Posts Tagged 'Bakerella'

Bridal time baking

My dear friend Karen is getting married in June – and we just had her bridal shower yesterday.  As being one of the bridesmaids, I of course, offered up my help in hosting the shower…in the form of providing all the desserts! 

Now, I struggled with identifying the right mix and amount of desserts to bring.  I could have just ordered some cupcakes from one of the many awesome cupcake places around Seattle – but what fun is that?!  Instead, I mixed it up a little – literally.  I made each of the four desserts – some old favorites, some new.  Here’s what I ended up bringing – and I must say (fine, fine, LOUDLY brag) they were all HITS!

1. Oreo Truffles.  These things are so easy to make, yet is always a major crowd pleaser.  It was a happy day when I discovered these delectable bites on Bakerella a few years ago. 

oreotruffles

I’ve raved about these before on my blog.

2. Coconut cake.  You gotta love Paula Deen.  I was tempted to make the ridiculously time-consuming Martha Stewart coconut cake version – but realized, that’s crazy Lisa, and opted for the more time-friendly Paula Deen version – but even implemented more shortcuts. 

I had never made this cake before – which is a little stressful since this was going to be the “showcase” dessert for the shower.  You know, the ones that bring the “oohs” and “aahs.”  But I was a determined bridal shower baker.

Some of the changes I made: I used a vanilla-flavored boxed cake mix (gasp!!!  Oh hush!).  My plan was to add a teaspoon of coconut extract to the boxed mix, but oops…forgot that step.  But instead, I added the extract to the filling part – and it was delish!  I also toasted up a bunch of the coconut and completely covered every last part of the frosted cake.  That made a huge difference in adding to the coconutty flavor.  Oh – and I didn’t do three layers, just two – and that was just fine especially considering I only own two round cake pans, not three. 

I have to say brag again – this cake was damn good.  Super moist and a great coconut flavor and texture.  Make it, love it, and workout extra hard the next day. Smile

I should have used my pretty cake platter, but was worried about what it would do during transport.  It was nerve-wracking enough making sure the top layer didn’t slide right off while in the car. 

3. Brown butter toffee blondie bites.  Now, I couldn’t NOT channel my inner Martha Stewart (it IS a bridal shower after all).  So, I set about to make this recipe (which again, was new to me)

The hardest part of this recipe is getting the butter to brown, not BURN.  It takes patience and never taking your eye off the butter!  I highly recommend researching how to brown butter BEFORE you attempt to do it – as opposed to what I did: brown the butter, think it’s ruined, start looking for a new recipe to make, get curious and Google “how to brown butter,” realize my brown butter is in fact correctly browned, and then resume making these blondies.

To make them a little prettier than my typical hand cut way (which results in not very evenly-sized squares), I took a small round biscuit cutter (or use whatever small cutter you have) and made them into little circle bites.  Very cute!  Oh – and I substituted chopped pecans for the chopped walnuts. 

4. Lastly, I felt some fruit was in order.  So, I went with a platter of strawberries and pineapple – and made this delicious whipped fruit dip.

Sorry, I didn’t get a picture of the dip.  But, it’s dip.  Not much to it.

The recipe I used was easy to follow, but the end result was a little too runny.  So I added about a half cup of cream cheese to the mix, a few more sprinkles of sugar – and it was perfect!  Good enough to just eat with a spoon – but don’t do that…it’s not yogurt people!

In the end – I felt these four desserts made for perfect palette pleasers.  Sweet, fruity, light, chocolatey – everything you crave for with desserts was covered.

The hard part – making it all!  I did all of this after work on Friday evening – with the shower being the next day.  Oh…and the even harder part, the resulting cleanup – there was a hurricane of flour, sugar, bowls, beaters, and pans that was not met with open arms.  But that’s where happy husband comes in to rescue me!

Further evidence of my baking obsession – I made my gift for Karen baking-themed!  A super cute mixing bowl, measuring cups, measuring spoons, and a very delicious red velvet Barefoot Contessa cupcake mix.

Treats for our construction friends

Our townhouse is 95% finished with all the construction madness.  We have the new windows in and the new siding.  And they just finished patching up all the holes and seams from the new windows and painting them, as well as painting the exterior trim.  It’s alot of work. 

We felt bad though.  Since we didn’t know when they’d be coming in, we never took down our curtains in preparation, nor did we go searching around our garage for cans of paint.  But…they (I assume) must have found all the different paint cans on their own in our garage (4 different colors they had to deal with) and got the job done.  Everything looks great. 

So…in appreciation for all their great work (and having to work in the pouring rain and lately, in the snow…yes…snow) Micah and I decided we should give them some yummy treats.  This is where Micah’s part ends….as he is not a baker.

I checked out some of my fav food blogs and found some recipes I thought looked tasty and were things I had most of the ingredients for, and didn’t require a ridiculous amount of work (for instance, sorry…I’m not baking a 7-layer chocolate cake from scratch).

Here’s what I found and made (click on the names for links to recipes):

1. Cookies and Cream Rice Krispy Treats (from Cast Sugar blog)

It’s basically a rice krispy treat with some melted chocolate and oreo cookies mixed in.  After they are set and cooled, you drizzed with some white chocolate and some more oreo cookie crumbles.  YUM!

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Before the white chocolate topping…..         AND after the topping!! 

2. Butterscotch Blondies (from Honey & Jam blog)

These are super simple, and super delicious!!  I added a cup of chopped pecans to the recipe…and it turned out great. 

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3. Oreo Truffles (from Bakerella blog)

This was the most time consuming…but it wasn’t difficult to make.  And it hadn’t gotten such rave comments from other readers, that I HAD to try it out. 

Basically, you finely crush up a bunch of oreos (my food processor died, so I used a blender and it worked great), mix it with some softened cream cheese to make a dough, sort of.  Roll it into small balls and dip it in white chocolate.  Keep refrigerated and enjoy!

Oh, I made these for an upcoming gathering on Saturday – these weren’t for our construction friends. 

Oreo truffles

So, after making three different desserts today…the kitchen was a mess!

 DSCN0428 DSCN0417 The mess during baking……                     AND….the mess after baking. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’ll be giving these to our construction friends tomorrow…I hope they like them!


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