The Freshman Cook: A Week of Mini's and a Giveaway!

This week will be a week of mini’s! What the heck am I talking about? Well, I just love little bite sized mini desserts, and if you are like me, you can’t get enough of them either! So, starting today I will be making and posting (and eating!) a mini dessert everyday! Doesn’t that sound like fun! I know, I love it too! 🙂

In celebration of our “mini week” The Freshman Cook is giving away a “Just Mini Desserts”cook book along with a Libbey, Just Desserts, 25 piece parfait! You must comment in the comment section and tell me what your favorite mini dessert is. You can comment every day this week until Sunday, July 15. Each day you comment is an entry. If you would like additional entries you may follow The Freshman Cook, and like our facebook page. Of course, that can only be done once and it doesn’t matter what day you do that. So if you enter every day, like us on facebook, and follow us, you will have a total of 9 entries. I hope to hear from you!

Our first mini is a takeoff on strawberry shortcake and I call it Creamy Dreamy Shorties. Its made of strawberries, pastry cream, and pound cake, and topped with whipped cream. Yum!

Creamy Dreamy Shorties

Pound Cake

1 1/2 cups Butter

8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened

3 cups Sugar

6 Eggs

1 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla

3 cups Flour

1/8 teaspoon Salt

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Grease and flour bread pans.(or really any kind of pan)

Beat your butter and cream cheese until creamy.

About 2 minutes.

Add your sugar a little at a time beat for 5-7 minutes.

Add your eggs, one at a time, beating just until

the yellow disappears. Add vanilla and mix well.

Combine your flour and salt in a bowl, then gradually

add the mix to your butter mixture. Have your mixer 

at low speed and mix just until blended.

Pour into your prepared pans and bake for 30-40 minutes.

Cool on wire rack for 15 minutes, then take it out of the pan.

Pastry Cream

2 cups Milk

1/4 cup Sugar

2 Egg Yolks

1 Egg

1/4 cup Cornstarch

1/3 cup Sugar

2 tablespoons Butter

1 teaspoon Vanilla

Using a heavy saucepan, stir together the milk

and 1/4 cup sugar.

Bring to a boil over medium heat.

In a medium bowl, mix together the egg yolk and the egg. In a separate bowl, mix together the cornstarch and the 1/3 cup of sugar.
Then stir the sugar and cornstarch mix in to the egg mix and … stir until smooth.
When your milk comes to a boil, drizzle about 1/2 of the milk into the egg mix. This is called tempering the eggs. You slowly add the milk so that the eggs can get used to the high temperature and they won’t curdle or cook. As you are pouring, stir or whisk the eggs. Once your eggs are mixed, pour the egg and milk mix back into the pan with the rest of the milk. Slowly bring the mix to a boil, stirring the entire time until it thickens. After it has thickened, remove from the heat. (mine is still on the stove, but on a turned off burner) Add your vanilla and butter, stirring until the butter is completely blended. Pour cream in to heat proof container.
Place a piece of plastic wrap on the top of the cream. Make sure it is touching the cream. This way a skin can not develop on the cream. Refrigerate until chilled.

Strawberries

Cut up a few strawberries. I made a little extra here. If your strawberries need a little sweetening, sprinkle a spoonful or two of sugar on them. Mix it up and refrigerate.

Assembly

Cut up some of the pound cake into small bite size pieces. Use more or less depending on the size of your serving dish. I went back and cut my strawberries into small pieces as I was putting this together. Plus I wanted a few tiny pieces for garnish on the top. I filled the bottom with short cake, then added some strawberries, and then some pastry cream. Top it with whipped cream and garnish with strawberries. This can be changed around according to the size and design of your dish. Enjoy! Thanks for joining me today! Please stop by tomorrow for another mini recipe and don’t forget you can enter the giveaway every day. The giveaway ends on Sunday, July 15, 2012 @ 11.59pm PST.


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