Posts Tagged 'family'

When It Comes To Bananas, You Can’t Slime Me – Banoffee Pie

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Simple, quick and a total crowd-pleaser, this dessert is nouveau-British classic. I had it once during my time there, and it was enough to convert me from “I-never-eat-raw-bananas” to “I-always-eat-raw-bananas-when-they-are-covered-in-whipped-cream-and-caramel.”

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Even though the technique is easy, the pie takes a little time to prepare, as you have to let the caramel chill to set before it can be served. I thought that maybe I didn’t cook my caramel long enough (it didn’t get as brown as I thought it should), but it tasted right enough.

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Make sure your layer the bananas and whipped cream just prior to serving (or I did mine an hour before). If you cover the bananas completely with the cream, you shouldn’t have any issues with them turning brown, but I am really sensitive to slime, so I wasn’t taking any chances.

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The amount of rave that these received was enough to shut down the review forum. Guys, these got rave reviews. Try it, you’ll like it.

On this Random Tuesday, I have conquered bananas. YOU CAN’T SLIME ME. Celebration is in order.


Banoffee Pie

Adapted from Carnation and Saveur

1 box graham crackers, finely ground

2 sticks (16 tablespoons) butter, divided

1 can sweetened condensed milk

1/2 cup brown sugar

3-4 bananas

2 cups (1 pint) heavy whipping cream, cold

chocolate (optional)

Place graham cracker crumbs in a bowl. Melt one stick of butter, then add to the crumbs, stirring until incorporated. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Chill.

Melt the remaining butter in a small saucepan. Stir in the brown sugar and melt over low heat. Add the condensed milk, and bring the mixture to a boil for a few minutes, stirring continuously. The toffee should darken slightly. Pour the filling into the crust. Chill again for at least one hour until the caramel is firm.

Before serving, slice up the bananas and place in a single layer over the toffee. Whip the heavy whipping cream in the bowl of a stand mixer until soft peaks form. Spread this over the banana layer. Garnish with chocolate shavings.

Best served the day it is made.

Emily & Oreo Truffles

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This is my cousin, Emily. She bought this sweet new pro-grade Canon, and let me help her break it in one day. It was raining, and there were mosquitoes as big as my fist hiding near the creek.

As an added bonus, I’ve posted the recipe for the Oreo truffles I did for Wades’ grad below. I always think of Emily when I make them because she made the first I ever had.

Thanks, Em! You’re beautiful, and if people don’t tell you that enough, then I am really sorry, because it is so so so true.


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emily dress 1      mad grad 2

Oreo Truffles

Adapted from everywhere

1 package Oreo cookies (about 30)

8 ounces cream cheese, softened and cut into chunks

10 ounces almond bark or vanilla candy coating (alternately, you could use melted chocolate chips with a 1/2 tablespoon of vegetable oil for dipping)

Pulse the Oreos in a food processor until finely ground. Add the cream cheese chunks and pulse until well-combined. Scoop the mixture into small balls and roll until they are smooth. At this point, you can stick the truffles on candy sticks if you like. Set the truffles on a lined baking sheet, cover and freeze for at least a half hour.

Melt the candy coating in a bain marie or in the microwave, being careful not to scorch it. If you want to stir in food coloring at this point, you can do that. Dip each truffle in the coating and gently shake off the excess coating. Place the truffles on wax paper, sprinkle and let cool until hardened. Store covered in the refrigerator.

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,


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 #207: To Not OD – Crystal Cake Batter Cookies

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Guys, these cookies are vice in ultra overload. They are sugarcakebattercrystalmeth-type cookies (not that I would know about such things, but don’t you imagine crystal meth to look kind of like a unicorn/sprinkles?). The kind that will send you for a ride. And they could be better.

Mostly, it’s my fault. I fancied them up with a big, fat, unnecessary swirl of icing. They probably just needed a lick of icing, but as per my usual form (best phrase mix eva), I went a little overboard. I mean, when a girl has a grad party, you gotta go big. Especially when she looks like this. Can you blame me?

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But actually, I think the cookie recipe is a bit off. The dough part. The cookies feel too sugary, and they flattened out a bit too much for my liking, even after freezing them and making little stack of dough so they would be thick cookies! And take note, I nearly never chill dough for long enough. Impatience is my virtue.

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They are a fun idea, and they are not a bad use of that leftover cake mix you have in the pantry, but just prepare yourself for something like two weeks worth of sugar in one go. And this is coming from me, so you know it’s real.

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Frosted Cake Batter Cookies

Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction

For the cake batter cookies cookies:

1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cup yellow or white boxed cake mix
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg, at room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

Sift together flour, cake mix, and baking soda in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and sugars. Mix in the egg and vanilla and beat until creamy. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix until just combined. Do not overmix.

Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight. This will prevent the dough from spreading too much.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and use a small cookie scoop to portion out the cold dough on an ungreased baking sheet.  Bake for 5-7 minutes until edges are slightly browned. The centers will look soft, but they will set up as the cool. Remove to a cookie sheet and let cool completely.

For the cake batter frosting:

I Got It Right: Twinkie Bundt Cake + Homemade Marshmallow Creme

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So they say that blog readership declines in the summer. Something about people “getting outside,” and like, “enjoying life” or something? Cool, man, me too. Which is why I am writing this post a month prior to its publishing and enjoying the mid-July weather right now. This also means that you, a dedicated summer reader, will get to share in one of the biggest recipe joys/successes of my recent life, namely, HOMEMADE MARSHMALLOW CREME.

Stuffed in an ACTUALLY EXTREMELY DELICIOUS vanilla cake.

Making its TWINKIE-like characteristics extremely apparent.

Can she express this better? Probably, but I’m too overwhelmed with the below whisk/marshmallow creme shot.

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Guys, the marshmallow creme recipe I’ve linked below is the jam. Besides having to wait forever for the sugar solution to boil (my impatience was probably directly correlated to my desire for the finished product), the recipe was fairly simple. Now that I know I can have marshmallow creme whenever I need it, there are a host of recipes that have been opened up to me. Seriously, marshmallow creme is in a lot of toothsome things. More s’mores, anyone?

Oh, also the funnest part of this cake is getting to “tunnel” out the hole for the marshmallow creme. Cue cake-eating commencement.

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My auntie was half the inspiration for this recipe. We were chatting baking recently, and she was telling me how she used to love making Bundt cakes. It had been ages since I’d made one. Side fact of interest: she used to be a florist, and basically everything she touches ends up beautified.  I sprinkled on some sparkly pearls and made her have the first slice in appreciation.

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Lovely angel auntie. Thank you for everything! And thanks to all y’all who are sticking it out on the blog this summer. I mean, just because it’s summer doesn’t mean people don’t like cake, can I get a “Preach”?

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Appreciatively yours,


Twinkie Bundt Cake

Adapted from Pure Vanilla via Leite’s Culinaria

6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for the pan
3 cups cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup mild vegetable oil, such as canola, grapeseed, safflower, or sunflower
3 large eggs plus 4 large egg yolks, at room temperature
1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature

8 ounces marshmallow crème (I used this recipe.)
8 tablespoons (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
sprinkles and confectioners’ sugar, for dusting (optional)

Preheat the oven to 325°F (163°C). Coat a 12-cup Bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray or butter and dust it lightly with flour, tapping out any excess.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and vanilla on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Add the sugar and beat until evenly mixed, about 1 minute. With the machine still running, slowly pour in the oil and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs and egg yolks, 1 at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition.
Reduce the mixer speed to low. Alternately stir in the flour mixture and buttermilk in 3 additions each, ending with the buttermilk. Mix on low speed just until the batter is smooth and no lumps remain. Turn off the mixer and gently fold the batter several times by hand with a spatula to ensure everything is incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
Bake for 60 to 70 minutes, until the cake is golden, the top springs back when lightly pressed, and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Place the pan on a wire rack and let cool completely, about 2 hours.To make the filling, beat together the marshmallow crème, butter, and vanilla until smooth. Stir in sprinkles, if desired.
While the cake is still in the pan, use a knife to make 6 or 7 deep, evenly spaced notches or holes in the bottom of the cake, each about 3/4 of an inch in diameter, being careful to cut no more than halfway through to the top of the cake. Eat the scraps. Using your fingertips, gently connect the holes, making a uniform tunnel in the cake.
Use a spoon to fill the tunnel with marshmallow creme, smoothing the filling up to the top of the tunnel. Quickly and carefully invert the cake onto a platter. Dust with confectioners’ sugar, if desired, or make a quick glaze with powdered sugar and milk to drizzle over the cake.

Pipe Dream #205: To Be Opposites on the Color Wheel – Chived Feta Biscuits with Paprika

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Make these tonight. They taste like those cheddar biscuits from Red Lobster except with a sassy paprika sprinkle on top. I kind of unintentionally made them. I’ve seen recipes for the Red Lobster biscuits floating around for ages, and for some reason, they always call for Bisquick. I never have Bisquick on hand–whipping up drop biscuits is just too easy–so I have never made them. Sometime I’ll try it, maybe with a faux-Bisquick mix of my own. How hard can it be?

Either way chives + cheese +flaky biscuit = all this girl ever wanted in a savory snack.

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Remember how I just talked about associating red and blue color combinations with America/the 4th? Welp, red and green is another color set that I wish people would dissociate with Christmas. I mean, I love red and green Christmas colors, but if I want to wear red, green and teal plaid in to the office, please don’t tell me that I look like Christmas. I look like opposites on the color wheel, ok? Red and green are meant to be together.

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A word: Grate in this butter. It will make you so much happier than trying to “cut in” the butter with two knives. Hwhat a chore, hwhat a chore.

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Stir in your mise-en-placed additions. Or don’t mise-en-place them. I mean, why?

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Pat out ya rounds. Slice. Bake. They can even be frozen. I’ve been keeping a few in the freezer in case I get a craving for overpriced seafood.

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Chived Feta Biscuits with Paprika

Adapted from Joy the Baker

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 tablespoon sugar

1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon cracked black pepper

6 tablespoons butter, cold and cut into cubes

1/2 egg, beaten

1 1/2 tablespoons cold water

1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons full-fat greek yogurt, cold

1/4 cup chopped chives

heaping 1/3 cup (3 ounces) feta cheese, crumbled

1/2 egg beaten for egg wash

coarse sea salt, cracked black pepper, and paprika for topping

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and black pepper.  Cut in butter with your fingers until the mixture resembles a coarse meal.  In another bowl, stir together the egg, yogurt, and water.  Add this to the flour mixture, stirring a bit to make a soft, shaggy dough.  Stir in the chives and feta and dump mixture onto a counter to knead the dough together.  The mixture will come together in about 10 to 15 kneads, but try to handle the dough as little as possible.

Roll out the dough into a 1-inch thickness.  Cut into 2-inch rounds using a biscuit cutter or into mini circles with a cookie cutter.  Reroll any remaining dough and continue making biscuits. Place the biscuits on prepared baking sheet, brush with egg wash and sprinkle generously with the sea salt, black pepper, and paprika.   Bake for 12-15 minutes (less time if you are making mini biscuits).  Serve warm.

Note: To make these ahead of time, flash freeze the biscuits on your baking tray for about a half an hour before transferring to a plastic bag. Bake from frozen, and add a couple minutes onto your baking time.

A Mad Grad, Upcoming Delights

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Oh, Wades, the things I do for you. Given my sister’s obsession with DQ’s Brownie Oreo Earthquake, I felt it was only appropriate to festoon her grad party dessert table with every Oreo/marshmallow cream dessert I could think of. I was up til 2 a.m. baking, but baby was it worth it. I’m proud of her, ok? She’s good at everything.

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Give it up, these Oreo Cupcakes alone would have been worth braving the relentless rain that day, but there were several other desserts that made the cut. (Not pictured is the savory Greek food served that day. I had to keep telling people, “It’s like eating a taco; you’ve got this.” Nice work, Mum.)

Upcoming recipes you should be on the watch for:

– Oreo Truffles (On sticks.)

-Puppy Chow Bars (Hwhat?? I know.)

-Frosted Cake Batter Cookies (Also, I know.)


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Cousens. Fet.

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Coffee. Actually, this was mostly creamer. The ice cubes are coffee, so they melt into the creamer and your coffee won’t be diluted. Genius!

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Hi there, I love you two.

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Celebrating. Watch out, SoCal, her she comes!



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