Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Devil's Food Cake Cheesecake


Serious chocolate chip cookie dough lovers, this one is for you!

Say it with me, "Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Devil's Food Cake Cheesecake." That's a mouthful- literally! I've taken my favorite devil's food cake, layered it with cheesecake and topped it with a generous portion of chocolate chip cookie dough.

Now admittedly, this cake is a production. But each portion of the recipe is strait-forward and the end result is well worth the effort.  In comparison, it is easier to make than the infamous  PBC4, and most reviewers who attempted that behemoth reported back with favorable results.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Strawberry Cream Cake - A Guest Post!


Today I'm sharing a recipe for delicious Strawberry Cream Cake on my sweet friend's blog Sweet Teeth!  I met Heather on the SprinkleBakes Facebook page, and we've been gabbing about sugar ever since!

In this guest post you'll find lots of goodies: an interview, a new peek at the SprinkleBakes book and all the details for this old fashioned strawberry cake.  Oh, how I love strawberry cake!

Hop on over to Heather's blog and check it out!

xo

Friday, March 23, 2012

Mochi - A Guest Post for Bakingdom!


Hi friends!  Today I'm sharing a unique treat at one of my favorite places in all the blogosphere: Bakingdom! I've been smitten with Darla's work ever since I first discovered her site, and I feel she is a true kindred spirit when it comes to creating and decorating with sugar.  You simply must see her work to believe it!

I wanted something colorful and cheerful for my guest post, and mochi fits the bill!  Get all the details on what mochi is and how to make it  HERE!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Spring Flower Lollipops


Happy first day of spring!  To celebrate I've made a special treat for you with colorful spring flowers.

I've been enamored with edible flowers ever since making candied rose petals earlier this year. By doing a little research (that includes taste-testing) I've found that just because a flower is non-poisonous, doesn't mean it is also yummy.  That's why I'm sharing my list of favorite edible flowers.  They are all fairly well-known (easy to find) and add a certain something when used sparingly in dessert.
  • Basil 
  • Chamomile
  • Hibiscus (you can also find these at specialty markets -or online -packed in syrup!)
  • Johnny-jump-ups 
  • Lavender
  • Marigolds
  • Pansies 
  • Roses
  • Violas 
  • Violets
Common sense note:  Eat only those flowers you are positive you can identify.  Use organic, pesticide-free plants from nurseries and herb shops that offer organically grown flowers; pick them from a trusted friend's organic garden or your own.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Sweet and Salty Guinness Chocolate Pie with Beer Marshmallow Meringue




I'm a huge fan of Guinness in desserts, so when St. Patrick's day rolls around I try to find new ways to incorporate it into my baking.  This year I've made an old recipe new again!  Ever since I first tasted Guinness Chocolate Pudding, I thought it would be delicious as a pie filling.  It just took a few little tweaks to make it sturdy enough to slice.  I paired it with my own recipe for sweet-and-salty pretzel crust and topped it with a Guinness flavored marshmallow meringue. So, let's recap.
  • Sweet and salty pretzel crust
  • Guinness-infused chocolate pudding pie filling
  • Guinness marshmallow meringue -toasted
Comforting.  Delicious.  My very own beer/pretzel/chocolate/marshmallow dream come true.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Tiffany Blue Macarons with Orange Blossom Buttercream


"I want them for every table."

And so, she shall have them.  Specifically, bowls-full of macarons in assorted colors and flavors.  I was giddy at the news and my mind was flooded with inspiration for buttercream fillings; mimosa, lemonade, blackberry, buttermilk, bourbon, mint julep - southern flavors that would do justice to the the location of the nuptials.

I had just one concern.  I haven't made macarons in months, so a few practice batches were in order.


Luckily, I still have the knack! 

Although macs are already very feminine and dainty, a strand of sugar pearls makes them look even more elegant - almost like they are meant for fancy jewelry boxes instead of the dessert table.  I found this idea in a UK-printed magazine simply called "Wedding Cakes". 


Thursday, March 8, 2012

Lattice Pie Bars


Last December Bonne Maman sent me a sampling of their products.  I was already familiar with the brand, and I couldn't wait to  use their preserves in my baking.  I knew whatever recipe I chose to make needed to be special; a recipe that would allow the all-natural preserves to shine and not play second-fiddle to other ingredients. Months later, I've  found that special recipe in a Taste of Home home-cooks compilation, and the home cook who submitted the recipe is from my home town of Knoxville, Tennessee!

(Hi Betty K! I don't know you, but I love your recipe.)

(And you probably don't read my blog, but I had to give a shout-out just in case!)


Finding a dessert recipe using jelly or jam is easy... a preserves-specific recipe isn't as easy to locate.  Sure, they can all be interchangeable at times, but here's the difference.
  • Jelly: made from juice or liquids.
  • Jam: made from fruit pulp or crushed fruit and is less firm than jelly.
  • Preserves: made with chunks of fruit (or whole fruit at times) in a syrup or jam.
Preserves remind me just a little of pie filling, but of course, they are too sweet for that purpose. This "pie bar" recipe hits a perfect balance with the preserves thinly spread over a thick tart crust.  It's true comfort food, and the alternating colors and lattice will make your table pretty.


Friday, March 2, 2012

Potato Petit Fours for St. Patrick's Day


So, what do you call a cake that looks like a potato?  A potato cake?  No, that's name is already taken by a savory something.  Since these are small sponge cakes filled with buttercream and covered in marzipan, they might as well be called petit fours. Right?

I like it.  I'm going with it.

Each time I pass by the plateful of  "potatoes" on the kitchen counter, I do a double-take.  I can't wait to fake people out serve them!

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