It was recently one of my best friend, Kevin’s, 21st birthday. We have been friends since the 6th grade, so I felt the need to bake him very special birthday treats! I don’t really like to mess with all sorts of baking flour, so I just bought packaged cupcake mix. I think that you can still get creative by making your own frosting and adding your own twist to cupcakes- such as filling them with little tasty surprises like cookie dough and raspberries!
These cupcakes were devil’s food cupcakes with a homemade buttercream frosting that is to die for. For an extra treat, I cut out a small circle of each and filled half of the cupcakes with cookie dough and the other half with raspberries and strawberry syrup. These cupcakes are easy to make for those of you who don’t feel that you are a baking expert, but still are a bit above your average cupcake.
Some of you may know, I recently was given a cook book called Raising the Salad Bar by Catherine Walthers. It is a great book that I recommend all of you take a look through at some point. It tells you about all the different sorts of leafy greens and types of salad toppings, as well as how to make all sorts of dressings. Either way, the book motivated me to make more unique salads. I usually find myself putting the same vegetables in every salad I make, despite what else I am eating it with. Now I have realized that choosing a salad that compliments a meal can make a huge difference.
With that said, this salad is much different than most I have made. I came across this recipe in a Cooking Light magazine while bored at work the other day- yes I spent half of my day at work reading cooking magazines… Shh! One thing that makes this salad unique is its warm vinaigrette. This dressing went perfectly with the roasted Brussels sprouts. The bacon and maple syrup also added a ton of flavor. This is one salad that did not need a ton of toppings to complete it. I even ate it as a complete meal the next day!