It's time for another Secret Recipe Club reveal! This month, I was assigned Pale Yellow - written by a science teacher (informal science educator/curriculum specialist?) and avid baker with two adorable turtles.
She has a TON of great dessert recipes - Brown Butter Biscoff Rice Krispie Treats, Brown Butter Banana Bourbon and Bacon Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting (someone call Elvis), and Tres Leches Cupcakes with Dulce de Leche Buttercream. She also has some yummy looking boozy recipes - Banana Leche y Cafe con Chocolate y Rum, Boozy Nutella Milkshake, Painkiller Cocktail, and Vanilla Pudding Shots. There are also some tasty sounding savory baked goods - Roasted Strawberry Blue Cheese and Walnut Biscuits, and Caramelized Onion Bacon and Smoked Gouda Biscuits.
I ended up settling on these Blueberry Rhubarb Streusel Muffins, except that my store didn't have any rhubarb (not even frozen!) so I used raspberries instead. I thought the color and tartness would be similar to rhubarb. They came out great! Tender and sweet, but with a little tang.
I've been working on another post about Miami Beach, but it has been taking longer than expected. So, in the meantime, I'd like to share another cocktail with you! I made this Sparkling Raspberry Cocktail for an Arbonne brunch party.
One Year Ago - Lentil Salad with Walnuts and Herbs
Two Years Ago - Spanikopita Strudels
Three Years Ago - Barley Risotto with Asparagus
Four Years Ago - Spinach, Artichoke, and Chicken Casserole
Five Years Ago - Spring Shells and Cheese; Zucchini Pie
Now that we are nearing the end of Spring (that never really felt like Spring, dangit) - it's time to preserve some of that delicate seasonal fruit. I'm talking strawberries and rhubarb, people. I tried out three different jam recipes in the same day, because I am a crazy person (and because I bought way too many local strawberries at the farmers market).
First up is my mother-in-law's fresh strawberry syrup recipe (pictured in front and in the bowl on the right) - if only I had access to Oregon berries like her! Jasper loves this recipe, so I make a TON and freeze it to use all year (if it lasts that long). He loves to put it on sourdough pancakes and vanilla ice cream, I like it swirled into plain Greek yogurt. This is a raw fruit jam recipe (with more berries and less sugar to make it more of a syrup than a jam), so the taste of the fresh berries really comes through.
Next is a Raspberry and Rhubarb Jam with Cardamom (pictured in the middle and in the jar on the left) that was supposed to use apple juice, but I had cranberry on hand so I subbed that and it added a lot of cranberry flavor. It tastes very fall like to me because of the cranberry and spices. This is the only jam that I canned, so I will probably save it for the fall. If you want more of the rhubarb flavor to come through, use the apple juice instead.
And last is a Rhubarb, Raspberry, and Strawberry Jam thickened with Chia Seeds (pictured in the back and in the jar on the right). This is touted as a healthy recipe because the fruit is raw and it uses raw honey as sweetener. Because you use chia seeds to thicken it, instead of pectin, you can use much less sugar than you could for a traditional jam. This one came out pretty tart for me, but Jasper really likes it. The concept works really well, so I will probably be trying out different fruits. This recipe actually said to just puree the raw rhubarb, but I was pretty skeptical about that, so I simmered it in a little bit of cranberry juice first (since I was already doing that for the other jam).
Let's get jammin! I really crack myself up...
After much Pinterest envy, I finally bought a popsicle mold (at the end of the summer, good job). Did you know that "popsicle" is actually a brand name that we in the US have adopted to describe all ice pops? I didn't. It's one of those weird things like calling all facial tissue "Kleenex". Anyway the very first thing I wanted to try was a blackberry and yogurt recipe. But I was worried about the seeds, and then the store ended up not having any blackberries. So I bought raspberries instead. Plain Greek yogurt, sweetened with a little agave, and layered with muddled raspberries (clearly my layering skills need improvement) - simple, fresh, delicious. As far as sweets go, this is pretty good for you and I bet kids would love it!
Raspberry Yogurt Ice Pops
adapted from Real Simple
makes 10-12, depending on mold
1 3/4 cups plain full-fat Greek yogurt
6-8 tbsp agave nectar
3/4 pound raspberries (about 3 cups)
Whisk together the yogurt and 3 tbsp agave in a medium bowl. In a separate bowl, combine the blackberries and the remaining 3 tbsp agave and mash with a fork or potato masher until coarsely crushed. Taste the mixtures and add more agave as needed, keeping in mind that it will taste less sweet when frozen.
Layer the yogurt and blackberry mixtures (starting with the yogurt mixture, but don't make as big a layer as I did), dividing evenly among 4oz paper cups or ice-pop molds. Drag a toothpick or skewer through the mixtures to create a swirl effect. Insert ice-pop sticks and freeze until firm, at least 3 hours and up to 4 days. Remove from the freezer 10 minutes before serving to soften slightly. Or dip into warm (not hot) water to release. You can unmold all of the popsicles and store them in a plastic bag in the freezer.
This is a classic desert that works really well for Independence Day (Anything with berries does, really). It's quick to put together and very pretty, so keep it in mind for next year!
All you need is sponge cake, pound cake, or lady fingers; canned custard or pudding mix; whipped cream; and fruit. Then layer them up however you want and let it sit together in the fridge for a few hours to meld.
I used lady fingers (brushed with Cointreau), vanilla pudding, whipped cream, strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries. The amounts depend on your serving dish and your preferential ratio of fruit to cream. I used 2 packs of lady fingers, 2 boxes of pudding, 1 can of whipped cream, 1 medium container of strawberries, and 1 pint each of blue berries and raspberries. My layers were lady fingers, pudding, strawberries, whipped cream, lady fingers, pudding, whipped cream, blueberries and raspberries. I probably could have used more berries.
A few weeks ago, we celebrated our 2nd Wedding Anniversary! We went on a lovely trip to Texas over the weekend, but our actual anniversary fell on a Tuesday. We had plans to eat at some very nice restaurants on our trip, so we decided to stay in on our anniversary and have a nice home-cooked meal. I made steak with compound butter, spinach and Gruyere souffle, and vanilla bean panna cotta with mixed berries.