Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Lemon scented Mini Cheesecakes

I found this recipe off of another baking blog site :) www.milkmanswife.wordpress.com
Makes 48 cheesecakes..

-1 sleeve honey graham crackers, crushed to fine crumbs
-3 to 4 tablespoons of butter, melted
-2 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, softened
-3/4 cup granulated sugar
-2 eggs
-1 teaspoons lemon zest
-1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
-small splash of vanilla
-Mixed berry topping (recipe follows)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two 24 tin mini muffin tins with paper liners.
In a small bowl, mix the graham cracker crumbs with melted butter, stir with a fork until just moistened.

The recipe says to use about 1/2 teaspoon of crumbs, but I did that and when I baked it, it burnt in the 8 mins it says to bake the crust for. So for the second bath, I Spooned about 1 1/2 teaspoon of crumbs into each liner and pack down (a shot glass is a useful tool for this!) it baked better! Bake the crusts for about 8 minutes.

Meanwhile, cream together cream cheese, sugar, eggs, lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla until well combined. Top each crust with the mixture, filling the cups almost to the top.

Bake for 15 minutes. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely. I topped each cheesecake with a raspberry. Chill in the refrigerator for an hour before serving. Store leftovers covered in the fridge.

Enjoy! :)

Peppermint Patties

I haven't had a peppermint York in forever, but they're delicious. I never thought of making them from scratch until I got my new issue of the Food Network Magazine and there was a little insert for 50 edible gifts. One of them was (number 44) Peppermint Stars. yum!! It looked easy and painless so I made them!

-2 cups confectioners sugar
-2 tablespoons light con syrup
-1 1/2 tablespoons soften butter
-2 teaspoons milk
-1 teaspoon peppermint extract

Beat all of the above ingredients until smooth. It will be really crumbly, but you just work it with your hands and the heat of your hands will help meld it all together. I made it into a ball, wrapped it in plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes. Dust with confectioner's sugar and roll out until 1/4 inch thick. I got a mini candy cane cookie cutter.

It was the only one I had at the time. wish I had more of a variety!! But these were cute too!, then I ended up dipping them in chocolate only on the top side.

I had one and it tasted like a peppermint York! except I made them myself! :) Enjoy!

Vanilla Spritz Cookies

I got this Williams Sonoma cookie press as a Christmas present like two years ago.

I tried to use it for some hearts valentines day cookies with the butter cookie recipe included, but I hated the way the hearts looked after it was baked and it was a dry cookie. So I chucked it and put my press away. So I found the press while digging through my stash of baking stuff and thought I can make some Christmas cookies with it! I looked up a basic spritz cookies recipe and found a basic vanilla cookie dough from Martha Stewart.

-3 cups all-purpose flour
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-2 sticks unsalted butter
-1 cup sugar
-1 large egg
-2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract


Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Beat butter and granulated sugar with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture, and beat until combined.

Follow the directions for the press..I don't like this apparatus. They make it sound so easy, load the dough and press it once..but that's not how it happens. I was fighting with it the whole night, trying to get the dough onto the cookie sheet (do not use parchment paper, the dough sticks better onto a cookie sheet) and if the dough is too dry (you will know if it doesn't stick to the pan)..knead dough to soften. Bake at 350 degrees until firm, 12 to 14 minutes.

..but the cookies turned out cuter than I thought and they were pretty yummy!
Christmas wreaths!


Lemon Blueberry Crumb Bars

I found this recipe off the website www.Mybakingaddiction.com. (She said that she got it off of Allrecipes.com) Yes, I'm addicted to baking blogs and finding recipes and trying them out. This was a big hit with my BF since he LOVES blueberries. Even though he's healthy conscious and refuses to eat most of my baked stuff, he inhaled like half of these. I have to admit, for something so easy to make, they were pretty delicious!

-1 cup white granulated sugar
-1 teaspoon baking powder
-3 cups all-purpose flour
-1 cup unsalted butter
-1 egg
-1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
-1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
-zest of two lemons
-4 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
-1/2 cup white sugar
-3 teaspoons cornstarch

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Line a 9×13 inch pan with parchment paper and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, stir together 1 cup sugar, 3 cups flour, salt, lemon zest and baking powder.

In a small bowl, whisk the egg and vanilla together until combined.

Blend the flour mixture with the butter and egg/vanilla mixture. Dough will be crumbly. Pat half of dough into the prepared pan.

In another bowl, stir together 1/2 sugar and cornstarch. Gently mix in the blueberries.

Sprinkle the blueberry mixture evenly over the crust. Crumble remaining dough over the berry layer.

Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until top is slightly brown. Cool completely before cutting into squares.

Yum! Enjoy!!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Peppermint Bark

Let the baking, making begin! I'm having a dessert party this Sunday (instead of a full blown Christmas party that I have every year..) and I have a whole list of things I want to make! This gives me a opportunity to bake, and have people eat it!! :)

First up, peppermint bark! a treat that is seen everywhere! I'd thought I'd make some myself!

I bought some candy canes, and stuck them in a plastic bag. I actually looked up on the internet the best method to crush candy canes and this was it!
Then I whacked it with a rolling pin. :)

Instead of spreading out the chocolate to make "bark" and breaking them up later, I wanted to use my brownie mold to make small squared "bark." So I melted the white chocolate and put it on the bottom.

Then, I melted the milk chocolate and poured it over the top after the white chocolate hardened. Then, sprinkle the top with crushed candy canes before the chocolate dries.

I love the silicon molds because stuff like this pops out easily! Easy to make treat!!

Enjoy!! :)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Christmas Cake pops!

I had a community Christmas party last week and I knew I wanted to make cake pops. So here they are!! I had the plan to make reindeer cake pops, christmas hat cake pops, christmas tree cake pops and snowman cake pops.

I didn't get a chance to make the reindeer ones because when I started to make the pops, I realized I didn't have any chocolate candy melts. Oops. I started with the Christmas Tree ones. Bake your cake, mix it with some frosting then roll them into little cone shapes. Dip it into melted green chocolate and before the chocolate dries, I stuck on mini mini colored kisses sprinkles and a flower sprinkle for the stars.

Here are my tree cake pops!

For my snowmen cake pops, I rolled the heads into balls and coated it in melted white chocolate. Before the chocolate dries, I stuck on the orange candy coated sunflower seed for the nose. I used black non pareils for the eyes and mouth. It gets tedious because it's so small, but I just used my fingers. A tweezer might make it easier. Then two red regular MnM's for the ear muffs and a strand of Twizzlers pull and peel candy. You have to move pretty quick to stick everything on before the chocolate dries!

And then I got tired because decorating the previous cake pops took so long, so I made some regular ball ones and just coated them with white chocolate. I had found this bottle of gingerbread boys sprinkles at the craft store and just stuck one on each. easy!

Sad that Rudolph and his friends ("friends?") didn't have a chance. oh well, perhaps next batch?? :) Enjoy!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Gingergread Men!

I can't say I've ever had a gingerbread cookie..much less make them. I'm not a fan of ginger at all, the smell, the sight, the taste of it just makes me shudder.. *well, except of COURSE, eating at Ding Tai Fung, the Chinese dumplings place, you have to eat the dumplings with vinegar and long shreds of gingers..I'm not ever sure why I can eat it raw like that, and in/with nothing else. So weird.

Anyhow, gingerbread cookies appear to be a staple of the holidays so, I thought I'd make them and..eat them for the first time! Wish me luck...the trying to eat it part, not the making part. :)

This recipe is from my Martha Stewart Cookies book.

-5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
-1 teaspoon baking soda
-1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
-4 teaspoons ground ginger
-4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
-1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
-1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
-1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
-1 cup packed dark-brown sugar
-2 large eggs
-1 1/2 cup unsulfured molasses


Sift together flour, baking soda, and spices into a large bowl. Set aside.

Put butter and brown sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; mix on medium speed until fluffy. Mix in eggs and molasses until combined.
nice and smooth!

Add flour mixture; mix until just combined.

Divide dough into thirds; wrap each in plastic.

Refrigerate until cold, about 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll out dough on a lightly floured work surface to just under 1/4-inch thick.

Transfer to prepared baking sheet and freeze for about 15 minutes (I actually skipped this step..I cut my men then just stuck it in the freeze after that to cut back time...the dough did get a bit sticky. I think putting them in the freezer would harden them up a bit to make them easier to cut with the cutter) Cut into gingerbread men (or whatever happy shape you want..just adjust baking time) Space 2 inches apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper, and refrigerate until firm, about 15 minutes.
Bake cookies until crisp but not dark, 12 to 14 minutes. Let cool on sheets on wire racks.

Here's my men!!!
sooo cute!!! I love!!!! I didn't want faces on them so I just stuck buttons on (mini MnM's)...you can do the red.. or...
The green! Enjoy!!!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

MnM's Chocolate Chip Cookies

Err. I don't know why but for some reason I thought that people (like Nestle) sold chocolate chips in different colors. Like, green and red for Christmas!!! So I looked everywhere, and the closest thing I found was a bag of dark chocolate and mint chocolate morsels that were a light green color. I don't really want mint! I wanted to make chocolate chip cookies with a Christmas color twist, so instead, I bought a bag of these:

These will have to do! :D

I used the basic chocolate cookie recipe from my very first blog:


It's also on the back of the Nestle chocolate chip morsels bag. :)

I put in a cup of the regular morsels and dumped in the whole bag of MnMs...which turned out to be two cups. I like them chocolatey!

Then scoop out the batter with a cookie scoop for even cookies onto parchment lined baking sheets.

Then...wah lah!!

Quite delicious. I like the crunch of the MnM shells as you bite in to the cookie, then you get the gooey chocolate that's actually melted in the center of the MnM's...mmm...and I only ate 2. :)

The rest, off as treats for people! I bought these Christmas treat bags at my local baking supply store and just tied them up!

Enjoy!! :D