A few weeks ago, I got a few boxes of chocolate on sale at the local supermarket. I discovered that Spane and his friend, Noelle, had gotten into the chocolate one night when she spent the night. Apparently, neither one of them liked the unsweetened chocolate, but it was perfect for my Mocha Fudge Pie I made as a treat for my friend, Joanna Alexander of Strawberry Creek Crochet.
This has got to be one of simplest pies I have ever made, and it didn’t require any baking because I used a chocolate crumb crust I had in my pantry. It was just a matter of melting the fudge. I folded in whipped cream to make the pie silky, otherwise, it would have just been fudge.
I got inspiration from my friend Shem Walker, of Kobelin By Shem, who does amazing things with Swarovski crystals. Talk about Bling, and you talk about Shem. If only I were as talented as she is. I was also inspired by pictures I saw of decorated pumpkins in Pinterest, including on black one with lots of jewels. But, I wanted my pumpkin to be different.
When I was a teenager, my friends and I went to see the live production of The Rocky Horror Show at the Roxy Theater in West Hollywood. I even dressed up as Frankenfurter in my senior year in high school. A red lipped vampire pumpkin was the only way to go.
Spane’s school has a pumpkin contest every year, for those students who want to pay the school money to be in the contest. It’s not real money, it’s the school’s money that they print with a picture of the school’s name sake on it. But even so, Spane is just too frugal to spend his hard-earned money on contests, he prefers useful things like pencils, pencil sharpeners, notebooks, etc. It’s a good thing, too, because with all the other stuff I have had to get done, the pumpkin sat unadorned until tonight. The pumpkin found itself in the pictures of our Halloween costumes, Spane’s Tarantula costume, and my Well Dressed Black Cat costume. I wanted to serve my Mocha Fudge Pie with a completed pumpkin.
I believe that accessories are everything when wanting to look well dressed. Accessories should coordinate by color, and sometimes texture. There is no point getting overdressed, and just a few things can make a simple dress look fantastic.
When I was young and svelte, I dressed up as a cat for Halloween. I looked good. It was an easy costume because I always had a leotard top and bottom, and I only had to add ears and a tail. I was a lot of different things, but this year, 2013, came back as The Well Dressed Black Cat.
Spane decided that he wanted to be a tarantula for Halloween. His school has a policy of no violent costumes, and no masks. Well, that’s okay, I made his spider as realistic as I can, and used makeup on his face. He was scary!
Some of you may have noticed that things have been a little slow around here. It’s not that we haven’t been eating, it’s just that I have been extremely busy getting client’s web sites up and running. Last night, I was so tired I didn’t know what to do with myself, and the Monster Mash at the school was today, and I didn’t have Spane’s costume ready. I also thought I needed more stuff, but after a few hours sleep, I thought about it and realized I already had everything I needed to make his costume.
Ah yes! The time has come again to get all those tools out for the Holiday cooking. These days are pretty hectic, so it’s important to have your tools on hand, and that they are clean and in working order.
I’m always surprised to see people buying cooking tools that only do one job. A friend of mine went out and bought a Quesadilla maker, that couldn’t be used for anything else, and she already had several frying pans that were perfectly suitable to the task. That, to me, is a waste of time and money.
So, what I’m going to talk about here are tools that you can use any time of year, and that can be used for many jobs. I have all these products in my kitchen.
I’ve done a lot of shopping for you, found the best prices, and best products. This is a no-brainer! You can shop for the products by clicking on the link provided, or the picture, the choice is yours.
I just love marzipan. It is so forgiving, easy to work with, and delicious. As a child living in Germany, I remember every year at Christmas time, the bakeries would put out a nativity scene made from marzipan, with the structures made from gingerbread. These were true artisans. So, when I decided to make a Jolly Roger cake, I wanted to do something in that tradition.
Originally, I was going to make large cannon (rum) balls for Spane’s pirate themed party, but I soon realized that I could not put a candle on them the same way I could a cake. I still made the rum balls, and they turned out wonderful as well.
Making the cake was easy. I used my standard chocolate cake recipe, using Hershey’s Dark Cocoa, with the addition of a little Chipotle powder and Saigon cinnamon. Black food coloring made for an intensely dark chocolate.