Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Dark Mocha Caramel Brookies

Dark Mocha Caramel Brookies 

A few weeks ago, I gave my friend Sarah a baking lesson-not that she needed it. She was a more than capable co-chef! Together we made one of the most delicious things I've ever tasted. Not even exaggerating. I was thinking of making dark mocha caramel brownies. I had thought those up because Goetze's Caramel Cream candies had been on sale at CVS so I had picked up a bag, I was in the mood to try baking with coffee, and I have a new(ish) obsession with Hershey's Dark cocoa...well at this point maybe it would actually be better classified as a persistent obsession. 

Anyways, if my idea didn't sound good enough, right before we were about to start baking the brownies, Sarah asked me how you would make brookies, which are brownies baked with a chocolate chip cookie underneath that are sold in a lot of the Vandy Dining locations. I figured I might as well take this dessert to the next level by showing her how! So, now imagine a dessert with chocolate chip cookies, creamy caramel filling, and gooey dark chocolate mocha brownies...it just sounds too good to be true, right?! Well, whenever you imagine a dessert and that's the case, you know it's time to get your bake on!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

21 Cake

“21 Cake”

Pumpkin Butterscotch Cake with Nutella Salted Caramel Filling and White Chocolate Cinnamon Icing

A few weeks ago, Lauren turned 21. Needless to say, this upped the ante. Obviously, I was going to make her a birthday cake, but I have a baking blog with her, so it couldn’t just be any normal birthday cake. It needed to be epic. Creative, multi-faceted, and full of things that Lauren loves. While brainstorming this cake, I realized it was going to require a lot of ingredients. So, I made absolutely sure that it had 21 unique ingredients, one for every year Lauren has graced the Earth. 

We had the cake at Lauren’s birthday party, and it was definitely a hit. I may never make a cake this awesome again, but you should totally try. Here’s how: 

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Peanut Butter S'mores Cake Pops

Peanut Butter S'mores Cake Pops

Cake pops are perhaps one of the best things ever created. They provide an excuse to eat cake (as if you actually needed one) without feeling like you're overindulging. After all, they're so small and bite sized, how could one (or two, or three, or ten) hurt? :) It couldn't. Trust me, I'm pre-med.

My friend Rachel gave me a cake pop maker for my birthday last week (finally 21!!!!) and naturally I couldn't wait to test it out. My first experiment involved strawberry angel food cake pops, but it turns out whisking egg whites by hand doesn't work unless your name is Hulk. They turned out tasty, but unfortunately the texture did not translate into beautiful cake pops, but rather awkward half-tortoise shells that I covered in white chocolate. Delicious? Sure. Pretty? Not so much.

I realized that I needed to use a thicker batter in order to achieve the desired texture. So for the next batch, which Dena and I baked together in my new apartment kitchen (!!!!), we decided to use a blondie as the basis for our cake pops. We figured that this would create a dense but delicious center that would hold up to any necessary manhandling. We also decided to go with a s'mores theme, so we filled each cake pop with a marshmallow, covered it in chocolate, and rolled it in crushed graham crackers. Oh, and we added peanut butter to the blondie because, well, why not? The result: Huge success! The brown sugar creates a caramelized outer shell that locks in the moist richness of the peanut butter blondie, and the chocolate and graham cracker shell works perfectly with the flavors and the texture. Not to mention the gooey marshmallow center that oozes out when you bite into the pop. Sooooo goooooood. They literally disappeared faster than anything that we've made before (and trust me, that's saying something). Seriously, make these right now. Go.

Saturday, May 5, 2012



I want to start by apologizing for the delay in posts. By no means have we stopped baking, we just haven’t had the time to post about it due to finals and other craziness. But we have survived the end of the semester and you can expect more frequent blog posts to come. And Lauren and I are both staying in Nashville this summer and living just down the street from each other, so we will continue to have many team baking efforts!

This first post back is a great summer snack. With trendy flavors such as salted caramel, sweet and salty is all the rage right now. And caramel popcorn is an ever-popular sweet and salty summer carnival and holiday snack. This “popcrack” is a delicious twist on traditional caramel popcorn, with amazingness in the form of peanut butter, chocolate, and butterscotch added into the mix. It ends up being more like bars, but retains reminiscence of the caramel popcorn that we all know and love.

A few weeks ago, my friend Chelsey came back to Vandy to visit and we decided we wanted to bake something. We weren’t sure exactly what to make, but since I knew I was going to be moving out in the next few weeks, I wanted to use a lot of my food and baking ingredients up. So, I laid out many of my potential baking ingredients from the pantry, and this is what we came up with. Props to Chelsey for being a wonderful co-chef and coming up with the perfect name to capture the addictiveness of this tasty treat! As usual, absolutely no regrets.