Monday, January 26, 2009

Valentine Sponge Cake Cubes


Cut a frozen sponge cake into 1-inch cubes.

  • Tip: I bought my sponge cake at Harmons for way too much money. I suggest making your own large batch (maybe sheet cakes) because you throw a lot of it away carving it into perfect 1 inch cubes. You can reuse the discarded pieces in a trifle or something. I wish I had a best ever sponge cake recipe to share with ya'all but I don't yet.
  • Best to have a really really sharp knife because perfectly straight edges are key.
Melt canned frosting in the microwave at 30 second intervals until it becomes the consistency of heavy cream.
  • Tip: What the heck is canned frosting? Not sure why they say canned when all the frosting comes in plastic containers. Why don't they just say 'premade' or something so I don't have to wonder whether I got the right thing. For a novice like myself these little inconcistencies cause me stress only b/c I know if you don't follow the recipe exactly it could flop. And I HATE flops. Anyway, the frosting in the plastic container worked great... just be sure it's the normal stuff and not the 'whipped'. (I'm assuming that wouldn't work so great)
  • Tip: On the cover of Women's Day their little sponge cubes were pink and white and dark red. Well, so I try to make dark red frosting and I empty my entire little bulb of food coloring and my frosting is still just dark pink. GAH! I still haven't figured it out. I'm thinking I have to buy a really big glass vile of red food coloring and just use it all. I must figure this out.
Dip the frozen cubes in the frosting like you were dipping chocolates.
  • Tip: I just plop them in there one at a time making sure they're completely covered with frosting and then gently lift them out with a fork so that the excess frosting drips off.
Then the recipe said to slide them onto tinfoil (not sure why you would use tinfoil instead of parchment paper).

Sprinkle immediatly if you're going to put sprinkles on them. The frosting begins to set immediatly.

They need to set out for quite some time for them to truly set up. I'm guessing because the frozen pound cake continues to defrost which means it releases moisture making the frosting take awhile longer to really set up.

On the cover of WD each cube was in it's own little square white cupcake liner type thing which I thought was SOOOO cute. I think 4 or 6 of those in a cute little box would make for the perfect little valentine gift. One was dark red with white sprinkles (so cute), another was light pink with a red gel frosting heart on it (tried this.... didn't look so cute when I did it).

Parmesan Crusted Sandwhiches

These are from Heidi's recipe blog. They are utterly fantastic. I didn't have Monterey Jack cheese so we used Provolone and Mozzarella which turned out fabulous. I also substituted onion salt for onion powder because I didn't have any onion powder. I suggest cooking on a lower heat so the cheese has a chance to melt before the bread is toasted and the parmesan crusts. And I definitely suggest the Honey Mustard recipe below. It was divine.

Grilled Parmesan Sandwiches – Celeste Gooch

1 loaf – sour dough bread
Softened butter
1 clove garlic - minced
¼ C. freshly grated parmesan
1 packet Italian seasoning
Deli sliced ham
Sliced Monterey Jack Cheese
Honey Mustard

In a small bowl, mix softened butter, minced garlic and parmesan cheese – set aside.

Cut fresh sour dough bread in sandwich slices. Spread butter mixture on bottom of bread (grilling side). Spread honey mustard on the other side of bread. Top with ham and tomato. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning and top with Monterey Jack cheese. Top with another piece of sour dough bread and spread butter mixture on bottom. Cook the sandwich on a skillet like you would a grilled cheese sandwich OR if you are lucky enough to own a Panini maker (Summer) go to town with that.

I also like to make my own honey mustard – the recipe is below –

Honey Mustard – Sarah Russell

½ C. Dijon mustard
½ C. honey
¼ C. corn syrup
¼ C. mayonnaise
Dash of onion powder

Combine in small bowl and mix thoroughly with a fork.