Saturday, January 19, 2013

Katie & Mama J

There are many activities that I enjoy.  However, three that are at the top of my "favorites" list are cooking, doing crafts and spending time with my family.  It is a rare thing when I get to do all three at once, but today was one of those days.  Katie Garofalo (my son's girlfriend) came to the house around 9:30 this morning and we spent the day making candy, baking bread, etching glass and visiting.  I was in hog heaven!  Katie has been wanting to try out some candy recipes from a marvelous book she owns that is all about chocolate.  Talk about "right down my alley"...I would eat my shoe if it had chocolate drizzled on it.  I also have a few recipes from various Southern Living books.  So we compared recipes and decided to make Turtles.  Before we started that project, I mixed up the dough for Aunt Rhoda's bread and set it aside to proof ...that's fancy culinary jargon for "rising".  Katie realized that we were missing a couple of ingredients for the turtles, so she ran to Winn-Dixie while I did some prep work.  I chopped and toasted pecans and assembled wax paper sheets.  When Katie returned, we unwrapped and heated the caramels, then melted the chocolate.  Before you know it, we had a cookie sheet full of turtles.

A sprinkle of sea salt on top and they were finished.  Now all we had to do was keep our hands off of them until the chocolate cooled and hardened!  I took my mind off the turtles by finishing the bread.  After kneading and shaping the loaves, they went into the oven.  We had plenty of time to complete the glass etching project.  Tomorrow is the Secret Pal Tea at the Presbyterian Church.  Anyone who is so inclined can  put their name in the hat and pull out a name.  We remember each other once a month throughout the year with small gifts, cards, and surprises.  In January, we have a party and reveal ourselves to our pal.  I planned to etch a trifle bowl for my Secret Pal and Katie was interested in learning.  In between steps, we enjoyed some lively conversation.  The bread was done in an hour and when I took it out of the oven and placed it on the cooling racks the aroma of the bread & the chocolate-covered turtles was too much to resist. 

One loaf went home with Katie for her & GW to enjoy, two loaves will be shared with friends and you can see what we did with the other loaf!  There is nothing like the taste of bread, fresh from the oven.  The craft project turned out very well, also. 

If your eyesight is good, you can see the name of my Secret Pal on the trifle bowl, but I know I can trust you not to breath a word to her.

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