Just a Girl Trying to Find Her Place in This World

Oh I'm just a girl on a mission…

Tag Archives: Delicious

“This Little Piggy Went to the Market, This Little Piggy Stayed Home…”


And this little piggy became lunch!

So surprise!

Did I ever have a blast today! Not only did it (finally) snow here.

Not only did I get a GREAT TurboJam workout in.

Not only did someone tell me that they can see I’ve lost weight!

Not only did the Toronto Maple Leafs break their recent losing streak and win 4-1 tonight!

But I made these BEAUTIFUL cupcakes, that even my mom said were really good…. and she’s my worst critic. Tells it as it is.

The recipe was relatively easy too… All from scratch… and made with fresh strawberries… none of that geletin stuff.

So just for all you amazing people… Strawberry Piggy Cupcakes (which you can of course, just make strawberry cupcakes with buttercream frosting, and not decorate it… you know… if you’re boring and have no inner child)

Strawberry Cupcake Recipe:

3 cups Self-Rising Flour (Or make your own by adding baking soda and baking powder to all purpose flour, like this)
2 cups Sugar
3/4 cup Vegetable Oil
1 1/2 cups Pureed Strawberries Strained (That’s about 3 cups chopped strawberries before you puree them)
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1 teaspoon Lemon Zest
4 Large Eggs, Beaten
Red F00d Colouring

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 325F and line cupcake tray with cupcake papers.

2. In a large bowl, mix flour, sugar, oil, vanilla, lemon zest and eggs (beat first).

3. Puree strawberries in blender, strain them, then add to the mix. Add 2-4 drops of red food colouring (if you’d like) to darken the red tone.

4. Divide evenly into cupcake papers and bake for 15-24 minutes (I’ll admit… I suck at timing things) or until a toothpick can be inserted into the tallest cupcake and come out clean.

5. Allow cupcakes to cool completely before frosting them at all.

Butter Cream Frosting

1/2 cup Solid Vegetable Shortening
1/2 cup (1 stick) Butter, Softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups Powdered Sugar (Confectioners sugar, icing sugar)
2 tablespoons of milk
Food Colouring

Directions:

1. In a large bowl,  cream shortening and butter with an electric mixer. Add vanilla.

2. Gradually add powdered sugar, one cup at a time, beating on medium speed. The icing will appear dry at this point.

3. Add milk and continue beating on medium speed. If more milk is needed, continue to add it… I put in about 5 tablespoons I think.

4. Add food colouring and mix until well blended.

5. Spread icing on cupcakes

Again, if you have managed to suffocate your inner child, feel free to stop here… OR you can be creative and go on.

Piggy Faces

1. Cut a large marshmallow in half and place on frosted cupcake

2. Add two mini chocolate chips as eyes.

3. Cut a pink wafer cookie (you know, the ones with icing layered in them) into a triangle… you’ll get about 8 or 10 triangles out of each cookie, depending on how big you make them. (This is supposed to be the hardest part, but I found if you use a sharp knife, and leave the cookies at room temperature, it works really well) stick them in the icing as ears.

4. Put a tablespoon of icing in a piping bag (or in a sandwich baggie – put scotch tape on the corner to make it stronger, then snip off the end) and make two nostril dots on the marshmallow.

5. Enjoy!

 

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“I’m Dreaming of a White [hot chocolate for] Christmas…”

Man, one of the best feelings in the world is a nice morning workout, an even better feeling is a nice hot shower after said workout though. I am officially back on track with my TurboJam schedule (although doing a 45 minute intense workout right before going to work and lifting crates of milk for hours probably wasn’t one of my best ideas – 4 hours into my shift it really caught up to me). Such a good feeling though today… once I worked through the pain left from yesterday. LOL) It felt good to come home and settle back on the couch and watch Frosty the Snowman (the original cartoon one!) which was yesterday’s daily Christmas movie…. guess what today’s was? FROSTY RETURNS! (and I might watch another one depending on what time the hockey game ends tonight (GO LEAFS GO) and if I’m not too tired.) 

Then there was the lovely, homemade, white hot chocolate I knew hoped would be waiting for me when I got home from work yesterday that I was looking forward to sipping on while I watched my Christmas movie….

I tried the Hot Chocolate Truffle Balls recipe with white chocolate this time… It didn’t really work out, but I think that’s because I used the wrong cream, it tastes good though. The recipe calls for heavy cream…. and being a 20 year old with no baking experience prior to last month, I had no clue what classified as ‘heavy’ cream. So…

STORY TIME!

So for my first attempt at the hot chocolate truffles, found here, that I was linked to from the post “50 Things to do with Kids in December” (I suggest checking out the post, there are a ton of great ideas – I got the idea for the Ice Wreath there as well)

Anywho, the recipe calls for Heavy Cream, so I went to my nearby grocery store/workplace (I have to support my own paycheck afterall) and looked for the highest percentage of cream, the most I found was 18% *blushes* so I bought it. Now, I knew we carried a 35% whipping cream as well, but we were sold out, and I was anxious to try out the recipe. So I bought a carton of 18% “heavy cream” and my chocolate and skipped home to bake (actually I drove, but for the stories sake lets go with skipping)

Once home, I followed the recipe to a ‘T’ (the best I could with my 18% cream); melted the chocolate into the cream, mixed all till it was smooth, let it set on the counter for 10 minutes, left it in the fridge for 2 hours covered (the recipe calls for 2-3…it was 10:30 at night, probably another thing I should have left longer) But at 10:30 that night I scooped up the chocolate and set it on a baking sheet and placed it in the fridge for another half hour. 

When the chocolate was (a little) hardened, I scooped them up (although the recipe calls for you to be able to form them into balls, this was not my case) so I scooped them up and placed them in the saran wrap and stuck ’em in the freezer. They actually turned out alright, a little soft, not real hard like they were supposed to be, but easy enough to unwrap and put in the cup of milk, as a ball of chocolate. Then you just heat it up, and stir. 

All in all, they turned out tasty!

Then the real story begins,

I decided, ‘let’s try white hot chocolate!’ But when I went to buy more cream, they had the 35% whipping cream that, I thought, would be better since 35% meant it was ‘heavier’ than 18%…right? Right??

WRONG!

Wrong! Wrong! Wrong!

It started out alright, looked like everything was going great…

It looked like it was supposed to when it was ready to set in the fridge…. but, it never really set (and I left it for almost 4 hours this time too!)

But it was settled enough I could put it on a tray and leave it uncovered in the fridge (figured that would help it settle more too…)

WRONG!

I left them on trays OVERNIGHT in the fridge and in the morning they were still really hard to scoop up onto the saran wrap…. but I thought I’ d try, and maybe when I put the make-shift balls in the freezer they’d harden enough to hold shape. 

WRONG!

They haven’t hardened at all, they’re just kinda, blobs….in saran wrap….

HOWEVER! They are still tasty, you just need to scrap them off the saran with a spoon and drop it into the cup…

So the white hot chocolate is scrape, add milk, heat, and stir…. And it does taste delicious still, so that’s always a good thing. 

Rest assured though, I plan on going out and FINDING the proper cream so that I can make these the PROPER way and maybe give them away as Christmas gifts, You get about 10 balls from each batch, so just mix some white chocolate and some regular chocolate balls in a mug, wrap it, and give it as a gift. I think  that would be a nice idea. Just don’t use 35% whipping cream…

So what did I learn? 

“Heavy Cream” does not mean 18% table cream or 35% whipping cream, however, if forced to choose between the two, 18% table cream will be thicker than 35% whipping cream, so buy that.

On the bright side, I now have a supply of whipping cream in my fridge and made myself some fresh, homemade whip cream topping for hot chocolate 😀