Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Brazilian Lemonade

I hope you had a fun Memorial Day weekend! Jeffrey and I spent the weekend enjoying each other for what could be our last weekend alone...for the rest of our lives! My doctor told me last week to start walking to get this little girl to drop. So we came up with some fun activities for walking. 
On Saturday we visited the Los Angeles Arboretum.

 There were TONS of peacocks at the Arboretum. I caught this one, mid-caw!
 An activity we have always wanted to do is to take the Amtrak to San Clemente. They train lets you off right on the beach! It was really fun. We got on a Union Station and rode the train for 1 1/2 hours there. 

 The weather was perfect! It was cloudy all day, but the perfect temperature. We walked up and down the pier, then into town for lunch and ended our afternoon there with a nap on the beach. There were a ton of families with their kids. It will be so fun to come back here with Didi in just a few years!

 Big Momma on the beach! 
 Here is a picture of the gorgeous Union station! After walking 5 miles Sunday, we spent yesterday resting and relaxing! It is almost June, the month our baby will be born!!

Being pregnant means no alcohol! It is easy knowing it is better for baby, but sometimes you just want something fun to drink. I found this recipe on Pinterest and it was SO delicious. You could add alcohol to it if you would like, but otherwise it is the perfect "mock-tail."

Brazilian Lemonade
3 cups water
3 limes
1/3 cup sugar
3 Tbsp sweetened condensed milk
 Quarter the limes.
 Pour all ingredients into a blender.
 Blend until smooth.
 Pour through a mesh strainer to remove pulp and peel.
 Serve over ice!

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Lemon Olive Oil Cake with Brown Butter Icing

I am sure if you follow my blog, you already know this, but I have the most incredible friends here in LA. The Lord blessed me we my 3Bs 5 years ago, knowing I would need a family in California and I can't express how thankful I am for them. My 3Bs along with several other wonderful women threw me the most gorgeous and fun baby shower this weekend. I kept thinking, "what did I ever do to deserve this!" Here are some pictures from the big event.

 Megan and her mom Nancy were the creative minds behind the decorations. I loved all the photos of Jeffrey and I as babies on the center pieces!
 Here I am with my lovely hostesses! I am overwhelmed by their generosity and love for me and Diane! 
 Sweet Brook saying a prayer over us!
 So excited about donut holes! I am loving donuts this pregnancy, yum!
 My 3Bs! Love them so much!
 With my cabi team leaders! They support me in my business and in my life.
 More cuteness!
 Meg is the hostess with the mostess!
 The food was the star of the shower! Brook (who was my former employer at Dream Dinners) worked her magic! Everyone was blown away!

 Sweet Mother Goose from Grammy Dawn!
 I was so happy my mom came in town so she could officially meet all these special women. My aunt Risse came too, but sadly we didn't get a picture together. 

So I made this cake 1 year ago for Emily's 30th birthday party and I have never had a chance to officially blog it. It is the most incredible cake, she and her husband were so obsessed with it that they even had an olive oil cake for their wedding cake. I was really excited when her hubby asked if I would surprise her with the cake for her birthday a few weeks ago so that I could make this post!

Lemon Olive Oil Cake with Brown Butter Icing

 For the Cake:
2 cups Flour
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/3 cups olive oil
1 1/4 cups whole milk
3 eggs
zest of 1 lemon and 1 orange
2 Tbsp orange juice
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup limoncello
Preheat oven to bake on 350.
 Whisk together dry ingredients: flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and soda
 Zest lemon and orange. Juice both. 
 Whisk together wet ingredients: olive oil, milk, juice, limoncello and eggs.

 Slowly whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.

 You will need parchment paper because this cake sticks to the bottom of the pan. It says this recipe makes 1 9 inch round, I used a 6 inch round and made 2 layers, then had extra for a few cupcakes. 
 Grease the pan, place the parchment paper in the bottom of the pan and grease again. You may even want to use softened butter around the edges.
 Fill the pan with half the batter. Bake for 40 mins or until it is cooked through. (It may be longer for a bigger pan)

 Remove from oven and allow to cool in pan for 10 mins.
 Then remove from pan and cool on wire cooling racks. The best way to make this cake is to cook the night before, allow to cool then wrap in saran wrap and freeze overnight. Freezing the cake will make it easier to ice and will also trap the moisture!
 Here are my extra cupcakes! yum!
 For the Brown Butter Icing and decorating:
1 stick butter
4 Tbsp whole milk
2 Tsp vanilla
4.5 cups powdered sugar

Lemon Curd: for between the layers
Raspberries, blueberries and strawberries
Place butter in a saucepan and cook on medium low.
 Butter will begin to bubble and foam. 
 Begin to stir constantly until you see specks of brown appearing in the bottom of the pan. Cook for only a few more seconds and then remove from heat.

 Stir together milk and vanilla.
 Beat powdered sugar into milk and then slowly add in butter.

 Icing will be thick.
 To decorate the cake: Cut 4 wooden sticks that are a little longer than the bottom layer of the cake. I also placed the cake on a piece of cardboard with aluminum foil around it to be able to move it.
Spoon icing into a gallon bag and cut off one corner to use as a piping bag.

Place sticks evenly in the cake, then make a ring of the icing around the cake. This will serve as a barrier for the lemon curd.
 Spoon the lemon curd evenly on the cake inside the barrier.
 I used an icing spatula to ice the cake. Luckily, this cake looks better if it isn't perfect! Then I used the icing bag to "pipe" designs around the bottom, top and middle. Berries are super easy to use as a pretty and tasty decoration, but you could do flowers as well.

Love this so much!