May 27, 2009

Lemon Glazed Strawberry Tart with Pastry Cream

Lemon Glazed Strawberry Tart with Pastry Cream

I’ve been on a strawberry kick lately (seriously, I hope you like strawberries because I have two more strawberry recipes coming up). I also finally bought a tart pan last week and I wanted to make something fun and different. This may not sound like such a “different” dessert, but it’s really different for me. The majority of the desserts I make are either cake or cookies (or some variation like cupcakes and brownies). I’ve only make pie during the holidays and as much as I’d LOVE to make my cheesecake all the time I have to force myself to save that for special occasions.

Anyway, I found this recipe in my favorite cookbook and decided to go for it. I’m glad I did because this was damn good but it’s kind of involved. It’s definitely worth the effort to make, but like pies and cheesecake, I think this is a “special occasions” kind of dessert. It’s not difficult, per se, but there’s a lot of steps because you have to make all the parts (the crust, the …

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January 4, 2012

Butternut Squash Cakes with Maple-Cream Cheese Glaze

Butternut Squash Cakes with Maple-Cream Cheese Glaze

Hello January, we meet again. I used to try to make resolutions, the usual ones about going on a diet, exercising more, etc. but after years of pretty much not ever following through I’m officially giving up resolutions. I know it’s the New Year and that seems like a great time to “start over” but January just never works for me. The cold weather makes it hard for to get motivated to go walking (the only form of exercise I enjoy) and I crave lots of warm and hearty foods that are rarely low-calorie. And even if I do make some progress in January, February comes along and there’s Valentine’s Day and my birthday and I lose all my motivation.

So I’m not going to bother going on a diet this year or maybe ever again. I’m just going to keep doing what I’ve been working on since I started this blog: eat more real food like fruits and vegetables and a little less carb, sugar and processed crap. That’s why I was really happy to get this new cookbook for Christmas, Green Market Baking Book

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October 22, 2008

Chicken Pot Pie Soup – two ways

Chicken Pot Pie Soup

You could also call this Creamy Chicken Vegetable Soup. We’ve already established how much I love Jason’s Deli. Well, this is another item they have that I love almost as much as their muffins. When I was searching around for a similar recipe, I wound up finding two. One was made from scratch and kinda high in fat, while the other was uber simple (10 minutes to make it – TOTAL) and low fat. I decided to make both and see how they compared. In end all taste-testers (which would be me and Brandon) agreed that the made from scratch version was better, but the other version was definitely still good and the fact that it was so simple and also low in fat made up for the taste discrepancies.

November 18, 2008

Cheesecake Brownies

Cheesecake Brownies

I was really craving some chocolate last Friday night. My usual standby is brownies, because they are simple to whip up, but plain old brownies sounded so boring. I went and searched for brownies at one of my favorite recipe sites and as soon as I saw the name of these brownies I was already drooling.

They did not disappoint at all. Simple to make and they turned out so rich and fudgy. I’ve made a ton of brownie recipes and this is definitely one of the best. The recipe has chocolate chips in it, but I don’t think they were even necessary. They made the brownies almost too rich, so I don’t think I’ll be adding them next time.

My boyfriend is usually not a fan of brownies (which I can’t even fathom), but he loves cheesecake, so he liked these. He’s so picky about desserts (which is probably a good thing or I’d make them a lot more often), it’s great finding something he’ll actually eat!

August 4, 2010

Caramelized French Toast (Plus Homemade Raisin Bread!)

Caramelized French Toast

I’m not 100% happy with the name of this recipe. Caramelized Cinnamon Toast might be better, but calling it French Toast is more descriptive of how it’s made. I would say this is a combination of French Toast and Cinnamon Toast, but Caramelized Cinnamon French Toast is way too long, so we’ll just keep it simple. Everyone knows what French Toast is, right?

I’ve never been a big fan of French Toast. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never disliked it, but in the world of breakfast foods, I’d usually rather have pancakes or pastries. In fact, I’m not sure I’ve ever even made it at home before. I remember my mom used to make it when I was a kid (though not as much as pancakes or waffles) and of course I’ve had it at restaurants, but I guess it’s never occurred to me to actually make French Toast myself. But Cinnamon Toast? Well, that is one of my most favorite things in the whole world. I make that all the time. So much so that I have a bottle just to store my …

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December 15, 2009

Peppermint Fudge Pinwheels

Peppermint Fudge Pinwheels

Christmas is my favorite time of year and one of the main reasons for that is all the baking I get to do. Even when I didn’t cook much, I’ve always liked to bake and cookies are just about my favorite thing to make. Plus this time of year is the only time besides my birthday and Thanksgiving that I let myself make/eat whatever I want and I don’t feel guilty about it. Diets are what January is for. (I’ve already signed up for Recipe Girl’s Ten in ’10 challenge!) So expect a bunch of sweet recipes around here for the next few weeks because I’m in the baking mood.

I’m obviously obsessed with black and white desserts, so I knew I had to make these as soon as I saw them. The original recipe isn’t very christmas-y, but that was easily remedied with the addition of some peppermint extract to the chocolate cookie dough AND to the fudge frosting in the middle. Don’t worry though, these cookies aren’t crazy peppermint-y. The vanilla part of the cookie balances out the peppermint …

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March 29, 2011

Tex-Mex Potato Soup

Tex-Mex Potato Soup

It feels weird to be posting a soup recipe when it’s almost April, but it actually snowed in Charlottesville this past weekend so Spring isn’t quite here yet, at least for many of us in the top half of the country. And you know what? That’s kind of okay with me. Spring is beautiful time of year up here, but I actually prefer cold weather. Plus I get to eat more soup! I don’t think there’s anything I love more than soup (well anything that doesn’t have sugar in it, anyway).

During the colder months I make soup at least once a week, but I’ve been making it less in the past few months. So last week when the temperature dropped and brought rain and snow with it, I knew I had to make some soup. I figure it’s my last chance before it gets too warm. I recently had some potato soup at Panera Bread and it made me remember how much I love it, so I decided to improvise my own version at home. I love spicy soup like my favorite Chicken …

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June 6, 2011

Blueberry-Rhubarb Tarts

Blueberry-Rhubarb Tarts

Since my last experience with rhubarb went so well, I picked up another pound of it at the grocery store to try out some more recipes. This tart recipe was the first on my list because it’s on the cover of Kim Boyce’s cookbook, Good to the Grain and I think I’ve opened that book about a million times since I got it a month ago. I just couldn’t look at it one more time without making those tarts.

The only problem was that my rhubarb wasn’t as blindingly red as hers looked, so I decided to change the filling and add some blueberries to it to give it a deeper color. I’ve tried rhubarb with cherries, strawberries and now blueberries and I have to say that blueberry-rhubarb combo is my favorite of the three. I cooked the blueberries and rhubarb with some orange zest and dark muscovado sugar which has a strong flavor similar to molasses. The resulting compote was so good I could hardly stop myself from eating it all before I even got the tarts …

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