Saturday, October 25, 2008

Church Bake Sale

Our parish has a fall festival every year and I just came back home from dropping off some goodies for the bake sale (and previewing all of the other good stuff being delivered). :) This is something we look forward to every year; one reason being that we get to eat some of the best tamales ever!
Although I really wanted to try out my new tombstone and coffin cookie cutters, I went with pumpkins. Maybe I'll get to those next week. :)

I tried a new flavor of cake ball....chai-spiced. While I wasn't crazy about them, my husband who "tested" 3 for breakfast yesterday loved them, as did my son, so I was over-ruled. I used vanilla almond bark instead of candy melts this time, so that may have been why I didn't like them as much.

For the cake balls, I used a white cake mix and substituted a strongly brewed chai tea for the water. I also used 3 eggs in place of the 3 egg whites called for on the package. The flavor was really subtle....I added a touch of cinnamon, ginger and cardamon to the batter as well and might even add more if I try them again.

The instructions for putting them all together are here. If you've never tried them before, I recommend starting with the Pumpkin Spice Cake Balls.
Last, but not least, Toffee Blondies!!! Now, these, I AM crazy about! They are super easy and really, really good! I used a bench scraper to cut them. (My dad gave me this one from Sur La Table; I love the ruler along the sides!) It make cutting brownies, blondies, etc. so easy.
Toffee Blondies
(adapted from Everyday Food)

1/2 c. (1 stick) butter, melted
1 c packed light brown sugar (I've used a combo of dark & light, too)
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla (the first time I made these, I was out of vanilla...the horror!...so I used almond extract. I've made them that way ever since)
1/4 tsp salt
1 & 1/2 c flour
1 c toffee bits (this time I could only find the chocolate covered toffee bits, both taste great, but I think the plain ones make for prettier blondies.)

Preheat oven to 350. Line the bottom and side of an 8 inch square pan with foil, leaving an overhang on 2 sides.

Cream butter and brown sugar together until smooth. Beat in eggs, vanilla and salt, scraping down sides.

Add the flour on low speed until combined. Stir in toffee bits.

Spread batter into prepared pan (an offset spatula helps). Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool completely in pan.

Lift the blondies out of the pan using the foil overhang. Cut with a bench scraper or serrated knife.

Delicious!!!

24 comments:

  1. YUM! Everything looked great. Your cake balls came out picture perfect! I'm making your pumpkin spice balls today....just have to print out your recipe.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for the blondie recipe! We love blondies at my house! Printing that one out too!
    ~ingrid

    ReplyDelete
  2. Those all look so good! Though I'm with you, I'd probably prefer the pumpkin cake balls to the chai cake balls. Those pumpkin-shaped cookies are just adorable.

    ReplyDelete
  3. all of your treats look wonderful! The pumpkins are precious- as always I'm blown away by your decorating abilities!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I bet you goodies were the BEST :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Yum! The bake sale will make money this year!
    Sugar cookie tea...I can'[t wait to go to the grocery store!

    ReplyDelete
  6. there is an award for you on my blog!

    ReplyDelete
  7. From the looks of things, I would say the Bake Sale was a success!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I love my bench scraper. Since my husband makes the dough and bakes the cookies, he's commandeered mine. I need to get another. The toffee blondies look awesome!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I LOVE blondies even more than brownies. These look like absolute perfection. The pumpkin spice cake balls look to die for as well, I can't wait to give them a try!

    ReplyDelete
  10. What a splendid collection. Love the pumpkin shaped cookies!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I don't want to sound like a jerk, but could you make the cake balls with homemade cake?

    The flavor of boxed cakes is great but I hate all the unpronounceable ingredients AND the flavor of the canned icing.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thanks for posting the bench scraper picture. I've been wondering what that is. Janice was tryng to explain it to me.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Hi Jen....I'm sure you could make these with homemade cake, I've just never tried it. I'm a big label reader, too, but for cake balls, I make an exception. :)

    Try bakerella's blog...www.bakerella.blogspot.com. She has a lot of great info on cake balls.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Just wanted to let you know that I love your ideas. I can't wait to try the pumpkin balls!

    ReplyDelete
  15. oh wow! those pumpkin cookies look soo good! so cute and that orange is so pretty!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hi!
    I made both your blondies and the pumpkin spice cake balls. How'd you get your cake balls so perfect? Not fair! Talk about yummy, too!

    I think Babygirl and I messed up the blondies a bit, I think she might have over mixed the batter and I probably over cooked them by a couple of minutes. :-( Don't get me wrong they were good but just a bit dry. To moisten them up I made an icing from browned butter, cinnamon, powdered sugar, vanilla and half&half, YUM! Thanks for the recipe!
    ~ingrid

    ReplyDelete
  17. Hi Ingrid! I'm sorry they came out dry for you. If you make them again, try pulling them out a few minutes earlier...they are usually pretty moist. Although, your frosting sounds so good, it probably didn't make any difference! :)

    ReplyDelete
  18. Wow, well done. I'm bookmarking the recipe for the blondies.

    ReplyDelete
  19. YUM! it all looks wonderful!! I may have to try the pumpkin spice balls sometime - hubby's birthday is next weekend and he has "ordered" red velvet cake balls - so I guess I'm making those again for now! LOL and more smilie face cookies for my oldest to take to work for a birthday.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I made your toffee blondies using crushed up Heath Bars (I couldn't find toffee chips) and they are DELICIOUS!! Very easy too!

    ReplyDelete
  21. I have really enjoyed your blog! I just wanted to let you know that you can buy Chai spice in the grocery store now. I use it in cakes, cookies, and icing. I'm really looking forward to making chai cake truffles with my family! Thank you for the GREAT ideas!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Those look so adorable!that pumpkin looks really cute!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Pumpkin is really good I always love your blog.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Is the butter melted as stated in the ingredient list or solid as it sounds with the instruction to cream it and the brown sugar together?

    ReplyDelete

Thank you so much for taking the time to comment! Happy baking! :)
(Comments, especially on busy giveaways, may take a minute to show...thank you for your patience.)

Related Posts with Thumbnails
Pin It button on image hover