake! It is sweet, of course, but it has a real strawberry taste because it only includes real strawberries. Freeze-dried strawberries get blended into dust for the frosting and fresh ones are pureed and reduced for the cake itself. 

Now let’s play how many times can Becky say “strawberries” in a paragraph…

Anyways, that’s all I got. Bye food blog journal thing. 

<3 Becky