Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Postpartum a year after?

Everything happens for a reason.

This is something I've been telling myself constantly over the past few months. I got married. Got pregnant. Gave birth. I'm raising a lovely, active daughter. I'm working. Trying to be the best wife, mother, sibling, friend to the people I love.
And often I feel like I'm going out of my mind.

Can you have postpartum depression a year after giving birth?
Maybe I don't know what to call it. Lately, it seems as if I can't get my bearings straight and I am desperately trying to get my head above water. Rising water. Strong current. Madness.

It's a constant feeling of being overwhelmed. I thought that after I have the baby, everything would fall into place. Now...my house is still so disorganized, my "to-do list" keeps extending, I'm always tired when I get to work and when I get home. I'm uninspired, unhappy and drowning.

Help! I don't want to be here.

I've got a loving family, great friends, a stable job. I've been repeating those three things in my head as well. It will get better, right? I know God has plans for me and that everything happens for a reason. I know that He will not forget me. He will be my pillar of strength in this sea of loneliness.  

Friday, February 15, 2013

New Blog Project!

I've created a new blog to chronicle my baking adventures and mishaps! 2013 is the year for me to organize my blog, after all. Please do check it out, its www.onenuttybaker.blogspot.com.

The first entries are all re-posts of the baking posts I've already published here, I will be adding more of my baking ramblings in that blog and I would love it if you visit :) Thanks!


Thursday, January 31, 2013

Royal Red Heart Cupcake Toppers

I've got a couple of new stuff I've baked recently and am extremely happy with. For peanut butter lovers and chocolate lovers alike. Problem is, it is almost midnight as I write this, I have to wake up early tomorrow morning and my recipe book happens to be on the top shelf of a cabinet about 12 feet away. So I'll post the pictures and recipes some other time.
Instead, I want to share with you pictures of these vivid red cupcakes toppers I made out of royal icing.
It's almost February and a lot of people are already busy with orders for Valentine's! Personally, I don't treat Valentine's Day any differently, it's NOT a non-working holiday so it certainly feels like a regular day. Plus, the whole bouquet of flowers on V-Day? It doesn't really work for me.
But give me a box of chocolates or cupcakes...and I will instantly follow you like a lovesick puppy!
These photos show my first attempts at royal icing. I piped the hearts on acetate that I wiped a bit with shortening. I didnt realize the toppers would take so long to dry! I made the hearts for my sister-in-law's birthday dinner the following night and the royal icing was still very soft and terribly fragile. I should have let them dry for at least 2 days. Oh well.
I managed to get all the cupcakes decorated and that's what counts. I am tempted to do this again for Valentine's day to give to my relatives. Apart from the drying time, you finish so much in less than an hour!
You don't even have to wait for Valentine's Day to make these!
Because everyday should be Valentine's Day! (Cheesy, I know haha!)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Creamy & Dreamy

I know I've mentioned that Cream Cheese doesn't seem to agree much with me, but after making so many red velvet cupcakes over the holidays I have finally found my go-to recipe for tasty cream cheese frosting that hasn't failed me so far.
I don't even have to put this in the chiller since it holds its shape after piping. That means I get to finish decorating my cupcakes sooner without compromising the taste of my frosting.
So I hope you try this out and if you've ever had problems with cream cheese frosting, you can now kiss them a sweet goodbye with this recipe!

What we'll need:
1 cup cream cheese
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup shortening
 3-4 cups icing sugar
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cream butter, shortening and cream cheese. Once well combined add the vanilla extract and salt. Add the icing sugar gradually. You don't have to use up all 4 cups of icing sugar, if you like the consistency of the frosting with 3 cups you can stop there. 
My cousin likes a sweeter frosting so when I made her cupcakes I used 5 cups of icing sugar and added 1/2 teaspoon milk. 
But that's basically it! Cream cheese frosting that's stiff and rich and oh so delicious! 
Now I never have to worry about making cream cheese frosting! In fact, I now come up with all sorts of excuses to make this kind of frosting!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Garage Sale Treasures

Everyday on my way home from work I would pass by this street a couple of blocks from where I live. Its your usual street lined with houses and cars parked out front, not really a busy street and not super interesting. Except for this one house. A brown house with a high gate and a small stall in front with a sign that read "Garage Sale". I normally go straight home after work so I could be with the baby but this time around I decided to check it out, especially since I keep seeing these colorful bowls and jars on display.
Look at the treasures I found!
They were all in really good shape too. A little bit of cleaning and they looked practically new! The set of green bowls even had the price tag attached to it.
The red baking dishes really made me happy because when I peeked underneath...
What a find! A Paula Deen baking dish!
And another excellent find at this garage sale was this...
It's an 8-inch cake stand with a cover and a christmas village design. Absolutely lovely! I was ecstatic over my finds!
Do you want to know what the best part about the garage sale was? I bought 5pcs soup bowls, 2pcs baking dish, and a cake stand with a cover and everything cost me only 15 dollars!

You can imagine how HUGE my smile was when I got home!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Happy New Year!!!

I know the toppers are for Christmas but hey, it's still under the 'holiday' theme so please let it slide.
I feel like 2012 just breezed by me. Having a baby puts everything on fast-forward and last year, no matter what I did, it was like I couldn't catch my breath.
There are so many things I am truly thankful for - a husband who supports me, a healthy and happy baby, work that fulfills me and family and friends who make me feel like the luckiest woman on Earth.
May 2013 whisper wonderful moments in your ear, may every experience promise joy and hope and love for you and your family. May every glorious second last forever.
Wishing you the best this new year!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Vanilla Coconut Cupcakes with Coco Cream Cheese Frosting

The recipe I use for my carrot cake calls for dessicated coconut and coconut cream. For a three layer 8" carrot cake I only use about 1/4 cup of the coconut cream and since it does not keep for a long period of time I always worry about what I will do with the leftover cream. I hate letting things go to waste! Finally, I started looking for something easy I could make with the leftover coconut cream.
I asked and the internet giveth! I honestly can't remember where I got this recipe from. I just googled coconut cupcakes, copied all the recipes that came out and edited all of them into one recipe that sounded right. (If you have any idea where this recipe came from, feel free to let me know!)
These coconut cupcakes are extremely delicious! Moist, light, with a hint of vanilla. I like coconut but I know a lot of people who don't and that's fine, the coconut flavor in these beauties is not overpowering at all. It's a delicate kind of cupcake because it crumbles quite easily but it also kind of melts in your mouth.
I also made coconut cream cheese frosting which is your basic cream cheese recipe with a little bit of the coconut cream (1/2 cup) instead of milk. Another way to use up my extra coconut cream and still have that subtle coco frosting. So good!
Now my only problem with this recipe is that the batter can shrink quite a bit when it bakes. Some of the cupcakes separated completely from the cupcake liners. I have no idea why it did that. Maybe you could help me out?
Coconut Cupcakes
2/3 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 and 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup dessicated coconut
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup coconut cream

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 12-count cupcake pan
2. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy
3. Add the eggs one at a time and beat well after each addition
4. Add the vanilla extract
5. In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, dessicated coconut, and baking powder
6. Beat half of the flour mixture into the bowl with the wet ingredients
7. Pour in coconut cream
8. Include remaining flour mixture and beat until smooth
9. Fill the cupcake liners 3/4 full and bake for 18-22minutes
10. Cool completely before frosting
Hope you like making these!