Monday, October 29, 2012

Halloween fun

I made a two different treats for the cake walk at cub scouts. I made spider web cupcakes and finger cookies. To make the cupcakes I used a regular box cake mix and frosting. I baked it according to the directions on the box. When cooled I frosted them lightly, mostly just enough to cover the cake.
Make sure you smooth it out kind of good. Then take some of your frosting and put it in a bowl and mix it with black food coloring until it is the desired color.
Put this colored frosting into a piping bag or a zip lock bag I grab the corner I want to cut and push it through the inside of the bag, and fill my hand up with frosting. Then I pull my hand back through and the frosting is just in the corner and not all over the bag.
I could not get a good picture of the frosting in my hand since I was taking the picture myself. Next clip a tiny, tiny piece off the corner of the bag. With your piping bag make a small circle in the center of the cake and a bigger circle around it.
I only do a few cupcakes at a time, because I get bored easy and I need to keep changing what I am doing. Anyway, once you get some done you will need a toothpick or in a pinch a skewer. I hadn't realized we were out of toothpicks until it was too late. Next take your toothpick and start at the center line drag the toothpick through the black icing connecting the lines and going past the outer line. I usually make 5 or 6 lines on each cupcake.
This is when I realized I had made the lines too thick. I had to use the other corner of my bag and make the hole smaller. Next after the web is made you take an m&m and put it some where on the web. Using the black icing make little legs off the sides of the candy.
Next up we made sugar cookie fingers. I used the same recipe I have used before and you can find it here. After the cookies chilled we rolled them out like a snake and used sliced almonds to make finger nails. I used a butter knife to make the slits on the knuckles. After the first pan was out of the oven we realized we used too much dough. Our cool fingers turned into fat fingers. So we made them skinny almost boney looking and they turned out better.
I also dusted cinnamon over the slits, they look pretty awesome and I hope the boys like them at scouts. Whats your favorite halloween treat?

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Stuffed Jalapenos

I love spicy food, so much that I grow at least two jalapeno plants every year. I love tabasco peppers too, oh and banana peppers. Anyway, before an impending frost I picked and the large ones. I have been letting them get to a big enough size so we could stuff them. The recipe I use is simple and I don't know who originated it, it was told to me a long time ago. I didn't get as many pictures as I'd like, but I got the one that show how to cut them. Always make sure you wear gloves, and I recommend a well ventilated area too. These were so spicy just cutting and de-seeding made me cough.
Stuffed Jalapenos:
Ground meat- cooked, drained, and cooled slightly
Cream cheese- warmed up a bit
I didn't put an amount because it all depends on how many jalapenos you get. We had about 14 or so and used a pound of ground meat, one package of cream cheese and two packages of bacon. Rinse the jalapenos cut a slit down the center length wise, not cutting through the pepper. Make a horizontal slit at the top and bottom of vertical slit, making sure not to cut through the pepper again. Its ok if you accidentally chop through it, you can finagle it and wrap the bacon so it holds on most occasions. Gently pull your sides open and cut out seeds and membranes, or leave them in up to you. You get more stuffing in without it though.
Cut open and ready to stuff.
This is the only picture I got, but it shows you how I cut mine open. Ok once you have them cut open I rinse to get out any extra seeds that may be hiding. Mix your cream cheese and browned ground meat until smooth. It works best if meat is warm and cream cheese is warmer too. Stuff your peppers until the meat mixture is poking out a bit. Take your bacon and wrap one piece around the jalapeno and secure it with the tooth pick. Now this may sound easy, but when you have cream cheese mixture on peppers and gloves, then bacon in the mix it can get tricky. I try to get the tooth pick through the start and end of the bacon piece. Then cook until bacon is done, I like it grilled. This is the part I wish I had taken another picture. They are delicious and spicy, we had some so hot I could barely eat them. How do you use your peppers?