Monday, August 16, 2010

Summer Fruit Bruschetta

I love Sunday breakfasts. This is summery and delicious - perfect for an August morning. Plus, it's super light and healthy, but it feels indulgent.
1/2 French baguette, sliced
Cinnamon and sugar
2 Tbsp. honey walnut cream cheese
5-6 medium strawberries, diced
1 cup blueberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Dust cinnamon and sugar mixture onto bread (like a dry rub). Bake until crispy on the edges but still soft in the center, about 5 minutes. (I baked it while I chopped the berries, which was the perfect amount of time.)

Chop and combine the fruit. Spread each piece of baguette with 1/4 tsp. of cream cheese (just enough to make the fruit stick), then top with fruit.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Cupcakes. They got me. At first it was a passing fancy - we'd stop by the local cupcake shop maybe once or twice a year. Then I started reading other food blogs and saw the cupcakes some of my favorite bloggers were making. And the obsession grew until today, when I broke my "I don't bake" tradition and made cupcakes from scratch. And guess what? Apparently I DO bake!

I'll admit it - as a baking newb, I made virtually zero modifications to these recipes from Hershey and the domestic goddess herself, Martha Stewart (say what you want, woman knows her buttercream). Nevertheless, there is nothing to complain about, so I don't think I'd have anything to modify, even if I wanted. I did make a double batch of frosting, but really a batch and a half would be ideal. I had a ton of frosting left over.
For the cake:
2 cups sugar
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water

For the frosting:
  • 2/3 cup natural, creamy peanut butter
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2/3 cup natural, creamy peanut butter
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2/3 cup creamy peanut butter
    1 stick (8 Tbsp.) unsalted butter, softened
    3/4 cup confectioner's sugar

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake pan with paper liners and set aside.

    Combine sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Beat at medium speed for 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Scoop batter into cupcake cups (fill about 2/3 full) and bake for 22-25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool completely.

    To make the frosting, cream butter and peanut butter on high speed. Reduce speed to low and beat in confectioner's sugar. Increase speed to high and beat on high until frosting is fluffy. Frost cooled cupcakes immediately.

    Makes about 30 cupcakes.

    Cake: Hershey's
    Frosting: Martha Stewart

    Friday, August 13, 2010

    Red Wine Pasta

    Whew, it has been a long time since I have been in the kitchen! We had a wonderful time at the beach, but it feels good to be home. I had some amazing food while we were away, and I can't wait to make some copycats and share them with you!

    This recipe, however, I actually made before we left. I threw this pasta sauce together on the fly one night, and it has been earning raves ever since.

    1 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
    1 Tbsp. olive oil
    6-7 garlic cloves, crushed
    1 onion, diced
    1 green pepper, diced
    1 cup red wine
    1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
    1/8 cup white sugar
    1/4 tsp. ground red pepper
    Salt and pepper to taste
    1 pound spaghetti, cooked according to package directions

    Heat olive oil in a large sauce pot. When heated, saute onion and green pepper until tender. Add garlic and saute until fragrant. Pour in tomatoes and wine and stir until combined. Add sugar, red pepper, salt and pepper, and cheese. Cook until flavors combine, about 30-45 minutes. Toss with pasta and top with additional Parmesan cheese if desired.

    Sunday, August 1, 2010

    Hello? Bueller?

    I know, I have been a terrible poster lately. We're preparing for a family vacation, so I haven't been experimenting much lately with new recipes. I've been using this blog to guide what I've cooked lately. But I promise, when we get back, I've got lots of new recipes I'm ready to try and blog. So don't go too far!!