Category Archives: Uncategorized

Mug Cakes

Standard

I have an obsession. A hidden love. A passion.

And who, pray tell, is it, you may be asking?

Mug Cakes.

That’s right. Mug cakes. Chocolate cakes that can be made in under five minutes in the microwave. Completely customizable, completely homemade. I’ve been making these darlings for a while now, so it’s kind of become an art for me. I have the recipe completely memorized and I’ve tweaked it so much and made so many variations that I think I can claim it as my own.

So without further ado, I present The Mug Cake:

  • 4 tbsp flour (any variation would work I’m sure; I use spelt)
  • 4 tbsp sugar or honey
  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 3 tbsp milk (regular, coconut, rice, soy, or almond will all work)
  • 1 egg (or if you don’t have any, a couple tbsps of cornstarch and another 2 tbsp of liquid will suffice just fine!)
  • 1/8 tsp baking powder
  • Shake or two of salt
  • Sliver of butter
  • Splash of vanilla extract (or peppermint, orange, lemon, or any other if you want to experiment)

1. Combine all ingredients in a very large mug.

2. Stir VERY well using a narrow rubber spatula.

3. Microwave for ~2:30 minutes

4. Using an oven mitt, remove.

5. Enjoy the scrumptions!

Variations:

Peppermint: replace the cocoa powder with peppermint cocoa mix. Cut down the sugar by about 1 or 2 tbsps. Replace vanilla extract with peppermint extract. Garnish with crushed peppermints.

Peanut Butter: replace the butter with as much peanut butter as you want. Delicious!

Oreo: add some mashed oreos to the batter.

Butterscotch: add butterscotch chips to the batter. really creative, right? 🙂

White Chocolate: add white chocolate chips to the batter.

Coffee: I’ve been trying to make a good mocha mug cake. So far they’ve all been too strong for me. But others have loved a splash of espresso grounds in theirs.

They are so many possibilities! Try them out and share your creations with me!

Oh, and a shout out to Carrie for being my mug cake wingman and helping me master the art 🙂

Listening to: so much good music! Crushin’ on Andrew Bird and his Heretics, loving Lana del Rey’s Video Games, obsessing over Florence and the Machine’s Howl and Cosmic Love, and once more, Andrew Bird in French

Reading: This is All, the Pillow Book of Cordelia Kenn

Learning: just continuing to work on my Spanish!

Martha

Things to Smile About

Standard
  1. old oaken desks with scratches and stains
  2. fun magazines coming in the mail
  3. the flickering of candlelight
  4. splashing through puddles barefoot
  5. a tree with leaves bedewed
  6. new experiences
  7. memories that flood at random
  8. dried flowers with scent that lingers, long after color has left
  9. airplane tickets, folded and creased
  10. being surrounded with things that have history
  11. ballet flats
  12. books that have been well loved
  13. a doorful of scarves, all with a story
  14. frighteningly enormous handmade slippers
  15. picking up forgotten hobbies again
  16. people that make me laugh deep
  17. a basket of yarn and needles
  18. mini jam jars brought from Ireland
  19. manchego cheese with butter snaps
  20. ‘ain’t’s, ‘bless your heart’s, and ‘y’all’s
  21. adorable babies who giggle and squawk
  22. a new member in our family
  23. college football games (go dawgs!)
  24. books to add to my ‘to read’ list
  25. a cat who wakes me up in the morning
What are you smiling about today, this rainy day in October? I challenge you to at least stop for a moment and think of just a few things that bring joy to your life, no matter how small. Cause somedays it can feel like you’ve an eternal to-do list, can’t it? And no matter what you finish more just keeps coming? Well, let’s slow. Because today everything that needs to be done will be done but not everything that needs to be enjoyed will wait before drifting into yesterday.
Listening to: Spotify’s pop radio
Reading: Robinson Crusoe (I know I’m reading really slowly!) and The Whistling Season
Learning: how to crochet again! 🙂 so much fun.
Martha

Of Apples and Autumn

Standard

It’s starting to feel lots like Autumn here! I’m loving it. My window’s open and the clothes are out on the line and I’ve spent the afternoon sitting at my desk, just journaling, writing, reading, and surfing Pinterest. (Follow me? You know you want to…) May I just say that there are some crazily amazing recipes on that website? The following recipe for Apple Donuts I found there might just become a regular fall treat.

Oven-Baked Apple Donuts (Adapted from cooks.com)

  • 1/4 cup of lightly packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup of white sugar (or sugar substitute like stevia, truvia, honey, brown rice syrup, or any other such nonsense)
  • 1 1/2 cups of bite size chunks of apple, cored (I used Granny Smiths)
  • 1 1/2 cups of spelt flour
  • 1 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup of cold butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup of rice milk

To Coat:

  • 1/4 cup of butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup of sugar (or substitute)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder

Preheat your oven to 350F. Whisk the flour, baking powder, sugars, salt and nutmeg in a bowl. Add the cold chopped butter. Rub the pieces of butter with the flour mixture until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

In a separate bowl, beat the egg. Mix in the milk and fold in the chopped apples. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture. Stir using a spatula or spoon making sure not to over mix. Place a spoonful of batter into each mold of a buttered mini muffin pan.

Bake for 15-18 minutes or until the donuts are just golden. Remove from the oven, un-mold and lightly brush each donut with the melted butter. Dunk in a bowl with the sugar and cinnamon mixed in. Shake off excess sugar and serve immediately. Enjoy! Makes about 24 mini donuts.

I made these Sunday afternoon because we had guests over and figured I’d have more than enough. But the next day, all twenty-four were gone. That’s how good they are. Also, yesterday morning I made Apple Stuffed Swedish Pancakes. I’ve grown up on Swedish Pancakes and this twist turns them from a classic comfort food to a gourmet breakfast treat. I usually double the recipe so that I can eat off them all throughout the week. (For those of you who don’t know, Swedish pancakes are similar to French crepes.) Best part of this recipe is that it’s super hard to mess up. If you mix up the steps (as I somehow manage to do on a regular basis) they still turn out wonderfully.

Apple Stuffed Swedish Pancakes (Adapted from American Girl Kirsten’s Cookbook)

  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups rice milk
  • 1 cup spelt flour
  • 1/4 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 Granny Smith apples, cored and cut into bite size pieces
  • 2 tbsp Maple Syrup
  • powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of cinnamon

Directions:

  1. Heat a small skillet to medium heat. Add some butter and then the apple chunks, sprinkling the 1/2 tsp of cinnamon on top.
  2. Meanwhile, crack the eggs into a mixing bowl. Beat them.
  3. Add 1/2 cup of the milk to the eggs and beat the mixture for around two minutes.
  4. Add the flour to the egg mixture all at once. Using a wooden spoon, beat the mixture until it’s smooth.
  5. When you can insert a toothpick into one of the apple chunks with not too much resistance, add the maple syrup. Cook for about three minutes until it resembles apple pie filling.
  6. Beat in the remaining 1 and 1/2 cups of spelt. Then add the salt and cinnamon.
  7. Add a tablespoon of butter to the skillet the apples were in.
  8. Drop two tablespoons or so of the thin batter into the skillet for each pancake.
  9. After about one minute the edges of the pancakes will brown lightly. Flip, and cook for another minute or so.
  10. Divide the apples into each pancake and roll them up. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and enjoy! Makes about about six pancakes.

Try out these recipes! They’re so easy and delicious.

A note on format: So every post shall have three little sections at the bottom. The first will be what I’m currently listening to with a link to where you can listen to it too. The second will be what I’m currently reading. The third will be what I’m learning. Three times a week I have a time for independent studies, as we call it, when I research/practice/memorize something. If you have suggestions for music, books, or subjects to investigate, let me know in the comments!

Listening to: Mandi Mapes – The One for Me

Reading: Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe – just starting!

Learning: the capitals of Europe. I’m using this quiz and my highest score is 83% (Shush, I know it’s not that great.) Can you beat my score?

Martha