WIAW & Baking Updates

As I am sure some of you have noticed my Year of Baking posts haven’t been very frequent. I have definitely been baking, but with the craziness of summer it’s been a rush to get the baking done and get out of the house to whichever event we are going too, never mind taking pictures.

I am hoping with the start of fall (apple and pumpkin season!) I will be able to spend a little more time in the kitchen and share some recipes with you. My dad & his wife also got me a wonderful gift card to Williams-Sonoma so I was able to get some baking tools that I have been too cheap to buy myself, so hopefully I can expand on what I make.

I did however learn a lot from this experiment thus far, I have learned that I would rather make cookies and brownies from scratch, but that can usually alter how a recipe will turn out. I am looking at you slutty brownies! Long story short, my sister and I tried to make these but with homemade brownies and cookies, turns out those are much more dense than the pre-packaged kind. SO we will make these again, but we have a plan on how to make sure the entire recipe gets cooked instead of ending up with raw dough & brownies!

This past week I have been obsessed with having an egg rollup for lunch, sometimes I even have it for breakfast.

YUM!

YUM!

A tortilla, eggs (usually scrambled), avocado, tomato, and onion. It doesn’t sound like much but it is perfect on a summer day.

Grilled Chicken & Peppers and Carrot and Parsnip puree!

Grilled Chicken & Peppers and Carrot and Parsnip puree!

I have also been experimenting with my Vitamix. I have been looking for new ways to get some veggies in to my diet.

I made a mash-up of a carrot & potato and paleo parsnip puree. I cubed about a pound of carrots and parsnips and one onion and put them in a pot with two cups of water and two cups of low sodium chicken stock, the water boiled off faster than the I anticipated, so I added a cup of 2% milk. Warning: the milk will cause the liquid to boil up fast, so don’t wander to far.

Once the veggies were fork tender, I drained the liquid and put the veggies into the Vitamix and blended for about one minute. Yes it looks like baby food, but it is delicious. The parsnip flavor was a bit too sweet for Nick, but B and I took it down.

I have also learned how to bake Bacon. The secret is to put it in a cold oven!
IMG_6608

Do you have any great fall Vitamix recipes? What is one secret to easy cooking you’ve learned?

Link up with Jenn for more WIAW goodness!


Year of Baking: Quebrada Baking Co

At any family event I am always the person to jump to make the dessert, and at B’s first birthday party I made his smash cake and all the cupcakes, but it was overwhelming and I don’t have the skills to always do what I want to do.

I had contacted one person initially, and it just didn’t end up panning out. I resigned to the fact that I would be making a cake. My trainer ended up telling me about a bakery that was close to our old apartment (so glad I didn’t know about this place when I lived there).

Enter Quebrada Baking Co, I am closest to the Arlington location, but the Wellesley location is where they do the design work for ordered cakes.

I talked to the baker in the Wellesley shop via phone and then I ordered the cake at the Arlington location. Our birthday party theme for B was Toy Story, and all I wanted was for the cake to say Happy Birthday and then have a hanging 2, just like the movie.

Toy_Story_2

I also ordered cupcakes so that our guests could have a little variety.

I went and picked up the cake Saturday afternoon

IMG 6264

I wasn’t super impressed – I felt like I could do a do a better job…and why is the I the only lower case letter? Plus the 2 just looks weird, no?

Luckily, that’s where the bad ends, the cake was absolutely fantastic. I ordered a chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting, and it was one of the BEST cakes I have ever had. I never usually order chocolate but B loves it.

IMG 6266

Chocolate Cupcakes

IMG 6265

The destroyed cupcakes are my error and not the bakery’s! The cupcakes were a huge hit as well.

Yellow Cake Cupcakes.

Each box had 2 cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, buttercream frosting, whipped frosting, mocha frosting, coconut topping, and chocolate frosting.

Other than the decorating error, I loved everything about Quebrada, and I would definitely order a custom cake from them again (I would probably go to the Wellesley location to avoid any errors in the future).

Cake with Buzz Lightyear Candle

Cake with Buzz Lightyear Candle

We even had pastries from the bakery the next morning (they make mini’s of many of their pastries), including multiple types of croissants, cinnamon buns, scones, and muffins. All were delicious, and I am so glad I have to make the trek to get to Quebrada otherwise I would be there ALL the time!

The family!

The family!

Have you ever had a cake problem?

Year of Baking: Sweet Potato Bread

I know it’s been awhile since I posted a baking post. It’s not that I haven’t been baking, I have, but I have had a serious amount of failures, and I didn’t want to post multiple failures, I will eventually post them all in one post.

Nick and I went to CT for the holiday weekend, and my good friend Cait invited us to her family’s pool club for dinner on the 4th. The only request, I bring a salad and some sort of carby-goddness. Check and check.

IMG 6205

We had a little matchy thing going on!

For the salad, I made a real greek salad.

IMG 6195

Farm fresh tomatoes, cucumber, and red onion. Tossed with olive oil (straight from Greece) and a bit of salt, I usually add Feta, but I didn’t have any good stuff, so I used Mozz instead. Still very delicious.

IMG 6196

Cait’s mom made this amazing coleslaw, seriously, I need that recipe Mama C!

IMG 6198

I also had a grilled Salmon burger from Whole Foods and beans. Cait’s dad grilled Chicken and Turkey burgers for everyone as well! Check out her post for more info on our fun day!

But, my carbs is what inspired this post.

IMG 6192

Unfortunately, this is the only picture I have. We were too stuffed after dinner to eat the bread, so I gave it to Cait to take home. She ended up taking it to Kaitlin’s house with her and they left me twitter messages!

Screen Shot 2013-07-10 at 8.28.34 PM

Plus, many people left comments on Cait’s post asking for the recipe, so without further ado:

Ingredients
1.5 cups of all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup sugar
1 cup chopped walnuts (pecans would be a great substitute)
2 large eggs
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
4 tablespoons of milk
1 cup of mashed sweet potato

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 325 F
2. Grease the bottom of a loaf pan
3. Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, nutmeg and cinnamon in a mixing bowl
4. In your mixer combine eggs, applesauce, milk and mashed sweet potatoes
5. Add the dry ingredients and mix until the ingredients are all together, don’t over mix
6. Pour the batter into the pan
7. Bake for 90 minutes
8. Cool in the pan on a baking rack for 20 minutes
9. Remove from pan and cool for another 30 minutes
10. If not serving immediately, I wrap and put in the fridge, and take it out the morning of the event.

It will stay good in the refrigerator for 5 days.

Notes

I actually used a mix of mashed sweet potato and butternut squash, since I made this the night before we went to CT and I had some steamed squash that would’ve just gone in the garbage.

I also used almond milk, since that’s what I had on hand.

You could also add raisins or chocolate chips if you wanted to add some other flavors.

Let me know if you make this so I can add your links to the post!

Pin It! Party #1

Lindsay had this wonderful idea for a PIN IT PARTY, that alone sounds fun, where we write a post with five posts (of our own) that we’d love to see pinned on pinterest. Then link up on Lindsay’s blog and see some other posts!

Here are my 5

Flour’s Lemon Lust Bars

flourslemonlustbar

Hands down the best lemon bar I have ever had or made.

Bake it in a Cake’s  Ultimate Birthday Cupcake

bakeitinacakebirthdaycupcake

This cupcake was labor intensive but the outcome was awesome and I loved everyone’s reaction.

Joy the Baker’s Cream Cheese Pound Cake

jtbcreamcheesepoundcake

I am not a fan of traditional angel food cake or bundt cake and I love that this can replace those items for a summer strawberry short cake

Mocha Protein Smoothie

mochaproteinsmoothie

This smoothie is the perfect afternoon pick me up; cold, creamy and a little caffeine.

Gifts for runners under $100

 

giftslabeled

This was originally a Christmas post, but with lots of new runners starting in the spring and summer months, I thought this would be a helpful list!

Did you link up with the Pin It Party? What’s your favorite post lately?

 

Year of Baking: Joy the Baker’s Cream Cheese Poundcake

After fasting and Greek Easter and a birthday/mother’s day weekend, I feel like I am 100% back on track again!

I’ve been back to my post-workout Oats with Designer Whey protein powder!

IMG 5729
pre-mixing

I accompany that with some water and coffee!

For lunches I always have some leftover roasted veggies, or recently, sautéed spinach with a turkey burger, egg, avocado and roasted broccoli!

IMG 5804
I wolfed down the broccoli before I took the pic, whoops.

I’ve also had hard-boiled eggs at the ready and sliced fruit for snacking.

Before I got back to my clean eats, I made a poundcake for Greek Easter, from the Joy the Baker cookbook – Cream Cheese Poundcake!

jtbcreamcheesepoundcake

Ingredients
2 cups all-purpose flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1.5 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1.5 cups granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 large eggs

Instructions

1. Preheat oven at 325F, making sure a rack is in the center
2. Grease and flour a 9×5 inch loaf pan for later
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt and set aside
4. Beat cream cheese until soft and pliable
5. Add butter and sugar and beat until fluffy, approximately 3 minutes
6. Add the vanilla and stir until blended, then beat in the eggs one at a time, beating at medium for 1 minute each
7. With the mixer on low, slowly add in the flour mixture and beat until just incorporated
8. Stop your mixer at that point and fold together the batter with a spatula
9. Spoon into your prepared pan
10. Bake for 30 minutes. After that, rotate the cake, and if it’s browning too quickly, move to an upper rack (I did not have this problem)
11. Bake for another 30-35 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean
12. Let the cake cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then transfer onto a wire rack to cool completely.

It should last for up to 4 days at room temperature, well wrapped.

IMG 5667

Notes
I LOVED this recipe. I needed something easy and simple to pull together for Easter and this fit the bill.

While we didn’t eat a ton of it at Easter, Nick and I took it home, I popped it in tupperware and put it in the fridge, and it is even more delicious a little chilled, my favorite is a small slice topped with Dark Chocolate Dreams from PB&Co.

Nick also might have stuffed a piece in his mouth when he came home starving after a night out, might have.

I definitely plan on making this again, I think it would be a great base for summer strawberry shortcakes!

IMG 5703

Check out more recipes and daily eats at Jenn’s link up for WIAW!


Do you like pound cake? What’s your favorite summer dessert?

Year of Baking: Flour’s Snickerdoodle Cookie

floursnickerdoodle

I haven’t actually baked in a while, it was nice to get behind the mixer this week and whip up a few desserts for Greek Easter.

IMG 5669

When I saw the Snickerdoodle cookie recipe in the Flour cookbook I knew I had to try it. When I was younger all the families in our neighborhood would bake a plate full of treats for each of the other houses for Christmas. Our neighbor across the street (aka my second parents) always made snickerdoodles and to this day I can’t have one without thinking of that time.

Ingredients

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1.5 cups of granulated sugar, plus 1/2 cup for coating
2 eggs, room temperature
2.5 cups unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
2 teaspoons Cream of Tartar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup ground cinnamon for coating

Instructions

1. Using the paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugar on medium speed
2. Beat for 4-5 minutes, while occasionally scraping down the side of the bowl
3. When the mixture is fluffy, add the eggs, one at a time, beat the eggs for 2-3 minutes until fully combined
4. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt
5. Slowly blend the flour mixture into the butter mixture and then mix just until the flour is totally incorporated and the dough is evenly mixed
6. Scrape the dough into an airtight container and let it rest in the refrigerator overnight (or at least 3-4 hours) before baking
7. When ready to bake, place the rack in the center of the oven and heat to 350 degrees
8. In a small bowl mix together the remaining 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon
9. Drop the dough by rounded tablespoons into the cinnamon-sugar mixture and roll to coat
10. Place the coated cookies onto a baking sheet, spaced about 3 inches apart
11. Flatten each cookie slightly with the palm of your hand
12. Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until the cookies are golden brown on the edges and slightly soft in the middle
13. Cool on a baking sheet on a wire rack for 10 minutes and then transfer cookies to the rack to cool completely

IMG 5668

Notes

The recipe says that this makes 24 cookies, but the cookies were gigantic, I would actually make the cookies smaller and make at least 48 if not more. I n my mind snickerdoodles are 2-3 bite cookies.

I made the cinnamon & sugar coating and had a lot left over, I think I would make less next time.

The cookies were made on Thursday and were eaten on Saturday and Sunday, while they weren’t as soft as they should’ve been in the center (like they were the day I made them), they were a soft chewy and not hard so I will take that as a win.

I only let the dough rest about 3 hours, so next time I will definitely let it rest overnight.

Have you ever made or eaten snicker doodles?

What cookie has special memories for you?

Year of Baking: Visiting Bouchon Bakery

When Nick and I were in New York there were two bakeries I wanted to try, spoiler we only made it to one of them. After walking for a few hours and some sight-seeing we came to the Bouchon Bakery in Rockefeller Center.

IMG 5529

I’ve only made one recipe from the Bouchon cookbook for the year of baking. I’ll be honest, a ton of the recipes intimidate me, and a ton of them are very complicated. This visit, however, re-ignited my interest to try a recipe from there.

IMG 5527

I asked for the Mixed Greens salad and it did not disappoint. Goat cheese, chicken, dried cranberries and apricots, pear, almonds and a light vinaigrette. It was so good. I honestly wasn’t expecting it to be anything spectacular, but I am drooling thinking of the creamy texture of the goat cheese.

IMG 5528

Nick loves him some chicken salad, but hates any added “stuff”, when we were at the bakery (2 pm) it was mobbed and Nick on the fly picked this sandwich without asking what was in the chicken salad. It had one of Nick’s no-no’s, grapes, but he actually really enjoyed it. I think it was better because the grapes were chopped and a lot of chicken salads have them whole.

bouchoncase

Uh, how delicious do those desserts look?

IMG 5533

If you know me, it is no surprise that I got the chocolate tart. The crust was nice, thin, and crunchy. The chocolate was smooth and creamy.

IMG 5534

Nick has a thing for coffee cake. We ordered coffees and enjoyed our desserts outside…I will say though, that powdered sugar was blown’ everywhere.

I also got a vanilla macaron for a treat later. It ended up being my treat on Monday, after a very long few hours, it was nice to enjoy a delicious pastry.

Now that I have visited, I decided I definitely need to make the chocolate tart (and get a tart pan) and I really need to give macarons a try.

Have you ever been to Bouchon? Have you ever made a tart or macarons? Any words of wisdom>?

Year of Baking: Cadbury Creme Egg Cupcakes

If you missed yesterday’s post, I chatted about Zooma and gave a discount code for the Cape Cod 10K and Half-Marathon!

For this week’s year of baking I am continuing from my Easter desserts and sharing the Cadbury Creme Egg Cupcake recipe, many of you mentioned that you wanted the recipe so here you go! The recipe is from Bake It In a Cake, and I have to say, I am pretty sure I am going to make all the holiday cupcakes in this cookbook!

BIIACcremeeggcupcake

Ingredients

Cupcakes

3/4 cup (1.5 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/3 cups whole milk
18 miniature cadbury creme eggs

Frosting

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup finely shredded sweetened coconut
Green food coloring
Handful of jelly beans

Instructions

Cupcakes

1. Preheat oven to 350F and line 2 tins with 18 paper liners
2. Combine the butter and sugar for 90 seconds or until fluffy
3. Add eggs one at a time, mixing in each egg completely before adding the next
4. Scrape down the sides of the bowl
5. Add (while on med-low) the vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, and salt
5. Mix on med-high and mix for an additional 30 seconds until all ingredients are well combined
6. Add the flour, 1/2 cup at a time, alternating with the milk, 1/3 cup of at a time
7. Mixing until each addition is fully incorporated before adding the next
8. Scrape down the sides and mix on med-high until smooth and creamy
9. Spoon 2 Tablespoons of batter into each cup or until 3/4 full
10. Place a chocolate creme egg in each cup
11. Lightly spread the batter over the egg, but don’t push it to the bottom
12. bake for about 25 minutes, until the edges and tops are golden brown
13. Allow the cupcakes to cool in their tins for 10 minutes
14. Move to a rack and cool completely

IMG 3365

Frosting

15. Whip the butter for about 30 seconds
16. Add powdered sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, whipping on med-high until fluffy
17. Add the vanilla until fully combined
18. If the frosting is too thick add milk
19. Put the coconut in a bowl and use a fork to mix in a few drops of green food coloring
20. Pipe or spread fronton onto cooled cupcakes
21. Roll the edges in the dried coconut
22. Place a few jelly beans in the center

Notes

IMG 3431

As you can see my eggs sank too far into the cupcake and got stuck on the bottom of the wrapper and that was pretty disappointing for me.

The frosting was too thin, again, like the Birthday cupcake, but I looked up a buttercream recipe and they were similar but had flour. I added 1/2 a cup of flour and it was thicker, but not my preferred consistency. Next time I will just use a buttercream recipe.

The vanilla cake was nice and flavorful and the cupcakes came out well, I wouldn’t cover the cadbury eggs if I made these again I would let them sink on their own and hope they don’t touch the bottom.

I was too exhausted after the lengthy lemon bar recipe, so I just made the frosting, no coconut or jelly bean topping, maybe when B is older?

I am not sure I would make these again, they were fast and easy (ha!), but there are a million other recipes floating around Pinterest that I would like to try instead.

Have you ever made a baked good with cadbury creme eggs? Verdict?

Year of Baking: Flour’s Lemon Lust Bars

Maybe I should just make this a permanent move huh? Again, this weeks Year of Baking is being moved since I have an Easter post up for tomorrow’s WIAW. I was also featured on Katie’s blog on Friday, if you would like to check it out!

flourslemonlustbar

My sister’s boyfriend has a nut (all nuts) allergy, so I wanted to make sure he could eat at least one of the desserts I was going to make. I am a chocolate lover through and through, but there are two desserts that I love that have ZERO chocolate, the first is lemon bars, turns out he also loves lemon bars, score. Perfect shortbread and a tart layer of lemon curd, it really is one of my favorite desserts, but every time I have tried to make one from scratch they have ended up as a sloppy mess. But, Flour hasn’t let me down yet, so I decided to give them one last try.

Ingredients

Shortbread

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
6 Tablespoons granulated sugar
2 Tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Super Lemon Curd

2 cups + 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice (14-16 lemons)
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
8 eggs
4 egg yolks
2 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

IMG 3426

Instructions

Shortbread
1. Cream together the butter, granulated sugar, and confectioners’ sugar on medium speed for about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy (will take 10 minutes if using a hand mixer or spoon)

2. Stop the mixer a few times to scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula

3. Beat in the egg yolk and vanilla on medium speed for 2-3 minutes, or until thoroughly combined

4. Scrape the bowl and paddle again with a rubber spatula to make sure the egg yolk is thoroughly incorporated

5. In a medium bowl, sift together the all-purpose flour, cake flour, baking powder, and salt

6. On low speed (or with a wooden spoon) slowly add the flour mixture to the butter-sugar mixture and then mix for about 15 seconds, or until the flour mixture is totally incorporated and the dough is evenly mixed

7. Scrape the dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap, and wrap the dough in the plastic wrap pressing down to form a disk 6-7 inches in diameter and 1 inch thick

8. Refrigerate the dough for about 30 minutes, or until it has firmed up but is somewhat pliable

Super Lemon Curd

9. In a medium nonreactive saucepan, combine the lemon juice, butter, and cream. Place over medium-high heat and heat to just below a boil

10. While that is cooking, in a medium heatproof bowl, whisk together the eggs and egg yolks until blended

11. SLowly which in the granulated sugar until combined

12. Remove the lemon mixture from the heat and gradually whisk a little of it into the sugar-egg mixture. Continue whisking the hot liquid into the eggs, until all of it has been incorporated

13. Once the lemon mixture has been incorporated, return the contents of the bowl to the saucepan, and return the saucepan to medium heat

14. Cook stirring continuously with a wooden spoon and making sure to scrape the bottom of the pan frequently to keep the eggs from scrambling, stir for 5-8 minutes or until the mixture thickens and coats the spoon thickly (To test, draw your finger along the back of the spoon; the curd should hold the trail for a second or two before it fills)

15. Remove the lemon curd from the heat and strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium bowl or pitcher

16. Whisk in the salt and vanilla

The Bars

17. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 350 F

18. Lightly flour the dough disk and two large sheets of parchment paper. Place the dough between the sheets of parchment, and roll it into a rectangle 9×11 inches and about 1/4 inch thick

19. Carefully peel off the top sheet of parchment, transfer the bottom sheet of parchment with the dough to a 9×11 inch baking pan with at least 2 inch high sides.

20. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the shortbread is light brown, remove from the oven but leave it on, pour the lemon curd on top, and smooth the filling evenly over the shortbread with a rubber spatula

21. Bake for another 15 – 20 minutes or until the curd has set and jiggles like firm jello

22. Let cool to room temperature in the pan, on a wire rack, then refrigerate for at least 4 hours or up to overnight to allow the curd to set

23. Gently tug the parchment on all sides to loosen the shortbread from the pan, then slide it out onto a cutting board

24. Cut into 9 bars, they can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

IMG 3427

Notes

I didn’t have any parchment paper, I just floured the dough and put it in the pan, it was a bit of a pain but worked in a pinch.

For the lemon juice, I did half lemon squeeze and half fresh squeezed from Whole Foods. I needed the rest of the lemons for Easter dinner. Again, it wasn’t an issue an I don’t think it affected the flavor as it was not from concentrate.

I ended up cooking the shortbread for less than 20 minutes but the bars for more than 20, again it just depends on your oven.

These lemon bars were huge. It easily could make 16-18 portions. They were also a huge hit, we only had one left over the next day. They were very tart (the way I like lemon bars) but just as a warning. The shortbread was nice and soft and the lemon curd was the perfect consistency.

I will note that both my mother-in-law and sister-in-law helped, I think this recipe is definitely one that needs two people to work on it.

Do you like lemon bars? Have you ever had one?

Year of Baking: Bake It In A Cake’s Halloween Brownies with Reese’s Pieces.

As I am sure you have noticed, I moved the Year of Baking to Tuesday. I have a big post planned for tomorrow that follows more the WIAW ideas, and both of these together would be TOO much.

This week I made Bake It In A Cake’s Halloween Brownies with Reese’s Pieces.

BIIAChalloweenbrownies

I had a bag of Reese’s Pieces kicking around and I didn’t want to chow down on them so I looked up to see if any my cookbooks had a recipe where I could use them. Originally, I was just going to replace chocolate chips in a recipe, but I ended up finding this recipe that had reese’s pieces as part of the ingredient list. The brownies also had a peanut butter icing, but honestly I just wasn’t in the mood so I didn’t make it.

IMG_3278

Ingredients

Brownies
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, broken or chopped
1.5 sticks unsalted butter
2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup Reese’s Pieces

Frosting
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup smooth or crunchy peanut butter
2 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons whole milk, if needed

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 2 mini muffing tins with paper liners
2. Place the chocolate and butter in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 90 seconds, stopping halfway through to scrape the sides and mix
3. Do not heat for longer than 90 seconds or the chocolate can burn
4. Using a wooden spin mix in the sugar, it will be thick & grainy, the sugar should be mixed in evenly
5. Stir in the eggs one at a time until the mixture is smooth
6. Add the salt and vanilla and stir for another 20 seconds
7. Mix in the flour until just combined
8. Stir in Reese’s Pieces
9. Using a 1-inch cookie scoop, spoon the brownie batter into the tins so the cups are about three-quarters full
10. Bake for 20 minutes or until the brownies have set (check with toothpick)
11. Cool the brownies for 10 minutes in the pan before transferring to a wire rack

Frosting
1. Whip the butter and peanut butter together for 30 seconds
2. Add the powdered sugar, 1/2 a cup at a time, until fluffy
3. If the frosting is too thick add the milk until the frosting is fluffy
4. Pipe or spread on cupcake and decorate with leftover Reese’s Pieces.

IMG_3280

Notes

I halved the recipe, because I certainly don’t need 36 mini brownie bites, and I decided to use a mini pan (for 12) and fill as many regular size cupcake tins.

Next time I would butter the tin instead of using paper because the brownies stuff to the liners and half the brownie didn’t come out of the liner.

I definitely prefer the Valentine’s Day brownie bite to this one. It wasn’t chewy on the outside, but these ones didn’t have a buttery taste, so I know to cut down the butter for the next time. I love peanut butter, but I would love a peanut butter swirl in the brownie instead of the Reese’s Pieces.

IMG_3281

Do you bake with candies? What’s your favorite recipe?