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Monthly Archives: March 2011

Oreo Cupcakes

I have been wanting to make some sort of Oreo stuffed cupcakes since I saw the Oreo stuffed chocolate chip cookies on the internet a few weeks ago.  I have been busy making regular chocolate chip cookies lately and just haven’t gotten around to the cupcakes.  I changed that today.  It was a weird day because of DST so time is all wonky for us today.  Most of it was spent just watching movies.  I decided it would be perfect to do the Oreo Experiment.

I mixed up a box of Classic White cake mix using the whole egg recipe.  I did half the amount of oil and replaced the other half with applesauce.  It makes the cake a little bit more healthy.  I chose double stuf Oreos because they have more cream.  I figured if there was more cream in the center of the cookies, the less the chance would be that it would all melt away and leave 2 cookies sitting in the bottom of the cupcake liners. I baked them at 325F for around 18 minutes. My dark pans make them cook a lot faster than the box says.

I couldn’t decide which way would be best to place the Oreos in the cupcakes so I decided to do it 5 different ways.

In the first row (all the way left) I put a cookie into the bottom and added a scoop of cake batter on top.  For the middle I put the cake batter into the cup and put an Oreo on the top.  For the final side, I put a mini Oreo in the bottom and topped it with cake batter and 3 more mini Oreos.

For the second pan, I did the first row the same as the first pan.

For the second row, I put half a scoop of cake batter in the bottom of the cup and put an Oreo on top of that.  Then I topped it with another 1/2 scoop of batter.

For the third row, I put 3 mini Oreos in the bottom, a scoop of batter, and one mini Oreo on top.

Baking cupcakes!  Time to turn them!

Finished Pan 1

Finished Pan 2

Both pans

Cooling cupcakes

Completed!

Extra Minis! (Some of these have mini Oreos)

 

This was a super fun experiment.  I haven’t eaten any yet but they all seemed to have baked up the way they should.  I frosted them with White frosting from Pillsbury and sprinkled some colorful daisies on top.  It was a lot of fun to experiment.  I will add how they tasted after we start eating some of them! 😀

 
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Posted by on March 13, 2011 in The Bakery!

 

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Chard and Beans

I did two new things tonight. One I found on my new iPad while searching around for recipes to use my abundance of greens I have gotten from the CSA. It is called chard and white bean stew. I followed the recipe pretty closely. I don’t like wine so I just used chicken stock instead of wine. I served it over rice in a bowl with garlic toast on the side. It came out amazing and the fresh vegetables in it were just amazing. I used up the last of the carrots I got in my box last week and the Swiss Chard I got in the box this week. I used some kidney beans as well as white beans because, well I didn’t have two cans of white beans in the house! Today was a fun day watching movies and making soup.

Chard and white bean stew Adapted from Smitten Kitchen!
1 pound Swiss chard, stems removed and cleaned
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 15 ounce can white beans, drained and rinsed
1 15 ounce can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
3 cups (or more to taste) vegetable broth
1 can tomato sauce
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 fresh thyme sprigs
1 bay leaf
1/2 tbsp dry basil
1 pinch of red pepper flakes

Directions:
Put a medium pot of salted water on to boil. Chop the swiss chard after cleaning it and cook for 1 minute in the salted boiling water. When a minute is up, dump the swiss chard into a colander and let it drain and cool while you make the rest of the stew.

Heat the olive oil in a dutch oven on medium heat. When the oil is warm, add the carrots, onion, celery and garlic to the pan. While this is cooking down, open the cans of beans and stock and tomatoes to get them ready to go into the stew. Rinse the beans under cool water. When the onion mixture is sweated down (about 15 minutes) add the chicken stock. I let it cook for a few minutes then added the beans, tomatoes, salt, pepper, thyme, bay leaf, basil, and red pepper flakes. Bring it to a boil and let it cook for 20-25 minutes (I put the rice in the rice cooker on quick cook at this point and just cooked the stew until the timer went off on the rice cooker.) After the time has passed, give the swiss chard a squeeze to get rid of the rest of the water, and add it to the stew. Cook for about 5 minutes more and serve over the cooked rice and top with some parmesan cheese. I made some garlic toast to go with it as well. I didn’t top it with Sherry vinegar as in the original recipe but the poached egg looks like it would be good. I am going to try that tomorrow.

Her photos came out much prettier than mine but I was working on getting awesome photos of the cupcakes and I was starving so I just got one quick photo of the stew.

I am going to write up the cupcakes as a separate post because it is going to be super long and involved.

 
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Posted by on March 13, 2011 in General Food, Meals!

 

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Chocolate Chip Cookies Revisited

UPDATE (4/10/11)
I have been meaning to go back and weigh out all the ingredients since I wrote it all out the first time. I measured it all with my dry measuring cups and weighed each ingredient after. This gave me basic weights to go by. Hopefully, my cookies will be more consistent this way. I have added the weights next to the volumetric measurements in the recipe. I used fractions because that is what my scale uses. I also poured some oatmeal into this batch and they seem to have come out just as good!

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I really wanted some chocolate chip cookies but the last time I used Alton Brown’s Chewy Recipe, the cookies ended up being too sweet, too salty, and too greasy. I thought about it for a while. I am always adding stuff to cookie recipes like, cranberries and oatmeal. I am constantly making up successful regular food recipes as well. Why couldn’t I change around the basic ingredients to suit my tastes? The overall texture of the cookies was what I wanted so I didn’t think I should change them too much. Just enough that they wouldn’t be too greasy and too sweet to eat.

Around 8pm, since Chuck wasn’t on tonight (>:( ) I decided to fill the void with cookies. I grabbed my trusty recipe and made some changes. I cut the amount of butter, brown sugar, and kosher salt. I liked the idea of biting into the cookie and getting a touch of salt but the way it was the last time I ate it, the cookies were too salty. Here is my revised recipe.

Ingredients

1.5 sticks unsalted butter
2 1/4 cups (11 1/4oz or 322g) bread flour
1/2 teaspoon (1/16oz or 3g)kosher salt
1 teaspoon (1/8oz or 6g) baking soda
1/4 cup (1 7/8oz or 56g)sugar
1 cup (7oz or 199g) brown sugar
1 egg
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups (12oz bag) mini semisweet chocolate chips

Directions

Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

I melted the butter in a medium saucepan over low heat until the butter was almost completely melted. Then I turned it off so it would be relatively cool when I mixed it with the sugar. I whisked the the flour, salt, and baking soda in a small bowl and set it aside.

Next, add the sugar and brown sugar and melted butter into my KitchenAid’s work bowl. I mixed them on a medium speed for a good 2-3 minutes, while I put the egg, yolk, milk, and vanilla into a small bowl. Once the sugar and butter were mixed, I put added the egg mixture. After the mixture came together, I slowly incorporated the flour mixture until everything was thoroughly combined but not over mixed. Finally, I added the chocolate chips and mixed on the stir setting. At this point, I transferred the dough to a small glass bowl (because my fridge is PACKED with greens from the CSA box I received on Saturday) and let it chill for an hour.

After the dough was completely chilled, I used two tablespoons and to scoop out the cookies, 12 to a pan lined with a SilPat. I baked them for 8 minutes, turned them, and baked for another 4-5 minutes. When I took them out, they were golden brown and delicious! 😀 😀

I lowered the temperature to 350F from the 375F in the original recipe because they were cooking around the edges way too fast. The butter was also re-melting and causing the cookies to spread a bit around the edges. This made for a raw cookie in the middle if I took them out of the oven when the edges were golden brown. By making the cookies smaller and lowering the temperature, I found that they cook way more evenly and keep their shape much better.

Cutting the butter, sugar, and salt in the recipe just slightly made for the same chewy awesome cookie Alton Brown was going for without them being so greasy or overly sweet/salty. I think from now on, I will be making them this way. This is the first time I have thought to change a baking recipe and I think they came out pretty amazing.

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2011 in The Bakery!

 

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