Sprinkled With Love : {Baby Shower}

Oh how different everything is the second time around haha.  I remember caring about every detail of everything for my 1st child….even the color’s for my shower.  This time around, I told my friends Heather & Julie, they could choose any colors they wanted…and I loved the finished product!  For my shower, or “Sprinkling,” they did a donut/brunch theme with multiple colors….you know, like sprinkles….how clever they are haha.   This post is way past due, but better late than never.  🙂
IMG_4638A big thanks to these ladies for all they did!IMG_4633JOetzell-lo_16They dipped this letter E in actual sprinkles! So adorable!JOetzell-lo_14JOetzell-lo_02JOetzell-lo_21JOetzell-lo_28JOetzell-lo_15JOetzell-lo_33JOetzell-lo_22JOetzell-lo_03
JOetzell-lo_23JOetzell-lo_13I was obsessed with this dress!  I also wore it in my maternity photoshoot.  It’s from Nordstrom’s rack, its not a maternity dress (I just bought a bigger size), and they had it in black as well!JOetzell-lo_17JOetzell-lo_62JOetzell-lo_30A beautiful shot of my eldest Evangeline
JOetzell-lo_37JOetzell-lo_45IMG_4646This was an adorable idea they had:  Every guest made a number/letter block for me, and after the shower, my friend Heather used Modge Podge to set them and I have a whole set of personalized, adorable blocks for my girls.  
JOetzell-lo_35I need to post the finished product, but everyone wrote wishes for my daughter Elizabeth, and my friends made it into a keepsake book to have forever!  

XOXO, Caroline

Afters Ice Cream : {The Milky Bun}

IMG_3191So there is this new type of dessert/dessert place that is all the rage around these parts (Fountain Valley/Huntington Beach).  Its called Afters Ice Cream.  I have a feeling this is the beginning of a new dessert trend.  Every evening this place has a HUGE line (like Diddy Riese in Westwood) …and one week night I decided to brave the long line and give it a try.

What they are known for is the “Milky Bun.”  In a nutshell it is ice cream, and a topping, sealed in a warm donut.  As you eat it the ice cream melts a little and causes the donut (or bun) to get “milky.”  What I love is that the ice cream flavors are very unique!  For example when I was there these were the flavors available:  cookie monster (full of Famous Amos cookies), salted caramel, churro, mint chocolate chip, jasmine milk tea, milk and cereal, almond cookie, and my favorite…Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter flavor.  The toppings are a variety of cereals, cookies, and candies.  The donut is a choice between plain or glazed.

Our Milky Bun Creations:
IMG_3180IMG_3189I opted for a glazed donut, with cookie butter ice cream, and captain crunch. Honestly this was not a winning combo.  It was way to sweet and I couldn’t get through half of it without feeling a little nauseous.  IMG_3190My husband chose a glazed donut, salted caramel ice cream, and cinnamon toast crunch for his topping.IMG_3187My husband loved his Milky Bun creation…..I tasted it and it was far superior to mine.  I think a lot has to do with the combo of ice cream/toppings you get.  But still I think it is something that is shareable since it is so sweet.  Next time I will just get the ice cream (no donut) because the flavors are great and no one else has them!

Drooling for Doughnuts : {Redbook Magazine Feature}

A few months back I featured a recipe about my knock-off of the Cronut….the Kronut.  Well this month Redbook Magazine came out with 10 delicious donut recipes and they featured my Kronut as one of them!  Be sure to check it out and all the other great donut recipes featured!  Also be sure to like and share it!


Screen Shot 2014-02-14 at 10.15.56 PM

Ta-Ta Weekend : {Hello Week}

Weekend Wrap-Up:

This Week:

Looking forward to {In The Blog}:

Looking forward to {In My Life}: 

Kronut : {A Croissant Donut}

IMG_1403Unless you have been living under a rock then you have definitely heard of the CRONUT by Dominique Ansel Bakery!  It’s the newest pastry that combines the light flaky layers of a croissant with the round fried deliciousness of a donut!  The creator of the Cronut has not released the recipe yet so there are lots of copycats out their trying to create this treat!….and I am one of them!   For my Kronut (spelled differently for copyright reasons), I basically just used a croissant recipe and made the rest up from watching Dominique Ansel make them on Jimmy Fallon….from what I am getting it’s a croissant and the only thing different is that it is fried (instead of baked) in a donut shape and topped or filled with a variety of glazes, etc.

The Good News:  They were delish!  They tasted best fresh, I preferred the Kronut holes, and the best combo by far was the strawberry & cream Kronut (pictured above).

The Bad News:  They take FOREVER to make (3 days!)  Worth it?  YES!

Want to make them but don’t have the time?  A cheat/faster way to make them is to use a can of Pillsbury Crescent Rolls (of course the taste will be a bit different) and pick up the recipe at step 7.

Let’s get started……..


{For the Dough} Thank you to finecooking.com for the Classic Croissant Recipe

  • 1 lb. 2 oz. (4 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour; more for rolling
  • 5 oz. (1/2cup plus 2 Tbs.) cold water
  • 5 oz. (1/2 cup plus 2 Tbs.) cold whole milk
  • 2 oz. (1/4 cup plus 2 Tbs.) granulated sugar
  • 1-1/2 oz. (3 Tbs.) soft unsalted butter
  • 1 Tbs. plus scant 1/2 tsp. instant yeast
  • 2-1/4 tsp. table salt
  • Oil (Ansel uses grape seed oil but I only had Veggie oil)

{For the Butter Layer}

  • 10 oz. (1-1/4 cups) cold unsalted butter


Step 1:  {Make the Dough} Combine all of the dough ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Mix on low speed for 3 minutes, scraping the sides of the mixing bowl once if necessary. Mix on medium speed for 3 minutes. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured 10-inch dinner plate. Lightly flour the top of the dough and wrap well with plastic so it doesn’t dry out. Refrigerate overnight.



Step 2: {Make the Butter Layer} After making the dough, cut the cold butter lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick slabs. Arrange the pieces on a piece of parchment or waxed paper to form a 5- to 6-inch square, cutting the butter crosswise as necessary to fit. Top with another piece of parchment or waxed paper. With a rolling pin, pound the butter with light, even strokes. Pound the butter until it’s about 7-1/2 inches square and then trim the edges of the butter. Put the trimmings on top of the square and pound them in lightly with the rolling pin, refrigerate.
IMG_1126IMG_1145Step 3: {Combine butter & dough}  The next day, unwrap and lay the dough on a lightly floured work surface. Roll into a 10-1/2-inch square. Brush excess flour off the dough. Remove the butter from the refrigerator, unwrap and place the butter on the dough so that the points of the butter square are centered along the sides of the dough. Fold the flaps of dough over the butter like an envelope, stretching lightly. Then press the edges together to completely seal the butter inside the dough. (A complete seal ensures butter won’t escape.)IMG_1223IMG_1225 IMG_1227 Step 4: {Roll Out}  Lightly flour the top and bottom of the dough. With the rolling pin, firmly press the dough to elongate it slightly and then begin rolling instead of pressing, focusing on lengthening rather than widening the dough and keeping the edges straight.IMG_1236Roll the dough until it’s 8 by 24 inches. If the ends lose their square shape, gently reshape the corners with your hands. Brush any flour off the dough. Pick up one short end of the dough and fold it back over the dough, leaving one-third of the other end of dough exposed. Brush the flour off and then fold the exposed dough over the folded side. Put the dough on a baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and freeze for 20 minutes to relax and chill the dough.IMG_1322

Step 5: {Creating those flaky layers} Repeat the rolling and folding, this time rolling in the direction of the two open ends until the dough is about 8 by 24 inches. Fold the dough in thirds again, brushing off excess flour and turning under any rounded edges or short ends with exposed or smeared layers. Cover and freeze for another 20 minutes.

Step 6:  {Repeat/last time} Give the dough a third rolling and folding. Put the dough on the baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap, tucking the plastic under all four sides. Refrigerate overnight.

Step 7: {The Next Morning}  Unwrap and lightly flour the top and bottom of the dough.  Roll the dough out again until it is about 1/2″-3/4″ thick.  Cut them into donut shapes. *Tip: Cutter should not be dull or it can smoosh the layers together too much and they won’t pop up correctly when frying.  IMG_1324 IMG_1325 IMG_1326Step 8: {Fry em up!}  Heat oil (I used a fryer but a pan is fine) to 350 degrees and fry approx. 2-3 minutes per side.  Once done, put on paper towels to absorb excess oil and cool.  IMG_1336 IMG_1343 IMG_1353 IMG_1354Step 9: {Decorate}  Now the fun part!  You can fill these, cut them in half and stuff, roll them, or glaze them!  I made a lemon glaze, orange glaze, raspberry glaze, chocolate glaze (semi-sweet), and plain glaze.  I also rolled some in sugar, and some in a cinnamon and sugar mixture.  Half of them I injected crème pâtissière (a vanilla custard) because Ansel injects his with something so I though I would try it.  But hands down MY FAVORITE was cutting them in half, rolling them in sugar, and stuffing with piped fresh whipped cream and berries.

Step 10: {Glaze Recipes} The glazes I made are simple and fresh…but of course you can play with them if you want a different flavor.  I combine the ingredients until it is the desired consistency:

  • Lemon Glaze: Fresh lemon juice mixed with powdered sugar.
  • Orange Glaze: Orange juice mixed, orange zest, mixed with powdered sugar (This isn’t a very “orangey” flavor so if you want to increase it you can add orange liquor or orange juice from concentrate).
  • Berry Glaze:  (I used raspberries but this will work for any berry)  Purée berries (I used my baby food maker), you may need to add a little water, then mix purée with powdered sugar.
  • Plain Glaze:  Powdered sugar, cold water, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract.
  • Chocolate Glaze: I used Martha’s recipe but it is simple as well (chocolate chips and heavy cream)
  • Whipped Cream Recipe:  I used this recipe and trust me fresh whipped cream is SO much better than canned!
  • Crème Pâtissière:  I used this recipe but I don’t feel like injecting the Kronuts with this really added anything…I should have injected whipped cream if anything.

Good luck creating your own fun and tasty toppings and KRONUTS!

IMG_1365 IMG_1368 IMG_1373 IMG_1388 IMG_1399 IMG_1403 IMG_1411 IMG_1420 IMG_1421 IMG_1419 IMG_1435 IMG_1438 IMG_1444 IMG_1445 IMG_1456 IMG_1439 IMG_1430 IMG_1425

Ta-Ta Weekend : {Hello Week}

Weekend Wrap-Up:

I am one of the luckiest people ever because my brother’s girlfriend’s family owns several donut shops.  So you know when you go to a celebration and bring a bottle of wine, dessert or app….well we get donuts brought!  I remember the first time I found out, it was at my sister’s 10th birthday when she showed up with a fresh dozen…..needless to say we fell in love! (With her and the donuts).  The donut shops they own not only make regular donuts but specialty donuts that need to be pre-ordered because they always run out!  The newest one they released was their version of the Cronut and it had to be pre-ordered….(Ain’t nobody got time fo dat), so this weekend I decided to try my hand at this seductive treat!  Stay tuned for the full blog about it and the recipe on Wednesday!.

The rest of the weekend was filled with an intimate cliffside wedding, making jam, blogging, beach baptisms, having a Johnston family lunch, watching Homeland (addicted), and taking cray long walks to work off those Kronuts.

My husband helped with the Kronut making of course!

IMG_1505 IMG_1524 IMG_1551 IMG_1555 IMG_1597 IMG_1606


This Week:

Looking forward to {In The Blog}: Umm…..KRONUTS!  My version of the famous Cronut will be featured Wednesday!

Looking forward to {In My Life}: This week The Great Gatsby will be released to own….I will def be getting a copy, and I am going to a Baby-Q couples shower Friday night and get to cook a few dishes!  This is going to be a good week!