Shortbread cookies dipped in chocolate sauce

I thought that this idea of a tea bag cookie would be cute. They didn’t really turn out to look like tea bags but they still tasted great. I love shortbread! I think, if you can get them to turn out like tea bags, that would be awesome. But this recipe is still great. Here you go:

Ingredients:

3/4 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
3.5 ounces dark chocolate broken into small pieces

Method:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together the butter and 1 cup of sugar until they are just combined. Add the vanilla. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour and salt, then add them to the butter-and-sugar mixture. Mix on low speed until the dough starts to come together. Dump onto a surface dusted with flour and shape into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic and chill for 30 minutes.

Roll the dough 1/4-inch thick. Place a tea bag as a guide and cut with a knife.

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Make a small hole at the top with the help of a skewer or cookie stick. Place the cookies on an ungreased baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the edges begin to brown. Allow to cool to room temperature.

When the cookies are cool, place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Put 2 and half ounces chopped chocolate in a glass bowl and microwave on high power for 20 seconds. Stir with a wooden spoon. Continue to heat and stir in 20-second increments until the chocolate is just melted. Add the remaining chopped chocolate and stir until the residual heat in the bowl melts the chocolate completely. Allow it to sit at room temperature, stirring often, until it’s completely smooth. The more you stir, the glossier the chocolate will get.

Dip each cookie half way through in the chocolate and set it on parchment paper to dry. It will only take a couple of minutes for the chocolate to set. After it’s dried, string a thread through the hole (if after baking the opening is small, gently push the skewer through) and attach the tea bag.

Arrange on a platter and serve. Enjoy!!!

You should totally try this out! They are delicious and buttery! Yum!

Thanks to: http://www.compulsivefoodie.com/2013/03/26/tea-bag-cookies/

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C is for Cupcake

I have seen these on the internet a lot. They are so adorable! I love the Cookie Monster, he’s awesome. He’s one of the best characters on Sesame Street…I think…unless they’ve added new characters, I haven’t seen it in years. One of my classmates birthday came, so I decided to make her some Cookie Monster cupcakes. Yum! I thought these were really cute, fun, and tasty! Also, thanks to http://photographybyme44.wordpress.com/ for taking some of the pictures for me! She’s great, you should check out her blog.

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Here’s the recipe:
Vanilla Cupcakes:

Servings: Makes 15 cupcakes

Ingredients:
1 1/4 cups cake flour or Canadian bleached all-purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup canola oil (vegetable or extra light olive oil also work)
1/2 cup buttermilk or (According to Glorious Treats, you can substitute the buttermilk with 1/2 cup milk plus 1/2 teaspoon white vinegar or lemon juice- add acid to the milk then set aside for 5 minutes before using)

How to Make the Best Vanilla Cupcakes:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a cupcake/muffin pan with cupcake liners.
1. In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 1/4 cups cake flour (or Canadian flour), 1 1/4 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda and 1/2 tsp salt. Set flour mix aside.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat 2 eggs with the whisk attachment on medium speed (15-20 seconds).
3. Add 3/4 cup sugar and continue to beat on medium speed (30 seconds).
4. Add vanilla and oil and beat on medium speed (1 minute).
5. Reduce mixer speed to medium/low and slowly add about half of the flour mixture. Add half of the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour mix and the rest of the milk. Beat until just combined and smooth, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl. The batter should be thin.
6. Pour batter into a lined muffin pan. Fill to about 1/2 full.
7. Bake for 12 -14 minutes at 350 degrees F. My oven takes 14 minutes. Let them cool in the pan for a couple minutes, then remove.

Once the cupcakes are cooled to room temp, pipe on the frosting. I used this amazing cupcake frosting recipe. When piping on the frosting, I didn’t have the right frosting tip so I just used the coupler and made about circles working from the outside in. It was perfect and super easy!

* A note about the flour: all-purpose works, it just does won’t produce a cupcake quite as soft as cake flour or Canadian Flour.

Then I made some blue buttercream frosting,

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That picture doesn’t look very good but…oh well!

Buttercream:
Ingredients:
6 cups confectioners’ sugar (I actually used 2 cups and it was fine)
16 Tbs. (2 sticks) unsalted butter
4 1/2 Tbs. milk, plus more, if needed
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. salt
Food colorings (optional)
Directions:
Have all the ingredients at room temperature.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, combine the confectioners¿ sugar, butter, the 4 1/2 Tbs. milk, the vanilla and salt and beat on low speed until combined, about 1 minute. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Increase the speed to medium and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes.

If the frosting is dry, add more milk, 1 tsp. at a time, until it is creamy but still holds peaks. Tint with food coloring as desired. Makes about 4 cups.

My classmate really liked these, I think. I believe you will too, you should try them.

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Thanks to: http://natashaskitchen.com/2012/06/29/perfect-vanilla-cupcake-recipe/, for the cupcakes: http://www.williams-sonoma.com/recipe/quick-buttercream-frosting.html, for the frosting, and: http://www.kidspot.com.au/best-recipes/kids-cooking+5/cookie-monster-cupcakes-recipe+4131.htm, for the idea.

Cream Puffs

Every time I go on an airplane, I hope they have cream puffs. The reason for this is, when I was much younger I had my first cream puff and it was heavenly. So yesterday, I decided to stop hoping that maybe the next plane I was on would have cream puffs. I decided to just make them. My inspiration for making them was a wonderful cook called Chef Randall. His website is great, you should check it out, it’s http://www.savorthefood.com. Chef Randall sent me a recipe for Nutella cream puffs. Unfortunately, my school doesn’t allow nuts, and Nutella has hazelnuts so I decided to try making them with a whipped cream filling. They turned out great! Here is the recipe:

Ingredients
Puffs
1 cup water
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 large eggs
1 egg yolk

Directions
In a medium saucepan, combine the water, butter, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Remove the pan from the heat and sift the flour directly into the pan. Stir the mixture into a paste with a wooden spoon. Return the pan to a medium heat. Stir the mixture until it pulls away from the sides of the pan and is slightly shiny, about 3 minutes.

Transfer the paste to a medium bowl, and beat with a wooden spoon until slightly cooled, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, incorporating each one thoroughly before adding the next. Before adding the last egg, beat it in a small bowl. Adding it by tablespoons to the mixture, just until the batter is smooth and tight. If the batter starts to get loose, do not add all of the last egg.

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Place a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Fill a large pastry bag, fitted with an open tip, with the cream puff mixture. Pipe twelve 2 1/2-inch circular mounds, about 2 inches apart, onto the prepared pan. (Alternately, use a large spoon to form the dough into the mounds.) Dab the tops of each puff with a fingertip dipped in water to smooth the tops. Beat the egg yolk with a tablespoon of water and brush the surface of the puffs with the beaten yolk.

Bake in the middle of the oven for 15 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F; continue baking until golden brown and the puffs are light, airy, and crisp, about 30 to 35 minutes more. Cool on a rack.

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Assemble the cream puffs. Cut the puffs in half with a serrated knife, and set the tops aside. (If the puffs are very moist inside, scoop out the excess dough and re-crisp them in a 350 degree F. oven for about 5 minutes. Cool completely before continuing.) Put a heaping tablespoon of the fruit in the bottom half of the cream puffs. Pipe or spoon about 1/3 cup of the whipped cream on top. Replace the puff tops. Refrigerate for up to 3 hours or serve immediately.

I am a fan of whipped cream, so I loved them with the cream, but some of my classmates aren’t so fond of whipped cream so I tried putting ice cream in instead, they said it was good, but I much prefer whipped cream. For the filling, I used the same recipe as my meringues. I love that recipe.
Thank you Chef Randall!
Thanks to: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchens/cream-puffs-recipe/index.html

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Liebster Award

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I feel so honored to get this award! It’s my first! Thank you so much to http://whenspoonmeetspot.com/! If you don’t know whenspoonmeetspot, I think you should take a look at the website, it’s great!

Here are the rules:

• Post 11 random facts about yourself.
• Answer the 11 questions made by the person who nominated you.
• Create 11 questions for the bloggers you pass the award to.
• Choose 11 bloggers to pass the award to and mention them in your post.
• Go to their blogs and let them know that they have been nominated
• No tag backs.

11 Random facts about me:

I love to swim, it’s my thing!
I play the violin
I have a dog and a fish
My favorite color is blue
My favorite fruit is mango
I like pop music, I’m still a student
I play attack on a lacrosse team
I’m in a band
I play tennis
I can’t snap
I almost died my first time skiing…

The Questions from Whenspoonmeetspot are:

1. What is your favourite website?
I love to watch movies so I guess, http://www.netflix.com

2. Which dish brings out the best memories?
My mom has been making sesame noodles for a long time, we got the recipe from a neighbor and I love them.

3. If you would get the chance to meet a famous person, who would it be?
I’m not sure…maybe Jennifer Lawrence, she seems like a nice person.

4. Salt or Sugar?
Sugar!

5. Most beautiful country you have ever visited?
England

6. Which song makes you instantly happy?
Hmm this is tough. I’m a fan of the Can’t hold us, by Macklemore

7. What was the last law you broke?
My grandfather let me sip some wine in England :p

8. Do you sleep on your back, front or side?
I sleep on my side

9. What human characteristic annoys you the most?
I don’t like know it all’s…

10. What is your favourite book?
I really liked the Hunger Games. However, I am also a big fan of Harry Potter

11. Name the world’s biggest island? ( sorry I’m running out of questions )
I don’t know my islands very well to be honest. So, I looked it up, Greenland.

My questions for the bloggers:

1. Who do you look up to most?
2. Do you have a favorite childhood pet?
3. Would you rather go to Europe or Asia?
4. Which food is better, Chinese or Indian?
5. Dogs or cats?
6. If you could choose your name, what would it be?
7. Chocolate or Vanilla?
8. Hot chocolate or Coffee?
9. What is your favorite kind of food?
10. What’s your favorite song?
11. Do you have a favorite thing to do?

I have chosen 11 bloggers for this award:

http://warmtoastymuffins.com
http://rabbitcancook.wordpress.com
http://fudgingahead.wordpress.com
http://yummychunklet.wordpress.com
http://bittersweetblog.com
http://ohlidia.com
http://sophiesfoodiefiles.wordpress.com
http://thehungrymum.wordpress.com
http://l2ee2l.wordpress.com/
http://littlepoppits.wordpress.com
http://misschriscreations.com/
http://weightandmeasures.wordpress.com

Pound Cake with vanilla glaze

Ahhh pound cake. I tend to enjoy sitting down with a piece of pound cake and enjoying it. Unfortunately I don’t have a bunt cake mold so I needed to make it it rectangles but I still love this recipe! Here you go:

Ingredients
2 cups sugar
1 cup butter, softened
5 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup milk
Directions:

1 Heat oven to 350° F.

2 Mix sugar, butter, eggs and vanilla in large bowl.

3 Beat on low to mix ingredients well.

4 Beat on high for 5 minutes.

5 On low, add flour and baking powder alternately with milk.

6 Beat well after each addition.

7 Spoon batter into greased and floured 10 inch tube pan.

8 Bake for 65-75 minutes, until a pick comes out clean.

9 Cool for 15 minutes; invert onto cake plate.

My glaze recipe was a simple vanilla glaze recipe that I sometimes use.

Thanks to: <a href="http://www.food.com/recipe/vanilla-pound-cake-55407

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