Showing posts with label Barbara Ross. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Barbara Ross. Show all posts

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Coconut Cream Birthday Cake #recipe @lucyburdette




Birthday girls by Bill Carito
Lucy Burdette: I don’t mind sharing a birthday celebration, in fact I like it. I trace this back to my experience growing up. My older sister Sue (older by 11 months, two weeks) and I shared our January celebrations. We often had a joint party, though maybe we had individual cakes on the actual day? I don't remember for sure.

This year and last year, I was pleased to share birthdays with my friend Barbara Ross, who reaches all the milestones eight days before I do. This year I promised to make this coconut cake. However, I got sick and couldn’t attend the dinner nor make the cake. My solution was to make a cake for our two birthdays together. The rub was, I had a good old friend visiting who loathes coconut. So I made a coconut cream cake, only sprinkling the coconut on the icing so I could leave a little section coconut free. (You will note the little toothpicks which are used to remind myself not to put coconut on this triangle of cake. It turns out at this age, I can agree to do something with myself and forget it instantly, so I decided a physical reminder would help.)


This cake is found in Southern Cakes by Nancie McDermott. I changed a few things around, like making the coconut unsweetened – the cake was plenty sweet anyway. And I added some chopped strawberries between the layers and strawberries on top for color and decorations. When I put the batter into the pan, I was worried. It did not fill up the pans as many batters do. It also came out looking quite flat. But after the whipped cream and strawberries and coconut were added, it was beautiful, and everyone agreed, delicious!
Ingredients

2 cups all purpose flour, sifted
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder, low-sodium for me
1/4 teaspoon salt
Three eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups whipping cream

1 1/2 cups whipping cream
3 tablespoons confectioner's sugar
Shredded or flaked organic coconut
Strawberries

Preheat the oven to 350 and grease the pans, followed by inserting rounds of parchment paper. Stir together the dry ingredients. Beat the eggs with 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat the cream to stiff peaks, using a KitchenAid or handheld mixer. 

three sets of ingredients
And the egg/vanilla mixture and beat that in briefly. Add the dry ingredients and stir until the flour disappears.
nice fluffy batter


Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 20 to 25 minutes until lightly browned and the cake springs back when touched.

uh-oh, not covering bottom of pan


Cool the cakes completely. (I made these the day before and covered them with plastic wrap.)

a little skinny


Beat the cream with confectioner's sugar until stiff. 



Spread whipped cream on the bottom layer, sprinkle this with coconut flakes and chopped strawberries. 

Settle the second layer on top and again, sprinkle with coconut and decorate with strawberries.
note the toothpicks demarcating coconut-free zone

Make sure to refrigerate if you are not serving this right away, and refrigerate leftovers if you have any. I can’t emphasize how good this cake tasted and how fast it disappeared!



Lucy Burdette writes the Key West food critic mysteries--find them wherever books are sold! Find her on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest--Instagram too...DEATH ON THE MENU will be in bookstores on August 7! Here's a pre-order the book link from Amazon--and here's a link to preorder a hard copy from RJ Julia in CT, where you'll be able to get a signed copy. I'll post others as they appear. 

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Chocolate Cake! @LucyBurdette



LUCY BURDETTE: About a month ago, I did a talk and signing with my friends Barbara Ross and Liz Mugavero. Barb's husband was coming along, and it was his birthday. I thought he deserved a cake for being a good sport. I asked what kind he would like, he answered (quickly!): Chocolate with White icing. I've made plenty of chocolate cakes for my family, but never were they iced in white. Here was an opportunity to try a different chocolate cake along with the different icing. I found this recipe on Pinterest from a blog called "add a pinch". It was described as the best chocolate cake ever. 





I made adjustments for a lower sodium cake as you'll see below and also left out the suggested espresso powder, as I didn't have any on hand. It was very good, and tall, and probably a tad less rich than my usual. 

Ingredients

2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, good quality
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda (to reduce the sodium content in the cake, I used 1 teaspoon regular baking soda and 1 teaspoon no sodium baking soda)
2 teaspoons low-sodium baking powder
Scant 1/2 teaspoon salt

Two eggs
1/2 cup unflavored, preferably organic, vegetable oil like canola
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup milk
1 cup water, boiling

Preheat the oven to 350. Prepare the pans by buttering well, adding a circle of parchment paper and buttering that as well. Pulse the dry ingredients together in a food processor or KitchenAid mixer. Then add the eggs, oil, milk, and vanilla. Mix that in well with the dry ingredients. Boil the water and add it to the cake mixture, taking care not to splatter outside your machine!



Distribute the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 30 to 35 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool the cakes for 10 minutes and then remove them from the pans and cool completely before frosting. You can make the cake a day ahead of time, just cover it well until ready to frost.



For the white icing: 




2 sticks of unsalted butter, softened
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 to 4 cups confectioners sugar
Milk, as needed for thinning




Beat the butter until soft and thick. Beat the vanilla in. Gradually beat in the confectioner sugar until the frosting is the consistency and sweetness that you prefer.
Birthday boy





My family is so crazy about the chocolate frosting that I usually make, so I tried this cake with that icing too. I found the vanilla buttercream overly sweet, but the birthday boy and guests loved it. A good choice if you don't want a double chocolate cake. The super-serious chocolate eaters in my family still think this cake is the best ever though...




Lucy Burdette writes the Key West food critic mysteries--find them wherever books are sold! Find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest--Instagram too...

Thursday, January 5, 2017

When the Weather Outside is Frightful #recipe #giveaway

Liz, Barb, and Lucy in Key West
A big warm welcome to guest authors Barbara Ross and Liz Mugavero! Be sure to read all the way down for their double giveaway!

BARB AND LIZ: For those of us who live in the northern half of the U.S., we’re coming into the season of cold and snow, ice storms, and howling winds. Some days, it’s better for both man and beast to stay tucked up indoors. Here are two recipes from our latest books, designed to bring comfort to you and to your four-footed friends during the three-dog nights to come.

For the humans—

Jacqueline’s Meat Loaf by Barbara Ross

In the Maine Clambake Mysteries, my protagonist’s mother, Jacqueline Snowden, isn’t much of a cook, but she can manage this simple meat loaf. In Iced Under she cooks it in hopes of enticing her daughter to stay over on a stormy night. In reality, this is the meatloaf my mother made and that I made for my kids a lot when they were growing up, so it feels like home to me.

Ingredients

2 pounds ground beef
1 medium onion, diced
1 1/2 cups dried Italian bread crumbs
1 egg
½ cup ketchup
2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard

Instructions

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and work with your hands until thoroughly mixed. (It’s a cold, messy job, but somebody’s got to do it!) Form the mixture into a loaf. Cook in an oven preheated to 375 degrees for 45 minutes.


Serves 6-8.


For the canines—

Vegetable Beef Crackers

Ingredients

2 cups wheat flour
1 & 1/2 cups white flour
1 Tablespoon chopped parsley
1/2 cup shredded carrots
2 ounces of vegetable beef (or beef only) baby food
1 egg
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
3/4 cup water

Instructions

-Combine all ingredients in bowl, adding flours last. Mix until well blended.
-On a lightly floured surface, knead dough for about 3 minutes.
-Roll out dough to 1/4" thickness and cut out shapes using mini cookie cutters of your choice.
-Bake on a lightly greased cookie sheet for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.
-Cookies maybe left in oven after baking (while oven cools down) to harden for a more crunchy bite.

Yields about 35 cracker size cookies.


A tasty feast for man and beast!

Barb and Liz will be giving away signed copies of both new books, Iced Under and Custom Baked Murder. Leave a comment with your name and email to be entered in the drawing!

Liz Mugavero is the author of the Agatha Award-nominated Pawsitively Organic Mysteries Kneading to Die, A Biscuit, A Casket, The Icing on the Corpse and Murder Most Finicky. Custom-Baked Murder, the fifth in the series, will be released in December 2016. As you can imagine, her canine and feline rescues demand the best organic food and treats around. She is a member of Sisters in Crime National, Sisters in Crime New England, Mystery Writers of America, and the Cat Writers’ Association. She currently lives in Connecticut.




Barbara Ross is the author of the Maine Clambake Mysteries, including the Agatha-nominated Best Contemporary Novel Clammed Up, as well as Boiled Over, Musseled Out, Fogged Inn, and Iced Under. Her story “Nogged Off” appears in the holiday novella collection Eggnog Murder along with stories by Leslie Meier and Lee Hollis. Barbara blogs with the Wicked Cozy Authors and Maine Crime Writers. In the summer, she writes on her big front porch overlooking the water in Boothbay Harbor, Maine. You can visit her website at http://www.maineclambakemysteries.com