13 May 2011

paper banner

Sometimes I love being broke and unemployed. For instance, it comes in handy when I want to watch six straight Doctor Who episodes. No pesky work to get in the way! Also, lack of funds means I have to get very creative and crafty with gift giving. For my mom's birthday (which i remembered all by myself, thankyouverymuch), I decided to create one of those cute mini banners that have been so gracefully hung all over the internet. And a sweet little picture frame with a matching, even mini-er banner!

09 May 2011

Mini Honey Cheesecakes

The beautiful and sweet Krystel of Couture Events asked if I could supply a recipe for one of the desserts that I made for the fun Milk & Honey Photoshoot that we shot a while ago. I am happy to oblige:

Mini Honey Cheesecakes
1 cup graham cracker pieces
¼ cup sliced almonds
¼ tsp cinnamon (approx.)
3 Tbl butter, softened
2 pkg cream cheese, softened
3 Tbl honey
2 eggs + 2 egg yolks
1 cup sour cream
1 Tb grated lemon peel
1 tsp cornstarch

Preheat oven to 350°
Line mini muffin tin with mini muffin cups. In a food processor, combine graham cracker pieces and sliced almonds. Pulse, scraping down sides, until almonds are finely chopped. Add butter and a few dashes of cinnamon and pulse until mixture resembles gravel. Spoon about one teaspoon of the crust into each muffin tin. Now, grab that tacky souvenir shot glass your aunt bought for you on her last trip to Hawaii. Use it to firmly pat down the mixture into the bottom of the muffin cup, making it as even as possible.

Blend the honey and softened cream cheese. Beat in eggs and egg yolks, then add sour cream, lemon peel, and cornstarch. Beat until mixture is smooth. Fill each muffin tin about ¾ of the way full, and bake for 12-14 minutes. The cheesecakes might seem a little jiggly when you pull them out, but they will set after they have cooled. (If your cheesecakes start cracking on the tops, pull them out of the oven immediately! They are definitely done!).
Let them cool in the tin for a few minutes, then take them out of the tins and let them chill completely in the fridge (at least 30 minutes). Before serving, carefully remove cheesecakes from the paper muffin cups – by this point they’ll most likely be all crinkly-looking anyway. Right before serving, top each cheesecake with a "smidgen" of honey. You know, a smidgen*. Considerably less than a dollop, but more than a pinch.
Makes about 24 mini cheesecakes.

This could be fun to try with normal sized cupcake tins as well. Just increase the bake time a bit (again, be wary of cracks in the tops of the cheesecakes!), and make sure they have ample time to set in the fridge. Also, these would be yummy with all sorts of toppings. Like raspberry sauce! Or sugared strawberries! Yum. How sweet :)

*update: Did you know that "smidge," "dash," and "tad" all have uniform measurements? There is even a special measuring spoon set if you're going to be precise about it! I think I need one.

30 March 2011

Sweet as Honey

I just got back from filing for my fictitious business name... and the winner for the name of my business is.... dun dun dun.... Sweet as Honey! Thanks to Couture Events for the inspiration :) Here is a sneak preview from the photoshoot I worked on with them yesterday!

18 March 2011

Valentine's Day!

Fortunately, being broke and being a baker are not mutually exclusive...
as long as you still live at home where your parents stock the
pantry. Anyway, This year, I told Steven that I would be baking a gift for Valentine's Day, and I just needed one flavor/ingredient to base my gift off of. He could choose anything, and I am very surprised that he did not choose bacon! Instead, he requested toffee. This was a challenge, since I had never even had toffee
before, much less made it. This was certainly my first little
adventure into candymaking - candy thermometer and all!
some hard work, a few burned batches of toffee, and a 7/11 run
for Heath Bars, I ended up with a beautiful batch of Pecan and Almond Chocolate Toffee, and some Espresso-Toffee Cupcakes with Mocha Buttercream Frosting. And I couldn't help but
add the heart garnish :)
I got to use so many new, fun ingredients this time around! I received a bottle of vanilla from
the Dominican Republic. It has a
wonderful, almost tropically sweet taste to it. Also, I finally found instant espresso! I've been looking for it for a while, and I think I'll be making a lot of "mocha" recipes that I've bookmarked for the last few months.

05 February 2011

Happy Halloween! Ok, this is post is a liiiiitle late. But hey, being a kindergarten teacher tends to take up more time than you would think. So here are some cake pops that I made and sold for Halloween last year. The "eyeballs" are red velvet cake with white and red candy coating, an m&m, and a miniature chocolate chip. The pumpkins are chocolate cake with orange candy coating, green candy leaves, and a chocolate "stem."

17 October 2010

people actually buy this stuff?!?

Turns out that if you give away baked goodies long enough, people will start ordering them from you! Ordering and pricing information for San Diego coming soon...

cake pops

I finally was able to document a batch of cake pops! I had never had my Nikon handy when I made them - and these things don't last long enough to be photographed... As Abby from NCIS would say, these things are more addictive than pistachios.

I got the recipe for these sweet little cake bites from Bakerella - who is pretty much a superhero in the baking+blogging world. I mean, she's been on Martha. Forreals.
I started out making real cake pops - with lollipop sticks - but
the lollipop-stick-less version is a lot easier. But I still call them cake "pops" because cake "balls" seems to always bring on an onset of giggling. Can't imagine why...

So, these cake pops in particular were made for an anniversary celebration. There are chocolate cake pops covered in dark chocolate candy melts, and red velvet cake pops covered with vanilla candy melts. Both contain cream cheese frosting, which I prefer because it has a mild and less-sugary taste than other frostings. Oh, and I only use half a can of frosting, while the original Bakerella recipe calls for a whole can.