Coffee Caramel Ice Cream

Nothing screams “Summer!” quite like ice cream. And, sure, you can go with the traditional–vanilla, strawberry, chocolate–once you’ve mastered those, it’s time to move onto something something more adventurous.

Actually, “mastered” might not even be the right word. Did you know ice cream actually isn’t all that difficult to make? It’s true! Outside of the basic ingredients, all you need is a lot of patience. That’s it. No special skills or magic required.

Trust me. Give this coffee caramel ice cream a go and you’ll see what I mean. You’ll be able to “master” ice cream in no time!

What You NeedBlog Ingredients.jpg

  • 3 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 4 ½  teaspoons ground coffee + ¼ to ½ cup water (depending on how strong you’d like the coffee taste)
  • ½ – 1 cup caramel sauce (note: thicker sauce is better. Avoid anything that says “syrup” as it will dissolve into the ice cream and you won’t have thick, gooey ribbons of caramel throughout)

 

How You Do It

  1. The night before, freeze your ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Having a freezing bowl is crucial; without it, your ice cream won’t properly firm up before it goes it the freezer, resulting in chunks of ice. At least 12-15 hours minimum is recommended.
  2. Brew coffee. I placed mine in empty tea bags. To prevent burning, use a medium temperature and let coffee brew as you make the rest of the ice cream.
  3. In a medium saucepan heated to low, whisk together the heavy whipping cream, milk, vanilla, and sugar. Stirring frequently, heat until small bubbles begin to form. Remove from heat and let cool at least 5 minutes.Blog Cream Sugar
  4. Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites and discard the egg whites. Using a fork, whisk together the egg yolks until they’re completely blended together.Blog Eggs
  5. Whisking as you go, very slowly pour the egg yolks into the heavy whipping cream mixture. Turn stove up to medium, and heat for 7-10 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent burning. Once the mixture reaches 180 F, remove from stove.Blog AllBlog Temp
  6. Stir in brewed coffee. If you used tea bags, plop them right into the mixture–this will strengthen the flavor. Let sit for at least 20 minutes, cover, and put mixture in the fridge (not freezer) anywhere from 1-3 hours.Blog Brew Coffee
  7. Mix in ice cream maker according to manufacturer. I mixed for 20 minutes, but if it don’t begin to firm up, it’s a good indication that the bowl wasn’t cold enough.Blog Ince Cream Maker
  8. When ice cream starts to firm up but is still soft, spoon into container. Layer in the caramel sauce, finishing with a drizzle on top. Cover and freeze, preferably overnight.Blog Caramel Sauce
  9. When it’s all ready to go, spoon some out into a bowl, drizzle over more caramel sauce, and enjoy!Blog FInished 2

I absolutely love the pockets of caramel–look at that!

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Who knew making ice cream could be so easy? Sure, it takes a bit of time, but, with results like this, why not?

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Until next time,
Danielle

Coconut Almond Bars & Classic Yellow Birthday Cake

Did you miss last month’s recipes? Now’s your chance to catch up. Not only did I make myself a birthday (apparently you aren’t supposed to make your own birthday cake, but who cares!), but I also make something that incorporates both coconut flakes and almonds (two things my boyfriend hates but managed to love this time around). Read on to learn more!

Continue reading “Coconut Almond Bars & Classic Yellow Birthday Cake”

Classic Yellow Birthday Cake

Classic Yellow Birthday Cake

With my birthday coming up in a few short days, I wanted to make a classic: a yellow birthday cake. Both easy and delicious, there’s no wrong way to decorate a classic yellow birthday cake. It’s an “all about the taste” cake, so don’t feel like you have to do something extravagant. Keep it in the pan and just frost the top, have several layers with frosting in the middle… The choice is up to you. With something so delicious, it doesn’t matter how it looks.

What You Need

CakeBlog Cake Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 8 tablespoons (½ cup) salted butter, softened
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup milk

FrostingBlog Fristing Ingredients

  • 3 ⅔ cup powdered sugar
  • 8 tablespoons (½ cup) salted butter, softened
  • ⅓ cup milk, plus more as needed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

 

How You Do it

Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and prepare pan. If you’re going to serve in the pan, simply butter and flour. If serving right out of the pan, line with parchment paper. I used a 9’x13’ with the intention of cutting it in half, so if you’re not going to do that, you can use a smaller pan.
  2. Cream together the sugar and butter.Blog Butter Sugar
  3. Adding one at a time, mix in eggs and vanilla. The consistency will be similar to that of uncooked pudding.Blog Sugar Butter Eggs Vanilla.jpg
  4. In a separate dish, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Alternating with the milk, pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until all are combined.Blog Cake Batter
  5. Pour into prepared pan and bake 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let set as room temperature for at least 20 minutes, then place in freezer until ready to decorate (it’s a lot easier to work with cold!).

Frosting

  1. Combine powdered sugar, butter, and vanilla. Mixture will not completely combine at this point; there will still be clumps.Blog Frosting Butter Sugar
  2. Add milk. Mixture will be slightly thinner than typical frosting.
  3. Add cocoa powder. This will thicken the mixture, but if you plan to frost your cake instead of piping, add some more milk until desired consistency is reached.Blog Frosting.jpg

Putting it Together

  1. Take cake out of the fridge. If making a layered cake, cut in half and begin to carve cake into desired shaped. If your layers are uneven, use a bread knife and shave off the tops.Blog Cake LayersBlog Carve Cake
  2. Stack the layers on top of one another, frosting in between, and create a crumb coat. If you’re planning on piping, this might be as far as you go–and that’s okay! If you’re interested in piping and adding sprinkles, continue below.Blog Crumb Coat
  3. Staring at the bottom, begin to pipe the cake. I used an open star tip, but which one you use is up to you.Blog Piping
  4. Pipe all the way around the cake. Depending on how you want to decorate the top, either pipe until the cake is completely covered, or leave the top open for sprinkles. If putting on sprinkles, do so carefully and slowly–they have the tendency to bounce around and make a mess! Putting the sprinkles on the dead center of the cake and then pushing them to the desired spot works the best. Pat them down if needed.20180520_131600 (2).jpg
  5. When you’ve finished decorating, that’s it! Cut, serve, and enjoy!Blog Cake Slice.jpg

The sprinkles make it so fun, worthy of any celebration.Blog Complete Cake.jpg

I love layered cake, don’t you?Blog Cake Center

I’m so excited for my birthday this year, and though I made this cake a few days before hand, I’m trying my best to save a slice or two for the big day. Until next time,

♥Danielle

Mix it up: The sprinkles I used are nonpareils, but if you don’t like the “crunch” they produce, you have so many other options. You can even use sanding sugar. Experiment!

Coconut Almond Bars

Coconut Almond Bars

When it comes to baking, these bars are as healthy as they get. Due they have a decent amount of sugar? Of course. Can we taste the butter? Absolutely. But there is also coconut and almonds, which means these are the epitome of ~healthy snacking~ right?

Okay, maybe not.

But they’re delicious, which is what counts.

Even if you’re not big on coconut or almonds, you might like these! My boyfriend, who hates both coconut and almonds found himself asking for more. These reason is that they’re more about adding texture, not so much flavor. Sure, you can taste them, but these bars produce a sweet vanilla flavor, augmented by the coconut flakes and sliced almonds. Definitely a crowd pleaser!

*A quick note: I cooked these on the shortest time possible as to end up with a gooey center. I’m talking fork-and-knife potential. If you’d like a firmer filling, simply bake for 5-10 minutes longer.

What You Need

Blog Crust Ingredients

Crust

  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons salted butter, softened

Blog FIlling Ingredients

Filling

  • 1 ½ cups brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
  • ¾ cups unsweetened coconut flakes
  • ⅓ cups sliced almonds

 

How You Do It
Crust

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F and butter an 8″ x 8″ glass dish.
  2. Mix together the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, and salt.
  3. Add in the butter until combined. There shouldn’t be any chunks of butter, and a ball of dough should form, able to hold its shape.Blog Crust Dough
  4. Press crust into glass dish and bake for 15 minutes, or until the top begins to brown. Note: the crust doesn’t have to be fully cooked at this point because it’s going to continue to bake later on.Blog Pressed in Pan

Filling

  1. Mix together the brown sugar, eggs, and vanillas until texture resembles a thin, grainy syrupBlog Filling Wet Ingredients
  2. Add in the unsweetened coconut flakes and sliced almondsBlog Filling Almonds CoconutFilling All Ingredients
  3. Pour over crust, making sure to cover the edges. If you’d like, sprinkle on some more coconut flakes. Bake for 30-40 minutes, depending on how gooey or firm you’d like the centers.Blog Glass Filled.jpg
  4. Cool for at least 20 minutes. If the bottom of the glass is still warm, don’t cut them yet! You’ll want them at least room temp–if not colder–otherwise, they’ll fall apart when you cut them. If you helps, stick them in the fridge or freezer. When they’ve finally cooled, cut and enjoy!Bars Stacked Done

Look at how deliciously gooey.Blog Bars Done

That’s all for now! If you give these coconut bars a go, let me know how they turn out. Until next time,

♥Danielle

Mix it up: Not a big fan of almonds? Try it with any other nut: walnuts, pecans… Completely up to you!

Chocolate Caramel Cheesecake

Chocolate Caramel Cheesecake

Ever notice how versatile cheesecake it? You can have a plain cheesecake, cheesecake with fruit, cheesecake with chocolate, coffee-infused cheesecake…Basically, cheesecake is so forgiving that you can pair it with just about anything sweet and you’ll come out with something amazing.

Take the recipe below. There’s chocolate incorporated throughout–from the cookies in the crust to the chocolate in the filling to the chocolate on the top, this is truly the cheesecake for the person who never turns down chocolate. And don’t worry if you don’t have a spring form pan (see note below); you’ll still be able to make this with whatever pan you do have.

What You’ll Need
Crust20180422_092328

  • 4 cinnamon graham crackers
  • 8 sandwich cookies, filling removed
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons butter, melted

Filling20180422_095058.jpg

  • 2 oz semi-sweet chocolate
  • 4 packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1 ½ cup sugar
  • 1 ¼ tablespoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup flour

Topping

  • ½ cup milk chocolate, crush (I used a chocolate Easter bunny!)
  • ½ to 1 cup caramel sauce

A quick note about the pan20180311_083300.jpg

Ideally, cheesecake should be cooked in a spring form pan. But if yours is leaking, or you just want to try something different, there’s nothing stopping you from using a regular ol’ pie pan or a tart pan. The one I used has a glass bottom and removable silicon sides. This produced a thinner cheesecake (see pictures below) and cook time wasn’t as long, but this recipe is written as if you’ll have a spring form pan. If you use anything other than a spring form, don’t sweat it–you’ll just have leftover filling.

How You Do It

Crust

  1. Using a food processor, combine graham crackers, sandwich cookies, sugar, and 2 tablespoons of butter. Pulse until texture is crumb-like. Mixture will hold its shape when pressed. If not, add another tablespoon of butter.20180422_092850
  2. Press crust into pan.20180422_093459

 

Filling

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Cut up semi-sweet chocolate into desired chunks and sprinkle over crust. I left larger chunks, but the size is up to use. The smaller the chunks, the more likely they are to melt into the crust, creating a fudge texture, so it’s completely up to you.20180422_095937(1)
  3. Mix together cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla. When combined, add in milk.
  4. Adding one at a time, beat in eggs until combined.20180422_101337.jpg
  5. Add sour cream and flour into the filling. When fully combined, spoon filling over prepared crust. If there are a few lumps in the batter, that’s okay. *Remember, if you’re using a pie pan instead of a spring form pan, you’re going to have some extra filling. If you’d like, save it and make another cheesecake!20180422_101925
  6. Bake for 65-75 minutes (about 45 if not using a spring form). Remove from oven and let cool for at least 1 hour at room temp. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours afterwards. Note: if there are cracks, don’t worry–that’ll be covered up later.

 

Topping

  1. After cheesecake has cooled, remove the rim of the pan.
  2. Begin to decorate. The pattern is up to you, but I created a cross-cross pattern using caramel sauce. Make sure the sauce is warm enough to easily spread/ drizzle over the cheesecake. If not, put it in the microwave for 10-20 seconds.20180422_154251
  3. Break the milk chocolate into desired chunks and sprinkle around the rim.20180422_154327.jpg
  4. When you’re done, cut into it, and enjoy!

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Can we talk about the crust for a moment? Look how gorgeous!

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So much chocolate; I’m getting hungry just thinking about it.

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Truly a cheesecake you won’t want to share.

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That’s all for today, but what do you think? Are you big on chocolate cheesecakes, or are you more of a strawberry cheesecake person? If you give this a try, let me know how it goes. Until next time,

♥Danielle

Mix it Up: Prefer dark chocolate? I bet it would be amazing, especially it you use a sea salt caramel sauce.

PB&J Cupcakes

I know what you’re thinking: “Wow, another peanut butter recipe? Danielle must really be obsessed with peanut butter.”

The answer is yes, yes I am.

These bring me back to my childhood. Lunch was always a PB&J on wheat bread. And these taste so much like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich that I can’t help but be nostalgic. They make me want to watch Nickelodeon and then go play with my Skip-It. These are fun and yummy, producing an instant smile.

Plus, if you’re like me and like a lot of jelly, these recipe can easily accommodate that. I just put a dollop of jelly on the top, but there’s nothing stopping you from putting on more. Nothing at all.

What You’ll Need

Blog Ingredients

Cupcakes

  • 8 tablespoons of butter, softened
  • ½ cup peanut butter
  • 1 ¼ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups and 2 tablespoons flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ⅔ cup milk

blog-frosting-and-filling.jpg

Frosting and Filling

  • 5 tablespoons butter, softened
  • ¼ cup and 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 ½ tablespoon milk
  • 1 cup strawberry jelly

How You Do It
Cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and line cupcake pan.
  2. Cream together the butter, peanut butter, and sugar. When butter is completely mixed in, beat in eggs and vanilla.Blog Wet Ingredients.jpg
  3. In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients: flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda.
  4. In batches and alternating with the milk, add dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, mixing thoroughly after each batch is added. Use the following suggestion:
    1. 1 cup flour
    2.  1/3 cup milk
    3. 1/4 cup flour
    4. 1/3 cup milk
    5. 1/4 cup and 2 tablespoons flour Blog All Ingredients Incorporated.jpg
  5. Fill cupcakes ⅔ of the way full and bake for 20-22 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. As cupcakes cool, make the frosting.

Frosting

  1. Combine the butter, peanut butter, and vanilla extract.
  2. Add in the powdered sugar in batches. Frosting will be thick.Blog Frosting.jpg
  3. To fill the cupcakes, use a corer or, using a knife, cut out the centers. Keep the centers.blog-centers-removed.jpg
  4. Fill with jelly. I piped them in, but you can certainly spoon it in. Cut off some of the cupcake centers and place over jelly filling.Blog Jelly Fillingblog-filling-topped.jpg
  5. In order to frost the cupcakes, using the tip of your choice, pipe on a base layer. Frost two circles on top of each other, making sure there’s a hole in the center.Blog Base LayerBlog Icing Center
  6. Fill the hole with jelly, and you’re all done!

Blog Finished 1

Look at the height on these babies!Blog Individual

And can we talk about the centers for a second? Because I’m in love.

blog-centers.jpg

I know this makes 16 cupcakes, but do I really have to share? Do I?

blog-featured-image.jpg

That’s all we have time for now. In the comments below, let me know what recipe you’d like to see next! Until next time,

♥Danielle

Mix it up: Obviously I used strawberry jelly, but there’s nothing stopping you from using grape or any other flavor!

Brown Sugar Orange Triangles & Peanut Butter Cookies

It’s so hard to believe that it’s already April–and Spring! I don’t know about you, but I was getting tired of snow…and snow…and more snow. Don’t get me wrong, it gave me the perfect excuse to stay in and bake, but sometimes it’s nice to have a bit of sunshine and not need to ear snow boots everywhere you go.

April also means that I’ve had this blog for just over two months–can you believe it? In case you missed anything from last month, this post is perfect for you!


In Case You Missed It

Brown Sugar Orange Triangles
12 triangles | 2 hours
Dense. Sweet. Delightful.

Cut use 3

These make the perfect breakfast treat. The icing is made with cream cheese, and there’s orange juice woven throughout the entire recipe. Serve them with some coffee or tea!

Peanut Butter Cookies
Approximately 24 cookies |45 minutes
Classic. Simple. Rich.

Use above shot

Fair warning: these are only for the biggest peanut butter lovers. They so rich and flavorful, that you just have to have a glass of milk with them. Plus, it’s pretty much impossible to eat only one. Trust me; I tried.

Hungry for More?

The next recipe doesn’t come out for almost two weeks, but if you still want more, check out my Instagram, daniellesmixingbowl. Hope to see you there!

Until next time,

Danielle