Thursday, December 29, 2011

Tiramisu Drops

Christmas did not feel quite like Christmas. My brother wasn't here and that made me feel like it wasn't really Christmas because my family wasn't together, but I guess that is part of growing up and moving on with life. Not always having my family together for major holidays. However I did get some good gifts like a mini cupcake maker, a doughnut maker and a soda maker, so I know my family and friends love when I make things otherwise they wouldn't buy me makers. I also got three cookbooks, one as a joke, but still has recipes. I also got 1500 count sheets and a bed pad warmer which makes my bed warm before I even get into it, both of these combined make my bed awesome. And some other odds and ends that I got that I'm not going to ramble on about, but one of the things that I gave were these cookies that I made. I got the recipe out of the Denver Post or whatever the newspaper is called. And of course I had to change it some because that is just what I do. The cookies were a quite dry and could be changed so it is better. Like I had a hard time trying to make balls out of the dough so I added milk to them so that they would stick together better. I also added Kaluha to the filling so that I was a little bit closer to an actual tiramisu.

Tiramisu Drops
1 cup slivered blanched almonds, lightly toasted
½ cup sugar
¾ cup butter room temp
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons instant espresso or coffee powder
¼ tsp salt
1 ¾ cup ap flour
1 tub mascarpone cheese (8oz)
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 tbsp cocoa powder

Heat oven to 350 F, line two baking sheets with parchment paper. In a food processor, pulse together the almonds and sugar until finely ground but not reduced to a paste. Add the butter and vanilla, then pulse to incorporate. Add the espresso or coffee, salt and flour, and pulse until a crumbly dough comes together. Shape the dough into 1 inch balls and place on the baking sheets. Using your finger, or the handle of a wooden spoon, press an indent into the top of each cookie. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden and firm. Allow to cool on the baking sheet. When the cookies are cool, in a medium bowl stir together the mascarpone and 2 tablespoons of the powdered sugar. Transfer the mixture to a pastry bag or a zip-close plastic bag with the corner snipped off. Pipe a dollop of the filling into the indent of each cookie. Sift the remaining tablespoon of powdered sugar with the cocoa powder. Sift over the tops of the cookies. Decorate with shave chocolate if desired.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Coconut Cupcakes

While every other blog that I read seems to be doing something very Christmasy I've decided to bring back one of my old favorite cupcakes. I haven't made these since high school, and while for most people that might be along time ago, but that the last time I made these was about five years ago I think. It might have been more recent. I finished my last required credit and should be getting my degree in the mail sometime after the end of the trimester. I'm excited. Except that all I face now are boring academics that some how always seem to be too much work. I did find a recipe that I want to try out soon, actually its more like five recipes, the only problem being that I don't want to have to eat them all. Like Tiramisu Drops, are cookies that are like Tiramisu but in a much simpler way. I might jazz up the recipe that they have, but that is just something I like to do sometimes. However I haven't really jazzed up this recipe because it is so delicious.

Coconut Cookies
3/4 pound unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
5 extra large eggs, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoon (1/2 tablespoon) vanilla extract
1/2 tablespoon almond extract
3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
14 ounces sweetened shredded coconut

Preheat the oven to 325. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time with the mixer on low, scrap down the bowl after each egg. Add the extracts. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together. In three parts, alternately add the dry ingredients and buttermilk to the batter, starting and ending with the dry. Mix until just combined. Fold in half the coconut. Line a muffin pan with liners. Fill each cup to the top with batter. Bake for 25-35 minutes, until golden and toothpick comes out clean. Cool 15 minutes in the pan. Remove and cool completely. Frost with icing and sprinkle with remaining coconut.

Cream Cheese Frosting
3/4 pound butter, room temperature
1 pound cream cheese, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 1/2 pounds powdered sugar

Blend cream cheese, butter and extracts in mixer. Add the sugar and mix until smooth.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Grilled Stuffed French Toast Waffle Cheeses

Or something like that. I have no idea what to call this delicious invention I thought of. Last night for dinner I could not decide on what I wanted to have for dinner. Some people have a go to dinner, like my mom, who eats eggs and toast whenever she doesn't know what else to make/eat. My typical go to dinner is french toast or calabasitas when we have zucchini from our garden. But last night I wanted french toast or waffles or pancakes. Earlier in the week we had chicken fried steaks and sweet potato fries. Since I'm the kind of person that likes to dip fries into some kind of sauce and the Utah fry sauce wouldn't be good on sweet potatoes I made my own kind of dipping sauce out of cinnamon, caramel and cream cheese. It was delicious. When I was trying to decide on what to eat last night and I had finally decided to have french toast, I wanted to have some of my caramel cinnamon cream cheese on my french toast. That is when my mom had the idea of putting the cream cheese in between two slices of bread, dipping that into an egg mixture and then putting that into a waffle iron. Delicious. Serve warm with maple syrup.
In other news I am almost done with my last lab class. This lab class has been one of the most difficult labs I've had to do. Mostly because of my schedule, but after Monday, there will not be anymore of the six to midnight class that made my life sleep deprived. It is also kind of sad for me, that I won't be able to get away from boring academics.
I'm going to be making coconut cupcakes tomorrow so I'll have that recipe for you then, and a picture of my favorite plated dessert from lab so far.