Raspberry Grapefruit Popsicles

Raspberry Grapefruit Popsicles

Some of the most common and complex inventions as well as food concoctions have been created “by accident”. One of these accidental concoctions includes the popsicle. Basically, a man named Frank Epperson left a drink with a string in it outside of his house overnight. The next morning he returned to outside to find that his drink was actually frozen. He then pried the remnants out by using the straw as a handle. In turn, this prompted the idea for the modern-day popsicle.

Fun facts aside, I had been craving a fruit-flavored popsicle for quite some time, especially since the Summer and warmer temperatures have arrived. For my first homemade popsicle I wanted to use a few different flavor combinations. This resulted in grapefruits for a tangy flavor and raspberries for a sweet taste. I literally only used three ingredients – fresh squeezed grapefruit juice, raspberries and just a touch of sugar – for these Raspberry Grapefruit Popsicles. 

Step 1: Cut and Juice Grapefruit

Cutting and juicing grapefruit for popsicles

Step 2: Blend Raspberries and
Grapefruit 
Juice Together

Blend raspberries and grapefruit juice together for popsicles

Step 3: Taste and Add Sugar (if needed)
or Adjust by Adding More Grapefruit
Juice to Make it Tangier 

Blended raspberries and grapefruit juice for popsicles

Step 4: Pour Juice into Molds and Freeze

Popsicle molds for grapefruit and raspberry popsicles

Step 5: Pop the Popsicles Out of
the Molds and Enjoy!

Raspberry Grapefruit Popsicles

The fun part about making these popsicles is that I had to wing most of the process so I found myself tasting the blended juice a few times and changing my ratio of grapefruit juice to raspberries quite a bit until I was settled with an optimal taste. All in all, I was definitely a fan of this flavor combination and the fact that I primarily only used fresh fruit (instead of most store-bought popsicles with larger amounts of added sugar). However, next time I will definitely enjoy experimenting with being more creative and perhaps trying a layering effect with whole fruit within the popsicles.

Popsicles are a fun dessert to have at home, they taste delicious and they don’t require many ingredients to make a great outcome! What type of popsicle combinations have you tried making?

Cheers!

Raspberry Grapefruit Popsicles

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Grilled Pitas with Feta, Red Onion, Olives & Tomatoes

I don’t dine at Greek restaurants or try to make Greek-inspired dishes very often, so when I do, I really savor the chance and opportunity to do so. This recipe, Grilled Pitas with Feta, Red Onion, Olives & Tomatoeslooked liked a perfect dish with Greek flavors and I especially liked the fact that I would get a chance to utilize the outside grill yet again this week.

This is very simple to make. All it requires is a few minutes for prep/cutting, patience for the grill to heat up, and a penchant for feta cheese!

Step 1: Cut Tomatoes, Onions, Garlic and Olives 

Step 2: Toss Prior Ingredients Together
with Olive Oil and Fresh Mint

Step 3: Brush Pitas with
Olive Oil and Grill

Step 4: Grill Pita and Add Tomato Mixture

Step 5: Cut and Eat!

I happen to like feta cheese, but I realize that not everyone does. I made this with my boyfriend and quickly learned he is definitely not a fan. It’s not fun when he won’t eat any, but at the same time, I get to have more. In these situations, I guess it’s a good thing because I get to have more… unless I just eat the whole thing. In that case, perhaps it’s not the best, but oh well!

Cheers!

Nectarine Raspberry Pie

Let’s face it – a pie is a pie. All right, that sounded like an incredibly silly statement, but I promise it’s true. Just hear me out. I will attest that a homemade, totally-from-scratch-pie does take a lot of time and effort and if done well is totally worth it. But, really, it’s all about what is actually in the pie a.k.a the delicious filling. I’ve made too many apple, blackberry or blueberry pies to last a lifetime (okay, not really, but you get the point). So, like I said, the key to the pie is the filling!

This past weekend I wanted to make a pie. So, when I saw a recipe for Nectarine Raspberry Pie, I got a little excited. I do realize that this isn’t the most unique pie; however, it is definitely different than the norm so I figured I needed to go for it. Plus, I’m always in the mood for experimenting with new recipes!

Step 1: Make Pie Dough


Step 2: Put Filling in and Bake


Step 3: Slice and Eat


I normally like making a pie with intricate latices, but I totally embraced the opportunity to make this pie more rustic with a full-fledged cover. The edges on this pie browned a little bit more quickly than I expected, but in the end, the pie still cooked well and the flavors from the fruit developed well.

This is definitely a great pie if you’re in the mood for something different than the standard apple or cherry pie.

Cheers!

Grilled Citrus Marinated Flank Steak with Arugula Salad


I love grilling meat in the Summer just so that I can make meat dishes paired with lighter and fresh flavors. Even though I gouged my finger (on accident) and, yes, major fail, I still love grilling. In my opinion, a lazy Sunday with grilling just can’t be beat!

This recipe is from Epicurious and is titled Grilled Flatiron Steak with Tomatoes and Tapenade. I didn’t prepare all the other items that this recipe calls for; however, I just followed the directions for the seasonings which was I felt was perfect. Plus, I really liked the idea of using an overly abundant use of orange juice and zest to boost the citrus flavor and aroma.

Step 1: Chop Fresh Oregano and
Shallots; Zest and Juice Orange

Step 2: Spread Seasonings and
Chopped Items on Prepared Steak

Step 3: Grill Steak

Step 4: Cool and Cut in Thin Slices; Serve

The key is to let this marinate at least one hour so that the flavors really start to set in. As a result, the citrus flavors really permeate into the meat – not too much, but just enough. Next time, I’d like to add more heat and a bit more paprika. But, all in all, this was a great recipe that I’d like to repeat again!

Cheers!

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!

Rhubarb Apple Pie


In my opinion, rhubarb is vastly unrecognized, often forgotten about, and I’d almost go as far to say that it doesn’t quite get the attention that it deserves. I might be biased (probably); however, it is my belief that the distinct sour and tartness of rhubarb baked into desserts is phenomenal.

This past weekend, I found this recipe for Rhubarb-Apple Pie in the latest issue of Cooking Light. I realize that not everyone is as crazy as I am about rhubarb; therefore, I liked the fact that this recipe paired rhubarb with another fruit in order to compliment its flavor with something more sweet. I think that this genius move increased the likelihood that more people would try it. As a result, my aspiration is that I can hopefully convert more people to like rhubarb with this recipe now!

Step 1: Slice Rhubarb and Peel/Slice Apples


Step 2: Combine Apples and Rhubarb
With Sugars, Lemon, Cinnamon and Flour


Step 3: Combine Butter, Brown Sugar and
Flour for Topping (I added Oats!)


Step 4: Place Fruit in Dough and
Place Topping on Top


Step 5: Bake and Eat!

I normally like to make my own pie dough; however, I simplified the baking process by using a pre-made crust from the grocery store which saved a lot of time and effort; therefore, the rest of this recipe was very easy with the simple chopping and assembly of the ingredients into the crust. All in all, I’m very happy with the result of this pie. The rhubarb combined immensely well with the apple and provided a dessert that was more attractive to those who aren’t as much of a fan of strictly sour desserts. A must-try and one that will be repeated again!

Cheers!


Lemon Icebox Pie With “Savannah Smiles” Crust

A few weeks ago, my lovely roommate alerted me to a contest that the Girl Scouts of Western Washington were putting on: a Food Blogger Contest. Any Food Blogger who signs up for the contest receives five free boxes of Girl Scout cookies in exchange for creating a recipe utilizing Girl Scout cookies and submitting the recipe to the contest.

Not only was I ecstatic to participate in this local contest, but I absolutely love Girl Scout cookies. I usually indulge in Girl Scout cookies that are more of a chocolate-y nature; however, I decided to use the lemon-flavored Savannah Smiles cookies for this baking extravaganza instead. Why? I have recently been itching for warm weather and have lately welcomed any and all chances to partake in foods and activities that remind me of Spring, sundresses (hence the blog title) and barbecues (still cannot wait for my upcoming visit to the South!). And, since the Northwest has experienced a few rare recent bouts of sunshine for the Winter, I figured I’d complement the sunshine by baking something lemon-inspired to get us all in the mood for Spring!

So, with a few household ingredients and a generous gift from the Girl Scouts, I happily made a Lemon Icebox Pie (with a twist – the crust substituted Savannah Smiles cookies instead of graham cracker crumbs).

Step 1: Grease Springform Pan

Step 2: Crush Lemon Cookies


Step 3: Pour Melted Butter, Sugar, Crumbled
Cookies and Salt Into Food Processor;
Pulse Until Combined


Step 4: Press Crust Into Springform Pan

Step 5: Whisk Condensed Milk With Lemon
Juice; Whisk Egg Yolks With Lemon
Zest;
Combine Both Mixtures


Step 6: Pour Liquid Mixture Into
Springform Pan; Bake at 325
Degrees for 25 Minutes; Freeze Overnight

Step 7: Cut Paper Stars (Or Other Shapes);
Place Onto Cooled Cake; Sprinkle
With Powdered Sugar


Step 8: Add Blueberries and Eat!

I love lemon-themed recipes. Out of all the ones that I’ve tried, I believe this one best captured a lemon flavor through an intense sour lemon filling that was complimented by a sweet Girl Scout cookie lemon crust.

Don’t be fooled – this recipe rings true to the name of “Icebox”. This pie is technically “frozen”; however, it does not come out of the freezer frozen like a brick. But, beware, it does start to melt and get soft rather quickly so I recommend consuming quickly. I decided to serve this on Superbowl Sunday, and luckily for us all, it was tasty enough so that it wasn’t a problem!

Cheers!

Again, I’d like to give a special shout-out and thank you to the Girl Scouts of Western Washington – this was a fun contest and I’m glad that I had the chance to participate. Don’t forget to check out their cookie sale March 2 – 18. If you need more information, check out their awesome cookie locator platform or their app or check them out on Facebook and Twitter to see what they’re doing!