Monday, 30 July 2012

White Cake...perfect for a wedding!

Our "Wedding" Cupcakes

I love a good love story...who doesn't?   Well, this love story has inspired me to make 6 dozen cupcakes for a family wedding this past Saturday, so I suppose I can share a little of it with you here...

My sister-in-law, Frances, is a florist and made
all the centrepieces...aren't they gorgeous!?!


As a teenager, Carlo's sister met, and fell in love with a young man, Antonio.  They both stood as attendants at Uncle Mario's wedding some 40+ years ago (pictured below).  As fate would have it, they both married other people and went on to have beautiful families.  But the love from their youth never died.

Marisa & Antonio:
attendants in Uncle Mario's Wedding
Years later, we were at a family wedding (Uncle Mario's daughter - coincidence?  I think not).  I was 3 months' pregnant with Sara and I can recall someone pointing out this man to me...he was my sister-in-law's long-lost love.  They did not connect that night, but the memory stuck with me.

Fast forward to a blustery winter's day a few years' back. We braved a snowstorm to go out and attend a family bridal shower (Uncle Mario's then future daughter-in-law - another coincidence?  No way!).  While we were there, a lady mentioned him to my sister-in-law, again!  This lady was adamant that they needed to reconnect.  That spring they did...he called, they went out and a whirlwind romance was set in motion.  They fell in love, again, and we, the newer generation of the family met Tony on my mother-in-law's 75th birthday.  The following January they were engaged - he took her for a ride in a horse-drawn coach while vacationing in Florida and proposed on the pier {{sigh}}.

They finally tied the proverbial knot this past weekend, some 45 years later.  They had a beautiful, intimate garden wedding at home, and in the age-old tradition of the familia making the sweet table, I was honoured to be considered part of this family and contributed my mandelbrot (biscotti) and cupcakes.  Thankfully I have 2 incredible daughters with tremendous artistic talent, so the cupcakes were gorgeous...but I wanted the whole shebang to be from scratch...


I found a recipe for "White Cake" from my grandmother...it looks simple and foolproof...so I decided to make the cake and icing courtesy of Bubbie Lou...she, too, loved a good love story, and had one of her own.

She and my grandfather grew up knowing one another.  The Regina Jewish Community was, and is, very small and tight-knit.  My grandmother was a young beauty and my grandfather the handsome athlete.



They fell in love in the 1930s and then the war broke out.  Bubbie was a war bride, getting married in a small, modest wedding on June 30, 1940.  Mom was born a couple of years later.


Meanwhile, Zaida had enlisted in the army, as had Bubbie's youngest brother, Uncle Paul.  The story goes that Zaida kept an eye or for his young brother-in-law during those years.  They were posted in Kingston, Ontario for a while, and Bubbie moved in, with baby Carol in tow, to live with her parents while Zaida was in training.  I believe Mom and Bubbie did move to Kingston for awhile.

World War Two ended before Zaida was shipped out, and they returned home to resume their normal daily life.  They went onto have 2 more children and live a happy long life together.  We all gathered together in Regina to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary in 1990, just as Bubbie was succumbing to Alzheimer's Disease.

Five years later, they were both resident in Pioneer Village, Regina's long-term care facility.   Bubbie lay in her bed, in failing health, and Zaida sat at her bedside, holding her hand.  She opened her eyes, and through the fog of dementia she smiled at him and called him "Sunkie Poonkie", their pet name for one another.  So strong was their love for one another that it overpowered the all-powerful dementia.

And so, in my mind, I thought it was only fitting that I prepare the recipe of one bride for another...and thereby keep the love stories running through the generations, even if only through cake.

A little blurry, but I love, love, love this photo of them!

Aren't they a beautiful couple?

Mazal Tov and Auguri (congratulations) Marisa and Antonio...may you enjoy a lifetime of health, happiness and joy as you embark on this next chapter of your life together!

With Uncle Mario (where it all began some 45 years ago!)
Bubbie Lou's White Cake


Ingredients:

  • ¼C butter (I use Imperial margarine)
  • 1C granulated sugar
  • 1 egg (unbeaten)
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • 1½C sifted flour
  • 2½ tsp baking powder
  • ⅔C milk

Method:
Preheat oven to 350˚.  Blend butter (margarine) and sugar until crumbly.  Mix in whole, unbeaten egg, then milk.  Blend dry ingredients separately, add to batter and blend well.  Place in greased 5x8 pan (or greased  muffin cups if making cupcakes - this recipe makes an even dozen cupcakes).  Bake at 350˚ for 20 minutes, checking every couple of minutes until they are just starting to turn golden on top.  As I read on a foodie sight - white cake is supposed to be white!  If overcooked, the cupcakes will dry out and won't release from the paper cups.  The maximum baking time should be 30 minutes, but cupcakes may need less time.  After 30 minutes, remove from oven, cool on a rack, then ice/frost when they've cooled completely.  

Friday, 20 July 2012

Banana Bread....From Bubbie Lou, to Mom, to Me...


I can still picture Mom's kitchen in our third house - the house of my adulthood.  Mom would dig into her deep freeze and pull out a bucket of pre-made (by her, of course) muffin mix...she'd scoop out a dozen muffins and bake up a batch for us to nosh (nibble) on.

Oh how I wish I'd paid attention to the recipe...but, much like my kids do with me these days, I humoured her and listened with one ear.  And now I cannot find the recipe anywhere.  I know it called for raisin bran, but that's as much as I recall. 

But the message was not lost on me...I remember how nice it was to always find Mama's freshly-baked muffins on hand - the perfect quick fix for hungry kids and hubby. 

Now I am the mother and I make muffins -  Norene's Blueberry Orange muffins from Meal-Lean-I-Yumm are a huge hit, as well as Mom's banana bread muffins.  I love to add new things to the mix - shredded coconut, chocolate and butterscotch chips, walnuts...sometimes just a single additional ingredient, and sometimes all of the above!

The important thing is that I am using Mom's recipe...which I recently discovered was Bubbie Lou's before her. 

Whenever I make a batch of banana muffins I can feel Mom and Bubbie's hands on my shoulder, and I can see Mom's smile - the one that lit up her whole face, and made her eyes sparkle.  I know she would be so happy that I am keeping the recipes, the memories, the flavours and the traditions alive...just like she did before me, and like my beautiful girls will do one day...many moons from now.

In fact, just the other day my sweet Sara said that she was going to make a home just like mine, and cook all the delicious recipes that have been handed down from her matriarchs {{{{sigh}}}}.  Those are the moments that make it all the more worthwhile. 

From my family to yours, I wish you a wonderful day filled with family, fun, friends and fantastic food.  B'Tayavon amp; Buon Appetito!

Bubbie Lou and Carol's Banana Bread


Ingredients:

  • ½C margarine
  • ¾C brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1¼C ripe bananas - mashed (2 large or 3 small bananas) - I use 1 banana to avoid excess moisture in my muffins
  • ¼C milk or orange juice
  • 1½C flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • ½C of frozen cranberries, walnuts,  etc. optional


Method:
Preheat oven to 350˚.  Cream margarine with brown sugar until smooth.  Add eggs, bananas and milk separately.   In a separate bowl, combine flour, salt & baking soda.  Add dry ingredients to mixture, stir in fruits and/or nuts, etc.  Pour into greased loaf pan (or if making muffins like I do, fill muffin cups ⅔ full.  

Bake cake for 50 to 55 minutes.  If using cranberries, bake for 60 to 65 minutes.  If making muffins bake for 20 to 25 minutes.  

Remove from oven.  Cool for 10 minutes and turn loaf or muffins onto baking rack to cool completely.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Rock Candy & Rogers' Chocolates

Rogers store (photo courtesy of pughs-news.blogspot.com)

David and Dad just returned from a Law Conference in Victoria, and they have brought back a fantastic treat - Rogers' Chocolates - from the place where it all started back in 1885.

Dad, Davie & Uncle Jim (Victoria 2012)


I think I need to backtrack a little.  Some of my fondest childhood memories are from our holidays in Regina.  It was so much fun to visit my mother's family out west...almost felt like we were living another life out there.  I loved the different foods that Bubbie Lou would make, and there were always treats available - she actually had a treat drawer - third drawer down on the kitchen island...take a look there and you were guaranteed a sweet delight every time.


Then there was a tall glass jar on the counter top to the right of the island (to the left of her fridge) which was always filled with rock candy, in an array of colours, all intertwined by tangled strings that held the candies.  They used to get them from the US - I guess like most things, availability was limited 35 years ago...today you can find them everywhere!  In fact, we did, at a candy store in Blue Mountain when we were there last May.  True to their genes, the girls love rock candy too.  So, we picked up some sticks for them to nibble on {{sigh}}...


Rock Candy
And then there were Rogers' chocolates...these nuggets of deliciousness with candy cores, smothered in chocolate and individually presented in beautiful pink wrappers.

Our box of Rogers' chocolates ... thanks Dad!

My family had a ritual whenever we ate a Rogers' chocolate.  I believe it all started with Bubbie Gertie - and later Bubbie Lou, then Mom - she would sit down at the table with a small dessert plate, a sharp knife and a box of Rogers' chocolates.  The family would gather round the table and watch as the chocolate was cut into 4, 6 or 8 wedges.  She would do this with a few chocolates, and while it seems silly, it actually made a lot of sense.  Each individual chocolate is large - the size of the palm of your hand - so the wedges were ample.  The first bite or two are delectable, but then the novelty of the flavour wears off.  If you divvy up a few chocolates, everyone gets to enjoy a sampling of a variety of tasty treats.  
Open the box and you find these chocolates wrapped like a gift!

Open the tissue and there is "decorative shred"
protecting it's delicate contents

Peel back the decorative shred to reveal
a treasure-trove of chocolate delights

See?  I wasn't kidding about the size of each
chocolate...mmm...peppermint, my favourite

I can still envision Bubbie Lou sitting at her kitchen table, serving each of us a wedge, and I can see Mom doing the same at her kitchen table.  As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, Davie and Dad have just returned from Victoria with a box of chocolates, and yesterday I added my name to the list of matriarchs who follow the family tradition of dividing, then eating a Rogers' chocolate!

Rogers'  Vanilla Cream chocolate - Bubbie style!


So from my family to yours, I hope you get the opportunity to try these tasty treats, and that you enjoy them as much as we do.

Until next time, I wish you a wonderful day filled with family, fun, friends and fantastic food.  B'Tayavon & Buon Appetito!

Friday, 13 July 2012

Sara and Carlo's Fantastic Fajitas


Life in our household is always busy...


With a teen and tween who are energetic and involved in many different activities, it seems that we are always running somewhere or doing something with one or the other of our kids.  As with most families, there are "time sacrifices" we make for our children, which we do willingly because it enriches our children's lives.

One area we will not cut corners, for many reasons, is mealtime.  Family meals are woven into the fabric of our family, dating back generations.  It is arguably my favourite part of the day, and not just because I love food, but because I adore my family.  

Every night, Carlo and I sit down to dinner with our daughters and share our day's experiences - the highs and the lows - as the girls animatedly inform us about schoolyard and classroom events.  We learn so much about the young ladies they are, and the women they strive to become one day, and I always marvel at how blessed I am to be surrounded by such amazing people.  

But mealtime is not restricted to dinners.  We share all meals on the weekends, and have our favourite lunch dishes as well - the latest being Sara and Carlo's fantastic fajitas.   They make the most incredible wraps...and I cannot eat just one...ever!   I think Sara was the first to come up with the idea for this dish, and it took a lot of convincing (and begging) to get them to agree to let me share it on my blog.  

This wrap is a favourite because...let me list the reasons!

  1. It is flexible.  You can add whatever fillings tickle your fancy.  The base is sauteed vegetables (an assortment of peppers, mushrooms and onions).  Then you can add rice, hot peppers, salsa, grated cheese, even beef or chicken strips.  
  2. Which brings me to reason #2 - it uses up leftovers and masks them in a delicious meal...gotta love those leftovers!  We will use beef or chicken from dinner the night, or 2 before, and even leftover basmati rice.  Waste not want not!
  3. It is fast and easy to prepare.  It takes no more than 20 minutes to prepare everything, and then another 5 in the oven to toast it up.  Perfect!

So, from my family to yours - below is a pictorial step-by-step recipe of our fajitas.  I hope you find them as fantastic as I do!  Thank you to Sara and Carlo for inventing - and preparing them, time and time again.

Until next time, I wish you a wonderful day filled with family, fun, friends and fantastic food.  B'Tayavon & Buon Appetito!

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Heat 2 -3 tbsp olive oil to large skillet

Slice vegetables (I used red, yellow & orange peppers,
along with white and green onions here)

A couple of pickled hot peppers (diced) are a nice addition 


Combine sliced and chopped veggies in a large skillet

Saute veggies until softened (not soggy)
and onions are translucent

Lay out your wraps

Add rice (along the centre of the wrap)

Layer sauteed veggies over rice

Top with salsa and then grated cheese
(cheddar or mozzarella are great)
Roll wraps, place on parchment-lined cookie sheet and
bake for 5 to 10 minutes - until light golden
brown and crispy.  Serve while hot.  

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

My Mother's Treasure turns 1! Happy Anniversary!

Photo source: http://www.tabletalkatlarrys.com/

Last night I had an urge to write, and so I did...2 blog posts to be exact.  It was one of those rare times when my heart, soul and fingers were in tune with one another and the words just flowed onto the page.  So, I went with it and wrote.  It never occurred to me that exactly 1 year earlier I followed a similar urge to write, and posted my first of 94 blog posts (thus far). 

Can you believe it?!?!  I forgot my own anniversary!!

Oh, what a wonderful, exciting year it has been.  Granted, it's had its ups and downs, but I have met many people from around the world, reconnected with family and discovered new family, started a family history collection of recipes and stories from my kids, and rediscovered my Mom...

My longing for days gone by was the driving force behind My Mother's Treasure, and while "what was, was" (another of my mother's favourite sayings - but pronounce the "w" as "v" - "vat vas, vas"), I did discover that I am ready to face this world without my mother beside and behind me...because she is inside me...thank you Mom, for preparing me to take on the world without you holding my hand, and for you and Dad teaching me to look inside myself to find the strength I need...it is there, in all of us, we just have to dig deep, look hard and believe in ourselves.  

And now, as fate has reversed our roles, I will stand beside and behind my mother, and hold her hand as we continue to walk this AD journey together.

Thank you all for reading and following My Mother's Treasure.  I am honoured and grateful for your interest and continued support.  And please, keep coming back, there are many more recipes to come in Year #2.

Until next time, thank you for visiting, and I wish you a wonderful day filled with family, fun, friends and fantastic food.  B'Tayavon & Buon Appetito!

Monday, 9 July 2012

Passionate for Potatoes - Nonna's Potato Salad

Nonna's Potato Salad

I grew up eating potatoes...a lot.

Potatoes were the staple side dish in my parents' home.  Regardless of the form - baked, in a kugel, Baba Ethels, mashed, scalloped, au gratin, Duchess, little babies tossed in olive oil, sea salt and garlic, or just a simple plate of fries, potatoes always made it to my plate. 

You would think I'd have developed an aversion to potatoes by now...but it's just the opposite!  I love them more with each passing day.  The proof is in the pudding - or my cantina - there is always at least 1 10 pound bag waiting to be transformed into one delicacy or another...

The kids also love spuds, and Nonna's potato salad is an all-time favourite.  So much so that I found myself throwing out containers of half-eaten store-bought potato salads.   And this was just the push I needed to learn my mother-in-law's recipe.

I tried making it a few times, but it never measured up to Nonna's.  Then I discovered her secret - boil the onions and carrots with the potatoes!  So simple it was genius!  My most recent batch was a huge success - as delicious as Nonna's - hurray!!

What better to serve at summer cookouts along with Bubbie Lou's coleslaw than a side of potato salad?  And so, from my family to yours - Nonna's potato salad. 

Until next time, I wish you a wonderful day filled with family, fun, friends and fantastic food.  B'Tayavon & Buon Appetito!

Nonna's Potato Salad

Ingredients:
10 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
1 small onion, peeled and diced
3 regular carrots, peeled and cut into half-inch rounds
¾C mayonnaise (I use Hellman's Olive Oil) - you may want to add more to reach the ideal consistency
¼C white vinegar
1½ tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper

Method:
Peel and cut the potatoes into bite-sized pieces.  Peel the onion and dice into small pieces.  Peel the carrots and cut into ½-inch rounds.  Place all veggies in large stockpot of water.  Bring to a rolling boil, then reduce to medium heat, stirring occasionally.  Check potatoes after 10 minutes to see if they are cooked enough.  When potatoes are done (easy to bite through but not soft enough to mash), drain all veggies and place in large glass bowl.  Add remaining ingredients, increasing any of the above to taste, and toss.  Keeps well in the fridge - but it won't last long!  Garnish with parsley when serving.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Cookouts, Cottages and Coleslaw - Bubbie Lou Style



Writing these posts has had an amazing effect on me - the more I think back, recalling events and dishes, the more I actually remember moments in my early life.  It's like I've embarked on an adventure for one, and I keep discovering new ports along the way.

Sometimes I just sit back and sift through My Golden Recipes or Mom's Cookbook looking for something to make.  Recently I found a recipe for Bubbie Lou's cabbage salad...coleslaw!  I guess the first name didn't sound too appealing to me, so I passed it by.  But this time I was intrigued...the girls, especially Sara, love coleslaw, and so I took a moment to read the recipe and see what ingredients it called for.  Then I started to see (and eventually "smell/taste") a coleslaw from my youth.  It was colourful and had a lot of flavouring (pepper and seeds of some kind)...

As a little girl I used to travel to Regina (with my family) quite frequently.  Many childhood memories take place there.  I can remember the incredible feeling of a prairie summer day - with a bright blue sky, blazing sun and zero humidity.  I can smell the fresh summer air wafting through the open windows at my grandparents' home and cottage...the feeling that this memory evokes is so powerful and comforting that I just want to take a deep breath, close my eyes and float back in time...

My grandparents were classic 1950s folks...picture "Leave it to Beaver".  They always dressed properly and even their casual wear was clean, crisp and fashionable.  They lived on a proper timetable (hmmm  maybe I am more like them than I thought) and even had cocktails after work.  My grandfather used to come home for a proper lunch set down by my Bubbie Lou every day - I remember, I spent many a meal with them! - and then had a short nap before going back to Isman Hide & Fur Shop for the afternoon.  They had a group of friends that they did everything together with - socialized, played cards, went for dinner, even had cottages in the same vicinity - Sandy Beach in the Qu'apelle Valley.

I loved going to the cottage at Sandy Beach.  It was a beachfront property, with a kitchen, huge living room/dining room, and I believe there were 2, maybe 3 bedrooms.  No washrooms back then - just the "biffy" (outhouse), a rain barrel and a lake.  You could use the water collected in the rain barrel to wash your hair (Bubbie Lou and Mom always told me it made your hair so soft) and take a bar of soap in the lake to wash your body.  Oh, how I hated the biffy.  Not only was it aromatically unpleasant, it was full of cobwebs and spiders - at least in my mind it was!  I remember being so afraid of falling in, or worse, of something jumping out!

But it was always great fun to go to the cottage.  Bubbie Lou and Mom would send Davie and I out to the side of the cottage to pick Saskatoon berries for a pie...I just remember that we'd eat one berry for every two we'd pick!  Good thing there were tons of bushes going all the way down to the lake.

We'd have cookouts and loads of food...and this is where the memory of Bubbie Lou's coleslaw comes in...I can taste the tangy coleslaw she would serve with burgers and dogs...I don't recall what else went with the meal...some recollections do get lost with time.

Thankfully the recipe did not.  I found it and recreated it this week!  I cannot wait to serve it to the family and see if it sparks any memories for Davie or Daddy.  To see the original recipe card, click here.

Until next time, I wish you a wonderful day filled with family, fun, friends and fantastic food!  B'Tayavon & Buon Appetito!


Add a little less than ½C of sugar 

Add a little less than ½C of oil

Add ½C of white vinegar

Add 1 tsp salt

Add 1 tsp ground mustard

Add 1 tsp ground pepper

Add 1 tsp celery seed

Add  ½ tsp garlic powder

Combine all ingredients in saucepan on stove

Bring to a boil


Meanwhile...shred 1 large cabbage and 1 thinly sliced
large Spanish onion and combine in bowl (or you can cheat
 like I did and buy a ready-made bag of coleslaw salad mix!)

Add boiled dressing to salad mixture, toss, cool and serve!

Voila - Bubbie Lou's Cabbage Salad <3

Bubbie Lou's Cabbage Salad 

Salad Ingredients

  • 1 large cabbage, shredded
  • 1 large Spanish onion, sliced thin in rings
  • (or you can "cheat" and buy the ready-made coleslaw salad mix)

Dressing Ingredients 
  • a little less than ½C sugar
  • ½C white vinegar
  • a little less than ½C oil (I prefer canola)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp celery seed
  • 1 tsp ground mustard
  • 1 tsp ground pepper
  • ½ tsp garlic powder

Method
Combine salad ingredients in a bowl.  Combine the dressing ingredients in a medium saucepan.  Bring to a boil and pour over salad ingredients (while the mixture is still hot! Norene Gilletz points out that the hot dressing will help to keep the slaw longer).  Toss and cool.  Keeps great in the fridge.

Monday, 2 July 2012

Happy Canada Day: Birthdays, Baking and Channeling Bregman's Chocolate Fudge Icing


Birthdays were always a big deal in our home.

Mom always made our favourite meal on our birthdays - a tradition that continues in the Bruni household to this day.

Not surprisingly, my own birthdays stick out in my memory a little more than the others' do, and Mom always made sure there were amazing cakes for the occasion.  




Me & my parents on my 25th birthday - Dad goofing around
(you can imagine Sara's comment about my acid wash attire!) 


My all-time favourite cake was Bregman's' chocolate fudge cake, which says a lot given the fact that I am a chronic migraine sufferer - chocolate does me in every time.  Ergo, I rarely indulge...the short-term benefits do not outweigh the long-term suffering...except when it came to Bregman's' double chocolate fudge cake!

My 25th Birthday cakes from Bregman's
1 double chocolate fudge,
the other strawberry shortcake

In an earlier post I told you that we would have Sunday morning brunch at home when we were children.  As we grew older, those brunches moved from our kitchen table to Bregman's.

Mmmm...it was worth waiting in a line, and perusing their take-out counter, just to get their mammoth Greek salad with a side of fries and gravy.  To this day it is still my favourite meal to order, just ask Carlo....whether we were going for brunch to the Wexford in our "dating era", or taking the kids to Pickle Barrel for dinner in 2012, a large Greek salad with a side of fries and gravy is my "go to" dinner - old habits die hard!  Funny enough, it has passed down to the next generation...Sara ordered the identical meal just last week!

Recently, Carlo and I were reminiscing about days gone by, how much we miss the amazing chocolate fudge cake from Bregman's - they closed their doors in 2007 - and the fact that we've not been able to find anything that approaches comparison, ANYWHERE, since!  

And that's how it happened...I got a bee in my bonnet and went on a mission to seek out the chocolate fudge icing that has eluded me for 15+ years since we moved north and stopped going to Bregman's.

I stumbled upon a recipe and video online at videojug ... the finished product appeared similar to the fudge icing I've been searching for.  By the time I woke up on Saturday morning I could no longer fight the urge to start up my mix master and make some icing.  I whipped up two batches of cupcakes - 1 vanilla for Sara and me, and 1 chocolate for Carlo and Becca.  Then it was time...with all the anticipation of a kid let loose in a toy store, I brought out the ingredients for my fudge icing.  It was at this point that Sara came downstairs and started to help me.  


My vanilla butter cream cupcakes-love the photo, had to add it!

But first...I had to convert all the ingredients from grams to ounces (oy, my math brain was not yet awake and functioning (thank goodness for Google and metric-conversions.org!).  

Then it was finally time...there was margarine and chocolate squares to melt, then icing sugar, milk, vanilla extract and salt to be added to the mixture, and then lots and lots of whisking.  

The recipe called for 500g (2C) of icing sugar...after 5 minutes of intense mixing it still did not reach the right consistency (heavy sigh).  I kept adding more, and more,  icing sugar (thank goodness for a well-stocked cantina) and after I added at least 5 more cups of icing sugar (remember - I subscribe to the shitarein method of tossing it in until is "feels" right)...HALLELUJAH!  I got it!  It was the perfect consistency!  I cannot tell you how excited I was to have finally found it.  Even Sara, who is not a chocolate fan, admitted it was delish and assumed her rightful position as keeper of the whisk and bowl (read "lick every last morsel")!

I piped 24 cupcakes with unabashed delight, anticipating my beloved's reaction when I placed the cupcake before him after dinner...and then I went about making Bubbie Lou's butter cream icing, and piped another 2 dozen cupcakes.  Then it was time to bake Bubbie Lou's cheesecake, tidy the house and prepare the BBQ and dinner fixings for later.




Finally, after what felt like an eternity, it was time to serve dessert.  I brought out the cupcakes, and watched intently as Carlo took that first bite of his cupcake.  He looked up at me…smiled…and nodded…I’d done it!  What a feeling of satisfaction…

PS –the following night we went to Mama Bruni’s for dinner and I took some cupcakes over for dessert.  My father-in-law actually told me I should open a bakery … I decided to forego my butter cream cupcake and try one of the chocolate fudge cupcakes instead (conditions were optimal, no inclement weather that would brew a migraine)…eureka, I really did do it…the icing was moist, sweet and delicious and perfectly formed.  Bregman’s may be gone, but their double fudge chocolate icing lives on…in my kitchen!

Until next time, I wish you a wonderful day filled with family, fun, friends and fantastic food.  B’Tayavon & Buon Appetito!

Naomi’s Chocolate Fudge Icing

Ingredients:

  • ¾C butter
  • 7oz semi-sweet chocolate squares  
  • ½ C milk
  • 7½ C icing sugar (minimum)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp salt

Method
Slowly melt chocolate and margarine together in small saucepan (over low heat, stirring often to ensure it doesn’t burn).  In the meantime, pour milk over a mixture of the sugar and salt in mixing bowl.  Mix on low speed until fully blended, then add vanilla and continue blending.  Turn off mixer, add melted chocolate/margarine combo and blend on low speed until fully mixed, then increase mixing speed and mix for at least 2 minutes.  You may want to add more or less sugar depending on your preferred consistency) until you achieve your desired consistency.  Pipe onto your cake/cupcakes and chill to set.