Thursday, February 25, 2010

The One About My Cheesy Happiness

This is an overdue post. Last Monday was a holiday and instead of having grand plans of going out, I decided to stay in. I worked on my thesis in the morning and decided to spend the rest of the afternoon watching my borrowed DVD copy of How I Met Your Mother which I happen to be so into right now. Then I thought to myself: What would go greatly with watching DVDs? My mouth suddenly started to water at the thought of chips and junk food but then I realized I didn't have any in the house. I considered going out to buy some at the nearby store but then immediately decided against it when I saw how H-O-T it was that day (or everyday, for that matter). I poked around the fridge, pulled out a block of cheese, an egg, bread crumbs, and Parmesan cheese, and made these:

I call them the Almost Italian Cheesesticks. They are "almost" Italian because traditionally, these are made using mozzarella cheese. Mozzarella cheese, however, is expensive so I just used cheddar cheese.

They were crispy on the outside and soft and warm on the inside. It was a total cheese overload that afternoon, I tell you. Happiness! :)

Monday, February 15, 2010

The One About the Peanut Butter Cups

I love Reese's peanut butter cups so I naturally giddy and excited when I stumbled upon a recipe for homemade peanut butter cups. I made a bunch of them yesterday to give as Valentine presents for my kindergarteners. Now, I'm not really an avid chocolatier (I'd rather eat chocolates than make them, really) so pardon me for the rough turnout. However, I'd say they tasted really good.

Here's the recipe which I got from Have Cake Will Travel:

Peanut Butter Cups

12 mini cupcake liners
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
update: better to chop your own bittersweet or dark vegan chocolate, the PB cups will keep better at room temp
1/2 cup creamy natural peanut butter + 2 generous T to add to the melted chocolate
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 t pure vanilla extract
pinch fine sea salt [if your PB is already salted, it's optional to add more]

1. Melt the chips in your microwave, keeping a close eye on them and stirring often to make sure they don’t burn. it should take between 1-2 minutes. Add the 2 generous T and stir to incorporate. Give it about 5 minutes to cool down a bit, it’s easier to spread around when not lava-hot.

2. Place a heaping teaspoon of melted chocolate in each mini cupcake liner and spread it all over the place with the back of a spoon. Repeat with all 12 liners.

3. Place the chocolate-covered liners onto a plate, into your fridge, to let it all harden.

4. Meanwhile, stir together peanut butter, vanilla, salt, and sugar. If your peanut butter is anything like mine, it should form a sort of paste that you can start kneading to make sure all gets incorporated really well.

5. The chocolate should be hard by now, so divide peanut butter paste into all 12 liners, pressing down gently to make sure the paste goes everywhere.

6. Top with heaping teaspoon of chocolate [melt it again if needed], spreading carefully so that none of the PB paste can be seen.

7. Chill in fridge for at least one hour, until ready to devour.

yield: 12 “small” cups

I may be a good cook but I was never good at food styling. Haha!

I put the peanut butter cups in clear plastic bags, tied red yarn to secure the openings, and stuck tags I got from Paper Glitter.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The One About What's Inside the Valentine Loot

Thankfully, LBC has safely, efficiently, and speedily delivered my package to Cebu. My good friend Darlene gladly received them and texted to inform me. This is what I made for my former nursery students:

I made them an activity book.

It is so not a coloring book. They kinda complete the whole picture by drawing on their thoughts and ideas. And yes, they can color afterwards.

I had them ringbound (in red, of course).
I got these tags from Living Locurto .
Now, for my teacher friends, I got inspired by Skip to My Lou. She loves giving gifts to her kids' teachers.

I printed the one-liners on colored paper.
Then I cut them up in strips and stuck them on the goods using double-sided tape. I then sealed each strip with a sticker. I have a bunch of reward stickers at work which I use on my students.
Here are the rest:

Butong pakwan!

I then arranged everything in a plastic food tub.
And then printed labels for the cover.

As of this writing, I have been receiving text messages and emails from my teacher friends, thanking me for their gifts. I am soooo glad they love it as much as I am glad from making it for them.
Happy crafting!

Monday, February 8, 2010

The One About the Valentine Loot

I terribly miss my students at Cebu International School!!! Before I left Cebu last year, I wanted to box them up and bring them home to Manila with me. Last weekend, I sent them these via LBC.

And how could I forget my friends over there? I made these for them:

Until LBC has safely delivered them, I can't show the contents yet. The contents and tutorial will be posted soon. :)

The One Where I Served Breakfast

I made breakfast for my co-teachers today. It was my turn to do so. Every Monday and Wednesday morning, when we have faculty meetings, someone sponsors the breakfast.

I made my famous spinach formaggio...

...and salmon mousse which was store-bought.
They went great with crostini and crackers, even.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

The One that Arrived in the Mail(box)

Something arrived in the mail yesterday! It's my first issue of The Mailbox Magazine for teachers! I have been loving this magazine since I was introduced to it during my first year of teaching. It's simply great!

The magazine is filled with lots of activities for kindergarten students.

And worksheets!

My five-year-old student took this picture of me! I am literally having my nose buried in the mag!