A Post-Grad's Attempt at a Healthy, Joyful, and Blissfully Sweet Life

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Cooking for a Crowd

hello hello there!

i hope you all had wonderful thanksgiving, full of delicious eats! this year mine was quite eventful-i was hired to be the head baker for an inn and all the desserts were up to me to create! which is basically  my dream come true.

after much deliberation and recipe pondering (probably the most fun homework ever), i decided on making pumpkin pie, pecan pie, pumpkin biscotti, spice cupcakes with chai buttercream frosting, and a flourless chocolate torte. YUM!

the kitchen i made a mess of baked in!
I brought over a test run of the pecan pie to Luke's family, and knew the recipe was a keeper when his dad declared it was officially his favorite thing I ever made him. Guess he couldn't tell that the main ingredient was tofu ;)

most of the time i had that whole kitchen to myself, which was wonderful.  once i learned my way around i was zooming like a mad woman from stove burner to oven to mixing bowl to timer.  i am pretty sure the guard who kept "dropping by" one of the nights i was baking was actually legitimately concerned for my well being. which made a lot more sense once i got home and looked at myself in mirror, where i noticed my hair was falling out of my pony tail, i had frosting on my face, and my arms were covered in chocolate.

hey, i could be covered in worse.

actually, i am pleased to say everything came out great, even if i did happen to burn the first attempt at the chocolate torte. after making 24 pies, 70 cupcakes, frosting, 120 biscotti, and a (non burnt) large chocolate torte, my job was complete.  that is by far the most i have ever made in my life! the chef said everything was enjoyed on the big day, and i even got offered a job to do the Christmas baking! just call me Head Baker Julia...

the pumpkin walnut biscotti dipped in chocolate and drizzled with white chocolate i made. a must for any Thanksgiving coffee drink :)

my thanksgiving was a bit nontraditional this year, in that i ran a 5 mile turkey trot and then got together with just my cousin, where the start of the meal was grapenuts.  that might sound weird to you, but for us, it was the perfect holiday!

bridget is my younger cousin, but is more like my sister/best friend. i am SO thankful for her in my life, and honestly don't know what i would do without her! therefore, it was very fitting to spend the day dedicated to thankfulness with her :)

and we celebrated by indulging in all our favorite traditions! grapenuts is an inside joke that was started years and year ago, but basically it's our favorite food and we put it on everything. so, we started the day with yogurt, strawberries, and grapenuts, a meal that can't be beat!

the day was spent doing all of our favorite traditions, like taking pictures, playing dog monopoly, and dancing around like goons. 

eventually we got very hungry and made our other traditional meal-brownie sundaes. we do not hold back on these, and add everything and anything to make them the best! 

this delicious creation would be a brownie (taken out of the oven early so it was still gooey, obvioulsy), half ben and jerry's phish food ice cream and half cookies and cream ice cream, crushed sugar cone, chocolate coated candy pieces, chocolate chips, a cherry, whipped cream, and grapenuts! i absolutely enjoyed every bite!

that would be me, holding up the grapenuts box rafiki style while singing "the circle of life" yes, we love grapenuts that much
needless to say my thanksgiving this year was very out of the ordinary, from baking for a huge crowd, to never actually eating any turkey or stuffing (i don't like either....seriously, give me ice cream for every meal.)

what was YOURS like?

*also!!! i am now just like every other person on the planet and have an iphone, and clearly the first app i downloaded was instagram. follow me!

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