Tag Archives: baking

Lemon Poppy Seed Cupcakes


The last few weeks we’ve had these awful meetings after work.  They go from 3:30-6:30pm, and although the information is somewhat valuable (but in my opinion super intuitive, therefore a waste of my precious time), I’d rather be at home than sitting and listening to presenters tell us how to manage our classrooms.  Lucky me, I usually have enough time to run home for a few hours on these days and bake.  It’s part of the luxury of only being part time-sometimes I get to leave a little early.  Food seems to make these long meetings more bearable, so I’ve been trying to bring treats (along with several other coworkers).


Last week I took gluten free chocolate mini-cupcakes, and this week I decided on lemon poppyseed.  I used a standard buttercream ‘recipe’ where I just threw together a couple of TBS of butter, milk, powdered sugar, and lemon extract until it had a good consistency and taste.


This recipe calls for buttermilk, but it’s really just not something we have in our house usually, so I do the ‘milk and vinegar’ trick where I just throw a bit of vinegar into my milk and let it sit until I’m ready to mix it into my batter.  I’m really fond of this recipe, the cupcakes were just the right amount of lemon, without too many poppy seeds.


Recipe: Mini Lemon Poppyseed Cupcakes

1/2 c. butter
2/3 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 TBS poppy seeds
Zest from 1 lemon
1/4 tsp. salt
Juice from 1/2 lemon
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup buttermilk (or 1/2 c. milk with 1 tsp. vinegar)
1 1/2 c. flour

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.  Line your mini-cupcake pan with paper liners.  In a medium bowl cream together your butter and sugar.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Mix in the baking powder, baking soda, poppy seeds, lemon zest, and salt, lemon juice, and vanilla.  Mix in the buttermilk and flour a little at a time, alternating the ingredients just until combined.

Spoon the mixture into your cupcake liners, filling each one about 3/4 of the way full.  Pop into the preheated oven for 12-15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.  Let cool completely before making your buttercream and frosting the cupcakes.  Sprinkle with yellow sugar sprinkles for a little added fun.  Enjoy!

Kale and Zucchini Quiche

What I love about vegetable quiche is that you can get away with putting whatever you want in it, and it’s almost always delicious.  It’s hard to mess up quiche (although I did once, I forgot ALL the spices.  No salt.  No pepper.  Nothing.  Don’t do that.), and it’s such a filling meal.  I think that you can have a nice salad with quiche, but since it’s so vegetable heavy already, we don’t often serve it with sides.


Recipe: Kale and Zucchini Quiche

pie dough, for crust
1 bunch chopped kale
1 small zucchini
1/4 onion (optional)
olive oil
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
herbs de providence (or some oregano and basil), to taste
2 eggs
1 c. milk
1/2-1 c. cheese (we used goat this time, but it would be good with other cheeses such as cheddar or fresh mozzarella), to taste

In a large skillet heat the olive oil. Toss in the onions and salt, stirring occasionally until brown. Add the zucchini and kale, stirring until the kale has wilted. Add more olive oil if necessary. Add the pepper and herbs to taste.

Preheat the oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit. While the oven is preheating roll our your pie crust and place pie pan. Refrigerate if necessary. In a small bowl whisk together the eggs and milk, until the eggs are full incorporated. Evenly distribute the vegetable mixture into the bottom of the pie-dish, followed by the egg and milk mixture. Top with cheese. Bake for 50 minutes, or until the center is fully cooked. Take out of the oven and let rest 10-15 minutes to let the custard set. Enjoy!

Quinoa and Kale Stuffed Portabellas

The kale in the garden is out of control.  Before this summer, I had experienced kale only once before, several years ago.  I had attempted a salad.  Unfortunately it wasn’t my best salad, and the crunchy, thick texture of the kale didn’t ‘do it’ for me.  I decided that perhaps kale wasn’t for me.  This summer my dad decided to plants a lot of kale.  Even though he doesn’t eat it, he likes the way the plants look and knows my mom will eat it, so into the garden it went.  It’s, as I said before, out of control.  We are now eating kale at least twice a week, and I’ve started to make chips with them to snack on throughout the day.  Thus the search for new and interesting kale recipes has begun.

I stumbled upon this recipe on Pinterest (of course) and knew it was meant to be.  I had some extra portabellas in my fridge from earlier in the week, and could easily sub her spinach out for kale, and her bell pepper for jalepenos.  Easy peasy.

I also didn’t have the ‘right’ kind of cheese, but we had some cheddar on hand so decided that would be the topping.  It would have been equally good with any other type of melty cheese.  I don’t think I wouldd have loved it as much without it, though.

Recipe: Quinoa and Kale Stuffed Portabellas, inspired by The Kitchen Paper

2-5 portabella mushrooms
1/2 c. quinoa, uncooked
olive oil
broth or bouillon (optional)
1/4 of an onion, chopped
1 jalepeno pepper
salt, pepper, basil, rosemary, oregano to taste
a handful (literally) of chopped kale
Melty cheese of your choice!

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit.

In a small saucepan, cook your quinoa according to the dictions. I like to use a bouillon cube or broth in place of the water.

In a small skillet, sauté the onion in olive oil until it begins to brown. Add in the pepper, spices, and kale. Once the kale is cooked, take off the heat and set aside.

While everything is cooking, wash the portabellas, and pull out the stems and scrape out the giles. Toss into the vegetables that you are sautéing, followed by the quinoa.

Place the portabellas on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 5 minutes. Take the portabellas out, fill with quinoa/vegetable mixture, and top with cheese. Cook for another 10-15 minutes, or until the cheese is melty and starting to brown a bit. Take out of the oven and enjoy!

I served the extra quinoa mixture on the side with leaves of lettuce from the garden. To eat, place a spoonful in the center of the leaf, fold the edges up to form a ball, and eat. 🙂

Sweet Cherry Crumble

I posted earlier about how we had picked tons of cherries last week.  We have been steadily making progress on processing all of them before they go bad, and one of the things I decided to make after a long day of pitting and freezing cherries for the wine and mead my dad is planning to make was a cherry crumble.

I love to make pies, but didn’t want the fuss of making a dough.  After standing all day, everyday, the last week… I needed something quick and easy.  Something that would bake while I threw together dinner.  I thought that the crumble would be perfect.

And it was.  This is probably the best crumble I have ever made.  It was not too sweet, it was delicate and crunchy and crumbly… it was heavenly.  I whipped up (ha!) a batch of whipped cream to serve on top (heavy whipping cream, a splash of vanilla extract, a sprinkle of sugar, and if you’re feeling feisty a little honey) and topped it with an intact cherry.  It was divine, and definitely going in the ‘to keep’ folder.

Recipe: Sweet Cherry Crumble, adapted from: Heather’s Bytes

For the cherry filling:
1 c. fresh sweet cherries
2-6 TBS sugar, to taste
A spoonful of honey
2 TBS lemon juice
1 tsp cornstarch
a splash of almond extract

For the crumble:
1 stick unsalted butter
1 1/8 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
6 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1/4 – 1/2 tsp cinnamon (to taste)
1/8 teaspoon salt

 Filing: Combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan.  Heat on medium-medium high, stirring and crushing the cherries slightly until the mixture is thick and begins to simmer.  Take off the head and set aside while you make the crumble.

Crumble: Combine all the dry ingredients in a small bowl.  Mix completely, and then add the melted butter, stirring until it is evenly distributed.  Take 2/3 of the crumble mixture and press into a 9″ pie pan.  Pour the filling over the pressed crumble, and then top with the reminder of the crumbled, making sure to spread it evenly over the top.  Bake at 375 degrees fahrenheit for 3-40 minutes, or until the crumble is golden brown.  Enjoy!

Madeleines, A Search pt. 3

I have found the perfect madeleine recipe.




These were flavorful, spongy, crispy, and just wonderful all around.  I don’t think I need to try other recipes (although I probably will), because this is it.


Recipe: Madeleines adapted from this recipe

2 eggs
1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
a pinch of kosher salt
1 c. flour
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Optional: powdered sugar, for dusting

Beat together the eggs and sugar.  Add the vanilla and kosher salt, followed by the flour.  Beat on medium until smooth.  Slowly add in the butter, mixing until the butter is fully incorporated.  Place batter in fridge.

While the batter is cooling, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Grease and flour a madeliene pan.  As soon as the oven is ready, take the batter out of the fridge (it should be less liquid-y, like cookie dough) and scoop into a pipette with a large round tip.  Pipe batter into the pan, evenly distributing the batter.  Do not overfill (I would say that you want it just about even with the top of the mold, although it does rise and puff a bit).  Bake for 12-14 minutes, or until the made lines are set, and the edges are golden brown.

After the madeleines are cool, dust with powdered sugar and enjoy!