Posts Tagged 'easy'



Pipe Dream #211: To Make A Mercy Killing – Orange Almond Trifles

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Trifles are the cooking equivalent of those sand art projects you did in elementary school, easy to assemble and satisfyingly ornamental without much effort. Granted, you probably won’t be able to create a camel under a palm tree using orange zest and whipped cream, but go for it if you want, man. Also, like sand art, trifles have a short shelf life, though this is because they go down easy, not because your little sister shook up your sand bottle and made all the colors mix and then your sand bottle was ugly beige-colored instead of zesty rainbow-colored.

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Guys, I was really excited about using this flavoring oil. It’s like orange juice concentrate. Except not for drinking. It’s just really strong, ok? You can get these in like, any flavor you want, too.

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Unlike this trifle, which was gluten-free and intentional, these are the result of an overly dramatic cake layer. I tried to get it out of a pan I didn’t bother lining before it was totally cool and was met with fierce resistance, so I mercilessly shook it into pieces. It was heartbroken, but hey, I can’t care about every cake’s feelings. After such a bad knock, I decided to give it a mercy killing and split it into four crumbled servings which I buried in creamy layers of pastry cream and whipped cream. Not such a bad way to go out, I guess.

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Because of the chill time required, trifles are a make-ahead dessert. Also, aren’t you just jazzed about getting a peek inside this fridge? To me, knowing what’s in someone’s fridge says a lot about them. It’s like reading their diary. Ok, I realize I am a little obsessed with food sometimes. You probably do not even care about this. Olives, broccoli slaw, maple syrup, greek yogurt and queso. Judge me how you will.

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I served the trifles in individual glasses garnished with an orange wedge to make them an acceptable dessert-for-breakfast. Because a pretty glass means you can eat whatever you want whenever you want.

Killin’ it,

L

Orange Almond Trifles

For the cake:

Half of any cake recipe will do. I used this one from i am baker.

For the orange pastry cream:

Any pastry cream recipe will do. I halved this one from Food Network.

For the sweetened whipped cream:

Beat 1 cup heavy whipping cream with a tablespoon or two of powdered sugar until soft peaks form. Stir in a 1/2 teaspoon vanilla.

Layer the trifle components, starting with the cake, then the pastry cream, then the whipped cream. Garnish with orange zest and toasted almonds. I used wine glasses as a vessel, but you could use anything. If you don’t want individual servings, you could try something like this.

Pipe Dream #210: To Be TartNotATart – Strawberry Rhubarb Cornmeal Cobbler

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I realize that rhubarb is no longer in season. But I’m posting this anyway, because I think you should make this cobbler, except with a different fruit. Unlike a more traditional cobbler recipe, this one includes cornmeal in the biscuit dough, making for a light, cornbread-y type topping. I think this would pair particularly well with a lemon-blueberry filling, or the late-summer plums with which this topping was originally paired. I’m looking forward to making another strawberry rhubarb cobbler with a more traditional biscuit topping.

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I loved loved lived the sweet-tart flavors meld. The rest of my family felt that neither the biscuit topping nor the filling was sweet enough. I think they were just wishing that it was a crisp or crumble like they are used to snarfing. I beg to differ regarding the sweetness, but you could try increasing the sugar in the filling by 1/4 cup if you’re nervous about it.

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Stop. Look at that.

Ok, the original recipe called for 1 hour and 15 minutes of bake time, but I found my biscuits brown and fruit gurgling at 50 minutes. If your biscuits are getting brown before your fruit is warm, just cover them with a little aluminum. Also, it is key to let the cobbler cool for at least 30 minutes before serving; it gives the fruit juices time to thicken up a little bit after simmering with the cornstarch.

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Springing, already,

L

Strawberry Rhubarb Cornmeal Cobbler

Adapted from Food & Wine

1 1/2 pounds rhubarb + 2 1/2 pounds strawberries, in chunks
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup white cornmeal
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 sticks cold butter, cubed
3/4 cup milk

In a bowl, toss the rhubarb and strawberries with 3/4 cups sugar and the cornstarch and let stand for 10 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375°. In a food processor, pulse the flour with the cornmeal, sugar, ginger, baking powder and salt. Add the butter and pulse until crumbly. Add the milk and pulse until moistened.

Spread the filling in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Scoop 15 mounds of dough over the filling. Bake in the center of the oven for about 50 minutes, until the fruit is bubbling and the topping is golden and crisp. Let cool for 1 hour before serving.

Pipe Dream #206: To Be a Mere Vessel – Puppy Chow Bars

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I’ve never posted about classic puppy chow before. I mean, sure, ages ago I tried out a lemon version, but I’ve since given up trying to make a dent in the 10,000 possible flavors you can lacquer onto rice. Rice is like dry tofu, flavorless and kinda gross on its own, which makes it indubitably versatile. In the case of puppy chow, rice cereal functions as a vehicle to transport peanut butter and chocolate from a bowl to my mouth without too much shame. (I feel like there is a “treasures in jars of clay” reference here in which I am the rice cereal and the Gospel is chocolate and peanut butter, but I can’t quite flesh it out, ah well).

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And now, with the introduction of puppy chow in bar form, I have provided you with an even simpler way to do so. Aren’t you glad?

Amp up the powdered sugar for a more traditional level of p chow sweetness. I wish I had marshmallows on hand to make this a sort of Rice Krispy treat/puppy chow hybrid, but I didn’t. I think it might make the bars hold together a little better. I stuck these in the fridge for a bit before slicing to make things as clean as possible, but they still looked average. Story of my life.

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Simply,

L

Puppy Chow Bars

Adapted from Dinners, Dishes & Dessert

1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup peanut butter
6 cups Corn Chex, Rice Chex or Rice Krispies cereal
powdered sugar

Line a 9 x 13 inch pan with aluminum foil. Place the cereal in a large bowl. Microwave the chocolate chips and peanut butter in a medium bowl, stirring every 30 seconds until melted. Pour the mixture over the cereal and stir to combine. Dump the mix into the prepared pan and press down with a spatula to form into bars. Let cool completely. Before serving, dust with powdered sugar. Slice into bars. You may want to stick the whole pan in the fridge before slicing to get the cleanest cuts.


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