Showing posts with label Recipes. Show all posts

Chocolate Cupcakes with Peppermint Frosting

I spent the day making food.  we have guests invited to our house for Sunday dinner and for Christmas Day, so I am trying to work ahead and make anything I can now.

I think the most fun thing I made (although the Tilted Cranberry Jello cups and the Jalapeno Cheese Balls were pretty fun!) were the cupcakes.  The cupcakes are chocolate, half are frosted with vanilla frosting and half with cream cheese peppermint frosting. 

Can you figure out which is vanilla and which is peppermint? :)
Here is the recipe I used:

Perfect Chocolate Cupcakes
2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla 
1 cup boiling water
Line muffin tin with paper liners. Heat oven to 350*F.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Beat on medium speed for one minute.
Stir in boiling water
Fill liners 2/3 full with batter.
Bake cupcakes for approximately 22 minutes.
Cool completely.

Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
6 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
4 cups powdered confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
1 to 3 Tablespoons milk
Place butter in a large mixing bowl and blend slightly. Add cream cheese and blend until combined, about 30 seconds.
Add powdered sugar (a little at a time) and blend on low speed until combined. Increase to medium speed and beat until it begins to get fluffy.
Add vanilla and peppermint extracts
Slowly add the milk.  Do not add too much!
Beat until fluffy, about 1 minute.
To achieve the red stripe in the frosting: Before filling a large piping bag with frosting, add some red gel food coloring to a toothpick, and draw three lines with the red dye on the inside of the piping bag. Then carefully fill the piping bag with frosting. Squeeze some frosting into a bowl until you see the red stripes begin to appear.  Then squeeze on to cupcakes.

I know I copied this recipe from somewhere on-line but can no longer find it to give credits to the appropriate person.  If it happens to be yours you can make yourself known in a comment and I will give you all credit!

P.S.  If you are coming to my house soon you will be seeing these again!  I hope you don't mind.  At least you will know exactly how I made them!

Great Is Thy Faithfulness { or Keeping It Real }

It has been a long week.  And a hard one.  I have been sick.  A frustrating illness that is very real but somewhat unexplainable.

All week I have been a step (or two or three) behind.  It has been one of those weeks where I quickly iron a shirt for Keith as he gets ready for work in the morning.

I had to bake about 30 dozen cookies before a cookie exchange on Friday.  The problem?  My oven was not working.  A little hard to bake cookies without an oven.  My sweet husband bought me a new stove that was supposed to be ready to pick up on Wednesday.  Only it wasn't.  And Keith couldn't pick it up Thursday morning so I did.  And the boys and I hauled it in the house and got it ready to go.  By then I was ready for a nap (remember, I've been sick) but I had cookies to bake.

So I baked cookies.  It was do or die type of baking.  Just get in there and get it done.  I made two kinds of cookies.  Neiman Marcus $250 Cookies and Pumpkin Cookies.  Thankfully it went well and the cookies turned out great.

On Friday morning I felt horrible.  But I had not attended this annual event last year due to illness and really felt I should go.  I knew I did not have anything contagious so off I went.  The boys spent the day with Keith and I took the girls with me. It all ended up fine.  I made it through.  I felt better as the day progressed.  Oh yes, and I came home with about two dozen each of twelve kinds of cookies!

But you know what? I feel (some) better today.  It has been a hard week.  But God is so good and so gracious even when things seem difficult.  I'm thankful that tomorrow is a new day in a new week in a new month.  So here is to a joyous December!

It is of the LORD'S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is thy faithfulness. Lamentations 3: 22,23

Another picture from Texas.

Freezer Cooking

There have been way too many times recently that supper time comes and I am left opening and shutting cupboards, frigde, and freezer and staring into them, I suppose in hopes that something will miraculously have appeared since the last time I opened that particular door!

At busy seasons of my life I have found "freezer cooking" so helpful, and it finally occurred to me that perhaps I am, once again, in a busy season.  I decided it is time to be proactive so that the next time I stare disconsolately into the freezer as supper time approaches there is actually something there!

Why a busy season you say?  I was hoping you would ask!  There is something (besides all the "normal" stuff) that has been taking up a nice little chunk of my time recently.  But... I can't tell you what just yet.  There will be a little announcement here next Tuesday morning, though.  I'm pretty excited!

So I planned my menu figuring I'll do it the easy way and just double everything this week and have repeats next week.  But then I started cooking.  And decided I'd save myself a lot of work if I just keep on cooking.

I've now made:
Sausage and Potato Casserole
Butternut Squash Soup
Autumn Casserole
Spinach Lasagna Rolls

I'm hoping to finish up this afternoon with:
Black Bean Burgers
Chicken Taco Soup
Chili (to serve over potatoes or rice)

So there you have it.  I pretty much just double the amount I would normally make (which means 4X most recipes!) and freeze in two portions.  If all goes well we will have suppers for the next two weeks in the freezer by the end of the afternoon.

I know some people cook for the whole month at once, but I'll try this and see how I like it.  As I said, I've tried various methods in the past and it has worked well for us.

OK, off to my kitchen.  If I were a really great blogger I would have incredible pictures of massive amounts of beautifully prepared food taken in a pristine kitchen.  Try to imagine that scene while I go toil on in reality!

Gingersnap Bars- Just in Time for Fall

Fall is definitely in the air here in Pennsylvania. It has been quite chilly some mornings recently.  I love this time of year!  I love helping the children pull out jackets and sweaters that have been stored away all summer.

I was trying to figure out what to take to a couple of different events this weekend and thought of this recipe for Gingersnap Bars.  Perfect!  I looked back to see if I had ever posted the recipe here and was surprised to see that I don't think I have.  This is a wonderful, easy recipe that seems especially perfect for this time of year.

The best part?  They only have to bake for 10 minutes, so by the time your coffee or tea is ready your bars are done and you are all set!

Gingersnap Bars

3/4 cup butter
1/4 tsp. ginger
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup molasses
1 1/2 tsp. soda
1 egg
1 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. cloves
2 Tbsp. sugar


Melt butter. Add remaining ingredients except 2 Tbsp. sugar. Spread in greased 15x10 inch jelly roll pan. Batter will be very thick. Sprinkle with 2 Tbsp. sugar. Bake 350 degrees F for 10 minutes. Do not over bake. Cool 5 minutes and cut into bars

Of course, I needed these for a couple of events and it rarely seems worth my time to make a single recipe of almost anything, so I made a quadruple batch!

P.S.  I have a fun post to share with you tomorrow, as soon as I have pictures...

Pumpkin Roll Recipe

I have received a number of requests for my pumpkin roll recipe. And to the people who asked quite a while ago, I am sorry I didn't post it before! I have not made any recently, but with fall just around the corner, we are certainly getting to the time of year for them!

Cake Roll:
  • 3 eggs 
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 6 oz. cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup soft butter
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  1. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Line an 11x15 jelly roll pan with wax paper.
  3. Beat the eggs at highest speed for 5 minutes. 
  4. Gradually beat in sugar.
  5. Stir in the pumpkin and lemon juice.
  6. Mix dry ingredients together.
  7. Fold dry ingredients into wet ingredients.
  8. Spread cake batter in pan.
  9. Bake for 15 minutes or until top springs back when touched lightly.
While the cake is baking sprinkle a clean tea towel with a liberal coating of powdered sugar.  When cake is done IMMEDIATELY invert unto tea towel. Quickly peel off wax paper.  Roll hot cake and towel together as tightly as possible.  Cool completely.

While it cools prepare your filling by beating all ingredients together until smooth and creamy.

Once your cake is cooled you can unroll it gently.  Spread your filling over the cake and re-roll carefully.

And there you have it!  Any questions?  Fire away and I'll try to answer!

*I basically use the recipe in Mennonite Country-Style Recipes with a few adaptations.