May 2013 archive

DIY Powdered Sugar

As a food blogger who makes mostly desserts, I use a lot of powdered sugar. The other day coming home from the grocery store with a few bags of sugar for the second or third time in two weeks, my mom and I decided that we should start buying stock in sugar.

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So you can imagine my delight when later that week I found this tutorial on pink recipe box for DIY powdered sugar! It’s very simple to make, but I found I needed to do it in batches. Time, and whether or not you can really do it all at once depend on the strength of your food processor. Mine is very small and weak, and I use it quite a bit, so I tend to do everything in batches.

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You’re going to have more powdered sugar than granulated sugar, so a rule of tumb to remember is to take out 1 tablespoon for every 1/2 C of sugar. So, if you want to make 1 C powdered sugar, add 1 C granulated sugar minus 2 tablespoons. For 2 cups, 2 cups granulated minus 4 tablespoons. Got it?

You also don’t want to blend maglie calcio poco prezzocontinuously for too long- pulse the processor or blender 10 or 12 times. If you let it continuously blend, the heat will cause the sugar to melt and you could end up with a sticky, yucky, mess.

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I found I needed to pulse more times because of my processor. Things like this tend to be more arbitrary and depend on the strength of the tools you are using, and tend to be more “rules of thumb” or “guidelines.”

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 C minus 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar
  • optional: 1 teaspoon cornflour (for storage)
  1. Place sugar in canister of food processor or blender
  2. pulse at least 10-12 times or until powdery. If needed, work in 1/4 c batches.
  3. if storing, mix in cornflour.

Linked to: buns in my oven

10 Recipes for Birthdays

Happy Tuesday! I hope everyone had a wonderful, relaxing, memorial day yesterday. I spent mine quietly with my grandparents going out to eat and shopping.

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My birthday is tomorrow, so I’d thought I’d share some birthday recipes! If I was at home, I’d definitely be making a few of these. As it is, I’ll probably make a few of these when I get home. I won’t be celebrating with my parents for another week!

1. First things first, a cake! Try this easy funfetti cake by sally’s baking addiction.

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2. Chocolate Chip Cookies are a tradition in my family for birthdays. Every year on our birthdays, my mom makes my dad and I a cake of our choosing, and a batch of chocolate chip cookies! Try her famous recipe on your next birthday and start a new tradition.

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3. Don’t like cake? Try a pie instead! My cake batter pie has all of the taste of cake mix, and none of the crumbly texture!

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4. Cake pops are perfect for birthday maglie calcio poco prezzo parties, and so cute as well! Try these pink lemonade cake pops, which are perfect for summer birthdays!

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5.  My birthday cake is always, always always, a chocolate cake mix with chocolate frosting. I don’t know how this tradition started- probably way back when I was a kid and my mom was making a cake that she knew she would like, and being the biggest chocoholic I know, she make a cake with as much chocolate as she could. Once I started baking my own cakes, I just kept tradition going! Try this German Chocolate Cake from Teenage Cakeland and start your own chocolate birthday tradition!

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6. No birthday would be complete without taking cupcakes to work or school. My funfetti cupcakes with cotton candy buttercream were a hit with Brian’s family on his birthday.

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7. Sweet & Salty more your thing? Try these cake batter pretzel bites from The Domestic Rebel.

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8. Of course, birthdays always include special birthday breakfasts. Try these Cake batter pancakes from How Sweet it Is and start your day with a dose of funfetti.

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9. If you’re not a fan of pancakes, her cake batter cinnamon rolls would be just as wonderful!

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10. This cake batter milkshake by Averie Cooks is perfect for summertime birthdays!  cakebattershake-8

So there you have it! Some wonderful recipes, perfect for birthdays.  I’ll be celebrating mine here in Phoenix, and will continue the celebration with my parents when I get home from vacation next week.

I’d also like to wish a very happy 25th wedding anniversary to my parents, and a 52nd anniversary to my grandparents!

Saturday Sprinkles

I’ve had a  wonderful time here in Arizona visiting family. I got to see my younger cousin graduate from high school, which was wonderful! I haven’t been able to comment and network on blogs, but I’ve been reading and trying to keep up with a few!

I’ve started school again- I’m taking an online history class to try to catch up from the semester I missed.

I won’t have a post up next thursday because I only made three recipes before my trip, instead of four. I apologize in advance! My parents are traveling, I’m traveling, and Brian is Ray Ban outlet traveling so I was busy getting ready for my trip and helping everyone else get ready for their trips!

All my shows are ending right now and that makes me sad. Doctor Who is done until November, Parks and Rec is done, The Office is over forever and that makes me cry… who knows what I’ll do this summer.

I GOT A JOB FINALLY AND I AM SO HAPPY.

Instagram this week:

 

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An early Birthday gift from my parents. I’m so excited!

IMG_6162  crazy pets…

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Poolside in Arizona. I love it here.  IMG_6208 Teatime with my cousins. <3 I could have fancy teas every day.

What are some of your favorite things you’ve done from this week?

 

Pink Lemonade Cake Pops

The other day I went to Target to buy some clothes for my upcoming Disneyland trip- a dangerous thing to do the day you get hired at a new job. I ended up leaving the store with peanut butter, peanut butter chips, honey, pink lemonade frosting (because omg reasons)… and no clothes.

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To celebrate finally finding a job (after two months of unemployment mixed with post disney depression), I made cake pops! Pink lemonade cake pops, in fact. Because what better way to Ray Ban outlet celebrate finding a job and summer than to make a “summer” cake you can eat on a stick?

So let’s walk through how to make a cake pop. First you bake a cake- any cake you want. I used a Betty Crocker box mix for a yellow cake, but you can make any cake your heart desires- homemade, box mix, semi-homemade; just follow your heart. I figured since I was adding flavors, it didn’t matter what type. Just make sure you use an unflavored yellow or white cake.

Then, you crush it up into small pieces; add in frosting, and mix it all together until it’s sticky enough to roll into balls. I used about 3/4 of my can of frosting. I also added in a few teaspoons of lemonade mix to make the flavor stronger.

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Roll into balls and chill for about an hour.

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Melt your frosting; I used a makeshift double broiler with a cassorole dish and a pot of simmering water. We’ll be using white chocolate for the coating, and sprinkles, because how can we forget sprinkles?

I like to put some chocolate on the sticks before putting them in the pops because it holds better. Chill for 30 minutes after doing this.

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Then you dip them in chocolate, coat them in sprinkles, and let them chill for 1-2 hours.

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And there you have it- a wonderful summer treat for any occasion! It’s the middle of graduation season, (My cousin Beth graduated yesterday! Go Beth!) and I’m sure any graduate would appreciate these!

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Recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 1 box yellow or white cake mix, plus ingredients on back of box.
  • 1 can Pillsbury Pink Lemonade Frosting
  • 2 tsp lemonade mix
  • 1 package lollipop or cake pop sticks (can be found in most baking aisles or at craft stores.)
  • 1 package white chocolate melting chocolate
  1. Make cake according to instructions. Let cool, and break apart into crumbs.
  2. Mix in frosting until cake can be rolled into balls without crumbling or falling apart. mix in lemonade.
  3. Roll into balls and chill for 1 hour. While pops are chilling melt chocolate on stovetop, double broiler, or microwave.  Dip in chocolate and insert into cake pops. Let chill for 30 minutes.
  4. Dip pops into chocolate. coat on sprinkles. Let chill for 1-2 hours.

Homemade Dole Whip

… With only 2 ingredients!

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What is a Dole Whip, you ask? Well, at the Magic Kingdom and Polynesian resort at Disney World, and at Disneyland Park, are pineapple/vanilla soft serve ice cream called Dole Whips. And they are amazing and I love them and half the reason I’m looking forward to going to Disneyland this week is Ray Ban outletbecause I want a Dole Whip, dangit.

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After a huge two month craving for a Dole Whip, I finally figured how to make my own at home, and I’ve never been happier. (That’s a lie. I was happier the day I got paid to walk around the Magic Kingdom during Disney Orientation.)

Here’s what I used to make this:

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All you need is frozen pineapples and cool whip, as well as a blender or food processor. I used a food processor, but only because my blender is really old (it’s almost an antique) and the pineapple chunks were too big for it. You blend or process the pineapples, mix in the cool whip, and blend them one more time to get the chunks out. You’ll then freeze the mixture for two hours then… TADAA! You’ve got yourself a homemade dole whip that’s just as good as the ones at Disney. I made them with my roommate from the Disney College Program, so this is doubly Disney Cast Member Certified and approved.

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RECIPE:

Ingredients:

  • 1 21 oz package frozen pineapple
  • 1- 1 1/2 c whipped topping
  1. If needed, chop up pieces of pineapple to fit into the canister of blender or food processor. Place in canister and blend until pureed. If needed, work in batches.
  2. Pour into bowl and mix in whipped topping. place back into blender or food processor and blend until smooth. (an immersive blender would also work for this.)
  3. place in a shallow dish and freeze for at least two hours. Serve cold.

Sunday Things

Hi everyone! Thank you so much for visiting my blog and commenting and pinning and all those wonderful things! 

I will be taking a brief semi-hiatus for the next 10 days. I will be visitin family on the west coast and won’t be around to be active on this blog. I have some posts planned out,Ray Ban outlet but between getting ready for my trip and finding a job, as well as spending time with my boyfriend who is going to Europe while I’m away, I haven’t been able to plan out as many posts as I’d like too. I’ve had so much fun blogging these past few months and I can’t wait to get back and really start growing my blog over the summer! 

 

Love, Faith

Death By Peanut Butter Cookie Sandwiches

Or as Brian calls them, “Peanut Butter OD’s.”

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I’m SO over death by chocolate. I mean, it’s good and all, but if I’m going to die a food related death, I would rather die in the ooey, gooey, creamy/crunchy salty flavors of peanut butter. Yes please, that sounds divine.

And I know there are dozens of you out there who would agree.

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I was thinking the other day about the abundance of Death By Chocolate desserts, and I started wondering… why is there death by chocolate EVERYTHING, but any peanut butter dessert has to be paired with other things? Why can’t peanut butter stand alone as the shining star it is? So I set out to find a Gafas Ray Ban outlet combination of recipes that would do that.

I decided on cookie sandwiches  A simple enough recipe to combine multiple peanut butter goodies.  For the cookies, I halved the Soft Baked Cookie recipe I posted a few weeks ago. I also added an extra egg yolk and some corn starch to make the cookies softer and chewier.

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I then stuffed the cookies with a homemade peanut butter buttercream, and rolled them in peanut butter chips. Pure bliss.

Death By Peanut Butter Cookie Sandwiches
Serves: 20
 
Ingredients
  • For cookies:
  • 1 C flour
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp cornstarch
  • ¾ C brown sugar, packed.
  • ½ C white sugar
  • ½ C (1 stick) salted butter, softened.
  • 1 egg + 1 egg yolk
  • ¾ C Peanut Butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • For buttercream:
  • ½ c (1 stick) salted butter
  • ½ c peanut butter
  • 1 and ⅓ c powdered sugar
Instructions
  1. In a medium bowl combine flour, baking soda, and cornstarch. set aside.
  2. In a large bowl combine the sugars in an electric mixer on medium speed. Add the butter and mix to form a grainy paste. Add eggs, peanut butter, and vanilla and mix until light and fluffy.
  3. Gradually add the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Do not overmix.
  4. Chill well, at least 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 300˚.
  5. Drop 2-teaspoon size rounds onto a baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes until cookies are slightly brown on the edges. Let sit for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
  6. Spread frosting on cookies when completely cool, and roll in peanut butter chips.
  7. To make frosting: Beat butter in an electric mixer on medium-high speed until creamy. Add peanut butter and mix until combined and fluffy. Slowly add in powdered sugar. Spread on cooled cookies and top with a second cookie before rolling in chips.
  8. Store cookies in refrigerator for up to 7 days.

Blueberry Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting

{Inspired by Star Trek: Into Darkness}

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I’ve been staring at this post for the longest time, trying to figure out what to say about these cupcakes. It’s not that I can’t think of anything- it’s that I’ve thought of too much! I don’t know whether to start with how much my mother and I love Star Trek and are super excited about the new movie and how we were going to go see it together at midnight May 17 but then dad just HAD to book their flight to Barcelona a day earlier than planned so we can’t see it together until June (I’m going to go see it this week anyway), or whether to talk about how I made these for her on Mother’s Day with the help of Brian, and we all loved them?

(Side note: are we at that point yet where I can type in run-on sentences while nerding out about sci-fi yet?)

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Although, this is a food blog, and the shining star should be, well, the food. So I’ll talk not about my nerdy family (which is AWESOME), nor about the occasion I made these for(Mother’s Day/ STAR TREK), and instead break these cupcakes down and talk about them. I started with a vanilla cupcake, tossed in some blueberries, and topped with a chocolate buttercream.

I thought of these cupcakes a few weeks ago after an entire day of watching cupcake wars and wanting to make some kind of dessert to celebrate the release of the movie. Rather Cheap Oakleys than figuring out how to decorate the cupcakes all fancy-like, I just thought of “dark” flavors to put in. I used my favorite cupcake base from How Sweet it Is that I’ve used for other cupcakes, as well as modify the the buttercream to give it a nice chocolate-y takes. Dark dark dark. Like the new movie!

Makes 12 cupcakes.

For the Cupcakes:

  • 1/2 c (1 stick) butter
  • 1 C sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 Tbs Vanilla Extract
  • 1 and 1/2 C flour
  • 1/3 C milk
  • 1/3 C frozen blueberries, thawed

For the frosting

  • 1 C (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 1 and 3/4 C powdered sugar
  • 3/4 C unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 Tbs milk or heavy cream to thin, if desired
  1. Preheat oven to 350˚. Line muffin tin with cupcake liners and set aside.
  2. Whisk together flour and baking powder in a medium bowl and set aside.
  3. beat the butter and sugar together in a mixer until fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until just combined. Add half of the dry ingredients and mix until combined; add the milk and stir, then add the rest of the ingredients. Fold in the blueberries.
  4. pour into the prepared pans until about 2/3 full; bake for18-22 minutes or until the edges are golden, the centers are set, and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  5. To make the frosting: Sift together sugar and cocoa. Set aside. Beat the butter in a large bowl until creamy. Add the sugar/cocoa about 1/2 C at a time. If the frosting is too thick, slowly mix in cream until frosting has reached desired consistency. Spread or pipe onto cooled cupcakes.

Orange Scones with a Vanilla Glaze

Happy mothers day to all the mothers reading this! I made these scones for breakfast for my mom on Mothers day. (Hi mommy.) I also gave some to Brian’s mom, and she loved them! She was all excited yesterday to tell me that she had them for breakfast, and I would not be surprised if they were gone by tonight. (Hi Franny!)

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A few weeks ago, my mom and I went to a women’s tea hosted by her church. I was wonderful, but my favorite part was the scones- Orange vanilla and strawberry, served with lemon curd and devonshire cream. They were fantastic, and I left determined to make the scones myself.

I really like scones, guys. This recipe is adapted from Joy the Baker, and the glaze is a creation all of my own. *sort of… it’s just cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla. It’s so basic it can hardly be counted as a recipe and there are thousands out there.

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I cut these round, mostly for ease. Rolling them out then using a cutter is much more easier than shaping and slicing and hoping they’re the same. They’re much more moist and less crumbly than your traditional scone, and the glaze helps to lock in the moisture for even longer.

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Oh my lanta, this glaze. I could just slurp it off a spoon. In fact, I used to when I was younger. I would sneak downstairs at night and mix up milk, powdered sugar, and Cheap Oakleys Sunglasses Outletvanilla in a little bowl and eat it sitting on the counter. (… hi mom and dad! you didn’t read that! Blame whoever got me the Emeril Lagase cookbook!) I tried using heavy cream for the glaze- I’m not skipping out for my momma- but about 4 tablespoons in, I realized it was too thick and went back to using milk. Heavy cream is fine for making light and fluffy icings, but it’s much too thick for making a glaze.

These are thick, fluffy, and full of orage flavor, with the zest of two oranges in the mix. They also use buttermilk, but don’t stop reading here! You can easily substitute and make your own! You’ll want about a tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice for every 1 cup of milk. This recipe calls for 3/4 cup of milk, so put 3/4 Tbs in a liquid measuring cup, then fill to the 3/4 cup line and let sit for five minutes. After that, I like to add the zest to the milk so it can really get nice and friendly and infuse the flavor. I let it sit while I’m working my dry ingredients before adding the egg and pouring it in.

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Enough talking, here’s the recipe. (Adapted from Joy the Baker)

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 C buttermilk (to substitute: pour 1/3 Tbs lemon juice in a liquid measuring cup. Pour in regular milk up to the 1/3 c line. Let sit 5 minutes.)
  • Zest from 2 oranges
  • 3 C all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 C granulated sugar
  • 2 and 1/2 tps baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 c (1 and 1/2 sticks) butter
  • 1 large egg

For the Glaze:

  • 2 C Powdered sugar
  • 6 Tbs Milk
  • 1 and 1/2 Tbs vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 400˚.
  2. Add the orange zest to the buttermilk and set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl seift together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Using a pastry cutter, two knives, or your fingers, cut in the butter until the mixture is mealy and crumbly.
  4. Add the egg to the buttermilk (or buttermilk substitute) and beat. Add the mixture to the flour all at once and stir with a wooden spoon to create a soft dough.
  5. Knead on a floured surface 10-15 times. Roll out to a 1-inch thickness and cut with a round cutter. Reshape and re-roll with the scraps, trying to use as much dough as possible. Bake for 13-17 minutes or until top edges are golden brown.
  6. Let chill for a few minutes, then dip in glaze and let chill on a wire rack.
  7. To make the glaze: Combine sugar, milk, and vanilla in a mixing bowl and whisk until combined.

The Recipe Critic

Cake Batter Pie

A few months ago I made a Chocolate Chip pie for date night at Brian’s house, and we both agreed it was one of the best things I’ve made. Three days later, he returned an empty pie tin to my house- his family polished off everything we didn’t eat.

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But I wanted to make it better. I wanted to make this recipe my own. And so I thought- What makes things better? What is something food bloggers love? What can I do to change this recipe? Then it hit me- Cake batter. Cake batter posts are everywhere. Round-ups, cookies, puppy chow, popcorn, cinnamon rolls… the recipes you can find with cake batter flavor are nearly endless. So I’m throwing one out there into the mix, combining three of my favorite things- cake batter, cookies, and pies. And the best part is, no actual cake mix is used! Instead, I used a combination of butter, almond, and vanilla extracts to create the cake batter taste. Butter extract and flavor can be bought at craft stores, specialty baking stores, or online. I used Wilton brand that I got from AC Moore. Almond extract can also be bought at craft stores and and in the baking aisle of most grocery stores.

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The base recipe is from a cookbook I got for Christmas a few years ago from a friend of mine called Your Favorite Brand Name Chocolate Cookbook for a chocolate chip pie. I simply removed the chocolate chips, and added sprinkles and a mixture of extracts to give it a cake batter taste… without using any cake mix.

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Ray Ban outlet
Ingredients:

  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  •  1/4 tsp butter flavor.
  • 1/2 c flour
  • 1/2 scant c sugar
  • 1/2 c brown sugar
  • 1 c (2 sticks) butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/4 c sprinkles
  • 1 pie crust for a 9-inch pie pan. (I use my perfect pie crust that has served me well for 12 years. Store bought or your own favorite recipe will work just as well.)
  1. Preparation: Preheat oven to 325˚ F. Spray 9-inch pie pan. Roll out pie crust and place in pan.
  2. Beat eggs in mixer on high until foamy. Mix in extracts.
  3. In a small bowl, mix together flour, sugars, and salt. Mix into egg mixture.
  4. Beat in butter and stir in sprinkles. Bake for 45-55 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool for a few minutes for the filling to firm up. Serve warm.

Leftovers can be kept in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. When reheating, heat slice in microwave for 15-30 seconds.

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