Day 3 and 4 Juices

All recipes are meant to be juiced unless otherwise noted.

“Hot Soother” especially good for those with a sore throat or maladies:

– 1/2 lemon
– 1 tsp honey (not for kids under 1 year old–choking hazard)
– hot water
(I added 2 shakes of cayenne pepper)

Sip slowly.

Cantaloupe Shake“: good for those with allergies or have high blood pressure/cholesterol

– 1/2 cantaloupe, with skin

“Popeye’s Favorite” full of iron and great for anemic individuals

– small handful spinach
– 4-5 carrots, greens removed
– 1/2 apple, seeded

“Ginger Pear Cooler” – Happy Hour

– 1/2 lemon
– 1 inch ginger
– 1/2 cucumber
– 1 pear

Juice and serve with ice.

“Cleansing Tonic”:

– 1/2 inch wedge green cabbage
– 2 green apples, seeded
– 6 carrots, greens removed

———————

Day 4:

Super-Eight Stress Reliever“: suggested for those who are overweight/obese

– 1 kale leaf
– 1 collard leaf
– small handful parsley
– 1 stalk celery
– 1 carrot
– 1/2 red bell pepper
– 1 tomato
– 1 broccoli floweret
(optional: 1 celery stalk for garnish)

“Healing Smoothie”

– 1 firm kiwi, peeled (skin is incredibly tough and inedible)
– 1/4 cantaloupe, with skin
– 1 ripe banana

Juice kiwi and cantaloupe.  Add juice with banana in the blender and blend until smooth.  Serve.

“Hawaiian Fizz”: Happy Hour

– 3 pineapple rings, with skin/
– 1/4 in ginger
– 1/2 pear
– sparkling water
(optional: 1 pineapple spear for garnish)

Juice, add to a drinking container, and then fill it up with sparkling water.  Serve.

“Green Goddess”: dinner

– handful spinach
– 3 collard leaves
– 4 carrots, greens removed
– 2 stalks celery
– 1/2 cucumber
– 1 apple, seeded
(I added 1/2 green bell pepper, substituted collard leaves for red kale, and substituted spinach for dino kale because I ran out of some ingredients)

Juice.  This yielded about 28-30oz (depending on how large or small carrots, apples, and cucumber are).

Day 3 and 4 of Diet/Challenge

So I forgot to allot time to write about Day 3 yesterday so I will write about both days and their respective recipes to follow. 🙂

On Day 3 I noticed I had more energy than the day prior and I wasn’t feeling gross/blah like I had on Day 2.  I still had hunger pangs (obviously the detoxing still) but they came less often than of the first two days in the challenge.  I still had my dreaded dry coughs so I was prepared to add more ginger and lemon to most of the juices I was making to aid in my recovery process.

I started off in the morning with something called a “Hot Soother”, which consists of hot water, lemon, and honey.  I also added a few shakes of cayenne pepper to help clear my sinuses; it’s not needed but I like that extra spicy kick in my drink.  I then made myself a “Cantaloupe Shake” to combat any of my current allergies (cantaloupe with skin). For lunch I prepared “Popeye’s Favorite” to incorporate more iron into my system, which I thought I needed.  I thought it would have more spinach than other ingredients but I was wrong.  In this recipe it seemed carrots dominated.  I didn’t mind because I love carrots but really Popeye?  I figured you to be an all-spinach guy…

Anyway I had to be somewhere soon after so I skipped my mid-afternoon juice, which would have been the “Liver Mover” with beets and an apple, and went to happy hour with a “Ginger Pear Cooler”.  The recipe calls for lemon but I ran out and used a full lime instead.  A little sour since some of the pulp was whole and spicier than most drinks because there was more ginger called in the recipe.  I still ate some of the organic crackers my dad bought for snacks, a package of the roasted seaweed sheets, and some chili crackers at my cousin’s house.

For dinner which I juiced prior to arriving at my cousin’s house, I made a different “Cleansing Tonic” which made a good 32oz of juice (also because apparently I didn’t measure right and used half of a green cabbage instead of a 1/2 inch wedge…).  Sometimes I don’t know what I was thinking…haha.  Even still, the large juice made me full, was tasty, and made me run to the bathroom every 10 minutes to pee.

Oh yeah…note: juicing makes you pee every 10-15 minutes or so.  All in a body’s work to detox but can be inconvenient ESPECIALLY when stuck in traffic or driving a far destination.

People can be so cruel…my cousin is doing the Master Cleanse diet with lemons, organic maple syrup, and cayenne pepper (among laxative/nighttime teas and ones with sea salt) along with me doing the raw food/juicing challenge, and my aunt (her mom) decides to cook some mouthwatering, yummy-smelling fried rice in the kitchen nearest us.  Both of us are in our first week of our diets and it’s killer to smell all the good foods without being able to enjoy eating them.  Evil, evil people.

I got home that evening and didn’t drink any chamomile tea because I was just too tired and had school the next day.

—-

On Day 4 which was yesterday, I woke up rather late and prepared late so I had to skip the breakfast and mid-morning juices (which I won’t skip next time) and went straight into lunch which I prepared a “Super-Eight Stress Reliever”, which I read is great for overweight/obese people.  I would assume it’s because there are 8 really awesome vegetables being used to help organ function and boost health.  I didn’t have collard greens so I substituted them for some red kale I had, and I also didn’t have any red bell peppers so I used a green bell pepper.

After making that I hastily gathered my supplies and ingredients to make my mid-afternoon juice because class was starting in an hour and I had to drink this right before leaving and bring the happy hour juice with me.  For my mid-afternoon I made a “Healing Smoothie” because I wasn’t able to get nutrients from the morning, and the banana blended with the juices would help me through class, since I would usually drink a juice every 2-3 hours.  For my happy hour drink, I made a “Hawaiian Fizz” because I wanted something different than the other juices I have done in the past few days.  Sure I can just get the same nutrients everyday, but it’s good to try different things.  I also made sure to pack some organic crackers in case I got hungry through class, but I didn’t really need it.

After a short trip to the grocery store for more carrots, green apples, some granola for snacks, and oatmeal for breakfast, I had to drive home.  That was most uncomfortable for me because I needed to pee really bad AND I was stuck in traffic.  Oh..my..goodness.  And yes, if you’re wondering I went right before I left the store too!  Once I got home, skipping the bathroom details, I went to juice my dinner.  I made the “Green Goddess” using all of the green vegetables and fruits I had in my inventory.  I had to substitute spinach for red kale because I ran out, and used dino kale to replace collard leaves.  I also added some green bell pepper just to make it really “green” ha.  I think from now on I should just plan on using a 32oz container to drink out of for my dinner juices because I end up having more than 24oz of juice in the end, whereas the other juices tend to end up between 6-12oz.

The next time I have my classes I am going to wake up earlier and plan my time wisely because juicing takes time, and cleaning up afterwards takes even longer.  It’s the truth.  Look for the recipes of Day 3 and 4 soon. 🙂

Day 2 Juices

Mid-morning: “Maureen’s Spicy Tonic

– 1/4 pineapple, with skin
– 1/2 apple, seeded
– 1/4 in ginger root

Juice and serve.

Lunch: “Ginger Hopper

– 1/4 in ginger root (can add more if want it spicier)
– 4-5 carrots, greens removed
– 1/2 apple, seeded

Juice and serve on ice if you like.

Dinner: “Harvest Soup

– 2-3 garlic cloves
– 1 kale leaf
– 1 large tomato
– 2 stalks celery
– 1 collard leaf, chopped (can substitute for spinach)
– 1 tbsp croutons
(note: I added in a handful of spinach)

Roll garlic in kale and push with tomato and celery.  (Here’s the part where I added in the handful of spinach).  Place juice in a saucepan, add chopped collards (in my case spinach) and gently heat.  Garnish with croutons.

Day 2 of my Raw Foods/Juice Adventure

Let me just say that it’s rumored the first three days are the toughest in any diet, especially this one.  9am my alarm clock rang and I just did not want to wake up.  Three hours later I found myself groaning as I got up from bed because I really wanted to just sleep the entire day; I was feeling so tired.  Honestly I think I would have slept more had I not had something to do at 3pm yesterday, and juicing for an entire day in one time takes a good while.

So, it was a little after noon and I had to drag myself out of bed looking the crappiest I’d ever looked in the mirror (even worse than having done two all-nighters in a row…).  I went to brush my teeth and put my hair up so that I could start picking out what I wanted to juice that day and what things I could pack for the party at 3pm.

For mid-morning, I had a wake-her-upper called “Maureen’s Spicy Tonic” which also aided in helping my throat out… Day 1 I was completely 100% lost my voice. Yesterday I was back up to 50% near the end of the day… The drink had pineapple, apples, and ginger, and I drank this after I had my morning “tea” (hot water, some lemon, and a little honey) to soothe my throat and ready myself for the day.

After as a snack, I prepared myself with a Waldorf Salad drink as I did the day before and I think I found my most loveable drink.  Haha!  For lunch, I made myself a “Ginger Hopper” to combat any kind of sickness and help my throat get better (ginger, carrots, and half of an apple).  I waited about an hour in between to drink each drink so that I could detox my body better.

For my mid-afternoon juicing, I made the Potassium Broth like the day before.  Before I had to go prepare myself to leave, I pre-made my dinner to bring to the party.  It was called “Harvest Soup” (I added a few other things to my liking and due to not having collard greens) and consisted of garlic cloves, kale, tomatoes, celery, a lot of spinach, and about 5 roasted garlic croutons.  It’s meant for being heated up as a soup with collard greens, or in my case a handful of spinach, added in while cooking, and then garnished with a tablespoon of croutons.

At the party, the hosts (my boyfriend’s cousins) had made some healthy entrees only one of which I would be able to munch on.  They had some green enchiladas with chicken, honey chipotle chicken kebobs, and separate dishes for guacamole and chips (or dress up the entrees however we liked).  I made raw veggie burritos out of the romaine lettuce, guacamole, black olives, and diced tomatoes.  Throughout the day I also munched on some roasted seaweed sheets and had some green tea.

I noticed the hunger pangs were far less than day 1 but still noticeable, and yet I was still tired.

I decided also to write down in a journal what juices and foods I had eaten for the day (for the rest of the diet) so I could be more organized in what I needed to get from the fridge or which drinks I would want the next day.  In an additional post I will relay some of the juices I haven’t put out a recipe for yet, for any of my readers.

Day 1 Juicing recipes

As promised, even though a day late, here are the recipes I used for the first day.  I’m going to have a separate post after this one for my Day 2 entry & recipes as well.  Hm I might as well make them into 2 separate categories so they can be archived better (one for Entries and one for Juicing Recipes….yeah I think that would be a better idea) for your/my use. 🙂

Also the two books I used for references (recipes and planning) are “The Juice Diet” by Christine Bailey (ISBN: 978-1-84483-964-3) which has recipes AND large colored photos, and “Juicing for Life: A Guide to the Health Benefits of Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Juicingby Cherie Calbom, M.S. and Maureen Keane, M.S., C.N. (ISBN: 978-0-89529-512-5).

I began Day 1 for breakfast/mid-morning with “Cherie’s Cleansing Cocktail“:

– 1/4 in. ginger root
– 1 beet
– 1/2 apple, seeded
– 4 carrots, greens removed

Juice together and serve. (Note: seeds in the apple and carrot greens are toxic so they are often removed prior to consumption.)

For my mom I made her a “Green Machine [Cleanse]“:

– 9oz pineapple juice
– 4 broccoli florets
– 2 celery stalks
– 1 tsp green superfood powder (I subbed with 2 kale leaves).

Juice and serve with ice.

I then juiced some beet juice (I read it helps with liver health/detox) to share between us.  It sure stained our teeth purple/red for a little though…BLOOD!! Just kidding 🙂  We drank and took a swig of beet juice to swallow down our milk thistle capsule.

For lunch I had the “Garden Salad Special“:

– 3 broccoli florets
– 1 garlic clove
– 4-5 carrots, greens removed  OR 2 tomatoes
– 2 stalks celery
– 1/2 green pepper

Juice in order, and serve.

I think that was by far the worst one I’ve ever tried…was like drinking a garlicky version of marinara sauce, but really watery.

For happy hour, I made the “Waldorf Salad“:

– 1 green apple, seeded
– 1 stalk celery

Juice and enjoy (especially relish in the moment after that last one drink I had haha).

For dinner I called it the Veggie Tonic Cleanser…at the time I didn’t remember the name but it’s really “Potassium Broth“. …yeah.

– handful parsley
– handful spinach
– 4-5 carrots, greens removed
– 2 stalks celery
(I added 1 pear for sweetness & 1/4 in. ginger for spice)

Obviously juice and serve.

My raw foods/juice cleansing adventure

You know, I haven’t given much thought or energy to keeping up with this blog and I’m sorry.  I’ve been hooked on Facebook, Instagram, and, more importantly, spending time with my relatives.  Yup; I’ve succumbed to being a homebody.  Recently I got bored of the foods that I was eating because it was all processed foods or they just had too much of fat/sugar/salt in them; frankly my palate was tired of what it was given.  I knew I had to do something about it to change that perspective on food so that I could go back to appreciating being a foodie.

I thought…hey…I should do that detoxing thing so many people are doing nowadays…maybe that will work.  I did some research on what the diet/program entailed as well as remembered watching the documentary “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead” on Netflix.  You know?  I could do that too!  Sure I don’t have butt loads of medication to take like the two guys in the documentary or more than half of me to lose, but I think I could take on the challenge to make myself better and healthier.  I looked up tons of books at Barnes and Nobles and ended up grabbing two (a recipe book with colored pictures–honestly big colored pictures and cookbooks totally go together–and another detailing different juicing programs as well as which juices/vitamins combat certain sicknesses or even complexion.  I was hooked.

I began by buying some organic vegetables at a natural/organic/vegan/gluten-free friendly market called Jimbo.  Like most organic food items, they come at a pretty penny but totally well worth it in the long run. Also, there were lots of items there, and an actual deli/juice bar, that you just couldn’t find at a Trader Joes or Sprouts (I’ve looked…) at least around my town.  A few days after on a Wednesday (because if you have ever shopped at Sprouts you know that Wednesdays are double-ad Wednesdays and that means more sales for you) I grabbed most of my items from there as well as some capsules for herb milk thistle.  What does milk thistle do for you and why is it so important?  It helps keep the liver functioning at a healthy level and allows for better digestion.  It’s also great alongside detoxing.

So day 1 (Aug 17, 2012) began and I woke up bright and early (well early enough for me) around 9am, and was fully awake about an hour later.  It’s my summer and I usually just sleep in. Ha!  I got down and started to look at the recipes I chose the night before so that I could clean and prep the fruits and vegetables for the mid-morning/lunch juice.  Also I was using one of the recipes for my mom’s juice too.

I got down to choosing what my book called “Cleansing Cocktail” which I added beets, apples, carrots, and ginger.  I added kale to get that extra goodness as well.  For my mom, I chose a liver cleansing juice called “Green Machine Cleanse” which consisted of pineapples, kale, broccoli, and then I added extra beets.  We both ended the juices with a capsule of milk thistle and our daily vitamins.

They were both delicious and honestly I thought I had this all in the bag…piece of cake.. until I got to the lunch/mid-afternoon portion.  I was wrong….so, so wrong.  Ordinarily I don’t like the original V8 juice because it’s not sweet (duh it’s like a bloody mary without the alcohol), so I was hesitant of making my “Garden Soup Cocktail”.  It tasted like a liquid/watered down version of marinara sauce with extra garlic.  I’m so glad that 8 oz of the juices are needed because I was only able to stomach just that.  It had tomatoes, a garlic clove, kale, spinach, carrots, and parsley.  The worst part was the garlic….the raw garlic I had to juice.  Vile I tell you.

The Happy Hour part of my day was making a delicious juice version of a Waldorf Salad.  Essentially it’s a green apple with celery.  Yum.  I was SO excited to drink that after my juiced lunch.

For dinner I made myself a “Veggie Tonic Cleanser” which I added parsley, spinach, carrots, celery, a pear for sweetness, and some ginger for the spicy kick at the end.  This one…not too bad either.

Each time I had my main meals/juices I would feel so starved after I had finished drinking because my body was still detoxifying itself and my brain was thinking “hey you! by now we usually have SOME sort of food other than a liquid…care to feed me with those?” I wish…because I want a nice cut of steak right about now. 😛  My snacks of the day were some crackers that had flax, coconut oil, and basically all the good stuff you could add in a cracker (having a total mind fart right now), and a small package of roasted seaweed sheets.  Also a lot of water and non-caffeinated tea was taken in as well as the juices.

I’m nearing the “end” of my day 1 right now as I start feeling sleepy from my mint + chamomile tea, with a little bit of honey.  I’ll post up recipes of the juices as per the books I used in day 2 after a good night’s rest.  Until then, happy eatings to you and have a good day/night!

Restaurant Review: Jilbertos (Escondido, CA)

Here in CA you can find many taco/Mexican food shops with a combo name of “___lbertos”.  You know…Alberto’s, Roberto’s, Albertacos, Jilbertos, Alertos…and the list goes on.  I’m not kidding about those name variations because they all exist.  In Escondido, there is probably one or two on every block; no joke!  I wouldn’t think of calling my boyfriend and I connoisseurs of Mexican food, but we are most likely going to taste about two or three things on the menu at each different Mexican shop.  The three things we mostly choose are rolled tacos, chimichanga(s), and carne asada fries/nachos.  That last bit is more or less a variation on what we crave that day or which one we are too bored of eating again.

To my knowledge and/or recollection, we have eaten at about three shops in Escondido with Jilbertos being at the top of the list (Jilbertos, Antonio’s, and…another which has escaped my memory).  Saving our waist lines and our wallets, we haven’t been back at Jilbertos for more than a week.  On an earlier date, we bought a chimichanga (for him), and 12 rolled tacos (for me), which I will review shortly in this post.  I forget the actual prices for each, but they are slightly pricey than the average taco shop but give a large portion. (And sorry for the bad quality of the pictures.  They were taken with an iPhone 3G camera which doesn’t give such a high resolution for photos…)

First things first, Jilberto’s can be found by a large grocery store named Vallerto’s (surprise surprise that there ISN’T a taco shop inside), Subways, Baskin-Robbins, Office Depot, and f.y.e. (for your entertainment) which is a store consisting of many genres of DVDs, CDs and vinyls to buy (more than in your ordinary Target or Walmart store).  The address is below:

1301 E Valley Pky, #A 
Escondido, CA 92027
(cross streets are Harding St. & 78 freeway/Valley Pkwy)
(760) 480-2618

Visa/Mastercard/Discover and cash are accepted.

Rolled Tacos

12 Rolled Tacos with Guacamole & Cheese

12 rolled tacos (with guacamole and cheese toppings), $7.50

Review: From my own perspective and bias, I feel that these are probably some of the best rolled tacos I have ever eaten in my life.  It’s a pretty modest statement but I (and so have some friends) can say it’s true that these are just too good to put down or only eat little of.  They all stay crunchy despite a hefty layer of toppings (even the tacos at the bottom pile do not lose their crunchiness).  There is a pretty good amount of meat inside, compared to other locations I have been to.  There isn’t a big need to add any more toppings like salsa or pico de gallo but only through preference.  Additional salsa (I have experimented on adding) does not pull up enough on taste for me to distinguish the differences between a rolled taco smothered in guacamole and cheese.  Every time I go to Jilbertos, I need to order this again.  In case you feel that 12 rolled tacos is too much to eat, they have a 3-piece rolled taco special (comes with rice and beans), and a 5-piece rolled taco plate.  I can never finish 12 rolled tacos in one sitting, so I let Mike either finish the rest or allow him to take it to work for lunch.

Carne Asada Chimichanga

Carne Asada Chimichanga

Review: Chimichanga with all of the works for no additional cost

The boyfriend, Mike, LOVES chimichangas, but only if done with the right consistencies.  His key targets are the shell must be crispy and crunchy, the filling must be to capacity of the chimichanga and taste yummy, and any toppings the restaurant adds must not diminish the crispy outer shell.

Other establishments are not up to par (for his standards) as the chimichanga here at Jilbertos.  It’s often a hit or miss as some places only grill their burritos (not really a chimichanga) or get too soggy to quick due to toppings, and some don’t even fill with much meat inside.

If not feeling in the mood to eat a chimichanga, he’s one to opt for the 12 rolled tacos instead and it doesn’t bother him in the least bit.  I have sampled a little of the chimichanga and it is pretty tasty.  Crunchy shell, good meat to saucy filling ratio, and very very filling.  This is not one of the menu items someone would pick if trying to lose weight due to the sauces and the fact that tortilla is fried, but it is very satisfying to eat.  I’m not a big fan of burritos and the like (chimichangas for example) so I cannot attest to all of the details on how this chimichanga is in comparison to other chimichanga menu items in other restaurants.

Jilbertos’ horchata is also just as good as other mom and pop Mexican restaurants, and yes, we always get a large cup of horchata for every visit.  That is a must!

I believe our bill (a large drink, 12 rolled tacos and a chimichanga) came out to be approximately $13-18.  Like I said before…a little bit pricey but oh so good.

I urge you to try something from Jilbertos if in the area next time.  There is no drive-thru like many other places, and parking can be tricky due to such a populated area, but a very good restaurant to try Mexican food if you haven’t already here.  Look for more reviews to come for other restaurants, desserts from Trader Joes, and dessert wines, and happy eatings!

Temporary Hiatus

My oh my…I haven’t been back here in a long while.  My camera stopped functioning and went to its own heaven, so I’m currently using a not-so-good camera phone.  I’m oh so sad about being camera-less.  I’ve taken a lot of photos pertaining to food, events, and even from restaurants but haven’t had the time to put them up or at least even written a decent blog.

In the future (maybe in the next week or two), look for recipes for smoky mushroom stroganoff, garlicky-grilled cheese sandwiches, food encapsulated from Valentines Day dinner (made by 5 girls for our guys), fair food reviews, and others.

In a non-food related way, I have somewhat gone back into my other online portfolio for photography (http://azndlish.deviantart.com) which I have also recently gone back to despite a long hiatus as well.  See you around and look for a future update.  Sorry for the extremely long wait, everyone!

Recipe: Mac&Cheese and the Kitchen Sink

Today has been a rather lackluster day.  Migraines, cramps, and plenty of thunder down under.  Sorry a bit TMI, but you ladies understand what I mean.

I have been craving macaroni and cheese for a few days now and I just had time to make something I wanted for myself after being so busy the whole weekend (other than my friend’s birthday party on Saturday…celebrated my parents’ 28th anniversary on Sunday too).  I decided to make my own version of a simple mac & cheese, sans boxed version you would find in every supermarket.  I just had to make my own version from scratch.

I originally wanted to put in Gruyere cheese instead of Monterey Jack cheese, but I was pretty low on cash as most college students are so I had to sell myself short on many ingredients.  For example instead of using smoked paprika, I had sweet paprika which I normally use only for deviled eggs.  Also why add “the kitchen sink” into the name?  I used so many other ingredients I found around the kitchen sink into the recipe as well.  Also you can substitute the bowtie pasta I used for regular elbow macaroni or other shapes…

Mac&Cheese and the Kitchen Sink

Mac&Cheese and the Kitchen Sink

Mac&Cheese and the Kitchen Sink
adapted from “Traditional Macaroni & Cheese” recipe by http://www.verybestbaking.com

Estimated time:
Prep – 15 mins;  Cooking: 20 mins;   Yield – 6-8 servings, depending on how large the serving size

1 bag (12 oz) of bowtie pasta, cooked and drained
2 tbsp cornstarch (mix with 1-2tbsp of water until dissolved)
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1 can (12 fl. oz) evaporated milk
1 cup water
2 tbsp butter or margarine
1/2 cup sour cream
2 cups (80z) shredded Monterey Jack cheese (divided if baking this dish)
optional: handful of store-bought croutons, crushed, for garnishing

1. Combine evaporated milk, water, butter, and sour cream in a medium saucepan.  Add cornstarch mix, salt, cayenne pepper, paprika, black pepper, and cook over medium heat stirring constantly until mixture comes to a boil.
2. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese (reserve 1/2 cup cheese if baking) until melted.
3. Pour cheese mixture over cooked pasta and toss. 
4. Garnish (optional) with a few sprinkles of paprika and crushed croutons.  Serve and eat while warm.

If baking, after you have added in 1 1/2 cup of cheese to melt in the mixture, pour over pasta and mix well.  Pour into a greased casserole dish and top with remaining cheese.  Add panko bread crumbs (or crushed croutons if you don’t have any on hand) on top.  Bake for 20-25mins, at 375 degrees F, or until cheese is melted and light brown.  Sprinkle with a little bit of paprika on top for added color.

The cayenne comes out as an undertone in the dish as when you bite into the pasta you first taste all of the cheese.  Then the slight spicyness comes from underneath to give a little kick.

Sorry the picture was not as great as it is with my cell phone camera.  However, I hope you enjoy this recipe and happy eatings! 🙂

Recipe: Red Velvet & Cheesecake Tunnel Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

Boy what a weekend it has been!  After my midterm last Thursday I went home, ate dinner, and then went to bed.  I was so tired I didn’t get to blog. 😦 Then on Friday I needed to bake up a bundt cake for my friend’s birthday bbq potluck thing (Saturday).  Just your treat that I am going to post up the recipe I adapted from two recipes I found online (at the time I don’t remember which site I went to for the bundt cake portion…)!  The frosting I adapted from Joy the Baker and Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook.

Usually I do not post up recipes unless it has been tried and more than two people love it.  This one was a BIG crowd-pleaser; even my parents liked it (they aren’t fans of cakes that are too sweet, but this cake isn’t that at all).  Sure if you eat the frosting by itself it can get pretty sweet, but just enough sweetness for this bundt cake.  I don’t have pictures for this cake yet, but I will have them uploaded into my computer by tonight for your enjoyment.

Also, I sort of cheated on the cake portion using a red velvet box mix, but it saves up on a lot of time and money for me.

Take a chunk out...

Cutting into deliciousness

Red Velvet & Cheesecake Tunnel Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese frosting

1 red velvet cake mix box
1/3 cup butter (I used unsalted and added 1/4tsp of salt)
16 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs (for the cheesecake mixture, so get more for however many the cake box calls for)
1 tsp vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (if using a darker bundt pan, take temp down by 5-10 degrees).  Prepare cake mix according to package directions, substituting oil needed for butter (as stated in ingredients list).
2. Pour 1/2 of batter into a 12-cup greased and floured fluted bundt pan.
3. Combine in a separate bowl cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract, mixing well at medium speed on an electric mixer until well blended.  Slowly add in eggs (2) one at a time until incorporated.
4. Pour cheesecake mixture over batter in pan  and spoon the rest of the red velvet cake batter over the cheesecake mixture.  Bake 1hr or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Cool 30mins to an hour (while in bundt pan to keep shape of fluted bundt pan).  Remove to a wire rack.

For the cinnamon cream cheese frosting:
2 1/3 cups powdered sugar
3 tbsp butter, at room temp
4 oz cream cheese, cold
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon (I used 1/2tsp because I like the cinnamon to be extremely present in frosting)
1 tsp vanilla extract

5. Beat the powdered sugar, cinnamon, butter, and vanilla extract together in an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (can use the same from cake batter–just cleaned).  Mix on medium-slow speed until well mixed (you wouldn’t want to cover yourself in a powdered sugar blanket).
6. Add cream cheese all at once and beat on medium to medium-high until incorporated.  Turn the mixer to a medium-high and beat for 5 mins or until the frosting becomes light and fluffy.  Do not overmix as the frosting can become runny.
7. Make sure the cake is nice and cooled so the frosting does not melt into the cake.  Pipe lines on bundt cake or spread frosting covering most of the cake (up to you how thick you would like the frosting to be on the cake and how much to spread).

You can also convert this recipe into cupcake form by filling up each holder half-way with cake batter and then adding in about 2 tbsp of cheesecake mix into each and topping with rest of cake batter (enough to fill 3/4 of the way).    Then bake as directed on cake mix box for 19-25mins, depending on altitude and lightness/darkness of pan, checking with a toothpick at the end to see if baked through.  Cool cupcakes for about 30 mins transferring to a wire rack and then frost cupcakes.

To add more color and texture I added some red sprinkles over frosted bundt cake.  Keep cool until serving.  Slice (if a cake) and enjoy your decadent dessert.

This recipe calls for a dozen cupcakes so double the cake recipe for two 9-in layer cakes, and double the frosting recipe to frost a two-layer 9-in cake.

this could be your slice

a piece of the cake

Photo credits go to Diana Wong.  Thanks Di for taking some pictures and happy belated birthday, chef (that’s my nickname for her).  Hope you liked the cake like Agatha hoovering it. Hehe…

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