Sunday, July 4, 2010

Best summer desert EVER!

This started out from this recipe in July's Woman's Day. (find it online here) I originally made the recipe as called for using the frozen whipped topping. While shopping for ingredients to make it for the 4th of July I came across mini angel food cakes. A light began to shine & these deserts were born. Yeah, I know the little brown slug things don't look so good & my camera doesn't take very good photos in the near dark but work w/ me here. Use your imagination & I promise you that you will LOVE (as long as you like the ingredients - *g*) this desert. Bonus? Quick & EASY!

Mini angel food cakes

Frozen orange sherbet (the commissary by us only stocks the orange cream variety)
Using a teaspoon, stuff the softened sherbet into the center of the angel food cake.

I smashed it around on the bottom a bit too, to give it a little more flavor throughout.

Put the filled cakes back in the cartoon & cover w/ plastic wrap. Place cartoon in freezer for 4 hrs or overnight.

Take the frozen cakes out of the freezer & place on plate. I just happened to have leftover small blue plates. Very 4th of July, yes?

Whip up some heavy cream until nice & frothy. Add sugar to taste. Then top frozen cake w/ as much whipped cream as you'd like. (those aresol canned whipped cream won't do. Make the good stuff!)
These little orange squiggles are amazingly awesome. Trust me when I tell you that they help to make the cake perfect. Put these on top of the whipped cream & then enjoy heaven.
For a little extra awesomeness (& don't photograph the chocolate once it's been in the fridge for a few hours. It gets pretty solid), drizzle some chocolate ganache on top.

Recipes -

6 mini angel food cakes
orange sherbet
heavy cream
sugar to taste
ganache * recipe follows
candied orange peel** recipe follows

Stuff mini angel food cakes w/ orange sherbet. Stuff as much sherbet in as possible. Put cakes back into cartoon, cover w/ plastic wrap (tightly) & place in freezer for 4 hrs or overnight.

Take cakes out of freezer 5 - 7 min before using. Whip heavy cream until stiff. Add sugar to taste. Top mini cakes w/ whipped cream, chocolate ganache & candied orange peels. Serve & await the applause!

*ganache -

1/2 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup 60% cacao Ghiradelli chocolate bar broken into small pieces.

Pour cream into glass bowl. Put bowl in microwave for 1 minute or until cream is bubbly. Take from microwave & add chocolate pieces. Let cream & chocolate set for 1 minute. Whisk cream & chocolate until smooth. Pour over mini angel food cakes. If any ganache remains, place in bowl w/ tight seal & refrigerate. Next time you use it, take it from the fridge & let set for a minute. Then stir w/ spoon until smooth.

**candied orange peel - from Woman's Day Creamsicle cake recipe

Using a citrus zester, remove the peel from 1 orange in strips. Or use a vegetable peeler to remove the peel from the orange in vertical strips, avoiding as much of the white pith as possible; cut into smaller strips. Bring 2 cups cold water and the peel to a boil in a 2-qt saucepan; drain. In the same saucepan, whisk 1 cup water with 2 cups sugar until sugar dissolves. Add the peel and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat; simmer the peel 10 to 15 minutes until tender and translucent. Drain; let cool. Toss the peel in 1/2 cup sugar. Using a fork or your fingers, remove peels, gently shaking off excess sugar. Store in an airtight container for 1 week.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Hanae's Birthday Cake

Hanae's birthday cake

To make you'll need either the Wilton Wonder Bowl or the Pampered Chief bowl (not certain which one but I'll find out & post it.)

All I can say is follow the directions on the insert. I know, this is a cooking blog so please give the directions. Can't do it. Sorry. No way. Ah, who am I kidding? Actually I've already put the pan away & it's up pretty high in the pantry. It's also kinda
late tonight & I have no one to climb up & get it! See I'm afraid of heights. Even getting onto a step stool can do me in. Sad, isn't it.

I do remember that it took 1 & 1/2 prepared cake mixes to fill the wonder bowl. I used the remainder to make a 10" round that I stuck under the dress mold. Just follow the pictures & I'll explain as best I can.

Below is the box & part of the directions.

This is the baked product in the bowl. It comes in a few pieces that you have to put together. Basically you have to screw the base into the bowl.

Eureka! A baked product that didn't fall apart & that was done in the center. Yes, I did use the heating rod the first time but it still wasn't done. That's what makes the hole in the top. The heating rod.
Just a different view of the cake after I had put the 10" round under the dress. @ this point though I wrapped the whole thing up w/ lots of plastic wrap & threw it in the freezer. Okay, I didn't "throw" it in but I was tempted. Not kidding.

This is what Hanae wanted. This is not what she got. No, she didn't want the dolly w/ the black hair. She wanted the blonde dolly, which she got. Actually it was the dress style that she wanted only she also wanted pink & white dots on the dress. I can tell you right now that it didn't happen cause her momma hadn't decorated a cake for over a year! Sad, isn't it.
I did my best which was sad enough & I have vowed to start practicing. I've told Hubby that he'd darn well better make friends in the breakroom since he's gonna be taking cakes in!

I was trying to be fancy & I shouldn't have. I just haven't practiced enough in the last year. I know, I already told you that I haven't done any @ all!

Basically I smoothed the dress the best I could which is to say I made stripes w/ the spatula in the icing down it. Then I put ruffles on the bottom & up the side a bit. After that I started in w/ the smallest star tip I have (16 I think) & went around the skirt & all over the front & the bodice. I was trying to make her shirt more of a blouse but well, I didn't. Then I was going to wipe the bodice & start over but my daughter didn't make it onto the school bus. This meant that I had to go get her. Not enough time. So she got her doll the way she got her. Period.

Whew! I'm glad that one's over. Ready for the bad news? My son wants this one for his birthday next year! Guess I really need to start practicing!

Ocean cupcakes

Hanae's ocean cupcakes

Ingredients -

1 batch prepared cupcakes any flavor
1 recipe buttercream icing (see recipe below) colored blu
blue colored sugar sprinkles
Goldfish crackers or other substitute

They were studying oceans & sea life during her birthday so she wanted a water theme. I think I saw these in a Family Circle magazine once & decided to make my own version.

I iced the cupcakes w/ a crumb coat as they were very moist. Then I went back & put more icing on smoothing it in a circular direction. Next I took the back of a spoon & touched it to the the iced cupcake & pulling it away in a smooth motion to create a wavelike look.

Pour some blue colored sugar sprinkles on a plate & gently roll the edges in the sugar. Top off w/ Goldfish crackers or even swedish fish depending on who it's for & what they prefer.

My Fav Buttercream Icing

I won't lie. It's been quite awhile but finally I have some new posts! No photos of the first recipe but a few of the others.

My Favorite Buttercream Icing

1/2 C solid white veg shortening (don't use the butter flavor, ick!)

1/2 C butter (I use salted but can use unsalted. If using unsalted add a pinch of salt to icing while mixing)

1 tsp Flavoring (I prefer butter but can use almond or vanilla. Also I like to buy them from Wilton or online)

2 T canned milk (this is regular canned milk NOT sweetened condensed milk)

4 C (1 lb) pure cane confectioners sugar

1 T Meringue powder (buy in hobby stores in the Wilton aisle - store in fridge & will last almost forever!)

Cream shortening, flavorings & milk. Add dry ingredients & mix on med speed until all ingredients have been thoroughly mixed together. Now mix on low speed for 10 min. This will make icing light & fluffy. Once recipe will ice a double 8" round cake.

To thin icing I add a little milk or lite corn syrup. Only add about a tablespoon @ a time until desired consistency is reached. To make it thin enough to ice a cake add about 2 tablespoons of liquid. The recipe as made is wonderful for making flowers & borders etc... on the cake.

Can make this using a hand mixer however a stand mixer works best as the icing is quite stiff.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Fresh Parsley

This might be totally shocking but I had no idea for years that you could buy fresh parsley, wash it, chop it & freeze it. When I found out I was in heaven. Yes, I'm really not that great of a cook. There I admitted it. But I do love the idea of having fresher herbs than the dead ones in my cupboard. So now I chop them up & throw them in the freezer. Great idea, yes? I also do this w/ onions & red, green & yellow pepers because sometimes it's nice to have the work done plus there's times when peppers are so very expensive. I typically keep them for about 2 - 3 months after which it is all gone & time to cut more.

Here's how I cut parsley.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

New addition

My sister has recently been given a large box full of my paternal Grandmother's recipes. Trust me when I tell you that just hearing about those darn things makes my mouth water to the point where I want to drool! I can still taste Grandma's rolls & pies. They are/were amazing! Mmmmmmmm.

Anyway the going will be slow as my sister has to transcribe them after work & well, Grandma wrote everything in pencil! Aghh!!! Don't write recipes out in pencil! Too hard to read after many years have gone by!

You are welcome to stop by & visit anytime you might be looking for something fun. No idea when the roll recipe will be up but I'm sure it will @ some point!

Grandma's recipe box

Friday, October 31, 2008

Kitty Litter box cake!

So what is this gross monstrosity you might ask? Well it's actually a cake. A pretty good cake to be honest. Notice the "poopies"? Realistic, aren't they? Everybody @ school was pretty grossed out but know what? The cake is GONE! Of course I did make this for my son's 6th grade class & it turned out awesome. They were all properly impressed!

kitty litter box cake -

  • 1 spice or German chocolate cake mix
  • 1 white cake mix
  • 1 large pkg vanilla instant pudding mix
  • 1 pkg vanilla sandwich cookies
  • Green food coloring
  • 12 small Tootsie Rolls
  • New, cleaned litter box
  • New, cleaned litter scooper

  1. Prepare the cake mix according to the directions on the box. Use any size pan. Allow the cake to cool to room temperature.
  2. Prepare the pudding mix and put it in the refrigerator for now.
  3. Crumble the white sandwich cookies in small batches in a food processor (scrape often to get every little piece) or by hand. Set aside all but about 1/4 cup.
  4. Measure 1/4 cup of cookie crumbs and add a few drops of green food coloring to it. Mix with a fork or shake everything in a jar.
  5. Crumble the room temperature cake into a large bowl. Toss it gently with half of the remaining white cookie crumbs and enough chilled pudding to moisten (not soak) the crumbs.
  6. Put the cookie crumbs and pudding mixture into a brand new, clean litter box.
  7. Heat three unwrapped Tootsie rolls in a microwave safe dish and until they're soft and pliable. Pinch the ends so they are no longer blunt--you want them to look convincingly like what cats put in the litter box, right? Repeat this process with as many Tootsie rolls as you'd like to add, microwaving them in batches of three.
  8. Bury the shaped Tootsie rolls in mixture and sprinkle them with the other half of the cookie crumbs.
  9. Scatter the green cookie crumbs lightly over the top. This will mimic real litter, where many of the grains are often blue or green.
  10. Shape 3 more Tootsie rolls and scrape them on top of the cake. One can hang over the side of the litter box. Sprinkle them lightly with cookie crumbs.
  11. Place the box on a newspaper and sprinkle a few of the cookie crumbs around. Serve with a brand new, cleaned litter scooper for that extra touch!
This is a very fun cake that most people will have a great time w/. Hope you enjoy!