Wednesday, May 27, 2009

TWD: Chipster-Topped Brownies

So I'm a day late and have no picture of these, so let's just write this week off as a fail for me. But I'm already making next week's and there will be pictures!

This week's recipe was Chipster- Topped Brownies. Brownies + Chocolate Chip Cookies = Yum. 'Nuff said :)

This recipe was picked by Beth at Supplicious. Check out her blog for the recipe (and a pic!).

Chipster-Topped Brownies from Baking From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan, pages 94-95.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

TWD: Fresh Mango Bread (with Strawberries)

I was a little hesitant about this week's recipe because I've never cut up a mango before. But luck was with me Saturday morning before I made this. We were watching Giada at Home and she  demonstrated how to cut a mango, what are the odds! So, using what I learned from my fav Italian chef, I tackled this recipe feeling fairly confident... and it turned out great! 

It was really easy to throw together, smelled awesome as it baked, and has a great taste. My only problem was that my mango didn't produce enough fruit for the whole recipe. I had read on the TWD site that this could happen so I got an extra mango and it still wasn't enough. So to try to keep this from getting too dry or boring I added in about a cup of diced strawberries, which taste awesome with the mangoes. I will definitely be trying this recipe again.

Kelly of Baking with the Boys picked this recipe, check out her blog for the recipe and all the awesome things she has made. And see how all the TWD bakers handled this one, it sounds like there are some interesting variations out there (I heard mention of some muffins and some bakers adding in chocolate chips).

Fresh Mango Bread from Baking from My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan, page 45.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

TWD: don't worry!

Don't worry, I'm still doing Tuesdays with Dorie. I just never had a chance to make this week's recipe. But I'll be back next week!
In the meantime, check out how everyone handled the Tartest Lemon Tart picked by Babette of Babette Feasts.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Pepperoni and Parmesan Pasta Salad

I decided to make this pasta salad for my contribution to Mother's Day lunch.

It was so quick to throw together and the little bit I tried last night was awesome. I couldn't find the dressing that she mentions in this recipe, so I just used a bottle of Zesty Italian and it seems to work just fine. Although I would love to find that dressing, it sounds awesome.

Pepperoni and Parmesan Pasta Salad


16 ounces of pasta, cooked to your preference
1 16 ounce bottle dressing
3/4 quarters of a bag of pepperoni, cut up
4 ounces shredded Parmesan cheese


Combine drained pasta, 3/4 of the dressing, pepperoni and Parmesan. Mix thoroughly.

Chill for 2 hours, or overnight.

Mix in the last of your dressing before serving.

Strawberry Cake

Happy Mother's Day!

Today I'm having lunch with my parents and grandma to celebrate Mother's Day. I'm providing the sweet to end the meal and a side. This cake was requested by my mom after she saw Paula Deen make it on her show last weekend.

This was one of the easiest cakes I have ever made (probably cause of the cake mix). I love playing around with cake mixes (red velvet cookie, anyone?) and adding the strawberries to this is such a neat idea (plus it meant I got to use my mini Cuisinart). This cake smelled awesome while it was cooking and I adore the bright pink color.

I ended up just using a whipped vanilla frosting from a can so that it could sit out and everyone could eat it without worrying about the ingredients in butter cream. I still love these whipped frostings, this one reminded me
of marshmallow fluff.

I cannot wait to eat this cake (2 more hours!), I'm hopeful it will be amazing.

Simply Delicious Strawberry Cake


1 (18.25-ounce) box white cake mix 
1 (3-ounce) box strawberry-flavored instant gelatin 
1 (15-ounce) package frozen strawberries in syrup, thawed and pureed 
4 large eggs 
1/2 cup vegetable oil 
1/4 cup water 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease pan (I used 9x13 but you could use 2 9 inch round pans).

In a large bowl, combine cake mix and gelatin. Add pureed strawberries, eggs, oil, and water; beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Pour into prepared pan(s), and bake for 20 minutes (mine was about 27 minutes), or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Let cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pan(s) if desured, and cool completely on wire racks. Frost.

You can decorate the top with strawberries, I used red sugar crystals.


Thursday, May 7, 2009

Cute Monkey Cupcakes

Saturday was the first birthday of Max, my bff's little boy and my unofficial nephew. I adore this kid (and his mom) so I was more than willing to help when asked. The idea for these came from my friend looking up "monkey cupcakes" (Max's nickname is monkey and that was the party theme) on photobucket and then piecing together the ideas she liked.

These were so incredibly easy to make. We used cake mixes because they are easy, fast, and kids love them. We also used frosting in a can, she bought whipped chocolate frosting and it was so incredibly easy to use. The nose/mouth of the monkey is a Vanilla Wafer with just a tiny little bit of one side cute off. The ears are 100 Calorie Nutter Butters cut in half and the eyes are upside down M&MS. Then you just use icing to make your eyes, nose and mouth (eyes and nose are black, mouth is red).

The only problem we had with these is that the ears got a little soggy. The one she saw used regular Nutter Butters for the ears, and we determined that these probably don't get soggy because they are much thicker than the 100 calorie version and have the filling. So I'd recommend either using the original NB cookie or putting the 100 cal version on closer to serving (we made these the day before). 

These were a huge hit. Everyone kept asking where she got them and couldn't believe we made them. Max seemed to think they looked neat but was way too excited about his own personal smash cake to pay too much attention. Happy birthday Max!