Thursday, October 27, 2011

Not enough hours in a day!

Where did the last few weeks go?? It might have something to do with all the traveling I've been doing lately. Over the past month, I've been out of town (both in state and out) for a few days every week! Unfortunately, that means a lot less time at home to work on Beaverdale Homestead projects, including the blog. I'm a day late for a Wordless Wednesday post, so I'll do an Abbreviated Thursday post!

As promised, a little bit of Honey Marshmallow love...
 I made marshmallows once before I had a stand mixer, but I wouldn't recommend it! You'll get a sore arm, and possibly burn out your handmixer motor! I have a Kitchenaid hand mixer, and it did fine, but it's still a long time to hold the mixer, and the marshmallows won't be as fluffy as stand-mixer marshmallows.
 There are a lot of recipes online for marshmallows - essentially, you soak a few packets of unflavored gelatin in cold water, make a sugar syrup, and mix the hot syrup with the gelatin. And mix. And mix. Most recipes call for corn syrup in the sugar mixture, which I've done (and they're delish!), but I wanted to try marshmallows that used honey instead of corn syrup. I'm happy to report that they are also very tasty!! They do taste like honey (big shock), and aren't pure white, but I'm a fan. Don't mind the oh-so-professional labels below. I cut this batch into rather large squares - I think I'll make them a bit smaller in future batches. These wouldn't fit into some mugs!
In the background, you can see my infused sugar jars. I'm making vanilla sugar and mint sugar. I looked everywhere online to find a mint sugar recipe made this way, and I came up blank. All of the mint sugar recipes I found involved blending the sugar and mint in a blender and serving it "wet", such as on the rim of a  mojito. I wanted to make an mint infused sugar using the same method as traditional vanilla sugar (scrape vanilla bean into sugar, put vanilla bean pods into sugar, mix every day, and voila, vanilla sugar!). I figured it should work for mint, too, even though there's a higher moisture content in mint as compared to vanilla bean pods.

The good news is, it seems to work! I may have to dry out the sugar once the infusion is complete, but the sugar smells VERY minty! I'll be using these sugars in my hot chocolate mixes to make flavored hot chocolate. I'm not sure how well vanilla bean hot chocolate will work, but I'm excited for the mint hot cocoa! My homemade hot cocoa mix is made with raw cacao powder from my favorite Northwoods store, Wilderness Family Naturals. I also use their cold-pressed coconut oil in my handmade lotions. Yummy!

This weekend, I'll be repeating my newest recipe for pumpkin spice cupcakes! They were a huge hit when I brought them as treats for choir rehearsal... such a hit, that I didn't even have a chance to take pictures! I don't meant to toot my own horn, but they were incredible, and you never would have guessed they were gluten-free! They may also have to make an appearance at the Craft Fair in a few weeks! I'll snap some pics of them this weekend. Stay tuned for more snippets of my preparations for Beaverdale Homestead's debut!

Westminster Craft Fair
Saturday, November 12, 9am - 3pm
4114 Allison Ave, Des Moines, IA
**Free Admission**

While you're there, check out my friend Judy's original artwork. She's selling her Peace Art and Flower Note Cards. We're supporting each other in our debut into the "crafting" world. (I'm pretty sure neither one of us fits the traditional definition of a crafter, but we're going to have a blast!) Find Judy over at her SPLIT IN TWO blog.

Hope to see you on Nov. 12th!

1 comment:

  1. Looks like fun...I might have to try making marshmallows too. I love the flavored ones, like liquor flavors. The mint sugar for cocoa is a great idea. Good luck!


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