Mango Creamcicles

Mango Creamsicles--Mango Half and Half Bars

Mango Creamsicles–Mango Half and Half Bars

Yesterday marked the official kick off of the summer season, and nothing screams summer more than a creamsicle! They’re the perfect blend between a popsicle and ice cream–half popsicle and half ice cream–doesn’t get much better then that!  If you don’t have a Zoku Quick Pop Maker–order one! It will more than pay for itself.  If you just refuse to spend the extra $10-12 to upgrade from your popsicle molds, then go ahead and use your popsicle molds, but you will not get the creamy center  you get from a typical half and half bar.

Pin It!

Pin It!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup of mango puree

1/4 cup of water

1 cup of organic coconut cream can sub with heavy cream or half and half

1 teaspoon a vanilla extract

2 tablespoons  of maple syrup or sweetener of your choice

Directions: To a cup add the cream vanilla extract, maple sugar, mix well and set aside.  To another cup add the mango puree and water, and mix until mango puree is thinned out.

image

If using classic pop molds, place all ingredients in a blender and blend until well combined.  Divide mixture evenly among molds and freeze for 6-8 hours or until frozen solid.

If you are using the Quick pop maker, Pour the mango juice into the molds and allow to set for 2-3 minutes.
image
At the 3 minute mark siphon out the remaining unfrozen juice with a straw or a unused infant aspirator–I purchased one just for this.  Zoku sells a tool kit for $20 which includes a siphon tool, but the aspirator is $3 and does the job equally as well.
image
 After you have removed all of the juice, pour cream into the molds, and allow to set for another 4-5 minutes, then follow the directions for removing the pops.
image
image
image

Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Before I had my own child, I spent countless hours in the kitchen with my nieces and nephews baking cookies.  It was a tradition actually. A tradition that my  now 22-year-old niece looks back on fondly.  Great considering the fact that I do not consider myself a baker.  This particular recipe is a chocolate chip recipe from Serious eats, but with my spin on it.  By spin, I mean I used the listed ingredients, mostly–and a little extra chocolate, but I did not follow the directions as written.  I sort of did things my way.  If you want to make these cookies exactly as Kenji over at Serious eats intended, then by all means follow this recipe.  In either case, this recipe is tried and true. The brown butter in this recipe lends a nice toffee flavor to these cookies.  I let the dough rest before cooking these.  My intent was to let it rest over night, but the dough smelled so good that Page insisted that we bake a few right away, so we did, after it rested for about 8 hours.  To be honest there was not really a noticeable difference between the cookies we baked early and the ones that were baked the next day.  Good cookies are just good cookies. But that could have been a result of me not following the directions word for word.  But that aside, these cookies were amazing!!!  If you were lucky enough to have one of these at a bake sale–you’d be a lucky duck indeed!

Pin It!

Pin It!

 

 

 

Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

10 ounces of all purpose flour (about 2 cups)

8 ounces of cooled brown butter (2 sticks) see directions for browning butter here

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

5 ounces  of granulated sugar or 3/4  cup

5 ounces of  tightly packed brown sugar or 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (go to my Instagram account to see how to make your own)

10 ounces of chocolate chips

2 teaspoons of kosher salt–I used Pink Sea Salt

2 eggs

2 teaspoons of vanilla extract

Directions: Add  flour, salt and baking powder to a bowl, mix and set aside.  Add cooled brown butter and sugars to a bowl with the whisk attachment.  On medium speed, cream together, for about 5 minutes. Kenji’s recipe calls for using brown butter that has not fully solidified, but I am a busy woman, I put my brown butter in the refrigerator, and came back for it 3 hours later, so I decided to cream it with the sugars.

image

After butter and sugar mixture has creamed, change to the paddle attachment and add in the eggs and vanilla mix on medium speed until the mixture comes together.

image

image

Add in the flour mixture and mix on low speed until dough  is just barely combined , about 15 seconds.

image

There should still be some dry flour remaining.

image

Turn off mixer, add in chocolate chips, using a silicon spatula, fold the chocolate chips into the dough,

image

 

Transfer to an air tight container and refrigerate.  I rolled the dough out onto parchment and then sealed it in a Ziploc bag.  Then separated it into 3 equal sized cookie logsso that I could freeze them for later–that didn’t really happen–I gave one roll away, and we ate the rest:

image

 

image

 

Allow the dough to rest overnight, or as long as you can–up to 3 days in the refrigerator, then cut or scoop dough out into tablespoon sized  portions on to a silpat or parchment lined cookie sheet.

image

image

Bake on 325F for 13-16 minutes.  The cookies should be brown on the edges but soft in the middle.  Remove from oven, transfer to a wire rack to cool, then enjoy!

image

image

 

image

 

Mango Ice Cream

Mango Ice Cream

Mango Ice Cream

My husband loves mango’s and is especially fond of mango kulfi–an Indian ice cream.  It’s a special treat that he likes to enjoy whenever we go out to eat at an Indian restaurant. Although Kulfi is delicious, most recipes call for corn flour as a thickening agent.  I prefer the use of egg yolks to thicken my ice cream.   This ice cream is ultra creamy, not as rich as a Kulfi, but delicious none the less.

Pin It!

 

 

 

Prep time: 30-45 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

3 cups of organic mango puree

1.5 cups of organic milk

2 cups of organic heavy cream

4 egg yolks

1 vanilla bean

1/4 cup-1/2 cup of maple syrup more if you like it ultra sweet or if your mango’s are not sweet

Directions:

In a medium bowl, beat together the yolks, and your sweetener of choice.

image

You can beat by hand using a whisk, or use a hand mixer. Beat until thoroughly smooth and creamy. (A couple of minutes by hand.) If you’re using maple syrup, or agave, the mixture comes together quite quickly.

image

Put 1 cup of the cream, and all of the milk, into a medium saucepan over medium heat.
image
Scrape the vanilla seeds from the bean with the tip of a small knife, and place into the pan; add the pod too. Heat the mixture until just before it starts to simmer (DO NOT LET IT SIMMER). Remove mixture from heat.Strain the hot mixture, reserving the milk and discarding thevanilla bean pod.
image

Add half of the hot mixture to the egg-yolk mixture, and whisk until blended. Be careful when adding the hot mixture to the egg mixture, go slowly you don’t want scrambled eggs.  Stir this mixture into remaining hot mixture in the sauce pan,add the last cup of heavy cream and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, add in the mango puree,and cook until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon.

image

Remove from heat.  Quickly cool the mixture by pouring the hot mixture into a bowl over an ice bath, or let it cool to room temperature for at least 30 minutes. Once the cream has cooled sufficiently, freeze in an ice-cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.

image

If you don’t have an ice cream maker, check out this Link to see how make ice cream without one.

image

You could also freeze the cream in popsicle molds, or make a instant pop in a Zoku Quick Pop Maker–like I did below!

 image

image

Thanksgiving Recipe Roundup-All the Thanksgiving Recipes you need in one post!

Pin It!

 

 

Thanksgiving is just a week away. I’ve been preparing my household and making lists for the big day.  What would this blog be without a post with my most useful recipes to get you ready for the big day.  The below is a list of must haves for almost any Thanksgiving meal.

Chicken stock

No Thanksgiving meal is complete without a good chicken stock on hand.  Nothing beats a homemade stock, especially if you plan on making homemade gravy to go along with your Thanksgiving meal.  Using home made stock to make your gravy could mean the difference between good gravy, and fantastic not a drop left in the gravy bowl, gravy!  One of my favorite chicken stocks to make is the one from Modernist Cuisine.  It requires the use of one pound of ground chicken and one pound of chicken wings, so it’s a bit more expensive to make, because the soul purpose of the meat used int he recipe is to extract flavor, so you can’t eat it, but it’s totally worth it!  You will not find a better chicken stock.  If you prefer not to splurge on the modernist version of chicken stock, try this one–I’ve made both and they both out perform the store bought stuff.

image

 Poultry Seasoning

What’s better than a do-it-yourself seasoning for your bird?  Not much short of finding every single ingredient already in your cupboard–then nothing is better! This poultry seasoning tastes identical to the store bought stuff, only it has no fillers.

image

Potatoes

What’s a Thanksgiving meal without potatoes?  In my family potatoes are as synonomous to Thanksgiving dinner, as turkey is to Thanksgiving.  They are a must have!  In the mean time, this recipe for smashed potatoes is one of my favorite ways to eat potatoes and is the perfect addition to any Thanksgiving meal.  My cauliflower mash is also fantastic!  I’ve had it with and without potatoes and either way the mash is devine!

Smashed Potaoes

Smashed Potaoes

Roasted Garlic Cauliflower Mash

Roasted Garlic Cauliflower Mash

Roasted Garlic

Let’s face it, roasted garlic makes everything better–especially a Thanksgiving meal–so here’s how to roast garlic

How to Roast Garlic

How to Roast Garlic

Creamed Corn

What is it about corn that screams Thanksgiving?  I don’t know but my no cream creamed corn recipe is definitely a brillant addition to any Thanksgiving meal

No cream Creamed Corn

 

Dessert

Finally while I don’t profess to be a dessert wizard, I do have a great recipe for diy condensed milk.  My grandmother would always have a couple of cans of condensed milk out for her baking, and I’m quite sure that she would approve of my do it yourself version. It can be made with dairy and nondairy milks.

How to make Condensed Coconut Milk

 

One of my favorite desserts is Chocolate Pots de Creme  my recipe for them is AMAZING!! If you manage to save any of these for more than 3 members of your family to enjoy, then you’re doing much better than me!

 

So tell me are you ready for the big day? What are you making?

Strawberry Creamsicles

 

Strawberry Creamsicle Half and Half bar

Strawberry Creamsicle Half and Half bars

Strawberries and cream, what’s not to love about this combination?  When I was making Orange Creamsicles the other day I decided I’d make a few strawberry cream bars as well.  My daughter loves strawberries, and she loves ice cream, so I thought since it’s so hot out lately I’d give her the best of both worlds.  The verdict? She loved this creamsicle of course–who wouldn’t?  If you are doing this, my suggestion is to use very ripe, and very sweet berries, otherwise you’ll have to add sugar in some form to make these sweet.

Pin It!

Pin It!

 

 

 

 

Prep time: 5 minutes

Makes 2-3 strawberry creamsicles

Ingredients: 1 cup of pureed organic strawberries

1 cup of heavy cream or coconut cream

1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract

2 tablespoons of maple syrup

Directions: Add the cream, vanilla extract and maple syrup to a cup, mix well and set aside.  If using classic pop molds, place all ingredients in a blender and blend until well combined.  Divide mixture evenly among molds and freeze for 6-8 hours or until frozen solid. If you are using the Zoku Quick pop maker, Pour the strawberry juice into the molds and allow to set for 2-3 minutes.  At the 2 minute mark siphon out the remaining unfrozen juice with a straw or a unused infant aspirator–I purchased one just for this.  Zoku sells a tool kit for $20 which includes a siphon tool, but the aspirator is $3 and does the job equally as well.  After you have removed all of the juice, pour cream into the molds, and allow to set for another 4-5 minutes, then follow the directions for removing the pops.  If you aren’t going to eat the pops right away, you can store them in sandwhich size zip lock bags and place them in the freezer until you’re ready to eat them.  These never last longer than a few hours in our house, so I can’t say how long you could store them that way.  If you like these, you’ll probably love my Orange creamsicle recipe too. image

Fudgesicles

Coconut Fudgesicle

Coconut Fudgesicle

One of my favorite treats as a kid was a fudge pop. Back then they were sold as the low-fat, low-calorie version of ice cream.   Not that any of that mattered to me , I was 7!  I just really enjoyed the creamy chocolate treat!  Back then fudgesicles contained 3 or 4 key ingredients, Milk, chocolate, and cream.  That is a far cry from the ingredient list we see today on a fudgepop box.  When formulating this recipe, I wanted to stick to what made fudgesicles great when I was little, a few ingredients and not much else.  I switched out the milk for coconut milk, and added some coconut cream for richness, the result—-Heaven–creamy fudge heaven!  I didn’t add any extra sugar to this, for my palate it didn’t need it.  My daughter and husband both loved these without any added sugar as well.  However, if you like fudgesicles on the sweeter side, add 2 tablespoons of maple syrup to the mix before freezing.  Although I used coconut milk and cream as a base for these, you can use milk and cream, or just use milk.  You can also use my recipe for Chocolate Tofu Pudding just freeze and enjoy!

Pin It!

Pin It!

 

 

 

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 5 minutes

Freeze time: 4-6 hours

Makes 4-6 pops

Ingredients: 2 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate chopped

1 tablespoons of unsweetened  cocoa powder

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1 cup of coconut milk

3/4 cup of coconut cream

Special equipment: Popsicle molds

Directions: Add the milk, cream and cocoa powder to a sauce pan over medium heat, and whisk until well combined and mixture is just below a simmer–DO NOT BOIL!!! Remove from heat.  Add in chopped chocolate, and whisk until all the chocolate is melted, stir in the vanilla extract. image Divide the mixture evenly among the popsicle molds image Freeze for 4-6 hours or until solidly frozen. Follow your popsicle molds instructions for removing pops from molds and enjoy!   image

Cherry hand pies

Cherry Hand Pies

Cherry Hand Pies

 

 

I am not a fan of baking, but every now and then I get a craving and I drag myself into the kitchen and have a go at it. Baking involves a lot of science, and only after one has mastered the science, can one move onto the artistry of it. In cooking you can add a little here and there and the final result will not be drastically altered, with baking, well let’s just say, baking is much less forgiving, and that my friends is why I avoid it if I can. There is a reason why chefs on top chef avoid doing desserts–sooo many things can go wrong. This recipe took me several tries before I was happy with the final product. I tried this with puff pastry and I was less than impressed. I moved on to a gluten free, do-it-yourself pie crust, and was highly disappointed. It was my fault really, the dough was good, but I used way too much butter, and the dough spread and wouldn’t stop spreading.  Finally I gave in and bought ready made pie crusts, the kind you roll out–not the kind already in a pie tin–and I was very pleased with the result.  These little hand pies make a great addition to a picnic, they’re small, mess free, and you don’t have to worry about having a knife to cut the pie because these are single serving.

Logo Pinterest-01

Pin it!

 

 

 

 

Prep time:10 minutes

cook time: 30 minutes

Makes 6 pies

Ingredients:

2 cups of fresh cherries, halved and  puts removed

1/2 cup of maple sugar (cand use maple syrup, cane sugar, or sweetener of your choice)

1 tablespoon of lemon juice

1  teaspoon of vanilla extract

1 tablespoon of arrowroot powder (can sub with xantham gum, cornstarch or flour)

1/8 teaspoon of sea salt

1/8 teaspoon of cinnamon

1 package of ready made pie crusts–the kind you can roll not the ones in a pie tin.

directions: add the cherries, lemon juice, sea salt and sugar to a sauce pan over medium heat.

image

Cook until cherries begin to release juices, about 5-7 minutes.

image

In a small bowl mix together arrowroot and 1 teaspoon of water, add it to the cherry mixture, stir and cook until mixture thickens.

image

Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Once mixture has cooled. Pre-heat oven to the recommended temperature on the box for the pie crust you are using. Roll out your pie crusts, then cuts out your desired pie shape. I used a tarlet tin to cut out tarlet pie shapes, two circles for each pie. Fill one of the shapes for each pie with 2-3 tablespoons of the cherry filling, top it with the other pie shape, seal it by pressing the borders with a fork. Use a knife to cut a few slits on the top of the pies for ventilation. Place the pies on a silicone/parchment lined baking sheet and bake until golden brown– about 20-30 minutes.

 

image