Monday, April 27, 2015

Menu Plan Monday


Monday: Pepperoni pizza and salad

Tuesday: Mango chicken

Wednesday: Tacos

Thursday: Spag bol and salad

Friday: Eating out
See other menu plans over at Organizing Junkie

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Rosemary Cornbread

Last week we recieved our first bag of fresh herbs of the year.  We are very lucky to get weekly bags filled with rosemary, mint, parsley, basil and more from Randal's coworker.  We made good use of the mint and parsley by making Armenian kebabs and fatoosh salad, but to use some of the rosemary I went with a rosemary cornbread.  I am not a huge fan of cornbread but I do love rosemary which made this cornbread one of the best I have had!

 1 cup cornmeal
1 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup milk
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary

Preheat oven to 400. 

In a large bowl, mix together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, salt and baking powder.   Add in the egg, milk, oil and rosemary and stir to combine.

Grease a baking dish and pour in the batter.

Bake for 15-20 minute.

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Monday, April 20, 2015

Menu Plan Monday


Monday: Biscuit sliders, corn on the cob and salad

Tuesday: Chicken tikka, jasmine rice and naan bread

Wednesday: BLT's and tomato soup

Thursday: Tacos and spanish rice

Friday: Eating out
See other menu plans over at Organizing Junkie

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Sophie's Minion Cupcakes

Monday was Miss Sophie Bears 4th birthday.  Sophie has been in my daycare for 2 years now and is such a smart, sweet little girl that when she asked me to make her minion cupcakes I just couldn't refuse.  I don't know why but my daycare kids are just loving the minion movie these days, but it has to be the one with the bad bunny!

I found the inspiration for the look of these cupcakes on the Betty Crocker site, but Sorry Betty, I had to make my own vanilla cakes and swiss meringue frosting!

4 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 plumped vanilla bean
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
pinch of salt
1 1/4 cups whole milk
10 tablespoons butter

Preheat oven to 350.  Line a cupcake pan with paper liner.
In a small bowl mix together the flour, baking powder and salt.  Set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the eggs for 5 minutes, until thick and lemon coloured.  Add the sugar and continue beating until the mixture has thickened.  Add in the vanilla extract and the flour and mix just to combine.
In a small pan heat the milk with the vanilla bean and butter until simmering.  Remove the vanilla bean and gradually add the hot milk to the batter.
Fill each liner 2/3 full and bake for 18 minutes, or until cooked through.

Swiss meringue buttercream
2 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
5 large egg whites
1 cup + 2 tbsp of sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
pinch of salt
yellow food colouring

To make the frosting, put a few inches of water in a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Put the egg whites, sugar and salt into a bowl that will fit over the pan of water and whisk until it reaches 150 degrees and the sugar has all melted. Transfer mixture to the bowl of your stand mixer and whisk on medium speed until the bowl feels cold (this can take up to 10 minutes) add the butter 2 tablespoons at a time, finally beat in the vanilla and food colour.

For the Minions
Black liquorice
Large marchmallows
Brown M&M's
Black icing pen

To make the minion cupcakes, spread a layer of frosting on each cupcake.  Lay a strip of black liquorice just above the center of each cupcake.  Cut the top and bottom off each marshmallow and give some cupcakes one eye and other cupcakes 2 marshmallow eyes.  Use a little of the frosting to glue the candy onto the marshmallows and use the icing pen to draw on the mouth.
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Monday, April 13, 2015

Menu Plan Monday


Monday: Cod with chili lime butter and corn succotash

Tuesday: Grilled cheese and tomato soup

Wednesday: My birthday - Randal is bringing home dinner

Thursday: Spag bol and salad

Friday: Eating out
See other menu plans over at Organizing Junkie

Sunday, April 12, 2015

SRC - Tiramisu Cupcakes

Time for another Secret Recipe Club reveal,  this month I was assigned the blog Pale Yellow. April is my birthday month and with the reveal just a few days before my birthday and once I read that Tracy calls herself a baking blogger I went right to the cupcake recipes to find something sweet to make for my birthday dessert.  

Tracy has a lot of delicious looking cupcake recipes, I was torn between the Sangria Cupcakes and these Tiramisu Cupcakes.  In the end I went with the tiramisu as a good tiramisu is probably one of my favourite desserts, so those flavours in cupcake form sounded amazing to me.  

I have made many different kinds of cupcakes over the years, but there is just something about espresso soaked cake topped with mascarpone frosting and a dusting of cocoa that made these one of my very favourite.

3/4 cup and 3 tbsp cake flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
3 tbsp milk
1 vanilla bean
3 tbsp unsalted butter
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs and 3 egg yolks

1/4 cup hot coffee
1 1/2 tbsp kahlua
3 tbsp sugar

1 cup heavy cream
8 oz mascarpone
1/2 cup icing sugar
1 tap vanilla extract
cocoa powder for dusting
chocolate shavings

Preheat oven to 325, line a cupcake pan with liners.

To make the cupcakes, place the milk in a saucepan, split the vanilla bean and scrape out the seeds, place the seeds and the pod into the pan.  Heat until simmering.

Add the buttter, turn off the heat, stir until the butter has melted and set aside.

Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, add the eggs and sugar.  Mix until combined.  Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water.  Whisk until the sugar has dissolved.  Put the bowl back on the mixer and whisk until the egg mixture is pale and fluffy.  Add in the dry ingredients.  Remove the vanilla pod from the milk and add to the cake batter. 

Divide batter between cupcake liners and bake for 18 minutes.

While the cupcakes are baking, make the syrup by stirring the kahlua and sugar into the hot coffee.

Once the cupcakes are baked, poke holes in each cake and brush on the soaking syrup.  Leave cakes to cool completely.

To make the frosting, whisk the cream to stiff peaks.

Beat together the mascarpone, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy.  Fold in the whipped cream and pipe onto cupckes, dust with cocoa powder and top with chocolate shavings.

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Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Lemon Pepper Grilled Asparagus

I am just loving grilled asparagus these days, is there any better vegetable for throwing in the grill?  it is done in 10 minutes or less, takes hardly any prep time and I always make a lot as the next day I take the leftovers, throw it in a pan to warm it through and top it with a fried egg.

1 lb asparagus
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp lemon pepper
1/2 tsp salt

Trim the ends off the asparagus.  Place in a shallow dish and drizzle with the olive oil, season with the lemon pepper and salt and toss to combine.

Grill for about 10 minutes, until tender.

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