Monday, July 18, 2011

Chocolate Eclairs

For those who asked for the recipe.

1 cup water
1/2 cup butter, cubed
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 eggs

2 1/2 cups cold milk
1 package (5.1 ounces) instant vanilla pudding mix (i used less)
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 squares (1 ounce each) semisweet chocolate
2 tablespoons butter
1 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
2-3 tablespoons hot water

In a large saucepan, bring water, butter and salt to a boil. Add flour all at once and stir until a smooth ball forms. Remove from the heat; let stand for 5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Continue beating until mixture is smooth and shiny.

Using a tablespoon or a pastry tube with a large tip, form dough into 4-in. X 1 1/2-in. strips on a greased baking sheet (leave room for them to grow in the oven). Bake at 400 for 35-40 minutes or until puffed and golden. Remove to a wire rack. Immediately remove tops and set aside. Let eclairs cool.

In a large bowl, whisk ilk and pudding mix for 2 minutes. In another bowl, whip cream until soft peaks form. Beat in sugar and vanilla; fold into pudding. Split eclair; remove soft dough from inside ( I didn't do this, they were already pretty hollow). Fill eclairs. Remaining filling can be stored in fridge (I used mine for filling between layers of a cake).

For frosting, in a microwave, melt chocolate and butter; stir until smooth. Stir in sugar and enough hot water to achieve a smooth consistency. Cool slightly. Frost eclairs. Store in refrigerator.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Eclairs, Toys and the 4th of July

So here is a quick catch up on what we've been doing this month. On Sunday I made eclairs, and they were way easy and so so so so yummmy, I couldn't stop eating them. I was pretty proud of myself (you could probably tell since I considered them worth putting on the blog).

Andrew frosted them for me!

Alex is so lucky to have a fun daddy and a fun uncle nearby who will take time to play with him. The track and cars are a $2 yard sale find. After I took pictures they got more creative with the track, making it go over the bean bag chair and onto the couch.

The guys were sad that the cars wouldn't go around the exer-saucer because of the toys, then they realized they could just put the track over the toys...

Then they had to hold Alex's hands away because he would grab the cars. Ha.

Aunt Tonya gave Alex these great shoes, since I think every one should wear red, white and blue for the 4th of July we got them out so Alex could wear them. He loves them!! Only not so much to actually wear on his feet, they are so great to suck on, especially those laces.

Am I a bad mom because I let my baby suck on his shoes all the time??

We packed the 4th with fun. Andrew and Alex and I went to the parade late, then left early because it was pretty lame. Then Lindsay and Carson came over and we played basketball. Alex was not very happy to be left out so we were all pretty happy when he fell asleep in the stroller so we could play.

We had a BBQ and then tried to make some homemade ice cream. Even though we left it in the ice cream maker for hours it still never got past the consistancy of a runny milkshake. It was still tasty though.

The fireworks in Cedar are not set off from a higher area so we tried to get to a high spot so we could see them. They were still pretty lame, it was more fun watching people set off fireworks at the park near our house.

Though not very impressive, we still had fun seeing the firework show. See my cute family in our patriotic attire? I love the 4th of July!!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Quick Weekend in Cali

Here are some pictures that we took at the beach during our super fast trip to California. We ended up only taking pictures at the beach (aside from two that I took in the hotel room) but the reason we went was for my uncle John's baptism. The trip was so fun and totally worth the 10 hours that it took to get there. Alex was a champ in the car, we only had to stop once so that I could feed him, other than that he was happy with bottles and rice cereal.

Highlights of the trip were:

  • The Nestle Toll House Cafe that my mom spotted where she got us each a huge ice cream sandwich

  • Learning how to accidently call Onstar

  • The nice man who stands outside my aunt and uncle's gated community telling people the code

  • The beach!!!!

  • Alex only waking up once in the night in the hotel room

  • Purposely calling Onstar when we got lost and were late for the baptism

  • The wonderful baptism

  • Getting to spend the weekend with my wonderful parents and two aunts and one uncle!
I sure love these guys!!

This was after Alex face-planted in the sand.

I love the beach! Every time I go to California I am reminded of that, the weather was so great and I just love the flowers and the ocean and the beach and the palm trees. I can totally see myself as a beach bum.

I love this picture!! My mom was nice enough to let me talk her into coming to the beach with us so she could take pictures, then she sat with Alex on the beach so Andrew and I could play in the waves! I know they both loved it, later she thanked me for having her come saying "How often do you get to sit on the beach with your grandson?"