Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Lemon Tart Flop

This is quite a simple tart, it is just a lemon bar cookie in a tart pan.  I had issues with the filling running out of the pan because I didn't have the crust going up the sides high enough (good thing I had the tart pan sitting on a cookie sheet). I just scooped out all the lemony goodness and put it back on the crust...a classic Lucille Ball moment! More like a lemon pizza pie really :) Oh well, live and learn. 
Until next time...

1 cup all-purpose flour
7 tbsp. butter, softened (no substitutions)
2 tbsp. confectioners' sugar

3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp all-purpose flour
confectioners' sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  For the crust, combine the flour. butter, and confectioners sugar in a food processor and process until combined.  Press evenly into a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom or a spring form pan.  Refrigerate for 15 minutes.  Bake for 15-18 minutes or until a deep golden brown.  Leave oven on.  Cool completely on a wire rack.

2. For filling, whisk the eggs, granulated sugar, lemon juice and flour together in a large bowl until smooth.  Pour into baked pastry shell.  Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until filling is set.  Transfer to a wire rack.  Sift additional confectioners sugar over the warm tart.  Cool completely.  Makes 8 servings.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Cinnamon Ricotta Scones

  I love scones. 
 They are so easy to make and taste so yummy.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a baking sheet or spray with nonstick spray.

In a mixing bowl- add:
3 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder

With a pastry blender, cut in:
1/2 cup COLD butter (cut into cubes)
and cut until it resembles coarse crumbs

Mix together:
1 Cup ricotta cheese
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
and very lightly fold into the flour, butter mixture, being careful NOT to overmix the dough; handle gently and lightly.

Divide the dough in half; On a floured surface, pat each half into a 6" round (about 1/2" thick)
Cut each round into 8 wedges.
Place the wedges on prepared sheets, leaving 1" space between wedges.

Beat an egg white until frothy. Lightly brush the tops of each scone wedge with egg white. Sprinkle generously with cinnamon sugar (1/3 cup turbinado sugar mixed with 2 teasp. cinnamon).

Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the bottoms and tops of scones are golden. Remove from oven and cool completely.

If you'd like, drizzle a cinnamon glaze over the tops of the cooled scones. (1 Tblsp. butter mixed with 1 C. powdered sugar, 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract, 1/4 tsp. cinnamon and just enough cream to mix into a drizzly - not runny - consistency).

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Coconut Raspberry Cookies

When I saw this cookie, The picture reminded me of a cookie that I loved as a child from a well known bakery in the town I grew up in...I had to try it.  I was not at all disappointed!    I adapted this recipe from one I found on tasteofhome.com.  This cookie is wonderfully buttery with a nice chewy texture and crispy edges.  You want to snatch one right off the pan when they come out of the oven, but you gotta wait until they firm up and cool down. That was the hard part!!  Wait about 5 minutes before you transfer them to a wire rack to cool.  Store them in a sealed container....if you have any leftover!!  These won't last long, it is hard to stop at just one!



  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1-3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup flaked coconut
  • 1/3 cup seedless raspberry jam


  • In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, water and extract. Combine the flour, salt and baking soda; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Stir in coconut (dough will be sticky).
  • Set aside 2/3 cup dough; roll remaining dough into 1-in. balls. Using the end of a wooden spoon handle, make a 3/8-in. deep indentation in the center of each ball. Fill each with 1/2 teaspoon jam. Cover jam with a teaspoonful of reserved dough; seal and reshape into a ball. Repeat.
  • Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 375° for 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool. 

Yield: about 1-1/2 dozen.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Chocolate Icebox Cake with Raspberry Sauce

No time to bake these days, it seems that I am spending more time at my new job than I am at home.  I wanted to make SOMETHING so I whipped together this icebox cake.  In an effort to make it "healthy" I used fat free greek yogurt instead of sour cream and stevia instead of sugar.  It was creamy and chocolatey and quite delicious. 

Easy Peasy!


  • 1 pint reduced-fat sour cream**
  • 1 pint fat free sour cream**
  • 1/3 cups powdered sugar, divided **  
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract            
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 42 chocolate wafers (from 2 packages)
  • 3 (6-ounce) packages fresh raspberries, divided
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice


1. Line a 9- x 5-inch loaf pan with 2 sheets of plastic wrap (one horizontal, and the other vertical). Let the edges overhang on each side by about 4 inches.
2. With a whisk, combine sour cream, 1 cup sugar, vanilla, and a dash of salt in a large bowl until blended.
3. Arrange a layer of about 14 overlapping chocolate wafers in 2 lines on the bottom of the loaf pan, keeping the layer as level as possible. Spread with 1 cup of the sour cream mixture; repeat in the same way with 2 more layers of wafers and cream, ending with cream layer. (You may have wafers left over.) Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until wafers are very soft (at least 12 hours).
4. Meanwhile, pulse 2 packages of berries in a food processor just until broken up. Add remaining 1/3 cup sugar, water, lime juice, and remaining dash of salt; pulse once or twice. Pour mixture through a coarse strainer; set over a bowl, pressing hard on solids to extract as much liquid as possible (you should have 1 cup). Refrigerate, tightly covered, until thoroughly chilled (about 1 hour); stir before using.
5. Lift icebox cake out of pan using over-hanging plastic wrap; transfer to a large plate. (Be careful, cake will be very soft.)
6. Carefully flip cake onto a cutting board, so that the chocolate wafer layer faces up. Peel back plastic wrap. Using a sharp serrated knife, cut cake crosswise into 10 slices, wiping knife clean after each cut. Arrange each slice on a plate, and pour a small pool of raspberry sauce on each plate; garnish evenly with remaining package of raspberries. Serve immediately with remaining sauce.
Health, JULY 2011
**  I substituted fat free greek yogurt  and stevia (about 14 packs)

Monday, August 1, 2011

Happy Birthday Don!

Today is my husbands birthday!  And miracles of miracles I have the day off!  Soooooo.... I thought that I would make him his favorite cake.  I wanted a simple and easy cake because I had a million other things to try to get done today.  I saw this sheet cake recipe here and thought that I would give it a try.  There are no fruit or nuts in this carrot cake.  It has only carrots, imagine that!  I followed the recipe as written until I got to the part where all the flour was  all mixed in.  The batter was very thick and stiff....more like a quick bread than a cake.  I had some buttermilk in the fridge so I added a couple of splashes to loosen it up and make it look more like a cake batter.  It was moist and not overly sweet.  The carrots really shine through!!! 

 A great choice! 

Carrot Sheet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Serves 12-15, depending on the size of your slices

2 cups (10 ounces) all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
4 eggs,
room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup (6 ounces) canola oil
1 cup (8 ounces) granulated sugar
4 cups grated carrots (a little less than 2 pounds of whole carrots)
1 batch Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe below)

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9x13 baking dish.
Whisk together the flour, cinnamon, powder, soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs with the vanilla. Set both aside.
In a large bowl, beat together the oil and sugar in a mixer or by hand until they reach a uniform consistency. With the mixer on low, beat 1/3 of the flour. Next, add 1/3 of the eggs. Continue adding the flour and eggs in alternating additions. Stop mixing when the last of the flour is just barely incorporated. Fold the carrots into the batter with a spatula, working slowly and gently until the carrots are distributed and no more dry flour remains.
Pour the batter into the baking dish and tap the dish a few times against the counter to work out the air bubbles. Bake for 45-50 minutes, rotating once during baking. The finished cake should be slightly puffed in the middle and browned on the edges. A toothpick inserted in the middle should come out clean.
Let the cake cool completely before frosting, about one hour, or wait to frost until the next day. Leftover cake can be kept, covered, at room temperature for several days. You can also wrap the unfrosted cake in aluminum foil and freeze it for up to 3 months.

Cream Cheese Frosting
Adapted from Faith Durand's recipe
Makes enough to thickly cover a 9x13" cake

1/4 cup (2 oz) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups confectioner's sugar
pinch of salt

Beat together the butter and cream cheese. Slowly beat in the vanilla, confectioner's sugar, and salt. Increase to high speed once the frosting starts to come together into lumps. Beat until creamy, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary