Wednesday, February 29, 2012

{ Chocolate Mint Cupcakes }



I think I've mentioned this in the past, but my husband likes canned icing.

Yeah, right? This baffles me.

The Bean, however, likes homemade icing.

I've done a fine job raising this human being, haven't I?

Go me!

Back to the icing:

Quandry? Nah, normally I frost a sheet cake in 1/2 canned (chocolate) 1/2 homemade (buttercream). 

Since it's 1/2 dark & 1/2 light, I always call it a Yin Yang cake.

The Yin Yang symbol (simplistically) means that the 2 sides are interdependent and that one is no better than the other. 

This is SO not true here.

Buttercream is clearly superior to canned icing.

Clearly.

Last night, when baking the hubs a cake, however, I decided to do something different.

I poured out enough for a 9" square cake, and then made the rest into cupcakes for the Bean.

The other day, while at the dollar store, I fell victim to little $1 bags of Andes Chocolate Mints.

Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.... Andes. Chocolatey, minty goodness.

There are 12 Andes in each pack. 



I kept wondering what to do with these, you know, besides inhale them.

Should I chop them up and throw them in cookies? Should I put them in brownie batter?

These cupcakes presented the perfect solution.

A Chocolate Mint Glaze.

yes.

Mix it up...



Next, dunk your cooled cupcakes into the glaze



 As you remove them, turn them slowly to try and get off all excess glaze.


They will be gorgeous and glossy when wet.

I dipped mine a second time as well.

The glaze will dry, and while it won't be as glossy, it will still be quite pretty.

Sweet, fudgey, with a cool minty finish. 

That's what I'm talking about.

And delicious.

Let's not forget delicious.

This ain't no canned icing.

I can't believe I just typed that.

I'm so ashamed.

Tina

P.S. If you haven’t already,  you can ‘like’ my Facebook page here, and follow me on twitter here, and you can follow me on instagram here.

Chocolate Mint Glaze
recipe by Tina @ Sugar Bean Bakers
enough glaze for 12 cupcakes

12 cupcakes
12 Andes Mints
1/4 Cup Butter
1/2 Cup Powdered Sugar
3-4 Tablespoons HOT Water
Dash of Vanilla


At 15 second intervals, melt the Andes with the butter. Stir after every 15 seconds (only took 1 minute total in my microwave), whisk until glossy. Add powdered sugar and 3 Tablespoons of Water, and again, whisk until glossy. If not thin enough, add the 4th Tablespoon and whisk. Lastly, whisk in the vanilla.



This post is part of a St. Patty's Day blog carnival!

If you've arrived via 20Something Saver Hi! Yes, you've taken the correct train!

Your next stop is here over to see my friends at Hot Coupon World where they've baked us up some nomalicious Double Chocolate Mint Cookies!

Chocolate & Mint for the win!

No shoving! There's plenty for everyone!

Please comment  & share this post :)


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Thursday, February 23, 2012

It's A Keeper Thursday Linky Party!

Have you been to It's A Keeper yet?


If not, what are you waiting for? Christina has tons of recipes and tips on her site!
As you may have guessed, she only posts them, if they are, in fact, keepers!
I can't wait to try the 2 Bite Apple Pies & Strawberry Refrigerator Cake!

Every week, Christina hosts It's A Keeper Thursday. This week I'm co-hosting with her!

Be sure to link up your favorite recipes, but before you do, here are just a few little guidelines…

Follow It’s a Keeper and and Sugar Bean Bakers via email, Facebook and/or Twitter.

It's A Keeper Facebook
Sugar Bean Bakers Facebook

Your link should be a food or craft/project related item. Link up as many as you’d like!

Add the It's A Keeper Button to your sidebar or blog post – help spread the word!

Here's the It's a Keeper Button:


Here is mine if you'd like to add it as well:






Happy linking & have a great Thursday!

Tina 


Friday, February 17, 2012

{ Buckeye Cupcakes }



I'm from Ohio.

We love all things Buckeye.

However, I always wonder about naming things "Buckeye" on my blog because most people outside Ohio say, "Buck...WHAT?".

A buckeye is a nut.

And yes, it is poisonous.

At some point in time a highly intelligent Ohioan decided, poison or not, that since a Buckeye is brown and tan, it made perfect sense to call all things chocolate and peanut butter "Buckeye".

Yeah, believe me, I'm as confused as you are.

Here's my original post on Buckeyes.

Huh.

Anyway, for this recipe you'll need chocolate cupcakes.

As I've said before, this is a great cake, but you can also use any darn box mix or recipe of your choosing.

It's all about the icing people!


This is actually a combination of 2 icings that I have already posted.

They come together deliciously on this one cupcake!

First, make up some Peanut Butter Buttercream.

  Then drizzle with this decadent Chocolate Glaze shown at the bottom of this post.

And... that's it!

Doesn't matter if you call it a Buckeye Cupcake or a Chocolate Cupcake with Peanut Butter Buttercream and Chocolate Glaze.

Wait, Buckeye Cupcake is MUCH easier.

You might wanna stick with that.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

{ Re-growing Green Onions }

Do you guys ever watch The Next Food Network Star?

I'll admit, I really like this show.

Now, it's no Top Chef, but it's enjoyable.

They not only have to cook to impress, but they have to do filmed segments to see if they have the chops to make it as a TV Host.

And yes, the grand prize is your own show on Food Network.

Not everyone realizes this, but Guy Fieri was actually on the show, and won Season 2.

No, I wasn't watching it then, I didn't start watching til Season 5.

Season 5 gets me to where I am headed in this post, however.

The winner that year was Melissa d'Arabian who now hosts 10 Dollar Dinners.

Melissa once said that you could regrow green onions in water.

WHUT???

Now, this has been 3 seasons ago, but her show came on the TV the other day and it reminded me to try her little tip.

Guess what... it works!

Just plunk the whites with about an inch of green into a jar with water, and within a couple days, they will start to sprout.

Do nothing else but wait.

Oh, and also, change out the water every couple days so it doesn't get nasty and rinse the roots.

If you aren't going to use them right away, clip off the tops so they don't get too long/go bad, and pitch.

No worries, they'll grow back.

SCIENCE IS AMAZING, right?!

They will stop growing as some point. I don't know how long, and yes, I do realize how unhelpful that is! However, you'll get far more onion than you paid for this way!
 

According to EHow, you can also do this with chives. Check it out here for more info on re-growing your green onions and chives.


Let me know if you give this a try!

*note: this is for re-growing the green part of the onion, not the white.


Tina

Sunday, February 12, 2012

{ Pretzel Turtles }


Pin It



I've seen these around the internets for a long time now, but I'd never gotten around to making them.

Last week, when my friend Lori said she was going to try them, well, I had to try too. Sorry, I'm a bandwaggoner.

It's something I'm working on ;)

But for now, I'm a big ole copycat. Sorry, Lori!

She got hers made before me and said they were "ta die fer".

Ok, I'm paraphrasing in rapper slang. I don't know why I just did that.

Apologies.

She actually said, "they are delicious".

These.Are.Seriously.Easy.

You need 3 things.

Rolos, Pretzels, Pecans.


This takes 5 minute to bake.

The most labor intensive part of the entire thing is unwrapping the Rolos. Yes, that IS annoying. I make the Bean do it. I'm pro Child Labor. You know, when it comes to the hard stuff, like.. unwrapping candy. (oh, and chores, I'm pro chores!)

For the preztels, I really love the little "window pane" pretzels. I don't find these by a big manufactor though. I'm not sure how widely they are available. I buy the store brand from Kroger. The mini twists will work as well. I just like the square, cause, you know, it's hip to be square. (cue Huey Lewis and the News).

Basically, you stack the rolo on the pretzel


Then bake for 5 minutes at 250 degrees F.

Remove and immediately top with a pecan. Push down so it flattens out some.

If you are a nut hater (like me) you can opt to top these with M&Ms instead.

However, pecans have such a mild flavor, I don't mind them here at all.


Then, let cool.



Like I said in the  Peanut Butter Blossoms, it will take at least a couple hours for the chocolate to set back up enough that you can store them.

Of course that doesn't mean you can't eat them. You'll just have to lick chocolate off your fingers.

What a crime.

Great for Valentine's Day & Holidays.

Or you know, any of the other days of the year!

Tina


*I wish I knew who came up with idea originally, but I've seen it so often, I wouldn't know who to credit.
I'll just say, well played  Turtle Genius, well played.



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Oopsey Daisy

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

{ Egg In A Frame & Stories About My Mamma }





Have I told you about my Mamma yet?

I know there are about 100 different ways to spell this word, but this is how we've always spelled it.
There's also Mama, Mamaw, Mammaw, and then the variations like MeMa, MeMaw, MawMaw.
In any case, this post is about my Grandmother. Specifically, my Mom's mother.

She's a dynamo.

In April, she will be 92 years young.

She can work circles around people 1/4 of her age. She loves to wash dishes and do laundry. She REALLY loves to organize.

No grass ever grows under her feet.

She's still very active in the community. If the church doors are open, she's there. Every summer, she works the snack station at our Vacation Bible School. She still a member of the Hospital Auxiliary as well as the American Legion Auxiliary. She goes to Card Parties at the local Grange Halls and American Legion Posts three times a month. She plays Chair Volleyball (and is dang good at it) at the Senior Center each Thursday.


She'd do anything for anyone who needed it.

Need a shirt? Because she'd give you the one off her back.

Everyone loves my Mamma!

When I grow up, I want to be just like her.

As a kid, there was nothing better than going to Mamma's house and spending the night. We'd build puzzles, go on nature walks, play dominos, walk to town (about a mile) and get ice cream, she'd tell me stories, and we'd just have the best time ever.

In the morning, she'd make me my very favorite breakfast. Egg in a Frame. Oh, and coffee. Yes, I was like 8 years old and drinking coffee. Well 1/2 milk, 1/2 coffee, and a whole lotta sugar.


Yes, my Mamma made me lattes long before they were popular here in the USA!
I just love, love, loved Egg in a Frame.

I know this is a simple recipe, and most of you have probably had it, or made it, but eating this always reminds me of sitting on the counter in her teeny, tiny kitchen, sipping my 'coffee', while she fried me up an egg in a frame.
Here's the deal.

For one Egg in a Frame you'll need:

Egg in a Frame

1 slice of bread
1 egg
butter
salt
pepper

Most any bread should work. When I was a kid, it was always white, yum. Now, it’s wheat… Still delicious though!


I've seen a lot of people plop the butter in the in the pan, Mamma did not do this. She buttered the bread on both sides.

Then, she cut a hole in the center

IMG_9857

and popped it into a pan. I spray mine with cooking spray first.

Keep your pan no higher than Medium.


Crack the egg into the hole you made in the center. You can break your yolk, if you are the type that likes hard yolk. Me? I’m all about the runny stuff.
Liquid Gold. YUS!


Salt and Pepper to your liking.

IMG_9858


Toast on one side until nice and brown, then flip

IMG_9861


Cook until the other side is browned and delicious looking.
Oh! It’s not in these photos, but I did toast the little circle. My pan was too small to do it all at once.

BE SURE YOU TOAST THAT CIRCLE. It’s The Circle of Deliciousness!

In the end, what you get is a toasty, buttery, eggy dish.

IMG_9863


For me though, I get memories on a plate.

Do you have a food that brings back memories for you?

Share with me!

One last thing, I really think you need to see this. Last Christmas my Mamma was in the play at church. She played a teenager.

Yes, I said a teenager!

Our minister's 20-something daughter put her up to it. She also made this shirt for Mamma.

To which Mamma said to me, “I’m Bieber’s biggest fan! I don’t know who that is, but I think he’s a singer or something!”.

Man, I squishy heart love that lady.

Dec19_2010

Isn’t she cute!

Monday, February 6, 2012

{ Gooey Cookies & Red Velvet Cookies }


IMG_9909

It’s a twofer post! Two, two, two recipes in one!

I made these for the first time last week. I had 3 teenage boys here, and they all went through the roof for them.

This recipe is based off what I’ve known as Gooey Bars. It tastes just like them, but in cookie form.

I found the recipe here at Food.com and knew I had to try it.

Success?

Here is the conversation that followed the baking of these cookies:

Friend 1: “These are EPIC cookies!”
Friend 2: “I’m in HEAVEN!”
Friend 1: “They are HEAVEN COOKIES!”
Bean: “I just tasted nerdvana!”



(yes, he said NERDvana).

I guess you could say they liked them. I’m just not sure.

These cookies are moist, tender, and rich!

They are also EASY and take only a few ingredients. YUS! Love that.

So, for the Gooey Cookies, you’ll need:

Gooey Cookies
¼ cup butter , softened (no substitutions) 

1/4 teaspoon vanilla 
1 egg 

4 ounces cream cheese , softened 

1 (18 ounce) box yellow cake mix 

1 cup powdered sugar 

IMG_9869


First, beat together, in a large mixing bowl, the cream cheese, egg, vanilla, and butter until light and fluffy.


IMG_9871


Then add in the cake mix

IMG_9873


until well blended. It will be quite thick. Cover and chill for 30 mins in the refrigerator.

Preheat oven to 350 while the dough is chilling.

After the chilling, form into balls (I made mine a little smaller than the size of a ping pong ball) and roll in powdered sugar.

IMG_9877


Bake for 12 minutes. Do not let brown. With about 2 mins left, I lightly pressed a glass on top of them to make them a little flatter.

You don’t need to do this, if you want little fat cookies. It’s all good


Smile

Remove to cooling rack.

Yummy in muh tummy!

The Bean professes that these are his new favorite and that I should make them daily.

Sure. That’s gonna happen.

IMG_9884

Now.

Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies

Yesterday, I don’t know if you’ve heard this or not, but there was a wee little game on the telly called “The Super Bowl”.

We had a party for our youth group (where NONE of us watched the Super Bowl), and I needed some snackage to take.

Well, I made the Pull Apart Pizza Bread, but needed some sweeties.

I thought about it for a while, and finally decided to throw caution to the wind and use the above recipe, but with Red Velvet Cake Mix.

I am probably not the 1st person to try this, but I didn't follow anyone's recipe.
I figured, if it was good with yellow cake, it's gonna be even better with Red Velvet, right?
 

Now, let me tell you… they were good PLAIN.

And OH SO PRETTY!

IMG_9908

(those little choccie hearts are Valentine Junior Mints, by the way, cute, right??)


I can rarely leave well enough alone, however, so I whipped up a batch of Cream Cheese Icing and made…

you guessed it, Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies.

I had 3 people tell me that these were one of the best things I’d ever made… so there ya go.

Apparently, they were acceptable.

IMG_9909

Here’s the Cream Cheese Icing Recipe:

Cream Cheese Icing

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened (not melted!)
 

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
 

1 teaspoon vanilla 
 

3 cups powdered sugar
 

Beat together the vanilla, cream cheese, and butter. Add powdered sugar slowly. 
 

Dip spoon into the bowl. 
Remove. 

Lick.
Moan happily.

The end.
Oh, you can also spoon (or pipe) between two Red Velvet Cookies!

You know, if you have any to spare!

These Red Velvet Cookies would be GORGEOUS for Valentine’s Day and Christmas!

Now, I think chocolate cake mix will fall victim to this recipe next!





*

 

There you have it, two recipes, one post.
Now that, my friends, is a deal!




Thursday, February 2, 2012

{ Super Bowl Snacks }


Today I'm rounding up some recipes that I think would make good Super Bowl snacks.

I hear that the big game is this Sunday.

Also, I hear there are two teams playing it in. However, I had to google to find out who they were.

Not a football fan? No, I'm not.

(Oh, google says its the New England Patriots & the New York Giants. I assume that is right. It's google after all, and the google knows).

So, I'm not a footbal fan, BUT, I am a PARTY fan! Woot!

I think we are actually going to go to a Super Bowl party on Sunday.

We were promised board games and commercials. They'd better be there, or I'm demanding my money back. Even though I'm not paying. I will want money back.

I'm totally waffling on what to make myself.

I might do this Buffalo Chicken Dip that my friend Steph made for New Year's Eve.

Or maybe I'll make these whoopie pies shaped like footballs.

Another option my Snowflake Crunch Popcorn, but with the teams colors.
Google tells me they both have Red and Blue (and white/silver/whatever). Use the red and blue M&Ms instead of just the blue. Now, I KNOW it's not the perfect blue of the team- but... it'll work. If you are a big fan and HAVE to have the right color, M&Ms does sell the darker blue in specialty stores like Party City, etc.



These Ranch Crackers are sure to be a hit Ranch Snackin' Crackers


Do you want to make friends fast? Then make this Chocolate Chip Cheeseball


If you want a savory cheeseball, try this one that takes minutes to make 1.2.3. Cheeseball!


Need a dip? Okay! Try this one Holy Moses Dip.



A favorite get together snack around here is this Pull Apart Pizza Bread. yum.


You just CANNOT go wrong with a batch of  Caramel Corn...


That is, unless you bake it at 200 degrees Celcius , like my long time New Zealand friend Pam. LOL!

Love ya, Pammy!

Maybe you'd like to delve into making some of these Peanut Butter Patties.


They are quick to disappear!

Or, even better, how about these 3 ingredient Oreo Truffles!




There's a few of my suggestions! Are you having/going to a party?
What are you planning to make?

Go Team! I really hope that the ....

oh never mind. I really don't care who wins!

But if you are into football, I hope YOUR team wins!

Have fun :)

Tina
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