Sunday, December 6, 2009


Okay, don't tell my hubby, but I've been indulging (quite modestly, I might add) a bit recently...

It began when I decided I needed a new pair of gloves as the only pair I had somehow, unfortunately, ended up in the wash and shrunk. I knew I wanted something simple but with a bit of a feminine flair. I first began looking at Anthropologie to see if I could find any lovely, but affordable options. I stumbled upon their Ring-Around Gloves in a lovely shade of blue. And at a reasonable $24 they were a great contender! Before I could commit, I clicked over to Target and started looking around there. Then I saw a section for cashmere gloves and that's where I found the beautiful cashmere gloves that were surprisingly inexpensive!

Aren't they pretty? Simple but the scalloped edge/button detail at the wrist adds just enough interest so that they don't seem boring. I ordered these beautiful gloves and I can't wait to get them so I can put them to use. I hope they are as soft and warm as I imagine they will be. And I was finally able to indulge my love for cashmere, even if it is small scale. I hope they pair well with the pretty new coat I am getting for Christmas from my mom. I have really been wanting to get back in the habit of reading more so I'm thinking about taking weekly walks to the downtown library to pick out a new book each week and, you know, perhaps a cookbook and craft book or two, so I will surely be needing these little gloves to keep my hands warm and toasty.

Next I finally treated myself to some bareMinerals makeup. I saw a great deal on television some time ago for a five-piece starter kit for $29.99. I decided to try it as I had tried a smaller brand of mineral makeup several months back after utilizing an offer for free samples. I absolutely loved the mineral makeup and had really been wanting to try the mother of all mineral makeups since. I can't until I receive mine and give it a try!

My last little splurge as of late was from my dear King Arthur Flour! With all the holiday baking I've been dreaming of, I have been dying to get my hands on some more King Arthur Flour ingredients.

This time I decided to try their Double-Dutch Dark Cocoa which promises to provide a rich chocolaty flavor and a deep black color! Cocoa is one of those ingredients where it really makes a huge difference to use high quality products. I see some killer brownies in my future! I will definitely be saving some of this cocoa to use in the absolutely amazing Andes Mint Brownies that I am including on list of goodies I am baking for my friends this Christmas.

Then, of course, I had to get some Espresso Powder to put to use in my chocolate baked goods to enhance the chocolate flavor. I am excited to try this out. They claim that if you use between 1/2 to 2 teaspoons in your recipe you won't notice any coffee flavor but it will simply help to enhance the chocolate. If you use 2 or more teaspoons you can create a great mocha flavor. My hubby hates coffee, so I am hoping that this powder is indeed magical and merely plays a silent, but supporting role in my chocolate treats.

And finally I wanted to get some Vietnamese Cinnamon. I received a Penzeys spice box as a wedding present and it included the most amazing cinnamon! Once you try good cinnamon the stuff from the supermarket just isn't the same. I am so giddy about having some of the good stuff at my fingertips again. Cinnamon is one of my favorite spices.

It is probably a bit silly just how excited I am to receive these ingredients and put them to use. Baking is such a fun science! I wish the package would magically arrive on my doorstep in the next few hours as I am doing some serious baking this afternoon and would love to be able to use my fancy new cocoa! I am baking Spritz Cookies, Snow Ball Cookies and Chocolate Bon Bon Drops (from none other than King Arthur Flour). I'll post pictures and recipes later this evening!


  1. Amy, thanks for including those tempting cinnamon and espresso and cocoa pictures here - looking forward to seeing your cookies! And I, too, wish the box from KA could have appeared magically on your doorstep - but never fear, our "elves" are hard at work and you should get your order soon. :) PJ Hamel, King Arthur baker/blogger

  2. PJ, thank you for providing such wonderful products, recipes and blog posts! I really love KAF products and recipes. I am always so excited to see what's new in the catalog and on the blog. It is always such a pleasure to receive KAF products as I just know they are going to be fabulous!

  3. Amy! Speaking of your Andes mint brownies, did you know that Tollhouse makes a dark chocolate/mint chip combination bag? I saw a recipe using them recently, and I immediately thought of you. It would be much easier to use than the actual Andes candy, since you wouldn't have to unwrap each one, lol.

  4. Nancy, there are actually Andes mint chips for baking which the recipe I used called for (and I would have used) except the Euclid Kroger doesn't carry them. I have seen them at Wal-Mart before and intend to get a bag next time I get a chance for the brownies. Though you still need whole Andes mints for the top/icing.


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