Dark Chocolate Mint Pinwheels and Linky Party

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2  teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder ( I used Hershey's special dark)
  • 1 cup chocolate chips melted
  • 1 tablespoon gel green food coloring or 1 small bottle of the water based kind.( I highly recommend the gel variety. You can buy it at any craft store. It is much brighter and you can use less)
  • Powdered sugar, for rolling out dough

Directions

Sift together the flour, salt and baking powder and set aside.
Cream butter and sugar together in another large bowl. Add egg and vanilla and beat until incorporated. Gradually add the dry mixture, beating until combined. It will be in little tiny balls. It won't be creamy yet,this is normal.

Remove half of the mixture from the bowl. Add green food coloring, 3 tablespoons milk and peppermint extract beating until fully combined. You may have to knead the colored dough a bit to get it mixed thoroughly.  On a sheet of waxed paper or Saran wrap, roll out dough to form a large rectangle, about 1/4-inch thick. Set aside.

Take the cocoa powder and whisk it in a small bowl with the 1/2 cup milk until well combined. Add it to the white dough. Now add the melted chocolate and beat until combined. Now knead dough until completely combined and easy to work with. Place on a sheet of waxed paper or saran wrap and roll out into a similar sized rectangle as your green dough.
 Now very carefully, slide or flip the green  dough on top of the chocolate  dough.  Trim edges if uneven and patch if necessary. Roll dough into a log, creating a swirl effect. NOTE: do not worry if the dough starts to tear a little when you are rolling it. This is normal. Simply mend it with your fingers as you go along.

Now place a generous amount of sprinkles in a shallow dish and roll the cookie dough log firmly over the sprinkles until they stick and its covered. Wrap tightly with saran wrap and place the dough back in the refrigerator and let chill for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Slice the dough into 1/2-inch slices and place on a parchment lined sheet tray about 1-inch apart.  Bake for 10-15 minuets depending on how thick you sliced the cookies.

Here's the best part!!! If you only wan to bake 6 cookies, wrap it up tightly in saran wrap and freeze until ready to use again!!! 



If you like this recipe your going L*O*V*E Thursday's SO STAY TUNED!!!!


Please join me and link up ANYTHING handmade or homemade. I would love to see recipes, DIY projects, party planning, and craft projects of all kinds!!!
And if you didn't make anything this week, no worries, link up an old favorite!!!
There are no rules! Feel free to grab the Handmade Hog button and place it in your post or on your sidebar but it is absolutely NOT required!! EVERYONE is welcome to participate!!! This is just supposed to be a fun way to share your ideas and pick up some new ones !! 
So, please join me! LINK UP!!! I can't wait to see what you have in store!!!




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A Deeper Look Inside My Weight Loss Journey

 
I'm sure most of you know that I recently lost over 100 pounds. You can read all about how I did it and see before and after photos {HERE}
 
Obviously there are many sides to any story, especially a journey like loosing 100 pounds. I didn't just accidentally gain 100+ pounds. I'm sure occasionally it does happen but there are reasons why I ended up the way I did and I wanted to share a little bit more of an intimate look into my life and the struggles I have had with  weight and self esteem.
 
Whether over weight or under weight I know this is a topic that touches so many woman's lives.
 
MY BACKGROUND 
Ever since I can remember, I have been conscious of my weight.  That probably means around the age of 6. At that time I was not chubby but weight was something that was always openly discussed and frowned upon in my family. By the time I was 9 or so I started to be a little bit chubby. I was by no means deemed overweight by my doctor but because I was not tall and thin, I was not a waif, some of my family members thought I was fat.
 
 
I had been getting comments for years like "don't use so much butter", or "are sure you want to eat that?", or "maybe less jam on that honey"........whatever..........A LOT OF NEGATIVE FOOD TALK!!!
 
Please, please don't talk to your children this way. It's HURTS us inside!!!! Lead by example. Don't give us broken tools and expect us to figure out how to use them. IT'S NOT FAIR.
  
Teach your children what to eat, show them, eat it with them. Don't tell them they have to be skinny and then feed them donuts. IT'S CRUEL!!! 
 
By the time I was 12 my father had taken to me to Jenny Craig, which did have a program for OBESE children, not children who where slightly chubby at the awkward age of 12. They accepted me anyway advising caution

I came from a broken home at an early age. I lived with my mother most of the year and only went to live with my father in the summers. Needless to say my mother was not happy when I flew home with an extra suitcase full of Jenny Craig food at the age of 12.  I only stayed on it for a couple weeks. It was too difficult for a child of my age and my mother, rightfully so, thought it was ridiculous and unnecessary. She was right but it was too late. The damage was done.

 This was the straw that broke the camels back. Jenny Craig at age 12? Really?   This is when my "issues with food" officially began.  
 
By the time I was in Junior High I was CONSTANTLY worried about my weight. I was very conscious of what I wore but was too young to know how to control my food intake.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            
By the time I was in high school I tried being bulimic for a little while but thankfully hated it so stopped that pretty quickly. I continued to worry and obsess about what I ate and how my clothes fit and couldn't understand why I wasn't rail thin like most of my 15 year old friends. At this time I weighed about 130 pounds. I just happened to have a C cup and hips but I thought I was fat.

So basically I've been on a diet since the age of 12! 
 
THE WAY MY "ISSUES WITH FOOD" MANIFESTED
So for most of my childhood and all of my adult life I have been obsessing about food in one way or another. It's constantly on my mind, hardly ever leaving my train of thought for a moment's time. It's kind of like being in prison.

For most of my twenties I hardly ate much of anything. I'd usually eat one meal a day and usually not a healthy one either. Then I would work out for an hour and a half  6 or 7 days a week. I was a complete nutritional and health disaster. I ate far too little calories and worked out WAY too much. I was a waitress for 12 years before I became a nurse and I can remember I would go to the gym between shifts when  I worked doubles instead of resting and taking care of myself. I maintained about a size 8-10 doing this for most of my twenties but then every few years I would get really depressed (this is another topic I should write about at a later date) and I would use food as my comfort. I would just start eating and eating and eating everything in sight. I would usually gain 20-40 pounds, stay depressed and overweight for 6 months and then snap out of it, go on a crash diet and loose the weight again. This roller coaster cycle went on for years.

I can remember when my husband proposed to me I was heavy at the time and the very first thought that entered my mind was, "OH MY GOD. I'M SO FAT. I HAVE TOO BE SKINNY FOR MY WEDDING" How sad, now that I think back on that. Of all the wonderful blessings of joining my life with my husband's, what was I most worried about? My weight!!! sad. sad. sad.
 
******Well, my friends the wonderful news is I have changed. I am a new woman. I am no longer obsessed. I am not spending every waking moment worried about what I should or shouldn't be eating. I am enjoying my life, my children, my husband and I am thinner, healthier and happier than I have ever been.
 
How did I manage to unravel a lifetime of damage in two years? I'm not exactly sure but what I do know is that with the birth of my children came the most incredible gift of all. A NEW OUTLOOK ON LIFE. I am a new woman. I wrote a post not too long ago called "Forever Changed." which expresses just how much my life has changed since I had my children. Honestly, every little tiny aspect of my life is different. All those years and years of therapy working on each and every tiny crevice that plagued me were gone in an instant, the single instant my son was born.

I can't explain it any other way but all of a sudden food did not have the power to control me any longer because IT WASN'T IMPORTANT!!!!.  Not important  like  MY KIDS AND THEIR WELL BEING. Suddenly, I was given a real , hard reality check and all that truly mattered were my babies and their well being. Period!!! 
Anything else was trivial at best. Including most of my life long problems.

God works in very mysterious ways and this is nothing short of a miracle.
 
I was able to loose 100+ pounds in a healthy way, truly healthy for my mind, body and spirit. I was kind, gentle and understanding with myself, which I never had been before. I stopped obsessing and just let it be and it worked! If I wanted a cupcake or two I ate them and moved on. Period. No guilt. No binging. No week long punishment. A miracle in my eyes.

The weight just fell off. I am in tears writing this because I never thought I would tackle this obstacle. I thought for the rest of my life I would be imprisoned by my own mind. Don't get me wrong, I am still critical and wish I could look this way or that,  but the true obsession is GONE!!! 
Thank you God for giving me two beautiful, healthy children who not only bring me so much joy on a daily basis but have changed my life for the better in every way I can imagine. I am truly the woman I have always wanted to be. WOW!




Thank you. Thank you for listening.
That journey was a long one and I am so happy I was able to share it with you. I truly appreciate each and every one of you for listening.
 
Again, this is a subject I am passionate about so I would be happy to chat with you about it or share my story with your readers anytime. Simply shoot me an email at "www.bouffeebambini@hotmail.com" Be sure to include the www.

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I'll leave you with this bit of inspiration


Linking up here at my friend Lindsay's {BLOG}








 

What We Wore Girls Edition


I love both my babies more than anything in this world but it sure is fun having a little girl. I just love putting her in adorable, comfy little outfits I'm big on comfortable. In fact if it isn't comfortable, I won't put her in it.

I love you my baby Ginger Grace; You little beauty!!!!!













Ginger:
Paris Leg Warmers: B:Mod Designs

Mama:
Hoodie: L.A.M.B
Jeans: 7 for all mankind
Flats: Gap

pleated poppy
Momma Go Round





Easy Dressed Up Caramel Apples

Here's a quick SUPER easy Thanksgiving idea folks!!!!!!


You will Need:
2 apples
half a bag of caramels unwrapped
wooden lollipop sticks (find at any craft store)
1/2 a bag of dark choclate chips
1/4 bag white choclate chips
Toffee bits or sprinkles
Raffia and gift tag for decoration

Dircetions:
1. Simplly remove the apple stem and plunge the wooden stick about half way into the apple so it is secure.
2. Melt the caramels in the microwave for about 20 seconds and dip the apples. Set on wax paper in fridge
3. Melt the dark chocolate in the microwave in 3o second intervals as not to burn. Dip apples. For the sprinkles or toffee bits sprinkle or roll righth away. Set on way paper in fridge.
4. place white choicolate chips in a small zip lack bag, melt in microwave. Cut a tiny hole inthe corner and pipe a design onton the apple. Set on wax paper in fridge.
5. Decorate as desired and enjoy.



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This is the Reason I Love My Life

Thank you God for showing me the true meaning of love. I am enamoured with it's beauty and will cherish every little moment like this forever.


Hold your babies tight . Love them more than you thought possible. They are our future!




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What I Wore Leg Warmers


Another staple of fall that I L*O*V*E are leg warmers!! They are just too cute!!!! 






Jacket and Shirt: J Crew
Leggings: Emersonmade
Leg Warmers: Delirium Kredens
Flats: The Gap
Spoon Necklace: Beau & Stella





pleated poppy
Momma Go Round







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Baby GG's First Tutu and a little Surprise

I can't believe my little GG is already 9 months old. She is starting to be so much fun. She's crawling around everywhere getting into all kids of trouble with her brother. 
I managed to snap a couple of cute photos of her in her very first tutu compliments of my dear friend Lindsay at {Lee La La}.


SURPRISE
A little giveaway for all you crafters out there!!!! 

TWO readers are getting the chance to win TWO PDF patterns from {Petite Kids Boutique}.

                       To Enter Please:  visit {Petite Kids Boutique} and let me know your favorite pattern.



For additional entries:  you may make {Petite Kids Boutique} a favorite on Etsy and/or you may like Petite Kids Boutique on {FACEBOOK}




Can't wait to shop??? 
Enter "BOUFEE01" at checkout for  15% off your order!!!!!! Offer valid until the end of the giveaway!!! Giveaway ends Monday 11/14!



 

Ginger Bread Hugs

LETS GET FESTIVE!!!!! 

I L*O*V*E the holidays because it gives me even more reasons to bake until my little heart is content!!! 

I've already got a huge list of holiday baking ideas and this was one of them; Ginger Bread Cookies with a little Hershey hug snuggled in the middle. YUM! 

I found the original inspiration for this idea {here}
Ingredients:
3 cups flour

2 tsp. Ginger, Ground
1 tsp. Cinnamon, Ground
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. Nutmeg, Ground (I used fresh)
1/4 tap salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup molasses
1 egg
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
24 Hershey's white chocolate "hugs"


Mix flour, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda, nutmeg and salt in large bowl.

Beat butter and brown sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy.
Add molasses, egg and vanilla; beat well. Gradually beat in flour mixture on low speed until well mixed. Press dough into a thick flat disk. Wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll in granulated sugar. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets.
Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until edges of cookies just begin to brown. Immediately press about 5-6 white chocolate chips into center of each cookie. Remove to wire racks; cool completely. Store cookies in airtight container up to 5 days.








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Upside down Banana's Fosters Muffins


INGREDIENTS
This recipe will make 6 giant muffins. YOu will need a giant muffin pan

Topping
 
2 Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Whisk the flours, almonds, baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the sugar and butter together until light. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and rum extract. Add dry ingredients alternately with sour cream in 2 additions each, beating well after each addition. Pour cake batter over caramel and bananas in pan.
3 Bake muffins ntil tester inserted into the center comes out clean, about 30-35 min. Coo lmuffins in pan on a rack for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of each muffin to loosen then turn muffins out onto a platter. Serve warm or at room temperature. These would be great with ice cream too.
Makes 6 giant muffins. 






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1 Generously spray giant muffin pan with non stick cooking spray. Start by making the caramel topping. Take brown sugar, rum extract, and butter and combine and melt in a saucepan on medium heat until sugar dissolves and the mixture is bubbly, this should take several minutes. (After sugar melts, don't stir.) Pour mixture into giant muffin cups evenly. Arrange sliced bananas in a single layer ontop of the caramel mixture.
  • 1 cup of firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon rum extract
  • 1-2 bananas sliced
Cake:
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 Tbsp cake flour
  • 3 Tbsp of ground almonds (from about 2 oz of whole almonds)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup  of sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon rum extract
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

METHOD

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