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Thursday, June 28, 2012

Goldfish Bowl Cake Pops

My daughter has been participating in a nature camp this week. She gets to go on hikes and play in a stream, make arts and craft out of the things she finds on the walk and make tie-dye Tee-shirts. She learned about picking berries and not eating from plants unless a grown up tells her it's OK.  She even came home and told me all about Leaves if Three. Wow! My 6 year old knows about Poison Ivy and I couldn't pick it out if you showed it to me. Way to go Kiddo!

So, for their end of camp treat, I'm bringing them these Goldfish Bowl Cake Pops. I know, not very "nature" orientated, but you can't argue that they are cute :)

To make the Fish Bowls, start off with my Perfect Bottomed Cake Pop Technique, however, this time place white candy wafers down.

Dip the cake pop into the blue candy melts. Allow the excess to drip off. Then place on to the white wafer.
Quickly add some sprinkles around the stick, this will the be gravel in the bowl.

Once the pop is dry, turn the pop over and take a look at your bowl. Pretty cool, eh?

To add the fish, take a toothpick and add a dot of melted candy and attach you fish.

To make the seaweed, I rolled out two little gumdrops. Sprinkle some waxpaper with sugar and roll, roll, roll. Keep adding sugar as it will get sticky on the rolling pin. The thinner the better. Then take a small knife, pastry wheel or even clean scissors and cut a small leafy, triangular shape.
Attach the seaweed with some wet candy melts.

For a little extra detail, I added some bubbles using the Wilton Icing Writer. 
Put a little on the wax paper and use a tooth pick to dot on the bubbles. 

There - I think the kids at camp are going to love these!

These pops have a bit more steps involved, but you can make them as detailed as you like.

Have Fun Cake Poppin'!

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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Cupcake Project - Coffee Ice Cream Chocolate Cupcakes with Kahlua Frosting

I've  been stressing out all month wondering what Ice Cream Cupcake I should make. I really wasn't sure what was expected out of an Ice Cream Cupcake. I researched the 2011 entries and I've been watching the 2012 entries grow and grow for the 2012 Ice Cream Cupcake Contest being held over at The Cupcake Project and Scoopalicious.

So, of course I want to so something a bit different from all the entries.
Here's different. 
Cupcakes with Ice Cream as a main ingredient!

That's right! The ice cream is mixed into the cake mix.

Yes, some of you may recall that I made this as a Bundt Cake, but this time I made it with the coffee and it turned out so much better!

Here's What You Need: 
Chocolate Cake Mix
Pint of Coffee Ice Cream
1 Cup of Cold Coffee
3 eggs (Just pretend you see the eggs in the pictures)

Here's What  You Do:  
Combine the mix, eggs, coffee and softened ice cream in the mixer and combine together. 

Measure out into 24 prepared cupcake tins and bake at 350 deg F for 20 - 25 minutes.

Now, these won't puff up like regular cupcakes, they do rise, but they are not light and airy and won't puff up. They are rich and moist and oh so decadent!

To top off the Ice Cream Cupcakes, I continued with the chocolate coffee flavor. 
What better way than with this?

I made a plain Kahlua Frosting I found here.

1/2 Cup Softened Butter
5 Tbsp Kahlua
3 Cups Powdered Sugar

Beat together the softened butter and the 3 Tbls of the  Kahlua until blended, about 1 minute. Gradually add powdered sugar and 2 Tbls of Kahlua until a soft frosting is reached.

This was very sweet and had a strong Kahlua flavor.

I am worried that this doesn't have Ice Cream in the picture, so, I then added some GREAT  Ben & Jerry's Dublin Mudslide. Nom, nom, nom!

I also tried this Chocolate Kahlua Frosting recipe

6 Tbsp Butter
1 lb. Powdered Sugar
3 Tbsp. Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
4 Tbsp. Kahlua
2-3 Tbsp. Coffee

Beat together butter and half the powdered sugar. Add cocoa powder, Kahlua, hot coffee and remaining sugar. Beat until smooth.

This frosting wasn't as sweet and the  chocolate and coffee played so well together in my mouth. I really did just eat it with a spoon! Yum!

I really loved the Chocolate Kahlua Frosting the best!

I'm still torn as to which picture to submit... I'm not sure if this combination "qualifies", but it sure was tasty!

P.S. - I had some left over batter from the 24 cupcakes so I made some mini cupcakes! They were a great pop in your mouth treat!

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Sunday, June 24, 2012

Oatmeal Fudge Bars

When I was going through my Cooks Country Chocolate Desserts Magazine, I knew I was going to make this recipe.   It looked so good and easy and there were no "unusual" ingredients. 

So, when I finally did make them, I was not disappointed. And neither were the other parents and kids who enjoyed these crispy, fudge-y bars. 

Now, the recipe calls for Quick Oats, but I just had Old Fashion Oats. The magazine said that the Quick Oats created more of a chewy crust and crumble while the Old Fashion Oats resulted in a more crunchy and crumbly crust.

Recipe From Cooks County

Crust and topping

1 C Quick Oats
1 C Light Brown Sugar
3/4 C Flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
8 Tbls butter - melted and cooled

Preheat oven to 325 deg F and line an 8x8 baking dish with 2 pieces of foil to form a sling in the pan.
With a fork, mix the dry ingredients and add in the melted butter. Reserve a loose cup for the topping.
Press the remaining mixture into the pan and bake for 8 minutes.
Let cool for at least 1 hour.

Fudgey Filling

1/4 C Flour
1/4 C Light Brown Sugar
2 tsp Instant Coffee Granulars
1/4 tsp Salt
1 1/2 C Chocolate Chips
2 tsp Butter
1 Egg

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. Melt butter and chocolate chips in the microwave for 45 seconds. Let the chocolate cool and wisk in the egg. Stir chocolate mixture into the dry ingredients.

Spread filling over the cooled crust and smooth. Sprinkle with the reserved oats and press into the chocolate. Bake at 325 for 25 - 30 minutes.

Let cool for two hours. Remove from the pan lifting on the foil, cut into squares and ENJOY!!

I loved all the extra crumbs that flaked off! They were so tasty! I was gobbling them up while cutting them.
I think it would be great to just make the crust on a cookie sheet and break it up as an ice cream topping!

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Thursday, June 21, 2012

How to Make Gumball Machine Cake Pops

Recently, I asked my Facebook fans what type of cake pop they would like a tutorial on and I got a good response for a Gumball Machine Cake Pop!

So, here it is! 

At first I was thinking that I would make a two story cake pop with a red cake pop on the bottom for the dispenser and a second pop in top for the gumball bubble. However, I like things easy and wanted to keep it as basic as possible. 

I think that these would be a great addition to any RAINBOW party or summer party. It's a cute addition to your dessert table.

I used the rest of the Banana Cake that I made to make these cake pops. The added banana makes the cake so moist that I didn't need frosting for a binder. However, if you feel like you need some, use a little bit of Vanilla frosting.

Need tips on making Cake Pop Batter and Dipping a Cake Pops.... Check out my YouTube Videos.

Once your pops are measured and rolled, cover them with waxed paper and place them in the fridge.
While they are in the fridge, prepare the sticks. 

Step 1. I found some Red Foil covered caramel candies in the bulk food section of the grocery store. 
2. I used a wooden skewer to punch a hole from the top to the bottom.
Step 3. Remove the skewer and open the bottom part of the wrapper.
Step 4. Push your lollipop stick up from the bottom through the top and allow for 3/4 inch of the stick to protrude.
Step 5. Complete all sticks and prepare candy melts.

When the candy melts are melted and smooth, you're ready to get the cake balls out of the fridge.
Step 6. Dip the stick into the candy melts then add the cake ball.
Step 7. When all the balls are on the sticks, dip the cake balls into the candy melts and tap off the excess.
Step 8. Immediately add the rainbow nonpareils sprinkles to the lower half of the pop and top with a red gumball or candy.

There! Now aren't those pretty?

I also made a few other gumball machines using other bases and toppers.

I tried some red soft candies like a Tootsie Roll  and some flat sprinkles.
Also, a red Starburt base and some mini M&M's as gumballs.

Then I made one with a pink gumball for the top and bottom.
And finally, I tried them with Froot Loops.

Honestly, I think that the red foiled candies worked the best, followed by the Froot Loops.

BTW, I love this picture with the gumballs! The bright colors just make me happy and it puts a smile on my face. I hope it makes you smile as well.

Now, this picture is my background on my phone. Did I mention that it makes me happy? 'Cause it does!
Have a Happy Day!

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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Banana Whiskey Cupcakes

My daughter is a FRUIT junkie. She loves fruit and would eat it for every meal if I let her. Her breakfast choice is fruit over Pop Tarts. Her lunch or snack will always consist of fruit. And for dinner, she usually has some sort of fruit on her plate. I can't complain. It's so much better than the Pop Tart or sugary snacks and cookies.  So, is it any wonder that my daughter's first cake pop was Banana flavored? 

She LOVES Banana cake pops and it's so easy to make banana cake from a cake mix. 
She rejected chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry and proclaimed that she would never eat a cake pop. 

Here's What You Need for a Plain Banana Cake:
Yellow box cake mix
3 eggs
2 bananas
1/4 C oil
1 C water
1 teaspoon baking soda

Combine all ingredients and mix well for 3 minutes.
Add to your choice of baking pan and bake at 350 for 25 - 30 minutes.
I baked half the cake in an 8" round cake pan and I'll show you the cake pops I made with them on Friday.

In other half  I added:

5 Tbls Whiskey
2 Tbls brown Sugar
1 tea Cinnamon
1/2 C Chopped Pecans

Add to a prepared cupcake pan and bake at at 350 for 25 minutes. 

Let them cool and prepare your butter cream frosting.
1/4 cup shortening
1 1/2 sticks butter
1 pound powered sugar
1 Tbls Saigon Cinnamon
Milk as needed approximately 8 Tbls 

Combine shortening and butter then mix in powered sugar and milk until the consistency is as thick as you like. Then add the cinnamon. The good cinnamon. The same cinnamon that Cinnabon uses. Trust me.

Frost, top and indulge!

Now, you may notice in the above picture some caramel oozing out from under the frosting.
I was experimenting with adding some caramel, but just thought that all the flavors were so good and did not need the addition of the caramel. 
However, it was good. And if you want to add it, please, be my guest!

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Sunday, June 17, 2012

Red, White, and Blue Fun-da-Middles

The 4th of July is quickly approaching and the heat is ON!

The kids have been out of school and I've been driving around now more than ever with camp and playdates and stuff, stuff, stuff! 

So for some festive holiday fun, I made some cupcakes. Fun-da-Middle Cupcakes!

And gave them a patriotic twist. 

I made the basic Fun-da-Middles, only colored the centers blue.
I've also figured out I can save myself from washing a bowl by placing the cream filling into a baggie and adding the coloring to the baggie. From there, I just snipped the edge of the baggie and added it to the cupcake center. 
Then baked them as directed and let them cool.

I also got a star mold at the craft store and made some red and blue stars. 

Then I made some buttercream frosting and tinted 1/3 blue and 1/3 red.  I was hoping the red would be more red, but I did not add enough coloring and I did not let it rest and develop long enough. Oh well...

I used a large star tip to pipe three layers of the frosting, which, I admit, is A LOT of frosting, but it's all for the wonderful effect! The oohs and aahs are sure to follow when you present your kids with these sugar filled treats!

Have a Safe and Wonderful 4th of July Holiday! 

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