Monday, November 29, 2010

Carmel Apple Pie

Thanksgiving is over, let the madness of Christmas begin. But before I start making yummy winter foods, I have some pie recipes that I made for Thanksgiving that I am going to share this week. These pies would also be a great addition to a Christmas party. Today's is a super yummy apple pie, the best part is the caramel, it adds a little extra sweetness.

Caramel Apple Pie
Recipe Source:

1 whole Pie Crust
7 Cups peeled & sliced Granny Smith Apples
½ whole Lemon, juiced
½ cup Sugar
4 Tbsp Flour
¼ tsp Salt
½ cup Flour
12 Tbsp Butter
1 cup Brown Sugar
½ cup Quick Oats
¼ tsp Salt
½ jar Caramel Topping

1. In a bowl mix peeled apples, lemon juice, sugar, flour and ¼ teaspoon salt. Set aside. 

2. Crumb Topping - Cut the butter into the flour with a pastry cutter, then add in brown sugar, oats, and ¼ teaspoon salt.

2. Add apples to prepared pie shell and top with crumb topping. Cover crust edges with aluminum foil and bake on a cookie sheet in a 375 degree oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil from crust and place back into the oven for another 30 minutes.

3. Remove the pie from the oven and pour ½ jar of caramel topping over the top. Allow to cool slightly before serving.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

I decided I was going to make something for Brent to take to work for the people he works with seen as how today was the last day before the Thanksgiving break. I was planning on taking them down around 4 when he called me and told me that he would be getting off at 4 because they were shutting the university down. WHAT? I didn't know universities shut down, AND I have 3 dozen Whoopie Pies! I was definitely more concerned about the cookies than why the school was shutting down. But apparently there is a huge snow storm coming and we have to get all of our candles and flashlights ready in case the power goes out. All I could think was what am I going to do with all of the cookies! So if you are reading this, I have them and they are yours if you want.

**update, as of 10pm there was no storm. It was cold, but no storm, and I still have given away no cookies.

These are definitely the softest cookies I have ever had. They are really simple to make and don't take a lot of time. Oh, and they are delish!

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies
Recipe Source:

for the Cookies

3 cups all-purpose Flour
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
2 Tbsp ground Cinnamon
1 Tbsp ground Ginger
1 tsp ground Nutmeg
2 cups firmly packed Brown Sugar
1 cup Vegetable Oil
3 cups Pumpkin Puree, chilled
2 large Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla Extract

for the Cream-Cheese Filling
3 cups Powdered Sugar
1/2 cup Butter, softened
8 oz Cream Cheese, softened
1 tsp Vanilla Extract   

Make the cookies:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat; set aside.

2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves; set aside. In another large bowl, whisk together brown sugar and oil until well combined. Add pumpkin puree and whisk until combined. Add eggs and vanilla and whisk until well combined. Sprinkle flour mixture over pumpkin mixture and whisk until fully incorporated.

3. Using a small ice cream scoop with a release mechanism, drop heaping tablespoons of dough onto prepared baking sheets, about 1 inch apart. Transfer to oven and bake until cookies are just starting to crack on top and a toothpick inserted into the center of each cookie comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Let cool completely on pan.

Make the filling: 
Sift confectioner' sugar into a medium bowl; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter until smooth. Add cream cheese and beat until well combined. Add confectioners' sugar and vanilla, beat just until smooth. (Filling can be made up to a day in advance. Cover and refrigerate; let stand at room temperature to soften before using.)

Assemble the whoopie pies: 
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Transfer filling to a disposable pastry bag and snip the end. When cookies have cooled completely, pipe a large dollop of filling on the flat side of half of the cookies. Sandwich with remaining cookies, pressing down slightly so that the filling spreads to the edge of the cookies. Transfer to prepared baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate cookies at least 30 minutes before serving and up to 3 days.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Squares

Thanksgiving is coming and pumpkin things are a big part of that for me. I have a couple of pumpkin recipes that I want to share before thanksgiving. These are so good.  It is a delicious fall dessert.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Squares
Recipe Source: Martha Stewart, Everyday Food

2 cups all-purpose Flour
1 Tbsp Pumpkin-Pie Spice
1 tsp Baking Soda
3/4 tsp Salt
1 cup unsalted Butter, room temperature
1 1/4 cups Sugar
1 large Egg
2 tsp Vanilla
1 cup canned Pumpkin Puree
1 pkg (12 oz) Semisweet Chocolate Chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line bottom and sides of a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with foil, leaving an overhang on all sides. 

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, pie spice, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

3. With an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar on medium-high speed until smooth; beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in pumpkin puree (mixture may appear curdled). Reduce speed to low, and mix in dry ingredients until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips.

4. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. Bake until edges begin to pull away from sides of pan and a toothpick inserted in center comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool completely in pan.

5. Lift cake from pan (using foil as an aid). Peel off foil, and use a serrated knife to cut into 24 squares.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars

We were going to visit my cousins, who just happen to be very big boys, and the idea that I could try a recipe and not have any left over to bring home is all the motivation I need to try something new. I went to Costco and saw all of the apples and decided that an apple dessert sounded really good. This is really easy and is worth the work to cut up the apples into little bits. This is the perfect fall dessert!

Carmel Apple Cheesecake Bars
Recipe Source:

1 cup Flour
1/4 cup firmly packed Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Butter, softened

Cheesecake Filling:
3 - 8 oz pkgs Cream Cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar, plus 2 Tbsp, divided
3 large Eggs
1 1/2 tsp Vanilla

3 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and finely chopped
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Nutmeg

Streusel Topping:
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup quick cooking oats
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

1/2 cup Caramel Topping

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. In a medium bowl, combine flour and brown sugar. Cut in butter with a pastry blender (or 2 forks) until mixture is crumbly. Press evenly into a 9x13 baking pan lined with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Bake 10 minutes or until lightly browned.

3. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese with 3/4 cup sugar in an electric mixer at medium speed until smooth. Then add eggs, 1 at a time, and vanilla. Stir to combine. Pour over warm crust.

4. In a small bowl, stir together chopped apples, remaining 2 tablespoons sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Spoon evenly over cream cheese mixture. Combine ingredients for Streusel topping and sprinkle evenly over cream cheese mixture. Bake 40-45 minutes, or until filling is set. Drizzle with caramel topping and let cool. Refrigerate several hours. Serve cold and enjoy!

I shared this at
Themed Bakers Sunday

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Red Velvet Cupcakes

For this first post I decided that simply because the name of my blog is what it is, its only fitting that the first post be cupcakes. That's when I got a call to make cupcakes for a friends baby shower. So I scoured the internet to find a recipe and found the perfect one. 

These are not just any cupcakes mind you, they are one of the most moist, delicious cupcakes I have had in a very, very long time. Red Velvet. I am sure everybody has had red velvet before but I had never been so lucky. So after searching high and low, after looking at all of the reviews on several different sites I found it. I also read along the way that the perfect frosting to go with red velvet cake is cream cheese. So that recipe follows the cupcake recipe. These are a perfect dessert. Who doesn't love cupcakes?

Red Velvet Cupcakes
Recipe Source:

2 1/2 cups sifted Cake Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Salt
2 Tbsp Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
2 oz. Red Food Coloring (two bottles)
1/2 cup unsalted Butter, softened
1 1/2 cups Sugar
2 Eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 cup Buttermilk, at room temperature
1 tsp Vinegar
1 tsp Baking Soda

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake liners.

2. Sift together the cake flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside. In a smaller bowl, mix food coloring and cocoa powder to form a thin paste without lumps and set aside.

3. In a large bowl beat butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about three minutes. Beat in eggs, one at a time, then beat in vanilla and the red cocoa paste, scraping down the bowl with a spatula as you go. Add one third of the flour mixture to the butter mixture, beat well, then beat in half of the buttermilk. Beat in another third of flour mixture, then second half of buttermilk. End with the last third of the flour mixture, beat until well combined, making sure to scrape down the bowl with a spatula.

4. In a small bowl, mix vinegar and baking soda. Be careful as it will fizz so don't do it in a shallow bowl. Add vinegar mixture to the cake batter and stir well to combine. Fill cupcake cups with cake batter until they are a 2/3 full. I ended up with 17 cupcakes. Place muffin tins in your preheated oven. Bake for approximately 20 minutes, rotating pans halfway through. The cupcakes are done when you can insert a toothpick into the center of a cupcake in the center of the tin and it comes out clean!
5. Cool the cupcakes in their tins on a wire rack for 10 minutes then remove and allow to cool completely before frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

1/2 cup Butter
8 oz Cream Cheese, Softened
3 cups Powdered Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla

All of the ingredients need to be at room temperature. In a mixing bowl, mix butter on medium speed until light and creamy. Add cream cheese and mix until fluffy. Slowly add the sugar one cup at a time. Finally add the vanilla and mix until creamy.
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