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The Better Cake in a Cup

February 19, 2012


{I actually think it looks more elegant than a cupcake, and it would work well with clear plastic cups also! The glass used above is just a normal juice glass.}


{I don’t like when my cupcakes have muffin tops.}

{I have begun to love fresh fruit to garnish pastries instead of traditional sprinkles.}

Secretly I think I love cake in cups because the servings are bigger than cupcakes. Whatever, at least I can admit it to myself. It's not like I have a problem or anything. I could totally just eat one small cupcake and walk away if I wanted to... 


The Better, Simple Valentine Part II

February 12, 2012

Chocolate covered pretzels are one of the most classic Valentines Day treats, so of course I couldn’t resist making some. I think these simple goodies are a perfect metaphor for my best girls, who all have a bit of salty sass and adorably sweet personalities. Anyway, these did take longer than expected. I’m a person who really enjoys a thick coat of chocolate so I dipped them, let them set, then repeated the process another two times.


Anyone who makes chocolate covered pretzels knows that after you are done there are a large amount of broken pretzels. What is a domestic goddess to do? I found that laying the broken pieces flat on a baking tray and drizzling them with chocolate was a fun way to make sure no pretzel went to waste. For some extra jazz, I added pink and red sprinkles.
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And of course I couldn’t help but use some play on words for the packaging. My heart goes into a twist every time I see you. Happy Valentines Day from The Better Martha.


The Better, Simple Valentines Day: Part I

February 11, 2012

I’m so happy with the way my Valentines turned out this year! I chose to do a candy instead of a baked good because I have a list of over 100 people to give to, and even I don’t have the patience to bake such a large amount of cookies. The valentines below were inspired by this post from Dandee’s blog (which has the cutest valentines idas). I toyed around with ideas of how I could use her adorable PDF while incorporating candy since I don’t think my friends would be too thrilled with plastic bugs. 
To learn how to make these critter filled Valentines click the “read more” button below.
UPDATE: It has come to my attention that the link for the mason jar pdf was taken down. I created my own version that is pretty similar. You can get it for free by clicking here and choosing "slow download". If you find that the mason jars are too big for your preference when you print them, you can always adjust the size by picking the "scale" button in your print settings and lowering the percentage. 

The Better Things I'm Liking: Striking Stripes

February 10, 2012

Stripes are one of my favorite patterns, (though difficult for me to pull off) and I’m glad to see that many stores are putting them into their collections. After a quick trip to Ann Taylor Loft and JCrew, I saw that stripes were everywhere! Sadly I won’t be making any new additions to my wardrobe until August. My mom promised that if I abstained from my love of retail therapy I can leave my current wardrobe at home, and we will shop to replace it on the east coast when I leave for college. Be still my beating heart, upon the next shopping trip your desire for striking stripes will be satiated.

The Better Vanilla Cupcake

February 06, 2012

I am willing to go out on a limb, and state that I have discovered the perfect vanilla cupcake. This is one of the few times where I can say I have by far surpassed Real Martha because I have baked her vanilla cupcake, and while it tasted pretty good, the texture was more cornbread than cupcake. I found the recipe listed below tucked away in a corner of the internet, and it is just divine. I will warn you that this recipe does call for cake flour, and if you know me at all you know I like my recipes to stick to all the basic things one already has on hand. Also you really need to be careful to only fill the cupcake liners halfway for this recipe because it does rise quite a bit.
Today was marvelous. I decided to take a mental health day from school, and it was well worth the extra day of work I will have to catch up on. Nothing beats baking, reading in the sun, and taking long naps while your friends are suffering through calc class. What can I say? I’m a second semester senior with a crippling case of senioritis.

{My girls: Grace, Brittany, and Mackenzie the birthday girl}

best vanilla cupcake
blank recipe page copy 2


The Better Way to Make Chicken Wings

February 05, 2012

I have gathered from gym TVs and my morning radio station that football time is here, and the Super Bowl is coming. Really, these events have no effect on my life seeing as how the only sports watched in my household are soccer and golf. I am aware that for many people this time is a serious combination of (root)beer, chips, chicken wings, and a complete disregard for any healthy New Year’s resolution, but it doesn’t hurt to try a healthier version of everyones favorite snack, chicken wings. This recipe doesn’t call for butter, and totally kicks the deep fryer to the curb. Trust me when I say you won’t miss either since the chicken still comes out moist on the inside and crisp on the outside. 
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The Better Chocolate Chip Cookie

February 04, 2012

Such a classic, and yet I find so many people get it wrong. The perfect chocolate chip cookie should be petite with crisp edges and a soft middle. I don’t know where my local deli gets off selling huge crispy cookies that resemble hockey pucks more than they do cookies. I promise you the second I have my own home the smell of these decadent babies will always be lingering in the air.  
Just like the  I made not too long ago, I could hear my brother in the kitchen at all hours grabbing one or two to take back to his room. To the untrained eye he is a sensible and mature man, but I know better than to be fooled by his charming demeanor for he will always be my juvenile brother.