Tips for Choosing the Right Roofing Contractor

As with most things in life, you get what you pay for. When it comes to roofing and installation of new shingle roofs or replacement storm damage from hurricane Sandy; if the price is right then that’s exactly who we will choose- someone who can give our family a great product at an affordable rate without sacrificing quality service like those other companies might offer instead!

Here are 5 questions to ask before you hire a roof installation company:

1. How long have they been in business?

You probably wouldn’t take your car to a mechanic who has been on the job for two weeks. And you shouldn’t sign up for heart surgery with a doctor fresh out of school, but why would you pick an Pacific Roofing & Repair that doesn’t have decades or even centuries worth experience? A fly-by/night company will only want more from their clients – cash in hand first before doing anything else!

The world is full of scammers looking to take advantage and this includes those seeking work at home jobs as well; so avoid getting taken advantaged by checking out what others say about them online beforehand just like I did

2. Double-check licensing and insurance

The roof is a dangerous job, which is why we never recommend that homeowners take it on themselves. It’s important to have the right tools and equipment for this type of work; otherwise you could end up with some expensive repairs or even worse: injuries! For example, reputable contractors always carry all necessary permits so they can perform their jobs in compliance with applicable regulations and standards. And when hiring someone else who may be entering your property without permission (think trespassing), don’t settle just because he carries his own hammer–make sure there’s proof too such as valid workers compensation insurance coverage from an accredited provider like

3. Look at past work

With a service industry, reputation is everything. The internet provides third party reviews from past customers who have used your company’s services in the past and are now able to speak on behalf of you when it comes time for future business decisions regarding projects or investments into growth opportunities that will help maintain current clientele with additional costs going forward because people want peace-of mind knowing what kind of experience they can expect before making large purchases like roofs!

The internet is a treasure trove of information for consumers looking to make an informed decision before they purchase. Third party reviews from people who have used the services in question can provide valuable insight into what customers think about quality, workmanship and customer service among other things that may influence their choice making process when buying products or services online like roof repair.

Third-party website evaluation tools allow you as home owner access information which was previously unavailable – such as feedback left by past clients on particular companies’ websites; this would give anyone thinking seriously whether it worth investing his/her money with said business opportunity ample time necessary take care all kinds pros & cons while still

4. Price isn’t the only thing that matters

If you’ve been told to get three estimates for a home renovation project in the past, it may be because there is no clear answer as to why this number was chosen. In fact, many people don’t realize that they can go beyond one or two and still make an informed decision on who will do their roofing needs best.

5. Get financing agreements in writing

The “Three Estimate Rule” is a common piece of home renovation wisdom that, according to various sources and experienced contractors we’ve spoken with for this article, doesn’t really make sense. It seems like no one knows where it comes from or why three may be the ideal number — but there are still plenty who follow suit just because they were told so many times by other people doing projects in their own homes!

A better way: Talk through your options until you find someone trustworthy enough whose services seem right up your alley; don’t limit yourself at all when looking into hiring roofers

How to Make Delicious Chocolate-Raspberry Layer Cake

Moist, sweet, and rich layer cakes are simply delicious. However, making these cakes is tricky. If you have no prior experience making layer cakes, you could end up making a mistake that could make the cake dry, bland, and unappetizing. Thankfully, you can avoid making common beginner mistakes by following our simple guide on how to make a chocolate-raspberry layer cake. By following this guide, you’ll have no problem making a scrumptious cake the whole family can enjoy.

Ingredients for the Cake

All of the common cake ingredients are needed for a great chocolate-raspberry layer cake. These include self-raising flour, eggs, sugar, and butter.

Ingredients for the Raspberry Cream Layer

Keeping it simple, the juicy raspberry layer only requires fresh raspberries and some butter and chocolate. If you want to be decorative, you can add red food coloring.

Ingredients for Chocolate Cream Layer

The chocolate layer is also relatively simple, all you need is dark chocolate, thick cream, and some brown sugar.

Step 1:

Firstly, preheat the oven to 320F. Afterward, grease your cake pans and start melting the chocolate using a saucepan. You want to constantly stir the chocolate so you get a thick and even melt.

Step 2:

Next, you’ll want to get started on the base of the cake. Use an electric mixer to mix all of the butter and sugar you have together. Once you have achieved a creamy consistency, you can start to add the eggs and flour. It is best if you add the eggs one at a time, so you don’t ruin the consistency of the mixture.

Step 3:

Now that you have the mixture ready, it’s time for baking. Considering we have the oven preheated already, it should only take a touch over an hour for baking to complete.

Step 4:

While waiting for the cake to bake, you’ll want to start making the chocolate and raspberry cream layers. Now that you have already melted the chocolate, you should simply add more butter and sugar and combine it for a creamy mixture. For the raspberry layer, heat the raspberries in a saucepan with butter. Slowly mix while adding more butter and sugar, the consistency will start to thicken and start to look creamy. Let both the mixtures cool, and you’ll have two delicious raspberry and chocolate creams ready for spreading.

Step 5:

Once the cake is finished cooking, cut it in three even pieces. From there, evenly spread the chocolate and raspberry spreads. Make sure to alternate between the good to get a good combination of the two flavors.

Step 6:

After you’ve spread the cream, all you need to do is put the cake in the fridge. Let it chill for half an hour and you should have a scrumptious cake ready for eating.

I also make sure that my kitchen is clean before and after I use it to avoid catching any dirt while cooking or doing something for food that we’re going to intake. When my kitchen has molds growing, I don’t hesitate to call mold removal companies on Oahu to remove it right away.


I have written this recipe so many times, and I did not want to sound monotonous, especially with everyone making their fall season writings everywhere. However, like everybody else, fall is my favorite season, and I love it. The weather is calm, not too hot or cold, making baking very enjoyable.

The only issue I have with fall recipes is that they all tend to include apples, pumpkin, cider, or cinnamon. That said, I prefer sharing a corn recipe. Baking with corn will have a sweet smell coming from your kitchen and better yet, create a unique yet delightful recipe. Below is a quick and easy corn cupcake with a cream cheese frosting recipe.

Mini Corn Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting


1 cup of flour
½ cup butter-unsalted
¾ cups of sugar
Baking powder-one tablespoon
One egg
A single cup of corn puree. You can use fresh or canned corn, drained and pureed using a food processor.


Heat the oven in advance at 350F
Get ready your mini cupcake pan. It should have 24 mini cupcake liners.
Mix sugar and butter and beat thoroughly.
Add the egg and corn puree to the mixture.
Lastly, add flour and baking powder.
If your batter is still rough, add milk to smooth it.
Finally, bake the batter for approximately 12 minutes, depending on the oven type.
After the set baking time, remove it from the oven and let it cool as you make the frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting


About 8 oz of Philadelphia-style cream cheese. It should be at room temperature.
Unsalted butter-5 tablespoons
A teaspoon of vanilla flavor
A cup of confectionary sugar
Half cup of corn puree


Cream butter with the cheese on either medium or low speed.
Add vanilla and the sugar to your mixture.
Whisk until they are well incorporated
Frost your cupcakes in your desired style
Sprinkle coconut flakes over the frost.

With that, you can enjoy some yummy cupcakes this fall!

It also important to keep your kitchen clean before and after you use it. From your kitchen equipment, cleaning the kitchen exhaust hood, pumping and cleaning the grease trap, and performing nightly kitchen cleaning. Have a great day!

Cranberry and Sage pie!!!

I just had to share my excitement about a recent acquisition, a book called The Four and Twenty Blackbirds Pie Book. The first recipe from the book that I chose was Cranberry and Sage Pie, and I wanted to tell you about my attempt to make it. I was able to bake this one day while my Scottsdale pool resurfacing contractor was at my house and working on my swimming pool remodel. They could smell it through the window and little did they know that I made it just for them!

This was my first time baking with cranberries. I enjoy the sour flavor in foods, but in terms of fruit, cranberries have always been my least favorite ones. They are just so sour.

The pie had an earthy flavor that was strong due to the sage, but somehow the flavor was more sour than normal. They said these were “uncommon recipes” and they meant it.

There’s one thing that I have to admit. I’m a sucker for a thick pie crust, like the ones that can really stick to your teeth while eating. They have a somewhat chewy consistency, and the pie can be easily held.

For this particular recipe, a flaky crust is fine too, as the filling has a texture and flavor that is quite heavy.

There were some downsides that happened when I baked the pie.

The pie crust practically melted when I put it in the oven. The temperature of the pie was quite cold, so it may have been a matter of the oven temperature interacting with the pie. Maybe the acid of the pie had something to do with it, or maybe the butter was the cause.

I couldn’t find any fresh cranberries from any of the local stores, so I had to get frozen cranberries. They might have been the reason for the extra sour taste of the pie.

I didn’t add any allspice to the recipe. I think it’s a bit too overpowering and anything that it’s added to begins to taste like a pumpkin pie.

There is some happy news to spread about my pie. The pie has a great taste, and tastes even better after the first piece is finished. The delicious pie aroma has filled my kitchen, and the thickness of my crust was perfect.

This recipe is worth trying at least once. It’s easy to follow the steps of the recipe, from the simple stuff like refrigerating items to mixing items. The link to this recipe can be found here, on Food52.

After eating four pieces of the pie, I’ve become hooked. This always seems to happen to me. Time to decide which pie to make next.

Grandmas Christmas cookies

Yey!!! Christmas is here, of course every baker and crafters’ best time of the year. Time to be more creative than last year, time for giving and sharing… (did you buy all your gift already?  ).

Lots of traditions, sometimes I think , should I create something different this time, but then again this is what Christmas it is all about, those memories, I think I wait for Christmas just to have that special dessert, or those cookies, things that makes me remember how great this time is.

It is no news that my mom is visiting from Brasil and will spend the Christmas with me. So we shared recipes, cooked and baked together. Lots of memories, lots of histories. One of the things I remember from my childhood was my grandmother’s christmas cookies. My mom said that at night when the kids were sleeping, grandma would finish th cookies with merengue and sprinkles. Next day she would said that Santa’s helpers took the cookies and “painted” them. Isn’t that so pure? It brought tears to my eyes.

Grandma would be proud of us, sitting at the table “painting” the cookies together spreading them all over to dry, like she used to do.

If there is a secret to this recipe I would say to bake them on very hot oven for short period of time.

Grandma’s Christmas Cookies

3 eggs
1 cup of cream (I used La Crema, but heavy cream will work just fine)
2 cups of sugar
1 cup of milk
50 grams of ammoniac powder
Flour until the dough is consistent.

For the Merengue

3 egg whites
6 tbsp. of sugar

Heat the oven at 450 F 
Whisk the eggs, add the cream and sugar.
Last add milk and flour until the dough is form and consistent
Mix with your hands.
Roll the dough and cut the cookies not to thin.
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes.
They should stay still very white on top.
Let them cool while making the merengue.

Heat egg whites with sugar until all melted.
Beat on the mixer until soft, shine and forming picks.
Spread over the cookies and sprinkle how you want.

My grandma used to save them inside a huge cookie can, they would stay soft and gooey for days.

This special recipe is from my friend Mark who is a reputable Honolulu roofing contractor. His mom used to bake these for their company Christmas party every year and they were always gone so fast!

Happy Valentines Day with Romeon and Juliet Donut

That  is right! This week’s dessert for my husband, is Romeo and Juliet Donut

The most famous and romantic couple gave name to one of the most simple and traditional desserts in Brazil. Which consist of guava paste, with Mina’s cheese. White fresh cheese, like the mexican queso fresco.
There is not much information about this dessert, how started and why is called like that. But the influence is of course, Portuguese and Bulgarian.

The cheese used is typical from Minas Gerais, called Mina’s Cheese, here on the US we use the Mexican “queso fresco”. It has a very similar texture.

For the guava paste, anyone would be just fine. A very popular name brand is “Goya”.
Now a days there is numerous dessert forms to represent this dessert , from cakes, cupcakes, to mousse and cheesecake. But its original form still remains strong in every afternoon coffee or tea or breakfast. Two ingredients ready to go, just cut it into slices and eat it together.

Like Romeo and Juliet, this dessert is a perfect marriage of colors, textures and flavors, combining the tangy cheese with the sweet guava paste.

Of course  I couldn’t just slice them and serve to my husband….”here it go” this is your dessert. Not fun….
So I made a donut and filled with the two ingredients combination.

Romeo and Juliet Donut

10 Tbsp all-purpose flour
3 tbsp. sugar
1 Tsp Baking powder
1 egg
1/4 cup of warm milk
1/2 cup of guava paste and cheese cut in very little cubes and mixed.

  1. Start by mixing the flour, sugar, baking powder and egg together.
  2. Pour milk into the mixture, little by little until the dough is all combined, but still sticky. (probably won’t use all the milk.)
  3. Pull a little bit of dough , pressed to form a little circle,(make sure is not to tick), filled with about a 1/2 tsp of the guava and cheese mixture. Close, forming the donut shape.
  4. If the dough is to sticky, just cote your hand with oil or butter.
  5. Have a pan ready with oil in the stove. Make sure is hot.
  6. Fry the donuts, 3 at a time.
  7. They will fry very fast. Scoop out, let it rest in a plate with paper towel.

* If they are not very cooked on the inside, after frying, just put in the heated oven. Do not bake, just let it warm up a little bit.

** This donut recipe is my mom’s recipe, and is good  whitout any filling aswell. Just roll  the donut into a sugar and cinnamon mixture  after is done.


Haunted Cupcake competition and Chocolate Show

Every year  Pastry Chicago, an organization together with The French Pastry School of Chicago, hold baking competitions. Like cookies, cupcakes and pies.
It’s for amateurs, students and the public, all competing together at the same level.
Last year I did go to the cupcake competition, it was my first time competing.
It was the same time of the year and the theme was “Haunted Cupcakes”. Not only they had to be scary and Halloween themed, they had to have a spice on it. Mines were chocolate and cayenne pepper cupcakes.
There is 5 places, and nice prizes for them, including a kitchen aid mixer.
I didn’t win but the experience was great. We could enjoy nice views from the place (it was in a golf club), eat some good fall baked goods, drink apple cider and hot chocolate, plus a live demonstration from the School’s teacher.
This year unfortunately I can not go. Very sad!!!! The competition will be held at THE CHICAGO FINE CHOCOLATE SHOW. During the weekend of 18th to 20th of October. The theme of course is the same, creepy cupcakes, and the flavor its, duurrrr Chocolate.
Good Luck to whoever can go, send me some pictures!!!

French Pastry Experience

Last year I participated on a cupcake competition, already mention in  here, all about it.
And one of the prizes were a gift certificate to watch a demonstration at The French Pastry School, here in Chicago.
Cool right?!!! I’m very excited, I already took some classes at the school, “fundamentals of French tarts”, with instructor chef Della Gossett , I don’t think she is still there but it was a quite of an experience. I could do a different post telling you all about it. But I did learn some great techniques on tarts, beside the recipes I took with me.
So what about the demonstration? Yes,  Its 2 1/2 hours with two chefs instructors from the school. We will learn ( not hands on) how to make a variety of desserts, including petit fours and candies. Yummy!!! Here goes my diet…
I promise to take a lot of notes, lots of pictures( if possible) and of course recipes and then share all with you!!!
The demonstration will be on November, 25.

While we wait, here is one of the tarts I learned at the class and the recipe:

Pate Sable (make ahead)

187 g o butter
117 g confectionary sugar
125 g almond powder
2 eggs
300 g Flour (can be pastry flour)
Cream the butter
Add the confectionary sugar and the almond powder
Gradually add the eggs alternating with the flour
Press the dough on a sheet pan, cover with plastic and chill overnight
Grease a tart circle, roll the dough and dock it. Place in the cooler to rest before bake.
Bake at 300 F for about 20 min until is brown. Let it cool


90 g sugar
128 g Fresh Lemon juice
2 egg
90 g sugar
lemon zest from one lemon
175 g butter
1/4 tsp salt
I a separate bowl Mix the lemon juice with 90 g of sugar
Mix the eggs with the other 90 g of sugar
Combine the mixtures and add the zest
Heat the mixture over a water-bath until it thickens.
Strain and add the butter in small pieces
Cover with plastic and refrigerate.
Fill the baked shell with the lemon cream.
The tart its done , now you can finish the top the way you want.
I top mine with merengue.


1 pinch of cream of tartar
200 g sugar
2 egg whites
100 g confectionary sugar
5 g vanilla
1 pinch of salt
Whip the egg whites with the cream of tartar. Gradually add the sugar.
Fold in sifted confectionary sugar and vanilla
Pipe cookies on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
Bake at 250 F for about 45 min.
Let them cool before you top the tart.

* you can top the merengue with nuts, chocolate, salt…