Ok, so it wasn’t really a “birthday bash” per se, but my sister and I had a super fun time last night having a little mini birthday celebration because a group will be here on her birthday, and her party with friends will be afterward.
There were two parts to the surprise:
Part 1- Baking
I told you all that I was going to bake a little somethin’ simple for my sister. Sooo I made sugar cookies based on this recipe from cooking light. I just omitted the icing. Of course, the cookies were lightened which gave me the perfect excuse to whip up some ganache and make sandwich cookies!!! =D Here are both of the recipes:
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (about 11 1/4 ounces)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 10 tablespoon butter, softened
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 large egg whites
To prepare cookies, lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt, stirring well with a whisk. Place granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla and egg whites. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating at low speed just until combined. Divide dough in half. Shape each dough half into a ball; wrap each dough half in plastic wrap. Chill 1 hour.
Unwrap 1 dough ball. Press dough into a 4-inch circle on heavy-duty plastic wrap. Cover with additional plastic wrap. Roll dough, still covered, to a 1/4-inch thickness. Repeat procedure with remaining dough ball. Chill dough 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375°.
Remove one dough portion from refrigerator. Remove top sheet of plastic wrap; turn dough over. Remove remaining plastic wrap. Using a 2 1/2-inch cutter, cut dough into 18 cookies. Place cookies 2 inches apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake at 375° for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on pans 5 minutes. Remove cookies from pans; cool completely on wire racks. Repeat procedure with remaining dough half.
The only thing about these cookies is that I definitely baked them longer than 10 minutes, but that may just have been our oven. They tasted wonderful!!!!!
Ganache-ish (I used a couple of different recipes and made up my own…its not true ganache, but it tasted good)
About 1 cup heavy cream
9 T cocoa powder
2 T oil
1/4 C brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
So basically, I combined the heavy cream and sugar and heated until simmering. Then, I stirred in the cocoa powder, oil and extract. And let thicken. It was pretty tasty. I was originally going to make a whipped icing (hence the brown sugar), that required no heating, but when it did not “whip”, I researched some ganache recipes, and because I didn’t have any actual baking chocolate, just sort of made up the recipe as I went along. This filling was pretty dark and bitter, but it went perfectly with the sweet cookies!
And now, for the pics:
Part 2- Movie and Popcorn
I let my sister pick out a movie (Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants) to watch and made us some popcorn! Salty for me, spicy for her!
All in all, we had a bunch of fun last night and I really think that she was surprised!
As ya’ll know, we have a group getting here later on today. We’re basically running around like crazy trying to get everything ready, and we’re all super excited!
I had better go….this was an uber long post!
Hope ya’ll have a great Friday!
What are your weekend plans?