Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Peanut Butter Truffle Cookies

It has been a while since I made anything yummy lately. I ended up getting sick about a week ago, therefore I was not able to make anything. Then I have just been to busy as well as lazy to do anything. But Tonight that changed because I was craving something sweet really bad, especially since someone polished off my ice cream that I was looking forward to all day. But I guess things happen for the reason because I I had ice cream then there would have been no cookies. I didn't know what I wanted to make at first, all I know is that I wanted chocolate to be one of the ingredients but I only had less than a cup of chocolate chips left in my cabinet. I ended up pulling out one of my cookbooks I forgot I had. That cookbook is called The Magic of Peanut Butter, put out by Skippy peanut butter. While thumbing through the pages I came across one called truffle cookies. Not only did the title catch my attention, it was also the fact that it only called for 1/2 cup chocolate chips. I was sold. I got up right away and made myself a batch. I must make my cookies too big though because I only ended up with 2 dozen and the recipe says it make 4 dozen. But no matter what the size, they came out great. And since they called for very little ingredients and were very easy to make, I will definitely be making them again shortly, especially since I didn't end up with too many. Well I hope you enjoy them as much as we have here, and let me just say there is probably only a dozen left now. :)
Peanut Butter Truffle Cookies
1 cup peanut butter (creamy or chunky)
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350*F. In a small bowl combine all the ingredients except the chocolate chips until blended. Stir in the chocolate chips until combined. Drop by rounded teaspoon on to an ungreassed cookie sheet. Bake 9 minutes or until puffed and golden brown. Remove to cooling racks and enjoy. :)
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Friday, May 20, 2011

Homemade Strawberry Jam

So today is national pick strawberries day. Well I didn't pick my own strawberries, which I would actually love to do, instead we got our strawberries from a field where someone else got to pick them. Well back on Easter I got to learn how to make strawberry jam with my mom. I was so excited because I always wanted to learn to make jam with my mom and because I think homemade jam taste better than store bought. And it turned out to be easier to make than I thought. I wanted to make this post sooner, but every time I would put the jam on my toast or sandwich I couldn't wait to eat it, therefore I could never snap a picture fast enough. But I guess it worked out in the end because I can use it for today's national food holiday, even though I didn't pick the strawberries myself. Well the recipe we used came from the package of sure-jell pectin that we bought, you can even find the recipe along with many others on their website. So if you end up making your own homemade jam, you will be hooked. :)

Homemade Strawberry Jam

5 cups prepared fruit (about 2 quarts fully ripe strawberries)
1 box SURE.JELL Fruit Pectin
1/2 tsp. butter or margarine (optional)
7 cups sugar, measured into separate bowl

Bring boiling-water canner, half full with water, to simmer. Wash jars and screw bands in hot soapy water; rinse with warm water. Pour boiling water over flat lids in saucepan off the heat. Let stand in hot water until ready to use. Drain well before filling.

Stem and crush strawberries thoroughly, one layer at a time. Measure exactly 5 cups prepared fruit into 6- or 8-quart sauce pot.

Stir pectin into prepared fruit in sauce pot. Add butter to reduce foaming, if desired. Bring mixture to full rolling boil (a boil that doesn't stop bubbling when stirred) on high heat, stirring constantly. Stir in sugar. Return to full rolling boil and boil exactly 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim off any foam with metal spoon.

Ladle immediately into prepared jars, filling to within 1/8 inch of tops. Wipe jar rims and threads. Cover with 2-piece lids. Screw bands tightly. Place jars on elevated rack in canner. Lower rack into canner. (Water must cover jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add boiling water, if necessary.) Cover; bring water to gentle boil. Process 10 minutes. Remove jars and place upright on a towel to cool completely. After jars cool, check seals by pressing middle of lid with finger. (If lid springs back, lid is not sealed and refrigeration is necessary.)

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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Mario Kart DS Cake in Red

Here is my latest cake creation, which I am very proud of. As you can see it is a red Nintendo DS which has a game of Mario Kart in progress. This cake will be for my friend's son Jaxon's 6th birthday. Well one day me and Jaxon sat down and started talking about what kind of cake he wanted for his birthday. He told me he wanted to have a cake with Mario on it because he loves Mario and he loves the Super Mario Bros cake I made last year (which happens to be my top blog post of all time :) ) Well he also told me that he wanted a Nintendo DS for his birthday and that he loves playing Mario Kart. So I got the idea that I should make a cake that looks like a DS and have Mario Kart playing on it. Now I knew that the images were going to be a challenge to make, so I came up with the idea of laminating a couple of Mario Kart images to put on top of the cake. Plus if I laminate them it will give it that glossy look of the screen on a real DS. So I researched the web to find some photos, I cropped them down to the size I needed and then I laminated them. Then I baked a regular sized rectangle cake and frosted it red. I place the laminated images on the cake and frosted little buttons on the cake as well as the other details need to make it look like a DS. I even frosted the little touch screen stick on the side as a nice extra touch. And as you can see from the photos how it all came together in the end. I know Jaxon will love his cake and I can't wait to bring it to him. :)

Here is another image of the cake .

I added these on last minute becasue I forgot that there are buttons on the sides of the DS

I added the power switch and where the stick goes as well.

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Sunday, May 15, 2011

Banana Nut Bread

So I have a legitimate reason for not blogging this past week. That reason being that I had to go away for work again. I was sent to Irvine this time for some training. I had a lot of fun and learned a lot of useful things, but it is good to be back home with Tomas because I missed him a lot. Well the recipe I am going to share with you today is a banana nut bread that I made with my mom not too long ago. We were looking through the Food Network Magazine and found the banana nut bread recipe and decided to give it a try. It came out very yummy and I hope you like it too. Enjoy :)

Banana Nut Bread

1 banana, mashed

1 cup chocolate chips

3/4 cup walnuts

1 1/4 cup flour

3/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

2 eggs

1/2 cup melted and cooled butter

1/2 cup sour cream

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350*F. Lightly grease 1 loaf pan. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl. Add in the walnuts and chocolate chips. In a medium bowl whisk the eggs, butter, sour cream, and vanilla. Stir in the banana into the egg mixture, then fold in the dry mixture until well combined. Spread the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for about 55 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 30 minutes and then slice and enjoy :)
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Sunday, May 8, 2011

Coconut Cream Pie

Today is a special day. As most of you already know today was Mother's Day, but did you know today is also national coconut cream pie day. And another thing no one else would know is that it was Tomas sister Monika's Birthday (my future sister in law). Therefore I had three things to celebrate today. Since I got off work early today, I was able to go home and surprise my mom for Mother's day. It turned out great. I got to spend the day with my wonderful Mom and my family. I not only surprised her with myself, I also brought her a homemade coconut cream pie since today is national coconut cream pie day. That was actually the second time I made that pie this week. The first time I made it, the pie was gone in no time. Lukas, Tomas brother, got excited when he saw me making the second pie, but I broke his heart when he found out he was not going to be able to eat this one since it was for my mom. Well anyways, I found this recipe in the Southern Living Our Best-Ever Cakes and Pies Magazine which has been on my book shelf for a few years and it wasn't until now that I decide to try out the recipe for the coconut cream pie. Well I hope you enjoy it as much as we have and for those of you moms out there I hope you had a wonderful Mother's day. :)

Coconut Cream Pie

1 package refrigerated pie crust, divided

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup cornstarch

2 cups half and half

4 egg yolks

3 Tbsp. butter

1 cup sweetened flaked coconut

2 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract, divided

2 cups whipping cream

1/3 cup sugar

Garnish with toasted coconut

Preheat the oven to 425*F. Fit one crust into a 9-inch pie plate according to package directions; fold edges under and crimp the edges. Pick the bottom and sides of the crust with a fork. Save the other pie crust for a future pie or you can cut out borders to place around the pie if you desire. I saved the other pie crust for making another pie.Bake the pie crust for 12-15 minutes or until lightly browned. Combine 1/2 cup sugar and cornstarch in a heavy saucepan. Whisk together the half-and-half and the egg yolks. Gradually whisk the egg mixture into the sugar mixture; bring to a boil over medium heat whisking constantly. Boil 1 minute and remove from the heat. Stir in the butte, coconut, and tsp of vanilla. Place plastic wrap directly over warm custard and let stand for 30 minutes. Remove the plastic wrap. Spoon custard mixture into prepared pie shell and cover and chill for 30 minutes or until set. Beat the whipping cream at high speed with an electric mixer until frothy. Gradually add 1/3 cup sugar and remaining 1 1/2 tsp vanilla, beating until soft peaks form. Spread the cream over the pie filling and top with toasted coconut. Serve and enjoy :)

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Friday, May 6, 2011

Raspberry Filled Chocolate Cake Truffles

After making Jaylynn's wedding cake I had a lot of cake scraps and raspberry cake filling left over. As I sat there looking at the leftovers I came up with an idea of what I can do with all of it. I decided to make cake truffles with raspberry filling. Every time I make cake truffles Tomas comes into the kitchen and says that I should put some kind of fruit filling in the center. Well I finally made his wish come true with the raspberry filled cake truffles. And I have to say I am glad too because they turned out extremely yummy. Now this raspberry filling is what I use for my layered cakes, therefore if you don't want to put it in your cake truffles then you can put it in between the layers of a cake that you make. Now with Mother's Day coming up, cake truffles can make a nice gift for that special someone. As you will see in the photos below you can package up the truffles in cupcake wrappers and place them in a pretty container (if you need more height add some tissue paper to the container). Then for a nice finishing touch tie a pretty ribbon and a message on the outside of the box and then the gift is ready for that special someone in your life.

Raspberry Filled Cake Truffles

Cake Truffles

1 Chocolate cake mix
1 can chocolate frosting
1 Package dipping milk chocolate

Raspberry Filling

2 cups frozen raspberries
6 Tbsp cornstarch

8 Tbsp lemon juice

1 cup sugar

Bake the cake as directed on the box. While the cake is cookin prepare the raspberry filling. Place all four ingredients into a saucepan at a medium high heat. Heat until the sauce boils and begins to thicken. Let the raspberry mixture cool (you can place it in the fridge to cool faster). When cool place in a ziploc bag with the corner snipped off and set aside. When the cake is done let it cool until cool enough to handle.Crumple up the cake completely. Add in the entire can of frosting and mix thoroughly. Roll the cake mixture into small balls, about 1 inch each leaving about 1/2 cup of cake mixture behind. After making all the balls, make a hole in the center of each ball and set aside. Fill each hole with the raspberry filling and take some of the leftover cake mixture and cover the hole. Place the balls in the fridge to help firm, about 30 minutes. Melt the dipping milk chocolate according to package. Dip the cake balls into the chocolate one at a time. Shake off excess chocolate and place on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper. Let set and enjoy :)

Here is a picture of what the trufles look like packaged up and placed in a nice box.

Here is the package of the truffles wrapped in a box and tied with a bow and message.

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Thursday, May 5, 2011

Jaylynn's Wedding Cake With Purple Hearts

This here is the first wedding cake that I have ever made. I have done wedding cupcakes and a bridal shower cake before, but never a wedding cake. So I was a little nervous at first. I made this cake for my friend and coworker Jaylynn's wedding. The cake is a chocolate cake with raspberry filling. She wanted a cake with white buttercream icing with purple hearts decorated on it, and this is how it came out looking in the end. So I hope she likes it and that she has a wonderful and beautiful wedding. Congratulations Jaylynn :)
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Monday, May 2, 2011

Cream Filled Cake Truffles

I think that it is time that I get back to celebrating national food holidays. Not only is it fun to cook and eat food, it is even more fun to celebrate food. To get back into the roll of things I made cream filled cake truffles to celebrate national truffle day. Yay for Truffle Day!!!!! Everyone loves when I make cake truffles and to no surprise these are already gone. Now these cake truffles actually did not come out the way they were supposed to be. They are suppose to be mini hostess cupcake truffles which I found on a blog called Sugar Derby But since all the white chocolate disappeared at my house, I couldn't do the cute curvy white line on the top. Therefore I ended up just making cream filled cake truffles instead. So if you want you can make the line on top to make them mini hostess cupcake truffles, or just make them cream filled. Which ever you decide to choose have fun celebrating national truffle day. :)

Cake Truffles

1 Chocolate cake mix
1 can chocolate frosting
1 Package dipping milk chocolate
1 package dipping white chocolate (optional)

Cream Filling

2 tsp very hot water, not boiling
1/4 tsp salt
1 jar marshmallow creme
1/2 cup shortening
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla

Bake the cake as directed on the box. When the cake is done let it cool until cool enough to handle. While the cake is cooling prepare the cream filling. To prepare dissolve the salt in the water and set aside. Whip the marshmallow cream, shortening, sugar and vanilla until fluffy. once the water is cool add to the marshmallow mixture and whip well. Set aside until ready to fill the cake truffles. Crumple up the cake completely. Add in the entire can of frosting and mix thoroughly. Roll the cake mixture into small balls, about 1 inch each leaving about 1/2 cup of cake mixture behind. After making all the balls, make a hole in the center of each ball and set aside. Fill each hole with the cream filling and take some f the leftover cake mixture and cover the hole. Place them balls in the fridge to help firm, about 30 minutes. Melt the dipping milk chocolate according to package. Dip the cake balls into the chocolate one at a time. Shake off excess chocolate and place on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper. If you want to make a white curvy line on top to make them look like Hostess cupcakes, then melt a little bit of white chocolate. Place the chocolate in a Ziploc bag with a corner snipped off and make a swirly line on top of each truffle. Let set and enjoy :)

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