Saturday, January 7, 2012

Another birthday cake

We had another birthday. Our 8 year old requested a horse birthday cake.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Mint Chocolate Cookies

Now that baby is here it is fortunate & unfortunate that I like baking again. It has been fun being back in the kitchen and enjoying it too (not too good for dropping the baby weight). I baked these goodies up when we ran out of our year supply of Guittard chocolate chips. I was forced to use what I could scrounge up in my pantry. I happen to have a bag of Nestle dark chocolate chunks and mint chips. I usually don't prefer nestle, but I found them on sale. I used Rach's recipe for her Mint Chocolate Cookies and we were in heaven for a night. Yes, they only lasted a night. They were deep chocolaty and the mint was perfect. They were the perfect amount of soft and crisp. Yum!

Mint Chocolate Cookies

2 ¼ c. flour
½ c. cocoa
1 t. baking soda
½ t. salt
1 c. butter soft
1 c. packed brown sugar
¾ c. sugar
1 t. vanilla
2 eggs
1 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 c. mint morsels
1.Combine first 4 ingredients.
2.In a separate bowl combine next 4 ingredients. Beat well.
3.Add eggs, gradually beat in flour mixture.
4.Stir in chips and morsels. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto cookie sheet.
5.Bake in 375° oven 8-10 minutes.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Best Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

I am pretty loyal to my Big Fat Chocolate Chip cookie recipe, but I thought I would go outside the awesomeness of the Big Fats and try a different recipe. Of course we have all tried a million chocolate chip recipes and some don't work so well and others are steller. I have now made these twice and have been thoroughly delighted each time. These cookies are nice and soft even after they have cooled. The Big Fats are more like a bakery cookie - crisp on the outside & soft on the inside and these ones are smaller and softer all around. I loved them! This doesn't mean they will replace the Big Fats in my life, but another go to amazingly delicious chocolate chip cookie recipe that makes me happy each time I make them.

I found the recipe via pinterest. It was originally posted on the blog Apple a Day

Best-Ever Chocolate Chip Cookiesbarely adapted from Anna Olson, Food Network Canada

3/4 c. unsalted butter, softened
3/4 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. granulated sugar
1 egg
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 c. all purpose flour
2 tsp. cornstarch
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. bittersweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugars until fluffy and light in color. Add egg and vanilla and blend in.
3. Mix in flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Stir in chocolate chunks.
4. Using a standard-sized cookie scoop or tablespoon, drop dough onto a prepared baking sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until barely golden brown around the edges. (The tops will not brown, but do NOT cook longer than ten minutes.)
5. Let cool, on the sheet, on a wire rack for five minutes. Remove from baking sheet and let cool completely. Try not to eat them all

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Birthday Cake

Okay so these pictures are horrible. The battery of course went dead right when I finished the cake. By the time it was recharged it was evening time and so the pics are not great at all. I just snapped a few and he blew out the candles and we ate.

So this little 3 year old wanted a puppy cake. Now that it is done I wish I had made it Red and had it be Clifford, because it looks a lot like Clifford. And once again I made brownies instead of cake. Cake doesn't get eaten around here, but brownies do. Plus I think brownies are actually easier to work with. Less crumbly and more stable.

The next day we had cupcakes with Grandpa & Grandma & Aunts & Uncles. I made pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes, which were steller, and the frosting was delish. It was a cream cheese white chip frosting. Yum!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
From allrecipes w/ adaptations

3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon ginger
3/4 to 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1.Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease and flour muffin pan or use paper liners.
2.Mix sugar, oil, eggs. Add pumpkin and water. In separate bowl mix together the baking flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices and salt. Get chocolate chips a bit wet then mix in with flour (this helps them not sink to the bottom). Then mix dry & wet ingredients.
3.Fill muffin cups 2/3 full with batter. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes

White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting
adapted a bit from Baking Bites blog

4-oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup white chocolate, melted and slightly cooled
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 tsp milk or cream
2-3 cups confectioners’ sugar

In a large mixing bowl, cream together cream cheese, butter and melted white chocolate. Beat in vanilla and milk, then add in the confectioners’ sugar gradually until the frosting reaches your desired consistency (make it a bit stiffer if you wish to pipe it onto the cupcakes instead of spreading it with a knife).
Spread frosting onto cupcakes with a knife, or transfer to a pastry bag fitted with a wide tip and pipe onto cooled cupcakes.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

TWD-Creamy Dark Chocolate Sorbet

Happy late-Pioneer Day! Every July 24th, we commemorate the arrival of Brigham Young and the first Mormon pioneers to the Salt Lake Valley. It's a big deal here. Parade. Rodeo. Fireworks. Family. Friends. Food. It gives us a reason to celebrate on a hot summer night! Last night we had a lovely evening with neighbors, eating this delicious sorbet and lighting fireworks.

Dorie's Creamy Dark Chocolate Sorbet was the perfect cool dessert on a warm summer night. I actually made the sorbet on Sunday. It came together in a snap and I was able to get it in the fridge before we went to church. Later in the evening I put it in the ice cream maker and then into the freezer. 

I served the sorbet with a Chocolate Crinkle Cookie and fresh strawberries. It was divine. Deep, dark, creamy chocolate. We loved this recipe and I will definitely put it in the keepers along with many other Dorie recipes!

Should you care to give this a try on a hot Summer day (which I'm sure you do), head on over for the recipe at A Whisk and a Spoon

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Birthday Cake Fun

My sweet Miriam had her 5th birthday! I can't believe it. She is such a fun girl. Since Christmas she has been talking about having a rudolph (family) party and cake. I was kind of hoping that by the time May rolled around she might forget, but she did not. We have listened to Christmas music in the car nonstop for months. So I found myself having to make a rudolph cake. I am not the best at creative cakes in general. I am pretty proud of how it turned out. I went google images and just pulled up an image of rudolph from the movie and used it as an outline. She wanted brownies instead of cake. Awesome! Because I don't really love cake and Brownies were much easier to work with.

I made the extra pieces on top out of sugar cookies dough. I just traced the outlines of the ears, eye, and antlers onto the dough. I used a mini york mint for the eye and a red gumball was the perfect solution for the nose. It was a hit. Gone in seconds, because brownies are so much better than cake and so are sugar cookies. All the kids went crazy over the gumballs, so it is good I bought extra. I love that this girl thinks out of the box and is not afraid to follow through. She was teased by her sister for months that she wanted rudolph, but Miriam stuck with it without a care in the world. Love that girl

The hubby had a Birthday too. Just last week. He made it easy on me (so nice since I am 8 months pregnant and still not on a first name basis with my kitchen). He chose key lime pie, which I made, and a costco bought apple pie (awesome, I didn't have to slave over it, bless him).

The key lime pie recipe came from a Betty Crocker Cookbook that we got for a our wedding, I think it is even the Bridal edition (aka: non baking savvy people).

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

TWD: Chocolate Chocolate Chunk Muffins

My kids say "a muffin is just an ugly cupcake", but I disagree!! A muffin is so much more... THIS muffin is so much more!! Its rich and dense and chocolatey. Because it isn't so sweet, you can really taste and appreciate the bittersweet chocolate. The flavor is SOOOOO spectacular. I think it really pays to use a high-quality chocolate. Plus, any time you can eat chocolate for breakfast, I'm in!! What? Its legit. Muffins are a breakfast food. They are.

My sweet boy was being so patient waiting for his muffin. We all agreed, it was worth the wait!! It didn't take long though, these came together in a snap!! Next time I may let the kids make them. Thanks Bridget at "The Way The Cookie Crumbles" for this weeks choice!! If you would like to give it a try (and I'm sure you do) click here. :)