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Archive for April, 2012

A muffin and orange juice. A cupcake and cookie. An apple and a chocolate and peanut butter granola bar. Don’t forget dipping the knife into the peanut butter, then the raspberry jam, and then licking the knife…and then repeating multiple times. Pretty classy hey?

So, that’s maybe what I’ve had to eat today. I’m feeling embarrassed. Who the heck eats a cupcake and then a cookie at recess? Oh right, this girl.

What else do I want to eat? These. Delicious chocolate cake with cheesecake in the middle…because I haven’t baked anything similar to this in the past…not these, or those, for sure not this, or this either…are you noticing a trend? I really need to branch out.

Fortunately these aren’t around the house anymore, otherwise they would be busy causing trouble and would probably end up being tonight’s dinner. So much for a balanced diet.

At least everything today tasted good?

 

 

Chocolate Cake with Cream Cheese filling

Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker

For the Almond-Sugar Topping
1 cup chopped almonds            1/4 cup sugar

For the Cake
3 cups flour                 2 cups sugar
6 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tsp baking powder     1 tsp salt
2 cups cold water         ¾ cup vegetable oil
2 tbsp white vinegar     2 tsp vanilla

For the Cream Cheese Filling
2 (8-ounce packages) cream cheese, at room temperature
2/3 cup sugar      2 eggs
½ tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease a 9×13-inch baking pan; set aside.

Make the Almond-Sugar Topping: Combine the chopped walnuts and the sugar in a small bowl; set aside.

Make the Cake Batter: In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt.

In another bowl whisk together the water, vegetable oil, vinegar, and vanilla.

Pour the wet ingredients into the flour mixture and, using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, mix together until just combined and there are no traces of dry ingredients. Set aside.

Make the Cream Cheese Filling: Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese on medium speed until soft and smooth, about 3 minutes.

Add the sugar and continue mixing until light and fluffy, another 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the eggs and the salt and beat until thoroughly combined and smooth.

Pour half of the cake batter into the prepared pan.

Slowly pour all of the cream cheese filling over top, trying to distribute it as evenly as possible (do not try to spread it after you pour it).

Pour the remaining cake batter over top of the cream cheese filling.

Sprinkle the top of the cake with the walnut-sugar mixture.

Bake for 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs attached.

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Peach Pie

Things that are a good idea and that make me happy:

a.) Pie

b.) Homemade pie (even better)

c.) Eating pumpkin pie in April, I can’t even deny that this happened tonight and that I’m ecstatic about it.

d.) Making pies in the summer with fresh berries and then freezing the pies to enjoy throughout the year.

Point D is so key to my winter existence. Just as the song suggests, yes I do like to eat, eat, eat apples and bananas, but enough is enough. Sometimes all that I crave are the warm summer months filled with strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, peaches, nectarines, do you want me to keep going?

Back in August, when the peaches were fresh, I made this pie which I then froze and brought out for Easter dinner a few weeks ago. Such a good idea, you would think. Wrong. Note to self, next time bake the pie upon completion and then freeze. Why? Because that way you will be sure to avoid soppy, soggy crust. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good soppy crust, but this was more like not baked dough. Normally this isn’t a problem that I have, but I suppose that because the fresh peaches and filling were so liquid-y it became an issue.

Nevertheless, come August, you can be sure that I’ll be trying this pie again. Here’s to second chances.

Peach Pie

Adapted from The Food Network

Pie Crust

3 1/2 cups flour

1/4 cup sugar

1 tsp salt                    1 cup butter

1 tbsp white vinegar   1/3 cup cold water

Preheat oven to 400F.

Combine flour, sugar and salt.

Cut the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse meal.

Add the white vinegar and gradually pour in the cold water.

Turn out onto a clean surface and press into a cohesive dough without overworking.

Wrap in plastic wrap and press into a 1 inch thick disk; refrigerate for an hour.

Divide the chilled dough in half; roll 1 piece into a 12-inch, 1/8-inch-thick circle on a lightly floured surface and transfer into a 9 inch pie place.

Add the peach filling to the crust.

Roll out the other piece of dough in whichever fashion your wish. I made mine a lattice crust.

Roll up or pinch the overhang to seal.

Peach Filling

2 1/2 lbs peaches   3/4 cup brown sugar

Juice of 1 lemon     2 tbsp tapioca

1/2 tsp vanilla        1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg      1/4 tsp salt

4 tbsp butter

Skin the peaches and cut into wedges.

Combine the wedges with the remaining ingredients except for the butter.

Pour into a prepared pie shell and dot with the butter.

Bake for 50 minutes or until the top is golden brown.

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Easter brunch, Easter lunch, or Easter breakfast. It really doesn’t matter which meal you decide to consume this at, the important thing is that it gets consumed. Oh, and it’s not just an Easter thing, this is an I don’t need an excuse to make it type meal. So maybe that means that it could be an Easter dinner meal as well?

I unfortunately will be opting for none of the above answers.

Easter breakfast? Most definitely reserved for Hot Cross Buns. But can someone please tell me why the song lies? I want 2 Hot Cross Buns for a penny, not the $3.50 or whatever it was that I paid for them.

Easter brunch? I’ll be busy because “this I know with all my heart, His wounds have paid my ransom.”

Easter lunch? Why the heck would I want to get full before…

Easter dinner? Turkey and the works plus a homemade peach pie for dessert. Yeah, I’m saving all of my calories for you.

That being said, I like french toast, I like coconut and therefore I like love coconut crusted french toast. You probably will too.

 

 

 

 

 

Coconut Crusted French Toast

Adapted from Two Peas and their Pod

3 large eggs                         3/4 cup light coconut milk
1/2 tsp coconut extract        1/4 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp salt                          1 cup shredded sweetened coconut
6 slices of Texas Toast white bread

In a shallow dish, whisk together the eggs, coconut milk, coconut extract, vanilla extract, and salt.

Place the shredded coconut on a plate.

Dip both sides of each slice of bread into the egg mixture. Dip both sides of the coated bread into the shredded coconut. Drizzle a little egg mixture on top of the coconut to make it stick to the bread.

Meanwhile, heat a large non-stick frying pan medium-high heat.

Cook the slices of bread until golden brown on one side and then turn and cook the other side. Serve immediately.

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