Saturday, February 20, 2010

Peanut Butter Crinkle Cookies

My dad loves peanut butter cookies, so I decided to make him some this morning. I have had this recipe from Baking Blonde starred since September 2008. I'd say it was about time to make them! I love the addition of powdered sugar for rolling instead of granulated sugar.

Peanut Butter Crinkle Cookies

1 cup butter
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 eggs (room temperature)
2 tsps vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup powdered sugar (or more as needed for rolling)

Preheat oven to 350. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Place powdered sugar in shallow bowl.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and peanut butter. Once combined beat in the white sugar, and brown sugar until well blended. Beat in the eggs and vanilla.

In a large bowl wisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Gently add to creamed mixture and mix until almost combined.

Chill dough for 10-20 minutes.

Roll tablespoonfuls of dough into balls. Genlty roll the dough balls into powdered sugar and place dough balls on parchment lined baking sheets. Carefully press down on each ball with a glass to flatten tops slightly.

Bake for 10-12 minutes in the preheated oven, or until top is crinkly and edges are set. Cool on sheet for 10 minutes and transfer to baking rack to finish cooling

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Hidden Heart Cake

I made this cake from I Am Baker's blog for Valentine's Day. It is supposed to have a hidden heart inside. It was quite the undertaking and the first time I have ever carved a cake. Unfortunately, my heart didn't quite come out in the shape I wanted it to. You can kind of tell it resembles a heart though! Check out hers though... it is amazing! She also has step by step directions to follow if you want to make one. I'll just give the shortened version with my pics here.

First, make a 9x13 pan of red velvet cake. Break it up with a fork and mix in about 1 cup of frosting. Set aside.
Next, make two 2 layer white cakes. Frost in between each layer with white frosting. Put the layer cakes in the freezer for a couple of hours or even overnight.
When the cakes are nice and frozen, use a small bowl to make an outline on the top of each cake. I used a toothpick to make the line.
Next came the hardest part for me. You need to make a pointed well in the center of one layer cake. Mine was too wide at the bottom.
You need to make a well in the second layer cake as well. But this one needs a pointed mound in the middle. Mine was not pointed enough.
Next you fill the wells with the red velvet mixture you made earlier. You should frost around the ring of the bottom layer cake so you know which one needs to go on top. Stack the cakes together with the red velvet meeting in the middle. The cake with the pointed mound in the well will be the top. Frost a crumb coat on the 4 layer cake. Refrigerate or freeze for about 15 minutes.
Then frost the entire cake and smooth. Try to smooth it better than I did!
To decorate, I piped pink borders on the top and bottom of the cake. Then I used cookie cutters to press on the sides of the cake as a stencil.
Then I went over the stencil marks with frosting.
I finished by writing on the top of the cake.

Not quite a heart inside, but you get the idea! Happy Valentine's Day!

Brownie Oreo Trifle

I tried to make this a little healthier by using SF/FF pudding and lite Cool Whip. Who am I kidding? I don't think it makes that big of a difference with the other ingredients!
Brownie Oreo Trifle
1 9x13 pan of brownies
1 box chocolate pudding (small size if using regular, lg size if using SF/FF)
1/2 cup water
1 can sweetened condensed milk
8 oz cool whip
12 oz cool whip
18 oreos, chopped
6 oreos for garnish
Bake brownies as directed. Cool completely and chop into bite size squares.
Combine pudding mix, water, and sweetened condensed milk. Mix until smooth. Fold in 8 oz of cool whip until there are no streaks.
Chop 18 Oreos and set aside.
In a trifle bowl, layer half of the brownies, half of the pudding mixture, half of the Oreos, and half of the cool whip. Repeat each layer.
Garnish the top with 3 whole Oreos and 6 crushed Oreos with filling taken out.