2 Sisters 2 Cities

We are two sisters, Keelin and Meaghan, living in two different cities with two different lifestyles. We created this blog to share our day-to-day adventures in San Francisco and Boston. 2 Sisters 2 Cities was first started in December 2009. On our blog, we love to share our favorite recipes, DIY projects, party ideas, and stories about our lives.

iPad Air Giveaway

ipad air giveaway

In addition to our Totally Awesome Christmas Giveaway, we’ve partnered with some blogger friends to bring you the chance to win one of the biggest prizes of the year. This time, we’re giving away an iPad Air!

ABOUT THE IPAD AIR

The new iPad Air is unbelievably thin and light. And yet it’s so much more powerful and capable. With the A7 chip, advanced wireless, and great apps for productivity and creativity — all beautifully integrated with iOS 7 — iPad Air lets you do more than you ever imagined. In more places than you ever imagined.

GIVEAWAY

Prize: iPad Air 16GB Wi-Fi ($499 ARV)

Sponsors: 2 Sisters 2 CitiesBay Area MommyClare’s Weight Loss Journey with Plexus SlimCouponing For 4Dallas Single MomDream a Little BiggerFood Folks and FunFun Fierce Fab Beauty Over 50!Happy Deal – Happy Day!Joyful ScribblingsMamamusingOh My Gosh Beck!Patchwork PosseThis Mama LovesYou Justincredible

Rules: Use the Rafflecopter form to enter daily – all entries are optional. Giveaway ends 12/31 and is open worldwide.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good Luck!
m&k

Totally Awesome Christmas Giveaway

xmas

It’s December and we’re celebrating with the Totally Awesome Christmas Giveaway! We’ve partnered with a group of fabulous bloggers to give you the chance to win a $250 prize. The winner will be able to pick how they receive their prize – either by Amazon gift card or cash via Paypal. And your prize will be delivered in time for you to do your holiday shopping!

Prize: $250 Amazon Gift card or cash (via Paypal)

Sponsors: Naturally FrugaliciousRandom ThoughtsLush to BlushThis Mama LovesMomma T and FamilyBlog by Donna and Oh My Gosh Beck!

Rules: Use the Rafflecopter form to enter daily. Besides the mandatory blog comment entry, all other entries are optional. Giveaway ends 12/17 and is open worldwide.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good Luck and happy December!
-m&k

12 Days of Christmas Cookies (The Past)

Why hello there December 1st!  I could have sworn Thanksgiving was a mere three days ago.  Time to put those pumpkin pie pans away and get ready for some Christmas baking!  We are so excited to kick-off our 3rd year of our annual 12 Days of Christmas Cookies.  Before we start our series for 2013, I wanted to highlight our 24 Christmas cookies from the past two years.

12 Days of Christmas Cookies {from 2 Sisters 2 Cities}

12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS COOKIES 2012

 

12 days of Christmas cookies- 2011 {from 2 Sisters 2 Cities}

12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS COOKIES 2011

Happy Baking!

sister m signature

Make-Ahead Turkey Gravy

K and I are both cooking up a storm in our kitchens this weekend so we asked our mom to do a guest post on her traditional make-ahead turkey gravy recipe.  By completing this step ahead of time, it cuts down on a lot of the cooking time (and stress!) on Thanksgiving day.  Take it away mom!

Make-Ahead Turkey Gravy {from 2 Sisters 2 Cities}

I love to get many of the sides for Thanksgiving dinner done ahead of time. There are so many tasks to complete towards the end  of the cooking session that this recipe is a great time saver and delicious, too!  Before I  found this recipe, roasting a turkey dinner and then making gravy was a dreaded event. After nearly four decades of cooking for my husband and family, I have resolved that part of my holiday stress.

On a calm day in early November, this  recipe comes together easily – don’t let all the steps scare you. Most of the time is spent smelling the awesome vegetable -turkey broth simmering on the stove.  Easy enough to place in a couple quart mason jars, and freeze up to 1 month. Then, take out two days before Thanksgiving, put in refrigerator to thaw. The final steps of reheating can easily be delegated to a willing guest or one of my four daughters in my case!

Make-Ahead Turkey Gravy
Author: 
Recipe type: Sauce
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10
 
Makes 6-7 cups Planning tip: Freeze up to 1 month then refrigerate 2 days to thaw. Reheat in saucepan, whisking to combine.Turkey drippings from roast pan can be added at that time.
Ingredients
  • 4 turkey wings ( 3-4 lbs)
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and quartered
  • 8 cups chicken broth ( RESERVE 2 CUPS)
  • 1 cup dry white wine or water
  • 1 cup sliced carrots
  • 3 peeled garlic cloves
  • ½ tsp. dried thyme
  • ¾ cup flour
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Put wings in a single layer in a roasting pan. Scatter the onions on top. Roast 1 and ¼ hours or until wings are nicely browned.
  2. Put roasted wings and onions in a 5- to 6-qt. pot. Add 1 cup of the broth to the roasting pan and scrape any of the brown bits from the bottom. Add this back to pot with 5 more cups chicken broth,( Keep the remaining 2 cups broth in the frig until later), carrots, garlic and thyme. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer gently, uncovered 1 and ¼ hours.
  3. Remove wings from broth. Optional: When cool, pull off skin and can save meat for another use. Otherwise discard.
  4. Strain broth through fine mesh strainer, pressing vegetables to extract as much broth as possible. Discard vegetables. Skim fat off broth ( easy way to do this if time permits, refrigerate overnight and remove any solidified fat.)
  5. Whisk the flour into the reserved chicken broth until well blended and smooth.
  6. Bring strained broth to a gentle boil. Whisk in flour mixture. Whisk until thickened and boiling. Boil 3-4 minutes to cook out any flour taste. Stir in butter , season to taste.
  7. On Thanksgiving, after the turkey is removed from the roasting pan, you can spoon the fat off the drippings and add 1-2 cups of the drippings to the gravy as it is being reheated.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!

-2S2C Mom

Happy Easter with Last Minute Easter Ideas!

Happy Easter Readers!   We have been busy this Easter season getting recipes and holiday ideas ready for you.   Feel free to browse around for more ideas, but here are some great ways to celebrate this holiday with your family and friends.
Deviled-Eggs.jpg
These classic deviled eggs have been a huge Pinterest hit this season.  They are so easy to make and delicious.  Make these for an appetizer tonight with your dinner!
Cheesy-Potatoes.jpg
Our second favorite this season is the easy-peasy Cheesy Potatoes.   This recipe comes together in minutes with using the short-cut of frozen hash browns.
Delicious-Biscuits.jpg
Who doesn’t love a homemade biscuit fresh out of the oven?   This recipe here is so easy you can whip it up right now and have biscuits in under 30 minutes!
easter bunny place cards
How will you guest know where to sit?  Make these super cute and easy place cards.  Do I see a project for the kid’s to do while you are prepping dinner?
Chocolate Dipped Coconut Macaroons {from 2 Sisters 2 Cities}
Don’t forget our favorite course (especially pregnant M!)… Dessert!  Chocolate dipped coconut macaroons!
Easter-Funfetti-Cupcakes.jpg
Homemade Funfetti Cupcakes with buttercream frosting
topped with marshmallow peeps
Rice-Krispie-Treat-Eggs.jpg
Rice Krispie Treat Eggs dipped in Peanut Butter Chocolate!

Peanut-Butter-Filled-Chocolate-Bunnies.jpg

Or Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Bunnies!

Wishing you all a memory-filled and happy holiday!

Love always,
sisterk (2)  and  sister m signature

Buttermilk Biscuits

Buttermilk Biscuits

Happy Easter everyone!   You are probably looking for some last minute recipes here so I thought I would share with you an easy recipe for buttermilk biscuits.  Today for dinner I am serving baked ham with homemade biscuits, sweet potato casserole and steamed green beans.  When I was younger I use to call days like this “Ham Day!”

There is nothing like a homemade warm biscuit fresh out of the oven sliced with butter spread on it.  Like muffin and scones,  I am always surprised at how easy it is to make biscuits.  I guess with dinners every night and three-part cupcake recipes, a biscuit seems easy to make.  My favorite part in making biscuits is that you want there to be small chunks of butter in the dough so you really don’t have to mix it up much.  Other bonuses are that you really just need one bowl to make these and you don’t need a mixer!
Delicious Biscuits

Worried that you don’t have time to make homemade biscuits?  Make them ahead by placing the cut-out biscuits (before baking) on a wax paper-covered tray.  Place the tray in the freezer until biscuits are frozen.  Once frozen, place biscuits in freezer bags between layers of wax paper.  When you are ready to bake them, just pop them out, place them on a parchment paper-lined baking tray and bake for the specified time, plus an additional minute or two. Tada!  Fresh biscuist!

Buttermilk Biscuits
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12 two-inch biscuits or 6 three-inch biscuits
 
Ingredients
  • 2¼ cups of all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. of sugar
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • ¾ tsp. salt
  • ¾ tsp. baking soda
  • 9 tbsp. cold unsalted butter ( 1 + ⅛ sticks of butter)
  • ¾ cups of buttermilk
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
  2. In a large bowl add flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda and whisk together. Cut cold butter into small pieces and add to dry mixture. Using a pastry blender or your fingers, blend the butter into dry ingredients until the mixture has pea-sized crumbles.
  3. Add buttermilk and mix the ingredients until it just comes together. The mixture should be lumpy. Knead 2-3 times with hands to form dough together.
  4. On a lightly floured surface, place dough and pat flat until about ½-3/4 inch thick. With a floured round round cutter (I used a fluted 2-inch, but feel free to use a regular round cutter 2-3 inches big) cut out biscuits and line them up on baking sheet leaving about 2 inches of space in-between them. If you don’t have a round cutter, make drop biscuits by scooping out ¼ cup of dough and dropping on baking sheet, also leaving 2 inches between.
  5. Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden brown. Serve warm.
  6. *If make ahead method- Freeze biscuit dough on a wax paper lined baking sheet after cutting out rounds, or dropping dough. Once frozen add to a freezer bag. Bake frozen biscuits the same as above but adding a couple more minutes to the bake time.
  7. *If using buttermilk powder- Add 3 tablespoons of buttermilk powder to dry ingredients and then mix in ¾ cup water when above recipe says to add in the buttermilk.

Homemade Biscuits

Source- Slightly adapted from Smitten Kitchen
sisterk (2)

Easy Easter Place Cards

Easy Easter Place Cards {from 2 Sisters 2 Cities}

Since we have been on such an Easter recipe kick this week, I also wanted to share a quick little Easter-related DIY project.  I got the idea for these Easter place cards from a book my mom gave to me for my birthday.  I read about Craft-A-Day: 365 Simple Homemade Projects on another blog and added it to my Amazon wish list.  It has so many cute and easy projects in it and I love flipping through it for ideas.

The Craft-A-Day book did not have a specific project for Easter place cards, but I modified a couple of their egg and bunny-themed projects.  This place cards would be a lot of fun to make with kids!  Also, the first person to name the television show that I got all these names from is our official 2 Sisters 2 Cities’ reader of the month :)

The only supplies you need to make these Easter place cards are white and pastel-colored card stock, scissors, double-sided tape or glue, and colorful gel pens.  A circle and oval stencil could come in handy, but it’s not necessarily needed.

To make the egg place cards, you just need to cut out egg shapes from various shades of paper.  It helps to have a template version on the egg so that you can use it to trace all the other eggs so they are a uniform shape and size.  Then, cut one of the eggs in half and cut a strip from the middle of another egg.  Tape or glue these two pieces onto a full egg to create three colorful parts.  Then, tape the egg onto a folded place card and write in the guest name.

paper eggs place cards

Alternatively, you could just wrap one full egg in various colors of washi tape:

washi tape egg place cards

I also couldn’t resist making a couple fun-loving bunnies for my Easter table.  To make these, I just cut small  circles out of white card stock.  I then cut out a pair of ears using the white and the “inner ears” using a shade of pink.  I snipped off a corner of the pink paper for the bunny’s nose.  I used double-sided tape to attach the bunny face, ears, and nose to a pink-colored place card.  Then, use a black gel pen to draw in the bunny’s eyes, mouth, and whiskers.  Finally, use a fun colored pen add the guest name to the place card.

easter bunny place cards

Happy Easter everyone!  I’m off to go stock up on liquor for my guests…

 sister m signature

 

Homemade Funfetti Cupcakes

Homemade Funfetti Cupcakes

Since Easter is usually timed with the start of spring, it is often associated with bright and pastel colors.  Oh, and of course bunnies and chicks!  I was trying to think of a cupcake that could be Easter-themed.  I know I could have gone with a carrot cake cupcake, but truthfully my all time favorite cupcake is vanilla with buttercream frosting.

Funfetti Cupcakes

Homemade funfetti cupcakes have been on my list of recipes I have been wanting to try for awhile.  After finding the cutest Easter egg cupcake liners at Target- okay, I may be a little obsessed with Target- I decided to give this recipe a try.  A fun way to top these colorful cupcakes is with a bright-colored marshmallow peep.  My favorite peeps are the yellow ones of course!   Make these cupcakes for your Easter weekend!

Easter Funfetti Cupcakes

Homemade Funfetti Cupcakes
Author: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
Funfetti Cupcakes
  • 1 + ⅔ cup AP flour
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp.baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature (1 Stick)
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ cup sprinkles
Buttercream Frosting:
  • ½ cup butter (1 stick)
  • 3-4 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Sprinkles, for topping
  • Peeps, for topping
Instructions
Funfetti Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a cupcake pan with liners.
  2. In a medium bowl mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk together until combined.
  3. In the bowl of your mixer add butter and sugar. Mix until fluffy.
  4. Add in eggs and mix together.
  5. In a measuring cup mix together sour cream, milk and vanilla.
  6. Add dry ingredients into mixer bowl in 3 parts alternating with sour cream/milk mixture.
  7. Mix until smooth. Gently fold in sprinkles into batter with a rubber spatula.
  8. Divide the batter into the 12 cupcake pans. Place in oven and bake for 18-20 minutes
Buttercream Frosting:
  1. Cream butter in bowl of mixer, add in 2 cups of confectioners’ sugar, milk and vanilla on medium speed. Beat until smooth and creamy, making sure to scrape down the sides to incorporate all of the ingredients. Gradually add in remaining confectioners’ sugar until the frosting is a good spreading consistency. Beat on medium high speed until light and fluffy, making sure not to over beat.
Assembly:
  1. Once cupcakes are cooled, prepare a pastry bag with a large star tip. Fill with frosting and swirl onto cupcakes. If you don’t have pastry bags or tips, glob a spoonful of frosting in the middle of cupcake and take a knife and smooth around. Top with sprinkles and peeps.

Source:  Cupcakes adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction, Frosting is a 2 Sisters 2 Cities original

Home Easter Funfetti Cupcakessisterk (2)

Rice Krispies Treat Eggs Dipped in Peanut Butter Chocolate

Rice Krispie Treat Eggs Dipped in PB Chocolate

In college, my roommate and I use to make Rice Krispies treats and eat them when they were hot and gooey before pushing them into a pan.  Everytime I see the advertisement for Rice Krispies treats and their egg shaped recipes, I have the urge to make them.  What’s better than homemade Rice Krispies treats?  Homemade Rice Krispies treats shaped like eggs and dipped in peanut butter chocolate and sprinkles!  That’s what I am talking about!

I also wanted to state that prepackaged Rice Krispies treats are nowhere as good as homemade ones.  Not even close.  Not one bit.  No siree!

Okay, so to make egg-shaped Rice Krispies, you need plastic eggs which you will use as your mold.  Cooking spray is your friend for this process for both the eggs and your hands.  You could also use canola or vegetable oil if cooking spray isn’t your thing.

This recipe would be a lot of to make with your family.  I would recommend making the peanut butter/ chocolate ahead of time in the microwave and letting it cool down a bit to thicken up.  I thought of this genius idea after making them, but if you don’t have sprinkles you could use ground up graham crackers… mmmm s’mores.  If you don’t like peanut butter, than skip this ingredient and melt another ounce or two of chocolate.  Dipping Rice Krispie treat eggs could almost be as fun as dying real eggs.

Rice Krispie Treat Eggs

Rice Krispies Treat Eggs Dipped in Peanut Butter Chocolate
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 1 10 oz. package regular marshmallow
  • 6 cups Rice Krispies cereal
  • cooking spray
  • 5 oz. semi sweet melting chocolate (such as Baker’s)
  • 1 tbsp. Crisco
  • ¼ cup peanut butter
  • sprinkles
Instructions
  1. In a large microwave safe bowl microwave butter for 1 minute or until melted. Add marshmallows and stir to coat with butter. Microwave the bowl of marshmallows for 2 additional minutes and stir to combine. Add in 6 cups of Rice Krispies and stir until combined.
  2. Cover a clean plastic Easter egg with cooking spray. Fill both sides with Rice Krispie treat mix and then close egg to stick both sides together. Lay egg on wax paper to cool. Continue this process until all of the mix is made into eggs. Use cooking spray as needed to prevent sticking.
  3. In a medium microwave safe bowl add in chocolate and Crisco. Microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in-between, until completely melted and smooth.
  4. Add peanut butter to chocolate and stir until combined.
  5. Dip Rice Krispies Treat eggs in chocolate peanut butter. Let cool slightly on wax paper then dip in sprinkles. Place in refrigerator until chocolate hardens. Best if enjoyed in the same day, if not store in an air tight container.

Source: Rice Krispies Treat Recipe is adapted from Kellogg’s Rice Krispies,  PB Chocolate is a 2 Sisters 2 Cities’ original

Peannut Butter Chocolate Dipped Rice Krispie Treats

sisterk (2)

Peanut Butter-Filled Chocolate Bunny Pops

Peanut Butter-Filled Chocolate Bunny Pops

I found this bunny mold at Target and I thought I could do something fun with it for a Easter gift to give to friends.   I wanted to try something different then a solid chocolate bunny., such as a peanut butter-filled bunny!   I made the peanut butter filling similar to how I make buckeye cookies, but with a little bit more peanut butter consistency.   These peanut butter-filled chocolate bunny pops would be a perfect gift to put in your children’s Easter basket.  If I was going to be with my nephew T during Easter weekend,  I would give him one!  It’s worth noting that these bunny pops are not just for kid’s- my boyfriend loved them!  He even said they tasted better than Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups!!  Whatt Whatt!!

I bought the small plastic bags at Michaels that I used to wrap the bunnies.  I then tied a ribbon around the stick.  I used Ghirardelli Chips for the chocolate because I have noticed that Nestle chips lately are really waxy and don’t melt smoothly.   You could also use melting chocolate, such as Bakers.

Peanut Butter-Filled Chocolate Bunny Pops
Author: 
Serves: 6-8
 
Ingredients
Peanut Butter Filling
  • 2 oz. confectioners’ sugar
  • ¼ cup peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp. butter, room temp
  • ⅛ tsp. vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
Chocolate
  • 10 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips (I used Ghirardelli)
  • 2 Tbsp. Crisco
Instructions
  1. In a medium sized bowl, mix together peanut butter, butter, vanilla extract, and salt. Add in confectioners’ sugar and stir until combined. The dough will be dry but work together with your hands. Set aside.
  2. Melt chocolate by either a double boiler method or the microwave method;
  3. Double Boiler- Place chocolate in a double-boiler or a metal or glass bowl above a saucepan with a couple inches of water. Heat up water. Add in 2 tbsp. of Crisco and stir into chocolate. Stir chocolate until completely melted and smooth. Microwave- Place chocolate and Crisco in a microwave safe bowl. Heat up in 30 second intervals stirring in-between each interval. Repeat until smooth.
  4. To ease with candy making pour chocolate into a plastic squeeze bottle (from Amazon or a craft store in the candy making section.)
  5. Fill mold halfway with melted chocolate.
  6. Take 2 tsp. peanut butter filling and roll in-between hands to create a long piece. Pinch the top so it will fit in the bunnies neck/head area. Gently place filling in chocolate but don’t push all the way in (you want it to stay in the middle.)
  7. Fill remainder of mold with melted chocolate, making sure that the peanut butter is covered.
  8. Take lollipop stick and lie in middle of the chocolate. Twist the stick into the chocolate until covered and stick fits into mold.
  9. Tap the tray on work surface to knock out air bubbles. Repeat for remainder of molds. Place tray in the freezer on a flat surface for 1-2 hours until hardened.
  10. Once the candy is hardened pop chocolate pops out of mold and enjoy!
  11. Wrap chocolate top in small plastic bag and tie with ribbon.

How-to-Make-a-PB-Filled-Chocolate-Bunny-Pops_thumb

sisterk (2)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...