Shoe Love

As it has been far too long since my last post; I decided to make today's post a fun one and share some shoe love. I kind of have an obsession with vintagey things; both as inspiration and the real thing. Behold these vintage inspired and recreated lovelies (they vary from resonable expenditure on a budget to 'oh crap! I just spent all my rent money on shoes!')

Some Vintage inspired Jimmy Choos

How Gorgeous are these by Ralph Lauren?

These T-straps are lovely!

These are adorable!They are called the Bergman by Seychelles

Another by Seychelles!

I want a pair of these so much! Too bad they are out of my size!">

These are lovely...

Remix Vintage makes these fabulous 1940s recreations! If you are looking for vintage recreation shoes...this is a great place to find them.">

Well, this last pair of shoes has no obvious vintage ties...but they sure are fun!Yes! Alexander McQueen!

That should brighten up your Saturday!

Tea Desserts for a Party....

Recently, I volunteered to make a few desserts for a Alumnae Group that I'm involved with's High Tea. I decided to make lush Chocolatey Brownies, Southern Tea Cakes and individual White Chocolate Cheese cakes.

For the Southern Tea Cakes, I used Paula Dean's recipe off the Foodnetwork's site. They turned out rather good. I had never made Southern Tea Cakes before and I was a bit suprised when they tasted and looked rather like not-too-sweet sugar cookies.

I included the recipe below in case you are interested....

Paula Dean's Southern Tea Cakes
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl sift flour, baking soda, and baking powder together. Add remaining ingredients and blend well. Dough should be soft. Roll dough out onto a floured surface until approximately 1/4-inch thick. Cut dough into desired shapes and bake on a slightly greased sheet for 10 to 12 minutes.

I also made these lovely white chocolate mini cheesecakes from Bon Appetit that turned out delish! Instead of making the strawberry sauce, I simply topped half of these babies with sliced strawberries. I kind of improvised with creating them too. I only had one 6-muffin pan...and they had to sit overnight. What was used instead...why ramekins, small dip bowls, coffee mugs and tea cups!! I am a little proud of the ingenuity involved.

Here's the recipe below (Note: Rosewater could not be found...for once disappointed in the Dekalb farmer's market...shocking - Vanilla extract was used)

Strawberry and White Chocolate Mini Cheesecakes

The muffin cups are brushed with oil before lining them with plastic. This helps the wrap stick to the bottom and sides of the cups, making it easy to form the cheesecakes.

Makes 8
PREP TIME: 50 minutes TOTAL TIME: 8 hours 50 minutes (includes chilling time) Recipe by Jill Dupleix

April 2011

3 1/2 ounces gingersnap cookies (about 13)
2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
3 1/2 ounces high-quality white chocolate (such as Lindt or Perugina), chopped [Marcy NOTE: used Ghiradelli Chips]
1/2 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
1 8-ounce package Philadelphia- brand cream cheese [Marcy NOTE:used lowfat; still great]
1/2 cup plain whole-milk yogurt or sour cream [Marcy NOTE:used low-fat - they turned out great anyway]
3/4 teaspoon rose water or vanilla extract
1/4 cup sugar
1 8-ounce container fresh strawberries, hulled, halved or quartered if large, divided
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
ingredient info
Rose water is available at some supermarkets and at specialty foods stores and Middle Eastern markets.
Brush 8 standard (1/3-cup) muffin cups lightly with vegetable oil. Line each cup with plastic wrap. Finely grind cookies in processor. Add melted butter; process to blend. Press crust mixture firmly onto bottom of prepared muffin cups, dividing equally (about generous 1 tablespoon for each).
Stir white chocolate in medium metal bowl set over saucepan of simmering water until melted and smooth. Reserve saucepan, adjusting water level to reach depth of 3D4 inch to 1 inch; set aside.
Place 2 tablespoons water in small bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over; let stand until softened, about 5 minutes. Bring water in saucepan to simmer. Place small bowl with gelatin in saucepan and stir until gelatin dissolves. Remove small bowl with melted gelatin from water.
Puree cream cheese, yogurt, rose water, and sugar in processor until smooth. Add melted white chocolate and gelatin; process until smooth. Divide mixture among prepared cups, pouring atop crusts. Cover and chill overnight.
Place half of strawberries in processor. Add powdered sugar and process until smooth. Transfer to small pitcher. DO AHEAD Strawberry puree can be made up to 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.
Using plastic wrap as aid, lift cheesecakes from cups. Remove plastic wrap and transfer cheesecakes to plates, crust side down. Arrange remaining cut strawberries atop cheesecakes. Spoon strawberry puree over and serve.

And the amazing brownies? I baked up a pan of brownies, let them cool completely and cut them into bite-sized bits. Then, I cheated a bit; I spread on some fudgey frosting from a can. I know, I know...but I have yet to perfect the fudgey deliciousness that is canned fudge frosting.

The recipe for the brownies? Well, I pulled it off a site online ages ago and saved it onto my computer. I don't know the site...nor the person who created the it is my disclaimer to anyone who recognizes their brownie recipe...

Yum Brownies

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup boiling water
2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9x13 inch pan.
In a large bowl, stir together the cocoa and baking soda. Add 1/3 cup vegetable oil and boiling water. Mix until well blended and thickened. Stir in the sugar, eggs, and remaining 1/3 cup oil. Finally, add the flour, vanilla and salt; mix just until all of the flour is absorbed. Spread evenly into the prepared pan.
Bake in the preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool before cutting into squares.
Servings Per Recipe: 24

Now you have some delish desserts to bring to a party, or even just treat yourself. Or you could always throw a tea party yourself...hmmmm...ideas...