Sunday, June 18, 2006

happy summer

Summer nights are getting to be very beautiful, especially if you can get to a roof to see the sun set over the Hudson or this view from a harbor cruise in lower Manhattan. I finally got around to setting up a space in my room to do scrapbooking - turning our catch-all desk into a very enjoyable place to spend time going through pictures from the last few years. Another project that I have finished up is the reading of "Middlemarch", mainly while on the train to/from work. What a great book - this quote is from the main character Dorothea who comes across as moderately eccentric at first, but definitely wins you over.
"If we had lost our own chief good, other people's good would remain, and that is worth trying for. I seemed to see that more clearly than ever, when I was the most wretched. I can hardly think how I could have borne the trouble, if that feeling had not come to me to make strength."

In other news, Helaman and I have sworn off ice cream (our favorite treat) for two months in the hopes of not appearing as beached, pasty white whales on our trip to Hawaii. Just the pasty part. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, June 10, 2006

cupcakes for sale

Inspired by Julia's post on scratch vs. box mix cupcakes, I decided to try her recipe. Well, I didn't decide, I was forced into it by a raging thunder storm which was great to listen to, but not so fun to march out into to get the treat I was craving Friday night. Magnolia Bakery would charge $4 a pop for these cupcakes, EXCEPT Magnolia's wouldn't be HALF as good. However, they would definitely have better presentation which proves anything will sell in New York based on packaging alone. In fact, at a firm party a year ago, we had some absolutely fabulous looking cupcakes which everyone was raving about, and it felt like an illustration of the Spiral of Silence Theory (Comms 201) where everyone is thinking something but no one is saying it. I thought they tasted like they were a week old. They were way too dense and for some reason no one was saying it for fear of offending these beautiful cupcakes. A cupcake is supposed to be light and airy, so you don't feel like you ate an entire cake afterward. The "gourmet" bakeries in the city fall woefully short in this area. Julia's recipe, however, produces possibly the creamiest batter and lightest cupcakes I've ever tasted. Don't be scared off by the ingredients, I used regular sugar and salt and no cardamom, but they still tasted great, so imagine how they'd taste with the proper ingredients. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, June 03, 2006

rainy saturday

Carmine's is one of the places we love to take friends from out of town because it is a crowd pleaser and so far no complaints. We went there tonight with some people but didn't have the camera so here is a picture from last year when the Buchanans and Blaydens came to visit. On the table you'll see the masterful "Titanic" dessert, made with a brownie base, a very thick layer of high quality chocolate and vanilla ice cream, bananas, strawberries, whipped cream and three smokestacks made with those round wafer type pipe things. Anyone know the name of those things? I can't think of it. The dessert is fabulous and perfect for a group to devour. The main dishes are also very tasty.

We went to see The Da Vinci code to get out of the rain today. It's a fun story/murder mystery and the movie is well put together. Posted by Picasa