Red Berry Cream Cheese Sponge Cake

Red Berry Cream Cheese Sponge Cake

First, we make sponge cake.

This is how I make like to make it . It is another great way to use my favorite kitchen tool, my handy immersion blender with my whip attachment for this fluffy sweet treat.

4 eggs
1.5 cups sugar
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon orange zest
1 cup whole milk
1/4 cup butter (lightly salted)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

1. Separate the egg whites from the yolks in two bowls.

2. Beat egg whites until soft peaks form. (with your stick blender, this step might take 3 minutes, think soft whipped cream. Do not skip this step!

3. Add sugar to the yolks and beat until pale and fluffy.  Add vanilla and stir on low until just combined.

4. In a third bowl, sift together dry ingredients.  Add to egg yolk mixture until just combined. (I use the whisk with no power for this one)

5. Add milk and softened butter, beat just until combined.

6. Fold in whites, small batches at a time until fully incorporated. (I use the whisk with no power for this one)

7. Pour into two greased and floured 8″ round cake pans or one large bunt cake mold.

8. Bake at 325 until the middle springs back when touched, or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and let stand in pans for 10 minutes. Then turn out onto wire cooling racks and cool completely.

Hint: Cakes are close to being done when you start to smell them.

While the cake is baking you make the frosting.

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces butter, softened
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon orange/lemon juice
  • 4 ounces whipped cream or coolwhip type topping.

Directions

In a large bowl, beat together the butter and cream cheese with an electric mixer. With the mixer on low speed, add the powdered sugar a cup at a time until smooth and creamy. Add 1 teaspoon orange/lemon juice. Fold in the whipped cream.

After you ice your light and airy Sponge-o-riffic Cake-o-rama! Top it with mixed berries of your liking. I had these frozen strawberry, blueberry, blackberry, raspberry melody garnished with a sprig of mint from our garden! ENJOY.

Beautify your eggs in the morning

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Turn any smart phone into a free voip phone + free text message

Image representing Google Voice as depicted in...

Image via CrunchBase

Have an old smart phone lying around? Why not turn it into a free voip house phone?  I only have experience using this with an android phone (with no cell service attached). Thanks to google voice and pbxes.com you can easily make 100% free phone calls over your wifi. You are already paying for wifi at home, why not use it to make free calls? Of course this technology is not as reliable as your regular cell phone service, or as convenient in some cases since you can only use your phone wherever  wifi is available (good thing starbucks is everywhere!). And I have had some trouble using it to authenticate a craigslist account so there might be other instances where this option might not work for you.

Bundled with google voice is the ability to send and receive sms messages right to your inbox or to your android.

Setting up your phone is easy to do:

 Get a Google Voice number.

 Download Sipdroid application on your phone

 Open the Sipdroid application on the phone. Select settings and add your Google voice account information.

Sipdroid will register automatically register an account for you at pbxes.com and configure your google voice account also.  While you’re in settings you might want to check the Call Options (I  and Wireless Options (Here, I check the options Select Wi-Fi Ap & Screen on) to make sure your settings are all in order.

Once you have a little green light, you’re ready to make calls. IMPORTANT NOTE: Once you register with pbxes.com through the application, you should log into your account at Pbxes.com and update your information, othewise they might delete your account and you have to register a new one.

Text messaging works a little different, to use that download the google voice application or just send from your gmail inbox!

Good Luck!

English: Sipdroid 1.0.7 on a HTC Hero mobile phone

NOTE: Sometimes Pbxes stops working for no real reason, but it is easy to resolve. Simply log into your pbxes.com account. Click Personal Data then change your time zone and save changes. Then change it back to the correct one. Actually any change to your settings seems to refresh something and gets your voip working again.

Amanda’s Homemade Sugar Scrub

SGVegan is now EVERYDAY Vegan Shop

Most of the time, when we want to exfoliate the dead skin on our bodies, we turn to salt scrubs.

Dead sea salt scrub, sea salt scrubs…

How about a sugar scrub?

In fact, sugar scrubs are much better than salt scrubs.

Why?

Sugar being easier to dissolve, does not exfoliate the skin as hard as salt. So using a sugar scrub is suitable even for people with sensitive skin condition! 🙂

Introducing my very own homemade, DIY Sugar Scrub!

Over the past 3 weeks, I have been experimenting with 3 sugar scrub batches that I made personally in my own kitchen.

Making the scrub is really easy, all it requires is simply just 15-30 minutes and you get a scrub that can last you for a really long time.

As I was still in the midst of experimenting, I decided to share portions of my sugar scrub with my close friends to…

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That’s a Pallet?

Soap Just Soap

T and D Organics and Designs

This is the equation for our soap:

ACP  + 3DO +  DW +  5 EMITCOBIHTGCTBL= S

A crock pot + three different oils + distilled water + 5 extra minutes in the check out because I have to get carded to buy lye = soap

Seriously: In this town I am carded for lye and Visine Advanced but not for Sudafed…

Moving on…

T and I are getting away from processed EVERYTHING. We are growing our own food, making our own candles, our own soap and shampoo.

I’m getting into this whole “If I can’t read it I’m not using it” thing and not because I’m one of those tree hugging, environmentalist, hippy fascists- I just don’t like the idea of using something that I have no idea what it is, what it does or what it was originally for (ie the pesticides we currently use in commercial farming were originally nerve…

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Farming from a Meatpacking Factory

in.gredients

Re-purposing an old meatpacking factory as a zero-waste farm seems pretty ironic. But John Edel has bigger plans than just an eco farm for The Plant, a vertical farm and food business operation opening soon in Chicago. He hopes to “show people the ease of adapting to green food production in urban living environments,” including utilizing hydroponics and aquaponics (CNN). Fantastic concept, John!

(image: The Plant)

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