9.22.2014

snickerdoodle cupcakes


Since making these delicious snickerdoodle cookies a few weeks ago, I have been totally craving that awesome snickerdoodle flavor! I was in the mood for cupcakes last week, and thought it would be fun to try a snickerdoodle variation of my favorite vanilla cupcakes. They turned out awesome!


These snickerdoodle cupcakes have the perfect soft texture, and I love the little hint of cinnamon. It's kind of amazing how just adding a little cinnamon to the cake and frosting gives them a totally different flavor without being overpowering at all. These cupcakes taste just like snickerdoodle cookies, but with the added bonus of some delicious creamy frosting!


Snickerdoodle Cupcakes

for the cupcakes:
1 1/2 cups cake flour
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, cold, cut into small cubes
4 eggs
1 1/2 cup milk (I used skim, and it worked fine)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

for the frosting:
2 sticks butter, softened
pinch of salt
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
cinnamon sugar, for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 350. Line two muffin tins with paper liners. In a large bowl or a the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together flours, sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt. Add the butter and mix until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine the milk and vanilla in a measuring cup, and add about half of the milk mixture to the flour mixture. Beat until well blended and smooth. Add the other half of the milk mixture, and beat until smooth. Fill paper liners 2/3 full and bake 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool in pan for a few minutes and then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely. To make the frosting, beat the butter until light and fluffy. Add the salt, cinnamon, and powdered sugar, and mix until combined. Add the vanilla and beat until light and fluffy. Frost cupcakes as desired (I used a large round tip) and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

adapted from my vanilla cupcakes


9.18.2014

one hour orange rolls


Oh, how I love orange rolls! If given the choice, I will always choose an orange roll over a cinnamon roll. I have my favorite orange knot recipe that I make all the time, but a few weeks ago I was in the mood for a more traditional orange roll, and quick. I stumbled across a one-hour cinnamon roll recipe on one of my favorite blogs, Life Made Simple, and got to work. The resulting rolls weren't quite as soft and fluffy as a true orange roll recipe, but they were pretty darn close and so easy and quick to make! This is definitely one to keep around for when those cravings strike. Delicious!

One Hour Orange Rolls

for the rolls:
2 3/4 cup flour
2 1/4 teaspoons yeast (I used active dry)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup milk
1 egg

for the filling:
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup sugar
zest of one orange

for the frosting:
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 tablespoons butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
3 tablespoons orange juice (more or less as needed)

In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour, yeast, and salt. In a small microwave safe bowl or measuring cup, combine the sugar, butter, water, and milk. Heat on high for 60-90 seconds, or until the mixture is warm and the butter is almost melted. Add the milk mixture to the flour mixture and mix until combined. Add the egg and mix to form a soft and sticky dough. Kneed 3-4 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Cover and let rest 5 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured floured surface to form a 16 x 9 rectangle. Mix together the butter, sugar, and orange zest, and spread it evenly over the surface. Roll the dough up lengthwise and cut it into twelve equal sized pieces. Place the rolls in a lightly greased 9 x 13 pan and cover lightly with foil. Turn off the oven and place the rolls inside, and let rise for 25 minutes. After 25 minutes, pull out the pan of rolls and preheat the oven to 375. Remove the foil and bake the rolls 15-18 minutes, or until light golden brown.

Beat together the cream cheese and butter until fluffy. Add the powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Add the orange juice until desired consistency is reached. Spread the frosting over the hot rolls and let it melt. Serve warm.

adapted from Life Made Simple


9.16.2014

garlic parmesan chicken penne pasta


I know I posted a similar recipe not too long ago, but this one was just too good not to share! I am really loving quick pasta dishes for dinner lately… somehow life just never seems to slow down even a little bit, so it's really nice to have a quick meal that's ready in under 30 minutes. My kids loved this (although Lizzy picked out every last piece of parsley, since she is anti-green right now) and I wanted to eat the creamy garlic parmesan sauce with a spoon. Yum! I think this pasta would be great with some sautéed mushrooms and spinach mixed in, but I didn't have any on hand when I made it. (And I'm sure Lizzy appreciated that I didn't try to corrupt her precious noodles and chicken with anything green.)

Garlic Parmesan Chicken Penne Pasta

1 pound penne pasta
3 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons minced garlic
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup milk
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
pepper to taste
2 cups chopped cooked chicken (I used rotisserie)
1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley (dried would work fine as well)

Cook the pasta according to the package directions and drain. While the pasta is cooking, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add the butter and garlic and cook until the garlic is fragrant. Whisk in the flour to form a paste, and let the mixture cook 1-2 minutes. Slowly add the chicken broth and milk, whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Continue to whisk frequently and bring the sauce nearly to a simmer, until thickened. Remove from heat and whisk in the parmesan, salt, and pepper until combined. Toss the sauce with the pasta and the chicken, returning to the heat if needed to heat through. Sprinkle with fresh parsley and enjoy!

adapted from Lil' Luna
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