Bake or Bust!


The past couple of days have been studying and researching baking.  And not just “regular” baking, but complete allergy-free baking (gluten and nuts being my focal point).

Saturday Night Cookie Fest was a total disaster, but today I fared a bit better with cupcakes.

I made a batch of chocolate cupcakes that started out great, but fell pretty drastically in the center.  I really just plugged that hole with frosting!  I then baked a batch of vanilla cupcakes that from the outset seemed much denser than the chocolate one.  The chocolate almost taste like pudding inside, where the vanilla is a heavy-duty cake.

pretty ugly once the insides collapsed!
at least the vanilla held their shape

I whipped up two batches of “buttercream” frosting – one vanilla and one chocolate – busted out the piping gun, and got busy!

no laughing at my attempt to make them pretty! A cake decorator I am NOT!

I’m relatively proud of the results.  D likes the vanilla, but isn’t too sure about the chocolate one.  And since he’s ridiculously picky (always asking me for that 1940’s full fat version of food), I take that as success…at least with the vanilla ones.

I have a few theories about my cupcakes sinking, and may have to make some modifications and keep trying.  I’m done baking for a bit though – I can only handle it in small doses.  At least with cooking, I can add things or make changes as I’m going to make sure I like the meal in the end.  Not so with baking.  If you don’t get it right before cooking, you’re sort of screwed.  I don’t like that.

My favorite dish this weekend was last nights wrap.  I was so in love the with Homegrown Smoker wrap I had in Portland, that I made my own version!

my killer wrap from Portland

First, I made up a batch of acorn squash alfredo over brown rice rotini noodles as my mac n cheese base.  I sautéed some Portobello’s, and stacked them on a tortilla with purple cabbage and sauerkraut.  It was actually really very tasty.  I probably could have used some bbq tempeh or something else in it, but I was still very thrilled with the result.  And then decided I wanted more, but was too lazy to wrap it up, so ate it “deconstructed”!

cooking 'shrooms
before I wrapped it up!

Tonight is a BAS.  So much sugar (from the baking), that I need something a bit more cleansing.

this evening's Big Ass Salad


R and I ran together today!  She will be 8 in just over a week, and she’s always asking to go running with me.  I want to encourage her love of running (all kids LOVE to run…we just start to hate it when we get older), and since I’m coming back from a back injury, I thought it would be perfect for us to do it together!

So the two of us hit the canal trail to do day 1 of the Couch to 5K program.  While I really just wanted to run, I know that I can’t until I know my back can handle it.  It ended up being perfect.  We chatted, and R was very proud of herself for the almost 2 miles we went.  When we pulled back into the driveway, she announced in a very dramatic sigh to my husband that “we had a great workout”.  It was awesome.


Much of this weekend was work or worrying about work.  It’s going to be quite a long and challenging week.

Yesterday I went for a long overdue pedicure.  Since we’re going into winter dress code at work (no open toed shoes), I thought it would be fun to get something bright, so my toes are now green!

Last night D and I finally watched a movie we’ve had from Netflix for weeks, Love and Other Drugs.  It was cute, but we both felt there were parts drawn out too much.  Overall, we were just happy to have 2 hrs to be in the living room to watch a movie!

Today has been very low-key.  Baking, working out, and basically getting everything ready for the chaos of fall to begin.  Summer is always a bit of a reprieve when the older kids are home, and it’s just D, R, and I in the mornings.  Now we’re back to the school year, and it always takes us just a bit to hit that groove.

Now it’s time to figure out what to have for dinner, get backpacks organized, lunches packed, and try to get to bed before midnight!

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I am a 45 yo busy career single mom and doctoral student attempting to find her inner athlete, be a gluten-free(ish) vegan, and find a way to balance it all without going crazy! I love to cook, read, run, box, do yoga, dance, travel, and learn as many new things as I can - which often gets me in trouble.... I am passionate about life in general, and if I didn't write about it, I'd probably implode.

4 thoughts on “Bake or Bust!

  1. Would love go try! I have to admit I like the vanilla one more too. I’m glad she likes to run, and she’s at an age where she can work upnto a few miles together. I’d love to do a 5K Turkey Trot with her!

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