So even though this is not a revival followed by music and a bountiful harvest, these potato's are a cause for celebration and merriment for your next dinner.
Then for the future I can add the chocolate top with coffee toffee to get a rich mocha flavor (which is the pairing of coffee and chocolate) I thought it may just make it the ultimate treat.
Using the recipe in the last entry on 8/12/2014 I moved forward with my idea. I already had the perfect toffee now just add coffee right? Hmmm so how to go about doing that. If I add a liquid it may not solidify properly. Or I may have to add more sugar or or or. What I went forward with a rounded heaping tablespoon of instant coffee. I used Nescafe and added to the sugar and butter at the beginning and just melted it in.
Then several things happened. The toffee was way darker then it was before so my take a ways from the amber color changing at the right moment really didn't help this time. I used the candy thermometer and cooked the candy to 300 degrees. Not only was my candy darker caused by the coffee but it also seemed to foam up a bit more. Because of that I assumed I needed to stir it more to keep it from riding up the side. I really don't know why I thought that but it was a mistake. I should have stuck with my original actions. You see there is so much butter in the recipe there really is no risk for it sticking. I should have known better but hey then I wouldn't be writing this.
Once the butter is melted and melded in there in no reason to stir it other then a few times during the boiling process till it hits 300 degrees. I found the more you stir it, it seems to add additional air and this cools the candy down and causes it to crisp too soon in the pan. So note to self this was definitely an inferior design on my part. Do not stir too often.
Next thing I noted was it didn't have the creaminess that it had last time. Can two tablespoons of coffee affect the consistency that much? Apparently. Unfortunately its too late for me but not for you! You can see in the picture above that the candy actually was hardening right out of the pan and didn't seal around all of the nuts. There are creases you can see where I had to push the candy into place and air pockets around the pecans. What to do... Hmm well here is what I would change to make this a non-inferior design.
First off next time I would add less coffee. The flavor of the heaping tablespoon was way too over powering and the candy lost the creamy taste of the toffee. Remember we want a delicate melding not a hostile take over. So I probably would cut it down to a rounded teaspoon. Next I would add the same amount of additional butter as coffee. So if you add a rounded teaspoon, add two teaspoons more butter to compensate for the dry ingredient. I truly believe that will make the difference. Don't let the darker color scare you either just keep the mixture rolling on enough heat to keep it roiling. High to start then turn it down once it boils to keep it at a boiling point but not going crazy. We want to keep the air out of it. Remember this is a fun and easy experiment it takes less then 15 minutes to make this.
Not that the above wasn't tasty but it could be better. So back to the cutting board and please let me know if you try this I would love to hear and see your results. You could be featured on our DIY.
Yesterday we were experimenting making Toffee. If you didn't get a chance to see the blog about it you can see that here: http://www.grafxquest.com/blog/colonel-sprocket-in-the-kitchen
Over all I have to say considering it was the first time making it, it wasn't really a huge massacre but since this is about Inferior designs we have to pick on it now don't we?
Ok so here we go. The photo on the right is the final product. The toffee though thick was perfect. The perfect consistency and actually the perfect thickness and texture. I say the perfect thickness because I love Toffee and there is nothing better then MORE Toffee, then Toffee layered with Toffee. The consistency was buttery and crisp and breaks off easy and is not chewy or sticky and melted perfectly in the mouth. I have eaten many Toffees and since it is one of may favorites I would definitely say I would do this again.
Now here is what I would not do again. I could have gone the easy route and melted chocolate chips on the top for the chocolate layer. However I do not like the way melted chocolate chips taste melted down and used on deserts. They belong IN a cake, cookie, muffin etc...but really should not be used as a chocolate glaze on top of foods. So I tired to create my own chocolate by making the recipe off the top of my head as opposed to looking it up. Why? Because I love to be inspired and create without help and learn from the mistakes and I like making a mess. So what I had mistakenly done was create fudge.
As you can see the in the photo the Toffee has a layer of chocolate fudge on top. So not entirely a horrible disaster as it still tastes wonderful but its not the right chocolate or consistency that should be used on top of Toffee. And I was not striving for a fudge which by the way was a little on the dry side lol. So as not to waste it even knowing it was fudge, I put it on top of my Toffee anyway. I probably shouldn't have done that now that I think about it because the Toffee was as I said perfect and could have stood alone.
So the inferior design here was definitely the chocolate on top and will have to be revamped. But here is how I made the Toffee.
The Toffee will start hardening quickly so spread it to the edges fast. While its still hot you want to add your chocolate topping. Now here you are on your own since I messed this step up. You will need some type of chocolate to put on top and like I said some people just melt chocolate chips on top of the hot Toffee. You can sprinkle with more nuts if you like. Then put it into the fridge or the freezer to quicken the setting process.
One Hour later remove from freezer, hit yourself in the forehead with the corner of the pan and give yourself a lump. Ooops did I forget to tell you there was another thing that went wrong? Yep part two of the massacre. Well this is inferior design and I am the worlds biggest klutz. Put two and two together and you get one sore forehead. Have you ever seen those cartoons when the character is hit in the head with something and you see his head vibrate and hear a wah wah wah noise. Yep that was me. I was already sporting a Migraine and this was instant vibration right to that source. DOH!
Ok after popping yourself in the forehead flip the pan over and the Toffee pops right out with a shake. I did use a non stick pan too by the way. Now juts break the Toffee into pieces. I bust it up by hand. It was easy and didn't need a hammer just some gentle pressure. And walla Toffee...All in all about 15 minutes to make and an hour from freezer to table. Wonderful after dinner treat!
If you make this and upload a 5 step process on how you didnt do it like me. I would love to see it and share it in our DIY section.
Have a Toffee and Tonk's coffee filled day! Yea!
The Perfect Beginning Post
The funny thing about this page is that my intent was to show you that not every project goes right and as a matter of fact usually they go wrong. So what better way to show you my first project fiasco entry and it's actually the top banner. Very seldom does a project turn out exactly the way I want it and I usually have to do a lot of futzing until I reach the desired effect. Sometimes I over futz and can ruin it that way too.
I used to get really frustrated by my projects when they went awry. Not anymore. First I am doing something that I love. That is truly important. If you don't love it, find something you do love. I know that sounds easy, but honestly do a self evaluation and then after you talk yourself out of it, do it again. Life is short. I lost my little brother nearly 2 years ago now and I will repeat; life is short. Do what you love. So like I said I don't sweat the little stuff anymore. When a project goes wrong I try to fix it and move on. Its a learning process plain and simple.
Now to the banner above. I am creating a theme across my banners. If you didn't notice go take a look...I will be here when you get back. Promise. Ok are you back? Great so now you saw that the theme is modernized vintage. If you would like to know why please leave me a comment and I would be happy to answer that. Anyway here is the issue with this particular banner. I created it in Corel and the creation file is in PSP form which is the equivalent of a PSD file in Photoshop. The reason for that is so you can create your image on different layers. One of my bad habits it to create and get several steps down the line and find the program crashing on me so I loose everything I worked on. This time I saved the PSP file like a good little girl and then exported it into a JPG file. All well and good right? Well just as I exported it to a JPG file guess what? Yep the program crashed. I was like AH HA! I beat you to it this time.
I then took my JPG and uploaded it to the top of the page. As you can see the text bubble overlaps the facebook and twitter buttons as well as the search bar. I also noticed that the "Inferior Design" text was dropped down a little too low and could be nugged over to the right. I went to open the PSP file and that is when I found I no longer had a PSP file to work with but now had two JPG files instead. What? Where did my editable file go? Are you kidding me? I was going to flip the image of the man to the bare space on the left and re adjust everything. I no longer had an editable file to work with which means what? You guessed it. I would have to start all over. Or...or I could use it as is for the banner. Why? Because it became the perfect example of how something can be an inferior design. The time creating it is now lost and I technically would have to start over. Except its perfect after all because I get to show it to you as is.
Believe it or not seldom does my work come out perfect the first time. There is no reason to be upset you just keep working at it till its right. To be honest there really is no right or wrong in art either because everyone will view it differently. You may look at the banner above and say I love it, its perfect, someone else will say yep, it's a mess. I say yep it's a PERFECT mess! LOL and that is ok with me!