Archive for June, 2012

Oreo inspired pride

June 28, 2012

I love oreo cookies. I love them. Love, love, love. I love them so much that one of my friends and I would often head out to the America Today clothing shop in Antwerp during school breaks just to go and buy these cookies – completely bypassing the clothes and heading straight for the good stuff. (Yeah. I admit it, I’m a bit of a sucker for American snacks and sweets.)

When I saw the picture on Oreo’s facebook page of the cookie with the rainbow colored filling, I was just really happy. Another thing to add to my reasons-I-love-oreos list. I wanted to make oreo cupcakes to celebrate – or maybe a cake. But my bike broke down and I couldn’t get any. So instead I made some home made oreos, as a little thank you for the awesome people behind that pictures, and the awesome people behind those cookies.

Also, another reason to celebrate oreos is because they turned 100 this year. That, and they’re adorable:

Since 1912, we’ve made it our business to make life a little less serious.
In a world that’s become far too adult, a couple of Oreo cookies, a glass of milk, and a shared Twist, Lick and Dunk is all it takes to set your inner kid loose.
Celebrate the kid inside all of us.

Oreo turned 100 years young this year

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Red Velvet Cake

June 22, 2012

Every couple of months I break down and (attempt to) bake a Red Velvet cake. Red Velvet is one of those cakes everybody seems to love, but personally I haven’t had the best experiences with it. It’s not a very common cake here in Europe, and the one time I had one  (a Red Velvet cupcake from Harrods) wasn’t a terribly great experiences because there was a big chunk of baking soda in the little cake, which almost burned a hole through my tongue. If I want Red Velvet I have to make it myself, and because I don’t really want it I hardly ever bake it – except every once in a while I think: Everbody just can’t be wrong about this cake. And then I give it another shot.

This time around it actually worked, and I’m a bit of a fan of this recipe, to be honest.

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Triple chocolate chip cookies

June 20, 2012

While baking these coffee cupcakes the other day I used brown butter for the very first time. Now there’s something you should know about me (and my friends can vouch for this) I absolutely love butter. Butter and I are best friends. I always say that if there was only one thing I could eat for the rest of my life it would be bread and butter. Now it probably doesn’t come to a surprise that the brown butter absolutely blew me away. Even while browning it I was all but drooling over my little pot, the nutty smell of it was amazing. Then when I made that cupcake batter the smell kept getting better and better and I just knew: I have to try this again in a different recipe. And soon.

And today I got to use it again when I made these triple chocolate chip cookies with brown butter and vanilla. It’s safe to say my second brown butter experience didn’t disappoint – in fact I think these were the best chocolate chip cookies I have ever had. I got the recipe on the Sweet Peony Blog, but slightly altered it. I’m out of vanilla essence so I used the seeds of a vanilla bean, and I used a mix of black, brown and white chocolate chips.

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Penguin fun

June 17, 2012

My parents took a couple of ice cream classes a while back and ever since they’ve been bitten by the frozen-treats bug. They got one of those professional ice cream machine and everything. Yeah. It’s really no surprise that I’m so obsessed with baking and cooking, with parents like this. A friend recently asked my parents to make him a couple of ice cream cakes. My dad is the one who does the actual ice making, while my mom is always in charge of the cake assembly – she rocks at that kind of stuff.

Her plan was to make three different flavored cakes – one of them was for the kids, and she wanted to put fondant penguins on that one. Aha, I thought, the perfect job for me. The thing with having a talented and creative mom, though, is that everyone always assumes the really good stuff was made by her. “Have you seen those penguins mom made?” My brother asked me, “They are amazing!” (You should probably know that my brother is a bit of a penguin fan.) “No,” I told him, “I made them!” And he gave me this suspicious look like I would try to steal my mom’s thunder. Thanks a lot, bro.

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Chocosaurus

June 12, 2012

I love going shopping with friends. Catching up, having fun, lots of laughter – and of course: the shopping itself. On Monday my friend Dana and I took the new(ish) tram to Wijnegem shopping center. It had been ages since we last saw each other so admittedly we did more talking than shopping (my wallet is grateful) – but the stores we did enter were pretty awesome. I bought some rolling marzipan and (five point) star cookie cutters in Pippoos, and the cutest little dinosaur chocolate molds in Alice Délice. I could spend hours and hours in Alice Délice, and if I had the money I’m sure I could spend a lot of that down there as well. I refrained though (this time!) and only got these chocolate molds.

I had to try them out as soon as I got home.

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Banana chocolate chip cake

June 11, 2012

What does one do when one is faced with four over-ripe bananas nobody wants to eat anymore? One bakes something banana-y. Also: add chocolate. Adding chocolate is always a good idea.

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Rainy days

June 8, 2012

How’s the weather been treating you? Here (here being Western Europe) June hasn’t been very nice to us. The end of May/Beginning of July was very warm and very sunny, but the last week has been rainy and cold. Me, I really like rain though. Mostly when I’m inside to enjoy it, but I don’t mid it all that much when I’m outside either. Today I decided to make some cupcakes to celebrate the rain, and then sun.

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Baby shower

June 6, 2012

Because I tend to bake something at least once a week (and on a bad week – or a good week, depends on how you look at it! – I might bake three or even four different things) there have to be people to actually eat the things I make. My parents’ sweet tooth isn’t that developed and my brother is just one man (one man with a big appetite, but still only one man). That’s why a lot of it gets shipped off to my neighbors. They seem to like what I make (either that or they’re too nice to tell me otherwise) and when their daughter gave birth to their second grandchild they asked me if I could bake some stuff for the baby shower/christening. “Sure!” I said, trying not to seem too excited. Play it cool, Aline.

I asked them what they’d like and they pretty much gave me free reign. My neighbor said the baby’s daddy really liked the Walnut and Coffee gateau I made, and that it’d be nice if I made the Rhubarb Buckle again.  So that’s what I did. I also made mini!merveilleux, cupcakes, brownies and shortbread cookies. It took me a couple of days to bake and decorate everything, but at the end of the road I was super proud of everything – and this ended up being my first paid job. The praise I got afterwards was amazing, my neighbor kept telling me how good everything was – and her daughter came by as well with the cutest Thank You card. An awesome experience all around.

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Star Trekking

June 1, 2012

Six days. That’s how long it took for my geeky fannish colours to show on this spanking new baking blog of mine. Six days I was able to maintain that professional (well sorta) appearance I was going for. I have to admit, I thought I’d be able to pretend that I’m not an absolute media geek for at least a little longer. I mean, it’s not even been a week yet. But it couldn’t be helped! Yesterday my friend Stephanie came by with the Star Trek TOS boxset she got for her birthday and I couldn’t just not bake anything to celebrate the occasion. It was both our first times watching TOS, and we were ready to get our Shatner and Nimoy on.

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