Archive | March, 2010

Two completely different brownie cupcakes

28 Mar

It’s a tease that my mom asked for brownie cupcakes for her little get-together last Friday. One week until I can bring chocolate back into my life and I’m mixing brownie batter, which definitely scores in my top five favorite batters. I have no idea how these two cute cuppies tasted, but reviews were great on both accounts.

So this pictures isn’t all that appetizing. All Bran… fat-free brownie mix… water… and baking soda, not quite the tempting combo I’m used to in my kitchen, but my mom asked for me to test out this One Point Chocolate Muffin recipe and of course I was going to make it for her. The really interesting part about this recipe is that you mix the cereal and water together and let it sit for 15 minutes and it turns into the “glue” of the recipe. She said they were good, but I wasn’t able to taste the batter of the final product, so I’m not quite sure. She served it with Cool Whip & strawberries. I do like the idea of stretching a box of brownies though, this recipe made 30 instead of the 20 or so you get out of the box alone. Either way, super cute little guys

So from All Bran brownies, we move to super delicious frosted & sprinkled brownies. One of my best friends, Amy, turned 23 last week and was having a party last night in Wisconsin. I honestly thought I had no chance of getting the night off of work, so I was pretty sure I wouldn’t make it. However, I have been having a super lucky week and that included having Saturday and Sunday off of work. Instead of telling Amy that Elizabeth and I were coming for a visit we decided to surprise her, and it worked perfectly! And what’s a birthday surprise without Jell-O shots & dessert? So I made my famous Jell-O jiggler shots and brownie cupcakes with my favorite vanilla buttercream and multi-colored Sprinkles.

My Jell-O shots are great because they are mess-free and delicious, I always make them a little differently, but take the basic technique from the Jell-O Lounge. They’re wonderful.

As for the cupcakes, I doctor-up a boxed brownie mix, added some sprinkles in the batter and scooped them into cupcakes liners, which Elizabeth suggests I should spray with nonstick next time. Maybe next time I will forgo the liners all together. Then I decided to pipe some frosting into each little brownie, then frost.

I finished them off with my go-toΒ vanilla buttercream recipe and thought it would be fun to break out my Wilton sanding sugars to decorate. Making brownies as cupcakes is great because there’s no need for cutting them and risking undercooking the middles or overcooking the edges, and it’s also fun for people to be a little surprised when they take a bite and realize they’re getting fudgy brownie goodness.

It was a fantastic surprise and an excellent end to my lucky week, I hope the luck continues!

oatberries again

24 Mar

Last night I needed to bake, and not just because I’ve been slacking lately. I needed to bake because I’m entering a “Best Baker Search” contest. I read about it last week through a link from Twitter and I felt like it was a great opportunity for me and that I had to do it. I filled out the questionnaire right away and got a response asking for a video, which I put it off until the last minute, as always, but finally I finished it last night – and used my Oatberry recipe for the application. (I actaully ended up YouTube-ing the video.)

I picked this one for a few reasons, #1- this is MY recipe, so that’s a cool twist, #2 – it’s quick and easy, #3 – it does not involve chocolate (still lent), and #4 – everyone loves them and so the extras were fantastic for elizabeth, me, my mom & work (plus I froze a cookie muffin for my dad).

Even though it’s my recipe, I had to make a swap, this one is a keeper. I didn’t have a full cup of regular oats, so I added 2 packages of Cinnamon Roll instant oats. It was a goooooood decision. These cookies always get rave reviews but I literally had people telling me I am amazing at work today when I handed them out. In fact, my one manager said he wanted to eat the whole container and my other manager told me, “you are like the female Wright Brothers of cookies.” I love when people love food I make πŸ™‚ Happy Wednesday! More baking this Saturday, I promise!

Nicole’s gluten-free coconut rochers

15 Mar

It looks as if Saturday mornings have turned into my bake days. I think my manager has it written down somewhere that I am not available to work on Saturday mornings, which isn’t true, but I”m not complaining. It is nice to have a consistent shift off. So pretty much Saturday mornings I bake and then bring treats to work at night. Every time I do this I forget that I previously promised my friend Nicole, who is gluten intolerant, that I will bring something special for her and then I feel terrible – but I finally remembered this week!

These coconut rochers weren’t specifically fantastic, but they weren’t difficult, costly or time consuming either. Three ingredients, that’s it. Sugar, 1 egg and shredded coconut. I made a very similar “cookie” (i guess that’s what they would be labeled as) when I went to pastry camp two summers ago, and remembered that even though I’m not a huge coconut fan, I enjoyed them. Surprisingly, they don’t have a strong coconut flavor at all, they’re kinda like little cereal bites. I think next time I make them I will use my pastry camp recipe and also use a different pan. I baked them on a baking sheet topped with parchment this time and the bottoms didn’t crisp so well. Oh well, Nicole liked them, so it was a success πŸ™‚

finding an excellent chocolate replacement!

9 Mar

It’s about halfway through lent and I have been craving something super chocolate-y, lucky me, last week Hershey’s Cinnamon Chips were on sale at Target. Interesting note on these chips, they are super cinnamon-y when you taste test them out of the bag, but once they’re mixed into something sweet, they’re great.

I searched around for a good-looking recipe to use them in, and I found the perfect one – Oatmeal Cinnamon Chip Cookies – but, as I often do, I switched it up adding some other spices and also made cookie cubes instead of cookies. This was mostly due to the fact that I wanted to bring them to work Saturday night and I didn’t have a whole lot of time, so it was easier to plop the dough in a 9X13 instead of portioning out cookies, but either way they were fabulous, literally amazing. And the raw dough, which only I got to enjoy, could replace chocolate chip cookie dough any day. I’ve found my lenten recipe! Next time I think I will just try chocolate chip cookies replacing the choco-s with the cinnamon-ies… or maybe once my chocolate-free lent is over, I can combine both!

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