Sunday, September 13, 2009

Parents' Weekend

Last weekend my parents and youngest brother came to visit, and I made cupcakes, lasagna and ciabatta bread for the occasion.

Just before they arrived, my massive, beautiful lasagna was minutes away from perfection, when a SMASH*CRASH*TINKLE*TINKLE noise sounded from the oven. I wish I'd gotten a picture of the oven coated with pyrex glass and bits of lasagna, but my camera was not the first thought on my mind. The pyrex dish (brand new) didn't just crack in half or anything, it shattered. I had been feeling all grown up, fixing dinner for my family in my very own kitchen, but when mom arrived a few minutes later, I stopped being grown up and let her clean up the mess.
I scooped off the top layer of the lasagna and ate it, even though mom begged me to throw it out.

The cupcakes were Banana Caramel, because I wanted to do something with a gooey caramel center.

I still think it is a good concept, but the banana cake was entirely too dense, and after a few days in the refridge, they were completely unappetizing. The icing was caramel cream cheese, and I added whipping cream to make it lighter, but the flavor was still kind of overwhelmingly cream cheese.

Eric said these were his favorite cupcakes so far, and my family liked them too, but I was not impressed. I wish I'd tried the Rachel Ray recipe I saw for them, but this is the recipe I used:
with my own concoction for icing.

I do like the idea of using rum in the cupcakes, though.

They look pretty though, don't you think?

A few days before I made the bread, I made a starter for ciabatta bread, and let the yeast grow for 6 hrs at room temp, and then stalled it in the fridge til I was ready to make it. I got the formula out of "The Bread Bible" by Rosy Beranbaum.

It's not a good picture, but the bread had fantastic "crumb," or network of holes, but the crust wasn't very distinct and I don't think I let it rise enough because I was trying to get it done before soccer with Eric. The flavor was GREAT. I LOVE BREAD.

The start of my bread baking adventure! I plan to make a lot of breads from the Bread Bible, and really go gung ho on my new book "The Breadbaker's Apprentice" which is apparently THE book for bread bakers.


  1. your blog makes me happy. the fact that you live billions of miles away makes me unhappy.

  2. hi mikaela! it looks like you're having lots of fun since you've been married! :) i love baking too so it was fun to scan your latest creations - i made mini pecan pies the other day and they turned out so cute. baking is so fun. check out bakerella's blog if you ever get a chance!