Recent Posts

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

I feel like I'm trying to speed summer up in Michigan by posting a Strawberry recipe. Michigan strawberries won't be ready for a couple more weeks, if we are lucky. When I think of strawberries I instantly think of strawberry rhubarb pie. This is my grandpa's favorite pie. If you see him in the summer and show up with a strawberry rhubarb pie you will definitely be his favorite person.

As a kid I was not a super fan of pie crust, I would always eat the center of the pie and then throw away the crust. My parents never really minded which is good. When I started baking I had started eating my crusts, but was a little intimidated to make my own pie crust. I have since gotten over that fear. However I found this recipe before that and it is so delicious it will have a permanent spot in my recipe collection.

You get all the goodness of the center of the pie without you guessed it the crust. This recipe is relatively easy to make. Mix all the fruity stuff and then top with the crisp topping. However I have to give a disclaimer that chopping the strawberries and rhubarb takes some time. It is well worth it in the end though.

I took the pictures with some whipped cream on top, which tastes fantastic. Does whipped cream taste bad on anything? I didn't think so. However its is even better with vanilla ice cream. You get this warm vs cold thing going on that is hard to resist.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

  • 3 1/2 cups rhubarb, diced
  • 4 cups strawberries, diced
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar, divided
  • 1 Tbsp corn starch
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup oatmeal
  • 1 1/2 sticks butter
Cooking Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl mix together the strawberries, rhubarb and 3/4 cup of the sugar.
  3. In a small bowl dissolve the corn starch into the orange juice.
  4. Mix orange juice into the fruit.
  5. Pour fruit mixture into a 1.5 qt baking dish.
  6. In a large bowl mix together the flour, brown sugar, salt and oatmeal.
  7. Add the butter and cut it into the mixture with a pastry cutter or a fork.
  8. Sprinkle the oatmeal mixture on the fruit.
  9. Place the baking dish on a cookie sheet.
  10. Bake for 1 hour. Check the color of the topping at 45 minutes, and cover with foil if it is getting too brown.
  11. Serve warm.
Recipe Source: Laura's Baking Talent

You may also enjoy

Traditional Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberry Shortcake Cookies

Monday, May 26, 2014

Chicago Dogs

Happy Memorial Day Everyone! I hope that you have all celebrated with a parade, a BBQ or a golf tournament (ok that is probably just the people in my area). Celebrating Memorial day means that summer is in full swing. I love burgers, kabobs, and pretty much anything that goes on the grill. However I really love hot dogs.

Why do I love hotdogs? Well they are super easy. You just take them out of the package and throw them on the grill and you are good. However I agree that a plain hot dog is not overly exciting. So at our house we like to dress up our hotdogs. The great thing about dressing up your hot dogs is that you can prepare everything in advance.

You can chop up the veggies you are adding and its easy to pull them out before serving. I have done Greek coliseum dogs, German pretzel dogs, and Mexican hot dogs.  I even make my Tzatziki dip for the Greek coliseum dogs. However I realized that I didn't have any American hot dog versions. Since we live really close to Chicago you can't get more American than a Chicago dog. We made these earlier this weekend and they were super easy to make and so delicious.

To make a Chicago dog you need sliced tomatoes (I got smaller ones), mustard, relish, diced onions, thin sliced dill pickles, and celery salt. Traditionally they also have a sport pepper on them, but I'm dubbing it optional. You can buy poppy seed buns, or make your own especially if you have a random overly large jar of poppy seeds you are waiting to use up. Who me?

I hope you try these and add a little Chicago Style to your BBQ this summer.

Chicago Dogs

  • 4 hot dog buns
  • 1 Tbsp melted butter
  • 2 Tbsp poppy seeds
  • 4 hot dogs
  • 3 small tomatoes sliced
  • 2 dill pickles sliced in half
  • yellow mustard
  • relish
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 sport pepper (optional)
  • celery salt
Cooking Directions
  1. Start by warming the hot dog buns in the microwave for 15 seconds.
  2. When the buns have been removed from the microwave brush the top of them with the melted butter.
  3. Sprinkle the buns with the poppy seeds.
  4. Grill the hot dogs on the grill for 3 minutes, rotating them once per minute.
  5. Lay the tomatoes on one side of the bun.
  6. Then add one hot dog to each bun.
  7. Put the dill pickle on top of the hot dog opposite of the tomatoes.
  8. Add yellow mustard and relish to the top of the hot dog.
  9. Sprinkle on the diced onion.
  10. Top with a sport pepper (optional).
  11. Shake celery salt over the whole hot dog.
You may also enjoy

Mexican Hot dogs

Greek Coliseum Dogs

German Pretzel Dogs

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Getting to see Cat Cora

The senior PGA golf tournament is being played at a golf course in our town this weekend. Hubby Jim is ecstatic because he gets to go and watch all the pros. I was excited as well, because the course is absolutely beautiful and I love being outside. However the cool thing is that the tournament is sponsored by KitchenAid so they brought in some celebrity chefs, including Cat Cora. I couldn't pass up the opportunity to see her present.

We got there early and got to see her review the set up. As the hubby said she is all business, making sure that everything is there and in its place.

There were a couple of guys on the side that helped her set up. One also stayed close and took away the dirty dishes etc as she went through the presentation. She later joked that wouldn't it be nice for everyone to have a helper like that at home. Yes... please come help me with all my blog posts.

Afterwards I was lucky enough to get a copy of her cookbook and have her sign it for me.

She demonstrated three recipes for us. The first recipe she did was for these jalapeno poppers. They looked absolutely delicious and were so easy to make. Planning to try them and put them on the blog soon. She also did salmon burgers and a twist on a banana split sundae. Both looked amazing. She was also really down to earth and answered a lot of questions.

I was already flipping through the cookbook on my way home, and talking to the hubby about all the recipes that I wanted to try.  It was a really great and fun experience to see her speak. I can't wait to try some of her great recipes.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Raspberry White Chocolate Blueberry Pudding Cookies

Technically the first day of summer doesn't happen until June 21st. However in my book Memorial Day Weekend is the true start of summer. You get your first long weekend... and everyone starts to plan all of those BBQ parties.

I love to make desserts for the BBQ parties that we attend. Can you imagine that? I always think that cookies are great for a BBQ. They are easy to pack, they require no silverware, and everyone can sneak as many as they want.

I thought it would be fun to do a Red, White and Blue cookie to celebrate Memorial day this weekend. However i was a little stumped on how to accomplish this without just defaulting to sprinkles or candy. Although these M&M cookies I made for last years Fourth of July are delicious!

So anyway I was thinking about what was red and blue... and I instantly went to raspberries, strawberries and blueberries.... Then I remembered these raspberry cheesecake cookies that I made with muffin mix.... So I decided to try mixing raspberry and blueberry muffin mix to see if they would be a great idea for a Red, White, and Blue cookie.

They not only turned out but they were delicious. So if you are looking for a great easy cookie idea for your BBQ this weekend these are guaranteed to be a hit.

Raspberry White Chocolate Blueberry Pudding Cookies

Yield: 2 Dozen
  • 1 box (7 oz) Jiffy Raspberry Muffin Mix
  • 1 box (7 oz) Jiffy Blueberry Muffin Mix
  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 pkg cheesecake instant pudding
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups white chocolate chips
Cooking Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a medium sized bowl add the raspberry muffin mix, blueberry muffin mix, flour, and baking soda. Mix them and set aside.
  3. Add the butter and brown sugar to a large bowl, and cream them together.
  4. Once creamed add in the vanilla and pudding mix and mix again.
  5. Add the eggs and beat them into the mixture.
  6. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and mix well.
  7. Lastly add the white chocolate chips and mix again.
  8. Measure out 2 Tbsp of dough and round it into a ball and place on the cookie sheet.
  9. 6-8 cookies will fit on a cookie sheet.
  10. Bake for 8-10 minutes.
  11. Cool cookies on the cookie sheet.

You may also enjoy

Banana Split Pudding Cookies

Red, White, and Blue Cake

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Raspberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

This coming weekend is Memorial Day... know what that means... the start of summer. One thing I love about summer is getting ice cream. We love to get a cone and go sit at one of the lookouts at the beach and just sit and enjoy. I've always wanted to make ice cream at home, but we don't have an ice cream maker so I always thought that wasn't going to be possible until I purchased one.

Well guess what you can make awesome ice cream at home without an ice cream maker. All you need is something to mix up the ingredients. They are actually all pretty soft so you could do it by hand ... I'm a wimp so I used the stand mixer.

Then you put them in the freezer over night and then its ready to enjoy. That is one thing you have to have is a freezer. Although I'm guessing pretty much everyone has one of those.... The great thing about ice cream at home is that you can be as creative and decadent as you went. As you can tell I went all out there with this raspberry cheesecake ice cream.... raspberry pie filling, cream cheese, and chunks of graham crackers. Yup! There is no way you could not enjoy this..

Raspberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

  • 1 package (8oz) cream cheese
  • 1 (8oz) container cool whip
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) condensed milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 can Raspberry Pie Filling
  • 9 graham crackers
Cooking Directions
  1. Put the cream cheese into a large bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth.
  2. Add the cool whip, condensed milk, and vanilla and mix until well combined.
  3. Roll in the raspberry pie filling and mix again.
  4. Break the graham crackers into large chunks and add to the batter. Combine them in with a large spoon.
  5. Put everything in a large freezer safe container with a lid.
  6. Freeze overnight.
Recipe Source: Laura's Baking Talent

You may also enjoy

No bake Banana Split Dessert

Raspberry Cheesecake Pudding Cookies

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Tomato Basil Spaghetti

Hi everyone... it feels like forever since I've done a blog post, but in fact its only been a little over a week. I've decided to go in a little bit different direction with the blog. Don't worry I will still be baking and cooking up excellent recipes... I've just decided to not do the theme weeks.

I had lots of fun coming up with ideas, and I actually still had a whole year of ideas of what I could do for different theme weeks. It just got a little overwhelming to post on a set topic on a set schedule. So I would end up doing the baking/cooking for the blog and never go the chance to try numerous recipes that I wanted to try.

Speaking of new recipes this tomato basil spaghetti is the perfect addition to your summertime dinner list. It is super easy to make.. and it is a great use for all of those summertime tomatoes. Did I mention that I planned to have 2 tomatoes in my garden, but I got carried away with seeds and they all sprouted. So I now have 8 plants, and numerous homes for them. Come August I am sure I will be giving away tomatoes like crazy.....

Tomato Basil Spaghetti

  • 4 oz spaghetti
  • 1/2 cup Italian dressing
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 4-5 leaves basil
Cooking Directions
  1. Boil a pot of water. Add the spaghetti and cook for 6-7 minutes or until its al dente.
  2. Drain spaghetti and rinse with cool water.
  3. Move the spaghetti to a large bowl, and mix in the Italian dressing.
  4. Add the mozzarella cheese and tomatoes.
  5. Lastly add the basil, either chopped or as a garnish.
Recipe Source: Laura's Baking Talent

You may also enjoy

Greek Pasta Salad

Zucchini Cups

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Dulce de Leche Tres Leches Cake

Happy May everyone! When I was little I would celebrate May Day by leaving flower baskets on my neighbor's porch. I would take a piece of paper and roll it into a cylinder. It would then be filled with lilacs from our huge lilac tree. For some reason I always remember these May Days being very bright and sunny.

I'm beginning to wonder what happened since its now 45 and rainy. I'm sure that there were some cold May Days growing up. Its probably just like anything else that seem bigger when you are a kid and seems to shrink when you see it again as an adult.

Want to know something that doesn't shrink... the love we have for this cake. It is Jim's favorite cake for his birthday (which happens to also be Cinco de Mayo). However this cake doesn't need to be saved only for that day... it can be enjoyed all year long.

Besides tasting great.. it is also the easiest cake I've ever made. Trust me anyone can do it.

Dulce de Leche Tres Leches Cake

  • 1 yellow cake + ingredients to make it
  • 1 can (13.4 oz) dulce de leche
  • 2 tsp water
  • 1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cup cool whip
Cooking Directions
  1. Prepare the yellow cake mix and bake in a 9X13 pan.
  2. Let the cake cool for 10 minutes after removing it from the oven.
  3. Take 2 Tbsp of the dulce de leche and the water and mix it together in a small bowl. Set aside for later.
  4. Put the remaining dulce de leche, evaporated milk, and sour cream into a blender. Blend until well mixed.
  5. Use a fork to poke holes into the cooled cake. The holes should be about 1/2 inch apart.
  6. Pour the milk mixture on the cake. Poke more holes in the cake if the mixture does not get completely soaked up into the cake.
  7. Put the cake in the fridge for one hour.
  8. Top the chilled cake with the cool whip.
  9. Take the dulce de leche and the water you set aside earlier and warm it in the microwave for 10 seconds.
  10. Drizzle the caramel mixture onto the cake.

Recipe adapted from Kraft. 

You may also enjoy

Peanut Butter Chocolate Birthday Cake

Chocolate Chip Cake