Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Homemade Bagels

I love to cook. I took all the cooking classes that I could when I attended BYU. They were by far my favorite courses! :)..Pun intended hehe! This is a great basic bagel recipe that is easy, doesn't require many ingredients, and can be customized  with added flavors or toppings. I'm afraid I can not remember the original source of the recipe, just that I got it from a BYU family cooking class.

Yes-You Can-Bagels

2 cups warm water, about 110 degrees F
2 (1/4-ounce) packets active dry yeast
3 tablespoons granulated sugar, plus 1 tablespoon
5 to 6 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons yellow cornmeal
Optional Toppings:
1/2 cup lightly toasted chopped onions (2 teaspoons each)
2 tablespoons poppy seeds (about 1/2 teaspoon each)
2 tablespoons sesame seeds (about 1/2 teaspoon each)
1 tablespoon kosher salt (about 1/4 teaspoon each)
*Cream cheese and jam for spreading
Combine the water, yeast, and 3 tablespoons of the sugar in the bowl of an upright mixer fitted with a dough hook. Stir and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Gradually add 4 cups of the flour and the salt, and mix until the mixture comes together.
Add 1 to 1 1/2 cups additional flour 1/2 cup at a time to make a stiff dough, either stirring with the wooden spoon or working with your hands. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and no longer sticky, about 5 minutes, adding just as much flour as needed. (Dough should be heavier and stiffer than regular yeast bread dough.)
Grease a large bowl with 1 teaspoon of the oil. Place the dough in the bowl, turning to coat. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free spot until almost doubled, about 1 hour.
Remove from the bowl and punch down the dough. Divide into 12 equal pieces, about 2 to 3 ounces each, measuring about 4 inches across. Form each piece of dough into a ball. Roll each ball into a 4 to 6-inch log. Join the ends and place fingers through the hole and roll the ends together. Repeat with the remaining dough. Place on a lightly greased surface, cover with a clean cloth, and let rest until risen but not doubled in a draft-free spot, 20 to 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Grease a baking sheet with the remaining teaspoon of oil.
In a large, heavy pot, bring 12 cups of water and the remaining tablespoon of sugar to a boil. In batches, add the bagels to the water and boil, turning, for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Flip bagels onto the prepared sheet pan. Bake for 5 minutes, turn over and cook for another 30 to 35 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Family Pictures

Its that time of year again, when you start thinking of the Holidays and sending out Christmas cards. I actually really love this time of year! I'm already getting excited thinking about eating Turkey and wrapping presents. I even have a pile of presents started in our basement ;) And I have been waiting to do our pictures so I could start designing our card :)

Stacy took our family pictures this past weekend! She did an amazing job! We started outside but the rain pushed us in and we ended with a great indoor shoot!

I was SOOO excited to discover this old bus in a field not
far from our house! It was the perfect backdrop :)

I love my family!!!!!

 She's my best little buddy :)

 My handsome Hubby :)

Hahah! Love this funny smile of Lucy that Stacy was able to capture :)

Our Sweet Baby girl.....

Can you tell she is the center of our lives?
We love how these turned out!!!!!!!! We did a few Christmas specific pictures as well, but you will have to wait to see those! ;) I love my little family so much! I am so blessed to spend each day with them!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

SOLD: $200 Vintage Kitchen Chairs

Chad found these amazing dining chairs at a yard sale this summer!! They did need some lovin' but that didn't scare us away :) Chad worked on fixing and painting the chairs and I recovered the pads. While recovering, I found the tag and it dated back to 1929!!!!!!!!!!! We were super excited to have TRUE vintage chairs on our hands! :) They look so good now, I wish I could keep them ;)

We are selling these, $200 for all 4!!!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Getting Organized...Finally!

My Kitchen cabinets are organized!!!!!!!!!!!!! Phew...Chad was nice to remind me that it only took me 3 months :) Too bad there are closets and cabinets upstairs that still need help....I'll get there! I'm that person who is always working on 5 projects at a time with 50 more ideas running through my head to do next! So things kinda take awhile.. :)

This morning my lower cabinets looked like this:

And now I am happy to show that they look like this!:

I Started by grouping like items in the same cupboards. Bowls in one,
baking dishes in another, misc. items...etc.

Most of the racks I was able to find at DI! I also picked up a few at Walmart,
like this two-level dish rack I stacked my bowls on

This still looks somewhat crowded, but everything is similar and 
has its own place so I don't have to dig around or take everything out 
to find what I want :)

These totes where a life saver! Before I just had all these small items floating around,
making a mess and taking up way too much space!

Ahh.. I can breathe for a bit :) Its nice to finally check something off my list!!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Salted Caramel Cupcakes

While we were in NY Erin took us to this cake store and we got AMAZING cupcakes!!! Chad and I have been wanting them ever since. So I googled for a recipe :) I have to admit, this recipe is pretty dang good, but I am not sure if it beats NY's, I think their cupcakes were more that the right word? But I loved that about them!!  You can find her recipe HERE

You would be a fool not to try these out!! They are so good! I am going to attach the link to the blog I found them from, her pictures are way better. :) ..A few things about the recipe: she does a caramel center which I did not try, she also does salted and unsalted butter plus salt, I just did salted butter and left out the additional salt.  ENJOY!! These are delicious :) 

Peach Cupcakes

I LOVE peaches, they really are my favorite fruit!! I couldn't help but buy a few the other day...even though I knew their season was at an end. I was super disappointed when I went to eat one and the texture was too weird, mushy. Luckily I had found this recipe via Pinterest that I was wanting to try out! They turned out really good! The cupcakes actually weren't super sweet, more like a muffin. Her frosting recipe was super good as well! I didn't add quite as much butter and powder sugar as her recipe called for; I'm not a big frosting fan and the less sugary the better! I also added half a teaspoon of Almond extract to the frosting. It was amazing!! Nothing goes quite as well with peaches as almond extract does ;)

You can find the recipe HERE
Oh, one last change I made; She used dried peaches as well,
I used only fresh puree and just added extra!