Sochi Inspired Life

As most of you know, I spent ten days on the East Coast. I posted some pictures on Facebook that you are welcome to check out, but the bottom line is that I saw a ton of awesome people, I saw a LOT of snow, and I was cold 🙂

Since I’ve been back in sunny (and warm) SoCal, I’ve been really focusing on starting and finishing projects that have been on hold for months. For example, I submitted my passport for renewal (who wants to travel once I get it back?!). I’ve really kicked off organizing my scrapbook supplies with the goal of making my Briar Woods book in the coming weeks. I’ve also watched a lot of the Olympics. Like a lot a lot. Using Mom’s Verizon password I have access to NBC’s Live Extra app on my iPad which allows me to watch hours of coverage of the events. I’m basically in heaven. Because I’m basically obsessed with the Olympics.

So what else have I done today? I have Growth Group tonight which is the weekly Bible study that ties to the sermon from the past week. Growth Group is something I love most about my church. But I digress. It’s my turn to bring dessert tonight, so I figured I would keep with my Olympics theme and make a Russian dessert… Ha! After much searching on Pinterest, I stumbled across this “easy” recipe for Sharlotka, a Russian apple cake that looked delicious and fairly straight-forward. It also looked like something people would actually want to eat. So here we go!

First, the peeling and coring and dicing of the apples… I was over it before the first apple was done. I also don’t really love apples, so that may have had an affect. You’ll also see that I opted for the 9×13″ option over the 9″ round, basically because I had this and I don’t have that.

20140220-150046.jpgOnce that was done, I had to mix up everything else. No big deal here, got to use my blender and my mixing bowl with a lid (it’s one of my favorite kitchen tools). I was watching men’s skier cross during this part of the process. Technology is amazing 🙂 Once the batter was done, I folded in all the apple chunks and we were good to go!

20140220-150100.jpgThen I just had to pour the mixture back into my pan and throw it in the oven. I taste-tested the batter left in the bowl and was happy that I at least liked the taste of that. Since I was using the bigger pan, I didn’t have to cook the dish as long, which was an added bonus of my choice.

20140220-150111.jpgWhile that was cooking for 20-25 minutes, I sat at the table and worked on part two of my dessert plan. So I figured Russian apple cake would taste good with the option of heating it and adding a scoop of vanilla ice cream, which I bought. But I also wanted an option for people who might not like apple cakes, or trying new things. So I decided to take five bowls and sort M&M’s into Olympics rings colors. Then I could have a bowl of round pretzels as well to carry out the rings theme… nerdy, I know. But here is a shot of my sorting process anyway, because it made me happy. As a side note, I was watching women’s skiing half pipe… not to dis-credit these women, they are Olympians and I’m not, but this event is SO different from the men’s event. They just aren’t comparable at all. Which didn’t stop me from watching it while I sorted.

20140220-150136.jpgAnd yes, if y’all were wondering I DO feel a little bad for the orange ones because they aren’t going to the party. But I’m sure my roomies and I will snack on them this weekend. Please also notice the two cutie oranges on the table, which is to prove that I didn’t eat the chocolate and stuck with the fruit instead!  Additionally, if you are curious there is officially NOT an even distribution of colors of M&M’s in a 42 oz. bag. Poor yellow and brown (shown here as the black ring). When that project was finished, so was my cake!

20140220-150143.jpgI still need to add a light dusting of powdered sugar (or dare I say “snow”) to the top but overall it looks good! I hope my Growth Group appreciates my Olympics themed dessert tonight and I’ll have to let you know how it tastes once we cut into it. Overall I am happy that I forced myself to create a new dish and to expand my cooking inventory. Happy Sochi Days!!

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