Friday, July 15, 2016

Use Your Words: Cocktails, Hawks, and Swimming in a Tub

Today’s post is a monthly writing challenge. If you’re new here, this is how it works: participating bloggers picked 4 – 6 words or short phrases for someone else to craft into a post. All words must be used at least once. All of the posts will be unique as each writer has received their own set of words. That’s the challenge, here’s a fun twist; no one who’s participating knows who got their words and in what direction the recipient will take them. Until now.

Use Your Words | www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics


At the end of this post you’ll find links to the other blogs featuring this challenge. Check them all out, see what words they got and how they used them.
I’m using: Strawberries and Cream ~ queue ~ hoist ~ all white ~ lawn ~ hawk
They were submitted by Shannon of Confessions of a part time working mom.

                          
It's no secret that I'm a summer person. And although it officially starts with Memorial Day, for me the proof that it's truly here comes in the days following Independence Day, while I'm clearing the last of the fireworks from my lawn so we don't run over them with the lawnmower and just getting the last of the cordite smell out of my nose.

I have to admit, and I have many times, that being a summer girl is way more of a challenge having grown up on the East Coast by oceans and now living in the land locked Midwest. I grew up driving an hour or so on weekends to beaches on Cape Cod or Plum Island. Less often I could be found by a lake, but cold water to swim in was a must.

When I moved to the Midwest no one had to tell me that other than vacations that required 2 planes, I was out of luck in the ocean realm. But when I called the parks department my first week here to ask which of these many lakes have beaches on them and they laughed, well, that was a low blow.

When the boys were younger we belonged to a pool. It was our only option, so we took it. Now it's not worth joining considering the boys are so busy with their own schedules. Especially since one's a Head Lifeguard at a city pool. But not belonging is making me desperate. Plunging many rungs down the ladder from the ocean life but unwilling to give up completely, it seems I've been reduced to embarrassing myself and the boys with my new plan, sitting in an Intex Swim Center Family Lounge Pool on the back lawn.

But not so fast. Apparently it's out of stock. If I want this baby, I've got to join the queue. Now I've hit rock bottom. I may have to lower the tub 2 floors down onto the lawn and hoist the damn thing back up at bath time. Yeah, desperate has new meaning.

Even the inability to submerse myself has not  changed the fact that I love summer. Ah, wearing all white, flip flops and tank tops, being able to buy fresh plump strawberries to create new recipes:

Strawberry Topped Brownie Bites, an elegant dessert for any occasion. Dense, chocolatey individual desserts topped with a fresh strawberry and a glaze. | Recipe developed by www.BakingInATornado.com | #dessert #chocolate #strawberry

Strawberry Topped Brownie Bites
Strawberry Topped Brownie Bites, an elegant dessert for any occasion. Dense, chocolatey individual desserts topped with a fresh strawberry and a glaze. | Recipe developed by www.BakingInATornado.com | #dessert #chocolate #strawberry


And evenings, when it starts to cool down just a bit, there's nothing like sitting on the back deck, drinking a favorite summer cocktail I developed a few years ago, my Strawberries and Cream Cocktail:
Strawberries and Cream Cocktail | Recipe developed by www. BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #cocktail



And watching our friends the hawks, who build their nests and raise their young in the woods behind our house and even get comfortable enough with us to come visit.

Hawks on the back deck | www.BakingInATornado.com | #nature #hawks

Yeah, I'm a summer girl all the way. Even the Midwest can't break me of that. Pass me a cocktail and lets go lower that tub. I'm in need of a swim.

Baking In A Tornado signature | www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics

Strawberry Topped Brownie Bites
                                                                          ©www.BakingInATornado.com

 
Ingredients:
1 stick butter
1/2 stick margarine
4 oz unsweetened chocolate
3/4 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 cups sugar
1/2 tsp salt
3 eggs, room temperature
1 1/4 cups flour

18 strawberries

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 TBSP raspberry flavored liqueur
2 tsp strawberry extract

Directions:
*Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 36 mini muffin cups with nonstick spray.
*In a microwave safe bowl, melt the butter, margarine and chocolate until completely smooth. Mix in the vanilla, then sugar and salt. Mix in the eggs and finally the flour.
*Drop the batter by heaping TBSP into the prepared muffin cups. Bake for 15 minutes or until the top springs back to the touch.
*While the brownie bites are baking wash, hull and half the strawberries.
*Once the brownie bites are done, remove from oven and immediately press a strawberry half into the top of each one. Run a knife gently around just the top of each bite and then allow to set for 5 to 10 minutes.
*Once they have set, gently run the knife around the bites and carefully remove from the tins. Allow to cool completely.
*Whisk together the powdered sugar, raspberry liqueur and strawberry extract. Drizzle over the brownie bites. 
*Store, covered, in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature for serving.

26 comments:

  1. I remember when I lived in Detroit as a child, we would drive for hours to spend a day 'at the beach'. Good memories -- now I live right by the ocean and never go in it! You are amazing! How do you come up with these awesome recipes? Stay up nights?

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    Replies
    1. Sometimes they come to me and sometimes the boys give me inspiration, another reason I love having them home over the summer!

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  2. "Giggle". Loved this. But especially love that recipe you shared--that is a keeper!

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  3. Okay, so now I want those brownie bites with the cocktail and hawks in my yard too!

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    Replies
    1. Come on over. The Brownie Bites will be gone but I'll make another batch!

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  4. That family lounge pool actually looks like a lot of fun. We don't own a pool, either, but we are in the process of getting a jacuzzi with a rock waterfall. As long as I can submerge my body in water during the hot summer, I'm happy. We go to the beach but I rarely swim in it. I just love looking at the waves.

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    Replies
    1. I can't believe you live in Florida and don't have a pool. Enjoy that jacuzzi, it's better than my bathtub idea.

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  5. Karen you need to come out to Michigan...I would love to have you do a baking class for me. Or you know, we can always throw down a couple cocktails and giggle the night away...

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  6. I hear you on being land-locked.
    But looking at the map, I realise that even though I need to drive to another country, it's actually only 280 miles to Genoa, Italy, until I can see the Mediterranean sea, whereas your trip to the Gulf of Mexico is roughly 900 miles.

    So I say enjoy your lounge pool and your yummy treats on the deck!

    PS: The words that I submitted all have something to do with Wimbledon :-)

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    Replies
    1. Wimbledon? I never would have guessed that one.

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  7. it's really dangerous reading your blog, I want those brownie bites NOW...sobs...and I'm an awful baker.

    We have a local "beach" it's really a lake, but so cool. I need to get their more often. Some neighborhoods have a local pool, but I rather put my son in Boys and girls club and let them wear him out. He gets pool time at least twice a day.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, summer programs for the kids are great. I remember those days well.

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  8. Nowadays, I would use a Ghirardelli brownie mix - would you ever forgive me? Strawberries and raspberry liqueur? I would brave a hawk attack for that. Alana ramblinwitham.blogspot.com

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  9. The ocean here, is absolutely nothing like the ocean back home, and I miss it. Loved your use of your words!! These brownie bites look scrumptious!! Great post!!

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    Replies
    1. It may be different but I'll still take some ocean over none!

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  10. I love to swim too and we've lived a half of a mile from a huge lake but now we'll be about 5 miles. I can deal with that.

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  11. OH MYLANTA! I love hawks and would flip to have them visit me!!
    Now, I need one of those pool/chair things!!

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    Replies
    1. Those hawks are just amazing birds. The only thing that freaks me out is when they bring their . . . ahem . . . dinner onto my deck to eat.

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  12. I MISS THE BEACH. Maybe I need to get on the list for that pool?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A water lover's gotta do what a water lover's gotta do.

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  13. Ahhh! Summer! The smell of dust and sage and freshly mown hay in the clear prairie air. Swimming in the river. Riding. Riding. Riding. The bellow of cow and calf. Chasing rabbits or anything else that moved in the quiet landscape. Hiding in the hayloft and swinging on the rope into the fresh dried grasses. Heaven. Yep. I'm a summer girl too.
    Love this, Karen!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. YES! Another summer girl. Although I don't have any cows in my summer day.

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