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Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Munchies!

This is the ultimate cupcake!  Rich chocolate cake, creamy peanut butter filling, chocolate cream cheese icing, crushed pretzels and caramel.  One day while eating a bag of chocolate covered pretzels it hit me...This would make an awesome cupcake!  Thus, "The Munchies" cupcake was born.  If ya wanna make some of these addictive confections, the recipe is below.

Chocolate cake

  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder, highest quality available
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups hot water
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Sift together flour, salt, cocoa powder, sugar baking soda and baking powder.
In a seperate bowl mix together, eggs, buttermilk, oil, vanilla.  Add to dry mixture.  
Slowly beat in hot water.  Mix until smooth, will be a thin batter.

Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full.  Bake for 35-40 minutes, just until a cupcake passes the toothpick test.  Makes about 28 cupcakes

 Creamy peanut butter filling
  • 1/2 plus 1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter
  • 1 stick softened unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup milk or half and half
  • 4-5 cups powdered sugar

Cream butter and peanut butter together add milk and mix until creamy.  Add powdered sugar 1 cup at a time.  You want it nice and creamy, not stiff like a buttercream, so if you need to add more milk, add ONE tablespoon of milk at a time, until it becomes a creamy filling.
Chocolate cream cheese icing

  • 2 sticks softened unsalted butter
  • 8 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 1 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 7 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup whole milk or half and half

Cream the butter and cream cheese together, add vanilla.  Sift in Cocoa powder and milk.  Add powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, while mixing.

Caramel topping
If you don't feel like making your own caramel, you can melt soft caramel candies in a double boiler with some heavy cream, over low heat until it's smooth.  If you wanna try your hand at homemade, follow the recipe below, it's AMAZING!

  • 1/2 cup light-brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Pinch of coarse salt
In a small sauce pan bring butter, sugar and cream to a boil over medium-high heat. Stirring constantly until butter is melted and mixture is smooth. Reduce to a low-heat simmer, simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Stir in vanilla and salt, transfer to a glass jar or heat safe container and allow to cool to room temp.  (if you pour it over the chocolate icing while hot, it will melt the icing and become a giant mess, I learned the hard way.)
 Pretzel topping

Crush pretzel sticks and sprinkle ontop of cupcakes....ENJOY!!!!

***notes*** for the swirl on the cupcakes I used a Wilton 1M tip, you can find these at pretty much any craft store and Walmart even has them.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Note paper template for organizational binder

I created a "Notes" template for my organizational binder.  Link below...

Recipe card for organizational binder

This is a recipe card I created for my organizational binder.  I am going to write some of our go to recipes and recipes that I want to try and add them into my household binder.  Once again it is a google document.  Link for the google doc is below :D

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Week by week planner for your home organizational binder

 I also like to have a week by week planner in my binder, where I can get a little more specific about certain appointments, plans and reminders. Pick out and customize your own weekly planner pageshere! <----Once again, you can pick out your own style of weekly planner pages, download and print, you can even customize them. I will include a picture below of the one I like.

This is just a screen capture but you get the idea. I like the more simple, straight forward style planners and this one is perfect.

A month by month calendar for your home organizational binder

Awesome site for printable calendars <----this site has a ton of calendars you can print, a lot of styles to choose from.  I chose a simple one that listed the holidays for each month and a space off to the side for notes.  I will include a picture below.  I use a three hole punch to punch holes in the papers and I put them in my binder.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Chore Chart

I'm back!  I was MIA for a while, my life has been pretty hectic but now that things are starting to slow down, I am back and have sooooo much to blog about!  During my hiatus I realized I am in need of some serious organization, I have been creating charts and tons of other organizational documents that I am going to be putting in an organizational binder for my household.  The first chart I want to share with you all, is my 9 year old daughter's chore chart.  I made it in google documents, so you can edit it, color code it, add to it any way you'd like.
Chore Chart <------- Go here for the chore chart

Here is a screen capture of the chart

You will notice beside each chore is a monetary value, each day that she does that specific chore, she earns that dollar amount.  At the end the of the week we add up each check mark's dollar amount and that is the allowance she gets for that week.  She doesn't have to do all of these chores each day, I go through and highlight the ones she MUST complete each day (like picking up her room)...If she chooses to go above and beyond and do extra chores, she is then rewarded for that.                      

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Peanut buttercup cake

Chocolate Cake
1 1/2 cups hot coffee
3 Cups Sugar
2 1/2 cups sifted all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs (room temperature)
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups buttermilk (shaken very well)
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
3 ounces of high quality semi-sweet chocolate

Preheat oven to 300 degrees
In a large bowl sift all dry ingredients and sugar together.
in a small bowl pour hot coffee over semi-sweet chocolate, whisk together until chocolate is melted.
in a large bowl beat eggs with an electric mixer for 3 minutes, add oil, vanilla, buttermilk and coffee/chocolate mixture.  Beat on medium for 2 minutes.
Add sifted dry ingredients to wet mixture and beat on medium speed until well combined.
grease 2, 8 inch round cake pans and put a circle of parchment or wax paper in the bottom of each pan.  Pour 3 1/2 cups of batter in each pan (I make cupcakes with the left over batter)
Bake on 300 degrees for 1 hour-1 hour and 5 minutes.  At about the 1 hour mark, check cakes with a toothpick, if tooth pick comes out mostly clean, the cakes are done.
Allow to cool IN the pans.  Take a knife, loosen the cake from the sides of the pans and once totally cooled, you can invert the pans onto wire racks and allow to cool for any additional time.

Peanut butter buttercream
2 sticks  unsalted butter (softened)
6 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup whole milk
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons of peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
beat butter until it is light and fluffy...Add milk and vanilla.  Add powdered sugar 1 cup at a time.  Whip for a few minutes, then add the peanut butter.  Continue to mix for 3 minutes.
Chocolate buttercream frosting
1 stick unsalted butter
2/3 cup Cocoa powder
3-4 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cream butter, add milk and vanilla.  Add cocoa powder.  Add powdered sugar 1 cup at time. mix until fluffy.
Chocolate ganache-
4 ounches of dark chocolate
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon unsalted butter
Heat together in microwave for about 30-45  seconds.  Whisk together, until all chocolate is melted and ganache is glossy.
Assembly of cake
Put one cake round on serving plate or cake board flat side up.  Top with half of the peanut butter buttercream and chopped Reese's Cups (about 5 Reese's cups) .
Stack the other cake round ontop flat side up.  Frost with chocolate frosting.  Using a pastry bag fitted with the Wilton 1M tip and with peanut butter buttercream in the bag, with a medium pressure squeeze out dollops of the frosting on top of cake and as cake border.
With a whisk, drizzle ganache all over top of cake and on sides.  Cut Reese's Cups in half and place halves on top of cake.