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I had a few apples left in my fridge so I decided to make apple strudel muffins (adapted from allrecipes.com).

I have made quite a few changes from the original recipe by reading all the comments– more cinnamon, more chopped apples (3 cups instead of 1 1/2 cups), substituted half a cup of white sugar for brown sugar (instead of 1 full cup of white sugar), and a little less butter (1/4 cup instead of 1/2 cup).

After making all kinds of changes, I am definitely keeping this recipe in the recipe box for my family to use. The muffins came out surprisingly good! Even though the batter was a bit stiff, it still came out moist, which is how they are supposed to be.

Optional: Double the topping ingredients if you want to layer the batter. Also, it doesn’t hurt to add a little bit more cinnamon!

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake for 20 minutes.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups chopped apples (1 1/2 cups chopped, 1 1/2 cups shredded)

Ingredients for topping:

  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease a 12 cup muffin pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
  3. In a large bowl, beat together butter, sugar and eggs until smooth. Mix in vanilla extract. Stir in apples, and gradually blend in the flour mixture. Spoon the mixture into the prepared muffin pan.
  4. For the topping: In a small bowl, mix brown sugar, flour and cinnamon. Mix in butter until mixture is like coarse crumbs. Sprinkle over tops of mixture in muffin pan.
  5. Bake 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Allow to sit 5 minutes before removing muffins from pan. Cool on a wire rack.

Enjoy!

My friend Aram and I decided to have a get together at Alice’s Tea Cup Chapter II, located in the upper east side of Manhattan. It is a perfect place if you and your girlfriends (or guy friends if they are willing to go), are looking for a place to chat over tea and scones (and other foods). There are currently three locations, all of them which happen to be in Manhattan.

We both ordered two scones and two pots of tea. They are mostly known for their delicious baked scones. You would have to ask your server what the daily selection was (includes pumpkin, almond, buttermilk, blueberry, etc.) I, for one, could agree that the scones were delicious– especially with the preserves/cream that they give you. Tasted very fluffy and buttery. We both got extremely full from them (each scone is about as big as one hand).

There are also a variety of teas you can choose from. I like to stick to the basics (green/black tea) so I ordered their signature tea which consisted of Indian black vanilla tea with Japanese green tea and rose petals while Aram chose ginger tea. Would definitely stop by again for the Alice in Wonderland experience.

156 E. 64th St.
(between Lexington Ave & 3rd Ave)
New York, NY 10021
(212) 486-9200

My aunt sent my mother a recipe for Sour Cream Coffee Cake, which was adapted from a recipe she found printed on a package of King Arthur Flour.

I decided to make two sour cream coffee cakes- one for my family and one for my friends for New Year’s Eve so I doubled the ingredients.

This recipe is for 1 cake (9 inch pan). Serving size is 12. The only thing I did differently was whisk the batter on my own without an electric mixer and use a regular aluminum 9 inch pan rather than a springform pan. It came out great nevertheless.

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pans
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pans
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar, plus 1/2 cup for topping
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Make the topping: In a small bowl combine 1/2 cup sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, and walnuts; set aside.
  2. Make the cake: Butter and flour a 9-inch springform pan; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter, sugar, and eggs until smooth. Add the flour mixture alternating with the sour cream, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.
  4. Spread half of the batter into the prepared baking pan, and sprinkle with half of the topping. Repeat with the remaining batter and topping.
  5. Bake until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes, then remove sides of pan and place on a wire rack to cool completely. Serve topping side up.

John and I have traveled to Mitsuwa just to get some baked goods and we both can never get enough of them. Each of these treats cost about $2.00 and they make it right in front of you so it is fresh. We chose one with red bean paste and egg cream filling for the other.

595 River Road
Edgewater, NJ 07020
(201) 941-9113

It’s rare for me to bake because, well, I’m not that good at it. This was my first time baking cupcakes. I practically had all the ingredients for these cupcakes so I thought it would turn out very well. I took the recipe from allrecipes.com and instead of making a carrot cake, I wanted to put them in little cupcake papers.

Here is the recipe:

Original Recipe Yield 1 – 9×13 inch cake

Ingredients

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups vegetable oil
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3 cups grated carrots
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9×13 inch pan.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, white sugar and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in carrots. Fold in pecans. Pour into prepared pan.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
  4. To Make Frosting: In a medium bowl, combine butter, cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Stir in chopped pecans. Frost the cooled cake.
 

Nutritional Information

Amount Per Serving Calories: 491 | Total Fat: 26.1g | Cholesterol: 74mg

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I read the comments and tweaked some things. For example, I used less vegetable oil (3/4 cup rather than 1 1/4 cups). Instead of pecans, I used this bag of soy nut trail mix I found at home (pumpkin seeds, soy nuts, raisins, etc). You don’t have to add nuts if you are not a fan.

I also used less carrots because of my lame excuse…my hands were too tired to grate anymore (I grated enough carrots for 1 1/2 cups rather than the recommended 3). After putting it in the oven for 35 minutes, I took them out and it tasted more like cupcakes with nuts rather than what a normal carrot cake would taste like. Baking just takes a lot of practice and patience and I guess I don’t have the patience. 😦 At least, they were still edible haha.

While shopping around H Mart, a Korean grocery store, I decided to try some baked goods from Tous Les Jours, which was located inside the market. Tous Les Jours, which means “Everyday,” in French, is a French-Asian bakery and is also a chain bakery.

What I enjoyed most about Korean bakeries is that it’s not as greasy as some of the goods that you may find in Chinese bakeries. The quality is also very wholesome and delicious, but I thought it was a little expensive. John and I chose a strawberry pastry, a sweet cream corn doughnut, and a sandwich bun with blueberry cream cheese filling. These baked goods definitely make a great snack! I would love to go back for more.

112 Linwood Plaza
Fort Lee, NJ 07024
(201) 461-2870

My mom and I thought it would be interesting to make this bread we brought from Ikea one day. It was fairly easy to make and we followed all of the instructions.

Right when we took it out of the oven, we spread it with butter. It tasted exactly like whole grain bread but somewhat bland. We barely tasted the lingonberries in the bread which was very disappointing. It was just downright boring! I do not recommend unless you want to waste your time and effort making bread, when you can buy a loaf of whole grain bread in the market.

My sister and I made apple crisp today and it came out pretty well! Here is the recipe that we followed. More info here.

We used granny smith apples for this recipe since they are most suitable for cooking. The only thing we did differently was mix the apples with the first batch of ingredients (all-purpose flour, white sugar, and ground cinnamon) instead of sprinkling it on top so that it would be fully absorbed. Also, we added less water (1/4 cup instead of the suggested 1/2 cup) so that it wouldn’t become too watery. What you could also do is add less white sugar because I think 1 cup is a bit too much.

Once it came fresh out of the oven, the apples and cinnamon just melted in my mouth. Mmm! 🙂

12 servings (Use 9×13 inch pan)

Ingredients

  • 10 cups all-purpose apples, peeled, cored and sliced
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup water
    .
  • 1 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degree C).
  2. Place the sliced apples in a 9×13 inch pan. Mix the white sugar, 1 tablespoon flour and ground cinnamon together, and sprinkle over apples. Pour water evenly over all.
  3. Combine the oats, 1 cup flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and melted butter together. Crumble evenly over the apple mixture.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for about 45 minutes.


I had this raisin bun for breakfast today. It costs only $0.80 from a Chinese bakery. The dough is very soft and sweet with a slight lemon filling. It is a good snack if you are ever on the go!


I had this delicious raisin toast with butter for breakfast this morning along with a cup of milk. You can find this loaf of bread in Chinese bakeries for $2!