Enchanted Mommy

Cupcake Birthday Cake

Zebra Elmo cupcake cake

Isn't this so cute... and it's SO easy to make!

I just love planning for my girls birthday parties far in advance!  I have SO much fun finding ideas!  Although, let me just tell you that I’m not a theme type of person.  My house and my clothes are all boring neutral.  So, when it comes to planning my kids birthday parties, it’s hard.  Like many soon to be two year olds, Ella had her favorite character.  At that time, it was Elmo.

I can’t say that I find it cute.  I’m not one of those women that like cartoon characters at an older age (in fact, I’m total opposite).  Because of this, I had to find something that incorporated simplicity along with her Elmo.

I knew I had to give a little.  Nevermind the fact that I (and mostly all moms) would do anything for my kids.  She sang all of Elmo’s songs and watched him on the iPad every chance we allowed her.  How could I not give her an Elmo themed party?  So, I did.  I gave her a zebra print party with Elmo accent.  I got the idea when I found the shirt below on etsy.

Elmo birthday shirt

This shirt gave me the idea for Ella's party

Now, you’re probably reading this post so you can learn how to make the cupcake cake.  So here you go!

You will need:

  • cake flavor of your choice
  • two white icings (I wouldn’t use a creamy or whipped)
  • pink cake coloring for icing (you can get this from any craft store in the cake aisle)
  • cupcake cake pan
  • black wilton sparkle gel (I found mine at party city, but I also saw that they sold it in grocery stores)
  • star cake tip
  • large ziplock bag to squeeze icing
pan for cupcake cake

This is the cupcake cake pan that I have

 

star cake tip
This is what the star tip looks like

Directions

  • cook cake according to the box and cupcake cake pan directions (the cupcake pan will tell you cooking instructions)
  • Let cake completely cool
  • Put white icing all over cake bottom and top so that it looks smooth
  • Put the top piece on the bottom piece
  • Mix the pink icing coloring with the icing with a mixer to make it really pink (remember: a little of this goes a long way and you can always add more)
  • Put the pink icing in the ziplock bags and do stars all over the top of the cake
  • Use the black sparkly gel to make lines all over the bottom of the cake (just random zebra lines)
You’re done 🙂  You can also do a little extra by decorating the plate!
Zebra print and Elmo party invite

I even had a friend design her invitations according to her shirt.

***  Side note.  I just love cupcake cakes.  I also used the pan for her 1st birthday party smash cake.  It was really cute and a big hit!  So, I will probably let the tradition continue each year for Ella.

Magical Peanut Butter Cookies, South Beach Style

If I look at sugar, it goes straight to my butt.  The End.

So, I’ve gotten pretty good at modifying recipes so they are South Beach friendly.  This definitely fulfills my sweet tooth, it is such a great alternative to Paula Dean’s regular recipe.  You have to think that it’s all mental and that you have to modify food choices to get/stay slim.

Peanut Butter Cookies

Looks Delicious, huh?! Goes great with a glass of skim milk!

I’ve italicized and bolded my changes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup peanut butter, creamy or crunchy 1 cup all natural peanut butter (only ingredients are peanuts and oil), creamy or crunchy 
  • 1 1/3 cups baking sugar replacement (recommended: Splenda)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Modified ingredients peanut butter cookies

Vanilla extract, two eggs, all natural peanut butter and granulated splenda (I doubled my recipe, that's why there are two eggs in the picture)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a large baking sheet.

In a mixing bowl, combine the peanut butter (make sure you stir the natural peanut butter first), 1 cup sugar replacement, the egg, and vanilla, and stir well with a spoon. Roll the dough into balls the size of walnuts. Place the balls on the prepared baking sheet. With a fork, dipped in sugar replacement to prevent sticking, press a crisscross design on each cookie. Bake for 12 minutes I baked for 11, it is SO important to not overbake cookies (they will become hard), remove from the oven, and sprinkle the cookies with some of the remaining sugar replacement. Cool slightly before removing from pan.

Bammmmm…. that wasn’t too hard to modify and you have a great sweet treat that won’t go to your butt!

Chocolate Chip Snicker Cookies

So last night my husband and I were really having a sweet tooth craving and were trying to decide what we wanted.  I decided to browse my pinterest food board to see if I had anything good saved on there.  I came across these chocolate chip snicker cookies I have been dying to try for a while.  They are chocolate chip cookies with a mini snickers wrapped in the middle!  What’s not to love!  These cookies were relatively easy to make, but did have an unusual step in it I wasn’t expecting.  You actually brown the butter in a pan over the stove instead of just using softened butter.  Interesting!  It gave the cookies a really flavorful toffee taste.  And just a warning… the toffee taste made the cookie dough IRRESISTIBLE.

M

I adapted the recipe slightly because I felt like the cookies were too doughy and I couldn’t mold the cookie around the snickers very well.

CHOCOLATE CHIP SNICKER COOKIES

Adapted from bakersroyale.com |   Makes 24 large cookies

2 ¼  Cups flour
½ Teaspoon baking soda
16 Tablespoons butter
¾ Cup brown sugar
½ Cup granulated sugar
¾ Teaspoon Salt
2 Teaspoons Vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 Cup chocolate chips
I bag of mini or fun size snickers

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees and spray baking sheet or line with parchment paper.
  • Whisk together flour and baking soda in separate bowl
  • Put 10 of the 16 TB of butter in a skillet pan and heat over medium until completely melted.  Then continue to brown the butter until it is a dark golden brown color.  Make sure to stir continually or swirl the pan so the butter doesn’t burn.  This only takes a couple minutes.  Put the butter in a large bowl and stir in the remaining 6 TB of butter until it is completely melted.
  • Add the sugars, salt, and vanilla.  Then come the eggs.  Add the eggs and whisk for 30 seconds. Then let it sit for 3 minutes.  Repeat this 30 second whisk-3 minute rest two more times.  The dough should now be thick and smooth.
  • Add the flour. Mix very briefly… this is the key to good cookies!  The more you mix the more cake-like your cookies are… the less mixing you can get away with, the more chewy your cookies will be.  I love my cookies chewy so I mix until the flour is just barely combined.
  • Stir in chocolate chips
  • Scoop cookies leaving at least 2 inches between cookies… I used an ice cream scooper to scoop.  Place the snickers slice on top of each cookie and fold the edges over to completely hide the snickers.  Dice up the remaining cookie and press them into the top of the cookies.
  • Bake for 10 to 12 minutes.  The cookies should still be puffy and the center will have just begun to set.  Cool on a wire rack.