RumChata Tres Leches Cake With A Creamy Cinnamon Mascarpone Topping

RumChata Tres Leches Cake With A Creamy Cinnamon Mascarpone Topping 2

*Stands up at the front of the room and clears my throat* Hi there. My name is Janet and I’m a slacker. I mean, how else can I explain away an absence of almost a month? Sure, I could give you a line (truthful though it may be) about being under the weather in recent weeks. I could say that life has been busy, which it has. No one with a seven year old, other kids, a spouse and a household to care for can deny that one. But none of that is good enough. Had I really TRIED, I could have found the time and energy to post here. You ladies and gentlemen deserve nothing less than my all. In my defense, I made something (a chocolate/peanut butter bundt cake) about a week ago that I was going to post, but it turned out so badly even the kids didn’t like it. So no go. I won’t post less than delicious foods.
But I’m back. You can now be frightened. :-p
It’s been an interesting few weeks. Lots of snow, missed school days due to said snow because we live in the south, lots of cussing when the fire goes out in the house and we start to freeze to death (I died four time during the last month, but then my husband remade the fire and revived me. ๐Ÿ˜€ My toes, however, are still frozen.) and many moments of “The Momma” (that would be me) verging on insanity when no one could go outside and I got no alone time.
So what am I back with on this snowy Valentines Day? Well, anyone who likes sweet foods has heard of Tres Leches Cake, correct? It is a sponge cake that is soaked in three different types of milk. Theories abound as to where it originated, but generally, it is seen as a treat stemming from South and Central America. While I like the typical one just fine, I wanted to play with the soaking liquid a bit, so I used Rumchata in place of some of the milk.
About a year ago, I discovered the liqueur called RumChata. It’s a creamy liqueur based on Horchata, the delicious rice and milk beverage (the origins of horchata are also disputed, so I am so NOT going to get into where it came from) that is enjoyed in Mexico and has become a trendy drink in the states now, too. While we all know I tend to balk at trendiness, I bought an airplane sized bottle of the RumChata on a whim one day and absolutely loved it. I describe it as alcoholic liquid rice pudding. That is truly what it tastes like.
This cake is pretty darn easy. It’s a sponge cake, so yes, you have to separate your eggs and whips up the whites, but I have complete faith in your egg beating abilities. :-p Then all you do is whisk together the milks for the top, poke some holes in the cake and pour. Top it with the easily mixed together topping and voila, a delicious, somewhat boozy dessert (obviously just for the adults). This is the perfect treat to bring along to a book club, a dinner for adults (bring some cookies for the kids), and cut in half, makes enough for you and your sweetie with some left over. The original tres leches cake recipe that I adapted comes from Bon Appetit.
You know the drill… ๐Ÿ™‚

RumChata Tres Leches Cake With A Creamy Cinnamon Mascarpone Topping

  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Rumchata
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 4 ounces mascarpone cheese, softened
  • Mascarpone topping-
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup RumChata
  • Soaking liquid-
  • 1/2 cup RumChata
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 3 egg yolks (save the rest for something like creme brulee)
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 13×9 inch pan, preferably glass.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon
  3. In a large, scrupulously clean bowl, beat the egg whites at medium to high speed (I tend to start out lower and speed it up as they get firmer) until firm peaks form, about 6 minutes or so.
  4. Gradually add in the sugar, beating well. Then add in the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition..Mix in the vanilla extract.
  5. Add the flour mixture, alternating it with the 1/2 cup RumChata, starting and ending with the flour (flour, Rumchata, flour, Rumchata, flour).
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
  7. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes, then turn the heat down to 325 and continue baking until the cake is golden brown and the center springs back if gently pressed.
  8. Let it cool in the pan for ten minutes, then invert it onto a rack that has been placed over a rimmed cookie or baking sheet.
  9. Whisk together the milk ingredients. Poke holes all over the cake using a skewer and pour about half of the liquid slowly over the top of the cake. Let that soak in for ten minutes.Invert the cake over a large platter and drizzle the rest of the milks over the top of the cake.
  10. For the topping, simply beat together those ingredients until creamy. Dust the cake with powdered sugar, slice and serve with a dollop of the creamy topping.

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RumChata Tres Leches Cake With A Creamy Cinnamon Mascarpone Topping

 

Easy Homemade Irish Cream Liqueur

Easy Homemade Irish Cream Liqueur


I’m not a big drinker when it comes to alcohol. A beer or a glass or two of wine every few weeks and the occasional vodka and lime-aid when I’m feeling nostalgic (my stepmother loved them back in the day), but straight hard liquor and I don’t get along. Except in my younger days, when we were all stupid about booze, I’ve never understood the drinking to get drunk idea. I mean really… who LIKES a pounding headache and hanging over the toilet for hours? Anyone? Bueller? Anyone?

One thing I do love however, is sweet creamy drinks. Kahlua and cream? I’ll take one! Baileys Irish Cream, straight up? Yep. It’s a weird “I love this in the middle of Winter” thing for me. The problem is affording the bottle. So, years back, I looked for and found about 900000 recipes for it. While it’s not exactly like Baileys, it’s a nice substitute when you either can’t afford the real thing or want something fresher and giftable. This can be poured into small flasks or bottles to make great stocking stuffers for the adults on your list. I’ve worked on this for years and now have it the way i like it. Feel free to change up some of the basics to appeal to you; less alcohol, more if you like a stiff drink, less or more chocolate of coffee, etc, etc, etc.

You also can’t get much easier than this recipe. Technically, you use a blender to mix it all up. but if you don’t have a blender, you could conceivably do this using a whisk. Just make sure you gets the eggs fully incorporated by adding liquids slowly and mixing well. Not matter how it’s done though, this takes five minutes. Tops. And the reward for that time is a really delicious creamy drink!

You know the drill… ๐Ÿ™‚

Easy Homemade Irish Cream Liqueur

  • 1 cup middle of the line whiskey (preferably Irish Whiskey if you want to be authentic. I have also used brandy at times to change it up. You could even use run if you’re feeling froggy)
  • 1 14ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon instant coffee powder
  • 1 tablespoon chocolate syrup (something like Hersheys; the kind you would use in milk)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon coconut flavoring
  1. Pour all ingredients into a blender.
  2. Cover and blend. See how easy that was?
  3. Keep stored, covered, in the refrigerator. Best served cold.

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Easy Homemade Irish Cream Liqueur 2

Raspberry Amaretto Poundcake

Raspberry Amaretto Poundcake

Raspberry Amaretto Pound Cake



Not a fancy looking cake, is it? Trust me; you won’t care. I’ve never been a huge fan of layer cakes, even with the sweet tooth I have. I make them for birthdays and whenever I get a strange craving for one, which isn’t often. Then I eat one slice and no more, reminded of the fact that I don’t care for them. Too messy, too darn sweet. But give me a pound cake and I can chow down on that bad boy… or girl. I’ve never been proficient at identifying the gender of my pound cakes.

Totally off the subject of pound cakes and gender, I had a…fun…experience the other night. My husband and I were checking the pool the other night (we haven’t yet opened it for the year) because my son Jordan had said that it was full of tadpoles. Went up there with a flashlight and yep, our pool has become a froggie resort. I am pretty sure I heardร‚ย some lively Caribbean style music and saw one frog with a Mai Tai. Well, we looked, we got sad thinking of all the tadpoles who were going to have to die for the sake of cleaning the pool and then we left. Russ went first down the stairs. No problem. Then me. I got two stairs down the five stair deck, hit the third and “CRAAACCCKKK!!”. Suddenly, I was half airborne. I say half because as I was flying, I was also falling as that crack was the sound of the old poorly made staircase breaking. The stair went down, I followed, my bottom half slamming into the side of the stairs, my top half slamming into the next stair down as I tried to prevent myself from hitting head first into the next stair. Talk….about…pain. My R.N. husband was convinced for a bit that I had broken my leg. But it’s not. I do however have one whopper of a huge bruise on my right thigh and I walk like someone who has been hit by a bus… or a staircase. I feel about 95 years old right now lol.

So what’s my cure? Back to cake ๐Ÿ˜€ I had seen an Amaretto Pound Cake on Southern Living and wanted to try it. But I also love using fresh fruit any chance I get this time of year. I have a MAJOR love of Blueberries and Raspberries. Blueberries aren’t quite there yet in the stores; still expensive and still being imported from Chile. Raspberries are looking pretty good, though still not quite up to par in the way of sweetness. Baking takes care of that though (and pigging out on pound cake makes me forget that I am in pain). Baking fruit concentrates the sweetness plus you have the added sweetness of whatever is with it, in this case a moist, love almond scented and flavored pound cake. The raspberries do tend to break down in the batter, leaving holes, but again, you won’t care. This isn’t a fancy party cake, not something to serve to the Queen. This is a homey, comforting sort of cake to have with coffee, tea, as a midnight snack, after school treat, you name it. This is a nice densely crumbed cake, very moist and the almond flavor is wonderful.ร‚ย  Then you run into a nice tart raspberry with that almond flavor and oh my gosh, it’s yummy.

My changes from the original are the almond extract, the Fiori Di Sicilia (which I list as optional), the raspberries and the original called for scattering almond slices on the bottom of the pan before baking, but I didn’t want those, so I skipped it. I also changed the amounts for the glaze as when I made it, it made far too much and a good portion ended up dumped.

You know the drill…. ๐Ÿ™‚

Raspberry Amaretto Poundcake

  • 1 1/4 cups unsalted butter, room temp
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Amaretto
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon Fiori Di Sicilia flavoring (optional)
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 cups fresh raspberries
  • Amaretto Glaze-
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons Amaretto liqueur
  • 1 tablespoon water
  1. Preheat oven to 325. Grease and flour a 12 cup Bundt pan and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the butter and cream cheese. Beat at medium speed until creamy, scraping down the bowl once if needed.
  3. Gradually add the sugar, beating at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the Amaretto and the extracts, beating well afterward. Gradually add the flour to the mixture, keeping the speed at low speed so you don’t end up looking like Casper The Ghost. Beat just until blended.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating just until blended after each one. GENTLY fold in the raspberries. You can’t avoid crushing some, but you can minimize the damage. Gently spoon batter into the prepared pan. When you have it in the pan, firmly bang the pan on a countertop to help remove any air bubbles.
  5. Bake at 325 for 65 to 95 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  6. When the cake is almost done, make the glaze- in a small pot, combine the glaze ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium heat and set aside until the cake is finished.
  7. Set the cake on a rack. Spoon the glaze over the top, a little at a time, letting it soak in each time. Use about half the glaze. Let the cake cool completely on the rack, then turn out onto a serving dish. Reheat the glaze and spoon the rest of it over the cake, again letting it soak in each time before adding more.

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Old Fashioned Fruitcake

Old Fashioned Fruitcake

Old Fashioned Fruitcake



A couple of weeks ago, I asked on the blogs facebook page if the readers liked or hated fruitcake. I was fully expecting a lot of “ewwww, I HATE fruitcake!”. But to my surprise, the vast majority of the responses were people saying they either loved it or had at least learned to appreciate it. Yep… fruitcake. Candied peels, unnaturally dyed cherries and pineapple, the whole kit and kaboodle.ร‚ย  I was totally tickled since I have always loved fruitcake.

About ten years or so ago, I started making my own. I got the recipe from The New Doubleday Cookbook, one I used to have, but have since lost *sobs* (excellent cookbook btw… if you can find it, get it). Luckily, a few years ago, I was able to find the exact recipe on an about.com site. Yay! This is a typical fruitcake recipe, similar to what one would get at a higher end grocery or through mail order. But even though the fruits are expensive, this is still cheaper than buying one prebaked, plus you know the ingredients going in and the biggest plus, it tastes ten times fresher. ANDDDDDD, you soak this bad boy in a rum or brandy soaked cheesecloth (you can sub apple juice) to up the drunken goodness lol.

This isn’t at all difficult. But you DO need to get this made now for it to be ready for Christmas eating. It is a two day process to make it then it ripens in the soaked cloth for 3 weeks. Could you eat it immediately? I suppose so, but trust me, it tastes far better as it ages. Also, the original recipe calls for making this in a ten inch tube pan. I use two loaf pans; one large, one 8 inch. It works perfectly and that way I have one cake I can soak in rum and one I soak in juice to be kid friendly. Otherwise, I have changed this recipe very little. I add a bit more dried fruit, more vanilla and almond extract, less nuts, no currants and that’s about it. Ok, so maybe I’ve changed it more than I realized lol. Regardless, I’m going to write this as I make it.

You know the drill…. ๐Ÿ™‚

Old Fashioned Fruitcake

  • Fruit Mixture-
  • 1 1/2 lbs fruitcake mix (found this time of year in any grocery store, usually near or in the produce section)
  • 8 ounce container candied lemon or orange peels (your preference)
  • 8 ounces raisins
  • 8 ounces golden raisins (can use a full lb of one or the other if you prefer)
  • 8 ounce container candied cherries
  • 8 ounces finely chopped pecans or walnuts, toasted
  • zest of 2 large lemons (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup orange marmalade
  • 1/4 cup brandy, rum or orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • Cake-
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • Cheesecloth for wrapping
  • Rum, Brandy or Apple Juice for soaking
  1. Place all the fruit mixture ingredients in a large bowl. Stir well to mix. Cover the bowl and let it sit overnight at room temp.
  2. The next day, preheat oven to 250 degrees and grease and flour the bottom of either a 10 inch tube pan or two loaf pans.ร‚ย  Put a large shallow baking pan filled with boiling water on the bottom rack of your oven.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, baking powder and salt. Stir to combine.
  4. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  5. Pour the dry ingredients into the bowl of wet ones. Beat just enough to thoroughly blend. Now, carefull spoon the fruit mixture into the bowl of batter. Stir well to combine and make sure all the fruit is covered well in batter.
  6. Pours into the prepared pan or pans. Bake at 250 degrees for approximately 4 1/2 hours, until the cake has shrunk slightly from the sides of the pan and/or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out with only a few moist crumbs on it. MOIST, not liquidy.
  7. Cool in the pan on a rack for one hour. Loosen the edges with a butter knife then carefully turn out onto the rack to finish cooling. When completely cooled, wrap the cake(s) in a rum, brandy or juice soaked cheesecloth, then wrap tightly in foil. Let ripen for at least 3 weeks. This can be aged even longer. Just make sure to redampen the cheesecloth every three weeks. Just remember, the more you soak this, the more alcohol is getting into it, so don’t eat and drive! ๐Ÿ˜›

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Boozy Browned Butter Brownies

Boozy Browned Butter Brownies

Boozy Browned Butter Brownies




Heh. Title as tongue twister. I thought about Browned Butter Baileys & Kahlua Brownies, but that just wasn’t as fun. Then again, I’m probably just easily amused.

I posted on my facebook page earlier that I found it funny that bloggers are accused of *cough cough, I’m looking at you, Martha Stewart* not testing recipes and just generally not knowing what they are doing. Why did I find that funny? Because it took me more than one pan of these brownies to get it right, to get it to where I thought they were good enough. Mind you, my boys absolutely loved the pans that didn’t make the cut. Brownie overload. But I was NOT going to post a recipe/slash photo that wasn’t good enough. And I know I’m in the majority with that opinion. The majority of bloggers I know won’t post something that either doesn’t turn out magically wonderful on the first try or that they haven’t decided is great after the 73rd try (and fail). We take as much pride in our work as people in any other job. The ones that don’t are the ones that disappear after six months because blogging is work. The things we post don’t happen in five minutes. We spend hours a day creating (or recreating and making our own the recipes of others) recipes, photographing them, writing posts etc etc. Why? Because we love you *breaks into the Mickey Mouse Club Theme Song* And because we love to cook, and love to write and love the people we meet. Bottom line though? Find a decent blogger…and chances are you are finding someone whose recipes you can trust. I hope you count me among them. If for no other reason than my sons are over here getting nauseous and fat from too many brownies.

Boozy Browned Butter Brownies

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 4 ounces good quality unsweetened chocolate (Again, Ghirardelli makes a good one), coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 3/4 cup sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 8 ounce package cream cheese, room temp
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 3 tablespoons Kahlua
  • 3 tablespoons Baileys Irish Cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 inch square pan with foil; butter the foil.
  2. Place your butter in a medium saucepot. Over medium heat, melt the butter and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the butter is golden brown. Watch carefully, cause this can go from brown to black in a second and then all you’ll have is 3/4 of a cup of trash.
  3. Remove from heat and add in the 4 ounces of unsweetened chocolate. Let sit for five minutes, then stir to get a smooth mixture.ร‚ย  Stir in the brown sugar and a 1/2 cups of the white sugar. Add in the vanilla and 3 of the eggs, one at a time, and stir well after each one.
  4. Stir in the flour, then spoon half of the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
  5. In a small mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese and 2 tablespoons flour. Using a hand mixer, beat at low speed until well combined. Add in the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and the egg; beat well.
  6. Add in the liquors (you can btw, sub any favorite liquor for the Kahlua and Baileys. Using all of one of them would be yummy, as would something like Amaretto or Frangelico or maybe Peppermint Schnapps for a Christmas version) and beat well.
  7. Pour the cream cheese batter over the top of the brownie batter. Spoon portions of the remaining brownie batter over the cheesecake batter and use a knife or the back of a spoon to swirl the two batters together. The brownie batter is thick so don’t expect it to swirl easily.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes or until a wooden skewer comes out with just a few moist crumbs on it.
  9. Let cool in pan on a rack for about an hour, then use the foil to take the brownies from the pan. These will cut easier (and have a better texture) if you let them chill overnight. Slice with a hot sharp knife.

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Semi Homemade Sweet & Fruity Wine

Semi Homemade Sweet & Fruity Blackberry Wine

Semi Homemade Sweet & Fruity Blackberry Wine

I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a big drinker. I like wine sometimes, Baileys in the Winter as well as hot chocolate with peppermint schnapps in it. And I admit to a liking for any of the vodkas made by Pinnacle Vodka. I have simple tastes there too though- toss some of the whipped cream flavor into Orange Crush and I’m happy hehe. Problem is, even with booze, though I don’t drink it, I get caught up in ideas surrounding it, especially nowadays with so many cool sounding things out on the market. I have a bunch of stuff gathering dust because it sounded interesting but if I drink hard liquor, I’m likely to be snoring within ten minutes.

So, since I like to play with my booze :-P, a few years ago I decided to see what I could do to make inexpensive wine a bit better.

I’m so far from a wine snob it’s kind of laughable. I have been known to happily drink Mogen David. I draw the line at Boones Farm though… had enough of that back when I was too young to know any better. Point being, I like sweet wines. Dry wines are too..well… dry for me. I love to use them in cooking and love the flavor they impart there but other than an occasional glass of Cabernet, I prefer my wines sweet. Not being able to afford a wine making kit complete with five gallon jug, locks, etc etc, I make my own with bottled wine. And EVERYONE who has ever tried it has loved it. it’s sweet, fruity, full flavored, NOT DRY, inexpensive for what you end up with and has a bit more of a kick than “normal” wines because of the brandy I add to fortify it.

This is more of a technique than a recipe but I will post it in recipe format. make this this week and by the time Labor Day hits, you can strain it out and have a nice sweet glass of wine over ice while you grill out.

You know the drill. Erhmmm, get to bottling??

Semi Homemade Sweet & Fruity Wine

  • 1 gallon jug (just writing jug for wine tells you how NOT seriously I take wine since jug wine is so maligned lol) of decent but inexpensive red wine (I use either Gallo Burgundy or “Sweet Red Wine” which isn’t really sweet, so I’m not sure from where the name comes. Burgundy makes a heavier wine, the sweet red a lighter one)
  • An empty 750 liter bottleร‚ย  (because once you add the additional ingredients, you have too much for the gallon bottle and need another bottle. You could of course just drink about 3 glasses then you’d have enough room ๐Ÿ˜€ )
  • 1 1/2 lbs frozen blackberries or raspberries (I have done both; the blackberry is what is in this photo)- make sure they are frozen, not thawed
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 ounces brandy (an airline bottle is the right size)
  1. Pour about 1/4 of the gallon of wine into another container. Or drink it. I won’t judge… though it could make continuing this process rather interesting hehe
  2. Use a funnel and pour the sugar into the gallon wine bottle. Now take your frozen berries and shove them down into the bottle. This is boring and makes your hands purple but short of pureeing the berries which makes it difficult to strain later (trust me; I tried), it’s the only way to get them in there. but this is why you leave them frozen. Can you imagine shoving mushy thawed ones in there? Lol.
  3. Now pour the brandy in there.
  4. Cap the bottle back up tightly, shake it well and store it in a cool dark place.
  5. Go back once a day for the first week to shake it to keep the sugar mixed.
  6. Let this sit for about 3 to 4 weeks. Strain through a coffee filter set into a fine mesh strainer over a bowl (this takes a while so be patient) then taste it. if it’s not sweet enough for you, add about another half a cup of sugar then cap it and set it back in a cool place for another week. After that, pour some over ice and enjoy.
  7. This makes a great spritzer also. Just mix 1:1 with some club soda or 7-up.
  8. This can also be made with white wine and something like peaches, nectarines or pears. But I personally didn’t care for it as much. You may however.

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Berry Peachy Sangria

Berry Peachy Sangria

Berry Peachy Sangria

Someday we will actually get Summer weather here. Is it just here that has had extremely strange weather? I know I brought this up before but man, it’s freaky! Kentucky in June should NOT have rain and temps in the low 70’s. We should be sweltering even with the A/C on and lying buck naked in swimming pools while drinking fun drinks…. ummm, not public pools, people. And no, not me. I don’t want to scar psyches for life.

BUT…! I’m preparing for Summer. I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a huge alcohol person. Been there, done that in my younger wilder days. But I do like some softer hard drinks. Honest, that really does make sense. That means I’ll drink a wine cooler type thing or regular wine. Sometimes I even have the hard stuff but not often because I end up a giggling fool within two sips. With the softer stuff, it takes at least 4 sips.

One thing I love is Sangria. I remember drinking the bottled cheap stuff in my younger days and it was even pretty good. But I decided I wanted to play with something homemade and made with white wine rather than red. This took about 90 seconds to throw together and I’m kind of proud of it since it DID take 90 seconds and it was all done on a whim. The Peach Schnapps adds a bit of bite but you can’t taste it as alcohol per se just a peachy flavor so be careful. Then the sweet sparkling wine and the Sprite and the fruit… well, suffice it to say that this comes together nicely. It can pack a punch though if you’re not a drinker so like I said, be ready. This has a full bottle of wine plus a cup of schnapps but all you taste is a wonderful peach taste.

You know the drill. Get to cookin’…erhmmm, pouring.

Berry Peach Sangria

  • 1 750 ml bottle of Moscato wine (you could use a white zin if you prefer- just don’t use a dry wine or this will be too tart)
  • 1 cup peach schnapps
  • 1 can peach nectar (can be found in the grocery store in the ethnic aisle usually)
  • 3 cups Sprite or 7-up
  • 1 cup frozen peaches
  • 1 cup frozen mixed berries
  1. Drop your frozen fruit down into the bottom of your pitcher. Pour the peach nectar over, then the schnapps, Then slowly pour in the wine and follow up with the soda. Give it all a gentle stir. You can serve immediately or refrigerate it to let the flavors blend. I suggest letting it sit. It was good right after being made but it was outstanding an hour later when it blended.
  2. See how easy that was? I just added this direction because I felt stupid only having one direction up.

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Happy Blog-I-Versary To Me (& Something For You)!!

Today is my one year blog-iversary. Yep; I am a year old today. That won’t come as a surprise to most of you whom I sure often think that I have the maturity level of a one year old. Though truthfully, that may be an insult to the vast majority of one year olds, now that I think about it.

But yep… From Cupcakes To Caviar is one year old today. Now I can get one of those cool widgets that shows recipes from a year ago without the widget looking at me and saying “Whatchoo talkin’ bout Janet? You can’t use this yet.” And yes, in my little world, widgets talk. So do animals, both real and stuffed, my computer keyboard, various fruits and vegetables, my ceramic pigs and my toes. This could be why no one else ever wants to enter my little world. But that’s ok, because going by the above list, I already have tooร‚ย  much damn company for my own good. Oh yeah… and Twinkies. They talk to me. Lots. Usually they just say “eat me… NOW, wench!” and I am so frightened I obey. Twinkies are Demi Gods.

So today for my blog-i-versary, I bring you brownies. No no, not just any brownies. C’mon how often do I do things the normal way? No, these are special “don’t feed them to your kids” brownies. No really; don’t. They have booze in them, on them, drizzled over them. These are a cocktail in fudgy form. I don’t want to be responsible for drunken kiddos.

I was actually rather proud of how these turned out. The brownies are thick, incredibly fudgy and have a nice chewy bite to them (have I mentioned that I love Cooks Illustrated in recent days?) The original recipe came from C.I. with just a few minor changes made by me. But the buttercream frosting and the Kahlua Caramel Drizzle (yes, you read that right. Thank me later) are all me. The Kahlua drizzle is absolutely amazing if I do say so myself. It is thick and chewy and intensely Kahlua-ish (hey, I needed a word! Don’t be hatin’)

But that’s not all. For sticking with me for a year (or in some cases, since you started reading this post because someone told you there was a giveaway… it’s all good) I have a present for you. But to find out what it is, you have to click that “continue reading” link hehehe. Continue reading