Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Slated Caramel Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting.....sweet yet salty and utterly delicious!

This recipe was created for Ryan and Kristen Smith. I enjoyed making these Salted Caramel Cupcakes for their wedding and will make them many more times to come as I am such a fan of their sweet yet salty's a wonderful combo!

Remove some of the cake and fill with Caramel sauce

Cupcakes filled with caramel sauce

Salted Caramel Cupcakes
Author: Brenna Bowers
Makes: 24 cupcakes or 2 layer 8” cake

1 box Duncan Heinz White Cake Mix  (or Pillsbury)
1 box instant butterscotch pudding mix
4 egg whites
2 Tbs oil
1 1/3 cup water

1 jar Mrs. Richardson Caramel Sauce (found at Safeway/Vons) (Hershey’s Carmel syrup is 2nd best in my oppinion)

Mix all the ingredients well! Place in cupcake holders or greased cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees F until done (ready when the toothpick comes out clean). (Cupcakes take about 13 minutes).

Let the cupcakes cool completely! With a paring knife remove a piece of the cupcake in the center of the top about as big as your pinky finger (not big at all!).

Fill a baggie or squirt bottle with the Carmel sauce (cut the tip if needed) and pipe into the whole of each cupcake.

Prepare frosting (see below) and pipe/frost over the caramel filled whole. 

Caramel Frosting
(Frost cupcakes with this frosting then top with Caramel sauce and flake salt)
Author: Brenna Bowers
Makes: enough frosting to cover a 9” cake

3 sticks butter
¾ lb powdered sugar
½ tsp vanilla
8 oz Mrs. Richardson Caramel Sauce (found at Safeway/Vons) (Hershey’s Carmel syrup is 2nd best in my oppinion)
2 Tbs milk

Flake salt- found at specialty markets

Beat the butter and powdered sugar very well with a mixer- about 2 minutes. Add the other 3 ingredients and whip until well incorporated.
Pipe/Frost completely cooled cakes/cupcakes.

To Assemble Cupcakes: After having filled each cupcake with caramel sauce and once you have frosted each cupcake, drizzle more caramel sauce on top of each cupcake and sprinkle with a light dusting of the flake salt. Enjoy!!!!

Chai Cake....believe it you can enjoy your favorite tea in cake!

I had the privileged of making the wedding cake for Ryan and Kristen Smith! They are 2 foodies and were looking for a cake to suit their craving for something unique yet tasty....therefore I created this recipe and have dedicated it two the two of them!

Chai cake batter

Chai Cake
Author: Brenna Bowers
Makes: 24 cupcakes or 2 layer 8” cake

1 White Cake Mix (Duncan Heinz or Pillsbury)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp maple flavoring
¾ tsp of the contents of a Chai tea bag (Bigelow)
Dash nutmeg
½  tsp + dash of cinnamon
3 egg whites
1 1/3 cup water

Mix all the ingredients well! Place in cupcake holders or greased cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees F until done (ready when the toothpick comes out clean). (Cupcakes take about 13 minutes).

Monday, January 17, 2011

Caramel can't just have one bite!

The perfect recipe to satisfy a craving of something crunchy, sweet yet salty, and soooo delicious!

Begin with 2 large pans and lots of popped corn!

For best results use a candy thermometer to cook the caramel properly

The caramel mixture has now been brought to 225 degrees F.

The caramel mixture with the addition of vanilla, maple, and baking soda.

Pouring the caramel goodness to coat every kernel of popcorn.

Mix well so that the caramel mixture is evenly distributed to all the popcorn.

Bake it and stir every 15 minutes until golden brown and crunchy!

The perfect batch of caramel corn!

Carmel Corn
Author: Brenna Bowers
Makes: 35 cups (2 large oven pans) (enough for all your friends!)

1 ½ cups white corn kernels (35 cups when it is popped)
2 cups brown sugar
1 cup butter (2 sticks)
½ cup dark corn syrup (or maple syrup) *
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp maple flavoring
1 tsp baking soda
Optional 3-4 cups nuts (walnuts, pecans, or almonds: raw is best but pre roasted is fine too)

2 oven pans (the biggest pans you can find with a 3-5" lip to 
    hold all the popcorn inside)

Pop the pop corn kernels (how-to below). Remove all the un-popped kernels and discard them. Spray both of the oven pans with cooking spray. Distribute and add the popped corn (and nuts) evenly into 2 large oven pans.

In a medium sized sauce pan over the stove, combine brown sugar, butter, dark corn syrup, and  salt. Cook slowly (so that the sugar dissolves) and then bring to a boil. Once it starts to boil you do not need to stir, just put in a candy thermometer and wait for soft ball stage (225 degrees F), about 5 minutes.

Remove the mixture from the heat and let it cool down a little (about 30 seconds). Add the tsp of vanilla extract and the maple flavoring then stir it in. Then add the tsp of baking soda and stir (it will become white and bubbly again). Immediately pour the caramel  mixture (evenly dividing amongst the 2 oven pans) over the popped corn (and nuts). Stir until the corn is evenly coated. (or try Abby's Tip: try mixing the popped corn and caramel mixture in a large brown paper bag by shaking it until all the corn is coated)

Place the pans into a 250 degrees F oven for one hour, stirring every 15 minutes!
You know the caramel corn is ready when the corn does not stick together when stirred. 

Let the caramel corn cool completely before you bag it or place it in an air tight jar.

*Use light corn syrup if you prefer caramel corn that is not as dark in amber color...will have a different flavor but is just as yummy!

**Freezes well if placed in an air tight container.

How-to pop Popcorn Kernels:

With an air popper : Add 1/2 cup of kernels at a time into the air popper. Plug it in and let the air popper do its job! Continue to repeat this process until all the kernels are popped. 

With a pot over the stove: Place 1 Tbs of vegetable oil in a large pot. Turn on the heat to medium-high. Add 1 cup of the kernels into the pot and place a lid on it. Shake the pot to coat all the kernels with the oil. Leave the pot on the heat until you begin hearing the kernels pop. Pick up the pot and shake it (with the lid on!) and place back on the heat. Continue this process (shaking the kernels to keep them from burning) until there is a 5-7 second delay and therefore no more pops-it is now done. Pour the popped corn into a pan and repeat this process with the next batch of kernels.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

SunnySideUp Breakfast Egg Burrito....

A fabulous breakfast burrito that is quick, easy, delicious and best of all a balanced meal to start off your great day!

SunnySideUp Breakfast Egg Burrito
Author:  Brenna Bowers
Makes: 1 Burrito

1 tsp butter
2 Tbs white onion, chopped or sliced
1 small clove garlic, minced
1 small roasted red bell pepper in oil, drained and chopped (found at Trader Joes in a jar) ½ cup ¼ cup fresh spinach, roughly chopped
1 whole wheat tortilla
2 Tbs cheddar cheese, shredded
¼ of an avocado, sliced
1 egg
Salt and pepper

Turn on the heat to medium-low and add the butter into a small sauté pan. Once the butter is melted, sauté the onion for about 2-4 minutes, stirring once in a while and continuing to cook until translucent. Add in the garlic, roasted red bell pepper and spinach; sautéing until the spinach wilts down (about 1-2 minutes) and stir every so often.

Sprinkle the cheese onto the tortilla and place it in the microwave for about 40 seconds- just long enough to melt the cheese. Slice the avocado and place it onto the tortilla with the melted cheese. Place the sautéed veggies on the tortilla as well.

In the sauté pan (just used for the veggies), carefully crack the egg into the pan (not breaking the yolk) and sprinkle with salt and pepper to season. Allow the egg to cook low and slow until the egg white turns opaque (when the egg white turns from transparent to solid white and the yolk is still runny, it is ready). Place the SunnySideUp egg on the tortilla and wrap it up like a burrito. 

Eat up and start your day right!