Sunday, June 17, 2018

Dominican Cake

Pin It Dominican Cake

Yesterday we celebrated my Mom's 88th birthday and I baked her a Dominican Cake. My Mom is from Dominican Republic and this is her favorite cake. I learned this recipe from a popular Dominican cookbook my Mom owns called Mujer 2000 Recetas de Cocina by Silvia H. de Pou and have been baking this cake since 2011. Dominican Cake is rich tasting and one of my favorite cakes to make. When I was young this was the cake my Mom always baked, and I have fond memories of watching and helping my Mom bake this cake.

Dominican Cake
Dominican cake in texture is a smooth and spongy cake that is moist and very rich in flavor. The classic frosting is Suspiro (Merengue). Be sure to give yourself enough time to do it in case you need to make the caramel syrup more than once (actually twice for me) to get it right. This recipe yields enough batter for a 9-inch 2 layer cake. For this cake, I used orange juice and orange zest, but you can substitute with lemon juice and lemon zest or lime juice and lime zest. Typical fillings for this cake are pineapple, guava and dulce de leche, but strawberry or raspberry are also great options. See recipe and instructions below.

Pretty Flowers

Cake Ingredients
2 sticks Unsalted Butter, softened (room temperature)

2 cups Granulated Sugar

4 Large Eggs (room temperature)

1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract (CariDom)

3 cups All Purpose Flour (King Arthur)

3 teaspoons Baking Powder

1 cup Whole Milk

1 tablespoon Orange Juice, freshly squeezed

1 tablespoon Orange Zest

½ teaspoon Coarse/Kosher Salt

Mom's 88th birthday celebration

I use Wilton Bake Easy Non-Stick Spray to grease 2 9-inch round cake pans. Spray bottom of cake pans, then line with parchment paper and spray over it and along the sides of the pans. You can also coat the pans with butter and flour.

Adjust oven rack to the middle position and heat to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

Mom blowing out the candles
With a stand or hand held mixer with paddle attachment on medium speed, mix butter until it is creamy; about 4 minutes.

Add sugar little by little, and continue mixing until it is light and creamy; about 3 minutes.

Add eggs one at a time, mixing well.

On low speed, add in some of the flour mixture and some of the milk. Do this a few times ending with the flour mixture.

Scrape sides of the bowl with a spatula to make sure all ingredients are incorporated. Mix again for 10 to 20 seconds.

Mom with her cake slice 
With mixer on low speed, add vanilla extract, orange juice, orange zest, and combine; about 20 to 30 seconds.

Spread cake batter evenly between the 2 pans using a spatula to smooth tops.

Lightly tap the pans against the counter top 2 to 4 times to settle the batter.

Bake for 30-45 minutes. Oven temperatures vary so start checking the cake at the 30 minute mark and adjust time accordingly. My cake baked in 35 minutes.

Cake is ready when you insert a toothpick or cake tester in the center of the cake and it comes out clean.

Cool cake in pans for 15 minutes.

Run a knife around the edges of the cake and then flip cakes onto wire racks.

Peel off parchment paper, flip cakes right side up, and cool completely before frosting, about 1-2 hours.

Mom's Dominican Cake

Suspiro (Merengue) Frosting
3 Egg Whites (use cold Eggs)

1 ½ cups Granulated Sugar

½ cup Water

1 teaspoon Lemon Juice, freshly squeezed

1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract (Cari Dom)

Yummy slice of Dominican Cake

Using a stand or hand held mixer, mix the egg whites on high speed for several minutes until stiff peaks form; about 3 minutes.

In a small pan, stir sugar, water and lemon juice and boil until sugar dissolves and caramel forms a syrup-like texture. Keep an eye on it so it does not burn.

Use a candy thermometer and when it reaches 235 degrees, it is ready.

Dominican Cake
To be sure, you can test the texture by taking a little of the syrup with a small spoon, and add a drop of the syrup to a paper towel. If it forms a little ball, it is ready. This is a trick my Mom taught me.

Turn mixer on high speed and add the hot caramel mixture little by little to the egg white/whipping cream mixture and then the vanilla extract.

Keep mixing until it reaches a thick but soft consistency like whipped cream cheese; about 4 minutes.

Dominican Cake
If you wish, add food coloring at this time. I used Wilton Icing Color Concentrated Gel in Pink. Use by dipping toothpick in gel and then into frosting and stir gently with spatula. Each time, use a clean toothpick so frosting does not get into gel color. Repeat until you reach the color you desire.

Put aside, and let it cool completely before frosting the cake.

Goya Guava Jelly tastes great

Cake Filling
Guava Jelly (Goya)

Frost the Cake
Once cake and frosting have cooled completely, line edges of a cake platter or cake circle (Wilton 10 inch) with strips of parchment paper to keep edges clean as you frost the cake. I first line the cake turntable with a grip liner so the cake does not move as you are frosting it.

Making the caramel syrup
Place the cake on a cake circle and onto the cake turntable. If you do not have a cake circle take cardboard and cut a 10 inch circle and cover it with aluminum foil.

If you do not own a cake turntable use a large cake platter and put parchment paper along the edges.

Caramel boiling
Using a spatula spread the Guava Jelly over the first layer, place the top cake layer over it with the top side down, and then frost the cake as desired.

If needed, use a serrated knife to cut the cake tops to make even layers.

I decorated with Wilton Confetti and Sugar Flowers from Fancy Flours.

Place the cake in a cake carrier and let it set in the fridge for 2-3 hours, and just bring to room temperature for 1/2 hour before serving.

Caramel reached 235 degrees and it is ready
You can make the cake a day ahead and refrigerate overnight as well, and just bring to room temperature for 1 hour before serving.

Wilton Confetti and Sugar Flowers from Fancy Flours I used to decorate


-Sophia/Two Frys

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Bonfatto's Fire in the Hole Wing Sauce

Pin It Bonfatto's Fire in the Hole Wing Sauce & Marinade 

Bonfatto's Fire in the Hole Wing Sauce & Marinade is a hotter version of their highly popular Original Wing Sauce. The Original is a rich and buttery smooth tasting wing sauce that truly compliments your wings. This same profile is used for Fire in the Hole yet it is kicked up a few notches with the addition of more hot peppers in the ingredients. Fire in the Hole is fairly hot and spicy, but will not knock ya down. The heat lingers on your tongue for a bit in a most satisfying way. I agree with the website and the fact that the sauce creeps up on you. The Bonfatto's heat scale is 3 Dragon Heat Flames so it is hot and even my wife Sophia enjoyed our Fire in the Hole chicken wings, and she usually goes for more milder sauces.

Wings with Bonfatto's Fire in the Hole Wing Sauce & Marinade
Fire in the Hole is fantastic and it made our wings so flavorful and with each bite the heat was level was ever present and welcoming. If you cannot deal with spicy sauces like Fire in the Hole, then check out the Original instead. I am recommending Fire in the Hole for a more intense heat experience on your wings.

Some of the ingredients in Fire in the Hole are: pepper sauce, unsalted butter, honey, spices and garlic powder. This is my new favorite wing sauce and our family thinks this sauce is spicy and packs a punch that will have you craving more with each bite.

Our wings with Fire in the Hole; spicy and delish
Based in State College, PA Bonfatto's is a sauce company by Letterman Industries that we have loved and supported since first meeting David Letterman many years ago at the former Atlantic City Food Network Food and Wine Festivals. It was at the Grand Market where we first came across Bonfatto's products and we have been hooked since. Bonfatto's also own a restaurant in Pennsylvania. Not only do Bonfatto's make great wing sauces they also offer a wide variety of other BBQ sauces that are really great.

Wings are ready to bake
To make the chicken wings, I pat them dry with a paper towel, and season both sides with coarse salt. Add wings in a large resealable bag and 1 cup of Fire in the Hole Wing Sauce & Marinade, sealing the bag and making sure the sauce coats all the wings. Adjust the amount of sauce depending on how many wings you are making. I let the sauce marinate in the fridge for a few hours, but if you can do so overnight. When ready to bake, heat the oven to 375 degrees and bake the wings for one hour turning them at the half hour point.

Order some Fire in the Hole Wing Sauce & Marinade today for both your indoor cooking and outdoor BBQing. With July 4 coming up, here's a perfect excuse to use Fire in the Hole on wings to share with your entire family.

To order Bonfatto's Fire in the Hole Wing Sauce & Marinade and their other fine products visit:

-Allen/Two Frys

Friday, June 1, 2018

K POP Sauce

Pin It K POP! Sauce with Beef Stir-Fry
Medium Heat Korean Chili Sauce

I discovered K POP! when I was doing research on Korean hot pepper paste. I recently heard Gochujang pepper pastes are good when blended into ketchup. Then I came across K POP! Sauce, not a ketchup but a spicy pepper sauce. I was interested in this type of condiment. K POP! Sauce is a very good sauce to add to your cooking as well as a straight forward condiment.

Beef Stir-Fry with K POP! Sauce
We made beef stir-fry (recipe below) with K POP! and it came out fantastic and the flavors really popped. There was no need to add other sauces or spices, except for seasoning the veggies, and beef strips with a little salt and pepper. K POP! has all the flavor you need to create a stellar stir-fry dish. I also tried K POP! on pork fried rice and pork steamed dumplings takeout from a local Chinese restaurant.

The sauce accompanied both our homemade stir fry and the takeout foods perfectly. K POP! Sauce has a medium heat level and a bit of sweetness culminating in a warm, vibrant, and tasty sauce that was so satisfying.

Jasmine Rice
K POP! Foods is based in Southern California and recently released Seaweed Snacks. The flavor profile of K POP! Sauce comes from ingredients such as: Gochujang hot pepper paste, hot pepper powder, soy seasoning, garlic juice, lime juice, soy sauce, sugar, and more... The ingredients blend into a thick but textured sauce.

Pick up some K POP! Sauce online to add to your pantry and try cooking and topping your foods with it for a sweet-heat flavor burst, Korean style. This is the best new Asian sauce I have come across in years so check K POP! out.

Steamed Veggies
Beef Stir-Fry with K POP! Sauce
1-2 cups Jasmine Rice

1 bag Frozen Chinese Stir Fry Vegetable Blend

1 pound Beef Round Strips

Coarse Salt

Himalayan Pink Salt

Cracked Black Pepper

1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 tablespoon lukewarm Water

1/2 - 1 cup K POP! Sauce

Beef strips simmering in K POP! Sauce

Set your rice cooker to the cook setting with desired amount of jasmine rice, water, and season lightly with Himalayan Pink Salt.

Season stir fry veggies with salt and pepper, and steam just until al dente.

Season beef strips with salt and pepper.

Add steamed Veggies and with tongs combine 
In a skillet on medium-high heat, add the extra virgin olive oil, water, and beef strips.

Cook for about 5-6 minutes.

After three minutes, add desired amount of K POP! Sauce and with tongs, stir together.

Using tongs, combine and serve
Add the steamed veggies to skillet and stir together.

Serve the beef stir-fry with jasmine rice.

For further information, visit:

-Allen/Two Frys

Monday, May 28, 2018

Patriotic Sprinkle Cream Cheese Cookies

Pin It Patriotic Sprinkle Cream Cheese Cookies

I saw Patriotic Swirled Cheesecake Cookies on the blog, Yellow Bliss Road and decided to bake them this morning for Memorial Day. I added red, white and blue sprinkles and reduced the sugar by 1/4 cup. The cookies have a wonderful flavor from the cream cheese and are soft, chewy, and moist while the sprinkles add some crunch. See recipe and directions below.

Patriotic Sprinkle Cream Cheese Cookies
Close-up of Patriotic Sprinkle Cream Cheese Cookies

Patriotic Sprinkle Cream Cheese Cookies
 Yield: 3 Dozen Cookies

1 cup Granulated Sugar

2 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour (I use King Arthur)

2 teaspoons Baking Powder

1/2 teaspoon Coarse Salt

So yummy!
Each cookie has its own design

The cream cheese make these cookies a true star!
1/2 cup, 1 stick Unsalted Butter, softened

8 oz. Cream Cheese, room temperature

2 Large Eggs, room temperature

See the pretty red, white, and blue sprinkles
So much color and sprinkles inside too!
Cookies are cooling on wire rack

Cookies cooling on wire racks
1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract

1 cup Red, White, and Blue Sprinkles

Blue and Red Gel Food Color

Cookies just taken out of the oven

These cookies are so pretty!

Cookies ready to bake!

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

In the bowl of mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and cream cheese on medium speed; about 1-2 minutes.

Scrape sides of bowl with spatula.

Add sugar and incorporate until light and fluffy; about 1 minute.
Chill the dough for 1/2 hour in the fridge

Dough is colored
Red, white, and blue sprinkles
Scrape sides of bowl with spatula.

Add egg and mix just until incorporated.

Add vanilla and mix until combined.

Turn mixer to low speed and slowly add the flour mixture until incorporated.

The dough has sprinkles now

Sprinkles incorporated
Flatten dough, add the sprinkles and press them into the dough 
Separate the dough in three bowls, cover with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Once the dough has chilled, add the blue food color in one bowl and red food color in another bowl.

Line counter space with wax paper.

Use plastic gloves and take dough in your hand and roll until the blue has fully covered all of the dough. Repeat this step for the red dough.

Take one of the dough balls and flatten it out a bit (see photo) and add 1/3 of the sprinkles. 

Cover it with wax paper (see photo) and press the sprinkles into the dough.

Take the wax paper and cover the dough and press into it so the sprinkles stick
Roll the dough over the sprinkles like a burrito
Take burrito shape and roll in your hands until the sprinkles have been incorporated
Take the dough and shape it to look like a burrito (see photo), and then roll the sprinkles as you form a ball.

The dough will be sticky.

To make the marble-like effect, take 1/2 tablespoon of each color (see photo) and place it on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. I do 8-10 cookies per baking sheet.

Once you have the dough balls on the baking sheets, take each one into your hands and gently roll together.

Repeat until you are done forming all the cookies but be careful not to mix the colors too much.

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Use 1/2 tablespoon measuring spoon to form each ball

Here is a close-up of 3 balls; gently roll in the palm of your hand to form a cookie
Form 1/2 tablespoon ball for each color and place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper
Bake for 10 to 13 minutes. Cookies should just start to brown on the bottom and be light on the top. My cookies baked in  13 minutes.

Wait about 3 minutes and transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

For the Patriotic Swirled Cheesecake Cookies recipe, visit:


-Sophia/Two Frys