Thursday, November 26, 2009

Treats for Turkey Day

So, one of my favorite things to do in the world is to spend insane amounts of time working on tedious little edible treats. This in turn, turns me crazy haha. But....Thanksgiving seemed like the perfect time to engage myself in this love of details that I possess. I went searching all over the internet and finally stumbled upon a few recipies. After I twiddled and tweaked them to suit me, this is what I created. I'm quite proud of these little guys, if I do say so myself.

Detailed Little Project Number 1:

Cookie Turkeys
One package of Keebler Fudge Stiped Cookies
One package of Marshmallow Fudge Cookies (Great Value Walmart Brand)
One can of vanilla icing (a little tinted yellow and a little tinted red
One can of chocolate icing
2o mini chocolate chips
20 mini candy white ball sprinkles
Assorted candy corn (I used peppermint and gingerbread) (You can also use Indian corn or regular candy corn)

Directions (Brace yourself before you try to conquer this. You WILL get frustrated! BEWARE!

1. Take one Keebler Fudge Striped cookie. With a dab of the chocolate icing, attack one half of a Marshmallow Fudge cookie to the base.

2. With a piping bag and a large circle tip (or cut the end of a ziploc bag) pipe a turkey "neck" in front of the fudge cookie.
3. Put a dot of white icing on two mini chocolate chips and add the mini white sprinkle ball. Push the chips into the head of the turkey.

4. With the yellow icing, give the turkey a nose and two legs/feet. With the red icing, give the turkey a gobble. (Use a piping bag or ziploc bag)

5. Cut a fuge striped cookie in a little more than a half. With icing, attach five pieces of candy corn to the cookie in the shape of a feather. Add icing to the candy corn and attach to the back of the turkey. VOOOLAH! Makes ten turkeys. Prepare for compliments.

Project #2 (Yet surprisingly not as detailed. If you don't want to lose your mind, I would recommend this!)
Peppy Pilgrim Hats
Ingredients for Peppy Pilgrim Hats:
1o Keebler Fudge Striped Cookies
10 Marshmallows
Melting Chocolate Wafers
Vanilla Colored Icing
40 white candy Sprinkle Balls
1. Melt the chocolate wafers in microwave.
2. Coat the marshmallows in chocolate and set on parchment paper. Let set.
3. Attach the marshmallow with a bit of frosting to center of cookie.
4. Pipe yellow square onto the front of the pilgrim hat.
5. Push four sprinkle balls onto each corner of the hat!
6. Let them sit out for everyone to see, enjoy, and fall in love with!

Cookies for Katherine

I had one request from my aunt on Thanksgiving. Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies. Of course I obliged quite willingly, but inside I was thoroughly concered. I had never been successful with oatmeal cookies. hunt started. My hunt for amazing oaty oatmeal cookies. I was on a mission, but uncertain was I of the results. But, I found one that looked quite decent. I must say, searching the words "the best oatmeal chocolate chip cookies" on google gives you numerous results. It's my job to make sure that I pick the best.
Here we go....
Oaty Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies (Absolutely Amazing I Must Say)
3/4 cup of room temperature "I can't believe it's not butter" baking sticks
1 cup of packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla
3/4 cup of flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon cinamon
3 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup of milk chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350* F.

2. Place cookie dough (using an ice cream scoop) on baking sheets lined with parchment paper.

3. In mixer, cream butter and brown sugar. Add the egg and vanilla and mix until combined.

4. In a separate bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, and salt.

5. Slowly add to the wet mixture (beating in between).

6. Stir in oatmeal and chocolate chips.

7. Bake 13-15 minutes. Edges will be light golden brown.

Hint: You can also add M&M's, raisins, or nuts. Whatever you like will suit!

Terrific Turnovers (Empanadas)

Yes, empanadas. A Mexican/Latin American traditional Christmas treat. Often filled with meat, this dessert can also be made with an array of fruit.
Soo..I decided to go tropical. But first, I should give you the background. I was assigned a project for college. In Spanish, there is a holiday called Las Posadas and at the end of the festival, they have a huge feast (these empanadas included). "Brownie points" were awarded to those who were creative. I decided that I should be creative with my "baking skills" (or so I'd like to think). This was the finished product.

Tropical Fruit Empanadas.

1 1/2 Pre-Made/Pre-Rolled Refrigerated Pie Crusts (Pillsbury)
Tropical Filling (Recipie Follows)
Egg wash (One egg+1 1/2 Tablespoons of water)
Cinamon+Sugar Mixture

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Cut out pie dough with circle cookie dough or circular cutter into 4 inch circles.

3. Spoon one Tablespoon of filling in half each circle. Brush the other half with egg wash.

4. Fold over and pinch the sides of the empanda. Scallop edges with a fork.

5. Place on greased cookie sheets and brush with egg wash. Sprinkle with cinamon sugar.

6. Bake for 16-19 minutes or until light golden brown.

7. Let cool, and store in airtight container.

Tropical Filling

1 cup of strained juice from one can of crushed pineapple
1 14-16 oz. bag of frozen peaches (slightly thawed)
1 20 oz. bag of frozen strawberries (Slightly thawed)
1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla
1/3 cup of brown sugar (packed)
1/8-1/4 of a cup of corn starch.

1. Combine juice, vanilla, corn starch, and brown sugar in saucepan on medium low heat until thickened.
2. Add fruit(diced into 1/2 inch pieces) and leave on low heat for a slight simmer. Let cool.
3. When cool, add to empanadas, bake, and enjoy!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Sensational Snack Mix

So, what if you don't like baking...but you like food and you like mixing stuff. Well...good news...I can help you to! It's all in the snack mix.

Here's an example of one of my favorites (due to the fact that it includes both chocolate AND peanut butter!)
So whats all in it??

chocolate animal crackers
Pretzel snaps
Reeses Pieces
Chex Cereal (drizzled with melted milk chocolate and broken into clusters)

To Do: Mix desired amounts and watch it disappear!!

A Few More of Cupcakes Past

Roar! These tasty treats were for my FABULOUS Lady Lions! They were gone in a matter of minutes.

ARGH!! Pirate cupcakes for a little pirate birthday boy!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Memories of Cupcakes Past.....

So....I thought that I would relive a few of my fondest cupcake memories.....

The beloved Penguin Cupcakes. These babies were eaten up by two young children who galdly decapitated the poor penguin creatures. The penguin contains half of a mini donut, and on top is a donut hole. It is then dipped in melted chocolate icing and decorated. Yum!

Whale Cupcakes! A series of cupcakes made for Bible School two years ago! The tails are dipped chocolate wafer cookies dipped in melted blue icing.
Sheep Cupcakes...also for Bible School. I frosted them with vanilla frosting and added mini marshmallows that I cut in half. A few other little details, and vooollaahh!Lion Cupcakes...the last of the Bible School Bash! I frosted these big guys with vanilla icing and pushed Twizzler pull and peel licorace into the icing to make it's "mane." Then added m&m's, a cinamon heart, and some piping, and roooooarrr!

My cute little "good luck" mini cake. Tese are probably one of my favorite treats to create. I frost a mini layer cake, and cover in in whatever sort of fondant tickles your fancy! PS I looove practicing!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Mary Catherine's Tea Party baby cousin Mary Catherine was baptized on Sunday. So I decided that it was an opportunity-to bake a cake of course! I realized that I needed to stretch my "fondant skills" and chose to decorate my cousin a little tea party of her own. Of course, I needed to add my famous mini cupcakes along with the cake. I couldn't show my face without cupcakes!! Let's be realistic here! (and in the shape of a heart!)

Everyone absolutely loved it....and it is now my quest to learn how to "ship" my little cakes. I must figure out how to do this! It's imperative! It's now my new goal. Anyone willing to be a guinea big? This experiment might end in multiple broken cakes and many tears (from me)...but if I figure out how to do it...then it will positively be worth it!

Meadowbrook Munchies

A way to show my Lady Lions their proper respect! Mini cupcucakes with orange "vanilla buttercream" icing covers funfetti cupcakes! Some are coated in sugar. I colored fondant green and cut out small circles. The perfect bite size treat! Try some out for yourself!!

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