Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween With Spooky Treats!

 Happy Halloween Everybody!

To celebrate all that is spooky and frightful.I'm showcasing Krysta's Halloween drawing of me and Dave. She made us a bride and groom,but killed us off and we somehow came back as zombies.I figured she never really wanted us to rest in peace and just wandering around eating brains all night. Watch your artistic brain there,were comming for it next. Thats all were thinking about now!

Woooo! Look at these creepy silhouettes on my chocolate cupcakes.My spider's seem to really love these just as much as the bloody bones.That creepy crawly spider has strangely become my favorite of the bunch and I find it crazy that all of these are just simply made using Wilton stencils and icing sugar. This shows that you really don't need any frosting for cupcakes,especially chocolate ones.

These spooky cakes are actually to good for frosting and I find it would only take something away from it.However candy or icing sugar is a good choice to dress up these cupcakes. I actually had a lot of fun with creating these with some help from my sister.I realized by the first try you really need some help holding down the stencils to get a good print.So if using these for cupcakes always get some extra help in the kitchen.

This kind of cupcake is actually my favorite because it so chocolaty and moist.I've made these before and reviewed them in a  past post.Do you remember the wacky or vegan cupcakes?Well if you don't, they are the simplest cake you could ever make.I'm not a vegan, but I sure do like wacky ideas. Its such a well known recipe now that it doesn't seem to be wacky anymore.However I think its a recipe more known for saving the expensive ingredients for something else. No eggs or butter!,craziness.Yes! I'm telling the truth here.Only shows that you really don't need these ingredients to make a good cupcake.They are impressive cakes and are a big favorite of many.

I have to give a top rating again for these cupcakes.They are all so chocolaty rich and surprisingly they only use 1/4 cup of cocoa.They are light and airy with great flavor. I have nothing even bad to say about these and the stencils are now my favorite baking item to work with. So lucky I have Christmas stencils to use for when the holiday roll around.Its coming up close everyone!. But for now.......

Everyone havecreepy and safe Halloween!

Creepy Silhouette Cupcakes 
(Adapted from Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes, Martha Stewart's Cupcakes)

1 1/2 cup cake flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp white vinegar or lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup cold water
Icing sugar
Halloween cupcake/cookie stencils ( Option:Wilton's)

1. 350F, Line cupcake or muffin tin.
2. Sift together cake flour, white sugar, cocoa powder, b.s and salt in medium bowl, set a side.
3. Beat on med-high speed in a large bowl the oil, vinegar, vanilla and water until combined.
4. Add flour mix, beat till smooth (thin batter)
5. Open up strawberry jam jar and scoop large amount on to a small plate.
5. Add batter to each liner,about less then three quarters full.
6.Bake for 20 minutes and be sure to rotate pans halfway through for even baking.
7. Use toothpick test, when done, remove and cool on a rack.Cake tops should spring back when touched.
8. Once completely cool.Add icing sugar to sifter.One at a time place stencil on cupcake.May need some help from another to hold it down.Then sift the icing sugar on top till you no longer see the top of the cupcake.Remove stencil and place in fridge.
(3 days stored at room temp, frozen for 1 month)

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Creepy Bloody Bones

I just received this adorable apron in the mail and It came all the way from Oklahoma.This is actually my very first giveaway win from that state and I might as well start covering the map.This apron has become my Halloween celebration gift because I was able to wear it while I tested out some creepy treats.This is by far my perfect apron because its long,adjustable,made of sturdy material and the best part it has no ties at the neck.Its simple and the quote "Peace,Love And Cookie Dough" is perfect. People really should live by those three very words.

Green Couch Design
 is the business that creates the prints for this very apron and they also offer other adorable items in their kitchen line.They also offer other product lines like jewelry,ornaments,bed designs,coffee tables,room dividers and tufa pots.They also have another quote that is my favorite.They offer "Just beat it" quote and its the cutest print I've seen.It makes me want to breakout in dance throughout the kitchen.I have no idea if they got this idea from the song, but it still makes me want to dance to Michael Jackson's music while I make cookie dough.Thank you so much Megan and Cale for your great designs and apron.Hope you like my photo pose!

Anyways, everyone must be interested in these creepy treats I made?Right?Yes! Well I wanted to stay clear of the sweet stuff this time and venture into the savory treats.Now when you hear the word bread stick.You probably think salty and boring bread,right? If that's not what you thought,well that's sure what sparked into my brain.Well since I thought it was boring I made sure these bread sticks transformed into something exciting like creepy and all so chilling arm and leg bones.

Not so boring anymore right?Yes! These are by far the simplest, delicious and all so creepy appetizers you could make for a Halloween party.They pair so well with any food and they are so adaptable to any spice or sauce you could choose.Don't be a scaredy cat by the bone idea either because its so easy to transform these bread sticks by simply knowing how to tie the knots.Then POOF! a perfect arm or leg bones.

The ingredients are very common and go on an add your own favorite spices to the mix if you take on this recipe.Just remember when you make these bone bread sticks to always have warm water and the right amount of yeast.Without those important item you will either end with some pretty flat bones or to big of bones.Just follow the recipe and you will be perfectly fine.Even if you do come to a problem just come on by and leave a comment or e-mail me.I love to help with any problem you may be having.

I really had a lot of creative fun with this recipe and I've actually used this recipe many times in the past, being 
that's its one of my high school recipes.These are simply buttery bones with a slight flavor of spice.These pair so well with store bought of homemade salsa.They actually become extremely addicting when you add the salsa into the equation.I wonder what other sauces or dips would taste good with these bones.I won't be able to find out for a while now because they were all eaten up so fast.However the salsa is the best for the spooky aspect of Halloween and twenty four leg and arm bones were all munched up by the stomachs.When their gone that fast I can only be happy about it because it means I did a good job.

I can really see why these are so delicious.They actually cover the board of texture and are so mild they go well with any dip or sauce.You've got you slight crunch,your chewy and soft aspect and when warm you have that fresh texture.Bread always seems to be a big lover of many,especially when fresh;however I am just as happy wit day old bread.I don't make bread products all that often,but when I do I like to try out new ideas and flavors. I give this recipe a 5 out or 5.No problems aroused and its just a simple delicious recipe.

These are just simple bread sticks, but when you bring in a simple chance many people get interested in it again.If I had just made bread stick I don't think they would of been eaten that fast.Bringing creativity into the mix really gets peoples attention.Anyways only 1 day left till Halloween! Today's Hallow's Eve! and who knows what I'll squeeze in for Halloween day.Might see something sweet,savory, humorous,who knows?

Everyone have a great Hallows-eve!

Creepy Bones 
(Adapted From Italian Bread Sticks,Italian Foods 11)

250ml all purpose flour
1ml salt
1ml sugar
7ml quick acting yeast
10ml light olive oil
125ml warm water
65ml all purpose flour
15ml margarine or butter,melted
1ml Italian spice
1ml tarragon

1.Mix 250ml of flour,salt and sugar in a medium sized bowl.Sprinkle yeast on top and stir.

2.Measure warm water and oil.Add the oil to the water.

3.Add wet to dry,stir with a wooden spoon till forms into a ball.Add the 65ml of flour, gradually to the dough.

4.Knead for 5 minutes, till smooth.Let rest for 5 minutes.

5.Roll dough out into a rectangle, about quarter inch thick.

6.Score into thirds and then into halves.Should get at least 3 strips on each halve.

7.Then tie a knot on each end of the strips and let them rest on a nonstick or greased cookie sheet.Let rise for 20+ minutes, until puffy.

8.Melt margarine in bowl and add spices.Brush the mixture on the bread sticks.Once risen, bake at 375F for 15-20 minutes, nicely golden brown.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Halloween week! Here's Peanut Butter and Chocolate

The combination of peanut butter and chocolate is a big favorite around Halloween, especially the popular Reese's cups. I have never been a big fan of Reese's and I can actually recall always trading mine after trick or treating. However strangely enough I love chocolate and peanut butter together in baking.

Anyways, I couldn't miss out making something with this combination for the Halloween week.So I started with making peanut butter thumbnail cookies and from their I filled each with milk chocolate chips to create a nest affect. I have never seen any eggs shaped like mini Hershey kisses, but its good to be imaginative in the kitchen. 

These cookies didn't exactly create the thumbnails that I hoped for because they became a little to flat; however I've used this recipe many times in the past and it's still my favorite. This is just a simple peanut butter cookie recipe that will make a large batch of cookies. It also offered other variations in the directions to make peanut butter chocolate chip and peanut butter jelly nests.I used their nest variation and just replaced the jelly with milk chocolate chips.Right now I'm thinking that the chocolate chips were probably not heavy enough to keep a nice deep, indent overtime.Maybe, next time I'll use the large Hershey kisses and use less butter to help out the appearance.

Well regardless of how critical I am on how they look, they sure are delicious.These cookies definitely get high marks from me for flavor and texture. They have a lot of crunch which I love and they definitely need a tall glass of milk to wash them down with. They also have lots of moisture,which means they will never dry.However with this characteristic you do have to be careful how and where you store them.Because in a warm place they will break very easily.So try to store them in the fridge or put them in a cookie jar and place in a cool area.I do have to say peanut butter cookies are the best when cold and with chocolate chip on top like these you will never have to worry about them falling off.They are rich in peanut butter and have that great hint of milk chocolate. Peanut butter cookies are such a simple treat to make and it pleases so many people.

I hope everyone is enjoying the Halloween week. 4 more days till the big day! What do you all have planned?

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Nests 
(Adapted from Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe)

Yields: Over 3 dozen

1 cup butter,softened
1 cup brown sugar ( can use homemade brown sugar, white sugar + 1 tbsp light molasses)
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 cup smooth peanut butter
3 cup all purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
Chocolate Chips (preference on amount)

Beat soft butter and both sugar together in a large bowl.Once fluffy and combined.Beat in eggs, one at a time,till batter is smooth. Mix in peanut butter, thoroughly.

Sift in flour,baking soda and salt.Stir until fully combined. Shape dough using your hands,(smaller then a golf ball) Place each on a ungreased cookie sheet.Press each with your thumb to create an indent.

Bake at 375F and bake for 4-5 minutes.Remove from oven and press each again with your thumb.Bake for another 6-7 minutes.Remove from oven and right away fill each indent with chocolate chips.Place in the oven again for 5-10 seconds till chocolate chips stick and have a glossy surface. Continue till all cookie dough is gone.Place cookies on a rack to cool completely.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Halloween Buns

Do you love the smell of fresh bread baking in the oven? Well if you do this is a must read and if you love Halloween I plead with you to stay right here.These are the simplest buns you could ever make and guess what you can make any shape you like. For the month of October I chose to make my batch into spooky characters.I used my creativity and cookie cutters to come up with the shapes.

Are you interested in hearing more? Yes!

Well these little buns are deliously golden and crisp on the outside, while being fluffy and chewy on the inside.They are so much like kaiser buns in texture and flavor, its insane.The spooky shapes are a way to make the recipe more fun and to spread the Halloween spirit around here. I even have a favorite of the bunch, the creepy crawly spider buns. These tarantula sized creatures are creepy enough that a family member won't even eat one.

But back to the basics here.The recipe is very simple to follow and actually uses very common ingredients. The only downside is the time consumption from the rising dough factor.However these buns are a little different because they are a cool rise bun.What's that you ask? Well their buns that rise in the fridge instead of in a room temperature environment.Opposite way from what most recipes do; however one positive to this choice is the pans are out of your way when the cleaning has to be done.

Also in any recipe using yeast its extremely important to always have the water, warm.It cannot be HOT or COLD! Always check before adding.I don't want any of you to end up with flat buns.

If everyone follows the warm water advice in this recipe you will end up with dough doubling in size all by its self in the fridge and then its zapped with a high heat in the oven where it rises even more. Then you end up with freshly baked Halloween bread and I highly recommend it with cream cheese or even ham and cheese. They are the best right out of the oven;however they have ten times more flavor the next day.

Whatever shape you make them or whatever spread you have on them.We can all agree they sure are fun to eat!

Look out for more delicious treats!

Halloween Cool Rise Buns 
(Berendina Dykema Recipe,Foods Class 11/12)

750ml all purpose flour
14ml quick acting yeast
14ml granulated sugar
6ml table salt
30ml soft or hard margarine
280ml warm water

1.Measure warm water.Add the margarine to the water.Microwave in 10 second increments, till margarine is almost melted. Take out, stir and set aside.

2.Add half of the flour (375ml) to a large bowl.Add the sugar,salt and yeast,stir.

3. Once the margarine is fully melted and the water is warm( NOT HOT!). Add the wet to the dry,stir.

4. Gradually add the rest of the flour, till fully incorporated.

5.  Knead for 8-10 minutes, till dough is smooth.

6.  Grease 2 cookie sheets

7.  Divide dough in 12+ balls.

8.  Make shapes and place on sheet. Cookie cutters are useful.

9. Cover sheets with saran and chill in the fridge till double in size or keep overnight.

10.Bake the buns at 375F for 20-30 minutes, till golden brown.Cool on a rack.Best serve warm.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Spooky Halloween Shapes

Last night I made spooky rice crispy.Ghosts, pumpkins, kitty cats,blood thirsty bats, and crescent moons.Some are decorated with milk chocolate chips and others are left as is.I used Halloween molds and cookie cutters to create the shapes. The cutters were deemed the best in creating the shapes (shown above) However a lot of work was needed to mold and flatten out the sticky mixture to cut them out. My hands were very sore afterwards, but it was worth it.

The spooky shapes with chocolate chips were the ones made with molds.They didn't create the most efficient look as the cutters did, but they were simple to full and pop out of the molds. I used the original Rice crispy cereal recipe on the box to create all of these.

Look out for more chilling, scary treats coming your way!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Banana Inside A Banana

These are the cutest little banana's ever! A bite size treat that's super addicting and definitely a crowd pleaser. From looking at this photo you might not know that these are actually really easy to make as along as you have a simple muffin recipe and a nonstick banana mold. I cant see the molds being all that hard to find;however I got mine as a birthday gift. President Choice is the brand and I find a lot of their baking ware to be really unique, durable and affordable.I recommend their cooking and baking ware.

For this creation I used a Banana Pecan Muffin recipe and then altered it to be banana chocolate chip. However I can see any muffin recipe for these banana molds.The key to have these come out just right is the mixing method. You don't want to much mixing or to little,you just want the batter to be combined. The baking time is also an important factor for the recipe because you do not want these to over bake at all because they will lose their moisture and be to crispy. You want to see that perfect golden brown around the edges and then its time to pop them out of that pan.

With the perfect baking time you get the best texture and flavor. Incredibly moist, chewy and strong flavors of banana and chocolate. You want to see those muffin rise perfectly and just slip out of those molds so easily. Only thing I warn about is to never overflow the batter because that's when you have problems with sticking,if you avoid that your in the happy baking day and if it does happen carefully pry away the edges with your hand. No Knives!

I love to see some more ideas for these banana molds. Anyways its October and its time to get into the Halloween mode.So watch out for some spooky treats to come your way.

Mini Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins ( Adapted from MUFFINS, Banana Pecan Muffins)
Yields: About 12 or double recipe for 24+

1 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup chocolate chips
2 large overripe bananas (frozen bananas,thawed out)
5 tbsp 2% milk
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 egg,beaten
1/2 vanilla extract

Tuned on oven to 375F. Greased and floured one banana mold pan.

I sifted flour,baking powder & salt together in a glass bowl. Then mixed in the sugar and chocolate chips till fully combined.

I thawed out 2 overripe frozen bananas.Once soft I mashed the bananas in another glass bowl with a fork.I added in the milk, beaten egg, melted butter & vanilla to the fruit and mixed together.

Made a well in the flour blend.Poured the wet mixture into the middle of the well. I gently folded the ingredients together with a large rubber spatula, till just combined. Also making cutting motion through the batter helps combine everything.

Then I spooned in the batter into the molds,not overflowing.Baked till puffed,edges are golden and when touched it springs back.You can also check for sure with a toothpick.Plus do not over bake.You want lightly golden and moist.

I cooled them for a few minutes and then proceeded with flipping over the pan on a clean surface.I let them fully cool on a cookie rack.

Note: If they don't all pop out by themselves, use your hands to remove them from the mold.Do not use knives because they will scratch the pan. To avoid this all together do not overflow molds and keep the batter in the molds.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Gobble Gobble Gobble! Happy Thanksgiving In Canada

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone in Canada and for the ones in the U.S Happy Thanksgiving in November.Yes, I know its a day earlier but I want everyone to see this recipe before everyone has their feast. Never know you might want to make these treats.Whenever you celebrate this day its definitely the start of all fall baking. Making those delicious apple, pumpkin, or pecan pies. However I've got some thing different for all you to try out for your delicious feast. How about turkey biscuits, No there not made of turkey, but more like they are shaped like turkeys.Trust me they are way cuter then the real birds!

These scrumptious turkeys are made from a simple cheddar cheese biscuit recipe I found on food network, along with a few minor adjustments to be thanksgiving friendly. I was able to make about 10 turkeys and using the extra scrapes to make a itty bitty pumpkin.The recipe was pretty simple to follow and now I only wish I doubled the ingredients to make more turkeys.

I was actually super surprised by this recipe because I had some worrisome thoughts the whole time I was cutting the shapes that they would spread to much or even break at the fragile parts.However It was perfectly fine and the biscuits held up their shape wonderfully.

I highly recommend trying this recipe for your thanksgiving meal and if you don't have a turkey cookie cutter you can easily make a homemade one. I actually did that myself with this recipe using a piece of cupboard and taking some references off the Internet. Here are the two pictures I went by to create my cutter.

Turkey Body Reference
Turkey Head Reference

Now here's my final product and I've noticed you definitely need some craft skills when you have a passion for baking.

Anyways I'll leave all of you with a simple short post for today.Enjoy the long weekend! Sonner or layter is going to be Halloween,stay tune for some treats. 

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Birthday Cards And Strawberry Cupcakes!

I just had to show all of you the really creative handmade card my sister Anna made me and the really funny card my sister Heidi gave me lol.Check them both out! You will also see the strawberry cupcakes I made using my new gift,the silicone baking cups.Enjoy!


My favorite foam image is the cupcake, whats yours?

Imagine a cake like that!


Excellent card!Gave me a giggle!

Yum Yum! Vanilla cupcakes with strawberry jam inside and swirled on top.The silicone cups were super easy to use and I'm happy that I don't have to user paper liners anymore. Now time to relax and rest.


My 21st Birthday!

Happy Birthday Food Network And Happy 21th Birthday To Me!
My avatar! Krysta Version!

At my birthday party!

I am really excited that me and food network share the same birthday. Its seems the biggest coincidence that one day It would become my favorite channel and I would have a passion for food, especially towards pastry arts.It was meant to be in some way :).

For my 21th birthday I had a great family party on Sunday.We had lots of variety of food along with some of my favorites. My mom made a delicious Oreo party cheesecake and It was super rich, but oh so good. I was super spoiled on that day with all the great gift I received and everyone knows what I really like, Baking stuff!. I also have come to realize though that with this passion it comes with endless ideas for gifts, which is pretty awesome There will be always something new in the food world.

I got some really neat baking items , jewelry pieces and a gift card.I used my gift card towards my new computer that I'm using right this minute. I'm super excited to have something brand new to use for my blogging and have no problems. I am also excited to use my new baking equipment for my future recipes.I even used a few items last night to make my delicious strawberry cupcakes for my birthday today. Thank you everyone for the lovely gifts!