Hi, I'm Rachel.

A few years ago I could barely boil water.

True story.

Determined to be a kick ass wife, I developed a love for football and learned to cook in my tiny Jersey City kitchen. I spend my days working in Manhattan, my nights and weekends chasing after a rambunctious toddler, and the hours in between cooking with my husband and feeding my TV habit...oh, and I blog about it all! 

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Entries in red velvet cake (2)


Individual Red Velvet Oreo Cheesecakes

I know you're thinking that I must have some kind of weird obsession with 'velvet' desserts. This is my second velvet dessert in 2 weeks. It's almost Valentine's Day, though, and I couldn't possibly let it go by without a sweet little red dessert to share.

Do you celebrate Valentine's Day? I don't like to make a big deal out of it, personally. I love using it as an excuse to just find something fun to do with Shaun. Over the last few years, we've been known to hit up Shake Shack, Bobby's Burger Palace and a nice little brunch, instead of going out for a big fancy dinner (though we've definitely done many of those during the first few years we were dating). This year, we plan to have brunch on Sunday at my favorite Jersey City spot, The Lighthorse Tavern, and for the actual V-day, we plan to simply make a nice dinner at home. I think steak will be involved. :)

But back to dessert. I made little cheesecakes.

Isn't it pretty? I am obsessed with that deep red color. Oh and the whipped cream. I really love whipped cream.

And they aren't just any little cheesecakes. Nope. These have a whole Oreo on the bottom, white chocolate chips throughout, and a gorgeous red velvet color. They are rich, sweet and a perfect dessert for any day really. That's why I made them into individual servings...so you can have a treat anytime without feeling like you are eating a decadent slice of cheesecake. Ya know?


And I almost forgot to mention that these little guys clock in at 4 Weight Watchers Points+ per cheesecake. Not too shabby if you ask me.

Individual Red Velvet Oreo Cheesecakes
Yields 24 cheesecakes
4 WW Points+ per cheesecake

24 reduced fat Oreo cookies
2 1/2 pkg reduced fat cream cheese (20 oz total), softened slightly
1 C granulated sugar
1/4 C unsweetened cocoa powder
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 small bottles red food coloring
2/3 C white chocolate chips
whipped cream

special equipment:
foil baking cups

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two muffin tins with foil baking cups and drop an Oreo cookie in the bottom of each. Meanwhile, beat the cream cheese in a stand mixer or with a hand mixer. Beat in the sugar and cocoa on medium speed until light and fluffy. Pour in vanilla and food coloring; beat to combine well. Add eggs, one at a time, and mix thoroughly. Make sure you scrape down the bowl, turn over the ingredients that have sunk to the bottom. You want to make sure it's all gorgeously red and not lumpy.

Add white chocolate chips and stir until combined. Pour batter into baking cups, filling them about 2/3 of the way full.

Bake 20 minutes or until centers are firm. Cool for 10 minutes in baking pan. Remove cups from pan and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving. Store in an airtight container for up to a week, or freeze for future use!

Serve with 2 Tbsp whipped cream per cheesecake.

I really love these! I think they just turned out so pretty and were fairly easy to make. I definitely set a couple aside for Valentine's Day. I love that they are already in individual servings, so there's no temptation to go overboard. Each of us gets one, and end it there. It's my kind of dessert.

Questions of the Day:

Are you into Valentine's Day?

If so, what are you doing for it?

Do you like individually portioned desserts?



Moka's Red Velvet Cake

A couple of weeks ago, Shaun and I embarked on the Cannon family vacation 2010, annually spent at our favorite spot in Aruba with my parents, sisters and family friends (and in case you didn't know, it was also the home of our 2008 beach wedding). Known for year-round fabulous weather, tradewinds, and signature slanted Divi trees, Aruba is also famous for its abundance of delectable restaurants. Though much of the week was spent swimming in blue water, laying under a palapa and cheering on Holland in the World Cup, we also found time to indulge in the local culinary delights that the island had to offer. I know what you're thinking, how did we manage to fit all of that in, day after day.

While I'll be telling you about my favorite local spots, there's something you should know about the Cannons. We love our dessert. So while last year we indulged in fried Oreo's at Smokey Joe's, this year, we stumbled upon a life-altering confection. Yup...I just said life-altering. The only thing sadder than having to wait another year to sunbathe on this One Happy Island is knowing that it's also another year before I get to have Moka's Red Velvet Cake again. It's that good. Multiple layers? Check. Ample sweet frosting? Check. Sprinkles? Check.

Located in the Paseo Harencia, an outdoor mall in the heart of Palm Beach (across from the Holiday Inn), Moka's is a small coffee shop offering gourmet coffees along with homemade desserts displayed in glass-topped cake stands. After all, is there anything else more inviting than beautifully displayed layer cakes?

Instead of the usual cream cheese frosting (of which I can never have enough), this red velvet confection was topped with standard vanilla buttercream, a refreshing and unexpected change from the typical red velvet. Oh, and the three layers of cake with buttercream filling between each didn't hurt either.

Moist and decadent to boot, this cake was even a bit pink and yellow at the edges, a sure sign of its imperfect, yet wonderfully homemade nature.

So there you have it. A pretty fabulous dessert that, admittedly, I may or may not have indulged in multiple times following nightly dinner. Have you ever had a cake or dessert that you just can't get out of your head? Share the goods!

Psst...itching for more Aruba-inspired fun? Check out Aruba tidbits here, here and here. And for more cake fun, try Irish Car Bomb Cupcakes, Pink Coconut Cupcakes, Baba Booey's Peanutastic Cupcake, Butter Lane Cupcakes, Key Lime in the Coconut Cupcakes, and Baked by Melissa's Mini Cupcakes.