All posts in category Desserts

Tuesdays with Dorie: Strawberry Shortcakes, Franco-American Style

Strawberry Shortcake|Frankly Entertaining

I was so excited for this week’s recipe because it gave me a chance to make something that completely intimidated me. Lady Fingers seem so delicate and seem like something that would take way more work than I’d be willing to put in, but I was wrong. This recipe actually came together fairly simply. Although the lady fingers take a few bowls to put together, they’re not hard, and they’re not especially time consuming. There was more than enough batter to make the six servings, plus I made about 8 other traditionally shaped cookies.

I was a little skeptical after the cookies baked because they weren’t as sweet as I thought I’d like, but when I added the strawberries and whipped cream, the whole thing was amazing! My kids have been snacking on the leftover cookies, but I think I prefer the whole dessert to just the cookies!

Strawberry Shortcake

I went the simple route and just made these with strawberries and sugar instead of the roasted strawberries. I think this would also be amazing with blueberries, or some strawberry with rhubarb. I think a DIY shortcake table would be the perfect thing for a 4th of July (or Canada Day) celebration! If you had various fillings on the table it would be a perfect color palette. hmm…Putting my thinking cap on!

Strawberry Shortcake|Frankly Entertaining

The Tuesdays with Dorie participants don’t publish the recipes, but you can get your own copy of Baking Chez Moi , by Dorie Greenspan, and join us! Feel free to follow along with everyone else here.

Tuesdays With Dorie: Chocolate-Cherry Brownies

TWD: Chocolate Cherry Brownies | Frankly Entertaining

I’d been seeing people’s sneak peeks of their brownies all week, and so I was really excited for this recipe. I love a good brownie, and this recipe makes my favorite kind: dense, chewy and in no need of frosting. I’ve never been a huge fan of cake brownies (with the exception of the mint chocolate brownies that my nan made). I never use a hand mixer when I make brownies I because don’t want to add any more air to the batter than is absolutely necessary!

Dorie’s brownies are probably the densest I’ve ever eaten, to the point where I wondered if they were baked all the way through (29 minutes didn’t seem long enough for an 8 x 8 pan). I actually had fresh cherries on hand, but I followed the recipe and cooked the fried cherries in red wine. (side note: I can’t buy wine in the main part of the grocery store here in town, so I have to go to the separate part of the store to purchase it separately and then walk around the grocery store with a brown paper sack. I was so paranoid that I was going to run into someone I know who might think that it was a little too early, and I’m a little too mormon, for that kind of purchase!) Anyway, I’m glad I followed the recipe, because the cherries are amazing! If I had some whipped cream it would almost be like a delectable black forest bite!

Chocolate-Cherry Brownies

The other amazing thing about this recipe: they’re probably the least time consuming brownies that I’ve made from scratch (don’t judge, I sometimes use a mix!). These came together amazingly fast, and to shave off some time I melted the butter and chocolate in the microwave! I basically had the entire batter put together in the time it took to cook off two Tablespoons of wine! This is definitely a recipe that I recommend.

The Tuesdays with Dorie participants don’t publish the recipes, but you can get your own copy of Baking Chez Moi. Feel free to follow along with everyone else here.

Tuesdays With Dorie: Limoncello Cupcakes

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Limoncello Cupcakes

I’m trying my best to get back on the Tuesdays with Dorie  bandwagon, and at some point I may actually start posting these on time (unless I continue to be foiled by my throttled internet! That’s right, bandwith on your home internet is not unlimited in Alaska. It’s what my kids ask for almost every day!) What do you do with a recipe when you don’t use the main ingredient? Improvise of course! Since I don’t drink, I knew I wouldn’t be dousing my cupcakes with lemon liqueur, I decided I would just go with a lemon simple syrup. It was the right consistency and the right flavor, so I don’t think I really missed too much.

Limoncello Cupcakes

I was a little worried about adding the cardamom, but the flavor was really subtle, and all the kids loved the cupcakes. Instead of using orange marmalade for the filling I used some Italian mandarin cream that I’ve had in the pantry waiting for a special occasion. It may not have been the best choice. The flavor was amazing, but the texture was a little off after it was baked.

Limoncello Cupcakes

All in all, I was very happy with these cupcakes. The texture with the glaze was perfect, and I loved the flavor. Another plus is that these are simple to make. No muss, no fuss, and everyone is happy that there’s dessert!

Alaska

 

In other news, it’s April 14th, and it’s snowing! For the most part, the weather since I’ve been in Alaska has been amazing. It’s not super cold, and the air is always fresh. Sometimes though, you look at pictures of friends swimming outside back in Texas, and you realize just how far away you are!

The Tuesdays with Dorie participants don’t publish the recipes, but you can get your own copy of Baking Chez Moi. Feel free to follow along with everyone else here.

A Little Pie Love

Love Pie

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! For the first time since we’ve had kids, we’re going out for a Valentine’s Date! I’m excited at the prospect of dressing up for a fun dinner out, and I’m really excited about not having to plan anything at at all. We don’t do Valentine’s Day gifts, so this is just a fun relaxing day! If you’re looking for an easy way to celebrate all the love, why not try a pie topped with pastry hearts? I made this as a fun dessert for the kids. I just used store bought crust and canned pie filling, so the whole thing took all of five minutes to put together, but it makes the day a little more special.

If you decide to try this, make sure you cover the crust with foil, because all those edges can brown pretty quickly!

Love Pie

Caramel Crab Apples

caramel crab apple

I feel like I’ve been in hiding lately. In south Texas we’re in the middle of cedar season, and if you suffer from cedar allergies you are hating life right now. I never had an allergy until a few years ago, and I’m not enjoying it now. Cedar season runs from about Thanksgiving to Valentine’s Day, so I still have about a month left, and I’m just keeping my fingers crossed that the numbers go down from yesterday’s high of 34,420!

caramel crab apple

On a positive note, my husband came home from the grocery store the other day with crab apples! These apples are the cutest things, and as soon as I saw them I knew they’d be perfect for caramel apples. My kids love sweet treats, but a lot of times something like a caramel apple will only get half eaten because it’s too much. The crab apple is the perfect size for little people. Everyone finished their entire dessert, and they still wanted more, which is exactly how I think a dessert should be!

caramel crab apple

You can now buy caramel beads in the baking aisle so that you don’t have to unwrap all those squares of caramel. I just followed the directions on the package, but I cut it in half since I only had tiny apples. It’s basically a cup of caramels and a tablespoon of water over low heat. If I had it to do over again, I’d spray the wax paper with cooking spray, because a couple of the apples got little bits of paper stuck on them and it was kind of tedious to remove!

I think these would be perfect dipped in red sprinkles for Valentine’s day. It might be just the thing to help me celebrate the end of cedar season!

Galette des Rois 2014

Gallette Des Rois

Today is Epiphany, and if you know me at all, you that means it’s time for the galette des rois. I made two of these last night, and I think I’m going to make a couple more today. I forgot to buy the crown when I was out on Saturday night, and the favor this year is a Lego mini figure, but none of that matters, because the cake is so delicious! I think I’m starting the healthy eating plan tomorrow, because this is definitely decadent! If you want my full on recipe for the gallette click here. This year I tried it with King Arthur Flour Almond Schmear . The schmear may seem kind of pricey, but it goes a long way. I only went through half the can for the two cakes that I made yesterday. The almond recipe isn’t difficult, but this is basically almond filling in a can, which means you can have this dessert finished in 25 minutes! This is an item that everyone orders from the patisserie in France. I don’t know anyone who made it themselves, but don’t be intimidated. The recipe is easy and oh so worth it! You can eat this warm out of the oven, but it tastes perfect at room temperature. If you make this for dessert tonight you will be very popular at your house … trust me! This is your chance to be an authentic French pastry chef for a day!

I spiced things up today by making this cake a rectangle instead of a circle. That’s right, I’m walking on the wild side, or as the in France, “Je prends les chemins de traverse.”

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p.s. Yesterday I used Trader Joe’s puff pastry, which comes rolled. I love it so much more than the pastry that is folded in thirds. Today I’m using Dufour, which is from France.

p.p.s There’s quite the online debate about what constitutes the proper translation for walking on the wild side. Who knew?!

Sweet Cream Ice Cream and a Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss Giveaway

Hot Chocolate Ice Cream Float | Frankly Entertaining

So, it’s a brand new year, which means we should have a treat and a giveaway … right?! Since it’s the third I assume most people are off their diets and ready for a treat to warm them up in these frigid temperatures. I know some of you are probably thinking that I don’t know frigid temperatures because I live in Texas, but it was pretty cold here this morning, and having grown up in Canada, I know a thing or two about cold! (p.s. If you still look stylish and your hair isn’t a static-y mess, then you’re not really cold!)

Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss Sweet Cream Ice Cream

Today is a combo recipe. The first part is brought to you by the awesome peeps over at Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss, and the second part comes by way of an old friend who told me all about hot chocolate floats many moons ago!

First up the ice cream. I know ice cream doesn’t really go with today’s weather, but just stay with me for a minute. Last year for Christmas we got an amazing gelato maker for a gift, and we’ve been experimenting with all the wonderful flavors. After I was approached by the people at Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss, I knew I wanted to make ice cream with their product. I use flavored coffee creamer as a substitute for whole milk in a lot of baking recipes when I want to change it up a bit. I knew I was going to use the Sweet Cream flavor because I wanted something with a delicate flavor so that the texture really stands out.

digital thermometerA thermometer makes this a lot easier!

The ice cream was amazing on it’s own. It was super smooth and the flavor was perfect. For the first round, kids had ice cream topped with a little hot fudge sauce. Then we moved on to the grand finale, which was the hot chocolate float.

The idea is the same as a regular soda float, except you add ice cream to hot chocolate. This is delicious no matter what, but if you have kids it’s extra perfect because the ice cream does double duty as a flavor and as a coolant for the hot chocolate. If you haven’t tried this before, you need to try it. If you like hot chocolate at all, you’re going to love this. I’ve also seen other people use this idea with warm apple cider, but given a choice, I go with chocolate almost every time!

Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss GiveawayThe Prize Package

Now for the giveaway. The people at Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss are giving one lucky reader the same gift pack they sent me! There is an awesome travel mug, an amazing candle, some biscotti and a coupon for you to try Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss for yourself. Follow the rafflecopter instructions at the bottom of the post. Contest will close next Tuesday. Good luck everyone!

hot chocolate

Sweet Cream Ice Cream

adapted from The Ciao Bella Book of Gelato and Sorbetto

Ingredients:

  • 1 16oz container Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss, Sweet Cream flavor
  • 1 c. heavy cream
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2/3 c. sugar

Instructions:

  1. In a heavy sauce pan combine the creamer and the heavy cream, over medium heat until the mixtures reaches 170º. Stir constantly so the mixture doesn’t burn on the bottom.
  2. While the cream is coming to temperature, whisk the 4 eggs and the sugar in a separate bowl.
  3. Take a little bit of the hot cream and pour it into the egg and whisk, whisk, whisk! Add the remainder of the cream mixture to the egg mixture, stir and then pour it back into the pot and put it back on the stove.
  4. This time, heat the mixture to 185º, and don’t let it boil. Again, you need to stir the entire time.
  5. The mixture will turn into a custard and get thick (it’ll cover the back of a wooden spoon).
  6. When the custard has reached 185º, pour it through a fine mesh strainer into a lean bowl.
  7. Cool the mixture in the fridge, and then make ice cream in your ice cram maker.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

[easyrecipe n="0"]

Eggnog Mini Cheesecakes with a Gingersnap Crust

eggnog cheesecake

When I was at the grocery store last week, I spied the first eggnog of the season. It still seems a little early to me, but since everyone now also has out all their Christmas decorations, it must be time to begin! I’ve been bouncing different cheesecake ideas in my head, and this was the idea my husband liked the most. The great thing about a cheesecake is that it’s basically a blank canvas, and you can add whatever flavor you like. Right now I have a list of about 10 that I want to experiment with. I’m pretty sure I won’t get them all done any time soon!

I love the idea of a slightly spiced cheesecake. Eggnog is something most people love or hate, but I think that has a lot to do with texture. If you’re not into drinking heavy cream, you’re not going to like it, no matter the flavor. Cheesecake is a pretty heavy dessert, so everything matches perfectly. I used a store bought ginger snap cookie for the crust. Because I made cupcake sized cheesecakes, I had to use a biscuit cutter to size the cookies to fit in the pan. Next time I might try a snickerdoodle, just because they’re softer to start. The gingersnaps softened up with the cake, but they were a pain to cut. I had to use my rolling pin to hammer the biscuit cutter!

 

Eggnog Mini Cheesecakes with a Gingersnap Crust

Ingredients:

  • 3 x 8oz cream cheese
  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 3/4 c. eggnog
  • 24 gingersnaps

Instructions:

  1. Fill two cupcake tins with liners and place a cookie in each opening. You may have to cut down cookies to size using a small biscuit cutter.
  2. Mix cream cheese and sugar until smooth.
  3. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing after each egg.
  4. Add vanilla and eggnog and mix until smooth.
  5. Fill each cupcake opening 3/4 full
  6. Place in a 425º oven for 5 minutes, and then lower the heat to 250º and continue baking for 15 more minutes
  7. When the baking time is finished, turn off the oven and open the oven door, and leave the cheesecakes in the oven for an hour.
  8. Place the cheesecakes to chill in the fridge. Serve with whipped cream and grated nutmeg

 

sarahsig

 

 
[easyrecipe n="1"]

Pumpkin Nanaimo Bars

Pumpkin Nanaimo Bars | Frankly Entertainingimage

I’ve written about Nanaimo Bars before, but it’s been a while, and I thought I could tweak the recipe a little for the holiday season. Am I the only one who has trouble believing that it’s already November?

So, now that the holidays are upon us, it’s time to start thinking about Thanksgiving and Christmas recipes. I decided to go with a pumpkin Nanaimo bar because I had never seen one before, and I love to find uses for the instant pumpkin pudding that’s available this time of year. Pumpkin flavor fits this dessert perfectly. If you haven’t tried the original recipe for some crazy reason, make sure to try this one!

Just a word of warning about the pudding powder, here in San Antonio you can only buy it at WalMart. I’m not sure if that’s the same everywhere though. Do me a favor, if you live somewhere else, let me know if you see the Jello brand pumpkin pudding at any other grocery store. Another heads up, pumpkin pudding is only available from October until December.

If you looked at the picture and thought how amazing my skills have gotten recently, don’t be too jealous, Candice and I had another food photo shoot last week. Basically I made a bunch of food and held the reflector while she made everything look amazing! I’m hoping she does a couple of tutorials with this, because she had some pretty genius ideas for putting it together.

I have two more shots from her that I’ll post over the next couple of weeks. Trust me, you’re going to want to come back and see these pictures, and try the recipes!

Nanaimo Bars

Ingredients:

Bottom Layer

  • 1/2 c. butter
  • 1/4 c. sugar
  • 1/3 c. cocoa
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 3/4 c. graham cracker crumbs
  • 3/4 c. coconut

Frosting Layer

  • 1/2 c. butter, softened
  • 3 Tbsp. milk
  • 3 Tbsp. instant pumpkin pudding mix powder
  • 2 1/4 c. icing sugar

Top Layer

  • 1 1/4 c. chocolate chips
  • 1/4 c. butter

Instructions:

  1. Melt the butter, sugar and cocoa in a heavy saucepan.
  2. Add the egg. Stir to cook and thicken. Remove the pan from heat.
  3. Stir in crumbs and coconut and press into a 9×9 ungreased pan.
  4. In a separate bowl, beat together milk, custard powder and powdered sugar until light and creamy.
  5. Spread over graham crumb layer.
  6. Place pan in freezer while making the top layer.
  7. Melt chocolate chips and butter together over low heat, or in the microwave. Cool for about ten minutes.
  8. Pour chocolate over the frosting layer and spread to cover the entire pan.
  9. Chill in refrigerator

 

sarahsig

 
[easyrecipe n="2"]

Citrus Squared Dessert

citrussquared3

So, the question is, how much citrus deliciousness can you handle? Usually I think anything with fruit is an affront to the very idea of dessert, but I have made an exception today. This is the dessert that puts the pound cake and the grapefruit chantilly together. Right now you’re probably thinking, big deal, cake and a frozen cream dessert… yawn! You have to have faith is how amazing this is!

citrussquared

To put this whole thing together, you have your lemon pound cake and your grapefruit chantilly. While the chantilly is in the freezer you melt some butter in your cast iron skillet. Place slices of pound cake into the hot pan and let it get nice and toasty. Ideally it will be warm, buttery and slightly crisp around the edges. Serve it with a scoop of the chantilly. I cannot adequately describe how amazing grilled pound cake is, but I can say that grilled pound cake is made even better paired with grapefruit chantilly.

citrus squared dessert | Frankly Entertaining

Please, please make this and then come back and tell me how much you love it. You can also tell me if you don’t love it, but I’m pretty positive you’re going to love it!

sarahsig

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