HOW TO DECORATE CUPCAKES like you went to pastry school

Question for you – are you a baker? I am trying so hard to become a really awesome baker, but I have to master the patience portion. With cooking, you can throw in a little of this & a little of that, a dash of something unexpected, and voila – you feel like Gordon Ramsey. With baking, there is so much precision and attention to detail – neither of which I have. In a decision to try and up my kitchen game, I signed up for the Windy City Dinner Fairy cupcake decorating class at Macy’s last week & would you believe it was a total blast?! It was free, delicious, and I learned some seriously valuable frosting tips! 
How to decorate cupcakes like you went to pastry school

Nicole from Windy City Dinner Fairy taught us how to decorate cupcakes with a piping bag. Have you ever used one? We got a set as a shower gift and I have barely broken it out, but thanks to some pro tips (like, make sure your frosting is room temperature before putting it into the bag otherwise the icing won’t go on smoothly) and I feel like I have kind of got the hang of it. 

How to decorate cupcakes like you went to pastry school

If you are like me & have no idea what you are doing, here is a basic guide:

Round Tips: for lines, dots, writing, filling, and thicker frosting

Open Star Tip: star shaped decorations & perfect to make the below hydrangea flower frosting effect

Closed Star Tip: rosettes

Basket-weave Tip: for lattices & ribbonlike lines and boarders

To make the awesome hydrangea cupcake frosting effect (like the cupcake below), fasten your open star tip to your piping bag, fill with room temperate icing, and squeezing slowly place a drop of icing starting from the outer rims moving inward. Feel free to go as high as you want to go or as wide. It’s your cupcake, so have a little fun with is!

How to decorate cupcakes like you went to pastry schoolSo, what do you think? Ready to try out your new cupcake decorating skills? For more information on Windy City Dinner Fairy visit Nicole’s Facebook page and for upcoming information on Macy’s events, click here. Happy decorating!

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How to decorate cupcakes like you went to pastry schoolThis post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Macy’s; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

SANEM’S TRIFLE the best 30-second dessert ever

You know when you are going over to a friends house for a dinner party & you ask what to bring, and because your friend is nice, they are like “Ohmygosh, nothing, don’t worry!” Or maybe, “maybe a bottle of wine?” But you love this friend and you want to help out, so you say, “Okay, I’ll bring some wine, but I am also bringing over dessert. Nothing you can do about it.”
30-second dessert | Sanem's Trifle via Lauren KelpYou feel good because you’ve taken some of the load off your friend & that is a nice thing. You’ve got an extra bottle of wine from the last time you hosted, so that’s easy breezy. Done & done. You’ve crossed that off your mental to do list & all is well. Until the day of the dinner party & you’ve totally forgotten your really nice offer to bring dessert & you are running late & are starting to stress about it. What to do?!

Step away from the store bought pie, you don’t need it. Give me 30-seconds and a few simple ingredients and we will whip up such a delicious dessert, you’ll be on sweets duty for the rest of your dinner party attending life!
30-second dessert | Sanem's Trifle via Lauren Kelp

Meet your new favorite dessert, the Sanem Trifle <3. A girlfriend of mine, the lovely Sanem of Sanem’s Boutique, shared this trifle recipe with me and she swore that it was truthfully the best dessert & couldn’t be more simple to whip up.

So, naturally, we had to give it a try. Lawd, have mercy was she right. This dessert is crazy easy to make & really, really good. It’s wildly easy to make & perfect for individual servings or to make little ones en mass for a cocktail party.

30-second dessert | Sanem's Trifle via Lauren Kelp

Sanem's Trifle
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
  • 2 Sara Lee family size all butter pound cake
  • One quart Land O Lakes heavy whipping cream
  • Powdered sugar
  • 1 pint raspberries
  • 1 box Salerno Santa's Favorite anise flavored cookies
  • 1 Jell-O box of instant white chocolate pudding
Instructions
  1. Rinse raspberries in a colander and set aside to dry.
  2. Follow instructions on the back of your pudding box. Make the pudding and set aside.
  3. Pour about 2 cups of heavy whipping cream into a large mixing bowl. By using a balloon whisk, whisk the whipping cream with powdered sugar for about 5 minutes. I seriously eyeball the amount of powdered sugar I add. Start off with a tablespoon or two and then add to taste. You will know your whipped cream is done when it reaches soft peaks.
  4. Take the pound cakes and place them on your cutting board. Cut them in half length wise. Take the cup your a going to "build" your trifle in and place it open side down on the pound cake. Press the cup down to cut out your pound cake. Push the round pound cake piece down into the cup with your fingers so it becomes the first (bottom) layer of your trifle.
  5. Your next layer are the raspberries. This layer will cover the entire piece of pound cake. Be generous.
  6. Third layer to creating the Razy P Trifle is the pudding. I add the pudding into a glad ziploc sandwich bag. I seal the top, cut a corner off the bottom of the bag. It helps me control the application of the pudding and looks much neater rather than adding the pudding with a spoon. Add enough pudding so that you have completely covered the raspberries.
  7. You are almost done! Now, take that fabulous fluffy whipped cream and do the same thing that you just did with the pudding. Add some whipped cream into a sandwich bag, cut a corner off and add your whipped cream over the pudding. Cover all of the pudding with the layer of whipped cream, and you are set!
  8. The anise flavored cookies play a role at the very end. I add some in a sandwich bag, seal the bag and crush the cookies. Remove the crumbs from the bag and garnish the top of your trifle. If you have a few extra raspberries you can add one two on top of the whipped cream and garnish the crushed cookies over the raspberries. Grab your spoon and dig into the layers of goodness, my friend!

30-second dessert | Sanem's Trifle via Lauren KelpStunning right? Promise me something, if you only try one thing on LK, have it be this. I mean, just look at it! Give it a try & let me know what you think. xo, LK

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30-second dessert | Sanem's Trifle via Lauren Kelp

CHAI CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES + our new favorite cookbook & a fun event!

One woman’s Vogue is another gals cook book – know what I mean? Between you & me, I never really got into fashion magazines. Truthfully, I enjoy Vogue & Vanity Fair more for the articles than anything else & while I absolutely appreciate the styling & editorial finesse, they never became a staple in my purchasing habits. But cookbooks are a different story entirely.

PS – Hey, CHICAGO! Scroll down to the bottom, I’ve got a special surprise for you!

chai chocolate chip cookies via lauren kelp

Give me a good cookbook & I will read it like an 11-year-old reading Harry Potter for the first time (or, fine, okay, also me every time I read it…I mean book 6 is just so freaking good!) A new cookbook is full of exciting possibilities – new recipes, yes, but also new stories, new ingredients to fall in love with, new ways to show your friends and family you love them, new ways to be thoughtful about your food & mindful of what you are putting into your body. In fact, I love cookbooks so much, I have given myself a strict monthly budget to indulge my little habit. December’s cookbook of the month is the latest from Nancy Silverton, Mozza at Home.

chai chocolate chip cookies via lauren kelp

If you don’t know Nancy, you should! She is the only chef to win both the Outstanding Pasty Chef & Outstanding Chef awards from the James Beard Foundation (i.e. big freaking deal). Mozza at Home is all about crowd-pleasing recipes for relaxed, family-style gatherings. Uhh, does that sound like anyone you might know?! She gives you the backstory on each recipe, where it came from, why it’s personally significant, and she tells the story of her time in Tuscany & you are tempted to put in your two-weeks notice & fly out to meet her. I just got the book yesterday but am already obsessed! I was so excited, I woke up this morning (yes, as in like 3 hours ago) and whipped up her Chai Chocolate Chip cookies & they are nothing short of magical. Enjoy with a cup of coffee or hot mint tea and you’ve just about died and gone to heaven. Grab the recipe below.

CHAI CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3 dozen
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup pecans
  • 1¾ cup + 2 tablespoons cake flour (or unbleached all-purpose flour)
  • 1⅔ cup + 2 tablespoons bread flour (or unbleached all-purpose flour)
  • 2½ sticks of unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1¼ cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1¼ teaspoons baking soda
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1½ teaspoons ground cardamom
  • 1½ teaspoons grated nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1¼ lb chocolate (60% - 70% cacao), chopped into ½ chunks
Instructions
  1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position & preheat the over to 325.
  2. Spread the pecans on a baking sheet and toast them in the over for 10-12 minutes, or until they are lightly browned and fragrant. Feel free to shake the pan & adjust half way through baking, so nuts brown evenly. Remove from the oven, set aside to cool, & turn off your oven. Once nuts are cooled, coarsely chop and set aside.
  3. Combine the cake & bread flour in a large box and stir to combine.
  4. In another large bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, and pepper and mix until light in texture and color. Add in the eggs, one at a time, mixing thoroughly in between.
  5. Add the vanilla and mix. Reduce speed and add in the flour and mix until no flour is visible. Add in chocolate and stir to combine.
  6. Cover the dough & refrigerate for at least 1 hour (preferably over night)
  7. Adjust the oven rack so one is on the top third and one is on the bottom third and preheat to 350 & set up two cooling racks.
  8. Remove the dough from the fridge and roll into 1¾ ounce balls (smaller than a ping pong ball). Put 6 to 8 balls on each large baking sheet with at least 2 inches of space in between each ball of dough.
  9. Put one sheet on each rack in the oven and bake for 12-14 minutes, until light golden, but still soft. Switch baking sheet positions halfway through cooking time, so they bake evenly.
  10. Remove baking sheets from the oven and set on the cooling rack & let sit for 5 minutes.
  11. Repeat with the rest of the dough & enjoy!

chai chocolate chip cookies via lauren kelp

For all my CHICAGO friends, come meet me & Nancy at her book signing at the Macy’s State Street at noon on December 9th! I’ll be there from 12-1, so come introduce yourself & say ‘hi’ & I’ve got a special gift for you!

Looking for more fun holiday events? Check out this list of events happening at Macy’s this month!

chai chocolate chip cookies via lauren kelp


lauren buttonThis post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Macy’s; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

QUICK & EASY CHERRY PIE another easy Thanksgiving recipe

How are you doing, my little turkey master? Feeling pumped to have the gang together this weekend? What are you making? Are you excited? A little anxious? Well, sister-friend, have no fear cause we are here to help with all those last minute cooking needs! You’ve got the bird handled and possibly some sides, but now it’s time to fill in all the extra little details – rolls, appetizers, and most importantly DESSERT! Don’t know what to do and don’t know if you can handle another 45-step recipe? Girl, we got you. Try this 4 step, 30-minute prep cherry pie and don’t look back! Delicious, easy & a total crowd-pleaser — what could be better? 

easy thanksgiving cherry pie via lauren kelpeasy thanksgiving cherry pie via lauren kelp

THANKSGIVING CHERRY PIE
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 pie
 
Ingredients
  • 4 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 4 cups pitted cherries
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1½ tablespoons butter
  • Store bought crust (9 inch)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F & place bottom crust in pie pan. Set top crust aside, covered.
  2. Roll out half the crust and line a 9-inch pie pan. Refrigerate until needed. Roll out the top crust and set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl combine tapioca, salt, sugar, cherries, and extracts. Let stand 15 minutes. Turn out into bottom crust and dot with butter. Cover with top crust, flute edges and cut vents in top. Place pie on a foil-lined cookie sheet--in case of drips!
  4. Bake for 50 minutes in the preheated oven, until golden brown. Let cool for several hours before slicing.

easy thanksgiving cherry pie via lauren kelp


 

HOST A CANDY MAKING PARTY

Hello, hello, my favorite festive friends! How has your fall been? Can you believe we are already half way through October?! Holiday season is officially around the corner & we are talking all about how to get the jump on party planning today (it involves wine so you know it’s going to be good!) host a candy making party this holiday season via lauren kelp

The holidays can get so hectic & while everyone wants to get together for parties, potlucks, and mini gift exchanges, your already busy schedule can’t handle much more. Sound familiar? It’s true! We are busy birds but we also love a good get together, so that is why we are throwing a candy making party!

That’s right…. A CANDY MAKING PARTY!

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It’s almost too good to be true, right? Wrong! It’s the best idea ever! Whether you want to be fabulous & make your own Halloween candy, try a dry run for Christmas presents, or be extra prepared and get a holiday party on the books, this candy making party is legit & perfect for so many reasons.

host a candy making party this holiday season via lauren kelp

#1 – WINE + CANDY = MAGIC

Everyone loves a good get together, but everyone loves it more when good wine is involved. You know I am right! For the perfect candy-making recipe & an even better wine pairing, hop on over to our friends Kendall-Jackson.

Here is a hint, it involves delicious chocolate, sliced almonds and the most perfectly paired Vintner’s Reserve Cabernet you’ll ever had. The rich flavors of dark chocolate paired with the complex oak and cherry notes of the Cabernet are legitimately divine!

host a candy making party this holiday season via lauren kelp

#2 – GATHER THE GALS

When sending out the invites for your fabulous candy-making party ask your guests to bring their favorite chocolate bark, toffee, or caramel recipe to share with the group! Grab some index cards or print off this recipe card (made by the amazing Ashley Cooper Design) for your guests to do a fun recipe share!

For our get-together, we had the ingredients of two of our favorite bark recipes – white chocolate and cranberry bark & a dark chocolate and almond bark – already prepped & set out. This way, while your guests are swapping recipes, pouring wine, and catching up, you can have some candy already set out & ready to whip up!

host a candy making party this holiday season via lauren kelp

#3 – PREP THE SPACE

Whether you’ve got a big island that everyone can gather around or a tiny little galley kitchen, it’s important to create a designated candy-making space. Since my kitchen is the latter, I clear off my dining room table and have everything all laid out and ready to go. That way, my friends can sit around the table, drinking wine & catching up, all while making their own little tin of candy from the pre-prepped ingredients on the table.

Not interested in going the individual tin route? Have a few bigger baking pans & have everyone work on those. Once the candy is done, you can break up & divvy up then.

host a candy making party this holiday season via lauren kelp

#4 – GOODIE BAGS

You are hosting a candy-making party, of course there has to be goodie bags! Luckily, they are wildly easy & most of the work is already done for you.

Grab a few clear plastic bags (your local grocery store should have them in the baking aisle) and a packet of twist ties, & if you are feeling really fancy you can make or buy little name tags for your bags!

Cut up the candy into squares & divvy them up amongst the bags & voila! Add in those recipes you asked everyone to bring & you’ve got yourself one heck of a little parting gift.

host a candy making party this holiday season via lauren kelpHappy hosting, my friends!

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recipe-card

 


Photography by Constance Higley & Recipe Card by Ashley Cooper Design

This post is sponsored by Kendall-Jackson but all thoughts, opinions, and food obsessions are our own.

PUMPKIN SPICE DOUGHNUTS because we all need a little more pumpkin spice

Pumpkin Spice doughnuts via Lauren Kelp

Hello, hello, my fabulous pumpkin spiced friend! Are you enjoying your cozy sweaters, warm scarves, apple scented candles, and all things pumpkin? I absolutely am and have been thoroughly delighted to indulge in anything slightly autumnal. I love to bake, in fact, I am a much better baker than I am a cook, and so when new seasons roll around, I like to ring them in by having a little Kelp house bake-off. By bake-off, I mean I bake a bunch of stuff, light a bunch of candles, get totally in the seasonal spirit, and then promptly invite all my friends and family over to indulge in the glory.

This month I have had a fresh batch of these pumpkin spice doughnuts on hand at all times. Super easy to make, wildly delicious, and perfect for gift-giving, handing out at work, or just as a little indulgent, these pumpkin spice puppies are the way to go! Plus, they are easily made vegan! Just swap out the margarine for your favorite vegan butter or margarine and voila!
Pumpkin Spice doughnuts via Lauren Kelp

PUMPKIN SPICE DOUGHNUTS
Serves: 10
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ Tbsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ cup Silk soy milk
  • ½ tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp. applesauce
  • 2 Tbsp. pumpkin purée
  • ¼ cup margarine
Glaze:
  • 2 Tbsp. confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tsp.Silk soy milk
Cinnamon-Sugar Coating:
  • 2 Tbsp. cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp. pure cane sugar
  • ½ Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and pumpkin pie spice and mix thoroughly.
  3. Combine the soy milk, vinegar, vanilla, applesauce, pumpkin purée, and vegan margarine in a small saucepan over medium-low heat and mix until the margarine is just melted. This should be slightly warm to the touch, not hot.
  4. Add the wet mixture to the dry and mix.
  5. Using a tablespoon, scoop the resulting dough into an ungreased nonstick doughnut pan, either full- or mini-size.
  6. Bake for 8 to10 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into a doughnut comes out clean. Invert the pan over a cutting board or cooling rack to release the doughnuts. Allow to cool completely before decorating.
  7. To make the glaze, whisk the confectioners’ sugar and soy milk together until smooth.
  8. To make a cinnamon-sugar coating, combine the cinnamon, sugar, and spice.
  9. Dip the cooled doughnuts in the glaze and then roll in the sugar mixture.

Pumpkin Spice doughnuts via Lauren Kelp

And just like that you’ve got fresh, delicious pumpkin spice doughnuts right out of the oven! Plenty to share, plenty to snack on, and with a recipe this easy, it’ll be hard to resist making a fresh batch every week or so (trust me!)

I have recently been substituting Soymilk & Almond milk into my recipes more. Have you done this? Do you like it? Have you noticed a substantial change? As we move away from dairy and processed foods, I am curious to see how our menus and snacks change as well. Let me know below!
Pumpkin Spice doughnuts via Lauren Kelp


This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.

THE EASIEST PUMPKIN PIE RECIPE easy + delicious, what could be better?

pumpkin pie recipe via lauren kelp‘Tis the season for all things pumpkin, am I right? Pumpkin colored hues, pumpkin picking, pumpkin lattes, pumpkin errythang. Truthfully, I love this time of year so much that I don’t really mind being inundated with various pumpkin flavored things – in fact, I kind of like it! To get into the spirit of fall, we whipped up the most delicious pumpkin pie recipe I have ever made. If you have a favorite pie crust recipe you like to use, now is the time. If not, add a pie crust to your shopping list & no one will ever be the wiser. The secret to this pie is using International Delight Pumpkin Spice creamer. Kind of genius, right? It was my moms idea – so thanks, Jane!

Now pour yourself a cup of coffee, scroll down, and let’s get to baking!

pumpkin pie recipe via lauren kelp

THE EASIEST PUMPKIN PIE RECIPE
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 servings
 
Ingredients
  • Pastry dough or prepackaged pie crust
  • 15-oz can canned solid-pack pumpkin (about 2 cups)
  • 1 cup International Delight Pumpkin Spice Creamer
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ cup light brown sugar
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
Instructions
  1. If you have a pastry dough recipe you like, us that. If not, follow the directions of your store bought crust.
  2. Whisk together pumpkin, International Delight Pumpkin Spice creamer, milk, eggs, brown sugar, spices, and salt, then pour into shell.
  3. Bake pie in middle of oven 45 to 50 minutes, or until filling is set but center still trembles slightly.
  4. Serve cooled with whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon or ginger!

pumpkin pie recipe via lauren kelpSo, what do you think? Crazy easy, right? The Pumpkin Pie creamer has a lot of great spices and flavors to it, but feel free to add in some cinnamon, ginger, or maybe even a dash of nutmeg. Go crazy – it’s your recipe! To check if your local store has the creamer, check here & for more great recipes check out ID’s Instagram! 

pumpkin pie recipe via lauren kelp


This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of International Delight. The opinions and text are all mine.

THE MARY ANN CAKE WITH MASCARPONE & BERRIES

the perfect summer cake - the mary ann cake with mascarpone and berries via lauren kelpHello, hello summertime warriors! While back to school sales are around every corner, August isn’t over yet and we’ve still got some summer baking to do! Head to your farmer’s market, or local grocer and grab all the berries you can find for this delicious Mary Ann cake. Blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, heck, even cherries – bring ’em all to the party. In my opinion, you can never have too many berries for this cake.

For you Williams-Sonoma junkies out there (hey, I will gladly raise a hand), you might recognize this recipe from one of their catalogues many, many moons ago with the name sake after their Mary Ann cake pan. If you have no idea what I am talking about, this is a bitching cake that isn’t wildly difficult to make, tastes like a dream, and looks like you casually took a year off life to become a pastry chef.

Don’t get caught up if you don’t have the right pan, a spring pan works great. Besides that, put on some kitchen jams, pour yourself a glass of wine or some iced tea, and get to baking, baby! If you are looking for an excuse to try this puppy out, first day of school celebration cake, birthday cake, or even a  “hooray you made it to Wednesday” cake. See, it really is a cake for all occasions! Happy baking, babes xoxo LK
the perfect summer cake - the mary ann cake with mascarpone and berries via lauren kelp

THE MARY ANN CAKE WITH MASCARPONE & BERRIES
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: Serves 12 -16
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 16 Tbs. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1½ cups granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups mixed berries, such as blueberries, raspberries and sliced strawberries
  • 4 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 6 oz. mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
  • ⅓ cup sour cream, at room temperature
  • ¼ tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ cup chilled heavy cream, beaten to soft peaks
  • Confectioners' sugar for dusting (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat an oven to 350°F & grease and flour a Mary Ann cake pan (if you don't have this kind of pan, a spring pan is perfect too).
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.
  3. In another bowl, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy (about 1 to 2 minutes). Reduce the speed to low and gradually add the granulated sugar, beating until blended. Increase the speed to medium-high and continue beating until the mixture is light and fluffy (about 3 to 5 minutes).
  4. Scrape down the sides of the bowl & add the eggs in one at a time. Make sure to beat thoroughly after each egg is added. Beat in the vanilla.
  5. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the milk and beginning and ending with the flour, beating just until blended and no lumps of flour remain. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 40 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 15 minutes. Carefully turn the cake out onto the rack and let cool completely, at least 1 hour.
  6. Just before serving, prepare the topping: In a nonreactive bowl, combine the berries and 2 tablespoons of the granulated sugar and stir until well blended. Set aside. In a small bowl, using a rubber spatula, gently combine the mascarpone, sour cream, vanilla and the remaining 2 tablespoons granulated sugar. Fold in the whipped cream. Spoon the mascarpone mixture into the well of the cake, spreading it to the edges. Arrange the berries on top of the mascarpone mixture and dust the cake with confectioners’ sugar.

the perfect summer cake - the mary ann cake with mascarpone and berries via lauren kelp


Photography by Constance Higley & Baking by Brendon McCaskey. Recipe adapted from Williams-Sonoma

DAIRY FREE PASTRY PUFFS

Hello, hello, my little party-throwers! How has your week been so far? Fabulous, I hope! So, we are always trying to work healthy substitutes into our meals in the Kelp house and recently, we’ve really been trying to become as plant-based as possible. Now, when you share your house with a meat-eater (I’ve been a vegetarian for about 10 years now), that can be a little difficult at times. But, that all changed once I started making these dairy-free pastry puffs!

 

Delicious and not wildly difficult to make, these little guys are perfect if you want to move away from dairy, or are looking for a lighter version of the original.

 

We’ve worked in some pro tips in the recipe, but the main thing to remember is to have fun. It sounds so cheesy, but it’s true! We aren’t solving the world’s problems with our pastry puffs, so don’t get stressed. It’s okay if the cream is a little lumpy (just whisk it!) or if there is some oil that separates from the dough (that’s normal). Enjoy!

DAIRY FREE PASTRY PUFFS
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
Cream Puffs
  • 4 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
  • ½ cup grapeseed oil
  • 1 cup Silk Almond milk
  • 1 pinch kosher or sea salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
Dairy Free Pastry Cream
  • 2 cups Silk Almond milk
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon pure almond extract
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 & line a baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a liquid measuring cup, crack the eggs and set aside.
  3. In a medium sauce pan, combine the oil, almond milk and salt and bring just to a boil. While mixture is on the stove top, Once boiling, turn to low heat & stir in the flour all at once, stirring quickly with a wooden spoon. Stir until mixture forms a ball & continue cooking and stirring for 1 or 2 minutes. A little oil might separate from the ball, that is totally fine.
  4. Dump the dough into a bowl and beat for about 1 minute on medium speed. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until each egg is fully incorporated before adding the next. Continue mixing until the dough is uniformly smooth, thick and shiny, about 3 – 5 minutes.
  5. Break off pieces of dough and roll into silver dollar sized balls & place on prepared baking sheet, spacing them about an inch apart.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes (or until lightly browned) and turn the oven off and leave the pastries in the oven for another 20 minutes to dry out
  7. Remove from oven and pierce the side of each puff with a small, sharp knife to let the steam escape. Let cool completely. Cut in half horizontally and fill with dairy free pastry cream.
Dairy Free Pastry Cream
  1. Combine the almond milk and salt in a large saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. In a small bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar on medium high speed until the mixture is light yellow and thick, about 3 minutes. Turn the mixer to low and beat in the cornstarch and slowly add the hot almond milk to the egg mixture. Pour the mixture back into the sauce pan and cook over medium heat until thick and it just starts to come back up to a boil, stirring constantly with a spoon or whisk.
  3. Continue cooking for no more than 2 minutes. If your cream looks lumpy, just whisk it until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in the extracts.
  4. Strain into a clean bowl and cover with plastic wrap (making sure the plastic wrap touches the surface of the cream) and refrigerate until cold, about 2 – 3 hours.
  5. When filling the puffs, make sure to give the cream a good whisking beforehand

Sooo, what do you think? Ready to make your own batch of dairy free pastry puffs? There are tons of benefits of eating clean and working more plant-based recipes into your daily routine & while a dessert may not be the best example, it’s a tasty place to start!

 

I would love to hear your favorite plant-based meals! Have a favorite or looking to try something new, tell us!


This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.

CHOCOLATE VEGAN ICE CREAM

easy non-dairy, vegan chocolate ice cream with almond milk via Lauren KelpHappy almost weekend, party people! Are you doing anything fun to celebrate? My sweet sister is celebrating her birthday this weekend so it was only appropriate that I, the best big sister, come up with a special recipe to celebrate her with!
I have been trying to replace typically non-healthy foods with a healthier alternative & we are on a massive vegan ice cream kick right now. This ice cream only calls for 3 (THREE!) ingredients, is super easy, and tastes like a rich, double chocolate dream. Best part? It’s totally customizable. Want to add in some peanut butter? Great! How about chopped nuts? Perfect!
Just five minutes in the kitchen, a few hours in the freezer, and you’ve got yourself a healthy treat that you won’t even realize isn’t bad for you…it’s that good!
easy non-dairy, vegan chocolate ice cream with almond milk via Lauren Kelp

CHOCOLATE VEGAN ICE CREAM
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6 servings
 
With only 3 ingredients this healthy ice cream alternative is hard to beat!
Ingredients
  • 1 cup, Silk Almonmilk (I used Original, but Vanilla works too)
  • 2 frozen bananas
  • ⅔ cup of cocoa powder
  • Optional: ¾ cup of chocolate chips (to make it extra chocolatey)
Instructions
  1. In a blender (or food processor), add in all your ingredients & blend until smooth.
  2. Scoop out into a freezer-safe container, cover and freeze until solid.
  3. Serve it up & enjoy!

easy non-dairy, vegan chocolate ice cream with almond milk via Lauren KelpSo, what do you think? It’s amazing how a few frozen bananas, some Silk Almondmilk, and a little bit of cocoa powder can quickly turn into the best dessert around. It’s absolutely perfect for weekends, dinner parties, or something to make on Sunday for throughout the week when your will power tends to slip.

We have a back-up supply on hand all the time & the flavor options are endless! Run to the store & whip up a batch and let us know what you think. Can’t wait to hear 🙂

easy non-dairy, vegan chocolate ice cream with almond milk via Lauren Kelp


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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.