Showing posts with label cherry topping. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cherry topping. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Black Forest Mini Cupcakes and a Giveaway!

It's Tuesday of our "Mini Week" and today we having Black Forest Mini Cupcakes for dessert! It's also Day 2 of our giveaway. You can sign up everyday until the drawing on Sunday! There is a picture of the giveaway at the end of this post! Check it out and enter everyday! Leave me a comment telling me what your favorite mini dessert is, and for 2 extra entries, like us on facebook, and follow The Freshman Cook. Leave me a comment about that too. Enter every day this week until Sunday!
Black Forest Mini Cupcakes 
(cake from Cake Dr)
1 box Duncan Hines Devil's Food Cake Mix
3 tablespoons Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 1/3 cups Buttermilk
1/2 cup Vegetable Oil
3 Eggs
1 teaspoon Vanilla
Fresh Cherries 

Chocolate Frosting
8 tablespoons Butter
2/3 cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
3 cups Confectioner's Sugar
1/3 cup Milk
2 teaspoons Vanilla
1/4 teaspoon Salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Pit your cherries. You will need 2 cherries per cupcake 
for the filling, and 1 cherry, pitted, but with the stem on
for the garnish on top.
Combine the mix, 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder,
buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla in mixing bowl. 
Mix for 1 minute on low. 
Scrape the bowl, and mix again on medium for 2 minutes.
I used 2 ounce souffle cups for cupcake wrappers.
Put a small spoonful of batter in the bottom of the cup.
Place 2 pitted cherries on top of the batter.
Cover the cherries with more batter.
Fill the cups about 3/4 full.
Bake for 15 minutes.
Cool on a cooling rack.
While your cupcakes are cooling, make your frosting.
Place 8 tablespoons butter and 
2/3 cup of unsweetened cocoa in bowl. 
Blend on low until combined.
Add confectioners' sugar, milk, vanilla and salt.
Beat on low for 2-3 minutes. If the icing is too thick, add
more milk. If it is too thin, add confectioners' sugar.
Using a Wilton #5 tip, pipe the chocolate frosting
on top. Garnish by pitting the cherry, but keeping it
in as good a shape as possible. Top cupcake with cherry.

Thanks for joining me today!

Stop by tomorrow and see what we are making
for tomorrow's mini!
This is our mini giveaway I mentioned above.
You can enter every day until Sunday. The giveaway 
ends Sunday at 11:59 pm PST.
Enter by leaving me a comment telling me what your favorite
mini dessert is. You can enter once a day! Get 2 extra entries
by liking us on facebook, and following The Freshman Cook.
If you enter everyday, and like us on facebook, and follow us
you will have 9 entries!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

A Birthday Cake and The Freshman Cook Gets a Makeover!!

A few weeks ago, a friend of a friend had an impromptu Birthday party. Since no one had given much thought to the Birthday Cake, my husband volunteered me! Now, don't get me wrong, I love to bake. Anything, pretty much anytime. But I only had 2 hours to have it completely ready to go. So, I grabbed a box of Devil's Food cake mix, and made my favorite cake from The Cake Doctor, Anne Byrn. I have posted cakes in the past that I have made from her book. I just love it, because the cakes are so moist. (I think I have said that before! :o)!!) But the question of how to decorate the cake was really driving me crazy.! I thought about peanut butter, reese cups, chocolate chips, all of the usual cast of characters. Time was flying by, and going to the grocery was out of the question. Here is what I finally came up with.

Chocolate Cherry Double Layer Birthday Cake
1 box Duncan Hines Devil's Food Cake Mix
3 tablespoons unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 13 cups Buttermilk
1/2 cup Corn Oil
3 Eggs
1 teaspoon Vanilla
Mix all the ingredients together in your mixing bowl
Mix on low for 1 minute, then scrape the sides of your bowl,
and mix on medium for 2 minutes.
Pour into 8" pans, and bake for 30-40 minutes.
Remove from oven, cool on rack.
After 5 minutes of cooling, take a knife or offset spatula
around the edge of the cake, between the cake and the pan.
Let the cake continue to cool for 15 more minutes.
Release cake from the pan. and let it continue to cool
on the cooling rack.
I made Chocolate Ganache for the frosting. 
Melt 1/2 cup chocolate chips in a double boiler on the stove.
Add 1/4 cup of heavy duty whipping cream. This is my normal
recipe, but I ended up adding another 
1/4 cup of whipping cream because I wanted this ganache to 
drip down the cake.
Mix the ganache until completely smooth.
Cover the top of the bottom layer with ganache.
Cover the ganache with a thin layer of
cherry pie filling.
Top with top layer.
Cover top layer with ganache. 
Add some additional ganache on top until it drips
down the sides and looks pretty.
Add a circle of cherry pie filling in the middle of the top layer.
Happy Birthday My Friend !!

The Freshman Cook Makeover!!

If you have read The Freshman Cook in the last week, you know that this blog, just received a fabulous makeover. It all started when I won a contest hosted by Ashton of Something Swanky. My prize was a full blown blog makeover designed by the incredibly talented Leah over at Just Call Me Blessed!!! Am I lucky, or what!! I emailed Leah answers to her questions about what I was looking for, and she hit the nail on the head.!!! She designed the gorgeous header that you see now, and I just love it!! I hope you do too! If you are looking to make some changes in the design of your blog, you must contact Leah. She has an etsy shop so you can check out what she does, and she is such a patient person to work with. She gave me detailed instructions on how to install the features she designed. Of course, she will  install them for you, but I was curious and wanted to learn how to do it myself. If you are looking to make any changes in your blog, or your facebook page, maybe a button for your blog, or you just want something different, contact Leah. You will be so glad you did!! Thanks, Leah! You are the best!!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Valentine Cheesecake!

  I have been making this cheesecake forever! I like to write in the margins of my cookbooks, and I usually write down the date I made the recipe and what it was for.  I also try to include my thoughts on the recipe, like changes I want to make, or if it was successful or not. From my notes I see that I made this recipe for the first time when my now 22 year old son graduated from kindergarten. I can't count how many other times I have made this. I even made this when I worked as the chef in a gourmet restaurant. This cheesecake is the ultimate cheesecake. It is not dry. It is so creamy and rich. For Valentines Day, I made individual little cakes, topped with chocolate ganache and covered with cherries.          You're gonna fall in love!!
3/4 cup finely crushed Vanilla Wafers
a short 1/4 cup of melted Butter
12 ounces softened Cream Cheese
1/3 cup Sugar
1/4 cup Whipping Cream
2 1/2 teaspoons Cornstarch
2 Eggs
1 Egg Yolk
a short  1/4 cup of Vanilla Syrup
1 teaspoon Vanilla Bean Paste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Put about 15 or so Vanilla Wafers  in a plastic bag.
Take a rolling pin and crush the wafers until they are
very fine. You can also use a food processor.
Pour crushed wafers into a bowl.
Add melted butter, and mix together thoroughly.
Distribute evenly between the 3 pans.
Using your fingers, smooth the wafers over the bottom
of the pan, making it as evenly as possible.
Set pans aside while you make the filling!
In your bowl, combine together the softened cream cheese
and the sugar.
Add the whipping cream and the cornstarch. 
Beat with an electric mixer until smooth.
To get the smoothest possible mix, your cream cheese
should be very soft when you begin.
Add the eggs and the egg yolk, one at a time, beating
after each addition.
Add the vanilla bean paste and the vanilla syrup.
If vanilla bean paste is not available, use vanilla extract.
I like to use this paste because the flavor is so intense.
It especially comes out in this recipe.
You can see the little flecks of bean in the picture!
Pour the cheesecake mix into the pans.
This recipe makes three individual cakes!
Place all three in the oven.
Cook at 350 degrees for 8 minutes. Turn down the temperature 
to 200 degrees and bake for approximately 50 minutes.
To check to see if they are done, stick a toothpick in the
center like you would a cake. Also make sure the center
of the cakes do not look wet or shiny.
When you take the cakes out of the oven, let them sit
on a cooling rack. Take a knife or offset spatula around the 
edge to loosen the cake. Don't release the pans right now.
Wait at least 30 minutes, so they have a chance to cool.
Then you can release the pans, but let the bottoms stay on for a while.
When the  cakes are completely cooled,
wrap in plastic and place in the fridge to chill. Still keep the bottoms on,
or transfer them to some other type of base.
Chocolate Ganache
1 cup Milk Chocolate Chips
1/2 cup Whipping Cream
Place the chocolate chips and the whipping cream
into a saucepan and heat on low.
Stir the entire time, to melt the chocolate,
until it is beautiful and smooth.
Place chocolate on top of the cake,
covering the entire top.
Cover the top with the chilled cherries!

Happy Valentine's Day!!

This recipe comes from a cookbook called
Cheesecake Extraordinaire by Mary Crownover.
I have changed the recipe some. If you would like to make
a large(9" springform pan) cheesecake, double all of the ingredients,
except for the egg yolk. Still only use one!
You can also use vanilla liquor in place of the vanilla syrup.