Amazing Chocolate Icing
10 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 pound, 8 ounces powdered sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup sour cream
Melt chocolate over a double boiler or in microwave and allow to cool until just slightly warm. Beat butter until light and fluffy.
With mixer on low speed, gradually add powdered sugar. Add salt, vanilla and sour cream, and mix until very smooth.
Add chocolate and mix until just incorporated.
Don't over-whip; it will add too much air to the frosting. The consistency should be rich and dense, like ice cream.
Cream Cheese Frosting
Mix cream cheese, butter, and vanilla at medium high speed in clean bowl of standing mixer fitted with whisk attachment ( or in large bowl using handheld mixer) until well combined, about 30 seconds, scraping down bowl with rubber spatula as needed. Add confectioners’ sugar and mix until very fluffy, about 1 minute.
Quick Fix with a Mix
PREHEAT oven to 350° F. grease or line cake pan or
BLEND cake mix, pumpkin, eggs, oil and water in large mixer bowl until moistened. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour batter into prepared pan, filling 3/4 full.
BAKE for 18 to 23 minutes (for cupcakes)
26-38 minutes for cakes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Cool in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely. Ice with cream cheese frosting. Decorate with assorted sprinkles, if desired.
Chocolate Crinkle Cookies
1 cup granulated sugar
2 oz. unsweetened baking chocolate
¾ cup flour
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
¾ stick of butter, unsalted (three ounces)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
½ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
Chop baker’s chocolate into small pieces.
Melt the butter and chocolate together in a double-boiler or microwave. Remove from heat and stir, then set aside to cool slightly.
Mix the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt together.
Add the sugar to the chocolate/butter mixture and stir until completely mixed.
Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat by hand or electric mixer until the mixture is light and fluffy.
Fold in the flour mixture and stir just until combined.
Cover and refrigerate the dough for an hour (until firm).
Preheat oven to 375 degrees (a little less if using dark cookie sheets).
Prep the cookie sheets with non-stick coating like Pam.
Roll the chilled dough into small balls (about an inch) and roll them in confectioner’s sugar before placing them on the cookie sheets. Leave about an inch in between each ball.
Bake for 10 minutes.
Beet or Ruby Brownies
Time: about 1 hour including bake time
Butter and dust with cocoa a 8-9 inch round cake pan. Heat oven to 175C/350F.
Boil beets with skins until soft. Peel and puree with a hand blender or grate finely and mash. You should have about 3/4 cups of beet puree.
Melt chocolate and allow to cool.
Mix flour, baking powder, salt and vanilla sugar together and set aside.
Cream butter and sugar together and add eggs one at a time until the mixture is smooth. Add chocolate, beet puree, and flour mixture individually, mixing well.
Fold in nuts.
Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes.
Serve when cooled with whipped cream or ice cream or ice with cream cheese frosting.
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