Chocolate-Peanut Butter Cheesecake

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Hello, lovely.

Apparently, the Kraft/Philadelphia website were down the other night.  I usually just go to the Kraft website, and use their recipe for peanut butter cheesecake, but I kept getting ‘404 – file not found’.  So I experimented, and this is what I got!

Chocolate-Peanut Butter Cheesecake

Base:
1/2 cup margarine or butter (I used 1 square of Imperial Margarine)
2 cups of Oreos crumbs

Cheesecake:
2 blocks of cream cheese
1/2 cup of peanut butter
2 eggs
1 tbsp sugar
1 shot Kahlua
2-3 tbsps of melted chocolate (or 4… or 5…)

Topping:
Crumbled peanut butter cups

Base:
Preheat oven to 325.  Melt your margarine and stir the crumbs in.  Press down into the pan with your fingers.  When we cook cheesecakes, we put a layer of wax paper on top of the springform pan.  Bake for 5-10 minutes.

Cheesecake:
Mix together cream cheese and peanut butter.  Do a little taste test to make sure the peanut butter is strong enough for you.  Add eggs and sugar, and mix.  Add in Kahlua.  You’ll want to grease your spring form pan, just so the cheesecake comes out easily.  I forgot.  I poured in a little of the mixture before I forgot.  Ideally, you would spray some Pam onto the sides after baking the base.  I had to put some margarine onto a piece of paper towel and get the edges that way.  Once your have your mixture poured into the pan, add the melted chocolate, and swirl it around.  Bake at 325 for 30 mins.  If it doesn’t looked cooked at 30 minutes, leave for another 5.  It will brown a little when it is cooked.

Topping:
Once the cheesecake has cooled, crumble some peanut butter cups over top.  I had a bag of the Reese minis in our cupboard, and they all melted together in the heat wave last week.  They were perfect on top.

Enjoy with a big glass of milk!

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Wine cozies

I’m probably not the first one to admit that I have problems finishing things.  I was terrible at writing essays in school because I always had trouble with my closing paragraphs.  It’s the same thing with my projects.  I love to start a new one, but I have trouble finishing them.  Unless I have a goal.  That’s why I can give things as gifts, because I’ve got the goal to get them finished by a certain date.  Here are two examples of gifts that I made back in 2007.  One was a gift for a cooperating teacher who liked wine, and the second was to go with a wedding gift.  I made that one in the wedding colours, and it accompanied wine glasses that they had on their registry.

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As for the embellishments, the first one was embroidered with gold stars.  The second one has the bride and groom’s names, and the date of their wedding on the other side.  I got the pattern from a knitty article.  Here’s the link:

http://knitty.com/ISSUEwinter04/PATTwinecozy.html

I guess the most important thing that I did was to size up as I went.  I used a bottle to make sure I went up high enough for the neck.  I tend to knit really tightly, so if I follow a pattern, sometimes things end up to be quite a bit smaller than intended.  Like the sweater that I made myself… but that’s another story for another day.

A gift idea for the Mr and Mrs

My brother was married over the May long weekend.  For my birthday back in November, they gave me a book called “Knitted Wild Animals” by Sara Keen (http://www.amazon.ca/Knitted-Wild-Animals-Easy—Knit/dp/082303318X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1340304321&sr=8-1).  I thought that they deserved the first creation from the book.  I made the lion from the book, except I made two, one without a mane.  I picked up the outfits from Build-A-Bear, and dressed them up.  They were the gift toppers for the wedding present.

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They took a lot of work, making all the little pieces, sewing them together, and stuffing them.  I even recruited my wonderful husband to help sew them together.  But it was definitely worth it.

Crochet necklace

Here’s my first attempt at making crochet jewellery:

And here’s a close up to see the detail:

This was actually really easy to make, and didn’t take a lot of time.  To save yourself a lot of grief, when you are knitting or crocheting with beads, here is the most important thing:

**Put all of your beads on your string before you start!!**  And if possible, put more than you need on.  I used a small guage wire, and 2.75mm hook (I think for US sizes, it’s ‘C’, but I’m not sure.  It’s quite small.)  I put 16 crystal beads on per strand.  I started by attaching the wire to a jump ring, and then I did 4sc, added a bead, and then did 4sc, repeating until I had 16 beads on.  I made three strands, and then I noticed that one was a lot longer, so I braided them.  Thank goodness it’s forgiving!  It was my first time working with wire, so I had a hard time getting my tension right at first, but by the end of the project, I was moving a lot more quickly.  The whole thing took me about half an hour to make, and it did look rather pretty.

 

*Edit June 25**  I realize that in the pattern, I put it was sc, but it was actually a chain stich.  I’m new to crochet, and didn’t realize my error when I was typing up the post.

A blog award!

An award! madebymarly has been nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award by http://byhookorbypen.wordpress.com/. Thank you so much for this award!

Now the rules:

  1.  Thank the person who gave you this award
  2.  Include a link to their blog
  3.  Pass the award onto 15 blogs (I’m doing 2.  I’m new to the blogosphere, and I could only find 2.)
  4.  Tell 7 things about yourself

The Nominations. The following blogs have won the VBA award. I can only manage 5, as I recently nominated 15 other blogs for the award and have run out of prospect recipients.  So here it is:

  1. http://mindfulnessandme.org/ – I love your new post with the blanket!  It’s beautiful!
  2. http://actoncreative.net/ – The woven items are beautiful.  I just ordered a Martha Steward loom, and am trying to make a baby blanket, but it’s awfully slow going.

About myself:

  1. I’ve never eaten a Big Mac
  2. I often use Tenderflake for my pie crusts
  3. I am a first aid instructor
  4. I broke a tooth playing Red Rover
  5. I broke my nose playing Capture the Flag
  6. I ran 5k once, and would really like to get another one in this summer
  7. I am terrified of moths

Baby Beanies

I love making this for babies and kids.  I got into making these beanies over the past few months, and I’m working on some to sell at our local market.  Here are two that I gave as birthday gifts:

I got the idea for the beanies from the book ‘Just be Happy’ by Alessandra Hayden (you can find it on Amazon: http://www.amazon.ca/Just-Be-Happy-Crochet-Toddlers/dp/0578075679/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1340130377&sr=8-2).  Each hat was made to reflect the nicknames of the girls.

Easy Knit Gift!

I make a lot of baby blankets.  Knitted or crocheted blankets are great gifts for little ones because if they pull it up onto their face, they are still able to breathe through them.  This is an easy (and quick!) blanket to make.  Use two types of yarn at once, and use needles that are at least 10mm (size 15).  It’s knit like a large dishcloth.

 

Here’s the pattern:

Cast on 5
Row 1: k
Row 2 – 75(ish): k2, yo, k to end of row (increase by 1 each row)
Keep this up until you have the length of blanket that you want, anywhere from 75-100 rows, depending on the size of needles you use.  Next row: k1, k2tog, yo, k2tog, k to end of row (decrease by 1 each row)
Contine to decrease by 1 each row, until you have 5 stitches
Next row: k
Bind off