June 5, 2015

Hot Dog Sugar Cookie

These hot dog sugar cookies are complete knock-offs from Callye Alvarado's blog The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle.   She is an amazing artist who uses sugar cookies as her canvas and royal icing as her paint.   I am constantly in awe of her talent and get so much inspiration for my own baking.  Her ability to visualize so many different cookies out of the most ordinary cutters is truly incredible...what a visionary!

Nothing says summer more than hot dogs and how cute would it be to serve these cookies at your next summer BBQ?  I myself am a ketchup, relish and onion fan but with these "hot dogs" you can add whatever condiments you want.

Happy Summer!!!

June 1, 2015

Buttermilk Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Here's a scrumptious banana bread that tastes even better the next day.  The recipe originated from one of my sister's co-workers, but was adjusted and tweaked to it's current deliciousness.  Buttermilk makes the bread really moist and I added mini chocolate chips to gild the lily even further.   (Never a bad thing in my opinion.)  Be sure to use REALLY ripe bananas, we're talking super dark, to get the maximum fruit flavor. 

May 16, 2015

Rainbow Cake

This Rainbow Cake has been a long time coming - we're talking five years!  Procrastination is not a trait I am friendly with.  I'm the type that likes to cross things off my to do list as soon as possible but for some reason I waited such a long time to make this cake.   Not anymore.

I'd first seen it featured on the blog Whisk Kid and then later on the Martha Stewart Show.   I loved how the rainbow of colorful cake layers is hidden behind a veil of unassuming white Swiss meringue buttercream.   There's just something so joyful about this surprise that it always makes me smile.

For the cake layers I used the recipe from Cook's Country's Confetti Layer Cake.  I like that it contains cake flour instead of all-purpose and uses a reverse creaming method to make the batter.    I find the crumb of the baked cake is so much more tender this way.   

I have a feeling I'll be getting many requests from family and friends to make this cake again and again.  But since it makes me so happy I don't mind!

April 12, 2015

Lemon Poppy Seed Sour Cream Bundt Cake

Could I think of a more superfluous name for this cake - Lemon Poppy Seed Sour Cream Bundt.  I admit it doesn't roll off the tongue so easily but I couldn't help myself, the name says it all.  The naissance of this beauty came from my desire to clear out my fridge of sour cream and lemons.  A rather inauspicious beginning I admit but at least it was a noble cause! 

Luckily for me the recipe is very straight forward and comes together in no time at all.   This is the second bundt cake I've made in a week.  While I love how simple and nostalgic they are, I do confess it's the cake pan that I'm a bit more obsessed with.   My favorite is this one by Nordic Ware...a true gem in any baker's kitchen.

I will pay this cake the ultimate compliment by saying it's as if it came from the box.  What?@!  Yes, you read correctly and it's no joke!  What I mean is that the texture is amazingly moist and tender, not dense and heavy like you find most bundt cakes to be.   My only critique is that I want MORE lemon flavor so next time I think I'll brush on a lemon infused simple syrup while the cake is still warm but before it cools and is glazed.  

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