Irish Cream Cupcakes

Irish Cream Cupcakes

I just couldn’t resist making these creamy and chocolatey Irish Cream Cupcakes to help celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this year.  They’re a fun and tasty way to celebrate Irish heritage and religion by lacing both the cupcakes and the frosting with Irish Cream.  These cupcakes are deliciously moist and not too sweet with a white chocolate ganache frosting. Good any day of the year in my opinion.

So what’s the Irish in Irish Cream anyway?

Simply put, Irish Cream is a creamy liqueur made with Irish Whiskey, which can only be named as such if distilled on the island of Ireland, among other regulations.

What are we celebrating on St. Patrick’s Day?

St. Patrick’s Day is a cultural and religious celebration recognizing the patron Saint of Ireland, St. Patrick who died on March 17th, 461. He is best known for bringing Christianity to Ireland.

Why do we wear green?

Ireland is also known as The Emerald Isle, referencing green.

St. Patrick used the green shamrock as a tool to teach people about the holy trinity.

Green is one of the primary colours of the Irish flag.

Wearing green makes you invisible to Leprechauns, who are said to pinch anyone not wearing green, and that’s reason enough for me LOL!

A single Irish Cream Cupcakes sits in focus in the foreground. It sits on a black cooling rack draped with a green and white checkered towel. The background is blurry.
Irish Cream Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 60 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
16-18 minutes 4+ hours
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 60 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
16-18 minutes 4+ hours
A single Irish Cream Cupcakes sits in focus in the foreground. It sits on a black cooling rack draped with a green and white checkered towel. The background is blurry.
Irish Cream Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 60 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
16-18 minutes 4+ hours
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 60 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
16-18 minutes 4+ hours
Ingredients
White Chocolate Ganache
Chocolate Cupcakes
Servings: cupcakes
Instructions
White Chocolate Ganache
  1. Heat cream and Irish cream in a small pot until just at a simmer.
  2. Add chopped white chocolate and butter to a medium size bowl. Pour hot cream over white chocolate and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Whisk until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap directly on the surface and chill until cold, about 4 hours or up to 24 hours in advance.
  3. Using an electric mixer or stand mixer fitted with a whip, whisk ganache until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Use immediately or chill until ready to use.
Chocolate Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350℉ and line 24 muffin tins with paper liners.
  2. Using an electric mixer or stand mixer fitted with a whip attachment combine all ingredients EXCEPT the water and whisk until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add boiling water and stir to combine.
  3. Pour or scoop 1/4 cup of batter into prepared tins. Bake for 16-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool enough to handle, then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  4. Frost with white chocolate ganache frosting.

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Breaded Pesto Chicken Cutlets

Breaded Pesto Chicken Cutlets

 

Why are chicken cutlets so good?

Simply put, they are pounded thin.  This not only makes them tender but makes them cook quickly leaving them little chance of drying out. The trick is to pound them out as evenly as possible which results in even cooking.  Breading the cutlets isn’t always necessary but it does help to keep in all the moisture as does a good sear if opting not to bread them. Breaded Pesto Chicken Cutlets is a good example of both pounding thin and breading.

 

 

I love versatile food!

Breaded Pesto Chicken Cutlets are a great example of how one dish can become 3 different kinds of meals.  These crispy cutlets slathered with pesto are fantastic served with buttered noodles for a quick and easy weeknight meal.  They’re also great cut into wedges and served atop a crisp salad. I’m thinking my favourite though is nestling said cutlet between chewy bread and tomato slices for an upgraded sandwich that ‘s good for lunch or dinner.

 

Breaded Pesto Chicken Cutlets are cut into strips in the foreground, while whole cutlets remain on a parchment lined tray in the background. A black kitchen towel, knife, fresh basil and pesto adorn the scene.
Breaded Pesto Chicken Cutlets
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 cutlets 35 minutes
Cook Time
12-15 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 cutlets 35 minutes
Cook Time
12-15 minutes
Breaded Pesto Chicken Cutlets are cut into strips in the foreground, while whole cutlets remain on a parchment lined tray in the background. A black kitchen towel, knife, fresh basil and pesto adorn the scene.
Breaded Pesto Chicken Cutlets
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 cutlets 35 minutes
Cook Time
12-15 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 cutlets 35 minutes
Cook Time
12-15 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: cutlets
Instructions
  1. Using a blender or mini processor combine the first 7 ingredients and blend until combined but still has some texture. Set aside.
  2. Using three shallow bowls, combine flour and 1/2 tsp salt in one, breadcrumbs and 1/2 tsp salt in the second and the eggs whisked with the milk in the third.
  3. Pat chicken breasts dry with a paper towel. Cut each breast in half horizontally and then cut each half into half vertically, giving you 4 pieces per breast.
  4. Place chicken pieces between 2 pieces of parchment. Pound to about a 1/4" thick (no thinner).
  5. Dredge chicken cutlets with flour, shaking off excess.
  6. Dunk floured cutlets into egg wash and then into bread crumbs, turning to coat evenly. Arrange prepared cutlets onto a clean plate or tray.
  7. Add enough oil to a large skillet to come up about an 1/8" of an inch. Heat over medium until hot. Add 4 cutlets and cook approximately 2 1/2 minutes per side depending on thickness. Remove to a paper towel lined plate. Repeat with remaining cutlets.
  8. Turn oven to broil, with rack 8-10" from heat.
  9. Arrange cutlets on a foil lined tray. Spread 1 tbsp of pesto onto each cutlet and sprinkle lightly with grated parmesan cheese. Broil for 1-2 minutes until cheese is bubbly. Remove from oven and serve immediately.
Recipe Notes

-You can use any pesto you'd like here, however, the one included with this recipe contains less oil than regular pesto.  I found regular pesto makes the cutlets too oily.  This slightly drier version gives the same great flavour but less oil and better results. If you'd like to use a classic pesto, here's the recipe Classic Pesto

-These cutlets are also great on top of pasta drizzled with extra pesto or in a sandwich.

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Coconut Oatmeal Cookies

Coconut Oatmeal Cookies

I promised!

Yes, not too long ago I promised to build up my “cookie” category because who doesn’t want more cookies?  Today’s Coconut Oatmeal Cookies are made just for me!  That’s right, they’re not Christmas cookies made for giving, chocolate chip for my husband or spicy oatmeal for my brother.  Nope, they’re golden with crispy, buttery edges and a slightly chewy centre. Pure coconut and oatmeal goodness, and they’re just for me. This wonderful Coconut Oatmeal Cookie is MY favourite and not made enough in my opinion.  It’s wonderful to bake for others and I truly love to do so, but today I’m thinking of myself.  I really don’t need to eat a bunch of cookies all by myself, but these are oh so good and I do like to have a little treat once in a while. Luckily they freeze wonderfully!!

What makes a good cookie?

I suppose one could say that depends on what kind of cookie your making, but many cookies start off in a similar manner by creaming the butter and sugar first.  So here are a few tips,

1. Use room temperature butter, do not substitute margarine or shortening. Sure they will work, but butter just tastes better.

2. Cream the butter and sugar well, ensuring the sugar crystals are evenly coated. This helps give a tender texture to the cookie.

3. Mix dough until just incorporated and dough sticks together. 

4. Measure out dough or use an Amazon cookie scoop where applicable for each cookie to ensure each one is the same size for uniform baking.

5. Do not overcrowd on the pan.  Allow the cookie enough room to spread and brown evenly all around.

6. Do not over bake.  This can be difficult as cookies are still soft when removed from the oven so it’s hard to judge sometimes.  I bake one tray first according to the recipe and adjust if needed before baking more.

7. Use parchment paper or Amazon Silpat mat  to prevent cookies from sticking.

8. Bake one tray at a time using the middle rack.  This takes a little more time, but every cookie will be the same.

Author: Compelled to Cook, recipe adapted from Best of Bridge BL’s Cookies.

Coconut Oatmeal Cookies rest on a blue and white striped napkin that is draped through a white wooden tray. A small glass bottle of milk sits to the side and a canister of cookies lays in the background.
Coconut Oatmeal Cookies
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
54 cookies 20 minutes
Cook Time
10-12 minutes
Servings Prep Time
54 cookies 20 minutes
Cook Time
10-12 minutes
Coconut Oatmeal Cookies rest on a blue and white striped napkin that is draped through a white wooden tray. A small glass bottle of milk sits to the side and a canister of cookies lays in the background.
Coconut Oatmeal Cookies
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
54 cookies 20 minutes
Cook Time
10-12 minutes
Servings Prep Time
54 cookies 20 minutes
Cook Time
10-12 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: cookies
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350℉.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt. Set aside.
  3. Using an electric mixer or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugars.
  4. Add egg and molasses and beat to fully incorporate. Stir in vanilla.
  5. Add flour mixture, oatmeal and coconut. Mix until just combined and dough comes together.
  6. Line baking trays with parchment or silpat mat. Using a 1 ounce cookie scoop, scoop out dough, spacing 2 inches apart.
  7. Bake one tray at a time on the middle rack for 10-12 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven and allow cookies to cool on tray for 2-3 minutes before moving to a cooling rack to cool completely.

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Roasted Gremolata Cauliflower

Roasted Gremolata Cauliflower

Cauliflower is boring!

But it doesn’t have to be with a good roasting and the addition of a vibrant Gremolata.  Roasted Gremolata Cauliflower is anything but boring with its caramelized edges, fresh garlic, parsley and a good dose of lemon zest.  The Gremolata is a game changer for plain, boring cauliflower, transforming it into a flavourful and zesty side dish.

What is Gremolata?

Gremolata is an Italian condiment/accompaniment that is made with Italian flat leaf parsley, lemon zest, fresh garlic, olive oil and salt. It’s vibrant and fresh with a slight bitter note from the parsley and flavour punch from the garlic. If you have parsley, lemon and garlic, you’ve got a simple sauce that will spruce up so many things. It’s a classic accompaniment for the Italian dish Ossobuco but also great with fish, lamb and of course vegetables. 

Roasted Gremolata Cauliflower
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
5-6 people 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
5-6 people 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Roasted Gremolata Cauliflower
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
5-6 people 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
5-6 people 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400℉
  2. In a large bowl stir together parsley, lemon zest, garlic, salt and 3 tbsp of olive oil. Set aside.
  3. Remove outer leaves from cauliflower and cut the head into quarters. Easily core the cauliflower by cutting it out of each quarter, allowing any remaining leaves and stem to come away with it.
  4. Break or cut the cauliflower into large bite-size pieces. Toss cauliflower with remaining 1 tbsp of olive oil and a few grinds of a pepper mill. Spread out evenly on a large baking tray.
  5. Roast in the oven for about 30 minutes, turning once, allowing the bottom edges to become golden and caramelized.
  6. Remove from oven and add to the bowl of Gremolata along with the parmesan cheese. Toss to coat evenly and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
Recipe Notes

-make as a vegan option by omitting the parmesan cheese or using your favourite alternative cheese.

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I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
Flaky Jalapeño Cheddar Biscuits

Flaky Jalapeño Cheddar Biscuits

Make a better biscuit…

It’s hard to resist a flaky, buttery biscuit and these Flaky Jalapeño Cheddar Biscuits are tender and flaky.  So good on their own, dunked or piled high with your favourite fillings. The good thing is, they’re easy to make using basic ingredients.  So what makes a good biscuit?  Let’s look at the basics.

-use quality butter.

-use fresh baking powder and baking soda, they do EXPIRE!

-cut butter into flour evenly to ensure a flaky biscuit.

-do not overwork the dough, once mixed, only knead enough to bring the dough together.  Overworking dough will result in a tougher biscuit.

-use a sharp cutting tool for the best edges.

-brush tops and sides with a whisked mixture of egg and cream for a nice golden exterior.

 

What’s a biscuit good for?

By far my favourite thing to do with a flaky biscuit is dunk it into soup, stew or chili.  But, they’re also wonderful as a sandwich.  Especially these Flaky Jalapeño Cheddar Biscuits, because they spread out a little, making them just the right size for a fried egg…just saying!

Flaky Jalapeno Cheddar Biscuits
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8-10 4" biscuits 25 minutes
Cook Time
18 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8-10 4" biscuits 25 minutes
Cook Time
18 minutes
Flaky Jalapeno Cheddar Biscuits
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8-10 4" biscuits 25 minutes
Cook Time
18 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8-10 4" biscuits 25 minutes
Cook Time
18 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: 4" biscuits
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425℉ and line a large baking tray with parchment.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  3. Add cubed butter and using a pastry cutter, cut butter into dry ingredients until pea-sized and evenly distributed.
  4. Whisk together buttermilk and one large egg. Add to dry ingredients and stir until just starting to come together. Add grated cheese and diced jalapeno and continue to mix until incorporated being careful not to overmix. It will be a bit of a scraggly mess.
  5. Flour your work surface and dump out the dough. Knead dough a few times to bring everything together. Flatten dough into a 3/4"-1" disk. Using a 3" round cutter, cut out biscuits.
  6. Reform remaining dough and cut out biscuits. Place biscuits on a parchment lined baking tray.
  7. Whisk together one large egg and one tbsp of milk or cream. Brush each biscuit top and sides generoulsly. Bake in preheated oven for about 18 minutes until golden and puffed.
  8. Remove from oven and allow to rest on the tray for 3-5 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. Serve slightly warm.
Recipe Notes

-these particular biscuits spread out some and are wonderful sliced as a sandwich.

-I used a 3" cutter, however for slightly smaller biscuits that would be good for soups or stews a 2 1/2" cutter is probably preferred.

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I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com