I swear, I'm alive!

I was taken over by the monster known as GRAD SCHOOL! Yes, this beast has kept me from many of my favorite pastimes. I have so much reading to do for school that reading for pleasure has become rare, and when I do, I usually am prevented from writing a review by the looming reality of homework. And while I am a master (mistress?) of procrastination, somehow reviews and blogging seemed too obvious a procrastinatory technique.

This is my Spring Break, and the last few days I have been cooking and baking up a storm. The downside to this is that I've lost my camera cable, and the pretty pictures I took of the cupcakes I made from Rose Levy Berenbaum's The Cake Bible (Sour Cream Butter Cake, for those who own the book - only I didn't have sour cream, so I used Yogurt). I made a tasty pomegranate liquor buttercream using her Neoclassical Buttercream recipe. The buttercream did not turn out as planned. I fail at simple syrup frostings, apparently. Next cake I make, I am going to try her Dark Chocolate Ganache, and use the same liquor. Pomegranate + Dark Chocolate = Love.

For those of you who like to put your alcohol in your food, let me assure you that pomegranate liquor is ideal for frostings. In an American buttercream, however, it is insanely sweet. Some of us have a major sweet tooth and don't mind this, and it crusts excellently. But if you use any of Rose's recipes, you'll notice she has a caveat for adding liquor into your frosting. Any baker who puts this in the default recipe (even listing it as "optional") gets major props from me.

And if you bake and don't own The Cake Bible.... why not?! Get thee to a bookstore!

My other loves have also fallen by the wayside. Despite being in a production where the rehearsal process allowed for mucho knitting time, I was doing to much actual work on the show (unheard of!) to get anything really accomplished. I'm hoping I can remedy this in the second half of the semester, because I really want to learn how to knit socks before it turns into flip-flop weather.

My beloved books have suffered too. I've managed to finish the first two Tessa Dare novels, Goddess of the Hunt and Surrender of a Siren, and while I did not have time to write reviews for them both, I can recommend them heartily! I started the third, A Lady of Persuasion, but then life took me by the horns again.

It must also be pointed out that the only reason I got that much reading done was because I took some time away from school to go to the funeral of my Grandfather. He was the greatest man in my life, my hero and my inspiration. I miss him each day.

I'm hoping to get a new camera before I go to London (SQUEE!!) in May so I can post pictures of the wonderful sights I am seeing. We will see how my continuing adventures in graduate school.. er... continue.


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