Carrot Cake Cinnamon Rolls

Okay, so these posts are a little backdated. But, I’ve told you all this before, I usually make a bunch of recipes, then schedule them all. So these cinnamon rolls I actually made at Easter. How fitting, right?Oh my gosh, they were delicious!! A beautiful combination of carrot cake and cinnamon roll… tons of cream cheese icing. The best of both worlds.I thought these cinnamon rolls would be a little finicky, but honestly, they turned out so well and I was so happy with them. I got rave reviews from everyone who got one. I found the original recipe here, and wow am I glad I made them. I also made a double batch and came out with 2 dozen rolls. There were plenty to go around!Seriously. If you are a fan of carrot cake or cinnamon rolls, go make these, and you won’t be sorry! I also apologize, because I got no good pictures of these rolls. Just trust me though, they were delicious!

Ingredients

Yield: About 8-12 rolls, depending on cut size

For the dough:

¾ c. milk
2¼ tsp. active dry yeast
¼ tsp. sugar
4-4¼ c. flour
6 tbsp. brown sugar
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. nutmeg
Pinch of ground cloves
2 eggs
1½ tsp. vanilla
¼ c. butter, melted
¾ c. carrots, finely shredded

For the filling:

3 tbsp. butter, melted
¾ c. brown sugar
1½ tsp. cinnamon

For the icing:

4 oz. cream cheese, softened (½ of a regular brick)
¼ c. butter, softened
2 c. icing sugar

½ tsp. vanilla
3-4 tbsp. milk

To make the dough, in a small pot or heat-proof measuring cup, heat milk to 115°F. Add in the yeast and sugar. Allow to proof for 5-10 minutes.Add vanilla to the melted butter.In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine 4 cups of flour, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. With the mixer on low speed, slowly stream in the yeast mixture. After yeast mixture is incorporated, add in butter mixture.Add in one egg at a time, mixing after each addition, then add in the carrots. Slowly increase speed, until dough comes together. If the dough is a bit sticky, add in the additional flour.Transfer dough to large greased bowl, then cover and let rise in a warm space about 1 hour, or until doubled in size.While the dough rises, lightly spray a 9 x 13 baking pan with non-stick spray. Mix together the brown sugar and cinnamon for the filling in a small bowl.When dough is risen, turn out dough onto a well-floured counter or onto a silicone mat. Roll out into a large rectangle, about 12 x 20 inches. Brush the dough with the melted butter, then sprinkle the brown sugar and cinnamon mixture over the dough evenly.Roll the dough into a log (I started at one of the long engs) and pinch the ends to seal. Using a knife (or unflavoured floss! – cuts super cleanly!) cut the dough into 8-12 rolls, depending on how big you want them. Just remember – they still have to rise, so keep this in mind.Space evenly in the prepared pan. Cover, and let rise for an hour in a warm place, until doubled in size.Preheat oven to 350°F. Uncover rolls and bake in the preheated oven for 30-40 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches at least 200°F. Remove from oven and allow rolls to cool 20-30 minutes before adding icing.To make the icing, in a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese and butter until smooth and fluffy. Mix in the vanilla and icing sugar. Beat on low speed to incorporate. Add milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached. Spread over slightly cooled rolls.

Chocolate Marble Bundt Cake

It’s cake time! It’s been a while since I’ve made some cake, and I figured it was high time for cake.The nice thing about this cake recipe is that it calls for a significant amount of buttermilk. The best part of this is if you ever have a surplus of milk, or if you have some that is on the point of turning, that makes it perfect for buttermilk. I had a ton of milk, so I figured, let’s make some cake!If you don’t want to buy actual buttermilk, a great substitute is milk with some white vinegar or lemon juice mixed in. You let it sit for about 10 minutes, and bam! DIY buttermilk that works perfectly.I found the original recipe here, and the only thing I changed was that I didn’t make the glaze to go on top. I figured that the cake was going to be sweet enough, so instead I just sprinkled some icing sugar on top as garnish.Let’s make some cake!

Ingredients

Yield: 1 10 inch Bundt cake

For the yellow cake batter:

¾ c. butter
1 c. sugar
2/3 c. brown sugar
3 eggs
1 tbsp. vanilla
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
2¼ c. flour
1½ c. buttermilk

For the chocolate cake batter:

2/3 c. cocoa powder
5 tbsp. hot coffee
2 tbsp. sugar

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 10-cup Bundt pan. Spraying with non-stick spray or brushing with Miracle Cake Release also works.In the bowl of a mixer, cream together butter, sugar, and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat eggs in one at a time, mixing well after each addition.Stir in vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix until well combined.Add all the flour and buttermilk. Stir until combined, and don’t overmix.In a medium sized bowl, stir together the cocoa powder, coffee, and the sugar until well combined. Stir in 2 cups of the yellow cake batter, and mix until well combined.Place about a quarter of the yellow cake batter into the bottom of the cake pan, then alternate between the chocolate and yellow batter, until all batter has been used. Feel free to dollop the batter in uneven lumps.Use a knife and swirl the batter around together, not too much. Tap the cake on the counter to dislodge any bubbles.Bake in the preheated oven for 35-45 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, before inverting on a wire rack and cooling completely, removing the pan when able and cool enough.

Chocolate Marzipan Cookies

It was Teacher’s Convention last week, and I went to my brother-in-law’s house and hung out with him and his wife, Serena. I’m lucky and married into a pretty great family. Well, Serena had a tube of marzipan that she didn’t know what to do with, so I took to Pinterest.I found this recipe, and Serena and I attempted it, and it was incredible! The cookies are thick, crispy on the edges, and chewy and tender in the middle.Really, I don’t want to continue writing. Please just make these cookies!!

Ingredients

Yield: 2 dozen cookies

½ c. butter, very soft
1/3 c. sugar
½c. brown sugar, packed
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
½ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
1½ c. flour
1 c. chocolate chips
½ c. chopped dark chocolate
½ c. chopped marzipan
Sea salt, to finish

In a large bowl fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugars together. Add the egg and the vanilla, and beat again.Mix in the baking soda and salt, then add in the flour and mix on slow until flour is incorporated.Fold in the chocolate chips, chopped chocolate, and marzipan. Chill the dough for 1-2 hours.Preheat oven to 350°F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or silpat. Scoop out large tablespoon sized balls of cookie dough, roll into balls, place about 2 inches apart, and flatten slightly with the palm of your hand.Bake in the preheated oven for 11-15 minutes, until the edges are light golden. Once out of the oven, sprinkle cookies with salt, let cool on the trays for about 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Double Chocolate Pecan Bread Pudding

This recipe is fantastic! It makes enough for a 9×13 pan, but when I made it I used an 8×8 square pan and a loaf pan. It’s delicious. Chocolate in the custard and chocolate chips in the actual bread pudding – heck yes a double load of chocolate.I found the original recipe here, and the only thing I changed was I ran out of Kahlua (the travesty!), and substituted milk for the heavy cream and the remainder of the Kahlua I didn’t have.The more I write on the blog, as in number of posts, I realize how much I just want to get to the recipe. So, I hope that my readers don’t mind when I have a short post, because I just want to share the food. Enjoy this!

Ingredients

Yield: 1 9×13 pan

5 c. cubed bread (day old, or stale)
½ c. chocolate chips
½ c. chopped pecans
1 c. brown sugar, packed
¼ c. cocoa powder
1½ tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. cardamom
Pinch of salt
5 eggs, lightly beaten
2 c. milk
½ c. Kahlua
1 tsp. vanilla

Spray a 9×13 pan with non-stick stray. Put the cubed bread in a baking dish. Sprinkle the chocolate chips and pecans over the bread. Set aside.In a large bowl, combine the brown sugar, cocoa powder, cinnamon, cardamom, and salt. Add the eggs, and whisk until combined.Add the milk, Kahlua and vanilla. Whisk until thoroughly incorporated.Pour the mixture over the bread cubes, and let sit 45 minutes to an hour, or until soaked through.Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake the bread pudding for 60-75 minutes, or until the custard is set. Check halfway. If the bread is getting dark, cover with aluminum foil. Let cool before serving.Best if served warm with ice cream or whipped cream on top!

Raspberry Smacks

I made these for a New Year’s Party as well, and they turned out very well. I had some homemade raspberry jam that my mom gave me, and they made the perfect filling for these squares.

There is a sweet shortbread type crust, a raspberry jam filling, and a brown sugar meringue on top. I saw a picture of these, and I wasn’t too sure about them, but I was so pleasantly surprised.

I found this recipe in one of my cookbooks – a Company’s Coming Sweet Treats book. It did not disappoint, even though I didn’t know what to expect. If you are looking for a new recipe to try that’s a little out of the ordinary, I would highly recommend this one!

Ingredients

Yield: Approx. 16 squares, depending on cut size

For the crust:

2 egg yolks
1½ c. flour
½ c. brown sugar, packed
½ c. butter, at room temperature
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla
¼ tsp. salt

For the filling:

1 c. raspberry jam (store bought or homemade)

For the topping:

2 egg whites, at room temperature
1 c. brown sugar, packed

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9×9 inch square pan with foil or parchment paper.

To make the crust, whisk all crust ingredients in a large bowl until crumbly. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan. Set aside.

Drop teaspoonfuls of jam over the bottom layer, and spread evenly.

In a medium bowl of a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip egg whites until frothy. Add brown sugar, in three increments, beating well after each addition, until stiff peaks form.

Spread meringue mixture over the jam. Bake in the preheated oven for about 25 minutes until golden. Let cool completely on a wire rack. Slice, and serve.