Archive | June, 2011

Santa Came!

9 Jun

With a little help, anyway.

Remember my much-hated side-by-side refrigerator/freezer?

It’s GONE!!

Santa and my clients (whom I love very much) brought me a bee-yoo-tiful French door, bottom-freezer refrigerator, and I might have to marry it, I love it so much. Want to know why? Because my daughter came home from school, opened it up, said, “Where’s all the food from the other fridge?” and it was ALL IN THERE!!

I can fit a lasagna pan.

I can fit a pizza box.

I can fit an ice cream cake. Hell, I can fit ice cream!

Excited is not the word, my friends. I had a terrible, awful, no-good, very bad day the other day, and told a friend that I was going to go hug my new appliance so I’d feel better. And I was not kidding.

My only issue is organizing the freezer, which is a drawer-style. How do I keep things from being buried down there? Do any of you have a system? Please let me know in the comments.

Kitchen toys are the best toys in the world!

 

ps–The old fridge did not go to the landfill. It went to Habitat for Humanity, and they even drove out here to pick it up. I’m happy to be rid of it, and happy someone else will love it as it deserves. 🙂

Chocolate Chip Coconut Muffins

1 Jun

Sunday was the first full day our family had together in a pretty darned long time. It’s been a few of those months, you know? So we made a point to stay commitment-free (at least until my daughter’s 3:30 ballet recital) and work some needed errands into some down time.

We got up early and headed to one of our favorite places for breakfast and a quiet morning walk around the water. The weather was beautiful, so we popped into a coffee shop to choose some morning treats before heading to a bench on the State House lawn to eat.

I love this coffee shop, and I love the idea of supporting a local business over the nearby Bucks of Star whenever possible. But to be totally honest, their muffins have underwhelmed me. Dense and a bit on the salty side, they were more like misshapen scones, and I’m just not a scone kind of girl. So when DD picked out a chocolate chip coconut muffin, I didn’t have very high hopes that it would be eaten.

It was devoured.  She wolfed it down so fast that I risked a fingertip to tear myself off a bite, and got the most wonderful surprise I’ve had in awhile. Something about the coconut and the chocolate chips made for a divine combination that wasn’t terribly coconuty, but was moist and light and had just a tinge of crunch that made my mouth very happy (and put my cinnamon coffee cake to absolute shame). This is not a pina colada muffin. In fact, my guess is that if you just handed one to an unsuspecting person, he or she wouldn’t readily identify the coconut, but they’d love the muffin.

Yesterday, I mucked around with my own chocolate chip muffin recipe and came up with a really good clone of that coffee shop pastry. Mine are miniature, which makes them great for lunchboxes and breakfast in the car (fewer crumbs), but you could certainly make them full-sized by increasing the baking time (and using full-sized chips, I’d think). If you want something more dessert-like, sprinkle sugar (sanding sugar would be fantastic if you have it) over the tops before you bake these up.

One word of warning: Don’t substitute butter for the shortening in these. You’ll end up with greasy muffins, and those are icky.

I bagged these up in threes and froze them, just as I did for the DIY Little Bites last year. They’re also absolutely delicious fresh and should last a few days at room temp. Give them a try and let me know what you think. You’ll need:

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup shortening

1 egg

1/2 cup milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut

1/2 cup miniature chocolate chips

Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees and grease a mini-muffin pan.

Cream together the shortening and sugar in a mixer. Blend in egg, milk, and vanilla and mix well.

Gradually, at low speed, mix in flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt until just mixed together. Then stir in coconut and chocolate chips.

Spoon about a tablespoon of batter into each mini-muffin cup. Bake for about 12 minutes, or until the sides brown (the tops will not brown). Cool in pan about 5 minutes, and then remove the muffins from the tin to cool the rest of the way.

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