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The other day I was watching a local morning show. They had a chef from the Four Seasons Restaurant on the show doing a segment about the PieCaken, the dessert answer to the Turducken. It was an amazing thing. If you can't decide if you want to eat a piece of cake or a piece of pie, you can have a PieCaken. He quickly showed how he made it and I thought, "I have to try this!". But, I had a
few roadblocks because, for one thing, the end result was so huge! When the chef made it , he used pecan pie and pumpkin pie in a spice layer and a maple layer of cake. It looked so cool when he sliced it, but it also looked like a lot to eat. I didn't think a pie would fit into my regular 9" round cake pans either.
I researched around the internet a bit to see who else was making this thing. One media commentator said that this dessert had been around for quite a while in the dessert underground. I didn't even know that there was a dessert underground! So I was talking to Alicia about my desire to make one and blog about it and also my dilemmas and she suggested that I turn it into a cupcake version! Genius! (Then I saw today that it had been done before, but I still think my daughter is a genius!) We decided that we would try to make it a little lighter and use angel food cake with a cherry pie filling.
Here is how we made our version of the Piecupcaken:
First I used my mom's Pie Crust Recipe and a 2 inch bisquit cutter to fill my mini muffin tins with crust. Bake them at 400 degrees F. for 15 min.
Meanwhile, mix up an angel food cake mix.
Cool the shells briefly when they come out of the oven and then fill them with cherry pie filling. Put cupcake liners in a regular sized muffin tin and put a ladle full of cake batter in the bottom. Then, set the filled pie shell in the middle of the batter. Top the little pie with more cake batter.
Bake in a 350 degree oven for 25 min. I tried this for 20 min, but the fluff of the cake didn't hold up as well as at 25, even though the cake batter did cook all of the way through at both tries.
When it comes out of the oven it looks like a regular cupcake. We were worried that the angel food batter would be too fluffy to hold up, but it was fine! You can see the pie peeking through a little bit, but there was no sogginess on the bottom or anywhere.
We frosted them with a light and fluffy Marshmallow Cream Frosting. We found the recipe for it on Kraft. Add a few sprinkles and there you have it! A Piecupcaken! A pretty, delicious and original Christmas dessert!
One of the benefits of this pie, cake mash-up is that the crust does allow you to have a fruity center of the cake, without it getting soggy and the fruit sinking to the bottom of the cake.
While we worked on this we came up with some other flavor combinations to try:
So many possibilities! Let me know what combinations you come up with!
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Here it is! The last week before Christmas. That last stretch before the big day. Have you gotten everything ready so that you can spend this last week relaxing and enjoying the time with your family or do you still have things to finish up? Is everything in place for your Christmas Eve traditions? What does your family do on Christmas Eve?
Because we eat a big meal on Christmas Day, we always keep our Christmas Eve dinner simple. It consists of two kinds of soup served with crackers and other soup toppings. Here are the two recipes we serve:
We also like to drink Egg Nog, Hot Cocoa Bombs or Hot Orange Punch with our homemade cookies. We usually play games, we may watch a Christmas movie and we always end with singing to the tree.
Do you do Christmas stockings with your kids? I know families who do not, but they are a big part of our Christmas. We don't have a fireplace, so our children always would lay out their stockings along the back of the couch. When Santa would fill them, he would lay them on each person's bed. In the wee hours of the morning, when the children woke up, they were not allowed to go to the tree without us. But, they could get into their stockings. They would wake each other up and giggle and whisper about what was in them. Sometimes, they would even fall back to sleep for a little while. This gave Mom and Dad a little extra time to sleep, until the kids couldn't stand it anymore and woke us up.
If you haven't tried stockings for your family but would like to, yet you don't want to fight the last minute shopping crowds, there are still 2 days left to get your orders by Christmas from Oriental Trading. They have some cute, inexpensive choices and you will be able to afford to get one for everyone!
If you have a little time to sew,Sew Like My Mom has a really good tutorial to help you make some special stockings for your family. Or, if you are fast at crocheting, here are some darling ones on ravelry.
I know in some places they use pillowcases instead of stockings. Whatever you use, Christmas stockings are a lot of fun. Do you have any special memories associated with using them? Please fill free to share them with us! Keep having a Merry Week!
I am super late posting because I had to go to the post office and mail all of my out of state gifts. You don't even want to know how much that cost! But, I love making and giving gifts and getting them all mailed is a big relief to me. Now I can focus on the things I need to finish up at home.
Do you ever realize that just when you thought you had everyone covered, there is a friend or a neighber that you really want to do something for? Here is a sweet way to remember someone that is tasty, warm, personal and useful that doesn't break the bank, but adds that extra touch that says you gave some thought to your gift. It is a bread cozy for a loaf of your special bread. The great thing about this cozy is that you can use any scraps of fabric that you may have. You can make a few in advance to have ready for when your bread is baked and your friend can use it again to keep bread warm when she takes her own bread to share at a family or church function. (Or wherever)
For the Cozy: You need about 1/3 of a yard of any cotton fabric and the same amount of batting and about 1 yard of ribbon.
Now, are you wondering about that loaf of bread?
Citrus is getting ripe and so prolific right now that this is a great time of year to bake an Orange Poppy seed Loaf. It is super quick and simple to whip up and the orange glaze makes it extra special. Do you have lemons instead of oranges? It works for lemons just as well. Here is the recipe:
When I put the bread in the cozy, I lined the cozy with some waxed paper or parchment paper.
Since I was giving this loaf away, I decided to put the glaze in a little container so it wouldn't be too messy and they can add the glaze on their own. Have you seen these cute little containers at Dollar Tree? I use them for so many things and you can fit just the right amount of glaze in one for this loaf. I used a round self-adhesive label on the top. (I just drew on it myself).
Now, here is how the loaf looks when you put on the glaze and serve it.
There you have it! It took me much longer to wite this post about this little gift than it took me to make it. You can make the cozy for any special loaf you make and you will have an extra special gift for someone! I hope you enjoy it!
Here is another family favorite that my mother used to make for years. When you hear the name, "Fudge Mounds", you may think of a cookie, but what they really are is a delicious cake-like cookie with vanilla frosting that are perfect with cold milk. Growing up, they were my big brother's favorite.
We liked to eat them all year, but I thought it would be fun to dress them up a little for Christmas and put them on plates that we were sharing with friends. When I started to make them I realized that I was all out of shortening! It was because of all of the pie crust I had made during Thanksgiving. So, I substituted butter with equally scrumptuous results, just a little flatter. I even made the butter cream with butter! I think the result was extra rich cookies for the holidays. Then we just added some Christmas sprinkles from my Hot Cocoa Bomb stash. They came out so pretty and we received so many compliments from the people we gave them to.
From a nice chocolate cookie, to a delicious frosted cookie, to a pretty holiday chocolate cookie!
Wondering what we put on those plates that we gave away? Here are the recipes:
Then, we sprinkled on a few peppermint Hershey Kisses, wrapped up the plates and put on a festive gift tag. It was a nice mix of treats. We have have few more people we would like to give treats to, so I am going to be doing more baking and Cocoa Bomb making, and that is another thing I love about the holidays.
What special treats do you like to give away? Leave a comment and let me know.
Right now Panna Cooking has a 50% off offer! You can give a gift to your budding chef friends to be able to cook online with famous chefs for just $9. 99! What a great gift! Click on the delicious looking picture below for the details.
Creators of Hot Cocoa Bombs! (copyrighted)
Helen Reynolds: Mother of six children , grandmother to eleven! I love to cook, craft and create things and I especially love doing that with my family, So, when my lawyer daughter, Lindsey, my artist daughter, Madalynn, and I came up with the idea of Hot Cocoa Bombs, this blog was born. Then, one more daughter, with her technical and science skills, plus creativity has joined in to round us out! Read more about us here!