Saturday, April 19, 2014

Easter Brunch Menu

We had the opportunity to run away from home for about 10 years.  One of the places we lived for a few years was Angel Fire, NM.  It was a small quaint town with wonderful people, great golfing, tennis, breathtaking fall leaves and aspen trees,  and the best snow EVER!    Coming from Seattle our snow is usually wet and NM snow is dry and lots of sunshine.   I took a job as a ski instructor teaching small children.  Lots of work, but the excitement when they came down the mountain was unforgettable.  Riding up the chair one day (a two mile chair I might add) with one young boy he told me it was the best day of his life!   How awesome I got to share my love of skiing and children, and be part of a child’s best day ever!  Kids learn to ski so easily when they are young.  I taught our granddaughter to ski when she was still in diapers.  What great memories.

Anyway, I digress.   Taos, NM was the nearest town and had this fantastic bakery that served the most delicious Almond Croissants.  Sitting outside the bakery with the love of my life, the sun shinning and savoring every bite of the croissant and sipping a latte, PERFECTION!

The memories came back the other day when I found on Pintrest. the recipe for these croissants!   This  delicious treat will be in our Easter brunch basket on Sunday!   Below is the recipe and author for this delicious treat!  Make sure you check out NatashasKitchen here.  Lots of good recipes!  Note she had this at a relatives house in Seattle!   I have copied the recipe for you below.

Almond Croissants Recipe (French Bakery Style)

Prep time  12 mins       Cook time  18 mins      Total time  30 mins

If you visit a classic French Bakery, you’ll likely see these behind a shiny glass: “Croissants aux Amandes” (aka Almond Croissants). My cousin’s wife, Katya, shared this recipe with me on our recent trip to the Seattle area.  She served them with breakfast alongside a hot latte. These almond croissants were delicious and so easy to make. The recipe can be cut in half for a smaller crowd. What a wonderful treat!

Author: Natasha of NatashasKitchen.com

Skill Level: Easy                             Cost To Make: $7-$9                 Serving: 8

Ingredients

  • 8 (one-day-old) medium/large croissants, left at room temp uncovered overnight
  • 3 Tbsp sliced almonds
  • Powdered (Confectioner’s) sugar for dusting
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 4 Tbsp rum (optional, but highly recommended. You can use 1 tsp Vanilla extract instead)
  • 1 Cup water
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup almond meal/almond flour (or ⅔ cup whole blanched almonds, but you’ll need a good food processor to process almonds into an almond meal)
  • ⅛ tsp of salt
  • 1 stick (8 Tbsp) unsalted butter, room temp, sliced
  • 2 large eggs

Instructions

How to Make the Syrup:

  1. In a small saucepan, combine 1 cup water, 2 Tbsp sugar and 4 Tbsp rum. Bring to a simmer for a minute and stir until the sugar dissolves then remove from heat and let cool to room temp.

How to Make the Almonds Filling:

  1. If using whole almonds: combine ½ cup sugar, ⅔ cup almonds and ⅛ tsp salt in the bowl of a food processor, and pulse until finely ground. Add the butter, and mix again until well blended. Add in the eggs one by one, and process on high speed until creamy and fluffy.
  2. If using almond meal or almond flour: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine ½ cup sugar, 1 cup almond meal and ⅛ tsp salt. Mix until well incorporated, then blend in the butter. Finally add the eggs 1 at a time and mix on med/high speed until the whole mixture is creamy and fluffy with a frosting-like consistency.

Assembling your French Almond Croissants:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F . Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. After your croissants have been on the counter drying out overnight, and you’re ready to use them, slice each croissant horizontally like you would for a sandwich.
  3. Work with each croissant one by one: dip it into the syrup, coating both sides and the ends well. The croissant should be quite moist, but not soaking wet. Just dip it once on each side.
  4. Arrange the croissants on a baking dish, cut side up. Spread about 2 Tbsp of almond filling on the bottom half of each croissant.
  5. Place the top halves on and spread about 1 Tbsp of almond filling over the top. Sprinkle with sliced almonds.
  6. Bake on the center rack for 15 to 18 minutes,or until the cream is golden. Transfer to a wire rack and cool to room temperature or just warm. Dust with powdered sugar before serving. These are best served the same day they are made.

Now that my excitement has calmed, on to the rest of our our Easter menu: 

Almond Croissants (featured guest)

Latte

Orange juice/Mimosa

Eggs Benedict with Hollandaise Sauce

Bacon (of course)

Happy Easter to you and may the Easter bunny fill your basket!  

 

Friday, April 18, 2014

Easter cards with a twist!

   
Fellow crafters understand the files and boxes we accumulate of scrap paper.  This week I decided to finish my Easter cards using the scrap box.  I found the chick, goose and jelly bean files from the Silhouette store.  For those who don’t have a Silhouette,  I find pictures on the internet to print and use for “themed” cards.   The mason jar and top were stamps I recently purchased.  This card is perfect for those jelly bean fanatics!

Momma with Babies  Mother Duck 2
Embossed frame from Sizzix Wreath & Birds Set                Heat embossed Happy Easter in yellow

DuckJelly Bean

Silhouette file with coordinating color mats             Mason Jar stamp set by Recollections @ Michaels

Cards are complete and in the mail and it is time to plan and shop for Easter Brunch!

Friday, April 4, 2014

Bunny Easter Card

 
I would like to take a moment to send my heartfelt hope and prayers to those who are suffering from the recent slide in Oso, Washington.    A special thanks to all the volunteers and first responders for their continued efforts in finding survivors and helping families.   Our thoughts are with you all.
 
Everyone needs a place to go when our heart is feeling a bit heavy.   My craft room is my place to go and let my mind relax and regroup.   Easter is quickly approaching and I decided get started on my cards.  I have seen this bunny card many times and it makes me giggle every time I see it!
 
I used my Silhouette for the bunny bottom, by Sarah Bailey click here, climbing into the tree.  The  bunny head, also by Sarah Bailey click here, peeks through on the inside of the card going for the carrots. 
 
The tree is easy enough to draw, but I did use my designer software to draw and cut the tree.  After embossing the tree with my Paper Studio folder I applied brown ink to enhance the tree.   The fireflies, butterfly and carrots (inside the card) were stamped and colored.  As well I stamped the grass around the tree.  It was a fun card and I have to say I did feel better.  
 
Bunny Tree Card

The card tells a story that I think the kids will like.

Thanks for stopping by!