Magnolia Bakery’s Cupcakes & Icing

24 Jul

Magnolia Bakery’s Cupcakes

YIELD 24 cupcakes   |   TIME: About 45 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) of unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing pans
  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting pans
  • 1 ½ cups self-rising flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake papers. Mix the flours together in a bowl. In a glass measure, mix the milk and vanilla.
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter with an electric mixer at medium speed until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy (about 3 minutes). Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually add the flour mixture, alternating with the milk and the vanilla, beating well after each addition. Spoon the batter into muffin cups about 3/4 full.
  3. Bake until the tops of the cupcakes spring back when lightly touched, 20 to 22 minutes. Remove cupcakes from the pans and cool on a rack before icing.

Magnolia Bakery’s Buttercream Vanilla Icing

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 8 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  •  Food coloring (optional)

PREPARATION

  1. Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Add 4 cups of the sugar and then the milk and vanilla extract. Beat until smooth and creamy. Gradually add the remaining sugar, 1 cup at a time, until the icing is thick enough to spread. Add a few drops of food coloring if desired. Frost cupcakes. Serve at room temperature. Leftover icing freezes well for up to two months.

Thank you NYT Cooking

Really Good Chocolate Cake

3 Jul

Carrément Chocolat

Serves 8
Adapted from Pierre Hermé “Pastries”

Chocolate cake:

  • 4 ounces (125 g) Valrhona 72% cacao Araguani dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1 stick (125 g) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup (110 g) superfine granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs (100 g)
  • 1/3 cup (35 g) all-purpose flour, sifted

Smooth chocolate cream:

  • 2 1/2 ounces (70 g) Valrhona 72% cacao Araguani dark chocolate, chopped
  • 7 tbsp (100 g) whole milk
  • 7 tbsp (100 g) heavy cream
  • 2 1/2 egg yolks (50 g)
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) superfine granulated sugar

Chocolate mousse:

  • 6 ounces (170 g) Valrhona 72% cacao Araguani dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1/3 cup (80 g) whole milk
  • 1 egg yolk (20 g)
  • 4 egg whites (120 g)
  • 4 tsp (20 g) superfine granulated sugar

 

Thin chocolate sheet:

  • 3 1/2 ounces (100 g) Valrhona 72% cacao Araguani dark chocolate, chopped

 

Chocolate sauce:

  • 1 1/2 ounces (50 g) Valrhona 72% cacao Araguani dark chocolate, chopped
  • 6 1/2 tbsp (95 g) still water
  • 2 1/2 tbsp (35 g) superfine granulated sugar
  • 3 tbsp (50 g) heavy cream

 

Chocolate glaze:

  • 3 1/2 ounces (100 g) Valrhona 72% cacao Araguani dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1/3 cup (80 g) heavy cream
  • 4 tsp (20 g) French butter
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) Chocolate Sauce, recipe above
    • For the chocolate cake:

    • Preheat a convection oven to 340’F (170’C) or a regular oven to 350’F. Butter an 8-inch square mold (or a round one), 1 1/2 to 2 inches deep. Sprinkle it with flour.
    • Place the chopped chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water to melt. Remove from the bain-marie. Cut the butter into pieces and add it to the chocolate in the bowl, along with the sugar, eggs and sifted flour. Pour the batter into the prepared mold. Place it in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. The cake should look underdone. Unmold the cake on a rack and let cool. Clean, rinse, and dry the mold, then wrap it in plastic wrap. Place the cooled cake at the bottom of the mold.
    • For the smooth chocolate cream:

    • In a saucepan, bring the milk and cream to a boil. In a bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar. Off the heat, combine the two mixtures, then pour them back into a saucepan, and stir over gentle heat until the mixture reaches 185’F (85’C). Pour one-third of the mixture over the chopped chocolate, stirring well. Repeat two more times, stirring after each addition, then process the mixture with a handheld immersion blender (or whisk it vigorously). Pour the cream over the cooled cake. Refrigerate for 1 hour, then place in the freezer for 1 hour.
    • For the chocolate mousse:

    • Melt the chopped chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Remove the bowl from the bain-marie. In a saucepan, bring the milk to a boil. Pour the milk over the chocolate in the bowl, beating until the chocolate is smooth. Add the egg yolk and incorporate well. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the wire whisk, beat the egg whites until stiff with a dash of the sugar, then, as the mixture begins to stiffen, add the remaining sugar. Incorporate one-third of the beaten egg whites into the chocolate mixture, then carefully fold in the remaining beaten egg whites.
    • Pour the chocolate mousse over the smooth chocolate cream in the mold. Smooth the surface with a spatula. Freeze for 2 hours.
    • For the thin chocolate sheet:

    • Melt the chopped chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Remove the bowl from the bain-marie and cool at room temperature until the chocolate thickens, then reheat it slightly for a few seconds in the bain marie until it reaches a temperature between 88’F and 90’F. Pour the chocolate over a sheet of acetate (or wax paper) and spread it out. Before it can set, cut out a square the same size as the cake. Place another acetate sheet on top and add  a weight to prevent the chocolate from warping as it dries. Refrigerate for 2 hours.
    • For the chocolate sauce:

    • Place the chopped chocolate  in a small saucepan and bring to a boil with the still mineral water, sugar, and cream. Stir continuously until the sauce is thick enough to coat a spatula.
    • For the chocolate glaze:

    • In a saucepan bring the cream to a boil, then remove it from the heat. Gradually beat in the chopped chocolate, beating it from the center outward. Set aside to cool to 140’F before adding the butter, then add the 1/2 cup (100g) of the chocolate sauce.
    • To finish the cake:

    • Remove the cake from the mold and discard the plastic wrap. Using a small ladle, pour the chocolate glaze (it should be warm, between 95’F and 105’F around the sides of the cake, then over the center. Using a cake spatula, evenly coat the sides and edges. Leave to set for a few minutes then transfer it to a cake plate. Remove the acetate from the thin chocolate sheet, and place it on the cake. Set the cake in the refrigerator to defrost for 2 hours before eating. Cut with a knife dipped in hot water for 30 seconds.

HoneyLemon – Kbeauty in Surrey and tax free!

7 Jun

Was going to buy some rice cakes, and ended up with a cushion compact ! If you’re even in Surrey, near the Guildford Town Centre there is a Korean Supermarket, HANNAM Supermarket which houses a cute and well stocked Kbeauty boutique called Honey Lemon.

Features brands such as:

– Sulwhasoo – full line plus exclusives such as the limited edition cushion compact ($75)
– IOPE – skincare and makeup
– Laneige – skincare and makeup
– Missha – skincare and makeup
– A.C. Care – skincare
– A’pieu
– Cellex-C
– Banila Co. – has more than just the Clean It Zero balm cleaner (original, $29), but cleaners, CC compact, moisturizers – the most comprehensive stock I’ve seen locally so far. For comparison, T&T has the balm cleaners for $59.

And best of all, they DON’T CHARGE TAX . And give lots of samples, and a stamp card that earns you gifts.

HANNAM Supermarket, Surrey
#1-15357 104 Ave. Surrey V3R 1N5
604-580-3433
08:30am~10:00pm Everyday

Honey Lemon Beauty Shop
604-588-1224
10:30am~6:30pm

Mille-Crêpe Tiramisu Birthday Cake

4 Sep

millescrepes-recipe

You know you want to make this….

Mille-Crêpe Tiramisu Birthday Cake

Recipe adapted from Francisco Migoya of Hudson Chocolates, Poughkeepsie, New York

Yield: One 8-inch cake

Cook Time: 40 minutes (plus 5 hours chilling)

INGREDIENTS

Crêpes

  • ¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons cake flour
  • ¾ cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 3 tablespoons Armagnac or cognac
  • Nonstick pan spray

Tiramisu Filling

  • 1¼ cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 4 cups mascarpone cheese
  • ½ cup sweet Marsala wine (or half as much rum or coffee liqueur)
  • ¼ cup natural cocoa powder

DIRECTIONS1. Make the crêpe batter: In a fine-mesh sieve set over a medium bowl, sift together the cake flour, all-purpose flour and sugar. Whisk in the salt. In another medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and egg yolks. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and whisk until smooth and webby (it will be very thick). In a slow, steady stream, whisk in the butter, then the milk and the Armagnac, until the batter is smooth (if there are any lumps, strain the batter through a fine-mesh sieve and into a medium bowl). Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set an 8-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Lightly coat with nonstick pan spray. Gently stir the crêpe batter, then pour ¼ cup of batter into the skillet. Holding the skillet by the handle, tilt and turn the skillet to quickly disperse the batter. Cook the crêpe until the underside is golden-brown, about 1½ minutes. Lightly jerk the skillet to loosen the crêpe, then flip the crêpe over using a spatula, a more vigorous jerking motion, or your fingers. Cook on the other side until golden-brown, about 30 seconds, then slide the crêpe onto the parchment-paper-lined baking sheet. Repeat until all of the batter is used (you’ll end up with about 20 crêpes total, and will need 18 for the cake). Refrigerate the crêpes on the baking sheet until completely chilled, at least 2 hours or overnight.

3. Make the tiramisu filling: To a fine-mesh sieve set over a large sheet of parchment paper, add the confectioners’ sugar. Transfer the confectioners’ sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or a large bowl if using a hand mixer), and add the mascarpone cheese and the Marsala wine. Use the paddle attachment to combine the mixture on low speed until well combined.

4. Remove the crêpes from the refrigerator. Insert an 8-inch cake round (a cardboard circle for the cake to rest on) into an 8-inch cake ring. Add 1 crêpe to the cake round so it lies flat. Add ¼ cup of the tiramisu filling to the center of the crêpe and use a small offset spatula to evenly spread the filling over the crêpe. Repeat with the filling and 17 more crêpes, leaving the last crêpe on the top plain (refrigerate the leftover filling; you’ll use it to finish the cake). Leaving the cake in the cake ring, chill the cake in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.

5. Remove the cake from the refrigerator and use a blow-dryer to warm the sides of the cake ring and loosen it (a hot, wet and wrung-out kitchen towel pressed against the sides of the ring works too). Remove the ring by setting the cake on top of a tall, quart-size cylindrical can (a 28-ounce can of tomatoes works well). Slide the cake ring down (if it sticks, apply more heat); the ring should slide right off while the can supports the cake. Remove the cake from the can and set it on a cake plate or platter. Spread the remaining tiramisu cream on top of the cake. Add the cocoa powder to a fine-mesh sieve and sprinkle it over the top of the cake. Slice and serve.

Read more:http://www.tastingtable.com/entry_detail/chefs_recipes/12552/Mille_Crepe_Tiramisu_Birthday_Cake_Recipe.htm#ixzz3koGBco7a

10 Superfoods For Everything From Allergies To Muscle Pain

4 Oct

Curb Heartburn: Whole Grains And Fiber
‘Tis the season for overindulging — and heartburn. But, adding in more veggies and replacing refined grains like white rice and pasta with their whole-wheat counterparts might help you survive the holidays reflux-free. The secret? The high insoluble-fiber content gets things moving, explains Ronald Primas, MD, clinical instructor of medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital, in New York City: “The more fiber you eat, the less time food spends in the stomach, which helps keep food and acid from coming back up.”

Clear Allergy Fog: Berries, Apples, Onions
Consider these foods a garden-variety allergy pill. It’s thanks to a compound called quercetin, which has shown promise in test-tube studies done at Tufts University for preventing immune cells from releasing the histamines that cause those familiar symptoms.

Survive Cold Season: Tuna, Halibut, Turkey
Don’t subsist only on salads during the winter months. Getting an insufficient amount of selenium can mean that you’re missing out on a key player in immune function. Selenium helps build up white blood cells — particularly those responsible for killing bacteria and viruses, even the flu. Animal studies have shown that selenium deficiency not only leads to more severe flu symptoms but also enables mild flu viruses to mutate into more virulent strains. Just one serving of halibut or sardines gives you more than 60 percent of your RDA and provides you with mood-boosting omega-3 fatty acids.

Survive Cold Season: Fermented Foods
What do yogurt, kimchi (Korean cabbage), kefir (a fermented milk drink), miso, and tempeh (made from fermented soybeans) have in common? They all contain beneficial bacteria, aka probiotics, which can help keep your immune system strong, explains Siona Sammartino, a nutritionist and natural foods chef in Seattle, WA. A Swedish study found that having a daily probiotic drink cut workplace sick days by 55 percent. And, a Cochrane meta-analysis of 10 studies found that probiotics worked better than placebos for reducing upper respiratory infections. Not into yogurt? Say cheese: Many aged raw-milk cheeses (such as Edam, Gouda or feta) are good sources of probiotics, notes Sammartino.

Survive Cold Season: Kale, Spinach, Yams, Pumpkin, Carrots
Vitamin A is the VIP here, keeping mucous membranes moist and healthy so germs can’t get past them, says David Katz, MD, founder of the Yale University Prevention Research Center and author of Disease-Proof: The Remarkable Truth About What Makes Us Well.

Soothe Joint And Muscle Pain: Fatty Fish
It’s like oil in the Tin Man’s joints: The omega-3 fatty acids in fish such as salmon and sardines can help get stiff knees working again. A recent meta-analysis of research found that taking omega-3s daily reduced joint pain and a.m. stiffness enough to allow patients with rheumatoid arthritis to reduce NSAID use.

Soothe Joint And Muscle Pain: Tart Cherries
Athletes swear by the anti-inflammatory powers of tangy “sour-pie” cherry juice to reduce after-workout soreness. In a study from Oregon Health & Science University, runners who drank 12 ounces of the tart stuff twice daily for a week before a race (plus on the day of the event) reported less post-run pain than those who had a cherry-flavored placebo drink.

Clear Allergy Fog: Nuts And Seeds
Got itchy eyes and sneezing fits? Make like a squirrel and stock up on nuts and seeds. Almonds, peanuts and sunflower seeds (and even some vegetables) are chock-full of vitamin E, which studies suggest may help reduce the allergic response, explains Today show nutrition expert Joy Bauer, RD. A German study found that people with diets high in vitamin E had a lower risk of hay fever than those who weren’t getting as much of it. The RDA for adults is 15mg, the amount in about 2 ounces of sunflower seeds — perfect for powering up a salad.

Fight A UTI: Parsley Tea
Lab research suggests why you should eat the parsley-sprig garnish on your plate (and then some): It’s been shown to be an antibacterial force against the germs that cause urinary tract infections — even some of those that have demonstrated resistance to antibiotics. Next time you feel the dreaded twinge of a UTI, try this: Boil some water, steep a bunch of parsley in it for 10 minutes and then drink up, recommends Param Dedhia, MD, internal-medicine physician at Canyon Ranch Resort and Spa, in Tucson, Ariz. Repeat throughout the day.

Fight A UTI: Cranberry Juice
It’s not merely a sweet mixer for boozy beverages. Studies show that the go-to preventive remedy for UTIs isn’t just the stuff of folklore. Past research has focused on compounds in cranberries (and blueberries) called proanthocyanidins, which were found to keep bacteria from attaching to bladder cells and causing infection. Now, new research from McGill University demonstrates yet another way that the humble cranberry may be a woman’s best friend: “In lab studies, cranberry prevented the bacteria from producing a specific protein called flagellin, which is necessary for growing the tails that enable them to swim up the urinary tract and attach to cells,” explains lead study author Nathalie Tufenkji, PhD. Look for products with cranberry juice listed in the first three ingredients.

Thanks health.com

Avocado Caesar Salad

4 Oct

Avocado Caesar Salad

Ingredients
1 ripe Hass avocado
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more if needed
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus more to taste
1 to 2 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
3/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp kosher salt, plus more to taste
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
2 hearts of romaine, torn into bite-sized pieces
8 thin slices of baguette, brushed with olive oil and toasted until golden
Shaved Parmesan cheese (or grated)
Flaky sea salt

Instructions
1. Cut the avocado in half lengthwise, and carefully remove the pit. Scoop flesh into a blender, then add extra-virgin olive oil, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, sliced garlic, Worcestershire sauce, kosher salt, and black pepper. Pulse for 1 to 2 minutes until the dressing is smooth. You will still see some small flecks of avocado in the dressing.

2. Season to taste with additional lemon juice, kosher salt, and black pepper. Store dressing in the refrigerator for up to three days.

3. To make the salad, spoon some of the dressing in a big bowl, and add torn romaine. Gently toss until the lettuce is lightly coated. You don’t want the leaves drowning in dressing. Divide the dressed greens and golden crostini among four plates.

4. Finish with shaved Parmesan, more black pepper, and a sprinkling of flaky sea salt. Serve extra dressing on the side.

POMEGRANATE AND CUCUMBER SALAD

27 Aug

Cucumber Pomegranate Salad

What you will need:

1 1/2 to 2 cups pomegranate seeds
2 1/2 cups chopped cucumber (English or Persian)
1/3 cup Greek yogurt
1-2 cloves garlic chopped or pressed
red onion thinly sliced
1 T chopped fresh or dried dill
lemon
salt & pepper

 

1. Cut up cucumber and chop dill. Thinly slice red onion. Place in a mixing bowl with the pomegranate seeds and add the pressed garlic.

2. Add the yogurt, a few squeezes of lemon and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well. Eat as a side dish or pairs well with fish.

 

Thank you peaceloveshea.com

 

 

Japanese Marinated Soft Boiled Egg for Ramen (Ajitsuke Tamago)

13 Jan

JAPANESE MARINATED SOFT BOILED EGG FOR RAMEN (AJITSUKE TAMAGO)

Japanese Marinated Soft Boiled Egg for Ramen (Ajitsuke Tamago)

About This Recipe

YIELD: makes 6 eggs
ACTIVE TIME: 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME: At least 4 hours to marinate

Ingredients

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sake
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup mirin
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 6 eggs

Procedures

  1. Combine water, sake, soy, mirin, and sugar in a medium bowl and whisk until sugar is dissolved. Set aside
  2. Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Pierce fat end of each egg with a thumbtack to make a tiny hole (this prevents them from cracking and eliminates the air bubble at the end). Carefully lower eggs into water with a wire mesh spider or slotted spoon. Reduce heat to maintain a bare simmer. Cook for exactly 6 minutes. Drain hot water and carefully peel eggs under cold running water (the whites will be quite delicate)
  3. Transfer eggs to a bowl that just barely fits them all. Pour marinade on top until eggs are covered or just floating. Place a double-layer of paper towels on top and press down until completely saturated in liquid to help keep eggs submerged and marinating evenly. Refrigerate and marinate at least four hours and up to 12. Discard marinade after 12 hours. Store eggs in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat in ramen soup to serve.

Thanks to Serious Eats

I like: White Balsamic

26 Jul

Creamy White Balsamic Dressing

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 T. white balsamic vinegar
  • 2 T. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 t. honey
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • ½ t. white pepper
Combine all ingredients in a jar. Shake vigorously. Chill several hours before serving.

White Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice (about one generous squeeze from a fresh lemon)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Combine the vinegar and lemon juice in a glass bowl.Slowly whisk in the oil until fully combined.Whisk in the honey. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes to let the flavors meld. Give the dressing a good whisk immediately before serving. Makes 1 cup of white balsamic vinaigrette.

Avocado Toast

18 Apr

avocado toastWhat you will  need:

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • REALLY good bread – dense, seedy – I like Cob’s Cape Seed Loaf. Believe me, the bread makes the difference.
  • extra virgin olive oil that’s just for eating – I like Bom Dia
  • truffle oil (optional)
  • fresh lemon juice (for sprinkling)
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • cayenne pepper
  1. Toast bread till crispy
  2. Drizzle extra virgin olive oil and truffle oil (optional, to taste) – can go on bread or on avocado. Personal preference.
  3. Put as much avocado on your toast as you want – some recipes call to mash like guacamole but I prefer mash some, leave some chunks. It’s a personal preference.
  4. Sprinkle lemon juice on avocado.
  5. Season with sea salt (crunchy), freshly ground pepper and a healthy sprinkle of cayenne pepper.