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Archive for the ‘Pastry/Baking’ Category

Chocolate Stout Cupcakes with Chocolate Glaze

If you love Guinness and you love chocolate, you will love these cupcakes. They are a cinch to make and turned out fantastic! The perfect ending to another fun and festive St. Patrick’s Day. And the the great thing about them, they aren’t green! So, make them any time you just want to enjoy a great Chocolate Cupcake!

Oh, and special thanks to food.com and foodnetwork.com for supplying the recipes. I modified the glaze a bit, because I didn’t have corn syrup, but it’s still beautiful and very tasty. On the cupcakes, I simply halved the recipe and sped it up. I have limited time and 12 cupcakes is plenty for our family. Worked great! I had an even amount for all 12 cupcakes and it left me some Guinness to enjoy as I cooked! Added bonus.

Chocolate Stout Cupcakes:

1 cup of flour – $.35
1/3 cup of cocoa powder – $.50
1/2 cup of white sugar – $.30
1/2 cup of brown sugar – $.45
1/2 cup Guinness Beer (or other Stout) – $1.00
1 egg – $.33
1 cup of butter 1/2 cup butter (revised and proven to be just as moist) – $.75
1/4 cup sour cream – $.45
1/2 tsp baking soda – pantry
Whipped Cream (optional)

COST: $4.13

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and fill your cupcake tin with paper cups. Set aside.

In microwave, melt butter and brown suger. Remove when butter is melted and whisk till smooth and sugar is dissolved. Add Guinness and cocoa powder and whisk again, till combined and creamy.

In another bowl, sift together salt, flour, white sugar and baking soda. Add flour mixture to Guinness mixture and beat with a whisk, by hand, till smooth and combined. Add egg and sour cream and beat again until solid in color.

Divide batter evenly amongst cupcake cups. Bake for 20-25 minutes or till cupcakes spring back to the touch. Cool for 45 minutes before removing paper cups and glazing.

Chocolate Glaze:

1/4 cup unsalted butter – $.25
1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate, chopped (I used chips, from bulk bin) – $.75
1 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted (Important! I skipped the sifting. Not a good idea) – $.75
1/8 cup whole milk – fridge
1/2 tsp vanilla extract – pantry

Combine butter, milk and vanilla in medium saucepan and heat over medium heat (preferably on gas stove), just until butter is melted. Decrease heat to low and add chocolate. Whisk until melted, then immediately turn off heat and add powdered sugar. Whisk until smooth. Let cool 5 minutes.

Stir again and pour over cooled cupcake. Delicious!

COST: $1.75

GRAND TOTAL: $5.88


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Turkey Pot Pie

Grocery prices have gone through the roof! All kinds of excuses, from bad weather, no water to high gas prices. Whatever the reason, it’s getting harder and harder to keep meals affordable.

One good way is to use meats that maybe you might not think of. Turkey legs are regularly on sale and unlike a chicken leg, they are huge! So, next time buy a few and make some pot pie. Feel free to change the veggies. Peas would be nice, but my kids can’t stand them. And frankly, I’m not too fond either. But still, that would be more traditional. Either way, with a few simple and affordable ingredients, this pot pie rivals anything Marie Callendars has to offer, even if you do use packaged gravy! :)

Prepared Homemade Crust/Dough:

1 cup flour – $.75
1/4 tsp salt – pantry
3 Tbsps very cold butter – $.60
3 Tbsps very cold lard – $.45
2 to 3 tablespoons ice cold water

COST: $1.80

Combine flour and salt in large bowl; cut very cold butter and lard (even if you have to freeze it) into small dices and mix with flour mixture. Use your hands and fingers and squeeze and mix till flour and butter/lard are well incorporated. Mixture will have some small pebbles, which is perfect!

Next, stir in cold water with fork or fingers (I prefer fingers) just until flour is moistened. Form a ball with the lightly mixed dough and wrap in plastic wrap and place in fridge.

Turkey Pot Pie:

1 large Turkey Leg (mine was HUGE) or two small size – $2.03
4 medium to large potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes – $.80
5 fresh carrots, washed and sliced 1/2 inch thick – $.55
1/2 an onion, diced – $.35
1/4 cup cream – $.40
2 packages Turkey Gravy (powdered) *optional – $.78
1 Tbsp butter – $.25
1 Tbsp flour – pantry
1 Tbsp Chicken Bouillon powder – pantry
1 tsp garlic powder – pantry
1/2 tsp pepper (to taste) – pantry
1 3/4 cups water/broth (saved from legs and veggies)

COST: $5.16

Place large leg in deep pot, fill with water till leg is covered and bring to boil. Add 1/4 tsp pepper and powdered bouillon. Mix, cover and reduce to simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or till turkey leg is cooked and meat will pull off boned easily. Remove leg and let cool. Save broth.

In broth, add carrots and potatoes, cover and rapidly simmer till veggies are soft, not mushy. About 20 mins. When veggies are 1/2 way done, begin your sauce and remove meat from turkey leg and shred.

In large saucepan, over low heat, melt butter. Next, stir in onion, salt and pepper. Cook until onion has softened. Now add turkey and flour and turn heat to medium. Cook for 1 minute, mixing constantly. Last, add packages of gravy powder and mix quickly, followed by water or broth from legs and veggies (preferable).

*If you don’t use packaged gravy, it’s fine. Just triple butter and flour (roux) and season well, making sure to use quality broth or bouillon for gravy base.

Bring to boil and stir constantly till thickened. Once thick, turn off heat and add cream. Mix well, then add cooked veggies and mix carefully, as not to break up veggies.

In a deep baking dish, either a round glass pan or pyrex, pour pie filling.

Prepare pastry topping. Roll dough into a 15 inch round and carefully cover pie ingredients. Cut slits on top for vent holes, turn edges and crimp, give an egg or butter bath if you like and bake in 425 degree oven until golden brown, about 35 min. You may need to cover your edges with tin foil to prevent burning.

Serve with nice crispy french bread $1.29, buttered with some garlic or parmesan. Yummo!

GRAND TOTAL: $8.25


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