March 31, 2014

Lemon Beer Cupcakes with Strawberry frosting



Lemon Beer Cupcakes

1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
juice of 1 lemon
6 oz. ish of Shock Top's Lemon Shandy beer
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
 
Preheat oven to 350. Beat together the butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time until fully incorporated.  Add vanilla extract, fresh squeezed lemon juice, and lemon shandy beer
In a smaller bowl, mix together dry ingredients.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet in small batches.  The batter should be thick but not dry. 
Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full and bake for 18-22 min. Cupcakes should be a yellow golden color but not brown.

Strawberry Buttercream Frosting

1 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
3½ – 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 cup strawberries
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons half-and-half

Add strawberries to a food processor or blender and blend until they become a puree.  Add to a pan and boil for about 10-15 minutes.  Let puree cool.
Add butter to a bowl and slowly add in powdered sugar.  Alternatively add vanilla, half and half and strawberry puree until the frosting is the desired consistency.  Frost cooled lemon beer cupcakes with the finished frosting.  

**Mine were green because I added green dye to them for an Oakland A's game (green and gold cupcakes!)



March 12, 2014

Breakfast on the Go! Mini Quiches

It's almost my favorite time of year - Baseball season!  And with that comes tailgating!  I was trying to think of new ideas for tailgating - last year I perfected the make ahead breakfast burrito - and found mini quiches!  Easy to make ahead, freeze, and reheat!  Work was having a breakfast bake sale so I decided to test it out and they were a hit!

Ingredients:

1 Red Bell Pepper
1 Green Bell Pepper
1/2 White Onion
Bunch of Green Onions, chopped
Deli Ham, chopped (omit if you want a vegetarian option. I did both)
Shredded Cheddar Cheese
12 eggs
1/4 cup milk
Salt
Pepper
Parsley
Olive Oil

Directions:

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Heat oil in a pan and saute bell peppers and onions until tender. Mix together in a large bowl eggs, milk and spices.  Grease a cupcake tin generously.  Add ham to the bottom of the pan, then layer bell pepper/onion mix, and cheese.  Then pour egg mix into the individual cups until about 2/3 full.  Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown around the edges.  Let quiches remain in the pan for 10 minutes before removing.  Eat or freeze for later!



March 1, 2014

Coffee Cupcakes with Baileys filling & Jameson frosting

St. Patrick's Day cupcakes - Part Deux! 




So I made some Guinness cupcakes with Baileys and got a request to do a Jameson frosting so I did some research and realized there is nothing out there. So I put together my own.  I prefer chocolate but I can see those who prefer vanilla or coffee to prefer this!  I doubled this to make more for my friends and family.  This recipe yields ~24 cupcakes.



Batter Ingredients:

3/4 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
3 eggs
2 cups + 1 tbsp. flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. instant coffe
1/2 cup brewed strong coffee
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp. milk

Bailey's Chocolate Filling:

1 1/4 cup heavy cream
1 bag of Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 tbsp. Baileys

Jameson Frosting:

1 1/2 sticks of butter, softened
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
4 tbsp. Jameson

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time, beating until together.  Set aside.  Whisk flour, baking powder, salt & grounds together in a smaller bowl.  Set aside.  Mix coffee & milk together in a third bowl.  Gradually add flour mix and milk mix to the butter mix, alternatively.  Divide batter into cupcake trays at 2/3 full.  Bake for about 20-23 minutes.  (This batter smelled so amazing I wanted to eat the whole bowl and that never happens to me!)



Meanwhile make the Baileys filling.  Add 1 bag of chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl.  Heat 1 1/4 cup of heavy cream until just before boiling.  Pour the cream over the chocolate chips.  Stir until melted.  If need be, throw into the microwave for 30 seconds and stir again.  Once blended, slowly add Bailey's cream and stir until blended.  Set aside.




Put 1 1/2 sticks of softened butter in a bowl.  Add 4 1/2 cups of powdered sugar slowly, adding until just thicker than spreadable amount.  Add Jameson so that the frosting is smooth and spreadable.




After cupcakes have cooled, cut a hole in the middle with a pairing knife.  Add the Bailey's filling.  Then frost each cupcake with the Jameson frosting.  Top however you like if you feel inspires too! :)




Eat and Enjoy!!

February 26, 2014

Ghost Pepper Jelly

I bought a ghost pepper plant last summer and I really had my doubts of my green thumb but turns out, I can't stop them from producing.  After making two rounds of salsa, giving them away to my friends, and making chili with them, I finally needed to get creative and found a pepper jelly recipe.  I only had two ripe at the time so I substituted the third pepper with 4 habanero.

WARNING! Make sure to make this in a very well ventilated area!  I had all my fans going in my kitchen while doing so.


Ingredients:
2 ripe red ghost chili peppers
4 habanero peppers
3 red bell peppers, washed, drained, stems and seeds removed
2 cups cider vinegar, divided
6 cups sugar
3 ounces liquid pectin


Directions:
  • Puree peppers and 1 cup vinegar in blender
  • Combine puree 1 cup vinegar and sugar in a large saucepan.
  • Bring to a rolling boil and boil for 10 minutes stirring constantly.
  •  Stir in pectin and return to a rolling boil for 1 minute.
  • Remove from stove and skim foam.
  •  Ladle hot jelly into clean hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space.
  • Can jars and let stand for a day.  Store for a year or eat any that didn't can within a couple months.

December 8, 2013

Eggnog Cupcakes with Nutmeg Rum Frosting



I doubled the recipe I found to make about 28 cupcakes instead of 14. So the measurements ended up as the following

  • 2 cup eggnog
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 2 T. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 cup sugar
  • 2 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg 
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tin with paper lines. In the bowl of your stand mixer add the eggnog, melted butter, vinegar, vanilla, and sugar. Beat on medium speed until well combined. Sprinkle the flour on top of the eggnog mixture and then sprinkle the baking soda, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg on top of the flour. Mix on low speed just until everything is mixed in.
  2. Fill the lined cups up 2/3 full with the prepared batter. Bake for 22-24 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool in the pan for a few minutes before you transfer them to a wire rack. Let them cool completely before decorating.

For the frosting:

¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) butter, at room temperature
¼ cup whipping cream, at room temperature
¼ cup Spiced Rum
5 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons eggnog
Pinch of salt
dash of nutmeg
dash of cinnamon

In the bowl of an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter to lighten, about 3 minutes.  Add 2 cups of the confectioners’ sugar and beat on low speed until incorporated.  Turn the mixer to medium and continue to beat until well blended.  Add the whipping cream and Spiced Rum and beat until smooth.  Add the pinch of salt and the remaining sugar, one cup at a time, beating well after each addition, until the desired consistency is reached.  Sprinkle frosting with nutmeg.  Use immediately or cover and refrigerate for up to two days.  If refrigerated, bring to room temperature and beat lightly before using.

Pumpkin cupcakes

I know!!!  It's been a very long time but things got crazy and honestly I just got lazy.  But it's the holidays and my favorite time of year!  So first off what I did for Thanksgiving - Pumpkin Cupcakes!

Ingredients:

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, sift before measuring
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/3 cups sugar
2 eggs, beaten until frothy
1 cup mashed cooked or canned pumpkin
3/4 cup milk


Preparation:

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg into a bowl. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy; beat in eggs. Blend in mashed pumpkin. Stir in the sifted dry ingredients alternately with the milk, blending until batter is smooth after each addition; stir in chopped walnuts or pecans. Spoon batter into well-greased and floured or paper-lined muffin pan cups. Fill about 2/3 full. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes, or until a wooden pick or cake tester inserted in center comes out clean. Frost with cream cheese frosting, whipped cream, or leave plain. Makes about 24 cupcakes.


Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and cream cheese on medium speed until light and fluffy, approximately 2-3 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, gradually add confectioners' sugar, beating just until incorporated. Add vanilla and cinnamon until well combined. Increase speed to medium high and beat until frosting is light and fluffy, approximately 1-2 minutes.
  • Use a small offset spatula or a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip to frost cupcakes, garnished with pumpkins candy, if desired.

April 29, 2013

Lamb burgers

The weather is getting hot and that means two things for me - Farmer's Market & Grill Time!  I found some ground lamb for a decent price (not much more than ground beef) and jumped at the opportunity to try my first attempt at lamb burgers.  With all of my fresh herbs and garlic from the farmer's market, I knew I would have plenty for the patties, but I didn't realize how delicious it would all turn out until that first bite!

1.3 lb ground lamb
1 tsp. fresh dill
1 tsp. fresh mint
1 tsp. fresh cilantro
1 tsp. oregano
2 cloves garlic, chopped or minced
dash of cumin
dash of salt
dash of ground mustard
dash of black pepper
Olive oil - enough to just moisten the mix
Gouda cheese (optional)

Add all ingredients to a bowl and work together and then into individual patties.  Grill on each side for about 5 minutes or until well-done.  I topped these with gouda cheese towards the end to melt on the burger.  Serve with hamburger buns, mustard, and condiments (lettuce, tomato, onion and pickles).