Creme Egg Filled Brownie Mug Cake Thing

So Easter is just around the corner and there are rows upon rows of Easter themed candies in the markets now. I decided to pick up some mini creme eggs for old times sake. I used to eat these all the time as a child and I have now noticed that there are many different filled versions as well. I bought the fondant filled and caramel filled ones. Eating them straight up was alright, but I figured I could make them into something even better. I give you Easter Creme Egg Filled Brownie Mug Cake. Make sure you have a microwavable 1 cup container.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

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  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 Tbsp. packed brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 3 Tbsp. milk, coffee or water
  • 1-2 mini-sized Easter Creme Eggs (or 1 full-sized Creme Egg)

Step 1: In a heatproof mug or ramekin, stir together the flour, brown sugar, cocoa powder, and salt until no lumps remain.

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Step 2: Stir in the oil and milk until you have a thick paste. (If you mixed it all in a bowl, spoon it into a ramekin or mug.)

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Step 3: Unwrap the Easter Creme Egg and press it into the middle, pushing it down so that only about the top third is exposed.

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Step 4: Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes, checking it after 30 seconds (microwaves vary) – it will be done when it’s springy on top but still a bit gooey – like the very best brownie.

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Step 5: Eat warm. (I like to add a dollop of fresh whipped cream on top or even a small scoop of ice cream)IMG_5864

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Simple Crème Brûlée

While rummaging around the refrigerator I noticed the leftover container of heavy whipping cream and the massive amount of eggs. Figuring I could make something with these simple ingredients with the added sugar and maybe vanilla from the cupboards. So a custard was the first thing that came to mind. But no I just had to up the difficulty by wanting to make crème brûlée. It’s a pretty easy recipe and you can substitute the portable kitchen blow torch with a broiler. So an inexpensive, but such a decadent dessert that seems super expensive. I should have done this for Valentine’s Day. Oh well.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

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  • 1 1/3 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 4 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • (Optional: 1 tsp. lemon or orange zest, 1 tsp. flavored liqueurs, and etc.)
  • 4 Tbsp. superfine sugar (or Turbinado/raw sugar)

Step 1: Preheat the over to 300°F and boil some water.

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Step 2: In a medium saucepan, over medium-high heat, bring the cream and vanilla to scalding point. (small bubbles will be forming around the edges) (you can also add the optional ingredient)

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Step 3: Remove the pan from the heat.

Step 4: In a heat-proof bowl, beat the egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale.

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Step 5: Gradually pour in the hot cream into the egg mixture, while whisking constantly.

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Step 6: Strain mixture into a large measuring cup or small pitcher.

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Step 7: Evenly pour the mixture into 4 ramekins.

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Step 8: Place the ramekins into a baking dish

Step 9: Place the baking pan in the oven and carefully pour the boiled water into the baking pan without getting any water in the ramekins. (Fill to halfway up the ramekins)

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Step 10: Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the custards are set. (There will be a slight wobble when gently moved) (The timing will depend on the amount of custard in the ramekins, how hot the water is, and how thick the ramekins are.)

Step 11: Immediately remove the ramekins onto a cooling rack and allow them to come to room temperature. (1 hour)

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Step 12: Refrigerate uncovered for 4 hours, or until cold and firm. (You can store them for 3 days covered)

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Step 13: To serve, remove custard from the refrigerator, sprinkle 1 Tbsp of superfine sugar evenly over the top of the custard.

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Step 14: Place under a very hot preheated broiler. (Or you could use a portable kitchen torch, just keep it 2-inches, at an angle, over the custard and keep moving the torch around until the sugar melts and caramelizes.)

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Step 15: Caramelize the sugar until golden brown and bubbly. (May need to turn ramekin around to evenly brown.)

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Step 16: Allow custard to sit a few minutes for the sugar to harden, or place into the refrigerator for a couple of seconds.

Step 17: Once sugar has harden serve imminently. (I think I’ll have to allow the custard to bake longer next time it doesn’t look like it set to much and give the broiler a little long to heat up)

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Side Not: After placing in the refrigerator for a few minutes it set right back. So with that in mind I do believe it became all liquidy inside because of the heat from the boiler which caused the ramekin to be way to warm for the delicate custard.

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

I just adore having mashed potatoes at any time of the year, but it’s especially the best during the holidays. Making it was a pain and I just didn’t like making it, but only during the holidays will I be willing enough to make it. Last year I had made garlic mashed potatoes. They didn’t turn out as creamy as I had hoped. This year I have revised this past recipe and I am going to try it out today.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

  • 3lbs. unpeeled red potatoes, rinsed and quartered (or peeled)
  • 8 oz. unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 oz. Romano cheese, grated
  • 3 Tbsp. roasted garlic, minced (See Notes)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano

Step 1: In a large pot, have water boiling with a dash of salt.

Step 2: Add the potatoes to the pot and boil for 20-25 minutes, or until fork tender.

Step 3: Drain the water thoroughly. (Note: I drained the water into the serving bowl to warm it up)

Step 4: Add the potatoes to a large mixing bowl.

Step 5: Add the rest of the ingredients to the bowl.

Step 6: Mash with either a masher or an electric mixer until desired consistency. (Note: I recommend using the masher, it’s easier to control and you can take your time with it. Also you can add some milk to make it smoother, 1 Tbsp. at a time or so.)

Notes:

To make roasted garlic is very simple. Here is what you will need to do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F
  2. Slice the top of the head of the garlic off
  3. Remove the extra papery skin
  4. Place on top of foil
  5. Drizzle olive oil on top and season with a sprinkle of salt
  6. Wrap the garlic tightly in the foil
  7. Bake for 35 minutes

Chicken Pot Pie

It’s now early autumn and raining constantly. I wanted to make something comforting and effortless. So I figured a chicken pot pie would do the trick. Finding a decent recipe was pretty simple, since the last time I had homemade chicken pot pie it was terrible. Sorry dad, but it was dry and salty. Spotting Ina Garten’s Chicken Pot Pie episode it seemed pretty easy to make. With a few adjustments to suit my needs and such. I will also be showing you how to freeze this delicious chicken pot pies. Found the idea from The Kitchen. The containers that I will used are the Hefty 3ct EZ Foil Mini Loaf Pans.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

  • 3-4 chicken breasts, skinless and boneless
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 cups chicken stock/broth
  • 2 chicken bouillon cubes (I used the powder version, 2 tsp.)
  • 8 Tbsp. unsalted butter, 1 stick (I added 1/2 stick as well)
  • 2 cups yellow onions, chopped
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 cups carrots, diced, blanched for 5 minutes
  • 2-3 russet potatoes, diced, blanched for 10 minutes (I used red, but found it staying to firm when done baking)
  • 2 stalks of celery, diced, blanched for 5 minutes
  • 2 cups frozen peas, rinsed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp. rosemary, minced
  • 1/4 cup freshly minced parsley
  • 1 package frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 1 egg, beaten

Step 1: Preheat the over to 350°F.

Step 2: Place the chicken breast on a baking sheet and rub the olive oil over them.

Step 3: Sprinkle generously with the salt and ground pepper.

Step 4: Roast for 20-30 minutes, or until cooked through.

Step 5: Set aside until cool enough to handle.

Step 6: Cut the chicken breasts into large dices, about 4-6 cups.

Step 7: In a small saucepan, heat the chicken stock.

Step 8: Dissolve the bouillon cubes in the stock and simmer over low heat.

Step 9: In a large pot, melt the butter.

Step 10: Saute the onions over medium-low heat for 6-8 minutes, until onions are translucent.

Step 11: Add the flour and cook over low heat, stirring constantly for 2 minutes.

Step 12: Add in the hot chicken stock to the sauce.

Step 13: Simmer over low heat for 1 minute until it thickens.

Step 14: Add in 2 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. ground pepper, heavy cream, carrots, celery, potatoes, herbs, and cooked chicken. Mix well and remove from heat.

Step 15: Preheat the over to 375°F.

Step 16: Roll out puff pastry on a floured surface until 1/4 inch thick.

Step 17: Using foil containers to gauge size, cut pastry into rectangles, leaving enough space to fold over edges of containers, about 1/2-inch.

Step 18: Fill foil containers with chicken and vegetable mixture, all the way to the top. (Remove the bay leaf)

Step 19: Brush sides and edges of foil containers with egg-wash.

Step 20: Place pastry over foil containers and press edges so the egg mixture holds them against the sides. (If freezing, stop here, cover pies with foil and place in freezer. Start at step 21 when you take them out of the freezer.)

Step 21: Brush tops of pot pies with egg and cut several slits to allow steam to escape.

Step 22: Sprinkle tops with sea salt. (Optional)

Step 23: Place pies on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour, or until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling hot. (I recommend the full hour because of the potatoes)

Baingan Bhartha (Eggplant)

I’ve always wanted to make Baingan Bhartha (Eggplant) ever since I had it once in the Indian restaurant a few months ago. So I looked long and hard for a recipe that could emulate the flavors.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

  • 1 large eggplant
  • 2 medium tomatoes (using Roma)
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced (I will be using red and yellow)
  • 1 green chili pepper, seeded (I will be using green bell pepper and adding some chili sauce)
  • 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1/4 inch piece of fresh ginger
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp. salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. ground peppercorn
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas (optional)

Step 1: Preheat the oven’s broiler.

Step 2: Rub oil on the outside of the eggplant, or coat with cooking spray.

Step 3: Place under the broiler, and cook until the flesh is soft and the skin is blistering off, about 20-30 minutes. (Turn as needed for even cooking.)

Step 4: Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise, and scoop the flesh out of the skin. Discard the skin; chop up the flesh and set aside.

or

Step 1: Cook the whole eggplant (put it on a microwave safe dish) in microwave for 8 to 10 minutes until it is tender. If you are using an oven, preheat the oven at 400 degrees F and bake it for about 45 minutes turning the sides every fifteen minutes. Be sure to first put the eggplant in an oven safe shallow bowl or a cookie sheet.

Step 2: Let it cool and scoop out the flesh, then chop the eggplant in small pieces and keep aside.

Step 3: Blend together the tomatoes, ginger and green chili; set aside.

Step 4: Heat the oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat.

Step 5: Add the red bell pepper, onion, and garlic; cook and stir until tender, or until golden brown.

Step 6: Add the cumin seeds, and let them crackle for a few seconds and turn golden brown. (Be careful not to burn them.) *you may want to heat a bit more oil in the pan before doing this.

Step 7: Stir in the tomato and peas, and season with turmeric, ground coriander, cayenne pepper, and salt. Cook and stir for a few minutes or until the tomato puree has begun to separate from the oil.

Step 8: Add eggplant over medium heat, keep stirring the eggplant and mashing the eggplant as it cooks; 8-10 minutes.

Step 9: Add the garam masala and cilantro.

Step 10: Taste, and adjust seasonings if desired. Serve with a side of naan. (Side note: It taste best the next day.)

Hot Nutella Coffee

Finding a stash of leftover whipped cream and half a jar of Nutella I thought of combining them. I wanted something hot, but that it didn’t require any real effort to make. So coffee came to mind. I’ve been going through a coffee phase and mocha has always been a favorite. Why not use Nutella.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

  • 8 oz. hot coffee
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. + 1 Tbsp. Nutella
  • 1 tsp. cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. sugar (or more, to taste)
  • 1/2 cup whipped cream

Step 1: In a large mug, stir together hot coffee, 1 1/2 Tbsp. Nutella, cocoa powder and sugar. (Add more sugar to taste, if needed.)

Step 2: In a small bowl, add in remaining Nutella and 1 Tbsp. of the hot coffee mixture. Stir until Nutella has dissolved.

Step 4: Fold Nutella mixture into the whipped cream until incorporated.

Step 5: Top hot coffee mixture with whipped cream mixture.

Decorated Cupcakes

Well today I will be decorating a multitude of cupcakes for my portfolio and it is so time consuming. But I really got inspired from a multifaceted playlist a few days ago. There were also many other sites that I checked out, but there were to many to count.

Edible Decorating Items:

  • Butter Cream Frosting
  • Fondant
  • Edible Glitter
  • Edible Dusting
  • Nuts
  • Berries
  • Candies
  • Food Coloring
  • Water
  • Vodka
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Cookie Crumbs
  • Corn Starch
  • Shortening

Decorating Tools:

  • Piping Tips: 2D, leaf, round, star, petal, and etc.
  • Piping Bags
  • Off-set Spatula
  • Rolling Pin
  • Pairing Knife
  • Food Safe Paint Brushes

Here are the decorated cupcakes:

Layered Mousse Cake

I racked my brain for ideas on what dessert to make on July 4th for the past 3 months and I finally got some sense of what to make. I figured I could make a cake, but not my usual cheesecake. I wanted to make a mousse filled layered cake. Now for July 4th I want it to color coordinate. Red, white, and blue. So a white cake, a layer of strawberry mousse, and a layer of blueberry mousse. The hard part will be to figure out how to make all of this without getting in my dad’s way when he begins preparing the rest of the food for the annual July 4th party. I figured I could use a box cake mix and make the mousse and whipped cream frosting. This recipe is something that needs to be made in advance or at least a day before.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

Strawberry Mousse

  • 8.5 oz. strawberries, sliced and divided (if using frozen allow to partially thaw)
  • 4 1/2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar or lemon juice
  • 1/2 Tbsp. powdered gelatin (I will be using agar agar)
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp. water
  • 7 oz. cup heavy cream

Blueberry Mousse

  • 5 oz. blueberries
  • 4 1/2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 Tbsp. powdered gelatin
  • 2 Tbsp. water
  • 7 oz. cup heavy cream

Syrup

  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp. fruit liqueur (Optional)

Whipped Topping (Make this twice)

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

*Early Preparations:

Step 1: Prepare the cake as stated by the box directions. (I recommend making this a head of time to allow it to cool and firm up before cutting 3 layers.)

Syrup

Step 1: Prepare syrup; mix water and sugar and microwave until hot, about 1 minute.

Step 2: Stir until completely dissolved, then let cool.

Step 3: Stir in fruit liqueur; set aside. (Optional)

Gelatin*

Step 1: Begin preparing the gelatin for the blueberry/strawberry gelatin and mousse in two separate small bowls or cups; put 1 and 2 or 2 and 2 1/2 tablespoons of water in each bowl, respectively, then sprinkle the gelatin into the water and set aside.

Note: Keep heavy cream chilled.

Main Preparations:

Mousses

Blueberry

Step 1: Put the blueberries and sugar into a food processor and purée.

Step 2: Pour the heavy cream into a large bowl and whip until thick enough that cream dribbled from the beater briefly leaves a trail, but is not stiff.

Step 3: Microwave the prepared gelatin until it turns to liquid (but don’t boil it), then add to food processor along with the lemon juice and run the food processor again to mix.

Step 4: Pour the blueberry mix into the whipping cream and fold until mixed.

Step 5: Allow to set in the refrigerator for 1 hour before use.

Strawberry

Step 1: Roughly slice 5 oz. of strawberries. Pour balsamic vinegar and sugar over the slices, stir to coat, and leave in a bowl to marinate for about 30 minutes. (If using lemon juice, 1 Tbsp, no need to marinate)

Step 2: Take another 3.5 oz. of strawberries, cut them in half, and slice thinly.

Step 3: Pour the marinated strawberries and any liquid into a food processor and purée.

Step 4: Pour the heavy cream into a large bowl and whip until thick enough that cream dribbled from the beater briefly leaves a trail, but is not stiff.

Step 5: Microwave the prepared 6g of gelatin until it turns to liquid, then add to food processor and mix.

Step 6: Take the sliced strawberries from 2 and the strawberry purée from 5 and add them to the whipped cream, then fold until mixed.

Step 7: Allow to set in the refrigerator for 1 hour before use.

Cake Assembly

Step 1: Warm enough strawberry jam to coat one surface of the pâte sucrée disk in the microwave to soften it, then coat the top of the tart.

Step 2: Place a cake-forming ring onto the plate the cake will be served on and line it with either acetate sheet or parchment paper. (If the ring you’re using is adjustable, size it slightly large than the tart base). Lay the base in the ring jam-side up.

Step 3: Lay the first layer of the sponge cake on top of the tart base, then dab on one third of the syrup.

Step 4: Pour the mousse strawberry onto the cake and spread smooth with a spatula.

Step 5: Lay the second layer of sponge cake onto the mousse and press down lightly, then dab on one third of the syrup.

Step 6: Pour remaining mousse on top, again spreading smooth.

Step 7: Lay the top layer of cake on top, press down lightly, and dab with remaining syrup.

Step 8: Chill for about 2-4 hours in the refrigerator to set.

Decorating The Cake

Step 1: Remove the cake ring from the cake.

Step 2: Whip one cup of heavy cream with the sugar and vanilla extract until thick enough that cream dribbled from the beater briefly leaves a trail, but is not stiff. (Here’s a video on Whipped Cream Frosting)

Step 4: Spread a thin layer of cream around the outside edge of the cake.

Step 5: Put the cake and cream in the refrigerator to allow the layer to set.

Step 6: Add another coat of cream, chill, and repeat as many times as necessary to get a nice, even layer all the way around.

Step 7: Whip the remaining cream until stiff enough to hold its shape.

Step 8: Use a pastry bag to make a decorative wall of cream around the outside edge of the top.

Step 9: Decorate with leftover fruit.

Juicy Burgers

After having a quick burger at Five Guys Burgers and Fries I really began craving for a burger. Now I’ve never made a burger before, so this will be something new to learn. I’ve been watching some cooking shows and daytime shows on burgers for the last few days and I think I finally figured out how to make a decent burger.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

  • 1 lb. fresh ground beef (80/20)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1 cup diced onion

Step 1: In a large bowl, add all the ingredients.

Step 2: Mix the ingredients until combined, but don’t over mix the ground beef.

Step 3: Dived the ground beef into 4 portions and mold them into a round patty.

Step 4: In a preheated large pan over medium heat, add the patties and cook burgers until well browned, about 3-4 minutes.

Step 5: Flip burgers and cook until browned on the outside and no longer pink on the inside; about 3-4 minutes.(Can add cheese right after flipping the burger, and cover to allow the steam to melt the cheese.)

Step 7: Serve on hamburger buns.

Toppings:

  • Chopped lettuce
  • Tomato slices
  • Onion slices
  • Ketchup
  • Yellow mustard
  • Mayonnaise
  • Pickles
  • Relish
  • BBQ sauce
  • Etc.

Frozen Nutella Hot Cocoa

It’s getting hot now since it’s summer, but I was craving for some hot cocoa. I knew if I were to get some it would just make me really sweaty from the heat. So today I will be attempting to make a frozen version, but with a twist of some Nutella. While scouring the net I stumbled upon Serendipity’s Famous Frozen Hot Chocolate and I found many variations of it. Since buying the mix was out of the question I figured I could make my own, but in a budget friendly route. The upside was that I have all of the required ingredients already. This venture will be the collaborations  of 3 different recipes. For the Nutella idea I would have to give thanks to this link. The frozen hot chocolate recipe is from this link, although I will be cutting this in half. Finally the hot cocoa mix is from this link and I will be only using 2-3 servings of it.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

  • 1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp cocoa mix
  • 4-5 Tbsp Nutella
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 cup whole milk (I used 2% milk)
  • 2 cups ice cubes

Cocoa Mix (2-3 1.5 oz. hot chocolate packets of your choice)


  • 1/4 cup + 3 Tbsp dry milk powder
  • 3 Tbsp + 1 1/4 tsp confectioners’ sugar, sifted (I had to use granulated sugar)
  • 1 Tbsp + 3/4 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 Tbsp + 3/4 tsp powdered non-dairy creamer (didn’t have any so instead I will be adding liquid creamer, in sweet cream flavor)

Step 1: In a blender add milk, cocoa mix, salt, and Nutella. (I recommend sifting the cocoa mix before adding to the blender)

Step 2: Blend until combined

Step 3: Add in the ice and blend until the ice becomes small chunks.

Step 4: Pour evenly into 2-3 glasses and place on top of a plate.

Step 5: Top with whipped cream and sprinkle with mini chocolate chips or chocolate shavings.

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