This past weekend we had a few friends over to our house for a casual gathering, I got a bunch of ingredients for us to make our own pizzas and we hung out around the kitchen island, making our own pizzas and drinking beers and catching up. For dessert, I wanted to keep with the casual tone and was brainstorming unfussy ideas for sweet treats. I’m participating in a little recipe challenge with Salt for Life, and a sweet and salty dessert is always up my alley.read more
I had such a good weekend — it was my birthday and I had the best time relaxing, celebrating with friends and family, and of course indulging in some birthday treats. I have been craving Thin Mints lately, some subliminal Girl Scout messaging must have seeped into my brain and sure enough the Girl Scouts were waiting at the top of the subway platform on my way home from work last week and the cookie gods had given me a sign that it was time for Thin Mints. Now serving a bowl of Girl Scout cookies would probably have been a welcomed dessert by my family that came over to celebrate my birthday, but you know I don’t roll that way. So I crushed up the cookies and layered them in glasses with brownies and whipped cream, the flavors melded together into a minty, chocolatey sweet treat — it was delicious! Full recipe below:read more
Do you have one of those recipes in your back pocket that works for just about any occasion? Mine is so simple it’s almost embarrassing: Rice Krispy Treats! It’s the one thing that I always get asked to make for friends’ parties. For a recent holiday party I decided to add a fresh twist to my classic recipe and make a Neapolitan version with classic flavor layers of chocolate, strawberry and vanilla ice cream. It takes just a simple modification of the traditional Rice Krispy Treat recipe, full instructions below:
Following the traditional instructions to make Rice Krispy Treats, prepare the ingredients and press a layer of the classic flavor into a lightly greased baking pan. Work quickly to add the next layer so they don’t cool too much — the strawberry layer is exactly the same recipe as the classic Rice Kripy Treat, but when you’re melting the butter and marshmallows together you want to add in 4 drops of pink food coloring and 1 tsp of strawberry extract (you can usually find these near the vanilla extract in the baking aisle!). Press the strawberry mixture directly on top of the classic layer. Next, make the chocolate layer with the same classic recipe, but mix in Cocoa Krispies in lieu of Rice Krispies. Then, pour the Cocoa mixture on top of the Strawberry layer and cover with a large piece of parchment paper. Use a rolling-pin to roll over the parchment paper and press the layers down. Set them aside and let cool completely to solidify. When you’re ready to serve them, flip the baking dish upside down with the parchment paper on the table, slowly lift the dish up and reveal the compressed layers. All that’s left to do is to cut them up into squares with a serrated knife, and try not to eat them all in one sitting!
Last week we had our latest Boston Bloggers event at the Sweet bakery. Sweet had a handful of bloggers over for a whole night of cupcake tasting. So, yes, in case you were wondering, it was awesome. We heard from Sweet’s lovely founder and learned all about how the bakery got started, and how it’s evolved over the years. And then we dug-in and taste-tested lots of their classic flavors (like, oh boy, some of the most delicious carrot cake and cream cheese frosting I’ve ever had!), and a few of their new and seasonal flavors — like Guinness butter-cream for St Patty’s day (yum). I think one of the biggest surprises was tasting their gluten-free cupcakes, I had no idea I was eating a gluten-free cupcake until someone told me — they were some of my favorites from the whole event! Thanks to Sweet for hosting us, and letting me fulfill my fantasy of an all-you-can-eat cupcake feast!
I got a head start this weekend on holiday baking, who says pies are just for Thanksgiving day? I’m a big of fan of individual-sized desserts (as evidenced here and here), after a heavy meal and lots of snacking, I always still want dessert, but just need a little taste to tie me over. So I made the recipe for classic pumpkin pie (I use a top secret family recipe…the one printed on the Libby’s pumpkin puree can!) and used a mini-muffin tin to bake the ingredients off in bite-sized pies. Mini-pies just weren’t cute enough though, I had to up the adorable factor and use my alphabet cookie cutters to spell out a little a seasonal message. I think I’m going to do the same thing for Thanksgiving later this week! What kind of recipes are you baking up for the holidays?
I couldn’t bear turning the oven on in our apartment this weekend, (it’s been quite the heat wave) so I had to get creative making a dessert to bring along to a friends BBQ. I picked up a frozen cheesecake at the grocery store and chopped it up into small cubes, and layered the cheesecake bites with fresh blueberries and raspberries in pint-sized mason jars. To make them look a little more special, I used cut up fabric pieces from bandanas to top the lids, and used washi tape to affix mini spoons to the jars. We kept them in the freezer right up until they were ready to be served, and the result was a cool, handheld treat for our day by the pool!
Do you ever get a craving with the season change? The warm weather and beginning of summer has had me craving lemonade, ice cream, and sweet fresh blueberries. For Father’s Day last weekend I pulled out my grandmother’s blueberry cobbler recipe, and it just tastes of summer. It’s so simple to make and it’s a real crowd-pleaser — we practically licked the inside of the dish clean! Scroll down for the recipe.
Grandma’s Blueberry Cobbler
1 cup of flour
1 stick of butter
1 1/2cups of sugar (divided)
1 tsp of baking powder
1/2 cup of milk
2 cups of blueberries
1 tbsp of lemon juice
Melt butter in casserole. In a bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, 1 cup of sugar, and combine with milk. Pour batter of butter when melted.
In a small saucepan, combine 1/2 cup of sugar, blueberries, and lemon juice. Simmer on stove for 10 minutes. Pour blueberry mixture over batter (but do not stir). Bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees or until golden brown.
This weekend I experienced perhaps my favorite wedding planning meeting to date: the tasting! I consider myself quite an expert in this category, as eating is pretty much my favorite thing in all the world. It felt like a big relief to go through all of the details and taste every little treat, narrowing down our choices to make the perfect menu. One of my favorite choices that didn’t make the cut were those mini ‘adult’ root beer floats (I’d be lying if I said I stopped after just one). Now, how do I go about getting invited to more of these tasting events?