Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Chocolate Chocolate Chunk Muffins

I have this fuzzy feeling in my mouth right now. And my face feels kind of warm.

I also just ate 3 kiwis in a row.

I must be allergic!

Kiwis are my least favorite fruit, but every time my dad comes to visit, he always has the need to buy an entire bagful of green things for me. According to my dad, kiwis will solve all  problems from strep throat to a stomach ache.   Since I truly dislike kiwis (the fuzz really freaks me out), I always end up putting off eating them until the last moment.

Blech. How do I get rid of this feeling?

Chocolate Chocolate Chunk Muffins!

All things came into place: a friend was craving something chocolatey, I wanted something both special (to celebrate my birthday) and easy to bring into work.

These muffins fit perfectly.  The perfect amount of chocolate for the friend and just the right sweetness for a morning meeting.  Stick a candle in it, and it's a birthday muffin!

Mmm Mmm Choco-late!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Peanut- Butter Surprises

Graduation day! Where has the time gone? It seems like only yesterday that M and I were playing restaurant with plastic cobs of corn and hamburger buns. Last Tuesday was actually the last day of school, so since then, with no exams it's been smooth sailing towards summer! A couple of my friends and I decided to kick it off with a baking (...eating) fiesta!

Peanut-Butter Surprises...think of them like Peanut Butter Blossoms inside out! Reversed!

Despite making a few modifications to the recipe, the outcome was worth it. After taking our first bite of these cookies, they were truly a delicious surprise.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Samoas Bars

Dear Girl Scouts,

      Why are your cookies so crazy addictive? 

P.S. Also, why are they getting smaller and smaller?!!!!

But seriously. They are really addictive. I think I could eat five of them at once. And then eat ten more.   

To avoid the travesty of the shrinking Girl Scout cookies, a simultaneously shrinking bank account, and get my Samoas/Caramel deLite fix, I began making my own version of the delicious cookies last year.  

Now, getting the Samoas ice cream does help the craving, but these bars really do the job! Of course, you can always cut the dough into cookie shape so it looks more like what comes in the box. 

But being a lazy bum, I've made them into bar form for the easiest and most efficient process!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Carrot Cake

So M has been harping on my lack of posts in this blog, so I decided it was time to change that! It's been quite a busy senior year, and with tomorrow being the last day, I should have lots of free time to help M out with the baking (and the eating!).

The end of anything is cause for celebration- and party festivities! Having had my senior recital for violin this past weekend, I baked a carrot cake to end the day on a sweet note. If you're looking for an easy, yummy, memorable cake to make for that occasion, read on:

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Funfetti Cookies

Jiayou!! 加油!!

There's no perfect English translation for "Jia You" -a Chinese phrase that literally means to "add oil".  People use it to encourage others to keep going, most publicly at the Beijing Olympics, Jiayou was used to cheer on athletes. A kind of "GO you! You can do it!", hearing this phrase can give someone that extra push to keep at whatever they are doing. 

It's a little difficult when there is no English phrase that entirely encapsulates the encouragement and the strength behind 加油.  

"Go you!!" doesn't really seem to have the same effect...

But a little encouragement goes a long way.

Whether it's a challenging trip to Ghana (加油 L!!!), playing a solo in front of your school, or studying for an endless string of exams, we all could use some words to boost our efforts.  Make sure let people know that you believe in them and their work!

Okay, enough of that! And more of these Funfetti Cookies!

My roommate and I only just started making these cookies a year ago when a friend convinced us that the cookies were a million times tastier than the actual cupcakes from the box. 

In disbelief, we made these cookies by following the recipe on the side of the box and we were proved entirely wrong! These are now an apartment favorite -both for the yummy and easiness of the recipe.  We should have started making these ages ago!!

Since then, we've made these many times, but the funniest moment was after my roommate had an incredibly difficult exam.  Her brain was fried -obviously cookies would remedy that!  She started following the recipe on the side of the box...but then ended up using the recipe on the back.  

Monday, June 6, 2011

Red Velvet Cake

The Great Cake Debate. 

Or really The Great Frosting Debate.

Two weeks ago, I caved and bought a couple of 9-inch cake pans. 

Why did it take me so long to buy what so many consider essential to a baker's kitchen?

Well, I'm not exactly the biggest fan of cake.  Actually, it's more like I'm not frosting's biggest fan. I'm that person who scrapes off the frosting and smushes it into a pile on the side. 

I like cake, just not so much frosting. (This is to the disgust of many of my friends, who are huge Frosting Fans.)

So to christen the new pans, I knew that I would make one of my favorite types of cake -Red Velvet! I invited Kay over both for moral support in this new adventure and for her help, which proved crucial in flipping the cake. There's got to be an easier way to flip those things!

This cake is delicious! It's definitely not something to make or eat everyday... there's way too much butter in the frosting itself. But this cake is just perfect for a special occasion or to share with friends. 

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Cinnamon Sugar Pull Apart Bread


Wait... what?? 

The weather gods literally just decided overnight to make it unbearably humid and hot.
Thank god for air conditioning and fans. And electricity.

It's suffocating...although now it's decided to be crazy and thunder/lightening all over the place. So confused.

Kay and I actually attempted this bread months ago. And I mean months. Totally got sidetracked with the craziness that is life, but now, it's finally time to revel in its glory. 

Initially inspired by Joy the Baker, and then re-motivated by Naturally Ella, this Cinnamon Sugar Pull Apart Bread is de-licious.  

Ever try Monkey Bread?

Essentially the same concept -cinnamon, sugar, bread, buttery goodness- this Cinnamon Sugar Pull Apart Bread was the perfect addition to our movie night gathering. 

Yes, I've admitted it before, I do have a cinnamon addiction. It's like my safety blanket. I can always rely on the sweet smell of cinnamon to pull me up from the dregs of rainy misery...or something like that.

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