This picture? The real reason for this post. 

My boys love doughnuts (okay, so does momma!). Nothing like the "Hot Now" sign at Krispy Kreme to lure us in. We even have a Krispy Kreme in town where you can watch the donuts being made. For the easily entertained like me, it's some fun! But sometimes I don't feel like driving (or paying) for the yummy goodness. And darn if the boys aren't sick of hearing "we can make those ourselves" when they ask for something at the store. So I rooted around the Web and found a fairly easy sounding recipe for a cake-like donut. We made them and ate them all. YUM!

Then trouble hit. I went to make the donuts again and the Web site with the recipe was gone. Vanished.  Wouldn't load. Now, there are hundreds thousands gazillons of recipes on the Web so finding another one wouldn't be difficult. BUT, the recipe I found first had this amazing chocolate glaze that tasted just like Krispy Kreme chocolate glaze!!!! Eat-it-straight-from-the-jar-with-a spoon good!!! I was not happy about losing the recipe for the glaze. A couple of week later I found that I HAD written down the recipe on a scrap piece of paper (sometimes I do, sometimes I don't. I'm screwed if Pinterest disappears!). REJOICE! So I'm sharing it here so I don't lose it again. And because I know you need some chocolate glaze in your life too.

Easy peasy cakey donuts

2 cups Bisquick*
2 T sugar
1 t vanilla
1 egg
1/4 cup water
a little bit of cinnamon
a tiny bit of nutmeg

*According to Wikipedia, one cup of Bisquick can be substituted with one cup of flour, 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1 tablespoon of oil or melted butter.

I didn't write down any of the instructions so basically mix everything together, roll out on a well-floured surface and cut out doughnuts/holes. Heat oil and fry (here's where a deep fryer would come in handy but I don't have one). They will cook very quickly so keep an eye on them and flip! Let cool on paper towels. Pop them in a bag with cinnamon and sugar to coat or cover them with chocolate glaze. 

Chocolate glaze 

2 squares unsweetened baking chocolate
3 T butter
1 cup powered sugar
3/4 t vanilla
2-3 T hot water

I didn't have the squares on hand so I used 3 small handfuls of chocolate chips and it turned out fine. Melt the chocolate and butter on the stove. Remove from heat, add remaining ingredients. Try not to eat the entire pan in one sitting. 



Random Thoughts Valentine's Edition

I made Chris some whiskey candies. Got the recipe at Olives for Dinner but left out the hot sauce. It was my first time making a hard candy and it was fairly easy. Washing the dishes coated with hard candy shell was the hardest part. Not sure if the candies have enough flavor. I think I will experiment with other liqueurs. I spy with my little eye a bottle of Grand Marnier hiding in the bar. 

Paste magazine has a list of the Top Anti-Valentine's Day films. Most I haven't seen. I think I would add "Mona Lisa Smile" since Kristin Dunst's character gets exactly what she deserves while getting exactly what she thinks she wanted, her Mrs. Degree (but no happy-ever after). However, if I was going to sit down to watch a soppy, sweet type of love story today, my choice might be "Stranger than Fiction" or the BBC miniseries "North & South" or "A Room with a View" or "Pride and Prejudice" (Colin Firth preferred but Matthew Macfadyen's not bad). So basically, any English period drama. 

Isn't this sweet? I got the idea in my head and took the boys to my friend Julia's paint it yourself pottery place (Actually name is Do*It*Yourself Crafts and it's awesome. You should go.). On one side is a thumbprint heart with handwriting by Will. On the other side, Joseph added some paint in blues and greens making the pendant reversible. Just a happy for this momma who loves anything they create (even when I'm the one making them create it). 

This morning, Rice Krispies treats and lego jedi light saber valentines were successfully delivered to Will's classroom. Followed by heart-shaped sugar cookies with cream cheese frosting and you're dino-mite valentines for Joseph's classroom. (Oh yes, I'm THAT mom complete with the stereotype of frosting the cookies minutes before leaving for school). So now I have a messy kitchen and lots of cream cheese frosting to keep me company as I clean up. If you are still looking for Valentine's Day ideas, check out my Pinterest board. Lots of ideas and free printables. 

Seems lots of folks have a love-hate relationship with Valentine's Day. My wish for everyone is that we all find some joy today in ourselves and in those around us we love. Hugs to all y'all.


I don't run

I went to the gym yesterday. I never go to the gym in January ... or most other months for that matter. Like most folks, I contempt making one or two lifestyle changes come New Year's Day. Then I wait patiently for all the other suckers to lose steam and clear out. I don't have time to put my name on a waiting list for a treadmill. 

For some unknown ghastly reason, I've decided that running is what I should be doing. A thin girlfriend told me long ago that it's the fastest way to lose weight. My friends that run are gorgeous. I don't want to be a gorgeous skinny-minny but fitting into my clothes would be nice. I've never been one to diet or really care about my weight. I'm not chasing any fads — I believe in the simple "eat less, move more" motto. My only problem is I've been eating more and moving less more and more. Carrying two babies certainly didn't help — the body is never quite the same after all the rearranging. 

I, maybe surprisingly, was on the track team in high school. It was a small school. You know how you do one or two years in junior varsity and then move to the varsity team. Yeah, not me. I never broke a 12-minute mile. Thankfully, I had soccer to get my varsity jacket. 

So I went to the gym yesterday. Been wanting to try out the Run 5k app. Seems pretty cool using jog/walk intervals to build endurance. After eight weeks, I should be able to run 30 minutes non-stop. I liked the idea of taking it slow. 

I lasted on Day One about five minutes. My legs said oh hells no. 

And after the gym? Chinese food and a donut. 


A cup of cheer

What? You say it's February 2013? I'm still catching up on my December posts ... 
Besides, are you only thirsty in December? I think not.

I'm big on tradition, especially Christmas traditions. So every year I make Ruby Wine Punch. Sometimes for an event but usually just for me. Two Christmas-es ago I made some, bragged about it on Facebook and had two friends ask for the recipe. I thought, hey I'll just post about it and they can get the recipe off my site. So I did it the very next day. Here it is, finally. 

I haven't shared many recipes on Pretty Little Nest because I haven't felt enough ownership to claim the right to publish. But this recipe for Ruby Wine Punch has been in the family now for three generations. My thanks to one Mrs. Morrisson for sharing it with my grandmother.

Ruby Wine Punch

3/4 cup water
3/4 cup sugar
6 inches of cinnamon sticks
1 tsp whole cloves
dash of salt
2 cups burgandy wine
1 quart cranapple juice

Combine water, sugar, cinnamon, cloves and salt in a saucepan; bring to a boil stirring constantly. Reduce to simmer 10 minutes until clear like syrup. Chill (wine and the cranapple juice should be chilling in the fridge as well). Combine with wine and cranapple juice. Serve. If serving in a punch bowl, go ahead and get fancy with an ice ring of cranapple juice. It is rather sweet so you can add ginger ale/sprite or cut back on the sugar. 

Notes from me: I made 2012's version with a cheap dry red and cran-pomegranate juice. Not the same so sticking to the recipe next time. Try to strain the punch while pouring into a cup. No need to ruin Christmas by choking on a clove. AND if you put the punch back into the cranapple juice container CLEARLY MARK the container before someone pours the "juice" into a cup for your four-year-old. Just saying. 

Do you like those wonderfully vintage Christmas glasses? Score at the thrift store! Even better, got six of them marked way less than they should have been. Double score!