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The Moment You’ve All Been Waiting For–New recipes!!!

29 Jul

I know I know, it has been entirely too long since I’ve put up an actual post with an actual recipe. I am so sorry. So so sorry. Anywho, I’ll keep this intro short and sweet, since I have so many delicious new things for you to read about! But I just wanted to say thank you to anyone who is truly reading/following this blog. I never dreamed that I would have over 200 hits, so thank you thank you thank you, and I encourage you to leave me comments. I would love to get to know each and every one of you readers out there. =]

Recipe Numero Uno! The Tortilla Pizza, Take Two

Yes, I know it’s not a forreal recipe, but it was so so good. I blogged about this a while ago and it was even better the second time around. I prefer plain pizzas so I went with simple chicken and lots of cheese, while my parents piled on spinach, tomatoes, chicken, cheese and onions. If you want the “recipe” from earlier you can find it here!
Here’s what they looked like!

Recipe Numero Dos! Peach Almond Cake!

This idea came from a dream. I kid you not. I dreamed that I was baking a peach almond cake so I woke up and, you guessed it, baked a peach almond cake. As with most of my cakes the peach flavor didn’t come through quite as strong as I had hoped, but all in all it was a delicious cake.

CAKE
1 WHITE cake mix + necessary ingredients
2 peaches, pitted and cubed

ALMOND BUTTERCREAM
1 cup chortening
3-4 cups confectioners sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 tsp almond extract ( or just to taste. I used a lot, since I really wanted a strong almond flavor, but it’s up to you.)
Splash of milk

A handful of finely chopped almonds (optional)

1. Puree your peaches. Add the peach puree with a little bit of water to your mix in place of the called-for water. Add in the rest of the ingredients the mix calls for, pop in the oven at 350 for about 26 minutes, give or take.
2. Mix shortening and about a half of the sugar, all of the extracts and the milk together until they are pretty well mixed.
3. Add in the rest of the sugar, beating slowly and getting progressively higher until you are beating on the highest setting.
4. Taste! My favorite part! If your almond extract has given the frosting a little bit of a bitter taste, you just haven’t used enough vanilla to balance it out, so go ahead and give it a little bit more vanilla, beat it in and taste again. Repeat until satisfied with the flavor.
5. Your buttercream should be light and fluffy, as well as delicious!
6. I did a two layer cake, spreading a bit of the frosting between the layers and then frosting the whole cake. Then I added finely chopped almonds on top for some pretty decoration.

The Final Recipe! Lemon Blueberry Birthday Cake

No intro needed but YUM. This was probably one of the prettiest cakes I’ve done and it was also really yummy.

CAKE
1 WHITE cake mix, necessary ingredients EXCEPT water
1 cup lemonade concentrate
1/4 cup lemon juice
Several handfuls blueberries
A few extra berries for decoration (optional)

FROSTING
1 standard container Cool Whip
2 standard containers lemon yogurt
3-4 cups confectioners sugar

Mix the cake mix as usual, replacing the water with the lemonade and lemon juice. This gives the cake a very strong, but not unbearable, lemon taste–balanced, of course, by the sweetness of the cake mix. Add in blueberries, according to how many you want in the cake. I used about four handfuls, but if you want more or less…well, you know what to do. Bake at 350 for about 27 minutes or so.

Now, I stepped out of my comfort zone with the frosting for this cake. I wanted to try something new and a little lighter for such a summery cake. Now, it wasn’t my favorite, but it was very easy to make and it got RAVE reviews. I kid you not, everyone absolutely loved it. (I thought it was a little too sweet for me.) All you do is empty the Cool Whip and the yogurt into a large bowl with about two cups of the sugar. Beat it on high (starting slowly, of course) until the sugar is well mixed in. Add in the rest, beat, and voila! Place it in the freezer for about an hour to let it thicken up a bit.

I must warn you, though this frosting makes for an absolutely gorgeous, smooth cake it is a little difficult to work with. With a standard buttercream it is easy to spread without making a mess. While making this cake I had frosting everywhere. Since it is a thinner frosting with less form and hold than buttercream it runs. Like a cheetah. As soon as I attempted to frost the sides of the cake it was dripping all over the counter. So what I did was poured most of the frosting on the top of the cake and let it drip down the sides. Once it looked like it was finished dripping and had set I took a frosting spatula and smoothed out the sides and the top. The result was stunning, but definitely a pain in the ass. I had quite a bit of extra frosting and plenty of it on the cake plate and the kitchen counter, so be sure to clean up that plate before you present it. (By the way, this was also a layered cake with frosting in the middle, though I played with the idea of blueberry jam in the middle. Your call.) Here’s what it looked like, with a few blueberries on top for pretty decoration!

Keep an eye out later today or tomorrow for the South of the Border cupcake. I am working on fine tuning the frosting RIGHT NOW!

Pay Attention to Me, Dammit! (The Chocolate Lover’s New Idol)

15 Jul

So this is a story all about how my life got turned upside down. I promise, I’m not going to rap. Just rant a little bit and then post a delicious experimental recipe. But, seriously, my life is so upside down. I just graduated from, like, the smallest high school on this planet.

Wait.

I keep using this “I” word. And perhaps you, nonexistant reader, are wondering just who this “I” fellow is. Well, I’ll tell you. I’m eighteen. I like to cook, duh. I am smart, I won’t even attempt to deny that. And I like to consider myself decently pretty. I mean, I’m no Gisele Bundchen or Cintia Dicker, but I’m not a total hag, either! I have really pretty blonde hair and huge golden eyes. And sure, right now I am suffering from a truly unsightly red-purple sunburn that would make Uncle Vernon’s face look like a Cullen. But I have not always resembled a plum! Certainly not for the past four years have I looked like a plum, so please explain to me why, WHY, have I been single for these four miserable, horrible years?! I should be dating. A LOT. And having a lot of sex, or at least that’s what my hot, taken friends tell me.

So, to drown my four-year sorrows, I am going to make the ultimate cupcake, the cupcake that puts the term “Death By Chocolate” want to sob with self-loathing. I dare to go where no chocolate lover has gone before. This just may be the best breakup food in the history of breakup food.

Here is what you will need, broken hearts.

Cake
Chocolate (or dark chocolate) cake mix
1 cup chocolate chips
1 bag Hershey’s Kisses (optional, but recommended for those in serious need of chocolate)

Frosting
2 1/2 – 3 cup confectioners sugar
3/4 cup butter
1/3 cup Nutella, or similar choco-hazelnut spread
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
A splash of Hershey’s chocolate syrup

Okay, you will want to prepare your cake mix according to the box instructions, then mix in your chocolate chips. I like to fill my cupcake cup about 1/3 full and plop a Hershey’s kiss into the middle so it has a nice, gooey chocolate center, then fill the rest of the cup with batter. Bake at 350 until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean, and one inserted into the very center of the cake comes out just a little bit gooey from your optional Kiss.

Now, the fun part. Most people go to all of this trouble of creaming the butter and blah blah blah, but I like to just throw in the butter and about half of the sugar and half of my Nutella with the almond and vanilla, beat it on low-medium speed until it’s starting to get creamy, and then add the rest in. Beat, of course, until nice and fluffy. To thicken the frosting just add in more confectioner’s sugar.

Pipe or spread generously onto cooled chocolate heaven cupcakes and consume until you are no longer sad, angry or pathetic.

Bon appetit, mes cheres!

G-L-A-M-O-R-O-U-S –a bubbling girls night in treat

14 Jul

So, my girlfriends and I adore champagne and, of course, we’re not old enough to drink it. So here’s an idea I just thought of. How about a milk chocolate-raspberry cupcake with a champagne buttercream. I think it would go really really nicely with a night of chick flicks and party games, no?

Spot of Tea? –a rich teatime treat

14 Jul

So, I’ve been bouncing around this idea in my head. I’ve recently taken a liking to tea and coffee (with about a pound and a half of sugar) and I need a good snack to go with it. I’m thinking…

a really delicious rich butter cake with either a tart lemon glaze or a lemon buttercream.

As usual, thoughts, comments, questions etc are more than welcome!

Afternoon Delight–the sexiest chocolate strawberry cake in the world

14 Jul

Moist fresh strawberry three layer cake, strawberry preserves between the layers, topped with a thick chocolate ganache. Easily modified into a scrumptious cupcake!

Thoughts?

South of the Border–ay caramba!

14 Jul

A dark chocolate chili powder cupcake with a sweet chocolate-chili buttercream.

Thoughts?