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Those Grocery Store Cookies

Those Grocery Store Cookies

My kids love those cookies from the grocery store. You know the ones. The seem to have no flavor. The cookie is more cake than cookie and you just know that the vibrant colors of frosting are filled with chemicals. It pains me to buy…

Mixed Berry Jam

Mixed Berry Jam

There is a point when you look at the berries in your refrigerator and they just aren’t the same. I used to get really frustrated. I am always so ambitious when I buy fresh produce at the Farmer’s Market, and disappointed when we cant’t get…

Margarita Cake

Margarita Cake

You know I love cake. I am always looking for new ways to eat cake and different cakes to make. This Margarita Cake is a delicious way to imbibe.

If you want o make it alcohol free, substitute margarita mix for the tequila.

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Margarita Cake

This cake was fun to develop. I took pieces from a lot different recipes and made it my own.
Prep Time1 hr
Course: Endings
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cake, lime, margarita, tequila

Ingredients

Cake

  • 2-1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 3 Tbs. Lime Flavored Gelatin
  • 1 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 1 tsp. Kosher Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
  • 2 cups Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups Granulated White Sugar
  • 3 jumbo Eggs, at room temperature
  • 1-1/2 cups Buttermilk, at room temperature

Simple Syrup

  • 1/2 cup Granulated White Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Nellies, Key Lime Juice, can order from Amazon can substitute fresh Lime juice
  • 1/4 tsp. Tequila, Remember if you wouldn't drink it don't cook with it.

Buttercream

  • 2 cups Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
  • 6 cups Confectioners sugar, sifted
  • 2-3 Tbs. Heavy Cream
  • 2 tsp. Vanilla
  • pinch Kosher Salt
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 3-4 Tbs. Tequila

Instructions

Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
    Butter, flour and line with parchment paper, 3 8" round cake pans.
  • In a small bowl combine all dry ingredients.
    In the bowl of a stand-up mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter unitl ight and creamy, about 3 minutes.
    Gradually add in sugar and beat until light and fluffy.
    Add eggs, one at a time, beating until combined, after each egg.
    With mixer on low add dry ingredients to butter, alternating with buttermilk. Beat only until just incorporated, Do not overwork. Start and finish with dry ingredients.
    Beat in vanilla.
  • Divide batter evenly between three pans. I use a large ice cream scoop to make sure it is even.
    Bake 27-30 minutes. You want your tester to come out with just a few moist crumbs.
    Allow to cool completely, on rack, before removing from pans.

Simple Syrup

  • Combine sugar, lime juice and tequila in a small sauce pan.
    Stir over a low heat until sugar is dissolved. Then bring to a low boil.
    Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature

Buttercream

  • In bowl of a stand-up mixer, beat butter until light in color and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes.
    With mixer on low, add vanilla, salt, zest and tequila.
    Then add confectioners sugar about a cup at a time.
    Change attachment to whisk and beat in cream, on high. You are basically gettting the cream to soft or medium peaks, to hold up frosting. This could take 5-7 minutes.
  • To assemble cakes:
    With a pastry brush, "paint" each layer with simple syrup. You don't want it drenched but you want it coated on all sides.
    Spread enough frosting to cover the top of first layer across the top. Add another cake layer and repeat. For third layer, frost all three layers on the sides and work towards the top. Be generous with frosting. Then smooth tops and frost top layer.
  • Garnish cake with a rim of Flake salt, like Maldon. I like to srpinkle more lime zest over the top and then place a lime wedge for decoration.
Sheet Pan Cheesecake

Sheet Pan Cheesecake

This is the easiest way to make cheesecake for a crowd. Every piece is good and gets plenty of topping.

Tahini Cake

Tahini Cake

Every now and then, a cake hits me between the eyes. This is one of those cakes. As I have said before, I love Tahini!. This cake has tahini in the cake and the frosting so it hits all the notes for me. I even…

It’s Strawberry Season!!!!

It’s Strawberry Season!!!!

I am so very fortunate to live in Southern California, where we get fresh strawberries year round. But even here, those summer series are special

Our season is peaking for the next few weeks and I am fully taking advantage of it. Those dark red berries on the inside and out are super sweet and bursting with flavor.

I love to eat them straight from the basket and I love pairing them with other flavors. Just last night I saw an instagram post about a mozzarella and pomegranate seed salad. It was lightly dressed with fresh mint, olive oil, wine vinegar and a little salt.  I can’t help but think my version made with strawberries is going to be so fresh. The perfect summer salad.

You all know, I love pound cake too. So I thought I’d fold some strawberries into a pound cake batter. They really added a whole other level of moisture. For the glaze I went for a strawberry lemonade taste.

I made a standard glaze with confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice, but then added some strawberry jam that I had melted. It gave the glaze a wonderful speckled pink color and the flavor was the perfect blend of sweet and tart. A great summer cake to take along or have on your counter.

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as my family did. Be sure to send me comments and post pictures of your version.

endings.Fresh Strawberry Pound Cake
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Fresh Strawberry Pound Cake

I love pound cake. I have written about them a lot. They are so versatile and the variations are endless. THis one use fresh strawberries in the batter. I then made a Starwberry/Lemon Glaze with left over strawberry jam.
Course: Endings
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cake, poundcake, strawberry

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Unsalted Butter, room temperature
  • 4 Large Eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup Sour Cream
  • 2 pints Fresh Strawberries, washed and chopped into bite-sized pieces.
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 2 cups Granulated White Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 2 cups Confectioners' Sugar, sifted
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice
  • 2 Tablespoons Strawberry Jam, heated to make thinner

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375° with rack in middle of oven.
    Grease and flour a large bundt pan, set aside.
  • Whisk together, flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder, in a medium bowl. Set aside.
    In the bowl of a stand-up mixer, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. This will take 3-5 minutes on medium.
    Add eggs, on at a time.
    Add in the vanilla.
  • Turn mixer to low and add the dry ingredients, alternating with the sour cream, in three additions. Start and finish with dry ingredients. Remember to not overwork the batter. Mix only until just combined.
  • Fold the strawberries in, gently.
    I like to use a scopp to put the batter into the pan. It is a thick batter and I find this gives a more even fill. Then smooth top.
    Bake in preheated oven for 55-65 minutes, A cake tester should come out with just a few moist crumbs.
    Let cool, in pan, on rack for 30 minutes. Turn out and then let cool comoletely, before frosting.
  • You can make the glaze while the cake is cooling.
    Whisk lemon juice into sifted confectioners sugar. Be patient. It may take a minute to come together.
    Once it does start to come together, whisk in melted strawberry jam.
    Whisk until smooth. Pour over cooled cake and serve.
A Fresh Twist on Pound Cake

A Fresh Twist on Pound Cake

The South has a long love affair with pound cake. As I have said before, my family has hundreds of recipe variations, designed to suit any mood or occasion. When I cam across this recipe, in Southern Living, I knew it would be a keeper.…

Pancake Cake!

Pancake Cake!

I admit it I am jumping on the bandwagon! I’ve seen  the Trader Joes Pancake Bread in a loaf style, delicious. I’ve seen dozens of Pancake bread recipes but have seen a lot of Pancake Cake recipes so I though I’d dive in. I am…

Cinco de Mayo! Ole!

Cinco de Mayo! Ole!

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Carrot Margarita

A beloved beverage from a great vacation.
Course: Everything Else
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: carrots, margarita, tequila

Ingredients

  • Coarse salt for rimming glass
  • 2 ounces Tequila
  • 1 ounce Orange Liqueur
  • 2 ounces Fresh Carrot Juice
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Lime Juice
  • 2 Table spoons Fresh Orange Juice
  • 1 Tablespoon Simple Syrup
  • whole carrots, scallions for garnish

Instructions

  • Quickly dip glass rim in water then into the salt.
  • In a shaker filled with ice pour tequila, orange liqueur, carrot juice, lime juice, orange juice and simple syrup.
    Shake well to combine.
    Pour into preferred glass, filled with ice.
    Garnish with whole carrots and/or scallions.
    Serve.

 

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Rosemary Guacamole

A favorite dip given a new taste with fresh herbs.
Course: Beginnings
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: avocado, fresh herbs, guacamole, rosemary

Ingredients

  • 4 Medium Avocados
  • 2 sprigs Fresh Rosemary
  • 1 Serrano Pepper
  • 1 Garlic Clove
  • 1 small Lime
  • pinch Kosher Salt

Instructions

  • Peel and remove pit of all 4 avocados.
    In a medium serving bowl, or Mojacete, mash the avocados, coarsely.
  • Strip the leaves from the rosemary and mince them, almost to a paste.
    For the Serrano pepper, remove all membranes and seeds, then chop fine.
    Mince garlic clove, fine.
  • Stir with a fork, you are kind of mashing a little more, as you add the rosemary, pepper and garlic.
    Squeeze in half of lime juice. Add salt and then taste.
    Adjust seasoning by adding more juice or salt.
    Serve with chips.
Nancy SIlverton’s Madelines

Nancy SIlverton’s Madelines

These Madelines are sheer perfection! You get fantastic flavor from the freshest ingredients and golden butter. You get the iconic bump, from chilling you batter and starting in a hot oven. You can indulge in the rich flavor of vanilla with a hint of lemon.…

Miss Grace Lemon Cake

Miss Grace Lemon Cake

Growing up in Los Angeles, there were a few staple treats. Sometimes, it was a midnight run to Western Bagel to get hot bagels just out of the oven and other times it was Mis Grace Lemon Cake. Miss Grace holds a special place because,…

A Classic Salad Dressing becomes a Tasty Dip!

A Classic Salad Dressing becomes a Tasty Dip!

Green Goddess Dip for Vegetables and entertaining.

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Green Goddess Dip

The most delicious dip for veggies. You'll want to make extra.
Course: Beginnings
Cuisine: American
Keyword: crudite, dip, fresh herbs, vegetables

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Mayonnaise
  • 1 cup Sour Cream
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup each fresh dill, fresh chives, fresh parsley all minced You can use whatever herbs you have on hand. Fresh is best.
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice
  • Kosher salt & fresh ground pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Stir together mayonnaise and sour cream, then add in minced garlic cloves.
    Add in minced fresh herbs and stir to completely incorporate.
    Stir in lemon juice and Salt & Pepper.
    It is best if you can let it sit overnight, but you can serve immediately with fresh cut veggies and crackers.