Wednesday, January 28, 2015

baked goodies perfect for a tea party!

Tea Party Goodies via design. bake. run.

ummm... so, i sort of hosted a mini tea party at work this week. any excuse to bake some yummy baked goods, right? i'm not big on tea or anything, but i'll take all the goodies that come with it. :)

for our initial afternoon tea party kick-off, i settled on some coffee nutella macarons as well as some lemon cream cheese macarons (thanks to all the lemons in my garden), some mini lemon cupcakes with lemon icing, multi-berries scones, jam thumbprints and what better way to top it off then your not-so-typical savory bites, spam musubi. yup, you heard that right. we didn't have cute little tea sandwiches. we opted for spam musubi instead and those were delish! spam musubi is quite a hit with my coworkers and me. we'll take it any time of day, any day of the week, just as we'll take any of the other baked goodies.

anyway, the recipes are below if you'd like to bake any for your tea party or any party or just because. yeah, when you think about it, who needs an excuse to bake? i sometimes just bake because i wanted to. okay, enjoy and happy baking! :)

Mini Lemon Cakes and Multi-Berries Scones via design. bake. run.

multi-berries scones
recipe adapted from smells like home's blueberry scones

  • 8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, frozen whole
  • 1-1/2 cups fresh or frozen berries (i used a mix of blueberries, blackberries and raspberries)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the work surface
  • 1/2 cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 egg, for egg wash

  1. adjust an oven rack to middle position and preheat to 425° F. grate the frozen butter on the holes of a large box grater. if using fresh berries, place the berries in the freezer until needed. whisk together the milk and sour cream in a medium bowl; refrigerate until needed. combine the flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and lemon zest in a medium mixing bowl. whisk to combine. add the grated butter to the flour mixture and toss with fingers until thoroughly coated.
  2. add the milk mixture to the dry ingredients and fold with a spatula just until combined. transfer the dough to a generously floured work surface. dust the top of the dough with flour, and knead with well floured hands, 6-8 times, just until the dough holds together in a ragged ball. add small amounts of flour as needed to prevent sticking.
  3. roll the dough into a 12-inch square. fold the dough into thirds like a business letter (a dough scraper really helps with these steps). fold the short ends of the dough into the center in thirds, to form an approximate 4-inch square. transfer the dough to a plate lightly dusted with flour and chill in the freezer for 5 minutes.
  4. return the dough to the floured work surface and roll into an approximately 12-inch square again. sprinkle the berries evenly over the surface of the dough, and gently press down so that they are slightly embedded in the dough surface. using a dough scraper, roll the dough up to form a tight log. lay the log seam side down and press the the log into a 12 by 4-inch rectangle. using a sharp, floured knife, cut the rectangle crosswise into 4 equal rectangles. cut each rectangle diagonally to form 2 triangles. transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet.
  5. brush the tops of the scones with the egg wash and sprinkle lightly with sugar. if freezing ahead of time, flash freeze on the baking sheet for 20 minutes, then wrap individually and store in a freezer bag until needed. bake until the tops and bottoms are golden brown, 18-25 minutes. transfer to a wire rack and let cool at least 10 minutes before serving.

makes 12 scones (or however big/small you cut it)

Baked goodies perfect for any (tea) party! via design. bake. run.

mini eggless lemon cupcakes
recipe adapted from yum'e'licious


for the cupcakes
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup buttermilk (or do what i do; add 1 tbsp lemon juice to 1 cup of milk, stir, and let it sit for 5 minutes before using)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • zest of 1 medium sized lemon
  • few drops of yellow color, optional

for the lemon icing drizzle
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

  1. if you don't have buttermilk, this is when you mix the lemon juice and milk together and set it aside while you do everything else.
  2. preheat oven to 350°F. then sift the flour, baking powder and the baking soda in a good size bowl and set that aside.
  3. in another bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. then add in 1/3 cup buttermilk and beat again until fluffy. repeat again with another 1/3 cup. then add the lemon zest and lemon juice and mix well. now, if you want to use some yellow food coloring, this is where i add it in.
  4. now add in the dry ingredients and mix well before adding in the remaining buttermilk; mix again until incorporated.
  5. fill the mini cupcake cups to 2/3 full (makes about 20-24) and bake it in the oven for 14-15 minutes. or if you'd rather do a loaf cake instead, pour the batter into a greased loaf tin (9"x5") and bake it for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  6. let the mini cupcakes (or loaf) cool completely before drizzling the icing over. to make the icing, just mix the powdered sugar and lemon juice together. if it's too runny, just add more powdered sugar; and if too thick, add more lemon juice.

makes about 20-24 mini cupcakes or one loaf

French macarons, mini cupcakes, scones, jam thumbprints and spam musubi... perfect treats for any party via design. bake. run.

other goodies you can find recipes for:

Sunday, January 25, 2015

creamy lemon squares

Creamy Lemon Squares via design. bake. run.

whooo hooo! so here's my first post of 2015. it only took me 25 days into the new year, so that's not too bad considering i haven't posted any recipes lately, or more like months with the exception of those mini pecan tarts last month.

okay, so i was inspired by miss martha stewart after watching one of her episodes of martha bakes, featuring citrus baked goodies. you see we are in the winter season and winter is known for its abundance of citrus fruits. we have a small lemon tree growing out back in our garden and it's bursting with lots and lots of lemons! i've never seen this many lemons on our tree before, it's incredible. i mean... i'm so excited because the endless possibility of anything lemon is amazing. of course, i just need to muster enough energy to bake or create delicious yummy looking and tasting things. we'll see where that takes me. but for now, yes... i've made these perfect little lemony and creamy squares. they are perfectly sweet and creamy with the condense milk, but yet at the same time the tartness in the lemons come through. it is just amazing. it's like a nice burst of goodness in your mouth.

below's the recipe should you want to make some yourself. i did a mini hybrid of two recipes in one. i couldn't be bothered to make the shortbread crust and opted for a graham cracker crust instead. i've made the shortbread a bunch of times, so the graham cracker crust with the lemon squares is a new thing. i'd say it's not too bad, just a tad crumbly when you eat it, but still delicious. i ate every little bit of it, to the last crumb even! ;)

Creamy Lemon Squares via design. bake. run.

creamy lemon squares
recipe adapted from martha stewart's lime squares recipes


for the crust
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled, plus more for pan
  • 1-1/2 cup (about 24 squares) graham-cracker crumbs
  • 1/4 cup sugar

for the filling
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (i used 3 lemons)


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush an 8-inch square baking dish with melted butter. Line bottom with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two sides.
  • In a food processor, finely grind the graham-cracker squares. Then add in sugar and butter and blend to mix. Press mixture into bottom and 1 inch up sides of prepared pan. Bake until lightly browned, 8 to 12 minutes. Cool crust, 30 minutes.
  • To make the filling: In a large bowl, whisk together egg yolks and condensed milk. Add lemon juice; whisk until smooth. Pour filling into cooled crust; carefully spread to edges.
  • Bake until set, about 15 minutes. Cool in pan on rack; then chill at least 1 hour before serving. Using parchment paper overhang, lift out of pan, and transfer to a cutting board. With a serrated knife, cut into 16 squares, wiping knife with a damp kitchen towel between each cut.

makes 16 squares. enjoy! :)
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