These shortcakes whip together quickly, and are not too sweet! Perfect with fresh berries and a little creme fraiche.
1 1/2 c flour
1/3 – 1/2 c sugar
1/2 c cocoa powder
1 tbsp baking powder
1/4 c cold, unsalted butter cubed
2/3 c half and half
1/2 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 400.
Pulse dry ingredients in a food processor to combine. Add butter and pulse to form course crumbs. With motor running slowly add half and half and vanilla. Process until a dough begins to form; it will be very sticky.
On a lightly floured surface, knead several times. Press out to about 1 inch thick and cut 6 3 inch round cakes.
Place a silicon mat or parchment paper on a baking sheet, place cakes on the sheet. Bake for 12 – 15 minutes, until dry to the touch and slightly cracked.
Serve warm with fruit, creme fraiche, whipped cream or ice cream.
These cookies are so good – they taste like birthday cake! I adapted it from Smitten Kitchen. Enjoy!
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1/4 c cream cheese, softened
1 1/4 c sugar
1 large egg
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 c rainbow sprinkles
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Line two baking large sheets with parchment paper.
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl and whisk to blend. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat cream cheese, butter and sugar until fluffy. Add egg, vanilla and blend again. Add flour mixture and beat until well combined. Chill in the fridge for 20 minutes or so before using.
Scoop balls of dough and roll them briefly in the palms before dropping them in a bowl of rainbow sprinkles and gently press down to coat the top.
Transfer to baking sheets at least two inches apart.
Bake for 9 to 10 minutes until they look underbaked, just a little brown on the the bottoms.
Let set on the baking sheet on a rack for a few minutes before transferring to cooling racks to cool the rest of the way. Repeat with remaining cookie dough.
Such a simple and tasty dessert – those french are so smart!
2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted, plus more for greasing
2 c halved fresh figs
1 c whole milk
3 large eggs
1/2 c sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1Preheat the oven to 325°. Butter a 10-inch glass pie plate. Arrange the figs cut side up in an even layer in the plate.
In a large bowl, whisk the milk with the melted butter, eggs, sugar and vanilla until the sugar has dissolved. Whisk in the flour until the batter is smooth. Pour the batter evenly over the figs and bake for about 40 minutes, until golden and puffed. Let the clafoutis rest for 5 minutes before serving
This is from David Leibovitz – it is perfect. You need time to make this as everything needs to chill between steps. I did it over 2 days. So worth all the work!
2 c whole milk
1/2 vanilla bean, (split vertically) or 2 tsp vanilla extract
6 large egg yolks
1/2 c sugar
1/4 c flour
4 tbsp unsalted butter, cold and cubed
1 1/2 c flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 c whole milk
6 tbsp unsalted butter, cubed
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 c sugar
1/2 c heavy cream
2 tbsp light corn syrup or golden syrup
4 ozs bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
For the custard filling
Add the milk to a medium saucepan and use a paring knife to scrape the seeds from the half vanilla bean into the milk. Add the vanilla pod to the milk and warm over medium-high heat with a pinch of salt. Turn off heat.
In a separate medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar until smooth, then whisk in the flour. Gradually pour about 1 cup (250ml) of the warmed milk into the yolks while whisking constantly, then scrape the warmed egg mixture back into the saucepan.
Turn the heat back on to medium-high heat and cook the custard, stirring the mixture with a whisk constantly (don’t vigorously whip it, which will make it harder to see what’s happening, and tire you out – just stir it) for 1 minute, then reduce the heat to the next-to-lowest temperature and continue to cook, stirring constantly with a whisk for 8 minutes. The mixture will continue to bubble gently as you cook it, but will not break due to the flour. Place a mesh strainer over a medium bowl and keep it nearby.
When the custard is thick, scrape the mixture into the strainer and press it through with a flexible spatula. Stir in the cold butter and vanilla extract (if using extract instead of the vanilla bean), until smooth. (Even if using vanilla bean, I often add around 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract to round out the vanilla flavor, so you can use both bean and extract.) Butter a piece of parchment paper and place it butter-side-down on top of the cream. Chill thoroughly, for several hours or overnight. (The vanilla bean can be rinsed thoroughly and dried, and used for something else.)
For the cake
Preheat the oven to 325ºF (160ºC.) Adjust the oven rack to the center of the oven. Lightly butter the bottom and sides of two 9-inch (23cm) cake pans and line the bottoms with rounds of parchment paper.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. In a small saucepan, warm the milk and the butter until the butter is melted. Remove from heat, add the 1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract, and set aside. Cover to keep warm.
In a stand mixer fitted with the whip attachment (or with a hand mixer, or by hand in a bowl with a whisk…and a lot of moxie) whip the eggs and sugar at high speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, gradually dribble in the warm milk and butter until combined, then the flour mixture.
Remove the bowl from the stand mixer and give it a few stirs by hand with a flexible spatula to make sure everything is incorporated, then quickly divide the batter into the two prepared cake pans. Smooth the tops and bake until the top of the cakes are golden brown and the center springs back when you touch it and the cake feels done, about 20 to 22 minutes. Don’t overbake. Let the cakes cool completely.
To finish the cake
Run a knife around the cakes to remove them from the cake pans and peel off the parchment paper. Put one round of cake on a serving plate. Remove the custard filling from the refrigerator, which likely has stiffened up, so give it a few good stirs with a whisk or spatula to loosen it up and remove any lumps. Spread it over the top of the cake on the plate. Top with the second round of cake. Chill the two-layer cake while you prepare the glaze.
To make the glaze, gently warm the cream, corn syrup and chocolate is a small saucepan, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat and let stand about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the glaze is thick yet spreadable. Pour it over the center of the cake and use a spatula or butter knife to coax it toward the edges, letting it drip down the side.
Refrigerate the cake until firm enough to slice, which will take at least 2-3 hours. If you try to slice it before the filling is well-chilled it’ll be messy to slice so patience pays off.
I doubled the fruit in this recipe and not mix the sugar with the berries as they were already sweet. This a super simple, tasty cake! This cake serves 8.
½ cup/115 grams unsalted butter (1 stick), melted, plus more for greasing
5 ounces/145 grams frozen and thawed or fresh, hulled strawberries (about 1 cup)
⅔ cup/150 grams packed light brown sugar
½ cup/120 milliliters whole milk, at room temperature
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup/130 grams all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Vanilla ice cream, for serving
Heat oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8-inch (square or round) baking dish with butter. Set aside.
Using your hands or the back of a fork, mash the berries to release all their juices, and stir in 1/3 cup of the brown sugar.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the melted butter, remaining 1/3 cup brown sugar, milk and salt, then add the flour and baking powder and continue whisking just until the batter is smooth. Transfer the batter (it’s not much) to the greased baking dish, and spread evenly into corners.
Spoon the strawberries and all their juices over the top of the cake batter. Place in the oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or just when a toothpick comes out clean in the center. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 3 to 5 minutes before spooning into bowls. Serve warm with ice cream.
Thus cake comes together in minutes and is so moist! You don’t even have to wait for the cake to cool to frost.
1 cup butter, cubed
1 cup water
1/4 cup baking cocoa
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup butter, cubed
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons 2% milk
3 tablespoons baking cocoa
3-3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Toasted pecans for garnish
In a large saucepan, bring the butter, water and cocoa to a boil. Remove from the heat. Combine the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt; add to cocoa mixture. Stir in the sour cream until smooth.
Pour into a greased 15x10x1-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
In a small saucepan, melt butter; add milk and cocoa. Bring to a boil. Remove from the heat. Whisk in confectioners’ sugar and vanilla until smooth. Pour over warm cake. Cool completely on a wire rack.
This makes a decadent cheesecake – you can use whatever berries are in season, just make sure they are the peak of ripeness!
FOR THE CRUST
1 c toasted pecan pieces
1/4 c flour
3 tbsp sugar
Pinch of salt
1 large egg yolk
2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
FOR THE FILLING
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, at room temperature
3/4 c sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 32-ounce whole milk ricotta
3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp amaretto (rum or Grand Marnier may be substituted)
1 tbsp cornstarch
FOR THE TOPPING
8 ozs (about 2-1/2 c) fresh berries
Preheat the oven to 325°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Spray a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray.
To make the crust: place the almonds, flour, sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Process until the nuts are finely chopped and the mixture looks sandy. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolk, cooled melted butter and vanilla. Add the liquid mixture to the nut mixture and pulse several times until the ingredients are well combined, moistened and crumbly. Dump the mixture into the prepared pan and, using your fingers or the bottom of a measuring cup, press into an even layer. Place the pan in the freezer for 10 minutes to chill; then bake for 10-15 minutes, until the crust is lightly golden. Let cool on a wire rack.
Meanwhile, make the filling: Combine the cream cheese, sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Process until soft and creamy, about 1 minute. Add the ricotta and process until the mixture is smooth and light, another 2 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, processing for 5-10 seconds between each addition. Add the vanilla, amaretto, cornstarch and orange zest and process until mixture is just combined (do not overmix).
Pour the filling into the crust, smoothing the top with a spatula. Bake the cheesecake for about 50 – 60 minutes, until the top is lightly golden, the edges are set and the center is quite jiggly but not totally liquid (it will continue to cook as it cools). Carefully remove the cheesecake from the oven and allow it to cool completely on a wire rack. Once cool, run a thin-bladed knife around the edge of the cake to make sure it’s not sticking to the sides then cover with plastic wrap and transfer to the refrigerator to cool for at least 2 hours or overnight.
For the topping: After the cake has chilled, place the berries evenly over top. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
For serving: Remove the sides of the springform pan and slice.