Monday, September 30, 2013

The Scoop #22


Maple-pumpkin stack cake. Fall is most certainly here.

I love biscuits, and this recipe is for drop biscuits, which makes them totally acceptable if you're uber lazy like me.

Croatia is on my list of places to go, and this is a recipe for Croatian sweet walnut chocolate bread, which will satisfy my desire to travel to Croatia....for now at least.

Now that fall is here, I can proclaim my love of MAPLE (except don't you tap syrup in the spring? whatever about formalities.....). This maple sugar cake might just be the first maple thing that I bake!

Homemade scented room diffusers.  I just bought a diffuser, but that was before I knew you could make them! Way cheaper!

Y'all have probably guessed that I love my doggies dearly! Well, here is a list of DIYs for you fellow dog lovers out there to make for your pups! I kind of want to become crafty and make them all. And if you aren't a dog lover, well shame on you...just kidding, well sort of, just look at the pictures anyways for some cuteness!

HOW CUTE ARE THESE SLICE OF PIE COOKIES?

More flavors of fall. Pumpkin spice galette.

I will try to get these posts back on schedule, but no guarantees as usual! Believe me, I would rather be baking and blogging, but got to do what I have go to do.

What link love do you want to share?


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Lemon Meringue No Bake Cheesecake


I believe graham crackers make most desserts better. Not sure why this is, but they do, for all intents and purposes I present the following recipe and my obsession with putting graham crackers in milkshakes, just try it. That's whats up.


Anyhoo, this lemon meringue no bake cheesecake parfait-ish thing is all kinds of tasty, and guess what's in it? GRAHAM CRACKERS. Well there's way more than just graham crackers, this does have kind of a long name.... In my brain, at least, I like to think I tend towards a simple aesthetic when it comes to baking, but you may have your own opinions based on what I have posted. This dessert does not come across as aesthetically simple, but it's a cinch to whip together! Back to the aesthetic, scrolling through pinterest I see all of these concoctions that have so much crammed into them. And I kind of roll my eyes, say what you will, but that's what I do. No, I don't want oven fried chicken with salted caramel glaze and a side of chocolate pasta cooked in pickle juice (I have not actually seen a recipe for this, it's my own hyperbole for emphasis)! I just want some plain ol' fried chicken and 'taters! Enough of my "critiques" and on with the recipe! Although the name may be long, I will stand behind this over-crammed dessert! This is delicious and you should make it (how pathetic of a pitch was that).

Lemon Meringue No Bake Cheesecake 
Ingredients: 
Graham Cracker Crust:
Four graham cracker sheets, crushed in food processor
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Marshmallow Cheesecake:
1/2 Cup whipped cream cheese
1/2 Cup marshmallow fluff
1/3 Cup sweetened condensed milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Lemon Curd
Whipped Cream
Extra Graham Cracker Crumbs for topping

Directions:
1. To prepare graham cracker crust, stir together graham cracker crumbs and melted butter, until thoroughly combined. Divide crust evenly between serving vessels (I made five of the little jars seen above), and press the crust into the bottom of vessel (talk about weird word for food, but couldn't think of anything else) with a spoon or ice cream scoop. Place prepared crusts in refrigerator while preparing cheesecake.
2. In a medium bowl, stir together whipped cream cheese, marshmallow fluff, sweetened condensed milk and vanilla. This can be done with an electric mixer, or I chose to stir by hand and run my immersion blender through it.
3. Remove crusts from refrigerator. Spoon 1 to 2 teaspoons of cheesecake into each vessel, spreading with a spoon. Then spoon 1 to 2 teaspoons lemon curd on top of cheesecake. Spoon another 1 to 2 teaspoons of cheesecake over lemon curd. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hour before serving. Immediately before serving top with whipped cream and additional graham cracker crumbs.

Notes: 
I used cold cream cheese with no problem, but the original recipe calls for room temperature.
I enjoyed these most after they sat in the fridge for one day.
I wish I had divided the graham cracker crust into two layers, so there would be crunch throughout, but that is my personal preference.
I topped mine with whipped cream, but I originally wanted to top these with a toasted marshmallow to mimic the meringue, but I don't have a torch, so I wasn't able to do so. Let me know how it goes if you try it that way!

Recipe Adapted/Inspired by How Sweet Eats
Print Recipe Here

Saturday, September 14, 2013

The Scoop # 21

Howdy.
I am slowly finding myself in better spirits than my last Scoop! Yay! I still have not been able to bake and I am kind of going through baking withdrawal, I will take some intravenous butter and sugar please. I am hoping to find myself in the kitchen tonight, I had hope the same for last night, but I ended up in the kitchen for ice cream, not baking. I am determined to bake! So watch out! Anyhoo, here are some of my favorite links of late. I would love to share all that I pin, but I can't so if you are hungry for more check out my overloaded Pinterest boards.

Are these for real? Bourbon maple bacon pecan cookies? YES, THEY ARE REAL.

I go through phases of liking cake and not liking cake, not really sure where I fall now, but I totally want to make this cake with brown butter and cookie dough frosting!

So, here is another cake, coconut and almond that is. I guess I have my answer about what "cake phase" I am in. Anyhoo, check out her blog! She is so sweet! Sweet as pie, err, I mean cake!!

I made an entire Pinterest board dedicated to donuts. Your welcome. And one just for waffles. I am not obsessed with either, promise. And if you are wondering why all of my food boards start with "A....", it is so that they are right at the top when I am pinning because I'm too lazy to scroll and look for my food boards.

I have not eaten much watermelon this summer, but I hope to seek out a good late summer one to make these 4 ingredient popsicles!

Guess this scoop is all about cake today. This one is chocolate chip, which has been on my baking list for ages.

No bake Elvis bars. They're raw and have bananas and coconut oil, therefore I deem them healthy. And calories don't count.

Pumpkin chocolate chip cookies made with whole grains, which make these healthy and pumpkin totally counts as a vegetable. Eat up. And the nice blogger behind this recipe mentioned me on her site this week! AHHHHH! I kind of freaked because I have been reading her blog for a long long time and have always looked up to her, so for her to mention me was like meeting a celebrity, minus the autograph, but I totally did a happy dance!

What links are you loving?


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Chocolate and Strawberry Cheesecake Pie


A few months ago Bridget at Bake at 350 had Desserts for Dudes Month! Now I am not a dude, but I am still all over these desserts! She posted a beautiful blueberry cheesecake pie, how genius is that? Her's has a gingersnap crust, but I don't like ginger very much so I got to thinking and remembered that I had some Famous Chocolate Wafer cookies buried deep in my pantry!


Then my synapses started firing away and I realized it is strawberry season (at least it was when I made this pie)! Hmmm....chocolate and strawberries is a most delicious combination! It was decided, I would make a chocolate and strawberry cheesecake pie!


I dug through my pantry and found the wafer cookies, and then I found the strawberries in my fridge. These were the strawberries I had recently picked, but they got squished and I was only about to salvage about 1/2 cup worth! So, out I went to get strawberries from the farm stand! Let's just say the farm stand robbed me! I bought three quarts because I wanted to be able to freeze some for smoothies, well those three quarts of "okay" berries cost me 18 dollars! EIGHTEEN! That's crazy! Not that I am still bitter and bothered by it or anything. I'll drown my anger with some of this pie, oh wait there is none left for me to eat. I will just have to go "pantry diving" (just came up with that one and it is completely accurate with regards to the state of my pantry) for something sweet! In the meantime here is the recipe so you can enjoy this "berry delicious pie" :).


Chocolate and Strawberry Cheesecake Pie 
Ingredients:
Crust:
1 and 1/2 Cups crushed chocolate wafers
2 Tablespoons sugar
1/2 Cup (1 stick) butter, salted and melted

Filling:
8 oz. whipped cream cheese, room temperature
1/3 Cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 Eggs

Topping:
2 Cups fresh strawberries
1/2 Cup water
1/3 Cup sugar
1 and 1/2 Tablespoons cornstarch mixed with 2 Tablespoons of water

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. For crust: In the bowl of a food processor, process the chocolate wafers until crumbly. Add melted butter and sugar, process until combined. Press crust into into pie plate and bake for 8 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely on wire rack.
3. For filling: beat together cream cheese and sugar until thoroughly combined. Add in eggs and vanilla, beating until combined. Pour filling into cooled crust. Bake for 25 minutes or until just set. Cool completely on a wire rack.
4. Meanwhile, for topping: in a saucepan combine strawberries, water and sugar. Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
5. Stir in cornstarch/water mixture. Increase heat, and bring to a boil again. Boil for a minute, stirring constantly. Remove saucepan from the heat, and let cool. Spoon thickened strawberry mixture over cheesecake.
6. Chill pie for at least 1 hour before serving. Store in the refrigerator.

Recipe Adapted from Bake at 350
Print Recipe Here





Saturday, September 7, 2013

The Scoop #20


You may have noticed that my blogging, and various social media postings have been quite spotty, here and there, and well sometimes all over the place! 

Let's just say, my life has felt like it has been turned upside down in the past two weeks, and I feel as though I have neglected you. I am sorry, not a day has gone by that I have not thought about baking or blogging, and wanting to do so, but I have not been able to for various reasons. There were also the the times I really just wanted to sit down and write all that I was (and still am) thinking about and going through, but at those times I was an emotional wreck. And I wasn't ready to spill my guts, but here is a brief overview of what I was thinking about among other things. 

Remember awhile back there was talk about how Pinterest and blogs were negatively impacting people because these sources seemed to only put forth examples of perfection; home cooked meals every night, laundry always folded and clutter-free homes. From this people felt like they had failed because their life looked nothing like the perfection they were seeing. Well, it is not all sunshine and rainbows, things may appear all dandy, but I think it so easy to hide your struggles from your blog because theres no face-to-face interaction where you would be able to see the raw emotion on a persons face. It is also easy to hide such from blogs because you are the author and editor of the blog, it is you that decides what you want to put on there or what not put to on there. Let's be honest, I don't think any one would want to put up pictures of dirty dishes, clutter or the tear filled tissues, but I think that sometimes that is what people need to see. It makes it more real than these stylized and photoshopped pictures of perfection. By making your life seem perfect all the time, I think you are not only cheating your readers, but also yourself because you are putting forth only part of your story. And let me finish preachin' with this, I don't want to cheat you and that is why I sat down and decided to write this post. I am also being sort of selfish in writing this because I am writing this partly for myself, I needed an outlet for all the emotions I am feeling right now. I could not just hold them in, I had to get them out. I want to thank you for reading, and for being there and sticking with me. Life is rough and in times like these you need evaluate your situation and sometimes be selfish, but in a healthy way so that you can take care of yourself. I love this blog, and yes it is part of me, but of late I have been trying to take care of my physical self because I have been a mess. From there I can then better myself and then work to better my blog. Peace and love my friends. 

The above, is the scoop on my life, but I still want to give you "the scoop" of what I am loving on the interwebs of late. And end on a bit of a lighter note. So, here goes....

I am obsessed as ever with waffles.

Recently, Pinterest has exploded with pumpkin recipes. I love baking with pumpkin, but people lets slow down just a lil' because summer isn't over just yet! (Yes, I have been pinning said recipes, but have yet to bust open a can of pumpkin!)

What could be wrong with the words 'triple chocolate', 'surprise' and 'cupcake' in the same phrase?

Hand-pies are adorable.

Nutella donuts? And they're baked?! YES.

Bars, bars, bars. Bars with almonds and strawberries, yeah! Cake bars, bars, bars I might add!

I never ended up going peach picking, sad face. Well, I can wallow in my peach picking withdrawal by making this peach ice cream!

And I am in denial that it is already September.

What are you loving lately? Share share share! I don't know why I keep saying things in threes....other than I kind of am trying to be sing-songy.






Sunday, September 1, 2013

Cherry and Nectarine "Crisp"



I say "crisp" because I don't know what this really is. It started out as a galette, but did not end up as a galette. I went to roll out the galette dough, and lets just say that the dough was not of a sufficient quantity. I am not really sure what I did wrong, but SOMETHING happened. So, I just pressed the dough into the bottom of a pie plate, put the fruit on top and then decided it needed a crisp-like topping. And that my friends is how the "crisp" came to be (and if I were for some reason reading this to you out loud I would most definitely be using air quotes!). Just a riveting story now isn't it?


When I make this again, I will forgo making the "under dough" because it was not that noticeable and it just seemed superfluous. Therefore I will not be including it in the recipe, but if you REALLY need to have it feel free to email me and I can search for the scrap of paper on which I wrote the recipe. Do you write your recipes on scraps of paper or are you more high tech and save them on your computer? Sometimes I write them out, but then there are those times I get really lazy and just pin them. I really need to get into typing them up, but there is just something so comforting about handwriting things. 

It took me forever to post this recipe because of my stupid infatuation with handwriting things. I wrote down the recipe on a scrap of paper, and lost it and literally just found it this morning! So voila here you go!  

Also I hate these pictures. My family, specifically Mama Bakelette, devoured this concoction before I photographed it. This is also the reason for the strange shape that has been eaten away, it was spoonful here and there, you do that too right? Also the lighting is terrible. Sorry the pictures are not very appetizing, but I hope the fact that it was devoured before I could do so vouches for its deliciousness! I leave you with this photo to try and tempt your palette. 

Cherry and Nectarine "Crisp"

Ingredients:
Fruit Filling:
2 Cups cherries, chopped and pitted
3 Nectarines, roughly chopped
1 Tablespoon flour
1 Tablespoon raw sugar

Crisp Topping:
1/3 Cup all-purpose flour
1/4 Cup old-fashioned oats
1/2 Cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 Cup unsalted butter, room temperature

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray or butter a pie dish. Prepare fruit. Combine cherries, nectarines, flour and sugar in a medium bowl, stir together. Let fruit mixture sit for 15 to 30 minutes.

2. Meanwhile prepare crisp topping by combining flour, oats, brown sugar and butter in a small bowl. Work the butter into the mixture with your fingers until it is thoroughly incorporated and looks like wet sand. 

3. Pour fruit into prepared pie dish. Cover with crisp topping. Bake until golden brown and filling is bubbling, 20 to 25 minutes  (longer for crispier topping).

Recipe by Bakelette