Visit Our Tiny Cottage Kitchen

Our Tiny Kitchen Saw Some Amazing Food!

We’ve had so much fun at the cottage this summer.  But all good things must come to an end.  We actually launched out Blog and Facebook page while we have been here.  Much of the fun was exploring local produce and the Farmer’s Market helped us do that.  We created more than a few new dishes for you because we were inspired by fresh local ingredients as they became available.

We thought you might like a peek at our tiny cottage kitchen while we talk food!

our cottage kitchenSome of the things we cooked this summer were completely new to us. One of the big triumphs were the Zucchini Flowers that we received.  They were a gift form a new friend and the first time we had ever made them.  The other was the Summer Ratatouille that developed out of a shopping trip that left us with just too many fresh vegetables.

kitchen vingetteWith all the sunshine, we had a bumper crop of Basil.  The Pesto we made offered us an opportunity to make Pasta, Pesto and Peas and to add that special touch to our Tomato Lover’s Lunch.  The local corn was outstanding so we made Mexican Street Corn, (everyday for about 2 weeks). Then we took a break and just had buttered corn.

We did a lot of baking this summer so of course we had to feature our Apple Blossoms and lets not forget about the Black Forest Cupcakes. The guests at the pot luck fell upon them like a herd of locusts!  Luckily we made a few extra so we actually got to enjoy them.

dining area Then there were the parties! You can’t have great party without fabulous food. Cool and Creamy watermelon feta bites went fast and our Wine and Cheese Appetizers had more views than any other recipe to date when it was posed. You guys love your wine and cheese don’t you?

This weekend will be the last Get-to-gether of the season with our cottage friends.  We’ll be making those awesome Maple Bacon Donuts as well as the Apple Blossoms in miniature.  And since we all need to eat our veggies, there’s Carrot Cake for the health nuts!  I’m sure they will all be delicious served with a Rose’ wine, Vin Santo and Apple cider.

Next week we’re heading home and we’re looking forward to that. Its been an awesome Summer but its time to go home. We’ll be out shopping in our favorite places once we’re back in town.  We’ll take you on some shopping and cooking school adventures too.  Don’t forget to check out our new page called “Lets Shop” here on the blog.

We wish you the best that the Fall can bring. Thanks so much for your readership over the Summer!

 

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Black Forest CupCakes

Chocolate and Cherries Topped with Whipped Cream. Sensational!

We love making these cupcakes for special occasions. A cupcake is the perfect dessert for a crowd since they come in their own little containers.  Just pop them on a pretty plate and you are the baking hero of the day.

Elfie is of German heritage so its little wonder that this recipe ended up on the blog. Cherries just happen to be one of her all-time favorite fruits.  And chocolate, what can I say? You never go wrong using chocolate in a dessert.   Just try to keep these treats away from her. I dare you!

We like to use real whipped cream in our recipes. It is not a lot of extra effort to use fresh ingredients and the end result, from our experience is just “Better”.

Black Forest cupcakesWhat you’ll need.

  • 1 package Devil’s Food Chocolate cake mix
  • 1 can of cherry Pie filling
  • 1 pint 8 oz of real whipping cream. (35% cream)
  • 2 tbsp sugar to sweeten the whipped cream
  • 1 package gelatin (this is in the baking section of the grocery store)
  • 2 Tbsp real chocolate chips melted to drizzle over whipping cream.

This recipe is made using a chocolate cake mix. The reason is that the texture of the cupcake is so light.  It’s hard to achieve that when baking from scratch. We’ve tried it but the truth is Duncan Hines has perfected the lightest chocolate cake you can produce and it makes the cupcakes perfect. One package of Devil’s Food cake mix is enough for 12 cupcakes. Bake using the directions provided.

While the cupcakes are baking:

Whip the cream  in a cold bowl using a hand or stand mixer.   Beat it just until the beater leave swirls in the cream. DO NOT OVER WHIP.

whipped creamIn a small bowl, pour 1/4 cup cool water over the gelatin powder and allow it to soften. After a few minutes add the 1/4 cup hot water to the gelatin and stir it well.

Knox gelatinMeasure half of the gelatin (1/4 cup)  to use in the whipped cream. DO NOT USE IT ALL.  With the mixer on the lowest setting gently pour the gelatin into the whipped cream and mix just to incorporate.

blending gelatinPlace it into a piping bag with a large star tip and chill for 1 hour.

piping bagCook’s Tip: Gelatin is simple to use and can help stabilize any liquid when making dessert.  It’s easy enough for a novice to use and adds no taste to what you are making.

Once the cupcakes are cool, use a melon-baller  or small ice cream scoop to remove the center of the cupcake.  Fill just to the top of the cupcake with the Cherry Pie filling.  Now pipe the chilled whipped cream over the cup cakes.

scooping out cupcakeFinally, place the chocolate chips into a sandwich bag and microwave for 30 seconds on half power just to melt the chocolate. ( you may need to do this a couple of times) Take care not to melt the bag. Cut the smallest tip off the sandwich bag and lightly drizzle the chocolate over the whipped cream. You’re all done!

Black Forest cupcakesLook how great these individual Black Forest Cupcakes turn out!  Your friends won’t believe you made them.  And just wait till they get a mouthful of the luscious whipped cream mixed into the tart cherries and enveloped in the lighter-than-air cake. Heaven.

We hope you give this recipe a try.  A beginner can produce these results just by following the directions!