Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Delicious Blueberry Pie

After a long day of eating po-boys and visiting the Abita brewery we were all worn out and lazing about the house.  Mom announced "girls, come in here and make this pie."  I popped up off the couch and rushed into the kitchen.  Looking around I noticed I was the only girl.  Oh well, this pie is super easy and super yummy.  Open up your copy of Talk About Good and flip over to page 428.  WHAT?!  You don't have Talk About Good?  Well, that just won't do.  Rush out and buy a copy right now .... or just follow the links I provided.  Now then, back to the pie.  We used the two part, roll out, frozen type of pie crust.  I'd tell you what brand but honestly I just went with what mom handed me and didn't pay attention.

I, absent mindedly, forgot to mix the cinnamon into the dry ingredients so I just sprinkled it on top.  Once the butter melted and everything came together you couldn't tell I'd messed up.

The recipe didn't say to slit the top crust but it seemed like a good idea and since I tend to enjoy playing with my food I went ahead and did it.

And this is my beautifully baked "fresh blueberry pie."  I wanted to get you a picture of a slice so you could see the yumminess inside BUT it all got cut up and devoured so fast I didn't have a chance.  We ate it with vanilla Blue Bell ice cream and wished we had 2.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Strawberry Bars

"Strawberry Chocolate Slices" is number 642 of the 1001 Cupcakes, Cookies and Other Tempting Treats.  These turned out to be an irresistible treat!  I even managed to give myself a belly ache.  The bottom layer is something like an oatmeal cookie and the top is similar but with almonds.  In between these is a layer of strawberry jam and chocolate chips.  The end result is a delicious, gooey cookie bar.  Of course, we made a few changes but in this case they were minor.

Into the flour mixture we went with a full half cup of brown sugar instead of the "scant" half cup called for.  My sister and I are brown sugar junkies and we feel no shame about it.  This is the bottom layer after baking for 10 minutes.

The jam, chips and top layer (with almonds) all prepped and ready to be added.

The "heaping 1/2 cup" of chips didn't seem like enough so, after this picture was taken, we added some more.  The mix of large and small chips was part fun and part availability.

The top layer applied and patted down with bits of chips and jam peeking through.

All baked and cut up.  At 25 minutes they still weren't browned so we let them go for 30.

The recipe says to cut them into 16 bars but this seemed HUGE so we went with about 40.  This yields a nice sized mountain of 2 bite treats.  This is one I'll definitely make again.  Blackberry jam might be nice next time.  The next time I make this it will be to bring to a large group so I don't eat them all myself.

What kind of jam would you use?

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Cream Puffs for all!

Once again this recipe is from 1001 Cupcakes, Cookies & Other Tempting Treats.  The recipes for the puffs themselves and for the cream filling seemed just right.  The chocolate brandy sauce was delicious after we added almost twice the chocolate called for.  Initially the sauce was very thin and runny.  Someone must have enjoyed the cream puffs because they and their sauce were abducted and taken to my sisters' grandparent's house were they were entirely devoured.

Baked and filled cream puffs.

Cream puff assembly line.

Monday, July 19, 2010

mmmmmmmmm sourdough

First things first.  The hubby got me a new book last night.  The Cookie and Biscuit Bible by Catherine Atkinson.  This is an English book.  (English like from England, as well as written in the English language.)  This seems like it would cause some confusion but it doesn't.  Naturally things are listed in grams and mls but the ounces and teaspoons are listed right next to them.  They use some English words for things but then have the American names following.  I spent last night skimming over it and soon I will have something to show you from it.

Now back to the sour dough.  This is, of course, from Artisan Breads Everyday.  Maybe it's just my favorite bread book because it's my only one so far but it hasn't let me down yet.  I made the slow version this time.  It takes an hour longer than the quick version but after a week of prep that doesn't really seem like much of a difference.  My sister and I made one loaf to leave home for my hubby and my bro inlaw while we took the other loaf home to our mom, her dad (my step dad) and our sister.  EVERYONE liked it.  I saved some mother starter so it won't take me a week next time.  Uh oh, now I have myself looking forward to the next time!

Bread dough whirling around in the mixer.  I guess it's hard to tell that this is an "action" shot.

After sitting in the fridge in a big ball over night we split it into 2 loaves and let it rest on the counter.

Loaf 1 ready to go into the oven.

Loaf 2 ready to bake.

Loaf 1 all baked and cooling.  Man, waiting for fresh bread to cool before you eat it sure is torture!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

bad bad me

I've been super mega busy so I took a little time away.  I now have stuff I've baked piling up waiting to be posted.  Well, not the food, just the pictures and maybe some stories.

Let's go with blondies today.  I made these for the hubby way back before I went to New Orleans.  Man, it feels like that's been ages ago.  I got this recipe from '1001 cupcakes, cookies & other tempting treats' edited by Susanna Tee.  I think I've mentioned before that this book is not available on Amazon, I found it at Half Price Books.  Many of the recipes in this book seem to need a little adjusting but it's a great idea book and starting point.

So, the blondies.  These have layers of cream cheese with chocolate chips swirled in.  It called for about 2/3 of a block of cream cheese.  If I make them again I'll use the whole block.  Straight out of the oven they were a little dry but the 2nd day they were much better.  I'd never lined a brownie or blondie pan with parchment paper but I can promise you that from now on I always will.  After they cool you just lift them out on the paper and you can get nice cuts.  No icky cuts or bad corners!  I LOVE IT!  Ok, here they come.

All swirled and ready to bake.

Baked and cooling.

Moist and almost gooey on the 2nd day.

These might also be good with butterscotch chips or caramel swirls.  Mmmmmm, caramel swirls!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

C is for COOKIE!

Yep, I heard the Cookie Monster song on tv last night.  Yep, I sang along proudly!

In honor of hearing the Cookie Monster song I bring you the cookies my sister and I made last week.  These are pretty much your standard chocolate chip cookie recipe but with a few little tweeks to make them even tastier.  One of those tweeks is extra chocolate chips, the others are secret.  Shhhhhh.

We'd already made a few cookie sheets' worth by the time the camera came out.

My middle little sister using the ice cream scoop method to portion out cookies.  (And my dog who forgets that he can't have chocolate.)

Cooling.  Don't they look tasty?

All piled up and ready to eat.  I think we made approximately 42 million cookies but I could be a little off.

So now I'm curious.  What's your favorite type of cookie?  Does it change with the season or with your moods?  If you could only have one type of cookie for the rest of your life what would it be?

Monday, July 5, 2010

I'm Back

Last week I had a sister in town and then I rode home with her and stayed in New Orleans for a few days.  While she was here we baked and baked and baked and then when we got to New Orleans we baked some more.  Here at my house we made pizza, sour dough bread, seed bread, chocolate chip cookies and blondies.  At mom's house we made strawberry bars, cream puffs and I made a blueberry pie.  Since I don't want to overwhelm you with so many delicious things at once I'll post them one by one over the next few days.  Let's start with the pizza.  Yes, I know, pizza isn't a "sweet" but we baked it and it was delicious.  I think we made this last Monday night.  My husband loves pepperoni pizza but neither my sister nor I eats red meat so we made 2 pizzas.  The hubby got pepperoni and onion with roasted garlic, basil from my garden, plain old bagged mozzarella and some delicious smoked mozzarella from the deli section of the store.  Sis and I had roasted bell pepper, roasted garlic, green onion, mushrooms, basil, roma tomato, plain mozzarella, smoked mozzarella and smoked gouda.  Both pizzas had some garlic salt and Tony Chachere's sprinkled between the tomato sauce and the cheeses.  Sadly both were made on store bought pizza crusts.  Maybe sometime soon I'll make a bunch of pizza crusts from scratch and freeze them.  If I did different sizes and different flavors I'd always be prepared for pizza or bread sticks.  YUM!  Anyways, I only got a before picture of our pizza and I only got an after picture of hubby's.   I hope you enjoy them as much as we did!

Veggie pizza for my sister and I.

Pepperoni pizza for the hubby.  That's a lot of pepperonis!