Dream Date Giveaway!

The fabulous folks over at Natural Delights Medjool Dates contacted me and asked if I would like a bunch of V.I.P. vouchers to give away to my readers. I was like, “heck yes I would!” and they arrived in the mail shortly after, no strings attached. So just to get this out of the way: The Natural Delights people rock, they gave me a bunch of freebies to share and told me to do and say whatever I felt like, which was very trusting/nieve/awesome of them!

My first idea was to secretly plant the dates at a dog park and then go around “picking up dog poo” and eating it (cause we might as well get this outta the way too: dates look kinda poop-like) all while filming peoples reactions. As HILARIOUS as that looked in my brain, my party-pooper wise husband figured that the Natural Delights people probably didn’t have that on their radar when they said I could do whatever I want. So instead, I went with my second idea: bake something delicious (more what they had in mind, Im sure).

Now, its a known fact that dates are not only totally crave-able, they are also a major superfood. They are packed with all kinds of crazy nutrition: antioxidants, fibre, vitamins and mineral galore. Knowing this, I feel a LOT less guilty about what I did to them…

Thats a piece of heaven folks, otherwise known as Sticky Toffee Pudding. Rich, chewy dates blend right in to become a decadent dessert, smothered in hot caramel and topped with whipped cream. Take THAT, vitamins and minerals! Jk it is still doing ok nutritionally (not that nutrition has anything to do with why I eat it), but it helps with the binge-eating remorse for sure! And hearing my six-year old ask for more “ticky toffee poo-DANG” is reason enough to make it all the time, even if it wasn’t delicious. Poo-dang is the best word ever.

Sticky Toffee Pudding ( or poo-DANG!)

1 3/4 cups pitted, finely chopped Natural Delights Medjool dates

1 tsp baking soda mixed into 3/4 cup boiling water

1/3 cup butter, room temp

3/4 cups brown sugar

2 eggs

1 heaping cup all purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

 

How I Do It: Finely chop the dates, discarding the pits as you go. Place them in a bowl and pour the boiling water mixed with baking soda on top (its amazing how ugly that bowl of dates will look, just warning you). Let that just hang out and in a separate bowl, beat your butter and sugar together. Add your eggs, mix for another minute and then add the baking powder and salt. Add your flour and the ugly contents of the dates/water bowl and stir juuuust until everything is incorporated. Pour it into a greased 8×8 inch baking pan and bake at 350 degrees for about 40 mins. A toothpick should come out mostly clean, do not over bake this!

Once its out of the oven, stab at it with a fork to make it all full of small holes and then pour about a half of a cup of warm caramel sauce over top (oh yeah, you should make some caramel sauce while the poo-dang is baking, the recipe is HERE. Or you could use store-bought sauce…if you want to ruin your dessert). Save the rest of the caramel sauce to pour over individual pieces and top them with whipped cream, oooohohohohoo its just so GOOD!

This recipe is best the day after you bake it and must must MUST be served warm. Hot even! But cold is an abomination.

So now that I have altered your very existence by giving you the power to make this dessert (you’re welcome by-the-way), its time for the GIVEAWAY! I am gonna make this ridiculously simple:

-Comment “poo-dang!” on THIS PHOTO and share the photo to be entered to win one of four V.I.P coupons for a free package of dates (up to a $15.99 value) from Natural Delights. Thats all! So very very easy.

Unfortunately, the coupons are only good in Canada :( But before you write me off as some jerk who made you read a whole post just to find out you can’t even enter the contest, take a peek at this:

ISN’T THAT THE BEST CHARM BRACELET EVER!?!?! My pal Dot over at Busted Button made it just for this giveaway!!! Its one-of-a-kind folks and I can mail this sucker anywhere in the world! Dot saved the day, non-Canadians!! (Canadian-Canadians can obviously enter to win this too). Here is how you can enter to win:

-Comment “Dot is my Dream Date” on THIS PHOTO and share the photo to be entered to win this bracelet from Busted Button! There I go again, always with the easy.

Now for those of you who don’t win one of these fabulous prizes, do not despair! You can do what I do when Im sad and eat high calorie foods! Sticky Toffee Pudding has super powers and can transport you to other worlds. Places where people sit up straight and use words like “verily”…

How I Think I Look When I Eat Sticky Toffee Pudding:

How I Actually Look When I Eat Sticky Toffee Pudding:

Any dessert with the power to do THAT is worth making asap, whether you win or not ;)

 

So just to recap:

-Natural Delights Medjool Dates are awesome and you should check out their website HERE for more recipe ideas and info!

-Sticky Toffee Pudding makes me feel like Im in an episode of Downton Abbey even when I am actually looking like a disgusting mom-troll.

-Comment “poo-dang!” on THIS PHOTO and SHARE the photo to be entered to win one of four coupons (up to $15.99 value) from Natural Delights Medjool Dates (for Canadians only).

-Comment “Dot is my dream date!” on THIS PHOTO and SHARE the photo to be entered to win the best charm bracelet EVER from Busted Button (open to everyone, anywhere). And be sure to check out the Busted Button Facebook page HERE. Dot is an incredible blend of talent and inappropriate-ness that is sure to entertain ;)

-EXTRA ENTRY (or first entry if you are a anti-social media and don’t have a Facebook account): Comment on this blog post answering the following question: What is your go-to comfy/ugly at home outfit? Or are you one of those weird people who stays nicely dressed until bedtime?

CONTEST ENDED!!!!!! Congratulations to Lynlee Turner, Candice Pauloski, Leanne Langley, Ariann Turner and Melody Shoji!!!!! 

xo,

 

 

 

 

 

 

PS – All of these beautiful photos where done by Frances Eden Creative, whom I love just as much as Sticky Toffee Pudding, maybe even a little more ;)

  • Karley Breese - December 18, 2013 - 2:08 pm

    My go-to home outfit is a pair of XL Nike sweatpants with a (small) hole in the bum and a baggy Pittsburgh Penguins t-shirt. My husband just loves it, especially when I fool myself into thinking this is an acceptable outfit to wear to drop the kids off at school…ReplyCancel

  • Leanne - December 18, 2013 - 2:17 pm

    My comfy ugly to to outfit, is to stay in my pj’s ALL day! And then back to bed…just to do it all again the next day :)ReplyCancel

  • Jessie - December 18, 2013 - 2:45 pm

    Dot is my dream date…ReplyCancel

  • Emily - December 18, 2013 - 4:26 pm

    I have a super comfy pair of Calvin Klein pj bottoms, which are barely attached to the waist band. I love them, shame people don’t love my bum in them…ReplyCancel

  • liz - December 18, 2013 - 4:27 pm

    My home clothes are velour pants, slippers, pink sweatshirt. Hair in a pony-tail no makeup. If its chilly- wrapped in a blanket.ReplyCancel

  • Farrah - December 18, 2013 - 4:59 pm

    My go-to comfy outfit is any of my boyfriends t’shirts that happens to be sitting in the ‘folded washing but still to be put away’ basket, with a pair of very faded Peter Alexander pyjama bottoms and of course, the piece-de-resistance, my fluffy grey uggboots… because they are basically a uniform in Bogantown (Rockingham), Western Australia where I live!ReplyCancel

  • Malea - December 18, 2013 - 5:01 pm

    I love sweatpants, fluffy socks, and a hoodie!ReplyCancel

  • Suzi Wilder - December 18, 2013 - 5:02 pm

    This would be perfect for my daughter Tyler who is going to Le Cordon Bleu to be a pastry chef!ReplyCancel

  • Dodie - December 18, 2013 - 5:50 pm

    one of my DH’s t-shirts and a pair of cotton-candy pink, fleece pj pants that I’ve had for so long, I can’t even remember where I got them….ReplyCancel

  • Dodie - December 18, 2013 - 5:56 pm

    pssst Melissa…you have a small error in your recipe. Your computer put b.soda, where it should have put b.powder… :)

    p.s. I am so making this yummy poo-dang tomorrow!

    :DReplyCancel

  • Brianne - December 18, 2013 - 7:10 pm

    A pair of green pyjama pants that have purple bamboo all over them and what I call my blue pregnancy dress because I lived in it when I was pregnant and now it’s just soooo comfy! Not gonna lie, I wearing this outfit right now ;)ReplyCancel

  • Theresa PhotographyMoments - December 18, 2013 - 9:33 pm

    Dot is my dream date..ReplyCancel

  • Ariann - December 18, 2013 - 10:56 pm

    Sweats and a nice big t-shirt, but I would totally wear a snuggie for just lazing around if I had one.ReplyCancel

  • Su Bushnell - December 19, 2013 - 9:09 am

    Dot is my Dream Date :)ReplyCancel

  • lena jones - December 19, 2013 - 2:42 pm

    Dot is my dream date!
    This bracelet is my dream as well! So neat and perfect!!!

    The picture link for comment is not working btw.ReplyCancel

  • Kitty Sanchez - December 19, 2013 - 4:54 pm

    I usually wear my pj’s alllllll day. Little pj polka dot shorts and a singlet pretty much.ReplyCancel

  • Shari - December 19, 2013 - 7:43 pm

    PJ pants when I want to be comfy. Usually get cozy when the kids change into their pj’s or shortly after. Love your pics and the cake looks way too yummy!ReplyCancel

  • Angelica - December 19, 2013 - 10:27 pm

    Dot is my Dream date!ReplyCancel

  • Lorena Trevino - December 20, 2013 - 7:49 am

    Dot is my dream date!! I love the bracelet so much!ReplyCancel

  • Melissa - December 20, 2013 - 11:54 am

    PJ all the way!! Have Merry Christmas and happy healthy 2014 Melissa Butter Cream Couture!ReplyCancel

  • Candice Pauloski - December 20, 2013 - 4:57 pm

    My favourite uglies are my husbands dirty tee shirts (he does not sweat so they don’t stink!) because they are nice and loose, and some gross superstore sweatpants… hawtReplyCancel

  • Cakemommy - January 8, 2014 - 8:34 am

    Dot is my dream date! And omgosh! you crack me up! Canadian girls represent :)ReplyCancel

  • Cakemommy - January 8, 2014 - 8:34 am

    dot is my dream date! you crack me up! canadina girls represent!ReplyCancel

Poorly Motivated Food Gifts

So Im doing a lot of food gifts this year as I am feeling very broke uuuh, I mean, anti-consumer! I thought that maybe there is a chance some of YOU might also be feeling cheap poor un-materialistic too. And as I am most generous, I am gonna spam you all with my cheapy food gift ideas :)

And here is what I did:

Photo by Frances Eden Creative

 

Peppermint Marshmallows! Get the marshmallow recipe HERE.  Replace the vanilla extract with peppermint extract and top with crushed candy cane before you powder the top. And so long as you don’t THIS,  you can save yourself time by not having to make a second trip to the store.

These cut into a million pieces so thats like, the cheapest/ tastiest/ bestest most impressive gift ever! I package mine in clear little bags tied with Christmassy ribbons and give them with a homemade hot chocolate mix. This gift is low-cost, low-time AND low-calorie. HA! But really, it is quick and cheap ;) And most importantly, it comes with the added bonus points of you getting to be that jerk who shows-up everybody’s store bought gifts with something made with looooove (and they never need to know any different).

*Also recommended for teacher gifts as these tasty morsels come with a Top Mompetitor guarantee*

 

Your welcome,

 

 

 

Vanilla Bean 4: Interference and a Really Yummy Creamsicle

Vanilla Bean is getting a time out. No it has not been naughty, no it isnt fair, but I am the boss around these parts and what I say goes!!!!

Ok in truth, this series was SUPPOSED to be an eight part epic with loads of giveaways and vanilla violence, starting and ending in May. My intentions were for a fantastic bunch of recipes to live up to the Caramel Series from last fall, but unfortunately my intentions were no match for: my hubbys huge job change, my teenagers grad, my youngest sons weekly trips to the specialist, my getting pneumonia (though that did breed a rather popular post…savages…), random household tornadoes, mental tsunamis, emotional earthquakes and etc etc etc. I did NOT, however, have a nervous breakdown so for that I am giving myself a very special applause *slow clap* and maybe even treating myself to a giant frappuccino with half a bottle of caramel sauce on top (being thin is nowhere near as important as being sane, amirte?)

But anyways, it is now July, Im only four posts in and rather then cutting it short, I am just gonna press pause on this sucker. The Revolution will see its victory day, but that day is gonna have to wait until fall, when I am done with u-pick farms and camping and being a beach bum ;)

Here is the next recipe that was on the list. Its actually rather fitting for the current season and since I feel there is no better time to get interrupted then when your are on a high moment, we will leave off here ;)

 

Vanilla Orange Creamsicles

1/2 cup vanilla syrup (recipe HERE)

1 cup fresh squeezed mandarin orange juice

1 cup plain greek yogurt

How I Do It: Whisk all the ingredients together in a bowl and freeze your mixture in the popsicle freezing device of your choice! DONE! Ridiculously easy, ridiculously delicious. And if you made your syrup with a raw or unprocessed sugar, they are ridiculously healthy too! (well, at least in comparison to the ones you buy at the store). Play with the flavours of yogurt and juice but don’t forgo that delicious vanilla syrup, its the perfect kinda sweet for these creamsicles. Plus we cant forget the flecks, Ive got such a thing for those gorgeous beany flecks…

I am off to make some Apricot-Reisling Jam! I will be popping in at random to share recipes for my fav sumer items so be sure to check out Buttercream Couture on FACEBOOK for pics and recipes and lots of status updates that really have nothing to do with food at all ;)

xo,

Vanilla Bean 3: Unicorns Love These Cookies

DISCLAIMER: I currently have pneumonia. Im just going to throw that out there for all you fabulous people so you don’t think I’ve completely lost it for good. I am heavily medicated and not getting a lot of oxygen to my brain at the moment, and yet, decided blogging right now was a good idea. I’ve just finished writing this post (which took me a record low of 10 mins), read it, inhaled a bit more steroids, read it again and decided to keep it as is. So, yeah. I offer no apologies (right now) and think Im maaaaarvelous! I also think pain killers are maaaaaarvelous!  Everything is maaaaarvelous!!!!!

 

Dum da da dum dum dum DUUUUUM I now present to you: the perfect vanilla bean tea cookie. Yes, I said perfect cause you know what, it IS perfect! And its not afraid to tell you its perfect because the perfect tea cookie has perfectly developed self-esteem and knows it is perfection! Just how perfect IS this tea cookie you ask?:

-If this cookie was a man, he’d be Brendan Fraser in the 90′s my husband.

-If this cookie was a competitor on The Bachelor, she would totally get the guy based on personality and dazzling good looks and not have to get all slutty in the hot tub.

-When you eat this cookie you get smarter, wiser and better looking, cause its perfection is transferrable.

-Miss Universe should watch her back, cause this cookie is coming for her sash and crown.

- Two words: Uni. Corn. Cause thats what this cookie is in the world of vanilla bean tea cookies.

 My husband has just come into the room, read what I have so far, and told me not to publish it. Hahaha what a nut! I feel AMAZBALLS! Whats the matter with that goof?!?

Vanilla Bean Tea Cookies

1 cup butter

4 tbsp sugar

1 cup almond meal/almond flour

2 cups flour

1 vanilla bean

1 egg for sticking

vanilla sugar for rolling (recipe HERE)

How I Do It: First off, do NOT substitute the butter in this recipe for ANYTHING else! Substituting the butter would be the equivalent to starting a diet the same day you start your period: it just wont work (and you will be left very frustrated by trying to make it work). So cream together the butter and sugar. Using a sharp knife, split your vanilla bean in half and use the edge of the knife to gouge out its beany bounty. Get those fragrant innards in with the butter/sugar and watch it get deliciously flecky. Add the almond flour (or it can be called almond meal, I buy mine in the bulk section cause its so much cheaper) and mix that in, then add the regular flour a little bit at a time until its all there.

You should have ended up with a sticky-ish dough thats ready to roll. Lay out a piece of parchment or wax paper and start shaping the dough into a tube. When it comes to these things, size is relative. I usually go for the circumference of a banana cause I like my cookies a little bigger, but if you are more of a roll-of-quarters kinda person then thats ok too. I feel…like there is a joke in here somewhere…but my brain just…hmmm… Cover your dough (I usually just roll it up in the parchment) and pop it in the fridge for about a half hour or just until its more handleable (you are gonna be slicing up this dough-log and soft dough does not cut like a champ, it has gotta be a hardened criminal).

Once the dough is chill-ay you want to brush it with an egg (that means crack the egg into a bowl and whip it up with a fork, then brush it onto the dough. I specify this cause I know at least TWO of you who will literally just rub an egg up and down the dough, then complain via comment later that the sugar didn’t stick). Now roll your roll in that beautiful sparkly vanilla sugar! Razzle dazzle it! Glitter it up like its going to the prom! Get it feeling fragrant and fancy and then catch it off guard by violently cutting it into 1/2 inch-ish slices >:) …so yeah, cut the sugared sparkle dough into half inch-ish slices and place them an inch apart on a lined cookie sheet. They bake at 275 degrees for abouuuut 20 mins.

Now eat them! EAT THEM ALL!!! Because they are perfect, just like this blog post, regardless of what my husband says! Flavour that don’t QUIT!

So I totally left the Revolutionary theme this week, eh? I don’t think I really described these cookies at all. I also am thinking I haven’t posted some of the pics but…I cant seem to remember what file they are in and…and then I keep forgetting what Im looking for and…Ive totally hacked up at least half a lung onto the keyboard and…oh! Here’s one!

This is my sick selfie. I am proudly posting a makeup-less, drug infused blogging picture of myself on the internet  (I ran it through Instagram first and changed the filter to “willow” so as to spare you the graphic details of my dark circles and spittle #phlegm #lungbutter #mypneumoniabringsalltheboystotheyard). I must be very medicated indeed.

I just love you all so much. I need cold water and a bendy straw. Gotta text my husband (he’s downstairs but I have no voice to yell and no will to move). Peace out yo. Remember: Perfection! Flavour that dont quit! Sparkly dough and bendy straws! Viva la Revolucion!

 

xo,

 

 

 

 

 

PS – pspspspspspspspsppspspspspsps peeeeeeeeeee eeeeesssssssss es es es es pee pee pee. SUBSCRIBE!

  • Mamakat Joyce - June 7, 2013 - 4:09 pm

    I loved that post and cannot wait to make those cookies. And for someone who is sick with no makeup on…Damn girl you look pretty good!!!ReplyCancel

  • Karley - June 7, 2013 - 4:19 pm

    This was perfect -I hope you never edit it!ReplyCancel

  • Gail - June 7, 2013 - 4:23 pm

    I don’t know how you don’t have a comment yet, but your friend at Busted Button just mentioned your post on facebook — she was right, this is funny!! I hope you don’t ever edit this because it will give everyone a laugh for years, hopefully including yourself. I currently am trying very hard not to laugh any more because I have an awful cold (I may end up joining you with the pneumonia drugs if things don’t change) and my throat was alredy too sore to talk.

    Oh, and the sparkly cookies just made my Gotta Try This List! Get well soon :)ReplyCancel

  • Melisa - June 7, 2013 - 4:23 pm

    Oh. Em. Gee. Yes, my favorite blog post ever. Not just of yours, OF ERRYBODY’S. Pneumonia you is awesome.

    Oh, the cookies look fantasmical too. FLAYYYYYY-VAAAAA!ReplyCancel

  • Tammy - June 7, 2013 - 4:26 pm

    SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY!

    This post had me laughing out loud for the first time all day. And it’s been a damn stressful, head in hands, flip-the-table-over-because-your-phone-froze kind of day.

    I love it. I’m going to make these cookies, and I don’t even remember what’s in them. All I know is that your blog post is hilarious, that you obviously have a fantastic sense of humour, and that you made me laugh out loud.

    I thank you, and hope you are feeling much better, very soon. I think I’ll go take a look around your site =)

    ~ TammyReplyCancel

  • Annie - June 7, 2013 - 4:30 pm

    HAHAHAHA!!!ReplyCancel

  • Kali - June 7, 2013 - 4:39 pm

    Girl, I’ll subscribe for that sparky dough effort! Poor you. Hilarious post!ReplyCancel

  • Tinille McKenzie-Wyatt - June 7, 2013 - 6:25 pm

    Hilarious! Can’t wait to try them!ReplyCancel

  • Adele Dimopoulos - June 7, 2013 - 6:54 pm

    Delightful. Wishing you a quick and full recovery and lots of fragrant vanilla bean dreams.ReplyCancel

  • Heidi G - June 7, 2013 - 7:48 pm

    OMG. Thank you soooooooooo very much. It’s been a rather difficult week and this so totally had tears coming out of my eyes. I feel your pain, pneumonia is awlful. I will definitely whip up at least one or many dozen of your recipe. Thanks for sharing with us. You are delightful.ReplyCancel

  • Rebecca Jones - June 7, 2013 - 8:36 pm

    That’s just the most brilliant post. Loved it so much :) (And you look amazing whilst drugged with no make-up!)ReplyCancel

  • Sarah - June 8, 2013 - 7:43 am

    Wonderful! Caused many giggles! Get better soon. xxReplyCancel

  • Crystal Vercoe - June 8, 2013 - 10:17 am

    Lol, very funny and yes I agree u look great, lol. I wonder if u can make shape cookies out of this recipe….ReplyCancel

  • coduda - June 8, 2013 - 10:31 am

    AWEEEEESOME.

    I was expecting f-bombs & confusion but that was pure comedy & awesomeness. :DReplyCancel

  • Susan - June 8, 2013 - 10:51 am

    This post made me laugh! I hope you feel better soon, and please don’t edit it no matter what your husband says. And I’m so making these cookies even though I don’t usually bake. ;0ReplyCancel

  • Dani - June 8, 2013 - 5:00 pm

    Subscribed based solely on this post. Great stuff!ReplyCancel

  • Jobakes - June 8, 2013 - 11:44 pm

    Oh you are fantastic! I love this post and can’t wait to hear more from you :D. Get well soon Melissa xReplyCancel

  • Betsy - June 9, 2013 - 5:20 am

    LOL. All recipe posts, in the entire internet, should be written this way. ;^)ReplyCancel

F a c e b o o k
P i n t e r e s t
I n s t a g r a m