So what was responsible for last night’s injury?

A Spanish tortilla with caramelized onions! I was slicing the potatoes when the mandolin struck. With trepidation, I returned to the recipe this afternoon for lunch (sans mandolin for the moment), but everything turned out injury-free and tasty!


On to more lovely things, namely…cake!

So in my lazy Christmas post, I mentioned that we were supposed to have this White Chocolate Cranberry Cake for dessert and that I made all the components yet failed to summon up enough energy or motivation to actually assemble the thing. Well, my mom brought in all the bits when she and Dad were in town to leave for their cruise and this afternoon I finally got assembling! I used my new cake turntable and everything – it made it really go a lot smoother!

It turned out to be a really nice cake! Usually I have issues with layer cakes in that they end up being waaaaaay too sweet for me, but this one is very nice – the white chocolate-honey frosting is tempered with cream cheese so it’s not overly sweet and obviously the cranberry puree used in the cake and in the mini-layers kind of tarts up the sweetness. It’s hard to see in the photo, but those are sugared cranberries used as a garnish – they’re actually edible (soaked in a simple syrup overnight and then tossed in various sugars) and are quite nice – refreshing, and again, not too sweet. Finally a fancy layer cake that I would definitely make again!

In summation, “Hey, Anne, what did you think of this cake?”

Note to self…

Mandolins are sharp (even the crappy ones); always use the handguard.

These are things that I know and yet I was foolish and did not always use the handguard – usually I’m half-good and just slice things carefully until it starts getting close and then use the handguard to finish up whatever I’m slicing. This evening I thought to myself “I’ll just do one more slice and then I’ll use the handguard for the rest.” And that’s how I ended up at the local Convenient Care (the walk-in clinic that’s still less urgent than a trip to the ER) with a paper towel taped around my thumb:

Don’t worry, there wasn’t really any thumb missing, just some skin. They cleaned it up and used something called Gel Foam that they use in surgeries to stop bleeding (there wasn’t enough skin to stitch back together) and wrapped it back up again and sent me on my way. In 24 hours, I can unbandage everything, give it a gentle cleanse, and bandage it back up again until I can get in for a follow-up.

Official Sign of Approval

Sparkly New Year’s nails!

I know I’m a little early and I’ll probably have to touch them up before making appearances at New Year’s Eve parties on Monday, but I couldn’t wait to get some glitter on! At first I went with gold as my accent nail:

but I decided I didn’t like that as much as I thought I would so the lovely Drew removed the gold nail polish for me so as not to risk my other freshly painted nails (it’s the closest I can get to him letting me paint his nails – I’ll get him one of these days) and repainted with my beloved OPI Strawberry Margarita since I was seeing a lot of pink in the glitter polish:

The requisite holding-a-bottle-of-nail-polish photo.

Much better. On a non-festive day, I think I’d switch it and wear the glitter polish as the accent nail, but for a special occasion, it’s perfect. The fun glitter polish is Soho Street by Nails Inc. (the second in the set Liz gave me for Christmas) and the pink is Strawberry Margarita by OPI (the gold in the first photo is It Looks Like Reindeer by OPI which I also used here).

Kitties being cute!

Jillian managed to take a really good picture of Josephine while we were all out at my parents’ house (black cats are so hard to photograph and Josephine has such a cute little face that I had to share it with you all):

And then, so Arthur doesn’t feel left out, here’s a photo of him channeling his inner Maru and attempting to squish into a box that obviously doesn’t fit him:

Silly boy.

The best thing from Michigan…

…besides Drew, obviously, is the wonder that is Hinkley’s Doughnuts. I tried to take a picture of the dozen doughnuts we brought back with us, I really did!

Unfortunately this is the best picture I got.

After having Christmas with my family, we drove up to Jackson (about a 5-hour drive) to do a Christmas with his family. His brother and sister-in-law came over in the morning and we opened presents (I got some great baking tools from his dad and some yummy-looking cookbooks [Joanne Chang’s Flour from his dad and The Back in the Day Bakery Cookbook from his brother and sister-in-law], so expect some of those recipes to appear here once we’ve finished a little holiday detox) and then his mom’s side of the family came over and we ate and ate and ate and ate! I think–who am I kidding? I KNOW–my favorite was the smoked salmon spread that Drew and his dad made, using salmon that his dad caught and then smoked himself! Oh, it was soooo good.

Now we’re back home and finishing off the holiday baking – in addition to the doughnuts, we got sent home with quite a few cookies which is not helping my waistline!