Posts Tagged ‘powdered sugar’

Rainbow-Surprise Lemon Cake & Surprise-Inside Cakes Cookbook Giveaway

Traditionally frosting is the star of cake decorating, but what about the inside? Amanda Rettke proves that it’s the inside that counts with her cookbook, “Surprise-Inside Cakes”.

SurpriseInsideCakes hc c

When it comes to decorating cakes I am not an expert. Upon receiving the Surprise-Inside Cakes cookbook by Amanda Rettke (I Am Baker) I was a bit intimidated to go beyond the recipes for different layers of color and/or frosting without any cutting and cake-puzzle-assembling. It is truly impressive how many different interiors she was able to design and execute. But after reading through a few of the more complicated recipes I realized that with the right tools and some patience, paired with her excellent step-by-step photos and directions, I might be able to pull it off.

I really loved the smiley face cake and argyle cake but decided to start out small with one of the easier recipes – the rainbow cake. First I had to decide on a cake flavor. Amanda provides recipes for perfectly level cakes and frostings which can be used to create any of the surprise-inside cakes. However, you could also use your own recipe or even a boxed mix, I won’t tell. If using other recipes you may end up with a domed top which will need to be leveled off, unless of course you know that particular recipe does come out flat. Either way, a cake with these interior designs will look made from scratch no matter what recipe you choose.

Rainbow Balloon Lemon Cake 1

To see if a boxed mix would work, I decided to doctor up a white cake mix to create a lemon cake. (Did you know that rainbows taste like lemons? Well, at least this one does.) The cakes did dome but that was easily solved by slicing off the tops with a long serrated knife. After that I followed Amanda’s detailed instructions for assembling and frosting the cakes. I don’t think I’ve ever frosted such a smooth cake before.

Rainbow Balloon Lemon Cake 2

Upon that beautiful white scene I created my own balloon decorations using the cake-top scraps and leftover frosting. It looks like fondant doesn’t it!? Nope it’s something even better, something I have decided to call cake-ball-fondant! Yup, I am a genius. Instead of forming balls to be dipped in chocolate, roll flat with a rolling pin and cut out shapes with cookies cutters. Consider your mind blown.

Rainbow Balloon Lemon Cake 3

In order to find out exactly how I colored and assembled this cake you’ll have to read about it in the Surprise-Inside Cakes cookbook! To assist in keeping a copy into your hands asap I am giving away a copy of this awesome cookbook to one lucky reader. After checking out the recipe use the Rafflecopter widget at the bottom of this post to enter.

Rainbow Balloon Lemon Cake 4

One year ago: Baked Eggs with Crispy Hash Brown Crust

Two years ago: Cheesy Cat Treats

Three years ago: Funfetti Cake Batter Smoothie
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Cookie Dough Oreo Cake

By now I am sure all of you are aware of one of the newest additions to the Oreo lineup, cookie dough. Personally I think that homemade versions such as Lindsay’s (Love & Olive Oil) and Tessa’s peanut butter ones (Handle the Heat) would win hands down. For the purposes of this cake however, homemade Oreos were not necessary. Chopped up Cookie Dough Oreos were mixed into the chocolate cake and used as decoration, but the real purpose of this creation was to make a cake that resembled a giant Cookie Dough Oreo covered in frosting. And if I do say so myself, I believe I succeeded.

Cookie Dough Oreo Cake 1

I made this cake for my step-mom’s birthday. It consists of super moist layers of chocolate cake with bits of Cookie Dough Oreo which are sandwiched around a layer of cookie dough filling, then swaddled in cookie dough frosting and topped with chocolate chips and more Cookie Dough Oreos. There’s some serious cookie-on-cookie action going on here. If you’re feeling really ballsy, serve it up with a scoop of Cookie Dough Oreo ice cream. I stuck with plain vanilla.

Cookie Dough Oreo Cake 2

One year ago: Pepperoni Pasta Bake

Three years ago: Butterscotch Haystack Cookies
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White Hot Chocolate Cupcakes

After living in Memphis for nearly 7 years I finally realized how much I am not used to cold weather anymore. Thankfully the temperatures were in the 50s and 60s over the weekend while my apartment was packed up into storage, but it promptly plummeted. Unfortunately my warmest coat is hidden away in some box because I didn’t look at the weather forecast before packing. For having a PhD I do some silly things sometimes.

This kind of weather calls from serious amounts of hot beverages and food. I say that and realize these cupcakes are not as warm as a cup of hot chocolate but they certainly will warm your heart. I’ve had White Hot Chocolate Cupcakes on my to-do list for way too long, I think since last winter. But I finally tackled them and a good thing too because they were a huge hit! People were calling dibs on the remaining last few.

White Hot Chocolate Cupcakes

One year ago: Blackberry Swirl Meyer Lemon Curd Ice Cream
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Pass the Cook Book Club: White Chocolate Mousse with Frangelico

It’s time to pass around another cookbook! This month we picked recipes from The Silver Palate Good Times Cookbook by Sheila Lukins.

PtCBC 2014

Since Valentine’s Day is approaching (and I happened to have most of the ingredients for this recipe), I decided to make the white chocolate mousse. White chocolate is is my favorite kind of chocolate and I couldn’t deny it in mousse form. I was slightly disturbed by how many dirty dishes were created in the making of this dessert, but thankfully it was well worth it (Kita, you were right). Want to make it more festive for Valentine’s Day? Add red food coloring or top it with colorful red/white/pink sprinkles.

Want to join the fun next month? Click on over to the Facebook group page to sign up!

White Chocolate Mousse

One year ago: Meyer Lemon Greek Yogurt Pancakes

Two years ago: Green Monster Spinach Smoothie
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Southern Caramel Cake

Ten days from now I will pack up the apartment at which I have lived for the past 4.5 years. Currently I have a whopping 8 boxes packed, which means there’s a lot of work to be done between now and then. And what better way to start the festivities than baking a cake! That’s productive and a good use of time, right?

Southern Caramel Cake 1

The only caramel cake I have ever had was from Kroger and was quite delicious. Since then I have been meaning to make a homemade version and was finally inspired when Beth told me that she had been dreaming about caramel cake – although that was right before we left for the winter break so I didn’t make it until now. While baking it I texted her saying I was going to make her day tomorrow, since I was going to be bringing it by the lab the next day. She said it tasted just like her Great Aunt Sally’s from when she was a kid! Winner.

Southern Caramel Cake 2

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Meyer Lemon Curd Cupcakes for Two

The more I pack, the more stuff I realize I have (and wonder how more than one person could have ever survived living in this apartment). In an effort to reduce the unnecessary clutter, as is typical with packing/moving, I have a separate set of boxes that are being filled with things to donate or give away. Some of it is stuff that I have debated donating in the past but somehow convinced myself to hold on to. Just goes to show that you should trust your instincts when you cannot answer the question, “when will I need/wear this?” Of course then there are things like my highschool tennis hoodies that even though I never wear them I refuse to donate them.

Meyer Lemon Curd Cupcakes 1

Which brings me to the items in my fridge that I cling on to because I don’t like to waste things and think that I will find some purpose for it in another recipe, only to be pushed to the back and lost. Then much later it is found without knowledge of what it was in the first place. Thankfully I found a purpose for the meyer lemon curd before it suffered the same fate – stuffed into a vanilla cupcake! Yes, I know I could’ve just eaten it straight up but that wouldn’t have been as fun because these cupcakes also happen to make just enough for two. Got any leftover frosting lying around? Perfect time to use it! I somehow did not have any so I whipped up a miniature batch of white chocolate buttercream.

Meyer Lemon Curd Cupcakes 2

Two years ago: Broccoli Quiche

Three years ago: Pizza Dough

MEYER LEMON CURD CUPCAKES FOR TWO

Serves 2

Ingredients:

CUPCAKES

1 egg white

2 Tbsp sugar

2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 heaping tsp baking powder

Pinch salt

1-1/2 Tbsp milk

FILLING

1-2 Tbsp meyer lemon curd

FROSTING

1 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1/8 tsp vanilla extract

0.5 oz. white chocolate, melted

1/2-1 tsp milk

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin pan with 2 liners.
  2. In a small bowl, add egg white and sugar and whisk until combined. Add in vanilla and melted butter and stir until mixed. Add flour, baking powder and salt and stir until smooth. Stir in milk. Divide batter equally between the 2 cupcake liners.
  3. Bake at 350 for 12-16 minutes, or until cake is set. Let cool completely.
  4. While the cupcakes cool prepare the frosting: In a small bowl, cream butter with an electric mixer until fluffy, then add vanilla. Add in powdered sugar on low speed. Add in melted white chocolate and beat until incorporated. To reach desired consistency, add in milk 1/2 teaspoon at a time with mixer on low speed, until it reaches desired consistency.
  5. Using a paring knife, cut out the core of the cooled cupcakes. Fill with meyer lemon curd. Cut off the tops of the removed cored and place on top of filling. Frost and decorate with sprinkles if desired.

Source: Cupcakes and Frosting adapted from How Sweet It Is.

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Homemade Cinnamon Hot Chocolate Mix

Every winter I whip up a new hot chocolate mix. This year I decided to try two kinds, white hot chocolate pods and now cinnamon mix. This version was made on the fly while my parents were in town for my graduation. We were getting ready to go to a drive-thru Christmas light show and I realized I didn’t have any hot chocolate mix to prepare and bring for the show. So I pulled up my favorite mix recipe and added cinnamon. If you haven’t had cinnamon and chocolate together before, you’re missing out!

Homemade Cinnamon Hot Chocolate Mix

Two years ago: Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate Mix

Three years ago: Bacon and Cheese Egg McMuffin Cups
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Review: The Dollop Book of Frosting & Orange Cut-Out Cookies with Orange Cardamom Icing

Before I defended my dissertation a couple months ago several people came to my rescue with guest posts, including Heather Saffer, winner of Cupcake Wars author of The Dollop Book of Frosting. This cookbook is not only full of fun and creative frosting flavors, but also novel ways to enjoy frosting – because frosting should not be restricted to cakes and cookies. Today her holiday blog tour stops here and I am sharing a recipe from this cookbook that would be perfect to make this holiday.

DollopBookofFrosting
As I expressed previously, Heather’s Ultimate Dude Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Buttercream stole my heart upon first sight. I can see why they were the big winner in Cupcake Wars. Flipping through the rest of the recipes I was also drawn to the Strawberry Spinach Cheesecakes with Strawberry Balsamic Goat Cheese Frosting and Vanilla Buttermilk Waffles with Maple Bacon Frosting. Frosting is now for breakfast kids, rejoice! Her recipes will take frosting down avenues you never thought possible. So if you love frosting and are looking for creative recipes then you really need to snatch this up. It would also be a great gift to grab for the sweet-tooth in your life ;-).

Orange Cut-Out Cookies 2

Now I know that I said frosting goes beyond cakes and cookies, but cut-out cookies were a staple for every holiday when I was growing up. We had scads of cookie cutters shapes, food coloring, and festive sprinkles for every occasion. These cut-out cookies pump up your traditional sugar cookie cut-outs with the flavors of orange and cardamom – a combination that will leave your palate both refreshed and comforted. For the upcoming winter holidays, I decided to cut mine with snowflakes and they tasted better than any snowflake that has ever landed on my tongue.

Orange Cut-Out Cookies 1

One year ago: Maple Breakfast Sausage
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White Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

If you are like me, the winding down of yet another college football season makes me sad. Some of you couldn’t care less but I’m going to tell you why you should – peanut butter and chocolate Saturdays are coming to a close. Regardless of the outcome of the Big Ten Championship game tonight, Ohio State will be playing in a bowl game. Which means that after today there is only one PB+C Saturday left and I know how many of you care about that combination.

These little cupcakes are a bit unorthodox for a Buckeye treat, using white chocolate instead of regular, but sometimes it’s good to change things up. I even made mini cupcakes instead of regular sized ones in order to appease all the people in my life that like to cut every dessert portion I serve in half (Stephanie). Not to mention my obsession with baking things in mini muffin pans recently, such as the wonton cups and mousse cookie cups. These mini white chocolate-peanut butter cupcakes are topped off with a white chocolate buttercream and a dose of spirited sprinkles. I’ll share if you can finish the end of this chant: “O-H!”

What do you think I should make for the last PB+C Saturday of the season?

 White Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

One year ago: Cranberry Fritters

Three years ago: Berry Medley Smoothie
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Peanut Butter Mousse Cookie Cups

Today’s the day! The Game – Ohio State versus Michigan and one of the biggest rivalries in college football. Although I am not sure it will ever get any better than my last game as a student in 2006, with Ohio State at #1 and Michigan at #2 (and upon winning went to the National Championship where we lost to Florida but I digress), this game is always makes me anxious. No matter what each team is ranked, anything can happen. Makes sense that this match-up is always the last game of the season before conference championships and bowl games. Wish it wasn’t at 11 am CST though.

To accompany this event, I made peanut butter mousse nestled inside mini cookie cups because it also happens to be National Mousse Day and you know how I love having a reason to celebrate a food holiday.

Peanut Butter Mousse Cookie Cups

Two years ago: Peanut Butter Reeses Pieces Giant Cookie for One

Three years ago: Red Velvet Cream Cheese Swirl Brownies
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