Vanilla Almond Buttercream Frosting

Vanilla Almond Buttercream

This weekend I wanted to play a little with baking a cake and decorating it since it has been a while since I’ve made and decorated one. I decided upon a vanilla cake, baked it, then the big decision was what kind of frosting I would use. I prefer buttercream, but it doesn’t set up as well as the frostings I’ve made with shortening. I really don’t like the frostings made with just shortenings, so I decided to do a mixture. The recipe was inspired by the recipe I found on I Am Baker‘s website.

To make the buttercream, you will need:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup shortening (I realized I put in a whole stick when I only needed half, but it still turned out pretty well with the whole stick)
1 two pound bag of powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
1/2 cup milk (I used Vanilla Silk Milk)

Directions:
1. Put the butter, shortening, vanilla extract, and almond extract in the mixer and cream together about 30 seconds.
2. Dump the entire bag of powdered sugar in, along with the milk. Mix until creamy and desired texture. You can add more milk if you’d like your frosting to be thinner.
3. Enjoy!

I kept my frosting a bit stiffer since I knew I’d be decorating the cake using rosettes.

Vanilla Almond

Baking love,
Heather

Apple Cake Pops

Apple Cake Pops

I decided to make some apple cake pops for my baby girl’s daycare teachers and this is what came out of that!

To make the cake pops, you will need:
Cake balls in whatever flavor you like (see my tutorial here)
Sucker sticks
Red Candy Melts
Green Candy Coated Sunflower Seeds
Pretzel sticks broken into three pieces
Wax paper
Styrofoam

Directions:
1. After your cake balls are made, cool them in the refrigerator or freezer. Right now, it is pretty cool here so I don’t really need to even put them in the fridge before I start dipping.
2. Set up your station. Have the sucker sticks, green candy coated sunflower seeds, and pretzel sticks all within reach. Put wax paper down on the table in case any chocolate drips and set the Styrofoam close by so you are easily able to put the finished pop in it to dry.
3. Melt the Candy Melts.
4. Take the cake balls out of the fridge. Put the sticks in the cake by dipping the end in the melted chocolate and pushing it about halfway into the ball.
5. Once the stick is dried in, dip the pop into the Candy Melts. Gently tap off any extra chocolate.
6. You have to work quick now- put the pretzel stick in as the stem and the green sunflower seed next to it as the leaf.
7. Place the completed pop in the Styrofoam to dry.
8. Do this for all of your pops and then enjoy!
9. If you have leftover Candy Melts, remake them into the little discs by spooning it out on the wax paper in small amounts. Once they are dry, store in a bag for the next time you make cake pops!

Baking love,
Heather

White Chocolate Oatmeal Craisin Lactation Cookies

White Chocolate Craisin Lactation Cookies

After posting my recipe for lactation cookies, I had a friend share another lactation cookie recipe with me, so I thought I’d give it a try this past weekend! Of the two cookies, I have to say I like the first recipe I posted a little better, which you can find here. I’m pretty sure it’s because they are not as healthy as these ones, and they include my favorite ingredient, regular chocolate (although, I do think dark chocolate could make these even better). Anyway, this recipe is a healthier lactation cookie option and still pretty tasty!

The original recipe can be found on Mama’s Like Me‘s page.

For the White Chocolate Oatmeal Craisin Lactation Cookie recipe you will need…
4 tablespoons water
1 cup Flaxseed Meal
½ cup unsweetened applesauce
½ cup coconut oil (I didn’t have coconut oil, so I used vegetable oil)
½ cup sugar
½ cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 ½ cups whole wheat flour (I didn’t have whole wheat flour, so I used regular flour)
3 cups Old Fashioned Oats
4 tablespoons Brewer’s Yeast
½ cup mini white chocolate chips
½ cup Craisins

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. Mix the water and flaxseed meal together and set aside. (This seemed like a lot of flaxseed to me, and makes the cookies taste a bit nuttier. I might add less the next time I make these.)

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3. In a stand mixer, combine oil, applesauce, sugar, and brown sugar. Mix well.

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4. Mix in eggs, vanilla, and your flaxseed meal mixture. Mix well.

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5. Add your flour, oats, salt, baking soda, and Brewer’s Yeast. The dough will be sticky.

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6. Stir in white chocolate and Craisins.

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7. Use a cookie scoop and place your dough on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.

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8. Bake for 9 minutes. The cookies will still be a little soft. Put them on a baking rack to cool.

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9. Enjoy!

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Like the other lactation cookies, this makes a large batch so I put about half in my freezer for later. The next time I make these I will probably add a lot more chocolate and Craisins, but that’s mostly because I LOVE my sweets!

Baking love,
Heather

Valentine and Housewarming Cake Pops!

Valentines Day and Housewarming Cake Pops

I was asked to make some cake pops by an acquaintance, and I happily said yes! She was looking for me to make her ones for Valentine’s Day and for some to give as a housewarming gift. We both looked online to see what might be best and she chose owl and cupcake Valentine cake pops and a mix of houses and purple ball cake pops for the housewarming gift. I set to work and this is what I came up with! These were so fun to make, I really just want to make more cake pops!! Unfortunately, I did not take pictures through my cake pop making process, but I’ll include a list of items needed for each type. I made a mix of vanilla cake pops and cookies and cream cake pops, using a box mix and store bought icing to mix it with. If you’d like to see how I make the cake for the cake pops, take a look here! For all of the cake pops I used my Oxo small cookie scoop to make sure they all used about the same amount of the cake/icing mixture. You will also need the sticks, bags, and ribbon to package all of the pops.

Owl Cake Pops
Owls

For the owls you will need:
*Red, white, and pink candy melts
*Chocolate chips to make the ears
*White sprinkles and a food writer to make the eyes (or the eye sprinkles that they sell)
*Orange sprinkles for the nose
*Pink and white hearts for the wings
*Star sprinkles for the feet
*Flower sprinkles for the bow

Cupcake Cake Pops
Cupcakes

For the cupcakes you will need:
*Red, white, and pink candy melts
*Valentine colored sprinkles
*Small hearts and round red balls to put on top

Housewarming Cake Pops
Houses

For the houses you will need:
*White and black candy melts
*Food writer for the windows, door, and grass (I like the Americolor writers)
*Flower sprinkles

Purple Cake Pops
Purple ball

For the cake pops you will need:
*Purple candy melts
*White sprinkles

I now have cake pop fever and am pinning tons of cake pop creations that I want to try!

Happy cake pop making!
Heather