Brown Butter Raspberry Tart

How I ended up picking this recipe was strikingly similar to how I decide to purchase something when I’m shopping for clothes. How? Well, sometimes when I have shopped, I have purchased something that “I thought I liked” on the spot. Unfortunately, some of these impulse buys have resulted in disappointment after a few weeks because what “I thought I liked” I didn’t actually like at all. So, in order to nix buyer’s remorse, I’ve eliminated impulse buys and instead try to wait a few days or weeks before purchasing something “I think I like”. My rule is that if I still like the item in a few days or weeks, I’ll consider buying based on need, budget, etc.!

Choosing this recipe was no different. I had been eyeing this Brown Butter Raspberry Tart for quite some time. So, yesterday, after thinking about it some more, I realized that I’ve thought about it enough – I had read all of the positive reviews and it looked amazing so I just needed to do it!

And, I’m glad I did.

Step 1: Make Crust and Bake (Let Cool);
Mix Together Eggs, Sugar and Salt 


Step 2: Brown Butter in Pan

Step 3: Mix Egg Mixture and
Browned Butter Together 


Step 4: Arrange Raspberries “Pointy”
Side Up on Bottom of Cooled Crust;
Carefully Pour Liquid Mixture Over; Bake 


Step 5: Cut a Slice and Enjoy!

I absolutely love the rustic feel of this tart. In my opinion, I think the tartness of the raspberry offsets the sweet filling nicely. I’m glad I chose wisely with the recipe, but perhaps I shouldn’t have taken so long. Oh well, at least I picked a good recipe that I’ll have plenty of opportunities to replicate in the future.

Perhaps I’ll start using my “shopping” techniques more often with my selection of recipes from now on!

Cheers!

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Homemade Oreos


I officially have a new obsession – Pinterest. As a result of my recent “pinning” excursions, I have found many different intriguing and recipes that look absolutely delicious. One particular recipe that caught my eye was Homemade Oreos via the blog Sugar Cooking. Oreos have always been a childhood favorite of mine as well as a guilty pleasure. The thought of making these had never previously popped into my mind; however, after seeing that picture, it was all I could think about. After all, sometimes, homemade re-creations just seem better and it’s something I’m always more proud of (as long as it turns out well, of course!).

Step 1: Mix Sugars, Chocolate, Butter
and Egg Together to Form Dough 




Step 2: Form Dough Into Balls, Flatten and Bake


Step 3: Cream Powdered Sugar With
Vanilla Extract and Butter for Frosting 



Step 4: Spread Frosting Between Two
Cookies and Enjoy With Milk 

It is so hard to only eat just one Oreo. In this case, my individual gigantic Oreos resulted in the size of at least three Oreos. So, I guess that means I only get to eat one? Maybe?

Because of their size, these Oreos resemble more of a whoopie pie than the classic Oreo (note: make the dough balls extremely small – even smaller than you consider to be “small”). Nonetheless, they definitely tasted like them. With a  simple bake time of nine minutes and a requirement of normal household ingredients, these are a must-try!

Cheers!

Blackberry-Peach Crumble

Since warmer days of summer are winding down to an end, I wanted one last fruit-inspired dessert to remind me of summer barbecues with cotton dresses and the wafting smell of fresh flowers before Fall sets in and we all settle into rain boots and jeans. As I started to ponder various fruits, I realized that I had not yet made a single dessert with peaches within the past few months. I had settled upon using peaches, but I also wanted to make something with blackberries. Luckily for me, my once thought dilemma turned into a blessing because I decided to combine the two fruits into a Peach Blueberry Crumble (and just substituted blackberries instead). Voila!

Step 1: Take (Very Ripe) Peaches and
Boil in Water for One Minute


Step 2: Place Peaches in Cold Water; Slide
Sides Off; Cut Peaches; Zest Lemon and Juice

Step 3: Add Peaches and Blackberries to
Lemon Zest, Sugar and Lemon Juice


Step 4: Mix Cut Butter With Sugars,
Flour, and Other Ingredients;
Place Onto Fruit; Bake for 40-45 Minutes

Sometimes I just love when desserts look pretty. Crumbles look… well… crumbly… and not exactly aesthetically pleasing or pretty. But, I totally bypassed this notion because the result was delicious. And, a scoop of vanilla ice cream always makes desserts just that much better!

Cheers!

Strawberry-Almond-Cream-Tart

So, continuing with this past weekend’s trend of using almonds, I found a recipe for a Strawberry-Almond Cream Tart during a recent shopping excursion at the local grocery store. After looking through recipe after recipe in the grocery store magazine aisle, I finally settled upon this one. But, I’m not going to lie, at first glance, I solely wanted to try this recipe because it looked “pretty” and it contained almonds. It wasn’t until after my impulse buy and I was in the car already on the way home that I realized that this would be a perfect dessert for a dinner party: light, summery, and the strawberries I had chosen were actually ripe!

Step 1: Crush Graham Crackers (You
Can Use a Food Processor — I Just Chose
to Smash Them in Bags!)


Step 2: Combine Crushed Graham Cracker
Crumbs With Butter and Sugar 


Step 3: Spray Pan With Cooking Spray;
Press Graham Cracker Crumbs Into Pan 


Step 4: Mix Cream Cheese With Almond
and Vanilla Extracts Plus Sugar 


Step 5: Cut Fresh Strawberries


Step 6: Add Strawberries and
Almonds to Top; Bake and Enjoy! 


Although I altered a few things from the original recipe, I’m happy with how it turned out. I really liked implementing nuts into this dessert because I often don’t ever think to add them to desserts. The key for the best flavor is to toast the almonds and the key to the best construction of this dessert is to use enough cooking spray (I didn’t and had some architectural failure when taking it out of the spring form pan). Anyway, all in all, this is a flavorful dessert that is light and doesn’t leave you feeling too full which is just perfect for summertime!

Cheers!

Buttermilk Pancakes With Blueberry Compote


I rarely make pancakes. But, this past Sunday, I decided to make them on a whim. It wasn’t until I was flipping my first batch of pancakes that I remembered how much I enjoy making them. This brought me back to the days when I used to make “Mickey Mouse” pancakes or make pancake letters that spelled out our names. After experiencing this bout of nostalgia, I realized that my taste bud preferences have vastly changed since then. When I was younger, peanut butter was usually the topping of choice or I would occasionally douse my pancakes in maple syrup. Now, I opt for fresh fruit or fruit flavored syrups instead. So, it’s no surprise that I picked Buttermilk Pancakes With Blueberry Compote to make for a Sunday breakfast.

Step 1: Mix Dry Ingredients Together;
Mix Together with Wet Ingredients 


Step 2: Drop Pancakes Onto Greased Griddle


Step 3: Flip After Bubbles Start to Form


Step 4: Mix Blueberries, Sugar, and
Water Together; Let Simmer for 10 Minutes

Step 5: Scoop Blueberry Compote Onto
Pancakes and Enjoy!


Making pancakes appears easy; however, in my opinion, it takes a perfect art to get them right. I usually have to temper with the temperature and size of pancakes a few times before I can get into a successful pancake-making-rhythm. Unfortunately, this results in a few burnt or undercooked batches, but usually by the third batch I’m creating good results!

My family thoroughly enjoyed this recipe. The blueberry compote was a nice change from a standard maple syrup. Although the recipe doesn’t call for it, I added a bit of cornstarch to the compote to help thicken it a bit. The blueberries were very tasty, but I’d like to experiment with raspberries for next time.

Cheers!

Chicken and Waffles

A few years ago, we held a family reunion in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Although vastly different than the Pacific Northwest, I thoroughly enjoyed that vacation and absolutely fell in love with the scenery, food, and people.  Prior to this trip, I had never been informed about Waffle Houses and a Southern favorite: Chicken and Waffles. I then became highly intrigued as to how savory fried chicken eaten jointly with sweet waffles and syrup would taste. Unfortunately, we ran out of time in Tennessee and I regretfully never tried Chicken and Waffles.

Now, it wasn’t until recently that I was reminded of Chicken and Waffles after flipping through Bobby Flay’s Cookbook. Instantly, my first thoughts reverted to my family’s trip to Tennessee and my regrets for never trying the esteemed dish of Chicken and Waffles. Well, luckily for me, my boyfriend and his roommates happen to love fried chicken. So, with little convincing, the decision was made to make these on a weekend morning.

We chose to make Melba Wilson’s Fried Chicken and Eggnog Waffles with Strawberry Butter from that cookbook. However, we didn’t have eggnog or strawberries (oops!). Instead, we substituted buttermilk and blackberries. The waffles were very similar to a recipe that I used a few weeks ago for brunch (as seen here).

Fried Chicken

Step 1: Marinate Chicken With
Spices and Buttermilk for 2 Hours


Step 2: Coat Chicken With Flour

Step 3: Fry Chicken in Vegetable Oil

Buttermilk Waffles

Step 1-2: Combine Dry and Liquid
Ingredients; Add Whipped Egg Whites
Step 3: Drop Batter on Waffle Iron

Blackberry Butter

Step 1: Cut Softened Butter into Cubes;
Whip in Food Processor; Pulse Berries

Step 2: Form Into “Loaf”; Put in Freezer
to Shape; Serve with Waffles

[Don’t let the picture fool you — although it doesn’t
look appetizing, the butter was one of the best parts!]

Voila: Chicken ‘n Waffles!

[All previous qualms regarding this dish and it’s
questionable taste were completely abolished.
Delicious and a great success!]

Every now and then I crave fried chicken. And, every now and then I crave waffles. But, after this meal we had this weekend, I will definitely crave chicken and waffles concurrently. Although not the healthiest, this is a perfect meal to share with friends and when in the mood for fried goodness and a sweet treat!

Cheers!