Life’s a Chocolate Buffet, My Friends

We are all familiar with the tale of Charlie Bucket. The lucky child who finds that last golden ticket to visit the magical and mystical factory of one Willy Wonka where chocolate delights abound.

Saturday I was the proud recipient of a ticket given away for Winnipeg’s First Annual Chocoholics’ Buffet held on behalf of the United Way of Winnipeg. I entered the giveaway located on their Facebook page and was delighted when I received the notification that I had won my very own golden ticket to chocolate delights.

Held in the beautiful Ballroom of The Gates on Roblin the first thing I noticed when I entered was the long table in the centre of the room that was already laden with, what turned out to be, only some of the offerings for the evening. To the left of the entrance was the Lindt Chocolatiers table teeming with truffles ready for the sampling. To the right an espresso machine set up to create hot chocolate or a mochaccino to order. For a flavour boost a splash of Triple Sec added hints of orange to your beverage of choice.

My Hot Chocolate- sans Triple Sec- ready to be sipped as I survey the room.

My Hot Chocolate- sans Triple Sec- ready to be sipped as I survey the room.

With hot chocolate in hand I took a walk around the room and noted the many different chocolate offerings that ended with the chocolate fountain surrounded by sliced fresh fruits ready for dipping. I will confess that as I went along I started a mental list of items that I was going to enjoy when I finally got to go through and select my choices. I will also confess to skipping dinner in order to have room to enjoy my fill.

This shot is only half of the buffet table as seen from my seat.

This shot is only half of the buffet table as seen from my seat.

It was at this point that I came across my companions for the evening. A big thank you to them all for helping to shape my overall experience as often social eating is as much about who you share the experience with as much as the food so thank you to all my table mates, your conversation and impressions added to my enjoyment of the evening.

First pass through the buffet provided this array of tastes.

First pass through the buffet provided this array of tastes.

After the ribbon cutting I had my first closeup experience with the buffet itself. It was a sight to behold being near so many different styles and interpretations of chocolate desserts.

Milk shots - the official shot of the Chocoholic's Buffet

Milk shots – the official shot of the Chocoholics’ Buffet

After we had settled in with our first selections we were treated to ice cold milk shots which made the perfect accompaniment for all of our rich bites. My table companions agreed it was a welcome palate refresher and we were asking for more as the evening went on.

I want to say I could name every item, but the sheer amount of offerings from so many talented culinary artists still causes my head to swim,even 24 hours later. I can tell you that I didn’t have a bad bite all evening. Everything I tasted was amazing,be it a slice of cake, cupcake, truffle or chocolate. I am already planning to attend the event next year with my husbandas he enjoyed the tidbits I got to bring home in my provided take home box.

For a list of all the Chocolate Artists and their offerings please click here to head over to The Chocoholics Buffet. Also take a moment to click here for the Chocolate Artist Spotlights to learn more about who they are and where you can get your own bites of their work.

Be sure to peruse the list of amazing sponsors some of whom used their business savvy to support and promote this event.

Finally Congratulations are in order for the planning committee for their visionary event. I am still trying to explain the whole experience to those who have asked me about it and while I am not often at a loss for words I find I can’t convey the whole experience.

All I can say is…you have to experience it for yourselves.

With that said….

Save these Dates:

Sunday December 1st, 2013Tickets for Winnipeg’s 2nd Annual Chocoholics’ Dessert Buffet will go on sale!

Saturday March 22nd, 2014Winnipeg’s 2nd Annual Chocoholics’ Dessert Buffet will be held!

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Sorry Aunt Jemima

A quick hit from my kitchen this morning.

I’ve been trying to convince my kids that sometimes fresh fruit, pure fruit spread or peanut butter make fine substitutes as toppings on waffles and pancakes instead of syrup  and I’ve been successful so far in not buying syrup for about a month or so now.

This morning however came a big  challenge….French Toast.

Pancakes and waffles are easy to tuck some sweet hits into with either fresh fruit or pureed on top but for some reason French Toast invokes the idea of stacks of thick bread dripping with syrup and powdered sugar.

Of course that could be what I see when I think of it. Making food changes has been a bit of a challenge in my life recently.

My youngest son and daughter both wanted to have French Toast and I rejected the suggestion from my 7 year old daughter to give them corn syrup as a substitute for Aunt Jemima’s warm smiling face…after all I’m trying to get some good eating habits in them as well as a sense of experimentation with their food.

So into my pantry I go and come out with a jar of a friend’s homemade apple sauce with cinnamon. Into my custard of 4 eggs and a tablespoon of heavy cream I put two tablespoons of this apple sauce. Whisk it together, dunk my whole wheat bread slices in the custard, cook it on my pancake pan and serve it up to some of my harshest critics…

There wasn’t a bite left after 5 minutes and while neither commented on the lack of syrup but kept delighting in the hints of apple.

Sorry Aunt Jemima but there seems to be a new sweetener in town…and it’s called pureed fruit.

Gotta say I’m very much looking forward to this coming berry season just so I can play with the flavours that can be incorporated as I loved this twist on a family favourite.

Shamrock Shots

Whenever St. Patrick’s Day comes around I often think fondly back to my youth when March signaled the sale of the Shamrock Shake.

Now as an adult I’m more aware of all the fat and calories that can be found in one so in recent years I have started making them at home with my kids using low fat milk, frozen yogurt, mint extract and a bit of green food colouring for nostalgia’s sake.

This year we decided to do a St. Patrick’s Day inspired dinner party. The theme was green, the decor was shamrocks and I decided to take my Shamrock-esque shake recipe and make it a drink that my adult dinner guest could enjoy as a shot while I made my regular version for my under 18 guests.

Ingredients (from left): Irish cream, green food colouring, mint extract, and frozen vanilla yogurt.

Ingredients (from left): Irish cream, green food colouring, mint extract, and frozen vanilla yogurt.

For the adults at my dinner I used Irish Cream in lieu of the low fat 1% milk I would normally use.

Yogurt in the blender.

Yogurt in the blender.

I didn’t really get a good chance to measure my scoops, as my ice cream scoop died a painful death a few months ago and I haven’t found one to replace it yet, but I would estimate it at about 5 scoops.

Irish Cream, green food colouring and mint extract.

Irish Cream, green food colouring and mint extract.

After scooping the frozen yogurt I add the remaining ingredients and blend until smooth.

Finished shot - Ready to Serve

Finished shot – Ready to Serve

Pour into shot glasses and recite your favourite Irish Blessing.

Shamrock Shots

Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day

Ingredients:

  • 5 scoops of Vanilla Frozen Yogurt
  • 1 1/2 cups of Irish Cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon of green food colouring
  • 1/8 teaspoon mint extract

Preparation:

  1. Put the 5 scoops of frozen yogurt in to a blender.
  2. Add the Irish Cream, green food colouring and mint extract.
  3. Blend until smooth.
  4. Pour into shot glasses and enjoy!

For your under 18 family members:

A (Lighter) Shamrock Shake

Ingredients:

  • 5 scoops frozen yogurt
  • 1 1/2 cups of 1% milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon green food colouring
  • 1/8 teaspoon mint extract

Preparation:

  1. Put the 5 scoops of frozen yogurt in the blender.
  2. Add milk, green food colouring, and mint extract.
  3. Blend until smooth.
  4. Pour into glasses and enjoy!

Chocolate + Irish Cream = Yummy Cake

I want to start this blog saying that I am thrilled to be featured for this recipe at The Chocoholics’ Buffet  today. This amazing event takes place on April 20th, 2013 at The Gates on Roblin and proceeds raised will benefit The United Way of Winnipeg.

I, personally, can’t think of a better way to help out a great cause. Be sure to wear your loose pants and pick up your tickets here.

Chocolate. They say that just eating is enough to stroke the pleasure sensors in your brain and create good feelings.

Irish Cream. Something I enjoy in my coffee or on ice but not something I’ve ever worked with beyond a nip in my evening cappuccino every so often.

I’m not so completely out of the loop that I don’t know that the makers of Bailey’s Irish Cream have recipes featured on their website but while I’ve browsed I’ve never made any of them.

However, into my hot little hands this week came a bottle of White Chocolate Irish Cream from Shannon’s and I was reflecting on my Triple Chocolate Bribe brownies about getting more than one version of chocolate into a recipe and decided that I would do the liqueur proud and use it in a chocolate cake.

When I was younger I had managed to bake the perfect (in my dad’s opinion) chocolate cake. It was so moist and I’ve never been able to attain it with any cake I had tried since then.

Until yesterday.

I went back to that old recipe, from Home Ec in the late 1980’s, and made a couple of changes based on the kitchen knowledge I have learned over the years:

1) I decided to use buttermilk. I’ve been using it in items such as muffins, quick breads, pancakes and french toast for a while.

2) I put in a cup of coffee. I like how coffee can add to the overall flavour of chocolate as evidenced by the mochachino.

Cake ingredients left to right: Bowl of dry ingredients for sifting including: 2 cups flour, 1 3/4 cups sugar, 3/4 cup cocoa, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1 tablespoon baking soda.

Cake ingredients (from left): Bowl of dry ingredients for sifting including: flour, sugar, cocoa, salt, and baking soda. Then Shannon’s White Chocolate Irish Cream, coffee, oil, egg and buttermilk.

Now on reflection of my ingredients I’m thinking about the next time I make this cake using Half Pints Brewing Stir Stick Stout in lieu of the cup of coffee I put in. Stout is known for adding very deep flavour to chocolate desserts and I think would play well with the Irish Cream. I can’t wait to experiment with this idea in future.

Dry ingredients. Sifted and ready to go.

Dry ingredients. Sifted and ready to go.

Sifting is one of my favourite parts of baking. It is simple, effective and doesn’t require a lot to get good results from it. All you need is a metal sieve and to shake the ingredients through until finished. Here you are wanting to sift through all your dry ingredients.

Wet ingredients whisked together and ready to go.

Wet ingredients whisked together and ready to go.

Getting the wet ingredients ready provided a good learning moment for my 9 year old son. Earlier yesterday he made eggs for the first time and while I was instructing him I discussed with him the value of cracking an egg into a cup so you can check it for blood spots. He managed to make 6 eggs with no issue (for himself, his brother, his sister and for me) but when I cracked the egg for this cake there was a good example to teach him what he was looking for and a talk about how if I had just cracked it into the bowl of wet ingredients that I would have had to start over again because my whole wet component would have been tainted.

Batter finished and ready to be baked.

Batter finished and ready to be baked.

Adding wet to dry I whisked the batter together. I like to use my whisk when my hands are up for the task because I feel like I can get at the sides of the bowl a bit easier. I used my spring form pan for this cake because once you take the collar off it can be ready to be iced almost as is. I will confess that idea I got from reading online.

Finished cake.

Finished cake.

Into the oven and after about 40 minutes I’ve gotten a cake that comes out clean when I check it. However, as you can see I’ve lived up to my name as something is not completely right with my centre. As I was going through my ingredient list for the photo I noticed that I failed to use 1 tablespoon of baking soda. Instead I only used 1 teaspoon.

In the end it didn’t cause any issues with the overall end product but I can’t help but wonder if it would have at least been more esthetically pleasing.

So let me take a moment to say…it pays to not rush and to really read before measuring out those dry ingredients. Luckily despite this mishap the flavour held up well and once iced the cake looked great.

Ingredients for the icing (from left): Heavy whipping cream, Shannon's White Chocolate Irish Cream and powdered (icing) sugar.

Ingredients for the icing (from left): Heavy whipping cream, Shannon’s White Chocolate Irish Cream and powdered (icing) sugar.

I got the idea for this frosting from my aunt. She tops a gingerbread cake she makes with a nice dollop of whipped cream and I decided to go with that inspiration.

A very simple combination of ingredients make up this frosting. The cake itself is very rich and a heavy frosting would make it too much. In my opinion, sometimes with frosting less is more.

This ended up being almost like the whipped cream on top of your hot chocolate.

Finished frosting.

Finished frosting.

I also love the simplicity of this frosting. You put all your ingredients together in the bowl and use your electric mixer until you have stiff peaks. It works well in a piping bag or in the decorator from Tupperware that I have mentioned before.

Finished cake!

Finished cake!

As you can see….dimple in the middle is wonderfully hidden by my frosting. I also decided to play a bit with the frosting and use a star tip.

I have come to the realization that I do need to work on frosting skills in the future :D.

Double Chocolate Irish Cream Cake with White Chocolate Irish Cream Frosting

Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup cocoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 egg
  • 2/3 cup oil
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup Irish Cream (I used Shannon’s White Chocolate)
  • 1 cup strong black coffee (of you could use a stout I recommend Half Pints Stir Stick)
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup Irish Cream (I used Shannon’s White Chocolate)

Preparation:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Sift together flour, sugar, cocoa, salt and baking soda.
  3. Whisk together egg, oil, buttermilk, 1/4 cup Irish Cream and coffee.
  4. Add wet ingredients to dry and whisk until everything is combined. Be sure to scrape the side of the bowl as you are whisking.
  5. Pour into greased 10 inch spring form pan
  6. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean in the centre
  7. Set aside to cool.
  8. While cake cools combine 2 cups whipping cream, 1/4 cup powdered sugar, and 1/4 Irish Cream in a bowl. Use your hand mixer to beat them until it forms stiff peaks.
  9. Once the cake is cool, remove the collar from the cake pan.
  10. Frost with the whipped cream frosting.

Again if you are in Winnipeg on April 20th be sure to get your tickets for The Chocoholics’ Buffet.

Thank you Anna Coleshaw-Echols of Lunchfor1.com for the opportunity to be featured today.

Playing with Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are a veggie that isn’t too hard to get into my kids. They love to eat them and when they are made there usually isn’t a bite left.

We usually have them one of two ways, however, either as store bought fries or baked and served with honey butter and cinnamon. So when the opportunity for me to play in the kitchen on a cold day presented itself today I decided to see if you could make a scalloped sweet potato.

Quick search and I get this recipe from Allrecipes.com and I figured this could be a good way to start playing with this method of cooking sweet potatoes as there are several different recipes and styles that can be found when you do an internet search.

Ingredients from left: 6 sweet potatoes boiled, peeled and sliced, 2 granny smith apples, grated and brown sugar combined with salt, cinnamon and nutmeg

Ingredients from left: 6 sweet potatoes boiled, peeled and sliced, 2 granny smith apples, grated and brown sugar combined with salt, cinnamon and nutmeg

Whenever I used a recipe from Allrecipes.com I take the time to read through the comments from previous users and see what suggestions I can glean esp when I find I haven’t got an ingredient on hand. In this case I took a suggestion from a poster to grate the apples instead of slicing them and substituted the mace with a combination of half cinnamon and half nutmeg. I think next time I make I will give using apple slices a try.

Getting ready to soften my sweet potatoes.

Getting ready to soften my sweet potatoes.

Now this is the first time I’ve ever done a partial boil on a potato, sweet or otherwise. So I will admit to feeling just a bit overwhelmed by the thought because letting it go too far will, of course, make these potatoes far to soft to be peeled and sliced. When the water came to a boil I checked it every few minutes and once I could feel the potatoes getting soft, but not squishy, I took the pot off the heat and then pulled my potatoes out of the water and put them on a plate to cool.

After peeling.

After peeling.

I let the potatoes cool so that I could easily handle them and then went to peel the skins off. I used a small paring knife and for the most part the skins came off with little effort. There were some parts where the skins didn’t want to come easily but a small wiggle of the knife worked through them and there wasn’t many of them.

Sliced and ready to go. Amazing how much these look like carrots.

Sliced and ready to go. Amazing how much these look like carrots.

One of the things I am having to learn as I work on my culinary skills is how to estimate and visualize the amount you get when you break ingredients down. For example, when I had boiled and peeled the sweet potatoes but before I sliced them I was unsure that I would have enough for a 13 x9 pan. So I was really surprised as I was slicing the sweet potatoes to find I had really did a good amount to make this dish with.

First layer in the pan.

First layer in the pan.

The layering process went quickly. One quick layer of sweet potatoes and then I used the grated apple almost as you would use parmesan in a traditional style scalloped potato. With the sugar and spice sprinkled on top and the first butter layer you can a great idea how these flavours are going to come together.

Ready for the oven.

Ready for the oven.

The house smelled warm and welcoming as these cooked up and when I put the pan on the table the kids were very excited to try and my eldest called dibs on seconds after taking the first bite.

I am looking forward to making these again.

Scalloped Sweet Potatoes and Apples

Recipe from Allrecipes.com

Ingredients:

  • 6 sweet potatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups peeled, cored, and sliced apples (I used two Granny Smith apples and grated them)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground mace (I used the suggestion of 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg)
  • 1/4 cup butter

Preparation:

  1. Place sweet potatoes in a large pot with enough water to cover, and bring to a boil. Boil until tender, then cool, peel, and cut into 1/4 inch slices.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish.
  3. Arrange half the sweet potatoes in the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Layer half of the apples over the sweet potatoes. In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, salt, and mace, then sprinkle half of the mixture over the apple layer. Dot with half the butter. Repeat layers of sweet potato and apple, and top with remaining brown sugar mixture and butter.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 50 minutes, until apples are tender and top is golden brown.

Using Leftovers – Strawberry Mousse

Earlier this week, also the subject of my previous blog post, I made an easy Strawberry Mousse that I was directed to via Pinterest. I had quite a bit left and started turning my thoughts to ways I could use the remainder and wondered if there was a way I could use it for my contribution to a housewarming we were invited to yesterday.

The first thought of using this mousse as our contribution came when I was talking about the school bake sale and one of the hosts for last night’s event said I should bring the mousse because it sounded great.

However, I didn’t want to make something for an adult evening that I would make for a kids’ bake sale so I decided to figure out a way to make it more suited for a celebration.

Thus yesterday in my kitchen Strawberry Mousse Dessert Shots with Drunken Strawberry Puree was created. The really great thing about this recipe is that you can hold back the alcohol when making the puree and this instantly becomes a family friendly item.

Ingredients: Double batch prepared strawberry mousse, Bailey's Irish Cream, and 2 cups pureed fresh strawberries.

Ingredients: Double batch prepared strawberry mousse, Bailey’s Irish Cream, and 2 cups pureed fresh strawberries.

When I originally conceived of the idea for this dessert shot I was going to use coconut rum and put the alcohol in the mousse itself. While discussing the logistics with Kevin he pointed out that the addition of the alcohol could thin the mousse out and cause it to loose the texture that would be expected with the term mousse.

So I turned my attention to my strawberry puree and Kevin told me to feel free to use a bit of his Bailey’s Irish Cream. So to my two cups of pureed fresh strawberries I added 2 teaspoons of white sugar to enhance their sweetness and 10 tablespoons of Irish Cream to achieve my drunken status.

Puree and Bailey's

Puree and Bailey’s

Kevin suggested that we run the puree through the blender after adding the Bailey’s to ensure that the mixture was smooth and he wasn’t wrong. After being run through the blender it was a great consistency.

Using the same 2 ounce plastic shot glasses from my Jell-O Magic Mousse I put 1 tablespoon of the puree into the bottom of each cup. Then taking my Tupperware decorator and filling it with my strawberry mousse I put enough mousse on top of the puree  to cover it completely and when I looked from the side I had good visible layers.

Finished Shot

Finished Shot

I got 30 of these in total. If I had gone with 1 ounce shot glasses I may have been able to double them but in the end I had enough.

After piping I took advantage of Kevin’s suggestion to put them in the deep freeze for the hour before we had to leave so that they would stay firm and cold even though we had other things to do prior to getting to the party and another fridge to keep them in. This was a great idea and my dessert shots set up every well and transported even better. One got knocked in transit and it didn’t run out from the cup as it was nice and firm.

I got many compliments on the shots. I was mostly proud of the fact that I managed to jazz up some leftovers in a way folks completely enjoyed.

Strawberry Mousse Dessert Shots with Drunken Strawberry Puree

Concept and presentation were mine.

Mousse recipe from Cookies and Cups

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz cream cheese, room temp (half a brick of cream cheese)
  • 1 cup Cool Whip, thawed
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2/3 cup chopped strawberries, plus more for garnish *optional
  • 2 cups pureed fresh strawberries
  • 2 teaspoons sugar (or to taste)
  • 150 mls (10 tablespoons) of Bailey’s Irish Cream

Preparation:

  1. With your electric mixer beat the cream cheese and powdered sugar together until smooth, about 30 seconds. Carefully stir in your Cool Whip. When combined fold in your chopped strawberries.
  2. Place bowl in refrigerator to chill for 2 hours.
  3. Clean and hull 1.5lbs of fresh strawberries. I put them through the mini chopper to get them nice and small. In the end I had 2 – ish cups of puree.
  4. Add two teaspoons of sugar to the strawberries and stir until well combined. You can adjust this to your preference and to the sweetness of the berries you started with.
  5. Add 10 tablespoons of Bailey’s Irish Cream. Stir to combine.
  6. Take the puree mixture and run it through the blender until smooth. This is will thicken the puree up a bit as well.
  7. Using 2 ounce plastic shot glasses, place 1 tablespoon of puree in the bottom of the glass.
  8. Pipe strawberry mousse until you have a nice layer on top of the puree.
  9. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Thinking Pink Part 2

Yesterday I wrote about how I agreed to send an item on behalf of each of my school aged children for the Pink Shirt Day inspired Bake Sale.

I sent the Jell – O Magic Mousse cups which was an idea that came easily but I found myself at a loose ends trying to come up with another idea.

Enter Pinterest.

I will confess that I am a Pinterest newbie and until this request had come up hadn’t even peeked at it but an assist from a friend off of Facebook gave me a few pink recipes to choose from.

I decided to go with Strawberry Mousse Sugar Cookie Cups. I liked the look, that it used my favourite mini muffin pan, filled the nut free requirement and most of all would be easy for transport. While I looked it over I did consider that it would be a small bite that kids might not pick over larger cupcakes and cookies and while that did happen when my son gave some away at the end of the day the reviews were positive so I’ll take it.

Starting left: Softened cream cheese and powdered sugar, chopped strawberries, and whipped topping.

Starting left: Softened cream cheese and powdered sugar, chopped strawberries, and whipped topping.

Again I liked that this was a simple recipe. I’ve never made a mousse before and the fact that this wasn’t overly complicated with pretty familiar ingredients made me confident I could make this come together with good results. I will say that I debated with myself while chopping the strawberries if the pieces should be smaller. Turns out that they could have been but it wasn’t a show stopper.

Lesson learned.

The mousse with all the ingredients combined.

The mousse with all the ingredients combined.

I will say that as I was working the ingredients together I found that even with the softened cream cheese and my Kitchen Aid mixer that when I went to fold the strawberries in that it took a bit of work and I was very worried about loosing some fluff in my mousse.

After all when you think about mousse you think of something light and fluffy.

Turns out that it worked out well in the end despite my concerns. After having my mousse combined I put a lid on it and tucked it in the fridge for the 2 hour resting period.

Taking advantage of the 2 hour rest period I turned my attention to my attention to my sugar cookie cups.

Mini muffin pan ready to bake the sugar cookie cups.

Mini muffin pan ready to bake the sugar cookie cups.

Now the author of this recipe used a tube of sugar cookie dough but I couldn’t find one at my neighborhood IGA so I wen with Betty Crocker’s Sugar Cookie Mix. Betty Crocker’s mixes are nut free I’ve found and work in a pinch when you need it.

My first batch of cups were a bit lean as I wasn’t sure how much dough to use in the cups. My second batch turned out much better as I was a bit freer with the dough. They went into the oven and were done in 8 minutes.

I skipped the white chocolate chips after baking because I couldn’t find some I was sure would be nut free.

Finished cookie cup after the pan.

Finished cookie cup out of the pan.

I wasn’t sure how the cup would be formed when I pulled the pan out of the oven. I had what looked like small cookies but as they cooled the centre sunk down and made the cup happen.

As you can see not perfect but still very tasty.

The mousse two hours machine.

The mousse two hours machine.

The picture doesn’t do the mousse justice sadly. The mousse did go a really lovely shade of pink that I was very happy with.

My new kitchen gadget must have. I had to borrow this one from my mom.

My new kitchen gadget must have. I had to borrow this one from my mom.

This lovely decorator is from Tupperware and my next purchase I think. I borrowed this one from my mom’s recent Tupperware order. I’m fully in love with this one! It loads easily and dispenses just as easy. One of the issues I have with my arthritic hands is often I can’t hold a decorating gun without cramping in my hands setting in after only a matter of seconds.

This easy to squeeze decorator made the task go quickly and I am converted to it.

Finished bites! Packed and ready to go.

Finished bites! Packed and ready to go.

I used the large star tip and filled my cups until I had what I thought was a good amount of mousse in each cups.

I still have left over mousse in the fridge. I’m planning to use it this weekend for Strawberry Mousse shots for a friend’s house party.

Jell-O Magic Mousse

Recipe via Pinterest. Originally from Cookies and Cups

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz cream cheese, room temp (half a brick of cream cheese)
  • 1 cup Cool Whip, thawed
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2/3 cup chopped strawberries, plus more for garnish *optional
  • 1/3 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 (16.5 oz) tube sugar cookie dough

Preparation:

  1. With your electric mixer beat the cream cheese and powdered sugar together until smooth, about 30 seconds. Carefully stir in your Cool Whip. When combined fold in your chopped strawberries.
  2. Place bowl in refrigerator to chill for 2 hours.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 ° and spray mini muffin pan with cooking spray. Place 1 1/2 teaspoons of cookie dough into each muffin tin.
  4. Bake for 8 minutes until they are just starting to golden.
  5. Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle 4-5 white chocolate chips in each cup. The heat from the cookies will melt them. As soon as the chips are soft spread carefully in the bottom of the cookie cup.
  6. Release the cookies from the muffin tin by loosening with a knife. Let cool on a wire rack until ready to fill.
  7. When ready to fill the cups, use either a spoon or a piping bag (or ziplock) and fill each with about one teaspoon of mousse.
  8. Garnish with a strawberry slice, if desired.