Showing posts with label cake. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cake. Show all posts

7.21.2014

raspberry coffee cake


Are you a breakfast eater? I'm sure I've mentioned it before, but I'm what you might call a non-traditional breakfaster. I eat breakfast every day without fail, but usually what I eat isn't what most people would consider breakfast food. I often eat leftovers from the night before, or make a quick sandwich, or… well, I've even been known to eat cold pizza right out of the fridge. It's a combination of factors… I really like savory things for breakfast more than sweet, and I'm usually too tired (and in too much of a hurry) to make much of anything in the morning. I make frozen waffles, toast, or cereal for the girls (lest you worry I am converting them to my strange breakfasting habits) but I'm usually just trying to grab what I can as I'm heading out of the house to work.

So what does that have to do with today's post? Well, on the days I don't work, I actually make an effort to make real breakfast foods, and my family loves it! I made this delicious raspberry coffee cake  few weeks ago, and the whole family loved it. It's super simple and straightforward to make, and has a delicious buttery crumb. The fresh raspberries in the filling made it extra special and tasty. I can't wait to try it again with some other varieties of fruit. Yum!


Fresh Raspberry Coffee Cake

for the filing:
2 cups fresh raspberries
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons corn starch

for the cake:
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
4 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
1 egg
1/2 cup buttermilk (or 1/2 cup milk + a splash of vinegar)
1 teaspoon vanilla

for the topping:
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces

Preheat the oven to 350 and prepare a 9 x 9 baking dish by buttering or spraying with cooking spray. To make the filling, whisk together the water, sugar, and corn starch in a medium saucepan. Mix in the raspberries and heat over medium heat until the mixture reaches a simmer. Let simmer 4-6 minutes, or until thickened. Set aside.

To make the cake, in a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and baking soda. Cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Whisk together the egg, buttermilk, and vanilla, and add to the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined. Spread about half of the mixture in the prepared pan. Pour the raspberry filling over the batter, then drop remaining batter by spoonfuls over the raspberry filling.

To make the crumb topping, mix together the flour and sugar, then cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle the topping over the batter. Bake 40-45 minutes or until light golden brown and cooked through.

adapted from Heather Homemade


7.14.2014

s'mores cupcakes


Does it get any better than this, my friends? These s'mores cupcakes are pretty darn amazing! The back story on them is that I've been working like crazy for the last few weeks and haven't had a lot of time to bake or cook. My co-worker Meag (who is a seriously awesome baker) brought in some s'mores cupcakes to work this week (yes, my co-workers are great like that), and I couldn't stop thinking about them! I could hardly wait to make my own batch. Pretty much the minute I got off work on Saturday, I was busy in the kitchen whipping up these beauties, and they did not disappoint.


I absolutely adore the delicious flavor combination... graham cracker crust, chocolate cupcake, marshmallow cream filling, and luscious chocolate frosting. Sprinkle the tops with a little extra chocolate, graham cracker, and marshmallow, and you've got a dessert that's both stunning and delicious!


S'mores are one of my favorite summer desserts, and these cupcakes are an awesome way to pack in even more s'mores flavor! They do take a little time to assemble, but the end result is totally worth it!

S'mores Cupcakes

for the cupcakes:
twelve graham crackers, crushed, divided
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon hot water
2 1/4 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks butter, cut into small pieces
1 2/3 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla
3/4 cup sour cream

for the frosting:
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3-4 tablespoons milk
1/2 cup cocoa powder
3 1/2 cup powdered sugar

for assembling:
7 ounces marshmallow cream
mini marshmallows
hershey's bars

To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350 and line 2 cupcake pans with paper liners. Reserving 3 tablespoons of the crushed graham crackers, mix the remaining graham crackers with the melted butter until evenly distributed. Add a spoonful of the graham cracker mixture to each paper liner and push it down with your fingers to form a crust. Set aside. In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together cocoa powder and hot water until smooth. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, and set aside.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, stir together butter and sugar. Heat, stirring occasionally, until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth. Transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer or a large mixing bowl, and beat until the mixture is cool, 4-5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add vanilla and cocoa mixture, and blend until smooth. With the mixture on low speed, add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the sour cream. Mix until smooth. Scoop into prepared pans, filling 2/3 full. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 15-18 minutes. Let cool completely before frosting and decorating.

To make the frosting, in a large bowl or the bowl of stand mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla and milk, then add cocoa and powdered sugar. Whip until the mixture lightens and is smooth and creamy.

To assemble the cupcakes, fill the cooled cupcakes with marshmallow cream. I used a piping bag and a large round tip and just jammed them into each cupcake, but you could also use a knife to cut a circle out of the top of the cupcake, fill the cupcake, then replace the circle. Frost with chocolate frosting (I used a large closed star tip) and sprinkle with reserved graham cracker crumbs, mini marshmallows, and hershey's chocolate. Enjoy!

adapted from my perfect chocolate cupcakes


5.23.2014

fresh strawberry cake with strawberry buttercream


My sweet Abby turned seven a few weeks ago, and we finally got around to having her birthday party this last weekend (yes, we're terrible parents). We had a nice brunch with my family and it was fun to celebrate our cute (and growing way too fast!) seven year old. I wanted to make an extra special cake for her, and we decided together that a rose cake would be perfect for her party. Abby is a super girly girl, and loves pink and purple and wants everything to be beautiful. I had originally thought I would just make a vanilla cake with vanilla icing and tint it pink, but when I bought some gorgeous strawberries at Costco for the brunch, I realized they would be perfect in the cake too!

4.04.2014

perfect chocolate cupcakes


Happy Friday! How about some delicious cupcakes to start the day off right? It's been a pretty rough week for me (hence the lack of posts) and I'm a little stressed and burned out. I realized on Wednesday that I hadn't baked in what felt like forever, so these chocolate cupcakes became my therapy. Abby and I made them together while Geoff was working late, and we had the best time giggling together and baking. I'm not sure why baking relaxes me so much, but it really is my very favorite form of stress relief. I usually end up giving the treats away, but just the act of making them is soothing to me.


These chocolate cupcakes are so delicious! The flavor is perfectly chocolatey and rich, and the texture is moist and tender. And when you add my favorite chocolate buttercream to the mix, they are amazing! The light and fluffy frosting complements the cupcakes perfectly without being overwhelming. We took some to a friend (who was also having a rough day) and I hope they turned her day around like they did mine!



Perfect Chocolate Cupcakes

for the cupcakes:
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon hot water
2 1/4 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks butter, cut into small pieces
1 2/3 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla
3/4 cup sour cream

for the frosting:
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3-4 tablespoons milk
1/2 cup cocoa powder
3 1/2 cup powdered sugar

To make the cupcakes, preheat oven to 350 and line 2 cupcake pans with paper liners. In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together cocoa powder and hot water until smooth. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, and set aside.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, stir together butter and sugar. Heat, stirring occasionally, until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth. Transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer or a large mixing bowl, and beat until the mixture is cool, 4-5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add vanilla and cocoa mixture, and blend until smooth. With the mixture on low speed, add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the sour cream. Mix until smooth. Scoop into prepared pans, filling 2/3 full. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 15-18 minutes. Let cool.

To make the buttercream, in a large bowl or the bowl of stand mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla and milk, then add cocoa and powdered sugar. Whip until the mixture lightens and is smooth and creamy. Frost cooled cupcakes and enjoy!

Cupcakes adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe and frosting adapted from Cooking Classy

3.11.2014

six layer rainbow cake


Today is my little Lizzy's third birthday! We had a little family party for her on Saturday, and I thought today would be a great day to share her amazing birthday cake!

First off, I just have to say that I love this adorable, sweet, hilarious little girl so much! She is such a little ray of sunshine and I can't imagine my life without her. She is totally my little mini-me, and it amazes me how incredibly similar we are. Happy birthday cute Lizzy!


Lizzy is obsessed with My Little Pony (thanks to her big sister) and asked for a Rainbow Dash birthday party. I decided to loosen that a little into a rainbow party, and it was the perfect excuse to make that gorgeous rainbow cake I've seen floating around Pinterest. I'm not going to lie… it took some time to make. I only had 2 8-inch cake pans, so I had to bake the layers in three batches, which was a little time consuming. Other than that, though, it was all pretty easy to put together!


To decorate, I just slathered some buttercream (very imperfectly, I might add) on the outside and then topped the cake with some rainbow sprinkles I found at my local party store. I found these cute twisty candles there as well, and the big number 3 is from Target.


As cute as the outside is, the inside is what makes this cake magical! I was nervous until I cut into it that somehow it wouldn't work or wouldn't look pretty, but it ended up being absolutely perfect. I was so impressed with myself that I kept giggling for joy while cutting the cake.


This one is definitely going down in the books as the prettiest cake I've ever made!

Six Layer Rainbow Cake

for the cake:
4 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups butter, room temperature
3 cups sugar
6 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
food coloring

for the frosting:
4 sticks unsalted butter
4 cups confectioners' sugar
pinch of salt
3 tablespoons heavy cream
2 teaspoons vanilla
food coloring (if desired)

Preheat oven to 350. Butter and flour 8-inch cake pans (as many as you have!) and set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt, and set aside. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition, then add the vanilla. Add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the buttermilk, and beginning and ending with the flour. Divide the cake batter into sixths in six different bowls, and add a different color of food coloring to each bowl. I used gel food coloring and used about a dime sized amount for each bowl. Bake in preheated oven 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Repeat with remaining batter, and let all layers cool completely.

To make the frosting, beat the butter until light and fluffy. Add the confectioners' sugar and salt, and beat to combine. Add the heavy cream and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy. Add food coloring if desired (I added a very small amount of blue food coloring).

To assemble, level each layer of cake. (I have a cake leveler I bought at Walmart for about $3, and it makes it super easy!). Stack the layers, adding a small amount of buttercream between each layer to hold them together. Frost with remaining buttercream and enjoy!

inspired by this cake from Brit & Co and adapted from my Perfect Birthday Cake


12.16.2013

mini nutella cheesecakes


Holy cow, it's another cheesecake recipe! I'm still not totally converted to cheesecake, but since it seems like everyone else really likes it, I've been finding myself in the position of making it lately. A few weeks ago a friend at work did me a big favor, and I baked up a batch of these delicious cheesecakes to say thank you. Considering she's begged me for the recipe every time I've seen her since, I'm guessing they were a hit! (And here I am, finally posting it for you, Liz!)


I made enough that Geoff and I got to try some too, and I'll admit that they were pretty tasty! The texture was silky and light, and I loved the hint of Nutella in every bite. Geoff went totally nuts over them and ate four little cheesecakes in about fifteen minutes. These cheesecakes would make an elegant and delicious dessert for any holiday party!


Mini Nutella Cheesecakes
adapted from Cooking Classy

for the crust:
9 ounces chocolate cookies, finely crushed (I used chocolate animal crackers but chocolate graham crackers would work great too!)
1 tablespoon sugar
6 tablespoons butter, melted

for the cheesecake:
6 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons flour
12 ounces cream cheese, softened (Neufchatel works fine)
2 large eggs
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup Nutella

Preheat oven to 325. In a small bowl, mix together crushed cookies, sugar, and butter. Divide evenly between 12 paper-lined muffin cups or 12 wells of a mini cheesecake pan. Press down to form an even layer and bake 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool while you prepare the filling.

In a medium bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, mix sugar, flour, and cream cheese until smooth. Beat in eggs, then add milk, sour cream, and vanilla, and mix until smooth. Fold in Nutella until just combined. Divide the filling evenly between the muffin cups, filling nearly to the top. Tap lightly on the counter to release any trapped air. Bake 20-24 minutes, or until just slightly jiggly in the center. Remove and let cool at room temperature 30 minutes, then cover with plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator for several hours. Keep in the refrigerator. Serve with whipped cream if desired.

10.25.2013

simple and sweet apple cake


Oh, I have such love for simple cakes. My strawberry summer cake is still one of my favorite desserts ever (and I love the peach version as well!). I love how homey they are and how easy it is to whip them up on a whim. This apple cake is joining the ranks as another delicious cake that's simple and easy to make. My little Lizzy was sick last Saturday and I spent most of the day on the couch with her snuggling and watching Lark Rise to Candleford (which I just discovered on Hulu and can't get enough of). Geoff joined me in watching it, and we talked about my love of the nineteenth century and how I was born at the wrong time. When I pulled this cake out of the oven later that night, his first comment was, "Wow, you really were born in the wrong century! This looks like something they would eat in Little Women." I'm still not sure whether that was meant as a compliment or an insult, but I'll take it as a compliment. :)


The apples make this cake very moist (without being soggy) and I love the flavors of the simple sweet cake mixed with the juicy apples and cinnamon. The batter took just a few minutes to whisk together, and mine was perfectly baked at about 50 minutes. I used golden delicious apples because they were what I had available, but I think it would be fun to experiment with some other varieties of apples too (granny smith, sweet tango, etc.). Hooray for fall baking!

Simple and Sweet Apple Cake
adapted from Julia's Album

2 large or 3 medium apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
1 teaspoon cinnamon
4 tablespoons brown sugar
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup canola oil
1/3 cup greek yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs
1 1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9 x 9 pan with cooking spray.Toss chopped apples with cinnamon and brown sugar, and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together sugar, canola oil, yogurt, and vanilla until well blended. Whisk in eggs until well combined. Whisk in flour, baking powder, and salt until combined. Pour half of the cake batter into the pan, spreading to cover the bottom, and top with half of the apples. Spread the remaining cake batter over the top and sprinkle with remaining apples. Bake 50-60 minutes, or until light golden brown. Let cool and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

9.06.2013

death by chocolate cheesecake


Would you believe this is the first cheesecake I've ever made? I'm a little iffy on sweetened cream cheese (I know! I'm so crazy!) and so cheesecake has never really been my thing. I've posted a few cheesecakey recipes on the blog, since Geoff absolutely loves cheesecake and could eat it every day of his life, but it has never been my first choice of dessert. For my dad's birthday a few weeks ago, though, I wanted to make him something extra special, and I've been eyeing this recipe for a while. Turns out this homemade chocolate cheesecake is amazing enough to turn even me around!


I love that it's not overly sweet, and has so much rich chocolate flavor. A small piece goes pretty far and is super satisfying. (Well, I should probably clarify that... I ate a small slice and felt satisfied and happy. Geoff, on the other hand, ate several slices and still wanted more. So it may just depend on the person.) Each layer is individually delicious... the crunchy, buttery cookie crust, the rich and moist cheesecake layer, and the silky smooth luscious ganache layer. Together, though, they're beyond amazing! I think this is honestly one of the best and most decadent desserts I've ever posted. Just posting these pictures has got me drooling all over again...

Death by Chocolate Cheesecake
adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe

crust:
9 ounces chocolate cookies (I used chocolate cat cookies from Trader Joe's but you could use graham crackers or teddy grahams as well)
1 tablespoon sugar
6 tablespoons butter, melted

filling:
10 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped (I used semisweet chocolate chips)
4 8-ounce packages of cream cheese (I used Neufchatel cheese)
1 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
4 large eggs

topping:
3/4 cup whipping cream
6 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 tablespoon sugar

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9 or 10 inch springform pan. Crush the chocolate cookies in a food processor (or by pounding them flat in a plastic bag). Put them in a small bowl and mix with sugar and melted butter, then press the mixture into the bottom of the springform pan. Bake 5 minutes, then let cool while preparing the filling.

Melt the 10 ounces of chocolate in the microwave or in a double boiler until smooth. Cool slightly. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, mix together cream cheese, sugar, and cocoa powder until smooth. Mix in the eggs one at a time, blending until smooth. Fold in melted chocolate and mix until blended. Pour over crust and smooth (I used an offset spatula). Bake about one hour, or until the center is set and appears dry. Remove from oven and let cool 10 minutes. Run a plastic knife or spatula around the edges of the springform pan to release the cheesecake. Cool to room temperature, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

To make the topping, melt the whipping cream, 6 ounces chocolate, and sugar together in a small saucepan over low heat, until smooth. Pour over the top of the cheesecake and spread so it covers smoothly. Chill until the topping is set, about one hour. Serve and enjoy.
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