Something about fall…

I don’t know what it is, but there is something about fall that makes me want to bake cinnamony goods, serve up a hearty stew with biscuits, drink hot cups of coffee or tea.

It makes me want to feel all cozy inside.

Maybe because the weather is changing?

img_0599

Winter is knocking at the door?

I want to hibernate?

Who knows, but whatever it is… it makes me feel all homey.

I think it must do this to others, too, because just yesterday, I was dreaming about sinking my teeth into homemade pumpkin doughnuts with a glaze, when I got a call from my hubby.

“What ingredients do I need to pick up at the store to make those Christmas cinnamon rolls in Paul Hollywood’s cookbook?”

img_0600

Uh-oh, he got bit by the fall bug, too! 😉

img_0601

Delicious!

Belated Birthday Party!

A little late, but never a reason not to celebrate our 4-year-old girl!

img_0552

Our kindergarten likes making a special occasion of each child’s birthday: Celebrating growth, personal achievements, and just making the child feel really special.

img_0554

Since we were in the States during our sweetie’s birthday, the kindergarten was unable to celebrate her. Upon our return, they promptly asked if we could have a belated birthday party for her. Sure!

img_0558

Last night, my little helper and I baked up mini-chocolate chip cookies, with mini Smarties (similar to M&Ms) instead of chocolate chips, and poked 30-40 grapes and cheese cubes onto toothpicks.

img_0561

This morning, we picked out a dress and braided her hair, and set off to kindergarten to celebrate!

On a side note, she got a little confused at first, and thought maybe she was turning 5. Ha! 😀

 

Happy Birthday, Boys!

The snake birthday cake created by a wonderful mom.
The snake birthday cake created by a wonderful mom.
Of course, little sister wants a picture taken, too.
Of course, little sister wants a picture taken, too.
Six years old!
Six years old!
Me too!
Me too!

Its always amazing when the birthdays come around. To think that not too long ago they fit comfortably on my lap, now there’s barely room! Amazing!

Christmas brings out the best in everyone… sort of.

Plum cake

Recently, I picked up a German cookbook from our region, and discovered, much to my delight, that the recipes were divided up by season. My hubby has recollected, many a time, about a plum cake he remembers eating as a child. And since it is plum season, I quickly turned to “September” in my new cookbook, in search of this Plum cake.

Low and behold, I found it, made it, and thoroughly enjoyed it!

IMG_1766

IMG_1768

IMG_1769

IMG_1772

Rhubarb Raspberry Tarts

I’ve been baking again. 🙂

My sister got me this cookbook when I was home last year, and the photo on the front cover has been tempting me ever since.

IMG_1128

And since rhubarb is in season now, I thought I should give it a whirl.

IMG_1127

(Oh boy, oh boy!!)

IMG_1126

The dough is made up from a corn flour, flour, and corn meal base.

IMG_1132

IMG_1133

IMG_1135

IMG_1136

I made up the rhubarb/raspberry compote the day before, so it was all ready to be plopped in the center of the tarts. The original recipe doesn’t call for raspberries. It actually calls for dried hibiscus flowers. I didn’t have any handy, and thought raspberries sounded tastier. 😉

IMG_1141

Ready to go in the oven… but first the freezer over night.

IMG_1145

The end product. Delicious!

Baking pie

I’ve been waiting for rhubarb to go on sale here.

And for the strawberries to be an ok price.

Why you ask?

I’ve been hankering after a Strawberry-Rhubarb pie.

IMG_1057

YUM!

(Good thing I’ve started jogging again!)

The birthday cake

My boys love cars.

And Cars. 🙂

So when I was trying to think of a “special” birthday cake, I decided I should do a car theme.

Growing up, my mom would always make me a “special” birthday cake. Every year I was excited to see what she would come up with. It always had some sort of treat on it, like candy or a toy, and it would have a theme. My mom is super-creative (although, she would humbly disagree). I had her making me “special” birthday cakes all the way up to when I left for college. I guess I’m just a kid at heart. 🙂

And I love surprises. 🙂

Anyway, inspired by my mother’s genius, here is what I came up with. Enjoy!

IMG_0957

IMG_0958

IMG_0960

IMG_0961

IMG_0962

IMG_0963

IMG_0964

IMG_0965

IMG_0966

Thanks to Auntie E, we had some nice cake toppers. :)
Thanks to Auntie E, we had some nice cake toppers. 🙂

IMG_0968

Yum!

The End.

I can’t seem to get the ball rolling…

Well, here I am again.

After another long pause.

I am all for and I do want to get into a regular habit of posting on my blog… it’s just, life keeps getting in my way. Or rather, other things have trump over my blog.

For the last 18 days, we have had sick children in our house. That means we are up in the night, leaving us less energy during the day light hours. But we are still functioning and hope that we are seeing the light at the end of this sick tunnel.

IMG_0906

One of our boy’s classes had a special performance and coffee/cake time for the parents this last week. I unfortunately couldn’t go, because I had a sick baby at home, but sent my hubby with some banana bread and a camera to document this momentous event for me. He was our little tambourine man, and did awesome!! Right on the beat. 🙂

IMG_0910

IMG_0912

We also hosted an ‘open house’ for our church this Sunday. I baked throughout the week, and had cookies and 2 German cheese cakes and lots of other snacks for our guests. About 10 people came and we enjoyed the afternoon together chatting, eating cake and sipping coffee. (Love that part of German culture!!)

Raspberry and blueberry "Quark" cake
Raspberry and blueberry “Quark” cake

As I type, my sick baby is sleeping on the bed, with one of my boys “looking after” her. Sweetness.

IMG_0927

Homemade

Today really felt like fall to me. Not just because of the grey, misty morning we woke up to, or the colorful leaves that keep falling outside my kitchen window. No today felt like fall because I made my first pumpkin pie of the season. From scratch.

Mmmm… it feels good to say that. From scratch. It just seems a little more wholesome and homey to me when I bake and cook from basic ingredients. I know what I’m putting into the food that I soon will devour. Daintily. 😉

Today, my two little helpers aided me in our pie-ish endeavors. I wish I would have taken pictures of the whole process, except that I didn’t remember till we were done.

So I took a picture of the final product instead.

These two dumped the ingredients into the bowl, helped mix and stir, sniffed the spices, and sampled our delicacy. They were with me from A-Z, patiently and enthusiastically waiting for their pumpkin pie. (Of course I baked the pumpkin on Sunday, and then pureed it this morning before asking the boys if they wanted to help make the pie. So maybe they were with me from B or C-Z.)

M dubbed it “his Birthday pie,” even though his birthday isn’t until March. Just before serving it up this evening, the boys burst into a jubilant “Happy birthday.” My silly boys!

Here’s to many more Pumpkin Pies! (And my hubby says, “Amen!”)