3.30.2010

Ryan's Farm Cookies!

Last week was Photo Cookie week...while I enjoy making photo cookies my true love is custom decorated cookies. I was thrilled when I received this custom cookie order as I was craving a new challenge. My first time icing bandanna print and I was very pleased with the results. Now I just hope little Ryan & his mom Audrey enjoy them. Happy 1st Birthday Ryan!!


3.18.2010

Baby Shower Cookies - New Rocking Horse Design!


We made several cookie designs for new baby Aris's shower.  The "theme" was in the colors - baby yellow, light blue and light green. I ended up adding brown because of the horses and baby carriages. I think it worked well with the other colors.

This order prompted me to come up with a better design for our rocking horse cookie. They are now one of my favorite baby shower cookies!

Congrats Shahreen! I was really happy to hear you and your guests enjoyed the cookies. Thank you!


3.15.2010

Mini Key Lime Pies for St. Paddy's Day!

Since we live in Miami, I thought Mini Key Lime Pies would be a great addition to our small St. Patrick's Day celebration. I have a few tips and terrible photographs (I promise to get better but this is my first time doing any sort of tutorial so please forgive me!).

These little guys did not come out as cute as I had originally envisioned them. This was my first time making mini pies rather than one large one. At least they tasted fantastic so that made me feel much better! Here is the original recipe from Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago Resort in Palm Beach, FL. My tips are a festive green :) I have made many Key Lime Pies and this one is by far my favorite!

Ingredients:
Graham Cracker Crust: (in a hurry? Buy a ready-made crust and make one large pie instead of many smaller ones)
  • 3/4 pound graham crackers (I find that 24 graham crackers is just about right)
  • 4 Tbsp. granulated sugar
  • 2 sticks melted butter (unsalted)
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
Filling:
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 can (14 ounces) condensed milk
  • 2/3 cup fresh Key lime juice (you can find bottled key lime juice online if you don't find these at your local supermarket but never substitute regular Persian limes or juice)
  • 1 lime, grated zest (I use key lime zest but since the recipe does not specify, you could probably use regular Persian lime zest if this is not available or omit it altogether)
Topping:
  • 1 cup heavy or whipping cream , chilled (Due to our normally warm weather, I like to put mine in the freezer for 10 minutes & shake the container before using)
  • 2 Tbsp. confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • I added 3 drops of Americolor Food Coloring to the Whipped Cream Topping to give it a more festive look. 
  • If you don't like the idea of green whipped cream or aren't in the mood to make your own, you can always buy whipped cream at the market and sprinkle some green sugar or sprinkles.

Directions: 
To make graham cracker crust: Preheat the oven to 325°.

Break up the graham crackers, place in a food processor and process to crumbs. Add the melted butter, sugar and salt and pulse until combined. Press the mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch pie pan, forming an even layer on the bottom, sides and edge. Bake the crust for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow the crust to cool 


I made mine the old-fashioned way with a potato masher (not because I wanted to...my food processor died a few weeks ago..ugh).

To make filling: While the crust is resting, in an electric mixer with the wire whisk attachment, whip the egg yolks and lime zest at high speed until fluffy, or 5 to 6 minutes. Gradually add the condensed milk and continue to whip until thick, 3 to 4 minutes longer. Lower the mixer speed and slowly add the lime juice until incorporated.
For those who decide to make their own juice, I suggest placing 15-18 key limes (I used 17 since some of mine were a bit tough) in your microwave for 5-8 seconds and then rolling them back and forth on your work surface with the palm of your hand. This will really help you get the most juice out of each one (your fingers will thank me later! :))

Again, If you are in a rush, you can spare your fingers the trouble and buy some Key Lime Juice...(see ingredients above for link).
It should be fluffy and also lighter yellow than when you started whisking..it doesn't look very appetizing yet, does it?

Pour the mixture into the crust and bake for 15 minutes (5-10 minutes if you are making them in mini tart pans), or until the filling has just set. Cool on a wire rack, and then refrigerate for 20 minutes.

To make topping: Whip the cream, confectioners' sugar and vanilla until nearly stiff. Evenly spread the whipped cream on top of the pie, and place in the freezer for 20 minutes prior to serving. 


If you want to get fancy, you can make a parchment cone (or cut the corner of a Ziploc bag). I used wilton tip 2D for the whipped cream.
 And here they are Ta Da! OK...I warned you they weren't very cute! One thing I would have done differently is to use a simpler tart shape (and also butter it heavily before applying the crust) so that it wouldn't crumble when I try to remove it. I had no choice but to serve these out of the metal tart pans (yikes). Thankfully, my 8 year old really didn't seem to mind. 

I hope you'll enjoy making this recipe for your family and friends. :)

Yours Truly,
Andrea B.


3.13.2010

Our Winner!

Big congrats to Anne Gustke, winner of our $50 Gift Certificate! We look forward to baking for you Anne! 


I'll be giving away some reaaally cute Easter/Spring cookies and other goodies very soon! Some contests will only be announced on my blog/Facebook and/or Twitter so please join, add us to your RSS feed or bookmark this site.

Thanks so much for your support!!

Yours Truly,
Andrea


3.02.2010

Win a $50 Gift Certificate!!

Hi everyone! Contest to win a $50 Gift Certificate ends TODAY! Winner announced tomorrow 3/3! Visit The Funky Monkey Blog to Enter!


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