Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Not Your Average Mudslide Fudge Brownies


It's moist and chewy. It's rich and fudgy. It looks like your ordinary brownie. 

It is anything BUT ordinary. This brownie has a secret ingredient added that's smooth, creamy, green and chock full of good healthy fats and omega 3.

Now before you freak out, I want you to have an open mind. Be willing to try new things, new flavors...Tickle your taste buds. Get out of your usual comfort zone and be a little adventurous because that's what this brownie is all about. 

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Post Valentines Red Velvet Brownies


So I finally got around to making these Red Velvet Brownies after much argument with myself, going back and forth between, "I'm tired and lazy now. Maybe I should make it next weekend" and "No, if I don't make it now, I'll never be done with it and I still have a bazillion other recipes to do." Procastination is one of my weaknesses. But when you just got home from a long day at work, the last thing you want to do is bake or cook. You just want to sit down, surf or watch the TV and relax. But then I sometimes end up waking up at crazy hours at dawn on a weekday (like 4 a.m.), baking in a hurry just so I could still make it to work on time at 8 a.m. Crazy, I know. Even my boyfriend tells me so.

I first saw these brownies on Smells Like Home, which is one of my favorite blogs! These amazing gooey Red Velvet Brownies were created and perfected by another wonderful blogger, Jessica from How Sweet It Is. I absolutely love Red Velvet cupcakes, cakes, hot chocolate and any RED desserts. There's just something about that color that lures you in, making it look so deliciously sinful and tempting. 

Friday, February 17, 2012

When Life Gives You Bland Blueberries...


I have so many recipes-to-do on my list that I've lost count. My problem is that I'm so fickle that I often have trouble making up my mind. I had planned to make Red Velvet Brownies last week when I saw some fresh local blueberries at the supermarket. Normally, berries don't grow in tropical countries. There is only one place high up in the mountains in the Philippines with a cool weather that grows strawberries and blueberries. Fresh blueberries are hard to come by here so I was really excited to try them. The Red Velvet Brownies will have to wait. I had expected it to taste just like the blueberry sauce on top of cheesecakes served at coffee shops. Imagine my surprise when I popped some in my mouth..and it tasted BLEH! I almost spat it out. Most of the berries were bland and some were sublty sour. Was this how fresh blueberries taste like?! They were awful! I thought that they were also a bit smaller than the ones I've seen in photos and were more black in color rather than bluish. 


Anyway,  I almost regretted the 2 packs of blueberries I bought, so excited I was. I wanted to make Tyler Florence's Lemon Blueberry Bars but after tasting the blueberries, I wasn't so sure if that was such a good idea. So I had all these blueberries that didn't taste good and I wasn't sure what to do with them or how to get rid of them. In the end, I decided to make some blueberry syrup and turned it into this awesome homemade Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream that I found at Kitchen Simplicity. Her photos looked so irresistible and mouthwatering! The ice cream was really creamy, smooth and rich with lovely swirls of blueberry sauce and the subtle hint of cream cheese flavor. The best thing about this recipe is that there's no need for an expensive ice cream machine!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Vegan Winner on Cupcake Wars!


Vegan cupcakes....who would have thought that a vegan baker would ever win Cupcake Wars? A cupcake with no eggs, no butter, no milk (not dairy anyway)......in other words, no texture and no flavor....or so I thought. Ever since I saw this on Cupcake Wars on the Foodnetwork, I knew I had to make it. This is "Sexy Back" on a cupcake! Chef Chloe moved with finesse and grace throughout the entire episode even under time pressure to bake 1000 cupcakes. Her cupcakes turned out beautiful and completely won over the judges, presentation and taste.  

These cupcakes are pretty low cost too with no eggs and butter and yet, they came out perfectly with nice domed tops, soft, fluffy and so moist. They're very easy to make. No creaming for several minutes, no beating the eggs until fluffy. You can mix everything by hand. My colleagues could hardly believe that these were vegan. They told me that these were the best cupcakes I made, even better than the Chocolate Guinness Cupcakes! 

Vegan cupcakes are taking over the world!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Got Milk for My Oreos?

I was never much of a gadgets person. I was never into the latest technology and my mobile is such an old model that it doesn't even have a camera in it. But my love for food inspires me to learn more about food styling and photography. It is where I find the most pleasure and comfort in life, when I am most happy. The marriage of cooking food/baking and photography brings out my creativity,  patience and passion.

About a few years ago, when I started baking again, I bought a Panasonic Lumix camera on sale. I love my old cheap camera. All the old photos you see in this blog before this post were taken with it. It may not be anything fancy but we've gone a long way and traveled to different places together. That camera had been reliable even when things got a bit messy around me when I was taking photos of food. But I was never completely happy with its photos even after tweaking them. On days when there wasn't enough light inside the house, the photos came out dark, sad and gloomy. Maybe it is high time for my old camera to take a vacation.

Last December, I got only one present but it was the best present anyone has ever given me for Christmas, a new camera. I took one photo with it and thought I had died and gone to heaven. I can practically hear the angels singing "Hallelujah! Hallelujah!Halleelujaaah!". I felt like doing cartwheels on the spot. The photos on this post were taken with the new Canon 550D and what a huge difference it makes! The camera with all its features intimidates me a little but I am slowly learning how to use it. I love it so much! I can tell that this new baby and I are going to have a very long and happy relationship!

This blog post is for all the wonderful fathers out there and to my dad, who has given me so much in life. I can never thank him enough for everything he has done for me. He is truly the best dad in the world!

There was a pack of Oreos lying around at home waiting to be eaten or used so I googled a recipe for Oreo cupcakes. Lots of chocolate Oreo cupcakes popped up but I wanted to follow something different. Then I found what I was looking for. At first, it looks deceivingly like a simple vanilla cake on the outside but you take a bite then you realize it has chunks of Oreos in the cake. The best surprise that makes you feel like a kid again is finding the Oreo cookie at the base. It was like eating Cookies and Cream ice cream.