Updated with new photos on February 13, 2012
I know this isn’t a new post, but there are several forthcoming! However, with Valentine’s Day just around the corner (okay, it’s tomorrow…yikes!) and everything red velvet popping up all over the place, I wanted to share the Red Velvet Cupcakes that I made for C’s “Cupid & Cupcakes” event at work since they came out so cute (if I do say so myself!). This is SUCH an easy recipe, and they turn out absolutely fantastic every time. I never get a chance to try out new cupcake flavors on C’s co-workers anymore because they are always requesting these ones!
I frosted these using a disposable pastry bag and a large star tip, then pressed an unwrapped Hershey’s kiss in the center and sprinkled them with both red and pink colored sugar.
C found me these adorable cupcake papers at Target; they are red with colored hearts around the sides, and on the bottom they say “Be Mine.” Hard to see in these photos, but they are super cute, trust me!
If you end up making these for your valentine (or for any other reason!) I’d love to hear how they turn out! The recipes for both the cupcakes and the cream cheese frosting are in my original post below.
Originally posted on Blogger on July 24, 2011
I made red velvet cupcakes last weekend for my 1000 Cooks for the Cure Party (well, I attempted to make pink velvet cupcakes, actually…they came out as more fuschia-ish in the end…but I used my normal red velvet recipe for them), and I was going to include all of my party recipes in one post, but then realized that would have ended up being the world’s longest post. Sooooo we’re breaking it down.
Originally posted on Blogger on September 1, 2011
I’ve been neglecting this little blog of mine like it is nobody’s business lately, and I hate that. I love this space, and I love writing here, so being as absent as I have been has killed me. Unfortunately, life has just gotten in the way. Luckily, it’s been for good reason! For those of you that don’t know already, I let out my big secret last week: I’m pregnant! Eek! C and I are super thrilled and cannot wait for March 13th (or whatever day around that time that this little guy/girl decides to show up) to get here. What does this have to do with me slacking on my blog? Well…I’ve been so freakin’ tired that all I’ve done for the past month or so is go to work, go home, go to bed, lather, rinse, repeat! Oh, and finish up my school work for the semester.
Finally, though, now that the second trimester is about to show its happy, smiling (we’re hoping, anyway!) face, I seem to have a bit of energy back. I have been cooking and baking, I just haven’t had the time to blog about it, so I am so excited to start sharing my recent adventures with you! And with that, I’ve decided to start by sharing my recipe for pineapple upside down cupcakes with you.
Originally posted on Blogger on July 5, 2011
I was eavesdropping on Twitter the other day when I saw mention of a Pie Party going on across the internet. I had no choice…I had to butt in. I quickly found out (through Marnely of Cooking with Books) that Shauna of Gluten Free Girl and the Chef had set up a pie party through Facebook. The goal of the party? To get people to bake a pie, any pie, by July 5th and then share a photo of that pie on Facebook. How could I not join in?? I haven’t made a pie in ages, so this was a perfect excuse to do so.
Originally posted on Blogger on June, 1, 2011
When I cook at home (cook, not bake!) I do try to use fresh and relatively healthy ingredients as often as possible. Last night, however, I found myself with limited time and threw together a quickie meal. I went with the idea of a pizza hot pocket, but instead of just popping one full of preservatives and such into the microwave, I quickly created this out of items I had on hand, including a container of Philly Savory Garlic Cooking Creme that C purchased by accident awhile ago. Since this is a quickie recipe, none of the ingredients require accurate measuring; just toss them together in whatever amount looks good to you!
Ricotta cheese (I used Sargento part-skim ricotta, but any would do just fine)
Philly Savory Garlic Cooking Creme (or another garlic cheese spread of your choice)
Shredded cheese (I used a “pizza mix”)
Mini pepperonis (turkey pepperoni works great, too!)
Tube of crescent rolls (I had Pillsbury extra large crescent rolls on hand)
Preheat the oven to the temperature listed on the tube of dough (mine was 350).
Mix the ricotta with enough of the cooking creme to add the garlic flavor and enough creaminess for your liking.
Unroll the crescent roll dough and use your fingers to pinch every two triangle rolls together so that you have several rectangles of dough. You could also use a tube of thin crust pizza dough for this, which would give you a crispier crust, or really almost any biscuit/roll/crust dough. I just used what I had in the house.
Spread a generous amount of the ricotta/creme mixture over about two thirds of each dough rectangle, leaving space around the edges to seal the crust (see photo below).
Sprinkle the mixture with mini pepperoni and shredded cheese.
Fold the dough over on top of itself, carefully sealing around the edges and moving each little packet to a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper and sprayed with cooking spray.
Using a sharp knife, cut a slit or two for venting into the top of each packet.
Slide these goodies into the oven and let them bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown and crispy. Let cool for a few minutes, and then dig in!
Originally posted on Blogger on May 18, 2011
We lived in the UK for about a year after I graduated college (C is British), and while I had never heard many glowing reviews of British food, I did find that I was VERY fond of their “takeaways” while living there. One of my favorite items from our local Fish & Chip shop was the cheese and onion pasty. Pasties are basically savory hand pies filled with a variety of delicious combinations of meat, cheese, and veggies.
Here is a quick dinner I whipped up a couple of nights ago for C and I. They are incredibly easy, do not need any sort of real recipe, and can easily be frozen to keep on hand for even quicker meals.
cheese (I use pre-shredded colby or cheddar jack, usually)
frozen puff pastry
I preheat the oven at 375, then set the puff pastry out to defrost. While it defrosts I slice the onions and put them in a saute pan with a pat of butter and some olive oil. On medium-low to medium heat I saute the onions until they are soft and slightly brown and then transfer them to a mixing bowl. I let the onions cool a bit while I put parchment paper onto a cookie sheet and spray it with cooking spray. I then unfold the puff pastry and let it continue defrosting. Once that is done, I add the cheese (usually a full bag of shredded cheese) to the mixing bowl along with some salt and pepper and whatever other seasonings strike my fancy at that moment. After mixing everything together, I cut each sheet of defrosted puff pastry into four pieces, then spoon a generous amount of filling onto half of each piece. Then the pastry gets folded over and sealed with a fork before being moved onto the cookie sheet. Once they are all laid out on the cookie sheet, I spray them lightly with cooking spray and cut slits in each little package. They look like this:
Then I pop them in the oven for 35-40 minutes, and they come out all golden, delicious, and oozing with cheesy oniony flavor. Like I said, these little packets of amazingness can be made with pretty much any filling. Try shepherd’s pie, with ground beef, veggies, and chunks of potato! Or chicken pot pie filling! The possibilities are endless, really.
Originally posted on Blogger on May 16, 2011
When the key lime tree growing in a pot in front of our house is bursting with fruit like it is right now, it means only one thing to me: time to make key lime cupcakes! This year I’ve got all sorts of other key lime ideas (key lime tiramisu, key lime cookies, key lime pie, key lime ice cream, the possibilities are endless!), but I had to start with my classic favorite cupcakes. These cupcakes aren’t difficult to make, but they are definitely a bit time-consuming. I’ve had some health issues this year that have kept me from baking as often as I like due to mobility problems, so now that I am feeling better most days I have been itching to get back in there. This recipe is great for that because of the different steps; they took me two days to finish this time, but I got to rest in between. Plus, they are totally worth waiting for, if I do say so myself (and I do).
I made this recipe up because the key lime cupcakes I had had from various bakeries and found in various cookbooks just weren’t…key-lime-y…enough for me. I like a seriously tart dessert with tons of delicious citrus flavor, so I was intent on infusing every part of this treat with some lime component. I started with my favorite yellow cake recipe, taken from Cupcakes! and adapted it slightly by using a bit less sugar and adding a generous amount of key lime zest to the batter. Elinor’s recipe is so great in part because it uses only oil as the fat, no butter, so it can be used last minute instead of having to wait for butter to soften. The first time I made it I worried it would have an effect on the cake but they always, always come out moist and delicious. So, I start by making regular sized cupcakes, adding the key lime zest to the batter at the very end. Using an ice cream scoop sprayed with cooking spray, I divvy the batter up in the cupcake pans and pop them in the oven.