Doughnut Muffins

Doughnut Muffins

This spring may be the best I can remember. Sure, it’s not super warm out and we’ve had quite a bit of rain as of late (but April showers bring May flowers, you know), but we haven’t had measurable snow since the very beginning of March.

The temperatures are seasonably warm, the birds are singing all the time, the daffodils and tulips are just starting to bloom, and having the windows open keeps it just a little too chilly in the house in the best possible way. Eating dinner when it’s still light outside is such a treat too. It changes my whole outlook on life.

Doughnut Muffins

I always thought summer was my favorite season, but I’m realizing when spring actually decides to grace us with its presence it may best summer by just a little. Don’t get me wrong, I love those warm, even hot days, with the sun beating down, the flowers in full bloom, their scent wafting through the air with the breeze.

But spring signals so much hope. The world comes alive with color and plants and animals. After the long, desolate winter, spring is such a delightful time. It makes me feel alive right along with the rest of nature.

Perhaps I just feel that way about this spring since there’s no longer any snow on the ground and my winter coat has been safely stowed away. Whether this spring is an anomaly (though it shouldn’t be) or a sign of wonderful things to come, I am making sure to enjoy it as much as possible.

Doughnut Muffins

I don’t know why, but these Doughnut Muffins remind me of spring. They don’t have any especially springy ingredients, but they make me feel bright and springy on the inside!

When these are baking, they seriously smell like the best doughnuts EVER! It’s crazy because they are clearly not doughnuts, but if you close your eyes and inhale, you’ll think you’re in the middle of a doughnut shop.

They don’t quite taste like doughnuts, but that’s okay because they are still amazing. These beautiful, domed muffins have a firm exterior with a fluffy, moist interior, and that glaze with the little vanilla bean specks. Let me just say make extra.

Doughnut Muffins

Doughnut Muffins

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 12 muffins

Ingredients

Muffins

3 cups all-purpose flour

2 ½ teaspoons baking powder

¼ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon kosher salt

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

10 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk (I used almond, use what you love)

Glaze

1 ½ cups confectioners’ sugar

2-3 tablespoons milk (I used almond, use what you love)

1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste

Instructions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a muffin tin with paper liners.

In a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. I did this by hand, but you could use a hand or stand mixer. Beat in the eggs one at a time, followed by the vanilla bean paste.

Alternately add the flour and milk, beginning and ending with the flour. You should do three additions of flour and two of milk. Once the flour and milk are fully incorporated, scoop the batter into the prepared pan, filling the tins almost all the way full. Bake 15-20 minutes, until golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs. Cool while you prepare the glaze.

For the glaze, whisk sugar, milk, and vanilla together in a medium bowl. Add more sugar or milk as necessary until a thick, yet pourable glaze is formed.

Dip each muffin into the glaze and allow the excess to drip off before placing on a rack or serving platter. Serve warm or at room temperature. Muffins may be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 5 days or frozen, wrapped in parchment and foil, and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw in the microwave about 1 minute.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Cooking Classy

http://piesandplots.net/doughnut-muffins/

Carob Brooklyn Blackout Cake

Carob Brooklyn Blackout Cake

This is what I made for Easter. Along with a slow braised leg of lamb.

You should be jealous. Very jealous.

Yes, I know this cake is make with carob. And everyone thinks carob is weird and gross.

Carob Brooklyn Blackout Cake

Rest assured this cake is far from weird or gross. In fact, if you gave this cake to even the most verdant chocoholic, they’d never know the difference. EVER!

Even Mom was leery of the rich, almost black pudding, the chocolatey looking cake, and the fluffy frosting that left us in a cloud of carob. But once she tasted them, she was converted instantly.

Be careful not to overbake the cake. Mine was the tiniest bit dry, but once the pudding soaked into it, any dryness vanished into a distant memory. My favorite part of the cake was the bites where the cake and pudding became one.

Carob Brooklyn Blackout Cake

Traditionally the pudding is used as filling and frosting, but I stuck with Half Baked Harvest’s idea to add buttercream to the outside. Best decision EVER! It’s an inspired and totally necessary addition.

I have never had a cake slice as beautifully as this one. It rivals any bakery or restaurant slice in look and certainly taste. I may not have ever had a cake taste this good either.

Carob Brooklyn Blackout Cake

The fluffy cake. The rich pudding soaking into the cake. The sweet frosting. My oh my, this is pretty much the perfect cake.

I can’t stop thinking about it. I’m just going to have to make it again ASAP. You should make it too!

Carob Brooklyn Blackout Cake

Carob Brooklyn Blackout Cake

Prep Time: 2 hours

Cook Time: 50 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 50 minutes

Yield: 10-12 servings

Ingredients

Cake

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

¼ cup canola oil

1 ½ cups granulated sugar

3 large eggs

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

¾ cup carob powder

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon kosher salt

2 cups all-purpose flour

¼ cup cornstarch

1 cup milk (I used almond, use what you love!)

Pudding

3 cups water, divided

2 ½ cups granulated sugar

1 tablespoon honey

1 cup carob powder

Scant 2/3 cup cornstarch

5 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cubed

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Frosting

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

2 cups confectioners’ sugar

¼ cup carob powder

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1-2 tablespoons milk, if necessary

Instructions

Make the cake. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter 2 8 or 9 inch cake pans. Line the bottom with parchment and butter the parchment.

Cream the butter, oil, and sugar until light and fluffy. I did this by hand, but a hand or stand mixer will work as well. Add the eggs one at a time, making sure each is mixed in before adding another.

Beat in the vanilla, carob, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the flour and milk alternately, beginning and ending with the flour.

Divided batter between the two pans and bake for about 25 minutes, until set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with only a few moist crumbs. Cool in pans about 15 minutes, before carefully inverting onto plates to cool completely.

Make the pudding. In a large saucepan, bring 2 ½ cups water, sugar, honey, and carob to a boil, whisking occasionally. Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk together cornstarch and remaining ½ cup of water. Once the sugar mixture comes to a boil, whisk in the cornstarch mixture.

Bring to a boil and cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens substantially, 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter one piece at a time, followed by the vanilla. Pour into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to chill until completely cool.

Make the frosting when ready to assemble the cake. Beat butter and sugar using a hand or stand mixer until light and fluffy. Add carob and vanilla and beat until fluffy and combined. My frosting was creamy and spreadable at this point, but if yours is not, add milk 1 tablespoon, at a time until it is.

Assemble the cake. Slice once of the cakes in half horizontally. Place on a cake stand. Cover with a generous amount of pudding. Place the other half of the cake on top. Cover that with a generous amount of pudding. Slice the other cake in half horizontally. Place the nicer of the two halves on top. Cover the cake with the frosting. I poured some additional pudding on top too.

Take the final, unused layer of cake and crumble it up with your hands. Push the crumbs into the frosting on the top and sides of the cake. Refrigerate for at least two hours before serving. Cake may be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Half Baked Harvest Additional chilling time is necessary

http://piesandplots.net/carob-brooklyn-blackout-cake/

Blueberry Coconut Macaroons #SundaySupper

Blueberry Coconut Macaroons - A gluten free treat for spring!

So it’s finally spring. And it actually feels pretty spring like here. The sun has been shining. We’ve had lots of temperatures in the fifties. One meteorologist event guaranteed we wouldn’t have any more measureable snow. Life is pretty good!

We have lots of spring in the house too. In the form of ladybugs. Lots of ladybugs.

Blueberry Coconut Macaroons

We have always had some ladybugs in the house over the winter. That’s right. Somehow ladybugs make it through these apocalyptic feeling winters and show up, unannounced in our house.

But this year, it’s been different. There have been lady bugs EVERYWHERE. We have to watch where we step so we don’t crush them. They crawl on the floors, walls, windows. They relish the sun and hide in the shade.

Blueberry Coconut Macaroons

Since the weather has been nicer, we’ve been putting them outside, but it seems like they come right back in.

There are far worse problems to have. Ladybugs are, after all, supposed to be good luck, and we can use all the luck we can get.

Blueberry Coconut Macaroons

You all are pretty lucky that I’m sharing these delightful Blueberry Coconut Macaroons with you. Plain old coconut macaroons are a hit with me, but adding blueberries, one of my favorite fruits, makes them totally irresistible.

These are easy to make, elegant, and feed a crowd. Plus, they are gluten free! Welcome in spring with these fun macaroons and some lucky ladybugs!

Blueberry Coconut Macaroons

Blueberry Coconut Macaroons #SundaySupper

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 24 macaroons

Ingredients

1 12 ounce bag shredded unsweetened coconut

1 cup granulated sugar

3 large egg whites

1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste

1 ½ cups fresh blueberries

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment.

In a large bowl, stir together coconut and sugar. Mix in the egg whites and vanilla bean paste.

Place the blueberries in a small bowl. Gently crush some of them, while leaving others whole. Mix the blueberries into the coconut mixture.

Place 1 ½ to 2 inch mounds of the mixture onto the prepared pan, pressing each together as much as possible. You do not have to space the cookies far apart, as they will not spread.

Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown on top and mostly set. Allow to cool completely on pan before serving or storing. Cookies may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days, or frozen, wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature for about an hour.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Une Gamine Dans La Cuisine

http://piesandplots.net/blueberry-coconut-macaroons-sundaysupper/

Don’t forget to check out the other Sunday Supper dishes!

Beverages

Appetizers

Sides

Entreés

Desserts

 

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

 

Gooey Cinnamon Cake Bars

Gooey Cinnamon Cake Bars

My TiVo gave up on me last week.

It was Thursday night and suddenly it worked slower than a snail. I couldn’t even watch HD programs. The horror, I know! But my TiVo was seven years old and outlasted three TVs, so buying a new one wasn’t the worst thing ever.

And it went in easily. Only three cords. But it was just teasing me. Because once the CableCard went in things got … interesting.

Gooey Cinnamon Cake Bars

Comcast tried to activate it … at nearly midnight. But it didn’t work after several phone calls, some lasting thirty or more minutes. With the Oscars on Sunday and me having to watch TV without a DVR (how did I manage?!?), I was in meltdown mode.

The next day, after unplugging several times, reinstalling the CableCard, and talking to seriously the most helpful person at Comcast or Xfinity or whatever they want to be known as today, it worked. The premium channels are still missing, but other than that it’s all good.

Gooey Cinnamon Cake Bars

And let me say I am so in love with my new TiVo Roamio. Who needs match.com when I can have TiVo???

I’m also pretty in love with these Gooey Cinnamon Cake Bars. They are best the next day after they are extra moist and well … gooey. I really like the top in all of its gooey glory and the cinnamon sugar topping.

I actually ran out of granulated sugar and made the whole recipe with brown sugar instead. Best decision ever! It adds extra flavor and moisture and makes these totally irresistible. I think I’ll grab one and catch up on some TV watching!

Gooey Cinnamon Cake Bars

Gooey Cinnamon Cake Bars

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Yield: 24 bars

Ingredients

Base

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

¾ cup packed light brown sugar

1 large egg

¼ cup milk (I used almond, use what you love)

Gooey Layer

¼ cup light corn syrup

¼ cup milk (I used almond, use what you love)

1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

1 ½ sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup packed light brown sugar

1 large egg

1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

Topping

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

3 tablespoons light brown sugar

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9 by 13 inch pan. Line it with parchment and butter the parchment.

Make the base. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. I did this by hand but a hand or stand mixer will work. Beat in the egg and milk. Add flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. Stir until combined. Spread into an even layer in the prepared pan.

Make the gooey layer. In a small bowl, whisk together the corn syrup, milk, and vanilla. In a medium bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. I did this by hand, but a hand or stand mixer will work. Beat in the egg. Mix in ½ cup flour, followed by half of the corn syrup mixture. Mix in another ½ cup of flour, the rest of the corn syrup mixture, and then finish with the final ¼ cup of flour. Place dollops of this gooey mixture on top of the base and spread into an even layer.

In a small bowl, mix together the cinnamon and sugar for the topping. Sprinkle over the cake.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until the edges are set but the center is still soft and gooey. Allow to cool completely in the pan before cutting into bars. Bars may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days or frozen, wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature for about an hour or in the microwave for 30 seconds.

Notes

Recipe adapted from The Moveable Feasts from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

http://piesandplots.net/gooey-cinnamon-cake-bars/

Brownie Pie + Blogiversary

Brownie Pie

Guess what? It’s my third blogiversary!

I really cannot believe I’ve been doing this for three years. It has flown by.

Brownie Pie

I’ve made a lot of really awesome treats, “met” a lot of amazing other bloggers, and learned a hell of a lot about photography. Although I’m positive I have a lot more to learn.

I’ve also learned blogging isn’t my one true passion in life. I like it, but writing is where my heart is. I feel like I am making good progress there too, so that fills me with hope.

Brownie Pie

To make my blog more representative of me, I am going to try to incorporate more fashion posts. While I do like to bake, it’s not something I do all the time. However, fashion is a huge part of who I am, and I would like to share more of that with you.

Don’t worry the recipes will continue, just with more of a balance. Because one other thing I’ve learned is that blogging shouldn’t feel like a job … especially if it doesn’t pay like one.

Brownie Pie

In the tradition of my blogiversary, I have made a fun pie for you today. A Brownie Pie. I didn’t want to make a giant pie and all of that crust, so I whipped up this easy to make pie.

It is fudgy and the perfect quick and easy dessert to make when a craving strikes without notice. I made it with carob powder, but feel free to use your favorite cocoa powder. It may look a little unassuming, but it is jump up and down, have a dance party in the middle of the kitchen good. Seriously, one bite, hot out of the oven, and I was in love with this gooey, molten goodness. This is definitely blogiversary worthy.

Brownie Pie

I say forget the slices, just grab a fork, maybe a scoop of ice cream, and dig in. It is a celebration after all.

Brownie Pie

Brownie Pie + Blogiversary

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients

1 ½ cups granulated sugar

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

3 large eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

½ cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup carob powder

½ cup carob chips

Instructions

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter an 8 or 9 inch round pie plate.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. I did this by hand, but a hand or stand mixer will work as well. Beat in the eggs one at a time, as well as the vanilla.

Stir in the flour and carob powder until just combined. Stir in the carob chips until distributed.

Pour batter into the prepared pan and smooth into an even layer. Bake 35-40 minutes until the top is set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs. Serve warm or room temperature. Pie may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, or frozen, wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature for about an hour or in the microwave for 30 seconds.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Love and Olive Oil

http://piesandplots.net/brownie-pie-blogiversary/

Not Quite M&M Cookies

Not Quite M&M Cookies

I made tacos last Friday for dinner, complete with homemade corn tortillas and taco seasoning. If you haven’t checked out that recipe yet DO IT! It’s so good, and you can even broil the tortillas until brown on both sides to make them even easier.

But I digress. I was feeling great after dinner. And then it hit. Scratchy throat. Sniffles. Oh no!

Someone in the house who shall remain nameless . . . ahem Dad ahem . . . probably wasn’t careful enough when he was ill and contaminated me.

Not Quite M&M Cookies

I know it’s probably not that bad. I do have a reputation for being a drama queen, but if you know me, you know getting sick is my worst fear in life. Literally. No joking. And since it’s almost a week later and I’m still fighting my cold, I’m pretty stressed and upset. And I may or may not be giving Dad the silent treatment.

I mean he even refused to eat his garlic the other night. In case you didn’t know, garlic is antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial. Though it’s not working fast enough.

Not Quite M&M Cookies

Amid all the garlic, apple cider vinegar, soup, and lean proteins I’ve been eating, I needed a cookie. A huge, soft, sugary cookie. I’ve had my eyes on Pinch of Yum’s Big Soft M&M Cookies for awhile and felt it was the perfect time to whip them up.

Clearly I couldn’t make them with M&Ms, so I swapped in Reese’s Pieces. You could go with either, but the melty Reese’s Pieces were insanely tasty in them. Oh, and you might notice some are different colors and bigger than you might expect – those are Reese’s Pieces Eggs that I stockpile every Easter. They are even better than the original Pieces. Like way better.

Not Quite M&M Cookies

These cookies are so soft and chewy. The flavor of the base is mildly vanilla which pairs so well with those peanut buttery Pieces. Don’t wait to make these cookies!

Not Quite M&M Cookies

Not Quite M&M Cookies

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 18 minutes

Total Time: 28 minutes

Yield: 13-15 cookies

Ingredients

1 cup packed light brown sugar

½ cup granulated sugar

1 cup vegetable shortening

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1 ½ cups Reese’s Pieces

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment.

In a large bowl, cream sugars and shortening until light and fluffy. I did this by hand but a hand or stand mixer would work too. Mix in the eggs and vanilla.

Add the flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix until the dough is combined. Stir in the Reese’s Pieces.

Using a regular sized ice cream scoop, scoop batter onto the prepared pan. Bake cookies for 15-18 minutes until light golden brown and flattened slightly. Serve warm or allow to cool on the trays. Cookies may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days, or frozen, wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature about an hour or in the microwave 30 seconds.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Pinch of Yum

http://piesandplots.net/not-quite-mm-cookies/

Flourless Microwave Peanut Butter Cake

Flourless Peanut Butter Mug Cake - Ready in less than 5 minutes!

Sometimes a dessert craving strikes and it can’t be stopped unless a sweet treat is consumed immediately. I mean, it happens to all of us, right? I’m not alone in this sweet tooth induced rage, am I?

I didn’t think so.

Flourless Microwave Peanut Butter Cake

When that craving strikes, you could rely on store bought goodies. But, come on, they aren’t that great and might not even satisfy that dessert desire.

You could always whip up a layer cake or pie or cookies, but who has time for that when you want dessert NOW?

Flourless Microwave Peanut Butter Cake

There are also treat stashed in the freezer, if you are anything like me. My freezer is always working full time. However, every once in awhile the things in there don’t sound good.

So we need a quick and easy dessert that can be made from the ingredients in the pantry. Might be nice if it was gluten free too. That’s a pretty tough checklist, but this dessert totally meets all the criteria.

Flourless Microwave Peanut Butter Cake

This Flourless Microwave Peanut Butter Cake takes just a couple minutes to make, less than one minute to cook, is gluten free, and totally made from pantry staples. You have to eat it hot out of the microwave (you’ll make the sacrifice, though it will be tough), so that you get a soft, moist, tender, slightly gooey cake that satisfies all your dessert cravings and more.

It is the perfect thing to make tonight while you’re watching the Super Bowl. You won’t miss a moment of the game, no matter who you’re cheering for. As for me, I say go Katy Perry!!!

Flourless Microwave Peanut Butter Cake

Flourless Microwave Peanut Butter Cake

Prep Time: 2 minutes

Cook Time: 1 minute

Total Time: 3 minutes

Yield: 2 cakes

Ingredients

¼ cup granulated sugar

½ teaspoon baking powder

2 large eggs

¼ cup creamy peanut butter

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Instructions

Lightly oil two large coffee mugs.

In a medium bowl, stir together sugar, baking powder, eggs, peanut butter, and vanilla until well combined. Divide equally among the mugs.

Microwave 1 mug at a time. Check the cakes after 30 seconds. Ideally the cake should still be a little gooey. If it is not done microwave it an additional 30 seconds. Do not exceed 1 minute total. Serve immediately.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Peanut Butter and Company

http://piesandplots.net/flourless-microwave-peanut-butter-cake/

Cinnamon Roll Popcorn

Cinnamon Roll Popcorn

It’s official. I am now 25. Yesterday was my birthday. Another year has come and gone so quickly. I often cannot believe I am 25; in fact sometimes I forget. On some occasions I feel older, others younger. Age doesn’t really mean much these days. It’s all about how you feel.

I celebrated more than I usually do. Typically I keep birthdays low key, but I’ve realized time is fleeting and life is short, so I should have fun while I can. So I went to see Kathy Griffin with my friends Katie and Kaitlyn at the Soundboard at Motor City Casino.

My friends and me

Kaitlyn, Me, and Katie

I’m a huge Kathy Griffin fan and have been for years. I never missed an episode of My Life on the D-List and saw her perform a few years back with Dad. He must be more of a fan than I realized as he offered to go with me again ;) When she was coming to town the night before my birthday, I felt like it was fate, and I had to go.

It was great to get all dressed up and go out and party with my friends in our front row seats. Kathy was hilarious! I haven’t laughed that hard in a long time, and it was great to let go of all my stress and just have a good time. I can always count on Kathy for that. By the way have you seen her on Fashion Police yet? So funny, though no one can ever really replace Joan Rivers.

Cinnamon Roll Popcorn

There was definitely an abundance of over served people at the show, if you know what I mean. This included one lady who fell onto the floor and had to be escorted out of the theatre by about five security people.

Clearly it was my most exciting birthday for many reasons. Then on my actual birthday, I chilled and watched movies, took a day off baking and blogging and writing, and got the best birthday present ever: an Alexander McQueen clutch. It’s insanely gorgeous – I’ve always wanted one.

Cinnamon Roll Popcorn

So it was my best birthday ever . . . maybe that means it will be my best year ever. Fingers crossed!

You’ll want to celebrate all occasions with this Cinnamon Roll Popcorn. It is super easy to make since the caramel is made in the microwave. The house smells amazing while it’s cooking – just like cinnamon rolls are baking. And then there’s the taste. It is super crunchy with tons of cinnamon flavor. I love the addition of pecans too since they get so toasty in the oven. This gluten free snack is definitely a birthday worthy treat!

Cinnamon Roll Popcorn

Cinnamon Roll Popcorn

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: Varies

Ingredients

8-10 cups popcorn (from about ½ cup of kernels)

1 cup pecans

½ cup packed light brown sugar

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1 stick butter

¼ cup dark corn syrup

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

½ teaspoon baking soda

Instructions

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment.

Spread the popcorn onto the baking sheet in a relatively even, single layer. Sprinkle with pecans.

In a large, microwave-safe bowl, stir together brown sugar and cinnamon. Add butter and corn syrup and microwave for 30 seconds. Stir to combine. Microwave an additional 2 minutes. Stir the mixture well, then microwave for an additional 1 minute 30 seconds. Be careful as the mixture will be very hot and bubbly.

Stir in the vanilla and baking soda. Pour as evenly as possible over the popcorn on the tray. Stir well to coat the popcorn.

Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes, stirring every ten. Allow to cool completely on tray and break into pieces. May be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Remodelaholic

http://piesandplots.net/cinnamon-roll-popcorn/

Carob Bumpy Cake #Sunday Supper

Carob Bumpy Cake - Moist cake with marshmallow fluff and glaze

So, I am curious. Have you watched The Interview? I heard about the movie long before the recent controversy began, and truthfully, I knew right away it wasn’t my kind of movie. I watch at least two movies a week, but I had a feeling this wouldn’t be one of them. I like a comedy as much as anyone else. We all need a good laugh sometimes. But there’s a line between comedy and stupid and I had a feeling The Interview would cross the line.

However, once all the controversy began and Sony pulled the film from theatres, I knew I’d watch it. I wouldn’t go to theatres to see it, but I haven’t seen a movie in the theatre for about ten years, so I’m not making a statement about The Interview.

Carob Bumpy Cake

Watching it wasn’t about loving it, but about making a point. I wanted to watch it because it seemed like the American thing to do to prove, even if just to myself, that I have the freedom to watch it and I’m not afraid to do so.

What I was surprised about is that I kind of loved The Interview. Yes it was silly and many of the jokes went way too far. Like waaaaaay too far. However, it made me laugh out loud, something not many movies do. A lot of it was smart and clever and funny. I could even imagine watching it again. So if you have some free time you might want to check it out.

Carob Bumpy Cake

You might also want to make this Carob Bumpy Cake. Bumpy Cake is the only classic Detroit area dessert I could think to make, so I whipped it up for this week’s Sunday Supper of hometown favorites and I am so glad I did.

I’ve never had traditional bumpy cake since it’s super chocolate-y, but I don’t think anyone could tell this version was made with carob. Even Mom couldn’t get enough of it and she has always been a little leery of carob.

Carob Bumpy Cake

The carob cake base is rich and moist, kind of like Devil’s food cake. I swapped out the traditional buttercream bumps for marshmallow fluff. Not only does this make the cake easier to make but it also takes out some of the rich, buttery-ness in favor of light, sweet fluff. The simple chocolate glaze on top rounds out the whole thing. The components are all stars in their own right and together they make a magical combination.

Carob Bumpy Cake

Carob Bumpy Cake #Sunday Supper

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Yield: 18 servings

Ingredients

Cake

1 cup water

½ cup canola oil

1 stick unsalted butter

3 heaping tablespoons carob powder

2 cups granulated sugar

2 cups all-purpose flour

3 large eggs

½ cup milk (I used almond – use what you love)

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Glaze

1 box confectioners’ sugar

½ cup carob powder

¼ milk (I used almond – use what you love), plus more as needed

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1 jar marshmallow fluff for assembly

Instructions

Make the cake. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 9 by 13 inch pan.

In a large bowl, stir together flour and sugar.

In a medium saucepan, combine water, oil, butter, and carob powder. While stirring frequently, bring it to a boil over medium heat. Once it boils, remove it from the heat and pour it into the sugar mixture. Stir until combined. Add eggs, milk, baking soda, and vanilla and mix until fully combined.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs. Cool completely in pan. Cake may be made 1 day ahead of time.

Once the cake is totally cool, spread rows of marshmallow fluff on the cake. Don’t worry if they run together a little. Use the whole jar. Place the cake in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

While the cake chills, make the glaze. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar and carob powder. Slowly whisk in milk and vanilla. Add more milk as necessary until a thick, yet pourable consistence is formed. Pour over the cake with marshmallow fluff. Cake may be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days in an airtight container.

Notes

Additional cooling time is necessary

Recipe adapted from Confessions of a Cookbook Queen

http://piesandplots.net/carob-bumpy-cake-sunday-supper/

Don’t forget to check out the other Sunday Supper dishes!

Breakfast

Drinks

Appetizers and Snacks

Main Dishes

Side Dishes

Desserts

Sunday Supper Movement Join the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

The Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls #SundaySupper

The BEST Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

Making and eating these rolls, I can’t stop thinking about how my Granny would have loved them. She would have loved making them and watching movies while they rose and eating them. Unfortunately, she’s been gone for just over seven years, so I’ll never get that memory, but I often imagine what it might be like.

By the time I got up (and I never sleep past eight), she would have already watched a movie (perhaps A Few Good Men or Legally Blonde), drank a few cups of coffee, and eaten something sweet, maybe a homemade muffin from the day before.

After I got up, we’d watch a little news and eat breakfast. Then we’d make the rolls. We wouldn’t break out the stand mixer, but instead Granny would mix them by hand as I added ingredients. We’d wrap up the dough to rest and go take a walk. (This is my day dream, it can be summer :)). Our amble through the neighborhood would be full of birds singing, fresh flowers, and bright sunshine.

The BEST Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

We’d roll the dough and slather on the butter, cinnamon, and sugar. Roll up the swirl and cut it into buns to rise again. I’d pop a DVD in or check OnDemand for another movie while we waited for them to rise again.

We’d eat a quick and light a dinner (more room for cinnamon rolls), bake off the rolls, make the cream cheese frosting, and indulge in the best cinnamon rolls we’d ever had. We’d watch another movie before Granny would head to bed and I’d sit up awhile, relishing in the perfect day I had with my grandmother.

The BEST Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

Of course this will never happen, since she’s gone, but I take comfort in imagining it, thinking of her daily, and asking for her guidance in this crazy thing we call life.

This week’s Sunday Supper was all about casseroles. These are admittedly not exactly a casserole. But they are baked in a casserole sized dish and are best served warm from the oven, like many other casseroles, so I went with it. And you should be glad I did because these cinnamon rolls are THE BOMB!

The BEST Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

After just the first bite, I was instantly transported to the Cinnabons I used to love. Except these are infinitely better. The sprinkling of cinnamon sugar on the bottom of the pan makes these soft, giant rolls that much better because it intensifies the cinnamon-y goodness in the roll itself. Oh, and the frosting, slather it on. Not only does it keep the buns soft, but it also tastes fabulous with the little vanilla bean flecks.

I have no doubt Granny would have loved these and I would love them just a little more if I could share one with her.

The BEST Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

The Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls #SundaySupper

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 25 minutes

Yield: 12 cinnamon rolls

Ingredients

Dough

¾ cup warm water

1 packet dry active yeast

½ cup + 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ cup milk (I used almond, use what you love)

1 large egg

1/3 cup canola oil

4 1/2-5 cups all-purpose flour

For the pan

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

¾ cup packed light brown sugar

For the filling

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

1 ¼ cups packed light brown sugar

2 ½ tablespoons ground cinnamon

2 tablespoons cornstarch

Frosting

8 ounces cream cheese

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste

1 tablespoon light corn syrup

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

3 cups confectioners’ sugar

Instructions

Make the dough. In a large bowl, pour in water, yeast, and 1 tablespoon of sugar. Stir and let proof 5 minutes. When the mixture is bubbly, add remaining ½ cup sugar and salt. Stir to incorporate.

In a small bowl, stir together milk, oil, and egg. Add to the yeast mixture and stir to incorporate. Add 2 cups of flour and mix to combine. Add additional flour in ½ cup increments until the dough comes together and is sticky, but not sticky enough to stick to hands. Knead the dough by hand for about 5 minutes. Place the dough in an oiled bowl (the same one is fine), cover with plastic wrap, and allow to rise in a warm place for about 2 hours until at least doubled in size.

Prepare the pan. Line a 9 by 13 inch pan with parchment. Butter with the 2 tablespoons of butter. Sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon.

Make the filling. In a medium sized bowl, stir together brown sugar, cinnamon, and cornstarch.

Flour a large, clean surface to roll out the dough. Lightly flour the dough, the rolling pin, and your hands. Roll out dough to a large rectangle, perhaps about 12 by 20 inches, until it is ¼-1/2 inch thick. Just do the best you can – it doesn’t have to be perfect. Spread the butter over the dough and sprinkle the brown sugar mixture over it. Use all of it. Lightly press it into the dough.

Starting from one of the long sides of dough, roll into a tight spiral. Cut off the uneven ends. Then cut the roll in half, in half again, and then cut each half into thirds, leaving you with 12 rolls. Place the rolls into the prepared pan, cover with plastic wrap, and place in a warm place to rise for about 2 hours. They should be giant and touching.

Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and cooked through. I highly recommend peeking inside one of the center ones with a fork or knife to be sure it’s cooked (I made the mistake of not doing that with a different recipe. My frosted cinnamon rolls were raw. No bueno!)

While the rolls bake, make the frosting. In a large bowl, beat together cream cheese and butter using a hand or stand mixer. Add vanilla bean paste, corn syrup, and lemon juice and beat to combine. Slowly add confectioners’ sugar while beating on low. Once all the sugar has been added, beat until frosting is light and fluffy.

Remove the rolls from the oven and frost immediately with half of the frosting. Allow them to cool a couple minutes and then add more frosting. You can also serve with a dollop of frosting on the side.

Rolls are best served hot out of the oven, but they may be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Warm them in the microwave for 30 seconds. Rolls may also be frozen, wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator for a couple hours or in the microwave for about 1 minute, until warm.

Notes

Additional, inactive prep time of 4 hours is necessary for the dough to rise.

Recipe adapted from Lauren's Latest

http://piesandplots.net/the-best-homemade-cinnamon-rolls-sundaysupper/

Don’t forget to check out the other Sunday Supper dishes!

Captivating Breakfast Casseroles

Appetizing Casserole Sides

Main Event Casseroles

Decadent Dessert and Sweet Casseroles

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

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