Goodness gracious! Life has been so crazy busy recently! Normal blogging shall resume soon! Oh, and by the way…my graduation ceremony from Johnson & Wales University is this Saturday! YaY!!!!
Golly gee today was a busy, cake filled day! I’ve got a lot of material to cover so I’ll skimp on the small talk. Deal? Deal.
I arose from my slumber (a great one at that) at 9:00 and headed into the kitchen for a light breakfast before leaving for my morning workout.
Does it get more summer-y than this?
I ❤ this brand. European eh? Fancy.
Assembled it sandwich style! Would you believe I didn’t lose a single strawberry in the midst of consumption!?! Pure talent.
Off to workout. I’d say today was a good one. Heart rate stayed right up there where it should be. After working out I ran a few errands. Bank, grocery store x 2 (to pick up some last minute cake assembly ingredients), and back home. The workout and the errand running worked up my appetite. Thankfully some Veggie Pirate Booty and wasabi-flavored almonds were stashed in my car!
They look crazy, I know. Trust me, these suckers are addictive!
Kashi round 2 for lunch! Mayan Harvest Bake frozen meal (the only brand of frozen meals I’ll eat now-a-days).
Tasty? Yes! Attractive…no.
I love everything about this meal! The polenta, sweet potatoes, smoky adobo sauce, plantains, pumpkin seeds…they all work SO well together! I just wish the serving size was bigger. Shucks.
Before I reveal today’s cakes, I shall fast forward to a VERY RANDOM dinner! Sweet potatoes and hickory smoked tuna anyone?
Indeed, this does make for 2 servings of sweet potatoes in ONE DAY! SCORE! How I love the simplicity of a roasted sweet potato and sea salt. No butter, no brown sugar. Simple and healthy and the way nature intended for it to be!
Tuna was from a pouch. Flavor was good…texture, well that’s a different story. I’ll leave it at that. Needless to say, the star of the show was definitely the sweet potato!
Cake anyone? I’ve done 3 2 cakes today. The last one is in the process of cooling. I won’t give any hints as to what it’s going to be, but in my opinion, it’s the show-stopper of the 3. Stick around to see how it turns out 🙂
Graduation cake #1: White cake with buttercream icing and fondant flowers. I was told she liked purple, wanted flowers, and was a true girly girl. I had NO problem coming up with this one!
I couldn’t have asked for a better outcome. The decorating, assembly, and delivery were all flawless. That rarely happens!
Proud mama 🙂
Graduation cake #2: Virginia Tech graduate! Simple chocolate cake with buttercream icing and the Virginia Tech logo.
If I had it my way there’d be a UT logo on the top. The things I do to please clients.
To conclude today’s cake craziness, I leave you with one last creation:
No, it was not I who decorated these little beauties, but rather my lovely mother. Leftover icing and poor naked cupcakes, together at last thanks to mi madre. I certainly didn’t get my cake creativity from my mother. Could I really be her’s? (dum dum dum!)
It’s FRIDAY!! Do you know what that means? No class! Super duper, I know! I’ll take a full 8 hour day in the kitchen over 4 1/2 hours in a cold, boring classroom ANY DAY!
Apple slices make good yogurt dippers!
14 g of protein…not too shabby for a cup of yogurt I’d say!
The blueberries are legit. No artificially flavored garbage!
On to more food (for others)!
We had a TON of extremely ripe bananas on hand. You know what that means! NANA BREAD Nana bread MUFFINS! Every Saturday morning we serve breakfast at the tea room (unlike solely lunch like throughout the week) and one of the ‘lighter’ menu selections is a parfait and muffin. Hope tomorrow’s customers like nana bread cause that’s what they’re getting!
Scone count was running low. I took care of that!
Chocolate chip scones, pre-bake of course. Confession: I like batter/dough…far more than the final product.
In the midst of scone construction, EXTREME hunger hit me. It was bazaar. Proof of how hungry I was…
(If you look closely, you can see that I didn’t even bother to wash the scone dough off my hands) Nana was delish.
Approximately 1 hour later I consumed something with more substance:
Lunch service went well. We had a good crowd I’d say. After lunch service was over, I made some parmesan stuffed chicken breasts, a baked pasta dish, and traditional bruchetta topping for a special dinner tonight (I say “special” because we rarely serve dinner at the tea room). Julie (the manager) and I planned next week’s menu shortly after. We planned and I munched…
After work I came home and crashed for a while 🙂 Dinner was simple. I wasn’t too terribly hungry. I’ve always eaten my cracked wheat for breakfast with sweet additions (such as pumpkin butter, jelly, bananas, or unsweetened applesauce) but for dinner I decided to add some pecorino cheese with a dash of sea salt. Simple, yet delicious 🙂
Ok, so maybe it’s not a very photogenic food, but it hit the spot.
Well fellow foodies, I’m off to work on cakes 2 & 3! Much to do and time is ticking down!
Ahh, another busy day indeed! Plus side…it was B-E-A-UTIFUL outside. Kinda hot and sticky however. That’s Tennessee for ya! Unfortunately I was forced to spend the earlier portion of the day indoors, listening to a lecture about genetics. Woot. Brain fuel was a necessity (well, I’d say caffeine was more of a necessity).
The cereal and nana were consumed mid-commute along with half my Joe. So, I’ve realized something. I eat WAY too fast. The past 3 days I’ve been forced to eat breakfast in the car on my way to class. In doing so, I eat a lot slower and therefore feel full on less food. That being said, only the nana and cereal were consumed in the car. I took care of the smoothie around 10:15ish.
New bar! Lovvvvved it 🙂 Check out the stats:
Had I known I would have liked it this much, I would have stocked up on my bi-monthy trip to Earth Fare. Oh, and other thing….I stayed full for a SUPER long time after downing this sucker 😉 On to lunch (which was consumed at 2:30ish…that’s how long I stayed full. Yeaaaa buddy!)
I was curious as to whether or not the whole combination would work, but it did 🙂
Strawberry Shortcake Cake, mid-construction, made from none other than LOVELY local strawberries!
Take that California! The guy from the grocery store said it was likely that these beauties were still in the ground when I woke up. Ok, so maybe that was a slight exhageration on his part, but I’ve no doubt they’re as fresh as they come!
After cake assembly, mom and I enjoyed the weather by walking outside for a bit. An appetite was definitely worked up!
I’d say that’s a purrty good dinner!
One cake down…3 to go! No class tomorrow, so it’s BACK TO WORK for lunch service which I’m rather excited about! I feel like I’ve been missing so much, not being there when all the action goes on. I like to think I missed as well 🙂
CrAzInEsS!!! Absolutely craziness I tell ya! The last 3 days have been non-stop, go go go! I had no clue one measly summer class could consume so much time! With going to class, going to work, studying, working out (when I can), and the 4, yes, I said 4, cakes I have to bake/decorate/deliver this weekend, I’ve had absolutely no Kayley time. Sheesh! So get this, I haven’t had someone ask me to decorate a cake in probably 5 or 6 months…and then all of a sudden I get 4 requests within a span of 3 days. Can you tell this girl has trouble saying “no”?! Enough of my venting and on to the eats!
Yesterday’s Breakfast (the only meal I had time to take a pic of):
Indeed, you are not seeing things. I ate my oatmeal/nana/almond milk concoction in the car. Red lights were bittersweet. On one hand, I had to sit…and wait. On the other hand, I was able to scarf down scorching spoonful after spoonful of warm oat-y goodness. Washed it down with Joe…seen waiting in the cup holder, angry because he had to share my attention with ol’ Christmas mug of oats.
Is it just me, or are apples SUPER filling to anyone else?! Needless to say, I was stuffed afterward.
I love me some Chobani 🙂
Class followed shortly after. I won’t bore you with the 4 1/2 hours worth of info that I supposedly left with.
Lunch time was a bust 😦 I REALLY wish Zaxby’s would respect vegetarians a wee bit more and double up on the salad greens when omitting the chicken. Exhibit A:
Ok, so maybe the picture doesn’t do it justice. That sucker didn’t do a thing for my overwhelming hunger! Thankfully I had Veggie Straws in my purse (as well as an almond butter and jelly wrap that went undocumented).
Lacking in the veg department, wouldn’t you say?
I was hoping to not have to resort to the straws, and especially the wrap, but it certainly came to that!
Work at the tea room followed. I made 3,13×9 pans of corn pudding, 25 cheese stuffed chicken breasts, and a mixed berry tart for a dinner party. All in a day’s 1/2 a day’s work!
Came home and studied my little booty off! Seriously, tests are like every other day. This should be illegal. I took a break…to eat dinner:
2 leftover whole wheat pancakes topped with the remaining cup of Chobani Honey Greek yogurt and some pumpkin butter along with some scrambled egg whites for protein. Breakfast for dinner? Yes please.
Following dinner I studied some more and worked on some cute little ladybugs for the first cake that I must have completed for this weekend. I’ll be sure to show you the final product(s)! Well, that does it for today. Tomorrow is lookin pretty similar. 1/2 cake down…3 1/2 to go!
Today=major lack of interesting blogging material. I’m a failure. I’ll explain.
This morning was the start of summer classes and in the midst of getting folders/papers/snacks/shoes for work/cup of joe ready, I failed to document my massive breakfast 😦 It was:
(insert very uninteresting picture here)
After scarfing the above concoction down in 2.7 seconds flat, it was off to school. Whoa nelly that was weird! I figured out that I haven’t stepped foot in a classroom in over 6 months. It was enjoyable while it lasted. I sat in extreme boredom from 9:00am-1:30pm!
Lunch was consumed mid-lecture and included 1 serving (29 biscuits….yes, I did count) of Kashi Autumn Wheat cereal, 1/4 cup Kashi Heart to Heart Warm Cinnamon cereal, and a nana. No milk. Just dry cereal. My classmates consumed processed cheese crackers and Dr. Pepper. I’m so jealous. I figured pictures wouldn’t be appropriate (even though my professor is blind. I’m not kidding.).
After class I headed to work. It was weird not being there for lunch service. I felt like I missed SO much! We were running low on complementary scones and corn muffins for our pinto beans so I made a big batch of both. We had a lot of coconut on hand so coconut scones they were! They turned out beautiful 🙂
Have I ever mentioned how much I love baked potatoes?? Well, now ya know! Dinner was ugly (excuse # 3923950 why I didn’t take pictures today). A simple baked potato with salt and pepper, filled with Morningstar Meal Starter Crumbles and fat-free vegetarian re-fried beans. Lots of brown. Goodness gracious, Kayley, where were the veggies today!?
Well, readers, if you’ve made it this far in this picture-less post, my thanks to you for sticking with me. Not sure if my mid-class meal will ever make it into my posts, but we’ll see. Well, it’s late and I’ve got an early start. I suppose attentiveness will be required tomorrow. Shucks.
Well, folks, I’m back after taking a blogger’s day off. Hope everyone had a splendid mother’s day! I did and I’m not even a mom! Brief rewind of yesterday’s happenings: Came into work, prepared the mother’s day menu items, took a break from lunch prep to actually eat with the women of my family (which was SUPER weird actually being in the front of the house as a “guest” in my own restaurant!), came home, drove to Knoxville to sign my apartment lease for next fall, ate dinner with mom at this swanky restaurant call Chez Libery, stopped by Earth Fare, and headed home to SLEEP! SHEWWW! At least the weather was b-e-a-utiful!
On to today’s eats! I gave Mickey D’s a run for their money with my take on their greasy, nasty breakfast sandwiches. Needless to say, I came out victorious (and I’m sure you’ll agree)!
Beautiful, dontcha think?
A wonderful church service was to follow.
We then headed across the street to a restaurant called Hillside Grille where we indulged in their mother’s day buffet. Let me start off by saying that I typically HATE buffets. Quantity, not quality…ick! This one was pretty darn good though. The lighting was pretty dim. Here’s my ATTEMPT at getting a decent picture of my plate:
Starting from bottom right, rotating clockwise:
I can’t decide which I liked best. It was a toss-up between the mashed potatoes and the black bean salad, but after considering the nutritional benefits of both along with the taste, I’d give it to the black bean salad. Paired with diced tomatoes and a light vinaigrette dressing, it was light and refreshing and somewhat original I’d say.
After lunch, my family and I visited my grandmother and presented her with a huge frame with pictures of all us grandkids (remember the pics I shared from last Monday?) She loved it! She’s a bragger when it comes to her grandkids so I’m sure everyone in the assisted living facility will know us all before we even come in!
I was feeling BREAKFAST for dinner tonight (oh, how I love breakfast food!!) so pancakes were in order…whole wheat pancakes to be exact!
Naked pancakes are no bueno. Strawberries to the rescue! Mom bought a gallon of fresh strawberries last week and the majority were frozen in individual bags. All I did was defrost them in the microwave and mix in a few packets of Truvia natural sweetener and WALLAH!
No need for syrup drenching folks! Light and fresh and healthy 🙂
Debbie Downer warning:
Kayley starts summer classes tomorrow. BOOOOOO!! Think about me at 9am when I’m reviewing syllabuses. I’m foreseeing multiple cups of joe in the mornin! No fear, this whole school thing won’t stop me from concocting my culinary creations!
Whoa buddy am I exhausted! Short post, ok? OK 🙂 Run down of today’s culinary adventure: Tomorrow=Mother’s Day tea at the Minnis House which means my little booty was busy busy busy (11 1/2 hours in the kitchen today)! What’s on the menu? So glad you asked!
Course #1: Coconut Scones with Banana Cream (Here’s a sneak peak! Shhhh, they aren’t supposed to make their debut until tomorrow!)
Check out that flakey factor!
Course #2: Cucumber Sandwiches (don’t judge. these aren’t your grandma’s bland cucumber sandwiches!), Orange Salad with mandarin oranges and toasted almonds tossed in an orange vinaigrette, and Strawberry Bisque.
Course #3: Chocolate Mousse with White Chocolate dipped Strawberries (sneak peak!)
In my opinion, partially mixed mousse is one of the most beautiful sites to a pastry chef!
Let me guess, you’re kicking yourself because you didn’t make reservations, aren’t you?
My eats were anything but interesting today. I was tasting and re-tasting ALL day long for seasoning, consistency, etc so I didn’t spend a lot of time preparing thoughtful meals for myself, and even if I did, I probably wouldn’t have eaten that much of it.
That being said, think about me tomorrow on your leisurely Saturday off while I’m running around like a mad woman.
Good evening readers 🙂 I hope everyone had as splendid a day as I did! Work was great today. It’s always uplifting when our daily special is a big hit. The manager, Julie, and I, sit down once a week and spend time planning what the specials for the coming week, and as cheesy as this sounds, a little bit of each one of us goes into each daily special. There is a reason that special is there. There is a reason why that special is going on that particular day. There is a reason why that side is paired with that main item. It may be because a particular guest requested that item or it may be because I’ve been really really craving that particular dish or to be quite honest, it may be because one particular ingredient was on sale. We don’t just throw this stuff together just so we can be done with it and call it a day. When that ticket prints out in the back and it reads “special, special, special, special….” I know I’ve done something right (and when the plates come back empty, that’s the icing on the cake!) Alright, I’ll get off my soap box. Breakfast, shall we?
Proven fact: food tastes better with farm spoon.
Proven fact: food tastes better in cute little heart shapes.
Off to work!
The kitchen smelled of cinnamon rice pudding today. I’ll be honest, I had never made rice pudding until today. It doesn’t exactly shout “trendy” from a culinary school stand point. Well, Johnson and Wales, trendy doesn’t always taste the best, now does it?! It turned out great! So warm and creamy with that perfect hint of cinnamon. It goes on the menu tomorrow so I’m hoping for a great response! I also made fried apple scones. They turned out ok. Certainly could have been better. The excess moisture from the fried apples caused them to not rise as much as I would have liked, but they tasted ok. I’ll know better next time around.
Lunch part 1:
Tasted like a PB and J, minus the smooth texture. Shocker, I know.
I prepared it at home and enjoyed it at work.
Lunch rush came and went (the word is getting out about the restaurant, I can tell 🙂 )
Lunch part 2 (I apologize for the horrible picture. Cottage cheese isn’t very photogenic):
I’ll mix cottage cheese with just about anything!
Julie and I planned the menu for next week and then I headed home to some dippin’ fun!
And the winner…cucumber and hummus, hands down (that cucumber was way bigger than this photo gives it credit for. just sayin.)
Walked around town with mom and came home to dinner that I had already prepared.
Dinner: Shrimp Roll and Vegetable Soup (kinda like winter meets summer on a plate!)
(The veggie soup contained everything but the kitchen sink. Use your imagination.)
Light and refreshing 🙂
Well, that’s all the eating for tonight. Now I’m off to experiment with strawberry shortcake cake #2 (see previous post for strawberry shortcake cake attempt #1)
So let me preface by saying that the title of today’s post has absolutely nothing to do with today’s happenings/eats. As a matter of fact, no Mexican food was consumed today. Shucks. I do like the word “Ole,” however, and found it to be rather fitting for such a holiday. On to more edible matters!
Ahh, beautiful morning, eh? I was craving waffles this morning and conveniently I had an unopened box of Kashi GoLean waffles calling my name from the fridge. I answered.
I intentionally got the plain waffles this time because I was planning on making a breakfast sandwich with scrambled eggs and tomatoes (Grainger County tomatoes to be exact!) somewhere along the way…it just wasn’t this mornin.
Waffle meets Greek Yogurt 🙂 Such a lovely pair.
Off to work, Joe numero dos in hand!
There was a party of 18 lovely ladies who came by the tea room today for a luncheon. They LOVED it! I’ve never heard so many compliments. It was so humbling 🙂 Since I usually stay in the back of the house (the kitchen), I rarely get to interact with the guests so it was nice getting to see such happy people eating the food that I helped prepare.
Big helping of fat-free cottage cheese
An hour later I had the remaining Chobani Greek yogurt from this mornin and a 1/2 of a Thomas Bagel Thin:
I toasted the bagel and dipped it in the yogurt. (I didn’t feel like dirtying up a plate when I had to run off and do something, so this seemed like the next best thing. clever, I know)
I’ve never heard of lemon poppyseed scones (however I’m not claiming that I came up with them) but I LOVE lemon poppyseed muffins and I LOVE scones…so why not put the two together!
Complementary scones tend to make people happy.
AAAAAND another snack for Kayley!. Veggie Straws make wonderful hummus dippers.
Headed to the gym and then came home and fixed breakfast…for dinner….cinnamon apple oat style!
Most foodie bloggers would be hesitant to post a picture of such messy oats in such a messy bowl, but I like to think this expresses my oats’ inability to contain themselves. I was equally as excited.
So what if it’s 80 degrees outside. I like oats. I like apples. I like cinnamon.
And I bet you want some now too!