Monday, January 20, 2014

Almond Butter Cookie Recipe

I am a firm believer that excellent baked goods do not need to be complicated or created from exotic or hard to find ingredients and this recipe is a prime example.  These almond butter cookies use basic ingredients and are excellent.  They are delicious and elegant enough to be a gift.

 - 2 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
 - 1 cup granulated sugar
 - 3 cups all purpose flour
 - 1 Tablespoon baking powder
 - 1/2 teaspoon salt
 - 2 ounces almond extract (yes, 2 ounces, this is not a misprint)
 - 3 Tablespoons heavy cream
 - 1 egg, beaten
    Large granular sprinkling sugar (can be found in the baking aisle of your local hobby and craft store or grocery store)

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2.  Beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until light
3.  Add flour, baking powder and salt.  Mixture will be crumbly.

4.  Add almond extract and heavy cream.
5.  Mix until dough forms.

6.  Split dough into 3 equal portions and form into logs about 7" x 1 1/2" x 1 1/2"

7.  Refrigerate logs for at least 15 minutes.
8.  Place each log on an ungreased cookie sheet.
9.  Beat egg add brush onto tops and sides of each log.  Sprinkle with decorator sugar.

8.  Bake in oven for 25 minutes.  Logs will spread.
9.  Cool logs for about 20 minutes.  You can remove them from the cookie sheets at this point.  If you have trouble due to sticking from the eggs, take a long sharp knife and slide it underneath each log to loosen from the cookie sheet and transfer to a cutting board.

10.  Reduce temperature to 300 degrees F.
11.  Slice each log into strips about 3/4" wide.  Cooling them makes this part easier
12.  Place each strip back on the cookie sheet side up

13.  Bake for an additional 15 - 20 minutes.  Longer for crisper cookies, shorter for chewier cookies.


~ Faith

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Looking for "Natural" Bath and Body Products?

I often get people asking me if my products are "natural" and I often have a very hard time answering that question.  Not because I am trying to hide anything but because the word "Natural" has no legally defined meaning in its application to the products we both use and consume.   The definition of "Natural".

Does the above definition help you?  Probably not as you read through the ingredient list on your favorite shampoo and realize that you cannot even pronounce many of the names yet, the bottle says that it is "100% Natural".  Well, how can that be?  How can manufactures market their products as being "natural" when you know that ingredient list contains things that are chemicals?

Monday, January 13, 2014

New Graphic Art Soaps

I have 4 new sets of guest size graphic art soap.  These guest soaps are perfect for a guest bathroom, kitchen and make wonderful housewarming or shower gifts.  Several also work well for Valentine's Day.  Each set is scented to coordinate with the artistic images embedded in the soap and layered with soap of coordinating colors.  These soaps measure about 2" x 2" and weight approximately 1.8 ounces each and sell for $8.00 per set of 3.  

For information on how I create these types of soaps, you can view my tutorial here:  How to use Water Soluble Paper.

~ Faith
Alaiyna B. Bath and Body

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Friday, January 3, 2014

What's So Great About Solid Hair Conditioner Bars?????

I have been creating and using solid hair conditioner bars for well over a year now and they are my best selling product (solid shampoo bars run a close second).  What is so great about them?  Here is my list:

 - No waste.  Liquid hair conditioners are mostly water (60% - 80% based on formulation) which is what gives them their liquid consistency.   The thicker the product, the less water in it, the thinner, the more water in it.  Solid hair conditioner bars have no water - just all the good conditioning and nourishing ingredients.  You use the water from your shower to help distribute the product.   One 3.8 ounce conditioner bar is equivalent to about 16 ounces liquid conditioner.