Have you noticed the sudden popularity of BuzzFeed quizzes lately? They’re popping up all over my Facebook feed. I’m guilty of spending too much time taking them myself, and in case you’re wondering, I’m a Shuba Inu, The Dowager Countess, Rachel, Dumbledore, an oboe (ha!), should live in Portland, and know entirely too much about Gilmore Girls. Now that I’ve exhausted the BuzzFeed quizzes, I’ve moved on to the BBC America quizzes, which have turned out to be a even better procrastination tool. How would I die in Victorian England? Acid milk, of course.
I’ve got a big, colorful cake for you today! My friend Ruth Ann runs a chamber music series here in Dallas, and I always make the desserts for the receptions after the concerts. Since last week was the final concert of the season, I decided to go all out with this 4 layer cake. I chose to color each layer to match the organization’s logo, but you can use whatever colors you want (pastels would be great for Easter). I did have one lady at the reception tell me that the yellow layer was her favorite because it was the most buttery. Hmmm…maybe I’ll start dyeing all of my cakes yellow from now on.
I know what you’re thinking. You’re going to tell me how to freeze cookie dough? Have you run out of ideas, Natasha? I was debating whether or not to even write this post, but when a friend told me that she had never thought of this and it changed her life (well, not quite, but you know what I mean), I figured it may be helpful to at least a few people. This is the method that I have been using to freeze cookie dough for as long as I can remember and it works like a charm, so even if you’re skeptical now, keep reading. We’ll be BFFs shortly.
So let’s talk dough.
I have a complicated relationship with cookies (and dough). Here’s why.
-I love them way too much, therefore I eat them way too much. Large batches of cookies do not stand a chance around me.
-I don’t like day old cookies. I know this makes me sound like a snob, but I am. Only fresh out of the oven cookies for me, please.
-Every time I attempt to make cookies, Aaron steals half my dough, so I get less cookies. Sad face.
Freezing cookie dough solves all of these problems. Originally, I starting freezing cookie dough when I had to bake for large events. It helped me do a lot of the work in advance so I wasn’t so stressed out the day of. I used to do the thing where I would roll it into logs, wrap it in plastic, and then cut it, but this way is so much easier.
Last week, I had the pleasure of celebrating my mom’s 60th birthday with her. My brother and I decided to throw her a little party, so obviously, there was cake. My mom is a true chocoholic, so for her, it’s not really dessert unless chocolate is involved. Originally, she had requested these Nutella Bomb Cupcakes, but a birthday just isn’t a birthday without a layer cake, so I ended up reworking the cupcakes into cake form.
It’s Small Batch Saturday! This recipe, like so many others out there in the blogosphere, was inspired by an overly ripe banana (and a chocolate craving). I made this on a whim, dumped a few ingredients I had on hand in my mixer, and ended up with a delicious chocolaty muffin. This has to be some kind of miracle, because nine times out of ten when I experiment, I end up with a gloopy mess.
Now that Valentine’s Day is over, let’s get on to more important things. Like my birthday. Technically it’s not until Wednesday, but I like to make my birthday week filled with as many obnoxiously sprinkly posts as possible. Unfortunately, I’m going out of town tomorrow for work for my entire birthday week, so I went with a sprinkly portable cake that I plan to take with me on my trip. Don’t worry, though, my real birthday cakes (I always make two) will be coming, but just a little later than usual.
The original title of this post was One Bowl Cupcakes with Nutella Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting, but per my fiancé’s request, I went with a more interesting title. Actually, his exact words were, “These are my favorite cupcakes you’ve ever made. Can you please not name them something boring?” Other reactions included, “Holy @#%! these are good,” and “It’s like a Nutella bomb went off in my mouth!” Hence, Nutella Bomb Cupcakes were born.
You may be thinking that there is entirely too much frosting on these cupcakes. That’s where you’re wrong. Swiss Meringue Buttercream is a magical concoction of which there can never be too much. Unlike American Buttercream, it’s not super sweet, and there’s no powdered sugar involved. Personally, I think a one to one ratio of frosting to cake is perfect.
Babycakes: A term of endearment. This can lead to other cute nicknames such as babyface, sweetcheeks, and noodlenose.
Baby Cakes: Miniature Layer Cakes that fit in the palm of your hand.
I know I said that Small Batch Saturday would be every other week, but I thought I’d throw some baby cakes your way around Valentine’s Day (the cake kind, not the noodlenose kind). Leave it to me to be off schedule the 2nd week into a blog series.
One of my New Year’s resolutions was to incorporate more vegan meals into my diet. Last year, I found myself becoming a bit of a cheese-itarian, falling back on grilled cheese, mac and cheese, and other things covered in cheese too many nights of the week. So in my quest to become healthier, I decided to make this cake. Um….
In my 20s, I could eat pretty much whatever I wanted and not gain weight. In my 30s, I can eat dessert in moderation, exercise on a very regular basis, and not gain that much weight. Let’s just say that this whole dessert blogging thing has been an exercise on self control, and I’ve failed on more than one occasion. Like when I made this cake. And this one. Yikes. Major fail.