A New Post? Whaaaaaa?!

So, it seems to me that I’ve been gone for a quick minute….almost. I’ve been so busy with school and work I haven’t had time to update my blog, BUTTTTTT I have been on Pinterest.

That could only mean one thing….come find me and follow me. I have over 15 thousand pins (I can safely admit I have a problem) and over 42 thousand followers. I have lots of cooking/baking boards as well as drink boards because every one loves a good beverage now and again. Plus there’s lots of other things I love!

Click the following link to check out my pinterest. If you have a pinterest you want me to check out comment below with the link. Also leave your personal pinterest and I’ll follow you 🙂

Nicole’s Pinterst 🙂 

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Happy Belated National Devil’s Food Cake Day!

(Okay, for those who actually care yesterday, the 19th, was actually National Devil’s Food Cake Day. But I love cake, so I don’t care!)

Devil's Food Cake

In lieu of  Devil’s Food Cake day, here’s a recipe from The Skinny Chef. Make sure you check out their site as well as the recipe below:

Serves 10

Ingredients

1 cups “white” whole wheat flour, plus flour for dusting pan
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
1 cup low-fat 1% buttermilk
1 cup strong brewed coffee, chilled
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla
non-fat cooking spray

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350° F. Coat a 9-inch cake or spring-form pan with non-stick spray. Dust with flour; shake off excess. Over a large mixing bowl, sift both types of flour, cocoa powder and baking soda. Set aside.
  • In another bowl, whisk the brown sugar, buttermilk, coffee, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla. Gradually whisk in the flour mixture until just combined.
  • Pour the batter into the pan. Bake 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Serve warm or cool completely before icing with chocolate sour cream icing

Enjoy! xo

Monkey Bread: Mason Jar Style

Monkey Bread in a Jar p Everyone Will go Bananas for Monkey Bread in a Jar

Courtesy of The Family Kitchen here is their recipe for easy Monkey Bread. Check out their site as well as the recipe below:

Monkey Bread {baked in 8 ounce mason jars} Makes 4 servings

What you’ll need:
10 refrigerated biscuits – cut into quarters
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

What to do: 
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray mason jars with cooking spray and place them into a deep sided baking tray.
2. Into a bowl, add: sugars, and cinnamon. Whisk together to combine. Place cut biscuits pieces into sugar mixture. Toss to combine and coat well.
3. Evenly distribute coated biscuit pieces between the jars. Adding a little extra of the sugar mixture as  you go. Fill only 3/4 of the way up the jar {to allow for bread to rise and not overflow}
4. Bake for approximately 10-15 minutes until monkey bread has risen and is golden and bubbly. Allow jars to cool slightly prior to serving.

Enjoy! xo

Jack Daniel’s Chocolate Cake: Mason Jar Style

whiskey cake Whiskey in a Jar Chocolate Cake

I feel like everyone responses well to alcohol related recipes. Courtesy of The Family Kitchen they provide an easy JD Chocolate Cake recipe. Check out their site as well as the recipe below:

Whiskey in a Jar (Flourless) Chocolate Cake

Ingredients

1 stick butter
8 oz chocolate pieces (chopped fine) or small chips, semi-sweet
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
4 eggs
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup Tennessee whiskey, I used Jack Daniels
nonstick spray

Frosting
4 oz shortening
4 oz softened butter
1 lb powdered sugar
2 tablespoons milk or whiskey

For Cake:

1. In a double boiler, or in the microwave, melt butter and chocolate together. Stir well. Let cool.
2. Add butter and chocolate to a large mixing bowl with sugars. Mix until well combined. Add whiskey and mix well. Add eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Mix well. Add salt, baking soda and baking powder. Mix very well. .
3. Pour into 4 pint jars that have been sprayed well with non-stick spray. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 – 40 minutes, or until cakes pass the toothpick test. (And they have risen and fell)

For frosting:

1. Cream softened butter and shortening in stand mixer with wire attachment.
2. Add sugar. Mix on low until combined. Turn mixer to high. Add a little of the milk or whiskey at a time, until icing is light and fluffy.
3.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

Makes 4 large servings

Enjoy! xo

Irish Whiskey Cake: Mason Jar Style

Yes, you read right… Irish Whiskey Cake baked into a Mason jar. I’ve always loved this idea: it makes a great gift and it’s good for those who can’t say no to the second slice of cake *that would be me :)* Courtesy of Sprinkle Bakes they’ve provided photo instructions as well as regular instructions. Check out their site as well as the recipe below:

Irish Whiskey Cake

Serves 10 
 This cake can be made in 10 – 8 oz. or 12 oz. glass canning jars,
-or- a 10″ bundt pan, greased and lightly floured. 

Cake: 
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups strongly brewed coffee
1/4 cup plus 3 tbsp. Irish whiskey
1 cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2. Whisk together flour, baking soda and salt in a large bowl; set aside.
3. In a medium saucepan, add coffee, whiskey, butter, cinnamon, and cocoa powder.  Place over moderate heat and whisk until butter has melted.  Remove from heat and add the sugar.  Whisk until incorporated.  Pour mixture into a large bowl and let cool slightly.
4. Whisk together eggs and vanilla extract and gradually pour into chocolate mixture.  Add flour mixture and whisk until just combined.  Mixture will be very thin.
5. Place canning jars on a cookie sheet or roasting pan and pour batter in each by the level 1/2 cups full; OR pour batter into a greased and floured bundt pan.
6. Bake for 45-55 minutes (for both jars and bundt pan).

Whiskey-Butter Sauce:

1/4 cup Irish whiskey
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup water

Directions:

1. Prepared whipped cream (for jar cakes)
2. When the cake(s) are almost ready to come out of the oven, begin to make the sauce.
3. Combine all ingredients (except whipped cream) in a small saucepan, and cook very gently over medium heat until sugar has dissolved.  Remove from heat.
4. When cake(s) are done, let them cool for 10 minutes.  With a skewer, poke holes in the jarred cakes and pour a little sauce into each cake -dividing it evenly until it has all been used.  Top with prepared whipped cream.

If making a bundt cake, turn the cake out and place it upside down (as it baked in the oven). Poke holes all over the surface and VERY SLOWLY drizzle sauce over the cake until it has completely absorbed all of the sauce.  Wrap in foil and let cool completely.  Store in an air-tight container.

Enjoy! xo

Crock Pot Orange Chicken

Courtesy of Team T Adventure‘s site, I found a simple Orange Chicken recipe. Check out their site as well as the recipe below:

Ingredients:
• boneless chicken breasts, chopped into small chunks
• 1/3 cup flour
• olive oil
• 1/2 T salt
• 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
• 3 T ketchup
• 6 oz. frozen orange juice concentrate (thaw or throw it in the microwave for 45 seconds)
• 4 T brown sugar

Directions:
1. In a bowl, mix the orange juice, brown sugar, vinegar, salt, and ketchup.
2. Pour the flour in a small bowl. Cover the chicken breast chunks in flour and shake off the excess.
3. Pour a small amount of olive oil in a skillet and brown the flour-covered chicken.
4. The chicken doesn’t need to be fully cooked since it’s going in the crock pot.
5. After the chicken is done cooking, pour the pieces into the crock pot. Then cover the chicken with your sauce mixture and give the pot a stir.
6. Cook on low for 5-6 hours or on high for 2-3.
Serve over rice and even add veggies if you want a healthier meal.

Enjoy! xo

Guinness & Bailey’s Irish Cream Cupcakes

On Une-Deuxsenses‘s blog you can find the step by step recipe to make these delish cupcakes. Check out their site as well as the creicpe below:

Guinness and Bailey’s Irish Cream Cupcakes
Yields: 24 cupcakes
Original recipe can be found here.
For the Guinness chocolate cupcakes:
1 cup stout beer/ Guinness
2 sticks unsalted butter
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. salt
2 large eggs
2/3 cup sour cream
For the Bailey’s ganache filling:
8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
2/3 cup heavy cream
2 tbsn. butter, room temperature
2 tsp. Irish whiskey OR Bailey’s Irish cream
For the Bailey’s buttercream frosting:
8 tbsn. unsalted butter, room temperature
3-4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
4 – 8 tbsn. Bailey’s Irish cream
(I also used some half&half to thin the frosting out w/o adding more alcohol)
Directions:

To make the cupcakes, preheat oven to 350 F. Line a cupcake tin with liners and set aside. Combine stout and butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the cocoa and whisk until smooth. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer beat together the eggs and sour cream to blend. Add stout mixture and beat to combine. Mix in dry ingredients on low until incorporated. Divide batter among cupcake liner about 2/3 full and bake until an inserted toothpick comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Cool completely.

To make the ganache, place chocolate in heatproof bowl. Heat cream in saucepan until simmering, then pour over chocolate, let sit for 1 minute, then stir until smooth. Add butter and Bailey’s and stir until combined. Set aside until cool and thick enough to be piped (you can use the refrigerator to speed the process but stir every 10 minutes to ensure even cooling). Meanwhile, cut a portion from the center of the cupcake using the cone method and once the ganache is of the right consistency, pipe the ganache into the centers.
To make the frosting, place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on medium high until light and fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar until incorporated. Mix in Bailey’s until smooth. Add more if necessary until frosting has reached a good consistency for piping or spreading. Frost the cupcakes as desired and enjoy!
Enjoy! xo

Mojito Cupcakes

On 6Bittersweets‘ and Sharin the Ninja‘s sites they show step by step of how to make these Mojito Cupcakes. Check out their sites as well as the recipe below:

Mojito Cupcake:

1 cup milk or soymilk
1/2 C fresh mint, roughly chopped and bruised
Zest and juice of 1 lime (about 2 Tbsp juice)
2 tsp dark rum
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp cornstarch
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup canola or other neutral oil
3/4 cup sugar
Lime Rum Frosting (Recipe below)
2 more limes sliced OR fresh mint leaves, to garnish

Combine milk and mint leaves in a small pot over medium heat until hot but NOT BOILING. Remove from heat and let steep for 10 to 15 minutes. Pass the milk through a strainer to remove mint leaves, but press on the leaves to extract as much flavor as possible. Set aside to cool.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a regular 12-cup muffin pan with baking liners. Whisk the mint-infused milk and lime juice in a measuring cup and set aside for a few minutes to get good and curdled.

In large bowl, combine the sugar and lime zest and rub thoroughly to infuse the sugar with lime flavor. Add the milk mixture, oil, and rum, if using, and beat thoroughly. Sift in the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, and mix until no large lumps remain [small ones are okay].

Fill cupcake liners two-thirds of the way and bake for 20 to 22 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack, and let cool completely. Pipe or spread frosting on cupcakes and garnish with lime slices.

Lime Rum Cream Cheese Frosting
1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), room temperature
8 ounces cream cheese, cold and cut into 6 chunks
Pinch of salt
2 tsp dark rum
1 Tbsp lime juice
1 1/2 to 3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 to 2 drops green food coloring, optional

Cream the butter, sugar, and salt together just until fully combined and smooth. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure even mixing. Add the cold cream cheese a chunk at a time, waiting until each is incorporated before adding the next. Add the rum and lime juice and mix just until incorporated. Taste the frosting, adding more sugar if needed. Add the food coloring, if using, one drop at a time and combining thoroughly after each, until you have the color you want.

Enjoy! xo

Mountain Dew Cupcakes

I’ve actually had these before and although I’m not a big fan of Mountain Dew they are pretty tasty. This recipe comes from All Things Cupcakes. Check out their site as well as the recipe below:

Mountain Dew Cupcakes
1 cup butter (2 sticks)
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
3/4 cup Mountain Dew
1/4 cup of lemon and lime juice (juice from 1 lemon and 1 lime)
zest from 1 lemon and 2 limes (separate into 2 piles, one for buttercream)
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon extract
2-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

1. Beat butter on medium for 30 seconds.
2. Add sugar and lemon, lime zest. Beat on medium-high until light and fluffy.
3. Add eggs one at a time, Scrape sides of bowl in between additions
4. Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Add to mixer bowl. Turn on low for 5 seconds.
5. Add the Mountain Dew, lemon/lime juice, and lemon extract . Mix to combine.
5. Scoop into cupcake papers about two-thirds full.
6. Bake for 18-20 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.

Mountain Dew Buttercream
1 cup butter (2 sticks)
4-5 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons Mountain Dew
Juices from half of 1 lemon and half of 1 lime.
Lemon and lime zest (rest of zest from cupcake recipe. Or zest from half of 1 lemon and 1 whole lime)
1 teaspoon lemon extract
neon green food coloring (yellow and blue if you dont have green)

1. Sift powdered sugar into a bowl or onto parchment
2. Beat butter at medium-high speed until creamy
3. Add half of the sugar, turn mixer on low for 5 seconds.
4. Add the Mountain Dew, zest, and lemon extract . Beat until combined.
5. Add food coloring to the desired color.
6. Gradually add remaining sugar until you get to the consistency and sweetness you like.

Enjoy! xo

Cherry Coke Float Cupcakes

Cherry Coke Float Cupcakes

I’ve never had these, but they are on my list of cupcakes to try. This recipe comes from Cocobean and Me. Check out their site as well as the recipe below:

Cherry Coke Float Cupcakes
adapted from Nigella Lawson’s ‘How to be a Domestic Goddess’
makes 12 cupcakes

Cupcakes
1 1/2 Cups flour
3/4 Cup sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 large egg
1/2 Cup buttermilk
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3 Tbs cocoa powder
3/4 Cup Coca-Cola
1/4 cup marachino cherry syrup
24 marachino cherries

Cola Icing
1 cup Icing sugar
2 tbsp cola

Preheat the oven to 350 F.In a bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Beat the egg, buttermilk, and vanilla in a second bowl. In a saucepan, boil the Coca-Cola, and cherry syrup gently for five minutes. Melt in the butter and cocoa powder. Pour into the dry ingredients, stir well with a wooden spoon, and then add the liquid ingredients, beating until everything is blended.
Pour into the cupcake pans and push a cherry into the center of each cupcake. Bake for 15 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
When cool drizzle over the Cola Icing and let dry. Top with cherry buttercream and a cherry.

Cherry Coke Float Cupcakes

Enjoy! xo