Cupcake Mania

Via aloha_pineapple on FlickrCupcakes have been on my mind lately, especially since my trial-run of the Banana Cupcake recipe (hint: if you want to be super-popular at the office, go with chocolate. People look at you funny when you say ‘banana cupcake with amaretto buttercream”).

I watched with fascination this past weekend an episode of “Throwdown with Bobby Flay,” where he went head to head with a cupcake baker/rocker from LA. I was disappointed with the outcome, mainly because sometimes I think Bobby is a boob and I appreciate a good cupcake baker. Especially in HD. The rocker made a moist, decadent Red Velvet cupcake with sky-high cream cheese frosting. I felt cavities forming just watching. I also felt the drool dribbling out of the corner of my mouth as I watched. Mmmmmm …. frosting ….

The other cupcake news to inform you of is this recent article from about the best cupcakes in the country. Sure, they mention the CR. And I’m happy and all, but I would love to try some of these other treats, liks the Fluffer Nutter from  “Cake Fetish” and the Fat Elvis from “Saint Cupcake”. What is that commandment again? Thou shalt not covet another man’s cupcake.

Best. Easter Candy. Ever.

Cadbury Mini Eggs via chattycha on flickr

Cadbury Mini-Eggs are now in season. This is the best Easter candy out there (other than the upper-end See’s and such). I’ve been eating these since I was a tween. I believe it was Sis who introduced them to me. Back then we went to the Walgreen’s at Bishop’s Corner in West Hartford. Now it’s Bartells at the University Village. When I was young and stupid I would buy the tiny one-serving bags several times throughout the season. Last year I finally got smart. Buy the larger bag once, and just make sure you ration them out. I take out a few, wrap the bag back up, put it in tupperware and hide ’em. Gotta stash them away so that the husband can’t track them down. One larger bag now lasts through Easter. Woo hoo.

Mini-eggs are rich milk chocolate coated with a sweet candy shell. They’re shaped like little robin’s eggs, speckled and all. I’m not a huge chocolate fan. I usually would choose Swedish Fish, Cinnamon Bears, or Jelly Belly’s over a chocolate bar. However this is a great chocolate treat that I can never turn down.

Oddly enough, Hershey’s does not have a page devoted to Mini-Eggs. Just this fun Easter basket filler. Good thing I’m not the only one who loves these treasures:

Girl Scout Cookies Time

The niece is a Brownie, and so this is the second year in a row we’ve purchased cookies for her Troop. Last year it was about eight boxes. This year, we reduced, to six.

girl scout cookies via chattycha on flickr
Missing from this photo: a box of Tagalongs, which I brought to the office. Tomorrow I’ll bring in the Samoas. Must share the sugar and calories with as many people as possible.

thank you card from emily via chattycha on flickr

Meanwhile, this bit from ICHC made me LOL …
Humorous Pictures

I heart pizza

Pizza from chattycha on flickrI love Chicago deep-dish pizza, but only when I’m in Chicago. I’ve had it only a handful of times when I’m not in Chicago. It’s just a staple when you live there, I guess.

This post from Slice describes the regional pizza styles across the country (via Fimoculous). The husband always reflects on the NY-style. Fold and eat. Plus, back on the East Coast I’ll never forget my hometown favorites, Pizza West (near “the Center”) and Jimmy’s on Farmington Ave. Cut into squares, not slices.

Seattle favorites:

PS. There are 280,668 results on flickr when you search “pizza“. Four of those results are mine.

Visit this tasty Web site

Cupcakes Take The Cake features cupcakes from around the world.

Cupcake takes the cake logo

They also list cupcake bakeries around the U.S., including our local cupcake eatery in Seattle, Cupcake Royale.

Now, I am most definitely known to enjoy a cupcake from CR when I’m hanging out in Ballard, however I must admit. The CR folks. They show a little bit of attitude. Not really needing that with my sweet treat. I’m just saying.

Yum. Cupcakes. Considering I received new muffin tins for Christmas as well (not really tins … it is the new silicone baking stuff) … perhaps perfecting the homemade cupcake could very well be my other new year’s resolution.

When Life Gives You Pumpkin …

Make pumpkin bread!

pumpkin bread via

And pumpkin biscuits.

Pumpkin biscuits via

Yes, I had leftover pumpkin after completing my Thanksgiving dessert, bourbon pumpkin cheesecake. So flipping through recipe books I decided upon these two oldies but goodies. Other runner ups for leftover pumpkin recipes includes pumpkin pancakes (I would have had to make that one up as I went along, since I don’t have a recipe) and cream of pumpkin soup (we actually had cream, but no chicken stock on hand and my goal was to use ingredients in the house).

The pumpkin bread recipe is your typical quick bread type, this particular one courtesy of our Better Homes Cookbook (the big red one). The pumpkin biscuits is a fantastic recipe (includes the directions for orange-honey butter, which I didn’t bother with), courtesy of Cooking Light magazine (November 2003).

BTW, I’m surprised to find Cooking Light’s recipes no longer behind a subscription wall. I stopped going to their Web site after I cancelled my magazine subscription (at some point I just stopped cooking as much and subscribing to a cooking magazine seemed a bit much). Anyway, it seems their business model has changed. Check for yourself.

joe metro

For the first year I lived in Seattle I was a bus rider. I didn’t even have my bike with me until 6 months in. I still take the bus every once in a while, and this video, in addition to showing what some are calling the “seedier” side of Seattle (really? The U-District? seedy? maybe sometimes), reminds me of that first, gray, dreary, depressing year I lived in Seattle. The people-watching element is something close to my heart.

Found via a Facebook post.

Megan Meier tragedy

Haven’t written in a while. In general I am distracted by work. When I’m distracted by work I find my eating habits to decline, and my enthusiasm to take photos of what I eat to diminish as well. I’ll do my best to bring it back this week.

However, I read the most sad story today, so sad I wished it was a horrible urban legend, something could refute for me.

Found via Romenesko News … summary – young teen meets cute boy on MySpace. Teen is led to believe the boy thinks she’s cute, pretty, nice, really likes her. One day the boy turns and begins to say mean things. She’s not a nice person. She’s a slut. She’s fat. Teen, completely distraught and confused as to why boy would turn after having such a good MySpace friendship with him, hangs herself in her closet. While her parents are downstairs making dinner.

Turns out cute boy is actually a fake MySpace profile, created by a former friend and friend’s parents. This family who faked the profile lived down the street from young teen.

No criminal charges will be filed, but there is no doubt that this death could have been prevented. Adults are supposed to know better, they are supposed to show their kids how to be the better person. How to be human. Adults don’t get involved in their kid’s squabbles. They show them that this is nothing. How much the future holds. They certainly do not condone torturing young girls at a time when self-esteem is so critical.

The journalistic ethical issue which resulted in this landing on Romenesko in the first place is that the local paper covering the story did not name the neighbors, “out of consideration for their teenage daughter.”

Readers were furious. But it didn’t matter. Bloggers took the matter in their own hands, investigated and found out who the neighbors were, posted their name, address, phone numbers and then some. Did everything but include a link to Mapquest. (Another thread of angry commenters can be found here). Heck yeah, readers of St. Charles Journal have a right to know who. I would want to know who to keep my kids away from. So, kudos to the bloggers. But I can’t help but speculate the debate that went on when deciding not to name names.

Oh, there better have been a debate.


Final afterthought … any repercussions for MySpace? If people were allowed to create false profiles, could this have been prevented? Facebook kicks you out if you are not who you say you are. On MySpace, no one is who they say they are, or so it seems.