Archive for May, 2012

Key Lime Coconut Cupcakes with White Chocolate Frosting

Sunday, May 13th, 2012

The weather here in Seattle has been beautiful, clear, and golden the last couple of days. It is so refreshing to wake up in the morning to an enthusiastic chorus of birdsong, and then join the rest of the people bounding out of their homes to soak up as much Vitamin D as possible while we have this sunlight!

I did exactly that last Saturday as I ran the 5K mentioned in my last post. The race was put on by World Concern to support their efforts to fight human trafficking. I had such a good time, and the weather could not have been better.

Here we are post-race – my friends Ally, Erin, Sara, and me.

In light of the sunshine, I had summer flavors on my mind as I thought about what to bake this weekend. I kept coming back to a recipe I tried a few years ago after seeing a contestant make it on a Food Network show – Key Lime Coconut Cupcakes with White Chocolate Frosting.

I remembered these as being delicious and was encouraged by the 5-star rating on foodnetwork.com. I thought about adapting them, but sometimes there’s just no reason to mess with a good thing!

I highly recommend these. They are absolutely scrumptious, especially if you’re a lime, coconut, or white chocolate person (which I am, am, and am).

As I didn’t really adapt it I’ll just send you straight to the source. The recipe can be found here: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/key-lime-coconut-cupcakes-with-white-chocolate-frosting-recipe/index.html.

I did make the change of garnishing with coconut flakes on top instead of lime zest (either option is great). I was also pretty generous with the lime juice/zest in the cupcakes – I added in nearly double what the recipe said. (The original amounts are perfectly fine – it just depends how much lime flavor you want.) I might also recommend doubling the recipe as it is (a little) more labor-intensive than some recipes but only yields about 12 cupcakes.

I hope you give these a try! These cupcakes have earned a permanent spot in my collection of favorite recipes.

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Grasshopper Pie Bites

Monday, May 7th, 2012

5K season is officially here! I am fully aware of this because I signed up for a race this weekend that I am not really prepared for. I have a bad habit of doing that and then training hysterically at the very last minute…

I like running. I’m not very good at it though. I pretend I’m legit by checking my watch urgently and looking upset when I have to pause at crosswalks, but it’s all a farce. I will probably never feel like running is easy.

But there are so many good reasons to do it, and I actually do really enjoy it. For one thing, 5Ks are always exciting and fun to do with friends.

Another reason I run is that there is a lot of dessert in my life, and if running enables me to experience things like these Grasshopper Pie Bites, then so be it!

I love Grasshopper Pie and was inspired to see if I could make it into “bites” after seeing a recipe for Cheesecake Bites. I adapted a pie recipe to include Mint Oreos, because it seems a shame to waste the cookie filling.

I noticed the “Open with Pull Tab on Top” instructions as I was taking this photo….hehe. Next time!

The Oreo fillings are mashed up and mixed with marshmallow creme, whipped cream, mint extract and food coloring (if desired).

It’s a very simple recipe. It would be a low-stress option if you’re hosting an event or party.

Just FYI, it is VERY hard to have just one of these…you may want to go on a run first. But I promise you they will be worth it!

Grasshopper Pie Bites

Inspired by Cooking Classy
Adapted from allrecipes.com

Makes 35 bites

Ingredients
20 Cool Mint Oreos
1 cup marshmallow creme
1 teaspoon mint extract
1/2 teaspoon green food coloring (optional)
1 cup whipping cream

Directions
Separate 20 Cool Mint Oreos. Set the filling aside in a little bowl.

Of the 40 separate wafers, set aside 5 to be crumbled and used for garnish later. The remaining 35 will be the base of the bites.

In a large bowl, whip the marshmallow creme, mint extract, and food coloring together until smooth. Mash the Oreo fillings with a fork, then add to the marshmallow mixture and whip until completely combined.

In a separate bowl, whip the cream until soft peaks form, then fold it into the marshmallow mixture. It will be hard to combine the two at first but don’t despair – just keep folding until combined. Place mixture in the freezer for 20-30 minutes.

Use this time to set out the 35 base wafers and crumble the remaining 5 wafers (to be used as topping).

Remove mixture from the freezer, and scoop it into a piping bag or a regular Ziploc bag with the tip/corner cut off. Pipe a dollop of the mixture onto each wafer. Sprinkle with crumbs.

Freeze for at least 2 hours before serving. Enjoy!

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Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

The weekend is almost here AND The Avengers is coming out. Holla!

I’m pretty excited about this movie, although I’ve only seen a couple of the Marvel films. My brother made me watch Iron Man and I loved it. I saw Captain America in the theater. That one was pretty good, but the experience was overshadowed by a major embarrassing moment….I got up to go to the bathroom halfway through, got confused about where we came in, and suddenly found myself walking out a door next to the screen and into the bright sunlight…I laughed so hard as I jogged around the entire building to get back to the front. I was kind of afraid the whole theater had flooded with light but fortunately it wasn’t really noticeable. Moral of the story: don’t be like me.

I hope you have a fun weekend planned too. If you’re in the mood for baking, here is yet another brilliantly simple and delicious recipe from Paula Deen. She is becoming my favorite source for dessert recipes.

The cookies are soft and chewy, and the cream cheese frosting is….cream cheese frosting. No further description needed there.

I made a couple small adjustments to this recipe after reading the comments on the original. The cookies will spread out quite a bit as they cook, so the dollops of batter should only be the amount of a tablespoon or just a little more. I also cut the frosting recipe in half, as the original recipe makes too much. (Although the concept of “too much frosting” is a little hard for me to grasp.)

These are indulgent, fun to eat, and perfect for the weekend. I hope it’s a great one whatever you do!

Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies

Recipe adapted from Paula Deen

Makes 13-17 sandwiches (depending on the size of the cookies)

Ingredients
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 tablespoons buttermilk
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon red food coloring

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 stick butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups powdered sugar

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, stir together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In the large bowl of an electric mixer (or using a hand mixer) cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs one at a time, then beat in the buttermilk, vinegar, vanilla and red food coloring. Beat until combined. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, and mix until combined.

Drop batter onto baking sheets. Each dollop should be about 1 tablespoon of batter, or a little more for big cookies. Leave plenty of room in between as the cookies will spread.

Bake for 10 minutes or until baked through. Cookies will be cakey and light. Let cookies cool for a minute or two on the baking sheet, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

For the frosting: In the large bowl of an electric mixer, combine the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla until smooth. Add powdered sugar on low speed until incorporated, then mix on high until frosting is light and fluffy.

Spread frosting over one cooled cookie and place another cookie on top. Enjoy!

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Jessie's Kitchen Chronicles