Pool Party Cake (Recipe)

By Libbie Summers
Assisted by David Dempsey

Three layers of delicious cake colored in an ombre of “country club” blues. Butter cream frosting, sides covered in Yum Yum Smile Shop Country Club Sprinkles, white gum balls and miniature pool floats. Quite possibly the most adorable, delicious and easy to decorate cake in all the land.

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Pool Party Cake
serves 20

What you need: 
2 cups cake flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla paste (can substitute extract)
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
Blue food coloring gel in three different colors (I used a turquoise, cornflower and royal)
Vanilla Buttercream Frosting (recipe to follow)
Yum Yum Smile Shop Country Club Sprinkles
White gum balls or other white candy balls
Small pool float toys (I bought mine HERE)

What to do: 
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray three 9-inch cake pans with non-stick baking spray and set aside.
2. In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
3. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar. |
4. Add the eggs one at a time until fully incorporated.
5. Add flour mixture alternating with the milk JUST until smooth (don’t overbeat).
6. Stir in the extracts.
7. Divide mixture evenly between 3 bowls. Add a little of the different food colorings into one of each of the bowls (each bowl will only have one color in it). Stir until well mixed. Add additional food coloring as needed to achieve the color you like. I liked mine super saturated, so I added enough to achieve that.
8. Pour each color of batter into one of the prepared pans and bake until tester inserted in the cake comes out clean (about 20-25 minutes). Allow to cool before removing from pans.
9. Frost cooled cakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting and decorate with sprinkles on the side (watch video below for sprinkling the sides of a cake and final decorating), gumballs on the top and pool float miniatures floating on the sea of gumball bubbles!

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
yields about 5 cups

2 cups (4 sticks) butter, room temperature
6 to 8 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla paste (can sub vanilla extract)
4 to 8 tablespoons milk
copper colored food coloring (or any color you like!)

In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy. Reduce the speed to low and gradually add 6 cups of the confectioner’s sugar. Add the salt, vanilla paste and 4 tablespoons of milk. Beat for 2 minutes. If the frosting is too thin, add more of the sugar (1/2 a cup at a time). If the frosting is too thick, add more of the milk (1 tablespoon at a time). Stir in a little food coloring at a time until you get your desired color. Refrigerate the frosting for a few minutes before using.
*Vanilla sugar is sugar that has been with a vanilla bean in a jar for a few weeks imparting a mild vanilla flavor
Ombre Cake, Summer Desserts, Libbie Summers Desserts, #libbiesprinkles,
Yum Yum Smile Shop, Cake Decorating, Cookie Decorating, Sprinkles, Blue Sprinkles

Watch the video here for easy decorating!

Sweet and Vicious Hot Chocolate

By Libbie Summers for Terra’s Kitchen
With Dr. Lisa Davis for Terra’s Kitchen
Photography by Teresa Earnest Photography

Who says hot chocolate can’t be good for you? Not Dr. Lisa Davis that’s who!! I’m so lucky that I get to work with Dr. Davis on the reg with my job as Creative Culinary Director for Terra’s Kitchen. Lisa is not only one of my favorite cool chicks, she also has a daughter named Libby AND she loves sprinkles. How could I not adore her?

Lisa and I were recently tasked with the job of creating a healthy hot chocolate recipe and this is the magnificent deliciousness we came up with.
Hot Chocolate Recipe, Sweet and Vicious, Hot Drinks, Winter Drinks, Cinnamon Drinks, Dark Chocolate Drinks, Libbie Summers, Terra's Kitchen, Dr. Lisa Davis
Sweet and Vicious Hot Chocolate
serves 4

If you’ve ever been invited to have hot chocolate in the home of a Mexican family, you’ll
never forget how unique the flavor is. The grated piloncillo sugar gives this extra dark
chocolate an earthy sweet flavor while the cinnamon and chili powder kick up the smoky

What you need:
2 cups whole milk
2 tablespoons grated piloncillo (unrefined Mexican sugar found in the ethnic section of the grocery
store/can substitute brown sugar)
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼-1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle chili powder
5 ounces (130 g) high-quality extra dark chocolate (over 70%), chopped
2 pinches of flake sea salt
What to do:
1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the milk, piloncillo, cinnamon and pepper
until warmed through and the sugar has dissolved.
2. Whisk in the chocolate and cook, whisking constantly, until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is
steaming hot and beginning to thicken (about 3 minutes).

To Serve: Serve warm. Divide chocolate between 4 cups and sprinkle a pinch of sea salt over each.
Pro Tip: No chipotle chili powder? Cut a jalapeno in half and add both halves to the warm milk to steep
for 15 minutes. Strain and add chocolate.

Health Benefits from Dr. Lisa:
•Dark Chocolate (70% or higher) – Cardiovascular health; Dark chocolate contains oleic acid and
flavonols which can help reduce LDL “bad” cholesterol. The flavonols in Dark Chocolate trigger the
production of nitric oxide which can improve blood flow and help reduce blood pressure. [1] [2] [3].
•Cinnamon – Can help balance blood sugar [4]. Smelling the wonderful odor of this sweet spice boosts
brain activity! [4].
•Chipotle Pepper – Contains a compound called “capsaicin” which can assist in weight loss by
suppressing appetite [6] A 2014 meta-analysis found that the addition of red chili pepper (roughly half of
a teaspoon) before meals contributed to a reduction in food intake of approximately 74 calories [7].

For healthy eating and loads of tips along the way, I urge you to give Terra’s Kitchen a try. You will LOVE it and your now less stressful life will love it even more! The New Terra’s Kitchen Wellness Program (where you actually chew food) starts in January!

Just for a visual, Here’s Dr. Lisa and myself overly photoshopped.
Terra's Kitchen Culinary and Nutrition Team, Meal Kit Executives, Libbie Summers, Lisa Davis

Before and After: Lotus Root and Chips

By Libbie Summers
Photography by Chia Chong

The beauty of the lotus root.
Peel, slice, fry, salt, repeat.

Lotus root…before. 
Lotus Root, Food Styling, Food Photography, Libbie Summers
Lotus root…after.
Fried Lotus Root, Lotus Root Snacks, Unusual Snacks, Libbie Summers, Chia Chong, food Styling, Food Photography
Spiced Lotus Root Chips
(try with any of the finishing salt recipes below) 

What you need:
1 lotus root, peeled using a vegetable peeler
juice from one lemon
canola oil for frying
Dry Herb Finishing Salt (recipe to follow)
Chai Spiced Finishing Salt (recipe to follow)
Sweet Onion Finishing Salt (recipe to follow)
Coriander and Pepper Finishing Salt (recipe to follow)

What to do:
Line a baking sheet with paper towels and set aside.

Squeeze lemon into a medium mixing bowl filled halfway with water. Set aside.

Slice lotus root into 1/8-inch thick slices (we used a mandoline). Place in the lemon water while your oil is heating up.

Heat oil in a wok or heavy pan until it is hot, but not smoking (approximately 300 degrees F.) Working in batches, pat dry lotus root slices before lowering into the hot oil. Fry lotus root slices until golden brown, turning as needed. Remove with a spyder or slotted spoon to the paper-towel lined baking sheet and immediately sprinkle with a Finishing Salt. Allow to cool before storing in an airtight container.

Dry Herb Finishing Salt
In a small bowl, stir together 1 tablespoon dried oregano, 1 tablespoon dried dill, 1 tablespoon dried parsley flake and 1 teaspoon flaked or kosher salt.

Chai Spiced Finishing Salt
In a small bowl, stir together 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves, 1 teaspoon ground ginger, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon turbinado sugar and 1 teaspoon flaked or kosher salt.

Sweet Onion Finishing Salt
In a small bowl, stir together 1 tablespoon dehydrated onion, 1 teaspoon turbinado sugar and 1 teaspoon flaked or kosher salt.

Coriander and Pepper Finishing Salt
In a small bowl, stir together 1 teaspoon ground coriander, 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper and 1/2 teaspoon flaked or kosher salt.

Before and After: Spring Onions and Waffles

Recipe and Styling by Libbie Summers
Photography by Chia Chong

Spring Onions…before.
Garden Vegetables, Spring Onions, Onions, Food Photography, Food Styling, Libbie Summers, Chia Chong

Spring Onions…after. 
Breakfast recipes, Waffle Recipes, Savory Waffles, Libbie Summers, Chia Chong,
Savory Spring Onion and Pancetta Waffles
(maple butter, sea salt)
makes 5/serves 4 for breakfast or dinner/serves 20 for an appetizer

1 packet active dry yeast
1 cup warm water
½ teaspoon sugar
3 cups All-Purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 ¼ cups milk
½ cup melted butter
3 eggs, separated
4 ounces diced and cooked pancetta
3 spring onions diced, green and white parts
Maple Butter (recipe to follow)
Sea salt for sprinkling

In a small mixing bowl or glass measuring cup, dissolve the yeast in the water. Stir in sugar and allow mixture to sit until it begins to bloom (foam). In a large mixing bowl, stir the flour with the salt and pepper. Whisk in the yeast mixture, milk, butter and egg yolks until smooth.

In a medium mixing bowl, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Fold them into the batter and let stand for 20 minutes. Just before cooking, fold in the pancetta and spring onions.

Preheat the oven to 200ºF

Prepare a waffle iron by spraying with non-stick cooking spray and heat. Pour 1 1/4 cups of the batter into the iron and cook until the waffles are golden, 6 minutes. Transfer the waffles to the oven to keep warm. Repeat with the remaining batter. Serve with a dollop of Maple Butter on top and sprinkle with sea salt.

Maple Butter
yields about 1 cup

1 cup Irish butter, room temperature
2 tablespoons good maple syrup

In a small mixing bowl, stir all ingredients together. Serve with warm Savory Spring Onion and Pancetta Waffles.

Libbie Loves: Banana Crushes

By Libbie Summers
Assisted by David Dempsey
A few things I’m banana crushing on this week!

Banana Inspirations, Libbie Summers favorite things, Banana Crushes

  1. Downloadable Banana Leaf Print  @Etsy
  2. Banana Door Stopper available @houzz
  3. Lole I Glow Travel Yoga Mat from @lole available  @moosejaw
  4. Banana Flambé Jam available @touchofeurope
  5. Rive Droite Lounge Chair from @patrick_norguet available @hive_modern
  6. Rachel Comey May Heel in Old Gold from @rachelcomey available @Vertandvogue
  7. Handsewn Italian Leather Driving Gloves
  8. Kip and Co X Electric Confetti Banana available @electricconfetti
  9. Vintage Jewelry found @Evergreen Antiques I’ll be giving these away tomorrow on Instagram!!!!
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