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Ice Cream Pie

27 Sep

Hurry up! It’s still warm outside to enjoy this awesomeness!!!

This is an old family recipe that my mom’s been making all my life. Everyone LOVES this treat in the summertime. I watched my brother, Pat, take down FOUR pieces in one sitting this past summer….it was quite impressive I gotta say.

My mom used to make it with Starbucks Java Chip ice cream – coffee ice cream with chocolate chips. But they no longer make that flavor – so we improvise!

This couldnt get any easier…..Make an oreo crust, dump ice cream in, and make sauce for top! It’s fabulous and so yummy when it’s hot outside. There are also different variations on ice cream….strawberry, vanilla, chocolate, coffee, mint chocolate chip…..you can really use any flavor you like! However, I recommend using premium ice cream.

Above is the cookie crust…..below is the softened iced cream poured into the crust. I used coffee ice cream and made my own “chips” by grinding up chocolate chips in the food processor and incorporating.

Next is the homemade chocolate sauce. You can cheat by buying store-bought sauce, but it wont sit right on the pie and wont adhere. (You will see pics of it later on – my mom tried to use it a couple times recently in a pinch.)

You can see how the sauce lays thickly on top of the pie. It is supposed to look similar to this.

Here is the side view of the pie as we devoured it.

Here is a slice of an ice cream pie my mom made this summer. You can see how her store-bought sauce doesnt adhere well to the pie.

Below is what remains of a Dulce de Leche ice cream pie my mom made this summer. Our family’s favorite was the Java Chip cake with oreo crust…..but sometimes, it’s a really really tough choice when the Dulce de Leche with vanilla oreo crust is offered as well. In that case, we mostly choose to have a SLIVER OF EACH 🙂

I cant tell you how simple and delicious this ice cream pie is. I encourage you all to come up with your own option for flavors and report back to me!! I am thinking about trying a strawberry version next summer.

If you are an ice cream lover – this is for YOU!

Ice Cream Pie

Pie Ingredients:

  • 18 whole oreos (approx)
  • 3 tblsp melted butter
  • 1 quart (or more) of ice cream (choose your flavor), softened a little

Sauce Ingredients:

  • ½ cup sugar
  • Small can evaporated milk
  • 2 squares bakers chocolate

Directions:

Crumble oreos in processor or blender until they are crumbs. Mix with melted butter and press into 9” pie plate. Freeze and then fill with ice cream (flavor of your choice).

Put back in freezer to harden and then make sauce.

Combine chocolate, sugar, and evaporated milk in saucepan. Stir and cook on stove until thick – it will take a while and feel like nothing is happening, but will suddenly thicken and come together. Chill the sauce for a couple hours. Spread over top of pie. Voila!

Other flavor combos:

–       Chocolate Oreos with java chip ice cream and chocolate sauce

–       Vanilla oreos with dulce de leche ice cream and caramel sauce

–       Strawberry ice cream with berries and chocolate sauce

–       Chocolate oreos with mint chocolate chip ice cream and chocolate sauce

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Blueberry Streusel Muffins

30 Jul

Robbbb was craving blueberry muffins. I was craving an upgrade to blueberry muffins.

Ingredients

I settled on these Blueberry Streusel Muffins.

Muffin mix and Streusel mix

They were so moist and delicious.

Mmmmm collective yum

And the streusel topping was the perfect mix of sugar and spice.

Cracklin’ with Blueberries

Sooooooo chock full o’blueberries!

What a fine specimen

Take a BITE

I definitely recommend these muffins – they are suuuuuuper yummy and they freeze well, too!

Blueberry Crumb Muffins

For the streusel:

  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, cubed

 For the muffins:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 pint blueberries

Preheat oven to 375 F. Line muffin pans with paper liners.

For the streusel topping, mix together all ingredients with your fingers, rubbing to make a coarse meal. Set aside.

To make the muffins: Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg in a medium bowl. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and both sugars on medium speed until pale in color, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition and stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl as necessary. With the mixer on low speed, add 1/2 of the flour mixture then the milk and finally the remaining flour mixture, beating only until just combined.

Scrape the sides of the bowl then add the blueberries, folding them into the batter. Divide the batter evenly among the wells of the muffin pans, filling each about 3/4-full. Break the crumb topping into small pieces and scatter over the tops of the muffins, pressing lightly to adhere.

Bake for about 22 minutes, or until the tops of the muffins feel firm and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer the muffin pans to a wire rack and let the muffins cool for a few minutes before removing them from the pan to the rack to cool completely.

New York-Style Crumb Cake

25 Jul

I dont even know why I wanted to make this cake.

Ingredients

I found it on foodgawker and both the pics and the mixture of spices for the crumb topping suckered me in. There was cinnamon and cardamom – yum!

Crumb Topping

Wet mixture in dish

I love dishes where you can see distinct layers in the food!

Look at the layers

Baked layers

It was so easy to throw together.

First piece!!

Look at that dish of sweet goodness

It was great to take to an early morning meeting that I had with clients – and then was nice to leave at my client’s office, rather than in my house 🙂

Look at the crumbs

New York-Style Crumb Cake

(makes a 9″ x 13″ cake)

For the topping:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and warm

For the cake:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup 100% whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2) sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups sour cream at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and position the rack in the center. Butter the sides and bottom of a 9″ x 13″ pan. You can use glass or metal, but the sides of the cake may get a bit crispier if you use metal.

For the crumb topping, mix flour, both sugars, salt, cinnamon and cardamom together in a medium bowl. Add the melted butter and whisk or stir until well incorporated. Set aside.

For the cake, sift both flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.

In a large bowl, beat the butter with a hand or stand mixer until completely smooth. Add the sugar and beat until the mixture begins to look pale and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until well mixed. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix again for 30 seconds. Add the sour cream and vanilla and beat until well incorporated. Add the dry ingredients in three batches, scraping down the bowl before each addition. Be careful not to overmix.

To assemble the cake, pour all of the batter into your prepared pan. Use your hands to scoop up a handful of crumb topping and squeeze it in your fist until it holds together. Break off in chunks and drop them over the cake. Repeat until you’ve used all the topping (and yes, there’s a lot of it).

Bake the cake for 45 to 55 minutes (rotating the pan once or twice) or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let cool completely on a wire rack before cutting; about 30 minutes.

Lemony Cream Butter Cake

4 Jun

I saw this cake online somewhere right before memorial day weekend…..and it sounded so good. I had been craving cheese danish lately and this seemed like cheese danish plus lemon – who wouldnt love that?

Ingredients

It seemed easy enough and chock FULL of lemon – both zest and extract! Look at this plate of zest!!!

Zestalicious

This cake would be excellent for a brunch or light dinner accompaniment. It’s so fresh and simple, but yet still elegant. I would garnish with a sprig of rosemary.

Here is the filling and then the cake batter:

Filling

Cake batter

And the finished product – notice how you leave 1/2 inch or so around the border of the cake when pouring the filling:

Ready to bake

I totally goofed when I made this the first time. I made the entire cake and had it in the oven and then I saw that I had forgotten the melted butter in the batter!!!! How could I have done that? I had to scrap the entire cake, clean everything up, get out all the ingredients again, and run to Wawa for more cream cheese. What a mess.

Done!

Thank god it turned out amazing!

First piece….

Slice of goodness

Lemony Cream Butter Cake

Ingredients for the cake:

  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (heaping)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice (which was about 1 lemon for me)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • zest of two lemons

For the cream cheese filling:

  • 8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease or spray a 9″ springform pan with vegetable spray.

Make the filling — In a large bowl or bowl of a standmixer, beat the cream cheese on medium-high to high speed for about 5 minutes, until smooth and creamy.

Add confectioners’ sugar and beat for another 2 to 3 minutes. Add egg and beat until completely combined, about 1 minute. Add butter, both extracts and lemon zest. Beat until completely combined, about 1 minute. Set aside.

Make the cake — In large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Whisk in melted butter, eggs, lemon juice, vanilla extract and lemon zest until combined. Do not overmix.

Pour batter evenly into springform pan. Carefully pour filling mixture evenly over the cake batter to within about 1/2 inch of the edge of the pan. (The filling should cover all but the outer 1/2 inch, at which point the cake batter will be visible.)

Bake for about 35 to 40 minutes, or until the cake has puffed up and toothpick inserted near edge of cake comes out clean.

Allow to cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully remove springform sides and allow to cool on rack for 1 hour. Transfer to refrigerator and chill completely before serving.

Serve chilled, with a little sprinkling of confectioners’ sugar.

Brown Butter Vanilla Cake with Dark Chocolate Buttercream Icing

22 May
Deliciousness

Deliciousness

I saw this recipe in Food and Wine (Feb ’12) and it looked good and had wonderful photos attached. It also called for whole vanilla beans (split and seeds scraped) and my gurrrrl, Beth, brought me some whole vanilla beans from her travels to Indonesia or Bali or some place “over there” like that.

Ingredients!

Ingredients!

Whip it…..whip it good

Vanilla seed scrapings and sugar!

I decided to make it a month or so ago, and while it’s a smidge more laborious than some other vanilla cakes, it’s totally worth it! The cake was soooooooooooooooooooo moist and delicious and buttery.

Golden cakes

(Here is the recipe for the cake part. The Dark Chocolate Buttercream frosting recipe follows.)

Brown Butter Layer Cake

Ingredients:

  • 3 sticks unsalted butter (12 ounces), plus more for greasing the pans
  • 2  ¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the pans
  • 2  ¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 and 2/3 cups sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 and ¼ cups milk, at room temperature

1)     Preheat oven to 325°. Butter two 9-inch pans (I used 8 inch) and line the bottoms of the pans with parchment paper. Butter the paper and dust the pans with flour, tapping out the excess.

2)     In a medium saucepan, melt the 3 sticks of butter. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until foamy, about 5 minutes. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, until the milk solids turn brown and the butter smells nutty, about 4 minutes longer. Scrape the melted butter and browned bits into a large heatproof bowl. Set the bowl in an ice water bath until the butter begins to set around the edge, about 8 minutes.

3)     Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the baking powder and salt.

4)     Remove the bowl from the ice water bath and scrape up the hardened butter. Transfer the butter to the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the paddle and beat until creamy. Add the sugar and vanilla seeds and beat at medium-high speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the egg yolkds followed by the whole eggs. Beat in the dry ingredients and milk in 3 alternating additions, scraping down the side and bottom of the bowl as necessary.

5)     Pour the cake batter into the prepared pans and bake in the center of the oven for about 40 minutes, rotating the ans halfway through baking, until the cakes are golden and a tootpick inserted in the centers comes out clean. Cool the cakes in the pans for 20 minutes and then invert them onto a rack to let them cool completely. Peel off the parchment paper.

Now for the Chocolate Buttercream…….

Ingredients for Buttercream

Egg whites, salt, and sugar mixture

Egg whites, salt, and sugar mixture

This Rich Chocolate Buttercream tastes delicious! It’s not too dark and it’s so light and fluffy.

Melted chocolate

Beating in melted chocolate

Frosted cake!

Let me just have a piece

Rich Chocolate Buttercream

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large egg whites
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (9 ounces), cut into tablespoons, at room temperature
  • 4 ounces extra-bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled

1) In a blender or food processor, pulse the sugar until powdery. Transfer the sugar to a medium heatproof bowl and whisk in the egg whites and salt. Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and whisk gently until the sugar is completely dissolved, 5 minutes.

2) Transfer the warm egg-white mixture to the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the whisk. Add the vanilla and beat at medium-high speed until stiff and glossy, about 8 minutes. Beat in the butter a few pieces at a time, making sure it is fully incorporated before adding more. The buttercream should be light and fluffy; if it appears runny at any time, transfer the bowl to the freezer for 5-10 minutes, then return it to the mixer and continue.

3) Beat in the melted chocolate until fully incorporated, scraping down the side and bottom of the bowl. Remove the bowl from the mixer and beat with a wooden spoon to remove any air bubbles. Then spread frosting on cake.

Layering the cake:

Invert one of the cakes so that it sits upside-down on a platter. Spread the filling/icing over the top of the cake in a thin layer and put the other cake right side-up on top of the cake. Put in the fridge (if necessary) to set for 5 minutes.  Finish icing the rest of the cake starting with sides first and then top. Refrigerate the cake until frosting is firm – 15 minutes.

Doesnt this look amazing?????

Deliciousness

Deliciousness

Versatile Vanilla Cake with Dark Chocolate Ganache

12 Apr

I knew I wanted to make a cake on Superbowl Sunday for Robbbb since his Patriots were playing. I wanted to make a vanilla cake since that’s his favorite, but wanted to use chocolate icing since that is MY favorite.

Basic ingredients - except buttermilk is something most people dont have on hand

Batter

I looked around for a couple days for some decent recipes. I ended up turning to Martha Stewart. I read some reviews on various cakes and netted out on her Versatile Vanilla and Dark Chocolate Ganache.

Beautiful Layers

Chopped Chocolate

I hadnt made a cake in a long time so I was excited. And I’m ashamed to admit this, but I’ve NEVER made a layer cake with icing before. And as you all know, I am always excited to get out my KitchenAid mixer and mix something!

Cream mixing with the Chocolate

Cooling the Ganache

I set out slowly and with confidence. I followed Martha’s instructions to a T and used quality ingredients. For the icing, you HAVE to use quality chocolate – 60 or 70% cacao at least. I used Ghirardelli brand 8 oz at 60% and 8 oz at 70%.

Iced Cake

It turned out AMAZING. The cake was moist and delicious and so flavorful. The chocolate ganache was the richest icing I’ve ever had. I will ALWAYS use this ganache from now on. It couldn’t have been simpler to make, too. I think the next time I make it, I’ll try using 2 cups of whole milk instead of 2 cups heavy cream just to see if I can make it a smidge healthier.

Delicious

I have since made this cake again for a Girls Night get together and it was once again, a total crowd pleaser. Robb’s compliment about this cake: “This cake reminds me why I love cake so much“. Believe it.

Versatile Vanilla Cake

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pans
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for pans
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour two 8-by-2-inch cake pans, tapping out excess flour. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  2. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. With mixer on low, beat in eggs and yolks, one at a time. Beat in vanilla. Alternately beat in flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix just until combined.
  3. Divide batter between pans; smooth tops. Bake until cakes pull away from sides of pans, 32 to 35 minutes. Let cool in pans 10 minutes. Run a knife around edges of pans and invert cakes onto a wire rack. Let cool completely.
  4. Place one cake, bottom side up, on a cake stand. Tuck strips of parchment paper underneath. Using an offset-spatula or table knife, spread top with frosting. Top with remaining cake; frost top, then sides.

Dark-Chocolate Ganache

(Makes 3.5 cups)

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound bittersweet chocolate, roughly chopped

Directions

  1. In a large saucepan, bring 2 cups heavy cream, 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, and 1/8 teaspoon salt to a boil. Remove from heat; add 1 pound bittersweet chocolate, roughly chopped, and let stand, without stirring, for 1 minute. Whisk just until combined. Refrigerate, stirring occasionally, until spreadable, about 1 hour.
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