Triple-Layer Godiva Dream Cheesecake

While Valentine’s Day may be a ways away, I have a sneaking suspicion that there are those among you that have abandoned your New Year’s Resolution – swearing off carbs and sugar, in favor of loftier aspirations – such as mastering some baking skills, or boning up on your recipe reading.  I applaud you.  Now let me help.

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Easy Cannoli

“Leave the gun, take the cannoli.”  This is not a post about the convergence of pastry, violence and classic cinematography, but that might be a good idea for later.  It should go without saying that the preceding quote is not only from The Godfather, but also one of my favorite guilty pleasure movies, You’ve Got Mail, a fantastic book by Sarah Vowell, and encompasses the love we feel towards this Sicilian pastry.

A crunchy shell.  A creamy center.  A rich chocolate punctuated with salty pistachios.  Cannoli is a fantastic portable dessert that fires on all cylinders.

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Double Chocolate Cupcakes

The beauty of my life as a novice baker lies partly in the fact that I don’t like sweets.  Don’t get me wrong – I love baking them,  smelling them, working with them and sharing them… my taste buds just prefer the savory side.

Trust me, this is a good thing.  My list of food/beverage related vices is long enough that sparing me of sweet related calories is a God-send.  Now when I start making my own cheese, beer and bread – we’ll be in trouble… “we” being my waist-line.

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Cream Filled Chocolate Cupcakes

I wonder if there have been studies on the effects of nostalgia making things taste better? Every now and then I pick up Swedish Fish from the gas station, and reminisce about penny candy jars and little league baseball games.  Those things are like wax, but damn they taste good in my mind.

I would argue for nostalgia making these Hostess Cupcake impersonators taste so darned good, but they just ARE that good!

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Banana Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Icing

Many moons ago I came across this recipe from the lovely Kristina of The Chocolate Peanut Butter Gallery and wanted to try my hand at it.

Thank God I finally crossed it off my “to-bake” list, cuz these little cupcakes are wicked!

The combination of banana and chocolate chips in the batter is perfectly balanced, with a heavenly whipped peanut butter/cream cheese frosting.

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