Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Maple Bacon Cupcakes

To start out, I would just like to thank everyone for your kind words and huge amount of hits to my blog in response to the 25 Things I've Learned in the Past 25 Years post. It was a wonderful birthday gift and I hope to add more of my personal thoughts and feelings into normal posts from now on.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

25 Things I've Learned in the Past 25 Years

I was always one of those kids who couldn't wait to grow up. Not so I could drink or drive a car, but so I could be an adult. To me, 25 was going to be the perfect age. I pictured myself as having a short, mom hair-cut with kids, a husband and a house, and I would definitely have the whole life thing figured out. Clearly, to younger me, 25 seemed much further off than it really was. While I'm not where I thought I would be at 25, I'm in a pretty great place and wanted to share some insights that guide me through life every day. There will be no recipe at the end of this post, so now is your chance to escape if reflection and life lessons aren't really your thing...

Those of you who know me know that I'm not really a touchy-feely person. I usually have to make a concerted effort to open up in any capacity, but lately I've been thinking about how far I've come in the past couple of years and wanted to put it out there. I've made a complete overhaul of my life, from taking on destructive thought patterns, to putting myself out there in ways that make me uncomfortable on purpose (hence this post). 

I always lived by a few credos. Don't get too close, you'll just get hurt. Don't make too much noise, no one wants to listen to you. When you're upset, stuff it down because no one cares, so don't put your burden on them. The world was completely black and white and I felt comfortable in my little box, until the bottom rotted out.

Since then I've met some wonderful people and leaned in to the ones who were already there for me. The result: Molly 2.0. I'm a happier, more thoughtful, and all-around lighter human being. I'm with a wonderful guy who makes me very happy, but for the first time, I know that if for some reason it doesn't work out, I'll be okay, because I have built a strong but soft foundation for myself that will catch me when I fall.

Here are the things I've learned over the last 25 years that have helped to shape me as a person today (in no particular order):

1. The best friends you'll ever make are the ones who have seen you at your most vulnerable and love you because of that, not in spite of it. Let your walls down and you'll see who your true friends are.

Monday, August 12, 2013

The Best Hollandaise Sauce You'll Ever Eat

I'm a big fan of breakfast. On lazy weekends, I lay in bed and think about what I'm going to make for breakfast when I get up. Even when I was in high school my parents frequently had to vacate the kitchen while I made waffles, pancakes, breakfast burritos, or any other egg dish that tickled my fancy that morning. Eggs Benedict was always a treat growing up and I never even attempted to make it on one of those lazy mornings because my mom's Hollandaise sauce was so delicious I was always intimidated to try it on my own. Since then I very rarely order Eggs Benedict when I go out for breakfast and I always rave to whoever I'm with about how my mom's recipe has ruined all others for me. Well, it was time to ante up. I tried making the recipe without my mom's instruction, for the sake of judging the recipe to a true Eggs Benedict fan.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

White Russian Cupcakes and Family Reunions

I've always gotten along better with people older than myself. During the reunion, this picture surfaced and it brought a tear to my eye. When I was younger I was pen pals with several of my relatives, two of whom, my Aunt Charlotte and my cousin Dawn are pictured above. My Aunt Charlotte passed away quite some time ago and it has been many years since I've seen Dawn. I didn't even know this picture existed, so this was definitely the highlight of the picnic for me. 

Due to the fact that I've always been more of a baker than a cook, I usually get asked to make some sort of dessert for the reunion, so I opted to try out an idea for a recipe I had several months ago: White Russian cupcakes. Because what could be better than alcohol and dessert in one?