Tiramisu Cupcakes~!

Tiramisu Cupcake

It’s been AGES. Life has gotten in the way, 2.5 jobs, 2 new puppies, ensuing craziness! But to make it up to you, I made these delicious Tiramisu Cupcakes. And that Spring-y liner is so appropriate for the season, I love it!

Also, here are my new babies. Aren’t they ADORBS?!

Jade and Lexa

Jade and Lexa

We adopted them from the Humane Society right after the New Year, they were about 8 weeks old at the time. Love my puppies!  Even though they still pee and poop in the house D: We’re working on it!

On to the tiramisu cupcakes! I can’t recall when I started loving tiramisu, although I do remember an instance in high school when a classmate brought in a giant tupperware (what’s the non-brand name for that? storage container? that sounds weird…) with like, a VAT of tiramisu inside. I thought it looked like a giant mashed up mess and was totally grossed out :\

Fast-forward a few years to university and I was scarfing down tiramisu like nobody’s business. I had no idea what was in it, but it looked super complicated and intimidating.

For my birthday this year (28! entirely too close to 30) I thought I’d take the leap and finally try to make tiramisu, but then my recipe search popped up Tiramisu Cupcakes by BrownEyedBaker. Who doesn’t love cupcakes? And I am a huge fan of single-serving desserts :)  The recipe looked all kinds of complicated, just as I had feared, but I re-worked the directions a bit to make it easier to follow. I also tweaked the recipe a TEENSY bit, because the first time I made it, the cupcakes were very dense, not fluffy like I had imagined.

Continue reading

Peppermint Bit Cookies

Happy Thanksgiving!  I am not going to see my family today, but I will be going out with Mr. Dumpling for dinner at a new (to us) restaurant :)  It’s always fun to try new places! And new recipes~

I’ve been having issues with my cookies for the past few months. They were turning out flatter than flat, almost falling apart from flatness… and prior to that, I had issues with super puffy cookies that tasted bleh :(  But, I think I’ve fixed it!

Here is my recipe for Peppermint Bit Cookies :)  It’s a basic cookie recipe that I’ve fiddled with a bit, I used Andes Peppermint Bits and a little bit of mint extract, but usually I use it to make Chocolate Chip Cookies (and leave out the mint).

Ingredients

  • ½ cup (1 stick) salted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¾ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp. mint extract
  • 1 ½ cups (6 oz) all-purpose flour *If at all possible, please weigh the flour
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ¾ tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. smallish-medium coarse sea salt (not table salt)
  • 6 oz peppermint bits (half a bag)

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  1. Cream butter, sugar, and brown sugar until it is nice and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  2. Add egg, vanilla, and mint and beat for another 2 minutes.
  3. Add baking soda, baking powder, salt, and flour until cookie batter is fully incorporated.
  4. Finally add peppermint bits until well distributed. The cookie batter should be somewhat thick – if it is runny, add small dustings of flour until it becomes thicker.
  5. Using a small cookie scoop, drop balls of dough onto a parchment lined cookie sheet, about 2 inches apart.
  6. Bake for 12 minutes until the edges are nice and golden brown.
  7. Remove from heat and let cookies sit on cookie sheet for a couple of minutes.
  8. Transfer the parchment paper (with cookies still on it) onto a cool surface and let cool for a little bit, then move onto a cooling rack.
  9. Eat!

Old Bay Shrimp and Sausage

This dish is SUPER simple to make! All you need is one pan and one plate, essentially. I forgot to take pics while making this (sorrysorry) but it really doesn’t need many~

Granted, I cheat a bit – the shrimp I buy is frozen in a bag, shell still on but already butterflied so it’s very easy to peel. I never really measure/count the amount of shrimp I use, basically I just ask Boyfriend how much he wants to eat and adjust accordingly.  I bought the Andouille sausage in a 2-pack at Walmart, based on recommendation from my sis. I use green bell peppers because Boyfriend likes, you can use any bell pepper you want, or even add other vegetables :)

One note on this recipe: KEEP STIRRING.

Ingredients

  • 20-25 medium size shrimp (or large, w/e you want!)
  • 1 large Andouille sausage (or whatever sausage you prefer)
  • 1 bell pepper
  • cooking spray/olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1½ tsp Old Bay seasoning
  • ½ tsp fresh ground pepper
  • dash of salt
  • ¼ cup water

Pre-directions: Peel and de-vein the shrimp. Slice up the sausage (I also halved the slices). Chop up the bell pepper (whichever color you love best!) into bite-size pieces. Mince the garlic cloves. It’s easier if you have all this at the ready.

  • If you’re like me, the garlic that you pre-peeled and stored in the fridge somehow started growing more garlic from itself. Completely freak out and call your sister (at 11pm) and ask if it’s poisonous now (potato horror stories come to mind). She advises you to just cut around the sprouts and use it anyway. You find fresher garlic buried deep in the crisper and use that instead…just to be safe.
  • Also if you’re like me, you’ve rarely cooked shrimp on your own before and don’t really know when it’s fully done, so I usually just keep cooking until it doesn’t look all clear and grey anymore. The whiter the flesh is, the better!

Actually, one more note: Look at the amount of ingredients that are going into the skillet. Then look at your skillet. Are you sure you chose the right skillet? This shit ain’t cooking down AT ALL. I would almost recommend one of those stove-woks (you know, with the flat bottom?). I wish I had me a stove wok :( I don’t know how many shrimps and bell peppers and sausage bits I flung all over the stovetop and had to frantically rescue, at the cost of singed fingertips. Keep this in mind before you start!

Directions

  1. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat liberally with olive oil/cooking spray.
  2. Add shrimp, Old Bay seasoning, black pepper, and salt.
  3. Toss the shrimp to coat with seasoning, stirring frequently until fully cooked (about 3 minutes). Dump it into a plate and set aside.
  4. In the now dirty (read: delicious) and seasoned pan, coat again with olive oil/cooking spray and add bell pepper. Stir and cook for about 2 minutes.
  5. Add the sliced sausage, stirring frequently until sausage is nicely browned.
  6. Now add the minced garlic and cooked shrimp, still keep stirring! Cook for just about 1 minute so that the garlic is nicely incorporated and the shrimp is all reheated n stuff. At this point I also added a teaspoon of hot oil, because Boyfriend loves him some spicy.
  7. Add ¼ cup water, scrape the pan to loosen the delicious browned bits. Let it cook down a bit into a light sauce, still stirring.
  8. Plate and eat!

I think this would taste super yummy over some rice or noodles, but I was in too much of a hurry last night, lol. If you want to do this, add a little bit more seasoning and water at the end so you have a bit of extra sauce :)

Hope you like this as much as my boyfriend does~!

Oreo Cheesecake COOKIES

I love cheesecake. Which is kinda funny, considering I absolutely, categorically refused to eat anything with cream cheese until about 2½ years ago. Then one day at work, my boss brought us all bagels…and horrors! there was NO BUTTER.  I had to use cream cheese. And it was delicious.

But not as delicious these Oreo Cheesecake Cookies.

Continue reading

Comfort Zones

I’ve almost always cooked just for myself, so I never really put much thought or effort into what I made, it was just sustenance. I am trying to slowly step out of my comfort zone and make new things, usually things I know (or hope) the Boyfriend will like – in case I don’t, lol. And like most people, I am completely uncomfortable stepping out of my comfort zone.  For as long as I remember (which, if we’re being honest, is not that long…I have a horrible memory), I’ve automatically assumed that anything that I’ve never tried is disgusting. Pretty childish, eh? But I’m trying to move past it! Slowly, but surely…

The only vegetable I eat is broccoli. This does not make for very interesting meals in the Dumpling house. Usually some form of meat with a side of steamed broccoli. Bo-ring.

In an effort to branch out, I made this yummy (to him, at least) Old Bay Shrimp & Sausage stir-fry for the Boyfriend a bit ago, which had green peppers in it. I think someday soon I might be able to force myself to try a green pepper. Unless it’s spicy. Are they spicy? I have no idea.

On the plus side, my sister loves vegetables. I am sure you will see many a vegetable dish come out of EatDouMiao. I am searching for another vegetable I can tolerate, hopefully I will find one soon! I don’t count corn or potatoes because they are basically starches, not real veggies.

This post was supposed to be about comfort zones. I think I went off on a little tangent, but basically my efforts here are to help grow and expand my food palette and to change to healthier eating habits. There are things that I absolutely refuse to eat (bean sprouts, tomatoes, onions) and things that I am willing to try. I’ve never made soups or sauces, never tried to make any really complicated dishes, but I plan to try very soon :)  I’m much more confident in my baking than I am in my cooking, so you will probably see a lot more baking entries than anything else. My sister is much more accomplished (and daring) in the kitchen.

If you’re curious about the current banner (which is a bunch of little mouse pastries), I made them for a Game of Thrones premiere party earlier this year. Cocktail wieners wrapped in croissant dough with almond slices for ears and black sesame for eyes. Labor intensive, but fun to make and everyone at the party loved them!  That’s what I love about cooking, what I think most people love – watching it disappear. No leftovers. That’s the goal.

Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes with Cinnamon Whipped Cream

Image

I’ve been wanting to try making cheesecake for ages now, but until I moved in with the Boyfriend, there really wasn’t much of a point of making an enormous cheesecake just for myself (well…at least not a very healthy point!). I helped my aunt make one a few months ago when I visited her, just a basic NY Cheesecake and it kind of failed :( The flavor was good, but it had huuuuuge cracks all in it and the crust was soggy.

Image

See? You can tell there is way too much moisture from the pooling in the area where a slice was removed. I read that mini cheesecakes were more forgiving, so I went searching for yummy (easy) recipes.  The one I’m about to share with you is one from PinchMySalt, Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes. I usually tweak recipes on my second or third go-around, so this one is, for all intents and purposes, the exact same recipe. I am just sharing my experiences with it :).

Continue reading

Mom’s Stuffed Jalapenos

Mom’s Stuffed Jalapenos

My mom used to make these fairly often for my dad and brother, who both like spicy food. I, however, do not like even a teeny tiny little bit of spiciness. Too much burning in my mouth! My boyfriend loves them, so I got the recipe (more like process) from my mom and dad. Hopefully you will enjoy them more than I do!

(Note: I have no idea how to make the pork stuffing, I recently moved in with my bf and my parents provided me with various pre-made things, such as dumpling meat, sauces, dough, and other frozen meats.  It’s basically ground pork, sugar, salt, pepper, napa, chives or some other green thing, chinese fivespice, and…other stuff.  I’m sure you can find various recipes for this versatile meat online.)

Image(these are raw)

Ingredients:
Jalapenos (a lot of them, usually the smaller ones are spicier so we use those, I think i had like 20 or 30)
Mom’s Ground Pork Dumpling Meat
Veg Oil
2 Minced Garlic Cloves
¼ cup Water
2 Tbsp Soy Sauce
Sugar
MSG
Chicken Flavoring?  (Box says Granulated Chicken Bouillon Flavoring)
(another note: this takes FOREVER, be prepared to spend at least an hour, if not more, preparing this)
Continue reading