When Brad and I took our Anniversary trip to Seattle, the first day there we had the most amazing cinnamon gelato at Bottega Italiana. Right away I knew that I needed to make something similar at home. Gelato is churned much more slowly than ice cream, so that the finished product has a lot less air whipped into it. I don't have the equipment needed to make real gelato, but cinnamon ice cream was totally in my capabilities.
I first turned to my most trusted ice cream recipe book, The Perfect Scoop. I tried the cinnamon ice cream recipe in the book, but it's custard-based and was too rich for my tastes. The second time around, I used the same method for infusing the ice cream with cinnamon ... [Continue Reading]
If I had to choose which dessert I like making most I would have to say cookies. I love how easy cookies are to make, and appreciate that there is always a new type of cookie to try. My second favorite dessert to make? I think you probably guessed it- it's pie. I really love to make pies, and actually find it to be very relaxing. Cutting butter into pie dough, rolling the dough out, and in the case of apple pie, peeling the apples, are all tasks that I can put my hands to work on while my mind wanders and reflects on life.
This particular apple pie is my favorite for a couple of reasons. The crust is perfectly flaky and buttery, and aren't those heart cutouts just adorable? You can use ... [Continue Reading]
Is there an unofficial end date to when we are allowed to cook and bake with pumpkin? Well, even if there is, I plan to ignore such a date and bake with pumpkin until I am tired of it! This year I am really loving the pumpkin: pumpkin granola, pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin waffles, pumpkin doughnuts, pumpkin soup, and now these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies.
Pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are popping up on blogs all over right now, and I needed to try them out for myself. These really are a combination of two greats: spiced pumpkin and the chocolate chip cookie.
The pumpkin helps to keep the cookies soft, and pumpkin pie spice helps to really bring out the pumpkin flavor. Chocolate chips ... [Continue Reading]
I haven't had many excuses.. I mean opportunities to make cupcakes lately. Baking a batch of cupcakes just for my family isn't a good idea, because we definitely don't need to eat a dozen cupcakes. We had my parents and brother over for dinner this past weekend so I had a reason to make dessert, and I decided that an afternoon spent baking in the kitchen sounded both relaxing and fun. I pretended I didn't have housecleaning to do, laundry to fold, or papers to grade, and just enjoyed myself.
These cupcakes have three components- a spiced apple cake, cinnamon cream cheese frosting, and a drizzle of caramel sauce. Have you ever noticed how kids eat cupcakes? They lick off all of the ... [Continue Reading]
We had our first rainy day of the season on Saturday, and it made me realize maybe I am ready for a change in the weather. Julia was supposed to have soccer practice, but it was canceled at the last minute due to the entire field being taken over by a track and field meet. It was a good thing, though, as the sky opened up and it was pouring five minutes into the scheduled soccer time. We would have been running off of that soccer field! We had both kids in the car, diaper bag packed, and it was Saturday morning, so instead of soccer we headed out to lunch at Panera. We sat inside by the window and had lunch while watching the rain pour down outside. William thought it was great fun to get ... [Continue Reading]
I learned to love baking early on. I started with box-mix brownies and of course, cookies. Chocolate chip, gingersnaps, and Snickerdoodles were a few of my early favorites. I fondly remember being about 12 years old and making a batch of Snickerdoodles, and then happily bringing a warm napkin-wrapped cookie out to my dad who was working in the front yard. Today, I'm lucky enough to still live just minutes away from my parents, making it easy to share my baking efforts with them. It goes the other way, too- the other day, I stopped by to pick something up at my parents' house and my mom sent me home with a few warm buttermilk pancakes, fresh off the griddle, wrapped in a paper towel.
These ... [Continue Reading]
A real s'more, made with a warm, gooey marshmallow that has just been toasted over a crackling fire, is a real treat. It's not surprising that s'more-inspired treats have been popping up on blogs in all corners of the internet this summer. There is just something special about s'mores, and I can't help but pin so many of these treats. The only s'more dessert that I've actually made this summer, though, are these cookies (plus a few microwave s'mores, which can't compare to the real thing).
I actually made two batches of these cookies in a row, one week and then the next, because I liked them so much. Which surprised me because I was not sure how much I liked these when I first tasted ... [Continue Reading]
It had been a while since I made chocolate ice cream, so I decided to go all out and make this Milk Chocolate Ice Cream with Brownie Bites. Oh my is this ice cream good. The milk chocolate ice cream is incredibly rich and creamy, and the brownie bites are rich, fudgy little wonders that add a whole other dimension of chocolate flavor to the ice cream. The brownies are amazing on their own, and since you only need half of the pan for the ice cream, you have plenty to enjoy or share. Or, you can do what I did and freeze the other half to mix into another batch of ice cream later on. (Just be sure to chop them into bite-size pieces before freezing. Directions on how to freeze are included in ... [Continue Reading]
We're right in the middle of summer, and I want to savor every minute of it! Besides all of the fun activities and outdoors time, one of the best parts of summer is the food. I thought it would be fun to look through my recipes and choose the few that I consider can't miss recipes for summer. So here they are, our favorite summer-time meals! (Plus a few desserts that are best enjoyed outside on a warm summer evening. :) ) I hope your summer is being filled with fun times, good food, family and friends. Enjoy!
Southwestern Grilled Chicken Salad with Black Bean Salsa
Grilled Chicken Fajitas
Mediterranean Chicken in Pitas
Fish Tacos with Pineapple-Peach ... [Continue Reading]
I hope everyone had a fantastic 4th of July yesterday! We stayed home in the morning (playing, making smoothies, playing some more, baking cookies...), and then headed over to the grandparents' house where the kids played and cooled off in the kiddie pool. Fun with family is always the best way to celebrate. :)
If it's as hot where you live as it has been here, why not cool off with a bowl of creamy peach ice cream? Tempting, isn't it? Made with fresh peaches, this ice cream tastes like summer. Creamy, fresh, and sweet, it's pretty much irresistible. Be sure to try some soft-serve style straight from the ice cream maker. You might have trouble stopping at just one or two ... [Continue Reading]
Wait, didn't I just post a recipe for blackberry crumb bars? Aren't crumb bars and pie bars basically the same thing? Yes, actually, they are. But I made both recipes within days of each other and both are totally worthy of sharing here. If you asked me to choose which dessert bar I liked better, I couldn't. Each is equally irresistible and easy to make. The main difference is that the fruit filling in these peach pie bars has eggs and Greek yogurt mixed in, which creates a creamy, fruity filling. Both recipes are completely adaptable to whichever fruits you're craving at the moment.
I have been eying this recipe for a long, long time. Pie bars are great because, well, they are pie in a ... [Continue Reading]
I just can't get enough of the fresh summer fruits that are available right now. Blueberries, strawberries, and peaches are my three absolute favorites, but raspberries and blackberries are also high up there on my list. Most of the time I enjoy fresh fruit on my morning bowl of oatmeal or cereal, as a side with my lunch, or sometimes as a topping for Greek yogurt.
Other times, though, I take advantage of sweet summer fruits by turning them into dessert. It's hard to beat a fresh fruit crisp, cobbler, or pie topped with a little vanilla ice cream.
If you took a crisp and crossed it with a pie, you would get these crumb bars. One dough makes both the bottom crust and crumb topping, ... [Continue Reading]