All About Baking!

Alright everybody!  Here it is... the All About Baking page!  No description is needed, just look at it's name: it's all about baking ya'll!  :)  Soooo...  I have decided that here I will post RECIPES, (along with a picture or two so that you know what it looks like :D) and on my home page I will post the DIY, a.k.a. all the pictures of me making it/the process.  So on my home page you can see the process and if you decide that you want to make it, come here to the All About Baking page for the recipe.  Simple enough :)


Quick and Easy Cinnamon Rolls*
(makes 4)

Quick, as in no yeast. Quick, as in the speed with which you will eat this entire batch of 4 cinnamon rolls. Quick, as in how badly you’ll need to commit this recipe to memory for every Saturday for the foreseeable future. 

I usually double this recipe to make eight instead of four.  Also, if you don't have any cream cheese for the frosting, you can make an easy glaze using powdered sugar and milk/cream.  You can just look up "powdered sugar glaze" or, play it my way and just wing it :)

Dough/Filling

Ingredients:
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus extra for work surface
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar, divided use
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 5 tbsp milk (about a 1/4 cup)
- a splash of apple cider vinegar
- 4 tbsp (1/2 stick) melted butter, divided use
- 3 tbsp light brown sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon

1.  Preheat oven to 375 and spray 4 cups in a muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray.
2.  In a medium bowl, combine the flour, 1 tbsp of the sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
3.  In a small measuring cup, combine 2 tbsp of the melted butter, the milk, and a splash of apple cider vinegar.
4.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients; stir until a soft dough forms.
5.  Heavily flour your work surface and, using your hands, pat the dough out into a rectangle, about 6" long and about 3" wide.  Use plenty of flour as you go.
6.  Pour the remaining 2 tbsp of melted butter on top of the dough and use the back of a spoon or a pastry brush to spread it out into the corners. 
7.  Combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and remaining tbsp of sugar.  Spread this mixture over the top of the dough as well and pat it into the butter.  Now, carefully roll the dough into a long roll; when you get to the end, pinch the entire seam closed.
8.  Cut the dough into quarters, place in the greased muffin pan, and bake for 14 minutes, rotating halfway through (7/7).


Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients:
- 3 oz cream cheese
- 1/3 cup powdered sugar
- a splash of milk or cream

1.  While the cinnamon rolls are baking, beat together the cream cheese and powdered sugar in a medium bowl.  Add a splash of milk or cream if it seems hard to spread.
2.  Frost the cinnamon rolls immediately after coming out of the oven; serve.



Homemade Apple Pie
















Ok, so I'm not much of an apple person, but I LOVE this apple pie!!  It's not to sweet, it's not to sour, and the crust is really, really good :)  However, for this recipe, you will need to make the dough and have it chilled and ready to go BEFORE making the pie filling.  Also, another heads up - this pie takes 4 hours to cool, if you cut it before then, all the filling will run out.  So if you are planning to make this for a dinner or something, start it about 5-6 hours BEFORE you want to eat it!

Double-crust Pie Dough  

Ingredients:
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for the work surface
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup vegetable shortening, cut into small pieces and chilled
- 12 tbsp (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and chilled
- 6-8 tbsp ice water

1. Process the flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor until combined.  Scatter the shortening over the top and process until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal.  Scatter the butter pieces over the top and pulse the mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.  Transfer the mixture to a large bowl.
2. Sprinkle 6 tbsp of the ice water over the mixture.  Stir and press the dough together, using a rubber spatula, until the dough sticks together.  If the dough does not come together, stir in the remaining water, 1 tbsp at a time, until it does.
3. Divide the dough into two even pieces.  Turn each piece of dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and flatten each into a 4" disk.  Wrap each piece tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.  Before rolling the dough out, let it sit on the counter to soften slightly, about 10 minutes.

Apple Filling

Ingredients:
- 1 recipe double-crust pie dough (above)
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour, plus extra for the work surface
- 3/4 cup plus 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon 
- 1/8 tsp ground allspice
- 2 lbs Yellow Delicious apples (about 4 large), peeled, cored, and sliced about 1/8"
- 1 1/2 lbs Granny Smith apples (about 3 large), peeled, cored, and sliced about 1/8"
- 1 large egg white, lightly beaten

1. Roll one disk of pie crust dough into a 12" circle on a floured work surface, then fit it into a 9" pie plate, letting the extra dough hang over the edges; cover with plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes.  Roll the other disk of pie crust dough into a 12" circle on a floured work surface, then transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet; cover with plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes.
2. Preheat oven to 500 degrees and place a rimmed baking sheet on the rack.
3. Mix the flour, 3/4 cup of the sugar, the salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, and allspice together in a large bowl.  Add the lemon juice and apples and toss until combined.  Spread the apples with their juice into the dough-lined pie plate, mounding them a little in the middle.  Loosely roll the second piece of dough around the rolling pin then unroll it over the top of the pie.  Trim, fold, and crimp the edges, and cut four vent holes in the top.  Brush the dough with the egg white and sprinkle with the remaining 1 tbsp sugar.
4. Place the pie on the heated baking sheet, reduce the temperature to 425 degrees, and bake until the crust is golden, about 25 minutes.  Reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees, rotate the baking sheet, and continue to bake until the juices are bubbling through the top and the crust is deep golden brown, 30-35 minutes longer.  Cool the pie on a wire rack to room temperature, about 4 hours.  Enjoy!  (It's better with ice cream!!)



My first recipe(s)...  Christmas Cookies plus Buttercream Frosting!  The cookies are pretty much just sugar cookies (with some special ingredients added)  and the Buttercream is just Buttercream :)  I colored the frosting when I made it to decorate my cookies with but you can do it however you want!  And by the way, I don't have pictures right now for these particular recipes, because when I made them yesterday I didn't think about it.  But I am sure I will be making these again soon in the near future and I will get some pictures then :)

Christmas Sugar Cookies

Ingredients:
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon (tsp) baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 ounces (oz) cream cheese, cut into 8 pieces
- 6 tablespoons (tbsp) unsalted butter, melted (still warm!)
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp whole milk
- 2 tsp vanilla extract

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  
2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.  Set this aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or just a large bowl)  put in the sugar and cream cheese.  Pour the melted butter over the top of it and mix it together until smooth.  (If you are using a stand mixer, use the paddle attachment)
4. Mix in the oil until incorporated.
5. Add the egg, milk, and vanilla and continue to mix until smooth.
6. Finally, add the flour mixture you set aside earlier.  STIR this in until most the flour mixture had been mixed in.  Then you can turn up the speed.  If you don't stir it when you first put the flour in, the flour mixture will fly everywhere.  Trust me, I know from experience.  :)
7. To bake the cookies, you can either roll out the dough and use cookie cutters, or just make a batch of drop cookies.  I have done both and they both work out well.  
8. Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes, rotating the sheets halfway through baking.  Let them cool for about 5 minutes before transferring from the baking sheet.

Buttercream Frosting

Ingredients:
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- milk

1. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large bowl) mix together the powdered sugar and butter until it is pretty smooth.  It doesn't have to be perfectly smooth because we will add some milk in a second.  Once again, STIR this mixture at first until most the powdered sugar has been incorporated.  Otherwise, you will be cleaning up a big mess :)
2. Add the vanilla to the mixture and put the mixer on "stir".  As it is stirring, slowly add a constant stream of milk until the frosting is the consistency you want.  I probably used about a 1/4 cup.
3. If you want to color the frosting, do this now.  Then go decorate your cookies!

*recipe found at http://www.dessertfortwo.com/2014/09/quick-cinnamon-rolls-for-two/