Monday, November 28, 2011

Bakery Buzz: Bleeding Heart Bakery

Confession: I have been wanting to go to the Bleeding Heart Bakery in Oak Park for quite a while. It's a pretty tiny bakery in Oak Park. They have kind of a punk/edgy (for a bakery) vibe going on and use a lot of local and organic ingredients. They sell (among other things) lots of gourmet cakeballs.

Then a few things all worked out to make my bakery visiting dream come true:
  1. I purchased a Groupon for 1 dozen cakeballs.
  2. My brother-in-law got a job at a church in Oak Park.
  3. I went to church with my sister at that church in Oak Park.
  4. We went to the Bleeding Heart Bakery after church.
We got there and spent a lot of time examining the flavors available that day:
  • Pumpkin
  • Vanilla
  • French Toast
  • Chocolate Peanut
  • Oaxaca (Spicy Chocolate) 
Hmm...How would we ever decide which ones to taste? Oh that's right, we had a Groupon for 12...we could try them all!

Well...just as we were about to purchase our dozen cakeballs, we were told that they weren't accepting Groupons that day. They just didn't have enough cakeballs. So even though between the 4 of us there, we bought 11 or 12 cakeballs, we couldn't use the Groupon! Ahhh...super frustrating.

But, I did enjoy my cakeball {Oaxaca - and they weren't kidding when they said it was spicy!} and this just means I have to go back another time to use my Groupon. I think I'll try the one in Elmhurst next time - it's a little bigger and maybe they will have enough cakeballs to let me use my Groupon!

If you want to get your punk rock pastry on, visit Bleeding Heart at
1010 North Blvd. Oak Park, IL 60301

Maybe call first to see if they have enough cakeballs: 708.358.0559

Friday, November 25, 2011

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

When I went searching for Thanksgiving desserts this year, there was really only one place to look. You know what I'm talking about...time for another Pinterest recipe! {See, it really is taking over my life.} This one is from 52 Cupcakes. If you haven't been there, go check out all of their amazing looking recipes!
When I saw this picture...

Original Here

...I knew I had to make these. Love me some Reese's peanut butter cups! And at the bottom of a cupcake? Even Better!

Then I went to check out the recipe, and it couldn't be easier. All you do is gather the ingredients (starting with a boxed cake mix!), throw them in the mixing bowl, and mix them up.

Before spooning the batter into each cupcake liner, add your secret ingredient to the bottom of each one.

Then spoon enough batter into each cup to cover up the peanut butter cup, and stick them in the oven.

While they are baking, gather up your frosting ingredients and mix them all together.

Then frost the cupcakes, and get ready for a delicious cupcake with a special surprise at the bottom!

{For the original recipe (if you want to make your own), head over to 52 Cupcakes}

Thursday, November 24, 2011

On Thanksgiving

Our Thanksgiving dessert, and a good reminder of what we can be thankful for today...

Monday, November 21, 2011

Chocolate Chip Pillow Cookies

Pinterest is taking over my life. Seriously, it is. I pin at work, at home, at my mom's house. I love it, but sometimes all of the pinning and repinning and commenting on pins just gets a little crazy. But sometimes, all of the pinning and repinning and commenting on pins leads you to some fun new recipe ideas. Example...Chocolate Chip Pillow Cookies!

Have you seen them over on Pinterest?
It's a brownie inside a chocolate chip cookie!


I know, right?


I (re)pinned them a long time ago, but felt a little self-indulgent just making them for myself. But when a friend needed a little pick-me-up, I knew these were the perfect cookies to get the job done!

At first glance, these cookies seem a little complicated, but they're actually pretty easy. All you need to do is bake a pan of brownies, and mix up a batch of your favorite cookie dough. Let the cookie dough chill in the fridge for about an hour before you use it. Spread some parchment paper out on the counter, preheat the oven to 350, then you're all set to follow these steps...

1. Roll a big glob of cookie dough into a ball. You'll have to experiment with how big you want your cookies to be, how much brownie you want to stuff in there, etc... I used about 1/4 cup of dough for each cookie.

2. Pretend like you're making one of those thumbprint cookies with the hershey kisses in the middle, and smoosh a hole into the center of your dough ball.

3. Cut a small piece of brownie (about an inch or so big) and push it down into the hole that you just made.

4. Work the edges of dough up around the brownie so that it starts to cover up the brownie.

5. Keep working the dough around the brownie until it's all covered up. Do not let any brownie show through! If you need to, add some dough to the top to make sure it's completely covered.

6. Put your dough ball/brownie creation on a cookie sheet and bake for about 15-18 minutes, depending on the size of your cookies. They will spread out quite a bit, so don't put too many on your baking sheet. I only did 6 at a time!

7. Surprise someone with a big batch of pillow cookies! YUM!

P.S. For the original idea, plus the recipe I used for the cookies, check out Bakerella's version.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Update poor little blog has really been neglected lately. I blame pinterest and conferences at school for eating up all of my extra time!  But the holidays are coming, and that means plenty of baking and time off from school, so hopefully I'll be able to catch up soon! In the meantime, here's a little update on my Cakeballs for the Cure. Remember these?

Well, between my mom's work and the teachers at my aunt's school, we made almost $50 and all of it went straight to the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Yay!

I ran out of time to make them to bring to my school or anywhere else, but I've got a whole plan worked out for next year.  It involves starting way earlier, before the Race for the Cure. I'm going to package the cakeballs in sets of 2 and called them Balls for Boobs!

Clever, right? I'm also open to suggestions for other catchy names...