I’m on the Pursuit of Happiness … I’ll be Fine Once I Get It

I’ve been totally into the Kid Cudi song Pursuit of Happiness featuring MGMT lately and it kind of seems appropriate for where I’m at with my life because lately I’ve been thinking a lot about what I want to do and where I want to be and such and I’m planning on making some big changes. At the beginning of the summer when I moved in with my sister and her friends if you’d told me that I would change so much within a few months and be making a kind of big change in my life because of this summer I probably would have just given you one of my patented sarcastic eye rolls and forgotten about it. Yet here I am about to move out in a few days and basically planning on transferring colleges so that I can be here. I’m also planning on picking up a minor in art, which is something I never thought I would do. I know it’s not practical to major in art and expect to make a living off of that, which is why I didn’t do that but I realized that art has always been a huge part of my life and I’m just not ready to give up on that, it’s too important to me. There are a lot of things I don’t want to give up on; after all, the best things in life are the ones worth fighting for (or something like that) and I’m kind of starting to really get that and I think I’m ready to start fighting rather than just sit back and take life as it comes. All of this is kind of a pretty recent development so I want to make sure that I’m making this decision for the right reasons obviously and I do have my reservations, but transferring for the wrong reasons would be just as bad as not transferring for the wrong reasons. I’m going to be staying through fall semester and then transferring in the spring, so that should give me plenty of time to think about my decision but I really think it’s the right thing for me to do. When I think about it it just feels right.

On that note of things nobody actually cares about but I feel the need to yammer on about anyways, you know what else is right? Coffee. I discovered yesterday that coffee is indeed totally the key to getting things done. I mean I knew that was a rule during the school year obviously but I’d been cutting back on my coffee intake lately because for some reason I thought that would be a good idea. Boy was I wrong, I had two massive mugs of coffee yesterday and man was I productive! Although I suppose that stopping the whole coffee at 11 pm thing was probably still a good call because I really need to establish somewhat more healthy sleeping patterns. Just a little tip/thing to try out for all of you coffee drinkers, if you haven’t done this before it’s worth trying; add some cinnamon to the coffee grounds before you make your coffee, it’s really good.

I spent a good chunk of yesterday in the kitchen, starting with making bread. We didn’t have any bread in the house and I was too lazy to go out and buy any … so I made some instead. Not sure how that works out but I had been wanting to make this bread anyways because it’s our mom’s recipe and a personal favorite of mine so I thought I’d give it a try. I modified the recipe though because we didn’t have any milk so in place of a cup of milk I used 1/3 of a cup of Greek yogurt mixed with about a tablespoon of heavy cream and the rest of the cup was water and that worked fine. The recipe my mom uses also uses some amaretto for flavor but we didn’t have any of that so I added about a tablespoon of honey to the dough for just a hint of sweetness and it came out really good. Here’s the actual recipe for those who want to try it out (I recommend it, it’s good stuff).

  • Hazelnut-Amaretto Bread

1 c. Milk (warmish or at least room temp.)

1 egg

2 tbs. Amaretto or Hazelnut liqueur

3 tbs butter

3 c. Flour

3 tbs sugar

1 tea yeast

Optional – hazelnuts

350 degrees approximately 24 min.

Mix the warm milk and the yeast together first and let it sit for a minute or two then add everything else, knead it together, divide it into three, roll out each lump of dough and braid them together. You also could just make a regular loaf type deal but we just always braid it. Put it on a greased baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for about an hour and then bake it off. I actually ended up not needing a full three cups of flour too, so with that you can just add it until the dough looks right.

After making bread I made mini doughnuts. Now the original plan for these was for them to be a component of yesterday’s cupcakes because I found a recipe for coffee and doughnut cupcakes where you make mini doughnuts and put them on top of the cupcakes and it was really cute but they just looked too big to put on cupcakes so we had doughnuts as well.

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They’re a little awkward looking because the glaze set before I tried doing sprinkles so the sprinkles didn’t actually stick, but they were actually really good. The recipe is from this blog called Always With Butter, which I like because the pictures of the food and process are really nice, plus the recipes seem pretty solid too. Here’s the one for yesterday’s doughnuts and cupcakes http://alwayswithbutter.blogspot.com/2011/03/coffee-and-donuts-cupcakes.html. The doughnuts also ended up being vegan friendly because we only had a few eggs left so I didn’t use any, instead I substituted a teaspoon of baking powder plus a tablespoon and a half each of water and vegetable oil, which I hadn’t heard of doing before but I just did a quick Google search and that’s what it got and it worked out so that was cool. I just completely skipped the milk and added a bit of water at the end because the batter was looking a little thick and they turned out fine with those alterations.

Yesterday’s cupcakes then were the coffee cupcakes that are also on the blog that link is to, although for some reason I felt like putting in half the batter and then adding some chocolate to the other half before putting that over the first layer. I mean it came out tasting good of course, I just can’t quite recall the thought process that led to the decision. The frosting, which was a coffee butter cream came out a bit off and started to separate a bit but it was still good, just looks a little unappetizing if we’re being honest here.

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