America’s Test Kitchen’s Strawberry Shortcakes

I love dessert. In fact it’s one of my favorite things to make and eat and share. There are some desserts that I remember eating as a child and I love remaking them as an adult. Strawberry shortcake is totally one from my childhood. I’ve tried a few different recipes trying to recreate the one I remember as a child. I found this recipe and it took me back! We had some fresh strawberries that someone dropped off as a thank you to me. The best kind of gift!! Tasty goodness!

Strawberry Shortcakes | Just Rhonda

Strawberry Shortcakes

6

Recipe from America's Test Kitchen

Ingredients

    Topping:
  • 8 cups fresh strawberries, hulled
  • 6 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • Whipped Cream
  • Biscuits:
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 5 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 8 Tbsp unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces and chilled
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 Tbsp half and half or milk
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten plus 1 large egg white lightly beaten

Instructions

  1. 1. Mix crushed and quartered berries with sugar in medium bowl; set aside while preparing biscuits (or up to 2 hours).
  2. 2. Adjust oven rack to lower middle position; heat oven to 425 degrees. Mix flour, salt, baking powder, and 3 tablespoons sugar in medium bowl. Using large holes of box grater, grate butter into dry ingredients, (see illustration 2). Toss butter with flour to coat. Use pastry cutter to finish cutting butter into flour. Or scoop up coated butter with both hands, then quickly rub butter into dry ingredients with fingertips until most of butter pieces are size of split peas.
  3. 3. Mix beaten egg with half-and-half; pour into flour mixture. Toss with fork until large clumps form. Turn mixture onto floured work surface and lightly knead until it comes together.
  4. 4. Pat dough into 9- by 6-inch rectangle, 3/4 inch thick. Flour 2 3/4-inch biscuit cutter; cut 6 dough rounds. Place 1 inch apart on small baking sheet; brush dough tops with egg white and sprinkle with remaining sugar. (Can be covered and refrigerated up to 2 hours before baking.) Bake until golden brown, 12 to 14 minutes. Place baking sheet on wire rack; cool cakes until warm, about 10 minutes.
  5. 5. Chill nonreactive, deep, 1- to 1 1/2-quart bowl and beaters for a handheld mixer in freezer for at least 20 minutes. Add cream, sugar, and vanilla to chilled bowl; beat on low speed until small bubbles form, about 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium; continue beating until beaters leave a trail, about 30 seconds more. Increase speed to high; continue beating until cream is smooth, thick, and nearly doubled in volume, about 20 seconds for soft peaks or about 30 seconds for stiff peaks. If necessary, finish beating by hand to adjust consistency. (Can be transferred to fine sieve or strainer set over measuring cup and refrigerated up to 8 hours).
  6. 6. Split each cake crosswise; spoon a portion of berries and then a dollop of whipped cream over each cake bottom. Cap with cake top; serve immediately.
https://rhondasteed.com/strawberry-shortcakes

Strawberry Shortcakes | Just Rhonda

Some people like angle food cake, some a sponge cake. I love a biscuit like this one! Tasty!

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Lemon Pound Cake

I love Lemon. I’m totally a big fan. And I love pound cake. So together – heavenly!! I’ve been making this recipe for years! I first found it in the first few years of our marriage and I’ve been making it ever since. It’s just a great all around easy cake. A pound cake is a kind cake that has been around forever! It  is defined as a rich cake containing a pound, or equal weights, of each chief ingredient, typically flour, butter, and sugar. Not all pound cakes nowadays stick to the formula.

Lemon Pound Cake | Just Rhonda

I’ve made this cake so many times as it’s one of my very favorites. It’s lovely all on it’s own. Or it’s lovely in a great trifle. Or it’s great with some fresh fruit and whipped cream on the side. The last time I made it I doubled it and my kids ate a loaf and a half when they first got home from school. And I had to stop them from eating more!

Lemon Pound Cake | Just Rhonda

Lemon Pound Cake

30 minutes

1 minute

2 8-inch loaves

Ingredients

    For the Cake:
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
  • 4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup grated lemon zest (6 to 8 large lemons)
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, divided
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • For the Glaze:
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 2 (8 1/2 by 4 1/4 by 2 1/2-inch) loaf pans. You may also line the bottom with parchment paper, if desired.
  2. Cream the butter and 2 cups granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. With the mixer on medium speed, add the eggs, 1 at a time, and the lemon zest.
  3. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. In another bowl, combine 1/4 cup lemon juice, the buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately to the batter, beginning and ending with the flour. Divide the batter evenly between the pans, smooth the tops, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until a cake tester comes out clean.
  4. Combine 1/2 cup granulated sugar with 1/2 cup lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over low heat until the sugar dissolves. When the cakes are done, allow to cool for 10 minutes. Remove the cakes from the pans and set them on a rack set over a tray or sheet pan; spoon the lemon syrup over them. Allow the cakes to cool completely.
  5. For the glaze, combine the confectioners' sugar and the lemon juice in a bowl, mixing with a wire whisk until smooth. Pour over the tops of the cakes and allow the glaze to drizzle down the sides.

Recipe found at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/lemon-cake-recipe.html?oc=linkback

https://rhondasteed.com/lemon-pound-cake

Lemon Pound Cake | Just Rhonda

The Barefoot Contessa has been one of my favorite recipe sources for a long time! I love love love her stuff! I collect her cookbooks. I’m just missing one!

Lemon Pound Cake | Just Rhonda

If you like lemon at ALL, I promise you’ll love it!

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Citrus PoppySeed Cake

A few weeks ago we celebrated my little sister’s birthday. She passed away in the year 2000 but I like to have a cake and talk about her so that my kids grow up knowing about her and that I miss and love her. This year I made this cake.

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It has three layers of  citrusy poppyseed cake with a lemony filling in the middle.  The recipe comes from the awesome Cake cookbook from Martha Stewart. 


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You pour a thin poppyseed icing on top of the layered cake.

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I added a little lemon zest on top.
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Citrus PoppySeed Cake

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pans
  • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pans
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 7 large eggs, lightly beaten, room temperature Eggs Large White
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk, room temperature Milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lime zest
  • 1/3 cup poppy seeds, plus more for sprinkling

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place two racks in center of oven. Butter three 8-by-2-inch round cake pans; line each with a circle of parchment paper. Butter paper, and dust pans with flour; tap out excess. Set aside.
  2. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium mixing bowl. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter on medium-low speed until lightened, 1 to 2 minutes. Gradually add sugar; beat until color has lightened, 3 to 4 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl once or twice. Drizzle in eggs, a little at a time, beating on medium-low speed after each addition until batter is no longer slick but is smooth and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Stop to scrape down bowl once or twice so batter will combine well. Beat in vanilla on medium-low speed.
  4. Reduce the mixer speed to low. Alternately add reserved flour mixture and milk, a little of each at a time, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Scrape down the bowl once or twice. Beat in lemon zest, orange zest, lime zest, and 1/3 cup poppy seeds.
  5. Divide batter evenly among the prepared pans. Bake 30 minutes, then rotate pans for even browning. Bake until a cake tester inserted into center of cakes comes out clean, 5 to 10 minutes more. Transfer to wire racks to cool, 15 minutes. Turn out cakes, and set on racks, tops up. Cool completely.
  6. Remove parchment from bottom of each layer. Save best-looking layer for the top. Place one layer on the serving platter. Spread 1 1/2 cups cream-cheese frosting over the top. Place second cake layer on top, and spread remaining 1 1/2 cups frosting over top. Place reserved layer on top. Chill cake, loosely covered with plastic wrap, 1 hour.
  7. To serve, stir lemon glaze well, then pour onto center of top layer of cake, letting it run down the sides. Using a single-hole zester, cut long strips of zest from orange and lemon, if desired. Arrange zest in loose spirals on the top of cake, and sprinkle lightly with poppy seeds.
https://rhondasteed.com/citrus-poppyseed-cake

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It was a good Sunday to talk about Kelly and how we find peace and comfort in the Plan of Salvation and eternal families. And we had cake. Win-Win.

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Martha Stewart’s Lemon Curd Mousse Cake

A few weeks ago it was Easter and I love to make desserts. So I found this one on Martha Stewart and thought “crepes” and “lemon curd”… yes! The thing that is great about this one is that it isn’t too sweet. The lemon curd is a little tart and not too sweet. And then having it folded into the unsweetened whipped cream settles down the tartness a bit.

Lemon Crepe Cake | Just Rhonda

It was a total hit. Go look at Martha’s over here. It’s so pretty. I skipped the candied lemons and just went with a dusting of icing sugar.

Lemon Curd Mousse Cake

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk, room temperature
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, melted, plus more, melted, for pan
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream, whipped
  • Candied Meyer Lemons, optional
  • Meyer Lemon Curd Mousse
  • 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin (from one 1/4-ounce envelope)
  • 1 tablespoon cold water
  • 4 large eggs plus 6 large yolks
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons finely grated Meyer lemon zest (from 2 lemons), plus 3/4 cup fresh Meyer lemon juice (from 5 to 6 lemons)
  • 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup heavy cream, whipped

Instructions

    Meyer Lemon Curd Mousse
  1. Sprinkle gelatin over water; let stand until softened, about 5 minutes.
  2. Whisk together eggs and yolks in a heavy small saucepan. Whisk in sugar, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Cook, whisking constantly, over medium-low heat, until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. Remove pan from heat; add gelatin, stirring constantly, until gelatin dissolves and mixture is slightly cool. Add butter, a few pieces at a time, stirring after each addition, until smooth.
  4. Strain through a fine sieve into a bowl, pressing with a rubber spatula to remove as much curd as possible; discard any undissolved bits of gelatin and egg. Press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto surface of curd to prevent a skin from forming, and refrigerate until set, at least 2 hours or overnight. Stir curd, and gently fold in whipped cream. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Stir before using.
  5. For the Crepes
  6. Whisk together flour, sugar, and salt. Whisk together milk, eggs, and vanilla. Gradually pour milk mixture into flour mixture, whisking until smooth. Whisk in butter. Pour through a fine sieve into an airtight container; discard lumps. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.
  7. Lightly coat a 6-inch crepe pan or nonstick skillet with butter. Heat over medium heat until just starting to smoke. Remove from heat; pour about 2 tablespoons batter into center. Swirl to cover bottom. Reduce heat to medium-low; return pan to heat. Cook until edges are golden and center is dry, about 30 seconds per side.
  8. Slide crepe onto an overturned plate. Repeat with remaining batter, coating pan with butter as needed, and stacking crepes. Let cool.
  9. Place 1 crepe on a flat serving dish. Spread about 1/4 cup lemon curd mousse onto crepe. Top with 1 crepe. Continue layering crepes and mousse. (Use 15 crepes, ending with a crepe on top.) Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
  10. Top crepe cake with whipped cream and 3 or 4 candied lemon slices.
https://rhondasteed.com/lemon-curd-mousse-cake

Lemon Crepe Cake | Just Rhonda

Lucy was a big fan because she LOVES lemon but so did everyone else. 🙂 Lemon curd folded with whipped cream.

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Bouchon Bakery’s Lemon Meringue Tarts

I love little tarts. In fact I’ve loved them for a long time and then we went to France and I saw tons of cute little fancy tarts lined up in the pâtisseries and I about died. So cute and oh man they are sooooo tasty. Since then I have an urge to make little cute tarts of all kinds. First up is lemon. Lovely lemon.

Lemon Meringue Tarts | Just Rhonda

This is an intense recipe. And I didn’t even make my Meringue as fancy as they did. (You can see some amazing ones here). Makes me want to make them again just to give it a shot and try and perfect my Meringue skills. 🙂

Bouchon Bakery's Lemon Meringue Tarts

Ingredients

  • 1/2 recipe Pâte Sucrée (see below)
  • Egg whites
  • Granulated sugar
  • Madeleine Cake, frozen
  • Lemon Curd
  • Pâte Sucrée
  • 2 2/3 cups (375 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup + 2 ½ tablespoons (46 grams) powdered sugar
  • 3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon (94 grams) powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup + 3 tablespoons (47 grams) almond flour/meal
  • 8 ounces (225 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons (56 grams) eggs
  • Madeleine Cake
  • 1/4 cup + 1 1/2 tablespoons (47 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 3/8 teaspoon (1.5 grams) baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon (50 grams) eggs
  • 3 tablespoons + 2 1/2 teaspoons (45 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon (28 grams) glucose syrup
  • 0.6 ounce (19 grams) unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons (9 grams) whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon (19 grams) fresh lemon juice
  • Lemon Curd
  • 3/4 sheet (1.8 grams) silver leaf gelatin
  • 1/4 cup + 3 tablespoons (108 grams) eggs
  • 1/2 cup + 2 teaspoons (108 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup + 3 tablespoons (108 grams) strained fresh lemon or lime juice
  • 5 ounces (140 grams) Unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, at room temperature
  • Grated zest of 1/2 small lemon or 1/2 lime (optional)

Instructions

  1. For the Pâte Sucrée: Place the all-purpose flour in a medium bowl. Sift the 46 grams plus 2 1/2 tablespoons powdered sugar and the almond flour into the bowl; break up any lumps of almond flour remaining in the sieve, add them to the bowl, and whisk to combine.
  2. Place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and cream on medium-low speed, warming the bowl as needed, until the butter is the consistency of mayonnaise and holds a peak when the paddle is lifted. Sift in the remaining 94 grams/3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon powdered sugar and pulse to begin incorporating the sugar, then increase the speed to medium-low and mix for about 1 minute, until the mixture is fluffy.
  3. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean, add them to the butter mixture, and mix on low speed for about 30 seconds to distribute the seeds evenly.
  4. Add the dry ingredients in 2 additions, mixing for 15 to 30 seconds after each, or until just combined. Scrape the bottom of the bowl to incorporate any dry ingredients that have settled there. Add the eggs and mix on low speed until just combined, 15 to 30 seconds.
  5. Transfer the dough to the work surface. Use the heel of your hand to smear the dough and work it together (fraiser). Divide the dough in half and form each half into a 4-by-6-inch-rectangle, about 1 inch thick.
  6. *You will use only one of these rectangles to make the tarts. The other half can be used in future recipes, for any tart with a semi-sweet filling.
  7. Wrap each piece in a double layer of plastic wrap. Refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours, but preferably overnight. The dough can be refrigerated for up to 2 days or frozen for up to 1 month.
  8. For the Madeleine Cake: Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a sheet pan with Silpat or spray lightly with nonstick spray, line with parchment paper, and spray the parchment.
  9. Sift the flour and baking powder into a medium bowl.
  10. Place the eggs and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and mix on medium-low speed for about 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium and whip for about 5 minutes, until the mixture is thick and pale yellow. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl, then whip on medium-high speed for 5 minutes, or until the mixture has thickened but is still light and airy. Remove the bowl from the mixture stand.
  11. Meanwhile, place the glucose and butter in a medium saucepan, set over medium heat, and whisk to combine as they melt. Remove from the heat and whisk in the milk, then pour into a bowl and let cool until just warm to the touch.
  12. Whisk about one-quarter of the egg mixture into the glucose mixture. Whisk in the lemon juice. Fold the dry ingredients into the remaining egg mixture in 2 additions. Fold in the glucose mixture one-quarter at a time, completely incorporating each addition before adding the next.
  13. Spread the batter in a thin layer and bake for 10 to 12 minutes; the layer should not take on any color. Let cool, then place the pan in the freezer until ready to use.
  14. For the Lemon Curd: Place the gelatin in a bowl of ice water to soften.
  15. Meanwhile, whisk the eggs and sugar together in a medium saucepan. Slowly whisk in the lemon or lime juice. Place the pan over medium heat and whisk slowly, until the mixture begins to simmer. Simmer for 3 to 5 minutes, whisking constantly, until thickened. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk gently for 1 to 2 minutes to release steam and cool the curd slightly.
  16. Remove the gelatin from the water, squeezing out the excess water, and whisk it into the hot curd. Strain the curd through a fine-mesh strainer set over the container of a Vitamix and blend on low speed for a few seconds, then add the butter 2 or 3 pieces at a time, blending until incorporated. Add the zest, if using, and blend to incorporate. Let the curd cool to room temperature.
  17. The curd can be used at this point or transferred to a covered container. Press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface to prevent a skin from forming and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
  18. If the curd has been refrigerated and has stiffened, transfer it to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix slowly until it reaches a creamy consistency.
  19. To Assemble: For the tart shell: Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line a sheet pan with a Silpat or parchment paper.
  20. Roll out half the dough, line the tart rings, and fill with rice. Bake for 8 minutes, then rotate the pan and bake for another 8 minutes, or until the dough is set and no longer sticks to the parchment paper. Remove the parchment and rice (store the rice for future use), return the pan to the oven, and bake for another 12 minutes, or until the dough is cooked through and golden brown. Set the pan on a cooling rack and cool completely. Run the tip of a paring knife between the top of the crust and the ring to loosen the crust, then lift off the ring.
  21. Meanwhile, make a Swiss meringue: Place the egg whites and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer and set over a saucepan of simmering water. Whisk until the mixture reaches 160°F/71.1°C, then immediately put the bowl on the mixer, attach the whisk attachment, and whip at medium-high speed for about 5 minutes, until the whites hold stiff peaks and are cool. Transfer to the pastry bag fitted with the 1-inch tip.
  22. Use the round cutter to cut the frozen madeleine layer into 6 rounds.
  23. Fill the pastry bag fitted with the 1/2-inch plain tip with the lemon curd.
  24. Fill the tart shells with curd to 1/2 inch from the rim of the shells (50 grams/1/3 cup each). Place the cake rounds on top. Hold the pastry bag vertically over the center of each cake, about 1 inch from the surface, and pipe the meringue to cover about two-thirds of the surface (20 grams each), then pull the bag up to form a dome with as much additional meringue as you’d like.
  25. Hold a small offset spatula at the tip of the domed meringue and pull it to the edges of the crust, forming a smooth line from the tip to the outside of the shell. Wipe off the spatula and continue around the tart to form a cone shape, then use the spatula to form irregular peaks in the meringue. Using the propane torch, brown the top of the meringue.
  26. The tarts are best the same day they are assembled. They can be refrigerated for 4 to 6 hours; remove them from the refrigerator 20 minutes before serving.
https://rhondasteed.com/bouchon-bakery-lemon-meringue-tarts

Lemon Meringue Tarts | Just Rhonda

Yummo!

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Ricotta Ice Cream

For Christmas I got this lovely Ice cream maker. I am a big fan of any Cuisinart appliances I’ve purchased. And this one is no exception. I used to have an older one that was traditional with the salt and ice and a whole lot of noise. 🙂 This one is a little bit easier. Okay, a whole lot easier. I bought it off Amazon and it is awesome.

 

The first kind of ice cream we made was a yummy Ricotta one. I have a beautiful book from the amazing David Lebovitz called My Paris Kitchen. I have loved every recipe I have tried so far and this one was no exception!! A lovely light fresh ice cream with a great texture! I’m a big fan of it.

Ricotta Ice Cream | Just Rhonda

Ricotta Ice Cream

Ingredients

    For the custard
  • 1 cup (250ml) half-and-half or heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup (100g) sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup (80g) honey
  • 2 cups (500ml) whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • optional: 1 teaspoon grappa or kirsch
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • For mixing in
  • 1/4 cup (40g) finely diced candied lemon, orange, or citron
  • 1/4 cup (40g) coarsely chopped shelled pistachios (untoasted, or very lightly toasted)

Instructions

  1. 1. Warm the half-and-half or cream with the sugar and salt in a small saucepan.
  2. 2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks.
  3. 3. Make an ice bath by nesting a metal or glass bowl in a larger bowl that’s partially filled with ice and some water. Set a mesh strainer over the top.
  4. 4. When the half-and-half mixture is very warm, gradually add it to the yolks, stirring constantly with a whisk as you pour (to avoid scrambling the eggs). Scrape the mixture back into the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a heatproof spatula, just until the custard thickens and coats the spatula. (Do not boil.)
  5. 5. Immediately strain the custard into the bowl in the ice bath and stir until cool.
  6. 6. Pour the custard into a blender and add the honey, ricotta, and grappa or kirsch (if using). Puree in the blender until the mixture is very smooth, about 30 seconds. Pour the mixture into a container, cover, and chill thoroughly.
  7. 7. Add the lemon juice, then churn the ice cream in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When done, stir in the candied citrus and nuts, and transfer to a container. Cover, and store in the freezer until ready to serve.

http://www.davidlebovitz.com/2014/08/ricotta-ice-cream-gelato-recipe/

https://rhondasteed.com/ricotta-ice-cream

We had it over some yummy brownies and a tasty hot fudge sauce for valentine’s day. Totally tasty!

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Coconut Lime Berry Cake

It was my mother in laws birthday last week and so I made a lovely cake I found in Martha Stewarts book aptly called Cakes. It’s a great book with a WHOLE lotta great cakes. All different kinds: loaves, bundts and tubes, coffee cakes, single layer, cheesecakes, icebox, cakes with fruit and layer cakes. I think I’ve made 5-6 cakes in the book and everyone I’ve loved! This one was totally good too! Now these  aren’t the best pics, I snapped them quickly with my iPhone before we rushed over to their house and scarfed this baby down warm from the oven with some whipped cream on top!

Coconut Lime Berry Cake | Just Rhonda

Coconut Lime Berry Cake

12

By Martha Stewart

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter at room temperature plus more for baking dish
  • 1 3/4 cup plus 1 Tbsp all purpose flour plus more for baking dish
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 1 cup packed sweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 cup plus 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tsp finely grated lime zest plus 2 Tbsp of fresh lime juice
  • 3 cups berries such as raspberries, blackberries and blueberries
  • 3 Tbsp orange juice

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9x13 baking dish; dust with flour, tapping out extras.
  2. In a large bowl, which together 1 3/4 cup flour, the baking powder, salt and coconut.
  3. With an electric mixer on high speed, beat butter and 1 cup sugar until pale and fluffy, scraping down sides as needed, about 4 minutes.
  4. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each.
  5. Reduce mixer speed to low, add flour mixer in 3 batches, alternating with 2 batches of buttermilk, beat until combined. Stir in lime zest and juice.
  6. Transfer batter to prepared dish; smooth with an offset spatula.
  7. In a medium bowl, toss berries with remaining 1 tablespoon flour and 1 tablespoon of sugar and orange juice.
  8. Scatter berries over batter.
  9. Bake until cake is golden at edges and a cake tester inserted into the middle comes out clean, about 35 minutes.
  10. Transfer the cake to a wire rack to cool 20 minutes, serve warm or at room temperature.
https://rhondasteed.com/coconut-lime-berry-cake

Coconut Lime Berry Cake | Just Rhonda

The lime is SUCH a lovely taste in it! So good. Nice work Martha (and her crew!)

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S’more Pie

I love finding tasty recipes on Pinterest. Like this one!

S'More Pie

It’s the taste of S’Mores but in a pie. Well done Tasty kitchen, well done.

S’more Pie

This recipes comes from tastykitchen.com

Ingredients

  • 1 stick Softened Butter
  • ½ cups White Sugar
  • 1 whole Egg
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla
  • 1 cup Flour
  • 1 cup Graham Cracker Crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 7 ounces, weight Container Of Marshmallow Creme
  • 8 whole (1.55 Oz Bars) Hershey's Chocolate Bars, Unwrapped
  • 1 cup Marshmallows
  • ¼ cups Chocolate Chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and spray a 9″ pie pan with baking spray.
  2. In a large bowl beat butter and sugar together until combined, then add egg and vanilla and stir them in. Stir in flour, graham cracker crumbs and baking powder.
  3. Divide the dough in half. Press half the dough in the bottom and up the sides of the prepared pie pan. Evenly spread the Marshmallow Creme over the bottom crust. Separate chocolate squares and place on top of the Marshmallow Creme. Place 1 cup of marshmallows on top.
  4. Using the remaining crust, pat sections of dough on top of and around all the marshmallows (they will still show through and that is great!). Sprinkle with 1/4 cup chocolate chips, then bake 20 minutes until lightly browned.
  5. Remove pan from oven and set it on a wire rack. Cool completely before cutting, or you will have a gooey mess. Not that I know …
https://rhondasteed.com/smore-pie

S'More Pie

I made it for a group of teenagers and they easily chose it over the other pies. It’s suuuuper tasty.

If you want to follow me on Pinterest you can here.

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Raspberry Chocolate Mousse Cake

Raspberry Chocolate Mousse Cake | Just Rhonda I’ve shared a few desserts on here…. but this one… oh my.. this one?? Easily one of my favorite things I have ever eaten. Now be warned, it is a process. It has four layers of goodness and it might seem intimidating because of all the steps but in the end? SO WORTH it!!! My lovely friend Jen Wilde gave this recipe to me. And she made it the first time I had it and ah… i still remember tasting it the first time. YUM.

Raspberry chocolate mousse cake

This is the first time I made it. And I used wax paper around the edges while the mousse sets up. I learned that you need to make sure that the edges are smooth. I didn’t do that this time. Lesson learned!

Raspberry chocolate mousse cake

Raspberry Chocolate Mousse Cake

Ingredients

    For the Brownie Layer:
  • 115 g (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
  • 220 g (1 cup + 2 Tbsp) granulated sugar
  • 50 g (2 large eggs) at room temperature
  • 105 g (3/4 cup) all purpose flour
  • 55 g (2/3 cup) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 g (1/2 tsp) salt
  • 10 g (2 tsp vanilla extract
  • For the Chocolate Mousse:
  • 225 g (9 oz) 56 % (or semi sweet) chocolate callets
  • 170 g (3/4 cup) heavy cream
  • Pinch salt
  • 30 g (2 Tbsp) water
  • 225 g (1 cup) cold heavy cream
  • For the Raspberry Mousse:
  • 57 g (1/2 cup) fresh raspberries (darker is better)
  • 255 g (9 oz) 32 % white chocolate callets
  • 115 g (1/2 cup) heavy cream
  • Pinch salt
  • 5 g (2 tsp) unflavored powered gelatin
  • 30 g (2 Tbsp) water
  • 225 g (1 cup) cold heavy cream
  • 113 g (or as much as you’d like) fresh raspberries
  • For the Vanilla Mousse:
  • 255 g (9 oz) 32 % white chocolate callets
  • 115 g (1/2 cup) heavy cream
  • 85 g (4 Tbsp) honey
  • Pinch of salt
  • 5 g (2 tsp) unflavored powdered gelatin
  • 30 g (2 Tbsp) water
  • 10 g (2 tsp) vanilla bean paste ( can substitute vanilla extract)
  • 225 g (1 cup) heavy cream (cold)
  • To Finish:
  • 60 g (2 oz) semi- sweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 115 g (4 oz) heavy cream
  • 170 g (1 small clam shell) fresh raspberries
  • Chocolate Curls of other decorations

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven at 350 F.
  2. Line a 9-inch cake pan with parchment and butter (spray well with nonstick cooking spray.)
  3. To Make the Brownie Layer:
  4. Cube the butter and place it in the medium saucepan over medium low heat. Stir occasionally as the butter melts. Add the sugar and stir until it melts. Don’t allow the mixture to come to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat, and let it cool to lukewarm.
  5. While the butter and sugar cool, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder in a small bowl.
  6. Once the butter has cooled, add the eggs, one at a time, whisking well between each addition. The mixture will start out grainy, but as you add the eggs, it will become shiny and smooth.
  7. Whisk the vanilla in. Finally, add the dry ingredients, and stir them in with a spatula. Do not over mix.
  8. Scrape the brownie batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 22-24 minutes, until a toothpick comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached. Cool the brownie layer completely before proceeding.
  9. To Make the Mousse Layer:
  10. While the brownie is cooling:
  11. Prepare your pan. You need a 9-inch pan with sides at least 3 inches tall, and the ability to remove the bottom. Either a cake pan with a removable bottom or a springform pan will work. Butter or spray the pan lightly with nonstick spray, then line it with cling wrap that extends up and over the sides. Line the Inner wall with an acetate cake collar or strip of waxed paper. Make sure the acetate or waxed paper is long enough so that it overlaps itself, and if you are using waxed paper, make sure you cut the strip tall enough to extend at least as high as the pan’s sides.
  12. Carefully place the baked brownie in the bottom of the pan. Prepared the chocolate mousse layer; combine the chocolate, 170 g (3/4 cup) of cream and salt in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave is 30 second increments, stirring every 30 seconds, until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth. Pour it into a large bowl and let it cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally.
  13. While you wait for the chocolate mixture to cool, prepare the gelatin. Whisk together the gelatin and the cold water in a small bowl and set it aside to let the gelatin absorb water. When the chocolate is at room temperature, microwave the bowl of gelatin for 10-15 seconds, until it is melted. Whisk the melted gelatin and chocolate together.
  14. Whip the remaining 1 cup heavy cream to firm peaks. Fold half of the whipped cream into the chocolate, and once it’s incorporated, gently fold in the remaining whipped cream. Scrape the cake for 25 minutes, until the mousse has started to set and is firm enough that a second layer can be added.
  15. For the raspberry mousse:
  16. While the chocolate mousse is setting: Make a quick puree by blending 57 g (1/2 cup) fresh raspberries in a blender or food processor or simple mashing them in a mortar or bowl. Pour them through a fine mesh strainer to remove the seeds and measure our 60 g (1/4 cup) raspberry puree. (If you have extra puree, save it for another use.)
  17. Combine the white chocolate, 115 g (1/2 cup) heavy cream, and salt in a microwave-safe bowl. Continue to make this layer the same way you made the chocolate layer, by melting and cooling the chocolate, add raspberry, whisking in melted gelatin, and folding in whipped cream. At the very end, stir in the remaining 225 g (1 cup) fresh raspberries and pour the mousse over the chocolate mousse layer. Spread it into an even layer, and refrigerate again.
  18. For the vanilla layer: While the white mousse is setting: Combine the white chocolate, 115 g (1/2 cup) heavy cream, honey and salt in a microwave-safe bow. Continue to make this the same way you made the previous two layers. At the very end, stir in the vanilla bean paste and pour the mouse over the raspberry layer. Refrigerate to set the mousse layers very well, at least 4 hours or overnight.
  19. To finish the cake:
  20. Remove the cake from the refrigerator and leave it a room temperature while preparing the ganache.
  21. Place the cream and chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 30 seconds at a time, until the chocolate is melted and ganache is very smooth when mixed (if using a whisk make sure not to incorporate air in the ganache.)
  22. While the ganache cool, unmold the cake; push the bottom out from the pan, or unhinge the sides. Peel back the cling wrap and unwrap the acetate or wax paper strip. Transfer the cake to your serving platter or a cake cardboard.
  23. When the ganache has cooled to body temperature, pour it over the top of the cake, and use a spatula to nudge it right to the edge and over in evenly spaced drizzles. Don’t worry if the top is not smooth – it will be covered up! Add the fresh raspberries and chocolate curls on top of the cake. Refrigerate to set the ganache.
  24. For cleanest slices, cut the cake when it is well chilled. Use a large sharp knife, and wash it frequently between cuts. For the best taste and texture, allow the cake slices to sit at room temperature for 10-15 minutes before serving.
  25. Store chocolate Raspberry Mousse Cake, well wrapped in the refrigerator for up to a week.
https://rhondasteed.com/raspberry-chocolate-mousse-cake

Raspberry chocolate mousse cake

Yes, this is a recipe that takes time. In fact I made it over two days. Doing the brownie layer first and leaving that alone for the night. And then the next day I did all the other layers.

Raspberry chocolate mousse cake

And I didn’t add chocolate curls – instead I just put raspberries on top. This is totally a special occasion cake. A really tasty special occasion. 😉

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Cherry Handpies

Handpies sounds fancy, but in reality it’s just a little pie that fits into your hand.  And they are just as easy to make as they sound. All I did was roll out my pie dough as thin as possible without breaking it and then cut it into circles with a cookie cutter.

Cherry Handpies

Fill the rounds with pie filling. You can make your own or you can open a can from the store!

Cherry Handpies

Fold them in half and then go around the edges with a fork, sealing them. Just try to make sure there isn’t any filling on the edges. Bake them at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes or until they are golden brown. And that’s it. Really simple.

Cherry Handpies

 

Cherry Handpies

Ingredients

    For the Pie Crust:
  • 5 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 lb tenderflake lard
  • 1 egg, stirred slightly
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 7⁄8 cup cold water
  • For the hand pies:
  • 1 can cherry pie filling

Instructions

  1. Stir the flour and salt together.
  2. Cut in the lard with a pastry blender or 2 knives until the shortening is in pea size pieces.
  3. In a measuring cup, combine the egg and vinegar.
  4. Add enough cold water to make one cup.
  5. Stir the liquid into the flour mixture, adding just enough to make the dough cling together.
  6. Stir the water in with a wooden spoon until mixed thoroughly, then gather the dough into a ball.
  7. Cover and refrigerate for one hour, you can chill overnite, covered, providing you leave it at room temp for 15 mins before rolling.
  8. Roll out the pie dough as thin as possible without breaking it and then cut it into circles with a cookie cutter.
  9. Fill the rounds with pie filling. You can make your own or you can open a can from the store!
  10. Fold them in half and then go around the edges with a fork, sealing them. Just try to make sure there isn't any filling on the edges.
  11. Bake them at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes or until they are golden brown. And that's it. Really simple.
  12. If you want a glaze just mix 1 cup of icing sugar with 2 tablespoons of water and 1 teaspoon of vanilla and drizzle over top of the cooled hand pies.
https://rhondasteed.com/cherry-handpies

Cherry Handpies

If you didn’t have any pie dough you  could always use my favorite puff pastry and make them with that.

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Humble Apple pie

In high school I took foods class and to this day it holds some of my favorite high school memories. We did such fun things in that class, I had some good friends in it AND we were cooking stuff that we got to eat. It really was awesome. There were some things I learned in those classes that I still use in my life. One of the other things that I kept onto was the how to make apple pie. I’ve been making apple pie the same way since then (which happened to be a long time ago….) But last week I got a recipe book from the library and it had a recipe for apple pie and so I thought I’d give it a chance. And it was great!

And on a side note…. we were told that the seeds inside a green pepper were poisonous. Seriously I remember being told that. And I may have been an adult before I learned that wasn’t true. Regan may have laughed heartily at me when I told him I thought that. And then he ate two of the seeds in front of me. I was still a little nervous that something would happen when we went to sleep that night. I’d believed it for YEARS.

Apple Pie

I learned that seeds from a green pepper aren’t poisonous. AND I learned a new way to make apple pie filling. Look at me expanding my mind. 😉 It comes from the cookbook by Christine Ha called My Home Kitchen. And it was tasty! I just made my regular pie crust that I always use.

Humble Apple pie

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 3 Tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar plus additional sprinkling
  • 6 granny smith apples. peeled, cored and sliced
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • Pie crust
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

Instructions

  1. In a large sauce pan over medium heat, melt the butter.
  2. When it forms, add the flour and whisk until dissolved to form a paste.
  3. Whisk in the water, the 1.2 cup granulated sugar and the brown sugar.
  4. Raise the heat and bring to a boil. then immediately reduce to a simmer.
  5. Add the apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves and toss to coat evenly.
  6. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until the apples gave slightly when pressed up against the side of the pan.
  7. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. On a lightly floured surface, use a lightly floured rolling pin to roll out one piece of the pie crust into a 13 inn round. Fit into a 9-inch pie plate.
  8. Trim the edge, leaving a 1/2 inch over hang, and chill while rolling out the remaining dough.
  9. Transfer the apple mixture to the pie plate, mounding the apples in the center.
  10. Drape the top pie crust over and pinch the edges to seal.
  11. Using a sharp knife, cut for 2 inch slits into the crust to allow the steam to escape.
  12. Brush the crust with additional granulated sugar.
  13. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350 degrees F and bake for another 35 - 40 minutes or until the apples are tender and the crust is golden.

Recipe from Christine Ha

https://rhondasteed.com/humble-apple-pie

Apple Pie

Was there anything in your life that you thought to be true when you were younger and then you learned it was true?

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Rocky Mountain Mini Chocolate Cheesecakes

So I collect cookbooks and I have for quite a few years. Sometimes I own one for a while and then realize it’s not really one I use or love. And then there are other ones that I have for a long time and I love them. I might not use it for a while and then I’ll pick it up again and I’ll find something I love in about 20 seconds. These lovely little cheesecakes are from a great cookbook that I have had for quite some time called “Divine indulgences” by the amazing Rose Reisman. I have a couple of her cookbooks (Divine Indulgences and The Complete Light Kitchen) and I’ve read more (Family Favorites and Weekday Wonders) and every single one I love. The great thing about Rose’s recipes is that they are healthy.

Rocky Mountain Mini Chocolate CheesecakesNow I think health is important, but I don’t like sacrificing taste for health. I love food and I think it’s one of the great parts of life. Well, Rose’s recipes make great food and surprise – it’s healthy too. Any of the recipes I’ve made out of Divine Indulgences are awesome and taste like dessert should taste. Not that I’m-trying-to-be-healthy-but-I-still-want-something-sweet kind of dessert (that often taste like you’re eating your shoe). Just good! This one is like that. You can’t tell that it’s low fat at all. So you can have three. 😉

Rocky Mountain Mini Chocolate Cheesecakes

So here it is:

Rocky Mountain Mini Chocolate Cheesecakes

10 minutes

25 minutes

35 minutes

12

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups smooth light ricotta
  • 3 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup light cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup low-fat sour cream
  • 1/3 cup miniature marshmallows
  • 1 egg
  • 3 Tbsp semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.
  2. Combine the ricotta, cream cheese, sour cream, egg, sugar, cocoa and flour in a food processor. Purée until smooth. Divide the mixture among the prepared muffin cups.
  3. Set the muffin tin in a larger pan. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the muffin cups.
  4. Bake in the center of the oven for 20 minutes. Remove and sprinkle the marshmallows and chocolate chips evenly over the cheesecakes. Return to the oven and bake for 5 minutes longer, or until the marshmallows and chocolate chips begin to melt.
  5. Remove the muffin tin from the water bath and cool on a rack. Chill well before removing the paper liners and serving.

I like these really nice and cold. It makes the cheesecake texture so nice and creamy!

https://rhondasteed.com/rocky-mountain-mini-chocolate-cheesecakes

Give them a try and you’ll love them and go check out this great cookbook too!

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Flourless Chocolate Torte

FlourlessChocolateTorte-7133

So after reading that title are you thinking what the heck is a torte? Well it’s like a cake. But usually it has little to no flour (which kind of makes the name redundant) and often the flour is replaced by ground nuts. This one has no ground nuts just no flour. I did some reading about them and it seems there is a bit of debate about the exact specifications of ground nuts or no ground nuts. Torte also comes from the word “cake” in German.

FlourlessChocolateTorte-7099

This recipe comes from the Food Network. I’ve made it a few times and it’s always worked out and always been tasty. Lucy loves it with a little icing sugar sprinkled on top and a raspberry.

Flourless Chocolate Torte

20 minutes

40 minutes

8 to 10 Servings

This recipe comes from the Food Network

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 sticks (12 Tbsp) of unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, plus more the pan
  • 12 ounces of bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Pinch of Salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter the bottom and side of a 9 inch springform pan. Combine the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl. Place bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (do not let the bowl touch the water) and stir until melted and combined. Remove the bowl from the saucepan and let cool slightly.
  2. Combine the eggs, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Beat with a mixer on medium high speed until pale and thick, 5 to 8 minutes.
  3. Gently fold half of the melted chocolate mixture into the egg mixture until just combined, then gently gold in the rest. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until the top is no longer shiny and barely jiggles and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with only a few crumbs, 35 to 45 minutes.
  4. Transfer to a rack and let cool completely in the pan. Remove the springform ring and transfer to a platter; dust with cocoa powder.

You can melt your chocolate and butter in the microwave, by using 1 minute increments and watching it very closely so it does not burn. We like icing sugar dusted on top instead of cocoa.

https://rhondasteed.com/flourless-chocolate-torte

FlourlessChocolateTorte-7128

So in a recap, A torte:

  1. Has little or no flour,
  2. Almost always round often with elaborate designs and glazes over top
  3. Is heavier in texture and taste
  4. Rises very little in baking

Now that list shouldn’t be scary 😉 This one is super easy and quick. And its gluten free, you know if you are into that sort of thing. It’s tasty, and I’m into that sort of thing.

FlourlessChocolateTorte-7136

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Lime Curd Cheesecake

limecurdcheesecake

Last week I shared how to make Lime Curd as well as a few ideas of how to use it. Well this week I wanted to share one thing that you can use lime curd for. This lovely cheesecake. I love a good cheesecake. It’s one of my favorite desserts. This one, I think, is pretty good too.

LimeCurdCheesecake-1

It’s got lime zest, lime juice and even lime yogurt in it so the base cheesecake is limey. But then wha-bam, you add on the lime curd and it’s some serious lime taste.

LimeCurdCheesecake-4

Lime Curd Cheesecake

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup margarine
  • 1 3/4 cup graham crackers crumbs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 blocks of cream cheese
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 Tbsp lime zest
  • 1/2 cup lime yogurt
  • 3 Tbsp lime juice
  • 2 eggs

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees C.
  2. Melt the margarine and combine with graham cracker crumbs and 1/4 cup sugar.
  3. Mix until combined and press into a 9" springform pan. Set aside.
  4. In a medium size bowl, mix the cream cheese with sugar and zest.
  5. Mix well with hand mixer until cream cheese is smooth and without lumps.
  6. Add in yogurt and juice and mix.
  7. Add in one egg and mix just until egg is combined.
  8. Then add other egg and mix until just combined.
  9. Pour cheesecake mixture into prepared bake.
  10. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes.
  11. Then shut off the oven and prop open the door and let cake sit for 10 more minutes inside the oven. Then cool completely.
  12. Spread with lime curd and Serve.
https://rhondasteed.com/lime-curd-cheesecake

I used low fat cream cheese for two of the blocks, which lowers the fat content. I think in a dessert like this you can’t tell when you switch out the low fat for the regular cream cheese.

LimeCurdCheesecake-5If you didn’t want to use lime, (but WHY??) you could change it to lemon zest, lemon juice, lemon curd. Or even orange. mmmm. Now that sounds tasty. An orange curd cheesecake. Next time!  But for now, try this one out!

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Lime Curd

Limecurd-1

A few days ago I posted a picture on Instagram of a dessert I was working on. It involved Lime Curd and a few people asked me what lime curd even was. So I thought I would share the recipe I used and then later when I share the other dessert you’ll have this recipe to come back to and use 😉

A fruit curd is a dessert spread and topping made by cooking egg yolks, sugar, fruit juice, and zest. Lemon is a common one, but you can also make lime, grapefruit, raspberry, or orange. I think I might have to make some raspberry curd soon!  Some ideas I found online that you can curds for:

  •  a filling in between cake layers or cupcake filling
  • spread it on pancakes
  • put it in a trifle instead of the jam
  • layer it in a parfait
  • a filling for crepes
  • add it into your homemade ice cream before you freeze it
  • stuffed in between two pieces of thick bread for stuffed french toast
  • on scones
  • with plain yogurt and some granola
  • (lemon one) mix it with indian spices and use it as a marinade/ simmering sauce for indian dishes
  • Awesome filling for home made doughnut
  • some lemon curd into fresh whipped cream and put it on top of cakes (like an angel food cake)
  • Mix it with Greek yogurt and add fruit to it
  • mini-tart shells, fill each with a spoonful of lemon curd, and top with whipped cream.

Limecurd-2

Now do you kinda wanna try making some???? It’s REALLY easy and only takes about 10 minutes.

Lime Curd

3 cups

Recipe from Martha Stewart

Ingredients

  • 8 large egg yolks
  • 2 large whole eggs
  • 1 cup (10 limes) freshly squeezed lime juice, strained
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon-size pieces
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated lime zest (optional)

Instructions

  1. Whisk together egg yolks and whole eggs in a nonreactive saucepan. Add sugar and lime juice; whisk to combine.
  2. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture thickens to almost puddinglike consistency, about 30 minutes. Remove from heat; transfer to a heat-proof bowl. Stir in butter one piece at a time, until fully incorporated. Stir in lime zest, if desired.
  3. If not using immediately, cover surface directly with plastic wrap to keep a skin from forming, and refrigerate until ready to use.
https://rhondasteed.com/lime-curd

Limecurd-3

S’More Roll

S'more roll

Last week I shared a tasty treat over on Lolly Jane. And I was pretty excited after I came up with it…. and normally I wait a little longer before sharing the recipes from Lolly Jane…. but this one is tasty!! So here it is. A chocolate roll of goodness. A S’More roll. It starts out with a sponge cake jelly roll and ends with some sprinkled graham cracker crumbs, chocolate ganache and jars of marshmallow. Yum.

First you make a runny sponge cake.

S'more roll

As it cooks you get a dishtowel ready with cocoa on it (it keeps it from sticking to the towel.)

S'more roll

Then when the cake comes out you flip it onto the dishtowel.

S'more roll

Peel off the parchment.S'more roll

And roll it up!S'more roll

Wrap it with saran wrap and stick it in the fridge.
S'more rollThen it’s unrolled and filled with three simple and yummy fillings.

S'more roll

S'More Roll

Ingredients

  • 10 egg yolks
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup cake flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup cocoa
  • Chocolate Ganache
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream or whole milk
  • Other Toppings
  • 2 Jars Marshmallow Creme
  • 1/3 cup Graham cracker crumbs

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line a cookie sheet with a piece of parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Beat egg yolks and sugar until lemon color. Add in water, salt, flour, powder, vanilla and cocoa.
  3. Beat at high speed for 10 minutes.
  4. Spread evenly onto prepared cookie sheet. (Batter will be quite runny.)
  5. Bake for 20 minutes.
  6. While this is cooking, prepare a tea towel that is a bit bigger than the cookie sheet. Sprinkle 1/4 cup cocoa all over the tea towel.
  7. When cake comes out of the oven dump it right onto the prepared tea towel.
  8. Peel off the parchment paper and roll the tea towel up together in a tight roll.
  9. Wrap the whole thing in saran wrap and put it in the fridge to cool.
  10. While you are waiting, make the ganache by microwaving the chocolate chips and cream together. 1 minute or Just until they will melt together.
  11. Let this sit on the counter until it thickens and cools a bit.
  12. When your cake roll is cooled, carefully unroll it.
  13. Spread the two jars of marshmallow over the cake.
  14. Sprinkle the graham cracker crumbs and then pour the chocolate ganache over top. (If it is too hot it will just run right off so it needs to be a little bit cooler but not too much or it will harden up.)
  15. Carefully roll the whole roll together again and wrap in saran wrap and put in the fridge for at least 1 hour.
  16. When ready to serve, unwrap and slice into slices.
https://rhondasteed.com/smore-roll

Now you might be thinking… when am I going to have 10 egg yolks or what do I do with all those whites? Well French Macarons or a homemade angel food cake is a great place to start!! I love this roll a LOT. In fact I may have eaten quite a few slices myself.

S'more roll

Give it a try… it’ll be a hit… I promise!

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Canada War Cake

Since yesterday was Remembrance Day, I am sharing a cake with history today. It’s an old recipe that comes from the war times. My grandma told me that for sure it was from the second world war but she was pretty sure they first came up with it in the first world war. It’s a recipe that comes from a time of less. There are no eggs and no milk in the cake recipe. When my grandma was a little girl her parents would make this cake and she thought it was really special. She even remembers her mom making it without any raisins in it. Then as time went on and cream was more available the icing was added to the recipe. I think most cakes taste better with icing!

canadawardaycake

Canada War Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 cups raisins
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp lard
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • Icing
  • 2 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup corn syrup
  • 2/3 cup milk or cream
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Instructions

  1. Bring raisins, brown sugar, lard, pisces and water to a rolling boil and take off heat and let cool.
  2. Add flour and baking soda and mix well.
  3. Pour into greased 9x13 cake pan or a cookie sheet (will be more like bars).
  4. Bake at 350˚F oven for 20-24 minutes or until tested done.
  5. Icing For Cake
  6. Bring ingredients to boil and boil until the softball stage.
  7. Beat until creamy and add butter and vanilla.
  8. Spread on cake or bars and allow to set.
https://rhondasteed.com/canada-war-cake

This is a gingerbread-ish kind of taste and it totally reminds me of bars (that’s how my grandma likes to make this) I would find sitting on my grandma’s counter when I was a kid.

RLS_4323

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Moxie’s Style White Chocolate Brownie

I’ve had this recipe for a few years and it’s always a favorite.

WhiteChocolateBrownie

I got this recipe from my friend Alysha’s family cookbook.  Don’tcha love a good family cookbook!

Moxie’s Style White Chocolate Brownie

15 minutes

40 minutes

49 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 9 oz white chocolate
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2/3 cup milk chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup white chocolate chips
  • Sauce:
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 Tbsp butter

Instructions

  1. Melt butter with white chocolate. Mix by hand the sugar, eggs, vanilla and milk. Add the cooled butter/ white chocolate mixture. Add dry ingredients and mix by hand until blended. Spread into a 9x13 inch pan and bake at 350ºF for 40-45 minutes.
  2. Heat the sauce ingredients until well blended. Cut brownies into squares. Put one scoop of vanilla ice-cream, add whipping cream and drizzle with sauce.
https://rhondasteed.com/moxies-style-white-chocolate-brownie

whitechocolatebrownie-2My favorite pieces are the middle ones….. and I like it when it’s still warm from the oven!! Obviously I skipped the whip cream this time. It’s good with it or without!

whitechocolatebrownie-3

Just Rhonda

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Sour Cream Chocolate Bundt Cake

Today I’m sharing a great cake that comes from my lovely grandma. I’ve shared a few recipes from her and I’m sure I’ll share more. But for now, here is a yummy, chocolatey dense cake for your eating pleasure.
sourcreamchocolatebundt

Sour Cream Chocolate Bundt Cake

25 minutes

45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup semi sweet chocolate
  • 3/4 cup boiling water
  • 2 cup brown sugar
  • 6 Tbsp butter
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 5 eggs unbeaten

Instructions

  1. Prepare a bundt cake pan by greasing well with shortening and set aside.
  2. Combine cocoa powder, semi-sweet chocolate and boiling water. Let it cool.
  3. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt and set aside.
  4. Combine brown sugar, butter and sour cream in a separate bowl and mix together.
  5. Add in cooled chocolate mixture. Add in flour mixture.
  6. Then add in each egg and mixing well each time.
  7. Pour into prepared pan.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-50 minutes or until pierced with a toothpick comes out clean.

For a little extra treat: Combine 2-3 cups of coconut and some sweetened condensed milk to moisten it. Put half the batter into the pan. Add the sweetened coconut into the middle. Cover with the rest of the batter.

https://rhondasteed.com/sour-cream-chocolate-bundt-cake
Sour Cream Chocolate Bundt Cake3

I added a simple icing sugar and water glaze to go on top. Cause really… most things are better with icing!

Just Rhonda

Apple Fritters

One thing that totally gets me thinking of fall is Apples! And baking. So apples PLUS baking? Totally FALL! These tasty treats TOTALLY remind me of my grandma Stasiuk.. She often makes them. And this recipe is another one from her.

applefritters

Really deep fried baking with apples and then a little icing drizzled? Fall, I love you.

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Apple Fritters

Ingredients

  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 cup warm milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp quick rising yeast
  • 2 finely peeled chopped apples
  • Approx 6 cups Flour

Instructions

  1. Combine chopped apples with 1 Tbsp of flour and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the eggs, salt, sugar and oil until frothy.
  3. Combine warm water and warm milk and add to mixture.
  4. Add 4 cups of flour. Sprinkle yeast on top of the flour mixture and then mix in.
  5. Then add in your apples and 2 cups of flour or more as needed to make a soft dough. This means that it shouldn't be too sticky when you touch it but when you press your finger into the dough it will bounce back towards you.)
  6. Let it rise in a warm spot until doubled.
  7. Meanwhile, have your dee frying oil heating in large pot on the stove.
  8. Use a tablespoon of dough and stretch it as your drop it into the oil.
  9. Let it brown on the first side and then turn it over and let brown. It should only take about 2 minutes on each side. If it is taking longer then the dough needs to be thinner.
  10. Let cool after cooked on both sides.
  11. When cool, combine a small amount of icing sugar with some warm water even to make a thin glaze and splatter over top of cooled fritters.
https://rhondasteed.com/apple-fritters
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Thanks Grandma! And Yep Fall, we love you every year.

RLS_6533Just Rhonda

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Butterscotch Poke Cake

This post first appeared on Lolly Jane where I contribute a once a month recipe.

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butterscotch-almond-poke-cake

I like dessert. I like it in all forms really. I especially love something that is freshly made. And I seem to make it a lot. Regan is often telling me I need to stop making it so much since there is pretty much always some sort of treat around to eat. My kids often ask what’s for dessert when we are still figuring out supper. I like to think it’s kind of a sweet way to enjoy childhood. I came up with this dessert after finding a yummy looking ice cream topping in the grocery store. If you don’t have a jar of the butterscotch ice cream topping, you could always make it. And you could even substitute a cake mix for the cake, but I think it tastes yummiest with this perfect crumb cake from my grandma. 😉

JustRhonda-2

Butterscotch Poke Cake

Ingredients

    For the cake: 
  • 2 2/3 cup cake flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup + 1/2 cup sugar 
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 3/4 cup + 1/4 cup milk
  • 5 egg separated
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • For the toppings:
  • 1- 355 ml jar of butterscotch ice cream topping
  • 1 cup chopped unsalted almonds
  • Vanilla Bean
  • 1 1/2 cup whip cream
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine cake flour, baking powder, salt and 1 cup sugar in a mixing bowl and mix well.
  3. Add in oil and 3/4 cup milk. Beat together. (It will be really stiff)
  4. Combine egg yolks, 1/4 cup milk and vanilla and mix well. Add into flour mixture and beat until smooth.
  5. In another bowl, beat up your 5 egg whites until stiff and slowly add 1/2 cup sugar and beat until it turns to a stiff meringue. Then fold the cake flour into the egg whites, folding just until combined. 
  6. Pour into a 9x13 cake pan and Bake in your preheated oven until the top is golden brown or a toothpick in the middle comes out clean, about 23-27 minutes.
  7. Open your jar of butterscotch topping and heat it up in the microwave for about 1 minute. Just until it is a little runny. 
  8. As soon as your cake comes out of the oven, take a table knife and stab holes all around in cake. Then slowly pour the butterscotch topping over the cake, taking care to cover the whole thing. 
  9. Then take a table knife around the edges of the pan, carefully pulling the cake away from the edge to let the butterscotch run down the sides, saving approx. 3 tablespoons. 
  10. Put cake in the fridge to cool.
  11. Cut your vanilla bean in half the long way and taking a sharp knife scrap out the insides of the bean and put into the whipping cream.
  12. Then whip the cream, adding in the icing sugar at the end of whipping.
  13. Spread chopped almonds over the top of the cake. Then spread whipped cream over top. 
  14. Pour last of the butterscotch over the top. Enjoy.
https://rhondasteed.com/butterscotch-poke-cake

Here’s a few pictures to give you a play by play. But I think it’s pretty easy! Just poke and dump.

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And then eat.

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Tasty!

Just Rhonda

Red, White and Blue Cheesecake Tart

I love fresh fruit season!! And I love dessert. So fresh fruit IN dessert?! Heavenly!! We had a clinic lake party. And I brought this for dessert. It comes from the always wonderful Martha Stewart.

Red, Blue and White Cheesecake Tart

Red, White and Blue Cheesecake Tart

45 minutes

4 hours

8

Ingredients

  • 6 graham crackers (2 1/2 by 5 inches each)
  • 1/3 cup whole almonds
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 bars (8 ounces each) reduced-fat cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Pinch salt
  • 4 red plums (1 to 1 1/2 pounds total), halved, pitted, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 pint (2 cups) blueberries

Instructions

  1. Make crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor, grind graham crackers, almonds, and 1/4 cup sugar until finely ground; add butter, and process until moistened. Transfer to a 9-inch removable-bottom tart pan. Using the base of a dry measuring cup, press mixture firmly into the bottom and up sides of pan. Freeze at least 15 minutes.
  2. Make filling and bake: Carefully wipe processor blade and bowl clean. Place cream cheese, sour cream, 1/2 cup sugar, egg, vanilla, and salt in food processor; blend just until smooth. Place tart pan on a rimmed baking sheet; fill with cheesecake mixture. Bake until filling is just set, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer tart pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
  3. Meanwhile, make topping: In a medium saucepan, combine plums, 1/2 cup sugar, and lemon juice. Cook at a rapid simmer over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until mixture is jamlike and moves around pan in a single mass when stirred, 15 to 25 minutes (time will depend on ripeness of fruit). Reserve 1 tablespoon cooking liquid (no solids) for blueberries; cool remaining plum mixture.
  4. Assemble tart: Leaving a 1-inch border, spread cooled plum mixture over tart. Reheat reserved plum liquid (on stove or in microwave) until liquefied. In a medium bowl, combine with blueberries, and scatter on top of plum mixture. Chill until ready to serve, at least 2 hours and up to 1 day. Remove from pan before serving.

When I made it I had not graham crackers so instead I substituted graham cracker crumbs. And instead of grinding the almonds, I used ground almonds that I already had.

https://rhondasteed.com/red-white-and-blue-cheesecake-tart

Red, Blue and White Cheesecake Tart 2

Now the time sounds long but it is so worth it!

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Chocolate Cupcakes

I was thinking the other day about the basics in the kitchen. And the kinds of recipes I’d want Lucy (and my boys if they’d want) to know how to make that would give her a good foundation for future kitchen activity. And one thing that is so basic is chocolate cupcakes. I tried quite a few recipes to find one I liked. After trying out 4 different ones, I liked this one the best from Sally’s Baking Addiction

RLS_9840

CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES

1 cup (240ml) water
1/2 cup (64g) unsweetened cocoa powder
1 and 1/3 cups (167g) all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Directions:

Make the cupcakes: Preheat oven to 375F degrees. Line 14 muffin cups with liners.

Over high heat, bowl the water in a small saucepan. Pour the unsweetened cocoa powder into a medium sized bowl and mix with boiling water until smooth. Allow to cool to room temperature by placing in the refrigerator as you prepare the other ingredients.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium sized bowl. Set aside.

In a large bowl, using an electric hand or stand mixer, cream the softened butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla extract. Slowly add the flour mixture and beat only until *just* combined. In a steady stream, add the cooled cocoa mixture and stir until smooth.

Fill each muffin tin 3/4 of the way full with batter. Bake for 16-19 minutes, keeping an eye on them to avoid even the slightest burning (which will lend dry cupcakes). My cupcakes took 17 minutes and a toothpick inserted in the middle came out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool before frosting.

 RLS_9842

But my favorite icing is totally this one from The Brown Eyed Baker.

 Make the Frosting: In a food processor, process the butter, sugar, cocoa powder and salt until smooth, about 30 seconds, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the corn syrup and vanilla extract and process until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds. Scrape the sides of the bowl, then add the chocolate and pulse until smooth and creamy, 10 to 15 one-second pulses. Frost the cupcakes as desired. The frosted cupcakes can be kept in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

For the Frosting:
1¼ cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
¾ cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
Pinch of salt
¾ cup light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
8 ounces chocolate (milk, semisweet or dark), melted and cooled

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Do you have a favorite chocolate cupcake recipe??

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Mini S’more Trifles

I think S’mores are lovely. Really, really lovely. Really they are one of my favorite things about summer. I was thinking about S’mores and I was thinking about trifle and so then I came up with the two of these things together.

mini-smore-trifle

These are easy and quick and that’s part of the reason they are great!

mini-smore-trifles3

Mini S’more Trifles

Ingredients

  • One Bite Brownies
  • Graham Crackers, broken up
  • Mini Marshmallows
  • For the Chocolate Ganache
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 pound semi sweet chocolate, chopped (You can also just use chocolate chips!)

Instructions

  1. Combine the chopped chocolate and heavy cream into a clean microwaveable bowl.
  2. Microwave for 1 minute at a time, taking it out to stir well. Continue doing this until the chocolate is completely melted.
  3. Allow the ganache to cool slightly.
  4. Layer trifles in clean pint jars.
  5. Start with ganache on bottom.
  6. Then break up two one bite brownies and slightly press down into ganache.
  7. Layer more ganache, then layer marshmallows on top, slightly pressing down.
  8. If you have a kitchen torch, toast the top of the marshmallows.
  9. Then sprinkle broken pieces of graham crackers.
  10. Break up two more one bite brownies and slightly press down.
  11. Layer more ganache, sprinkle broken pieces of graham crackers and finish with marshmallows.
  12. Torch top marshmallows.
https://rhondasteed.com/mini-smore-trifles

mini_smore-trifle1

The best part is that you don’t have to turn the stove on once!

mini_smore-trifles2 When my husband ate his, he warmed it up for about 10 seconds in the microwave and it made the marshmallows all gory and yummy.

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If you attach a plastic spoon, you can drop off a treat to a friend.

mini-smore-trifles6

An easy, quick chocolately treat!

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Mini Cherry and Almond Galettes

This post was originally shared over on Simple As That

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I don’t use a lot of prepared foods. I like to make most things from scratch. But one exception to that rule at our house is puff pastry. I have made it from scratch and it is anything but simple! It took 2 days and a whole lot of butter. Buying it is a whole lot easier. 😉 My favorite brand is from President’s Choice but there are other brands out there. It is so easy to make an appetizer or entree or this dessert!

You can use any fresh fruit really. I used cherries cause that’s what we had around the house that day.

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Open your box of puff pastry and unroll it.

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Cut it into squares.RLS_0983

Add some cut up cherries (or other fruit).

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Sprinkler with sugar and almonds.RLS_0988

Fold up the edges around the filling.

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Put it on your cookie sheet.

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Put an egg into a little bowl and mix it up with a fork. Then use a pastry brush to brush the egg wash over each one and sprinkle with a little bit of sugar.
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Then pop them into a preheat 400 degree oven for 15 minutes or until they are golden brown. That’s it. I like them warm with ice cream.

RLS_1045

Mini Cherry and Almond Galettes

A Galette is a rustic tart/ pie. It’s free formed and done without a pan. That’s part of what makes it so easy! For these little hand ones you need only 5 ingredients.

Ingredients

  • 1 Box of puff pastry
  • Fresh Cherries
  • Sugar
  • Sliced Almonds
  • 1 Egg

Instructions

  1. Open your box of puff pastry and unroll it. Cut it into squares.
  2. Add some cut up cherries.
  3. Sprinkle with sugar and almonds.
  4. Fold up the edges around the filling. Place them on your cookie sheet.
  5. Put an egg into a little bowl and mix it up with a fork. Then use a pastry brush to brush the egg wash over each one and sprinkle with a little bit of sugar.
  6. Then pop them into a preheat 400 degree oven for 15 minutes or until they are golden brown.
https://rhondasteed.com/mini-cherry-and-almond-galettes

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But they are great all on their own too!

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For some other easy 3 ingredient fillings you can go see this post too.

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101+ Birthday Gift Ideas for your Friends: Crispy Crunch Pie

I’m excited to share today 101+ Birthday Gift Ideas for your Friends, including my Crispy Crunch Pie. I am joining forces with Kristen Duke in her Birthday Celebration Week along with over 100 talented bloggers sharing lots of inexpensive ideas and free printables! All week long, Kristen is sharing birthday tips and giveaways so be sure to check out her Party.

When I first read what Kristen wanted I was thinking of a few gift ideas and even had one to do (I’ll share my other idea soon) but then I thought more about what I would give as a gift. And when my friends have a birthday, I take food!! I always take food! (Well sometimes I take flowers too!) So with that thought in mind here is a new recipe creation with a printable.

Crispy Crunch Pie Gift

As for the other creative ideas, a lot of these gifts are versatile for any occasion, and can be a to gift to your friends, family, or even that gal that you’d like to get to know better. Even more fabulous–most gifts are under $5, and have coordinating printables to make it super simple!

101 Birthday Ideas for Friends

{Blog Hop Birthday designs by C {dot} love}

But first, I wanted to add a Happy Birthday to Kristen! 😉

HappyBirthdayfriend Now, on to the treat. I was at Bulk Barn not long ago and got a bag of mini crispy crunch bars. Now these bars are truly Canadian chocolate bars. So if you live somewhere else you can substitute for a different kind or you can order them from here.

 I was thinking about these tasty little morsels and then I was thinking about pie. So I came up with this little number….

Crispy Crunch Pie

Crispy Crunch Pie

Ingredients

  • One baked cooled Pie Crust
  • 4 Crispy Crunch Chocolate Bars, crushed
  • For the Carmel Layer
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • For the Chocolate Ganache Layer
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 pound semi sweet chocolate, chopped
  • For the Chocolate Mousse Layer
  • 1/2 block 8 oz. of cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup icing sugar
  • 1 cup of whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup chocolate

Instructions

  1. Bake your pie crust and cool it.
  2. Using a microwaveable bowl, combine the butter, corn syrup, brown sugar and sweetened condensed milk. Mix well together.
  3. Boil on high in the microwave for 1 minute. Take it out and stir.
  4. Microwave again for 2 minutes and take out and stir.
  5. Do it again once more. Then let carmel sit for 5 minutes until it has cooled a little bit.
  6. Then pour the caramel on top of the pie crust.
  7. Add the crushed crispy crunch bars on top of the carmel.
  8. Combine the chopped chocolate and heavy cream into a clean microwaveable bowl.
  9. Microwave for 1 minute at a time, taking it out to stir well.
  10. When the cream has come to a boil, pour over the chopped chocolate, and whisk until smooth.
  11. Allow the ganache to cool slightly before pouring over the pie. Let pie cool.
  12. Cream the cream cheese and add icing sugar.
  13. In separate bowl melt the chocolate. Mix into the cream cheese.
  14. In a separate bowl mix whipping cream until stiff and then fold into the cream cheese mixture.
  15. Spread the mousse layer on top of the pie.
  16. Keep the pie in the fridge until just before you serve.

You can use a different kind of crushed chocolate bar if you can't get a hold of Crispy Crunch bars.

https://rhondasteed.com/crispy-crunch-pie

Crispy Crunch Pie Cut

It’s super sweet. Just like Kristen 🙂

Crispy Crunch Pie

If you want to print out the printable for the pie you can download it here.

CrispyCrunchPieAre you ready for some inspiration? Join in on the BLOG HOP! Click on each of links below each collage to see the gift idea and printable closer, along with instructions on how to make them, like mine above. I like to open a bunch of new tabs, and Pin my favorites for later. Don’t forget to follow the Birthday Gift Ideas Pinterest Board as well, to save future great ideas.

>>>>>>>Important info! Blog Hops often have glitches the first day. If the link has an ERROR, simply click on the HOME button for each site, or google the blog name next to the link, and you should see their gift post there. Links will be updated as soon as possible.<<<<<<<<<<<<

free printable blog hop

1. Birthday Balloon Gift + matching free Print by Capturing Joy with Kristen Duke
2. Stamped Cocktail Napkin + Printable by Delineate Your Dwelling
3. Buckets of Fun gift idea+Free Printable by Craftiness is Not Optional
4. 7 Candy Bar Love Notes to say “Happy Birthday” by The Dating Divas
5. Have a Flippin’ Awesome Birthday by Dessert Now Dinner Later
6. Fishtail Loom Bracelet by I Should Be Mopping the Floor
7. Lemonade Lip Balm by Pretty Handy Girl
8. Hair Tie Birthday Gift & Printable Tag by Wait Til Your Father Gets Home
9. Gift of Sunshine Idea + Free Printable by Sweet Charli
10. I hope your birthday is a whole “lotto” fun by C.R.A.F.T.
11. Chicken Spice Rub w/ Printable Tags by Over the Big Moon
12. Birthday in a Bag Gift Idea by Seven Thirty Three
13. Quick Note for your Birthday Printable by Liz on Call
14. Otter Pop Gift with Printable Gift Tag by Somewhat Simple
15. {you} Series Magnets Printable by Ruffles and Rain Boots
16. Tea Cup Succulent by Your Homebased Mom
17. Pretty Pincushion + Printable by Let’s Eat Grandpa
18. Lemon Bath Salts & Free Printable by See Vanessa Craft
19. Diet Coke Birthday Kit by Pink Peppermint Prints
20. Chocolate Filled Insulated Tumbler Gift by The Girl Who Ate Everything

free printables blog hop

21. Easy Funfetti Cake Balls with Printable by Salt and Pepper Moms
22. Hands Down Best Friend Around by Eighteen25
23. Berry Happy Birthday Printable by Stuffed Suitcase
24. Whisk Birthday Gift with Free Printable by Cupcake Diaries
25. Paper Plate Gift Idea by Crafting in the Rain
26. Popcorn Gift Printable by Breezy Bakes
27. Life Saver: Birthday Gift in a Jar by Here Comes the Sun
28. Decoupage Wooden Pendant by Twin Dragonfly Designs
29. Have a coffee on me: Funky Coasters by Funky Junk Interiors
30. Swanky Black & Gold Cosmetic Bag by A Prudent Life
31. DIY cocktail napkins by kojodesigns
32. Nail Polish Gift by Southern Hospitality
33. Banana Cake by Whats Cooking with Ruthie
34. Paparazzi – the PERFECT friend gift by Sugar Bee Crafts
35. “latte” fun birthday gift by Our Thrifty Ideas
36. Homemade Funfetti Cupcakes + Printable by Tastes Better from Scratch
37. Pearls are Always Appropriate by Mommy Envy
38. Girls Just Want to Have Fun Birthday Gift by A Little Tipsy
39. Manicure Kit Birthday Gift with Printable by Blooming Homestead
40. Orange you Glad Cup by Artsy Fartsy Mama

free printables

41. Donut Gift Tag by Pretty Providence
42. Rainbow Inspired Birthday Gift + Printable by Thirty Handmade Days
43. Drink Topper and Tag by LandeeLu
44. DIY Bath Salts using Essential Oils by Unskinny Boppy
45. Friends are Like Chocolate Chips by Delightful Deets
46. Paint Can Succulent Planters by East Coast Creative
47. A Bundt Cake Gift & Printable by Dukes and Duchesses
48. Jam Birthday Gift & Printable by Happiness is Homemade
49. Jazzed up Frames by House for Five
50. Favorite Things Gift Ideas by inkhappi
51. Toe-tally Cool Nail Polish Gift Idea + Free Printable by Simply Designing with Ashley
52. Quote Book by Reasons to Skip the Housework
53. Iron On T-Shirt Gift by Becoming Martha
54. DIY Humorous Girlfriend Gift by Brassy Apple
55. Tea-riffic Birthday Gift Idea & Printable by Mom Endeavors
56. Turn Today Into A Celebration by Dolen Diaries
57. You’re A Lifesaver Printable by Live Laugh Rowe
58. Happy Birthday Jar {free printable} by Kiki and Company
59. Mason Jar Flower Vase + Printable by R & R Workshop
60. Easy $5 Wooden Charm Bracelet by Craftily Ever After

free printables

61. Polka Dot Mason Jar Vase by The Cards We Drew
62. Free Printable Mini Notes by Confetti Sunshine
63. Bath Bomb Easy Birthday Gifts by Tried and True
64. Ball Jar Printable Tags by The Country Chic Cottage
65. Eat More Cake Birthday Gift Idea and Printable by Play. Party. Pin.
66. Have a “berry” happy birthday by The Contractor Chronicles
67. Merci Chocolates + Hey Birthday Girl french girl printable by Handmade in the Heartland
68. Five Minute Leather Necklace Tutorial + Birthday printables by Delia Creates
69. Ah-Mason Birthday Gift Idea by Lolly Jane
70. Simple Dangle Earring Tutorial by Bombshell Bling
71. Symphony Bar Brownies by Among the Young
72. Wishing you an E “straw” diary Birthday by Ginger Snap Crafts
73. DIY Washi Tape Cacti by Fry Sauce and Grits
74. State Pride Cheese Board by Addicted to DIY
75. Reusable Monogrammed Solo Cup by Mom 4 Real
76. go-to gift…EARRINGS! by A Girl and A Glue Gun
77. Embroidered Mixed Media Bookmarkers by The Creative Goddess
78. Beyond Measure Birthday Printable by Like Mother Like Daughter
79. Birthday Facial Kit Gift by The Benson Street
80. DIY Jewelry Bookmark by Design Dazzle

blog hop free printables

81. Birthday in a Jar – Birthday Printable Tags by A Pumpkin and a Princess
82. Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl Party Cookies by Crazy Little Projects
83. You are the Bee’s Knees by Love the Day
84. Birthday Candy Jar by Inside BruCrew Life
85. Hip Hip Hooray, today is your birthday!” printables by The Crafted Sparrow
86. Treat Yo Self Printable by Girl Loves Glam
87. Chocolate Facial with printable by TidyMom
88. Happy Birthday Sweets by A Night Owl
89. Quick & Easy Hydrangea Cake by Sweet C’s Designs
90. Sweets for the Sweet by Simply Kierste
91. Citrus Whipped Honey Butter Jars by Sand and Sisal
92. Diet Coke Gift for a Friend with Printable by Sweet Treats and More
93. A Latte for Two + printables by One Krieger Chick
94. Cookie Monster Birthday Gift Tag by I’m Topsy Turvy
95. Root Beer Float Cake in a Jar by Giggles Galore
96. Treat Yo’Self Printable Watercoloring Box by Persia Lou
97. Fruity Body Scrub with Printable by Mad in Crafts
98. Magnetic Necklace Charm by Sowdering About
99. Happy Bee Day with Printable by Just Another Day in Paradise
100. Manicure in a Jar by That’s What {Che} Said…
101. UBER lucky to have you in my Life by Maybe I Will
102. Free Happy Birthday Printable by NoBiggie
103. DIY Wine Bag & Charms Gift by Sypsie Designs
104. Crispy Crunch-y Pie with Printable by Just Rhonda
105. “You’re the Silver Lining” Friendship Nail Polish Gift by The Happy Housie
106. Tie One On for Your Birthday (Hair Tie Gift Free Printable) by illistyle

Did you have a gift idea that stuck out to you? Go ahead and visit your favorites and let them know you love it!

Follow the Pinterest Gift Board now!

Follow Capturing Joy with Kristen’s board Birthday Gift Ideas on Pinterest. footerMore posts like this:

Mini Lemon Cheesecakes with fresh Strawberries

I was trying to think of a dessert that was Canadian to share this week with Canada Day coming up. So my mind went to Red and White Desserts. These little cuties are perfect for Canada Day. Red and White (and yellow….)  You could leave off the lemon curd and have them be less lemony with the strawberries on top. (But then you wouldn’t have lemon curd on them….)

minilemoncheesecakes

I had helper in the kitchen when I was making these.

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I love to have my kids help but somedays I just want to do it myself. Oliver and Eli both REALLY like doing the mixing. The only problem (besides them fighting over it) is that sometimes Oliver decides he’s “done” and just lets go of the mixer. Yup, while it’s mixing. That can be…..messy.  I don’t recommend it.

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Mini Lemon Cheesecakes with fresh Strawberries

25 minutes

15 minutes

40 minutes

24 mini cheesecakes

Ingredients

  • 2 (250 g) blocks of cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 Tbsp all purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp of finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 3 large eggs
  • Nilla Wafers
  • Fresh Strawberries, washed and diced
  • For Lemon Curd
  • 8 large egg yolks
  • Finely grated zest of two lemons
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp of freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 sticks (10 Tbsp) unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces

Instructions

    For the Lemon Zest (from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook)
  1. Combine yolks, lemon zest, lemon juice, and sugar in a heavy bottom saucepan; whisk to combine. Cook over medium high heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon (be sure to scrape the sides of the pan), until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon, 8 to 10 minutes.
  2. Remove saucepan from the heat. Add salt and butter, one piece at a time, stirring until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it directly to the surface of the curd to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate until chilled and set, at least 1 hour or up to 1 day.
  3. For the mini Cheesecakes:
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  5. Line 24 muffin tins with liners and fill with Nilla Wafers.
  6. Combine cream cheese and sugar and mix well with hand mixer. Combine until smooth.
  7. Add in sour cream, flour, zest and juice and mix well.
  8. Add in each egg, beating just until each egg is combined.
  9. Pour cheesecake mixture evenly into each prepared muffin tin.
  10. Bake in preheated oven for 15-18 minutes or until tops of cheesecakes lightly browned and firm.
  11. Cool.
  12. After they are cool, cover tops of each mini cheesecake with 1-2 tablespoons of lemon curd (depending on how lemony you want them!)
  13. Add diced strawberries on top and a little lemon zest if desired.
https://rhondasteed.com/mini-lemon-cheesecakes

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If you don’t want to make your own lemon curd you can buy it (I think I’ve seen it in a store before…. maybe by the jams?). But just give it a shot! It’s soooooo tasty! I looove lemon. The lemon in these adds a nice bright spot on top of the tasty cheesecake base. And the Nilla Wafer provide the “Crust” for them. I actually could just eat lemon curd with a spoon. Or on ice cream. Or a shortbread cookie. Hmmm, now my mind is wandering to think of all the things lemon curd goes on…..

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Iff it wasn’t Canada Day and you weren’t going for Red and White (and yellow) then you could add blueberries instead and it’ll be tasty too!

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Easy White Cake

There are lots of basic recipes that I think are handy to have on hand. And one is an easy and quick white cake. Maybe you don’t have a cake mix and you still wanted to make cupcakes. Or make a trifle that has a white cake in it. Or layered cake. This is that kind of recipe. It’s one that comes from my grandma. She made it up a few years ago.

easy_white_cake

It is quick and easy and makes a moist cake with a nice crumb.

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Easy White Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 2/3 cup cake flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup sugar + 1/2 cup
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 3/4 cup milk + 1/4 cup milk
  • 5 eggs separated
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Combine cake flour, baking powder, salt and 1 cup sugar in a mixing bowl and mix well.
  3. Add in oil and 3/4 cup milk. Beat together. It'll be really stiff.
  4. Add in egg yolks and 1/4 cup milk and vanilla. Beat that until smooth. (Should be quite thin.)
  5. In another bowl beat up your 5 egg whites until stiff and slow add 1/2 cup sugar and beat until it turns to a stiff meringue. The fold the cake flour mix into the egg whites. (Don't beat it - just fold it in.)
  6. Bake in a preheated oven until top is golden brown or a toothpick into the middle comes out clean. Works well for cupcakes (13-15 minutes) or round cakes (20-23 minutes).
https://rhondasteed.com/easy-white-cake

 

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For these ones I added a lemon butter meringue icing and a single lemon jelly bean.

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Mini Galettes

Yesterday I posted over on Simple As That  an easy summer dessert recipe. Today I just wanted to share some other combos for the easy recipes.

Other easy combos:

  • Apple and dark chocolate
  • Pear and White chocolate
  • Apple and Cranberry
  • Rhubarb and Strawberry
  • Blueberry and pecans
  • Peach and Raspberry

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Go check out the really easy recipe over at Simple As That 

Katey’s “Fried” Ice Cream

I love getting together with other women, especially when we have food!  That makes it even better! I’m in a great ladies lunch group that gets together monthly. We rotate homes and get together and eat good food and chat. This last month we had this for dessert. The hostess told me what was in it and I went home and gave it a try! Here is my version of Katey’s Fried Ice Cream.

All you do is put 2 cups of Frosted Flakes, 2 tsp of cinnamon and 1 cup chopped (or grated) white chocolate into a food processor and chop it all up until it’s nice and small. Then you take one serving of ice cream (still frozen) into your hands and roll it into a ball. (Yep, it’s cold, just do it quickly!) Then roll the balls into the mixture. Place them on a cookie sheet and place them all back into the freezer.

To make some chocolate sauce, put 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa, 1 2/3 cup white sugar and 1 1/4 cup water in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil and let boil 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

When you serve them, add some yummy chocolate sauce on top. That’s it. So easy and soooo tasty!

Chocolate Syrup Recipe from All Recipes.

 

Caramel Popcorn

One of my very favorite treats is caramel popcorn. Really, if it involves caramel… I like it. A LOT. This is my favorite recipe for popcorn. (There are many kinds of caramel  for many kinds of foods ;)) It comes from a family cookbook that I got from my friend Alysha. (It has lots of great recipes in it!)

Carmel Popcorn

Caramel Popcorn

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unpopped corn
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

Instructions

  1. Pop corn and put in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Bring butter, sugar and corn syrup to a boil slightly, only until sugar dissolves.
  3. Remove from heat and add vanilla and baking soda.
  4. Pour over popped corn.
  5. * If you want the caramel to stay soft and sticky, then take it off the heat immediately after the first bubbles. If you want it to be harder then let it boil a little bit longer!

https://rhondasteed.com/caramel-popcorn

Upside Down Pear Cake

There are not a lot of foods that I don’t enjoy. And funnily enough, pears is one of them. I just can not take the texture of them. I want to like them, but then I bite into one and gag. Can’t do it.

So this fall being the smart lady that I am, I got a case of pears. And my family just wasn’t eating them fast enough. (Maybe since I got a case of nectarines and 2 of peaches at the same time…..) Anyways, I was needing to use up some pears. And I wanted to it in a way that I’d enjoy too. (And I’d already canned my limit for the year….. my self imposed limit that is).

This dessert is a result of all these circumstances. 🙂

Pear Upside Down Cake

Upside Down Pear Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 ripe pears
  • 2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
  • 2 tsp + 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

Instructions

  1. Grease a 2 quart glass pan. Peel your pears and cut into slices and layer into the bottom of the pan.
  2. Sprinkle the brown sugar and 2 tsp cinnamon over top of the pears.
  3. Sift together flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.
  4. In a separate bowl, cream butter and sugar in a mixing bowl. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each one.
  5. Add the flour mixture alternately with the sour cream, starting and ending with the flour.
  6. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 25 - 30 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
  7. Eat it warm with ice cream or vanilla bean whipped cream or let it cool to room temperature.

https://rhondasteed.com/in-the-kitchen-upside-down-pear-cake

 

 

 

And here

Pumpkin Pound Cake with Buttermilk Glaze

This is one of my favorite topics! 🙂 I made this a couple days ago for a Pinterest lunch, where everyone brought something they had pinned. It was a tasty time! One of the things I made was this.

I may or may not have a LOT (as in an obscene amount) of food  pinned. I can’t help myself. I loooove recipes. I’ve collected recipes for years. I’ve always thought it would be cool to write a cookbook.  I’ve started making up my own recipes even and really have realized I loooove doing it. It has taken me years to say I could do that. I have always been in the kitchen but I always thought I couldn’t do that.

Pumpkin Pound Cake with Buttermilk Glaze

From Cooking Light

Pumpkin Pound Cake with Buttermilk Glaze

Ingredients

  • Cake:
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (about 13 1/2 ounces)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup fat-free buttermilk
  • Glaze:
  • 1/3 cup fat-free buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. To prepare the cake, lightly coat a 10-inch tube pan with cooking spray; dust with 1 tablespoon flour. Spread pumpkin over 2 layers of paper towels; cover with 2 additional layers of paper towels.
  3. Let stand about 10 minutes. Scrape drained pumpkin into a bowl.
  4. Place 3/4 cup granulated sugar, brown sugar, and 1/2 cup butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed 3 minutes or until well blended.
  5. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in pumpkin and vanilla.
  6. Lightly spoon 3 cups flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife.
  7. Combine flour and next 4 ingredients (through salt) in a bowl, stirring well with a whisk.
  8. Add flour mixture and 3/4 cup buttermilk alternately to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture.
  9. Spoon batter into prepared pan. Bake at 350° for 55 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes on a wire rack.
  10. Remove from pan, and cool completely on wire rack.
  11. To prepare glaze, combine 1/3 cup buttermilk and remaining ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute or until thick, stirring constantly; remove from heat. Drizzle cake with glaze.

https://rhondasteed.com/pumpkin-pound-cake-with-buttermilk-glaze

 

Now go check out these other ladies kitchens…..

 

Rhubarb Sourcream Pie

This is my friend Lonnie and her family:

Lonnie is an amazing person. Her and Shawn have a blended family with piles of kids. And they handle all of it so well. I look up to her in that way so much. She is so fun to be around and such a good cook. And she shares. So that makes her even better 😉 Over two years ago Lonnie brought me one of these pies. And I fell in love with it! SO GOOD!

Rhubarb Sourcream Pie

Anywho, on to the PIE! I think I need one now too….

Rhubarb Sourcream Pie

1 hour

1 pie

Ingredients

  • 4 cups rhubarb
  • your favorite pie crust
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup sourcream
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Roll out your pastry and put it in your pan.
  2. Fill with your rhubarb.
  3. Mix together the sour cream, sugar and 1/3 cup flour and pour over top the rhubarb.
  4. Cut together the 1/2 cup flour, butter and brown sugar and sprinkle over top the pie.
  5. Bake on bottom shelf for 10 minutes at 425 and then reduce heat to 350 and bake for 40-50 minutes until rhubarb is cooked and the top is brown.
  6. Enjoy!

https://rhondasteed.com/in-the-kitchen-rhubarb-sourcream-pie

Banana Cupcakes

Two Sundays ago after we got home from church Lucy came into the kitchen and announced that we HAD to make some cupcakes. It was two people’s birthdays that she heard in Primary and we had to take them some treats. The two people are leaders – one in the Primary Presidency and the other a teacher – not her teacher. A different one.

Regan was on call, Eli had had a hard day and I was tired frankly. But she wanted to so badly. So we made some. And the kids watched me decorate them with the lovely Honey Cinnamon Frosting. They figured out how all three of them could have a beater (two with a beater each and one with a spoon. Lucy drew and wrote on a card for each of them and we all piled in the van. The first house no one was home so I just opened the door and set them inside (this is Raymond!) and the next house the kids (except Oliver 🙂 ) all ran up and delivered them. They were all so happy to have done it.

Obviously them getting to eat the left over cupcakes that day and in their lunches the next couple days sweetened the deal. But what made me the most happy, and I think them too (especially Lucy), is that they did some service for some one else. It was completely 100% her idea. In fact I tried to talk her out of it. I didn’t feel like. It wasn’t the easiest timing.

Sometimes, in fact I feel like a LOT of times, service isn’t convenient. But that isn’t the point. In doing things for other people we are made better and hopefully they are helped too. Reminds me of two sayings. One is a little more polite than the other 🙂

“God does notice us, and he watches over us. But it is usually through another person that he meets our needs. Therefore, it is vital that we serve each other.” – President Spencer W. Kimball

And “Service is like peeing your pants. Everyone can see what you’ve done, but only YOU can feel the warmth.” 🙂 HA!

Yep I know they were just cupcakes, but I am proud of Lucy for thinking of it and for insisting we do it. And hopefully all of them can start with cupcakes and continue on to helping in bigger ways as they age.

These lovely little cupcakes are a favorite. When you are tired of always making banana bread (although with this recipe I am not sure how that happens!) or just want to mix it up… try out these little beauties from Martha.

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (about 4 ripe bananas), plus 1 whole banana, for garnish (optional)
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Honey-Cinnamon Frosting

Banana Cupcakes

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a standard 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Make a well in center of flour mixture. In well, mix together butter, mashed bananas, eggs, and vanilla. Stir to incorporate flour mixture (do not overmix). Dividing evenly, spoon batter into muffin cups.
Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of a cupcake comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan; cool completely on a wire rack. Spread tops with Honey-Cinnamon Frosting. Just before serving, peel and slice banana into rounds, and place one on each cupcake, if desired.

Honey-Cinnamon Frosting
1 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 tablespoon honey
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions : In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat confectioners’ sugar, unsalted butter, honey, and ground cinnamon until smooth, 4 to 5 minutes.

Grandma’s Buttermilk Donuts

There are two kinds of donuts in my life. My mom’s yeast donuts and these.
My Grandma’s Buttermilk donuts.
Grandma's Buttermilk Donuts

A lovely cake crumb interior with a golden brown coating. Cooled and rolled in icing sugar is my favorite way to eat them!
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Grandma’s Buttermilk Donuts
2 cups white sugar
5 Tbsp Crisco (grandma says these do NOT work with a substitute!)
5 medium sized eggs
1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp vanilla
2 cup buttermilk
2 cup milk
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
Flour

Beat sugar, Crisco, vanilla and eggs with an electric mixer until frothy. Add salt, buttermilk, milk, baking powder, baking soda and flour. Add enough flour to make a soft dough. Roll and cut into doughnuts. Fry in hot oil until golden brown. Makes 41 doughnuts depending on how you roll the dough.

And yep… no measuring for the flour… this is straight out of Grandma’s cookbook that I posted about here.

Butterscotch Icing

I found this great recipe for a classic Layered chocolate cake here at Best Bites. I wanted to make it. But I wanted to try something different for the middle and the inside.

So instead I caramelized some bananas (you can see how to do that here from Emeril). I put the caramelized bananas in between the cake layers and then I made a butterscotch icing to go on top.

Chocolate cake with Butterscotch Icing

Butterscotch Icing
1/4 cup corn syrup
2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup whole milk
2 Tbsp butter
2 cups icing sugar (approx)
Combine everything except the icing sugar into a thick bottom pan. Bring to boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Stop stirring and continue to boil until it comes to the soft ball stage. Take off heat and cool until just warm to the touch. Using a hand mixer, beat until right consistency, adding just enough icing sugar to get to right texture! Spread over your cake and enjoy!

Easy Peasy Rice Pudding

It doesn’t get much easier than this!
Easiest Rice Pudding EVER
5 cups milk
1/2 cup white rice
Put in heavy pot on medium-low (just to come to an easy boil).
After 30 – 40 minutes add in
some raisins
1/8 tsp cardamon
1/8 tsp of cinnamon
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
Cook just until it all mixes in.
It will be really runny when you pull it off but as it cools it will thicken up.
Suuuuuuper easy and so tasty!

Caramel Mousse Napoleon with Caramel Sauce and Berries

We belong to a dinner club with some friends. It is really fun to try different foods and get together and laugh a lot 🙂 We meet each month and have a theme – like Martha Stewart or French or Moroccan or 30 mile diet, etc. Well New Years’ Eve we had a party.

Abby (the hostess) made Cornish Hens, something I’ve always wanted to make. It was soo good and so was the rice dish she served with it!!!
Dinner Club Cornish Hens

I had dessert, so I made this.
Caramel Mousse Napoleon with Caramel Sauce and Berries
Caramel Mousse Napoleon with Caramel Sauce and Berries
from Epicurious
Pastry Layers
1 17.3-ounce package frozen puff pastry (2 sheets), thawed
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
6 teaspoons sugar

Caramel sauce and mousse
3 tablespoons plus 3/4 cup water
1 envelope unflavored gelatin

2 3/4 cups sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 3/4 cups whipping cream, room temperature
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter

1 1/2 cups chilled whipping cream

Assembly and final decoration
Powdered sugar
Assorted fresh berries

Make pastry layers:
Position 1 rack in top third and 1 rack in bottom third of oven and preheat to 400°F. Roll out 1 pastry sheet on lightly floured surface to 15×12-inch rectangle. Using small sharp knife and long ruler, trim sheet to 13×10-inch rectangle. Cut in half lengthwise, forming two 13×5-inch rectangles. Pierce rectangles all over with fork; transfer to 1 ungreased baking sheet. Repeat with remaining pastry sheet, transferring to another ungreased baking sheet. Brush rectangles with melted butter; sprinkle each with 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar.
Bake pastries 8 minutes. Reverse position of baking sheets and bake until pastries are golden, about 8 minutes longer. Cool pastries on sheets.
Make caramel sauce and mousse:
Pour 3 tablespoons water into ramekin or custard cup. Sprinkle with gelatin; let soften while preparing caramel sauce.
Combine sugar, corn syrup and 3/4 cup water in heavy large saucepan. Stir over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves, frequently brushing down sides of pan with wet pastry brush. Increase heat; boil without stirring until syrup turns deep golden brown, occasionally brushing down sides of pan with wet pastry brush and swirling pan, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Add 1 3/4 cups cream and butter (caramel will bubble up vigorously). Return to low heat; stir until any bits of caramel dissolve.
Pour 1 1/2 cups caramel sauce into glass measuring cup; set aside pan of caramel sauce. Place ramekin with gelatin mixture in small skillet of simmering water. Stir until gelatin dissolves and mixture is clear, about 1 minute. Mix gelatin into measured 1 1/2 cups hot caramel; cool just to room temperature, stirring occasionally.
Beat chilled whipping cream in large bowl to medium-firm peaks (do not overbeat). Gradually pour cooled caramel-gelatin mixture over cream, folding constantly but gently. Chill mousse 15 minutes.

Assembly and final decoration:
Arrange 3 pastry rectangles on large clean baking sheet; drizzle each with 2 tablespoons caramel from pan. Spread 1 cup mousse evenly over each rectangle. Chill until mousse begins to set, about 1 hour. Reserve plain pastry rectangle.
Place 1 pastry layer with mousse on small baking sheet or board. Top with second layer, third layer, then plain pastry, aligning layers. Press assembled pastry lightly so that layers will adhere. Cover; chill at least 8 hours and up to 1 day. Cover and chill remaining caramel sauce in pan.
Using serrated knife, cut pastry crosswise into 6 pieces. Dust napoleons with powdered sugar. Transfer to plates. Rewarm sauce over low heat just until pourable; drizzle sauce onto each plate. Garnish with berries.

Soo good, and not hard! Give it a try!

Butterscotch Cupcakes

STOP WHAT YOU ARE DOING
And make these cupcakes.
Lovely cupcake
They may just look like plain ol’ white cupcakes.
But hiding inside is a lovely little surprise.
Hiding inside the cupcakes....
Butterscotch Cupcakes
from Food Network here
Cupcakes
* 1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1 pinch salt
* 3/4 cup unsalted butter
* 1 cup sugar
* 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
* 3 eggs
* 1/2 cup milk
Butterscotch
* 1/2 cup sugar
* 2 tablespoons water
* 2 tablespoons Scotch (or other whisky)
* 1/4 cup 35% cream, hot
* 2 tablespoons salted butter
(I used this recipe for butterscotch here instead since i don’t use scotch)
Vanilla buttercream icing
* 1/2 cup unsalted butter
* 1 1/2 cups icing sugar
* 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 3 tablespoons 35% cream, hot

Directions
Cupcakes
1. With the rack in the middle position, preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Place paper or silicone liners in 9 or 12 muffin cups.
2. In another bowl, cream the butter and sugar with the vanilla using an electric mixer. Add the eggs one at a time and beat until the mixture is smooth. With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients, alternating with the milk. Divide the batter among the muffin cups.
3. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the centre of a cupcake comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Let cool slightly. Unmould and finish cooling on a rack.

Butterscotch
1. In a saucepan over medium heat, bring the sugar and water to a boil. Cook until the mixture turns golden-brown. Off the heat, add the Scotch, the cream and butter. Continue stirring until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and let cool completely.

Vanilla buttercream icing
1. In a bowl, beat the butter, sugar and vanilla with an electric mixer until fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the cream in a thin stream and continue beating until smooth. Set aside.

Assembly
1. Using a apple corer or a melon baller, cut a pocket from the centre of each cupcake, removing about 15 ml (1 tablespoon) of cake without cutting through. Fill the pocket with 15 ml (1 tablespoon) butterscotch. Ice the cupcakes with the buttercream icing.

I made them for this little girl….
5 Years Old
Who’s just so happy to be 5.
Happy she's 5
And I’m glad to make them if that’s what she wants.
Lucy and me

And on a side note, when I told Alden I was going out to take pictures of Lucy for her birthday last night he said when do I get MY pictures? And I responded, when it’s your birthday, remember how I did that for Eli on his birthday and I did that on your last birthday, etc? His response, “yeah but what about right NOW?” And I would have except the light was fading fast and we ran out of light. So coming up for his birthday week – pictures of him, his party, lots of ALDEN. 🙂

And seriously, make these cupcakes. They are my favorite thing I’ve made in a while. And I bake a lot. I MAY have had 3 and half today. 🙂

BBQ Smores

BBQ Smores
We tried BBQing some smores for an FHE treat. It worked well. The marshmallows soft but not brown. But good.
Now it's time to taste it
Alden and Lucy and I enjoyed them. (Reg sometimes skips the treats we have around here. Me not so much.) 🙂
Aug 9- mmmm Smores
Surely EVERY summer must include Smores (on more than one occasion.)

So seems blog land has been pretty slow on a lot of blogs. Wondering who’s still checking often and what you’ve all been doing lately. (and eating)

Chocolate Mousse Cake

Chocolate Mousse Cake

I’ve seen this a few places online and wanted to give it a try and then made it twice in two weeks. It’s that yummy. The best thing about it is that it’s not too heavy. Not as heavy as you’d think being so chocolate and all.

Essentially you just make two round cakes. You can make them from scratch or you can use a mix. Did it once each way. Both taste great.

Bake them then let them cool (this picture I was in a hurry to get the cake done and the stuff was dripping off it 🙂 )

Level off the bottom cake – there are fancy tools to do that but I’ve never had one and always just used a knife. Which totally works.

Then add a layer of chocolate mousse. Like this one or this one or this one. Any chocolate mousse recipe will work.

So you layer that on top of your bottom cake. Then add skor bits. Top with your other round cake. And cover that with a chocolate ganache. Which you can find here. Then add more skor bits. And enjoy.

It’s tasty!

Linzertorte

I had requests from every one who tasted this for the recipe. SO here it is!!!

DSC_0133

LinzerTorte
(from Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook)

1/2 cup hazelnuts
1 cup blanched almonds
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg yolk
Raspberry Jam

Preheat oven to 350. Spread the hazelnuts in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Toast, stirring occasionally until skins begin to split, about 15 minutes. Immediately rub hazelnuts vigorously in a clean kitchen towel to remove skins (as much as will easily come off.) Let cool.

In a food processor (i used a magic bullet), pulse the hazelnuts and almonds until finely ground. (be careful not to over process it into a paste). Transfer into a small bowl, set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt; set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolk and beat 1 minute to combine. With mixer on low, add ground nuts and the flour mixture all at once; beat just until combined.

Divide dough in half. Using your fingers, press half the dough into a 9 inch cheesecake pan (you can use a bottomless tart ring if you have one but I didn’t) to form the bottom and up the sides about 3/4 inch. Chill until firm, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, lightly dust a piece of parchment paper with flour and roll out the other half of dough to a 13 inch round. Place on a baking sheet and chill until firm, about 30 minutes.

Using an off set spatula, spread the Raspberry jam evenly over the chilled base. Set aside. Cut the dough into 3/4 inch wide strips from chilled round of dough.(the recipe tells you to use a fluted pastry wheel but I don’t own one of those, so I just used my pizza cutter!). Arrange strips on top of the jam in lattice pattern. Freeze until firm, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350.

Bake, rotating pan halfway through until torte is golden brown, about 40 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 20 minutes. Remove ring and cool torte completely. Best eaten the day it is made as the crust gets soggy if left too long.

TRY IT!!!

And while i’m talking food, an update on my MSBH Challenge.
76. Linzer Torte
77. Bagels
78. Blueberry Muffins
79. Plum Coffee Cake Muffins
80. Marble Cake (SERIOUSLY good one!)
81. White Chocolate Glaze
82. Danish Dough

Banana Carmel Cake

Last March I made this cake for a Book Club I was hosting at my house. It was scrump-diddly-umsious. And they told me to email them the recipe. And I never got around to it (sometimes I’m LIKE that unfortunately) I just made it again this past week. And I thought I’d finally post it and send it along to all those lovely Book club ladies who I miss and wish I could attend. Instead maybe they can eat my cake 🙂 A little late. But better than never. Try it. I promise you’ll love it!

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(from the Essence of Chocolate by John Scharffenberger & Robert Steinberg)
3 cups sifted all purpose flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/4 canola oil
2 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
3 ounces semi sweet chocolate chopped into chip sized chunks
1 1/2 diced ripe bananas (about 2)

Carmel
1/2 cup firmly packed lightly brown sugar
2 Tbsp whole milk
4 Tbsp unsalted butter cut into chunks

Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350ºF. Butter and flour a 12-cup (10 inch) Bundt pan.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, salt and baking soda.
In the bowl of a mixer with the paddle attachment, combine the eggs, oil, sugar, vanilla and almond. Mix on medium speed til combined well, stopping to scrape the sides if needed. Mix in the dry ingredients, about 1/2 at a time, stopping to scrap the bowl if necessary.

Remove the bowl from the mixer and fold in pecans and chocolate. Carefully fold in the bananas; do not over mix.

Pour into the prepared pan/ Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

Meanwhile, about 5 minutes before the cake is done, combine the brown sugar, milk, and butter in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat, swirling the pan occasionally as the butter and sugar melt. Once it is amber in color, remove from the heat.

Remove the cake from the oven and immediately, using a long skewer, poke holes all over the surface of the cake. Pour the hot caramel over the top, poking more holes and pushing the cake slightly away from the sides of the pan as necessary to allow the caramel to soak into the cake’s top and sides. Place on a cooling rack to cool slightly.

When the cake has cooled, but is still warm to touch, unmold to a serving platter.

Serve either warm or at room temperature.

**Don’t add more bananas as it will make it a gummy cake.**
And I added a chocolate ganache on top just for a little extra va-va-va-voom.

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MSBH Challenge: 33(Baking Powder Biscuits) 34 (Parker house Rolls) 35 (Cranberry Zucchini Muffins

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And there is a new family up on my photo blog if you wanna see them.
A lovely neighbor I have.

Rugelach

I have one Jewish friend.
Well technically he is Regan’s friend.
From Medical School.
(And some times he reads this thing…. so Hi Asaph!!!)

I mean I grew up in Southern Alberta.
There isn’t a big Jewish population in Hill Spring.
When I grew up there it was Mormons and a few not any religions.
I don’t know about know since when I visit there I don’t know half of the people there. And even the ones I did know, I don’t recognize them. (Actually a young adult came up to me and said hello today and I was thinking he was being overly nice to a tired-yoga-pant-pony-tail-not-much-makeup mother carting around three kids. But he was a (a very handsome) guy (which is weird to call him that since the last time I saw him he was like 12) from Hill Spring walking by and noticed it was me and stopped to say hello and let my kids pet his beautiful chocolate lab dog.)

Anyways, back to my Jewish friend.
(Since we are friends on facebook I can call him my friend right?)
Today I made something for my MSBH challenge called Rugelach.
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It is very different from anything I’ve ever made before! The dough kind of felt like too soft sugar cookie dough. waaaay to soft. Like add more flour soft. But I did what the recipe said. And let the dough sit in the fridge overnight. You can add dried fruit, nuts or chocolate (or a combo of all three) for the filling. The chocoholic in me opted for nuts and chocolate. 🙂

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I have no idea if I made them right.
I need my one Jewish friend to try them out. And tell me if they are close to what they are supposed to be.
Too bad you live in Calgary Asaph! 🙂

Alden trying one. He seemed to enjoy it.
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And just cause they were looking cute after the bath, a blurry but still cute photo…
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MSHB Challenge #6

Banana Chiffon Cake

Banana Chiffon Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 7 large eggs, yolks and whites separated
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar

1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. In a large micing bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a medium bowl, mash bananas. Add oil, egg yolks, vanilla and 3/4 cup cold water; mix to combine. Add to flour mixture, and whisk batter until smooth.
2. In a large bowl, place egg whites and cream of tartar; using an electric mixer, beat until stiff peaks form. Fold into batter just until combined (do not overmix.) Pour into a 10-inch amgel-food cake pan with legs. Bake until a toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean, about 55 minutes. Invert pan onto legs over counter; let cool completely. Reinvert pan, and run a thin metal spatual around edge to release onto platter. Dust with confectioners’ sugar. Serve.

(I added some cream cheese icing.)