Monday, April 23, 2012

FINALLY I'm all caught up on my baking from the past million months. I finally feel like I can start blogging about current stuff... current exciting stuff.

The most exciting thing that has happened to me is I was promoted to a Certified Scentsy Consultant!! I love Scentsy. I thought I loved candles until I met Scentsy and I can't imagine looking back. I also love that everyone around me loves Scentsy. I'm so thankful for my support system because without them I wouldn't be doing so well. For the rest of this month, this Mother's Day warmer and Cerise are both 10% off. The warmer is beautiful and Cerise smells amazing!

Unfortunately, that's about it. My computer took a crap on me and died, so I'm using an old laptop my dad has until I decide what I want to do/buy.

Today I baked homemade funfetti cake batter donuts. I recently bought a donut pan and have been searching for an easy but good recipe and finally found one. This recipe from Cookies and Cups was exactly what I was looking for. I obviously changed a few things from the one on her blog, but the recipe is basically the same. I used vanilla non-fat yogurt instead of buttermilk and I also didn't double glaze them... you'll see. Also, I halved the recipe and made 6 to see how they would turn out.

These can be made using plain cake mix and added whatever you like. Next time I make them, I'm going to use sugar free cake mix and brownie mix. In my house, whenever we bake we always go the sugar free route for health reasons plus sugar free doesn't taste any different. Overall, they turned out to be really good! I wouldn't say they're as good as a grocery store donut, which is hands down my favorite, but they stand up well. Atleast you know these are being baked, not fried, and you have some control over what goes in/on them.

Double Glazed Funfetti Donuts
(adapted from Wilton)
makes 12 donuts


  • 2 3/4 cups Funfetti Cake Mix
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp melted butter


  1. Preheat oven to 425°
  2. Spray the donut pan lightly with cooking spray.
  3. In mixing bowl beat all ingredients on medium speed for 30 seconds.
  4. Transfer batter to a zip lock bag and cut the corner of the zip lock bag.
  5. Fill each donut mold about 2/3 full.
  6. Bake 10 minutes or until they spring back when you touch them. My tops didn't get too brown, but they were definitely cooked.
  7. Cool in the pan for about 2 minutes then turn them out onto parchment paper. 
  8. Glaze/ice/decorate as you like.
For the glaze: I did a simple powdered sugar/milk mix until it was thin and smooth. Instead of using the stove to heat the milk which helps with making the glaze extra thin, I microwaved the milk for 10 seconds and it worked just as well. I made one dipped in plain glaze and one in chocolate glaze. For the chocolate glaze, I put 3 drops of chocolate syrup into the mixture because I couldn't find the cocoa. 

For the icing: I used powdered sugar and milk again, but you want to use less milk so it's creamy like a buttercream. A chocolate icing could easily be made by adding cocoa. And sprinkles. LOTS of sprinkles. I love sprinkles.

Cinnamon/sugar mix: I made 2 donuts with a basic cinnamon/sugar mix. First I melted butter, brushed it on top of the donuts, and dipped the donuts into the cinnamon sugar mix. 

Originally Made: Today.

I LOVE frozen lattes and mochas, if only they could be made calorie free. Usually when I buy them at work, I get a sugar free caramel vanilla frozen latte with soy milk. We only use 1% in my house, which is fine with me, it's the only milk besides soy that won't make me sick. On one of my days off last month, instead of going out to buy one, I figured I could try to make one at home and it was a success! I used all the stuff in the picture plus a couple Splenda packets.

This is one of those recipes that really isn't a recipe. Like I said, I used 1% milk, Splenda, Sugar Free French Vanilla flavoring, Coffee House Caramel Macchiato, and a Van Houtte French Vanilla k cup. 

Basically, I brewed a k cup into an ice tray and then froze it overnight. I put half the tray into our Ninja blender and added the ingredients until it blended smoothly. I think it came out pretty well, plus it saved me $3-4. Currently I have a tray in the freezer and sometime this week I plan on making this again but with French Vanilla creamer and making my mom one with Irish Cream creamer. 

I love cinnamon rolls, big or small, I could eat them all day and never get tired of them. When my friends and I get together or go on vacation, this is one thing we always bake for breakfast one of the days. We just use the Pillsbury Rolls, but I made these with crescent rolls we had in the refrigerator. I edited this original recipe I found here and tweaked it to what I know I like/have. This is one of those recipes where you can use more or less of each ingredient. I did this and didn't follow the exact measurements. 

Mini Cinnamon Rolls

1 tube crescent roll dough
2 Tablespoons butter
For the icing:
1 Tablespoon milk
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1. Preheat oven according to crescent roll dough package directions. Layout half the dough  and pinch all the seams together. Flip over and pinch the seams on the back side together too.
2. Using a rolling pin, smooth the seams and roll the dough into a square about 1/4″ thick. Brush with the butter, and sprinkle with as much cinnamon and sugar as you want. Roll into a log and cut into pieces big or small enough to fit in your muffin tin.
3. Place mini cinnamon rolls into a non-stick sprayed mini muffin tin. Bake according to package directions.
4. Meanwhile whisk together milk and powdered sugar until desired consistency is reached. Drizzle over warm cinnamon rolls.

Originally Made: March 18, 2012

For my last trip to New York, in February, I baked this AMAZING New York Style crumb cake. I'm crumb obsessed. I'm probably the worst person to leave in the kitchen with a crumb cake because I could stand for hours picking off the crumbs, same goes for the crust on an apple pie... my mom hates that but I always sneak in for a piece. This recipe yielded the perfect crumb to cake ratio, which is the most important part of a crumb cake. I will say that I doubled it and cooked it for 45-50 minutes. It came out perfect.

New York-Style Crumb Cake
source: Cooks’ Illustrated free iPhone app and Cooks’ Illustrated May 2007
Don’t be tempted to substitute all-purpose flour for the cake flour, as doing so will make a dry, tough cake. If you can’t find buttermilk, you can substitute an equal amount of plain, low-fat yogurt. When topping the cake, take care to not push the crumbs into the batter. This recipe can be easily doubled and baked in a 13 by 9-inch baking dish. If doubling, increase the baking time to about 45 minutes. Cooled leftovers can be wrapped in plastic wrap and stored at room temperature for up to 2 days.
For the Crumb Topping:
1/3 cup granulated sugar (2 2/3 ounces)
1/3 cup dark brown sugar (2 2/3 ounces)
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon table salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick), melted and still warm
1 3/4 cups cake flour (7 ounces)
For the Cake:
1 1/4 cups cake flour (5 ounces)
1/2 cup granulated sugar (3 1/2 ounces)
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon table salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter (3/4 stick), cut into 6 pieces, softened but still cool
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup buttermilk
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting
To make the topping: Whisk sugars, cinnamon, salt, and butter in medium bowl to combine. Add flour and stir with rubber spatula or wooden spoon until mixture resembles thick, cohesive dough; set aside to cool to room temperature, 10 to 15 minutes.
To make the cake: Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Cut 16-inch length parchment paper or aluminum foil and fold lengthwise to 7-inch width. Spray 8-inch square baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and fit parchment into dish, pushing it into corners and up sides; allow excess to overhang edges of dish.
In bowl of standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment, mix flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt on low speed to combine. With mixer running at low speed, add butter one piece at a time; continue beating until mixture resembles moist crumbs, with no visible butter chunks remaining, 1 to 2 minutes. Add egg, yolk, vanilla, and buttermilk; beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute, scraping once if necessary.
Transfer batter to baking pan; using rubber spatula, spread batter into even layer.  Break apart crumb topping into large pea-sized pieces between your thumb, pointer, and middle fingers and spread in even layer over batter, beginning with edges and then working toward center. Bake until crumbs are golden and wooden skewer inserted into center of cake comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool on wire rack at least 30 minutes. Remove cake from pan by lifting parchment overhang. Dust with confectioners’ sugar just before serving.

Note: Cake flour makes a HUGE difference and I went through almost a whole box to make this crumb cake. It really does leave the cake a lot more moist. I didn't use buttermilk partially because I'm lactose intolerant and because we didn't have any in the house. I used vanilla low-fat yogurt and I think it worked just as well. The picture above is the only inside picture I have of the cake and this was the 2nd time I made it for Easter. As you can tell, it didn't exactly cook completely which was frustrating. I plan on remaking it this summer and hopefully it'll turn out correctly.

Originally Made: February 28, 2012
Source: Smells Like Home

Sunday, April 1, 2012

For Christmas this year I made myself and my best friends no sew tie blankets. They looked SO easy to do, but after the first one I wanted to give up and I only had to make 3. The main side is leopard print fleece and the back is black fleece. They are so SOFT and WARM! I love them. The first one was the hardest to make because it was my first time, but the other two were a lot easier after figuring out what worked best. Each blanket I made uses 2 yards of print fleece and 2 yards of black fleece. For those of you don't know, one yard is 36 inches so these blankets were about 72 inches long. I love long blankets so this wasn't a problem, but if you're going to make one for a child or pet I would suggest using less fleece.

What you need:

  • Fleece
  • I bought 6 yards of Anti Pill Black Fleece and used 2 yards per blanket
  • I also bought 6 yards of Anti Pill Fleece Print-Cheetah and used 2 yards per blanket
  • Scissors for obviously trimming and cutting
  • Ruler for measuring the blankets
  • Pins - I used them for keeping the two pieces of fleece together, they really helped keep the fleece matched up so they wouldn't move
  • Square piece of 4"x4" cardboard
  • Another person is helpful... I did the first one myself and the other two I had help from my mom which made a huge difference in getting the last 2 done faster

How to:

  1. I lined the fleece up as best as I could and placed a pin every foot to keep them together. You want the dull/faded looking side of both fleece on the inside and the bright side obviously on the outside.
  2. With the print side facing up, I trimmed the edges of all 4 sides so you don't have the black fleece longer than the print fleece. A ruler/tape helped with cutting in a straight line.
  3. From the cardboard the fleece was wrapped around, I cut a 4"x4" square. With this square, I place it in each corner of the fleece and cut it out. This step really helps with tying each piece of fleece together.
  4. After the corners are cut out, I laid down a ruler from edge to edge to form a straight line and cut along at every 1 inch mark. By doing so, you're getting even ties cut. You do this for all 4 sides of the blanket. After awhile, I was able to eye it with my thumb so I didn't need to use the ruler.
  5. Finally after cutting everything, I tied the top piece of fleece to the bottom and went along removing the pins. Don't tie it too tight or the blanket will pull. I've read on different websites to tie every other one to avoid pulling, but I just did every tie loosely the first time. I did go around a second time pulling them a bit tighter.

Aaaaaannnnnnddddd you're done! They loved this blanket and after I got the hang of it, it turned out to be really relaxing to do. The best part about this blanket is that it doesn't have to be perfect. None of my ties matched, one might have been one inch wide and the next two inches and the next half an inch. But, no one noticed and that was the best part!

I LOVE oatmeal cookies! Its the one cookie I don't feel totally guilty eating by the handful. Oatmeal is healthy! Right? AND every recipe I make I don't use real sugar, I substitute with Splenda for baking. So, I tell myself they're sugar free and healthy and ok to eat for breakfast. I always fall back on the Quaker Vanishing Oatmeal Raisin Cookies recipe found on the lid of the oats container. I think it's the best oatmeal recipe I've found. One thing I'd really like to accomplish in the future is developing my own recipes. In the picture you see 4 containers of cookies because I can't just make one kind. I made ones with chocolate chips, M&Ms, raisins, walnuts and plain oatmeal. My absolutely favorites are the ones with M&Ms.


  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) plus 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar (I used the Splenda version)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar (I used Splenda)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 3 cups Quaker® Oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)
  • 1 cup raisins (Like I said, I also used Chocolate Chips, M&Ms, Walnuts)


  1. Heat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, beat butter and sugars on medium speed of electric mixer until creamy. Add eggs and vanilla; beat well. Add combined flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; mix well. Add oats and raisins; mix well.
  2. Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets.
  3. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool 1 minute on cookie sheets; remove to wire rack. Cool completely. Store tightly covered.

Orginally Made: January 17, 2012.
Source: Quaker Oats
I'm playing catch up on a lot of posts/recipes from January, February and March. So, bare with me while I bombard my blog with those posts. Hopefully once they're done, I can get back to posting in real-time.

Blueberry Muffins.

At work we used to sell blueberries in 3 pull apart packs. It was one of the most random items in our store and they were very rarely bought. The day we pulled them off the shelf, there were atleast 8 to 10 packs of perfectly good blueberries. So, I took them home and said I'd return with something baked... here it is! They came out really good. I like blueberries, but I like them plain more than anything. I love muffins, but I'm kinda picky on which ones I eat and blueberry muffins are definitely not my top 3. The muffin mix itself was super moist and made for a really good muffin base. The crumb topping was the best part, as most crumb toppings are! Unfortunately I never took pictures of the finished product on a plate, silly me. Also, any picture I've taken so far have been taken with my Blackberry camera, which is a bit sucky. Eventually I'd like to get a better camera to take food pictures with, but it'll have to do for now. Onto the recipe!


  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup butter, cubed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease muffin cups or line with muffin liners.
  2. Combine 1 1/2 cups flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt and baking powder. Place vegetable oil into a 1 cup measuring cup; add the egg and enough milk to fill the cup. Mix this with flour mixture. Fold in blueberries. Fill muffin cups right to the top, and sprinkle with crumb topping mixture.
  3. To Make Crumb Topping: Mix together 1/2 cup sugar, 1/3 cup flour, 1/4 cup butter, and 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon. Mix with fork, and sprinkle over muffins before baking.
  4. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until done.

Originally Made: January 5, 2012.
Source: All Recipes.