Posts by category: Photos

Baking Dad: Space Shuttle Birthday Cake

Baking Dad: Space Shuttle Birthday Cake

As I mentioned previously, for his 6th Birthday last week my son requested a Space Shuttle cake to go along with the general, ongoing “I want to be an astronaut!” theme to his life.

Not gonna lie, I’m really pleased with how this one turned out.

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Foodie Friday #ShroomTember: Mushroom-Stuffed Ricotta Gnocchi w/ Mushroom-Herb Browned Butter

Foodie Friday #ShroomTember: Mushroom-Stuffed Ricotta Gnocchi w/ Mushroom-Herb Browned Butter

All of my life, I have hated mushrooms.

My memories of mushroom-aversion run deep and wide, all the way back to that traumatic time as a kid when my gag-reflex over being forced to eat the mushrooms on my plate got me into what I thought was some terribly unjust trouble.

Over the years though, I came to start appreciating mushrooms’ culinary uses. Contrary to my long-standing belief that it was their ability to “absorb” flavors that was supposed to make them great — a claim I always found dubious — I found instead that they were actually an excellent source of flavor themselves.

Eventually I would find out why, when I came to be familiar with the concept of umami, the so-called “fifth taste” beyond those of sweet, salty, sour, and bitter. Sometimes it’s explained as “savory,” but the Japanese word actually translates to give a meaning more like “deliciousness.”  Umami is something found in foods which are high in glutamates, and one of the highest glutamate foods is, as it turns out, mushrooms. With this knowledge — and frankly, having married a woman who loves mushrooms — I was happy to begin experimenting with using mushrooms in my cooking. As it turns out, they’re actually really good when given a chance. Who knew?

A few weeks ago, my friends at Life of Dad approached me about joining them as they help the Mushroom Council celebrate Mushroom month this September. Or as they are calling it: #ShroomTember.

Their request? Come up with a quick and easy mushroom recipe, and encourage others to do the same, for a chance at winning $500 for the best recipe.

I’m more than happy to oblige!

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Baking Dad: My Kid’s Cakes, Volume I

Baking Dad: My Kid’s Cakes, Volume I

One of my friends recently asked me why I had never collected together in one place all of the birthday cakes I have made for my sons, and it occurred to me that it was high time I rectified that oversight. Sure, I’ve posted pictures of them on here, or on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram (are you following me in those places? You really should be following me in those places…) but I’d never put together a post to send to people and say “Look! Set your eyes upon my mighty works of flour, and sugar, and fondant!”

So… here we go.

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I caught #FrozenChefMadness! Have you?

I caught #FrozenChefMadness! Have you?

Being a family of avid (well, enthusiastic, at least) gardeners, we’re no strangers to the problem of sometimes having way more fresh, ripe produce than we can use. Last year we had seven rather abundant tomato plants, for goodness sake. As a result, we have had to learn to preserve what we grow. That has definitely meant a lot of canning, and pickle-making, but for some foods my experience has led me to prefer one method over the rest: freezing.

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Who lives in a pineapple under the sea? SpongeBob Squarepants… cake.

Who lives in a pineapple under the sea? SpongeBob Squarepants… cake.

It was my son’s 5th birthday last week, and as has become my tradition I made him a fancy birthday cake based on something he loves for his party on the weekend with family and friends.

SpongeBob SquarepantsThe theme this year was, clearly, SpongeBob Squarepants.

In some ways this was not too difficult a theme (a square character being, like, the dream subject for a cake decorator) so I wanted to really stretch myself in trying to get it really, really “on model,” as it is called in the animation industry. That is, I wanted it to look like SpongeBob is supposed to look, like the animated character come to life in 3D, rather than some garish yellow travesty.

It wasn’t without its little mistakes and flaws, but I’m pretty happy with how it turned out. More importantly, it also tasted really good and my son loved it.

Now to get to work his little brother’s cake for January…

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Parenting Truth: It USED to be CUTE…

Parenting Truth: It USED to be CUTE…

It used to be cute when he would fall asleep in the car, on the drive home for lunch, after a fun morning out.

Now it means he won’t nap this afternoon.

Is this true for anyone else, or is it just me?

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(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Lego

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Lego

Lego cake success! A little misshapen, but it tasted good, so there.

And everyone who told me to try making homemade fondant was right, it’s way easy (if messy) and way, way tastier.

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Is today really the day that Marty McFly traveled to the future?

Is today really the day that Marty McFly traveled to the future?

Edit:

Yes. We now live in the future.


I’ve seen this pop up a lot this past year, and felt I needed to do something about it.

Did someone post an image, seemingly a screenshot from one of the Back to the Future films, along with a claim that today’s date is the very day that Marty McFly arrived in the future?

You know the one, with hoverboards and automatic shoelaces?

Well, to verify such a claim all you need to do is follow the simple chart above.

Or just watch this clip from the movie itself:

Not October 21st, 2015? Then no. Marty isn’t here yet.

You’re welcome.

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An Octonauts Birthday Cake

An Octonauts Birthday Cake

*WHEW!* Octonauts Birthday Cake, I dub thee “Good enough for tonight.”

Octonauts Birthday Cake

I hope he likes it. 🙂

P.S. Captain Barnacles it a stud.

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