Mini Marble Loaf and Chocolate Chip Cookies

Happy New Year! It’s been exactly one year since I started Talida Bakes, and I’d say my 2007 resolution to bake more has been accomplished. Granted, I had my summer hiatus, but I think I’ve come a long way and have learned many things about baking last year. I’ve got a similar goal for this year – to push myself and tackle more difficult recipes to learn new and challenging techniques. Oh, this and have a memorable wedding to start a great marriage.

To ring in the new year, Tim and I hosted a little dessert and cocktail party at my apartment. Well, what we thought was little turned into a college-reminiscent party that fit 40 people in my 670 sqft place. I meant to write this post earlier today, but lucky me had a full day of cleaning after last night’s party. I do love my friends, but this is never happening again. Not at my place.

So what did I make? I got my ideas from the latest Martha Stewart Weddings magazine in the feature called Sugar Babies. Once I saw the petit fours inspired desserts, I knew what I had to do. Copy it. Really, I took the marble loaf recipe right out of the magazine. But I also used my own chocolate chip cookie recipe as well as my previously posted matcha cupcakes. I wanted to try another stab at the thai tea cupcakes, but I ran out of time. Soon though.. that post will surely come soon.

Mini Marble Loaf
from Martha Stewart Weddings, Winter 2008

Ingredients:
1 3/4 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup buttermilk, room temperature
3 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1/4 cup boiling water

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Generously butter 6 mini loaf pans.
2. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt.
3. Beat butter and 1 cup sugar with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Reduce speed to low.
4. Beat in flour mixture in two additions, alternating with the buttermilk. Reserve one-quarter of the batter.
5. Whisk together cocoa and remaining 1 tablespoon sugar. Add the boiling water, and stir until smooth. Add to reserved cake batter, and stir until combined.
6. Spoon batters into pans in two layers, alternating spoonfuls of vanilla and chocolate to simulate a checkerboard. Run a skewer through batter in a swirling motion to create a marbled effect.
7. Bake cakes, rotating pans from front to back after 15 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into centers comes out clean, 25 to 40 minutes. Let cakes cool in pans on wire racks for 15 minutes. Run a knife around edges of pans to loosen, and turn out cakes onto racks to cool completely. Just before serving, cut cakes into 1/2-inch slices.

Chocolate Chip Cookies
from allrecipes

Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Sift together the flour and baking soda, set aside.
3. Cream together the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar. Beat in the instant pudding mix until blended. Stir in the eggs and vanilla.
4. Blend in the flour mixture.
5. Stir in the chocolate chips. Drop cookies by rounded spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. To make mini cookies, use 1/2 teaspoonfuls.
6. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes in the preheated oven. Edges should be golden brown.

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