Monday, October 31, 2016

Pumpkin Patch Chocolate Cupcakes

I love pumpkins and this week I found a pin on Pinterest of the cutest pumpkin cupcakes from Just a Taste so I decided to make my own version. 

My version uses a tried and true favorite chocolate cake from Hershey's and simple white buttercream frosting that I colored orange and then sprinkled with sugar. Add a tootsie roll stem and a curly cue of green frosting and you have the cutest cupcakes. 

Chocolate Cupcakes
Recipe from Hershey's Cocoa


2 cups sugar
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa
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


Heat oven to 350°F. Line baking pans with paper liners ad set aside. 

Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely.

Basic Butter Cream Frosting

3 cups powdered sugar, sifted

1 cup of softened butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1-2 tablespoons heavy cream

Orange food coloring

Green food coloring

Orange sanding sugar

20 tootsie rolls

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment mix the butter and powder sugar on low until blended, then mix on medium for 2 to 3 minutes until fluffy. Then add vanilla and heavy cream and blend one more minute. Add more cream to get to desired consistency.

Place a small amount of frosting into a small bowl and add green food coloring until the frosting is the color that you want. Spoon into a baggie and set aside. 

Add orange food coloring to the remaining frosting until you get the orange color that you want. If you are combining red and yellow go slow with the colors because otherwise you could end up with a color that you do not like by adding too much of one color. 

Once you have the decided color frost each cupcake with the orange frosting, then sprinkle with the orange sugar. Snip the corner of the baggie of green frosting and make vines on the cupcakes. Stick an unwrapped tootsie roll into the side of the cupcake where you drew the vines. 


Sunday, October 23, 2016

The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies from Williams Sonoma

I love chocolate chip cookies, but I like them crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside with a lot of chocolate. These cookies from Williams Sonoma are perfect, exactly like the name of the recipe and exactly the way I like them!  They are slightly crunchy, soft and chocolatly. 

The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie

1 1/4 cups  unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup (1 stick ) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup  firmly packed light brown sugar
6 Tbs. granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350F Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or Silphat baking liner. 
In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and salt, set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, on medium speed, beat the butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and mix on low speed until blended. Then slowly add the flour mixture and mix just until incorporated. With a wooden spoon stir in the chocolate chips.
Using a small ice cream scoop drop the dough onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing the dough mounds 2 inches apart. 
Bake the cookies, 1 sheet at a time, at 350 F until the bottoms and edges are lightly browned about, 10-13 minutes. Cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer the cookies to wire racks to cool completely. 

I love these cookies! I love the raw dough, I love them warm from the oven and even two days later! These just might be the perfect chocolate chip cookie, if not they are pretty close!

I hope that you try them!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Fudgy Cocoa Brownies

If you have read this blog more than once than you know that I am continually on the hunt for the "best" chocolate chip cookies, the most moist, chocolate cake and of course the fudgiest brownies. I think I may have discovered the best brownies I have ever made. These brownies almost never made it into the oven because I ate so much of the batter. 

The brownies are perfect just the way the original recipe from Cafe Delites is made, I just decided to frost them because I had leftover frosting from another project. I love them plain and frosted. 

The Best Fudgy Cocoa Brownies

1/2 cup unsalted butter. melted
1 tablespoon cooking oil
11/8 cup superfine sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt


Preheat oven to 350. Lighly grease an 8in square pan and then line with parchment paper. Set aside. 

Combine melted butter, oil and sugar together in a medium bowl and whish for about a minute. This will give the brownies a nice crust. Then add the eggs, and vanilla and whisk for another minute. 

Add the flour, cocoa powder and salt, stirring just until the ingredients are combined. Do not over beat or you will end up with cake brownies. 

Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 20-25 minutes. If you test for doneness with a toothpick the pick will come out with thick fudge crumbs. The brownies will continue to bake while in the pan cooling. 

Cool to room temperature.