Archive for the ‘Dessert’ category

Best Ever Fudge Frosting

November 23, 2013

The is the best fudge frosting ever. really. Hershey’s cocoa seems to work best for this.













¼ cup light corn syrup

¼ cup sugar

2 Tablespoons of milk

4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder



Bring all ingredients to a boil over medium high heat, stirring frequently. Boil 30 seconds, stirring frequently. Add ½ pound powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla, dash of salt. Beat with wooden spoon (or wire whisk) till smooth, add nuts if desired, pour over cake while still warm.


Chocolate Ganache and Coconut bars

April 13, 2013

These bars are delicious, I use extra dark chocolate (53% cocoa) but you could use whatever your prefer. They are sure to be super yummy no matter what.



1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 pinch salt
1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup unsalted butter, slightly softened and cut into small pieces
10 ounces semisweet or dark chocolate pieces, chopped
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon coconut extract (optional)
2 large eggs
3 1/2 ounces flaked coconut (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans


Preheat oven to 350°F.

First (bottom) layer:
Lightly butter a 9×9-inch baking pan.
Stir together 1 1/3 cups flour, 1/2 tsp baking powder, pinch salt and the brown sugar.
Use a pastry blender to add the 1/2 cup of butter (in small pieces), until the mixture is crumbly and coarse.

You can also do this in your food processor, just pulse until crumbly.

Press into the bottom of the baking pan.
Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes, then place pan on rack to cool.
Leave oven on.
Second layer:
Chocolate ganache.
After the chopped chocolate is placed in a medium bowl, bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan.
Pour the cream over the chocolate, and let it sit for 5 minutes before stirring.
Stir until the ganache is smooth then refrigerate for a few minutes to set.

Top Layer:
To prepare the topping, cream the remaining butter in a bowl.
Add the granulated sugar, and extracts.
Beat until blended, then beat in the eggs; then stir in coconut and chopped pecans.
Using a rubber spatula scoop out thin layers and lay the topping evenly over the ganache,
spreading it as little as possible but covering the entire surface.
Bake at 350°F for 40 minutes, until golden brown. Watch closely to make sure coconut does not

brown excessively, if this starts to look like a possibility, cover loosely with foil.
Set pan on rack to cool, the refrigerate before cutting into bars.

Raspberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

March 20, 2013

So delicious, I can’t stop eating this when I make it!

Rasp cc

  • Ingredients:

  • 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup cold butter, cubed
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup raspberry jam (quality is crucial here. I use Maury farms)
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds


  • In a large bowl, combine flour and sugar; cut in the butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs; reserve 1 cup crumb mixture.
  • To remaining crumb mixture, add baking powder, soda, salt, sour cream, egg and almond extract; blend well. Spread batter over bottom and 2 in. up side of greased and floured 9-in. springform pan. (Batter should be 1/4 in thick on sides.)
  • In small bowl, beat the cream cheese, 1/4 cup sugar and egg until smooth. Pour over batter in pan. Carefully spoon jam evenly over cheese filling.
  • In a small bowl, combine reserved crumb mixture and almonds; sprinkle over top. Bake at 350° for 55-60 minutes or until cream cheese filling is set and crust is a deep golden brown. Cool 15 minutes. Remove sides of pan. Serve cool.

Easter Bread

March 14, 2013

I got a bread baking book with this recipe when Peter was two years old. I’ve made it nearly every Easter since then.

easter bread.jpeg

½ cup milk

¼ cup sugar

¼ cup shortening

3 cups of all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 egg slightly beaten

1 pkg. Of active dry yeast

shredded sweetened coconut

green food coloring

confectioners icing (recipe below)

Candy decorations

Soften yeast in ¼ cup warm water (110 degrees).

Heat milk, sugar, shortening and 1 teaspoon salt till sugar dissolves; cool to lukewarm.  Stir in one cup of the flour; beat smooth.  Add softened yeast and egg; beat well.  Stir in enough remaining flour to make a soft dough.  Knead on lightly floured surface till smooth and elastic (8-10 minutes).  Place in a greased bowl; turn once.  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled (about an hour).  Punch dough down, devide into thirds, cover and let rest for 10 minutes.

Shape 1/3 of dough into 6 “eggs”; place close together in center of greased baking sheet.  For “nest”, shape remaining dough into two 26’” robes; twist together.  Coil around eggs, seal ends.  Cover with damp cloth (not terrycloth) and let rise until doubled.  Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes.  Remove from sheet; cool.  Tint coconut green.  Frost cake with icing and sprinkle nest with coconut. Decorate eggs with candies.  Makes 1.


Combine 1 cup of powdered sugar, ¼ teaspoon vanilla and enough milk to make a drizzling consistency.

Cinnamon Pull Apart Bread with Bread Machine Dough

January 28, 2013

cinnamon bread rolling cutting

For the Dough:cin bread dough

3  cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup granulated sugar

2 1/4 teaspoons (1 envelope) active dry yeast

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 ounces unsalted butter

1/3 cup whole milk

1/4 cup water

2 large eggs, at room temperature

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Filling:

1 cup granulated sugar

2 1/2  teaspoons ground cinnamon (I use the Vietnamese cinnamon if I can find it. It has a higher oil content)

1 Stick unsalted butter, melted until browned

For dough:

Mix all dry ingredients together in a bowl. Melt butter and cool to room temperature then mix with remaining ingredients. Pour liquid ingredients into the bread machine pan then pour the dry ingredients on top. Set machine for dough cycle. remove dough from pan when cycle completes.

For the cinnamon sugar filling whisk together the sugar and cinnamon.  Set aside.  Melt 4 ounces of butter and cook gently until browned.  Be careful not to burn. Set aside.  Grease  a large bread  loaf pan.  Set that aside too.

Deflate the risen dough and knead about 2 tablespoons of flour into the dough.  Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rest for 5 minutes.  On a lightly floured work surface, use a rolling pin to roll the dough out.  The dough should be 12-inches tall and about 20-inches long.  If you can’t get the dough to 20-inches long… that’s okay.  Just roll it as large as the dough will go.  Mix together the sugar cinnamon mixture and browned butter and spread across all of the dough.

Slice the dough vertically, into six equal-sized strips.  Stack the strips on top of one another and slice the stack into six equal slices once again.  You’ll have six stacks of six squares.  Layer the dough squares in the loaf pan like a flip-book.  Place a kitchen towel over the loaf pan and allow in a warm place for 30 to 45 minutes or until almost doubled in size.

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F.  Place loaf in the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top is very golden brown.  The top may be lightly browned, but the center may still be raw.  A nice, dark, golden brown will ensure that the center is cooked as well.

Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 20 to 30 minutes.   Run a butter knife around the edges of the pan to loosen the bread and invert onto  a clean board.  Place a cake stand or cake plate on top of  the upside down loaf, and carefully invert so it’s right side up.

Note: I have a two pound bread machine and have doubled this recipe with no problem.

cinnamon bread

Pumpkin Bars with Pecan Oat Crust

November 18, 2012

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8″ square pan and line with parchment.

Do not trim the parchment to fit on two of the sides so that it hangs over and will act as handles to lift the cold bars out of the pan.


For the Crust:

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup old fashioned oats

3/4 cups (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cold and cut into small cubes

1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans

For the Filling:

4 ounces cream cheese, softened

1 cup pumpkin puree

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg plus 1 large egg white

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon all-spice

1/8 teaspoon ground ginger

pinch of salt

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract.

To make crust:

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, salt, and oats.  Add cold butter and quickly but thoroughly break the butter up into the dry ingredients.  When broken down, some butter pieces will be the size of small peas, others will be the size of oat flakes.  Add the chopped pecans and toss to thoroughly combine. I use the food processor to make quick work of this part. But you can do it by hand in a bowl if you’re a purist.

Remove about 1 1/2 cups of the mixture from the bowl and place in a small bowl in the refrigerator.  This will be our crumble topping.

Dump the remaining crust mixture into the prepared pan.  Using your fingers, evenly press the crust into the bottom of the pans.  Try to make sure that the crust has an even thickness across the pan.  Place the pressed crust in the refrigerator while you prepare the filling. It will seem like a thick crust, that’s how it is supposed to be.

To make filling:

To prepare the filling place softened cream cheese in the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat cream cheese on medium speed for about 1 minute, until smooth and pliable.  This will help the cream cheese be less chunky when combined with the pumpkin.

Add pumpkin and sugar  to the softened cream cheese and beat on medium speed.  Stop the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl, ensuring that the pumpkin and cream cheese are thoroughly combined.  If the cream cheese looks chunky, switch to the whisk attachment and beat on high speed until most of the cream cheese lumps are incorporated. On medium speed add the egg and egg white.  Beat to combine (about 1 minute).  Add the spices, salt, and vanilla extract.  Beat to combine.

Remove the pressed crust and loose crumb from the refrigerator.  Pour the creamy pumpkin filling over the pressed crust.  Sprinkle generously with crumb topping .  Bake for approx. 25 minutes or until the center no longer jiggles.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before removing from the pan and slicing.  Resist the temptation to eat them warm! Trust me, they won’t taste half as good. Refrigerate until cold.

To store, wrap individual bars in plastic wrap and keep in the fridge for up to 4 days.

This recipe is courtesy of Joy the Baker

Apple Cake with Maple Frosting

November 15, 2012

“Comfort food, tender cake with chunks of apples, autumn spices and maple syrup frosting.”


    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
    • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
    • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
    • 1/2 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
    • 2 cups diced peeled, granny smith apples
    • 1/2 cup nuts (optional)
    • for frosting
    • 1 cup pure maple syrup
    • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
    • 1/2 cup heavy cream
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Butter the bottom and sides of 9×13 inch baking pan.
  3. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and other spices including salt and set aside.
  4. In a large bowl combine the butter and granulated sugar. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Beat in eggs one at a time.
Page 2 of 2Apple Cake With Maple Frosting (cont.)


  1. Using a rubber spatula gently fold in one third of flour mixture until fully incorporated. Gently, or the cake will be tough. Fold in 1/2 the buttermilk. another 1/3 of flour, then remaining buttermilk continuing to fold gently after each addition. Add remaining flour, apples the apples and nuts, if using.
  2. Spread batter in prepared pan. Bake 35-40 minutes, watch closely DO NOT OVER BAKE.
  3. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for at least 20 minutes.
  4. To make the frosting, simmer the maple syrup in a sauce pan until it reduces by half, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and add butter. Stir until incorporated and add vanilla and cream. Stir powdered sugar into mixture and beat with a wire whisk until smooth. Let it cool completely before pouring over the cooled cake.