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Archive for September, 2010

Lamb Cupcakes

September 30, 2010 4 comments

I was about to type in the title of this post when i realized that i didn’t exactly know the meanings of “Lamb” and “Sheep”.

I know, I know, a kindergartener could probably put me to shame on this, but then again, in my (rather weak) attempt at defence, English is technically not my first language.

I knew that Mary had a lil’ LAMB, but i also knew that Baa Baa was a black SHEEP. And from what i can remember, both of them feature the woolly four legged animals though of different colours.

I then thought of LAMB CHOPS, and wonder why i have never had SHEEP CHOPS. And how a few days ago, how my leather expert of a friend said my wallet is “lamb-skinned” instead of “sheep skinned”.

Anyways, lets not digress too far, so is this a Lamb marshmallow cupcake, or a sheep marshmallow cupcake?

I typed in “Lamb Vs Sheep” into google and got my answer on the first item that showed up.

Lambs are baby sheeps. Lamb chops are baby sheeps served on a plate (is that tragic or wad?), and when adult sheeps are prepared, they are called mutton chops.

AAaaah. we learn something new each day, or at least i did!

I followed Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes book for this, but fortunately, she has it on her site too. Here is the online version

Baa-Baah for now!

Categories: Cakes Tags: , , ,

Beetle Bug for the Lil’ Bug

September 28, 2010 5 comments

It’s my nephew’s first Birthday! Happy Bday Brian!

Categories: Cakes Tags:

Homemade Graham Crackers

September 27, 2010 4 comments

These homemade graham crackers kick store bought ones in the ass. Hard.

They taste like rich butter cookies, except more flavourful, with the brown sugar, honey and a dash of cinnamon.

I rolled the dough pretty thinly as i wanted a nice crisp snap to it. I also cookie cutted (yes, i know i just invented this word) them into circles as i was too lazy to measure and slice them into their traditional rectangular shapes.

Try this, i promise that you won’t reach for the prepackaged stuff no more. Not when it’s super urgent at least.

Graham Crackers  Recipe from Tracey’s Culinary Adventure who adapted from The Craft of Baking by Karen DeMasco (Thanks Tracey for sharing the recipe!)
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, at room temperature
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup honey

In a bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter, dark brown sugar, granulated sugar, and honey. Mix on medium speed until well combined, about 1 minute. In two additions, add the dry ingredients, letting the first fully incorporate before you add the second.

Turn the dough out and flatten it into a rectangular shape, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until chilled, about 30 minutes or up to 2 days. (The dough can be frozen, well wrapped, for up to 1 month.)

Preheat the oven to 350 F.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Unwrap the chilled dough, and on a lightly floured surface, roll it out into a rectangle about 1/8 inch thick. Using a ruler and a pastry cutter or a sharp knife, cut the dough into 3-by-3-inch squares; use a spatula to transfer the rectangles to the prepared baking sheets as you go. Reroll the scraps of dough once, and cut out more cookies. Using a paring kninfe, gently score each square to create a line down the middle, taking care not to cut all the way through the dough. Using a fork, pierce each rectangle with two rows of six to eight marks.

Bake the graham crackers, rotating the baking sheets halfway through, until they are golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

The graham crackers will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Categories: Cookies Tags: , ,

Rocky Road Brownies

September 26, 2010 Leave a comment

U know those dark, fudgy, ooey gooey brownies with a shiny top? Well, these are those, except with topped with a generous sprinkling of walnuts, sliced almonds (i added this myself), chocolate chips and toasted marshmallow. Le sigh, isn’t it a sweet life?

As with most brownies, these are really a no-brainer. All u have to do is just sprinkle your delicious mess of a topping over the baked brownies, and pop it back into the oven for a quick 5 mins ( 10 for me, as i wanted my marshmallow to have that toasted crispy shell )

Amanda of Fake Ginger used these brownies to bribe her little boy to get a haircut. That is one happy boy right there. I didn’t have these to bribe me to get a haircut as a kid. I had to sulk with my lower lip pouting into the salon mirrors.

Rocky Road Brownies Adapted from Fake Ginger (Thanks for sharing the recipe!)
from Martha Stewart

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus more for pan
1 bag (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup marshmallows
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8-inch-square baking pan. Line bottom with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on two sides; butter paper.

In a heatproof bowl set over (not in) a saucepan of simmering water, combine butter and 1 cup chocolate chips. Heat, stirring occasionally, just until melted, 3 to 5 minutes.

Remove mixture from heat; stir in sugars and salt, then eggs, and finally flour, stirring just until combined. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs attached, 30 to 35 minutes.

Remove from oven, and sprinkle with remaining chocolate chips, then marshmallows and nuts. Bake until chocolate is shiny and marshmallows are puffed, about 5 minutes. Cool completely in pan. Using paper overhang, lift cake onto a work surface; cut into 16 squares.

Categories: Brownies Tags: , , ,

Dispensing a lil Nutella Happiness

September 24, 2010 2 comments

U know how some things don’t need introduction? That there is a general global knowledge and quite possibly a universal love toward it? I might be exaggerating, but that’s how i feel about Nutella.

I grew up with spooning Nutella straight from the jar and into my mouth, careful to always change my spoon and not double dip because i didnt want my pristine jar of Nutella contaminated.

As for these cupcakes, good generous dollops of Nutella on each was in order.

Because I didn’t say that i stopped licking Nutella off my spoon,

Because adults also need that occasional burst of sheer heaven.

And sheer heaven is what i was trying to deliver with these cupcakes.

Recipe from Khas –> She was my school mate a long long long time ago!!

If u are reading this, HI KHAS! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe!

Nutella Frosted Cupcake (taken from http://novice-baker.blogspot.com/)

10 tbsp (140 grams) butter, softened

3/4 cupwhite sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1 3/4 cups (200 grams) all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
Nutella (1 tsp for each cupakes)
1. Preheat oven to 175 degree celcius (325F). Line muffins tins with paper liners.
2. Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add in eggs one at a time, until fluffy and incorporated. Don’t worry if the batter doesn’t look smooth. Add vanilla. Stir in flour, salt baking powder until batter is uniform and no flour remains.

3. Using an ice-cream scoop or spoon, fill each muffin liner with batter. They should be 3/4 full, if you’re not using a scoop. Top each cake with 1 heaping teaspoon of Nutella. Swirl Nutella in with a toothpick (I used 2 toothpicks), making sure to fold a bit of batter up over the Nutella. (do not swirl too much as you do not want to turn it to become ‘Nutella batter’.. Just a few rounds so that you can still bite into those delicious nutella)
4. Bake for 20 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean.
5. Remove to wire rack to cool completely.
Categories: Cakes Tags: , ,

12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies!

September 20, 2010 4 comments

I can’t think of a better way to welcome Christmas than by baking cookies!

12 different cookie recipes to scout, bake and share! Boy, am i psyched!

Thanks Abbey Sweets for letting me join the fun in this bake along.

Categories: Uncategorized

Churros Con Chocolate

September 20, 2010 2 comments


Still on a choux pastry roll, i decided to take a lil walk on the wild side. Instead of baking, i decided to deep fry these choux pastries. I was pleased when i saw Baking Bites featured a churros recipe on her blog as her recipes are usually clear and work for me. (Thank You Baking Bites!!)

While these mexican delights are tasty doused with a lil cinammon sugar, they are absolutely divine when dipped in chocolate sauce.

The consistency of the chocolate was on the thin side, as it serves a dual purpose. One is of course to dip your churros into, but once you have reached the end of your churros stick, or second churros stick,  this chocolate sauce can also be drunk the way you nurse a cup of hot chocolate. Oh yeah baby.

On a side note, i think i might have goofed up a bit on the deep frying tho. As typical of me, i totally disregarded the part of the recipe which called for measuring the temperature of the oil. I jumped straight into pipping my dough into the hot oil, marvelling at how pretty they turn out to be when they puff up into golden brown crispness.

But i guess u can’t fool the law of choux pastry of never opening the oven door before the pastries are cooked, cause some of my casualties came out deflated, with soggy centers after they have been left to drain.

Good thing i discovered the mistake early, and worked on my subsequent batches by lowering the heat, and making sure that each of them were a deep golden brown before i fished them out of the oil.

These churros are crispy when served immeadiately, they tend to get soggy in a bit… and when they do, just pop them into the oven for a bit of a refresher, and voila, fresh churros all over again.

Churros con Chocolate
Adapted from Bakingbites who adapted from Chocolateria San Gines
Churros
1 cup water
1/2 cup butter
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup all purpose flour
3 large eggs
vegetable oil, for frying
confectioners’ sugar

Chocolate Sauce
1 tbsp cornstarch
2 cups milk (any kind)
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate (chocolate chips)
1/4 cup sugar

In a medium saucepan, combine butter and water and bring to a boil. When mixture is boiling, add in flour all at once and stir vigorously with a wooden spoon until the dough comes together. Continue to stir and cook the dough for about 1 minute. Transfer to a large mixing bowl or to the bowl of an electric stand mixer. Turn the mixer on medium-high. Beat in the eggs one at a time, waiting until each has been well incorporated before adding the next. Batter may look wet before it comes together, but keep mixing and a smooth dough will form.
Transfer dough to a pastry bag fitted with a medium or large star tip.
Pour about 2-inches of oil into a deep saucepan. Bring the oil to about 365F.

Meanwhile, prepare the chocolate sauce.
Whisk together the cornstarch and milk. Add mixture, along with chocolate and sugar, to a small saucepan. Bring just to boil, whisking occasionally, and cook until sauce has thickened. Remove from heat.

Pipe 5 to 6-inch pieces of churro dough into the hot oil and cook until golden brown, then flip and cook until golden on the second side (about 5-6 minutes total). Remove from oil and set on some paper towels to drain, then dust with confectioners’ sugar.

Serve churros with small cups of chocolate sauce.

Makes about 20 churros.

Categories: Cookies Tags: , ,