Happy Galentine’s Day y’all!

I just can’t with the whole fancy, romantic dinner thing for Valentine’s Day. Take me to the mountains, give me tacos, give me margaritas and my heart is yours. But I CAN get excited about celebrating how great all the ladies in my life are. In true Leslie Knope fashion, you can bake all your gals these delicious, chewy, chocolatey brownie cookies. They’ll love you even more when you tell them they are gluten-free and they pair well with a rich malbec, a crisp rosé, a vanilla porter, or even a latte.

Flourless Chocolate Brownie Cookies

This recipe makes 2 dozen.

Flourless Chocolate Brownie Cookies 3


Flourless Chocolate Brownie Cookies

Flourless Chocolate Brownie Cookies 2

Ingredients

  • 3 cups powdered sugar (or 360 g)
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons cocoa powder (or 92 g)
  • 4 large egg whites, room temp
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate, roughly chopped

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet (2 baking sheets if you have them and want to bake them all at once) with parchment paper or silicone baking mat and set it aside.
  2. Whisk together the powdered sugar and cocoa powder.
  3. Add the egg whites, vanilla and salt and whisk until dough is smooth, shiny and thick (it will be thinner than most cookie dough, much thicker than brownie batter).
  4. Fold in the dark chocolate.
  5. Use a cookie dough scoop to portion out dough and place on prepared baking sheet(s). You should be able to fit 12 per sheet.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes. Tops should be crackled and shiny. Let cool on baking sheets. Store in airtight container.

 

Welcome back to Day 4 of Ornament Week!

If you are just now joining us for ornament week, you can catch up by checking out the other ornament week posts:

Today’s DIY Ornament inspiration: The Three Broomsticks Tavern Sign!

DIY The Three Broomsticks Ornament.jpg

Is this really the third Harry Potter related ornament I’m posting in a row? Yes, yes it absolutely is. Now, this isn’t what the actual sign looks like, but I rather like my interpretation.

Universal Orlando trip report - August 2011.

Materials

Plan Layout

First, just went out into my yard and found a stick I liked. I snapped my sticks to the length I thought would work for this ornament and arranged them on the wood round.

01 The Three Broomsticks Ornament.jpg

This helped me identify how much room I had for the lettering.

02 The Three Broomsticks Ornament.jpg

Paint the Lettering

I first used a colored pencil to decide where my lettering would go.

03 The Three Broomsticks Ornament

Then, I painted over it with brown craft paint and a fine point paint brush.

04 The Three Broomsticks Ornament

Make the Brooms

While the painted lettering dried, I made the tiny broomsticks. Using my hot glue gun, I attached pine needles (again, collected from my backyard) to one end of each stick.

05 The Three Broomsticks Ornament

Next, I wrapped twine around the pine needles where they join the broomstick, securing it with hot glue.

06 The Three Broomsticks Ornament

Finally, I used scissors to trim the pine needles to an appropriate length.

07 The Three Broomsticks Ornament

Assemble the Sign

I used my hot glue gun to secure the brooms to the wood disc.

08 The Three Broomsticks Ornament.jpg

09 The Three Broomsticks Ornament.jpg

Add a Twine Loop for Hanging

The wood disc I used had a pre-drilled hole in the top. I threaded a lenth of twine through it and tied a knot so I could hang it.

10 The Three Broomsticks Ornament

Add to Your Tree

I simply slid the twine loop onto a tree branch.

DIY The Three Broomsticks Ornament 2.jpg


Check out the tutorials from last year’s Ornament Week!

Wood Memory Ornaments and my 14er tree

13 Done

Glam Dinosaur Ornaments

02 Done

Cinnamon Gingerbread Ornaments

08 Display

Fabric & Fur Covered Letter Ornaments

White F done

Pom Pom Ornaments

10 Done_Fotor


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Welcome back to Day 2 of Ornament Week!

If you are just now joining us for ornament week, you can catch up by checking out the other ornament week posts:

Today’s DIY Ornament inspiration: a mandrake!

diy-mandrake-ornament.jpg

It’s finally time. This is the year that I finally have a Harry Potter themed tree. And today’s ornament is a grimacing, angry, ugly little mandrake. No muffs required.

Hermione Mandrake.png

Materials:

Mold the Mandrake Body

To start, I made a frame for my mandrake’s little body out of foil and wire. With the wire, I planned out the two arms and three little vines coming out the top of his head.

01 Mandrake Ornament.png

After kneading the clay for a bit so that it was pliable, I started applying it to the foil and wire frame. I used my fingers to sculpt his general shape.

02 Mandrake Ornament.png

I kept the small flower pot nearby so I could keep checking the size and make sure he fit in there securely.

03 Mandrake Ornament.png

I then used a few different tools to sculpt his little face and add details to his body. I also twisted additional little vines around the ones on top of his head and created little vine-like fingers for him. When I was happy with how he looked, I baked him according to the package directions on the box of clay.

05 Mandrake Ornament

Paint the Mandrake

Once my mandrake was cooled, I I used a dark brown paint to fill in all the little creases and crevices.

11 Mandrake Ornament.png

Then I gently added another layer of beige paint, being careful to not apply it in all the creases and crevices to create shading.

12 Mandrake Ornament.png

Then I touched up the crease shading and did some blending with the darker color and a super fine paint brush.

13 Mandrake Ornament

Glue the Mandrake in his Flower Pot

I used E-6000 glue to secure the mandrake inside his flower pot.

14 Mandrake Ornament.png

Add Twine for Hanging

I used E-6000 glue to secure a length of twine to two sides of the flower pot so I can hang him on my tree. I made sure to make it long enough to account for the leaves that I was going to add on top.

17 Mandrake Ornament.png

Add Foliage to Vines

Finally, I pulled out some faux leaves leftover from another project to add to the top of the mandrake. I had to cut some of them down to size. I secured them to the tops of the vines with a little dollop of hot glue.

19 Mandrake Ornament

Add to Your Tree

Using the twine loop, I hung my angry little dude on my tree, making sure not to get the foliage tangled.

DIY Mandrake Ornament 2.jpg


Check out the tutorials from last year’s Ornament Week!

Wood Memory Ornaments and my 14er tree

13 Done

Glam Dinosaur Ornaments

02 Done

Cinnamon Gingerbread Ornaments

08 Display

Fabric & Fur Covered Letter Ornaments

White F done

Pom Pom Ornaments

10 Done_Fotor


As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Welcome to Ornament Week 2019! A whole week of unique DIY ornament tutorials posted every day!

Today’s DIY Ornament inspiration: Baby Yoda!

DIY Baby Yoda Ornament.jpg

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, then chances are whether you’ve been watching The Mandalorian or not, you’re obsessed with Baby Yoda. For those of you that don’t know, he’s not actually Baby Yoda… but we don’t know The Child’s name, yet, and therefore, refer to him as Baby Yoda. Continue reading “Ornament Week: Baby Yoda”

For native midwesterners like me, sweet corn is a whole thing. We would have sweet corn at every meal for weeks while it was in season and never get sick of it. There’s just nothing like eating corn right off the cob that was picked earlier that day. The sugars haven’t turned to starch yet so the kernels are so tender and sweet. Anything you find in the grocery store has already become starchy and, in my opinion, inedible.

Continue reading “Gran’s Corn Pudding”

Well, if you couldn’t tell from my recent botanical print update or from the newest holiday items in my Etsy shop, I’m really into a mushroom aesthetic recently.

Any room in my house is home to anywhere between 5 and 10 houseplants. Many of them have names and many of them might be hiding a miniature little gold dinosaur peeking out from behind the foliage. I love adding small touches of whimsy throughout my home and felt these mushroom plant ornaments were the perfect addition.

Continue reading “Mushroom Houseplant Ornaments”

The onslaught of snow that bombarded us the last week in October stirred the need for warm, hearty comfort foods. As a native midwesterner, that generally calls for slow-roasted pot roast, creamy casseroles, and hearty stews.

I was reminded of feeling cold and tired and longing comfort during my trek to Everest Base Camp in Nepal last spring. The Moonlight Lodge in Namche was my favorite along the trek. The rooms were quite comfortable, they offered hot showers (for 500 rupees), free device charging, and their food was the best I had during the whole trip. Luckily I had the pleasure of staying there for a total of 3 nights; 2 nights on the way to base camp since we had an acclimatization day in Namche and 1 night on the way back down.

The thing about trekking in Nepal is that you get comfortable being uncomfortable. Coming off a season filled with lots of backcountry skiing, I already had a decent tolerance to being chilled and achy. I wouldn’t say the trek was easy for me by any means but I was surprised at how well my body and mind handled it. Quite tired of dal baht, I ordered the Sherpa Stew at the Moonlight Lodge one night and found it healing in more ways than one.

Moonlight Lodge Sherpa Stew
The Sherpa Stew at the Moonlight Lodge in Namche, Nepal

Continue reading “Namche Moonlight Lodge Sherpa Stew”

Welcome November!

While many people like to jump straight into Christmas decor the day after Halloween, I opt to savor the autumn season for a little longer. An ironic thing to claim with a foot of snow outside and a guest bedroom cluttered with Christmas crafts that I have planned for the blog in December.

Thanksgiving Botanical Gallery Update 2

So, as I remove the spooky spiders, bats, and toads from my Botanical Print Gallery, I’m adding some more harvest-themed prints in celebration of Thanksgiving. In addition to botanical illustrations, I’ve also included animals like turkeys and owls. Continue reading “Thanksgiving Botanical Gallery Update (plus free printables)”

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