Your Burning Baking Questions for B

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If you’re new to this blog, welcome! I love meeting new people who love baking as much as I do.

If you’ve been following for awhile, you’ll know that in addition to having a giant sweet-tooth, part of my passion for baking lies comes from how I cope with stress. But I get a lot of questions about my favorite recipes, methods and my baking experiences both online and in person, so I thought I’d attempt to answer a few more of them here. Maybe we can even get to know each other a little better!

What was the first thing you ever made? Some of my earliest memories are of helping my mother in the kitchen but the first thing I ever baked all by myself were these chocolate brownies.

Are there any recipes you know off by heart? Yeah, that one! And the one for peanut butter cookies because it’s so freaking easy.

What’s the easiest thing you’ve made? I’d say pretty much all of the stuff I’ve featured on the blog is pretty easy (otherwise I wouldn’t blog about it!) but these peanut butter cookies, this peach cobbler, these minty Nanaimo bars, these butterscotch treats, and these S’mores Squares were among the easiest. Oh! And applesauce, although I don’t think that really counts as “baking”.

What’s the most difficult thing you’ve made? Making your own pastry dough like I describe here is pretty labor-intensive. If you’ve never baked anything before, it’s probably not the best recipe to start with but mostly I think it’s just all of the steps that make it intimidating.

Where do you get your inspiration from? I read lots of cookbooks (found here and here), but I also used to collect magazine clippings like crazy. That was kind of getting out of hand so I’ve relegated a lot of my collection onto Pinterest and into my recipe book. I also read a ton of amazing baking blogs run by talented bloggers, all of whom are way better bakers than I am.

Do you only bake for your blog? Yes and no. Mostly I bake for myself, family, friends or co-workers (especially if there’s a special occasion). I enjoy trying new recipes all the time but since I started featuring more of my baking on the blog I’ve made a more concerted effort to vary the kinds of things I make, and the flavors I use. So yes, sometimes I find a new recipe to try out for the blog specifically, but I’m constantly returning to my favorites in between.

Have you ever considered making baked goods on commission? Are you going to open a bakery? I don’t have my food handler’s certificate, or any formal culinary training so probably not. I kind of like the idea of feeding a bunch of people and getting paid for it, though, so I wouldn’t rule it out.

Do you cook as often as you bake? Not as much, although I do like cooking a lot. I don’t often like eating big meals so I’m more of a grazer throughout the day- fresh fruits and veggies, and yogurt. Oh man, yogurt. I usually save my more substantial recipes for other people. Maybe I’ll share one or two on the blog in the future!

What’s the one thing you haven’t baked? I have yet to successfully make meringue, and as of yet I’ve never attempted a soufflé. (It kind of scares me.) I’ve also never made a cheesecake- no particular reason, I just haven’t done it yet!

What is your all-time favorite dessert? There haven’t been many baked goods that I’ve met and haven’t liked, but there’s nothing like a dense, moist carrot cake with cream cheese frosting.

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I hope you’ve enjoyed getting the chance to know me a little bit more- now I want to know a little bit more about you! What’s your favorite dessert? What’s the one recipe you’ve always been too intimidated to bake? Leave your answers below, and make sure to link to your favorite recipes on your blog! When it comes to baking, the more the merrier.

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One Lovely Blog Award

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The Internet is truly the coolest. Since starting my blog I’ve had the opportunity to connect with so many wonderful and interesting people from all over the world and all walks of life. But the one thing that brings us bloggers together is our passion for what we do. That’s why I’m so honored to have been nominated for the One Lovely Blog Award by the folks over at Sweet Spell. (Reader advisory warning: the pictures on that blog alone are almost too delicious to look at.)

For those of you visiting for the first time, my name is B and I keep busy working an office job, running a freelance business, and caring for my dog G. To decompress, I like to bake and read and blog all about my (mis)adventures trying to keep it all together.

Part of accepting the nomination is telling you a little bit more about myself, so here’s some things that my Internet friends, both new and old, may not know about me:

  1. This is not my first time at the blogging rodeo. Way back at the dawn of the Internet I may or may not have had a fan fiction blog. Yes, a boy band of the time played a starring role. No, I will not tell you which one it was.
  2. Obviously, I’ve always loved writing but for a while there I thought I was going to be a linguist because I was fascinated with languages. Turns out becoming a linguist is more than just embracing your inner J.R.R. Tolkien (apparently he knew 14!) so I stuck to dabbling around with them- I still have working knowledge of a few!
  3. You’d think that blogging and baking and drooling over books would be enough to keep me busy, but I’m actually doing all of those things while simultaneously singing my face off. Which brings me to my next point…
  4. I can sing pretty much every Disney princess song. No, really. It’s my one and only party trick. The only one I haven’t seen is The Princess and the Frog. I blame my parents, because there was always music in the house growing up.
  5. It was my mom that taught me how to bake, and I made my first batch of chocolate brownies at the tender age of seven. To this day, baked goods are still my kryptonite.
  6. Part of the reason I love baking is because I love making things for other people. If you’re my friend in real life you’ve probably received a homemade card from me at one point in time or another.
  7. If I could have any other job in the world (other than being a superstar-celebrity-entrepreneur-philanthropist) I would want to be the one who comes up with the names for colors on paint chips, or crayons. I love playing with words like “cilantro” or “persimmon”.

Now that I’ve accepted my nomination by telling you seven different things about myself, it’s time to nominate some of the other wonderful blogs that I hope you think are truly lovely as well.

Here are the rules for accepting your One Lovely Blog Award nomination:

  1. Write a blog post accepting your nomination.
  2. Show the blogger who nominated you how much you love them by thanking them in the post and linking to their blog. (Thanks again, Sweet Spell!)
  3. Tell us seven things about yourself.
  4. Nominate other blogs that you think are totally rad.
  5. Let the bloggers you’ve nominated know about they’ve received an award.
  6. Post the rules again to let those bloggers know how it works.

My Nominations

I love keeping up with Lydia as she cultivates a stylish life over at The Artful Attempt.

Tracy of The Culinary Jumble bakes all the Swedish things my mom and I used to make.

You’ll flip out over the incredible costumes Tanya sews over at It’s All Frosting.

I can’t help but smile every time a new post from Clairely Happy pops up in my feed.

Pola at The Escritorium has a talent with words, both real and imagined.

The gals behind Owl Machine are smart, hilarious and the authority on all things Disney.

Of course, this list isn’t exhaustive and can’t possibly include all of the other amazing bloggers I have met and continue to meet on my blogging journey. Writing this blog is one of my favorite things in the world to do and it’s readers like all of you that make the blogging experience a special one.

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Many thanks again for Sweet Spell for nominating me and congratulations to all of the other recipients that were nominated: Mrs. Twinkle, Goan Imports, The Creative Life in Between, Electric Blue Food, Love Served Daily, Twindays, milkandbun, The Millionaire’s Digest, A Pug in the Kitchen and Snapshots in Cursive. They’re all worthy blogs that you should go check out now!

Come Fika With Me

KBB_fikaEver since I was a little girl, I have enjoyed the Swedish practice of “fika” (explained so wonderfully and succinctly in the meme above). Similar to English “high tea”, “fika” is a perfect excuse to a take a restorative break from our busy day and enjoy a cup of coffee and maybe even a little treat.

My Swedish mother got me started on the practice early. (I’m pretty sure the first appliance I learned how to use in our kitchen was the coffeemaker. Now there’s strategic parenting for you!) Both of my parents worked from home and it wasn’t unusual to put on a pot of coffee in the afternoon and have the members of my family slowly drift into the kitchen once the small wafted through the house. My mother baked often and there would always be something sweet stashed somewhere in the kitchen. She taught my sister and I the basics of baking at an early age and I still have her chocolate brownie recipe memorized (it also happens to be the first baked good I ever shared on this blog here).

I definitely think that my love of fika has fostered my love of baking and I love sharing my baking with you online almost as much as I do sharing it in real life. Come and join my fika party by trying one (or more!) of my favorite recipes here, or share your favorite recipes or fika ideas by commenting below or emailing at me at keepingbusyb@gmail.com

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