Pecan Pie Truffle Recipe

 

I made my own version of the NYTIMES pecan pie truffles recipe.

1 TBSP Maple syrup

2 cups of pecans

2 sticks of butter (1/2 cup)

Graham crackers (8)

2 4 oz bars of dark chocolate

Nut pieces for garnish (optional)

 

Melt the two sticks of butter in a microwave safe bowl.

Grind graham crackers down to fine crumbs.

In a frying pan, lay out pecans in single layer. Turn the heat to medium-high, and wait till the pecans start toasting. Once the pecans start to become darker in color, turn the pan off and transfer the pecans to a cooling plate.

Combine the melted butter, graham crackers, and pecans in a medium sized bowl. Mix thoroughly.

Grab a cookie scooper and form balls of the dough. Place on parchment lined baking sheet, place in refrigerator for 2 hours (or freeze for 15-30 minutes in a jiffy).

After the truffles are set,  remove from the fridge. Place chocolate in microwave safe bowl(or instant pot on keep warm setting!). If microwaving, microwave in 30 second intervals until chocolate is melted through.

Dip the truffles into the chocolate and place back onto the cookie sheet. Top with nuts for garnish.

Place back in refrigerator for 2 hours (or freeze for 15-30 minutes in a jiffy).

Bon appetit!

Can engineering principles solve sales problems?

Around this time last year, I did some leadership work to solve problems the SE team as an org was experiencing within the company. The topic of the blog post is to explore how to apply engineering methods to non-engineering teams, and testing if the methods work cross functionally.

You can read more about the work I did here.

Clotted Cream Recipe(Ultra pasteurized)

If you only have ultra pasteurized heavy cream on hand and have a hankering for clotted cream, I’m here to tell you it is possible! Don’t let all the blogs on the internet tell you otherwise.

Adapted from https://theviewfromgreatisland.com/instant-pot-clotted-cream-recipe/

Equipment: Instant Pot IP-Lux

Ingredients: 1 cup of ultra pasteurized heavy cream, 35% fat or higher

Directions:

  1. Pour cream directly into IP pot
  2. Switch the tab to “sealing”
  3. Press the “keep warm” functionality, and let it cook overnight, at least 8 hours.
  4. After 8 hours, remove pot, cover, and place in fridge for 12 hours.
  5. Once 12 hours is up, scoop out the cream using a slatted spoon.
  6. Save leftover milk for scones!

Paper Planes

It’s the night of Layl al Qadr. The mosque is packed with worshippers, and those who want to spend the night and the early AM focusing on God and asking Him for forgiveness. Not only is it the most popular night of worship, it’s also the most popular night for donations.

How is this donation money accepted?

A common practice at mosques is asking donators to write their credit card details on a piece of paper, later collected by volunteers to manually type in the details into the system to record the donation.

So why is this practice bad? Why should we care that we are encouraging users to manually write down their credit card information, and hand over this sensitive information via paper to a stranger? What if the paper is accidentally left in an open space? What if the papers fall in to the wrong hands?

We are told to trust in Allah, but to tie our camel. In this case, that means educating people with protecting their assets. We have a duty to teach others to be more mindful of providing sensitive bank account information.

I’ve heard the counter argument, “Oh just cancel your credit card. They’ll refund you the money and it’s fine.” Have you ever been through the process of canceling a credit card?? It sucks. You have to call in, explain what happened, if there’s theft involved, police report might need to be filed etc. What happens if the credit card company denies your claim? Not to mention how long it might take to receive a replacement credit card.

Here are good examples of mosques that have gotten it right, and links to how people can get this set up within their own mosques. These are not completely foolproof options, but they are a step in the right direction.

Purchase a Square POS sale system, and enlist the help of a few brothers and sisters to walk around the prayer areas and swipe people’s credit cards in front of them.

Setup a venmo account, and ask folks to add the venmo account as a friend, and once verified, send money away!

Setup a credit card machine outside of the prayer area, like this one at Islamic Center of Boulder:

Donation kiosk

Tie your camel, and trust in Allah.

SEO – Images

Lately I’ve been doing some research on SEO and how to get your website to the top of search results! The algorithm does change, but the research that I’m sharing came from a Google guide. I’ve visualized it into a zine-like format. The first topic I’ll share is what to do with the images you’re uploading to your site. Describe the images! Don’t just upload them as “1234pic.jpg”. SEOimages

 

 

Google vs GoDaddy Domain Registration

Ever done research on where and how to host a domain? What does hosting a domain even mean? I had some experience learning the ropes with my snafu with WordPress. Number one lesson with WordPress? WordPress.com and WordPress.org are NOT the same. Registering your domain through wordpress.com does not give you access to the files underneath if you wish to modify and customize at all.

If you are starting to research where to build a website, one of the first steps to consider is where to register your domain, along with who will develop the website, and where the site will be hosted. Think of the domain as your house address, the web developer as the contractor hired to build the house inside and out, and the host to be the underlying ground your house is standing on.

The most common domain registrars include GoDaddy, WordPress, Google, Amazon, etc. Wait, Google?? I had no idea Google registered domains. Seems like the service started out as invite only, then transitioned to open up to everyone in the US. **Google domains is still in beta mode**

But which one to go with? Why should I choose WordPress over GoDaddy, or Amazon over Google? Where do I even start to think about the considerations needed?

Here are some thoughts to consider when choosing where to register a domain:

  1. Do you need access to the underlying files for tweaking later on? For example, do you want to change one file to include the Facebook “Like” button on your page?
  2. Do you care to have your registration information public or private?
  3. Obviously, what’s your budget?

The main factor that pushed me to choose to register my domain at Google was the cost factor and ease of use to sign up. An apples to apples comparison puts a domain registration with Google at $12 with anonymous registration, while the same domain would cost $20 at GoDaddy. If you don’t choose anonymous registration, then anyone who knows your domain name can find out personal information about you, such as your address, phone, name, etc. No bueno.

Here’s a quick breakdown to show you- I ran a sample domain search (using scarfgeeky ;)) on GoDaddy:

1

So introductory price with GoDaddy is only $3, right? Let’s select that and move on.

2.png

WOAH! To get privacy on your domain registrant information, you need to pay an extra $8/year. So total, we are at ~$20, including the privacy protection from GoDaddy. That’s a far cry from their initial advertised price of $3 for the domain.

3.png

Contrast GoDaddy’s checkout page to Google’s sleek checkout-

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Also no spammy upsells with Google domains! Talk about a pretty UI and easy to follow thought process.

Take note GoDaddy!

I chose my domain and checked out (using Google wallet). Simple and easy peezy.

Here’s an Infograph on how to choose between Godaddy and Google. Maybe I should have looked this up before registering my domain…

google-domains-vs-godaddy

The thorny path to learn API’s

I started a new project this weekend to start learning how to read/write to API’s. I had a dream of querying the LinkedIn API to read certain stats. This project will be documented later, but the goal of that project will be to evaluate the turnover rate for startups. Buttt before I get to that level, I kinda need to know the basics, right?

Welp. I bought a “Crash Course on API’s” from Udemy, and got down to it. The prerequisites for the course were to have a domain, a host for the domain, a text editor, and a FTP software to transfer my files from locally to online.

Needless to say, I was confused. I had bought a domain from WordPress recently, but it was hosted on WordPress, and I didn’t know what to do with it. Cue hours of googling and trying to figure out if I can even move my domain from being hosted on WordPress to another service like Hostgator or Bluehost. I finally came across an article articulating how to move your domain and followed it. The first step was to buy an account from hostgator. The class I was following along with had a coupon code for a month free! As a student, I graciously picked up on this offer. You can start to transfer your domain as you’re signing up for the account.

Ok, now my domain is moved to Hostgator. Now what? Well, turns out, I’m not done with WordPress. Apparently you need to change the nameservers in wordpress to reflect the new ones served up by Hostgator. This process can take up to 72 hours, they say, but it took about a minute or two for me.

So my blog is somewhat working, I’m trying to get the Facebook like button(exercise from the course to practice API calling) to show up on a random page in my domain.

My blog seems to let me in if I reach it through another browser, so I keep following along on the original tutorial and eventually get the code for a Facebook like button on another page in my blog. It works!!!

 

The blog was semi-working on hostgator, but WordPress.com sites really do work best with wordpress name servers. I ended up switching the name servers back to use wordpress.com, not hostgator. I’ll be playing around with the wordpress.org software and see if I can host it on hostgator instead! Stay tuned for my next post!