a few samples of my photography - (click for better quality)If you would rather skip to the recipe, skip the blue :)
New Years Resolutions are funny things arent they? People make vows that they usually dont keep. Mostly people make vows that they know they wont be able to keep. So why make them?
I had always wondered this, and had never made any. I knew as soon as I made a new years resolution that it wouldnt be long before I broke it. I mean, who went and made new years so special anyways? Why can I only make a vow to change something in my life for the better only once a year? As a child it had always confused me when I would hear adults making these vows. Even more when fellow classmates would proclaim their new years resolutions during lunch break, telling all who would listen that they vowed to eat more junk food.
Anywho, I'm getting a bit off topic now, so, I'll get back to my point, because there is one. I promise. I have never been one to make new years resolutions because I stubbornly believed that this one day shouldnt be any different than any others, should I want a change. I could have it any other time of the year!
However, this year is different. For some reason, I felt this want, this need to make some, so I did. And I would like to share them with you as they will be having a huge impact on my blog.
1) to do MORE : this is probably the reason I felt almost obliged to make vows this year. I feel like I'm not doing much with my life.
Dont get me wrong, I know WHERE I'm going and what I will be doing. In fact I have a 4 year, 10 year, and 20 year plan lined up. It's quite rare to meet an 18 year old who has her life all figured out and planned out. But thats me. The over achieving, overly prepared, and overly planning, uni student. There are parts of my life that I have worked hard to achieve, and am very proud of, such as my education and being an A student, and knowing what I'm going to be doing. At the age of 18 I also have a very nice resume, from working in a member of parliament's office at 15 to working for the Ministry of Child and Youth Services last summer. Planning and knowing gives me a huge sense of security. However, I have come to realize that in my life, in my personal 'fun time' life...I have no life.
My days are filled with going to class, studying, eating, and watching tv shows and movies on my mac. I shop. I bake. (and I have been neglecting that for a while too!) However, it sadens me when I realize I dont do much else. I'm a young healthy girl who should be out there conquering the world, doing whatever I like, but instead Im too lazy to even bother. I just sit home and do nothing worth talking about.
This is why I feel I need a change. I have decided to do more. Life is too short. I've noticed not just with myself, but with those around me, that as we grow older we forget how to have fun. I think back to a few years ago, I did so much more! I would read at least 3-5 novels a month. You would not find me not sitting somewhere drawing or painting. I loved going out and playing around in the snow with my younger brother, staying outside until my toes were numb. I volunteered SO much! I helped organizations such as the food bank and the blood donor clinics and I used to love helping others.
But now? I cant think of the last time I drew something. The last book I read for fun? 4 years ago. wow. It just dawned on me how LONG ago that was! And snow? I cringe at the thought of it. So this year, I vow to do more. to be more. to live more. Whose with me? ;) I'm sure I am not alone in this. I believe everyone falls into a rut ...a state of doing nothingness...going to school/work...coming home....watching some tv...go to the mall for an hour or two and go to sleep and redo the whole thing the next day.
So, how will this effect my blog? I intend to update more. At least once a week, but I will aim for 2-3 times a week. This will thus force me to bake more, something I enjoy immensely. I also plan on learning more about photography. I have $1000+ worth of photography equipment, yet I dont bother to properly learn! I just play around with it ..enough to make a picture and thats that...whats the point? In fact, in the ONE day that I decided to learn more about photography, I learned something AMAZING for food photography, which is custom white balance. (more on that soon;))
2) I intend to take better care of myself. Therefore drink more water, put on this strange thing called sunscreen ;) , and eat better. I sometimes stop and wonder when the lst time I had fruit was....and I honestly can not remember! :O I also go out of my way to avoid exercise (take the 4 flights of stairs to the top of Uni Center at school? Pshh Ill take the elevator thanks. ) Wow...its a wonder I'm still alive isnt it? So I will hopefully be posting some more healthy recipes ;)
I have decided that 2010 is going to be the year I do more, help more, be more. WHO IS WITH ME?:D Do you guys have any new years resolutions? I recommend everybody post them onto their blog. I feel that if it is up here, for the world to see, I cant just give up at it. It's not just me vs me....its me vs world opinion ;)
But yes, I'll shut up now and get on to the whipped cream.
SO, I'll get to the reason you are probably AT this post in the first place! The Whipped cream :)
My parents hate buttercream icing. gasp, I know. How do you think I feel? Try frosting a cake with regular old whipped cream, and you will feel my pain. In my opinion, buttercream is so much easier to work with. However, I have had to use whipped cream and after fighting against it, I decided to embrace it :) My major obstacle with it has been that it gets too soft and looses its shape after its left outside for more than 15 min.
With these steps, you can be sure to make a nice batch of fresh homemade whipped cream that doesn't get too soft and droop off, but is a nice stiff consistency, perfect for covering a cake, and even doing a little decorating.
Please do yourself a favor.
Don't buy store bought prepared whipped cream. It tastes so artificial. Why not make the fresh thing, without any preservatives, when it is soooo easy and soooo yummy to do?:)
Ok so first, some tips:
1) It would be a LOT easier to do this in a stand mixer, but handheld one would work too...it would just take a LOT longer :)
2) Pre-chill the bowl you will be using to make the cream in (dont use plastic)
3) Pre-chill your whisk attachment
4) Always use cream with a minimum fat content of 35% cream
5) Chilling the cream in the freezer before beating will make it be a lot stiffer and prettier when you make the whipped cream
6) Regular granulated sugar can be used in the place of icing sugar, but icing sugars higher cornstarchy content makes the cream stiffer and in my opinion yummier
6) work fast - whipped cream can be worked with very well when you follow these steps, but it is still cream, and should not be store out for too long. Once you have frosted the cake make sure you place it back in the fridge. This will make sure the cream doesn't go bad, and the re-refrigeration will make the frosting nice and stiff to the touch.
**click here for a printable version
Whipped Cream Recipe
1 Liter Whipping Cream * 2-3 tsp gelatin * 2 tablespoons of cold water * 1/4 cup - 1/2 cup icing sugar * 1 tsp vanilla (preferably vanilla sugar) Instructions: 1. Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water and let sit until its firm.
2. Pour all of the cream into your chilled bowl and add about 1/4 cup of sifted icing sugar (if using) and begin to beat. 3. Keep beating your cream until it starts looking like loose cream. You can taste test at this point and determine whether you would like to add more sugar or not.
4. Pour in the vanilla and gelatin and beat until the cream reaches a point where it can hold a peak. To test this, lift the whisk up and if the peak stays up it is ready, if it droops, it needs more beating.
*** Be careful NOT to overbeat the cream, as it will begin to curdle and turn into butter! Beat JUST until the cream is stiff enough to hold a peak or not droop off your whisk
**I have NO idea why the recipe is coming up underlined! SORRY!
I AM PLANNING ON POSTING A RECIPE TO USE THIS WHIPPED CREAM WITH EITHER THURSDAY OR FRIDAY, SO COME BACK SOON!:)