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Thursday, May 2, 2013

Pig Dinner EXTRA Starch

Middle-Class Martha is here to tell you Karma is alive and well! 

My husband is a FIJI and every year his fraternity has a Pig Dinner.  It is a formal dinner for Alumni to socialize with each other.   My husband’s traveling schedule was preventing him from attending this year so I scheduled a profractional laser facial on the previous Friday.  This procedure left my face looking like raw hamburger meat.    In a good way…I mean, I paid to look this way, so when it heals my skin looks fantastic.     

His flight Friday to Denver was cancelled, leaving him free to attend Pig Dinner Saturday.  On the way out the door Saturday morning, to my son’s District Boy Scout Pinewood Derby, he mentioned he would be going to Pig Dinner that night.   He also mentioned he was wearing his cream colored shirt with a suit and tie.   He asked me to wash it and have it ready, since he was on a tight schedule.  

Of all my domestic goddess gifts, ironing is not one of them.  I panicked!  The shirt came out of the dryer resembling crepe paper.   I would have taken it to the drycleaners, IF I had known he needed it.   WORSE, I had no spray starch and with my face looking so terrible, was not likely to be dropping in anywhere to buy some. 

This is where Karma and Grace come into play.  I remember “slightly “ making fun of one of our mutual friends, Tracey about a year ago.  Her husband is a patent lawyer with a firm, whom needs to be impeccably dressed everyday at work as part of his career plan to make partner.  She was spending entire days boiling starch and ironing his clothes.   I finally harassed/convinced her that was total non-sense.

Hi Karma!   Here I am a year later trying to remember how she did it.   My saving grace, Tracey……. thank you, thank you, thank you!   

Tracey’s Starch Recipe:
½ cup starch
1-cup cold water
Additional water
            2 quarts for heavy starch
            4 quarts for medium starch
            6 quarts for light starch

1.  Stir cold water and starch in a bowl
2.  In a large pot boil additional water (pick the amount of water to make the type of 
     solution, you need (i.e. Heavy, Medium or Light starch)
3.  Add the bowl starch mixture to the pot with the boiling water
4.  Dip clothes in the starch solution
5. Let clothes dry
6. Spray lightly with warm water then iron as usual.

Homemade Spray Starch:

2 cups cold water
1-tablespoon cornstarch

1. Add water and cornstarch into a spray bottle.  Shake well.

Tip:  Cornstarch is the cake maker’s BEST FRIEND when working with fondant.  Lightly dusting a paintbrush with cornstarch, allows you to move or touch up your fondant without damaging it.

Homemade SUNBURN relief:
1 cup of cornstarch

Add to bathtub full of warm water and soak for 30 minutes.

Homemade SUNBURN relief wrap:
1-tablespoon cornstarch
1-tablespoon baking soda
½ cup water

Mix water, cornstarch and baking soda in bowl.  Dip gauze in bowl and wrap on sunburn.  Leave for 20 minutes.

Middle-Class Martha

A Day in the Life of a Chocolatier

Today Middle-Class Martha made Sea-Salted Carmel and Chocolate covered Oreo’s for baby shower favors.  A very sophisticated shower, so no cute bears, ducks, cute little feet or trucks.  I had a great time but would someone living near me PLEASE HAVE A GIRL???  


Choose Your Wedding Chocolatier Wisely!

Middle-Class Martha doesn't do anything middle of the road and apparently that applies to advertising.   I am taking an enterpeurneurial advertising and marketing class currently.   The teacher is the CEO and President of Itancan LLC, Lesa Crowe.  Last month, we were assigned the task of designing a post card for mailings.   The above magazine advertisement is a result of Mrs. Crowe's idea and our meeting.   It  was later entered into a national advertising competition called the Communicator Awards.  It won a Silver Communicator Award of Distinction!   Last month, I had no idea this award even existed.   I simply smile every time I see the advertisement.

Middle-Class Martha has been a busy bee this year!  My small chocolatierie opened in October 2012 within a small business incubator system.   It has been an interesting road trip trying to find a middle line between social media, guerilla marketing, advertisting, customer service, product placement, community service and keeping true north on your vision for the company's future.

Here are 2 pictures from some of my chocolate projects this year.

A proto-type of a dark chocolate shoe filled with truffles and matching milk chocolate sea salted toffee clutch, I made for a JWL Gala auction basket.   My first attempt with using colored cocoa butter.

Literally a busy bee!   I have been exclusively taking custom orders.  I made the above dark chocolate dipped short bread cookie with fresh grated nutmeg, included in a custom bee basket for someone's grandmother Bea.

I hope to post a few new recipes soon.   I am entering a small business plan competition tomorrow.
Oh Honey, I need a sweet relaxing weekend.   

ENJOY your weekend!
Middle-Class Martha