Monday, May 28, 2012

Do what you love

Hello there friends!
I don't have any recipes to share with you today, but I definitely will soon.
{SPOILER ALERT: I'm thinking home-made pop tarts...}
But I would like to take some time and pass on some words of advice, and a story.

I have always loved baking. When I was in middle school, and I got off that bus, I would always run straight to my house and fire up the oven to make a fresh batch of chocolate chip cookies.
I would feed them to my family, my neighbors, and my friends.
Now, I don't really know what really sparked my initial interest in baking. I literally have no idea. There wasn't a huge amount of baking already going on in my house, and it's not like I was watching the Food Network instead of Disney Channel. 
I would say it was my love for food, but I am and always have been a picky eater.
But once I got in the kitchen and started baking, I knew I loved it.
I don't think you really need a reason why you love something. 
If you love it, you love it. It just is.

Last weekend, I made a bunch of cupcakes for the choir at church.

I attached a little business card to the box they were individually packaged in, not really thinking anything of it. {Other than it's probably not very nice to be advertising in church...}
But later that Sunday, and the week after, I had calls and e-mails telling me how great they were. 
I know that the treats I make are good, because I always taste them [My chef always says to never serve something you're not proud of], but hearing it from someone else gets me on a whole new level.
Then I got calls and emails from people asking me to bake them more treats, and they would pay me!
This is a whole new thing for me. This is one of my dreams. 
I have always wanted this for me, but I didn't think it would happen until I'm older. 
I thought I'd have to go off to college or something before that happened.
But I am getting paid for my sweets now, and I'm seventeen years old!

And don't they look good?
I am so happy doing what I'm doing. I never dread making four dozen cookies. It's a big number, and I don't even care how long it takes. I enjoy every single minute of baking, and it makes me so so so so so happy.
If you're still reading this, you rock. 
And if you're still reading this, I want to pass on some knowledge to you. 
Do what you love and love what you do.
I know that's been said a lot, and I know I'm young and pretty dumb, but you need to absolutely love what you do, every second of every day, and I guarantee your happiness will increase.

Stay hungry!
Love, Emily

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Coffee Cake is the best kind of cake.

Hello, friends! 
Please forgive my absence, I have been settling into a new house.
(The kitchen is wonderful.)

Fabulous. Look at that double oven.
Okay. Anyway. There's a line in this one song about this girl, and it goes like this
"Betty won't stop listening to modern rock
How she hates to be alone
I try to compensate her lack of love with coffee cake,
Ice cream, and a bottle of ten dollar of wine"
Some may argue that chocolate is the ultimate cure or a "lack of love"
Nope. It's coffee cake.
Always coffee cake.

While I will agree these aren't very good looking, I will tell you that they are delicious.
So here we go.
First, we'll make the cake. 
Combine your yogurt and baking soda together. This will end up bubbling up a little bit. That's okay.

See? Bubbly.
So now take a separate bowl, and cream your butter and sugar together. Then add your egg and vanilla. 
Mix well until combined.

In another bowl, combine your flour and baking powder. 
Now you're going to add this flour mixture to your sugar and butter mixture alternating with the yogurt mixture.

Here comes the fun part.
We're going to make a little syrup. 
When I was doing this I was so excited I was jumping up and down and stuff wow I wish i got a picture.
[I get way too emotional and excited about food.]
Ok so take a little bowl, and put 4 Tablespoons of butter in it, and pop it in the microwave until its all melty and nice. 
then add some maple syrup, brown sugar, and cinnamon. 

Okay, so then take a scoop of your cake batter, and put it in one muffin cup 

Try and get it to cover the bottom completely. 
Then spoon your syrup over it, a little less than 2 Tablespoons per muffin

Then plop some more cake on top, then mix up some butter, flour and brown sugar and sprinkle on top for a crumbly top, and put it in the oven.
{You can do this with a cake pan, and just alternate cake, syrup, cake, crumble}
 And bam, beautiful muffins.

Cinnamon Coffee Cake
For cake:
-1 cup plain yogurt
-1 egg
-1/4 cup butter, softened
-1 tsp vanilla extract
-1 cup lightly packed brown sugar
-1tsp baking soda
-1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
-2 tsp baking powder
For syrup:
-4 Tb butter, melted
-2 Tb maple syrup
-2 Tb brown sugar
-1 tsp cinnamon
For crumble:
-2 Tb brown sugar
-1 Tb all-purpose flour
-1 Tb melted butter
-1/8 tsp cinnamon