Healthy Cake using Mixed Fruits, Vegetables and Nuts

cookie monster birthday cake 615

By: Nathan Willow

Among the many edible root crops, the most versatile by far is the carrot. Unbeknownst to many, it comes in a variety of colors such as purple, red, white and yellow. The most common, of course, is the orange variety. A lot of cake recipes include the carrot because it is incredibly easy and fun not just to cook and bake, but also to savor and digest. Not to mention the nutritional value of carrots, this carrot cake recipe is exceptional. The truly amazing thing, though, is that the beta carotene in carrot is further increased when cooked or baked rather than when eaten raw! Carrots are usually used in bread, juices, puddings, soup, jams; it is also a staple ingredient to stir fried vegetables, most stews and a wide array of food, including the following healthy carrot cake recipe. Treat yourself to this veritable treasure trove of health.

Ingredients:

– Whole wheat flour – 3/4 cup
– Cake flour – 3/4 cup
– Packed brown sugar – 1/2 cup
– Cinnamon powder – 1 tablespoon
– Baking powder – 1 teaspoon
– Baking soda – 1 teaspoon
– Salt – 1/2 teaspoon
– Molasses – 1 1/2 tablespoons (optional)
– Canola oil – 1/4 cup
– Eggs – 2
– Medium-sized orange, juiced – 1 piece
– Orange zest – 1 tablespoon
– Lemon zest – 1 teaspoon
– Raisins – 1/2 cup
– Dried figs, chopped – 5 pieces
– Sesame seeds – 2 tablespoons
– Grated carrots – 2 cups
– Chopped cashew nuts – 1/4 cup

Directions:

– Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F or 175 degrees C.
– Grease spray a 9-inch Bundt pan.
– In a large mixing bowl, sift together the whole wheat flour, cake flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
– Dig a hole in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the molasses (if you will), canola oil, eggs and orange juice.
– Mix until the dry ingredients are thoroughly blended then stir in the orange zest, lemon zest, raisins, dried figs, sesame seeds, carrots and cashew nuts until all are incorporated.
– Pour into the greased baking pan.
– Bake for approximately 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Another indication that the cake is done if the cake springs back once it is lightly touched.
– Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes.
– Remove from the baking pan using a spatula to ease around the edges of the cake.
– Gently transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.

 

Anukriti Parsai uses traditional recipes handed down from generation to generation.
Anukriti’s Healthy carrot cake recipe is deliciously indulgent and is definitely not for weight watchers!
Anukriti is a contributing member of the Cake Recipe Secrets team.

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Shopping Gluten-Free

By: Gretchen Scalpi

According to Gluten-Free Foods in the U.S., 5th Edition by Packaged Facts “Over the five-year period ended in 2014, sales of gluten-free products in traditionally grain-based categories posted a compound annual growth rate of 34%.”

There are more gluten-free products in the grocery store than ever but many of those are packaged foods that may not include healthy ingredients. Other options are gluten-free grains, fruits and vegetables. It’s all so confusing so how do you choose? Follow the tips below and you’ll be well on your way to purchasing and eating a healthier gluten-free diet.

*Start by going through your kitchen and your refrigerator. Read labels and keep what you can and get rid of the rest.

*Carry a list of safe foods and foods to avoid every time you shop. Plan ahead and create a list of food you do want to purchase.

super hero birthday 5*Load up on fresh fruit and vegetables. Buy in season selections to save money and use them in recipes or eat them whole.

*Stay away from processed food and be prepared to do more cooking at home.

*Check the labels on everything before you purchase with the exception of fresh produce.

*Purchase gluten-free grains including quinoa, rice and rice flour, corn, buckwheat, millet and teff.

*Meat and seafood products without marinades are gluten-free such as beef, chicken, turkey, fish and shellfish.

*Dairy products including yogurt, cottage cheese, cream, milk and butter are a safe choice.

*Miscellaneous foods to round out your diet include honey, oils, hummus, seeds and seed butters and nuts and nut butters.

*Purchase drinks like bottled water, hot cocoa, coffee, tea, fruit juices and carbonated drinks after checking the labels to make sure they are gluten-free.

*Canned and plain frozen vegetables and fruit are a good choice. Check the labels on any items with sauces.

*Purchase separate containers of peanut butter, jams and jellies for yourself to avoid cross contamination.

*If you have a smart phone try looking for a phone app that can scan bar codes of packaged foods. This makes it easier to determine if the item you want to purchase is gluten free.

*Try shopping at ethnic markets and health food stores to give yourself some more options and to vary your diet.

*Purchase bulk items such as gluten-free flour, baking mixes and other staples online in order to save money.

To learn the intricacies of the gluten free diet, it’s a good idea to make an appointment with a Registered Dietitian who has experience working with this challenging diet.

© 2015 Gretchen Scalpi. All rights reserved. You are free to reprint/republish this article as long as the article and byline are kept intact and all links are made live.
Gretchen Scalpi is a Registered Dietitian, author and Certified Wellcoach® who has celiac disease and know the challenges of eating right with this condition. If you are new to the gluten-free lifestyle for medical or health reasons, you’ll want to attend Gretchen’s new free webinar “Five Things You Should Know Before Going Gluten-free” at http://www.gflifestylelearning.com/?p=401.

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Inventive Cookie Ideas for an Extra Sweet Spring

I don’t know about you, but those sweet Girl Scouts and their addictive cookies sure did a number on my waistline this year! And they’re not alone. I’ve never so enjoyed packing in the calories as I have taste-testing the oodles of fantastic homemade cookie recipes that have been turning up! And I’m not talking about your everyday chocolate chip variety (which I WOULD gladly eat every day, by the way.) No, what I’m seeing is an outbreak of awesome: in the form of ooey, gooey, one-of-a-kind cookie recipes in the recipes club Just a Pinch!

Combining the richness of turtle candy, the cuteness of a cupcake and the bite-size ease of a cookie is the recent recipe posting for scrumptious Turtle Cookie Cups on the site Just a Pinch by club member Valerie Johnson.
“These little cookie cups are very easy to make,” assures Valerie. “I made them for Super Bowl Sunday and they were a big hit. If you like chocolate and caramel, I’m sure you will like these.”

That’s one safe bet! These chocolate cookies are filled with soft caramel and topped with a pecan for the perfect crunchy finish. And since each cookie cup is baked in its own little wrapper, they’re ideal for bake sales and party trays.

Now, if ever there were a dessert whose very name screamed “party”, it’s the aptly named Whoopie Pie. Growing up in the South, I’ve had to be taught the art of the Whoopie Pie from some New England bakers. These filled, cake-like cookies are said to have originated in Amish kitchens as a way to use leftover cake batter. Goodness, those were some smart cookies!

The Whoopie Pie is a tough dessert to classify – Is it a cake, a cookie, an honest to goodness pie? – but it’s got universal appeal! Angie Walker of Stryker, OH (also a Just a Pinch member) adds her own spin to the traditional chocolate Whoopie with her Serene Sunday: Oh, the Sadness of Parting Pumpkin Cookies. With a big name and equally big flavors, Angie’s cookies are a spice-filled, pumpkin-packed treat. Is there such a thing as “classic innovation”? If so, I think Angie’s got it down to an art!

On the other hand, Kathleen Kulinski, another club member, has perfected what has to be one of the most decadent no-bake cookies of all time. With ingredients to satisfy every craving imaginable – from salty to sweet – I urge women everywhere to whip up a batch for those times when you need a little extra indulgence.

“This [cookie] is a little bit chocolate, a little bit salt, a little bit peanut butter and then there’s the fluff” exclaims Kathleen!

These chocolate dears are perfectly freezable, too. So make a lot, eat a few, and save the rest for your next “take me away” moment.

Kudos to all the crafty cooks out there who are coming up with such inventive ways to satisfy our collective sweet tooth! Thanks to you, our tables are a much sweeter place. Now, pass the milk, please…

If you enjoy these recipes, be sure to dip into some of the amazing recipe contests hosted by Just A Pinch. Or, if you haven’t done so, go ahead and join any recipe club and start exchanging YOUR ooy-gooy ideas with other cooks from around the world!

By: Janet Tharpe

Born in Lexington, Ky., Janet first developed her passion for cooking and recipe club groups at the early age of 14. As a child, she loved cooking for her grandfather and his workers. Now she shares her culinary skills by participating in church socials and a recipe club as she adds to her own recipe box.

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Simple Cupcake Ideas

wonder woman cupcakesThere could be no other way to make those cupcakes more appealing than decorate them with attractive designs. There are several cupcake ideas that you can try when decorating cupcakes at home. Try this easy guide on how to decorate cupcakes.

Butterfly Cupcake

All you need for a butterfly cupcake are the following: candy coated chocolates, chocolate stick cookies, 2 regular size cupcakes, licorice strips and 2 small-sized cupcakes.

First up is to coat the cupcakes with frosting. Try to use a different frost for each of the sizes. You can cover the small cupcakes with orange colored frosting and the regular cupcakes with yellow colored frosting.

Assemble the cupcakes to look like a butterfly, regular cupcakes right above the smaller ones. Decorate the cupcakes with candy coated chocolates around its edges. Decorate as well the center piece of your assembled cupcakes. Put in cookies across the butterfly’s body to cover the whole. And lastly, use the licorice strips for the antenna.

Snowman Cupcake

A snowman cupcake is perfect for the holiday season. You can check this simple guide in making a snowman cupcake that would look stunning and spectacular. Ingredients you would need are as follows: black chocolate covered candy, 1 regular size cupcake, gel icing, orange jube, 1 piece red colored fruit strip, 2 white marshmallows, 1 pretzel stick, 1 chocolate after dinner mint and cupcake frosting.

Coat each of the cupcake with frosting. Stick the marshmallows together using icing. Then, stick these marshmallows on top of your icing covered cake. As for the snowman’s arms, break the pretzel into two equal lengths. Attach these pretzels on each side of the snowman.

Form a circle shape for the snowman’s hat using the chocolate after dinner mint. Attach the chocolate coated candy on top of the snowman’s hat using the frosting. Stick now the snowman’s hat on top of the snowman’s head.

As for the nose, cut a small portion of orange jube. Use a stick or a toothpick to make a hole in the marshmallow. Cut the fruit strip forming a scarf to be placed around the snowman’s head. As for the eyes and buttons of the snowman, use a black gel icing.

Bee Cupcake

A bee cupcake can be very appealing to children. Here is a simple guide on how to make your very own bee cupcake.

Ingredients needed include the following: 11 cupcakes, butter cream frosting, 11 yellow jubes, black decorating gels, 11 square after dinner mint slices, yellow food coloring.

First thing is to color the icing to come up with a bright yellow hue. Using yellow colored icing, completely cover each cupcake. Cut each after dinner mint slice into half and place each of these slices right in the middle of each cupcake.

Cut the licorice strips into short sizes and position them under each wing. Use yellow jubes for the head of the bee. Lastly, apply two dots for the eyes. As for the nose, apply a longer stroke using black gel icing.

With this simple guide, you can certainly learn how to decorate cupcakes that would look alluring to children.

By: Daniel Stanley

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Baby Shower Poetry

nautical baby shower cakePoetry is such vibrant means of communicating. It is one’s creative way of expressing emotion, intellect and aspirations. It is filled with sentiment and mirrors the individual’s true inner being. Such channel of expression is befitting an equally elating occasion: the anticipated arrival of a newborn. Here are ways of incorporating poems into the momentous event, the baby shower.

Invitation Poems

Poetry about babies can give the baby shower invitation added charm. Think of what it feels like to have a baby, the hope of anticipation and the fulfillment of birth. Include in the poem how you’d like those wonderful feelings to be shared with the guest being invited. Finally, to give the invitation a customized appeal, include the invitation details in the poem, carefully spreading the details, all throughout the verse, if possible.

Thank You Poems

Thank you poems are creative ways of expressing love and happiness for the future newborn. With the upcoming occasion, there are many things to thank for: having God’s blessing in such a feeble form or having the support of family and friends while playing the waiting game. Mom-to-be can deliver the thank you poem. If it is a co-ed baby shower, the Dad-to-be can do the honors.

Another way of saying thank you is through the baby shower thank you card. This is sent to all guests who gave gifts for the occasion. Include a short rhyme on how blessed the baby is for having guardians as loving as the guest who sent the gift. Then end by thanking them for it.

Poems for Baby Shower Activities

It is unusual to have a baby shower and poetry reading in one, but it is an idea that can work among a very strong lyrical society. Most poets are very comfortable in expressing and conversing in verses, and if the future parents are poets themselves, then a poetry reading baby shower is not a bad idea. Who knows… they maybe anticipating a future rhymester!

However, if you are like the rest of the world, incorporating poems is not impossible in the conventional baby shower. It actually adds an enriching dimension to the event that everyone can gain knowledge from. Use rhymes to open and close the event, or when praising the Mom-to-be or future newborn. Riddles are also poems so use them in a game of treasure hunt or guessing game.

Cake Poetic Inscriptions

Since Verses and Rhymes is a good theme for a baby shower, why not include a line on the cake? Express how your future newborn is as sweet as the cake, or how much everyone is lovingly waiting for the baby. Mom-to-be does the honor of articulating the cake inscription before cutting it.

Baby Shower Favors

A fundamental part of any baby shower is the party favors, both as prizes and memorabilia. This is a wonderful opportunity to incorporate poems!

For winning games, contests or solving riddles, prizes can be awarded together with a poem about how remarkable the win was. The poetic party host can pronounce, in verses, how amazing the game was played and how miraculous winner won. Lastly, prize recipients can give their own “thank you” verse or two.

As the guests leave, give them an inexpensive memento of the occasion, and as in the whole baby shower theme, include a poem about how it was made special because of the guest’s presence.

Poems indeed, add more life to such a warmhearted occasion about giving life: the baby shower.

By: Julia Sullivan

To read about first signs of pregnancy visit Pregnancy Facts.

Article Source:
http://www.articlebiz.com/article/227329-1-baby-shower-poetry/

The most splendid meal of the momentous day: Wedding Cake

The D-day is round the corner. You are about to take the most important step in your life by tying the nuptial knot. Life is about to change!

With all those butterflies in your stomach, a sense of excitement prevails all around you. Amidst this are a lot of decisions to be made and a lot of work to be done.

You want your day to remain in the fond memories of you and your spouse, as well as your near and dear ones who attended the wedding to shower their blessings on you.

The wonderful celebrations will include all the getting together of new and old pals. The exchange of rings is likely to make your own heart skip a beat.

Also present on this special day will be the wedding cake. The resounding applause and the best wishes from all present make the cake cutting ceremony a momentous one.

As this red letter day of your life approaches, time ticks faster. You do not want to miss out on anything. You deserve the best!

Hunt for a good Boutique Cake Designer, place the order for your favorite cake and the rest will be taken care of.

There are many bakers and cake designers in Australia professing to be the best, so you,re your choice with care. Referrals are an important source to being able to place confidence in someone.

The old hands at the business ensure that the style of designing the cake is unique and distinctive.

The present day wedding cakes come in all shapes and sizes and are often used as an eye catching centerpiece at the wedding. Looks do matter a lot, but equally important is the taste and freshness, for the most important dish of the wedding should also be the most sumptuous.

There could be a huge array of flavours to choose the cake from, including Chocolate Mud Cake, Caramel Mud Cake, Marble Mud Cake, Strawberry Mud Cake, Saccha Torte, Devils Food Cake, Orange and Poppyseed Cake, Carrot Cake, Banana Cake and butter cake. Mind you, this list is not exhaustive.

What’s more, you can have a tier-designed cake with each tier made in a different flavour.These varied flavours would satisfy the taste buds of all guests present at the party.

Like it or not, a wedding is an occasion where it is difficult to spend as per budget. Finances tend to go awry as you try to pick the best of everything.

In such an event, wedding cakes come to the rescue, for they have the potential to cut other costs.

The wedding cake can be used as a dessert in a three course meal. Experts opine that a rectangular shaped cake tends to feed more people, so by ordering that shape, you may be able to make your wedding budget go further.

By: Julie Whitehead

Julie Whitehead wedding cakes style is unique. It is also specialise in custom made birthday cakes .

Article Source:
http://www.articlebiz.com/article/594383-1-the-most-splendid-meal-of-the-momentous-day-wedding-cake/