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Tag: Sweet Stuff

Apple Core Syrup

Apple Core Syrup

Apple Core Syrup

 

Cores from 5 to 7 apples, no need to remove the seeds (peels if you have them)

1 C. granulated sugar

1/2 C. lightly packed light or dark brown sugar

 

To make the syrup: Place the cores (and peels, if using), the granulated sugar, and the brown sugar in a medium-size saucepan with 1 C. water. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat, and allow the mixture to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the cores are softened and the syrup smells fragrant, 20 to 30 minutes.  Strain out the cores and return the syrup to the pan to keep it warm with the residual heat until you’re ready to eat. If you’d like it to be thicker, bring it back up to a boil, then reduce the heat, and allow the mixture to simmer until it is reduced and thickened to your liking.

Berry Berry Cool Pie

Berry Berry Cool Pie

Berry Berry Cool Pie

1 (14 oz.) can Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk

2 T. lemon juice

1 ½ C. assorted fresh berries (raspberries, blueberries or blackberries)

1 (8 oz.) container frozen whipped topping, thawed

1 (6 oz.) Keebler Ready Crust Graham Pie Crust

Mix together sweetened condensed milk and lemon juice in large bowl until blended. Stir in berries. Fold in whipped topping. Spoon into crust. Freeze 5 hours or until set. Let stand 30 to 40 minutes before serving. Garnish as desired. For Fudge Drizzle: Place 2 T. Smucker’s® Hot Fudge Topping in resealable plastic bag. Cut small piece off one corner. Drizzle topping over pie before serving.

Pistachio Cake with Pomegranate

Pistachio Cake with Pomegranate

Pistachio Cake with Pomegranate

100g green pistachios

35 grams of all-purpose flour for a dense nutty cake or 70 grams for a fluffier cake

1 stick of unsalted butter, room temperature (8 TB)

100g caster sugar

zest of 1 lemon

2 eggs, room temperature

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

 

1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted if organic

2 tablespoons of pomegranate arils, plus more for garnish

pinch of salt

drops of lemon juice

some green pistachios, chopped or kept whole

 

Preheat oven to 350 and grease a loaf pan with butter and flour. Pulse your pistachios with the flour until finely ground. Beat the butter for a few minutes then add the sugar and zest and beat until light and fluffy add eggs one at a time, while mixer is running and beat until combined. Add the pistachio and flour mixture, the salt and baking powder to the wet mix and fold with a spatula until combined. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until top springs back when pressed. If you are making the glaze: do so by pressing pomegranate arils through a sieve to release about 1/2 tablespoon of juice. Add the lemon juice, powdered sugar and the salt and mix to combine.  Once the cake is cool, drizzle with the glaze and top with pistachios and more arils.

Rhubarb Chess Pie

Rhubarb Chess Pie

Rhubarb Chess Pie

single-crust pie pastry

2 C. (½‑inch thick) slices rhubarb

1 ¼ C. granulated sugar (divided)

2 tsp. unsalted butter (at room temperature)

3–4 pinch kosher salt (divided)

4 large eggs (lightly beaten)

½ C. heavy cream

¼ C. melted unsalted butter

2 T. white vinegar

1 T. cornstarch

1 T. cornmeal

1 tsp. vanilla

 

Set oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 400ºF. On a lightly floured surface, roll the pastry out to a 12-inch circle, a generous ⅛‑inch thick. Carefully transfer the dough to a 9‑inch pie plate and gently press it up the sides. Drape any excess crust over the edge, then fold under and crimp decoratively. Use a fork to prick holes in the bottom of the dough. Line the dough with parchment or foil and fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake for 8 minutes. Carefully remove the weights and parchment or foil, then continue baking for another 5 minutes, or until the crust is dry and pale colored. Remove from the oven and set aside on a rimmed baking sheet to cool. Meanwhile, toss together sliced rhubarb, ¼ C. granulated sugar, butter, and a big pinch of salt on a separate rimmed baking sheet. Roast, stirring once, until just tender, about 12 minutes. Scrape the rhubarb, and any juices, evenly across the bottom of the prepared pie pastry. Lower the oven temperature to 350ºF. In a large bowl whisk together eggs, remaining sugar, cream, melted butter, vinegar, cornstarch, cornmeal, vanilla and 2 or 3 big pinches of salt. Once well-combined pour the mixture over the rhubarb in the pie pastry. Place the pie, on the rimmed baking sheet, in the heated oven and bake for 40 minutes., or until the center of the pie is just set. If the crust get too brown lightly tent it with foil for the last 10 or 15 minutes of baking. Cool on a wire rack 2 hours. Cover and chill the pie at least 3 hours. Allow the pie to sit at room temperature 15 or 20 minutes before slicing.

Peach Tart with Basil and Mascarpone  

Peach Tart with Basil and Mascarpone  

Peach Tart with Basil and Mascarpone

1 C. mascarpone cheese

1/4 cream (possibly a bit more)

½ C. basil chiffonade (leaves rolled and cut into very thin ribbons) plus more sprigs for garnish

¾ C. sugar

1 1/4 C. all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons fine yellow cornmeal

1/4‑teaspoon salt

1 large egg yolk

2 tablespoons heavy cream

1/2‑teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened

4 large peaches

 

Prepare Filling::  Using a hand mixer or whisk whip together the mascarpone cheese, cream, and 1/4‑C. sugar. Add the cream a little at a time. You are looking for a sour cream consistency, very smooth with no lumps. Mix in 1/4‑C. basil chiffonade at the very end until just incorporated. Refrigerate filling, covered, until you are ready to assemble the tart.

 

Make Tart Shell: Whisk together the flour with the cornmeal, and salt in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl mix egg yolk, cream, and vanilla. In a 3rd bowl cream the butter and 1/4 C. sugar together using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix them together on medium speed until they form a pale and fluffy paste, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the egg yolk mixture and mix them together on medium-low speed until well combined. Working in 3 additions, add flour mixture to the bowl until just combined. I find these additions easier to work with using a wooden spoon so as not to over mix the dough. Working on a piece of plastic wrap shape the dough into an oblong shape that is roughly the size of your tart tin (13 3/4‑by‑4 1/4‑by-1-inch). Add an additional piece of plastic on top and roll a rolling pin over the top to form a smooth flat piece of dough about 1/4‑inch thick. Close up the plastic wrap and move dough to the refrigerator. Refrigerate until cold, about 30 minutes, before using. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and peel off the top layer of plastic wrap. Invert the dough into the tart tin. It does not matter if it breaks or does not fit perfectly. Because you can press dough together and finish the shaping in the tart tin. The type with a removable bottom works best. Trim edges of dough flush with pan. Refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes. Bake about 18 minutes until golden and crisp. Let cool completely on a wire rack.

 

Make the Peaches: Peel the peaches. This can be accomplished easily if you blanch the peaches first. This will loosen their skin and the task is not nearly as messy as it would be with a knife.

Prepare an ice bath in a large bowl large enough for all the peaches. With a paring knife, lightly score an X onto the bottom of each peach. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Carefully drop the peaches into the water for 1 to 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, move the peaches into to an ice-water bath to stop the cooking. Once the peaches have cooled, the skin should peel off easily. You may need to get it started with a paring knife, but most of the skin can be removed with your hands. Cut the peaches in half and remove the pits. Cut each half into 4 or 5 evenly sized wedges. Stir together the peach wedges, remaining 1/4‑C. sugar, 1 tablespoon water, and remaining 1/4‑C. basil in a medium sized saucepan with a lid, set over medium heat. Cook covered, stirring occasionally, until the peaches have softened, become a uniform color and released their juices, about 6 minutes. Let the peaches cool completely in the syrup.

If necessary, right before assembling remove the peaches using a slotted spoon and continue to cook the juices until they have thickened to a syrup.

 

Assemble the Tart: Spoon mascarpone filling into tart shell. Top with the peaches in an attractive manner, spooning the thickened juices over the top. Garnish with more basil sprigs or leaves.

Rice Krispies Treats for Two

Rice Krispies Treats for Two

Rice Krispies Treats for Two

1 T. unsalted butter (1/2 oz)

1 C. tightly packed mini marshmallows

2 C. crisp rice cereal, such as Rice Krispies

Pinch fine sea salt

 

Line a 9-by-5-inch (23-by-13-cm) loaf pan with parchment paper or wax paper. If making the rice krispies treats for two in the microwave, place the butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on full power in 15-second increments, until the butter melts completely, 30 to 50 seconds. Add the marshmallows and microwave, again in 15-second increments, until the marshmallows melt, 25 to 50 seconds. Immediately stir the butter and marshmallows together very well. If making the rice krispies treats for two on the stovetop, melt the butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Immediately add the marshmallows and, working quickly, stir until melted and well blended. Remove from the heat. Add the pinch of salt and the cereal all at once to the melted marshmallow and butter goo. Stir, stir, stir until the cereal is completely coated. Press the mixture evenly into the prepared pan using buttered fingertips or a spatula. If you have the patience, let the treats cool slightly. Slice in half and devour. (Just to warn you, these are generous servings. But c’mon, since when did a little Rice Krispies treat ever satisfy your craving?!)

Milk and Honey Baklava

Milk and Honey Baklava

Milk and Honey Baklava

1/2 C. unsalted butter, cubed (this can be a rough cube, ain’t got to be perfect)

BAKLAVA:

1 C. walnuts

1 1/2 C. shelled pistachios

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 pound phyllo

SYRUP:

3/4 C. sweetened condensed milk

1/4 C. boiling water

2 T. honey

1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

 

I used a 9×13-inch/quarter baking sheet. You can also use a baking dish or even a round cake pan (but you’ll have to cut the phyllo dough to shape).

 

CLARIFIED BUTTER: In a small saucepan, set over medium-low heat, add the butter. When the butter has melted it will begin to bubble and the milk solids will rise to the top. Using a spoon, skim the top of the melted butter and discard the milk solids. Run the butter through a small sieve or a cheese cloth to remove any excess milk solids. We want to do this so the butter doesn’t burn in the oven. Set the warm butter to the side.

 

TO MAKE THE BAKLAVA: My phyllo dough came in a 1 pound box. I used a pair of scissors and cut my phyllo dough in half (1/2 pound). (I saved the other half in the freezer for another time.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a food processor, add the walnuts, pistachios, cinnamon and salt. Pulse until very ground, about 1 minute. Next, grab a clean kitchen towel and dampen it, being sure to wring out any excess water. Place it over the thawed phyllo dough as you assemble the baklava. (Phyllo dough tends to dry out very quickly and assembling the baklava takes a bit of time. The damp kitchen towel will help with this.) Brush the first sheet of phyllo dough with melted butter and transfer it, buttered-side down, into the baking dish. Add a tsp. or two of the walnut mixture. Repeat by buttering a sheet of phyllo dough and then spreading a T. or two of walnut mixture. Continue until you’ve worked through the phyllo dough/filling. Using a sharp knife, slice the baklava into 1-inch diamonds or squares. Transfer to the oven to bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top is lightly golden brown and crisp.

 

TO MAKE THE SYRUP: While the baklava is baking, let’s make the syrup! In a measuring C., whisk together the sweetened condensed milk, hot water, honey and vanilla extract. When the baklava comes out of the oven, drizzle the syrup on top. Allow it to sit for 1-3 hours so it has a chance to marinate! Serve.

Classic Icebox Cake

Classic Icebox Cake

Classic Icebox Cake

3 C. heavy cream

4 T. sugar

1 T. vanilla extract

2 (9-ounce) packages Nabisco’s chocolate wafer cookies

Unsweetened cocoa (or chocolate shavings)

 

In a large bowl, beat cream, sugar and vanilla with an electric mixer on high speed until soft to medium peaks form. On a flat serving plate, arrange 7 cookies side by side in a circle, keeping 1 cookie in the center.  Spread with 1/2 C. whipped cream, making a 7-inch circle. Repeat with remaining cookies and cream, making 11 layers of cookies and ending with a layer of cream (there will be a few cookies left over). Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. To serve, dust top lightly with cocoa powder or chocolate shavings

Lemon Upside Down Cake Loaf

Lemon Upside Down Cake Loaf

Lemon Upside Down Cake Loaf

2 C. all-purpose flour

1 tsp. baking powder1/2 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp. fine-grain sea salt

4 ounces 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

3/4 white granulated sugar

2 large eggs

2 T. lemon zest, from 1 lemon

1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

3/4 C. buttermilk

 

3 T. unsalted butter

2 T. dark brown sugar

1/4 tsp. fine-grain sea salt

1 lemon, thinly sliced

 

Butter a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan. Line the bottom with parchment, butter once more and dust with a T. of flour. Set aside. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Next, in a medium bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Add the eggs, lemon zest and vanilla; and then mix until the mixture is smooth. To the butter and sugar mixture, mix in half of the flour mixture and the buttermilk. Then, mix in the remaining flour mixture, being sure not to over mix. In a small skillet, melt the 3 T. of butter over medium heat. Whisk constantly until the butter begins to brown and then mix in the brown sugar and salt; stir until the sugar begins to bubble, about 1 minute. Turn off the heat and let stand for a few minutes to cool slightly. Pour the butter/mixture into the loaf pan, spreading it around evenly. Arrange the lemon slices atop, keeping in mind how it’ll look when you flip the cake over.  Pour the batter over the lemons and spread the batter gently so it’s nice and even. Transfer the loaf pan to the oven and bake for 35-45 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. To invert the cake, place a cooling rack on top of the loaf pan and turn both of them over; lift up the loaf pan, take off the parchment and voila! Your cake! Allow the cake to cool to room temperature before slicing.

Christmas Tree Squares

Christmas Tree Squares

Christmas Tree Squares

1 1/2 C. all-purpose flour

1 1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

11 T. (about 2/3 cup) unsalted butter, softened

3/4 C. granulated sugar

1 large egg

1 T. milk

1 tsp. vanilla

 

8 T. unsalted butter, softened

1 tsp. almond extract

pinch salt

4 C. confectioners’ sugar

3 to 4 T. milk

red and green food coloring

 

To prepare the dough. Heat oven to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. In a large mixing bowl, beat together butter and sugar until creamy. Beat in egg, milk and vanilla until combined. Add dry ingredients and mix until combined. Scoop mixture into a 10″ x 15″ baking pan coated with cooking spray, then spread to an even thickness. Place into the oven and bake until set, about 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and set pan on a wire rack to cool completely. To prepare the frosting. In a large mixing bowl, beat together butter, almond extract and salt until smooth. Mix in confectioners’ sugar. Gradually add enough milk until you get a spreadable consistency. Scoop out 1/2 C. frosting and set aside. Spread remaining frosting over the cooled slab of baked bars. Slice into 24 bars. Tint half of reserved frosting with red coloring and the other half with green. Pipe a tree design in center of each square, alternating colors every other bar.

Ombre Sugar Cookie Bars

Ombre Sugar Cookie Bars

Ombre Sugar Cookie Bars

 

1/2 C. Butter, softened

1/2 C. sugar

1 large Egg

1 T. milk

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 1/4 C. all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp. baking powder

 

2 1/4 C. powdered sugar

3/4 C. Butter, softened

1/8 tsp. salt

1 to 2 T. Heavy Whipping Cream

2 tsp. vanilla extract

Green food color

 

Heat oven to 350°F. Combine 1/2 C. butter, sugar, and egg in bowl. Beat at medium speed, until creamy. Add milk and 2 tsp. vanilla. Continue beating, scraping bowl often, until well mixed. Add flour and baking powder; beat at low speed, scraping bowl often, until well mixed.  Spread into bottom of ungreased 9-inch springform pan. Bake 23-26 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool completely. Combine powdered sugar, 3/4 C. butter, and 1/8 tsp. salt in bowl; beat at medium speed until creamy. Add whipping cream and 2 tsp. vanilla; continue beating until smooth. Divide frosting in half. Tint one-half with 30 drops green food color. Divide remaining white frosting in half again. Tint one-half with 6 drops green food color. Leave remaining frosting white. Dollop white frosting into center of cookie. Dollop light green frosting around white. Dollop dark green frosting around light green. Using offset spatula, carefully spread frosting in a circular motion to create ombre pattern, wiping off spatula every time it’s lifted off cookie.  Cut cookie into 12 wedges to create Christmas trees.

Kahlua Spiked Pecans

Kahlua Spiked Pecans

Kahlua Spiked Pecans

1 C. granulated sugar

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. salt

1 large egg white

3 T. Kahlua

4 C. pecan halves

 

Preheat oven to 325F. In a small bowl, whisk together sugar, cinnamon, and salt. In a large bowl, whisk together egg white and Kahlua. Add pecans and stir well to combine. Sprinkle half the sugar mixture on top and mix well. Pour the rest of the sugar on top and stir until completely combined. Scoop the mixture onto a large baking sheet lined with foil and coated with nonstick spray. Spread the pecans to an even single layer. Bake until pecans are lightly toasted and browned, stirring every 10 minutes, about 20 to 25 minutes total. Remove from the oven and scoop the hot pecans onto wax or parchment paper to cool completely.

Malassadas | Portuguese Doughnuts

Malassadas | Portuguese Doughnuts

Malassadas | Portuguese Doughnuts

1/2 C. whole milk

2 T. unsalted butter (1 oz), plus more for the bowl

3/4 tsp. kosher salt

1 package active dry yeast (2 1/4 tsp. or 1/4 ounce)

1/3 C. plus 1 tsp. granulated sugar

2 T. warm water, 110°F (43°C)

3 large eggs

3 1/2 C. all-purpose flour, plus more for the work surface

Nonstick cooking spray

Vegetable oil, for frying

 

1 C. granulated sugar

1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

 

Make the doughnuts | malassadas: Heat the milk, butter, and salt in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until it just begins to steam and form bubbles around the edges, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool until lukewarm. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, dissolve the yeast and 1 tsp. sugar in the warm water. Let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the remaining 1/3 C. sugar and the eggs on medium-high until thick and luscious looking, about 5 minutes. Switch to the dough hook, add the milk mixture, the yeast mixture, and the flour, and mix on low speed until a soft dough forms, about 7 minutes, adding more flour if needed. The dough should be just slightly tacky but not sticky. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface, shape into a ball, and place in a lightly buttered large bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm, draft-free spot until double in size, about 2 hours. Lightly coat a 13-by-18-inch rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray and turn the dough onto the pan. Press and poke it with your fingers, much like making focaccia, to help stretch it until it’s about 1/2 inch thick. Lightly coat the top of the dough with cooking spray, loosely cover the pan with plastic wrap, and let the dough rest at room temperature until double in size, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Make the cinnamon sugar: Mix together the sugar and cinnamon in a shallow bowl. Fry the doughnuts | malassadas: Fill a medium saucepan with 3 inches of oil and heat over medium-high heat until it reaches 350°F (177°C) on a deep-fry or candy or instant-read thermometer. Monitor the heat to keep a steady temperature. Using scissors or your hands, cut or pull a 2-to-3-inch piece of dough from the baking sheet and stretch it into a 4-to-5-inch circle, then lower it into the oil and fry, turning frequently, just until golden brown on both sides and cooked through, 45 seconds to 1 1/2 minutes, depending on the size. Drain the doughnut on paper towels for 30 seconds and then toss in the cinnamon sugar. Repeat with the remaining dough. Devour warm.

Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake Squares

Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake Squares

Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake Squares

 

1 1/2 C. vanilla wafer crumbs

scant 1/2 C. packed brown sugar

1/2 tsp. ground ginger

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. ground cloves

pinch salt

6 T. unsalted butter, melted

 

1 1/4 C. mashed pumpkin

1/2 C. granulated sugar

3/4 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. fresh grated nutmeg

1/4 tsp. ground ginger

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 C. heavy cream

16 oz. cream cheese, softened

4 large eggs

3/4 tsp. vanilla

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together wafer crumbs, sugar, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt until combined. Add butter and stir until moistened. Scoop crumbs into an 8″ square metal cake pan – firmly press crumbs down to form an even layer over the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Place into the oven and bake until lightly golden, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. In a medium saucepan, add mashed pumpkin, sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and salt – place over medium heat and cook, stirring, until the sugar and spices have thoroughly warmed through, about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in cream – scoop into a small bowl and set aside until the mixture has cooled to room temperature. In a large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Mix in eggs, one at a time, beating just until combined after each. Mix in vanilla. Scoop one-quarter into the pumpkin mixture and stir to combine. Pour back into the bowl with the cream cheese and mix just until combined. Scoop batter into the crust, smoothing the top. Place into the oven and bake until the edges are set and browned, but the center is still a bit wobbly, about 35 to 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and place pan on a wire rack to cool completely. Cover and place into the refrigerator to chill until firm, at least 2 hours, before cutting into squares.

Ginger-Lemon Bars

Ginger-Lemon Bars

Ginger-Lemon Bars

2 1/2 C. all-purpose flour

3/4 C. granulated sugar

2 T. ground ginger

2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

16 T. (2 sticks or 1 cup) unsalted butter

1 large egg

1/4 C. finely chopped crystallized ginger

2 T. honey

2 tsp. freshly grated lemon zest

 

2 C. confectioners’ sugar

3 T. fresh lemon juice

water, if needed to thin

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, ginger, baking powder and salt. In a small saucepan, add butter and place over medium heat – cook just until melted. Immediately pour into the dry ingredients, mixing until the dough is combined. Mix in the egg, crystallized ginger, honey and zest, beating vigorously to make a smooth dough. Scoop the dough into a 9″ x 13″ baking pan coated with nonstick spray, pressing it over the bottom to form an even layer. Place pan into the oven and bake until the top is firm to the touch and lightly golden, about 20 to 25 minutes. Meanwhile, as the bars bake, place confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice in a medium bowl, stirring until smooth. If the glaze seems too thick to spread, stir in 1/2 tsp. water at a time, until it becomes a spreadable consistency. When the bars are done, remove the pan from the oven and place a cutting board directly on top of the pan – carefully invert the hot bars onto the board. Lift the pan away and immediately pour glaze over the bars, spreading it evenly on top. Cut into 2″ bars to serve.

Giant Witch Cookies

Giant Witch Cookies

Giant Witch Cookies

1 C. sugar

1 C. butter or margarine, softened

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 C. Gold Medal™ flour

½ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

1 container Betty Crocker™ Rich & Creamy vanilla frosting

3 or 4 drops green food color

3 or 4 drops yellow food color

1 container Betty Crocker™ Rich & Creamy chocolate frosting

Assorted candies for decorating, as desired

 

In large bowl, beat sugar and butter with electric mixer on medium speed until creamy. Beat in egg and vanilla. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt. Divide dough in half; wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate 1 hour for easier handling. Heat oven to 375°F. Line cookie sheets with cooking parchment paper. Shape half of dough into 10 (1 1/2-inch) balls. On parchment-lined cookie sheets, pat each ball of dough into 4-inch circle, using floured fingers if necessary. Place 2 or 3 circles on each cookie sheet, about 9 inches apart. On floured surface, divide remaining half of dough into 2 portions. Roll each portion into 9×6-inch rectangle. Cut each rectangle into 4 whole triangles and 2 half triangles (see diagram).

Press 2 half triangles together to form fifth whole triangle. Cut 1/2-inch strip from top edge of each dough circle on cookie sheet; set aside. Place triangle over each cut edge of circle, covering 1/4 inch of cut edge; press to seal, aligning edge of triangle with edge of circle. Slightly bend point of “hat” if desired. Roll each 1/2-inch strip into 2 (1-inch) ropes; attach to either side of “hat” for brim. Bake 7 to 11 minutes or until edges of cookies are golden and surfaces look dry. With broad metal pancake turner, remove cookies from cookie sheets to cooling racks. Cool completely, about 30 minutes. Tint vanilla frosting green with green and yellow food colors. Spread on circles for witches’ faces. Spread chocolate frosting on hats. Make faces using candies.

Lemon Buttermilk Cake

Lemon Buttermilk Cake

Lemon Buttermilk Cake

2 1/2 C. cake flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

3/4 C. buttermilk, room temperature

3 T. grated lemon zest (about 3 lemons)

1/4 C. fresh lemon juice

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 3/4 C. granulated sugar

12 T. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

3 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk, room temperature

 

3 C. confectioners’ sugar

3 T. lemon juice

2 T. buttermilk

 

Adjust oven rack to middle position. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a glass 13 x 9-inch baking pan. Combine flour, powder, soda and salt in a medium bowl. Combine buttermilk, lemon juice and vanilla. Beat granulated sugar and lemon zest until moist and fragrant, about 1 minute. Reserve 1/4 C. of sugar mixture; cover and set aside. Add butter to remaining sugar mixture and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs and yolk, one at a time, until incorporated. Reduce speed to low. Add dry ingredients in 3 additions, alternating with buttermilk mixture in 2 additions. Mix until smooth about 30 seconds. Scrape batter into prepared pan an smooth top. Bake until cake is golden brown and toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, 25 to 35 minutes. Transfer cake to wire rack and let cool 10 minutes. For the glaze: While cake cools, whisk confectioner’s sugar, lemon juice and buttermilk until smooth. Gently spread over warm cake. Sprinkle evenly with reserved sugar. Cool completely, at least 2 hours.

Salted Caramel Apple Sheet Cake

Salted Caramel Apple Sheet Cake

Salted Caramel Apple Sheet Cake

 

2 C. (254 grams) all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

1 C. (200 grams) granulated sugar

1 C. (200 grams) lightly packed light brown sugar

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

2 sticks (227 grams) unsalted butter

1/2 C. (120 ml) buttermilk

2 large eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

2 C. (200 grams) peeled and chopped Granny Smith apples (about 2 medium apples)

For the glaze:

1 stick (113 grams) unsalted butter

1/4 C. (60 ml) milk

3 C. (375 grams) powdered sugar, sifted

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1/4 C. salted caramel sauce (homemade or store-bought)

 

Make the cake: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Butter or oil a 10-by-15-inch jellyroll pan or a 16-3/4 by 12-inch sheet pan. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the butter with 1 C. water and heat until the butter melts. Bring to a boil. Once the mixture is boiling, remove from heat and add in the flour mixture. Add in the buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla. Gently stir in the apples. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, spreading evenly. Bake for 20 minutes if using a jelly roll pan, and about 17 minutes if using a half sheet pan, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for about 10 to 15 minutes. Make the glaze: Meanwhile, combine the butter and milk in a large heat-proof bowl. Microwave until the butter is melted. Gradually stir in the powdered sugar until combined. Stir in the vanilla and caramel until combined. Pour evenly over the warm cake. Let set for about 15 minute before slicing and serving.

Vanilla Panna Cotta with Raspberry Sauce

Vanilla Panna Cotta with Raspberry Sauce

Vanilla Panna Cotta with Raspberry Sauce

12 oz heavy whipping cream (organic, with no added ingredients if you can find it)

2 oz milk

3 T. sugar

1 whole vanilla bean, split (or 1/2 tsp. vanilla bean paste)

3/4 to 1 tsp. gelatin (powder)

(water, to soften gelatin)

Raspberry sauce

 

1 C. fresh or frozen raspberries

2 T. sugar

 

Put the gelatin in a small bowl with 2 teaspoons, or so, of water to dissolve. Place the cream, milk, sugar and vanilla bean in a medium sized pot over low heat, then add the softened gelatin and stir.  Heat until the gelatin is completely dissolved, then remove from heat and take out the vanilla bean. Pour into molds, ramekins, or small containers which have been rinsed with water (according to Manu, this will help the panna cotta to release afterwards.) Refrigerate to set for at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight. Meanwhile, make the raspberry sauce by placing the berries and sugar in a small pot, over medium high heat for about 8 minutes. Remove from heat, and taste for sweetness, adding more sugar if desired. Press through a sieve to remove seeds and keep sauce to serve on/with the vanilla panna cotta. When ready to serve, unmold each vanilla panna cotta onto a serving plate, and drizzle the raspberry syrup on top or as desired. If you are wanting to do the same decor on the plate as I did, put the syrup in a plastic condiment bottle and make swirls on the plate.

Rødgrøt med Flote (Red Fruit Pudding)

Rødgrøt med Flote (Red Fruit Pudding)

Rødgrøt med Flote (Red Fruit Pudding)

If fresh fruit is unavailable, use canned or frozen raspberries and currants.  Don’t forget to allow enough time for the pudding to chill and set.  Serves 5 to 6, with sweetened whipped cream.

 

1 C. fresh red currants (cranberries can be substituted in a pinch)

1 C. red raspberries

1 C. sugar

1/8 tsp. salt

1 stick cinnamon

1 C. water, divided

3 T. potato flour or cornstarch

 

Combine fruit, sugar, salt, and cinnamon with 1/2 C. water and cook in a covered pan over medium-high heat for 15 to 20 minutes.  Allow mixture to cool, then strain fruit carefully to remove the seeds, reserving the juice.  Return juice to heat.  In a separate bowl, stir remaining 1/2 C. water into the potato flour or cornstarch to make a smooth paste.  Add paste to the hot juice and stir constantly until the pudding is thick.  Pour into sherbet glasses or a glass bowl and allow to chill thoroughly.

Clove Pink Panna Cotta

Clove Pink Panna Cotta

Clove Pink Panna Cotta

1 T. Powdered Gelatin

2 ½ C. Whole Milk

¾ C. Heavy Whipping Cream

1/3 C. Honey

2 T. powdered clove pink or rose petals

2 T. sugar

1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice Pinch of salt

Handful clove pink petals for garnish, optional

 

In a small bowl, combine gelatin with 3 T. warm water. Set aside for 10 minutes. In a saucepan, combine milk and cream and heat over medium-high heat until bubbles form around the inside of the pan. Stir in gelatin mixture and set aside to cool. When milk mixture is cool, whisk in honey, pink petals, sugar, lemon juice, and salt. Pour milk-gelatin mixture into a medium bowl and set over a larger bowl of ice. Gently stir until it starts to thicken. Pour into 6 small serving bowls or ramekins, cover, and refrigerate until set, about 3 hours or overnight. Serve chilled and garnish each bowl with clove pink petals if using.

Cherry Cobbler

Cherry Cobbler

Cherry Cobbler

 

1/3 C. sugar

2 T. margarine or butter, softened

1/2 C. all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/4 C. low-fat milk

2 1/2 C. fresh sweet cherries, pitted

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Beat sugar, margarine, flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and milk in mixing bowl.  Place cherries in lightly oiled 9-inch square baking pan.  Spread flour mixture over cherries.  Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until crust is brown.  Serve warm.

Hawaiian Guava Cake

Hawaiian Guava Cake

Hawaiian Guava Cake

2 1/2 C. cake flour

2 1/2 tsp. baking powder

3/4 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 C. unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 1/4 C. sugar

6 large egg whites

1/4 C. neutral oil

1 C. whole milk

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 C. guava puree or guava concentrate

3 squeezes of red gel coloring (optional)

 

for the frosting:

1 C. heavy whipping cream

8 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature

1/2 C. sugar

pinch of kosher salt

2 squeezes of red gel food coloring (optional)

1/2 C. guava puree or guava concentrate

 

  1. To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9 by 13-inch baking pan with parchment, leaving some overhang on the long sides.

 

  1. In a bowl, combine the cake flour, baking powder, and kosher salt, whisking until combined. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and sugar and beat on medium speed until well combined, about 3 minutes. Add the egg whites, in three additions, beating each addition until well combined, about 1 minute. Add the oil and mix until combined, about 1 minute more. In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk, vanilla, guava puree, and food coloring (if using). On low speed, alternate between adding the wet and dry ingredients, mixing each until combined before adding the next addition.

 

  1. Pour the mixture into the parchment-lined pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes before transferring it to a wire rack to cool completely.

 

  1. To make the frosting, in a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the cream on medium speed for 1 to 2 minutes, until frothy. Gradually increase the speed to high and whip until it’s light and fluffy with stiff peaks, another 2 to 3 minutes. Don’t overwhip! Transfer the whipped cream to a bowl. Replace the bowl on a stand mixer and fit the machine with the paddle attachment; there’s no need to clean the bowl. Place the cream cheese in the bowl and mix on medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes, until smooth. Add the sugar and kosher salt and increase the speed to high. Beat until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Lower the speed to medium and add the food coloring, if desired. Gradually pour in the guava puree in four additions, making sure the puree is fully incorporated after every addition. Scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula after the second and final addition. Increase the speed to high and beat until smooth and well incorporated, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove the bowl from the stand and, using the spatula, fold in the whipped cream in three additions, incorporating completely after each addition.

 

  1. Spread the frosting on the cooled cake, using an offset spatula to smooth it over the edges, and chill for at least 2 hours before serving. Cut into twenty-four pieces and serve immediately.
Blackberry Coulis

Blackberry Coulis

Blackberry Coulis

 

2 C. frozen or fresh Blackberries

2 T. Sugar

1 T. fresh Lemon Juice

Ice

 

Cook blackberries over medium heat in a small nonreactive saucepan until they start to simmer.   Add sugar and stir with wooden spoon until dissolved.  Remove from heat, strain through fine mesh strainer into a medium mixing bowl and stir in lemon juice.  Fill sink or large bowl with cold water and ice and chill the coulis in the ice bath.  Pour into a squeeze bottle, store in fridge for up to 3 days.  Serve over ice cream, with cake or even on grilled flank steak.

Foraged Oregon Grape and Lemon Curd

Foraged Oregon Grape and Lemon Curd

Foraged Oregon Grape and Lemon Curd

 

Foraged Oregon Grapes are transformed from tart and bitter to an unctuous curd suitable for eating from a spoon.

1 cup Oregon Grape puree

1/2 cup lemon juice

2 tablespoons lemon zest

1 1/2 cups raw organic cane sugar

6 eggs

8 tablespoons butter cubed

 

To create puree, place a heaping cup of clean Oregon Grape berries into a blender or food processor and pulse a couple times until juices start to release. Do NOT over puree. Place berry puree, lemon juice, lemon zest, sugar and eggs into a heavy bottomed saucepan. Over medium heat and whisking constantly, cook the mixture until it thickens (coats back of a spoon and whisk leaves traces in curd).

Remove from heat and pass through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl; discard solids. Whisk butter into hot curd until well combined. Place a sheet of parchment or plastic wrap directly on top of curd and chill until cold. Serve within one week or freeze.

Lemon Crème Brulee with Lavender and Honey

Lemon Crème Brulee with Lavender and Honey

Lemon Crème Brulee with Lavender and Honey

2 cups heavy cream

2 tablespoons honey

3 tablespoons coarsely chopped lemon zest (from 3 medium lemons)

2 tablespoons fresh lavender flowers (or 4 teaspoons dried)

⅛ teaspoon salt

3 yolks

1 egg

¼ cup granulated sugar, plus additional for caramelizing

 

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. In a heavy saucepan, combine the cream, honey, lemon zest, lavender, and salt. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer over medium heat, cover, and remove from the heat. Steep 10 minutes and taste the cream to determine if the lemon and lavender flavors are balanced and to your liking. When they are, strain the mixture, discard the zest and lavender, and return the cream to the pot. If it has cooled completely, warm the cream over medium heat until it is hot, but not boiling.  Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk the yolks and egg together with the sugar until smooth. Slowly add some of the warm cream to the yolks, about ½ cup at a time, whisking constantly to keep the eggs from curdling. After adding 1 cup of cream, pour the tempered yolk mixture back into the pan with the remaining cream. Add the vanilla and strain the mixture into another container to cool in an ice bath for baking later or divide it between 6 (4-ounce) ramekins or glass custard cups. Arrange the dishes in a deep baking pan and fill the pan with enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the dishes. Put the baking pan in the oven and bake until the custard is set around edges and slightly jiggly in the center, about 40 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and allow the custards to cool before covering with plastic wrap. Store in the refrigerator to cool completely, 3 hours to overnight. Bet before serving, sprinkle the top of each custard with a thin, even coating of sugar. Place the dishes under a preheated broiler for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the sugar melts, or use a hand-held blowtorch to caramelize the sugar.

Pacific Northwest Blackberry Filled Doughnuts with White Chocolate Ganache and Toasted Hazelnuts

Pacific Northwest Blackberry Filled Doughnuts with White Chocolate Ganache and Toasted Hazelnuts

Pacific Northwest Blackberry Filled Doughnuts with White Chocolate Ganache and Toasted Hazelnuts

1 cup whole milk

2 T. sugar

1 tsp. fine salt

1 (1/4-ounce) package active dry yeast (2 1/2 tsp.)

2 T. warm water

2 T. vegetable oil, plus about 10 cups for frying

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 tsp. lemon zest

3 1/2 to 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus additional for dusting

1 cup blackberry jam

White Chocolate Ganache, recipe follows

1 1/2 cups hazelnuts, toasted and finely chopped

 

Bring milk to a simmer in a 1-quart heavy saucepan, then remove from heat and stir in sugar and salt. Pour into a large bowl and let cool slightly. While milk is cooling, dissolve yeast in warm water in a small bowl, stirring. Let stand for 5 minutes. Stir the yeast mixture into the milk, along with 2 T. oil, eggs, and zest. Stir in 2 1/2 cups flour with a wooden spoon to make a very soft dough. Spread 1 cup flour on work surface and put dough on top, scraping it from bowl with a rubber spatula. Knead dough, incorporating all of flour from work surface and adding just enough additional flour (if necessary), about 5 minutes; dough should be slightly sticky. Transfer dough to an oiled large bowl and sprinkle lightly with additional flour. Cover bowl with a clean kitchen towel and let dough rise in a warm draft-free place until doubled in bulk, about 1 1/2 hours. Turn out dough onto a floured surface and roll out with a floured rolling pin until 1-inch thick. Cut out rounds with a 2-inch cutter. Place on a sheet pan and cover doughnuts with another kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes. While doughnuts rise, heat oil in a deep 4-quart pot until it registers 365 degrees F on a thermometer. Fry doughnuts 2 at a time, turning once or twice, until puffed and golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes per batch. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Place jam in a pastry bag fitted with a 1-inch plain tip and poke the tip into the center of each doughnut (entering from the side) and squeeze in some of the jam. Ice the top with some of the ganache and sprinkle with hazelnuts.

 

White Chocolate Ganache:

1 cup heavy cream

1 pound good-quality white chocolate, finely chopped

 

Bring cream to a simmer in a small saucepan. Place white chocolate in a large bowl, pour hot cream over, and let sit for 1 minute; whisk until smooth. Let cool until slightly thickened

Elderflower Panna Cotta with Gooseberry Compote

Elderflower Panna Cotta with Gooseberry Compote

Elderflower Panna Cotta with Gooseberry Compote

 

A delicately wobbly, creamy panna cotta is such a simple but sophisticated dish. Infused with the scent of elderflowers and partnered with a sharp gooseberry compote, it makes a stunning summer dessert. You can use fresh elderflowers during their short season in May, but otherwise elderflower liqueur works fine. Leave out the elderflower altogether and this is a great recipe for a plain panna cotta, with a little tang from the yogurt.

1/3 C. whole milk

1 C. heavy cream

1 T. T. superfine sugar (or 1 1/2 tsp. if you’re using elderflower liqueur)

3 to 4 large heads of elderflower, or 2 T. elderflower liqueur

1 1/2 tsp. plain gelatin

2/3 C. plain yogurt

 

1 pound gooseberries, topped and tailed

1/4 C. superfine sugar

A few sprigs of elderflower (optional)

 

Combine the milk, cream, and sugar in a saucepan. Tie up the elderflower heads in a piece of cheesecloth and add to the pan, or stir in the elderflower cordial. Scald the liquid – bring just to a simmer, but don’t let it bubble. If you’re using elderflower heads, let stand for half an hour to infuse, then remove the elderflower. Soak the gelatin in cold water for 5 to 10 minutes, until softened. If you left the cream mixture to infuse for half an hour, reheat it almost to boiling – if you have used liqueur, the cream should still be hot enough. Add the gelatin to the hot cream mixture and stir until dissolved. Let cool to room temperature, stirring from time to time. Once cooled, stir in the yogurt until thoroughly combined. Pour the mixture into four 1/2-cup molds, such as ramekins, and chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours, until set. Meanwhile, make the compote. Put the gooseberries in a pan with the sugar and V4 C. water. Tie up the elderflower sprigs, if using, in a piece of cheesecloth and add to the pan. Bring to a simmer and cook gently for about 10 minutes, until the gooseberries are soft. Let cool completely, then remove the elderflower sprigs and chill the compote. To turn out the panna cottas, dip each mold very briefly in hot water – literally just a few seconds – then turn upside down onto a serving plate and give it a shake; if necessary, run a knife around the edge. Serve with the gooseberry compote.

Key Lime Cake

Key Lime Cake

Key Lime Cake

Cake:

1 package moist deluxe yellow or lemon cake mix

1 small package lemon instant pudding and pie filling

4 eggs

1 C. vegetable oil

3/4 C. water

1/4 C. key lime juice, fresh or bottled

Glaze:

2 C. confectioners’ sugar

1/3 C. key lime juice

2 T. water

2 T. melted butter

Garnish:

Confectioners’ sugar

Key lime slices

Mint

 

Preheat oven to 350-degrees. Grease and flour 10-inch Bundt or tube pan. Combine cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, oil, water and 1/4 C. key lime juice in large bowl and beat with electric mixer on low speed until ingredients are moistened and mixed well. Increase speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes. Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until a toothpick or cake tester inserted into center comes out clean. Cool cake in pan for 20 minutes, invert cake onto cooking rack and poke holes with skewer or long tined-fork. Place cake on cake plate or serving plate. Combine glaze ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Pour glaze slowly over top of warm cake. Finish cooling cake. Dust with confectioners’ sugar. Garnish plate with key lime slices.

Blueberry-Hazelnut Crumble

Blueberry-Hazelnut Crumble

Blueberry-Hazelnut Crumble

2.5 C. blueberries (about a pint)

1 tsp. sugar

1/2 T. flour

1/2 T. lemon juice

1/2 C. flour

1/2 C. brown sugar

1/4 C. oats

1/4 C. chopped hazelnuts

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

4 T. butter

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Rinse the berries and drain thoroughly. Put the blueberries in a mixing bowl and add lemon juice, sugar and one-half T. of flour. Set aside until you are already with the crumble topping. In a food processor, pulse together the remaining ingredients until they resemble coarse breadcrumbs. Pour the blueberries into four 1 1/2-C. ramekins. You could, of course, just make one big crumble in a 9-inch pie pan. Next, cover the berries with the topping and bake for thirty minutes until the top has browned and the fruit is bubbling. Can be served hot or at room temperature. Goes very well with ice cream or frozen yogurt.

Dulce De Leche Bars

Dulce De Leche Bars

Dulce De Leche Bars

2 rolls (16.5 oz each) Pillsbury refrigerated sugar cookies

1 3/4 C. quick-cooking or old-fashioned oats

2/3 C. packed brown sugar

2 tsp. vanilla

1 bag (14 oz) caramels, unwrapped

1/2 C. butter

1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated)

3 tsp. caramel topping

 

Heat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, break up 1 roll of cookie dough. Stir or knead in 3/4 C. of the oats, 1/3 C. of the brown sugar and 1 tsp. of the vanilla until well blended. With floured fingers, press mixture evenly in bottom of ungreased 13×9-inch pan to form crust. Bake 13 to 18 minutes or until light golden brown. Meanwhile, in same bowl, break up remaining roll of cookie dough. Stir or knead in remaining 1 C. oats, 1/3 C. brown sugar and 1 tsp. vanilla until well blended. In large heavy saucepan, heat caramels, butter and condensed milk over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until caramels are melted and mixture is smooth. Spread caramel mixture evenly over crust. Crumble remaining dough mixture evenly over caramel. Bake 20 to 25 minutes longer or until light golden brown. Cool 1 hour. Run knife around sides of pan to loosen bars. Refrigerate 1 hour or until firm. With small spoon, drizzle caramel topping over bars. For bars, cut into 8 rows by 6 rows. Store in refrigerator.

Valentine Sandwich Cookies

Valentine Sandwich Cookies

Valentine Sandwich Cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 cups all-purpose flour

¾ cup Dutch process cocoa powder

1 ½ teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

 

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

2 tablespoons half and half (or milk)

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

pinch of salt

3-3 ½ cups powdered sugar

 

Combine the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until well incorporated. Whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Gradually add the dry mixture to the creamed mixture, beating on the lowest speed. Continue to mix on the lowest setting until the dry ingredients are just incorporated. Divide the dough in half, and shape into two discs. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour. When the dough is chilled, preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a baking mat. Set aside. Taking only one portion of dough out of the refrigerator at a time, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough to 1/8-1/4-inch thickness. Use a heart shaped cookie cutter to cut out cookies and transfer them to the prepared baking sheet. Bake the cookies for 12 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Once the cookies are cooled, prepare the filling. Combine the softened butter, half and half, vanilla, and salt and beat until combined. Add the powdered sugar slowly until the filling is smooth. It should be slightly stiffer than cupcake frosting. Add pink or red food coloring until desired color is reached. Transfer the filling to a piping bag fitted with a large round tip (or a freezer zip-lock bag with the corner snipped off.) Pipe the filling onto half of the cookies, and top with the remaining cookies to form a cookie sandwich.

Invisible Apple Cake

Invisible Apple Cake

Invisible Apple Cake

2 Eggs

50 g of Sugar

20 g of Butter

100 ml of Milk

70 g plain Flour

1 tsp of Baking Powder

1/2 tsp of Cinnamon

a pinch of Salt

 

Break the eggs into a large bowl; beat with sugar until white foam. Melt the butter on low heat; gradually add the butter into the dough, continuing to beat. Gradually add the milk into the dough. Beat well with a mixer. Add a pinch of salt, add baking powder according to the package instructions. Sift the flour into the dough, add cinnamon, and stir well.  Peel the apples and remove the core, cut into thin slices. Put the apples into the bowl with dough, mix well. Grease with butter a one-piece form (18 x 24 cm, or 20-22 cm in diameter), sprinkle with 2 T. of flour. Put the dough with apples into the form. Bake the cake for 40 minutes at 180C. Leave to cool completely. Cut the edges with a sharp knife. Decorate with icing sugar.

Cranberry Pound Cake

Cranberry Pound Cake

Cranberry Pound Cake

1 cup butter or margarine
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
dash salt
2 cups fresh cranberries, coarse chopped
Glaze:
2 cups powder sugar
cream to thin
1 tsp vanilla

Chop cranberries and coat with a bit of the flour so cranberries won’t sink to bottom of cake batter. Beat butter till creamy. Gradually beat in sugar/vanilla till fluffy. Blend in eggs one at a time. Sift flour and baking powder. Add flour to creamed mixture and beat to blend. Stir in cranberries till well incorporated. Grease and flour well a Bundt pan. Bake in a 325F oven about 70 minutes or tested done. Cool cake in pan for 15 minutes. Remove to cake platter. Mix glaze ingredients and spoon over warm cake. Best flavor if allowed to set overnight.

Guava Cake

Guava Cake

Guava Cake

Cake:

2 1/2 C Cake Flour

2 1/2 tsp. Baking Powder

3/4 tsp. Kosher Salt

1/2 C Butter, unsalted at room temp

1 1/4 C Sugar

6 Large Egg Whites

1/4 C Neutral Oil

1 C Whole Milk

2 tsp. Vanilla

1 C Guava puree or concentrate

3 squeezes of red gel coloring (optional)

 

1 C Heavy Whipping Cream

8 ounces Cream Cheese, room temp

1/2 C sugar

pinch of Kosher Salt

2 squeezes red gel coloring ( optional)

1/2 C guava puree or concentrate

 

Guava Gel:

1 1/2 C Guava Juice or concentrate

1/2 C Sugar

1/4 C Corn Starch

2 T. Water

 

Make the guava gel:  Make the guava gel first so it has time to set up. In a small saucepan combine the guava juice or concentrate with the sugar and heat until simmering and the sugar has dissolved. Mix the corn starch with water in a separate bowl until well mixed then add to the guava mixture in the pan. Bring to a boil stirring until thick. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until fully chilled.

 

Make the cake:  Preheat oven to 350 Deg F. Line a 9×13” pan with parchment paper, leaving some overhang on the long sides.  In a bowl combine the cake flour, baking powder and salt, whisking to combine. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar on medium speed for 3 minutes. Add in the egg whites one at a time, mixing well in between each addition, scraping down the sides of the bowl when needed. Add in the oil and mix until combined.  In a separate bowl combine milk, vanilla, guava puree and optional food coloring. On low speed alternated adding in the flour and milk mixtures until well combined. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center, about 25-30 minutes. Let cool in pan for 10-15 minutes before removing from pan to cool completely on a wire rack.

 

Make the Frosting:: Once the cake is cooled make the frosting: In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the heavy cream until light and fluffy with soft peaks then transfer to a bowl. Add in the cream cheese to the mixing bowl ( no need to clean out after whipping the heavy cream) and whip until smooth. Add in the sugar and salted increase speed to high. Lower speed and color with optional food coloring. Pour in the guava puree in 4 additions, scraping down sides of bowl when needed. Fold in the whipped cream in three additions, incorporating completely after each addition.

 

Frost the cake: Spread frosting over cooled cake, reserving some of the frosting to pipe stars or rosettes around the edges. Spread the guava gel over the top of the cake almost all the way to the edges. Pipe rosettes or stars around the top edge with the remaining frosting. Chill for at least 2 hours before serving. Cut into 24 pieces and serve.

Dump Cakes

Dump Cakes

Blueberry Dump Cake

 

1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix

4 cups fresh blueberries

1/2 cup white sugar

1/2 cup butter, melted

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Mix berries, sugar, and cinnamon in the bottom of a 9 x 13 inch pan. Cover berries with dry cake mix. Pour butter over cake mix, do not stir. Bake for 30 minutes, or until light brown. Serve warm or cold. top with ice cream.

 

 

Cherry Dump Cake

 

1 box (15.25 ounces) yellow cake mix

2 (21 ounce) cans cherry pie filling

1 tsp. almond extract

1/2 cup butter cold

 

Preheat oven to 350°F. In a 12-inch skillet or greased 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish, add the cherry pie filling and the almond extract. Mix together and spread it evenly over the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle the cake mix over the top, being careful to cover all the pie filling. Slice the butter into small pads (about 16) and spread them out evenly over the top of the cake mixture. Bake for 1 hour or until the topping is golden brown and the pie filling is bubbling.

 

 

Blueberry Lemon Dump Cake

 

6 cups fresh blueberries

1 lemon zested & juiced

1 12 ounce can evaporated milk

3 large eggs

3/4 cup sugar

1/4 tsp. salt

1 box lemon cake mix

1 cup unsalted butter melted

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9×13 pan. Pour blueberries into prepared pan. In a bowl mix evaporated milk, eggs, sugar, lemon zest, 1 T. of lemon juice and salt. Pour over blueberries.

Sprinkle dry cake mix over blueberry mixture. Do not stir. Pour melted butter over cake mix. Do not stir. Bake 25 minutes uncovered. Cover with foil and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool slightly. To serve, scoop into bowls and top with ice cream.

 

 

Lemon-Raspberry Dump Cake

 

18.25 oz. Lemon Cake Mix

4 C. Raspberries

1 3oz. Box Raspberry Jell-O

½ C. Sugar

1 ½ C. Water

½ C. Unsalted Butter

1 tsp. Vanilla

 

Preheat oven to 350. Spread raspberries evenly in 9×13” pan. Pour water over berries. Sprinkle with Vanilla, then the sugar. Distribute the Jell-O over all. Pour cake mix in the pan.  Use spatula or back of spoon to spread the cake mix evenly; do not mix. Cut butter into thin slices and cover the top with them. Bake 45 minutes to an hour until top is golden brown and it is cooked through.

 

 

Pumpkin Pie Dump Cake

 

30 oz pumpkin canned

16 oz evaporated milk

1 tsp. ginger

1/2 tsp. ground cloves

1 cup sugar

4 eggs

2 tsp. cinnamon

1 package yellow cake mix

1 cup chopped pecans

3/4 cup butter

 

Preheat oven to 350. Mix pumpkin, milk, ginger, cloves, sugar, eggs and cinnamon in a large bowl. Pour into a greased and floured 9×13 pan. Sprinkle cake mix and chopped pecans on top. Cut butter very thin and cover all over cake mix. Bake for 1 hour and serve warm with whipped cream.

 

 

Rhubarb Dump Cake

 

1 package yellow cake mix

3-4 cups cut up rhubarb

1 cup sugar

1 4 oz package of Strawberry Jell-O

1 cup water

¼ cup melted butter

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Layer the cut up rhubarb in a greased 9×13 pan. Sprinkle the cup of sugar over the rhubarb and then sprinkle the strawberry jell on top of the sugar. Pour the dry yellow cake mix over the rhubarb. Pour the 1 cup water over the cake mix and then lastly pour the melted butter. Do not stir. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-55 minutes or until bubbly and lightly browned.

Blueberry Squares

Blueberry Squares

Blueberry Squares

 

2 cups blueberries

1/2 cup sugar

2 tbsp, cornstarch

1/4 cup water

1 tbsp, lemon juice

 

Stir together blueberries, sugar and cornstarch in saucepan. Mix in lemon juice and water. Bring to boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer until mixture thickens (about 3 minutes). Let cool.

 

1 1/2 cups rolled oats

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 1/2 tsp. baking powder

pinch salt

3/4 cup butter, melted

 

Combine oats, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in large mixing bowl. Drizzle with butter and stir until well blended. Spread half the mixture into well-greased 8-inch  baking pan. Pat firmly. Cover with blueberry filled. Sprinkle remaining oat mixture over top. Bake at 350F for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Cool before cutting squares.

Donut Muffins

Donut Muffins

Donut Muffins

1/2 cup white sugar

1/4 cup margarine, melted

3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 cup milk

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 cup margarine, melted

1/2 cup white sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease 24 mini-muffin cups. Mix 1/2 cup sugar, 1/4 cup margarine, and nutmeg in a large bowl. Stir in the milk, then mix in the baking powder and flour until just combined. Fill the prepared mini muffin cups about half full. Bake in the preheated oven until the tops are lightly golden, 15 to 20 minutes. While muffins are baking, place 1/4 cup of melted margarine in a bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together 1/2 cup of sugar with the cinnamon. Remove muffins from their cups, dip each muffin in the melted margarine, and roll in the sugar-cinnamon mixture. Let cool and serve.

Rhubarb Upside-Down Brown Sugar Cake with Strawberries and Crème Fraiche

Rhubarb Upside-Down Brown Sugar Cake with Strawberries and Crème Fraiche

Rhubarb Upside-Down Brown Sugar Cake with Strawberries and Crème Fraiche.

About 1¼ to 1½ pounds rhubarb trimmed and rinsed

¾ cup sugar (1/2-cup for rhubarb, ¼ cup for caramelizing)

1½ T. unsalted butter

 

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 tsp. baking powder

Pinch of fine sea salt

3 large eggs room temperature

¾ cup packed light brown sugar

Finely grated zest of 1 orange

1½ tsp. pure vanilla extract

8 T. unsalted butter, melted and cooled

 

Left over rhubarb syrup

Strawberry jam

 

2 cups of Strawberries, hulled and cut in half.

8 oz. Crème Fraiche

First make the Rhubarb Topping:

 

If your rhubarb is not young and thin, peel it.  Cut the stalks into 1 inch lengths and toss them with ½ cup sugar and set aside for 30 minutes. Drain the rhubarb and reserve the syrup to make the glaze. Butter a 9 inch round cake pan with sides at least 1½ high. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat then stir in the sugar. When the sugar has melted and is JUST changing color add the rhubarb. Stir sparingly for about 3 minutes or until the sugar is slightly caramelized. Scrape the rhubarb and syrup into the cake pan and leave to cool. Next, make the cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together in a small bowl. In a large bowl whisk the eggs and brown sugar together until thick and smooth. Whisk in the zest and vanilla. Pour in the butter in 3 additions. Whisk well. Add the dry ingredients in 3 additions whisking gently. Scrape the batter into the pan over the rhubarb and put the pan onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake the cake for about 25 minutes, rotating it after 12 minutes. Bake until it is golden brown, springy to the touch and just beginning to pull away from the sides of the pan. Transfer the pan to a cooling rack and let rest for about 2 minutes, then run a table knife around the sides of the cake Place the serving plate over the cake and turn the cake over onto the platter. Wait for a minute then lift off the pan. Finally, make the Glaze: Bring the reserved rhubarb syrup to a boil then reduce to a simmer until it reduces and becomes syrupy. Add a few spoonfuls of strawberry jam and stir well. Gently spoon the glaze over the top of the cake.  To serve the cake, add strawberries to the cake plate, dollop with Crème Fraiche and serve.

Pumpkin Spice Sugar Cookies

Pumpkin Spice Sugar Cookies

Pumpkin Spice Sugar Cookies

3 C. all-purpose flour

½ tsp. salt

2 tsp. baking powder

2 T. plus one tsp. of pumpkin pie spice

2 sticks softened butter (8 ounces)

1 C. white sugar

1/3 C. dark molasses

1 large egg

1 C. canned pumpkin puree

1½ to 2 C. Demerara or Turbinado sugar

 

In a medium bowl, sift flour, salt, baking powder and pumpkin spice and set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream butter, white sugar and molasses until fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Add egg and beat for 30 seconds. Scrape sides of bowl and mix again. Add pumpkin puree and beat until mixed. Add dry ingredients on low speed until thoroughly mixed. The dough will be sticky but easier to manage once they firm up under refrigeration. Divide dough into four logs, eight inches long. Seal each one in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 60 minutes or longer. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. On a cutting board, unwrap one log, then cut it into quarters. Then cut each quarter into thirds, yielding 12 cookies per log. Repeat for other three logs – you will have 48 pieces. The dough will still be a bit sticky but easier to handle once rolled in the Demerara sugar. Pour the Demerara sugar into a pie plate. Line four cookie sheets with parchment paper or if nonstick, no parchment needed. Roll each slice in the sugar on the edges and both sides, pressing down slightly and then place on the pans; 12 per pan. Bake one pan 12 to 13 minutes until cookies start to dry out around the edges but are still soft in the middle. Ours took exactly 12 minutes but ovens differ, and cookie sheets differ. Repeat for the other three pans. When they come out, let them sit on the pan for five minutes then transfer to cooling racks using a spatula to remove them. Cool completely. Once they are cooled, they will be firmer and easier to handle but they are a delicate cookie so be gentle.