Thursday, May 20

Cookies with hazelnut filling.

I really felt like making something cute and adorable.
Logically, that leads to using little heart and star cookie cutters :)

Few things make me happier than tiny, shaped food. Haha.

I don't actually have much to say today, just trying to get through this summer of work and tiredness before I start my fall of school and tiredness. XD
I'm baking some cupcakes for my friends' birthdays, we're having a little get together tonight, and I figured I'd bring something. It's how I roll. :)

I was trying to figure out how to make some sort of cream filling made with hazelnuts, but I ended up whipping the cream and stuff so much, it turned into butter! Which, honestly, was not a bad result. :)

Simple butter cookies:
1 cup of flour
5 tbsp softened butter
3/4 cup of fine granulated sugar (run regular granulated sugar through a blender/food processor)
1 egg
1 egg yolk
pinch of salt
1/4 tsp of vanilla

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Cream together the butter and sugar. Add the egg and yolk, one at a time, mixing completely, then add the vanilla. Afterwards, add in the flour and salt, and mix until a dough forms.
Let the dough chill in the fridge for about an hour, and then roll it out (very thin) and cut out shapes. Bake them for about 8 minutes, or until golden brown around the edges.

Let cool while making the filling.

Hazelnut "butter" filling:
1 cup of hazelnuts
1/4 cup of sugar
2/3 cup of milk
1/2 cup of heavy cream
2 tbs nutella (optional. you can also add melted chocolate)

Cook the hazelnuts, sugar, and milk in a saucepan over medium-low heat until the hazelnuts start to become translucent, and the milk takes on a light brown color (from the hazelnut skins)
Blend the hazelnuts and milk until slightly chunky.
Whip the mixture with the heavy cream and nutella until the butter separates from the liquid. (it'll take a while, but you'll see when it happens). Strain out the liquid using cheesecloth, or layers of paper towels.

To assemble, sandwich a bit of the butter between two cookies, and use your finger or the dull side of a knife to make the edges nice and clean.
I let mine sit in the fridge for a bit, so the butter wouldn't be as soft, but you can eat them right away if you want. :)


Saturday, May 8

Chocolate Covered Strawberries...for Mother's Day

Because I once made chocolate covered strawberries for the mothers in my life, my father has roped me into doing it again.
Pretty simple stuff, but I figured I'd share what I was doing.

I used about a bag of Ghirardelli milk chocolate chips and made about 25 strawberries.

Just melt the chocolate, dip the strawberries, and decorate them if you want.
You can dip them in nuts, crushed cookies, sprinkles, or whatever!

I was going to drizzle colored white chocolate over them, but we didn't have any, so I made some royal icing and used that instead. :) Oh and I dusted them with gold pearl dust. Pretty! :)

The key to this is just using good chocolate (and good strawberries), and as far as supermarket stuff goes, Ghirardelli is boss. XD

So before I go to work, here are some pictures and stuff :P

Chocolate covered strawberries:
1 bag of chocolate chips. (what, like...3 cups, maybe?)
25 strawberries (depends on size, I had a few giant ones, so you could probably do 30-35)

melt the chocolate over a double boiler, or in a microwave, making sure to stir it so it doesn't burn.
Dip the strawberries in the chocolate, and let them set on some nonstick foil or parchment paper. Either serve once set, or store covered in the fridge...but not keep them for too long, they get all goopy inside after a couple days XD

Enjoy! :)


Wednesday, May 5

Coconut cupcakes with pineapple filling.

And a condensed milk glaze.
I feel like I've taken a trip to some tropical island XD

I am not a huge fan of coconut, as my parents will readily tell you, but I think that my dislike for coconut stemmed from the texture of the shredded stuff. It's so gross! But the flavor of coconut doesn't bother me, as I've learned with these cupcakes.
It's even kind of good ;D


So anyway, this idea came from some suggestions on flour on her nose's page on Facebook. I thought Mom had some coconut milk that I could swipe, and I knew I had frozen pineapple in the fridge.
When I went to get the milk, I saw that it was coconut oil instead! Which actually worked out rather well, since we were low on butter.

So in this recipe, I swapped out the butter for coconut oil (it's in a solid state), and just used regular milk, but if you can only get the milk, just switch out regular milk for coconut milk and use butter instead of oil.

I don't know what happened, but the filling wouldn't thicken! So I got the harebrained idea of trying to turn it into pineapple rice pudding, but then I think the starch from the rice helped thicken it too much before the rice got to cook! I had to push it through a sieve to get all the uncooked rice out XD
I'll say exactly what I did, though, so you can at least get the same results.

Coconut cupcakes with pineapple filling and condensed milk glaze (whew):

Coconut cupcakes: (makes 6)
1 c flour
2 tbsp corn starch
pinch of salt
3/4 tsp baking powder
4 tbsp coconut oil (or soft butter, if you're going to use coconut milk)
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
tiny bit of vanilla
1/4 cup of milk (or coconut milk, if you're using butter)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mix together the flour, corn starch, baking powder, and salt. Beat in the coconut oil/butter until it makes a kind of thick paste. Beat in the sugar.
Beat in the egg until fully combined. Add the vanilla and milk.
Put the batter in lined cupcake tins, and bake for about 20 minutes. (do the toothpick test!)

Pineapple filling:
1 egg
2 yolks
1/3 c pineapple puree (strained)
2 tbsp lemon juice
4 tbsp butter
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp cinnamon
(maybe a bit of cornstarch)
(and randomly, a cup of rice, haha)

Put a stainless steel bowl over a simmering pot of water, or use a double boiler. Whisk together the egg and the yolks, then add everything else but the rice. Mix it over med-low heat until it's thick. If it doesn't thicken, add a little cornstarch and keep mixing. If that still doesn't work, go ahead and add the rice and let it get nice and thick. Once it's thick, push the filling through a sieve to get rid of all the rice. Let it cool.

To fill the cupcakes, take a sharp knife and cut a cone out of the top of the cupcake. Cut off the pointy bit of the cone, just leaving a small cover. Fill the cupcake with the pineapple filling, and place the "lid" over the filling.

Then mix some condensed milk with powdered sugar (as if it wasn't sweet enough ;)) until it's really thick, but still spreadable.

Frost/glaze the cupcakes and enjoy!

Pineapple on Foodista