Tuesday, September 28, 2010

TWD- Tarte Fine (Apple Tart)

PhotobucketThis week's Tuesdays with Dorie treat couldn't be simpler. Leslie (she's wonderful, you should check out her blog) chose a simple apple tart made with puff pastry. If you use an apple peeler and corer, it should take less than ten minutes to assemble the whole thing. Then people will ooh and ahh because it's so delicious and you'll have to confess that it's simpler than any cookie recipe. I like to keep a box of puff pastry in my freezer for "emergencies". Usually I save the second sheet but this time I made ham and cheese turn overs for my brother. He was so excited that I will have to make them (and this tart of course) again soon.

Come back later to see Baby Strawberry's birthday festivities. I baked up a storm and she loved it!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

TWD- Nectarine Upside Down Cake

PhotobucketMy family suffers from birthday clump up- my husband's, brother's, mine, and now Baby Strawberry's birthday are all within a couple of weeks. It's wonderful but crazy and when I found myself making yet another birthday dessert last week I hoped everything would align, knowing this summer time "Cranberry Upside downer" was important- going to my hubby's work! I also made the apple tart that morning, took care of two kiddos, and was all ready to leave when it was time to flip the cake onto the platter. I'm sure you can see the beginning from the end- the cake topped all over my baking sheet and table (which was thankfully clean, even if it isn't fancy and pretty like all these lovely kitchen tables) and was not interested in going back together! I was already late (as usual it seems) and there was no time to make something new, so I put it in my pretty red hobnail bowl and wished for the best.

Fortunately, Dorie delivered and even crumpled, this was one of the most delicious Dorie treats I've made yet! Of course, I was still pretty frazzled from the tragedy and while I remembered my camera bag, I forgot to put my camera inside! So all we have for pictures is the tiny bit of leftovers we brought back from my tall man's work. This stuff was yummy, I'm telling you! CSN Stores has offered to let me review something and I think I should finally get a cast iron skillet (of course I'm loving the expensive, red, Le Creuset one here but I'm sure I could be happy with something more practical like this). The first step to make the cake is to cook the sugar and butter together to make the glaze for the fruit. I bet I could do that step in the skillet, line up the fruit, and pour in the batter (not unlike the Tart Tatin). Throw it in the oven, pull it out and serve ice cream or whipped cream right on top, what do you think?

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I have some new nectarines on the counter and can't wait to make this again- skillet method or even served right out of a bowl! Even blurry phone-pic Baby Strawberry wants more cobbler/cake/deliciousness- and I can't get her to eat fruit most days, despite her nickname! Thank you Sabrina for such a great choice! Get the recipe from her blog here (or buy the book already, it's wonderful!)

Monday, September 13, 2010

Bon Anniversaire

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It was my birthday this weekend and my wonderful best friend brought me Sprinkles cupcakes. I'd never actually tried them before and felt pretty bad about that, since cupcakes are one of my favorite things to make! Will you forgive the camera phone picture? My lens is broken and it's making me crazy! My other beautiful friend made me an enormous red lips cake that was sparkly and shiny like my signature lipgloss. Then I went to the mother daughter church campout on my actual birthday and they surprised me by singing and giving me a mini strawberry cake (that Baby Strawberry promptly devoured). It was a great birthday. I'll be back tomorrow with a messy but delicious Dorie treat. In the meantime, I'm planning Baby Strawberry's birthday (crazy how time flies) and would love any inspiration for the perfect first birthday cupcake. I'm planning on working with my old favorite recipe and think I'll have to do pink... but that's all I have planned for now!

What's your favorite cupcake flavor? I'm a red velvet fan but that's no shocker. I was actually pretty surprised to see that my Orange Creamsicle Cupcakes are the second most searched of my recipes (first? Cafe Rio Pork of course!)

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

TWD- Peanut Butter Cookies

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If I had to choose my last dessert, it would probably be cheesecake or some pastry cream laced tart. Certainly there would be mounds of strawberries on top. Now a cookie? I don't think so, but I do have an awfully hard time resisting them when they are on my counter (usually briefly in a tupperware, since they never make it to a jar). Really though, I think my tall man might actually choose peanut butter cookies as one of his all time favorites. Don't get me wrong, I think peanut butter cookies are yummy- but usually, they just make me want to wrap them around candy bars or drizzle them with chocolate or embelish them some way. But, since it's my tall man's birthday week and he was pulling weeds all morning I figured I could make the cookies how he liked them. This recipe is a little different than mine but I think the final product tasted almost identical, so I've included our family favorite version. I'd never rolled them in sugar, though, which was fun (especially since it made it so the tines of the fork didn't stick when I squished the cookies- a probably a usually remedy by dipping the fork into some flour every few cookies). Don't forget to scoop them out and bake them on a Silpat for uniform, picture-perfect results.Thanks for a great recipe choice, Jasmine! You made my husband a very happy man!

Are you an easy going peanut butter cookie man like my husband? What would your last dessert be?

Peanut Butter Cookies
by Anne Strawberry

1 cup softened butter
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup smooth peanut butter
2 2/3 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 375. Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until well combined. Mix in peanut butter. Slowly add dry ingredients and mix until just combined.

Scoop dough out, place on baking sheet, spacing apart generously, and bake from 9-12 minutes until dough has set but before cookies take on too much color. Remove from sheet and allow to cool. Enjoy warm!