The boys birthday cake looked festive and pretty.
The food at the Christmas party ended up going really well. Like almost nothing was left, and seeing as I was too busy to take pictures of it all before I put it on the table there are pretty much only pictures of the scraps. This was my first Christmas party, and the first time I ever hosted and cooked all of the food myself. I'm proud to say that it all got rave reviews, especially the coconut cupcakes, peppermint cake, peppermint fudge and brie en croute.
Riley was our mascot, she HATED her outfit. So she protested by staying still. The outfit came off pretty soon there after.
The coconut cupcakes were perfectly moist and not too sweet, and if you like the texture of coconut they would make a great dessert for a party any time of year. Here's the recipe:
What you need:
3 sticks of butter
2 cups of sugar
5 extra large eggs at room temp.
1.5 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract
1.5 teaspoons of pure almond extract
3 cups of flour
1 tsp of baking powder
1/2 tsp of baking soda
1/2 tsp of kosher salt
1 cup of buttermilk
14 oz sweetened shredded coconut
For the frosting:
1 lb of cream cheese, room temp
3 sticks of unsalted butter, room temp
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp pure almond extract
1.5 lbs of confectioners sugar, sifted
What you do:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 min. With the mixer on low speed, add the eggs 1 at a time, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Add the almond and vanilla extracts and mix well.
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In 3 parts alternately, add the dry ingredients, and the buttermilk into the batter, beginning and ending with the dry. Mix until just combined, fold into 7 oz of coconut.
Line a muffin pan with paper liners, fill each liner to the top with the batter, bake for 25 to 35 min, until the tops are brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool.
For making the frosting, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, on low speed, cream together the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla and almond extracts. Add the confectioners sugar and mix until smooth. Frost the cupcakes and cover the tops with the remaining coconut. I did this by dipping the frosted top into a bowl full of coconut.
I'm adding the fudge recipe because I have always had a hard time making fudge, it's always been difficult for me for some reason and this one was so easy to make and took no time at all.
3 cups of sugar
1.5 sticks of butter
1 small 5 oz can of evaporated milk
1.5 packages (12 squares) of bakers semi sweet baking chocolate chopped
1 jar Jet-Puffed marshmallow creme
1 cup of chopped planters walnuts (I didn't put these in)
1 tsp vanilla
1.5 tsp of peppermint extract
Line 9 inch square pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides of pan, set aside.
Place sugar, butter and evaporated milk in large heavy saucepan. Bring to a full rolling boil on medium heat, stirring constantly. Boil for 4 minutes or until candy thermometer reaches 234 degrees, stirring constantly to to prevent scorching , remove from heat.
Add chocolate and marshmallow creme stir until completely melted. Add walnuts, vanilla and peppermint, mixing well.
Pour immediately into prepared pan, spread to form an even layer. Let stand at room temperature for 4 hours or until completely cooled, cut into 1 inch squares.