Monday, April 30, 2012

April Foodie Penpal

April Foodie Penpal

My April foodie penpal was Veronica Gantley, the author of My Catholic Kitchen Blog.  Veronica sent four amazing homemade treats!!!  I received bread and butter pickles, peach preserves, vanilla bean pod sugar, and chocolate chip cookies.

After I ate a few of the chocolate chip cookies, and also saw the smiles they brought to co-workers, I headed over to her blog to find the recipe. Veronica has titled the chocolate chip cookies "Rachel Cookies" because one of her daughter's friends loves them so much.  I highly recommend this cookie recipe, so head over to  My Catholic Kitchen for the Rachel Cookie recipe

I just want to say how appreciative I am for Lindsay, The Lean Green Bean, for organizing the monthly foodie penpal exchange!!! If you would like to join in the monthly foodie penpal, you may sign up on The Lean Green Bean blog site.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Wilton Cake Decorating Course 4: Advanced Gum Past Flowers

I am so proud of my gum paste flowers that I made in the Wilton Cake Decorating Course 4: Advanced Gum Past Flowers, which I took at my local Micheal's  store. 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Maple Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

Maple Cupcakes with 

Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

 Its that time again to post my  Baked Sunday morning tasty treat. The assignment this week was to make Maple Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting from the cookbook: Baked Explorations by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito. I strongly encourage you to purchase the cookbook, but you may also find the recipe on Baked Sunday Mornings.
I ended up using maple syrup from Aldi's.

I was nervous about making these cupcakes because I am not a big maple syrup fan. However they were delicious!! I brought them to work the next day and  my co-workers gobbled them right up. I wanted to make pretty flower designs on the cupcakes, but soon realized that cream cheese frosting does not pipe like butter cream frosting. This is a recipe I would make again if I was attending a brunch.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Marshmallow Chocolate Cups

Today I am posting my Baked Sunday morning tasty treat. The assignment this week was to make Marshmallow Chocolate Cups from the cookbook: Baked Explorations by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito. I strongly encourage you to purchase the cookbook, but you may also find the recipe on Baked Sunday Mornings.
My marshmallow chocolate eggs
The directions recommended to use really good chocolate , so I chose E. Guittard. The directions called for a mixture of semisweet and milk chocolate. 

I was nervous that my marshmallow would not turn out right because my kitchen aid whisk barely touched the ingredients when it was on med high power.  My mom thought it might work if  the mixer is at full power, and she was right :) Phew crisis diverted and wallah, I had marshmallow filling. 

Since it is Easter weekend, I made mine into chocolate eggs. This was quite a fiasco. I  had a hard time getting the chocolate egg shells to remove from the mold.  It took a few tries to figure out how to cover them with chocolate. What worked the best was spooning a little chocolate on them and flipping them over on parchment paper to dry.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

The Best Basic Sugar Cookie Dough

The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle has posted her recipe for basic sugar cookies. I love using this dough to make cut-out cookies. The cut-out cookies will not spread when baked.  If you are looking for a chocolate cut out cookie recipe then check out Lila Loa’s chocolate cookie recipe.  I also recommend using the best ingredients!!! When it comes to butter, I found European unsalted butter tastes better than the regular store brands. Valrhona cocoa powder does not only smell amazing, whatever you use it in has a rich chocolate taste. And my most coveted ingredient to use is Nielsen-Massey Vanilla. I have the single strength, the double strength and the vanilla bean paste.