Easy Brigadeiro Truffles

A few years ago I had made different types of truffles which got a bit messy to say the least. This year I wanted to try out a simpler version that required less ingredients and time. I recently found out about the Brazilian truffles called “Brigadeiro” through a few websites and I wanted to make this treat. Now there were two ways of making this truffle. One way was by Betty Crocker and the other was by Eugenie Kitchen.

I found that the one by Eugenie was simpler and less of a hassle to make when compared to the Betty Crocker version. Although I am tempted to make double the batch, at the moment I have upcoming projects that are due in the coming week.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

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  • 14 oz. sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter + extra for rolling the truffles
  • 3 1/2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • pinch of salt (if you use unsalted butter)

Decorations:

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  • Coconut flakes
  • Cocoa powder
  • Cinnamon-sugar
  • Decorating sugar
  • Pumpkin spice-sugar
  • Green tea powder
  • Dried berries (Cranberries, blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, etc.)
  • Cookie crumbs (Almond, gingersnap, Oreo, graham cracker, etc.)
  • Sprinkles
  • Chopped nuts (Pistachio, walnut, almond, chestnut, etc.)
  • Fine espresso powder

Step 1: In a thick-bottom sauce pan, add in the sweetened condensed milk and cocoa powder.

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Step 2: Stir the mixture with a wooden spoon, over medium heat, until well combined.

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Step 3: Add in the butter and stir continuously until melted.

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Step 4: When the mixture comes to a boil begin stirring rigorously until it thickens.

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Step 5: Transfer thickened mixture into a heat-proof bowl and allow it to cool.

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Step 6: Rub some of the extra butter into the palm of your hands.

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Step 7: Scoop out 1 tsp. of the Brigadeiro mixture and roll into balls.

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Step 8: Gently roll the Brigadeiro into a coating and then place them into mini cupcake liners.

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Pumpkin Scones

Well Thanksgiving has passed and there are so many leftover ingredients that I have to use it some way or else it’ll end up being thrown away. So I thought maybe something for breakfast would work. A light treat that is simple to make and light on the wallet. Pumpkin scones could work since all the ingredients are from the leftover ingredients for my many desserts.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

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  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. pumpkin spice
  • 1 cup butter, grated and chilled
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree, chilled
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream, chilled
  • (Optional: 1 cup dried cranberries, chopped walnuts, chopped pecans, and etc.) (Side note: if adding dried fruit add 1-2 tsp. of milk to the batter)
  • 1/4 cup raw sugar, garnish

Egg Wash

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  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 Tbsp. milk

Step 1: Preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.

Step 2: In a large bowl, sift together the cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin spice.

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Step 3: Add in the brown sugar and stir together.

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Step 4: Cut in the chilled butter until the mixture resembles course meal, about pea-sized.

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Step 5: (Optional: stir in the dried fruits and nuts)

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Step 6: In a small bowl, combine the eggs, pumpkin puree, and cream.

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Step 7: While stir the butter mixture, slowly pour in the wet ingredients and stir until just combined. (Bits of butter should be visible and almost all the flour is incorporated.)

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Step 8: Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface.

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Step 9: Work quickly while gently kneading the dough, by folding and pressing the dough until fairly smooth. (the dough will be sticky so don’t over knead)

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Step 10: Divide the dough into 4 equal parts and shape the dough pieces into balls.

Step 11: Shape dough balls into 4-inch rounds about 3/4-inch to 1-inch thickness.

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Step 12: Cut each round into 6 wedges and place onto the prepared baking sheet.

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Step 13: Brush each pieces with the egg wash and sprinkle on the raw sugar.

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Step 14: Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly golden and the cut sides look flaky and dry. (Should feel light and sounds almost hollow when tapped on the bottom.)

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Step 15: Cool completely on a wire rack.

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Cinnamon Swirl Frosting

To pair with the last blog post of Snickerdoodle Cupcakes I will be making a cinnamon swirl frosting. I can already hear the cavities a calling.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

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  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3-4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon

Step 1: In a large bowl, cream the softened butter until smooth and creamy.

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Step 2: While mixing add in the sugar, heavy cream, salt, and vanilla extract.

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Step 3: Increase speed to high and mix for 3 minutes.

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Step 4: (Optional: Add more sugar if frosting is too thing or heavy cream if the frosting is too thick)

Step 5: Transfer 1/2 of the frosting to a small bowl; set aside.

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Step 6: Add the ground cinnamon to the large bowl mixture and beat to combine for 30 seconds.

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Step 7: Spoon the cinnamon frosting into one side of a piping bag and fill the other half with the vanilla frosting.

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Step 8: Pipe on to cupcakes as desired.

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Step 9: Garnish with a mini snickerdoodle cookie.

Pumpkin Pie Bars

Here we go again the yearly event of pumpkin pie making. This year I didn’t want to just make a pumpkin pie. Although I have made variations to the classic pumpkin pie over the years I wanted to try a different approach. So instead of making the classic pie I will be making it into bars. Since I had a horrible experience last year I figured individual pieces are the best way to go about my nightmare event. See what had happened apparently nobody knows how to cut a pie. As in someone decided it was a grand idea to hack off random chunks and that scared me.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

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  • 1 can of Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
  • 2 eggs
  • 15 oz. pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup corn syrup
  • 1 Tbsp. pumpkin spice
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°F and line an 11×7-inches baking pan with parchment paper and leave 2-inches hanging out the sides.

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Step 2: Unroll the dough and place into the bottom of the lined baking pan.

Step 3: Press the dough, with your fingers, to the cover to the sides and bottom of the pan; set aside.

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Step 4: In a large bowl, mix all the ingredients until smooth and well combined.

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Step 5: Pour mixture into the prepared pan. (Option: you can swirl in some melted chocolate at the point)

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Step 6: Bake for 45-50 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.

Step 7: Completely cool in the pan on a wire rack.

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Step 8: Use the excess parchment that was hanging over the edges to lift the pumpkin pie out of the pan.

Step 9: Cut the bars however you desire.

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Step 10: Garnish with whipped cream and a dusting of pumpkin spice.

Snickerdoodle Cupcakes

Having made 50 mini snickerdoodle cookies I knew I had to use them for something. So I will be using my batch of snickerdoodle cookies as decoration for snickerdoodle cupcakes.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

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  • 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup yogurt (plain or vanilla)
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a muffin pan; set aside.

Step 2: In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

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Step 3: In a large bowl, whisk together the butter and 1 cup of sugar until smooth.

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Step 4: Stir in the egg, yogurt, milk, and vanilla extract until well combined.

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Step 5: Slowly add in the dry ingredients in 3 batches. (Batter will be thick)

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Step 6: In a small bowl, combine the remaining sugar and ground cinnamon; set aside.

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Step 7: Spoon 2 Tbsp. of batter into each cupcake liner.

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Step 8: Top with 1 tsp. of the cinnamon-sugar mix.

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Step 9: Top with a heaping Tbsp. of batter, and continue this pattern until cups are 3/4 full. (I added a bit more than 3/4 full and you will see what happens when you basically fill the cups.)

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Step 10: Top each cupcake with 1 tsp. more of the cinnamon-sugar.

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Step 11: Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center. (They came out slightly over the edges of the cupcake liners so I had to run a clean knife around the underside of the overlapping sections to help remove the cupcakes from the pan.)

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Step 12: Cool completely on wire racks before frosting.

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Holiday Desserts Galore

Well another year has quickly come to an end and the holidays are just around the corner. Time to break out the new recipes and maybe a few classic ones, but nonetheless treats that will tantalize even the picky of eaters. Now last year I had done a simple set of desserts and a side.

  1. Iced Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies
  2. Pumpkin Molasses Cupcakes
  3. Pumpkin Cheesecake
  4. Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

This year I will be bringing back a classic cake that I haven’t made in a while. But most of all the rest of the desserts will be new recipes. So here are the desserts and sides that will be served this year for the holidays.

  1. Dulce de Leche Cake
  2. Upside-Down Caramel Apple Rolls
  3. Pumpkin Pie Bars
  4. Snickerdoodle Cupcakes with Cookies
  5. Gingerbread Latte Cupcakes
  6. Shortbread Cookies
  7. Mini Pumpkin Bread

(Side Note: Will be adding links to the list after Thanksgiving)

Strawberries and Cream Popsicles

While spending days studying for exams I needed to have a break. Since it’s still searing hot outside and a bit stuffy inside I wanted to make something refreshing and yet super simple. So I watched videos of how-to-make-frozen-desserts and it dawned on me to try my hand at some frozen desserts. I looked into the freezer and saw that there wasn’t that much space to work with, but I moved some things around and saw that a popsicle mold would fit in the tiny back corner.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3-4 Tbsp. honey (I used orange blossom honey)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 10-12 frozen strawberries (slightly thawed and sliced)

Step 1: Fill the popsicle molds with the sliced strawberries evenly

Step 2: In a large bowl, combine the heavy whipping cream, honey, and vanilla until soft peaks.

Step 3: Spoon or pipe the whipped cream into the molds.

Step 4: Use a chop stick or skewer to help blend the strawberries and cream.

Step 5: Top off the popsicle molds with remaining whipped cream.

Step 6: Freeze for 6 hours or overnight. (Side Note: I only froze it for 4 hours so when removing from the mold the handle kept coming off because the center was still soft, so I had to dip it into hot water to have the entire popsicle release from the mold.”

IMG_6057 IMG_6058(Side Note: After freezing it over night, I recommend dipping the bottom with the fruit in hot water to help loosen the popsicle from the mold. Try not to warm up the cream, that part will come out easily.)

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Quick and Easy Strawberry Shortcake

Well it’s that time of the year again. That’s right summer. When fruits are in abundance and the sweltering heat is overabundance. Strawberries galore is happening at my house right now and I need to use them before they go bad. Since I really wanted to skip out on baking and/or cooking because of the oppressing heat of the summer I figured a cold dessert was needed. Something that didn’t require too much time and there was no need to even go near the stove.

So I went to the grocery in the early morning. Wandering around to see what would inspire me. Walking down the frozen dessert aisle I spotted some frozen cakes. Now when I was in elementary school my mother use to buy the Sara Lee Pound Cake and I would have a slice of it with her on the weekends. That always entertained me for the day, as I would savor that one slice while trying to distract myself with a film on television.

Now that got me thinking. The cake was always partially frozen and it kept me cool in the house. So I figured I could get a small loaf. Now from there I was able to think of combining the cake with the massive amount of strawberries that I had just received earlier that week. There was also a bowl full of freshly whipped cream in the refrigerator. That was my ticket to a quick an easy dessert without the hassle of ovens or stoves.

Now that I think about it these would be perfect for Mother’s Day or even Valentine’s Day.

Here are the ingredients needed for this recipe:

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  • 2 slices of Sara Lee Pound Cake, thawed
  • 1/2 cup whole strawberries, washed and hulled
  • 1 cup sweetened whipped cream
  • 1-2 tsp. sugar

Step 1: In a small bowl, gently combine the strawberries and sugar until strawberries are lightly coated in the sugar. Set aside.

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Step 2: Take a cookie cutter and cut out rounds from the pound cake slices. (Optional: I used 1-3/4 inch cutter. I also cut the small disc in half)

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Step 3: Slice the strawberries in a fan-like slices. (How to fan strawberries)

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Step 4: Place one cake round on a plate.

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Step 5: Fan out 1-2 strawberries on top of the cake slice.

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Step 6: Top it with whipped cream and repeat with remaining cake rounds.

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Step 7: Garnish with strawberry fanned out.

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If you didn’t want to cut out the rounds here is the non-cut version:

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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

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.

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