You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘dessert’ tag.

chocolatetaco7_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

It may be a lot sunnier where you are but here after the holidays come the long, gray days of January. To brighten things I like to try new, fun things – especially where dessert is concerned. I made these to surprise my daughter one night at dinner, and she had fun putting them together with me. They would be great with mint ice cream, or any of the pretty colors, but being the girl she is she picked chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate! (She takes after me 😉

If you need a lot of these I would double the batter to allow for breakage. A lot will depend on your oven and how it gets, as well as how quick you can get these off the sheet and formed.

Chocolate Tacos, Makes about 8

For the shells:
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
3 T. dark cocoa (I use Hershey’s Special Dark.)
1 t. cornstarch
1/4 t. salt
3 T. egg whites (about three whites)
1 t. 2% reduced-fat milk
1/4 t. vanilla extract

For the glaze:
1/2 c. semisweet chocolate chips (I use Ghirardelli 60%)
1 t. butter

For the filling:
1 pint ice cream

Preheat oven to 400°.Combine first 5 ingredients, stirring well.

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Stir in egg whites, milk, and vanilla.

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Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. Spoon 1 tablespoon batter into each corner, forming a circle with the back of a spoon.

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Bake at 400° for about 6 minutes. You have to find the time when the shells are bendable but cooked. It’s better to take them out too soon than wait too long, too long and they won’t bend at all. You’ll have sandwiches instead! Anyhoo, rush them out of the oven and bend them right away. Let them cool and repeat with the rest of the batter.

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When you’ve baked all the shells melt the chips with the butter and stir smooth. Dip the edges of the shells. We drizzled the extra over the top. You’ll notice that I lost three shells – mostly to breakage because I left the first batch in too long.

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Fill the shells with scoops of ice cream and return them to the freezer for 30 minutes before serving.

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When ready to serve plate each taco, drizzle a little more fudge or topping for sauce and some coconut for fun.

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These may made a week ahead, wrapped airtight and kept in the freezer.

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pumpkincake14_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

Now I like a good four-page recipe probably more than the next girl, but there are times when you have to come up with something FAST. You found a slip at the bottom of the school backpack asking you to bring in something for the bake sale/party, you’ve been invited to a tailgate, or you just need cake like NOW.

This recipe is for those times. If you can stir you can make it. I promise. If you’re an experienced baker it’s still a lovely thing to throw together for a treat after working all day. It keeps well, it’s moist and velvety and it has that irreplaceable homemade thing going. It would also make a great Halloween dessert, just bake it in a round and drizzle a spider web-ish design in chocolate over the top. Boom.

Pumpkin Cake, Makes one 8″ cake or about 12 cupcakes

  • 1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 c. flour
  • 2/3 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. oil
  • 1 t. fresh ground ginger
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 1 t. baking powder
  • 1/2 t. baking soda

Frosting

  • 4 oz 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
  • 3 T. soft butter
  • 1 t. milk
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 2 c. powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350. Combine the pumpkin, eggs, sugar and oil. Stir together well.

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Stir in the spices.

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Then the flour, baking soda and baking powder.

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Spread it evenly in a greased baking dish.

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Bake for about 25 minutes, until the center springs back to the touch. Set it aside to cool to room temperature.

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While the cake is cooling make the frosting. Combine the powdered sugar, butter and cream cheese in a mixing bowl.

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Beat in the vanilla and the milk. Add a little milk if you need it to reach the desired consistency. Beat for two minutes.

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Spread the icing on the cooled cake.

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Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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I sprinkled some candied nuts on top.

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Keep leftovers refrigerated, and lightly covered.


Four years ago: Farmhouse Cornbread
Three years ago: Cheese Fondue
Two years ago: Brioche Coffeecake
One year ago: Apple Dumplings


snowballs16_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

Believe it or not, I woke up a few days ago thinking about coconut snowballs. Now mind you, the last time I actually had a Hostess snoball I was probably also gazing dreamily at my Duran Duran poster and Nick’s purple eyeshadow. I knew I wasn’t after an actual duplicate, but rather the experience of cutting down through that pristine exterior to find amazing chocolate cake underneath.

Dorie Greenspan, because she is my spirit baker (like a spirit animal, but you know, a baker), understands such things. So much so that she has almost exactly that on the cover of her Baking cookbook. I’ve adapted her cake recipe here, covered it in an old-fashioned seven-minute frosting, and then coating the whole thing in coconut.

Unlike their inspirational counterparts these aren’t for keeping, you have to make them and eat them up shortly thereafter because the icing can get sticky in humidity. You’ll want to eat them right away anyway, the chocolate cake is meltingly delicious inside the fluffy frosting.

Coconut Snowballs, Makes six individual desserts

  • 3/4 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 c. unsweetened dark cocoa powder
  • 1/4 t. baking soda
  • 1/4 t. baking powder
  • 5 T. butter, softened
  • 1/4 c. packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 c. granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 t. vanilla extract
  • 1 oz. bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 1/4 c. buttermilk
  • 1/4 c. hot strong coffee
  • 1/3 c. mini chips
  • Frosting (recipe below)
  • 2-1/2 c. fine shredded coconut

Combine the first four ingredients together and set aside. Preheat the oven to 350. Put the sugars and butter in a mixing bowl, cream well.

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Add the egg and beat well, until very light and fluffy, about three minutes.

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Beat in the melted chocolate, then add the dry ingredients alternately with the milk. Beating well after each addition.

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Lastly, fold in the coffee, followed by the mini chips.

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Spoon the batter into six ramekins. (I had to bake mine in two batches.)

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Bake for about 10 minutes, until puffed and just firm to the touch in the center.

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Turn them out to cool. They will fall slightly but that’s okay!

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While the cakes are cooling make the icing.

Frosting (from King Arthur Flour)

  • 1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
  • 1/3 c. cold water
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 2 t. light corn syrup or 1/4 t. cream of tartar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In the top of a double boiler, combine the sugar, water, egg whites, corn syrup or cream of tartar, and the pinch of salt. Beat with an electric mixer set at low speed for 30 seconds, then set the pan over boiling water (the pan shouldn’t touch the water).

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Beating at high speed, cook the frosting for about 7 minutes, or until it’s stiff and glossy. Remove it from the heat, add the vanilla, and beat an additional 2 minutes.

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Put each cake right side up on a plate and cover it with frosting, mounding it on top to get a half-spherical shape.

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Sprinkle coconut on to cover and put the finished cake in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

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Three years ago: Hot Fudge Pudding Cake
Two years ago: Cream Cheese Coffeecake
One year ago: Sandwich Bread


cheesecake9_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

I came home from a weekend away to a large container of cottage cheese VERY close to its expiration date. It was too much for bread or other uses but just enough for a cheesecake. This makes a nice, different cheesecake with the added bonus of less fat and a lot more protein.

Cottage Cheesecake, Makes on 8″ round cheesecake

  • 1 large 14 oz. container low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1 sm. pkt. instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1/3 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 t. baking powder
  • 1 c. graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 T. melted butter
  • 3/4 c. milk

Preheat the oven to 350. Combine the cottage cheese and pudding mix in a food processor.

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Blend until smooth.

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Add the milk and eggs, blend until smooth.

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Add the flour and baking powder.

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Blend smooth once more.

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Combine the crumbs and butter in a 8″ springform pan. Press them over the bottom and spoon the batter over the top.

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Bake for about 40 minutes, until lightly browned. It will still jiggle a bit. Cool to room temperature and then refrigerate for at least three hours and preferably overnight.

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Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve.

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Store all leftovers covered and refrigerated. This best eaten within two-three days.

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Three years ago: Chocolate Zucchini Snack Cake
Two years ago: Badabing Chewy Cherry Bars
One year ago: Peach Crumb Pie


lemoncakes15_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

This cake got its name from its strong clear lemon flavor, which reminds me of the lemonade you can buy from fair vendors – the kind they make to order with a whole lemon per glass. Because it’s been so hot I baked them in a small size to cut down on the oven time, but you could bake it as a traditional loaf – just adjust the baking time up.

I based this recipe on one for traditional pound cake from Carole Walter’s Great Cakes, another one of my favorite cookbooks.

Country Fair Lemon Pound Cakes, Makes about 24 mini bundt cakes or one loaf cake

  • 1 c. softened butter
  • 1 c. granulated sugar
  • 1 Meyer lemon
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 t. vanilla extract
  • 2-1/4 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 t. baking powder
  • 1/4 c. milk
  • 2 c. powdered sugar

Measure the sugar into a bowl and zest the lemon into it. Work the rind into the sugar with your fingers until it’s well combined. Preheat the oven to 325.

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Put the butter into a mixing bowl and beat until light. Gradually beat in the sugar.

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Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Beating well after each addition. Stir in the extract.

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Add the flour and baking powder. Beat well.

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You should have a thick creamy batter.

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Grease your pan(s) and fill them.

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Bake small cakes about 20 minutes. Loaves may need 45 minutes or more.

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While the cakes are baking make the glaze. Measure the powdered sugar into a bowl. Juice the lemon into the sugar and stir it into a glaze. Depending on how much juice is in the lemon, you may need to adjust the thickness of the glaze with a little more powdered sugar.

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Turn the cakes out onto a rack.

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Drizzle them with the glaze while they are still warm.

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You can serve these at any temperature.

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They’re especially nice with fresh berries and coriander flowers.

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Store leftovers lightly covered at room temperature for up to two days. Freeze for longer storage.

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Three years ago: Strawberry Frozen Custard
Two years ago: Traverse Cherry Pie
One year ago: Strawberry Lemon Torte


 

minicheesecake8_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

This is a nice recipe if you feel like cheesecake but would rather forgo having extra tempting servings sitting around. This gives you four polite-sized servings for a dinner party with no leftovers! I used orange and mini chips, but feel free to vary the flavorings however you wish. I bake these in ceramic ramekins because they’re easier to put in the water bath. Plus, they go together really quickly and with no crust you’re not only cutting calories you’re cutting down the gluten free as well.

Mini Cheesecakes, Makes four 3-1/2″ servings

  • 4 oz. 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
  • 2/3 c. greek yogurt
  • 1/3 c. sour cream
  • One egg
  • 1/3 c. granulated sugar
  • 1 T. all-purpose flour

Preheat the oven to 350. Combine the first three ingredients in a food processor.

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Add the egg, flour and sugar.

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Blend until smooth.

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Fold in your flavoring and addins, in this case I added 1 t. orange bakery emulsion and 1/3 c. mini chocolate chips.

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Lightly grease four ramekins and divide the batter between them. Fill an 8″ baking dish one-third full with warm water. Set the ramekins in the dish and put them in the oven.

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Bake for about 30 minutes, until the centers are set and the sides start to pull away from the dishes.

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You could serve these warm but I put them in the deep freeze to cool them quickly for dinner.

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Three years ago: Finnish Teaspoon Cookies
Two years ago: Lemon Poppyseed Scones
One year ago: Brigadeiro


pannacotta5_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

Panna cotta is quick, easy, delicious and hard to photograph. From all accounts it just appeared sometime in Italy in the 1960’s, first thickened with egg whites like a custard and baked in a water bath, until someone hit on the idea of adding gelatin. If you have a cold refrigerator you can start it about 90 minutes before a dinner party and it will be ready when you are. It would be a great choice for any friends on a gluten-free program.

In this version I’m using a combination of buttermilk and heavy cream. The finished dessert is a lovely balanced cream that doesn’t hint heavily at either main ingredient. I had the pears and caramel already, but you could use any fruit sauce you like – a combination of dried and fresh apricots would be especially good I think. I unmolded these, but you could stick with the ramekins if it makes things easier.

Panna Cotta, Serves four

  • 8 oz. heavy whipping cream
  • 1/3 c. granulated sugar
  • 1 T. cold water
  • 2 T. sherry
  • 1 packet unflavored gelatin
  • 2 c. buttermilk
  • One small can dulce de leche (optional)
  • Kosher salt for sprinkling (optional)
  • Two ripe pears, washed, cored and sliced (optional)

Combine cold water and sherry, stir in the gelatin to soften and set aside.

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Mix the heavy cream and sugar in a saucepan, heat over medium, stirring, until the sugar is dissolved.

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Once the sugar is dissolved remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the gelatin well. Then whisk in the buttermilk. The mixture will start to thicken a bit.

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Pour it into ramekins.

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Put them in the refrigerator for an hour, until set. Cover them with plastic wrap if you are making this recipe ahead. If you’re unmolding the panna cotta to serve it, run a knife around the outside of each one. It should unmold easily, but if it doesn’t gently ease it out with a spoon, holding the ramekin just over the serving plate. Spread the caramel on the plate, sprinkle with salt and add 1/4 of the pear slices to each serving. If you’d like a mix of textures a tuile cookie would be nice on the side.

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Three years ago: Chocolate Ganache
Two years ago: Stuffed Pork Tenderloin
One year ago: Chocolate Sheet Cake

appledumpling13_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

There may be times in life when you want something fancier than pie, when you want to give your inner Martha Stewart free rein in all its place-card-and-individual-dessert glory. Apple dumplings are for those times – humble enough to seem homey yet, if you seek out antique apples and make your own caramel sauce, there is plenty of opportunity for pretension. I kid, I love Martha, without her lots of people probably would never have discovered their love of hand-rolled beeswax.

Regardless, apple dumplings are basically self-contained apple pies, and very cute to boot. They would make a great fall brunch/dinner party dessert or something to wow people with at Thanksgiving. You can serve them with a caramel sauce like I did, or a scoop of ice cream. Even with small apples they are rather large, so if you aren’t feeding a table of pie-lovers and teenage boys, you might want to slice them in half and serve them that way.

Apple Dumplings, Makes five large servings

  • 1/2 recipe pie crust (under Basics, above)
  • 1 c. 1-2-3-4 streusel (under Basics, above)
  • Five well-shaped baking apples
  • 2 T. lemon juice
  • One egg
  • 2 T. water

Fill a mixing bowl with water and add the lemon juice. Peel your apples and cut them in half, remove the cores with a melon baller or metal measuring spoon.

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Drop them into the acidulated water, core down. When they are all prepared set them aside.

Preheat the oven to 375. Divide your crust into five equal portions. Roll out the first portion.

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Pick two matching apple halves out of the bowl and pack a tablespoon of streusel into one center, then fit the other apple half over it so the apple is back together again.

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Set it on the pastry and fold the sides up over it.

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You’ll have a little gob in the center of extra dough you need to trim off. You can roll it back out and cut out a couple leaves for decoration if you like.

When the apples are all wrapped up place them on a baking sheet.

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Whip the egg and the water together to make an egg wash. Paint it over all the dumplings. It will help seal any cracks in the pastry as they bake.

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Bake for about 30-35 minutes, until golden brown. My oven went psycho and switched itself to broil in the middle of baking, so I apologize for the scorching.

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Serve the dumplings warm or at room temperature.

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Three years ago: Weeknight Lasagne
Two years ago: Chocolate Almond Torte
One year ago: Brioche Coffeecake

frozenlemonpie6_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

Being a baker I don’t have a large inventory of no-bake recipes, but we had another hot day last week and knowing it wasn’t going to cool down much overnight I just couldn’t turn the oven on. So I turned to my cookbook collection and pulled out The Congressional Club Cookbook. It was published in 1961, when presumably good food still had the power to suspend partisanship – at least for a while.

frozenlemonpie_little-house-dunes

This recipe is based on one for Lemon Bisque by Mrs. Jamie Whitten, wife of the 1961 representative from Mississippi. I added some raspberries but you can mix it up – do a sauce or a white hot chocolate over the top. You could also go the other way, put it in a square pan and serve it in squares, topped with marshmallows, pineapple and cherries for an awesome retro dinner party dessert. Either way it’s refreshing, easy and healthy-ish –

Frozen Lemon Pie, Makes one 9″ pie

  • One graham cracker or vanilla wafer crust
  • 1 can evaporated milk, icy cold
  • 2/3 c. granulated sugar
  • 1/3 c. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 sm. can crushed pineapple
  • 2 c. IQF berries or other chopped fruit

Prechill your beaters before you start. Pour the milk into a bowl.

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Start to whip on high, drizzling in the sugar and lemon juice as you go. Whip to soft peaks, about four minutes.

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Fold in the pineapple and pour the mixture over your crust. Sprinkle your additional fruit, if you’re using it, over the top. (Note: A springform pan will help with neater slices.)

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Freeze until the pie is completely solid. This took about three hours in my deep freeze. In a regular freezer I’d leave it overnight. Take it out 15 minutes before serving. Run a knife around the edge and remove the rim. The pie should cut into neat slices.

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I think this would also be good with a coconut or meringue crust, which would also be gluten free!

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Three years ago: Sun Tea
Two years ago: Boston Cream Pie
One year ago: Raspberry Cream Cheese Danish

cakeandsauce14_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

Hopefully everyone’s out enjoying their July days – here’s a simple butter cake if you like to celebrate a weekend meal with dessert like I do. Without the sauce the cake would be lovely topped with sliced fresh fruit but with the sauce you have options. You do the cake and the sauce warm, cold, or one of each. The simple flavors of the butter and flavorings come through in the soft, sliceable yet delicate cake, and the velvety chocolate sauce can be casual or elegant. You decide.

Sunday Night Cake with Chocolate Sauce, Makes about nine 3″ servings

For the cake:

  • 1 stick softened butter
  • 2/3 c. granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1-1/2 t. baking powder
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1 t. vanilla or orange extract
  • 2/3 c. nonfat plain yogurt
  • 2 T. sour cream
  • 1-3/4 c. all-purpose flour

For the sauce:

  • 1 14-oz can evaporated milk
  • 1 c. semi-sweet chocolate (chopped, chips, etc.)
  • 1/2 c. dark cocoa
  • 1/3 c. granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 t. vanilla

Preheat the oven to 325.

Cream the butter and sugar together well with a spoon.

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Best in the egg, baking powder, baking soda, salt and flavoring.

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Then the yogurt, sour cream and flour.

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Stir well for about 30 seconds, until the flour is hydrated and you have a thick, creamy batter.

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Spread the batter into a greased 8″ square pan. Bake for about 20 minutes, until the center is baked through.

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While the cake is baking make the sauce. Combine the milk, sugar and chocolate in a saucepan over medium heat.

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Stir until the chocolate melts, then whisk in the cocoa powder.

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Let boil for five minutes.

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Beat the egg in a bowl, then add some of the hot chocolate mixture to the egg.

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Return it all to the pan and whisk. Cook for another minute and set aside until ready to serve.

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Cut the cake into squares.

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And top each serving with a spoonful of sauce. If the sauce is cold it will be a little thicker, like so:

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If both the cake and the sauce are warm the sauce is a little thinner:

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Store any leftovers wrapped in the refrigerator.


Two years ago: Baby Back Ribs with Dry Rub
One year ago: Lemon Ginger Cake with Saskatoon Berries

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