Sunday, January 29, 2012

Pink Velvet Cupcakes

Think Pink.

























Are you ready for some Valentine's Day Treats?  Believe it or not, I actually did not make these cupcakes with Valentine's Day in mind.  One of my dear friends is pregnant with a little girl and I made these for her shower.  Since Valentine's is right around the corner I thought this is the perfect time to share them with you.  Of course you could save the recipe for a baby shower, a little girl's birthday party, or even Breast Cancer Awareness (which is what there were done for in the recipe I used).  These cupcakes are a play on traditional red velvet.  For all the haters out there, they are definitely not the real thing as they don't have cocoa powder or vinegar, but they are similar in flavor and just as cute.  I topped them with my favorite vanilla frosting, but the classic cream cheese frosting would be just as delicious.

In other news...it is busy season which makes me tired :)

Pink Velvet Cupcakes
recipe from Lovin From the Oven

recipe makes 24 cupcakes

1 cup of butter softened
1 1/3 cups sugar
Pink food coloring
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar.   Once light and fluffy add your pink food coloring.  Start with a small amount and increase to reach your desired shade of pink.  Blend well with butter and sugar. Add in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Add in vanilla and beat well.


Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl.   Add 1/3 of the dry ingredients to the batter and beat until well combined.  Add in 1/2 of the butter milk, beat until combined, followed by another 1/3 of the dry, then the remaining buttermilk and finally the remaining dry ingredients.    The batter may look a bit lumpy after buttermilk is first added, but beat well and it will combine nicely.


Fill paper lined muffin cups two-thirds full and bake at 350 degrees for approx 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Watch the cupcakes closely in the last few minutes of baking so that they do not over brown.    Allow to cool for ten minutes before removing from pan, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
Very Vanilla Frosting
recipe by Baked Perfection

2 sticks of butter, softened
6 cups powdered sugar
pinch of salt
3 tablespoons vanilla extract
2 - 4 tablespoons milk

Beat butter and vanilla until creamy. Add salt. Add powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, beating until combined. Add milk 1 tablespoon at a time until you reach desired consistency



Sunday, January 22, 2012

Homemade Oatmeal Cream Pies

Better than I remember.

























A couple weeks ago my friend Ellen came over to bake with me.  We typically plan ahead what we are going to make, but this time we had not.  We flipped through several of my cookbooks and all of a sudden I exclaimed "Let's make Oatmeal Cream Pies".  I am really not sure where the idea came from, but we both knew it was a good one and went to the internet.  The recipe we decided to go with came from the blog Back to the Cutting Board.  She made a few adaptations to the original recipe which is from Food.com and we adhered too.  Of course we aded a few more changes, but for the most part stuck tot he original recipes.  These cookies are nostalgic and  absolutely delicious!  Next time you are in the mood for an Oatmeal Cream Pie, or an Oatmeal Cookie I highly suggest you give these a try.

Homemade Oatmeal Cream Pies

recipe makes 24 sandwich cookies

Cookies:

1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon molasses
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 1/2 cups quick oats

Cream Filling

2 teaspoons hot water
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 (7 ounce) jar marshmallow cream
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees FahrenheitCombine flour, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon in a bowl.  In large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars. Add in eggs, beating after each. Finally beat in molasses and vanilla.  Add to the flour mixture to creamed mixture and beat until just blended; mix in the oats with a wooden spoon.  Drop dough by tablespoons on parchment lined sheets, with plenty of space in between.  Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until just starting to brown around the edges.  Let sit on cookie sheet for about 5 minutes and then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

While the cookies bake prepare the filling. In small bowl, dissolve the salt in the hot water. Set aside and allow this to cool.  Combine marshmallow cream, shortening, powdered sugar, and vanilla in a bowl; mix on high until fluffy (3-4 minutes).  Add the cooled salt water and mix well.  Spread filling on flat side of one cookie, press 2nd cookie on top.


Sunday, January 15, 2012

Chocolate Pomegranate Scones

A twist on an old recipe.

























If you have been following Baked Perfection for a while now, you know that I really enjoy scones.  Let me clarify, I really enjoy scones that only my mother-in-law and I make.  Not to go into the entire history again, but I don't like dry hard scones that must be accompanied with tea or coffee.  I like them moist and crumbly and can be eaten by themselves.  Last weekend I had a hankering to make scones.  I had not made them since last summer so I figured it was about time.  The only trouble was that I wanted to come up with a new flavor combination.  I then had this brilliant idea to use the Dark Chocolate Pomegranate candies that topped and inspired these cupcakes: Chocolate Pomegranate Cupcakes.  All I did was chop up a cup of the candies and mixed them in.  I think it was really a nice touch.  The candy did get a little chewy from the baking, but otherwise these were a delicious success.  If you can't find these candies (I bought them at BJ's and have heard they are also sold at Costco), you can substitute and dried fruit or candy.  The possibilities are truly endless.

Chocolate Pomegranate Scones 
recipe from Baked Perfection

2 cups flour
3 tablespoons sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
zest of one small orange
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped chocolate pomegranate candy
1 1/4 cups heavy cream

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, orange zest, salt, and shopped candies. Pour in heavy cream. Mix  by hand, just until combined. Mixture will be sticky. Flour surface. Divide dough into two sections and pat into two rounds, each approximately four inches. Using a pizza cutter, cut each round into 6 pieces and place on a greased large cookie sheet. Bake 11 to 13 minutes. 


Sunday, January 8, 2012

Magic Cookie Bars

Simple and Delicious.

























I hope everybody enjoyed the Holidays.  I know I enjoyed my nice long vacation from work and spending quality time with friends and family.  You have may have noticed a little lull in the blog, but don't work I am back for 2012 with more recipes to share.  It seems everybody gets a little baked out after the holidays and I am also one of those people.  Yesterday was my first day baking since New Years and all I made for NYE was a batch of my famous chocolate chip cookies.  Anyway, I have been saving this recipe for you from before Christmas.  One of my friends brought these too my cookie exchange party back in December and they were a hit.  If you have never made these bars, you should really give them a try.  They are incredibly easy to make and truly delicious!

So I have a question for you.  What types of recipes would you like to see in 2012?  Perhaps you would like to see more of something, or perhaps there is something you have never seen me post.  Let me know and I will add it to my list!

Magic Cookie Bars
recipe from Eagle Brand

1/2 cup butter, melted
1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 (14 ounce) can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk
2 cups semisweet chocolate chops
1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
1 cup chopped nuts

Preheat over to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Coat a 9x13 baking pan with no-stick cooking spray.

Combine the graham cracker crumbs and butter. Press into bottom of prepared pan.  Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over crumb mixture.  Layer evening with chocolate chips, coconut, and nuts.  Press firmly down with a fork.  Bake 25 minutes or until lightly browned.  Cur into bars or diamonds.  Store covered at room temperature.