Day In The County: Baked

This will be a more picture post than me blabbing. I took Friday off to have a little fun-day with my Mom back home before starting my new job in a week. I’ll have to start getting up a 6am (shoot me now) rather than 8am like I do now.

Usually my mom will come into town and we’ll spend the afternoon at lunch and then hitting the mall…but it was a long week for both of us…so I decided to spend the date out there for a change.  Armed with a few utensils and quick trip to the store, I hoped in the Beemer for a trek trip out ……there. I don’t know what to call where I grew up… it’s not a farm, and it’s not a ranch…but it’s more of a ranch than a farm… bah. Regardless of what you call it….it’s gorgeous. I love living in the city after being in the country for so many years, but it’s such a breath of fresh air to be out there. We farm some of it, and the rest of it is natural landscape for the most part. It’s just relaxing to be out there, sitting by the water, hearing the wind blow across the trees. It’s just great.

Chocolate Banana Bread Batter

Chocolate Banana Bread

I think the only thing I didn’t have time to tackle was the 8inch 3 layer buttercream cake I wanted to make…but that’s ok.

This is the chocolate banana bread. This batter was absolutely amazing. After making several banana breads where recipes call for creaming the butter and sugar together….I recommend creaming the egg, butter, and sugar together all at the same time. It gives you much more of a fluffy and airy batter and the sugar blends better for some reason. It called for expresso power…but I didn’t have any on hand so I added one more tablespoon of cocoa powder. This particular recipe also called for a cup of chocolate chips…But I decided to do something a little different. I put in a really thin  layer of the batter on the bottom of the pan, then a layer of chocolate chips as pictured. What I was hoping that would happen ….that didn’t….  was that the top of the banana bread would be a layer of chocolate chips…but they either sank… or I put too much batter along the bottom.  The reason I didn’t put the chocolate chips on the bottom originally was because I thought maybe the chip would burn, or overcook sitting on top. Oh well, I’ll have to experiment next time the other way.

Devil Cakes Filled with Cream

Marshmellow Fluff

Filled Cupcakes

Left: Cream Filled Right: Cherry Center

Hostess Mimic'd

Cherry Filled: From the Bottom

So I’ve read time and time again that the best chocolate cupcakes are made from devils food cake…so I decided to try it out. There are several devils cake recipes of course, but I recommend using the ones that actually melt down chocolate…not the powder, and that also use buttermilk. For me, these ones seem to be the most moist. They really just fall apart. Love em.  To the right is the marshmellow fluff. I’ve avoided ever using this because it’s SO bad for you, but I really wanted to try filled cupcakes…and this seemed to be the best and most popular way to achieve this goal. The fluff comes in a jar, and is about as hard as concrete…event though it’s fluffy, kind of cool really. Mix with some hot water, salt, butter, and powdered sugar…and this concrete marshfluff turns into vanilla ice cream taste.  The outside white frosting is classic butter cream with powdered sugar, vanilla, and heavy cream.

The cherry filled ones I did kind of on a whim…I was making those pocketpies for my parents and had some cherries left over and putting 2-3 cherries in middle (after the batter is already poured) actually turned out really cute. I didn’t know if I would like them…but I did, and from the feedback I received, they definitely seemed to have worked! So yay! Speaking of pocket pies…I found some bigger shapes (shoot didn’t take pics of those) at my parents that I’m ‘borrowing’ that I’m so excited to use those again. They even had a pumpkin one that I’ll have to do pumpkin pies ones! I love festive food and theme food. Makes me happy. 🙂

After I frosted the creamed filled ones, I felt like there was something missing. Most pics of these kind of cupcakes are actually covered in chocolate and then have the classic Hostess white loops on the top…so that you know they’re cream filled. So I did it in reverse! I just put chocolate chips on top of the frosting to mimic the Hostess loops. Super fun…

So this was my day back at home…if we wouldn’t have sat down in the TV room and kicked back a few shows with Mom that she’s been geeking out about, that cake would have gotten done too…but hey, oh well. And thanks also a big thanks to my mom for letting  me use her awesome camera for these obviously better quality pics. And point deduction for saying in the beginning I wasn’t going to be writing much. ha!

Bottomline: Loved this stuff!! They were super fun to make, and they didn’t even take very long.  Another set of great recipes to add to the box!



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