March 29, 2010
Every time I go to the mall, I crave those soft pretzels they sell there.
Then one day I realized I could try to make my own. My life hasn't been the same ever since. I"m a new woman, with a slightly higher fat percentage.
Soft Pretzels Bites
1 pkg active dry yeast
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 1/8 tsp salt
1 1/2 cup warm water
4 cups all purpose flour
4 cups water
4 Tbsp baking soda
2 Tbsp melted butter
2 Tbsp kosher salt
1. In a bowl, dissolve the yeast, brown sugar and salt in warm water. Stir in flour and knead on a floured surface for 8 minutes. Dough will be smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl, turn to coat. Cover. Let rise for an hour.
2. Cut risen dough into 12 pieces and roll each piece into a long rope, about 2 or 3 feet long. Cut each rope into 1 inch pieces
3. Boil 4 cups of water with 4 Tbsp of baking soda. Dip the dough pieces in the boiling water. Remove when they float. Place on parchment covered baking sheet. Let them rise for 20 minutes.
4. Bake at 450 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes, until golden brown. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle kosher salt on top.
March 26, 2010
Glazed Mint Brownies
Make 1 box Brownie Mix/your favorite brownie recipe (Yes, I love making brownies from a box. I use the Betty Crocker Fudge Brownies mix). Bake as directed in a 9x9 pan. Let it cool.
3 tbsp butter, softened
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 tbsp milk
1/4 tsp peppermint extract (or more if you'd like)
green food coloring, if desired
Combine ingredients and beat until creamy. Spread over brownies. Let harden a bit in the refrigerator.
3/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
3 tbsp butter
Melt chocolate chips and butter. Stir until smooth. Spread over the mint filling. Refrigerate until both are set.
NOTE: I have just learned what the difference is between using peppermint extract vs. mint extract. Mint extract contains both peppermint AND spearmint. Spearmint makes your filling taste like toothpaste. And unfortunately the filling has about the same consistency as toothpaste. It tastes fine with the brownie and the glaze, but the filling by itself... Well, I was licking the filling spoon clean and couldn't stop wondering why on earth I was eating toothpaste voluntarily. From now on I will stick with using peppermint extract.
These lemon cream cupcakes have restored my faith in cupcakes! I've always been a muffin girl, but these babies sure made my day.
Lemon Cream Cupcakes
1. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Add lemon peel, lemon extract and vanilla; mix well.
2. Combine dry ingredients; add to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream (batter will be thick).
3. Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups with 1/4 cup of batter. Leave some in the bowl to enjoy unbaked! Yum!
4. Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.
Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy. Mix in the lemon juice and zest (amounts depend on how much flavor you want. I used about 3 tsp of juice and the zest of one lemon), then gradually stir in the confectioners' sugar. Then just frost away!
3 1/2 dL all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
200 gr grated cheese (I used Edam in Finland, but Cheddar or Mozzarella here in the U.S.)
50 gr butter, softened
200 gr sour cream
1 egg, slightly beaten
150 gr grated cheese
Italian seasoning, garlic powder (optional)
Stir flour, baking powder and salt together. Add cheese. Cut softened butter in with a fork. Stir in sour cream till a soft dough forms. (I usually end up using my hand for this.) Divide dough in half (or thirds if you want smaller horns). Also, stir the ingredients for the filling together in a separate bowl.
Roll out each dough half to a circle. Cut the circle into 8 triangles. Put some cheese filling on each triangle (on the wide end). Roll them closed and bend each one so they look like little croissants. Place on a greased cookie sheet.
Brush with beaten whole egg and sprinkle some poppy seeds on top. Bake at 425 for 10-15 minutes.
These are best straight out of the oven. You can reheat them in the oven or the microwave.