3 Favorite Recipes and 3 Years of Blogging

Today marks my 3 years in the blogosphere.  I hadn’t even given it a thought until WordPress sent me a congratulatory message this morning.

To celebrate my blog turning 3 years old, I decided a virtual party was in order, so here are a few of my favorite desserts for you to indulge in.

These HOMEMADE LEMON CUPCAKES are one of my favorite cupcake recipes. Moist and lemony – these are perfect recipe for any Spring or Easter celebration.

This OLD-FASHIONED CUSTARD PIE WITH STRAWBERRY SAUCE is one of my favorite pie recipes.  The smooth sweet taste of custard is countered with the tangy strawberry sauce.  This pie will delight your flavor buds – guaranteed.

And these CHOCOLATE COVERED CARAMEL CHEESECAKE BARS are one of my favorite bar recipes.  These cheesecake bars will take care of any craving you might have for chocolate and cheesecake at the same time.  The caramel is just a huge added bonus.

Thank you all, for reading my blog and helping it grow.  Without you, the readers, it wouldn’t be what it is today.  Your interest is what inspires me to continue baking, writing, photographing, and sharing glimpses of my country life.

 

 

Homemade Lemon Cupcakes and Giveaway Reminder

Earlier this week I decorated homemade lemon cupcakes with Celebration candies from SweetWorks Inc. If you aren’t familiar with SweetWorks, they are a large manufacturer and distributor of well known candies.,

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If you haven’t checked out my original post yet then please do so because SweetWorks has sponsored a generous giveaway here at The Joy of Caking and the contest ends tomorrow. 

As promised, here is the recipe for the homemade lemon cupcakes I featured in my earlier post.

Lemon Cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  

Line cupcake tins with paper cupcake wrappers.  I made 2 dozen mini’s and 9 regular size cupcakes.

1/2 c. butter, softened

1 1/4 c. granulated sugar

2 eggs, room temperature

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 c. sour milk

1 lemon juiced into 1/2 cup; fill the remainder of the 1/2 cup with hot water

lemon zest from 1/2 of a lemon

1 c. plus 2 heaping tbsp. all-purpose flour

Add butter, sugar, and eggs to a large mixing bowl.  Mix until creamy.  Add remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly and until batter  appears fluffy.

Spoon batter to each paper liner; filling each cup about 2/3 full. 

Bake mini’s for approximately 10 minutes, and regular sized cupcakes for approximately 16 minutes. 

Allow cupcakes to cool completely before removing them from tins.  Once cupcakes are completely cool; frost with your favorite icing.  I made a vanilla buttercream icing and used a clear vanilla extract to obtain a pure white icing.

I froze these cupcakes and we are having them for Easter dessert.  What are you making for your Easter dessert?   

Cupcakes, Candy, SweetWorks, Giveaway!

There are three things you should know about me, and each has to do with candy.

1.)  I loved the movie Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.  And that’s how I envision every candy factory being run.  Yes, even today!

2.)  My sister and I were once mad scientists and put Pop Rocks candy in a bottle of soda while we were sitting in our dad’s car.  Whoa!

3.   I’ve conspired with SweetWorks candy to show you some of their awesome new products, and in return they are sponsoring a GREAT giveaway here at The Joy of Caking!

Don’t you just love it when I tell you my secrets?  Now, let me tell you a few of SweetWork’s. secrets.

SweetWorks, Inc. is a candy manufacturer and distributor located in Buffalo, NY.  Their brands include Sixlets, Oak Leaf, Niagara Chocolate, Ovation, and Celebration candies.  And if that’s not enough, they are the parent company for Florida Tropic and Bubble King.  This corporation produces some of the most popular candies out there.

Since I typically blog about baking it only seemed appropriate to share SweetWorks Celebration line with you.

The Celebration line offers an unbelievable variety of beautifully colored Pearls (smaller, harder) candy coated balls that taste similar to a Jawbreaker in flavor, and Sixlets (larger, softer) candy coated balls that have a sweet chocolaty flavor.  Both are gluten-free.

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To show you just what you can do with the Pearls and Sixlets I started out by making lemon cupcakes with a white vanilla buttercream icing.  I’ll share that recipe with you later this week – I promise. 

I decided to focus on three decorating themes to give a sense of just how useful these decorations are.   I am sharing my finished cupcakes in the form of three virtual parties!

The first party is….

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Both the brightly colored and shimmering Pearls and Sixlets turned my simple lemon cupcakes into a cute and inviting baby shower theme. 

The second party is…

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I knew immediately when I saw the shimmering gold and silver Pearls and Sixlets that I was headed toward a wedding shower theme.  I only wished I knew someone who was getting married soon so I could show these off in the real world and not just the virtual world.  All I can say is elegant!

And the last party…

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What is a birthday without candles?  A great one in my estimation…   Especially when they illuminate the whole room and the fire department has to be on standby!  Again, these bright and shimmering Pearls and Sixlets offer an eye catching and festive birthday celebration. 

Now, a word about my experience with Celebrations candy.

Neither the Pearls or Sixlets melt in your hands when you handle them and they’re durable. The colors also didn’t run when they came in contact with the frosting. I actually frosted my cupcakes the night before and left them out at room temperature before taking my pictures the following morning.

I would offer a word of caution where the Pearls are concerned.  They are considerably harder than the Sixlets and they might be too hard for small children or people with dental concerns.  The Sixlets make the perfect alternative in those situations.

I have had so much fun working with SweetWorks and their candies. And now it’s your turn to have some fun!

SweetWorks is offering an assortment of eleven bottles of Pearls and Sixlets to one lucky TJOC reader.

This contest is now closed.  The winner is CindyB – congratulations!

To enter: Leave a comment on this post telling me which of the three virtual parties you liked the best.

For additional entries:

Follow SweetWorks on Pinterest, Facebook, and/or Twitter

Follow The Joy of Caking by Email, RSS, Pinterest, and/or Twitter.

Pin on Pinterest

Share on Facebook (with the link to this post)

Tweet this on Twitter:  Win Celebration Candy from @SweetWorks and @thejoyofcaking (with the link to this post).

Make sure you leave a comment for each of the actions you take in order to qualify for additional entries.  Eleven possible entries per person!

This contest is open to US Residents only.  The giveaway will close and the winner will be randomly selected on April 6th. 

Disclosure:  SweetWorks provided the candies for this post.  All opinions are my own.