Friday, June 25, 2010

Minti's Adventures: Snickerdoodles

For years (not really) I've been trying to find a recipe for Snickerdoodle cookies like the type we love in the Washington, DC area. Traditional recipes are very cakey and dry. Boring. The Snickerdoodles I'm used to are thin, flat, chewy and very buttery. Fast forward to a few weeks ago. I made these America's Test Kitchen cookies, but I switched out the chocolate chips for M&Ms. They were perfection. As I was enjoying cookie number 7 (dont judge me) I realized they tasted very similar to the Snickerdoodles I grew up eating. So, I made a few changes to the recipe and they aren't quite the same, but they are very very close. Go me!

(Sorry for the crappy pic. I didnt feel like pulling out the real camera)

Snickerdoodle Cookies

(Adapted from America's Test Kitchen)

Makes about 24 cookies


2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (10 2/3 ounces) all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoon (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup packed (7 ounces) light brown sugar
1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract


1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Line 2 large (18- by 12-inch) baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. Whisk flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon together in medium bowl; set aside.

3. In mixer, combine butter and sugar and mix until combined.

4. Add vanilla, egg and yolk and whisk until mixture is smooth with no sugar lumps remaining, about 30 seconds.

5. Slowly add in flour. Mix until combined. (About 30 seconds)

6. Roll 2 tablespoons of dough into a ball. Arrange 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets.

7. Bake cookies 1 tray at a time until cookies are golden brown and still puffy, and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft, about 15 minutes, rotating baking sheet halfway through baking. Transfer baking sheet to wire rack; cool cookies completely before serving.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Minti's Adventures: Pineapple Upside Down Cupcakes

Let me just say that I looove Minti (my mixer). I've been baking more than ever lately. If there's a fire the first thing I'm grabbing is the dog, but Minti is definitely going to be second.

Pineapple Upside Down cake is one of my faves, but I have never baked one myself. Since cupcakes are much more fun I decided to try something new (or what I thought was a new, creative idea. Mr. Google notified me there are a ton of upside down cupcake recipes). The cake is really moist and they're adorable. I will definitely be making these again.

Pineapple Upside Down Cupcakes
recipe adapted from here


6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter
3/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
6 maraschino cherries, cut in half
1-20 oz. can pineapple rings, juice reserved

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, melted and cooled
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla


1. Heat the oven to 350ยบ. Spray nonstick muffin tin with cooking spray.
2. Prepare topping. In a small saucepan, melt and stir together butter and brown sugar. Cook over low heat until well blended. Pour about a teaspoon of topping into muffin cups.
3. Cut 1 in chunk from each pineapple ring. Place the slices in each cup. Form into a ring. Put 1/2 cherry in middle of ring. (There are only 10 rings in each can. Use the leftover chunks to form rings in 2 remaining cups.) Press the fruit gently down into the butter-sugar mixture, then set the prepared pan aside.
4. Prepare the batter. In a medium-size bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt, and stir the ingredients with a fork until they're evenly blended.
5. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, and vanilla extract until smooth.
6. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and stir until the flour is fully incorporated.
7. Add the butter and pineapple juice. Stir well to combine the ingredients into a smooth batter.
8. Pour the batter into the muffin pan, dividing it evenly among all the cups. Bake the cupcakes until they're lightly browned, dry around the edges, and pulling away from the pan a little, about 20-25 minutes. (Trent's Note: the pineapple took up a lot of room in muffin tin. My batter made 14 cupcakes.)
9. Transfer the pan to a rack to cool for 5 minutes. Use a butter knife to carefully loosen each cupcake from the edges and bottom of the pan, then place a cookie sheet over the top. Invert the pan, turning the cupcakes out onto the cookie sheet, then transfer them back to the rack to cool completely.

Serve the cupcakes at room temperature. Makes about 12 cupcakes.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Key Lime Cupcakes w/ Cream Cheese Frosting

I told a friend I would make key lime cake for her. I've never eaten Key Lime cake before, but I thought it would have more of a....pop? More lime-y? It was okay. I added additional lime juice to the batter, however, the flavor was still very subtle.

If I use this recipe again, I will either add more lime zest, add lemon extract, or use lime jello like this recipe. If you have better suggestions, please leave them in the comments section.

Key Lime Cake

Prep Time: 25 minutes


2-1/3 cups flour

1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup butter

2 cups sugar

4 eggs

juice and zest from 4 key limes

1/2 teaspoon green food coloring, optional

1 cup buttermilk

cream cheese frosting

3/4 cup chopped pecans, lightly toasted


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour three 9 x 1-1/2-inch round cake pans.

2. In a medium bowl, with a wire whisk combine flour, baking powder, soda, and salt. Set aside.

3. In a large mixing bowl cream butter and sugar with stand or electric mixer until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time. Mixing well after each addition.

4. Mix in key lime juice and food coloring.

5. Add flour mixture alternately with buttermilk. Mix on low after each addition until just combined.

6. Hand stir in key lime zest. Pour into prepared pans.

7. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden toothpick comes out clean. Cool cakes in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes. Remove cakes from pans. Allow cakes to completely cool on wire racks.

8. Frost with cream cheese frosting. Use toasted pecans to decorate sides of cake.

*Trent's Notes: For cupcakes, bake for 18-20 min. Also, I skipped the pecans.

Cream Cheese Frosting:


16oz cream cheese, room temperature

1/4 cup butter, softened

2 Tablespoons lime juice

2 cups confectioner's sugar


1. Cream together the butter and cream cheese until smooth.

2. Mix in lime juice.

3. Slowly mix in sugar.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Brown Sugar Waffles

I made breakfast the other day for friends. These waffles were a hit. I forgot to take pictures. Sorry :-/

Brown Sugar Waffles


3 cups all-purpose flour

1 Tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

2/3 cups canola or grapeseed oil

4 large eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 1/2 cups buttermilk


1. In a large bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, brown sugar, and nutmeg. Whisk to blend.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, oil, buttermilk and vanilla extract.

3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and fold. Try not to over mix the batter or the waffles will become tough. It's ok if a few lumps remain in the batter.

4. Cook according to your waffle machine instructions.

5. Serve with maple syrup and strawberries.

Tip: Keep waffles warm in 200 degree oven until ready to serve.

Recipe adapted from here.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Cornmeal Molasses Pancakes

We had a 3 Chicks brunch last weekend. It was quite lovely. Our menu:

Turkey Bacon

It was simple and perfect. Next time I'll be sure to take pictures. The pancakes were divine. They even tasted great reheated the next day for breakfast. Head over to JoytheBaker for the recipe and her commentary.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Minti's Adventures: Royal Icing

My new goal is to perfect royal icing and decorating cookies. Today was my first attempt. Not too shabby. However, my piping could use a little (read: a lot) of improvement.

I used this sugar cookie recipe and this recipe for royal icing.

There were a bunch of fails, but I've posted some of my faves below.

Monday, February 22, 2010

An Ode to GSCs

Oh Girl Scout Cookies. I wait 365 days a year to see you, only to murder you the second I see you. You make me so happy, if only for a brief moment. But for those brief few minutes that I get to devour you, you make me the happiest person alive. And then you leave me again. But you give me something to look forward to. For 52 weeks. 365 days. 8760 hours. I cannot wait to see you again. My cookies. Sweet Girl Scout cookies. I love you.

Not exactly a restaurant post, but still delicious...