Friday, April 30, 2010

Chocolate chip Coconut Cookies

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Source: The Little Red House


Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies

2 sticks of butter (1c), at room temp
1/2 c white sugar
1 1/2 c brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
3 c all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
3 cups shredded sweetened coconut
1 lb chocolate chips/chunks

Cream the butter and the sugars until light. Scrape down the side of the bowl. Continue mixing while adding the eggs one at time. Make sure each egg is incorporated before adding the next. Add the vanilla. Scrape down the bowl with a spatula. Combine the flour, soda and salt in another bowl. With a whisk, stir to combine. With the machine on low, slowly add the flour. Mix until just combined, taking care not to over mix.
With a spatula fold in the chocolate and coconut

Drop by spoonful onto parchment lined cookie sheet.

Bake at 350° for 11-13 minutes. They should be lightly golden on the outside but still look gooey on the inside.

*note: these aren't overly coconutty.....just a nice hint of coconut flavor, and they have the BEST chewy texture!!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Pecan Pie Bars

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Source: Homemade by Holman


Pecan Pie Bars
Recipe from Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook

Crust:
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13 jellyroll pan with aluminum foil. Combine flour, sugar and salt in a mixing bowl. Cut the cold butter into cubes and add to flour mixture. Toss and use a pastry blender to cut butter into flour mixture until mixture resembles crumbs the size of peas. Pour mixture into prepared pan and press into a smooth crust. Poke several holes in the crust with tines of a fork. Bake about 18-20 minutes until light golden brown.

Filling:
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1/2 cup light corn syrup
2 T unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla

In a large bowl, beat eggs and add sugar, corn syrup, butter, and vanilla. Whisk together until smooth. Stir in pecans. Pour filling into pre-baked crust. Return to oven to bake for about 20 minutes until filling is set. Cool on a wire rack until completely cool. Use foil to lift bars out of pan and cut into squares.

S'mores Ice Cream

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Source: Liesl's Confection Dissection


S'mores Ice Cream
(recipe from Bonnie the Baker)

1 package marshmallows
2 cup milk
3 cups heavy cream
2 Hershey’s Chocolate Bars
6 or so Honeymaid Graham crackers (I used the plain variety)


Place Marshmallows, cream and milk into a large saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly until the mallows are melted, and the liquids blend nicely with the marshmallows. The texture will be thick and gooey. Remove from heat and let cool (I let mine cool to touch - about 10 minutes before putting into my ice cream maker), stirring occasionally. Pour mixture into ice cream maker that has been frozen according to manufacturer’s instructions, and churn for about 30-35 minutes.

While the ice cream is churning, cut chocolate into whatever size chunks you desire, I did bite size. Break graham cracker pieces into larger pieces, you want them to stay in tact so that they will freeze well, and still resemble graham cracker pieces after the freezing process is done.

After churning is completed, turn off ice cream maker, and fold in chocolate pieces and then graham cracker pieces. Be gentle when folding in the graham cracker pieces, or they will break. After folding, the ice will be somewhat soft, just place in an airtight container for a couple of hours until set. Makes about 1 Quart of ice cream. (feel free to cut the recipe in half)

Key Lime Cupcakes

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Source: The Doctor's Dishes, Desserts, and Decor


Key Lime Cupcakes
(Adapted from Bon Appetit - recipe originally from Bittersweet Bakery)
Makes 12 Cupcakes

3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 cup self-rising flour
1/2 cup salted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice (1 med/lg lime's worth)
1 tablespoon finely grated lime peel (approx 1 lime)
1/4 teaspoon neon-green food coloring
3/4 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line standard muffin pan with 12 paper liners.

Whisk both flours in medium bowl. Beat butter & sugar in large bowl until creamy. Beat in eggs 1 at a time, then next 3 ingredients (batter may look curdled). Beat in flour mixture in 3 additions alternately with buttermilk in 2 additions.

Spoon scant 1/3 cup batter into each liner.

Bake cupcakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool 10 minutes. Remove from pan; cool.


Lime Cream Cheese Frosting

1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
2+ cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1 tablespoon finely grated lime peel
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice.

Beat all ingredients in medium bowl until smooth. Spread over cupcakes.

Note: I made a double batch of both the cupcakes and the frosting, and, although I never thought I would say this, I have WAY too much frosting! The cream cheese frosting is very rich, so I put much less frosting on than I usually do (and swirled from the inside out, making more of a "rose" like design). I definitely have enough frosting for another 18-24 cupcakes.

Chewy Lime Sugar Cookies

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Source: My Baking Addiction


Chewy Lime Sugar Cookies
from Rock Recipes

Ingredients
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Zest of one large lime, finely minced
3 tbsp lime juice
1/2 cup unsweetened toasted coconut
1/2 cup sugar for rolling cookies

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
2. In a small bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
3. Using a mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until smooth and very fluffy.
4. Beat in egg, vanilla extract, lime juice and lime zest.
5. Gradually blend in the dry ingredients and toasted coconut.
6. Roll rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into balls, and roll in sugar. Place on lined cookie sheets about 1 1/2 inches apart.
7. Bake 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until lightly browned.
8. Let stand on cookie sheet two minutes before removing to cool on wire racks.

Whipped Cream Cupcakes and Brown Sugar Ice Cream with Caramel Sauce

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Source: Just Jenn Recipes


Whipped Cream Cupcakes

1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1-3/4 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prep a cupcake pan with liners.
In a bowl whisk together the cake flour, salt and baking powder. Set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the whipped cream until stiff peaks form – don’t go TOO FAR of you will get butter! Add the eggs one at a time until incorporated. Add the sugar and the vanilla. Carefully add the flour mixture until combined.
Spoon batter into the liners, filling the cups up halfway. Bake for 15-20 minutes depending on your oven. Let the cupcakes cool on a wire rack.


Brown Sugar Ice Cream

2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

In a medium bowl stir together the heavy cream, milk, brown sugar and vanilla.
Pour into your prepped ice cream machine per directions. Spoon into a freezer safe container and freeze until slightly hardened, about 1-2 hours.


Caramel Sauce

1 1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup water
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 Tablespoon butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup heavy cream

In a saucepan on low heat, stir together the sugar and water. Turn the heat to medium high and boil until the sugar turns a lovely shade of brown, I’d say just about 5 minutes.

Carefully – you look away for one second and you’ve got Burnt City on your hands.

Now carefully (can I say that enough) add the cream and the butter. It will bubble so watch yourself.

Let simmer on low, then add the vanilla and the 1/4 cup of heavy cream to smooth it all out and wait for it to get nice and thick.

Vanilla Almond Cupcakes w/ Salted Caramel Buttercream

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Source: Gimme Some Oven


Vanilla Almond Cupcakes w/ Salted Caramel Buttercream
(Adapted from Hello Cupcake and Chow)

Ingredients:

Cupcake Ingredients:

1 (18.25 oz.) white cake mix
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
1 tsp. almond extract
1 tsp. vanilla
4 eggs

Frosting Ingredients:

1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp. water
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup (1.5 sticks) salted butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar

Method:

To Make Cupcakes:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.

Add the cake mix, buttermilk, oil, almond extract and vanilla to a large mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed until moistened, about 30 seconds. Add eggs one at a time, until the batter is well-mixed. Increase speed to high and beat until thick and fluffy, 2 minutes longer.

Pour or scoop the batter into the paper liners until they are 2/3 full. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cupcakes cool on a wire rack.

To Make Frosting (pics above and below):

Briefly stir together granulated sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Continue cooking, without stirring, until mixture turns dark amber in color, about 6 to 7 minutes.

Remove from heat and slowly add in cream and vanilla (just start with a tablespoon or two), stirring with a wooden spoon until completely smooth. (Be careful, as the mixture will definitely bubble up and possibly splatter a bit as you add in the cream.) Set aside until cool to the touch, about 25 minutes.

Beat the butter ]in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on medium-high speed until light in color and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low, add powdered sugar, and mix until completely incorporated. Turn off the mixer, and then add caramel. Beat frosting on low to combine, and then increase to medium-high and beat until airy and thoroughly mixed, about 2 minutes. Refrigerate if not using immediately (or to harden the frosting a bit).

***To frost 24 cupcakes as I did (pictured above), I’d recommend making a double batch of the frosting. But if you’re just spreading it on with a knife, one batch should be plenty! :)

Ali’s Tip:

Keep a close eye on the caramel as you make it! It goes from clear bubbles to the “amber” color within about 30 seconds, and then will burn pretty quickly thereafter.

Also, if you absolutely, absolutely don’t want to make the homemade caramel, you can substitute in some caramel topping to put into the buttercream instead.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes

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Source: Gimme Some Oven


Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes
(Adapted from Hello Cupcake and Chow)

Ingredients:

Cupcake Ingredients:

1 (18.25 oz.) strawberry cake mix
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
1/4 cup (4 Tbsp.) lemon juice
4 eggs

Frosting Ingredients:

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1/4 cup pureed strawberries (made from fresh or frozen strawberries)
1 tsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. vanilla
3-4 cups powdered sugar (adjust to achieve desired consistency)


To Make Cupcakes:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.

Add the cake mix, buttermilk, oil and lemon juice to a large mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed until moistened, about 30 seconds. Add eggs one at a time, until the batter is well-mixed. Increase speed to high and beat until thick and fluffy, 2 minutes longer.

Pour or scoop the batter into the paper liners until they are 2/3 full. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cupcakes cool on a wire rack.

To Make Frosting:

Cream butter in an electric mixer on medium-speed until smooth and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Then add in the strawberries, vanilla and lemon juice, and mix on low-speed until combined. Gradually add in the powdered sugar and mix until combined. Then beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, another 3-5 minutes. (Add in more powdered sugar if consistency is too thin.)

***To frost 24 cupcakes as I did (pictured above), I’d recommend making a double batch of the frosting. But if you’re just spreading it on with a knife, one batch should be plenty! :)

Peanut Butter Crispy Bars

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Source: Smitten Kitchen


Peanut Butter Crispy Bars
Adapted from Baked: New Frontiers in Baking

These bars are sticky and indulgent and not good for you in any way, so before you even ask, perhaps you can make them with organic, low-fat peanut butter, whole grain bio-crisped rice cereal or a sugar substitute but you shouldn’t. Nobody likes a party pooper.

For the crispy crust
1 3/4 cups crisped rice cereal
1/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
3 tablespoons unsalted (their recommendation) or salted (what I used, and liked) butter, melted

For the milk chocolate peanut butter layer
5 ounces good-quality milk (their recommendation) or semi-sweet (what I’d use next time) chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup creamy peanut butter

For the chocolate icing
3 ounces dark chocolate (60 to 72 percent cocoa), coarsely chopped
1/2 teaspoon light corn syrup
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick or 2 ounces) unsalted (their recommendation) or salted (what I used, and liked) butter


Make the crispy crust: Lightly spray a paper towel with nonstick cooking spray and use it to rub the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan.

Put the cereal in a large bowl and set aside.

Pour 1/4 cup water into a small saucepan. Gently add the sugar and corn syrup (do not let any sugar or syrup get on the sides of the pan) and use a small wooden spoon to stir the mixture until just combined. Put a candy thermometer in the saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat and bring to a boil; cook until the mixture reaches the soft ball stage, 235 degrees F.

Remove from the heat, stir in the butter, and pour the mixture over the cereal. Working quickly, stir until the cereal is thoroughly coated, then pour it into the prepared pan. Using your hands, press the mixture into the bottom of the pan (do not press up the sides). Let the crust cool to room temperature while you make the next layer.

Make the milk chocolate peanut butter layer: In a large nonreactive metal bowl, stir together the chocolate and the peanut butter. Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and cook, stirring with a rubber spatula, until the mixture is smooth. Remove the bowl from the pan and stir for about 30 seconds to cool slightly. Pour the mixture over the cooled crust. Put the pan in the refridgerator for 1 hour, or until the top layer hardens.

Make the chocolate icing: In a large nonreactive metal bowl, combine the chocolate, corn syrup, and butter.

Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and cook, stirring with a rubber spatula, until the mixture is completely smooth. Remove the bowl from the pan and stir for 30 seconds to cool slightly. Pour the mixture over the chilled milk chocolate peanut butter layer and spread (actually, I found it easier to just roll it around until it coated smoothly, avoiding the risk of picking up any of the peanut butter layer with it) into an even layer. Put the pan into the refrigerator for 1 hour, or until the topping hardens.

Cut into 9 (they say, I say 16, at least!) squares and serve. The bars can be stored in the refrigerator, covered tightly, for up to 4 days.

Classic White Bread

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Source: Cafe Fernando


Classic White Bread
Recipe from Martha Stewart Living February 2010 issue.

Makes two loaves

Ingredients

1 tbsp plus 1+1/2 tsp active dry yeast
2 1/4 cups warm water
3 tbsp+ 2 tsp honey
4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pans
7 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
2 tbsp coarse salt

Method

1. Sprinkle yeast over half a cup of warm water, add 2 tsp of honey and whisk to dissolve the yeast. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes, then transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment. Add butter, remaining water and honey.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk flour with salt.
3. Add 3 cups of the flour mixture to yeast and mix on low speed until smooth.
4. Add remaining flour, one cup at a time, mixing until dough comes away from sides of bowl and forms a slightly sticky ball.
5. Butter a large mixing bowl and set aside.
6. Knead the dough on a floured surface until smooth and elastic, shape into a bowl and transfer to the buttered bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm place until it doubles in volume, about an hour. (You may freeze half of the dough at this point to bake later.)
7. Butter two 4.5*8.5 inch loaf pans. Punch dough down, divide in half, shape into an 8.5 inch rectangle, fold long sides in to the middle, overlapping slightly. Press seam to seal and transfer dough, seam side down, to the loaf pan.
8. Dust each loaf with flour, cover loosely with plastic and let stand until dough rises about an inch above tops of pans, about 45 minutes.
9. In the meantime, preheat your oven to 450F.
10. Reduce oven temperature to 400F and bake, rotating pans after 20 minutes, until tops are golden brown, for a total of 45 minutes.
11. Let cool completely before slicing.
12. Loaves can be stored at room temperature for three days or frozen for up to three months.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Heath Bar Cookies

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Source: The Novice Chef


Heath Bar Cookies
Adapted from: SimplyRecipes.com

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups coarsely chopped Heath, Skor or chocolate covered toffee bars

Preheat oven to 350.

Sift together flour, salt, and baking soda and set aside. In your stand mixer (or with a hand mixer) cream together softened butter, sugar and brown sugar until fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time, then add vanilla. Slowly mix in flour mixture into butter mixture until well combined. Then fold in chopped Heath candy bars. Cookie dough should be chilled for at least 30 minutes, up to overnight.

Scoop 2 tablespoons of cookie dough, gently form into a ball and place on a parchment covered cookie sheet. Dough balls should be placed about 3 inches apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes, checking after about 8 minutes for browned edges. Once the edges are beginning to brown remove from oven and allow to rest for 2-3 minutes on cookie sheet. Then allow to cool on a cookie sheet (if you can make it that long). And enjoy!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Fresh Strawberry Muffins

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Source: Real Mom Kitchen


Fresh Strawberry Muffins

1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups chopped strawberries
3 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Cream butter and sugar. Add egg and mix well.

Sift flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl. Add flour mixture and milk alternately to butter mixture. Add vanilla. Gently stir in strawberries.

Spoon batter into muffin pans.

Combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over muffins.

Bake at 400ยบ for 20-25 minutes.

Makes one dozen muffins. (Make sure you eat them the day you bake them. They aren’t so great the next day.)

White Chocolate Cookies

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Source: Teen Baker


White Chocolate Cookies

4oz (120g) Butter
4oz (120g) Sugar
2oz (60g) Golden Syrup
8oz(240g) Self Raising Flour
4oz (120g) White Chocolate Chips
A few drops of Vanilla Essence
1 egg, lightly beaten

1. Preheat the oven to 350F/Gas Mark 4/180’C and butter baking sheets - or line with baking parchment.
2. Cream together the butter, sugar and golden syrup.
3. Add the vanilla essence, chocolate chips and the beaten egg.
4. Mix in the flour until all the ingredients are combined to form a firm dough.
5. Form small balls of mixture (about a rounded teaspoonful) onto the prepared baking sheets, allowing a little room for the biscuit to spread out, and press it down.
6. Bake in or near the centre of your pre-heated oven for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
7. Leave to cool on the trays.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Fastest Ever Cinnamon Rolls

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Source: Lick the Bowl Good


Fastest Ever Cinnamon Rolls
from Sweet Cakes


For the Dough:

3/4 cup cottage cheese (4% milk fat)
1/3 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup white sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Grease the sides and bottom of a 9" or 10" springform pan (I used a casserole dish) with cooking spray.

In a food processor, combine the cottage cheese, buttermilk, sugar, melted butter and vanilla. Process until smooth, about 10 seconds. Add the flour, salt, baking powder & baking soda and pulse in short bursts just until the dough clumps together, but don't over-process. The dough will be soft and moist.

Scrape the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and knead it with floured hands four or five times until smooth. With a rolling pin, roll the dough into a 12 x 15-inch rectangle.


For the Filling:

* 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
* 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
* 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
* 1/2 teaspoon allspice
* 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
* 1 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Brush the dough with the melted butter, leaving a half inch border around the edges. In a medium bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, allspice and cloves. Sprinkle the mixture over the buttered area of the dough and pat gently into the surface. Sprinkle the nuts over the sugar mixture (if using).

Starting with the long side, roll up the dough, jelly roll style. Pinch the seam to seal and leave the ends open.

With a serrated knife, cut the roll into twelve equal pieces. Set the rolls in the prepared pan, cut side up. The rolls should fill the pan and touch slightly, but don't worry if there are small gaps.

Bake at 400 for 20 to 28 minutes until golden brown and firm to the touch. Set the pan on a wire rack for five minutes. Run a spatula around the inside edge of the pan and remove the springform ring. Transfer the rolls to a serving plate.


For the Glaze:

2/3 cup powdered sugar
2 to 3 tablespoons of cold milk* (see note)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a small bowl, mix the powdered sugar and 2 Tbsp. milk and vanilla to make a smooth glaze. It should have a thick but pourable consistency, so add up to 1 more tablespoon of milk if necessary.

Drizzle the glaze over the rolls. Let stand 15 minutes and serve.

NOTE: This glaze was too thin for my liking and I added quite a bit more sugar to thicken it up. Start off with a couple teaspoons (not tablespoons) then add more as necessary. It's okay if it's a little on the thicker side because once it hits the hot rolls, it will melt and glaze them nicely.

Margarita Cupcakes

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Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride


Margarita Cupcakes
Adapted from Martha Stewart Living

For the Lime Cupcakes:
3 cups flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp
2 cups sugar
4 eggs, at room temp
3 limes, zested and juiced
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
Tequila-Lime Buttercream, recipe follows

Preheat oven to 325. Prepare muffin tins with paper liners or baking spray.

Whisk flour, baking powder and salt together and set aside. Cream butter and sugar on a high until pale, light, and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Add eggs one at at time, mixing thoroughly before adding the next one. Add lime zest and lime juice. Turn mixer to the low. Add the dry ingredients in three batches, alternating with the buttermilk in two batches. Mix only until just incorporated.

Fill each muffin cup ~3/4 full. Bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer shows only moist crumbs attached, rotating the pans at the halfway point. Allow cupcakes to cool completely in the pans before removing.

Yields: 24 cupcakes


Tequila-Lime Buttercream
Adapted from: Swiss Meringue Buttercream, from Martha Stewart Living

2 cups sugar
8 egg whites
3 sticks butter, room temperature
2 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
1-2 Tbsp Tequila

Place the stand mixer bowl over a simmering pot of water (the bottom of the bowl should not touch the water). Whisk the sugar and egg whites until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture registers 160 degrees with a candy thermometer.

Place bowl on the stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and whisk on high speed until the mixture is cool and holds stiff, glossy peaks (approximately 10 minutes). Change to the paddle attachment and beat in one tablespoon of butter at a time on medium. The mixture might appear curdled but keep going, it will pull back together. Add lime juice and 1 Tbsp tequila. Increase speed to high and beat until the frosting reincorporates and is smooth and fluffy. Beat in remaining tablespoon of tequila, if desired.

Yields: Frosting for 24 cupcakes

Cheeseburger Pie

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Source: The Cookbook Chronicles


Cheeseburger Pie

2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 lb. lean ground beef
1/2 tsp smoked paprika (sweet or hot, your choice)
1 tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
1 tsp chopped thyme
2 large eggs
3 tbsp sweet mustard
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup seasoned bread crumbs

1 ½ cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

In a skillet, heat the olive oil on medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic, and cook until the onions become caramelized, about 7-8 minutes. Add the ground beef, paprika, garlic salt, red pepper flakes (if using) and chopped thyme. Cook the beef until thoroughly browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set the beef and onion mixture in a large mixing bowl.

With a spoon, gently mix in the eggs, mustard, balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, seasoned bread crumbs, and 1/2 cup of shredded cheese. Spoon the mixture into the pie crust, and top with the remaining cup of cheese.
Place the pie on a baking sheet to catch drips. Bake for 40 minutes, until the crust is golden, and the cheese is browned. Serve hot.

Chocolate Cupcakes with Milk Chocolate Sour Cream Frosting

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Source: Baking Bites


Chocolate Cupcakes with Milk Chocolate Sour Cream Frosting

2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream
1 cup coffee, room temperature
(or use water with 1 tbsp inst. coffee dissolved in it)
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips, optional

Preheat oven to 350F. Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.
In a large bowl, sift together flour and cocoa powder. Whisk in sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
In another large bowl, whisk together vegetable oil, eggs, vanilla extract, sour cream and coffee. Add to dry ingredients and stir until well combined and no streaks of flour remain visible. Stir in mini chocolate chips, if using.
Divide evenly into prepared pans.
Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
Cool cupcakes on a wire rack completely before frosting

Makes 24.


Milk Chocolate Sour Cream Frosting
6-oz milk chocolate
4 tbsp butter
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 - 2 cups confectioners’ sugar

Melt together chocolate and butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes, or until close to room temperature, then stir in the sour cream, salt and vanilla extract. When smooth, blend in (with an electric mixer) about 1 cup confectioners’ sugar. Gradually add in remaining confectioners’ sugar until a smooth, spreadable consistency is reached.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Coconut Cupcakes with filling

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Source: Alpineberry


Coconut Cupcakes with filling
(16-18 regular sized cupcakes)

Toasted Coconut:
1 cup (3 ounces) shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)

Coconut Cupcakes:
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
6 ounces (1.5 sticks / 12 tbsp) unsalted butter, at room temp
1 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, lightly beaten, at room temp
1/2 cup (4 fl oz) unsweetened coconut milk
1 tsp coconut rum (Malibu brand works well)
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup (3 ounces) shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)

Coconut Pastry Cream Filling:
3/4 cup whole milk
3/4 cup (6 fl oz) unsweetened coconut milk
1/2 vanilla bean
4 large egg yolks
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons coconut rum (Malibu brand works well)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
4 ounces (1 stick / 8 tbsp) unsalted butter, at room temp
1/2 cup coconut pastry cream (see recipe), cold
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 to 3 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted


To toast the coconut:

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Spread the coconut evenly onto a baking sheet and toast until lightly golden brown, stirring once, about 8 minutes. Turn off the oven and let the coconut sit in the oven until very dry and crunchy, about 10 minutes longer. Let coconut cool before using to decorate the frosted cupcakes.


To make the cupcakes:

Preheat oven to 350F. Line 16-18 standard muffin cups with paper cupcake liners.

Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of stand mixer using the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar together at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes.

About a tablespoon at a time, add the eggs. (If mixture appears curdled, stop adding the eggs, increase speed to high, and beat until mixture is smooth and shiny. Return to medium speed and continue adding the eggs.) Continue beating until mixture is ivory colored. the entire process of adding and beating the eggs should take 3-4 minutes.

Reduce speed to low. In 3 additions, add the flour mixture alternating with 2 additions of the coconut milk. Add the rum and vanilla and beat until smooth. Remove bowl from mixer and fold in the shredded coconut.

Spoon batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling each cup about two-thirds full. Bake at 350F until the tops spring back when lightly pressed and a cake tester comes out clean, about 20 minutes.

Allow cupcakes to cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan and cool completely on wire rack.



To make the pastry cream filling:

Combine the whole milk, coconut milk and vanilla bean and scraped vanilla seeds in a medium nonreactive saucepan and bring to a simmer over low heat.

Whisk together the yolks, sugar and cornstarch in a large bowl. Remove vanilla bean from warm milk. Slowly whisk the warm milk into the egg mixture then return the mixture to the pot over medium heat and bring to a boil, whisking constantly, until thickened. Scrape the mixture into a clean bowl and whisk in the rum and vanilla extract. In order to avoid a skin forming on the pastry cream, cover with plastic wrap pressed directly onto the surface of the pastry cream. Refrigerate until cold, at least 2 hours.


To make the frosting:

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the cream cheese, butter, coconut pastry cream, vanilla extract on low speed. Add 2 cups of the confectioners' sugar and mix until just smooth (don't whip). You may or may not need the remaining 1 cup confectioners' sugar depending on how stiff or sweet you want your frosting.


To fill and frost:

With a paring knife inserted at an angle, gently cut out a cone shaped hole from the cupcake. Spoon about 2 teaspoons coconut pastry cream into the center of the cupcake. Slice off some of the bottom of the cone and replace the top of the cupcake. Alternatively, using a pastry bag, insert the tip into the top of your cupcake and pipe the pastry cream into the center.

Frost your filled cupcakes with the cream cheese frosting. Make sure to cover the cut marks with the frostin. Sprinkle frosting with toasted coconut. Store cupcakes in the refrigerator.

Vanilla Cupcakes

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Source: Williams-Sonoma


Vanilla Cupcakes

Vanilla cupcakes are the perfect base for myriad fillings and frostings. For the richest, fullest flavor and fragrance, use pure vanilla extract. Or, better yet, if you are willing to splurge, add the seeds from a vanilla bean to the batter along with the extract.

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup sugar
6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 whole egg plus 1 egg white, at room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
Vanilla buttercream for frosting cupcakes (see related recipe)
Nonpareils and colored sugars for garnish (optional)


Directions:
Preheat an oven to 350°F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin pan with paper or foil liners.

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together the sugar and butter on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and add the egg and egg white one at a time, beating well after each addition, then beat in the vanilla. Add the flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with the milk in 2 additions, beating until just combined; scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat just until no traces of flour remain, about 30 seconds; do not overbeat.

Divide the batter evenly among the prepared muffin cups, filling each about three-fourths full. Bake until the cupcakes are lightly golden on top and a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 5 minutes. Then transfer the cupcakes to the rack and let cool completely, about 1 hour.

Frost the cupcakes with the buttercream. (The frosted cupcakes can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days; bring to room temperature before finishing.) Garnish the cupcakes with nonpareils and colored sugars and serve. Makes 12 cupcakes.

Adapted from Cupcakes, by Shelly Kaldunski (Weldon Owen, 2008).

Magnificent Moist Golden Cake

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Source: Cookie Madness


Magnificent Moist Golden Cake
Adapted from Shirley Corriher’s Bakewise

1 3/4 cup cake flour (7 oz)
1 3/4 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
4 tbsp unsalted butter cut in 1 tbsp pieces
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c vegetable oil
3 large egg yolks
2 large eggs
1/2 cup heavy cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 2 9-inch round pans with flour-added baking spray and line bottoms with rounds of parchment or use 8 inch round pans for a higher cake.

Put a stand mixer bowl and whisk attachment (or regular bowl and beaters) in the freezer to chill for about 5 minutes.

Thoroughly mix flour and baking powder in a bowl and set side.

Take out the chilled mixing bowl and whip the cream just a little beyond soft peak stage. Scrape it out of the bowl and set it aside.

Put the mixing bowl back onto the stand mixer (no need to rinse) and add the sugar. Heat the water to in the microwave. Add it to the sugar and beat a few seconds to dissolve the sugar, then add the butter, vanilla, and salt. Add the oil mix on medium speed to blend. Sprinkle about 1/3 of the flour mixture over the sugar mixture. Stir by hand — I do this with a heavy duty scraper. Continue adding the flour until all is incorporated. By hand stir in the egg yolks one at a time, and then stir in the whole eggs one at a time.

Fold a little of the whipped cream into the batter to lighten, then fold in the rest.

Pour the batter into pans. Drop the pans onto the counter a few times to get out any bubbles. Bake for about 20-23 minutes, checking at 15 minutes.


Chocolate Frosting:
2 oz unsweetened chocolate
2 oz semi-sweet chocolate
12 tablespoons unsalted or salted butter
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
4 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup milk plus more if needed
2 teaspoons vanilla
Pinch or two of salt

Chocolate Frosting:

Melt both chocolates in microwave or double boiler and set aside to cool.
Beat the butter until creamy. Stir in the cocoa power, about a cup of the powdered sugar, and the cooled melted chocolate. Scrape sides of bowl and beat well’ add remaining powdered sugar, then add milk, vanilla and salt, beating and scraping until you get the consistency you like.

Roasted Shrimp with Garlic and Lemon

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Source: Circle B Kitchen


Roasted Shrimp with Garlic and Lemon

1/4 cup olive oil
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1 lb extra large raw shrimp (peeled, deveined, tail on)
salt and pepper
1 lemon for juicing
1 lemon, cut into wedges or slices


Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Spray a roasting pan or sided baking sheet with cooking spray.

In a large bowl combine the olive oil, garlic, parsley, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper. Spread the shrimp in a single layer in your roasting pan and spread the breadcrumbs over the shrimp, sort of working them around each shrimp so they are fairly covered. Drizzle with a little more olive oil and bake for 8 to 10 minutes depending on the size of your shrimp.

Place the shrimp on a serving platter and drizzle with lemon juice. Serve warm or at room temperature with additional lemon wedges.

Yogurt Coffee Cake with Pecan Filling

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Source: The Perfect Pantry


Yogurt Coffee Cake with Pecan Filling

Baking spray really shines when it comes to Bundt pans, which can be difficult to butter and flour. This very simple cake takes just a few minutes to make, and it's great to have on hand when a friend drops by for afternoon tea. Substitute walnuts for the pecans, if you prefer them. Makes 1 cake (12-16 servings).

1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
1 Tbsp nonfat milk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 Tbsp light brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a Bundt pan with baking spray.

In the bowl of a Kitchenaid-type stand mixer fitted with the paddle, cream the butter and sugar. Add the eggs and beat until combined. Add the yogurt, milk and vanilla, and beat to combine.

In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Slowly add to the mixer, and beat on low speed until the batter is incorporated and smooth. The batter will be thick.

In a small bowl, stir together the pecans, cinnamon and brown sugar, to make the filling.

Place half of the batter in the bottom of the Bundt pan, and smooth it a bit with a rubber spatula. Sprinkle on the pecan filling mixture, and top with remaining batter. Don't worry if the batter doesn't seem to cover the filling completely; it will spread out in the oven.

Bake for 40 minutes. Remove from the oven, and let sit for 5 minutes. Then, invert the cake onto a wire rack and let cool to room temperature before serving. (Can be made ahead and frozen.)

Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

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Source: Cooking Books


Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
Adopted from Buttercup Bakes At Home

For the Cake

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate, melted (easy to do in the microwave)
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup sour cream

Oven preheated to 350. Grease two 12-cup muffin tins for cupcakes, or line with cupcake papers if you're using them. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt, then set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, or with a hand-held mixer, cream the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy. This should take about 2-3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time and beat after each egg until they're incorporated. Add the flour mixture in thirds and alternate with the buttermilk and vanilla. Beat between each addition. The mixture should be smooth once everything is added. Stir in the sour cream, and make sure any ingredients on the bottom of the bowl have been incorporated.

Fill the muffin cups to about 2/3rds full. Bake for 20-22 minutes, until the tops spring back when poked with your finger. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before removing the cupcakes to a cooling wrack. Cool completely before frosting.


For the buttercream

1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons milk
9 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted and allowed to sit until lukewarm
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups powdered sugar

In the bowl of an electric mixer, or with a hand-held mixer, beat the butter until light and creamy. This should take about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the milk in a thin stream and continue beating until smooth. Add the melted chocolate, then add the vanilla and beat for another minute or so. Gradually add the sugar and beat until it reaches a creamy, wonderful, shove-your-face-into-it consistency. Taste as you go so it's exactly as sweet as you want it to be.

You should store the buttercream at room temp, otherwise it will get hard in the fridge. Use it to frost your cupcakes!

Sugar & Gluten Free Yellow Cupcake

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Source: What You Should Know


Sugar & Gluten Free Yellow Cupcake

15 oz white beans canned or cooked
4 eggs
5 tablespoons light butter or margarine
3/4 cup splenda
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
6 tbsp ground almonds
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
cupcake liners

Before you get started, or even buy that $11 bag of almond meal here is what you should know..

You will need a blender of some sort, a hand blender will do, but this is necessary to de-skin the beans. WARNING: make sure the blender does not smell like anything (ie that potato soup you make that week) because the egg yolks will pick-up the smell.


Rinse and blend beans with eggs and extracts with blender or food processor until no bean pieces remain. Cream butter and Splenda in bowl, slowly adding in salt, baking powder and soda, and ground almonds. Wisk into the butter mixture the egg and bean mixture. Place in cupcake liners at bake at 350 F until golden. Depending on size should make 12-18 cupcakes.

These cupcakes are best small as they are so dense.

Top with no sugar added whipped cream or cool whip.

My Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie

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Source: The Cookbook Chronicles


My Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie
makes 34-36 3″ cookies

2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup demerara sugar (no demerara sugar? I’ve also tested this recipe with light brown sugar, and it’s perfectly wonderful)
1 3/4 cups packed, dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup + 1 tbsp bread flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder*
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt (not table salt!), plus either fleur de sel or vanilla salt for sprinkling over top

18 oz. 70% bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped**

*I have also tried this recipe without baking powder, and with 1/2 tsp. baking powder. They are great either way. If you like flatter, slightly richer-tasting cookies, omit the baking powder. If you like puffier, thicker cookies, use 1/2 tsp. baking powder. The version you see in the photo above contain 1/2 tsp. baking powder. Want the best of both worlds? I split the difference and use 1/4 tsp.

**If price is no object, I adore the large El Rey chips. But an entire block of Trader Joe’s “Pound Plus” 70% bar is about $4 for 18 oz., and is what I use for everyday cookies.

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugars on medium speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, and beat well after each addition.

2. Add the vanilla extract, the flours, the baking soda, baking powder, and salt. On low speed, beat the mixture until the dry ingredients are well-incorporated, about 1 minute. Stir in the chopped chocolate.

3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, or a Silpat. Scoop a heaping tablespoon of dough and roll it until it forms a sphere between your palms. Place the dough on the baking sheet (8 cookies per sheet), giving them room to spread. Dust the tops of each ball of dough with a little demerara sugar, and a tiny bit of fleur de sel or vanilla salt.

4. Bake in a 350 degree oven on the middle rack for 12-13 minutes. (Do not bake these on the bottom rack in the oven–the high proportion of brown sugar will cause the bottoms to darken too much.) At this time, the cookies should have taken on a golden brown color all around the edge, but still look very soft in the center–like hot cookie dough. Remove the tray from the oven, and allow the cookies to cool directly on the tray for 10 minutes before eating.

Chocolate Almond Thumbprint Cookies

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Source: One Cake Two Cake


Chocolate Almond Thumbprint Cookies
adapted from Smitten Kitchen

3/4 cup sliced almonds (or hazelnuts), toasted and cooled
2/3 cup sugar
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Chocolate chips (I recommend bittersweet or semisweet)


Pulse almonds, sugar, flour, and salt in a food processor until finely ground. (Be careful not to grind to a paste.) Transfer to a bowl and stir in butter, egg, and extract until combined well. Chill dough, covered, until firm, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Drop level tablespoons of dough 1 inch apart onto baking sheets. Roll dough into balls, then chill until slightly firm, about 10 minutes.

Press 2 or 3 chocolate chips firmly into the top of each ball of cookie dough and bake, 1 sheet at a time, until tops are pale golden and undersides are golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Be careful not to overbake. Transfer cookies to a rack and cool completely.

Layered Brownies

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Source: what megan's making


Layered Brownies

Brownie:
1 c butter, melted
2 c sugar
4 eggs
3/4 cup Hershey's cocoa
1 c flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt

Heat oven to 325-350 degrees. Grease 13x9 baking pan. Stir together butter, sugar, vanilla. Beat in eggs one at a time. Add cocoa, flour, baking powder, salt; beat until well blended. Pour batter into pan and bake 30-35 minutes or until brownies begin to pull away from the sides and toothpick tester comes out clean. Cool completely.


Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 lb powdered sugar
1 stick butter/margarine at room temperature
1 package cream cheese (8 oz) at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla

Beat together butter, cream cheese, vanilla, Add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time until you have used it all and the frosting is smooth. Pour over cooled brownies and chill.


Chocolate Glaze:
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 stick butter or margarine, melted
2-4 Tbsp evaporated milk
1 oz semi-sweet chocolate, melted

Melt chocolate and butter in double broiler, mix with powdered sugar and add milk one tbsp at a time. Try not to make the glaze too wet. Drizzle over brownies when well mixed.

Strawberry Ice Cream

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Source: savory-bites


Strawberry Ice Cream
Adapted from Christy J.

1 quart fresh strawberries, hulled
1 cup heavy cream, divided
1/2 cup milk
3/4 cup white sugar
3 egg yolks
1 tbsp vanilla

Place most of the strawberries into the container of a blender or food processor, and puree until smooth. Pour into a large bowl, and set aside. For the other strawberries, slice into thin chunks. You’ll toss them in at the end

Heat 3/4 cup of the cream and 1/2 cup milk in a saucepan over medium heat until it begins to bubble at the edge of the pan. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, egg yolks, and remaining 1/4 cup cream. Gradually pour the hot cream into the egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Return the mixture to the saucepan, and heat until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon, about 5 minutes. Do not allow the mixture to boil. Strain custard into the strawberry puree through a sieve, mix, and refrigerate until chilled.

Fill an ice cream maker with the mixture, and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Mine churned for around 30 minutes. At the very end, toss in those strawberry chunks. Leave a few for the topping to make it all look pretty. You’ll have to put the ice cream into the freezer for around 30 minutes for it to harden.

Homemade Samoas Ice Cream

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Source: Baking Bites


Homemade Samoas Ice Cream

3-oz dark chocolate, melted
approx 12 shortbread cookies
1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk
2 1/2 cups milk (pref. whole)
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup caramel sauce
2/3 cup toasted coconut

Dip shortbread cookies in melted chocolate and place on a sheet of wax paper. Refrigerate until chocolate is form, about 20 minutes.
Whisk sweetened condensed milk, milk, sugar and vanilla in a large bowl until blended. Chill for 15 minutes.
Pour ice cream mixture into ice cream maker and prepare according to the machine’s directions. When the ice cream is done, transfer to a large freezer-safe container. Chop chocolate-dipped shortbread cookies and stir into ice cream. Stir together caramel sauce and toasted coconut and drizzle into ice cream to create a swirl.
Chill for at least 45 minutes in the freezer before serving to allow ice cream to set up.

Note: Do not use melted caramels as they will not remain soft in the ice cream. A homemade caramel sauce (recipe soon!) or store-bought caramel ice cream sauce is your best bet here.
Yes, you do need an ice cream maker for this recipe, but you can start with store bought vanilla ice cream instead if you like.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Sugar Buns

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Source: Cafe Cosmopolitan


Sugar Buns
They melt in your mouth, not too sweet, with a little crunch on top from the all the syrup and sugar.

1 cup of buttermilk
1/2 cup of vegetable oil
1 tbsp active dry yeast
1/2 tsp. salt
2 1/2 tbsp sugar plus 4 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
1 egg
3 1/2 + cups of unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 stick butter softened + 1 tbsp butter for the pan

For the syrup: lemon zest of 1/2 lemon or natural lemon flavor, 4 tbsp sugar + 2 tbsp water


Mix together buttermilk and oil and warm up in the microwave oven for about 40 sec. to a minute. Mixture should be warm, but not hot.

Add yeast, egg, salt, 2.5 tsp sugar and wisk.

Add flour and knead well - the dough should be very soft, but not sticky, add a little more flour if the dough remains sticky after kneading.

Place the covered bowl with the dough in a warm place for about 1 hour.

After the dough has risen knead it down and roll to about 1/4" thick.

Spread 1/2 stick of the butter all over the dough and evenly sprinkle 4 tbsp of sugar on top of the butter. Roll the dough up, jelly roll fashion, cut 12 slices and place these cut side uppermost in the pan (use 1 tbsp of butter to spread on the bottom and the sides of the pan) close to each other. For these particular buns I always use Pyrex baking dish - it's just the perfect size and lets the dough to brown evenly from top to bottom. Let them rise for another 30-45 minutes, brush with a beaten egg, than bake in pre-heated oven on 375F for about 30 minutes.

For the glaze: boil together sugar, water and the zest of a lemon for about 2 minutes.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Butterscotch Chocolate Blondies

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Source: Leslie Sarna


Butterscotch Chocolate Blondies

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temp
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt (I like kosher best)
About 8 oz. chocolate chips, butterscotch chips or a combo of both


Grease a 8 x 8 inch pan and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a bowl, whisk together the butter and sugars until they are smooth. Then whisk in the eggs and vanilla. Slowly stir in the flour and salt. Stir in the chips : ) and pour into the greased baking dish.

Bake for about 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Dulce de Leche

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Source: Serious Eats


Dulce de Leche

Adapted from Make it Fast, Cook it Slow by Stephanie O'Dea.

2 (14-ounce) cans sweetened condensed milk
Oven safe ramekins
Water

Use a 4-quart slow cooker. Find an oven-safe dish to insert into your stoneware. You can use individual ramekins or a casserole dish. Carefully pour water all around the dish, until the water reaches three-quarters of the way up the sides of the dish. Open the cans of sweetened condensed milk and pour into the inserted dish(es). Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.

Sugar Cookie Bars

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Source: And Now for Something Completely Delicious


Sugar Cookie Bars
From The Repressed Pastry Chef
Makes 24 bars

1 cup butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
5 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 13 x 18 inch sheet pan and line with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking soda and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixture, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes on medium high. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing after each. Add the vanilla. Add the flour mixture in 2 addition, mixing until just combined.

Press the cookie dough into the sheet pan, using a greased spatula or parchment paper to spread it evenly. Bake for 10-15 minutes until lightly golden and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool completely.

Buttercream frosting

1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
4 cups confectioners sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4-5 tablespoons milk
Pinch of salt

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the shortening and butter until combined and smooth. Add the vanilla and salt and mix until combined. Add the confectioners sugar 1 cup at a time, mixing after each addition. Cream together on medium high for about a minute. Add the milk 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing until smooth. I only needed 4 tablespoons of milk to get a light spreadable consistency, but you may find you need more.

Spread onto cooled cookies. Slice into bars and serve.

Southern Coconut Cake

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Source: And Now for Something Completely Delicious


Southern Coconut Cake
From Sky High: Irresistible Triple-Layer Cakes
Makes one 8-inch layered cake

5 egg whites
1/2 cup milk
1-2 tablespoons coconut flavoring**
3 cups cake flour
2 1/3 cups sugar
4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1 1/2 cups sweetened flaked coconut

For the Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting:
12 ounces cream cheese, slightly chilled
1/2 cup plus 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup water
3 egg whites

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour two 8-inch cake pans and line with parchment paper (The original recipe is for a triple layer cake, but I only have two 8-inch pans and so I adjusted the cooking time for two thicker layers instead of three thinner layers.)

Put the egg whites in a bowl and whisk slightly. Add the 1/2 cup milk and coconut flavoring and mix thoroughly. Set aside.

In the mixing bowl of an electric mixer, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add the butter and coconut milk and combine on low speed. Increase speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.

Add the egg white mixture in 3 additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl and mixing just long enough to incorporate between additions. Divide the batter among the prepared pans and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow the cakes to cool in their pans for 10 minutes, then turn them out onto cooling racks to cool completely.

To make the frosting, put the cream cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on medium speed until fluffy and smooth. Add the butter 1-2 tablespoons at a time, mixing until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla and mix until creamy. Set aside.

Combine the granulated sugar and water in a small heavy saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Continue to cook, without stirring, until the syrup reaches the soft-ball stage, 238 degrees F on a candy thermometer.

Meanwhile, have the egg white in the bowl of an electric mixer, ready for when the syrup is at the proper temperature. Slowly add the hot syrup to the egg whites, while mixing on medium-low. Take care not to cause the hot syrup to splash. When all of the syrup is incorporated, raise the speed to medium-high and beat until the mixture has cooled to body-temperature and it forms stiff peaks.

With the mixer on medium-low, add the cream cheese and butter mixture one spoonful at a time. When all is incorporated, raise the speed to medium and whip until the frosting is smooth and fluffy.

Frost the cooled cakes and cover with shredded coconut.

**Add the amount of coconut flavoring depending on how coconutty you want the cake to taste. Add 3 tablespoons even, if you want. Or, if you'd rather tone down the coconut flavor, substitute for 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract.

Toffee Nut Bars

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Source: Bite Size Baker


Toffee Nut Bars
adapted from Great Cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup (1 1/3 sticks) unsalted butter, slightly firm
2 cups lightly packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons medium-fine chopped pecans (or walnuts), divided
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 10″x15″ jelly roll pan.

In a small mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.

Beat the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer on medium speed until lightened in color. Add the brown sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, and beat until lightened in color, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping down sides of bowl as needed, then add the vanilla. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients in three additions. Mix just to incorporate.

Fold in 1 cup of walnuts and the chocolate chips using a rubber spatula. Spread the mixture in the pan and smooth the top. Sprinkle the remaining walnuts on top.

Bake for 16 to 18 minutes or until the sides are lightly browned. Do not over-bake. Cool for 1 hour, then cut to desired size and shape.

Note: Because I love chewy cookie bars, I under-baked mine by about 3 minutes.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Coconut Pecan Chocolate Chunk Bars

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Source: Lisa is Cooking


Coconut Pecan Chocolate Chunk Bars
Adapted from: Nick Malgieri’s “The Modern Baker”

Ingredients:

Base Dough:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spoon and level method)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 ounces (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar

Topping:

1 1/4 cups light brown sugar, firmly packed
4 large eggs
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups (1- 7 ounce package) sweetened shredded coconut
2 cups (8 ounces) pecan pieces, coarsely chopped
12 ounces bittersweet chocolate cut into 1/4” to 1/2” pieces


One 9X13X2 - inch pan, buttered and lined with buttered parchment (bottom and sides).

Tip: Having the buttered parchment extend beyond the rim of the pan by a couple inches all around will help you to lift the slab out of the pan once it has cooled.


Method:

Pre-heat oven to 350 F and set rack to the lowest position.

To start the dough, mix the flour, baking powder and salt together in a bowl, set aside.

Beat the butter and sugar for the dough at medium speed, in a mixer with a paddle attachment, until light and soft, about 2-3 minutes.

Set the mixer to it’s lowest speed and add the flour mix, scraping down the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Mix until the dough is smooth, but do not over mix.

Place the dough into the pan, and gently press into place with your palms and fingers without compressing it too much. Bake the dough until it is slightly puffed in the center, and just starting to color, about 15 minutes.

In the meantime, prepare the topping. Place the brown sugar in a large bowl, and with the rubber spatula, mix the eggs into the sugar one at a time, stirring until smooth after each addition. Add the granulated sugar, and vanilla - then stir in the coconut and pecan pieces. Finally, mix in the chocolate chunks, having first placed them in a small strainer to sift away any dust formed when chopping the chocolate. Removing the dust will ensure a “cleaner” looking bar in the end.

Remove the pan from the oven when the dough is ready and spread the topping onto the partially cooked base layer.

Bake until the filling is set and nicely golden brown, about 20-25 minutes (it took us 30 minutes)

Cool the pan on a rack, and lift the slab out of the pan and onto a cutting board before it has cooled completely. Remember - excess flaps of parchment here really help.

Once cooled completely, cut into 2-inch squares to serve.

Storage: Keep at room temperature if serving within a day - if not, wrap and freeze them, defrost and bring to room temperature before serving.

Butterscotch-Pecan Cake

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Source: Martha Stewart / Lisa is Cooking


Butterscotch-Pecan Cake

FOR THE CAKES
Vegetable oil cooking spray, for pans
3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
10 ounces (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 1/2 cups packed dark-brown sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 teaspoons rum, preferably golden or dark
1 1/4 cups buttermilk, room temperature

FOR THE FROSTING
12 ounces unsalted butter (3 sticks), 1 stick left whole, 2 sticks cut into small pieces, softened
2 cups packed dark-brown sugar
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
20 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted

FOR THE BUTTERSCOTCH SAUCE
2/3 cup packed dark-brown sugar
3 ounces (6 tablespoons) butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 cups pecan halves, toasted and chopped, plus more halves for garnish


Directions

1. Make the cakes: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Coat three 8-by-2-inch round cake pans with cooking spray, line with parchment, and coat parchment. Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.

2. Beat butter and brown sugar with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, then add vanilla and rum. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in 2 additions, alternating with buttermilk. Raise speed to medium-high, and beat for 2 minutes. Divide batter among pans.

3. Bake cakes until golden brown and testers inserted in centers come out clean, about 40 minutes. Transfer pans to wire racks, and let cool slightly. Invert cakes onto racks. Let cool.

4. Make the frosting: Melt 1 stick butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat until dark golden brown, about 10 minutes. Add brown sugar, cream, and salt, stirring until sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil, whisking constantly, and cook for 3 minutes. Transfer to a mixer bowl, and let cool.

5. With machine running, add remaining butter, a few pieces at a time, and beat on low until incorporated. Raise speed to medium, and beat for 2 minutes. In another bowl, beat cream cheese and confectioners' sugar on medium-high until fluffy and smooth, about 3 minutes. Add brown-butter mixture to cream cheese, and beat until smooth. Cover, and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours (or overnight, beating on low speed before using).

6. Make the butterscotch sauce: Mix sugar, butter, corn syrup, and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat, and cook, stirring, until sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil, and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, and whisk in cream. Return to heat, and cook for 2 minutes. Let cool slightly.

7. To assemble the cake: Trim tops of 2 cake layers and top and bottom of third (this will be the middle) to create flat exposed surfaces. Brush 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons butterscotch sauce on cut sides. Let cool. Spread 1 cup frosting on 1 layer, then place middle layer on top, sauce side down. Spread 1 cup frosting on middle layer, then place third layer on top, sauce side down. Spread 1 cup frosting on top and sides. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.

8. Using an offset spatula, spread remaining frosting on top and sides of cake. Press chopped pecans on sides, and garnish top with halves. Transfer cake to a serving plate or cake stand. Refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours (or up to 2 days, covered).

Almond-less Almond Joy Cake

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Source: A Southern Grace


Almond-less Almond Joy Cake

1 box devil's food cake mix
1 (3.4 oz) box coconut cream instant pudding and pie filling
4 large eggs
1 cup water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup flaked coconut

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour a bundt pan.
Combine the cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, water oil, and extract in large bowl. Beat until moistened. Stir in coconut and pour into pan.
Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Sweet and Buttery Yeast Rolls

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Source: Southern Grace Gourmet


Sweet and Buttery Yeast Rolls

Ingredients

4 1/2 – 5 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons or 1 package active dry yeast
1 cup milk
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 eggs

Method

1. In a small saucepan, combine milk, sugar, butter, and salt. Heat just until warm, about 120 to 130 degrees.
2. In your stand mixer, add 2 cups flour and yeast. Add warm milk mixture and eggs. Beat on low speed until combined, being sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
3. Add your dough hook to the mixer, beat in as much of the flour as you can, I used 4 1/2 cups total flour. Knead on medium for 8 – 10 minutes, or until the dough is stiff, smooth and elastic.
4. Cover the dough, and let it rise in a warm place, until it doubles in size. This will take about one hour. Then punch the dough done, divide it in half, and let it rise another 10 minutes.
5. Shape the dough in 24 balls, or any other shape you want. Place the shapes on a baking sheet. Cover and let rise until they double again, another 30 minutes. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Bake the rolls for 12- 15 minutes, or until golden brown.

--- Make ahead method ---

Prepare as stated above, except after shaping the dough into desired roll shapes, you should place them on a baking sheet, and cover them loosely with plastic wrap. Store in the refrigerator for 2-24 hours, or freeze for up to 2 months. If frozen, defrost in the refrigerator first. Remove the rolls and let them stand at room temperature for 30 minutes prior to baking. Bake as instructed above.

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Frosting

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Source: Happy Tummy


Dark Chocolate Cupcakes
Adapted from Cooks Illustrated
Makes 12 cupcakes or 30 mini cupcakes

8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, cut into 4 pieces
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup (1 1/2 oz) Dutch-processed cocoa
3/4 cup (3 3/4 oz) unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
2 large eggs
3/4 cup (5 1/4 oz) turbinado sugar (Sugar in the Raw)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/2 cup (4 oz) sour cream

Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position; heat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pan with baking-cup liners.

Combine butter, chocolate and cocoa in medium heatproof bowl. Set bowl over saucepan containing barely simmering water; heat mixture until butter and chocolate are melted and whisk until smooth and fully combined. Set aside to cool until just warm to touch.

Whisk flour, baking soda and baking powder in small bowl to combine.

Whisk eggs in second medium bowl to combine; add sugar, vanilla and salt and whisk until fully incorporated. Add cooled chocolate mixture and whisk until combined. Sift about one-third of flour mixture over chocolate mixture and whisk until combined; whisk in sour cream until combined; then sift in remaining flour mixture and whisk batter until it is homogenous and thick.

Divide batter evenly among muffin pan cups. Bake until skewer inserted into center of cupcakes comes out clean (18-20 minutes for cupcakes, 13-15 minutes for mini cupcakes).

Cool cupcakes in muffin pan on wire rack until cool enough to handle, about 15 minutes. Carefully lift each cupcake from muffin pan and set on wire rack. Cool to room temperature before icing, about 30 minutes.


Salted Caramel Frosting
Adapted from CHOW
Makes enough for 12 cupcakes or 30 mini cupcakes

1/8 cup turbinado sugar (Sugar in the Raw)
1 tablespoons water
1/8 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 tablespoons unsalted butter (3/4 sticks), at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup powdered sugar

Briefly stir together granulated sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Continue cooking, without stirring, until mixture turns dark amber in color, about 6 to 7 minutes.

Remove from heat and slowly add in cream and vanilla, stirring with a wooden spoon until completely smooth. Set aside until cool to the touch, about 25 minutes.

Combine butter and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat on medium-high speed until light in color and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low, add powdered sugar, and mix until completely incorporated.

Turn mixer off and scrape down the sides of the bowl, then add caramel. Beat frosting on medium-high speed until airy and thoroughly mixed, about 2 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until stiff, about 45 minutes, before using.