Browsing Category: baking

Pancake Pops

My youngest son has a birthday coming up, and he wants to make pancakes for his birthday breakfast.  That is one of the special things we do together, so I was very happy he asked for that.  I wanted to make these birthday pancakes extra fun for him, and I think these pancake pops will certainly do the trick!  I usually cut his pancakes into strips so he can dip them in syrup, but this will be so much more fun!  This recipe comes from number-2-pencil and it is really easy to accomplish.  The pancakes need to be hardy enough to stay on the stick, so I would advise following the recipe below.  But, don’t worry, it is an amazingly delicious recipe!

Pancake Pops
by Melissa at No. 2 Pencil
Makes about 20 bite size pancakes
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon of sugar
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt
1/2 cup of fat-free plain Greek yogurt
1-2 tablespoons of milk, depending on the thickness of the yogurt you use
2 tablespoons of melted and cooled butter
1 egg, lightly beaten
Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl and whisk to combine. Add Greek yogurt, butter, and lightly beaten egg to the same bowl. Add enough milk to make batter stir-able, 1-2 tablespoons depending on the thickness of the yogurt.

Making the “pops”

  1. Scoop out a heaping teaspoon of pancake batter.
  2. Drop the pancake batter onto the hot griddle. Give the pancake about a minute to set up on the griddle side so the lollipop stick won’t go all the way through, then place the lollipop stick in the batter just shy of the top of the pancake. Press stick down and use your spoon to smooth out the valley in the batter, that way you will have pancakes that look perfect on both sides!
  3. Space the rest of the pancake pops out, so you have room to add the sticks.
  4. They cook really quickly since they are so small. About 4-5 minutes on the first side, and around 3 minutes on the second side. Once the edges start to dry out, they are ready to turn.
  5. To flip the pancake pops use a small spatula to lift them up a bit, then you can use the lollipop stick to give them a quick turn. The lollipop stick was warm, but it wasn’t too hot to handle. Just be careful not to touch the griddle!
pancake-pops-collage-512x1024

Summer Watermelon Bars

Oh Momma!  This may be the most delicious sounding dessert I have ever seen.  Watermelon is my wife’s all time favorite, and any dessert that includes lemon is ok in my book!  Put the two together, and you have one perfect post BBQ dessert for summertime in the back yard!  I am most definitely making this for my wife for Mother’s day.  I’m so excited, I want to run out now and grab the ingredients!  This recipe comes from RightAtHome.com

fc_610x392_watermelon_barsART_HEAD.jpg

ingredients

  • 1 box round vanilla wafers (12 oz.), finely ground
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 5 cups watermelon juice (from about 1/2 of a large watermelon)
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest (from 1 lemon)
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (from 2 large lemons)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 4 small envelopes (1 oz. total) of unflavored gelatin, (see chef’s note)
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar or 1 cup whipped cream, for garnish

directions

step 1 Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 13-by-9-inch baking pan with foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang on the long sides of the pan. Spray the foil with cooking spray.
step 2 Mix the melted butter into the finely ground vanilla wafers and add 2 Tablespoons of water. Mix well and press the crumbs onto the bottom of the prepared pan, forming a crust. Bake the crust for 20 minutes and allow to cool.
step 3 Set aside 2 cups of the watermelon juice in a small bowl. In a large bowl, combine the remaining 3 cups of watermelon juice with the lemon zest, lemon juice, sugar and heavy cream.
step 4 Sprinkle the gelatin over the reserved 2 cups of watermelon juice. Allow to sit for 2 minutes so that gelatin can dissolve and begin to absorb liquid, or “bloom.” After the gelatin blooms, heat it in the microwave for 2 minutes on high, or heat gently in a small pot over low heat on the stove top, until the gelatin has completely melted into the juice and the liquid is smooth.
step 5 Add the watermelon juice with the melted gelatin to the larger bowl of juice from Step 3. Stir to combine. Gently pour the mixture over the prepared crust from Step 2 and place in the freezer for 2 hours or until the mixture is firm. (Alternately, place the pan in the refrigerator and allow to set for 3 to 4 hours.)
step 6 Keep in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Before serving, cut the watermelon bars into squares. If desired, sprinkle each serving with confectioners’ sugar or a dollop of whipped cream.

chef’s notes

To make watermelon juice, simply place the watermelon cubes in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Strain the mixture with a strainer into a bowl.

Unflavored gelatin is commonly packaged in small envelopes (one or more envelopes to a box). Look for it in the pudding and gelatin section of your grocery store.

No Bake Chocolate Chip Chunks

I’m always in the market for a tasty, healthy, homemade snack.  When 3 pm hits I often find myself wanting to reach for the unhealthy sweets which is why I try to keep better options around.  This recipe sounds like it fits the bill.  I’ve made a few notes below regarding some revisions I’m likely to make.
Full Recipe & Instructions found on Including Cake.
choc chip 1
Chocolate Chip Chunks

 

 

What You’ll Need:

 

 

50g cashews or almond

 

100g dates (I also thought figs might be nice in place of dates…depending on your preference)

 

20g cacoa nibs (or good quality dark chocolate chips/chunks)

 

Up to 10g ground oatmeal (only if mixture is too sticky)

 

1/2 tsp vanilla extract or 1/4 tsp vanilla bean powder (or almond extract)

 

Pinch sea salt

 

1 tbs maca powder (this is optional….I think I might add a tbs of chia seeds instead)

 

 

Method:

 

Chop the nuts up coarsely and set aside for later use.

 

In a food processor, blend the dates until they form a paste. Add all the remaining ingredients and pulse to fully combine however maintaining coarse chunks. You should have a sticky mixture at this point.  From here you can form bars by pressing the mixture into the bottom of a baking dish or mini loaf pan.  Allow this to chill and firm up before slicing.

 

 

Hamburger and Fries for Dessert

This is just amazing.  I can just imagine my kids’ faces when I tell them that these are dessert!  I’m not sure that I could get mine to look that perfect, but it really does seem easy enough!  I am really excited to give this a try.  I know it is not the healthiest, but every once in a while you have to live a little! This comes from GloriousTreats.  See below the pic for their full breakdown on how to make these!

IMG_0225ec2

 

Cupcake “Hamburger”

Directions:

Bake one batch of vanilla cupcakes and one batch of chocolate cupcakes

I sometimes just use box mixes for this project, since it’s more of a novelty than a gourmet dessert.  I bake the cupcakes without any paper liners (just use some non-stick spray on the pan).  Baking the cupcakes without the liners allows the outside edges of the (vanilla) cupcakes to brown a bit.  To me, this looks the most like hamburger buns.  You can use paper liners if you prefer, but then the sides of your cupcakes will have little ridges (from the creases in the paper liners).

When the cupcakes are baked and cooled, slice the vanilla cupcakes in half (horizontally) and slice the chocolate cupcakes in half or thirds (horizontally), depending on how big you want your “hamburgers”.

Set these “buns” and “meat” aside.

Prepare the “lettuce” (coconut)-

Put about 3/4 cup of (sweetened) shredded coconut in a plastic baggie and add 1 or two drops of green liquid or gel food coloring.  Close the plastic bag and shake the bag until the coloring is well distributed.

Prepare the “ketchup” and “mustard” (frosting)-

You can use a tub of store-bought frosting, or make your own vanilla frosting  (you can use my recipe for cream cheese frosting as is or omit the cream cheese for a super simple American buttercream).

Color half of the frosting red and half yellow (you may want to add a touch of orange to get a nice mustard color).

Place each color of frosting in a piping bag fitted with a (medium sized) round tip, or simply put the frosting in a strong ziplock type bag (the freezer bags are usually a stronger bag) and cut off one of the corners of the bag (start small, you can always make the hole larger).

Now you’re ready to assemble:

Start with the bottom half of a vanilla cupcake.

Pipe a line of “mustard” frosting around the edge.

Add a slice of chocolate cupcake  (the “meat”).

Pipe a line of “ketchup” around the edge.

Add some coconut “lettuce”.

Top with a vanilla cupcake top.

For a final touch, you can brush the tops of the “hamburgers” with a bit of juice or simple syrup (I usually use orange juice) and add some sesame seeds.

You can also add a frilly toothpick.

To complete your “meal”, make some sugar cookie “fries”.

Sugar Cookie “Fries”

Directions:

Make a batch of sugar cookie dough (my recipe HERE).

Chill, and then roll out the dough as directed.

Cut the dough into strips using a pizza cutter or knife.

The strips can be as fat or thin as you want depending on how you want your “fries” to look.

Lay the “fries” onto a cookie sheet and set the whole sheet in the freezer for a few minutes (about 5) to chill the dough (this helps the cookies keep their shape when baked).

Bake as directed.

Once baked, cool just enough to remove from the baking sheet.

While still a bit warm, place cookie “fries” in a shallow baking dish and sprinkle with white sugar (to represent salt)

These cookie “fries” can be made several days in advance (up to a week) and kept in an airtight container.

Serve the cookie “fries” along side a cupcake “hamburger” and you’re sure to make your family and friends smile!

No Bake Lemon Coconut Bars

I’m all about simple and easy!  These No Bake Lemon & Coconut Bars certainly fit that bill.  Not only are they no-bake, but they only have 5 ingredients….I’m sold.  Oh and of course I love both lemon and coconut so this recipe is a no brainer for me!

What you’ll need:

  • Graham Crackers (7 oz)
  • Shredded Coconut (1 c.)
  • Finely Grated Lemon Rind (from one lemon)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3.5 oz butter (I’ll be substituting this for either Coconut Oil or Earth Balance)
  • 1/2 c. sweetened condensed milk (I will likely substitute this for coconut milk with some honey or agave added to it)

For the full recipe please visit Butter Baking.

IMG_3592-682x1024

 

 

Guinness Chocolate Cake With Salted Caramel Glaze

St. Patty’s Day and chocolate cake…..for this Irish girl, that’s a perfect combo!  Additionally making a bundt is soooooo darn simple that you could do this for a crowd without much hassle.  I have to say, the best part to me looks like the salted caramel glaze!

For full recipe and instructions please visit The Hungry Housewife.

8541050109_f16b877321_z

Coconut Milk Brownies

I’m always collecting recipes that substitute unhealthy ingredients for healthier ones. I think that’s what lifes all about….enjoying the things you love but finding a way to do it that is kind (or kinder) to your body.  My family loves brownies and I especially love coconut milk so how could these be anything but pure amazingness?!

coconut-milk-brownies-1

Recipe Adapted from Princess In The Kitchen

Coconut Milk Brownies
Makes on 9×13″ pan

1/2 cup coconut oil or Earth Balance (or a combination)
2 cups sugar (or substitute 1 c sugar for 1 cup of maple sugar or honey)
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup coconut milk
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Frosting
1/2 cup Earth Balance, softened
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup coconut milk
1/3 cup cocoa powder
2-2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9×13 baking dish.  Over low heat in a small pan, melt the coconut oil and/or Earth Balance. Add the sugar (honey &/or maple sugar as well) and stir for about 1 or 2 minutes.  Add the chocolate chips and stir until melted.

Add the butter mixture to a larger bowl or standing mixer and beat in the coconut milk, eggs and vanilla. In another separate bowl combine the cocoa powder, salt, baking powder and flour. Add this to the wet mixture and mix until it’s combined well.  Pour into the pan and bake on 350 for 35-45 minutes until a knife or toothpick comes out clean when poked into the center.

While the brownies bake and cool start the frosting by whipping the Earth Balance until it’s light and fluffy.  Add the vanilla and coconut milk and beat until combined.  Add a little cocoa powder at a time and mix it in well.  Now add the powdered sugar a little at a time until it’s at your desired consistency.  Once brownies are cooled completely, frost them!

 

Amazing Green Tea Cake

My husband loves green tea ice cream so I’m dying to try this recipe for Green Tea Cake that I found on Manila Spoon.  This would be a great recipe to try out for St. Patty’s Day or Easter as it’s a great spring time dessert.

For the full recipe and instructions please visit Manila Spoon.

IMG_5148

 

Homemade Twix

One of my absolute favorite candy bars since childhood is Twix.   I don’t know why I love them so much but I do….the only time I allow myself to indulge these days is when we’re on a road trip.  I’ve never seen a homemade version until this one from Ritroviamoci in Cucina.

For full recipe & instructions click here.

Note the translator toward the top of the page.

twix 4