Monday, November 30, 2009

Irish Car Bomb Cupcakes

Posted by: Annie

Source Smitten Kitchen via Craving Chronicles

This dessert probably belongs at a St. Patrick's Day celebration - rather than the days following Thanksgiving, however I made them for my best friend's birthday, because as a lover of Bailey's I could not deny her the deliciousness of these cupcakes. Everything about these cupcakes are amazing - from the rich chocolate batter to the Bailey's flavored icing; and for that reason can be made year round!

What you'll need:

For the Cupcakes -
1 cup stout (Guinness) (coffee also works perfectly! I used a fres
h cup from Wegmans!)
2 sticks butter
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups all purpose flour

2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 t baking soda
3/4 t salt
2 large eggs
2/3 cup sour cream

Cupcake Ganache Filling:
(You do not have to fill your cupcakes, however I did and it added such a nice flavor to the cake)
8 oz bittersweet chocolate
2/3 cup heavy cream
2 T butter, room temperature
1-2 t Irish whiskey (optional - I left this step out)

*You will need either a 1-inch round cookie cutter, or an apple corer, and a piping bag to insert the ganache filling.

Bailey's Frosting:

3-4 cups confectioners sugar
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
2-3 T Bailey's (or milk, or heavy cream, or a combination)

First, make the cupcakes. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake pans with 24 liners. Mix 1 cup stout (or coffee) with 1 cup butter in a medium sized saucepan, and bring to a simmer. Next, add cocoa powder to beer mixture and whisk until smooth. Remove from heat and allow mixture to cool.

Next, mix flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate large bowl, beat eggs and sour cream with an electric mixer. Next, add the slightly cooled stout/coffee-chocolate mixture to the egg mixture and beat to combine.


Slowly add in the flour mixture, and beat on a slow speed. Use a rubber spatula to fold batter until it is completely mixed. Fill the cupcake liners approximately 2/3-3/4 of the way. Bake 17 minutes, and cool cupcakes on a rack completely. I actually placed my cupcakes on a rack, and placed them in the refrigerator for approximately 15 minutes.

Now, make the ganache filling. Chop the chocolate into small pieces, and place in a heatproof bowl. Bring the heavy cream to simmer and pour in the chopped chocolate. Allow it to sit for one minute, and stir the mixture until it is smooth. If the chocolate is not completely melted you can place the mixture in the microwave for 20 seconds.

After the mixture is smooth and melted, add butter and whiskey (if
you are using it) and stir until smooth. Let the ganache cool until it is thick enough to be piped into the cupcakes.

Now you get to fill the cupcakes!

This was probably my favorite part of making this recipe. I used an apple corer that was slightly bigger than an inch, but it will worked out perfectly. Using an apple corer or a cookie cutter, cut the centers out of the cooled cupcakes. Push the apple corer approximately 2/3 of the way into the cupcake, but make sure to not cut through the bottom. Remove the centers from each cupcake and using a piping bag with a wide tip, fill the holes in each cupcake to the top:


Once the cupcakes are filled, it is time to make the frosting. Whip butter with an electric mixer until it is very light and fluffy; this takes approximately four minutes using a hand mixer. Next, add the powdered sugar very slowly - only a few tablespoons at a time. When the frosting appears thick enough to spread, add in the Bailey's and blend until combined.

Frost each cupcake and top with chocolate shavings. Enjoy!



Sunday, November 29, 2009

Cranberry White Chocolate Cookies



Posted by: Maggie

I had the idea to make these cookies after spotting a bag of white chocolate chunks while wandering through Whole Foods last week. A quick google search for an appealing recipe brought me to Just Another Foodie's blog. Between the cranberries, and the red and white colors they are very seasonally appropriate. If they go over well with my coworkers Monday morning I'll certainly make them again before Christmas, because I personally think they're scrumtrulescent.

They're really easy to make; I only halfway paid attention to what I was doing because I was watching You've Got Mail at the same time. It made me miss the old pre-trout lipped Meg Ryan.

Here's what you'll need:



1/2 cup salted butter, softened
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 T vanilla
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 t baking soda
1 cup white chocolate chips/chunks
1 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper to prevent cookie bottoms from getting too brown.

In a large bowl, cream together butter, brown sugar, and white sugar until smooth. Beat in egg and vanilla. Combine flour and baking soda in small bowl, and gradually stir into sugar mixture. Mix in white chocolate chunks and cranberries.

Roll dough into walnut sized balls, and bake on prepared baking sheets for 8-10 minutes. (Mine were perfect after 8). Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 1 minute, and transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Mom's Mac & Cheese

Macaroni and Cheese

Posted by: Maggie

My lovely Mom's Macaroni and Cheese recipe was a favorite of Annie and I growing up, and still is to this day. Annie was particularly fond of it, and asked for it for nearly every birthday dinner until she was probably about 16. If we were at a restaurant she mixed things up a bit and got mozzarella sticks. How she emerged from adolescence skinny is a medical and scientific marvel.

Once you try this recipe you'll never want the boxed stuff again. I cut the recipe in half since it was just for me. I've posted the original recipe below, that could probably serve 2-3 as a main dish, and 5-6 as a side. There should have been a side of broccoli with this, but due to a freak broccoli-steam-bag explosion there are green beans instead. They're really just there to look pretty. Let's face it - this is not a healthy meal and veggies will not change that.

You will need:

1 1/2 c uncooked elbow macaroni
1/4 salted butter
1 small onion, chopped (I used yellow)
1/2 t salt (preferably out of a cat shaker with a lazy eye, like mine)
1/4 t pepper
1/4 cup flour
1 3/4 c milk (funny story: I googled 1 3/4 divided by 2 mid-cooking. Thanks for the edumacation OTHS math department. I'll go ahead and tell you that it's 3/4 c plus 2 tablespoons so you never have to google such a shameful thing yourself)
2 c shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook macaroni per directions on box. Melt butter in pan, and saute onion with salt and pepper. Blend in flour, and cook over low heat until mixture is smooth and bubbly. Remove from heat and stir in milk. Heat to boiling, reduce heat and cook until mixture is slightly thickened. Add cheese, remove from heat and stir until cheese is melted. Mix cheese sauce and macaroni together, and bake in ungreased 1 1/2 quart casserole dish at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Cheesy Potato Soup

Potato Soup

Posted by: Annie
At the request of my boyfriend, this weekend I made Cheesy Potato Soup. It is the perfect fall dish, and INCREDIBLY filling. This recipe is not very difficult, however I like a very flavorful potato soup, and for that reason used a LOT more salt and cheese (I love cheese) than the recipe called for. The recipe also suggested using prosciutto, however I used bacon instead (much yummier to munch on while cooking). Original recipe can be found at Craving Chronicles.

What you'll need:

6-8 slices bacon
2 T olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2-3 carrots, diced
1 lb. red potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 qt chicken stock or broth
3 T butter
3 T flour
2 c whole milk
2 c grated cheddar cheese (I probably used 3 1/2 cups)
salt and pepper to taste

First, fry up your bacon! Set aside on a paper towel lined plate to cool, then break into crumbles.
In a large pot, heat the olive oil, and add the onion and diced carrots. (I used a bag of match-stick carrots, instead of dicing my own) Sauté ingredients to the point that the carrots become soft (approximately 8-10 minutes). Add the potatoes, and chicken stock. Make sure that the chicken stock covers the potatoes, onions and carrots. Bring everything to a boil and cook approximately 20 minutes, until the potatoes become tender.
While the potatoes are cooking, heat 3 tablespoons of butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. When the butter is completely melted, add flour. Next, slowly stir in the milk; add a little milk at a time whisking out any lumps that may form. Initially the mixture will appear paste-like, but once all of the milk is added the consistency will thin out. Continue to whisk the mixture as it heats, approximately five minutes. Remove the milk from heat, and add in the cheese.
Pour the milk mixture over the softened potatoes, and stir to combine. I did not want large chunks of potatoes in my soup, so I used a wire potato masher to mash up the potatoes into smaller pieces. Heat the soup to a simmer until it is thickened. Ladle into bowls and top with crumbled bacon.
Enjoy!

Pumpkin Pie Bars

Pumpkin Pie Bars
Posted by: Maggie

I have been waiting to make these
pumpkin bars over a month now. Sister/co-blogger Annie made them when I was visiting NJ early in October, and I've been dying to make a batch of my own since then.


Sadly, the Great Canned Pumpkin Shortage of 2009 has prohibited me from making these delicious treats until last week. My area of Virginia seems to be the last place that finally got pumpkin restocked, and when I saw the beautiful pallets of Libby's pumpkin at the grocery store last week I snatched a couple, abandoned my grocery cart, and mowed down several old ladies while running to the register with my treasure. Ok, not really, but I was irrationally excited. You would be too if you knew how delicious this recipe was and had to wait 6 weeks to make your own batch.

Here is the recipe: 1 1/3 c flour
3/4 c granulated sugar, divided

1/2 c packed brown sugar

3/4 c (1 1/2 sticks) cold butter

1 c old-fashioned or quick-cooking oats, uncooked

1/2 c chopped walnuts*
1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

3 eggs
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
1 T. pumpkin pie spice

1 t. vanilla extract

2 t bourbon (optional, I did not use it)

handful of butterscotch, white, or chocolate chips for sprinkling on top


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 13x9 inch pan with foil, with ends of foil hanging over the sides, grease with cooking spray.


Mix flour, 1/4 c granulated sugar, and brown sugar in medium bowl; cut in butter with pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in oats and nuts.
Reserve 1 c oat mixture; press the rest of it onto bottom of prepared pan and bake for 15 minutes.

Beat cream cheese, remaining sugar, eggs, vanilla, bourbon, pumpkin, and spice with mixer until well blended. Pour over crust; sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture and chips (if desired).
Bake for 25 minutes, and let cool in pan for 10. Use foil to transfer dessert from pan to wire rack; cool completely.

*my grocery store had a variety called "finely diced walnuts" that I used. The chopped walnuts looked way too big to use in a crust, so if you get that type I would strongly recommend pulsing them in a food processor a few times before adding to the recipe. 


Source: Joy the Baker via We Are Not Martha 

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Peanut Butter Pie

Peanut Butter PiePosted by: Maggie
Welcome to the first official recipe of "A Bitchin' Kitchen!" I know icebox pies are traditionally more of a summertime dessert, but when I spotted this while browsing the archives of The Pioneer Woman Cooks (my favorite food blogger of all time), I knew that I could not wait until warm weather to make it.

Chocolate and peanut butter are one of my favorite dessert combos, and this super rich pie satisfies the craving. I made it Monday evening, and in an effort to not eat the entire thing myself, sliced it up and put it in the freezer after it set. It turns out that the pie is even more delicious straight from the freezer, so I know what I'll be having for breakfast dessert for the next few days.


Ingredients:


Crust
25 Oreos
4 T. salted butter, melted


Filling

1 c creamy peanut butter

1 8 oz block softened cream cheese

1 1/4 c powdered sugar

1 8 oz tub Cool Whip, thawed


Directions:

Pulverize the Oreos in a food processor until they're fine crumbs. Mix in melted butter until moistened, and press into a pie pan. Bake for 5-7 minutes, or until the crust is set. Pop the pie pan into the freezer at this point so that you don't melt the filling when you pour it in. For the filling, beat the peanut butter and cream cheese until smooth. Gradually beat in powdered sugar until smooth, and lastly beat in the Cool Whip until smooth. Dump the filling into the chilled crust, and smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Say smooth a few more times for good luck. Chill for several hours in the fridge before enjoying!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Welcome to A Bitchin' Kitchen!



(Annie is on the left, Maggie is on the right. Maggie is a brunette now, but is scared to change this photo and confuse people. Perhaps she should give readers of A Bitchin' Kitchen more credit.)


Last updated: 9/14/11


Welcome to A Bitchin' Kitchen! We (Annie & Maggie) are two sisters who both love cooking, baking, taking photos of the food we make, and reading food blogs, so naturally the idea to start our own blog came about.

Annie is 23, lives at the Jersey Shore, and faces the unique culinary challenge of cooking for a picky boyfriend who would happily eat nothing but hibachi and tortilla chips for the rest of his life.

Maggie is 27, lives in Old Town Alexandria, VA, and enjoys making meals that don't result in leftovers (her least favorite thing), as well as baking desserts for her boyfriend and friends. Her boyfriend often claims that she is attempting to give him diabeetus, but she's really just trying to feed everyone around her so that her butt looks smaller in comparison.

Please check out our contact page so you know where else to find us on the interwebs. Thanks for stopping by! 

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