This summer, make this refreshing citrus dessert: Lemon-Lime Layered Dessert

We live in the deep south which means summer basically runs from early May to mid October. When it’s hot out there’s one thing that I can guarantee — I want to eat and drink foods that are cooling and refreshing.

This Lemon-Lime Layered Dessert is the PERFECT dessert to enjoy on a hot day (or really any day). it starts of with a buttery and nutty shortbread crust, then there’s a whipped cream cheese and vanilla layer, and is topped off with a lemon-lime “curd”. It’s heaven in a dessert.

The recipe doesn’t require a lot of hands on time, however make sure you allow for adequate cooling and chilling time for each layer.

Continue reading →

Birthday Cake Crispy Rice Cereal Treats

July is the month of birthdays for us. My husband, sister, father, nephew, brother-in-law- and sister-in-law all have birthdays this month. Two of these family members even have a birthday on the same day!

So in honor of the month of birthdays, I’m sharing a recipe for crispy rice cereal treats. It’s yet another twist on the traditional treat. To achieve the birthday cake flavor you mix in salt, vanilla, white cake mix, and sprinkles!

It’s an easy treat that comes together really quickly… and it has a flavor that both kids and adults will enjoy.

Birthday Cake Crispy Rice Cereal Treats

  • Servings: 16
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

2020-07-04-11.55.13-1

White cake mix is the secret ingredient for this crispy rice treat cereal recipe. The cake mix gives these treats that birthday cake flavor!

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 10 oz package of marshmallows
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup white cake mix
  • 6 cups crispy rice cereal
  • 1/2 cup sprinkles
  • 3/4 cup white chocolate chips
  • Food coloring, additional white chocolate chips, and sprinkles for decorating (optional).

Directions

  1. In large pot, melt butter over low heat. Add in marshmallows and stir until melted.
  2. Add in the salt, vanilla, and cake mix and stir to combine. Once combined, remove from the heat.
  3. Add cereal and sprinkles. Stir until combined.
  4. Press the mixture into an 8 x 8 inch pan coated with nonstick spray. Let cool completely
  5. Melt the white chocolate in the microwave (using short 30 second bursts until melted).
  6. Pour the chocolate over the top of the treats and spread it in an even layer.
  7. Melt additional white chocolate and tint it with coloring. Drizzle over the top and add more sprinkles.
  8. Place treats in the freezer until the chocolate has hardened, about 5 minutes.
  9. Cut the treats into 2″ x 2″ pieces and serve.

Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler: King Cake Inspired Cupcakes

primary

Mardi Gras day, also known as Fat Tuesday, is less than a week away and in the spirit of the Carnival season I couldn’t help but think about my love of King Cake. I can’t even remember the first time I had my first slice of King Cake, but what I do know is that it’s a taste that brings back so many memories of family and fun.

The King Cake is part of the heritage and food of the city of New Orleans. The tradition of the King Cake is believed to have originated in the late 1800’s when it was brought to New Orleans from France. It gets its name from the biblical three kings who brought gifts to baby Jesus. The cake is covered with purple, green, and gold-colored sugars that represent justice, faith, and power.

If you’ve never been to New Orleans, you need to change that. I believe every person should experience this colorful city. I love the sights, smells, foods, and the people of this city because it’s a place like no other. Both of my parents were born and raised in New Orleans and that probably explains why I have such an appreciation for the heritage, culture and community there. mix

I won’t be going to New Orleans for Mardi Gras anytime soon, but I really wanted to bring a little bit of the spirit of the city and celebration to my home. The best and easiest way to do this was though food or… well… through baking. In order to celebrate the spirit of Mardi Gras I decided to take some time out to develop a King Cake themed cupcake. DSC_0492cakesbasic

My King Cake cupcakes have a similar flavor profile to a cream cheese filled King Cake. Although the yeasty challah dough of the King Cake is not present in this cupcake, it is still infused with all the other flavors. The cupcake starts with a vanilla brown sugar cupcake base that I adapted from NatashasKitchen.com. There’s a cinnamon, brown sugar cream cheese filling and it is topped with cream cheese frosting, a sugar glaze and has the colored sugar for the infamous design! frosted

Many of the ingredients for this recipe are on sale at Target right now and I saved even extra money on many of their Market Pantry Items using the Target Cartwheel app. I ended up having to purchase my colored sugar from Walmart (but you can make your own).filling_final

If you’re celebrating the holiday over the weekend or just want to bake something new be sure to try out my recipe!

Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler… Let the good times roll!DSC_0587


  • Difficulty: intermediate
  • Print

Recommended Specialty Cookware: Decorating/Piping Bag, Muffin Pan

Ingredients:

Cupcake Batter:

  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Cinnamon Brown Sugar Flavor:

  • 2 tsp maple syrup (optional)
  • 3 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp flour

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Filling:

  • 4 oz Cream Cheese, softened
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar

Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tbsp buttermilk

Sugar Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1 tbsp buttermilk

Colored Sugar:

  • Colored sugar in purple, green, and gold

Directions:

Cupcakes:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°
  2. In a mixing bowl cream together eggs, brown sugar, sugar, and oil.
  3. in a separate bowl combine baking powder, baking soda, salt, and flour.
  4. Alternatively add flour mixture and buttermilk to wet ingredients and mix until combined (do not over mix)
  5. Fold in buttermilk.
  6. Pour batter mixture into a lined 12 compartment muffin tin filling to about 2/3 full.
  7. Set muffin tin aside.
  8. To make the brown sugar flavor combine maple syrup, brown sugar, cinnamon and flour. Sprinkle evenly on top of the cupcake batter.
  9. Bake cupcakes for 15 – 17 minutes, transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.

Cream Cheese Filling:

  1. Mix cream cheese, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, milk, and powdered sugar until smooth.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

  1. In a mixing bowl combine cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and buttermilk until smooth.
  2. Gradually add in powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time and mix until smooth and fluffy.

Sugar Glaze (do not make until after cupcakes have been filled and frosted):

  1. Combine powdered sugar, salt, and buttermilk. Stir until smooth (it should be a thick liquid).

To Assemble Cupcakes:

  1. Using the round tip of a wooden spoon, knife, or your finger create a crater in the center of each cupcake.
  2. Using a piping bag fill each cupcake with the cream cheese filling being sure not to over fill.
  3. Using a piping bag or knife frost each cupcake in the method of your choice.
  4. Mix together the sugar glaze and spoon mixture over the top of each allowing it to drip over the sides.
  5. Quickly sprinkle a combination of colored sugars over each cupcake.

Keep refrigerated until serving.