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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Birthday Cupcakes Too!


I also made some cupcakes for Elham's birthday using the same cake recipe below. Unfortunately you can't see the box, but it is covered in cupcakes! A nice, useful, Target purchase :)

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Birthday Cake!










I made a cake for my Sherry joon's birthday. I had to twist her arm to let me make her a cake (she taroffed like crazy "NO cake, No celebration!") So instead of the usual awkward office-wide singalong to Happy Birthday, we had a small getogether with this cake, and NO singing.

It's a basic white cake recipe; I just added some pizazz with a whole lotta food coloring, a dash of rasberry flavoring, and some "accessories." I think it was a crowd pleaser. Here's how you make it!


Preheat over to 325

Ingredients:
  • Red food coloring (optional)
  • Rasberry flavoring (optional)
  • 6 tbs unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 3 cups sifted white flour (and really make sure you sift or else you run the risk of flour bits in your cake)
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbs baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 6 egg whites

Directions:

  • Cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer, and mix in vanilla.
  • Combine the sifted flour, baking soda, and salt in a separate bowl.
  • Add milk to the flour mixture.
  • In a separate bowl beat the egg whites until stiff, and then add them to the flour & milk mixture.
  • You can then divide this batter between two 9" cake pans and bake for 25-30 minutes OR you can do what I did and use a 3"x6" cake pan (shorter in width, taller in height, and looks kind of like a munchkin cake!) and cook it for 45minutes to an hour. Just keep checking it towards the end to make sure you're not overcooking it.

Happy birthday to you! (And aunt Deb if you are reading this xoxo)

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Feelin a Little Healthy!


I love me some sweet, no good for you, muffins but generally in the morning I like to have something a little healthier and light on the sugar. Unless it's the weekend, or I'm on vacation...then anything goes. Pastries especially. But I digress!
Today was a dreary rainy day in San Francisco. Most are probably sad when it is rainy, but I use this as an excuse to bake! And so today I made some hearty oat & date muffins. If you need a little pick-me-up in the morning (or any time) I suggest you make these.
Preheat oven to 425 degress
Ingredients:
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 cup of oats (I used Trader Joe's steel cut Irish oatmeal)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3 tbs Agave nectar (I used this to replace 1/4 cup white sugar)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tbs ground flax seed meal
  • A handful of chopped dates

Directions:

  • In a small bowl, soak the oats in the milk for about 15 minutes.
  • Mix wet ingredients together in another bowl.
  • Sift dry ingredients together.
  • Pour dry mix into wet mixture, add oats and milk, and stir well.
  • Add flax seed and dates.
  • Fill greased/lined muffins tins about 2/3.
  • Bake for 20 minutes.

May you find the hippie within you while enjoying these muffins...

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Je T'aime, Madeleine


My friend Juliet was nice enough to get me a subscription to Bon Appetit magazine for Christmas, and I have to say I am having a lot of fun with it. I tried out the following recipe for Madeleines, and added some cranberries and apricots for good measure ;)

Ingredients:
  • 9 tbs unsalted butter
  • 4 large eggs whites
  • 1 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 6 tbs all purpose flour (I used 8 actually)
  • 1/4 ground almonds (aka Almond Flour, or Almond Meal)

Directions:
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Melt butter in skillet until it starts to turn golden brown.
  • Beat everything but the butter together.
  • Add the butter to mixture.
  • Pour into buttered Madeleine mold/pan.
  • Bake 12 minutes

Lollie Cake

A friend of mine asked me to bring back a new baking recipe from my trip to the South Pacific. I'll admit that no baking was involved in the making of this Lollie Cake, but it IS something unique to New Zealand! My friend introduced me to it when I was visiting, and I have to say it is unlike anything I've had here in the US. The concept reminds me a bit of a NZ version of the Rice Krispy treat though. It's very very sweet, with a malty flavor, and lots more cute esthetic value than a Rice Krispy. Here's how you make it:

Ingredients:
  • A little over a 1/2 cup of butter (i.e. a little more than a stick)
  • 1 1/4 cup of ground up malt cookies
  • A bunch of Eskimos! You might have a hard time finding these ones, but I think Circus Peanuts or marshmallows will work just fine too. Eskimos just have more bright colors for effect ;)
  • 1/2 tin of condensed milk
  • Some coconut for coating (optional)
Directions:
  • Melt the butter and condensed milk in the microwave.
  • Mix with ground malt cookies.
  • Cut up the Eskimos and mix them into above mixture.
  • Roll ingredients (you can add the coconut as coating here if you like) into a log and refrigerate for about 4 hours.
  • Cut up and serve!
*You can also roll them into little balls and refrigerate them.