Do you dread dicing onions? Does it drive you nuts when you can’t make small, even little squares? I’ve got the perfect video tutorial for you to help you with that… “How to Dice an Onion”!
I’m baaaaaaaaaack! Well, sorta. Back in August while in the Dog Tag, Inc. Fellowship Program, I had a 5 week rotation in the kitchen of the Dog Tag Bakery learning from the Executive Pastry Chef Rebecca Clerget and her amazing staff. One afternoon, we had the privilege of learning basic knife skills from “Kitchen” Kyle Wronsky, head of the savory menu at Dog Tag Bakery.
Kyle taught us how to dice an onion in a way that I had never seen before and my mind was blown! His technique, which I am sure is only new to me, was not only simple, but it created a small, uniform dice of the onion.
I knew I had to turn it into a video tutorial so I could share this with all of you!
How to Dice an Onion with “Kitchen” Kyle Wronsky
Prepare Your Work Surface: Place a wet cloth flat under your cutting board. This will ensure that your board does not slide around while you are dicing the onion.
Sharpen and Hone Your Knife: Not only must you start with a sharp knife, but you must keep your knife sharp. Hone your knife before & after each use to keep it sharp.
Trim the Gangly Bits: Trim the extra gangly bits off the root of the onion, making sure to keep the root in tact.
Cut the Top Flat: The opposite end from the root, slice off the top creating a flat surface to set the onion on.
Slice the Onion in half: Cutting through the root, slice the onion in half.
Make Horizontal Cuts: Cutting 80% through the onion making sure not to penetrate the root, make horizontal slices about 1/4″ apart starting at the bottom and moving to the top.
Make Vertical Cuts: Again, cutting 80% through the onion making sure not to penetrate the root, turn the onion 45 degrees and make vertical slices about 1/4″ apart. Start at one side and move to the other.
Make Vertical Cuts again: This cut creates the dice. Turn the onion 45 degrees again, and make vertical cuts 1/4″ apart creating an even dice of the onion.
Repeat: Repeat this process with the other half of your onion!
Big THANK YOU goes to Rebecca of Dog Tag Bakery for allowing us to use her kitchen to shoot this video! Bigger thanks to “Kitchen Kyle” for sharing his skills!
Your favorite vanilla cake layered with fresh blueberry compote and topped with buttercream make this Blueberries and Cream Layer Cake the perfect cake for any occasion!
My friends who work at the USO Warrior & Family Center at Fort Belvoir asked if I would make a baby shower cake for one of the women I absolutely had to say yes!
Casey gave me free range to make whatever I wanted for Ranna’s cake since she had seen what I had created for them in the past. I was super excited to make something really special for them!
I decided to go with my favorite box cake mix for vanilla cake. Don’t hate me, but I do not have an amazing vanilla cake recipe yet that works out perfectly every time I bake it. So, that means that I go with a super moist box mix.
However, I find that when I pair a box cake mix with a delicious homemade fruit compote and freshly whipped buttercream… no one can tell it’s from a box!
The inside is filled with a deliciously sweet and slightly tart homemade chunky blueberry compote. I chose the blueberry because Ranna is having a sweet baby boy and I wanted the entire cake to be on theme!
I used my favorite whipped buttercream tinted in a beautiful shade of blue and topped it all with a sprinkling of white jimmies!
Did you notice those adorable fluted edges on the cake? I used a fun scalloped edge cake pan I found at Home Goods. Check out the video below for a description of the pan and to see step by step how I filled and frosted the cake!
Blueberries & Cream Layer Cake
Yield: 12-14 servings
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours12 minutes
1 box of your favorite yellow/white cake mix + the ingredients to make it
Scalloped edge cake pans
2-3 cups fresh blueberries
zest of 1/2 a lemon
juice of 1/2 a lemon
1/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp corn starch
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1lb powdered sugar, sifted
1/4-1/2 cup heavy cream
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
blue/teal/aqua gel food coloring
Follow the directions on the box of cake mix to prepare batter. Grease and flour the cake pan.
Divide the batter evenly by weight into 4 parts. Bake each part at the temperature listed on the box for 7-15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center.
In a large pan, combine the butter, sugar, lemon zest, juice and berries over medium high heat.
Once the sugar and butter have melted, begin mashing the blueberries until about half of them are in pieces. You want this to be chunky so don't over mash the berries.
Cook for 5-10 minutes over medium heat. The mixture should be gently bubbling but not boiling. Stir frequently.
Sprinkle the corn starch over the mixture and mix until completely incorporated and no chunks remain. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.
Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely. The mixture will solidify and shouldn't be runny when cool.
Mix the butter, sugar, vanilla and 1/4 cup of cream together until smooth.
Add up to 1/4 cup more cream to reach your desired consistency.
Mix in the fool coloring until you have the color you want.
Beat the frosting on high for 3-5 minutes or until light and fluffy.
Place first layer of cake onto a cake place/stand.
Fill a piping bag fitted with a Wilton 1M piping tip with frosting and pipe a layer of frosting onto the outside edge of the top of the cake.
Fill the inside of cake with a layer of blueberry filling.
Place another layer of cake on top, making sure to line up the scallops line up.
When you get to the top layer, spread a thin layer of frosting on top just to the edge. Don't worry about getting it all the way to the edges because you're going to cover with the piping bag frosting. Make sure the frosting is smooth and flat.
Pipe a pretty scalloped edge of frosting onto the outside top of the cake.
Sprinkle white jimmes over the top of the frosting.
Cut and slice and enjoy!
Make sure to watch the video above to see how I filled and frosted this cake!
Surprise your friends and family with your favorite sugar cookie kicked up a notch with my Pretzel Shaped Cinnamon Sugar Cookies!
My sweet neighbor Amanda had a baby this week! A sweet little boy (well, not so little he weighed 10lbs, 11oz!) with the cutest chubby cheeks and the softest skin who just lays peacefully in my arms as I ooohh and awwww over him. Of course, I had to bake for this sweet baby’s Mamma and Grandma and decided on Amanda’s favorite cookie recipe of mine. Sugar cookies!
Instead of baking plain cookies, I decided to mix things up a bit and shape the dough into pretzels. I mean, we are in Germany after all! And to add another dimension of flavor, I added cinnamon to the batter and to the frosting! These Pretzel Shaped Cinnamon Sugar Cookies are soft, savory and sweet at the same time and so delicious!
To decorate the pretzels, I left a few without frosting and used white jimmies to act as the “salt” on the pretzel. Some I drizzled with chocolate while others I frosted and coated in rainbow jimmies and nonpareils. These really are so delicious and so cute… you need them in your life!
I made a quick video of how I rolled and shaped the pretzels. I hope it helps with you making them yourself!
Pretzel shaped Cinnamon Sugar Cookies
Yield: 1 dozen
Prep Time: 1 hour30 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour38 minutes
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
2-4 Tbsp heavy cream
1-2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the butter and shortening.
Add the sugar, eggs, and extract and mix on high until light and fluffy – about 4-5 minutes.
In another bowl, whisk together the cinnamon, flour, baking powder and salt.
Add the flour to the butter mixture and mix until combined. Make sure you are scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl.
Cover and chill at least 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 400 F degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
Weigh 2.5oz of dough. Roll the dough into a 12-13 inch rope.
Take each end and fold it up and over onto itself, twisting once. Make a small indentation into the dough where the ends will attach. (See video)
Bake for 7-9 minutes or until they begin to brown on the bottom slightly.
Allow the cookies to cool for about a minute or two before removing them to a wire rack to cool completely.
Apply a thin layer of frosting to the cookie and sprinkle any sprinkles or jimmies over the top.
You can also use a small flat piping tip attached to a bag filled with frosting and pipe any decoration on the cookie you want.
I used white jimmies to look like salt on a few. I melted chocolate and drizzled that over a few others and garnished with gold sugar crystals. The possibilities are endless! Just be creative!