Friday, December 21, 2012

Egg Nog Martinis

Today I did a guest post on  Exciting!  What a great site!  The full recipe can be found in the link below.

Martinis can be enjoyed any time of year. However, to get into the Christmas spirit, how about making an Egg Nog Martini? This martini is all decked out with red and green sugar crystals on the martini glasses. Why do we call it “eggnog”? The “nog” part of its name has evolved from the word noggin, a Middle English term for a little, carved wooden cup used to serve alcohol. Well, that’s enough of history, let’s get to the recipe!

Here is the recipe on Homemade Egg Nog Martinis


Items needed:

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Delicious Zucchini Brownies

Recipe adapted from The Yummy Life, Makes 12 brownies

Brownie Ingredients:
    * 1 cup chopped raw zucchini
    * 1/8 cup coconut oil
    * 1/4 cup low fat yogurt (regular or Greek)
    * 1/2 cup & 1/8 cup sugar  (or substitute SugarLeaf,
       check package for amount)
    * 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
    * 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
    * 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (dark
       cocoa recommended)
    * 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
    * 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

 Frosting Ingredients:
    * 1/2 cup semisweet or bittersweet
       chocolate chips
    * 1/8 cup nonfat milk
    * 1 tablespoons coconut oil
    * 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
    * 1/2 cup powdered sugar

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease or spray an 8 by 8 pan.
2.  In blender or food processor, puree zucchini, oil, yogurt, sugar, and vanilla. Set aside.
3.  In large bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt. Add pureed wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until moist throughout.
4. Pour into greased pan, spread evenly, and bake for 16 minutes until toothpick comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs.  Remove from oven and place on cooling rack. Cool for 20-25 minutes and frost while still warm.

1.  Combine chocolate chips,milk, oil and vanilla in microwave-proof bowl.  Microwave on full power for 30-40 seconds.
2.  Remove and whisk until chocolate chips melt in and mixture is smooth (return to microwave for a few seconds if necessary).
3.  Add powdered sugar and continue whisking until smooth. Spread evenly over brownies while they are still slightly warm.

Delicioso!  I love the taste of the coconut in them also.  I told everyone at our dinner party, that there was a secret ingredient.  No one could guess that the secret ingredient was Zucchini!

Nutritional Information for 1 serving with regular sugar
Unfrosted: 103 calories, 2.8g fat, 19.7g carbs, 2g fiber, 2g protein; Weight Watchers PtsPlus: 3
Frosted: 181 calories, 6.9g fat, 30.9g carbs, 3g fiber, 2.2g protein; Weight Watchers PtsPlus: 5

Kitchen Items Needed:


Monday, December 10, 2012

The Cutest Cupcake Toppers!

Today I would like to blog about the cutest cupcake toppers that I found on Etsy.  This blog is also related to my new business venture of candy and dessert tables.  I am planning to get a lot of business soon so I am doing research on table designs and preparing in advance.

Here are the hot air balloon toppers I found:

and here is the link:

Other items that are needed to purchase for this look:


These etsy designers are all so talented.  Thank you Etsy for helping so many people sell crafts they love to make.

Here is another really cool seller that does banners:

Happy Party Planning!

Please comment.  Tell me how much money do you typically spend on a birthday or special event?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

OMG Awesome Pumpkin Pie Milkshake

Just in time for Thanksgiving tomorrow!  Oh my gosh!.  This is the best milkshake I have ever tried, and yes it does taste just like pumpkin pie!

Makes one milkshake 
  • 1 cup vanilla ice cream
  • 1/4 cup milk (fat free or regular)
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup pureed pumpkin
  • 3/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/3 cup graham cracker crumbs( I did not use this, and it tasted awesome anyways)
  • 2-3 ounces of bourbon (optional)
  • frosting + fall colored sprinkles for glasses
1. Add all ingredients to a blender and mix until combined. 
Beautiful martini glasses-Buy Now!
Artland Currents 4-Pc. Martini Glass Set (Google Affiliate Ad)
2. Rim glasses with a light coating of frosting then dip in sprinkles. Put sprinkles on a plate for easier  dipping.                                            
3. Pour in martini glass and sprinkle cinnamon on top. Are you ready to be in heaven?????  Serve!

Extremely Moist Low Sugar Low Fat Chocolate Cupcakes with Decadent Chocolate Frosting

Cupcake Ingredients: makes 17 cupcakes
  • 18.25 oz Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate Fudge cake mix (or any chocolate cake mix)
  • 1.4 oz sugar free, fat free, instant chocolate pudding
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 1/3 cups water

Directions for Cupcakes:

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line a cupcake tin with cupcake liners.
2. Combine pumpkin puree and water in a large bowl; mix to combine. Add chocolate pudding mix and mix well.
3. Add chocolate cake mix and beat 2 minutes.
4. Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full with ice cream scoop and bake about 25 - 28 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Rotate pan halfway through for even baking.  Cool in pan on wire rack for 15 minutes.

Chocolate Buttercream Ingredients: Ices 24 cupcakes
  • 1/4# butter
  • 1/4# margarine (or to save money, just use margarine)
  • 6.75 oz vegetable shortening
  • 2# powdered sugar
  • 1.5tsp vanilla extract
  • 2.25 oz water
  • 1/2 cup sifted cocoa powder
  • 2 oz semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1.5oz milk
Chocolate Buttercream Directions:

1.  With paddle attachment on kitchenaid mixer, Cream butter/margarine and shortening until smooth, hardly any lumps
2. Add confectioner's sugar, in two parts, mixing in between.
3.  Add water/vanilla mixture and mix again.  Scrape sides and mix until smooth.
4.  Chocolate Ganache: Heat milk in glass measuring cup covered with saran wrap for about 30 seconds to a minute or until bowling.  Add to chocolate chips and whisk until blended.
5.  Pour into vanilla buttercream and blend.  Add sifted cocoa powder and blend.  Scrape sides and blend again.  Ice cupcakes and Enjoy!

WARNING: Well to start off, I want to say that the cupcakes by themselves are only 94 calories and lowfat.  Once the chocolate buttercream is added, it is not as healthy of a treat.

Super Moist Low Fat Chocolate Cupcakes (without Rich Chocolate Buttercream)
Serving Size: 1 cupcake, Calories: 93.8 • Fat: 2.3 g • Protein: 1.1 g • Carb: 17.5 g • Fiber: 1.4 g • Sugar: 9.9
Sodium: 281.8

Some Products Used:
Wilton 738046 4 Cavity Cupcake Box in Pink-Blue-Yellow - 3-Package (Google Affiliate Ad)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Low Sugar Sweet Potato Cupcakes with Bruleed Marshmallow Frosting

For the cupcakes: makes 15
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
16 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup & 1TB Sugarleaf sugar substitue
3 large eggs
17 oz. sweet potato puree ( either boiled or baked in the oven)
½ tsp. vanilla extract
3TB flax meal

For the frosting:  Ices 16 cupcakes
4 large egg whites
1 cups sugar
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. vanilla extract

1. Preheat the oven to 325° F.  Line cupcake pans with paper liners.
2. In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon; stir together with a fork and set aside.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Note: Sugarleaf does not cream as well as regular sugar.
4. Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl after each addition.  Mix in the sweet potatoes and vanilla extract, beating just until combined.  Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients, mixing just until incorporated.
5. Scoop the batter with ice cream scoop into the prepared cupcake liners.  Bake for about 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Let cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before icing.

1. Combine the egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar in the top of a double boiler. (Note: I just set my clean, dry mixer bowl over simmering water, to avoid dirtying two bowls.)
2. Heat the mixture, whisking frequently, until it reaches 160° F with an instant-read thermometer.
3. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk starting at low speed and gradually increasing to medium-high speed until stiff, glossy peaks form. Mix in the vanilla until combined. Frost cooled cupcakes as desired.
4.  Use a small kitchen torch (if you have one) or can put in oven on top rack on Broil setting.  Be careful to watch carefully so that the marshmallow frosting just slightly browns to leave a crispy shell.  Yum!

Nutritional Info:
Regular cupcake no frosting: 222 calories, 13.6g fat, 23 g carbs, 1.32 g fiber, 4.72 g sugar

Cupcake with frosting:  274 calories, 14.5 g fat, 4 g protein, 35.5 g carbs, 17.22 g sugar

Equipment Used:

Monday, August 27, 2012

Banana Low Sugar Flax Muffins


1 1/2 large bananas
2.5 TB sugarleaf (low sugar substitute)
1/2 cup ground flax seeds
1/2 egg
1 -1 1/2 tablespoon milk
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup AP flour


 1 Preheat oven to 350°F.
 2 Grind flax seeds or use flax meal
3 Mash bananas.
4 Mix bananas, flax and egg.
5 Mix dry ingredients together and add.
6 If needed add milk, one tablespoon at a time.
7. Fill muffin cups
9 Bake for 16 minutes.
10. Serve it warm or can put in microwave for 5-10 seconds.  Add a dab or two of butter and enjoy!

Calories 171 Calories from Fat 42 , Total Fat 4.6 g, Saturated Fat 0.5 g, Cholesterol 15.8 mg 5% Sodium 242.7 mg, Total Carbohydrate 24.1 g, Dietary Fiber 3.8 g, Sugars 5.8 g,  Protein 4.3 g

Cucumber Snackers

This is a really easy recipe and I do not really have to post the directions or ingredients because it is so simple!  It is really healthy and low carb.  You take one cucumber, peel the outside skin.  Then core the seeds with a melon baller.  Spread some Neufchatel cheese (lower fat and calories than regular cream cheese) in the middle and then roll up some turkey slices and put in the middle.  Tada!  Easy snack for you, your kids, or finger food for a party!  You can also use other sandwich meats if you prefer.

Equipment needed:

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Turkey and Parmesan Meatballs

Makes 7 meatballs

1/3 # ground lean turkey
3 TB parmesan
3TB Panko Bread crumbs
dash of salt
1/4 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and lightly oil aluminum foil in pan.Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl.
2.  Roll into meatballs and place in pan with aluminum foil.
3.  Bake for 13 minutes.  Can also add some broccoli or vegetable as a side dish.
4.  I added toothpicks to make this a bite size appetizer.

Nutritional Info(all 7 meatballs):  351 calories, 14.2 grams fat, 35.3 grams protein, 2 grams fiber, 16 grams carbs

Monday, July 16, 2012

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

Adapted from a recipe from JoCooks:

  • 2 large Portobello mushrooms
  • 1/4 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup spinach chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tomato chopped
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/8 cup goat cheese
  • 1/2 TB olive oil
  • salt to taste
  • 1TB hot sauce (Frank's or buffalo)
  • 1/4 cup mozzarella, shredded

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
2.  Remove mushroom stems and chop them up for stuffing
3. Bake mushroom caps for 10 to 15 min then soak up excess water with paper towel.
4. Heat olive oil in pan on medium heat and add onion, garlic.  Cook until onion is translucent.
5.  Add pepper and spinach.  Cook for a couple minutes.  Then add, tomato, goat cheese, salt, stems, hot sauce, and bread crumbs.  Cook for a few more minutes.
6.  Stuff the mushroom caps and top with mozzarella.
7.  bake 10 minutes or until cheese melts.

This dish is actually pretty filling.  In many recipes, mushrooms can be substituted instead of meat because of its texture.

Nutritional info:  206 calories, 11g fat, 11g protein, 28% Vit A, 17.4 g Carb, 3.47g Fiber, 3.59g Sugar, 12.9% Calcium, 20% Vit C, 3.5% Iron

Friday, July 6, 2012

Turkey, Carrot, & Mushroom Meatloaf

-2 large eggs
-2 TB dijon mustard
-1TB fresh thyme
-salt and pepper
-2 slices whole wheat bread, in small pieces
-8 oz mushrooms, thinly slices
-4 scallions, thinly slices
-1 medium carrot, grated
-1.5 LB ground turkey

1.  Heat oven to 375 degrees F.  Line baking sheet with foil
2. In large bowl, whisk eggs, mustard, thyme, 3/4tsp salt.  Stir in the bread.  Stir in the mushrooms, carrot, and scallions.
3.  Add turkey and mix together.  Put mixture on baking sheet and form into approximately 9" by 3.5"loaf.  Bake until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees F for about 40 to 45 minutes.

Nutritional Info:

Serves 6
Calories: 258, Fat: 13G, Sat Fat 3G, Sodium 518Mg, Protein 27G, Carbs 8G, Sugar 2G, Fiber 2G

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Baked Pumpkin Cheesy Shells

Adapted from a recipe from PBS

Servings: 8 (You can do 1/4 of the recipe to accommodate a smaller portion)


  • 16 oz small shell pasta
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 4 cups skim milk
  • 16 oz grated cheese blend( You can also use shredded cheddar)
  • ¾ cup pumpkin puree (1/2 15-oz can)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ cup panko breadcrumbs


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Cook pasta in boiling salted water. Drain and set aside.
  3. In a heavy saucepot over medium high heat, melt the butter and add the flour. Whisk together and cook for thirty seconds. Add 2 cups milk and whisk until smooth. Add another cup of the milk.  Cook for four minutes while whisking. The mixture will thicken.
  4. Add 12 ounces of the grated mixed cheese (reserving about a handful of grated cheese) and stir well so that the cheese melts. Add the salt followed by the additional cup of milk and the pumpkin puree.
  5. Once everything is smooth, add the cooked macaroni and toss well. Pour into a 9" by″13"″ casserole pan and top with the remaining grated cheese and the breadcrumbs.
  6. Bake for 25 minutes until golden brown and bubbling.
Nutritional Info: 
one serving:    439 calories    8.7g fat    26.4 g protein           56.4g carbs   4.63g dietary fiber    7.59g sugar

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Low Sugar Roasted Peach Cupcakes Topped with Streusel

Cupcake Ingredients:

Makes 6 cupcakes

  • 1 can peaches
  • 2oz unsalted butter
  • 2TB, 1.5tsp SugarLeaf sugar substitute
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup AP flour
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
Streusel ingredients:  tops about 10 cupcakes

  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 2TB brown sugar
  • 2TB canola oil


1.  First preheat oven to 475 degrees.  Chop peaches (can use fresh ones if you prefer!) into about 1/2" pieces.
2.  Put peaches on sheet pan lined with parchment or aluminum foil and bake for 25 min
3.  Lower oven to 255 degrees
4.  Cream butter and sugarleaf until light and fluffy.  Add egg and vanilla and use whisk to cream together.
5.  Add 1/3  dry ingredients, mix, then add half buttermilk.  Add rest of dry ingredients and milk and mix until just combined.  Make streusel by combining all ingredient with a fork.

6.  Fold in roasted peaches.  Put in muffin liners, top with streusel and bake for 11.5 minutes.  Turn pan around and bake another 11.5 minutes.

Enjoy!  I ate two when they were still warm!

                 calories    fat      protein          carb       fiber    sugars      Vit C

cupcake    177.13    8.46g    3.58g            20.99g    1.07g    7.83g        45%
W/streusel    239    11.53g    4.67g            28.52g    1,49g    9.6g        45%

Monday, February 6, 2012

Vegan Low Sugar Chocolate Pumpkin Mini Donuts with Rich Vegan Ghirardelli Ganache Sauce

Adapted from

Chocolate pumpkin loaf/ or cake mini donuts  (makes one loaf or 16 mini donuts)

1/4 cup applesauce
2 tablespoons coconut oil (or canola oil)
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup + 2 tablespoons boiling water, divided (see note)
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/3 cup sugarleaf sugar substitute
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Vegan Chocolate Ganache
¼ cup light coconut milk
¼ Ghirardelli semisweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 300 F.  Also, boil some water in a tea kettle
Put applesauce, coconut oil and cocoa powder in a mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, sift together
 flour, spices, baking soda and salt.

2. Measure out 1/3 cup boiling water and pour into the bowl with the chocolate mixture, mixing quickly to make a smooth chocolate sauce. Add pumpkin, sugar and vanilla and mix well.

3. Dump about half of the flour mixture into the chocolate mixture and gently stir just to incorporate, then measure out 1 tablespoon of boiling water and stir again. Now add the rest of the flour mixture and another tablespoon of boiling water and stir just until smooth. Take care not to overmix. Fold in the chocolate chips.

4.  Spoon the batter into the prepared greased loaf pan or pipe with piping bag into ungreased nonstick mini donut pan.

5. Bake loaf for 55 minutes to an hour. Stick a steak knife into the center of the loaf to check for doneness. A little bit of wetness is okay since it could be from a chocolate chip, but the knife should come out mostly dry.

Bake mini donuts for 10 minutes.

6.  To make chocolate ganache, put coconut milk in a bowl and cover with saran wrap and microwave for 1 min or until close to boiling.  Take out and stir in chocolate chips with a whisk.  Put in parchment bag and pipe on donuts.

Enjoy with coffee!

Helpful Equipment:

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Ice Cream Cupcakes


Well This post is more about method and decoration than a recipe.  You can use any cake recipe and test out the ice cream cones in advance of the final product to determine how much batter is needed.  These cupcakes are baked inside the cones.

1.  Test out batter to see how much is needed.  I used a strawberry cake batter and It was a little over halfway full.

2.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Line out cones on table and be careful not to break them when opening package because they are delicate.  I bought the JOY brand cones.  You must buy the Jumbo size!

3.  Use a mini ice cream scooper to fill cones in order to avoid getting it on the outside of the cone.

4.  Bake for about 15 min, depending on oven variations

5.  Here are the cupcakes iced

6.  Here they are in my handmade delivery box, had to deliver them 10 miles.  I had to redo the box twice to make sure I could transport all 18 cupcakes safely.

 Email me with questions!!  See you soon

Monday, January 30, 2012

Vegan Low Sugar Pumpkin Cupcakes and Slightly Sweet Cream Cheese Frosting

Hello all my lovely darling chefs!,

My favorite recipe in a while is Pumpkin cupcakes so I decided to change the original recipe by removing the eggs and adding a sugar substitute to lower the calories and carbs.


I also changed the Cream Cheese frosting to a lower fat, almost sugar-free recipe

Here are the ingredients for the cake:

This makes 5 standard cupcakes,  Prep time: 25 minutes (not including baking/cooling)

2.5 TB Sugar Leaf (sugar substitute I bought at Whole Foods)
1/3 cup organic Canola Oil or Applesauce (for even lower fat version)
1/2 cup and 1TB organic canned pumpkin
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup and 1TB Organic All Purpose Flour


1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees

2.  First combine the sugar and oil and mix for 30 seconds

3.  Add the pumpkin and vanilla extract and mix about a minute until combined

4.  Add dry ingredients, Mix until combined about 30 seconds, Make sure to scrape down sides.  Mix again.

5.  Take an ice cream scoop, medium sized and fill it about 3/4 full and fill muffin cups

6.  Bake at 325 degrees for about 18 minutes, turning once halfway through.  Definitely check cupcakes with toothpick periodically as different ovens will cook at different times.

TADA!  They were so good that I ate one warm right out of the oven, Yummy!

Cream Cheese Frosting

Just want to mention, that I decided I will make a better version of this cream cheese frosting using a different type of sugar.  I was not satisfied with the Sugar Leaf for the frosting.  I think I would like to try Coconut sugar or whey low next time as my substitute.

Ices about 5 cupcakes


8 oz Neufchatel Cheese
4 TB margarine
1/16 cup light coconut milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 TB sugar leaf
1TB brown sugar
Pumpkin spice to taste


1.Cream margarine and cheese together

2. Add sugars and cream again

3. Scrape down sides and remix.  Mix until smooth and creamy ( Check by spatula scraping bottom of bowl as shown below)

4.  Add pumpkin spice to taste and ice cupcakes with spatula.

Nutritional Info:

Pumpkin Cupcake (without frosting) (all oil) 185 calories

Pumpkin Cupcake (without frosting) (half applesauce/half oil)-131 calories
fat    protein    vitamin A    carb      fiber    sugars   calcium   Vit C    Iron
7.88g    1.2g    76.40%        15.3g    1.2g    2.8g    0.60%    17.00%    2.00%

Cream Cheese Frosting: about 79 calories (if frost 12 cupcakes), depends how much you decide to put on.  It can frost anywhere from 8-12 cupcakes; 6.66g Fat, 1.88g protein, 4.66% Vit A, 2.75g carbs ,1.33g sugar

Look forward to baking with you again!