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Monday, December 29, 2014

Homemade Ginger Ale

Hey everyone,

This post must give all proper credit to the true maker of this beverage- the BF. I like ginger, even love it, but not in the levels of true ginger beers and ales. My sister and the BF have always liked super "spicy" ginger things- and with this, you can make it as strong (or not) as you want.

The BF used Alton Brown's Ginger Ale recipe as a starting point, and the modifications he made were- he used way more ginger, you definitely need to use a little more yeast, or better yet, find a friend who home brews or something and go ahead and actually carbonate it- the recipe with just the yeast the way Alton Brown has it will make a little fizz, but it will not be truly carbonated like we think of in our sodas today.

Arsenal- pot, bottle with filtered water, ginger, sugar, yeast. (and a funnel is pretty helpful too!)
Make your ginger syrup first (The BF has been making syrup and using it for various drink concoctions- take things into your own hands!!).
Your finished ginger syrup.
Strain the ginger out of the syrup, or not, depending on your preference (Alton says to always strain, but BF likes it both ways, now often straining half of it out and leaving half in there), then add it to your filtered water.
Then add in the yeast, and throw that cap on (tight!).
And here you have it- a homemade glass of ginger ale- spicy and refreshing!

Savor it!
love, rue

Monday, December 22, 2014

Skillet Cookie

Hey there everyone,

This post is more of an idea than a recipe- because you can really take this concept, and apply it to your favorite cookie- however you like it! I started with the base for my Perfected Chocolate Chip Cookies, then added in whatever I felt like each time I made a cookie. These were inspired by an awesome find at Goodwill about a month ago where I found a 5-inch cast iron skillet- the perfect size for massive indulgence, or the perfect size for 2 to share. Just butter the skillet well, load it up with the dough (only fill 1/2-2/3 of the way full), set your oven to whatever temperature your cookie recipe says, and bake! It takes me about twice as long to cook a skillet cookie that is 5 inches as regular cookies- between 17-20 minutes or so. Just make sure you have a tall glass of milk to accompany this!

Your easy arsenal- skillet, butter, dough, and add-ins. I have some of the nuts separate because I like more than the BF does :)
Load up your buttered skillet.
Bake, then enjoy this thing of beauty- don't be deceived, it's super gooey and delish in the center, with crispy edges all around. Yumm!

Savor it! and give it a try!
love, rue

Monday, December 15, 2014

Guinness Irish Cream Cupcakes

Hey everyone!

I made these a few weeks back for a friend's birthday. Now, I don't really do alcohol (just not my thing), so I had to depend on the opinions of my boyfriend and friends- and I'm pretty sure you can't fake that kind of enthusiasm, haha. So these are super easy to make, despite having a few extra looking steps, and got rave reviews about how good they were- so go ahead, give them a shot! Let me show you how...

Your (a little large than usual but still mostly simple) arsenal.
Melt your butter, add Guinness, cocoa, and coffee.
Here's your butter-Guiness mixture on the left, and the egg and sour cream on the right (I only made a half batch).
After beating together the egg and sour cream, mix it all together well. This is when you can add your vanilla as well.
Then add in your dry ingredients...
And mix until just incorporated.
Fill greased cupcake tins/liners about 2/3 of the way full.
For some beautiful cupcakes like this!
And I didn't think I needed to show all the pictures from just another variation on a classic confectioner's sugar icing, so on the right is your Irish Cream Icing, and on the left your cupcakes.

[I only made a half batch, so that's what's in the pictures- a half batch made about 12 cupcakes exactly, and a half batch of the icing made enough to have extra if you're more of a medium-amount-of-icing person, and plenty if you're a I-like-a-ton-of-icing person :)]
Guinness Irish Cream Cake
-1 cup Guinness
-1 cup (2 sticks) butter
-3/4 cup cocoa
-1 tablespoon instant coffee
-2 eggs
-2/3 cup sour cream
-1 teaspoon vanilla
-2 cups flour
-2 cups sugar
-1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
-1/2 teaspoon salt
Irish Cream Icing
-1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
-3-4 cups confectioner’s sugar
-1 teaspoon vanilla
-3-4 tablespoons Irish Cream (like Bailey’s)
Melt butter on the stove, add Guinness, cocoa, and coffee. Remove from heat, let cool slightly.
Beat eggs and sour cream in a large bowl.
Slowly temper the butter mixture into the eggs and sour cream, mix well.
Add dry ingredients, and mix just until incorporated.
Fill greased cupcake tin/liners about 2/3 of the way full.
Bake for 16-19 minutes, until a tester comes out clean.
Beat butter and confectioners sugar together. Add vanilla, beat well.
Add Irish Cream until you reach a spreadable consistency.
Ice your cupcakes once cool, enjoy!

And here are the finished cupcakes!

Savor it!
love, rue

Monday, December 1, 2014

Caramel Filled Cookie Cups

Hey there everyone,

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving, if you're in the tradition of celebrating it! Here's a super simple recipe that could turn into all kinds of creative and wow-worthy holiday desserts- fill these with whip cream, no-bake cheesecake filling, fruit, chocolate, the list goes on!! Like last week, these start with my favorite cookie base (from my Perfected Chocolate Chip Cookies). And, please, it goes without saying they're just delicious all by themselves! Let's go!

Your cookie base, chocolate chips, and caramels.
And here's a picture of how I did the process, basically.
Ending up with this beautiful tray! Half have chocolate chips, half are sprinkled with sea salt.
And here's what they look like right out of the oven- just brown around the edges, and puffy in the middle.
Let them cool, and they'll fall in a little, leaving you with a little cookie cup to fill with whatever you like (or nothing at all)!

Caramel Filled Cookie Cups
-1 cup (2 sticks) butter)
-3/4 cup white sugar
-1 cup brown sugar
-2 eggs
-1 tablespoon vanilla
-1/4 cup caramel sauce
-3 3/4 cups flour
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
-24 (approx.) small pieces of caramel.
-optional: mini chocolate chips, sea salt
Grease a mini-muffin tin.
Cream butter and sugars. Stir in eggs, vanilla, and caramel sauce.
Add flour, salt, and baking soda and stir well.
Using a cookie scoop or spoon, get medium sized balls, form around the caramel bits, and place in your mini-muffin tin. Sprinkle with chocolate chips or salt (or other) if you desire.
Bake at 350 F for about 8-10 minutes, until just starting to brown, or 11-12 if you like your cookies a little crispy.

Your finished product- easy to store, and easy to eat!! Enjoy!

Savor it!
love, rue