Yaya's Cafe

The Mix of Stuff Blog

Pumpkin Pie in Two Great Ways October 7, 2013

Filed under: Cake,DIY,Family,Food,recipe,Uncategorized — Yaya @ 1:55 PM
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Today was great. I made pumpkin pie and pumpkin pie pops for dessert. They taste awesome.  ^_^

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For the pumpkin pie I used canned pumpkin and a homemade pie crust. The reason I am excited is because I made the crust from scratch and it is awesome. I usually buy the crust because pumpkin pie is the only pie I bake but today has changed that.

I got the pie crust recipe from  http://www.chow.com/recipes/10746-basic-pie-dough.

Here’s the recipe for homemade pie crust:

WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
1 1/2 Cups of all purpose flour
1 Teaspoon of sugar
1/4 Teaspoon of salt(fine not sea salt)
1 Stick of butter
4-5 Tablespoons of water

WHAT TO DO:
1. Mix the dry ingredients.
2. Cut the butter into small pieces and add to flour. Cut the butter into the flour mix until it is yellowish and pea sized.
3. Add 4 tablespoons of water.* Combine to form a dough ball. Note: * If it is too dry to hold it’s shape add last tablespoon of water.
4. Flatten ball of dough into a disk. Wrap in seran wrap and refrigerate for 30 mins or more.
5. Roll out dough and place in pie pan. Then fill with whatever filling you prefer and bake as directed.

For the pumpkin, I followed the recipe on the can.

Using the same recipe, some cookie cutters, and lollipop sticks you can make pumpkin pie pops.

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For pie pops:
1. Preheat oven to 375 deggrees. Roll out the dough.
2. Cut your mini pie rounds with cookie cutters.
3. Lay out the single pieces leaving room on the cookie sheet for the sticks.
4. Lay lollipop sick on dough and press down lightly. Add a dollop of pie filling.
5. Top with another piece of pie dough and use a lollipop stick to crimp shut. Top with egg wash and pop into oven.
6. Bake until edges are golden brown, about 12 to 15 mins.

It was fun, easy, and delicious. Best part is that anyone can do it. It is kid friendly fun. ^_^ And did I mention it is fun to eat.

 

Pear Jam and Stuff August 21, 2013

Filed under: DIY,Food,Party,recipe — Yaya @ 2:02 PM
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Hello All,

It’s been a while. Thanks for dropping by. First let me just say – I made Pear Jam but I am not a fan of pears. So why did I make Jam, you ask? Because when we bought our house we happened to have a pear tree in the backyard. Most people would say, oh well you don’t have to eat them if you don’t want to. But seeing all the pears on the tree, just sitting there waiting is like watching strawberries rot: Plain messed up.

Even though I am not a fan, I have plenty of friends who are. So every year during August and September I harass them until they come over and pick some off the tree. LOL. Now that sounds like it would be enough but it isn’t. There are always a ton of pears left on the tree, that even the birds and squirrels and occasionally our dog can’t or won’t eat.

Last Year, I made a few different pear treats and had a mini pear party. Everyone had fun and liked the treats, except me. I had fun. I enjoyed getting together for the heck of it. I just found no pleasure in the overwhelming pearness of a pear party. Lol. The only thing I truly liked and enjoyed eating was Pear Jam with toast and cheese. I also liked it on waffles and pancakes the next day.

Another Pear season has rolled around and I said to hell with coming up with pear desserts, this year is all about the jams. *_*

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Yaya’s Homemade Jam

(with Pear Bits)

WHAT YOU WILL NEED:

  • 8 Cups of peeled, cored and well chopped pears
  • 3 Cups of Brown Sugar
  • 1 Cup of Sugar (regular white sugar)
  • 1/2 tsp. of Cinnamon
  • 1/8 – 1/4 tsp. of Nutmeg
  • 1/4 of a Cup of Spiced Rum (Optional)

**Yields 6 half pint jars.**

WHAT TO DO:

  1. Chop the pears and place in a large pot or bowl.
  2. Add 1 cup of white sugar and 1 cup of brown sugar. Mix well, until it starts to become syrupy.
  3. Cover and let it sit for 10 – 15 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  4. Place pears and syrup in a large pot (if not already in one) and add the rest of the ingredients. Mix well.
  5. Bring pears to a simmer on medium heat. Lower slightly and let simmer for 90 to 120 minutes (1 1/2 – 2 hours). NOTE: On my stove medium heat is like cranking the heat to five out of nine. To lower slightly would be 3 or 4. I usually cook them on 4 for 90 minutes and switch to 3 if it needs a little more time.
  6. Place pears in warm jars and slap on a lids. Once that is done, tighten the lids and boil enough water to cover about 3/4 of the jar.
  7. Let it boil for 10 – 12 minutes and remove from water.
  8. Set aside and allow to cool before storing in a cool dark place.

NOTE: Make sure to double check the seals before long term storage.

Hope this recipe helps a few more people figure out what to do with their ton of pears this summer. Have a wonderful day!!

Thanks for reading!

 

Yummy Candy Coated Oreos April 16, 2013

Filed under: Baby Shower,Birthday,Candy,DIY,Food,Holiday,Party,recipe — Yaya @ 5:36 PM
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I made a few of these yesterday and thought I’d share. Let me know what you think of my new molds.

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Here are both patterns. One is striped and the other is polka dotted. ^_^

My favorite part is how easily you can customize the colors and use these for any kind of party.

Thanks for dropping by!

 

Coquito December 19, 2012

Filed under: Drinks,Food,Holiday,Party,recipe — Yaya @ 9:21 PM
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Coquito or Puerto Rican egg nog as my husband calls it is a delicious and simple Christmas treat. It is seasonal and a Puerto Rican thing. Most people I have spoken to who aren’t from Puerto Rico or have never visited during Christmas usually have no idea what it is. But trust me, you will definitely want to try it. Once you do, it will become a new tradition.

Coquito

What You Will Need:

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  • 2 Cream of Coconut cans
  • 1 Can of Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 Can of Evaporated Milk
  • Ground Cinnamon
  • Nutmeg
  • Rum (Optional)

What To Do:

  1. Pour evaporated milk and cream of coconut in a blender. Blend for 30 seconds.
  2. Add sweetened condensed milk, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and a pinch or two of nutmeg. Blend for 4 minutes.
  3. Add 1 cup of Rum and blend for 1-2 minutes. (Optional)
  4. Taste and add cinnamon or nutmeg to taste IF NEEDED.
  5. Pour into container with lid or cap and refrigerate. Usually cold in 1-2 hours.
  6. OR  pour into a glass of ice and enjoy immediately.

For my Coquito I usually put it in empty liquor bottles. I save them throughout the year and I ask friends to save them (when they can) so I can bottle my Coquito and share it. Coquito is best served cold and well shaken with finger foods.

As you can see, I reused a medium sized bottle of Jack.  Personally, I like to leave the old liquor labels on the bottle but you can remove the labels and decorate as you wish.

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Another idea is to gift wrap it. I like to use really shiny paper when I wrap it up. Then all you need is a label or ribbon to let the person receiving it know whether or not the Coquito has rum.

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Thank you for reading!

Happy Holidays!

 

Doughnut Holes December 18, 2012

Filed under: Food,recipe,Uncategorized — Yaya @ 1:27 PM
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Glorious, golden cinnamon sugar doughnut holes!

Now, these cuties are a simple and quick “homemade” alternative to store bought doughnut holes.

Cinnamon Sugar Doughnut Holes

What You’ll Need:

  • Can of Homestyle Buttermilk Biscuits
  • Ground Cinnamon
  • Light Brown Sugar
  • Canola or Peanut Oil  (Not pictured below)

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What To Do:

  1. Mix about 1/4 cup of Light Brown Sugar and about Half 1/4 of cup of Cinnamon. Most people like to do equal parts but I prefer adding the cinnamon to taste. If you want a more cinnamony flavor mix a full 1/4 cup of each.

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2. Preheat deep fryer. If you are using a small pot like I did here, fill it with about 2 inches of oil. It does not take long to get hot, so I suggest preheating on medium to medium high and keeping a close eye on your oil. Took me about 4-5 mins on medium high. Sometimes it will take less time or a little more.

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3. Separate the biscuits into however many come in your can of biscuits. In this case, eight biscuits. Then grab a round cookie cutter (or any shape you like). Cut into several small pieces. If you want traditional holes, roll the biscuit in your hand to form balls. If not, leave in whatever form you prefer. I have tried stars before and they look like pointy doughnut holes. ^_^

Good to eat, either way.

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4.  Turn temperature down to medium. Drop in oil and fry until golden brown. Have a fork or spatula ready to turn each doughnut so it is golden brown on both sides. Takes about 45 seconds to 1 minute per side to get nice and golden.

5. Remove and place on a plate with a paper towel or an empty egg carton like I have here. Make sure you let most of the oil run off before removing.  Let cool for 30 seconds before rolling in cinnamon sugar mix.

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6. Roll in cinnamon sugar mix until lightly coated. If you want a better coat you can put the doughnut holes in the sugar mix right after  you remove them from the oil.

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Eat and Enjoy!! Personally, I like mine late at night with a little Coquito but Milk also works.

Thanks for reading!

 

Cupcake Jars! December 16, 2012

Filed under: Cake,Family,Food,Holiday,recipe,Uncategorized — Yaya @ 7:37 PM
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‘Tis the season to be jolly  and enjoy the yummy goodness that a cupcake can bring. So here’s to the holidays and festive but always yummy treats.

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These are the some of the colorful cupcakes I made today. They are a little messy and covered in chocolate butter cream, which is my way of saying they are delicious. ^_^

Besides these cuties. I also made some like this.

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Very festive, right. Now, that you’ve seen them I’m sure you want to know how I threw them together. Well, here’s a quick how to.  ^_^

What You Will Need

  • 1 Box of White Cake Mix (Made from scratch is fine too)
  • Food Coloring (Liquid or Gel is fine)
  • Chocolate Butter Cream (any flavor you like would work)
  • Jam or Jelly Jars

What To Do

  1. Mix the White Cake Mix as directed or put together your favorite white cake recipe. I used a box mix because it was faster and I really wanted some cupcakes. ^_^ Either one is yummy.
  2. Then the divide the batter into several bowls. I divided mine into five bowls but you are welcome to do more or less. Just try to divide it evenly between however many bowls.
  3.  Add the food coloring gel and make the colors you want.  I made blue, red, green, yellow and orange.  (Most food coloring packages have basic color guidelines if you need to mix more complex color combos like Teal, which I didn’t make today but I still love.)
  4. Preheat your oven as instructed by your recipe.
  5. Line cupcake pans without mixing the colors. If you mix them, you can make marble effects and that type of thing but this works best in solid colors.
  6. Bake!
  7. Let cook on wire rack.
  8. Remove wrappers from five cupcakes, one of each color. Cut into two rounds.
  9. Drop the bottom of one color into the jar. Top with butter cream. Add another piece in a different color. Top with more butter cream. Then place the top of a cupcake on top and add a nice swirl of butter cream. Mix and match however you like.
  10. Once you run out of pieces you can cut more cupcakes and put them in the jars or just top the whole cupcakes. I did both. Some were for now and the rest for later.
  11. Eat!!

Enjoy now or put a lid on them and refrigerate for later. Either way is yummy. They can be stored in the fridge for up to three days with a lid.

Here are some photos of the steps:

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I hope you enjoy this fun treat. I sure did. My favorite part is that this idea can translate to just about any kind of party, activity and or holiday.  ^_^

Thank you for reading!!

 

Planning a Baby Shower and Other Kinds of Madness December 13, 2012

Let’s catch up.

First, I competed in NaNoWriMo this past November. The outcome: I didn’t get to 50,000 words like I wanted to. I made it to 28,000 or so. I started a damn good story and I am hoping to finish it soon. The holidays are a time of Mad Science like baking so there’s very little time to work on my story. I will though. ^_~

Second, I made some cupcakes and icing using a fantastic new recipe I found online. Once I get to a computer (instead of just my phone) I will add the awesome link. Any who, they turned out great and I gave most of them away to friends and family. They were delicious.

Update with Link:

The recipe is on Glorious Treats at http://www.glorioustreats.com/2010/04/recipe-perfectly-chocolate-cupcakes.html for the Chocolate Cupcakes.

The Cream Cheese Frosting can be found here: http://www.glorioustreats.com/2010/02/recipe-cream-cheese-frosting.html *

Note: * The Links are written out in case clicking on the underlined words doesn’t work. ^_^ Hope everyone tries these.  Just in case I will include the entire set of recipes at the bottom of the post.

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And super cute when I dressed them up to give away.

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The best part: It is really cheap to make. The ingredients are basic items most people have around the house. ^_^

Third and last big update, Baby Shower time. My best friend is pregnant and I am putting together her baby shower. She is due next year but I am starting to put ideas together so it will be easier when the time comes. ^_^ I am very excited and happy for her.

With that in mind, I am hoping to make it an exciting, beautiful and unforgettable day for her. ^_^

I am checking out recipes, themes and the vast variety of styles. Hopefully, I will find a lot of great but equally simple ideas!

The Recipes

Perfectly Chocolate Cupcakes

(makes 24-27 standard sized cupcakes)

2 cups sugar

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa (best quality available)

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

2 eggs

1 cup whole milk

1/2 cup vegetable oil

2 teaspoons vanilla extract (best quality available)

1 cup boiling water

Directions-

Line muffin tin with paper liners.  Heat oven to 350*F.

In a large mixing bowl, stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla.  Beat on medium speed for one minute.

Stir in boiling water (the batter will be thin, don’t worry, this is right).

Fill liners 2/3 full with batter.  (I usually put the batter into a large measuring cup with a pour spout, and then pour the batter into the liners.)

Bake cupcakes for approximately 18-22 minutes.

Cool completely on wire rack before frosting.

Recipe source- Hershey’s

Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

½ cup (1 stick/8 Tablespoons) butter (set at room temp about 10 minutes, but should still be cool)

8 oz. cream cheese (directly from fridge)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (always use pure vanilla extract if possible)

4 cups powdered confectioners sugar

1 to 4 Tablespoons heavy cream, heavy whipping cream (or milk- although I do like the richness that cream adds)

Directions:
*Place butter in a large mixing bowl and blend slightly. Add cream cheese and blend until combined, about 30 seconds.
*Add vanilla extract and powdered sugar and blend on low speed until combined. Increase to medium speed and beat until it begins to get fluffy.
*Slowly add the heavy cream, a little bit at a time until desired consistency is met. (Don’t add too much if you want the frosting to stay in place when piped on cupcakes.)
*Beat until fluffy, about 1 minute.
*Use at once or keep refrigerated. (This frosting will keep well in the refrigerator for several days, but you may need to re-beat it for the best texture.)

The recipe above will produce a delicious VANILLA flavored frosting, here are a couple of other options to try…

For a Stronger Cream Cheese Flavor: Use an additional 4 oz. (½ block) of cream cheese. This is good for any cake/cupcake recipe that is traditionally topped with Cream Cheese Frosting, like Carrot Cake, or Red Velvet Cake.

For Chocolate Frosting: (my favorite!) add ½ cup unsweetened cocoa (I use Ghirardelli brand, it’s really good). Add the cocoa powder before adding the powdered sugar, so it gets fully incorporated into the butter and cream cheese.

Strawberry, Blackberry, etc: Add 2-4 tablespoons of preserves. Depending on how chunky or seedy the preserves are, you may want to blend it in the food processor, and/or strain it through a fine strainer before adding it to the frosting. Add the preserves to the frosting mixture before adding the heavy cream. Depending on the amount of preserves you add you may need very little or no cream, especially if you want the frosting thick enough to pipe. A final option would be to add a drop of food coloring to add to the color of the preserves (for example, pink coloring for the Strawberry flavor).

* This recipe will frost about 22-24 cupcakes if you are piping a nice swirl, or even more if you just spread it on. If you’re making a cake, this will frost and fill a two layer 9″ cake.

Enjoy the recipes from Glorious Treats. I sure did!

Thanks for Reading and Happy Holidays!!