A Rose is a Rose is an…..Apple?

APPLE ROSE TARTS with cinnamon custard // via hourglassandbloom.com #appleroses #cinnamoncustard

 

Oh my god. I’m making roses out of apples. And custard! Mother-freakin-CUSTARD!

And the strangest part of all is……I’m prouder than a peacock ’bout it.

I showed Mike about ten times yesterday. “Hey, hey look at these! Did you see what I made today? Look, they’re little roses! Aren’t they pretty? They’re made out of APPLES! Did you even know you could do that? No of course you can’t have one, I have to take more pictures! Why?? To prove that they exist and I made them!”

Yeah, I’m that annoying.

It’s just the season, it gets to me! So many festivities, with all their pomp and circumstance…there should be treats to match! And with me being all married-lady now, I feel this new giddiness about the holidays. The first time we carve pumpkins for our apartment which no trick-or-treaters will ever even visit, the first Thanksgiving with it’s glorious midnight turkey sandwiches, picking out our first Christmas tree and arguing over how to assemble the stand, our first cutesy photo holiday card sent out to our loved ones….all of these new familial moments for us!

Hence, the roses, which we should really get back to talking about.

In practicing for the upcoming Thanksgiving celebration at my parent’s house, I’ve begun the recipe testing period. Starting with dessert. My initial thought is to do an entire custard pie topped with roses, and everyone will Oooooh and Ahhhh and it will pretty much just be glorious. Today, however, we baby step into it with some mini versions.

{I filled my little tarts with a cinnamon custard (recipe below), but these would be delicious with almost any combination of tart or pie filling you could think of.}

 

APPLE ROSE TARTS with cinnamon custard // via hourglassandbloom.com #appleroses #cinnamoncustard

 

For the roses:

4 red eating apples (I used Red Delicious)

4 cups water

2 cups sugar

Bring the water and sugar to a gentle simmer, stirring often until the sugar dissolves.

Rinse, core, and slice the apples in half. Then, using a very sharp knife or a mandoline, thinly slice the apple halves into little crescents. Place the slices in the bath of sugar water over medium-low heat. After about ten minutes they should be softened and a dusty rose color.

Remove them gentle with a slotted spoon and arrange them in lines on a cutting board, as seen below. You want each overlapping slice to overlap the majority of the underlying slice. Each row should be about 8-10 inches long for a good sized rose.

Working from the end of each row, begin to roll the slices together tightly, careful not to tear the apple. At the end, gently pinch the rose together and prop it up on the board! Voila! Ain’t she purdy?!

 

APPLE ROSE TARTS with cinnamon custard // via hourglassandbloom.com #appleroses #cinnamoncustard

APPLE ROSE TARTS with cinnamon custard // via hourglassandbloom.com #appleroses #cinnamoncustard

APPLE ROSE TARTS with cinnamon custard // via hourglassandbloom.com #appleroses #cinnamoncustard

APPLE ROSE TARTS with cinnamon custard // via hourglassandbloom.com #appleroses #cinnamoncustard

 

For the Cinnamon Custard:

2 large eggs

4 large egg yolks

1 c. sugar

1 c. heavy whipping cream

2 tbsp. corn starch

1 tbsp. ground cinnamon

In a blender, or with a whisk, blend the cream, eggs, yolks, cinnamon and sugar together until frothy. Sprinkle in the corn starch a little at a time and whisk in well, careful not to form clumps.

Blind-bake your pie crust. Once partially baked, pull the crust from the oven and pour in the custard. At 400 degrees, bake for 20 minutes. Keep a very careful eye on the custard past the fifteen minute mark, you don’t want it to puff up! The custard is done when still just a little jiggly in the middle. Set aside to rest until room temperature, then top with your beautiful apple roses! Custard tarts should be refrigerated within 2 hours of removal from the oven.

 

APPLE ROSE TARTS with cinnamon custard // via hourglassandbloom.com #appleroses #cinnamoncustard

 

See? Easy, huh? I love easy, delicious, beautiful things, don’t you?

Have you started on your holiday prep yet? Or am I just wayyyyy early to the party?

 

 

 

 

 

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Three Things.

DIA DE LOS MUERTOS COSTUME // #hourglassandbloom

Our Halloween will be spent in lawn chairs on the driveway, handing out candy to the little’ns. That is, if Mike can keep his paws off the Twix until then. But if we DO actually go out that weekend for continuing festivities, I’m totally doing this Dia de los Muertos face (inspired by our adventures in Taste of Mexico) Gorgeous. Creepy……but gorgeous.

 

 

FEATHERS // #hourglassandbloom

Kind of missing all the wedding crafting now. Like, a lot actually. Maybe I’ll start channeling it towards Christmas though……thank god for Pinterest.

 

 

SALSA // #hourglassandbloom

When we first moved to our new apartment over the summer, I immediately sniffed out this uhhhhhmazing salsa at a nearby liquor store. Cheap, delicious, perfectly refreshing with a kick. The downside, however, is that it’s totally hit-or-miss when they have it. That’s why I’m working on a knockoff. Look for the recipe here soon!

A Taste of Mexico : Los Angeles

I heard about Taste of Mexico with less than twenty four hours to spare. Usually my last-minute plans are the best ones, though, and Friday night was no exception.

In it’s third year running, Taste of Mexico is put on by an organization of authentic Mexican restaurants in Los Angeles. It’s grown from just four founding restaurants (La Casita Mexicana, Frida Mexican Cuisine, Guelaguetza Restaurant, and La Monarca Bakery) with just 850 guests, to twenty-six restaurants and 2000 guests this year!

Walking into the courtyard of La Plaza de Cultura y Artes in downtown Los Angeles, we were greeted with sensational smells, energetic mariachi, and throngs of smiling guests underneath the twinkling lights and starry sky. I felt like I died and fell into my culinary dream.

 

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

 

Happy to be there, but feeling the need to take the edge off after battling LA traffic, we headed straight to the mezcal tastings. For those of you who don’t know, mezcal is made from the maguey agave (while tequila is made from the blue agave plant). It’s usual sipped straight-up and has a similar taste to tequila, but is generally a bit more smokey. Hence: it’s freaking delicious.

We tasted samples from Wahaka and Illegal Mezcal, both paired with little chunks of Cacique cheese (like wine tasting!).

It only took a couple of shots on an empty stomach to quickly move on to beer and go in search of some delicious tacos. Victoria and Tecate cervezas in hand, we were reading to get our samplin’ on!

 

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

 

Everywhere you looked there were tacos, ceviche, albondigas, salsas, tiny margaritas, grilled pulpo (octopus), big pink prawns, MORE tacos. I don’t know how we ever settled on where to taste first. The Ceviche Project definitely caught my eye. They were serving up kampachi and erizo ceviche with chives, pineapple, avocado, jalapeno, onion, and escamol salt. Um, can you say DELICIOSO!? I tried but my mouth was too full of epic flavors.

 

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

 

On to the next one, on to the next one! We continued to take down tacos like it was our job. Stand out plates were from Yuca’s for their signature conchinita pibil with pickled red onion (Taco ‘Bout Good!), Guerrilla Tacos for a freakin’ amazing taco of swordfish belly with heirloom tomato and pickled radish, and of course Tacos Punta Cabras for the cauliflower and ceviche tostada with cashew and pineapple salsa.

 

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

 

I can’t name our favorites of the night, though, without mention of La Monarca Bakery. They had a ridiculously amazing caramel latte flan, insane flakey bunelos, and a big ol’ basket of delicious sweet buns. They have four locations, but thank god one of them is in Santa Monica because Mike and I are dying for more!

 

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

 

Full to the brim, we ended the night by nursing a few more cocktails and enjoying the mariachi. We have so many new restaurants to try next time we get a craving for Mexican food (um, basically every night), and had left very inspired, very full, and very happy. Until next year!

 

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

TASTE OF MEXICO, Los Angeles // hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #lifestyleblog

Pumpkin Brownies (Vegan Friendly)

It’s blustery and cold and crisp and awesome outside. It even rained today. RAINED! I had to put socks on because my feet were too cold! These are monumental things! Ok, don’t judge me.

So Wyatt and I are snuggled beneath a mound of blankets and I’m eating my second delicious fudge-y gooey pumpkin brownie. These things are fantastic. Made even more fantastic by how insanely simple they are to make, giving you way more time to cozy up with a quilt in front of Love Actually.

 

Two Ingredient Pumpkin Brownies (Vegan) // via www.hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #vegan #pumpkinbrownies

 

You’ll need:

1 (15 oz.) can of pumpkin

1 (family size) box of brownie mix

 

No there’s no typo there – just the two ingredients. That’s all. I told you these were easy!

 

Two Ingredient Pumpkin Brownies (Vegan) // via www.hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #vegan #pumpkinbrownies

Two Ingredient Pumpkin Brownies (Vegan) // via www.hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #vegan #pumpkinbrownies

 

Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees. Now, just plop the canned pumpkin in a bowl of brownie dry mix, stir it all up until smooth, and pour into a greased baking pan. Using a 7×11 inch pan, bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let them rest until until just barely warm, then slice ’em up and chow down!

Be aware that these are not your typical brownie.!Replacing the eggs/oil/butter/etc with canned pumpkin makes these brownies more dense and fudge-y than normal. But in my opinion, the fudgier the better – so party on!

 

Two Ingredient Pumpkin Brownies (Vegan) // via www.hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #vegan #pumpkinbrownies

Two Ingredient Pumpkin Brownies (Vegan) // via www.hourglassandbloom.com #foodblog #vegan #pumpkinbrownies