Tag Archives: pinterest challenge

Pin 52: Fudgy Avocado Brownies

Every Tuesday I scroll through my pins to find a cool DIY project that I’m going to master this week.  Every Sunday night I think, “Crap! I forgot to do something from Pinterest!” Hence another recipe. Dessert sounded good, I had avocados ready to use, so Fudgy Avocado Brownies it was.

http://www.southerninlaw.com/2014/04/grain-free-healthy-fudgy-avocado-brownies-recipe.htmlI should probably preface with a couple of facts about my “culinary skills.” Although I enjoy baking, I’ve been known to leave out forget an ingredient every so often…ok, almost every time. Mostly because I rarely read the recipe before starting it- which is also why I can never make a new dessert to bring somewhere because I don’t realize it needs to chill for 3 hours first.

Back to the brownies. Amazingly, I didn’t omit anything, but I had a bigger mistake.

Read through the ingredients to ensure a grocery trip wasn’t necessary, all good.

Step one: blended the avocado, eggs, vanilla, and a little water together, beautiful. I’m rocking this recipe. Step two- add melted chocolate. Oops, probably should’ve had that part already started. Just added a few more minutes to the prep time.

Step three: add the cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, and salt. So, I added my sugar, baking soda, salt, and dutch cocoa powder.

If you know anything about baking (not putting myself in that category!) you probably caught my mistake. Dutch cocoa powder and regular cocoa powder are not interchangeable. Especially when I used baking soda also. Apparently there’s a whole science behind it- alkaline & ph stuff- I don’t know, I just wanted some brownies.

They didn’t quite look like the picture. They would, however, look awesome for Halloween because they were jet black.

Let’s just say they were also far from fudgy or delicious. I guess Dutch cocoa powder + baking soda = bitter soapy taste. Yum

So, they were an epic fail…this time. I will definitely try the recipe again another day (apologies to my sister- a chef- I cannot comprehend making the same recipe multiple times in one day until it’s perfect).

Follow the Pin 52: Accomplished board here.

Southern in Law Avocado Brownies photo credit

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Pin 52 challenge: Bacon Wrapped Mini Meatloaf

We definitely are not a big red meat family. Occasionally burgers on the grill, but besides not really enjoying red meat, I’m not particularly good at cooking it. My mom & sister, however, are much better at it and that’s how meatloaf became one of my daughter’s favorite meals.

http://selfproclaimedfoodie.com/bacon-wrapped-mini-meatloaf/Since I find the whole meatloaf making process fairly gross, it’s usually reserved for dinner at grandma’s. But, after my daughter sent me this Bacon Wrapped Mini Meatloaf pin several times I finally agreed, though made no promises for the results.

I made a few slight substitutions to the recipe:
1 lb of grass-fed beef (instead of 1 1/2 lbs)
Boar’s Head bacon (instead of Wright brand)
panko (instead of bread crumbs)
omitted the crunchy onions

Aside from the meatloafs being a little smaller, I don’t think the substitutions made a difference in the finished recipe.

Even I have to admit, however, the results were pretty damn good.

I think my family was more impressed that I actually hand mixed everything (still gross) than the fact that it was delicious.

It doesn’t pursuade me to add more meat dishes to our meals, but it is nice to know that I have a recipe that can pass as a dinner my mom or sister would serve.

Follow the Pin 52: Accomplished board here.

mini meatloaf photo credit

Pin 52: week two pinterest crochet basket project

Last week I decided to make “someday” today.  I vowed to tackle one of the upteen pins from my Pinterest boards each week. Whether the results were a “nailed it” fail, or a success every Monday you’ll see the results.

Last week I made the delicious slow cooker quinoa enchilada bake, this week I got crafty. Not only was I clearing out some electronic clutter, I dove into my endless supply of yarn and took on creating a crochet basket.

Ok, so mine didn’t turn out exactly like these, but I was still pretty impressed with my first go-round.

Since the link to my original pin wouldn’t work, I found this one from Design Sponge.  While I’ve made plenty of blankets, I’ve never crocheted in a circle before.

I’m quite certain any (and all) errors were from my own lack of experience reading a pattern rather than the instructions themselves.  I definitely used thicker yarn, and my finished basket was not mini. But, it was a quick project that I’d definitely try again.

The result…a little uneven but not terrible.  Too big for keys or loose change, but it works for holding the tv remotes!

Is it perfect? Nope.

But, at the end of the day I have a finished project and something checked off my “someday” list.

Follow the Pin 52: Accomplished board here.

Pin 52: clearing electronic clutter

Yesterday we mapped out a beginner’s guide to well-being.  Understanding that wellness encompasses the mind, body, and spirit, it makes sense that our surroundings affect our health. Paper, toys, and general clutter adds an element of chaos to our mind and environment. Unfortunately today, we can’t escape our clutter even when we leave home…electronic clutter seems to follow us.

http://osxdaily.com/2014/04/29/hide-unread-mail-number-icon-ios/E-clutter: the hundreds of unread emails, countless posts saved on Facebook, not to mention endless Pintrest boards filled with reminders of projects we’ll one day complete.  Just turning on your phone can cause unnecessary stress.

Before the internet (am I dating myself or are you right there with me?!), I used to keep binders full of cool room ideas, books to read, and recipes I wanted to try.  Even though they’re now all on virtual boards, there’s still a nagging thought that I could be/should be doing more.

There’s no shortage of books and tips on clearing paper clutter, but eliminating e-clutter can help reduce mental chaos too.

So, I’ve decided to tackle this virtual clutter.

Yesterday’s “trail guide” suggested creating challenges to accomplish goals, so I’m completing one pin every week.  Origionally I thought Pin 365 sounded catchy, but even I know my limitations and figured every day was a bit of a stretch.  So, Pin 52 it is.

Whether it’s a recipe, book, or project, each week I’ll pick a “pin” from one of my boards and then move it to my “accomplished” board. Of course, I’ll share the results with all of you each Monday.

pin 1Pin #1… Slow Cooker Enchilada Quinoa Bake.

The results…delicious.

Although many people only dust off their crock pot during the busy school year or in the winter, it’s perfect for the summertime too. I’ll gladly spend more time outside doing anything rather than prep dinner inside.

If you really aren’t in the mood to cook, this recipe is ideal for shortcuts.  It calls for corn, tomatoes, onions, peppers.  While some days I don’t mind prep work, but after just returning from vacation (read: slim pickings in the fridge), a jar of salsa (tomatoes & onions already chopped) and my favorite corn salsa (diced peppers? done!) worked great.

You can leave it vegetarian and it would still be delicious; I added some shredded chicken to use up.  Even the kids had seconds.