Happy Jam Tarts

Happy Jam Tarts

We’ve all needed a little cheering up at times, especially this past past year. These cute, happy tarts won’t take your problems away, but they can certainly make you smile, especially if you make them for someone else. They’re super easy to make and they taste better than the ones in the box we ate as kids. You can use store bought pie dough if you want to streamline the process. Any flavor of jam or preserves you have on hand works too!

Feel free to have fun decorating these little cuties. The possibilities are endless. You can use edible glitter, purchased candy eyes or even add mustaches. Happy baking!

Print Recipe
Happy Jam Tarts
Jam-filled tarts with icing
Servings
tarts
Ingredients
Jam Tarts
Icing
Servings
tarts
Ingredients
Jam Tarts
Icing
Instructions
Jam Tarts
  1. Preheat oven to 375º.
  2. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Roll pie dough onto lightly floured surface. Cut into 8 6-inch by 4-inch rectangles, re-rolling dough as necessary.
  4. Make egg wash by beating egg together with milk in a small bowl.
  5. Spread 2 tablespoons of jam onto right half of each rectangle to within 1/2-inch of edges. Brush edges with egg wash.
  6. Fold dough in half, left side over right. Seal edges by pressing with a fork
  7. Poke several holes in the top of each tart with a toothpick.
  8. Bake until golden, about 15-20 minutes.
  9. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool completely.
Icing
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk powdered sugar, milk, vanilla extract and salt together until smooth.
  2. Using a toothpick, add food color a little at a time until desired shade is achieved.
  3. Stir in meringue powder, if using.
  4. Spoon icing onto tarts.
  5. Add sprinkles while icing is wet. When icing has set, add eyes, mouths and bows if desired.
Decorations
  1. For the eyes, make 16 1/8-inch balls of black fondant. Flatten slightly. Adhere with a bit of water.
  2. For the mouths, make 8 1/2-inch long, very thin strips of black fondant. Adhere with a tiny bit of water, using tweezers if necessary.
  3. For the bows, roll out blue fondant to 1/16th-inch thickness. Cut out bows using ***bow cutter. Adhere with a bit of water.
Recipe Notes

*To find Wilton Rose gel food color, click here

**To find meringue powder, click here

***To find bow cutter, click here

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Cherry Blossom Cookies

cherry blossom cookies

Each spring, I look forward to the sight and fragrance of beautiful botanical blooms, especially cherry blossoms. Feeling inspired, I baked some cherry blossom cookies just in time for Mother’s Day. These perfectly pretty, pink cookies are easy to make and fun to decorate. You can sprinkle sparkling sugar on them before baking and call it a day or you can make some pink cherry icing and add sugar pearls or sprinkles. Either way, they look beautiful and taste delicious!

Print Recipe
Cherry Blossom Cookies
Pink cherry flavored sugar cookies with cherry icing
Servings
dozen
Ingredients
Cherry Blossom Cookies
Cherry Icing
Servings
dozen
Ingredients
Cherry Blossom Cookies
Cherry Icing
Instructions
Cherry Blossom Cookies
  1. In a large bowl, beat butter and cream cheese together with an electric mixer on medium speed, until blended.
  2. Add sugar and salt. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy.
  3. Add egg and extracts. Beat on medium speed until combined.
  4. Add flour in two additions. Mix on low speed just until combined.
  5. Mix in food color on low speed, a tiny bit at a time, until desired shade is achieved.
  6. Divide dough into two discs. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours or up to overnight.
  7. Preheat oven to 375º.
  8. Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  9. Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface to 1/8" thickness.
  10. Cut out cookies with 2-inch blossom cutter. ***See note below.
  11. Transfer to prepared baking sheets. (Sprinkle with sparkling sugar if using.)
  12. Bake for 7-9 minutes until bottom edges are lightly browned.
  13. Remove from oven and transfer to cooling rack.
  14. Cool completely then ice with cherry icing, if desired.
  15. Decorate with sugar pearls or sprinkles before icing sets.
Cherry Icing
  1. In a small bowl, whisk first four ingredients together until smooth.
  2. Mix in pink gel food color, a tiny bit at a time, until desired shade is achieved.
Recipe Notes

*Do not use imitation cherry flavoring or extract. Imitation extracts may make your cookies taste medicinal. 

** I used Wilton gel food color in shade rose. Click here to find it. 

*** Use your favorite blossom cookie cutter or click here to view the blossom cutters I used.

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Honeydukes Inspired Pink Coconut Ice Cake

Honeydukes Inspired Pink Coconut Ice Cake by Brownie Mischief

I recently enjoyed a girls’ day out at Universal Studios Hollywood. My daughter is a Harry Potter fan, so of course we beelined straight to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter upon arrival at the theme park. We were spellbound by the ominous looking Hogwart’s Castle and the sparkling snow-topped shops of Hogsmeade. My daughter was in Harry Potter fan heaven, flitting around Hogsmeade, testing out her interactive wand and sipping some refreshing Butter Beer. It’s definitely a must-try

Our favorite shop was Honeydukes sweet shop, where anyone with a sweet tooth can get his or her candy wishes fulfilled. The candy selection was nothing short of magical. We picked up some Chocolate Flies, a Chocolate Frog and some Pink Coconut Ice candy.

Honeydukes Candy                   Pink Coconut Ice Candy

I was most excited to try the Pink Coconut Ice. I’ve been intrigued by the thought of this candy ever since it was mentioned in the book, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling. The Pink Coconut Ice candy is similar to a stiff fudge. It’s very sweet, so you can cut it into small squares and have plenty to share with friends.

Pink Coconut Ice Candy

I imagined the “shimmery pink squares” a little differently so, I decided to build on my imagined version of the coconut candy by making a shimmery pink coconut cake. I used my favorite coconut cake recipe and pink coconut buttercream. I tinted my buttercream with Americolor gel food color soft pink. I covered my cake in large flakes of unsweetened coconut. To find unsweetened coconut flakes, click here. I think the large flakes look more whimsical and add texture, but feel free to use whatever kind of coconut you prefer. I colored my coconut a shimmery, soft pink. Click here to see how I colored my coconut flakes.

Honeydukes Inspired Pink Coconut Ice Cake by Brownie Mischief

You don’t have to be a Harry Potter fan to appreciate this pink, fluffy, coconut-covered cake. I can imagine this pretty cake at any party or event with a pink theme. I hope you enjoy this perfectly Pink Coconut Ice Cake as much as we did!


Print Recipe


Pink Coconut Ice Cake

Moist, fluffy coconut cake with pink buttercream and coconut flakes

Course Dessert

Servings
6-inch cake (serves 6)


Ingredients
Coconut Cake

Pink Coconut Buttercream

Pink Coconut Flakes

Course Dessert

Servings
6-inch cake (serves 6)


Ingredients
Coconut Cake

Pink Coconut Buttercream

Pink Coconut Flakes


Instructions
Coconut Cake
  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Grease three 6-inch cake pans.

  2. In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

  3. In a large bowl, beat butter, sugar and oil together with an electric mixer at medium speed, until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.

  4. Beat in coconut extract. Gradually beat in egg whites until mixture is well combined, stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl.

  5. Beat in flour mixture in three additions, alternating with coconut milk, stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl.

  6. Pour batter into prepared pans, evenly distributing batter between the pans. Bake for 28-32 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of pans comes out clean.

  7. Place pans on wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Remove cakes from pans and place on rack to cool completely.

Pink Coconut Buttercream
  1. In a large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium speed, until light and fluffy.

  2. Add salt. Beat until combined.

  3. Turn off mixer. Add powdered sugar. Mix on low speed until sugar is moistened, then turn up to medium speed and beat until combined.

  4. Add coconut milk a little at a time, until desired consistency is reached. Add coconut extract and beat at medium speed until buttercream is smooth.

  5. Add gel food color with a toothpick, a little at a time, until desired consistency is reached. Beat at low speed until well blended.

  6. Fill and frost cake with Pink Coconut Buttercream.

Pink Coconut Flakes
  1. Place powdered sugar in a small bowl. Add a small amount of petal dust. Whisk together with a small whisk. Add additional petal dust until desired color is reached.

  2. Spread coconut flakes out onto a large shallow dish. Sprinkle powdered sugar mixture over coconut with a small sieve. Toss gently with gloved hands.

  3. Place cake on a baking sheet to catch excess coconut. Press colored coconut onto sides and top of cake.


Recipe Notes

*Do not substitute all-purpose flour. For best results weigh your dry ingredients. **For best results, use natural coconut extract. Imitation coconut flavorings may give your baked goods an unpleasant flavor. ***If your coconut milk is separated when you open the can, simply place it in a blender to emulsify before using. To find my favorite 6-inch cake pans, click here. To find the gel food color I used, click here. To find unsweetened coconut flakes, click here. To find the edible pearl dust I used, click here.


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Unicorn Rainbow Milkshake

Unicorn Rainbow Milkshake by Brownie Mischief

I’ve been dying to try one of those over-the-top milkshakes that have been catching my eye on social media for some time now. Also known as freakshakes, some magnificently indulgent ones can be found in Australia, the UK and New York City. It’s certainly on my bucket list to go meet up with one of those glorious creations in person and dig in! In the meantime, I decided to concoct my humble version here at home, in honor of National Unicorn Day. Yup, unicorns have their own day! Whoever invented celebrating national days, I thank you. It gives me a great excuse to indulge in a delicious treat…not that I need an excuse.

There are so many versions of unicorn milkshakes out there and I love every one of them! In fact, anything that’s unicorn related sets my heart aflutter. The current unicorn craze won’t seem to go away and, as you can imagine, that is just fine by me! One of the cutest unicorn things I’ve seen is my adorable cousin Nicole, scooting around in her fluffy unicorn slippers. Unicorn slippers are a must while drinking a Unicorn Rainbow Milkshake!

To make the Unicorn Rainbow Milkshake, you’ll need:

  • Unicorn Horn Cookie (Recipe below.)
  • Fondant Rainbow Topper (Click here for instructions.)
  • 3 ounces (about 1/2 cup) candy melts in the color of your choice
  • vegetable shortening, melted (about 1 tablespoon)
  • piping bag or squeeze bottle
  • tall glass (24 ounce)
  • rainbow sprinkles
  • 8 ounces vanilla ice cream
  • 1/3 cup milk (any kind)
  • 6 ounces rainbow sherbet
  • cotton candy
  • whipped cream
  • edible gold star glitter (Click here to find glitter.)

Place candy melts in a microwave safe container. Heat in the microwave for 1 minute at 50% power. Stir. Heat in the microwave for 10 second intervals until melted and smooth. If your melted candy melts are too thick, stir in melted shortening a teaspoon at a time until desired consistency is reached. Transfer the melted candy melts to a disposable piping bag or a squeeze bottle. (Alternately, you can use a plastic zip bag.) Place your glass on a rimmed plate or baking sheet. Snip off the tip of the piping bag and drizzle the melted candy along the rim of the glass. Immediately sprinkle on the rainbow sprinkles, before the melted candy sets.

Combine vanilla ice cream and milk in a blender and blend until smooth. Place 3 scoops of rainbow sherbet into your glass. Pour vanilla milkshake over the sherbet scoops in your glass. Top with cotton candy, whipped cream, a Unicorn Horn Cookie, a Fondant Rainbow Topper and a sprinkle of edible gold star glitter. Put on your unicorn slippers and enjoy your unicorn milkshake!

Unicorn Horn Cookie by Brownie Mischief

Print Recipe
Unicorn Horn Cookies
Sugar cookies shaped like unicorn horns.
Course Dessert
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Passive Time 11/2 hours
Servings
cookies (*see note)
Ingredients
Course Dessert
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Passive Time 11/2 hours
Servings
cookies (*see note)
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add the egg yolk and extracts. Beat at medium speed until combined.
  4. Gradually add the flour mixture, beating at low speed just until combined. Do not over mix.
  5. Cover dough with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  6. Line 2 large cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  7. Form dough into tablespoon size balls. (I used a tablespoon cookie scoop to make them uniform in size.) Form each ball of dough into a log, tapering at one end.
    Unicorn Horn Cookie Tutorial
  8. Twist two logs together to form a horn shape. Repeat with remaining logs. Insert skewers or lollipop sticks, if using. Place about 2 inches apart on prepared cookie sheets.
  9. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  10. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Bake until golden brown, about 13-15 minutes. Transfer cookies to wire rack to cool.
    Unicorn Horn Cookies Tutorial
  11. When cookies have cooled completely, place them on a parchment paper lined work surface. (You can use the same pieces of parchment paper that you baked them on.) If you are using lollipop sticks, you may want to cover the sticks with plastic wrap to keep them clean. Spray with edible gold spray. Let dry. Apply an additional coat of edible gold spray, if desired.
Recipe Notes

*This recipe makes about 14 unicorn horn cookies, but if you only need a few, you can roll out the remaining dough and use your favorite cookie cutter to make cookies. The baking time will be a bit less. You can also make as many unicorn horns as you need and freeze the remaining dough for later use.

**To make toppers as shown, use wooden skewers. To make cookie pops, use lollipop sticks.

***Click here to find Wilton Gold Color Mist

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Mini Chocolate Hand Pies for Pi Day

Mini Chocolate Hand Pies by Brownie Mischief

Pi Day is a day to celebrate mathematics, or more specifically, the ratio of a circle’s circumference to it’s diameter. While I do appreciate math for it’s precision, I also feel a bit peeved at math for making my brain hurt! Ok, I’m sorry math. I forgive you. I do need you! How would I bake without you? So today I will celebrate math (and also my love for puns) with these tender, fudgy mini hand pies!

Mini Chocolate Hand Pies by Brownie Mischief

Since pi is all about circles, I used a 2 3/4-inch circle cutter to make round pies, but you can cut them into any shape you like. You could cut larger circles, fold them in half and call them empanadas. Rectangles are very popular with Pop Tart fans and you don’t need a special cutter, but a ruler would be helpful. I think squares would be cute, too! Whatever your shape of choice, my buddy math can hook you up!

I used a stencil to add some powdered sugar polka dots to my mini pies. I may have gone a little overboard with my circles, but who’s going to stop me? I think they look pretty cute, but If you don’t have a stencil, a sprinkle or two of powdered sugar will do just fine! Alternately, you could drizzle them with some melted white chocolate. I had a bit of white chocolate on hand, so I can confidently say, that version is yummy too!

Print Recipe
Mini Chocolate Hand Pies
Mini chocolate pies with fudgy filling and a tender chocolate crust.
Course Dessert
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Passive Time 1 1/2 hours
Servings
Ingredients
Crust
Filling
Finishing Touches
Course Dessert
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Passive Time 1 1/2 hours
Servings
Ingredients
Crust
Filling
Finishing Touches
Instructions
Crust
  1. In a large bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt and baking powder.
  2. Add butter and cream cheese to the flour mixture. Use a pastry cutter or your fingers to cut butter and cream cheese into the flour mixture until it resembles pea-sized crumbs.
  3. Add 2 tablespoons of the cold water to the mixture. Stir gently just until the mixture begins to hold together.
  4. Turn mixture out onto work surface. Press mixture together and fold over onto itself.
  5. Form dough into a disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Filling
  1. In a small microwavable bowl, melt chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk in the microwave. Heat for 10 second intervals, stirring until smooth.
  2. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
Assembly
  1. Preheat oven to 375ºF. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together egg and remaining 1 tablespoon water.
  3. On lightly floured surface, roll dough to 1/8-inch thickness.
  4. Cut out 20 circles with a 2 3/4-inch circle cutter (or cut into desired shapes of your choice).
  5. Place 10 dough circles about 1 inch apart onto prepared baking sheet. Top each with 1 tablespoon of filling.
    Mini Chocolate Hand Pies
  6. With a small pastry brush or your finger, brush egg mixture around the perimeter of each of the filled dough circles.
  7. Top each with the 10 remaining dough circles. Crimp edges together with a fork. Brush pies with remaining egg mixture.
    Mini Chocolate Hand Pies
  8. Bake for 25 minutes or until crust is crispy and browned.
  9. Transfer to wire racks to cool. Sprinkle cooled pies with powdered sugar or drizzle with melted white chocolate.
    Mini Chocolate Hand Pies
Recipe Notes

*The chocolate chips you use depends on personal preference. Bittersweet chocolate chips give a more intense chocolate flavor, while semi-sweet chocolate chips yield a slightly sweeter finished product.

To find my favorite circle cutters click here.                                                                                  To find the polka-dot stencil click here.

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Cocoa Meringue Brownies

One of my favorite things to top desserts with are meringue cookies. They’re as light as air and they look so pretty and whimsical! The color and flavor combinations are endless, so you can really have some fun getting creative. I decided to whip some up, especially for placing on top of my favorite brownies. They take even the most humble brownies to a new level. You can use your favorite brownie recipe or even a boxed brownie mix. I won’t judge! I like to make the meringues a day or two ahead since they take quite a while to bake in the oven. While they bake, a subtle chocolate scent will waft through your kitchen, reminding you of the smell of hot cocoa. They even taste like hot cocoa! You can make your brownies a few hours ahead or the night before. I cut mine into rounds with a 2 1/2-inch cutter. I cut 12 rounds of this size from a 13 x 9-inch batch of brownies. Right before serving, spoon some thick, glossy chocolate ganache on the brownies, then top them with your pretty meringues! To make these little bits of chocolate heaven, you’ll need:

  • 1 batch Cocoa Meringues (recipe below)
  • 1 batch of your favorite brownies
  • 1 batch chocolate ganache (see notes)

Print Recipe
Cocoa Meringues
Pretty, light and crispy treats that taste like hot cocoa!
Course Dessert
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Passive Time 2 hours
Servings
batch
Course Dessert
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Passive Time 2 hours
Servings
batch
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 200ºF. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Sift together powdered sugar and cocoa powder in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  3. Place egg whites in a large bowl. Whip egg whites with the whip attachment of an electric mixer, at medium speed, until foamy.
  4. Add cream of tartar and salt to the egg whites. Whip at medium-high speed until soft peaks form.
  5. Gradually add granulated sugar and continue whipping, at medium-high speed until stiff, glossy peaks form.
  6. Stop mixer. Sprinkle powdered sugar and cocoa mixture over egg whites and whip at low speed until until incorporated, about 10 seconds.
  7. *This step is optional. Place a large, disposable pastry bag, fitted with a round piping tip, into a tall drinking glass. (I used a Wilton tip #12.) Fold the top third of the bag over the glass, forming a cuff. Using a small, clean paintbrush, paint thin, vertical stripes of food coloring on the inside of the bag, from the piping tip to the edge of the fold.
  8. Spoon egg white mixture into the pastry bag. Pipe small kisses, 1 inch apart, onto the prepared baking sheets. (I made mine about 3/4-inch to 1-inch in diameter. If you'd like larger kisses, use a larger size piping tip.)
  9. Bake for 2 hours. Turn off oven and leave meringues in oven to cool and continue drying out for an additional 2 hours. Store tightly covered at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Recipe Notes

To make the chocolate ganache, I used a ratio of two parts semi-sweet chocolate to one part heavy cream. (Weighing the ingredients will give you the most accurate ratio.) Place 8 ounces of chopped semi-sweet chocolate into a medium bowl. Heat 4 ounces (1/2 cup) of heavy cream in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring the cream just to a boil. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate, making sure to cover it completely. Let sit for 2 minutes, then stir gently until smooth.

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