Monday, April 30, 2012

Pip is Coming

You may remember that Caitlin made a wedding cake in the fall, while now our good friend Margot over at Newfoundlander at Heart has a person in progress (Pip) on the way. So, this past weekend we threw a baby shower for her, generously hosted by her mother in law, and organized by Hera and Brynn (Kate got the plates and napkins).

 I'm so excited for Margot to become a mother for real...I mean throughout all of University we all called her mom and she is probably the reason I didn't contract scurvy or some other nutritional deficiency in my first year of university. As amazing as she was and still is at being a friend-mom, she will be an even better for real mom!

In addition to providing an excuse to see Margot and other catch up with friends living in Toronto, the shower allowed me to knock a few things off my "to bake" list, which at the moment is pretty sizable.

I made brownies with chocolate butter-cream frosting...a lady only gathering does call for some pretty intense chocolate goods, along with brown butter chocolate chip cookies, and one of my new favourite things, chamomile cupcakes with honey glaze.  The brownies were probably no better than boxed brownies so I'm not sure it's something that I'd make again, but the cookies and cupcakes are both incredible and I can't wait to make either or those again.

All from: Joy the Baker Cookbook

Brownies with Chocolate Butter-Cream Frosting

Recipe for the Brownies:

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2) In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.

3) Melt butter and chocolate together in a heat proof bowl over simmering water. Once melted, remove the bowl from heat and stir in sugars. Whisk in the eggs, yolk, and vanilla. Add the flour mixture all at once and fold together. Fold in the chocolate chips.

4) Pour batter into a prepared 8 inch square pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or untila skwere inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool while you prepare the icing.

Recipe for the Buttercream frosting

3/4 cup butter at room temperature
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 1/2 to 3 cups of powdered sugar
2 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
scant 1/2 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup ovaltine powder


1) Cream together  butter, cocoa powder and salt.  Add in the powdered sugar, being sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl to ensure that everything is evenly incorporated. Add in the milk and vanilla. Beat until smooth.

2) in a small bowl, mix together cream and ovaltine. Turn the mixer to medium and pour the cream in slowly.

3) Frost your brownies - this recipe makes enough for two batches of brownies, so you can either half the recipe or store some for later. 

Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies


1 cup plus 1 tbsp unsalted butter
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp molasses
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (I used pecans)
1 cup chocolate chips 


1) Brown 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon of butter by placing it in a small sauce pan over medium heat until you start to see brown flakes on the bottom of the pot and it starts to smell nutty. Pour browned butter into a small bowl and place in the fridge to cool.

2) In the bowl of a stand mixer or with a hand mixer cream together remaining butter and granulated sugar. Add the vanilla and molasses and bean until incorporated. Pour in the browned butter along with the brown sugar, and mix for about 3 minutes until well incorporated. Add egg and egg yolk, then beat for one more minute.

3) Whisk together flour, salt and baking soda. Add the flour mixture and beat on low speed until just incorporated. Fold in pecans and chocolate chips.

4) Cover dough with saran wrap and place in the fridge for half an hour while the oven preheats to 325 degrees F. Roll dough into tablespoon sized balls and bake for 10-12 minutes.

Chamomile Cupcakes with Honey Glaze

1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
3 tablespoons dried chamomile (from teabags)
1/2 cup milk
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract

For the Glaze
1 cup icing sugar
3 Tbs heavy cream
1/2 Tbs honey
pinch of salt

1) Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees. In a stand mixer, cream together the butter, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and chamomile leaves.

2) Whisk together milk, eggs, and vanilla. Pour half of this into the butter mixture and beat until just incorporated. Add the remaining milk mixture and continue to beat.

3) Divide the batter between the cupcake tins. Bake cupcakes for 17 to 20 minutes. I made mini cupcakes for the shower so they only took 10 minutes.

Directions for the glaze:

Whisk together ingredients until smooth. Once the cupcakes have cooled use a rubber spatula to spread the glaze on the cupcakes and garnish with some chamomile leaves. 


  1. those chocolate chip cookies look yummy! they don't do good chocolate chip cookies over here like we have back in Canada. They always put milk chocolate in them and they're too sweet!

  2. They were yummy! They were my favourite treat from the shower.