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Archive for the ‘dessert’ Category

Peanut butter. Bacon. Cookies.

Oh. My. God.

Don’t ask questions.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Make sure you have some peanut butter. About a cup. Chunky or smooth – doesn’t matter.

Fry up about 6-7 pieces of bacon until crisp, then dice it up.

Mix 1/2 cup of white and a 1/2 cup of brown sugar with the peanut butter until combined. Add an egg and a teaspoon of baking soda. Fold in the bacon.

No questions. Just do it.

Roll into balls and place on a baking sheet. (I put parchment paper down first, but that’s just me.) Use a fork to make a criss-cross pattern in the cookie. Or don’t. It’s not important right now.

Bake for 10 minutes. Take out of the oven and cool on baking sheet.

Then enjoy the most delicious, hot affair between peanut butter and bacon ever imagined.

And this wonderful recipe? I got it here: Joy the Baker. Go there. Check out her blog. You’ll thank me. And her!

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Blackberry Yogurt Tart

This is another recipe from 101 Cookbooks. I’ll just tell you now that I’m obsessed with her recipes and will be using them frequently.

I saw this yogurt tart and thought that it would make a healthy-ish dessert. “Ish” is important here as the crust uses a healthy amount of butter. There is an option to use olive oil, which I may try next time. The butter crust was very good, though very rich.

Other modifications I made were to swap the natural cane sugar with regular sugar, omit the sesame oil (didn’t have any),  and use pureed blackberries instead of ginger.

The crust was rich and crunchy and the yogurt filling was still nicely tart. The maple syrup added sweetness without becoming too sweet, and the blackberries made it a nice purplish color. I think this recipe can swing easily from sweet to savory, depending on your cravings.

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Mixed Berry Lemon Bars

Mixed  Berry BarI love lemon bars. Now that warm weather is here, it seemed like a good time to make a batch. I’ve posted about regular lemon bars, as well as lime bars, on this blog. These great recipes come from the always delicious Baking Bites blog. Recently, I came across yet another great incarnation of the lemon bar: strawberry lemonade bars. I followed the recipe exactly, except in two places – one I feel is an important change, and one not so much.

The not-so-important change is that I substituted the strawberry puree for a mixed berry puree. This is a great recipe to experiment with. Love raspberries? Use a raspberry-only puree. More of a blackberry person? Use blackberries instead. Whichever summer fruit seems right. (Papaya or mango would also be an exciting substitution.)

The important change: I used an 8×8 pan instead of the suggested 9×13. The 8×8 pan allows for a good sized bar with a thick crust and a good amount of fruit to bite into. As with my experience with the pumpkin pie bars, I think the 9×13 just doesn’t allow for a well-formed bar.

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Pumpkin Pie Bars

I’ve never made pumpkin pie before, what with my fear of pie crust and because someone has always made pumpkin pie for me. I decided to make some for an election night party Cauli and I went to. This recipe calls for a shortbread-type crust, rather than a typical pie crust (hence “pumpkin bars” not “pumpkin pie”).

pumpkin-pie

I got both the recipes from a great baking blog, Baking Bites. I used her recipe for the crust from this post (note, I did not use the pie recipe from this post, just the crust) and the recipe for the pie from this post.

The results were good – buttery shortbread crust that didn’t get soggy from the pumpkin pie (something I notice happens with pumpkin pie in a regular pie crust) and well-spiced pie filling.

The only drawback was how little pie filling there was. If you look at the picture, you can see that there is almost an even ratio of pie filling to crust. This certainly doesn’t make the bars bad (pie and shortbread, come on!), but I would have preferred a larger pie filling to crust ratio. I think next time I will halve the crust recipe and use an 8 inch square pan, keeping the pie recipe as is.

Regardless, this was fun and easy to make!

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Key Lime Pie

Not too long ago, I was craving key lime pie. I decided to look up the recipe and found that it is incredibly simple to make, using just four ingredients: graham cracker crust, lime juice, egg yolks, and sweetened condensed milk. So when my mother and grandmother-in-law came over for dinner a few weeks go, I decided to make some key lime pie.

I found the recipe at Baking Bites, a great reference for all things sweet. I followed her directions completely and was rewarded with a very fresh tasting, custardy pie. There are some things that I would do different next time. The most important being that I would make the graham cracker crust. The pie was so fresh tasting, and jarred with the processed/packaged/preservative taste of the store bought crust. I would also zest the limes and add that to the pie – not only adding to the lime flavor but giving it a nice green-flecked look.

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Sour Cream Lime Squares

Last summer, I made lemon shortbread bars and I was surprised and happy with how they turned out: thick, sweet, and tart. This summer, I decided to try them with lime.

They came out a bit goopier than last year as I used a smaller pan and didn’t cook them quite long enough. Regardless, they firmed up a bit in the fridge and have a wonderful sweet, limey taste. If you have limes, this is a nice substitue to lemon bars.

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Lemon Squares

Lemon squares are not made, as Cauli likes to put it, “by combining lemons and squares.” They are a bit more complicated than that, but not by much.

I was first introduced to lemon squares by Cauli’s mom. I’d never had them before and was hesitant to try (I have my favorite desserts, and I’m always shy about trying new ones, which is silly because I generally always like them). But I did and they were incredible.

lemonsquares.jpg

 I found the recipe at Baking Bites– a great blog for a variety of baked goods. The shortbread crust was easy to make – just butter, flour, sugar, and lemon zest, and a whirl in the food processor. I adjusted this part a bit by adding roughly chopped pistachios. I think this has given the crust a fuller taste, which contrasts well with the lemony filling.

The squares came out really well, and I’d like to make them again, except with lime zest and lime juice. I think it would be an interesting and tasty alternative.

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