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The Old Hen B&B closed May 31, 2014. We recommend The Roaring River B&B 425.888.4834 and The Log Cabin B&B 425.533.8278 for your North Bend get-away. Please stay tuned for Deanna's cookbook plans. Here's to starting from scratch. Talking about The Old Hen online? Our hashtag is #theoldhen .

“This Is Us” Birthday Banana Muffin With Twinkie Frosting

I don’t know how it happened. I decided to check it out but was full of doubt. I turned on the TV, watched the first episode, and I’ll be darned if I didn’t sit there bawling my eyes out. Any emotional constipation I may have been suffering from before watching was gone and I quickly become a fan.


And since I’m not alone, I’m sure there is someone out there who needs this This Is Us – themed recipe for their loved one who will be celebrating their birthday soon. Have a co-worker who can’t stop talking about it? Got a Facebook friend who posts about how much they cried over this week’s episode… every… single…. week? Yeah, that person. They need this muffin.

Banana Muffin Recipe

  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup mashed bananas (about 3 bananas)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together shortening and sugar. Add eggs, bananas, fresh lemon juice, flour, baking soda, salt, chopped walnuts. Mix well. Place in large muffin tins with liners. This recipe will make 10 large muffins (or 20 regular size). Bake for about 35 or until top of muffin is light golden brown and springs back when touched.

Twinkie Filling Frosting

  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Whisk milk & flour together in a saucepan. Place over medium high heat and watch closely. Continue whisking until thick. Cook for about one minute while whisking. Remove from heat and set aside to cool for about 15 minutes.

Place butter & sugar in mixer on high speed until light & fluffy. After flour & milk mixture has cooled to room temp (important), add to mixer and whip until light & fluffy. It should look almost like whipped cream or, you know, Twinkie filling.

Note: For a very white filling you can substitute butter with white shortening. Shortening just won’t taste nearly as lovely.

Don’t forget the sprinkles and the candle… or your friend may get emotional.

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Pumpkin Cheesecake With Butterscotch Topping Recipe

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Ingredients for Graham Cracker Crust
  • 12 long (4 sections on each) graham crackers
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted

Crush graham crackers in food processor. Add sugar, salt, and melted butter. Process until similar to wet sand texture.


Spray a 10-inch springform pan with baking spray (or coat with butter) and press graham cracker mixture into bottom of pan. Bake in oven for about 15 minutes then remove and set aside.

Reduce oven to 325°F.

Ingredients for Pumpkin Cheesecake Filling

  • 2 1/2 pounds cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin spice
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree

Cream together cream cheese and sugars. Add remaining ingredients and mix until well-combined batter.

Pour cheesecake batter on top of the graham cracker crust in the springform pan. Place springform pan in about a little bit larger pan (about 11-inch pan). Most recipes say to use foil to protect your cheesecake from the water bath but I have never, ever had luck with foil. Place about 1 inch of water in a large pan (roasting pan or half sheet pan works well for this) which the doubled pans can fit into.

Here’s an example from my New York Cheesecake Recipe. Yeah, like that. I shall not be foiled again.

Bake until knife poked into cheesecake comes out nearly clean – about an hour. Top of cheesecake will be light golden brown. Allow cheesecake to sit in pan until cool. (It will continue baking for awhile while cooling).

Place cheesecake in refrigerator overnight or several hours until chilled for best results. Run a knife around cheesecake edges to loosen from pan. Remove sides from pan carefully. Run knife under cheesecake to make sure crust also removes from pan easily then place on serving plate. Top with butterscotch topping (recipe below).

Butterscotch Topping Ingredients

  • 1 cup butterscotch chips, melted
  • 2 cups of powdered sugar
  • 1 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1-2 tablespoons hot water

After butterscotch chips are melted, set aside. Mix remaining ingredients together in mixer until well combined. Add melted butterscotch chips. Mix until nice frosting forms. Place in a decorating bag with a large decorating tip. Place a swirl on each slice of cheesecake or each personal-size cheesecake.

Add a pecan and sprinkle with pumpkin spice if you feel especially festive.
Mini Cheesecakes

For personal-size cheesecakes, use about 6 of these cuties instead of the large springform pan… because size matters.

Wilton Mini Springform Pans, Set of 3

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Red Velvet Cheesecake Recipe

Hooray for the red, white, and sweet!

This is a bake-a-day-ahead recipe. The cheesecake and cake need to be chilled for best results.

Cheesecake Recipe


Preheat oven to 325°F.

  • 1 1/4 pound cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Cream cream cheese and sugar together. Add vanilla, eggs, sour cream, & salt and mix until well combined batter.

Spray inside of 9-inch springform pan with baking spray or coat with butter.

Pour cheesecake batter into 9-inch springform pan. Place springform pan in about a 10-inch pan. Place about 1 inch of water in a large pan which the 10-inch pan can fit into.

Here’s an example from my New York Cheesecake Recipe. Yeah, like that. I shall not be foiled again.

Bake until knife poked into cheesecake comes out nearly clean – about 40 minutes. Top of cheesecake will be light golden brown. Allow cheesecake to sit in pan until cool. (It will continue baking for awhile while cooling).

Place cheesecake in refrigerator overnight or several hours until chilled.

Red Velvet Cake Recipe

Preheat oven to 350°F.

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cups buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup very hot water
  • 1/2 ounce Wilton red food coloring

Place dry ingredients into mixer. Place eggs, buttermilk, oil, sour cream and vanilla in a container and beat together well. Mix beaten wet ingredients with dry ingredients. Mix in hot water on low speed.  Scrape down edges of bowl to be sure to incorporate all ingredients into batter. Mix on medium speed for a couple minutes.

Coat one 9-inch round cake pan with baking spray or coat with butter and then a dusting of flour. Pour batter into the cake pan.

Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until a fork poked in comes out clean. Allow to cool completely. Remove from pan and wrap in plastic wrap. Freeze several hours or overnight.

Day Two

Carefully slice red velvet cake into two layers with a long knife.

Place one layer on your serving tray. Set second layer aside.

Remove cheesecake from springform pan and place on top of first layer of cake.

Place second layer of redvelvet on top.

Because this recipe is so rich, I recommend decorating with whipped cream at the last minute, but if you really need to finish in advance of your event, you can use cream cheese frosting instead…

Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup unsalted butter,  room temperature
  • 2 pounds powdered sugar
  • 1 T. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt (or more if needed)
  • 2 tablespoons water (if needed for creamier frosting)

Whip cream cheese, butter, confectioner’s sugar together on low speed until forms into a creamy, dreamy frosting. Add lemon juice & salt. Add water if needed.

Using decorating bag and desired decorating tip, frost cheesecake sides and top.

Tomorrow, tomorrow. I love ya, tomorrow, you’re only a day awaaaaay.

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Pumpkin Pie Cookies Recipe

With Thanksgiving right around the corner and through the woods to Grandmother’s house, these little pretties are the perfect treat for your work, friends & family, and school parties. Placed in a cute clear bag with a bow, it’s like, well, a personal turkey day valentine. The pumpkin spice frosting makes them not only steal your heart, but your taste buds too.

pumpkin-pie-cookies

Preheat oven at 350°F.


Sugar Cookie Recipe

Cream together:

  • 2/3 c. shortening
  • 3/4 c. sugar

Add & beat together well:

  • 2 eggs
  • 4 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 T. milk
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 c. flour

Refrigerate dough for about 1 hour. This is an important step. It will prevent dough from being too soft which causes us to add too much flour and causes dry cookies. Refrigeration is key.

Roll out and use cookie cutters.

Bake 6-8 minutes.

Allow cookies to cool completely on a rack.

Royal Icing Ingredients

  • 5 -6 tablespoons water
  • 4 cups sifted powdered’ sugar
  • 3 tablespoons meringue powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin spice
  • Wilton brand orange, brown, and ivory food colorings

Whip water, powdered sugar, meringue powder, vanilla extract, and pumpkin spice together on low speed until combined. Turn speed up and whip until stiff peaks form like they do with whipped cream. Cover with a damp towel or place in airtight container when not in use to prevent frosting from hardening too soon.

Place part of icing in a smaller bowl and stir in a bit of orange food coloring. Add a smaller amount of brown just to give it a more pumpkin-y color.

Add ivory to another part of icing to make the “pie crust”.

Decorating tips: Number 5 (small round) tip should work well for outline and then flooding of “pie”. 104 will work well for “pie crust”. Use about a size 12 circle tip for the white “whipped cream” topper.

Decorate “pie” area with orange colored frosting by outlining the “pie filling” section of the cookie. When finished with all, just add a little water to the orange colored frosting and fill in middle.

After the orange has had a few hours to dry, place “pie crust” on the cookie in ivory in a wavey fashion as pictured.

When “pie filling” is completely dry, place a dollop of white icing for the “whipped cream”. Allow to dry at least over night as this part is pretty thick.

Make no mistake about it, the smaller these are, the more your friends will crush on them. And, soon, every year whenever someone thinks of turkey, they will think of you. Gobble it all up.

 

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Zucchini Walnut Sheet Cake Recipe With Orange Frosting

The zucchini is winning. Must use all da zucchini. Must haz cake. Moist cake. And orange glaze-y frosting.

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Preheat oven to 350*F.

Zucchini Sheet Cake Ingredients

  • 1 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Zest of one fresh orange
  • 2 cups zucchini, grated
  • 1 1/2 cups walnuts, chopped

Mix oil and brown sugar together. Mix eggs in well. Add flour, cinnamon, cardamom, baking soda, baking powder & salt. Mix well until fully combined. Add buttermilk, vanilla, orange zest, zucchini, & walnuts. Mix until well-combined.

Spray half sheet baking pan with sides with non-stick baking spray. Pour batter into baking pan. Bake for about 30 minutes or until done.

Orange Frosting Ingredients

  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • Juice of one fresh orange (chunks of refreshing orange in frosting encouraged)

Stir ingredients together until thick frosting forms. Add more of powdered sugar or juice if too thick or too thin.

You goin’ down, zucchini. You goin’ down.

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Red Velvet Whoopie Pies With Cream Cheese Filling

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There is nothing as happy in this world as makin’ whoopie… or red velvet anything. Putting them together throws us over the top into just plain glee. Thus, I present thee with the Red Velvet Whoopie Pie. With mini flags. You’re welcome.

Red Velvet


Red Velvet Whoopie Pies

  • 1/2 cup butter (or 1 stick), softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 ounce red gel food coloring (Wilton brand is best)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 1/8 cups flour
  • 1/8 cup dark cocoa powder
  • 1 recipe of Cream Cheese Filling (recipe below)
  • Candy sprinkles (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F

Cream butter and sugar in mixing bowl on high speed until light & fluffy. Turn speed to low and add wet ingredients. After wet ingredients are combined with butter mixture, add wet ingredients.

Split batter in half. Stir one food coloring for your team colors into batter very well, and then the second color into rest of batter.

Line baking sheets with parchment papers.

For large whoopie pies, use an ice cream scoop to make pies. For smaller ones, use a cookie scoop. Drop leveled scoops onto baking sheets. Place in preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes or until tops of pies bounce back when lightly touched.

After pies have cooled, turn upside down and use a decorating bag to cover with filling. Place second pie of opposing color (See what I did there?) on top of filling to sandwich pies together. If desired, roll sides into pretty sprinkles.

Cream Cheese Filling Ingredients

  • 8 ounces unsalted butter
  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 2 pounds powdered sugar
  • Sea salt (to taste – this might take up to a teaspoon)
  • Few drops of water if needed

Mix frosting ingredients together on lowest setting until powdered sugar is combined. Turn up speed and whip for about 8-10 minutes. If frosting is too sweet, it needs more salt.

And, with that, get your mind out of the gutter, naughty you.

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Chocolate Whoopie Pies

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This week I’ve been makin’ a lot of whoopie. Have you been making enough whoopie? If not, I implore you to do so. I see far too many packaged items and store-bought fried chicken at potlucks these days. So, please, bring back the whoopie… or, if you’re more straight-laced, bring another favorite old-fashioned recipe. But, just do it. Your friends and family will sing your praises.

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Chocolate Whoopie Pies

  • 1/2 cup butter (or 1 stick), softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3  cups flour
  • 1/4 cup dark cocoa powder
  • 1 recipe of cream cheese filling (recipe below)
  • Preheat oven to 350°F

Cream butter and sugar in mixing bowl on high speed until light & fluffy. turn speed to low and add wet ingredients. After wet ingredients are combined with butter mixture, add wet ingredients.

Line baking sheets with parchment papers.

For large whoopie pies, use an ice cream scoop to make pies. For smaller ones, use a cookie scoop. Drop scoops onto baking sheets. Place in preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes or until tops of pies bounce back when lightly touched.

After pies have cooled, turn upside down and use a decorating bag to cover with filling.  For a more rustic look, just spoon frosting instead. Place second pie on top of filling to sandwich pies together. If desired, roll sides into nuts or pretty sprinkles.

Light & Fluffy Filling

  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla… or mint, or almond, or maple (you get the idea)

Whisk milk & flour together in a saucepan. Place over medium high heat and watch closely. Continue whisking until thick. Cook for about one minute while whisking. Remove from heat and set aside to cool for about 15 minutes.

Place butter & sugar in mixer on high speed until light & fluffy. After flour & milk mixture has cooled to almost room temp, add to mixer and whip until light & fluffy. It should look almost like whipped cream.

Note: For a very white filling you can substitute butter with white shortening. Shortening just won’t taste nearly as lovely.

Did you hear that? They crowds are already rejoicing, “Whoop! Whoop!”

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Game Day Whoop Ass Pies

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Here a new play on a classic dessert… the Whoop Ass Pie for game day. Go Seahawks! Not a Seahawks fan? Here’s the recipe so you can adjust to your team colors… if you must.

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Game Day Whoop Ass Pies

  • 1/2 cup butter (or 1 stick), softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 recipe of Light & Fluffy Filling (recipe below)
  • 2 food colorings in your team colors
  • Candy sprinkles (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F

Cream butter and sugar in mixing bowl on high speed until light & fluffy. Turn speed to low and add wet ingredients. After wet ingredients are combined with butter mixture, add wet ingredients.

Split batter in half. Stir one food coloring for your team colors into batter very well, and then the second color into rest of batter.

Line baking sheets with parchment papers.

For large whoopie pies, use an ice cream scoop to make pies. For smaller ones, use a cookie scoop. Drop scoops onto baking sheets. Place in preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes or until tops of pies bounce back when lightly touched.

After pies have cooled, turn upside down and use a decorating bag to cover with filling. Place second pie of opposing color (See what I did there?) on top of filling to sandwich pies together. If desired, roll sides into pretty sprinkles.

Light & Fluffy Filling

  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla… or mint, or almond, or maple (you get the idea)

Whisk milk & flour together in a saucepan. Place over medium high heat and watch closely. Continue whisking until thick. Cook for about one minute while whisking. Remove from heat and set aside to cool for about 15 minutes.

Place butter & sugar in mixer on high speed until light & fluffy. After flour & milk mixture has cooled to almost room temp, add to mixer and whip until light & fluffy. It should look almost like whipped cream.

Note: For a very white filling you can substitute butter with white shortening. Shortening just won’t taste nearly as lovely.

Super fun to serve upon matching cupcake liners placed upside down and with a sign reading “Whoop Ass Pies”. And, preferably, when your team is winning.

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Pumpkin Whoopie Pies With Hazelnut Mousse Filling Recipe

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Hey, Punkin’! Here’s a little fallish treat for you and your loves.

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Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

  • 1/2 cup butter (or 1 stick), softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 recipe of buttercream mousse filling (recipe below)
  • 1 cup chopped hazelnuts

Preheat oven to 350°F

Cream butter and sugar in mixing bowl on high speed until light & fluffy. turn speed to low and add wet ingredients. After wet ingredients are combined with butter mixture, add wet ingredients.

Line baking sheets with parchment papers.

For large whoopie pies, use an ice cream scoop to make pies. For smaller ones, use a cookie scoop. Drop scoops onto baking sheets. Place in preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes or until tops of pies bounce back when lightly touched.

After pies have cooled, turn upside down and use a decorating bag to cover with filling. Place second pie on top of filling to sandwich pies together. If desired, roll sides into chopped hazelnuts.

Hazelnut Mousse 

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup Nutella
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 pounds powdered sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons water, if needed

Cream together butter, Nutella, and salt on high speed.

Place mixer on low speed. Add powdered sugar and mix until combined and light & fluffy. Add a bit of water if needed.

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Homemade Cake Doughnut Recipe

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The only way to properly follow up a post about Spanx is with a cake doughnut recipe. Amirite? And the only way to follow up a doughnut recipe is with a frosting recipe. And the only way to follow up all of the above is with sprinkles.

You can take the girl out of the bakery but you can’t take the bakery out of the girl. And this is why I need Spanx.


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Fill with Crisco shortening and then preheat doughnut fryer to 375F. Look up your appliance’s instructions (or look for fill line) to decide how much shortening to use.

Prepare a baking sheet with an old, clean towel (or several layers of paper towels) on it to place doughnuts on after frying.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups flour (plus about 1-2 cups more for rolling out dough)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 3 T. canola oil

Place all dry ingredients into a large bowl. Stir well then set aside.

Pour all wet ingredients into a medium bowl and whisk until eggs are beaten and all are well incorporated.

Combine wet ingredients into large bowl with dry ingredients. Stir gently just until all dry ingredients are moistened.

Dust counter, doughnut cutter, & rolling pin with flour. Roll out dough to about 1/2-inch thick. Cut doughnuts & doughnuts holes out and lay on a baking sheet so they are ready for frying.

Fry for about 1-2 minutes on each side. Look for middles and edges to become golden brown before flipping.

Place fried doughnuts on baking sheet covered with a towel to drain excess grease off doughnuts.

Eat while hot or wait for doughnuts to cool a bit before frosting. This chocolate frosting recipe is fantastic.  Or if you are feeling rather maple-y this maple frosting recipe is top notch.

If you would like to keep it simple, you can use this vanilla frosting recipe:

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (you can use clear vanilla for pure white frosting)
  • 1 tablespoon water

Makes about 24 cake doughnuts and 24 doughnut holes.

Tips For Making Homemade Bakery Goods 

When measuring flour measuring cup into flour canister. Level off top of measuring cup with a butterknife. Do not pack the flour into the measuring cup (like you would brown sugar) because you will get too much into your dough.

Stirring too much will make doughnuts (and pancakes and scones…) tough and rubber-y.

Wait for the oven or fryer to preheat every single time. If you begin before the preheat, your puff pastry will flop in the oven and your doughnuts will be full of grease from the deep fryer.

Don’t panic. If you’re afraid of your doughnuts under-cooking, just try one first and figure out how long you need to fry on each side then repeat.

Don’t forget the sprinkles. And Spanx. And sprinkles.

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© Deanna Morauski 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016