Thursday, November 4, 2010

Happy Halloween!

I really enjoyed our weekend! It started on Friday with Lily Ruth's 'party' at Parent's Day Out. The kiddos wore costumes and parents brought treats and the caregivers made special lunches in the classrooms. Adorable... well, adorable except for what the program director refers to as 'The Annual Torturing of the Children' - also known as picture time:

I only got a few shots before all 3 mamas gave up and got into the picture. Now I just have to remember to ask for copies...

I made a new favorite recipe - Lollipop Cakes! They actually come together very easily, and the recipe multiplies out very easily and tastily. Since I am NOT a great baker, and I needed to make way more of these than the original recipe allows for, both of those things are important. Alright, I'm going to give you the original recipe, then the modified / multiplied version that I have now made twice :-)

The original recipe comes from the 'Bean Appetit' cookbook by Shannon Payette Seip and Kelly Parthen with Carisa Dixon that I acquired on our (AWESOME) trip to Madison Wisconsin. You can see more about them on their Bean Sprouts Cafe website.

Bear with me, This is actually 3 recipes - the Bean Appetit Flour Blend, the Sweet 'Meat' Filling (a.k.a. chocolate cake), and the directions for assembling the Lollipop Cakes.

Bean Appetit Flour Blend

3 cups whole wheat flour
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 1/4 cups wheat germ
1/2 cup flax meal

combine and store in an airtight container

Sweet 'Meat' Filling

1/4 cup Bean Appetit Flour Blend
1 tsp cocoa powder
2 Tbsp packed light brown sugar
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp water
2 tsp milk
1 Tbsp chocolate chips

- preheat the oven to 350 degrees
- combine the flour blend, cocoa powder, brown sugar and baking powder in a mixing bowl. Then add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, water and milk and stir until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.
- spray a mini muffin pan and pour in the cake batter. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cake comes out clean.

Lollipop Cakes

Serves 4

1 recipe Sweet 'Meat' Filling
3-4 Tbsp milk
4 lollipop sticks
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips, melted

- When your cake is cooled, mash it up into little pieces in a bowl. Add the milk until the cake becomes sticky.
- form 1-inch-diameter balls using the sticky cake. Carefully slide a lollipop stick into each ball. Place in the freezer for 20 minutes or until the cake hardens.
- dip each ball into the melted chocolate and decorate it with the sprinkles. Set the cake balls on parchment paper and let them cool for 10 minutes or until the chocolate hardens.

SOOOOOOOOOOOO, here is the expanded version. Remember, I've made it TWICE, so I'm fairly certain that it's not a fluke that it worked... but it might be... bake at your own risk :-P

Makes 24 - 26 Lollipop Cakes:

1 1/2 cup Bean Appetit Flour Blend
6 tsp cocoa powder (I used Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa Powder)
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
6 Tbsp olive oil
6 tsp balsamic vinegar
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup milk
1/3 (+ a little bit extra) cup chocolate chips (I used 60%+ dark chocolate morsels)

Modifications to the process:

- Mix the cake in the same order as before. use a full size muffin/cupcake tray (I filled a 12 portion tray). bake approx 25 minutes - start checking for done-ness at 20 minutes.
- Once the cake has cooled, mash and mix in milk in small amounts. you want sticky, but still manageable, not sloppy or runny. I used 9 Tbsp milk.
- Roll the cake mixture into balls, insert the lollipop sticks and freeze (40+ minutes worked best for me)
- I may be skewered by real bakers, but I melted the remainder of the bag of chocolate morsels in the microwave (in a pyrex dish) for 1 minute.
- While the chocolate begins it's melting, bring a small pan of water to boil on the stove (small enough that the dish will sit in it w/o becoming submerged). As soon as boiling begins, turn the heat off, and place the dish of chocolate into the pan. The residual heat from the water will keep the chocolate at the right consistency. If the chocolate becomes too hard, turn the heat on 'low' for a minute or two.
- Sprinkle each lollipop as soon as it has been dipped. If you wait too long, said sprinkles will not stick :-(
- By the way, I tried using 'white chocolate' on a few from the first batch - not fantastic...

So there you have it! Yummmmmmmmm. I know - I love you, too.

1 comment: