Mrs. Carla Monti

Mrs. Carla Monti

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Strawberry Muffins!

I wanted to bake something fresh and healthy for a friend who recently had a beautiful baby girl. I saw a gorgeous carton of organic strawberries and thought of muffins instantly.

I love Ina Garten's fruit recipes, so I used one of hers (link here!)

As with all muffin recipes, you really shouldn't use a mixer. Mixers are best for cupcakes or dense cakes, but muffins should be light and their dough barely mixed together.

I prepared the wet ingredients in two cups, the first with melted butter, and the second with beaten eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla extract.

I made a well in the dry ingredients (sifted together first) and then stirred it all together, adding the strawberries and white sugar last.

Veggie Egg Cups!

Small, muffin-sized veggie egg cups are packed with protein, taste great, and refrigerate well. They're perfect for sticking in the fridge at work and heating up throughout the week.

The recipe can be found here!

I used sweet kernel corn and roasted zucchini as the veggies to add to the eggs, and made sure to include shredded cheddar cheese within the veggies to add extra flavor. Once the muffin pan was set, I topped them off with grated asiago and parmesan cheese for some added oomph!

Friday, May 6, 2016

Smash Cake - The Test Run!

Oh, the ever-so-popular smash cake trend! I had never heard about this until after Giuliana was already here, but since I am a baker at heart, I immediately jumped on board with the concept. If this is relatively new to you, you can read about the trend here!

The idea is fabulous - make (or order) the baby a tiny, beautifully but simply frosted and decorated cake so that he/she can destroy it, or alternatively, eat it with glee while you snap photo after photo!

I am a baker, but also a perfectionist, so two months before G's first birthday party, I just had to try out the recipe to see if the smash cake would be worthy.

In order to make the smash cake, which is typically 4 inches tall, I went to Target to buy three tiny springform pans by the Wilton brand.

They are adorable! I cannot wait to re-use these and make small cheesecakes or even small birthday cakes for people in the future. I can forsee these coming in handy! I just love to make mini, or individualized desserts.

Next up was finding a healthy but fun recipe. I used a cake recipe from the lovely blog, Oh Everything Handmade. I found a fabulous frosting recipe from the uber healthy website, Our Haven Hill.

I made two batches of frosting - one I left white from the cream cheese, and the other I dyed pink using natural dye made from boiling beets (you can find out more about this process here).

Applying the base layer of white frosting.

Using a spatula to get the smoothest finish, since I am too lazy to buy a metal offset spatula to do the job!

Piping flowers/swirls using the Wilton 21 tip.

All piped out and ready to go to the fridge and not melt all over Grandma's kitchen table!

Frosting settling nice and coldly.