Monday, November 28, 2011

Sometimes You Throw Away Your Camera's Memory Card

What? You've never thrown away the memory card to your camera? I hadn't either until two weeks ago. I was throwing away some trash and didn't notice that my card and card reader were in the pile I threw away. It wouldn't be that big of a deal if there weren't pictures of the desserts I had made that week on there. But they were.

I was asked by Deana of Lost Past Remembered to make some desserts for a movie filming in Queens. Even though I was super busy with work and operas, I decided this would be too cool to pass up.

The assignment consisted of making a citrus tart, a chocolate icing cake, and something else that I felt like making.

Thankfully, Deana took some pictures of the desserts I made while they were on set. (You can see her whole post on the food for the film here. She made some great dishes!)

The Citrus Tart
Deana sent some pictures of what to make and I read up on the process of candying lemons. I was really happy with the outcome. However, my recipe didn't have a carmelization process and the director wanted a darker looking citrus top. (I wish I had my pictures to show you how yellow and fresh the lemons were when I made it.) Thankfully, Deana is a master in the kitchen and easily whipped up a topping to add to the lemons to make them darker. She also let me know that one of the producers really liked the tart and wants the recipe. (See bottom of post.)

The Cake
I was also sent a picture of a round cake with chocolate icing and some white frosting swirls. Deana said to make the cake and make it pretty. So I put shredded coconut in a circle on the top edges of the cake. Well, the director really wanted those swirls so Deana came to my rescue again by taking off the coconut and adding the swirls (and some canned frosting...over my butter cream frosting! For shame!) ;)

The Extra
I had decided to experiment with my mom's recipe for Orange Drop Cookies. I figured they would make cute little tarts if baked in a cupcake pan. Well, they made cute little cupcakes instead. Hmmm. I iced them quickly because the lady from the movie crew who was picking up my desserts was close by. Once again, Deana spruced them up by adding white icing and a raspberry on top. Now why didn't I think of that? They are so cute like that!

What I learned from this experience is how to make candied lemons. Oh, and that directors have a vision.

Lemon Tart recipe found at Epicurious. (I used premade pie crust since I needed to save time where I could.)

Bake well and prosper!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Everyday Cookies

Wow! I haven't blogged in a month! I don't even know if I remember how to use blogger...

I went into the month of October knowing it would be the busiest month of the year for me. While I was singing Cherubino in the opera The Marriage of Figaro...
I was also in charge of props for all 11 performances of the opera. And while I was in the opera, I also hosted my mom for TWO WEEKS IN MY APARTMENT.
In fact, she was the guest baker for my only post in October: Sour Cream Coffee Cake. (My dad also came to see my show but could only stay for 2 days.)

And while I was singing, taking care of props, hosting my mom, working a full time job, and singing at my church, I also ran the NYC Marathon.
That's me hamming it up for the cameras BEFORE I tightened up and finished poorly. But hey, I finished! I mean, I HAD to. Right after the marathon I had an audition for an opera company. I kid you not.
That's me in my audition dress WITH my medal. I'm surrounded by two friends who celebrated my day's achievements with me.

And while all of THAT happened, the trees changed color. :)
So, as you can see, I was quite busy. I hope this explains why I haven't posted in a month. I'm very sorry and have missed baking/blogging/blogging friends. I was so busy that I even missed my blog's 2 year anniversary! Waaaah!

Now it looks like November and December will be quite busy too! I'm in ANOTHER opera, but no marathon for me. Just a half marathon the day before my birthday. Whew!

As for baking, I liked my mom's idea about making Everyday Cookies. I think they are called that because you can eat them everyday, but I'm going to say that it means to go through everyday one at a time. And eat a cookie everyday. ;)
Everyday Cookies (from my Mom's Best Recipe Book)
1 C butter
1 C white sugar
1 C brown sugar
1 C oil
1 large egg
1 t vanilla
3 1/2 C flour
1 t salt
1 t soda
1 t cream of tartar
1 C oatmeal
1 C Rice Krispies
1 C shredded coconut

Mix the butter, sugars, oil, and egg together. Add vanilla. Sift in the flour, salt, soda, and cream of tartar. Stir in the oatmeal, Rice Krispies, and coconut.

Chill dough for one hour. Roll into balls and flatten a bit. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes or until slightly brown on the edges.
Bake well and prosper!