Posts Tagged ‘Baking’

Easy Brownie Cups Recipe.

December 12, 2008

(This post is photo intensive so beware!)

First up, the recipe for you to read through then some step by step photographs to aid anyone who has never baked before-I dare you to try this easy recipe.

Brownies (serves 16)

1/2 cup vegetable oil (or melted butter)
1 cup caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 eggs (lightly beaten)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 175 degrees celsius. Line a muffin tray with paper linings.
2. Mix oil, sugar and vanilla essence in a large bowl. Beat in eggs gradually with an electric mixer.
3. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt in another bowl.
4. Gradually stir in egg mixture and flour mixture until well blended (you may use your electric mixer but on low speed)
5. Stir in walnuts and pour batter into paper linings.
6. Bake in the centre of the oven for about 15 minutes or until moist crumbs cling onto the skewer when poked in the middle of the brownie (not when the skewer is clean)

Photo time.

Chop the walnuts to the consistency that you desire. This were my walnuts halfway in the chopping process.
 

The oil-some people get terrified as to how much fat goes into sweets. Reality check for you! 🙂
 

Yes and there’s sugar as well. I love the crystal look of the sugar in this photo.
 

My whisks still clean before mixing, vanilla was added to this mixture already.
 

Eggs, two are going to be separated from their gang.
 

Beating away and eggs added in gradually. I’m super particular about the meaning behind gradual, since I hate my mixture to curdle up when the eggs aren’t incorporated well. yuck.
 

The whisk after all that mixing.
 

The flour measured, feel free to be more precise than me. 🙂
 

I love this cocoa from Hershey’s.
 

Measurement of baking powder.
 

The same double-sided spoon can be used for the salt measurement as well. Thanks to this awesome magnetic measuring set from Calin last Christmas. 😀

The gorgeous dry mixture.
 

Finally all mixed together in glorious perfection.
 

The end. Now eat.
 

You’ll love how your kitchen smells when brownies are baking.

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Dark Chocolate Cake Recipe.

June 9, 2008

This dark chocolate cake recipe from all recipes was fabulous. Next time I’d remember to take the pastry chef’s comment on beating the egg yolks and whites separately with some of the sugar – I’m sure this would make it more fluffy. In addition, I would take Sherene’s advise and use melted dark chocolate instead of cocoa powder and boiling water. Hey at least I used the best Hershey’s cocoa powder, haha.

Each step was done from scratch with love. Baking makes me feel at ease and happy. 🙂

The measurement of butter and the cocoa mixture cooling down.

Empty cupcake holders, waiting to be filled with chocolate goodness. 😛

The sugar glistering amongst its butter friend, just before getting better acquainted with each other.
 

More measurements of the flour mixture and egg.
 

Tadah, out came 50 mini-cupcakes. Moist and delicious. For those who have tried this (you know who you are), I hope you’ve enjoyed it!
 

p/s: I substituted the vanilla essence with Starbucks’ toffee nut syrup.

The Only Time I’ve Use Betty Crocker Cake Mix.

April 11, 2008

Call me a person that’s full of pride, it doesn’t matter. I simply refuse to use even Betty Crocker’s delicious cake mix when baking. The only time I’ve used it is when I had to bake numerous cupcakes for my friend’s birthday. It’ll simply take too much time to bake large batches of cupcakes in my tiny oven.

Nothing really beats measuring the correct amount of ingredients and mixing things up using different methods. Nothing really beats seeing the end product of my very own creation come to life, knowing full well that every credit goes to me.

I’m pretty sure I ain’t the only baker around who feels this way! 🙂

p/s: My camera lens broke today (Fuji Finepix F31) 😦 It isn’t worth getting it repaired. Any camera (similar to the amazing F31 specifications) to recommend?

Carrot Cupcakes With Starbucks Toffee Nut Syrup.

March 23, 2008

I decided to bake for a few of my friends from school and another dear friend of mine from church. Each of them got three mini carrot cupcakes in a brown bag. 🙂 Check out my previous post on the carrot cake here.

The cupcakes just before entering the oven.

The cupcakes after they leave the oven.

I then used a cake tester and poked holes in it and spread this delicious Starbucks toffee nut syrup over each cupcake.

And in the cupcakes went, into these brown bags for my friends.

I hope you guys enjoyed it! 😀 

My boyfriend saw me typing this post and asked me where his cupcakes were, oops! 😛

Moist Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins Recipe.

March 1, 2008

I needed to bake some banana muffins as I’ve got a bunch of over-riped bananas in the kitchen. Then I came across Genevieve‘s recipe and decided to try to out. I made some tiny changes. Thank you Genevieve. 🙂

Moist Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (Serves 12)

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/4 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 3 large)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup milk
2 small eggs
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 tsp vanilla essence

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease 12 muffin cups or line with muffin papers.
2. Sift first 4 ingredients into a large bowl.
3. Combine bananas, sugar, butter, milk, eggs and vanilla essence in a medium bowl.
4. Mix into dry ingredients until just combined. Do not over-mix!
5. Fold in chocolate chips.
6. Divide batter among prepared muffin cups, fill it till 3/4 full.
7. Bake until muffins are golden brown and tester inserted into center comes out clean, for about 25 minutes. (10 to 15 minutes for miniature muffins)
8. Cool muffins in tray for 5 minutes before transferring muffins to cooling rack to cool completely. Enjoy. 🙂

Baking really takes the stress out of school work. Sometimes you got to just step back and leave your work aside for a little while and do something you love. For me, its baking.

And of course it’s much more worth the while when I see good friends enjoying this muffin treat. 😀 Here’s Lishan and her muffin, while we were at a field trip on Friday.

I am looking forward to baking with my Starbucks toffee nut latte. 🙂

Join The “Great Cooks Blogroll” If You’re A Foodie Like Me!

February 23, 2008

One of the largest factor for setting up this blog is to have a chance to get to know others, share my ideas and learn from each other. Whenever I find someone who share my passion for cooking and baking online, I get excited. It’s such a nice feeling to know that ever since this blog existed, I’ve learned quite a bit from quite a few of my readers. Hence, if you’re a “newbie” like me in the food blogosphere, I do encourage you to join the “Great Cooks Blogroll”. I just did! 😀

Click on the icon below to join.

Many thanks to Jill McKeever for creating this blogroll for the food-loving community. And of course, thanks to Rosie for posting this on her blog.

Muffins & Cupcakes: Why they are different.

February 20, 2008

I found a lot of talk and misconceptions about the similarities and differences between a muffin and a cupcake online. Some say a muffin becomes a cupcake when there is frosting on it. Some say that cupcakes are smaller than muffins. That is incorrect, here is my take on it. Let’s conquer the cupcake first.

Cupcakes

  • A cupcake is essentially the same as a whole cake. It is simply baked and served in a portion to serve one individual.
  • It is usually frosted (like those in the photos above) and decorated. It is common to see it at birthday parties and weddings.
  • It is sweet and hence eaten mostly as a dessert or a sweet treat.
  • An un-frosted cupcakes does not equate to a muffin.
  • Butter is usually used in a cupcake recipe.
  • Conclusion: A cupcake is a cake.

Muffins

Source: Wikipedia

  • A muffin is one of the easiest things to bake (although I’ve had my fair share of failures, will give you tips to succeed in baking a muffin). It is simply mixing the wet and dry ingredients together and some recipes do not even require the use of an electronic beater or whisk.
  • It can be frosted or not frosted. For fruit muffins, I like to use a crumble on top (recipe in the next post).
  • It can be sweet or savoury and is mostly eaten during breakfast or tea.
  • A frosted muffin does not equate a to cupcake.
  • Oil is usually used in a muffin recipe.
  • Conclusion: A muffin is a type of bread (quick bread).

I hope this clarifies the difference between a cupcake and a muffin better. Watch out for my next post on my experience with baking muffins.

Chocolate Icing Recipe.

February 9, 2008

You can really do whatever you want to an Icing recipe to suit your preference. Here is my basic chocolate Icing recipe. It’s really easy, just 5 tiny ingredients and you’re good to go.

Chocolate Icing Recipe

Ingredients

1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (you may add more if you like)
1/3 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup of confectioner’s sugar (you may increase this according to the consistency you’re looking for)

Directions

1. In a large bowl, beat butter and cocoa together until well-combined.
2. Add milk and vanilla extract and beat till smooth.
3. Gradually beat in the confectioner’s sugar until your desired consistency is achieved.
4. Adjust with more milk, sugar, flour, if necessary.
5. Spread this beautiful icing onto your cake and serve.

Here’s how I decorated my cake in my previous post. This cake were for my cousins, during a picnic we had while watching Ballet Under The Stars. The cake was rich and Yum-O.

I topped off the icing with chocolate chips and dusted it lightly with confectioner’s sugar for a contrasting effect.

A close up view.

I welcome suggestions to make this recipe even better. 🙂

Extremely Rich & Moist Chocolate Cake Recipe.

February 8, 2008

Warning: This recipe is not for any chocolate lover, it is only for those who would die without the existence of chocolate and its goodness.

This is one of my favourite chocolate recipes, I hope you will enjoy it as much as I do. Here is the recipe for this luscious cake. I will be posting the icing recipe and display the finished cake, so do look out for it.

Extremely Rich & Moist Chocolate Cake (Serves 6)

Ingredients
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup white sugar (You may reduce this if you prefer it not to be too sweet)
2 small eggs
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup milk
1 & 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
A pinch of salt

Directions
1. Preheat oven at 175°C, grease and flour 2 cake tins with cocoa powder.
2. Sift flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt into one bowl.
3. Cream butter and sugar with electronic mixer, until light and fluffy. Beat eggs in very slowly, one by one. Stir in vanilla extract.
4. Combine in flour mixture alternatively with milk, mixing until incorporated. Pour into the 2 cake tins.
5. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or when a skewer comes out clean when poked into the middle of the cake.
6. Allow the cake to cool in the cake tin for 10 minutes before removing it to cool completely on a cooling rack.

Please note that the oven temperature and baking timing varies across ovens. Results for this cake will depend on the relationship you have with your oven. Here are some photos to guide you along.

The cake mixture waiting to be placed into my oven.

One layer of the cake cooling off on the cooling rack.

The 2 layers waiting to be iced.

Watch out for the rest of this post, for the icing recipe and finished cake.

The evolution of my cupcake designs.

February 6, 2008

I love baking cupcakes. It is so fun to decorate and it really allows me to get creative. Cupcakes are appropriate for many occasions too. I spot it at weddings, birthday parties and even at corporate events. It is also almost mess-free as I do not have to wash the cake tin as thorough, as compared to baking a whole cake.

Here’s how my cupcake designs vary from the year 2006 till now. I hope to give you bakers some inspiration.

A single mini-chocolate cupcake, lightly dusted with icing sugar. The recipe book behind is one of my favourite baking books.

Double chocolate cupcakes with chocolate fudge. A real delightful overdose of chocolate. These were baked for my church friends.

Mini-peanut butter cupcakes with chocolate fudge. This is one of my personal favourites.

My friends Calin and Elaine came over to my place for a baking session one day and we got really creative. It was a lot of fun. We used pink icing with marshmallows and chocolate chips. We made faces, flowers and somewhere in that photo lies an old man.

These chocolate cupcakes with colourful beaded sugars were for a Director friend on his big night at an SMU play.

This garden-themed birthday cake was for my friend’s birthday party. Calin, Elaine and I had crazy fun decorating this cake. It took us more than half a day. There were flowers, soil, grass, bees, butterflies, clouds, the sky and a rainbow found in this cupcake creation.

I hope to bake more soon, probably after Chinese New Year.