Friday, November 22, 2013

Doctor Who Baking Delights

Who doesn't love Doctor Who? New or Old, there is something for everyone.
Even us bakers.
In honour of 50 years of Doctor Who and the anniversary special airing this weekend, Lakeland is offering these amazingly geeky bakewares for us Whovians

Dalek Cupcake Wraps and Toppers

Disguise your cupcakes as delicious Daleks! The stars of our front cover, a batch of simple cupcakes can be easily transformed into a host of the Doctor's arch enemies.
Comprises 24 cake wraps and 24 toppers – 6 of each colour.
Doctor Who Dusting Set

Finish off your cakes or top cappuccino and hot chocolate with these dusting shields.

Dalek Cake Mould

Once a year, hostilities between The Doctor and the Daleks are halted and they sit down together to exterminate a cake. Our silicone mould enables you to make an intricately shaped Dalek cake all ready for decorating. Perfect too for a giant Dalek jelly!

Doctor Who Cake Pan

With indentations for creating six of the favourite characters from the show, our pan makes it easy. And because it’s made from silicone, you won’t need a sonic screwdriver to get them out.

Doctor Who Cookie Cutters
Bring some of the best-loved icons from the show to life with our polypropylene cutters that will stamp a design on each cookie, ready for icing.

And if Baking isn't your style and you want something a little more substantial for all your Doctor Who edible needs, check out this Whovian cookbook; Dining With The Doctor

Hello, sweetie.
Your taste buds are about to take a wibbly wobbly, timey wimey adventure through the Doctor Who reboot. Megafan and food writer Chris-Rachael Oseland spent a year rewatching all of series one through six and experimenting in her kitchen to bring you a fresh recipe for every single episode.
This book is a treat for any Whovian who wants to offer more than a plate of fish fingers and a bowl of custard at your next viewing party. Want to host an elegant dinner party to show off your new Tardis corset? Start the evening with a Two Streams Garden Cocktail followed by Baked Hath, Marble Cucumber Circuits with Vesuvian Fire Dipping Sauce, Professor Yana’s Gluten Neutrino Map Binder, Slitheen Eggs, and some of Kazran’s Night Sky Fog Cups for dessert.
If you’re just getting a few friends together to watch the latest episode, why not offer them an Ood Mezze Plate to munch on as stragglers wander in followed by some quick and easy Fish Custard Tacos, Open Faced Dalek Ironsides, Sontaran Soldiers, and a Cinnamon Pull Apart Crack in the Wall. They can wash it all down with a cup of the Pond’s Wedding Punch.
Lets be honest. No Whovian gathering is complete without them, so you also get an entire bonus chapter dedicated to interesting alternative takes on fish fingers and custard.
This comprehensive cookbook includes eighteen adult beverages, more than two dozen recipes for vegetarians, twenty that are safe for people with wheat allergies, and ten for the low carb dieters. You’ll be prepared for every possible guest.
The ebook also includes over 50 full color photos, a linked table of contents for easy navigation, and a useful appendix.
Put on your fez and straighten your bow tie. You own a cookbook now. Cookbooks are cool.

I really want to throw a Doctor Who theme party and make all of this stuff! Sadly I will not be hosting one this weekend due to the fact that I'm still a season behind! I know! I can hardly believe it!
For those of you who are new to the Who, I'm excited to say that you can now find it on Canadian Netflix! Woohoo!
Anyway, for you who are watching this weekend, enjoy!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Halloween - Bake Star Wars For Me Style

Wow, there has just been so much going on these last few months, I've barley had time to breath, let alone bake or blog. When did life get so busy?

This last week was no exception, especially with Halloween.
Now, I know I usually blog on Talk Star Wars To Me about Halloween, but this year, I figured that here was more appropriate, considering that there was a lot of food involved and not as much costuming. 

Let's start with pumpkins. My awesome friend Jocey, invited me over for some good old fashioned pumpkin carving! Now I hadn't carved pumpkins since I was a kid, so I was super excited and kind of leery  about my pumpkin carving skill level.

But as you can see, I don't think I needed to worry, Jocey had a plan.

 And an awesome array of pumpkins, squashes and gourds

This little guy's name is Gord.

Jocey's fantastic Jack Skellington

Lou and Hillbilly Billy

My Ernie turned out pretty good if I do say so myself

 Here they are all lit up

Check out how creepy this guy turned out!

So, the day before Halloween, I made cupcakes for the night itself. We had a Call of Cthulhu RPG night planned and I wanted to make cupcakes that would go with it.
But what flavour do you make something so dark and mysterious?
I went with the only thing I could think of; Guinness. I mean, it does absorb the light around it...

Guinness Cupcakes

1 (12-ounce) bottle Guinness Stout
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs
3/4 cup sour cream
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa 
2 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

 Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a large mixing bowl, combine the Guinness, milk, vegetable oil, and vanilla. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Mix in the sour cream.

 In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the cocoa, sugar, flour, and baking soda. Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the wet Guinness mixture.

I love my mixer soooo much!

 Butter 24 muffin tins and divide the batter among the muffin tins

I used these awesome cupcake liners that I've had kicking around for a few years now and never had a good reason to use. I think they were perfect for this.

 Bake 25 minutes, until risen and set in the middle but still soft and tender. Cool before turning out of the tins.

I didn't really like the icing recipe that went with these, so I decided to make this instead.

Cream Cheese Icing
by Allrecipies

2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese,
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy. Mix in the vanilla, then gradually stir in the confectioners' sugar.

I then tinted it red with more red food colouring than I'd like to admit.
I couldn't find my awesome piping tip so I had to ice them by hand, which leaves a lot to be desired. I then added slivered almond teeth and chocolate covered almond eyes and there you have it


Perfect for a night of Horror!

This was my costume for work. Yup, I was a business-casual Darth Vader.
I really just wanted to wear my Darth Vader dress. Can you blame me? It's pretty awesome.

We also attended a Halloween party with some friends on the weekend and were asked to bring snacks.
Instead of making something sweet, like I usually do, we decided to try something else instead.

Deep Fried Ravioli

1 package store bought ravioli (about 24)
1 cup buttermilk
2 cups Italian style bread crumbs
1 tsp dried Oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano
vegetable oil and olive oil for frying
fresh basil for garnish

Preheat the oil: Fill deep frying pan with two inches of oil- 3/4 vegetable oil, 1/4 olive oil. Preheat until a thermometer reads 325°. Or you can guesstimate like we did, but I don't recommend it.
While the oil heats and sauce cooks, prep the ravioli. Place the buttermilk in a shallow bowl. Place the bread crumbs, oregano, salt, and pepper in another bowl. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper for the ravioli. Dip first in the buttermilk, shaking when lifting out of the bowl, then dredge in the bread crumbs. Place on the baking sheet while you coat the remaining ravioli.

When the oil is hot, fry the ravioli in batches, turning until golden brown- about 3 minutes.

Using a slotted spoon, transfer the ravioli to paper towels to drain.

Sprinkle with extra cheese and shredded basil.

How amazing do these look?

Cheesy Marinara Sauce:

1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
1/2 onion, minced
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp red pepper flake
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup grated pecorino romano cheese

 In a medium sized saucepan, sautée the onion in olive oil over medium low heat for 8-10 minutes, until very soft. Stir in garlic and cook for about 1 minute, until fragrant. Add in the tomatoes, salt, and red pepper flake and cook over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.
Remove from the heat. Using an immersion blender, blend the sauce directly in the pot until mostly smooth. Fold in the  grated cheese.

You're going to want to try this recipe. It's fantastic! It was hard not to eat them all myself.
They didn't last very long at the party. Once people started trying them, they disappeared!

As for costumes, Adam and I went as Hipster Mario and Luigi

Yeah, we went there.

I love his moustache!

So hipster....

So how was your Halloween? Do/make anything special? Let me know.