Sunday, April 10, 2011

Nanaimo Bars

I subscribe to Taste of Home and this month I got the new issue.  Inside they have 5 types of cookie bars for all of us to try.  I made 4 of the 5 and will make the 5th soon.  Here is one of those bars recipes.

Thanks Taste of Home for publishing these great recipes!

Drizzled Nanaimo Bars

Prep:  40 minutes + chilling
Yield:  2 dozen

1         cup butter, cubed

1/2     cup sugar

2         ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped

2         eggs, beated

2         teaspoons vanilla extract

4         cups graham cracker cumbs

2         cups flaked coconut

1         cup walnuts, chopped


1/2      cup butter, softened

3          Tablespoons 2% milk

2          Tablespoons instant vanilla pudding mix

2          cups confectioners' sugar


8          ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped (can use morsels)

1          Tablespoons butter

1.  In large heavy saucepan, combine the butter, sugar and chocolate. Cook and stir over medium-low heat until melted.  Whisk a small amount of hot mixture into eggs.  Return all to the pan, whisking constantly (super important here, the help of someone else would be useful).  Cook and stir over medium-low heat until mixture reaches 160ยบ (definitely use a candy thermometer on this one).  Remove from the heat; stir in the vanilla.

2.  In a large bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, flaked coconut and walnuts.  Stir in chocolate mixture until blended.  Press into greased 15x 10-in. pan.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until set.

3.  For filling, in a large bowl, beat the butter, milk and pudding mix until blended.  Gradually beat in confectioners' sugar until smooth; spread over crust.

4.  For glaze, in a microwave, melt chocolate and butter; stir until smooth.  Drizzle over the filling.  Refrigerate until set.  Cut into bars.

These ones are really good!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

New Yawk Ci-Tay

I got back from NYC late Monday night.  I had been there for a good, good friends wedding.  You may remember the quilt that I made for him.  Before I get into the details of the wedding, I am going to share the experiences of my trip.  My mom tagged along and a friend and his sister were there too.

Whenever I go to NYC I have an agenda, because I never know if  will ever go back and then somehow a new trip pops up and I go again.  This trip was no different.  Being my third trip to the city I have seen quite a bit, but I believe this city is one in which you may never fully see everything, which is awesome!  It keeps you coming back for more.

I made this list:

1.  Purl Soho: 459 Broome Street  ( I finally made it here on Monday only to find that they didn't open for another hour.  I was very sad about this, because it was one of 2 things I really wanted to see.)  It looks great from the street and you can follow them at their blog Purl Bee or visit them at their site Purl SoHo, just like I do!  You are bound to find at least 20 things that you love here!!

2.  Baked: 359 Van Brunt Street  (I did not make it here.  I have one of their cook books and I really, really, really wanted to make it to their bakery.  Sniff...)

3.  Jekyll and Hyde Restaurant and Bar:  91 7th Avenue South (Greenich Village)

It's a restaurant and social club for explorers and mad scientists!
My mom and I ate a very late meal here after seeing Mary Poppins.

This is the original location and more of a bar/ adult hang out.  The more family friendly location is here and located at 1409 Avenue of the Americas.  Our food was good and this place have a fun/ laid back feel to it.  You'll want to try this place out if you can.

4.  Housing Works Bookstore: 126 Crosby Street, between Houston and Prince Streets.  This is where the wedding was held and it is an amazing place!  Read about their great work here and on their main website Housing Works.  It is really something to stand behind.

5.  Spin New York:  48 E. 23rd street
A great place to hang out, have fun, and eat good food!  This ping pong palace was started by Susan Sarandon.  I had a lot of fun here and it was a very chill atmosphere for sure!  SPiN New York.

6.  Earl's Beer and Cheese:  1259 Park Avenue.  This is a very, very small place, but it makes up for that with great cheese, small dishes, and beer.  Also, there is a very great mural of a deer filled wood.  Check it out.  Earl's Beer and Cheese.  They serve a cheese plate here and I loved two of the selections, Humble Pie and OMA... sooo good!

7.  See a bit of Central Park that I haven't seen yet. (Strawberry Fields and the Imagine Mosaic)  Funny, as I write this, 'We Can Work It Out' by The Beatles is playing.

8.  The Brooklyn Flea Market at Williamsburg:  27 N. 6th street  No matter how hard my mom and I tried, we could not find this place!!  Argh...  It looks really cool though  Brooklyn Flea.  You should try to find it if you are in the city and then tell me how you got there and whether or not it was as awesome as I dream it is.

9.  Chelsea Market:  75 9th Avenue.  Learn about Chelsea Market and check out its great shops at  I got to see Sarabeth's Bakery, Elenis  Cookies, Fat Witch (ate a brownie here), Ronny Brook, and much, much more!

10.  High Line Park:  Just across the street from Chelsea Market.  High Line.  It has a great history.  I enjoyed my visit to The High Line.  I find it to be such a neat idea to have a park up so high.  You'll find some great views from the park and a lot of great spaces to sit and ponder life and all of its intricacies.

11.  Greenich Village:  
          -  Murray's Cheese Shop  (I went to the one on Bleeker Street.  If you love cheese and nice meats,     
             this is the place to go.)  

          -  Joe's Pizza: 7 Carmine Street

          -  Faicco's Italian Specialties: 260 Bleeker Street

          -   Amy's Bread (250 Bleeker Street)  I love their Hot Cross Buns and I am probably going to get both of their cook books.

This is in the village.  I actually visited all three locations you can find them at Amy's Bread.

Photo from:

Photo from:

          -  Milk and Cookies:  South of Bleeker off 7th Avenue, 19 commerce street

          -  Rocco's Pastry Shop- 243 Bleeker Street.  I was not impressed with Rocco's.  My mom had been wanting a canoli for ages and ages.  We had heard that Rocco's was a good place to go.  They got both of our orders wrong and we both did not like what we got.

This is before it all went downhill.

Does this look like chocolate to you?  I didn't think so.

Sure, try them out.  I mean they make stuff that looks great, just look below:

But just know, looks can be deceiving.

          -  Ceci Cela:  55 Spring Street

          -  Sullivan Street Bakery:  533 W. 47th Street #1:  This is a very tiny shop with extremely kind service.  Sit in an old hodgepodge of chairs and look out onto the street while tasting the delicious 
            fare.  My friend Micah has their cookbook and says that it is great.

         -  Palma Restaurant:  28 Cornelia Street #A.  I wanted so badly to go here.  I hear that the food and 
            service are great.  Have you been here?  Fill me in!

12.  Garrett's Popcorn: 242 W. 34th street.  By request of my mother, we went here.  I had never heard of this place before.  The popcorn is unique.  It is packed with powerful flavor.  I purchased a small bag of the spicy cheese variety.  It is really quite good, but I find that I can only handle a bit at a time.  Garrett's Popcorn

13.  Edgar Allen Poe's Cottage:  Located in the Bronx at E. Kingsbridge Road and Grand Concourse.  Wouldn't it have been great to see this?!  Next time!

14.  Eat a lot of god food.  (This didn't really happen.  Yes, some good food was eaten, but my mom and I wanted a TON of great food!)

Also, some day I will see United Nations in the sun and with all of the flags up!

Gosh, who knew this would be such a long post.  Sorry, wrapping it up with the wedding.  My friend Zach and I met on our very first day of college.  We were in the same new student orientation group and we became fast friends.  I am so happy to see him in a place of true bliss.  He married his best friend Jeof on April 3rd.  It was as lovely and moving as any other wedding I've been too, if not more.  Those two are filled with love for each other and I feel blessed to know them.  I am so glad that they have a great network of family and friends that support them.  Housing works was the best place for this fantastic affair!  No detail was over looked, from food, to table settings, music, and the like. A perfectly done DIY wedding that I aspire to for my someday future wedding (hopefully).

Me, Zach, Mom

Me, Micah, Zach

Peeps from APU.  We all went there and overlapped in years, but a bunch of us didn't meet until this weekend.  The happy couple on the left.

I have wanted a photo booth and a candy bar at my wedding...  gosh, I hope Zach doesn't think I am stealing all of his ideas.  Oh, I also went to the Natural History Museum and Dylan's Candy Bar!!

Ok, that is it for now.  I promise!  I had a great time and got to celebrate the union of two great people!