Lazy Apple Pie

Leftover pastry dough is one of my greatest joys.  I never get tired of dressing it up with whatever berries and fruits my kitchen supplies.

I like the idea of a non-soggy, easy apple pie.  As a result I made Lazy Apple Pie.

You can follow these steps for tartlets or take the easier route and do the below steps.

Lazy Apple Pie
-pastry dough
-1 apple
-2-4 T. honey (depending on the tartness of your apple)
-cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice
-melted butter

1. Preheat the oven to 375 (F). Cut your thinly rolled pastry dough into any shapes you like and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.

2.  Cut the apple into centimeter cubes and in a small bowl, drizzle honey over them.  Add 1/4 tsp. of cinnamon and a few pinches of the other spices and stir.  Let sit for about 5 minutes.

3.  Using a pastry brush, paint butter over pastry pieces and them paint some of the apple syrup over as well.  Stick in the oven until golden brown (10-20 minutes depending on the size of your pieces)

4.  Put the apple mixture in a small saucepan over low heat and cook until apples are tender.

5. Use the apple mixture like a chip dip with pastry as the chips!


TMNT is Still Popular?

I recently made a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle topped cake for a 7 year old's birthday. I couldn't believe that TMNT was still running.  I had a great time with this cake.



I've got more recipes and photos to come, but here is what I've been up to lately.

Pig Cookies


Flourless Chocolate Cake with Sabayon and Chocolate Sauce

Wedding Cake


Back to Basics

Make your family a loaf of bread.  Don't be contented with store-bought bread full of high fructose corn syrup and preservatives.  You can't go wrong with homemade.

Make it any old way you like.  If it goes stale, make some French toast!


Chocolate Syrup

I came upon this recipe for the easiest, cheapest and most preservative-free chocolate syrup there is on Pinterest.  It was a chance meeting; we were meant to be.
I've found many uses for it; I'll take any excuse to eat some of the stuff.  It is a staple in the refrigerator. Really. Like milk and eggs.

Chocolate Syrup
-1/4 cup cocoa powder
-1/2 cup water
-1 cup sugar
-pinch of salt
-1/4 tsp. vanilla

1. Mix the water and cocoa powder in a small saucepan over medium heat and add sugar.  Bring to a boil and let simmer for 4-5 minutes.  Add salt.
2. Remove from heat and add vanilla, stir well and pour into heat proof jar to cool.  Keep in the refrigerator.

Add a few tablespoons to your iced coffee

 Make chocolate milk

Pour over your brownies

Have an ice cream sundae!

What will you use it for?


Unstoppable Fudge Brownies

Some days are quite simply made for brownies.  I whipped up a pan from the Brownie Bible.

These are delicious fudge brownies that I adapted to make a bit more sophisticated.  So give it a try and enjoy a brownie day of your own.

Fudge Brownies
-2 ounces dark chocolate (60%)
-2 ounces bittersweet chocolate (70+%)
-1 stick unsalted butter
-2 eggs
-scant cup of sugar
-1 T. Grand Marnier
-2/3 cup flour
-1/2 tsp. baking powder
-1/4 tsp. salt
-1/2 cup pecans

1. Preheat oven to 350 F
2. Melt chocolates and butter in a bowl over simmering water and cool slightly
3. In a large bowl, beat eggs with a whisk until frothy and lemon-colored.  Add Grand Marnier and salt, beat in chocolate/butter mixture
4. Sift together flour and baking powder and add to wet ingredients with nuts.  Mix until just incorporated and pour into a buttered and floured 8x8 square pan.
5. Bake 25-30 minutes until cake tester come out with crumbs

Plate lickin' good!


Whole Wheat Greek Yogurt Muffins

Now, for what I fondly call: Kitchen Sink Muffins.

I hate the fact that muffins are basically the most unhealthy breakfast on the face of the planet.  Thankfully, Pinterest exists.  I was able to find inspiration for a healthy and delicious muffin.  I mean these really are delicious.  The great thing is that you can make this recipe your own.  I put everything I had extra of in here.  And they came out wonderfully well.

I've adapted my recipe from here.

Whole Wheat Greek Yogurt Muffins
makes about 20

-1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
-1 teaspoon baking soda
-2 teaspoons baking powder
-1/4 teaspoon salt
-3/4 cup sugar
-12 oz Greek yogurt (plain or your favorite fruit flavor)
-1/2 cup vegetable/canola oil
-1 egg
-1 1/4 cups blueberries or raspberries (fresh of drained frozen ones)
-2 T. your favorite jam

1. Mix ingredients together quickly until just incorporated
2. Spoon batter into lined muffins tins about 2/3 full
3. Bake at 375 F for 20-30 minutes until golden brown and toothpick inserted comes out with a few crumbs


Fruit Filled Hand Pies

I'm starting to love making tart dough because of the leftovers!  It's fun to come up with easy and delicious ways to use up the scraps of dough.

This time I made tiny fruit hand pies.   They looked cute and tasted great!  Plus, I got to use up my leftover blueberry jam.  

To Make:
1. Roll pastry dough and cut with a biscuit cutter.  Put a spoonful of jam or fresh berries into the center.
2.Outline the cutout with egg wash and place another piece of pastry on top, pressing down the edges with a fork.
3. Cut an X mark on the top and cover in egg wash and sanding sugar.  Bake at 400 F for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.


Vanilla Pastry Cream Tart Topped with Easy Blueberry Jam

While it's still summer and the sun still shines, I figured I'd better get my summery desserts out of the way.
I used my favorite tart shell recipe - again - and made another tart.

My favorite part was the blueberry jam, which I made up on the spot!

Easy Blueberry Jam
-2.5 cups blueberries (if frozen, rinse in strainer)
-1.5 tsp. cornstarch
-1 T. water
-4 T. sugar
-1 tsp. honey
-juice from 1/2 lemon

1. Place blueberries in a medium saucepan with water.  Cook over medium heat until blueberries soften, stirring with a heatproof spatula.  Add cornstarch.

2.  Sprinkle 1/2 of the sugar and all of the honey on top.  Continue to cook, tasting as you go.  Some blueberries may be sweeter than others.  Add the remaining sugar if needed.  Cook while stirring 1-2 minutes and add lemon juice.  Cook 3-4 minutes more until mixture is thickened.

3. Pour into a bowl to cool.  Keep in refrigerator.

That went fast.


Caramel Sauce

I've gushed over Martha Stewart before, but this time I really mean it.  That woman is a lifesaver.  I've tried to make caramel sauce once before and failed so horribly that I was afraid to try it again.  Martha's specific instructions gave me courage to try again.  I can now live my life without shame--at least when it comes to caramel sauce.

My recipe is adapted from here.

Caramel Sauce
-1 cup sugar
-5 T. cubed butter
-1/2 tsp. sea salt
-1/2 tsp. vanilla
-scant 1/2 cup of heavy cream

1. Heat the sugar over medium heat in a saucepan-no stirring yet! When the sugar at the edges of the pan start to look melted, use a spatula to pull the edges inward over slightly lower heat.  Continue to use the spatula around the edges until all the sugar is melted and golden brown. Do not burn.

2. Remove from heat and stir in the butter and salt.  Whisk in the heavy cream and vanilla.  Pour into a container to cool.


Waffle Wednesday

Happy Waffle Wednesday!

Ever need an excuse to cook something?  That's what I needed last night when debating whether or not I could get up early and make waffles on a week day.

"Wait," I said to myself "tomorrow is Wednesday...Waffle Wednesday!"  Who could have resisted an alliteration so appealing and delicious? I most certainly could not.

 Easy One-Bowl Waffles
-1 cup whole wheat flour
-1 cup all purpose flour
-2 T. sugar
-2.5 tsp. baking powder
-4 eggs
-3 T. vegetable oil
-1.5 tsp. vanilla
-2 cups milk
-1/2 tsp. course salt

1. Mix the dry ingredients and add the wet to it with a few swift strokes while heating your waffle iron.

EASY AS THAT.  No excuses for next Wednesday.