Sunday, September 28, 2014

Chocolate Zucchini Spice Cuppins & More Sewing

When I saw this recipe's ingredient list I decided these were muffins with an identity crisis.  No self-respecting muffin (that might be the best phrase I've ever written) would permit itself an indulgence of quite so much sugar, and yet no self-respecting cupcake would fathom being seen without a frosting hat. And so, cuppins, with this year's last monster zucchini.



Chocolate Zucchini Spice Cuppins (or Muffcakes, Cuffins, or Muppins...take your pick)
adapted slightly from All Recipes

3 eggs
2 c. white sugar
1 c. vegetable oil
1/3 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 c. grated zucchini
3 c. AP flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. nutmeg

Topping, optional:
equal parts brown sugar, finely chopped walnuts, and mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray 24 muffin cups with non-stick spray or line with paper liners.
In a large bowl beat the eggs, then beat in the sugar and oil followed by the cocoa, vanilla, and zucchini. 
Stir in the flour, baking soda and powder, salt, cinnamon, cloves, and allspice.  Mix until just moist.
Scoop batter into prepared cups 2/3 of the way full.  Sprinkle tops with topping mixture.  Bake at 350 degrees F for 20-25 minutes.  Remove from pan and let cool completely before serving. Store covered and refrigerated. 



Having made the recipe once, I would say that you could healthify it a bit by cutting the sugar down to 1 1/2 c. and subbing a cup of unsweetened applesauce for 1 of the cups of the oil.  If you try and enjoy a healthier variation, please let me know!  :)


Sewing escapades have continued.  My machine and I are beginning to understand each other.  I no longer rev it like a dragster every time I begin stitching, and it has rewarded me with fewer thread breaking and bunching shenanigans.  I managed to make my older kids some fleece slippers with grippy bottoms, so I'm basically a cobbler now.





I followed this lovely little set of instructions, and it was truly a wonderful beginner's project.  Each pair took me about an hour total.  Gotta love a slipper you can throw in the washing machine!  After finishing the slippers, I decided to try something a little more ambitious, so I started a mei tai.
Yes, I know, if you read my babywearing post I claimed not to like mei tais at all.  Well, during a Toys R' Us clearance event I picked up an Infantino mei tai for $1.35, and have actually really enjoyed using it. Whether that's because I'm just fickle or it's a better fit for us than the Catbird one I had when my daughter was born, I don't really know.  But I enjoy that I can get a more wrap-like weight distribution (a higher back carry) in a mei tai, and that it's so lightweight.


So I've begun work on one modeled after the Infantino but with a larger body panel and a few other tweaks that should work well for us as my daughter grows.  I'm following this tutorial.  I finished all the straps yesterday so now I'm down to construction of the body, but I'm second guessing my decorative fabric choice...so we'll see.  :-p  Here are the pieces laid out so far:



Stay tuned! :D

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