Tag Archives: baking

Friday From My Kitchen:) Another Baking Frenzy

17 Oct

“Some people say they are addicted to sugar. I’m addicted to making and baking and sharing the sugar. Does that make me a “sugar pusher?”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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Well, she’s at it again. I had a big bowl of lemon cream cheese frosting left over from last week, so I had to use that up, right? So I made more mini lemon cheese cakes. But, cream cheese was on sale at Kroger this week, and not everyone likes lemon, so I decided to make a batch of my infamous mini no-bake peanut butter pies.

Please don’t ask for the recipe. I don’t use no stinkin’ recipe. I don’t even measure the sugar anymore. I just eye ball it. Haven’t had any complaints yet.

I think I ate two of these and gave the rest away. I don’t make them to eat them, I just need to make and bake and give them away. OH NO! I am a “sugar pusher.” I wonder if there’s a support group for that? S.P.A. Sugar Pushers Anonymous.

It was a fantastic fun Friday. The air was cool and crisp, and the sky was crystal blue. I didn’t catch the sunset for a photo because I was on the phone. But, even better, I got to FaceTime with my adorable granddaughters.

A perfect ending to a perfect day, Black Russian Friday. Cheers, my friends.

Saturday:) Well, She’s At It Again…Baking Frenzy

4 Oct

” I had these eggs I needed to use up, and some cream cheese and sugar that’s just been sitting there, not to mention a shelf of brownie mixes and marshmallows that have been neglected. Better get baking.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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Because I haven’t been able to bake for my firemen, I have all these baking supplies and sundries that need to get used up. Today was a good baking day. I really liked those mini lemon cheesecakes I made last week, so I made some of those again. Then, I decided the eggs were sitting and lonely in the fridge for too long, so maybe some brownies with marshmallows were in order, too.

Not to worry, I gave most of it all away. I don’t need a purpose to bake, baking is the purpose. My friend Bonita was moving today, so she got a tray. My friends Bob and Joni were having a party, they got a tray. Neighbor’s and friends got some too. Even the mail lady. My friends and neighbors don’t seem to mind. My compulsion is usually appreciated.

Happy Saturday, my friends. (I have a few left. Come on over.)

Wednesday:) What’s Cookin’ Miss Toni? Mini Lemon Cheesecakes

23 Sep

“I have been possessed by the ghosts of Betty Crocker, Mrs. Butterworth, and Julia Child all rolled into one. Lord, help me.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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Another cool and dreary day, so that means… stay in your pajamas, clean out the closet, spend countless hours on Facebook and bake something. I made some lemony cream cheesey cool whip stuff the other day and wasn’t that pleased with the results. So today, I decided to modify the concoction with my haphazard “what’s in the pantry” method of baking. I was going to make cupcakes, but decided on mini cheesecakes. No rhyme or reason.

I looked at the recipe inside the cream cheese, added a couple of eggs to two boxes of the cream cheese, a 1/2 cup of sugar and a little vanilla. I put a lemon cookie at the bottom of a paper lined muffin pan, and baked them.

While they were baking, I took my leftover lemony stuff, added another cream cheese, a can of Betty Crocker lemon frosting (thus the possession) and powdered sugar. (How much? What was left in the bag) I made some lemon pudding too, just used 1/2 the milk instead 2 cups. Then I just mixed that all up and added more sugar as needed. Crazy. I’m still not sure what I added.

I used my handy-dandy Wilton frosting tube and added the lemony-cheesey-pudding to frost. Oh yes, the frosting looked kinda thin, so I added a stick of melted butter and more powdered sugar, so it will set up better when refrigerated. (I hope)

I’m not sure how they taste yet. But, I’ll ask the neighbors later. They look good.

Happy “What’s Cookin’ Miss Toni Wednesday.”

Wednesday:) What’s Cookin’ Miss Toni?

28 May

“Some people are talented creative cooks and bakers. Me, I just slap stuff together and delicious concoctions are created.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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If you know me well, you know I don’t follow recipes. I just kinda fly by the seat of my pants. Well, the other day, I had some left over brownies. ** How is that humanly possible, you ask? Left over brownies? Well, I’m still not able to take goodies over to my favorite fire stations, and I still have that inner burning desire to bake every now and then. You see the dilemma.

I also had some left over peanut butter no bake pie filling in the fridge, so I decided to combine the great flavors.

RECIPE-KINDA:

Leftover brownies (from a mix)

Leftover peanut butter pie filling: 1 cream cheese, 1cup powdered sugar, 1 container cool whip, around 1/2 cup peanut butter.

Melted chocolate chips with a tiny vegetable oil (just a few drops)

Taste better refrigerated.

Oh boy, those were good. I still had a little peanut butter filling left, so I put a scoop on top of an Oreo cookie, to make a few mini pies. Oh yes, I also melted some chocolate chips to swirl on the top for extra chocolates goodness.

I, of course, sampled a few, then dispersed the rest to friends and neighbors who were gracious enough to take them off my hands. Thank goodness for friends!

Wednesday:) What’s Cookin’ Miss Toni

13 Feb

“Baking makes me happy, and sharing my baking makes me even happier. It’s a win-win.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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What a dreary bleak rainy day. You know what always cheers me up? Cooking and baking. Unfortunately, I never learned the art of portion control. Fortunately, for friends and neighbors, I never learned the art of portion control.

Today, I was baking mini cupcakes. Not just a batch, but massive quantities of mini cupcakes. I offered to bake for our Art Club meeting in the morning, and I made extra in preparation for my senior art group Friday, and to share with friends.

I probably made over a hundred yellow cake/cherry and just as many chocolate.

Then, a little dab of cherry frosting and a heart shaped conversation candy to finish off the decoration.

I’m going to be a busy girl.

Saturday:) Some Shakin’ and Bakin’

8 Sep

β€œBy doing what you love and finding how to serve, you add a very special joy to life.”

― Abhishek Kumar

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Yesterday, I talked about the fun and fabulous art show at The Cove featuring Kim Guthrie and Jennifer McCrary. But, what I didn’t mention was last week, Kim called me and asked me if I’d do her a huge favor and bake some of my cute mini cupcakes for her show. Most all my artist friends know that I’m famous for my brownies and mini cupcakes, because I bring them to our monthly McKinney Creative Community meetings. So, I was honored that she wanted to serve my cupcakes.

The theme of the art show was florals and succulents, so Kim requested pale frostings instead of my regular chocolate. I had seen this cool concept on Pinterest of layering three or four different colors of frosting on plastic then rolling it up, twisting into a tube shape and putting it in the piping bag. So, I thought I’d try it. Yikes! It took a little finessing and fussing and changing tubes and bags before I figured it out.

Not as easy as it looked on Pinterest. My plastic frosting tube was too big for my dispenser, so I had to finesse it into a pastry bag, and I had a heck of a time finding the right parts. πŸ€¦β€β™€οΈ But, it turned out ok. Tip: Don’t experiment with a new baking process two hours before you’re supposed to drop them off.

The chocolate cupcakes I frosted in different pastel colors.

They looked very nice on the refreshment table that Kim and Jennifer set up.

So, that’s what’s been bakin’ this weekend. Now for the shakin’ part, last night, Helene and I went over to the dance at the senior center. That was fun. Today, I slept in after staying up too late doing lots of nothin’. This afternoon, I went over to visit my dear friend Jerry, who just got home from several weeks at the hospital and rehab. He was asleep when I arrived, so I went back later in the evening.

At 6 pm, I met some of the girls at Braum’s for dinner and ice cream. We just giggle and laugh and tell outrageously hilarious stories. I really should record these sessions. We could have our own sit-com. Instead of the Golden Girls, we could be the Silver Girls. There’s an idea! (You can tell my arm isn’t long enough for a good selfie, but you get the idea.)

Another fine Saturday with friends, and a wonderful weekend sharing and caring. Life is good.

Saturday:) Some More Baking, Storms and My Silent Sanctuary

22 Jun

β€œWhen words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.”

― Ansel Adams

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I stayed up till after 2 am baking my mini cupcakes. I like to do the baking part the night before, but I prefer to frost them right before I need to deliver them, so they’re fresh. I hate dry crusty frosting, don’t you?

I was baking for St. Gabriel’s big Casino Night fundraiser tonight. The Women’s Club sent an email requesting baked goods. Say no more. But also, as is my tradition, when I bake for one thing, I also make extra for my firemen.

I didn’t set an alarm or have an early agenda, so I woke up, and took a short walk, less than two miles. It was already pretty darn hot. Google said, “The temperature in McKinney is 95, but with the humidity and heat index, it feels like 105.” Yikes!

I came home, drank a lot of water, then proceeded to frost and package up the mini cupcakes. These are my favorite. Chocolate with a cherry from pie filling hiding inside.

My first stop was Fire Station 9. They really appreciate my sweet treat drive by visits.

Then, off to church with two containers. When I got to the community center, there weren’t too many cars and the inside looked dark. But, the door was unlocked and I saw four men sitting at a distant table. All the other tables and chairs were set up and ready for the big event later. One gentleman came over and said,”Thank you,” when I said I had some cupcakes.

The bottom of the foil pans didn’t feel that sturdy and the plastic covers kept popping off. For some reason I said, “CUIDADO!” when he picked up the containers. I’m not sure why? Maybe he looked a little Hispanic, it just slipped out. And that means “Watch out,” or “Be careful,” in Spanish.

Without skipping a beat, he responded while juggling the flimsy aluminum pans, “Muchisimas gracias.” OK! He spoke Spanish. Phew!

I decided to stop in the adjoining sanctuary just a few feet away. It was Saturday afternoon and no one else was around. I love having the entire silent sanctuary all to myself. And, our beautiful new church is like an amazing old European Cathedral. It’s very quiet and peaceful and I feel like I’m alone there, talking to God, and He’s listening to only me. I’m pretty sure He is.

When I got home, it was a little overcast and they were calling for big storms, so I figured I’d try and get a little more walking in. When it’s hot, I prefer to take several short walks instead of a long one. A couple of times, I over did it and had to sit under a tree to catch my breath when I got light headed. Not good. I managed to get 3.5 miles total in today.

I barely got home when the skies opened up. A nice refreshing rain. The temp is 78 now instead of in the 90’s.

So, a very nice Saturday so far. I have dinner plans at Miss Pat’s and then we are off to the Performing Arts Center on the square for a concert at 8. What a perfect day.

Happy Saturday, my friends.

Friday:) Find Your Passion, Share Your Passion

22 Jun

“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”

~Maya Angelou

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I love this quote from Maya Angelou. There is so much more to life than making money and only looking out for yourself. And, what better way to live life than with passion and compassion.

I have many passions… art, painting, writing, baking, dancing, singing and sharing. The first thing I wanted to share today was my no-recipe recipe for Clean Out the Freezer Fruity Upside down Cake,

My freezer is always jam-packed to the gills with fruit, vegetables, left-overs and ice cream, of course. I tend to buy more groceries than I need, mostly because I buy food, then end up going out to eat all the time. Thus, I have food to freeze, not to mention left overs from all those lunches and dinners to freeze.

So, when I want to use up a few things in the freezer, I bake a cake. I went into the freezer and took out several different packages of frozen fruit. I had strawberries, blueberries, mango, and peaches. Then, I mixed in a can of apple pie filling.

First things first. I like to make a funny face with the mix before I start blending. It’s a goofy tradition I have. Humor is important.

I melt 1/2 stick of butter and add about a cup of brown sugar (I don’t measure) into a foil lined pan, stir that around till the pan is coated. Mix up the defrosted fruit with a can of apple pie filling and pour on top of sugar/butter mixture. Then, I use a yellow cake mix following directions and pour over fruit.

I bake at 350, but you can’t really time it. It takes a lot longer than a regular cake because of all the gooey fruit, so, I just keep testing doneness with the touch cake with your finger method. It has to bounce not sink. Bakers know that. Once it looks done, I actually turn off the oven and let it sit in the oven a while longer.

After it cools, I put a platter on top and flip it over. That’s what the foil is for. It peels away, leaving a beautiful fruity topping. Yum!

Then, share with your favorite local fire station.

Well, that was last week. After I’m done posting this, I have more baking to do tonight, as I volunteered to bake a mess of mini cupcakes for the St. Gabriel’s Casino Night tomorrow. A baker’s work is never done.

Sharing is caring. My mission in life…

Saturday:) Sayin’ Thank You To My Favorite “Peeps”

20 Apr

“Everybunny loves somebunny, sometime.”

(Popular song)

“Easter is a good time to count your blessings and say thank you to all your Peeps.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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This morning, I was sittin’ around with all my Peeps. Everybunny was relaxing. But, that didn’t last long. I still had much to do.

Yesterday, I baked around 150 mini chocolate cupcakes with a cherry in the middle, then made the frosting. This morning, it was time to frost, decorate and dispense the marshmallowy concoctions.

Now, here’s my secret, I use a thin pretzel to secure the Peep to the cupcake. Otherwise they tip over. (Experience talking)

My Peep army with General Godiva leading the troops. The Bunny Battalion.

Packing up the troops into smaller Bunny Brigades to take over to my Peeps at the Fire Stations.

I know, I know, it’s not all about bunnies and candy and Easter egg hunts and new clothes. It’s about the ultimate sacrifice, death and resurrection of Our Lord. But, it’s still a good time to count your blessings and say thank you to the people who sacrifice and care for us here on earth.

Happy Easter my friends.

Friday:) Fun and Games and My Bunny Baking Frenzy

19 Apr

“It’s all fun and games until I break out the marshmallow Peeps. Then, I get serious.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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With Easter just around the corner, I needed to start my baking frenzy today. It’s Good Friday, so a “Good” day to begin. I think I have all the cupcakes baked, and the frosting is made and in the fridge, waiting to frost them tomorrow. Then, I get to add the adorable marshmallow Peeps. Then, to stop over to a few of my local fire stations and a few neighbors, I frosted just a few today just to check out the consistency of the frosting. Looks good.

Let the frenzy begin! I’ll let you see the results tomorrow.

Hoppy Easter!