Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Of course we needed to be a unicorn this Halloween! :)
Mama had it easy this year making the costume. I found a fluffy vest with a hood and just embellished it with ears, mane, tail and a golden horn.
Super cute!

We made a couple more crafts and even got around to making a delicious carrot / red lentil dip with toasted ghostly corn tortillas!

Oh boy !

Hope you had a ghoulishly yummy Halloween !

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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Soft pretzel pumpkins

There's something very evocative about the deliciousness of a soft salty pretzel, specially smothered with spicy mustard. It talks to me about 80's music concerts with cheap beer, cold winter nights in NYC, and that darn "take me out to the ball game" song.
So imagine my joy when I found what has got to be the world's easiest pretzel recipe ever!!
I'm going to share it with you, because you know you love a good pretzel and it might bring you back memories too, whether Duran Duran, Pat Benatar or the Yankees....

Our soft pretzels here are Halloween inspired.

Soft pretzels

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

1.Sprinkle 1 package of yeast ( the little ones 1/4 oz) onto 3/4 of a cup of warm water. Add a tablespoon of sugar and stir. Let it stand for about 10 minutes. It will become foamy .
2.Put 2 cups of flour and 1 tsp of salt into a bowl. Add the yeast mixture.
3.Knead the dough until smooth.
4.Roll pieces of dough into ropes or what ever shape you want them to be.

5.Make fun shapes . (Here we are making a pumpkin)

6.Beat one egg with a fork and brush the tops of the pretzels with the egg. Sprinkle with corse salt.

7.Bake at 400* for about 10-15 minutes depending on the size of your pretzel. Or until golden brown.

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Monday, October 25, 2010

Paper doll ghosts

Here is a super easy project for little hands and perfect for any occasion. Paper dolls.
In October, pumpkin, bats and ghosts. November brings turkeys, cornucopias, or corn. In December, Christmas trees, Ginger bread men and wreaths ... The list goes on!!

The magic of paper doll making is this:
One: making tabs (hands that hold )
Two: a fan fold

To make some first,

Take an 8 1/2 sheet of paper and fold it in half.

Fold it in half again

And fold it in half again...

Open the paper. You should have 8 creases (8 rectangles ).

Refold back and forth. Like a zig zag ( a fan).

Flatten down and draw 2 tabs. One on each side. This is how your image will hold together.

Draw your image.
We chose a little ghost-y.

Cut all around the image .
BUT do not cut the tabs off.

And cut...

Tah dah!!! Paper doll ghosties!

We made tons of ghosts, pumpkins, bats, hearts, flowers and....

Even got around to including some paper doll unicorns !!

Have fun!!

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Sunday, October 24, 2010

More unicorn love!

There is always a time for sneaking in some unicorn love and last week we got around to making some unicorn crafts and art.
I love documenting the many different unicorns that honeypie makes. This time it was collage and I love that she didn't notice this unicorn has about 10 legs .

Here she worked on a sun catcher.

The whole "sticker story" books are awesome. If you haven't ventured into this world, you can find them at barnes and noble on just about any theme.

And some great new book finds at the library!
(We adore Tomie dePaola)

If you are a unicorn lover and believer like we are, good unicorn book finds are magic!!! ( There are not too many out there, sadly.)

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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Pasta ghosts

Today's Halloween / science fun?

Pasta skeletons!

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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Cookie skeletons

We have been busy getting ready for Halloween and nothing says yummy halloween better than these chocolate skeleton friends!

If you'd like to make these I am including the recipe below.



A fairy and her unicorn (skeletons!!)

Here's the recipe!

Royal icing

1 lb confectioners sugar
5 tb meringue powder
1/2 cup water (mixed in, a little at a time).

Mix in a bowl with a whisk. If the mixture is too thin, add more confectionary sugar. If it is too thick, add a bit more water but a tsp at a time. You want the icing to be thick, that way it will not run all over your cookies.

Chocolate cookies

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup plus 2 tbs unsweetened Dutch process cocoa powder.
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 cup (which is 1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 1/2 confectioners sugar
1 large egg lightly beaten
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

~sift flour, cocoa powder, salt, and cinnamon in a bowl.
~mix butter and confectioners sugar at medium-high speed in a different bowl ( with a paddle attachment on your kitchen aid) until light and fluffy.
~mix in the egg and vanilla. Reduce speed. Gradually add the flour mixture until the dough sticks together .
~ refrigerate the dough for at least an hour .
~roll out the dough to 1/8" thick .
~cut out the cookies in the desired shapes. (I like to bake on parchment paper. Keeps the cookies from sticking to the trays.)
~bake at 350* for about 8 minutes depending on the thickness of the dough.
~If the dough softens too much , stick it back in the fridge and roll it out again.

We are trying to do a Halloween countdown with projects to do everyday ... So stay tuned !

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