Posts Tagged ‘baking


Gingerbread Muffins with Fresh Ginger

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Don’t Forget Your Booties ‘Cause It’s COLD Outside!

And bake some homemade bread while you’re at it.  It’s 25 degrees and snowy today in Minneapolis… here are some shots of what it looks like outside.  Fred, our Boston terrier, was wishing he had some booties when he went out onto the balcony to check out the snow.  He dove into the blanket on the couch when we got back in –don’t think he appreciated that little field trip too much.  Anyway, it’s a great day for some baking and I decided to make homemade bread.  Pics and recipe forthcoming shortly…





Restaurant Eve’s Birthday Cake

My sister came into town this weekend and I made her this cake to celebrate her birthday.  Restaurant Eve’s Birthday Cake is what I think of when I imagine what a birthday cake should look like — pink frosting and lots of sprinkles!  Restaurant Eve in Alexandria, VA, serves this as a tiny individual cake and it’s their most-ordered dessert, birthday or not.  They even took the recipe off their website because of the cake’s huge popularity.  Fortunately, the Washington Post website still has the recipe up, which is where this came from.

For this  cake, I made two nine-inch round cakes.  After letting them cool completely, I cut them each in half to make four layers. The icing recipe makes a huge amount, so it was plenty to go between the layers, cover the cake entirely, with enough left to pipe on writing and decorations with an icing bag.  I used three drops of red food coloring to get the baby-pink Restaurant Eve color.  Having never made a layer cake before, I didn’t do a great job of getting the layers even, but it did taste good.  Getting the sprinkles to stick to the sides is a challenge, too — my kitchen was inundated with them when I finished.


Homemade Bagels

There’s not a great place to buy bagels near where we live… Bruegger’s is decent but not a real deli and I’m tired of the wild goose chase to find bagels.  So I decided to make my own tonight.  Had no idea what to expect about how they’d come out, but they were actually fine.  I did learn a few lessons for next time, though.

Here’s the recipe I used:  Homemade Bagels from the Food Network.

I used the bread hook attachment on my mixer for all the mixing and kneading and that made things easy.  The dough rose well and was easy to shape into bagels.  I put them on a sheet of wax paper to rise for the second time and they stuck really badly.  Getting them off the paper messed up the shape before I boiled them.  When they rose, the holes totally filled in.  Maybe I should have stretched them out more before letting them rise for the second time. I cooked them for 23 minutes instead of 30 and that was plenty.

The bagels tasted good – the yeast flavor really came out.  We made bagel and egg sandwiches for breakfast.



Last night marked the start of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year and beginning of the High Holidays.  Challah, a round loaf of bread, is a traditional food at this time, as are many other round foods.  Roundness symbolizes a perfect year to come.  Here’s a link to various Rosh Hashanah food traditions.  I have enjoyed learning about these holiday customs from my husband’s family, and since we are in a new city this year, wanted to try out a few traditional recipes for our own celebration.  This recipe can be made ahead of time for a holiday celebration.

This Challah recipe is from  I halved it to make one big loaf instead of two, and omitted the sesame seeds.  I also reduced the cooking time to around 30 minutes instead of the hour called for, and it still turned out to be a little too much.  The challah seemed a little too dense and maybe a little dry.  I think I added too much flour while I was kneading the dough, and probably needed to let the dough rise longer as a result.  Other than all those issues, the Challah was pretty good – especially with my mother-in-law Barbara’s chicken soup with matzo balls!  She brought us some frozen on her last visit and that was definitely the highlight of the meal.


Margaret’s Chocolate Chip Cookies

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