ANNOUNCING: Change is part of life, and apparently, it's part of blogging, too. As of September 5, 2013, I'm merging The Virtual Goody Plate with Disco Mom Takes on the World and whatever else may henceforth spill from my fingertips (and kitchen), into one great new blog. I hope you'll join me there in exclaiming, "THIS IS AWESOMELAND."

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Dessert Club - Summer Fruits

I'm so sorry you were not able to come to July Dessert Club and yet I am forcing you to look at all these delectable pictures. And my lame camera does not even do them justice! The theme this month was "Summer Fruits" and there was excellent representation: blueberries, blackberries, peaches, strawberries, raspberries, plums, and even tomatoes and basil. Let's just dig in, shall we?
Lemon Curd Trifle with Fresh Berries
(I LOVE trifle! And I have this same bowl, love it, too)

Raspberry Mousse Tart with Chocolate Crust
Sour Cream Panna Cotta with Blackberry Compote (sooo pretty!

Blackberry-Peach Buttermilk Upside Down Cake

"Polar Bear Tracks" (Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream Bon Bons, hello!)

Heirloom Tomato and Peach Bruschetta with Balsamic Glaze
(tomatoes fresh from her garden!)

Blueberry Lemonade with Ginger and Basil
(one of mine - apparently "not for everyone" but I LOVE it - recipe coming soon!)
Upside Down Plum Cake with Almond Whipped Cream (my vote of the evening)

Fresh Strawberry Pie
And the winner of the evening...Peach Hand Pies!
Recipe will not believe the miraculous wonder this crust is...
And I don't usually do this but I will give you a little info on next month's theme since I am SO EXCITED about it. At our Fruits meeting everyone brought a printed recipe, and slipped it into a manilla envelope - TOP SECRET! At the end, we stacked up the envelopes and everyone chose one, peeking to make sure they didn't pick their own. But nobody knows whose recipe they have, and nobody knows who has their recipe. All will be revealed, including TWO winners, at the August meeting...

Friday, July 29, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

I think it's hard to get much more decadent than these. And I know a bit about decadence. I'm not saying it's impossible; never say that, but these are up there. Let me put words to the picture you are drooling over. Chocolate-chip-graham crust. Creamy vanilla cheesecake filling. Chocolate-chip-cookie-dough topping. Drizzled with melted chocolate chips. Can you guess what kind of cookbook I might have gotten this from?
And here is the deal with the cookie dough and why it doesn't just bake into a cookie in the oven - no eggs. It has the real deal taste of cookie dough, but I think it's like the cookie dough in ice cream - no dangerous raw stuff, which also means it's still very cookie-dough-ish even after it bakes. Clever, clever!
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars (print recipe)

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
5 T unsalted butter, melted
2/3 cup (4 ounces) mini semisweet chocolate chips

Cookie Dough:
5 T unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
3 T granulated sugar
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips

10 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1 large egg at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract

1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1. Make the crust. Position a rack in the middle of the oven. Heat the oven to 325. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan and line the pan with a piece of parchment paper that is long enough to extend over two opposite sides of the pan. Butter the paper. (OR spray a 10-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray.)

2. In a medium bowl, stir the crumbs and melted butter together until the crumbs are evenly moistened. Stir in the chocolate chips. Press the crumb mixture evenly over the bottom and 1 inch up the sides of the prepared pan. Bake for 6 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack. Leave the oven on.

3. Make the dough. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt and vanilla until smoothly blended, about 1 minute. Decrease the speed to low and add the flour, mixing just to incorporate it. Stir in the chocolate ships. Set aside.

4. Make the filling. In a large bowl, using clean beaters, beat the cream cheese and sugar on low speed just until smooth. Mix in the egg and vanilla, beating just to blend them in. Pour the cheesecake batter into the crust. Drop teaspoonfuls of the cookie dough over the top of the batter. Bake until the top feels dry and firm and looks set if given a gentle shake, about 30 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack.

5. Make the topping. Put the 1/3 cup chocolate chips in a small heatproof bowl and place it over a saucepan of barely simmering water; the water should not touch the bowl. Stir until the chocolate chips are melted and smooth. Use a teaspoon to gently drizzle thin lines of melted chocolate over the top of the bars. Cool the bars completely in the pan, about 1 hour. The chocolate topping will be set when the bars are cool.

6. Loosen the sides of the bars from the unlined sides of the pan and use the ends of the paper to lift the bars from the pan. Use a large kitchen knife to cut the bars into 16 pieces, wiping the knife clean as needed, and slide the bars off the parchment. The bars can be covered and stored in the fridge for up to 3 days. Serve cold or at room temperature.
Recipe from The Essential Chocolate Chip Cookbook by Elinor Klivans

1 year ago: Chocolate Caramel Pecan Cheesecake
2 years ago: White Chocolate Raspberry Muffins

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Toasted Marshmallow Ice Cream

Well this recipe is pretty much the hit of my summer. There are few flavors more summery than toasted marshmallow. And this ice cream honestly captures that flavor - because that's what it is! You basically toast a whole bag of marshmallows, puree them with a vanilla custard base, and churn it in your ice cream machine. Voila!

And it goes without saying (but I'm gonna say it), the s'mores variation possibilities are pretty much endless. Pour on fudge sauce and sprinkle with graham crumbs. Serve on chocolate pie with graham crust. Sandwich between chocolate cookies and roll in graham crumbs. Or sandwich in graham crackers and dip in chocolate - wouldn't that be pretty? How about a s'mores parfait? S'mores milkshake? Oh my. It all sounds so sugary I need a potato chip. I mean a carrot. But you - what you need is this ice cream. So put your machine bowl in the freezer and marshmallows on the list - you are making this tonight!

Toasted Marshmallow Ice Cream

10 ounces marshmallows
2 cups skim milk
1 cup heavy cream
5 egg yolks
scant 1/2 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean (split in half and scraped)
1 tsp vanilla
pinch salt

There are two options for toasting the marshmallows in the kitchen. You can use a broiler (not recommended) or use a torch (recommended). I don't have a torch so I used the broiler. You just have to watch them seriously carefully, and the browning will be uneven. But you can make it work.

Broiler method:

Move one of the shelves in your oven to the highest possible position and preheat the broiler at high for a few minutes. Meanwhile, line a large sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone mat and spread the marshmallows over the pan in a single layer. Place the pan directly under the broiler and watching closely, let them start to brown. Seriously, for me it was like 12 seconds. Do not take your eyes off them. Once they start to toast remove and place in the refrigerator to cool completely. Then flip each marshmallow over and toast the other side. If the marshmallows start to expand too much make sure to remove them before they hit the heating element. My element browned them unevenly so I ended up kind of shifting the pan around every few seconds with the door open to toast them as well as I could.

Torch method:

Spread the marshmallows out in a single layer on a sheet pan lined with parchment or a silicon mat (recommended). Light the torch and begin toasting the marshmallows. If the marshmallows catch fire, blow them out, careful not to blow on the torch and mindful that you’re holding something that could burn down your house. You’ll need to rotate the marshmallows to toast every side. Be careful because the marshmallows can get very hot!

Making the ice cream base

Transfer the toasted marshmallows to the blender. Put the milk and the vanilla bean and scrapings in a heavy bottomed pan and turn the heat to medium. Stir regularly bring the milk up to a light simmer (it should be steaming, but not boiling much). While the milk warms up, put the egg yolks, sugar, and salt into a bowl and whisk together vigorously until the mixture is pale yellow.

Once the milk is hot, remove the vanilla bean and add about 1/4 cup of the milk to the egg yolk mixture while stirring. Once the milk and eggs are well mixed, add a little more hot milk and mix again. You’re gently warming the eggs so that you don’t end up with creamy scrambled eggs. Then pour the yolk/milk mixture into the milk in the pan and start stirring gently, but constantly. Allow the mixture to heat back up to steaming, but make sure that the mixture doesn’t boil. The mixture should thicken up to about the consistency of heavy cream. Take it off the heat and stir vigorously for about 3 minutes to cool slightly and then pour into the blender with the marshmallows.

Cover the blender and run it for about a minute to mix well and then allow the mixture to sit for a couple of minutes (this helps the remaining marshmallow chunks to start breaking down. Unless you want chunks, which I think is pretty good). Run the blender again for about a minute and then add the vanilla and the cold cream and run the blender for about 30 seconds more. Pour the mixture into a bowl, cover, and place in the refrigerator. Refrigerate for at least 8 hours. Right before churning in your favorite ice cream maker, whisk the ice cream mixture to thoroughly blend everything together. Churn in your ice cream maker and then allow the ice cream to ripen (freezer harden) in the freezer for at least two hours.

Recipe from

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Caramel-Stuffed Snickerdoodles

Since I made these the first time, I cannot believe how many people have told me snickerdoodles are their favorite cookie. Are they yours, too? And if that is so, why does it still get the squiggly red line, as if I have misspelled it? Don't the spellcheck makers know this cookie is a national, maybe even global, treasure? ("Spellcheck" also gets the line.)

So if snickerdoodles are such a cherished cookie, how could there be any possible way to improve on them? Arguably, there is at least one, and this is it. Fill them with caramel. Seriously! They are a dream come true, the realization of a dream I never knew I had until now! They are as easy to make as...snickerdoodles, and as delicious as they look...or moreso. And with fall coming up around the corner, keep these in your back pocket (not literally - sticky mess!) for Halloween parties, bake sales, and Christmas goody plates. Everyone will love them!Caramel-Stuffed Snickerdoodles (print recipe)
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup pure vegetable shortening
1 3/4 cups sugar, divided
2 large eggs
2 T ground cinnamon
2 large eggs
48 soft caramel candies (one 14-oz. bag Kraft) -OR- Rolo candies, unwrapped

1. Preheat the oven to 400. Line baking sheets with Silpat baking mats or parchment paper.

2. Sift together flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, combine butter, shortening and 1 1/2 cups sugar. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs, and beat to combine. Add dry ingredients and beat to combine.

3. In a small bowl or lidded Tupperware container, combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and the ground cinnamon. Use a small ice cream scoop to form balls of the dough. Press a caramel candy into a ball, using thumb and fingers to cover the caramel completely with dough; roll completely in cinnamon sugar. Hello. Place about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets.

4. Bake until the cookies are set in center and begin to crack, about 10 minutes, rotating baking sheet after 5. Transfer sheets to a wire rack to cool about 5 minutes before transferring cookies to the rack to cool completely. Store in airtight container up to 1 week. Makes about 4 dozen.

Recipe from The Baker Chick

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Build-Your-Own-Ice-Cream-Sandwich Party

I have been so excited about this, I moved it to the front of the queue! On Sunday, National Ice Cream Day, we hosted an ice cream sandwich party, inspired by this California ice cream shop, which I saw on this jaw-dropping wedding feature (yes, yes, yes, go through all the pictures. You will be astounded, as I was, and wish you could be, or at least know, people that cool.)

My friend Ashely and I collaborated on the menu, and we both spent all week baking and churning. The goal was to have at least two ice creams that could go with each cookie, and at least two cookies that could go with each ice cream. You gotta have options. The lineup:

COOKIES (clockwise from top): Peanut Butter, Lime Meltaways, Double Chocolate, Caramel-Stuffed Snickerdoodles (recipe coming), Chocolate Chip
(clockwise from top): Salted Caramel, Strawberry-Buttermilk Sherbet, Toasted Marshmallow (wait for it), Toasted Coconut, Chocolate

TOPPINGS (for rolling your edges in): chopped smoked almonds, mini chocolate chips, toasted coconut, black & white krispies, graham cracker crumbs, rainbow sprinkles
We had twenty-one people over. And, putting my college credits to use, we had 150 possible combinations. Or 750 if you use two different kinds of cookies on the top and bottom. Which many did.

Here's the one I made: peanut butter cookie, toasted marshmallow ice cream, caramel-stuffed snickerdoodle, rolled in smoked almonds.
Unfortunately, it's hard to be mom, hostess and photographer all at once (plus my camera batteries died), so there are no more pictures of the party, or the glorious sandwiches it produced. But it was SO much fun, and something I'd like to try again, of course with new flavors.

So. Two questions for you:
1. What unique combination would you make from the options above?
2. If you were throwing your own BYOICS Party, what cookies and ice creams would you include?

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Maple-Blueberry Swirl Ice Cream (a.k.a. Breakfast Ice Cream!)

La la la la la la! I. Love. Maple. And of course I love ice cream. And in case you haven't noticed, I have a bit of a thing for blueberries. Delicious! I made this recipe twice to get it right, and I'm not really a R&D kind of girl, but this was important. Basically the first time through, the directions were crap and I ended up with a sweet scrambled egg soup. Disgusting. Luckily the blueberry compote part was good. So. I went back to my Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream, which was sooo amazing, and put those directions with these ingredients. And the results were super delicious.

And just a hint of pancakey. So go ahead, have some for breakfast. Or, oh my gosh, I just thought of this! - break up bits of waffle cone and stir them in at step 9 - totally Breakfast Ice Cream!

And, just in case you didn't know (as if!), today is National Ice Cream Day. My sister's family celebrates by having ice cream sundaes for dinner. For dinner. Today we are celebrating by having a little make-your-own-ice-cream-sandwich dessert party. Watch for a follow-up post on the ice cream sandwiches - with five kinds of homemade cookies, and five kinds of mostly-homemade ice creams, it promises to dazzle and thrill. And hey, now you can celebrate Ice Cream Day by making yourself some ice cream for breakfast!

Maple-Blueberry Swirl Ice Cream (print recipe)
Maple Ice Cream:

2 1/4 cups heavy cream
2 1/4 cups whole milk
1 vanilla bean, split in half lengthwise (or 2 tsp vanilla extract)
6 large egg yolks
1 cup maple syrup

Blueberry Compote:

Juice of 1 orange
1 tsp cornstarch
1 cup fresh blueberries
2 T extra-fine sugar

1. Place the 2 1/4 cups heavy cream in the freezer so it is thoroughly chilled by the time you need it later.

2. Put the milk and vanilla bean in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and heat until steaming, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Remove the vanilla bean and scrape out the seeds, adding them to the milk.

3. While the milk is heating, whisk the egg yolks in a large bowl. You can use the electric mixer but in this case I prefer hand-whisking; it is easier to control the delicate mixing. Add the maple syrup while whisking and stir to combine well.

4. Pour some of the milk in a 1- or 2-cup pouring measuring cup. Slowly pour the heated milk cream mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly so that the egg yolks are tempered by the warm mixture, but not cooked by it. Eventually whisk in all the milk. Scrape the warm mixture back into the saucepan. If necessary, skim foam off with a slotted spoon so you can see your custard.

5. Return the saucepan to the stove, stirring the mixture constantly over medium heat with a wooden spoon, scraping the bottom as you stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the spoon so that you can run your finger across the coating and have the coating not run. This can take about 5 to 10 minutes. If it cooks much longer than that, the eggs will cook into solid bits, which you don't want.6. Take the cold cream out of the freezer and quickly pour it into a large bowl (at least 8 cups); place a fine mesh strainer over it. Pour the hot custard through the strainer and stir into the cold cream to stop the cooking. (Have a little taste - it is delicious!) Chill thoroughly, several hours or overnight.

7. To make the blueberry compote, combine orange juice and cornstarch in a small bowl. Place this mixture, the blueberries, and the sugar in a small saucepan over low heat, cooking and occasionally stirring until the blueberries macerate and their juices run. Cook 30 seconds to 1 minute longer and remove from heat. Cool in refrigerator.

8. Once chilled, churn the custard in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions.

9. To assemble, spoon the ice cream and compote into a freezer container in alternate layers. Using a blunt knife, cut through the layers and carefully swirl the compote through the ice cream. Cover the surface directly with waxed paper or foil and freeze.
Recipe from Ice Cream! Delicious Ice Creams for All Occasions by Pippa Cuthbert & Lindsay Wilson

1 year ago:
Denny's Saucepan Chocolate Cake
2 years ago: Coconut-Cream-Filled Chocolate Cupcakes (mhm)

Friday, July 15, 2011

Tuscan Lemon Muffins

So. It's a lemon muffin recipe. What makes it think it is so special that it gets to be Tuscan? Well, if you look at the ingredient list, there is olive oil. Definitely more Italian than most muffins. And look! Ricotta! Go ahead, say it with an accent.

It's true, there is no kale, white truffle, or wild game in these, but there is something truly exceptional about the lemon and olive oil together that I love. So it's not that they need the name to make them great, it just kinda seems fitting. Plus this woman would love them!

Tuscan Lemon Muffins (print recipe)
Makes 12

1 3/4 cups (7.9 oz.) all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 T grated lemon rind
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp lemon juice powder, optional
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup olive oil
2 T fresh lemon juice
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Cooking spray
2 T turbinado sugar

1. Preheat oven to 375. Place 12 muffin-cup liners in muffin cups; coat with cooking spray.

2. Weight or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, sugar, lemon rind, baking powder, lemon juice powder (if using), and salt; make a well in the center.

3. In a small bowl, combine ricotta, water, olive oil, lemon juice and egg. Add ricotta mixture to flour mixture, stirring just until moist.

4. Divide batter among prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle turbinado sugar over batter. Bake for 16 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes in pan on a wire rack.

Recipe adapted from Cooking Light, May 2011

1 year ago: Chocolate Caramel Pecan Cheesecake
2 years ago: Flourless Chocolate Cake with Toasted Coconut Ice Cream

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Swiss Bakery

The Swiss Bakery is almost exactly halfway between my house and my Mom's, just a block off the beltway on Braddock Road. Which makes it very convenient to drop in for a little something on our way to or from Grandma's. Of course, the hardest part is choosing what. If it's morning, we might get one of these pastries, like their seriously delicious cherry strudel, or a hazelnut croissant. And an artisan bread loaf or baguette for later. Last time I got this schogge brote or something like that - "chocolate bread" - it kinda had my name written all over it in sugar on top even though my spelling is Norwegian.

The girls always choose something out of this case - usually a heavily frosted cookie they start but never finish. Last time Ginger went classic and got the yellow smiley face.
If it is later in the day I might peruse this case of French pastries. I am usually a sucker for creme brulee or eclairs (theirs are EXCELLENT) but am also curious about this pear chocolate mousse.
The shop is large and roomy, with several displays of specialty Swiss foods, a wall of wine and cheese, and a counter that serves salads and sandwiches (we've never tried lunch there but it looks promising.) (Love this picture of Ginger trying to keep Poppy from grabbing all the Swiss chocolate bars within reach while their deadbeat Mom takes pictures with her iPhone.)

And on our most recent visit I just noticed this gorgeous big case of ice creams and sorbets! Flavors like Green Apple & Kiwi Sorbet, Summer Sangria Sorbet, and Candied Ginger Ice Cream. Drooly drool.
So next time you're rounding the beltway and crave a little something Euro, it's worth the stop. Or if you just need a destination off the beaten path of parks and playplaces. Or don't feel like making your own breakfast or lunch. Or cake. Pretty much the Swiss Bakery has it all. (Call me, I'll meet you there!)

1 year ago: Icebox Key Lime Pie (oh, man!)
2 years ago: Coconut Swirl Brownies

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Raspberry Jelly Roll

I'd never made a jelly roll before. Mostly because more steps = more things that can go wrong, and I hate hate hate to waste time and ingredients on failures, so I've just been chicken. I saw a rolled cake made on Martha Stewart a few years ago and that probably helped scare me away. I watched them roll the warm cake in a towel to mold it, unroll, fill and reroll it, and I thought, "That would never work for me." So I just never went there.

Then last December I had a really magnificent Bûche de Noël from Hollin Hall Pastry Shop, and I thought, "I'd really like to be able to make one of these." But you know, the holidays are so stressful. I don't want my first attempt to be all this pressure, like if it doesn't work there will be no Christmas for my family! Summer, with its fresh berries and light flavors, was the perfect time for my first rolled cake attempt. Not bad, I'd say. It was conveniently my friend's birthday. My friend with a long-hours lawyer husband, four little sons, and a mid-week birthday. I thought it safe to assume none of them were making her a cake! I have to be careful about bringing her treats because she is very disciplined about watching what she eats. But I figured, if it's her birthday, and there is fresh fruit involved, she might indulge. I figured right.

And. Usually when I make a whole cake for someone else I don't get any, right? Great thing about this is that you have to trim it on the diagonal, so my little 4-year-old helper and I each got an end piece to sample! Delish. The cake is based on a French/Italian style cake called a génoise, which relies on air beat into the batter, rather than chemical leaveners, to make it voluminous - what you and I would call a sponge cake.

So with one big success under my belt, stay tuned. I may just take on the Bûche this year.

Raspberry Jelly Roll (print recipe)
1 cup (5 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting pan
4 T (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 tsp salt
6 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar

Filling and Garnish:
3/4 cup raspberry jam
2 cups fresh raspberries
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar - OR - Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe below)

1. For the génoise - adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 350. Grease the bottom and sides of an 18 by 12-inch rimmed baking sheet, cover the bottom with parchment paper, grease the paper, and dust with flour, tapping out the excess.

2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Remove from the heat and set aside. Sift the flour and salt together onto a large piece of parchment paper. Set aside.

3. Whisk together the eggs and sugar in the bowl of a standing mixer until combined. Place the bowl over a pan of barely simmering water and heat the egg mixture, whisking constantly, until warm to the touch, about 110 degrees on an instant-read thermometer. Remove from the heat and beat at medium-high speed until the eggs are pale, cream-colored, voluminous, and form a thick ribbon of tiny billowy bubbles that falls from the whisk and rests on top of the batter for several seconds when the whisk is held about 4 inches above the egg mixture (this should take 6 to 8 minutes - see picture.) Beat in vanilla. Turn off the mixer and transfer 1 cup of the egg mixture to a medium bowl and stir in the reserved melted butter until combined; set aside. Grab the two ends of the sheet of parchment paper holding the flour mixture and, with the mixer at the lowest speed, slowly sprinkle the flour mixture into the batter until just barely incorporated. Add the melted butter mixture back to the batter in the standing mixer bowl and, with the mixer at lowest speed, fold gently to incorporate, being careful not to deflate the batter.4. Holding the bowl close to the bottom of the prepared pan, immediately pour the batter into the prepared pan, using an offset spatula to push the batter against the sides and into the corners of the pan and smooth the top. Bake until the cake is deep golden brown, springs back when lightly touched, and is beginning to pull away from the sides of the pan, about 25 minutes.
5. Meanwhile, sift the confectioners' sugar evenly over a kitchen towel measuring at least 20 by 14 inches. When the cake is done, run the blade of a metal spatula around the edge of the pan and immediately invert the cake onto the towel. Remove the parchment paper the cake was baked on. With a serrated knife, trim a scant 1/8-inch strip of crust from all four sides of the cake. Fold one end of the sugared kitchen towel over a short end of the cake and, beginning at the short end, roll the towel and cake together into a spiral. Set the cake aside on a rack, seam-side down, until cool, about 10 minutes.
7. To assemble the cake - when the cake is almost cool, unroll the cake and, using an offset spatula, evenly spread a thin layer of jam over the cake, leaving a 1-inch border around the edges. Sprinkle half the raspberries evenly over the cake. Reroll the cake gently but snugly around the filling, carefully peeling off the kitchen towel as you roll. Trim both ends of the jelly roll cake diagonally. Sprinkle the cake with confectioners' sugar OR carefully ice with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting. Using an electric or serrated knife, cut the cake into evenly proportioned slices, garnish with the remaining raspberries, and serve.

Recipe from Baker's Illustrated

Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting (optional):
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
5 T unsalted butter, soft but cool
1 T fresh lemon juice
1 T lemon zest
1 1/4 cup (5 oz.) confectioners' sugar

In an electric mixer using the whisk attachment, beat cream cheese and butter until light & fluffy. Add the lemon juice, zest and powdered sugar and beat until smooth and spreadable.
1 year ago: Fresh Raspberry Scones
2 years ago: Hazelnut Blondies

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Peanut Butter Cashew Brownies

Can any of us be surprised that these won Dessert Club this month? Their creator found this recipe on How Sweet It Is via foodgawker. In fact, several DC members find their stuff through foodgawker - do you know it? I admit, I spend what little free time I can scrounge up either baking or writing - I almost never surf or browse, though I know just how much I am missing. But after these brownies, I am bookmarking it. Maybe for stuff like this I can come up with a few minutes to gawk once in awhile.
Peanut Butter Cashew Brownies (print recipe)
1 batch brownies (boxed mix or homemade)
1/2 cup salted cashews
1 cup chopped Reese’s peanut butter cups
1 1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
1 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 tablespoon butter
1 1/2 cups Rice Krispies Cereal

Mix brownies according to directions, and bake for 20-25 minutes in a 9 x 13 baking dish. Remove and top with peanuts and peanut butter cups, and bake for 4-6 minutes more.

While they are finishing baking, melt chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter. Stir in cereal. Remove brownies from oven and evenly pour chocolate mixture over top.

Refrigerate for 2 hours before serving. Top each brownie with a dollop of Peanut Butter Frosting and a bittersweet chocolate chip.

Peanut Butter Frosting

1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter
5 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup heavy cream

Put sugar, peanut butter, butter, vanilla and salt in mixer. Mix on medium low until creamy, scraping with spatula as you work.Add the cream and beat on high until the mixture is light and smooth.

1 year ago: Dark Fudge Bundt Cake
2 years ago: Chocolate Chip Crunch Cake
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