Sunday, August 24, 2008

Baby in a Blanket Cupcakes & Marshmallow Fondant

The perfect edible artwork for a baby shower!

These adorable little cupcakes were inspired by my talented cousin, Beth. Her favorite hobby is cakes decorating, and she is really good at it! The 'Marshmallow Fondant' recipe that she gave me (listed below) is AMAZING! I can't believe how easy it is to make, and how much better tasting it is than the store bought Wilson brand fondant (not to mention 90% cheaper!). It is like playdough you can eat!

Babies in a blanket ~ Cupcakes

Fondant~ Skin color (pinkish), and pink
Cupcake mix
Icing sugar (make your own or pre-made)
Zip Lock bags (one for each color fondant)
Lg. Container (for baby heads)
XL. Container (for cupcakes)
Wax paper
Rolling pin
Knife (sharp edge)
Paint brush (clean!)
Black edible pen
Whoppers candy (I used strawberry flavor, because that is what they had at Ralphs, but you could use jelly beans or anything else you can think of).

*make cupcakes
SET- UP Fondants
Zip Lock bags
Wax Paper
Sm. Container
Paint Brush
Black Edible pen
Rolling Pin

SET UP WORK SPACE- Set down wax paper on your work area. (I tacked it down with tape on the sides…)- Fill your small container with warm water.- Have flour near by just in case the fondant gets sticky you can dust it.- Place your larger container where you can grab it when you're finished.- You will need a knife to cut the fondant into pieces you will need to use.- Zip locks near by so that when you finish using fondant you can immediately put in away and avoid drying out.

(SKIN COLORED FONDANT) Cut off enough to make a ¾" balls. This will be the head of the baby. (continue on with how many you want)- Using more skin color fondant. Take out paint brush, dip it in the water, tap the excess off, brush on the front/sides of the head – mid way. - Put excess fondant into zip lock – remove air and seal.-(BLACK FONDANT) Roll very thinly cut off not quite ½". Make a single curl in it. Again repeat paint brush procedure. Dab water on the top of the head of the "baby" place the curl or bow. I also added a tiny nose. You might have to hold it there for a little bit. (Baby heads are done… they need to dry now. Put them into the med. Container or a container where they are NOT touching each other. Leave them to dry over-night)

CUPCAKES:-You are just making them tonight. No icing. Let them rest over night.

DAY OF SHOWER:(Baby heads will be completely dry now)- Start by setting up your area once again like you did the night before with the exception of the additional gum drops. (You'll be making baby blankets next)- Easiest is to line the cupcakes in front of your work space so that they are easy to grab.- Place your head in front of the cupcake. If the baby head doesn't stay by itself, use more icing in that area and maneuver the head into the icing so that it's snug and stays.- I iced the cupcakes, found a nice spot for the head (I used edible markers to draw on the eyes, and a small dowell to poke a yawning mouth on some of them). Roll out flat, cut into a circle that is long enough that will drape over the cup cake. I used my 'Creative Memories' scrapbooking supplies - I found a circle that would work, and used that as a pattern. I cut into the fondant with a sharp knife, and pinched the edges of the blankets to make it look wavy. Drape the "now blanket" over the cupcake and baby. From looking at the picture I am posting, I think that the blankets look the best when they are pulled over both of the whoppers, and rest at the fondant neck of the sweet cupcake baby. The last thing I added was the bow on the babies head. The little flower on the baby blanket was made with a small cookie cutter. As long as the blanket is not completley dry, the flower will just stick on. If the blanket is dry, just use the paint brush dipped in a tiny amount of water to attach the flower. If I had more time, I would have added a larger yellow flower behind the small pink flower for a richer textured look.

There you have your baby in a blanket… I will warn you, these are too cute to eat, although they are fully edible! You may want to make a few plain cupcakes for guest to eat.

Marshmallow Fondant (MMF)

16 oz. white marshmallows
2 Tbsp. water
2 lbs. confectioner's sugar, sifted (8-9 cups, powdered sugar is the same thing as confectioner's sugar)

Liberally grease a large section of your counter top with the shortening (you can also use a large bowl, but I think the counter top is easier). Pour about half of the sugar over the shortening and make a large well in the center.
In a double boiler or the microwave, heat the marshmallows and the water until melted. Pour over the powdered sugar and mix (I like to use my hands – greased of course – to do this. Just be careful because it is quite hot at first).
Knead, adding more sugar as needed, until the mixture is not sticky. (I have never used all 2 pounds of sugar.)
Wrap airtight (I usually wrap in plastic wrap and then stick in a ziploc baggy) and let rest overnight for best results.
When you are ready to use it, dust your work surface with cornstarch and knead until pliable (you can microwave it for a few seconds to help soften it if you need to). Then shape or roll as thin as you want with a rolling pin dusted in cornstarch. To keep it from sticking to your work surface, turn rolled dough frequently and continue dusting with cornstarch until you have reached the desired thinness.

Q:Beth, At what point do you add the food coloring to the fondant recipe? Thanks, Dana

A:Dana, If you want all the fondant one color, you can mix it in when you combine the marshmallows and sugar. If you want several different colors, you knead the color into the fondant when you are ready to use it. Just make sure you do not use liquid food coloring. You have to use either paste or gel coloring or it will mess up the consistancy of your fondant. Have fun!Beth

Thank you, Beth!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Egg Souffle

My mom always made this dish on Christmas Morning.  For me it is a comfort food and reminds me of the excitement of Christmas Morning and of having lots of loved ones around.

about 8 slices of white bread, crust cut off
7 Eggs
1 LB Sausage - browned, drainted, and cut into bite sized pieces
2 Cups Milk
1 Cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Dry Mustard

Spray a 9x13 pan with Pam.
Line cake pan with crustless bread.
Evenly sprinkle sausage on top of bread, and evenly top with cheese.
Combine milk, eggs, mustard, and salt.  Pour over the top of bread, sausage and cheese.
Refrigerate over night (covered)
Bake at 350 for about an hour until browned on top (Do Not Undercook!)
Cool for 20 to 30 minutes before cutting.

Easter Morning Pull Aparts

These goey, sticky, and delishious breakfast rolls are sure to be a hit with EVERYONE!  My mom made these for our family when I was growing up and they were always gobbled up fast.  I recently made them for a baby shower and they were devoured!  So yummy, and so easy!
16 Frozen Rhodes Rolls
1/2 package of Non-Instant Butterscotch Pudding Mix
pinch cinnamon
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
3/4 Cup Melted Butter

Place frozen rolls in a bundt pan (Make sure to spray the pan with Pam first)  Sprinkle pudding mix and cinnamon on top.  Combine butter and brown sugar and drizzle over rolls.  Cover with tin foil and leave on the counter overnight to rise.

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.  Turn over on a plate and enjoy :-)

Friday, August 22, 2008


This recipe is perfection...

4 cubes of butter (yes 1lb)
2 cups brown sugar
1 1/2 cups sugar
cream all
add 3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
cream all for 4 minutes
6 cups of flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 bag of chocolate chips (I prefer Ghiradelli's milk chocolate chips)
Mix together
Bake 375 for 8-10 minutes
Sometimes I bake at 350 for 10 minutes

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Spicy Honey Chicken

This salad is sure to impress...

Spicy Honey Chicken Salad

2 t Garlic Powder
2 t Chili Powder
1 t Salt
1 t Ground Cumin
1 t paprika
1/4-1/2 t Cayenne pepper (depending on how hot you like it)
6 boneless skinless chicken breasts

6 T Honey
2 t Cider Vinegar

Combine first 6 ingredients (all the spices) in bowl and mix well. Use kitchen shears (or a pair of clean scissors) to trim off any excess fat from the chicken pieces. Toss chicken with spice rub to coat all sides well. Brush grill surface lightly with oil. Grill chicken a few minutes on each side, until cooked through.

Combine Honey and Vinegar in a small bowl, stirring well until combined. Brush mixture on chicken (both sides) in the final moments of grilling. Now because the glaze is sugar-based, you’ll want to turn the heat down so it doesn’t burn, but let it cook for a few minutes to caramelize.

Bermuda Vinaigrette

1 garlic clove, minced
1 T minced shallot (1 small shallot, or you could substitute onion)
1/3 C fresh orange juice
3T fresh lime juice
2 t honey (I added a little more honey. I have a sweet tooth...)
1 t cumin
1/2 t salt
1/4 t ground black pepper
1/2 C vegetable oil
In a food processor or blender: Combine all ingredients except oil in a food processor or blender. With machine running pour the oil in using a fine steady stream.

Put chicken over romaine lettuce, add slices of avocado candied walnuts and red onion and pour vinagrette over top or toss altogether. I like it better on individual plates but you decide!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Breakfast Burritos

The perfect way to incorporate vegetables onto the breakfast plate!

Breakfast Burritos
1 tomato, diced
2 t finely chopped cilantro
1/4 cup chopped onion
8 slices of cooked bacon
2 t butter
4 scrambled eggs
1/8 t pepper
3 T salsa
4 flour tortillas
1/3 cup Mexican blend cheese

Cooking instructions:

1. Mix tomato and cilantro: set aside  2. Cook onion in butter in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. When onions become glassy in appearance add cooked bacon and continue cooking until onion is tender, stirring occasionally.  3. Add the scrambeld eggs, pepper and salsa; cook until done, strirring occasionally. Stir in tomato mixture and remove from heat.4. Divinde scrambled egg mixture evely between tortillas; top with cheese. Fold up one end of each tortilla over filling, then fold in sides like an envelope. Serve immediately.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Orange Julius

This recipe has history - in 7th grade, I submitted this to the 1st cookbook I was ever a part of.

Orange Julius

6 oz. frozen orange juice concentrate
1 cup milk
1 cup water
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
12 ice cubes

1. Combine all ingredients except ice cubes in blender.
2. Blend for about 1-2 minutes, adding ice cubes one at a time.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

7 Layer Bean Dip

This is an appetizer everyone will enjoy!

Easy 7 Layer Bean Dip

In a serving dish, layer the following ingredients in this order:
Refried Beans
Sour Cream
Chopped Tomato
Chopped Black Olives
Shredded Cheddar or Mexican mix cheese
Chopped Greeen Onion

I also love to add cilantro! Enjoy!