Posted at 11:06 am , on January 5, 2021
One of my favorite combinations is cranberry and orange. Let’s face it, these two just belong together, whether it’s scones, muffins, cranberry sauce or cranberry relish. Cranberries are in season now so if you love this tarty fruit you might want to pick up a bag or two and put in the freezer. I started freezing them so that I had some to cook with all year long. I prefer fresh or frozen berries to dried cranberries plus they don’t have the added sugar that dried cranberries do. Along with antioxidants, they provide many vitamins and minerals that we all need in our daily diet. I must confess, sweet rolls probably negate all the positives of eating cranberries but after the year we’ve had I’m going to give myself a break and indulge in a few rolls. The rest can be frozen for up to a couple month’s. I like to freeze 2 rolls per package and that way I can have a sweet roll now and then. These rolls are messy and don’t look as perfect as some of my other sweet rolls but the taste is among the best. For me it always starts with brioche dough, I never waver with any other dough, it’s just that good. The cranberry orange jam was adapted from “Plated Cravings”. I had an idea of what the filling should be and this recipe was about as perfect as I could have imagined. And if that’s not enough I made an orange glaze that soaked into every crack and crevice of these rolls. I hope you’ll keep these in mind next time you are craving sweet rolls. They have a festive feel for the holidays but I think they would be perfect any time of year.
Posted at 9:46 am , on July 17, 2020
Have you guys been experiencing this heat wave? It’s been in the mid 90’s to over 100 degrees for what seems like a couple weeks now. It may be dry heat here in the Southwest but unless there is a breeze blowing by it’s just hot air. So instead of turning on the oven we’ve been grilling and making salads or simple sandwiches to beat the heat. We needed something cold for a boost of energy so I made popsicles. They are a welcome treat from the afternoon heat. I’d forgotten how easy they are to make with simple syrup, lime juice, lime zest and a little bit of alcohol that gives them that soft slushy texture. Refreshing is the best word to describe them and they taste even better than those frozen fruit bars you buy at the store. I used to make these for the kids but I think Joe and I enjoy them just as much!
Posted at 11:12 am , on July 3, 2020
If you love S’mores, you have to try these S’mores blondie bars. They are so decadent, loaded with big chunks of chocolate bars, marshmallow creme and cookie dough. And if that’s not enough, how about some roughly chopped pecans and graham crackers sprinkled over top. S’mores are great for all occasions but they seem to be especially popular for the 4th of July. While the celebrations this year won’t be quite the same, Joe and I still plan to grill some hamburgers and go for a hike somewhere. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and enjoy some S’mores or maybe a S’mores blondie bar. Stay safe and have a great weekend!
Posted at 9:50 am , on April 16, 2020
Earlier this week we had a surprise snow day. After several days in the 70’s with warm breezes the winds changed to strong gusts and dropping temperatures. What started out as rain quickly changed over to snow which blanketed much of New Mexico. Days like these are perfect for baking. The warmth from the oven and aroma that fills the air is serenity. I have a bucket list of recipes that I save for days such as these. When the fresh cranberries were available I picked up an extra bag to put in the freezer. They freeze just like blueberries and are great to bake with. These cranberry orange muffins are so moist and flavorful. I love the burst of tart cranberry alongside the sweet orange flavor. This is my guilty pleasure of the week. Sometimes you just need something sweet to brighten your day.
Posted at 9:52 am , on February 13, 2020
Who doesn’t love truffles? They really dress up a plate and taste so decadent. I didn’t always have such a sweet tooth but as I’ve gotten older I appreciate a good chocolate indulgence every now and then. A dollop of edible cookie dough covered in dark chocolate with a sprinkle of sea salt will make your taste buds sing! Way better than a box of chocolates! Once made they can be refrigerated for 2 weeks or frozen for a couple of month’s. That is . . . unless you can’t help yourself from eating them all.
Posted at 8:28 am , on February 7, 2020
I have a real weakness for homemade cinnamon rolls! It takes all my willpower not to eat the whole pan full. The smell of warm brioche, with butter, cinnamon and brown sugar is so intoxicating. Since a snow day was in the forecast I went out and got my supplies ready for a day of baking. There’s something special about baking on a cold day while looking out the window at falling snow. When the time finally came to pop these rolls in the oven I was rewarded with such a wonderful aroma. I couldn’t wait to drizzle the glaze over top and taste one. They are so light and buttery with the sweetness of cinnamon and sugar. As far as pastries go, these might be my favorite!
Posted at 10:07 am , on February 4, 2020
A few years ago my best friend Paula introduced me to Tiramisu. I don’t think I had ever tasted it until she suggested we share a slice. All I knew it was an Italian dessert. That first taste could only be described as luscious and decadent all at the same time. Who could disagree after tasting that creamy goodness with coffee undertones. It was absolutely delicious! It’s taken awhile but I finally have a recipe worthy of sharing. I found a great tutorial video from Sally’s Baking Addiction that helped me put it all together. I used her method and steps but changed a few ingredients as well as trimming the recipe in half. For me, chilling the dessert in the freezer for about 10 minutes prior to serving made it even tastier. If you haven’t tried a slice of Tiramisu you don’t know what you’re missing!
Posted at 8:42 am , on October 10, 2019
I set aside two jars of prickly pear juice to make jelly. It reminded me of my Mom and how she used to can everything including jellies and jams in big huge canning pots. This was a much smaller scale so I found a different method to preserve the jelly by covering the sealed jars in a hot water bath for 10 minutes. When they cooled you could hear the lids make that popping sound that tells you they are sealed. I found some low sugar pectin which allowed me to cut down on the sugar as well as quicken the process. In no time I had a little more than 3 jars of prickly pear jelly. I couldn’t wait to taste it so I made a batch of tea scones to go with the jelly . . . absolutely delicious!
Posted at 11:46 am , on June 7, 2019
Is it Summer yet? Maybe not officially, but after Memorial day it feels like summer break for most folks. Time to enjoy being outdoors whether it be time away on vacation, or just getting outside in your own backyard. When my kids were growing up we would make s’mores using the simple ingredients of store bought graham crackers, marshmallows and Hershey bars. I’ve been making marshmallow creme for several years and always wondered how s’mores would taste with that delicious whipped creme. Then I thought why not go all the way and make graham crackers too. And you know what . . . they turned out great. I had my doubts, but I am pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to put together and how tasty they are. The marshmallow creme recipe makes approximately 6 cups, more than enough for the graham crackers and chocolate. No worries, there are so many recipes to use marshmallow creme. Some of my favorites are dark chocolate cake with marshmallow creme icing, s’mores blondies, or rice crispy treats!
Posted at 6:14 pm , on December 26, 2018
I have memories of my Mom making traditional peanut brittle around the holidays. Everything she made always tasted so good. She used to make several different types of candies but the peanut brittle was always my favorite. That was back in the day, times have changed and now you can find red or green chile brittle here in New Mexico and it’s quite the addictive treat. Let me tell you about the green chile brittle. It has sweet and hot flavors coming from the spices on the pistachios along with green chile powder. Instead of using peanuts I added green chile pistachios which I think makes this brittle so special. First you taste the sweetness of the hardened sugar and corn syrup, next up you taste the flavors of the pistachio nuts and the heat from the chile powder coming on the back end. I’m a little obsessive compulsive and don’t know when to stop so I made another batch, this time adding red chile flakes and Pinon nuts aka pine nuts. I took some local NM dried red chiles and ran them through a grinder to get the fresh flakes that would spice up the brittle. The Pinons were roasted but unsalted so I added a hint of salt which helps balance all the flavors. Actually the red chile flakes were a bit hotter than the green chile powder which was a surprise to me. I couldn’t pick one over the other, they are both so good and such a treat this time of year. And the other thing about this brittle is how easy it is to make. I found a great recipe from “Veggie Obsession” who made brittle in the microwave. One bowl is all you need, just add the ingredients and microwave. Find the wattage of your microwave and use a conversion chart to find out how many minutes is necessary to microwave. Once you have the ingredients it only takes about 20 minutes from start to finish.