Decadent Carrot Cake

Decadent Carrot Cake CreamCheeseFrostingSheetPan

I have been searching for a new carrot cake recipe for a while, and I finally found one. I am in love with this new cookbook 200 Best Sheet Pan Recipes and this recipe for Decadent Carrot Cake by one of my favorite cookbook authors, Camilla Saulsbury and Published by Robert Rose (my publisher). Getting dinner together can be challenging, especially for those who work full time and/or have kids. Sheet pan meals are the new one-pot meals since they allow you to cook several components of your meal at one such as her recipes for California Fish Tacos with Cucumber and Pineapple, Sheet Pan Clam Bake and even Weeknight Chicken and Stuffing. Her book begins with an “extra-simple pantry meal” chapter, followed by breakfast and brunch recipes, meatless meals, recipes for seafood, chicken, turkey, beef, pork etc. Of course, I love all of the recipes I have tried so far!

Children, including those who claim an aversion to vegetables, are drawn to carrot cake. Perhaps it’s because the carrots create a moistness that plays up the sweet spices of the cake, and accent the component everyone loves most: the tangy cream cheese icing. Whether you have kids or not, this carrot cake is the perfect mix of sweetness and softness. It’s perfect for Mother’s Day, spring parties and summer gatherings. It’s also so simple to prepare. Enjoy and be sure to check out this cookbook!

Courtesy of 200 Best Sheet Pan Recipes by Camilla Saulsbury © 2016 www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with publisher permission. Available where books are sold.

200 Sheet Pan Meals Coobkook

5 Tips for National Cake Decorating Day

combed

So… I am in Lake Como, Italy staying at the amazing Grand Hotel Tremezzo this week, and I was on the plane Saturday so I didn’t get to post this. Before I do, here is just one o my views today.

Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Back to a few days ago, I wanted to share that Chicago’s French-inspired patisserie, Vanille, and their 5 tips for decorating the perfect buttercream cake for National Cake Decorating Day, which was Saturday. Owner and baker, Sophie Evanoff, shares some of her best buttercream cake decorating tips on my blog to inspire and make the best cake decorator of everyone. Check out her 5 tips for national cake decorating day below:

sprinkles

5 Tips for Buttercream Cakes

  1. Rustic buttercream– Easier to accomplish than a smooth sided cake and still looks professional.
  2. Add bought décor to cover up any problem areas. For example, chocolate décor, sugar flowers.
  3. Add nuts, sprinkles, chocolate curls to the side of cake, this will cover up any mishaps and don’t require a smooth finish.
  4. Add organic fresh flowers to any cake for a simple yet elegant touch.
  5. Combed finish- Makes any cake look even and finished.

Decor y

Founded in 2002, Vanille specializes in French-inspired artisanal pastries, desserts, and cakes. Owned and operated by Sophie Evanoff, Vanille prides itself on its premier quality and taste. From the ever-popular French macarons to the freshly baked croissants and handmade chocolates and candies, every creation shows Vanille’s true dedication to its craft. Vanille currently operates two Chicago locations; one at 2108 N. Clark St. in Lincoln Park and one at the French Market located inside Ogilvie Metra Station at 131 N. Clinton Ave. A third store opens this September at 3243 N. Broadway in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood.

Lemonade Poppyseed Cake

lemonade poppyseed cake

Today I am so excited to be on Talk of the Town Newschannel 5 in Nashville making this amazing recipe for Lemonade Poppyseed Cake perfect for this time of year. It is fabulous for breakfast, a snack and for dessert. It’s made with Milo’s new Lemonade that is all-natural with no preservatives. Milo’s Lemonade is a blend of fresh lemon juice, filtered water and is sweetened with pure cane sugar. Milo’s Lemonade was preferred in blind taste tests over leading national lemonade brands.

Milo’s Tea Company is a family owned, certified, woman-owned business located in Bessemer, AL. Milo’s was founded as a restaurant in 1946 by Milo and Bea Carlton after Milo returned from serving our country in World War II. Milo’s philosophy was simple – use high quality, fresh, natural ingredients, listen to your customers and never sacrifice taste. Milo and Bea’s vision still guides the company today as Milo’s continues to source only natural ingredients. Drink Milo’s and Taste the Difference.

In 1989, Milo’s began selling their fresh brewed Famous Sweet Tea to local Birmingham grocery stores, and now it can be found in thousands of retailers across the United States. Milo’s original products include Milo’s Famous Sweet Tea, Unsweet Tea and No Calorie Tea. These products can be purchased in stores across the country. These beverages meet the growing demand for all-natural products that are free from added preservatives. Most ready-to-drink teas are processed from instant or concentrate tea; however, Milo’s Tea is brewed fresh from high quality custom blended tea leaves.

Milo’s Tea Company has now introduced three new products to meet the growing demand of consumers for more Milo’s beverages just in time for summer and the 4th of July Holiday: Milo’s Decaf Sweet Tea, Milo’s Lemonade, and Milo’s Famous Sweet Tea and Lemonade. These are now available in multiple retail outlets. 

Molten Cake in a Mug

It’s the time of year when my kids get hooked on any type of hot chocolate desserts. My 3 kids especially love “molten” and “lava” cakes. So, I thought, “Why not change a recipe around a bit to create another tasty treat for them.” Instead of using ramekins, I tried some fun stoneware mugs. These Molten Cakes in a Mug came out absolutely wonderful. They make a simple, inexpensive holiday gift. Just purchase a stoneware or ovenproof mug, and tie a recipe card with this recipe to go along with it. It may just be what my neighbors are getting :). I hope they aren’t reading this…

Thanksgiving & Christmas Breakfast Recipes: My Favorite Coffee Cakes

One of my favorite things for breakfast is a truly awesome coffee cake. I crave it this time of the year, especially as the weather cools. My recipe for Apricot Almond Coffee Cake (above) was on my blog last year, and it’s so delicate and flavorful (I love the added touch of using Greek Yogurt). I have been eyeing some other recipes to try this season to serve on Thanksgiving and Christmas morning. I hope you’ll enjoy some of these recipes from some of my favorite sites that I look forward to reading on a daily basis.

Pumpkin Coffee Cake from How Sweet It is

Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake from Two Peas & Their Pod

 Corner Bakery Cinnamon Creme Coffee Cake from Barbara Bakes

Blueberry Lemon Coffee Cake from Cooking Light

Cinna-Bun Coffee Cake in a Jar from Picky Palate

 

Apple Praline Bundt Cake

When I saw the cover of Southern Living Magazine last month, I knew this very special Apple Bundt Cake with Praline Frosting had to be on my dessert table for the Jewish holiday, Rosh Hashanah. Thanks to my sister, Julie and her friend, Toby, my wish came true. This recipe rocks! What else can I really say? The entire issue of the magazine really does. So many recipes, so little time….I hope if you’re looking for a sinfully gorgeous Apple Cake to make, you’ll choose this one with Southern Flair (my kids loved the Praline Frosting). Happy New Year to those celebrating (and those who aren’t :)).

Pumpkin Galore

Every day I spend so much time looking at recipes and food blogs. I often get asked, “Don’t I ever get tired of looking at food all day, every day?” Honestly, no. As a Professional Recipe Developer, I am always looking for new, creative ideas for inspiration. I have seen so many incredible pumpkin recipes and ideas lately that I had to share them with you, starting with a recipe from Lisa for Gluten-Free Pumpkin Pistachio Bread  from her blog, With Style & Grace. Pumpkins are a nutritional powerhouse, and I hope you”ll enjoy some of these incredible ideas and recipes.

Here are some of my other favorites:

Maple Pumpkin Fudge from Sugarcrafter

Pumpkin Granola from Chocolate and Carrots

Studded Pumpkins from Gordon Gossip and Horchow

Maple Pumpkin Cheesecake Cooking on the Side

Stacked Monogram Pumpkins from Better Homes and Gardens

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes by Annie Eats

Pumpkin Vegetable Tray from Taste of Home

Any Occasion Chocolate Cupcakes

This is not one of my typical “lightened-up” recipes, but I had to share these Any Occasion Chocolate Cupcakes with you. My daughter, Leigh, made this recipe for me the night I arrived home from being in Italy for a week. I was so excited to come home to my family and true comfort food. These are so spectacular. You don’t even need to make homemade icing. I wanted to post the recipe for Father’s Day, but I was traveling again this past week. I realized that this recipe is perfect for so many occasions: Father’s Day, birthdays, parties, showers or just because. I thought they would be a great way to start off the week so enjoy.

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls

I’ll admit it. I am not much of a bread or yeast cook. I’m usually too busy (or too scared). When I recently came across these awesome Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls from Cooking Light Magazine, I had to try them. For 209 calories, 3.7 grams of fat, 5.1 grams of protein, you can enjoy an amazing lightened-up Cinnamon Roll. They weren’t difficult to make, just more time-consuming than most of my typical recipes. However, they were definitely worth the work, and everyone loved having homemade Cinnamon Rolls at their fingertips. I think I really impressed the family with these (especially the kids).

Note: Thank you to Cooking Light for permission to share this recipe on my site

Coffee Cake with a Twist: Apricot and Almond Coffee Cake

Coffeecakes have always been one of my favorite baked items. Serving and eating a piece with a cup of coffee or tea always make me feel warm and comforted. A friend recently shared a version of this recipe for Almond-Apricot Coffee Cake with me from the “Cooking with Paula Dean” magazine. I lightened it up a bit substituting egg white for some of the eggs, used reduced-fat cream cheese instead of regular and nonfat Greek yogurt for the sour cream. Apricots and almonds are two special ingredients to twist this recipe a bit, and they make this coffee cake even better. This is a great breakfast treat to serve to the kids, special snack, brunch recipe, bridal or baby shower recipe and, of course, dessert recipe.