What to Do When You Run Out of Cupcake Liners

I was making Breakfast Puffin Muffins the other day, when I realized I ran out of cupcake liners!

I wasn’t sure what to do!

Then I scoured the internet until I found a hack I could do with what I had.

If you run out of cupcake liners you can do three things. 1) Spray the pan with non-stick cooking spray.

2) Line the pan with parchment paper.

 

3) Get a paper towel and wet in melted butter or oil. Wipe the pan with it, making sure to heavily oil the molds.

Advertisements

Cherry-Pistachio Tea Cakes

So of course whenever I do a Jane Austen mystery, I have to pair with something Regency, Jane Austen, or tea party related.

This recipe comes from a Food Network Magazine. 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup of Pistachios
  • 1/3 Cup of Flour
  • 1 Teaspoon of Baking Powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 2/3 Cup of Powdered Sugar, plus more for dusting
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 6 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, Melted
  • 12-24 Medium Cherries with Stems

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.
  3. Pulse the pistachios, flour, baking powder, and salt in a food processor or blender until finely grounded.
  4. Whisk the powdered sugar and eggs in a large bowl, then whisk in the pistachio mixture until just combined.
  5. Stir in the melted butter until just incorporated.
  6. Spoon 2 tablespoons of batter into each muffin cup.
  7. Bake until slightly puffed and just beginning to set, about 8 minutes.
  8. Place 1 or 2 cherries in the center of each cake and continue baking until the cakes feel springy and the edges are lightly browned, 10-12 minutes.
  9. Transfer to a rack and let cool 10 minutes in the pan, then remove from pan to cool completely.
  10. Dust with powdered sugar.

20160909_222716

Thoughts After Baking:

So instead of using fresh cherries I used frozen ones.

Yeah, they did not turn out right. The cake part was good, but the cherries kind of leaked in them.

As soon as cherries are back in season, I am going to remake them and update this post. I’m sure these will be fantastic.

For more Food Network Magazine recipes, go to Garden Pasta Salad with Bocconcini

For more tea party recipes, go to Harvest Pumpkin Scones

For more desserts, go to Strawberry Milkshake

For more dishes featuring cherries, go to Chocolate Covered Cherry Delights

For more cupcakes, go to King Arthur Carrot Cake or Cupcakes

Mini Lemon Pancake Cookies

cream puff murder

Thoughts prior to cooking:

So this recipe comes from Cream Puff Murder (Hannah Swensen #11). The actual name of the recipe is Lois Brown’s Lemon Cookies, but after making them I changed the name (more on that later). The main reason why I wanted to make these cookies was because it is one of the few lemon desserts that actually use a lot of lemon. Most only want the zest, but this one actually used the juice.

baking banner

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup of Softened Butter (1 stick)
  • 3/4 Cup of Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Egg, beaten
  • 1 Tablespoon of Lemon Zest (lemon zest is the yellow peel being finely grated.)
  • 2 Teaspoons of Lemon Juice
  • 1 Teaspoon of Baking Powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 1 2/3 Cup of Flour
  • 1/2 Cup of Milk

Topping:

  • 1/4 Cup of Lemon Juice
  • 3/4 Cup of Granulated Sugar

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven at 350° F
  2. Beat the butter and sugar together until they are light and fluffy.
  3. Add the egg, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Mix it all together.
  4. Mix in the baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix well.
  5. Mix in one cup of flour and 1/4 a cup of milk. Stir everything up.
  6. Add in the remaining 2/3 cup of flour and 1/4 a cup of milk. Mix well.
  7. Drop by teaspoons onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Make the cookies small.
  8. Bake for 8 mins.
  9. Topping: Heat the lemon juice for a bit in the microwave. Add the sugar and stir it all up.
  10. When the cookies come out of the oven, brush the topping onto the hot cookies.
  11. Yields 4 dozen cookies.

baking banner

lemonpancakecookies

baking banner

Thoughts after cooking:

These cookies came out tasting like a mix between lemon cupcakes and pancakes. They also look a lot like pancakes as they are flat and creamy just like them. I thought they were amazing, and since they are so small, I consumed a ton of them. It’s just so hard to stop once you get started.

stopeating

baking banner

For more Hannah Swensen mysteries, go to Breakfast Omelet

For more lemon recipes, go to Lemon Bars

For more cookie recipes, go to Wookie Cookies

For more dessert recipes, go to King Arthur Carrot Cake or Cupcakes

King Arthur Carrot Cake or Cupcakes

cake1950s

Thoughts Before Cooking:

I didn’t care for the recipe in Carrot Cake Murder, but I had a super big craving for it.

I shopped around until I found the King Arthur website‘s recipe. Now I love the King Arthur Recipes, I used to have a cookie, bar cookie, brownie, and biscotti cookbook; but I’m unsure where I put it in my latest move.

Aw+man+i+missed+the+porn+raid+again+i+am+_9614058b2062adb4c677dd212977b011

When I find it I will finish making the recipes and post the ones I’ve already made.

baking banner

Cake Ingredients:

  • 1.5 Cups of Vegetable Oil or Safflower Oil
  • 2 Cups of Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 4 Large Eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon of Cinnamon
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Ginger
  • 2 Cups of Flour
  • 2 Teaspoons of Baking Soda
  • 3 Cups of Grated Carrots
  • 1.5 Cups of Chopped Pecans or Walnuts (Optional)

Cream Cheese Frosting Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup of Unsalted Butter
  • 1 8-0z package of Cream Cheese
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 2 Teaspoons of Vanilla or Vanilla Extract
  • 2.5-3.5 Cups of Powdered Sugar

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Lightly grease two 9″ pans, a 9 x 13 pan, or line your cupcake pans.
  3. Mix together the oil, sugar, salt, eggs, cinnamon, and ginger.
  4. Mix the flour and the baking soda separately, then add it in to the previous mixture.
  5. Add carrots and nuts, mixing until well-blended.
  6. Pour into prepared pans.
  7. Bake the cake 35-40 mins or until toothpick is inserted and comes out clean.
  8. Let them cool completely before frosting.
  9. Beat the butter and cream cheese together until smooth.
  10. Add the salt and vanilla.
  11. Beat in the sugar.
  12. Add milk or cream if frosting is too stiff, if too thin add more sugar.
  13. Frost the cake or cupcakes.

baking banner

6edb8f0f-5495-4672-b27a-aed390672967

baking banner

Thoughts After Baking:

This was fantastic!

fantastic

The cake was perfect, not to sweet but not bland.

loveitSupernatural

And the frosting was absolutely delicious. And with the two combined it was beyond words!

wow

I kept eating and eating them, I just couldn’t stop.

stopeating

baking banner

For more cupcake recipes, go to Peppermint Bark Chocolate Cupcakes

For more cake recipes, go to A is for Applesauce Cake

For more dessert recipes, go to Wookie Cookies

For more recipes, go to Brussels Sprouts, Turkey Sausage, & Pesto Pizza Casserole

Peppermint Bark Chocolate Cupcakes

chocolate-cupcake

So the book I reviewed this week was The Missing Mah Jong Player.

the Missing Mah jong player

While this book contains no recipes, one of the characters owns a cupcake store, so I felt it was the perfect time to include a recipe I created.

Thoughts Before Cooking:

I love anything minty chocolate and we had a plethora of Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark, so I thought I would test something out.

Now I love making everything myself and don’t care for using boxed things, but I was baking a ton of cupcakes for a party, in a limited amount of time and used a cake mix from a box. If you make a favorite chocolate cake recipe and just follow my little extras it should be just as good, if not extra.

baking banner

Ingredients:

  • 1 Box of Chocolate Cake Mix (If not from scratch, I usually use Duncan Hines)
  • 1 Teaspoon of Peppermint Extract
  • Cupcake Liners
  • Ice-Cream Scoop
  • About 10 Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark Squares
  • Chocolate Frosting (If not from scratch, I usually use Duncan Hines)

Directions:

  1. Either follow a recipe for a cake from scratch or the directions on the box of cake mix.
  2. When adding your wet ingredients, add a teaspoon of peppermint extract to the cupcake batter.
  3. Using an ice-cream scoop, place the batter into the cupcake liners.
  4. Bake according to box directions.
  5. While cupcakes are baking, chop up the peppermint bark into tiny pieces. Make them as small as possible, sprinkle size.
  6. When cupcakes are finished let them cool, otherwise the frosting will melt.
  7. When cupcakes have completely cooled down, frost them.
  8. After you have frosted the cupcakes, sprinkle the chopped peppermint bark along the tops of the cupcakes.

baking banner

Thoughts After Cooking:

I LOVED THEM! and everyone else did too. They were absolutely amazing. I’m just sorry that they were snapped up so quick that I wasn’t able to take a picture.

cupcakes

baking banner

For more desserts, go to Special Ingredient Chocolate Chip Cookies

For more recipes, go to Chicken, Asparagus, and Tomato Pesto Pasta

The Missing Mah Jongg Player

the Missing Mah jong player

The Missing Mah Jong Player (Steven Wade Mystery #1) by Iris Wynne

In The Missing Mah Jong Player, by Iris Wynne, divorced Marilou is looking for love in online chat rooms. She has been very busy with her dates and other commitments, that she hasn’t really had a lot of time for her mah jong group. So when she misses a day after confirming she would be there, Harriet (friend and fellow mah jong player) begins to grow worried.

somethingisnotright0

She goes to her house and discovers that Marilou is missing. When the police make no headway into solving the crime and are giving up, Harriet decides to hire a private investigator.

no-way-gif-gifs

Their investigator, Steve Wade is an ex-policeman who at first doesn’t want to take the case. After much arm twisting and free cupcakes from Harriet’s bakery, he complies. But Marilou’s disapperance raises a lot of hard questions. Was she killed? Did she willingly leave? Was one of the guys she was dating responsible for her disappereance? Or was the criminal someone much closer to her? Not only is Wade investigating a hard case, he also has the five remaining mah jong players intent on helping him discover the truth. From staging a speed dating dinner, to questioning family and friends; these ladies and Wade are hot on the trail.

plotthickens

Thoughts After Reading:

When you read the synopsis of the book it is very centered on Steve Wade and sounds like a modern Philip Marlow or Sam Spade type of detective fiction.

samspadePhillipmarlowe

I am not sure if the author changed her direction while writing, or is hoping for a Steve Wade series, but that is not the case. Instead of being solely focused on the private investigator the story is shown through the eyes of Wade, Harriet, Sarah (mah jong player and Wade’s new secretary), and Candy Kane (stripper turned private investigator). I believe this actually improves the story as it transforms it into being more than just a mystery, but also how a loss affects people and what they do to deal with their grief.

Whoa

Everyone’s reactions to Marilou’s disappearance range across the board. You have some of her friends in denial, believing she just ran away; some who don’t want to think on the issue and are intent on forgetting it as it is a matter for the police; Sarah who won’t stop crying as Marilou was a mother figure to her, and Harriet who needs closure and answers so she hires a detective. Not only does this more personal approach make a stronger story, but it really helps you connect to the characters. This also causes you to really care for Marilou, as all these personal reactions make her into an actual person instead of a “body” or “victim #1”.

loveitSupernatural

Steve Wade was a great character as well. He was intelligent, imaginative, analytical, and able to solve the mystery after a series of time. I liked that it wasn’t instantaneous but methodical, and that at times Steve would sometimes miss what was right in front of his face as he was too heavily concentrated on another aspect. He is also a perfect compliment to his surrounding characters. I hope that this will be turned into a series and that we may see more Steve Wade in the future.

Please!

As for the mystery it was pretty compelling. We at first have the question of whether or not there is an actual crime or if Marilou just left of her own accord. Then when it is established as a murder we have a long list of motives and suspects; everyone from Marilou’s cousins, friends, men she was dating, to even her children. It progresses realistically and the only complaint I have was that the end seemed a bit rushed as they present the resolution.

I thought this book is fantastic and the perfect addition to any mystery lover’s bookcase or kindle. I give the story a five out five.

cluelesstravistwothumbsup!

There is one thing that bothers me. It isn’t really about mah jong, in fact mah jong is mentioned maybe one or twice. It makes a great title, but that and the cover don’t really match the story.

bannerbooks-border-black-and-white

For more Private Investigators, go to Lane Changes

For the previous mystery, go to Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder