Chewy Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies

This recipe is my baby.  It’s the first recipe I ever developed myself and it’s the recipe I’m most often asked for. When I ask people what I should bring to their picnic, bake sale, birthday party, the answer is invariably MEXICAN HOT CHOCOLATE COOKIES. DUH.  They are spicy, chewy, chocolatey and just the right size.  If you usually just window shop when you look at baking blogs, I encourage you to give these a try. They’re memorable, foolproof and delicious. Continue reading “Chewy Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies”

Rainbow Mini Meringues, AKA Unicorn Tears

I don’t even know what to say about these.  They are tiny.  They are rainbow.  They are like delicious little unicorn tears.  They are magic stuck all around a cake, they’re amazing in a trail mix and I can say with some authority that they are also delicious by the handful.  Think this is just a Pinterest fail waiting to happen?  You are so wrong.  You need egg whites, superfine sugar and some gel food coloring.  That’s it. Continue reading “Rainbow Mini Meringues, AKA Unicorn Tears”

Earl Grey-Lavender and Lemon Tart

I had the pleasure of hosting a spring baby shower for a dear friend.  I wanted to make something really special for dessert.  The mom-to-be loves lavender.  I love lavender and Earl Grey!  I’ve made a lot of cakes that combine Earl Grey, lavender, and dark chocolate but this occasion called for something lighter.  So I decided on a lemon tart with a shortbread crust that I would top with an Earl Grey-lavender buttercream.   Continue reading “Earl Grey-Lavender and Lemon Tart”

Sunny and Stormy Cloud Cookies

I’ve had these cloud cookie cutters forever.  I can’t even remember why I ordered them but apparently I needed all three sizes.  They’ve been sitting in a box with a feather cookie cutter I got when I was fantasizing about making these cookies.  I saw a cute cloud pillow with a little smiley face on it at Target and thought, as I often do, “That would make a great cookie!” Continue reading “Sunny and Stormy Cloud Cookies”

Banana Chiffon Easter Cake

Easter Banana Chiffon Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

With so many sweets around at Easter, it might be overkill to make an Easter Cake but a small pastel cake on a cheerful cake stand can be a perfect focal point for the dessert table.  Plus, never pass up a chance to bake a cake.  I wanted to make a layer cake that would be sweet and light with a bit of a crunchy coating.  After looking through umpteen yellow cake recipes, which always seem to taste like cornbread when you make them from scratch, I decided to try the banana chiffon cake from Martha Stewart’s CAKES book. Continue reading “Banana Chiffon Easter Cake”

Dark Chocolate Magnolia Cake with Ganache, Gold Dragees and Wafer Paper

I have been seeing lovely wedding cakes all festooned with crafty-looking flowers made of edible wafer paper.  Wafer paper is a thin sheet of potato starch.  Do you remember these spaceship candies from when we were kids?  That’s wafer paper!  But now cake makers are using wafer paper to make exquisite and elegant designs.  Google it.   Continue reading “Dark Chocolate Magnolia Cake with Ganache, Gold Dragees and Wafer Paper”

Valentine Cupcake Trio

Every year our family collects and delivers valentines, toys and books for the children at Lurie Children’s Hospital.  We have a special connection there because our middle daughter has undergone multiple heart surgeries under their care.  I also make some cupcakes for the staff as a small thank you for all they’ve done for our family.  Her first surgery took place on Valentine’s Day and every year since it’s been our privilege to shower the patients in the cardiac unit with love.  And sugar. Continue reading “Valentine Cupcake Trio”