photo by studiodrome
While I’ve mastered many vegan goodies, there are a lot of candies that I miss. It wasn’t until I made these peanut butter cups and a batch of peppermint patties did I remember what I’d been missing. It had been over three years since I had either and man were they delicious. I would say for sure that the peanut butter cups were even better than the non-vegan kind. With dark chocolate and rich flavored peanut butter that melted in your mouth. Absolutely amazing. They were extremely easy and fun to make as well. I particularly enjoyed painting the insides of the mini-cupcake cups with chocolate. I had to wait patiently for the picture, as it was taken on film but turned out as good as the treats themselves. Can’t wait to make more.
So if you hadn’t guessed already. My (not-so) little surprise is a stand mixer! I’m ecstatic! I finally decided it was time to just fork over the money for it and get the one I really wanted. It’s a great addition to the kitchen and I know it will be great to make larger batches of things which I hope will be in my future.
My first baking experiment was my own birthday cake. A lot of people thought it was against the rules for me to make my own cake but I couldn’t think of anywhere that I could get a better cake. We broke in the mixer with mashed potatoes but this was the first dessert to get made.
I also treated myself to some new cake pans and a cake stand. It’s been quite awhile since I’ve made a cake, let alone a double layer one, so it was definitely a learning experience. With cupcakes, if one turns out funny there are still 11 good ones. With a cake you just have one chance. Mainly I learned the correct proportions of frosting and such that I’ll need for the next cake I make.
The plan was a double layer vanilla cake with vanilla frosting in the middle and a chocolate ganache icing. I used to have a really good recipe for vanilla cake but apparently lost it so had to do a bit of improvising. Ultimately everything turned out really well but did cause me a bit of distress in the making.
I made quite a chocolate mess covering it but I new it would taste great even if it wasn’t the prettiest cake ever. Still need a couple more decorating tools, but mainly practice. It really did turn out delicious though. Shawn says it tasted like a giant gourmet hostess cake. Yum!
In the end it was almost all gobbled up by the end of the night with only one lonely piece left. I had a great birthday, absolutely the best yet!
I don’t know why but I’ve been craving brownies like crazy lately. I thought I’d try something a little different and make these brownies using my mini cupcake tray. The concept was great, but didn’t turn out exactly as planned. Things went wrong at first when I found that my applesauce had gone bad. I also tried using ground flaxseed as egg replacer for the first time which worked amazingly well. I mixed all the wet ingredients in the food processor which made the whole thing fairly easy.
In the end, the recipe came out light and moist on the bottom and crunchy on top. The rose quite a bit more than I expected so they took a bit of trial and error to get them out of the pan intact. They were so cute though, like little brownie mushrooms, which made them even more fun to eat. I wish they were a bit more chocolatey though. I’ll just have to make some more!
I also made some messy red vevlet cupcakes, which helped curb my chocolate craving. They’re all gone already! This batch proved to me how important oven temperature is. My oven is just slightly cooler than the dial, and now that I’ve taken that into account my cupcakes are coming out better than ever. Yum!