Just Desserts

red velvet cake

Posted in cake,Chocolate by nora on November 20, 2011

ok, i know i haven’t updated this in a while, but here’s a new recipe i tried from smitten kitchen

if you haven’t guessed already, the recipe is for red velvet cake. i haven’t tried it yet, because i’m assembling and serving it down at the beach for thanksgiving, but i will post pictures and reactions of my family as soon as i can!


  • 3 9-inch cake pans (round)
  • electric mixer
  • oven (kinda obvious, but you never know)

this makes 3 cake rounds


  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 3 1/2 cups of cake flour (all-purpose is ok in a pinch)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa (not Dutch process)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 cups canola oil
  • 2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 6 tablespoons red food coloring, or 1 teaspoon red gel coloring (dissolved into 6 tablespoons water)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons white vinegar

1. preheat the oven to 350. put a tsp of butter in each of the 3 cake pans (9-inch) in the oven till the butter melts, then brush the interior bottom and sides with the butter, then line the bottoms with parchment

2. whisk the cake flour, cocoa, and salt in a bowl

3. put the oil and sugar in the bowl of the electric mixer and beat a medium speed until well-blended. add the eggs one at a time. turn it down to low, then add the red food coloring, VERY CAREFULLY (it tends to splash everywhere). add the vanilla, then the flour/cocoa mixture alternately with the buttermilk in  2 batches. scrape down the bowl and beat just till combined.

4. place the baking soda in a small dish, then add the vinegar (it wont blow up, don’t worry) and add to the batter while the machine is still running, for 10 seconds. (this makes the cake nice and fluffy)

divide the batter among the pans, and bake for 30-40 minutes, till a toothpick in the very middle comes out clean. if the cakes are on different levels of the oven, you need to rotate them.

CUPCAKE VERSION: makes about 35 cupcakes (liners filled 3/4 of the way), at 350 for around 20-25 minutes, but check on them 2/3 of the way through, just in case.

FROSTING: (this is 2 times the recipe, because i like a generous amount of frosting, the original gave you a thin layer). makes 12 cups

  • 16 oz (2 packages) of cream cheese, room temp.
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) of butter, room temp.
  • 6 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1. put the cream cheese and the butter in the mixer bowl, and beat till light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). add the sugar and vanilla, and beat on low to combine.

FROSTING TIPS:  spread a thin layer over the top and sides of the cake to “glue” the loose crumbs there, then add the rest of your frosting.

if it’s too soft, chill for about 10 minutes before using it.


no fail super yummy poundcake

Posted in Uncategorized by nora on January 9, 2011

i got this recipes from the book Ratio, it is the easiest recipes EVER and tastes great!!!
you will need:
-8 oz. butter (room temperature)
– 4 large eggs, room temperature
-8 oz. sugar
-8 oz. flour
-1 teaspoon salt
– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

what you do:
– preheat the oven to 325 and butter your loaf pan
– beat the butter in an electric mixer with a paddle on medium for about a minute. add the sugar and salt and beat on medium-high until it is pale and fluffy. scrape down the bowl and paddle and put the mixer on low. add the eggs 1 by 1, waiting until the egg is thoroughly mixed in to add the other egg. beat until compleatly smooth. add the vanilla extract.put the mixer on medium-low and slowly add the flour, mixing just until smooth and combined.
– pur the batter into your loaf pan and bake for 1 hour. to test if it is done, poke a toothpick into the middle of the pound cake. if it comes away clean, it is done. if it comes out with batter, then add 10 minutes. repeat this until the toothpick comes out clean.
– eat!!!

Microwave Mug Cakes (MMC)

Posted in Uncategorized by nora on October 17, 2010

I got this book called 101 Recipes for Microwave Mug Cakes (MMC) by Stacey J. Miller. This book is very helpful for when you only want one brownie, or any other single serving dessert. Some of my favs are:
-S’More MMC
-Mm (M&M) MMC
-and lots more!
You sould really check this out!

Here is the website: http://www.microwavemugcakes.com

About the project…

Posted in Uncategorized by nora on May 28, 2010

I decided that since the last recipe made 180 cookies, I’m going to do a recipe every WEEK. Adds to the anticipation!

Chewy chocolate chip cookies

Posted in Uncategorized by nora on May 26, 2010

So, first up in the cookbook is chewy chocolate chip cookies.  These are very good, as my brother at right is demonstrating. This  makes about 180 cookies.

You will need:

  • 1  1/3 cups unsalted butter (salted will work if you omit the salt in the recipe)
  • 1  1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, cold
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3  3/4  cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1  1/4 teaspoons table salt (omit if you are using salted butter)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cups (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips

What you do:

  1. Put 2 oven racks in the oven in the top and middle. Heat  oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. using a mixer with a paddle, beat the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar at low-speed and working up to high-speed. Beat at  until mixture is light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. scrape the bowl and beater.
  3. add the eggs and vanilla and beat on high until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. scrape the bowl and beater.                                                                  paddle ——->
  4. in a medium bowl, whisk flour,  salt, and baking soda. add this to wet mixture mixing until just blended, dough will be stiff. stir in chocolate chips.
  5. drop rounded teaspoons on the  ungreased baking sheets, about 2 inches apart.  bake until the bottoms are golden brown, about 8-10 minutes. rotate the sheets at 4 minutes so the cookies get baked evenly. after cooking, transfer the cookies to wire cooling racks (you’ll need a few.)
  6. Repeat with extra dough
  7. Enjoy!!

Here goes…

Posted in Uncategorized by nora on May 26, 2010

After watching a portion of Julie&Julia, I decided to do the same thing! (for those who havent seen it I mean doing a recipe a day until I finish a cookbook) The book I decided to use is all about chocolate! so starting tomorrow, I try my best to do one everyday until I finish the book.

 heres a pic of the book I’m using:

so…. tomorrow is… wait and see!!! (comments are appreciated!)


Posted in Chocolate,Holidays by nora on April 13, 2010

I’m sooo happy spring is here, one of my favorite things is the CANDY!!!!! Peeps, chocolate, maltballs, jellybeans, chocolate bunnies, I could go on and on! What are your favs?

Home-made Marshmallows!!

Posted in Marshmallows by nora on January 17, 2010

I know most marshmallows are hard to make, but these are suprisingly easy! These go great in hot chocolate, by a campfire, or just plain! Got this from www.visionsofsugarplum.com (also good for blackmailing little brothers into saying please)

You will need:

  • butter and confectioners sugar
  • 2 tablespoons gelatine
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup boiling water ( 2 min. in the microwave works too)
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

What you do:

Take an 8×8 baking pan, butter, line with wax paper, and butter and dust lightly with confectioners sugar. Add the gelatin and cold water in a mixer. Let dissolve.

In a large saucepan, add boiling water (must be boiling before added), granulated sugar, and salt. Whisk over medium-high heat until boiling. Cook over heat (WITHOUT stirring!) for 15-20 min.

 Slowly pour syrup into the disolved gelatin and add vanilla extract. Beat for 20 min. on medium setting, or until cool and thick.

Butter a spatula and pour mixture into the pan. Freeze the marshmallow overnight.

Pull the wax paper out of the pan and cut marshmallow with a buttered and sugared knife. It helps to add confectioners sugar to the top of the marshmallow. Roll the marshmallows in confectioners sugar until they aren’t sticky. Enjoy!

Hot Cocoa

Posted in Chocolate by nora on January 8, 2010

 Since it’s snowing, a good cup of hot cocoa can help a lot to warm frozen fingers. Be sure to cut up the chocolate chips very well or else they stick to the bottom of the cup. Makes about 20 servings.

What you need:

  • 3 cups nonfat dry milk
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1-1/2 cups Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 1-1/2 cups white chocolate chips
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

What you do:
Combine ingredients in large bowl. Working in two batches, pulse ingredients in food processor until chocolate is finely ground. Store in airtight container for up to 3 months. To make hot cocoa, stir 1/3 cup of this mix into 1 cup of hot milk. Top with whipped cream or marshmallows. (see Home-Made Marshmallows!!)

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Pretzels

Posted in Chocolate by nora on December 29, 2009

These are the BEST pretzels ever! If you have had them you know what I’m talking about. I mean, the peanut butter filled pretzels are good, but this is pure genius! These are found at Trader Joe’s, but not with the other peanut butter pretzels. To keep the chocolate from melting they are in the freezer area with the cookies and microwave meals.I’ve found that these are perfect movie snacks, and they are much cheaper than the candy provided at the movies. I haven’t seen them, but I’ve heard that there are DARK chocolate ones as well.What could be better! Just make sure you don’t eat the whole bag, that’s what I almost did! 🙂

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