Friday, April 10, 2015

Simple Cocoa Layer Cake

When I told my mom that I was going to make jelly bean fudge for Easter, she didn't think that was enough and suggested I make a cake. So I turned to my plethora of cookbooks in search of a chocolate cake recipe (because who doesn't like chocolate? Plus, I had given up chocolate again for Lent). I finally settled on a fairly simple recipe from the Hershey's 1934 Cookbook.

I also searched for decorating ideas. Because bringing a plain cake seemed boring. Sadly, I wasn't able to execute the main idea I liked as it involved bunny Peeps and all I found at Target was chicks. Still, I did my best with drug store and dollar store finds, plus a prepared decorating bag (already filled with frosting - you can find them in the baking aisle) that I wasn't able to use for decorating St. Patrick's Day cookies. I might've gone overboard on decorating.

Jelly Bean Fudge

When my aunt asked me to bake for Easter this year, I decided to do something different. So I started searching online for recipes. Specifically, Easter desserts. I noticed a few flavor trends: 
  • Coconut (nope, couldn't do that - only Mom and Nonni like that)
  • Peanut butter (no, not that - Carly's allergic)
  • Fruits, such as lemon and raspberry (just did the lemon cupcakes so might need to stay away from fruit for a while)
I also saw a lot of jelly beans, which to me screamed "Easter," so I started to focus on that. Eventually, I found an easy recipe for Jelly Bean Fudge. Just 3 ingredients. The results were ... interesting, to say the least.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Lemon Cream Cupcakes

When I was in college my mom threw a tea party for a few years, usually around Valentine's Day. Because I was miles away, I had to miss them. Even though I don't like tea, I was a bit bummed about missing them. So when my mom decided to throw one this year, I decided I had to go. I even offered to bake (though I have a feeling she would have asked me to anyway). I decided on something not chocolate since the party was going to be during Lent and as always, I gave up chocolate. My mom asked me to make something lemony so we'd have a variety of flavors. I set my sights on looking for lemon cupcakes as I was in the mood to make them and I wanted to use one of the skills that Mom and I had learned at a Wilton decorating class we took last summer. I ended up finding the same recipe in two places: Taste of Home's Cupcakes special edition magazine from a couple years ago and my 2012 cupcakes calendar.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Twix Bar Cookies

One of my favorite and least favorite things about the holidays is that my shows go on a little break. It's my least favorite thing for obvious reasons but at the same time, I also don't mind it because it that means I don't have as many shows to catch up on over the weekend. This leaves me with free time to bake if I want to. And after making the Milky Way cookie bars for Thanksgiving, I still had a lot of leftover Halloween candy so with only a couple shows to catch up on over Thanksgiving weekend, I decided to bake for my co-workers. There was no way I was going to get rid of my 3 Musketeers and M&Ms just yet so Twix was the only option. After looking at the Twix recipes I'd bookmarked, I decided on the cookies from Your Homebased Mom. The recipe is similar to your basic chocolate chip cookie recipe but also very different. Plus, they'd be easy to take into work.

Milky Way Magic Bars

I had a very interesting first Halloween in my new apartment. And by "interesting" I mean "quiet." Yes, it seems that the young kids in my complex trick-or-treat while it's still light out and I get home just as it starts getting dark. So the only person who came to my door was the pizza delivery guy (it was, after all, a Friday). Meaning I was stuck with 250 pieces of candy (yes, I overestimated by A LOT. Next year, I'm getting a smaller bag and leaving the bowl out before leaving for work with a note asking the kids to take 2 each).

After pulling out the Snickers minis for my dad, I started snacking on them and sticking them in my lunch bag. Still, I wanted to bake with the leftovers (this has helped tone down the snacking part of my solution) so I asked my mom which one she wanted me to use for my Thanksgiving dessert. She chose Milky Way. While I found a lot of recipes on a variety of sites, I finally settled on these gooey bars from Wine & Glue. They were quick and easy to make (which was good since I had to make them the night before and did so while watching NBC's The Making of Peter Pan Live! special) and very similar to the gooey Girl Scout cookies bars I've made before with Thin Mints and Tagalongs. Sounded like a win-win to me.


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