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Showing posts from July, 2013

Chonky Boys: The Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches that Scream Summer!

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Featuring my thick and nuggy Chonky Boy Chocolate Chip Cookies, these ice cream sandwiches are the stuff that summer dreams are made of.  If you've ever had the Cookie Ice Cream Sandwich at Disneyland , you are going to LOVE these! 

These big and bold chocolate chip cookies are based on a recipe from my culinary school studies at Auguste Escoffier, but with a few modifications to give them that Jennuine touch.  They make the perfectas book for a fat slice of real vanilla bean ice cream.  And those mini chips?  You just gotta have that extra cronch!

Thank goodness this recipe only makes 8 sandwiches, otherwise I would be eating them for breakfast lunch and dinner.  This way, my big family can help save me from my inner child diet-saboteur.  
PrintWith ImageWithout Image Chonky Boy Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream SandwichesYield: 8Author: Jenn Erickson Loaded with chocolate chips and buttery, brown-sugary vanilla flavor, these mall-sized cookies form a perfect partnership with a fat wedg…

Wooden Peg Fairy Doll DIY
{for whimsical favors, cupcake toppers, and birthday candle holders}

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I've been delighted to see a resurgence in the popularity of peg dolls in DIY communities online, and decided it was high time to breathe some new life into this oldie but goodie from my first year of blogging.  The tutorial needed just a bit of TLC and a sprinkle of pixie dust...
...and these magical little cupcake toppers that double as party favors are ready to take flight once again!

With simple wooden pegs, "silk" flowers and basic crafting supplies, you can create a whole garden of Flower Fairies as favors, cupcake toppers, and even birthday candle holders.
How to Make:  Wooden Peg Fairy Dolls(for favors, cupcake toppers, or birthday candle holders)
Wood Game pieces (my source: Factory Direct Craft)Bamboo skewers or wooden dowels, cut to 2” lengthsFoam floral block for makeshift drying rack (optional)DrillAcrylic paints in the colors you want for skin,hair, eyes, cheeks and mouthAn assortment of fine and medium paint brushes.  (I use a tracing stylus to paint the eyes …

Flip Dolls & Other Toys That Zip, Stack, Hide, Grab & Go
{Book Review & #Giveaway}

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You're going to "flip" for this book!
A stuffed toy can be a child's boon companion and greatest treasure. And often, a  stuffed toy hand-made by a loved one endures long after commercial toys have fallen out of favor. Flip Dolls are one such toy that goes beyond mere cuddliness to the realm of interactive, fascinating, and even magical.  Perhaps it's because, as a child, I was captivated by my friend's doll that flipped from Little Red Riding Hood to the Big Bad Wolf (a gift from her Nana).  It "may" have ended up in my backpack for a few minutes until my conscience caught up with me.  Just sayin'.

So, it was with childlike glee that I greeted the arrival of Flip Dolls & Other Toys That Zip, Stack, Hide, Grab & Go by Laura Wilson (Lark Crafts, August 2013, ISBN 978-1-4547-0248-1).  Wilson's playful spirit is evident in this clever, inventive and charming book of interactive plush toys.  One can't help but smile at the whimsical, f…

Snickerdoodle Doughnut Gems {Gluten-free, baked mini doughnuts}

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The doughnut madness continues here at Rook No. 17.  I think perhaps I'm trying to live out a childhood fantasy of living in a doughnut shop.  Although it's hard to imagine anyone objecting too strenuously to a proliferation of doughnuts,  I'd like to assure you, gentle reader, that there are other creative projects in the works (that do not lead to a sugar coma).

In fact, this post was not originally on the editorial calendar.  Last night, the girls hit us up for a double-sleepover.  The giggles died down by around 2:00 a.m., and thankfully everyone slept in.  The sleepover zombies awoke with ravenous appetites, and much to my chagrin there was naught in the pantry but some baking essentials.  Feeling a surge of energy (or delirium brought on by lack of sleep), I decided to modify my Lemon Blueberry Sour Cream Baked Doughnuts to make cinnamon-sugar dusted mini doughnuts.  I used the gluten-free flour from Trader Joe's again, and the results were spectacular (as evidenc…

Lemon Blueberry Sour Cream Baked Doughnuts {Gluten-Free Recipe}

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It's huckleberry season here in the fog blanketed forests along the bay.  I've been picking the diminutive sweet/tart huckles since I was a child growing up here, so it's a tradition that I enjoy sharing with my girls.  Rainy days have been few and far between this year, so the pickings were slim, but between me, my girls and their two friends, we managed to harvest enough little berries to make a sweet treat.
Yes, the recipe does say "Blueberry" rather than "Huckleberry" because I don't expect everyone to have huckleberries growing in their back yard.  Besides, these moist and cakey little doughnut gems are too good to reserve for one small season of the year.  Small, wild blueberries can be found year-round.  I buy mine in the freezer section of Trader Joe's.

Both my daughter and her friend can't eat gluten, so our huckleberry haul was the perfect opportunity to come up with another baked doughnut recipe.  If you've been reading along th…

Orecchiette Caprese Pasta Salad
{and Zyliss Salad Spinner Review}

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Orecchiette Caprese Pasta Salad -- A union of traditional Capese salad ingredients and toothsome Orecchiette pasta.  The key to this recipe is using a high quality balsamic vinegar*.
In early June, the folks at Zyliss sent me their "smart touch" salad spinner to review.  I've had salad spinners in the past, and they've all been satisfactory in the beginning.  But after about a month, the baskets have cracked, the spinning mechanism would falter, and ultimately, the spinner would be destined for the landfill.  So, to ensure that this review wasn't a mere first-impression, I invested a month of spinning my favorite greens:  baby kale, butter lettuce, fresh basil, and baby romaine.  From the start, the Zyliss "Smart Touch" struck me as sturdier than any other spinner I'd previously used.  Over the month of daily use, the spinner held up beautifully.  It was easy to use and easy to clean.  It did a great job of drying my salad greens, and was a particula…

Organize & Label with Vintage Sunbeam Jar Labels {free printables}

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While antiquing a few weeks ago I came across a stash of vintage labels from Sunbeam.  I love the graphic of the sweet little girl and the cheerful red and white border.  The labels are the perfect size to affix to small jars, and because they're blank, you can write whatever you like.  What a fun way to get organized with retro style!  Enjoy!


Click on the image above to visit my Photobucket, where you can download and save the jpg.

Click HERE to visit my GoogleDrive account to download the free scrap sheet in PDF.

Recipe: Brown Butter Baked Chocolate Doughnuts with Salted Caramel Glaze

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Creating this recipe was a bit like a fairytale -- Goldilocks and the Three Bears to be exact.  The first batch was too soft.  The next batch, too dry.  My third try, just right!  My story began when I was frolicking through the densely wooded forest of inspiration that is Pinterest.  I was lured by a tantalizing photo of salted caramel glazed chocolate doughnuts and clicked right over to get the recipe.  To my dismay, the doughnuts were far out of  reach -- at a bakery on the opposite side of the country.  The journey had only just begun -- I'd have to come up with a recipe of my own.


After much trial and error, I developed a recipe that yields a perfect cake doughnut that isn't too sweet.  That way, it plays nicely with the sweet caramel glaze.  The batter is easy to make, and it's lineage can be traced to the classic French madeleine.  Although it's tempting to eat the donuts right away, they're best when completely cool, and even better the next day.  
So here…

Future Heirlooms: Family Silhouette Pendant Tutorial

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These silhouette pendants are inexpensive to make and don't require fancy software.  With a few basic steps, you can create silhouettes of your loved ones -- be they the two-legged or four-legged kind.

Silhouettes, also known as "profiles" or "shades", have been popular since the 18th century.  They can be made from painted ivory or glass, plaster, or paper.  My first experience with silhouette art came in elementary school when my teacher projected our shadows on the wall and traced our profiles on a piece of black construction paper.  It remains one of my favorite childhood art projects to this day.  

I've admired the many silhouette projects I've seen online and have felt inspired to do my own.  The stars aligned when I connected with Lilly of Lilly D's DIY Craft Supplies after purchasing some pendant bezels and glass cabochons from her Etsy shop for my Lucky Clover Pendant project in March. 

Recently, Lilly sent me a generous sampling of diy jewel…