Desserts

Black Cherry-Peach Crisp Ice Cream

If you thought fruit crisp topped with ice cream was good, try mixing it all together. Sweet and crunchy black cherry-peach crisp layered throughout vanilla ice cream.

Black Cherry-Peach Crisp Ice Cream 3

The affliction of living with a food blogger is waiting to devour the food until all the photos have been taken at all possible angles. Waiting to be given the go-ahead to eat that gorgeous plate/bowl of food is just as torturous for you as it is for us, I promise. But how do you know for sure when the photo shoot has been completed, particularly for multi-step recipes such as ice cream? Without asking it’s a risky business.

Black Cherry-Peach Crisp Ice Cream 4

Yes, this ice cream was dug into before I was finished (photo evidence above). It’s my fault for not stressing this fact to my parents but I was still upset to find a large chunk already scooped out, especially when it was not even completely set yet. Normally I don’t bother with pictures of ice cream in the container but I purposely used a loaf pan this time to get all stupid-food blogger on you by putting ice cream in a baking pan and then taking aerial shots of it being scooped out. Like those first steps in pristine just-fallen white snow. I’ll just have to make more ice cream soon – darn.

Black Cherry-Peach Crisp Ice Cream 1

Thankfully the flavor of the ice cream did not suffer from it’s premature scooping. My parents’ inability to wait just shows how much they could not wait to try it. It starts out simple enough with a vanilla base which is then layered with bits of black-cherry peach crisp (notice those beautiful chunks of crisp topping in the post-churn/pre-freeze photo above). I baked a crisp just to turn it into ice cream. Which means this ice cream tastes just like a black cherry-peach crisp a la mode. Cannot really blame my parents, can I?

Black Cherry-Peach Crisp Ice Cream 2

One year ago: Greek Yogurt Everything Bagels

Three years ago: Cosmic Brownies
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My Favorite Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies Roundup

My favorite chewy chocolate chip cookies are one of the most popular recipes on my blog. It is also the recipe I use most to develop new cookie recipes and wanted to take a moment to highlight these other creations because if you loved my chewy chocolate chip cookies then you really should check these out too. While you’re at it feel free to leave a comment telling me about your favorite addition to cookies or what variety you’d like to see me make next!

Favorite Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies Varieties

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Blackberry Swirl Cheesecake

Creamy cheesecake with a sweet swirl of blackberries makes for one decadent and delicious summer dessert. Top it off with fresh blackberries and whipped cream.

Blackberry Swirl Cheesecake

This post has been a long time in the making. I made it Easter weekend and finally planned to share the recipe back in May only to discover that the images had magically disappeared from my camera’s memory card. With blackberry season upon us I figured it was a good time to try again. Thankfully it was good enough to warrant a second appearance and was gobbled up just as fast as the first time. The only thing I did differently the second time around was using chocolate graham crackers in the crust instead of regular. It was a most excellent substitution.

One year ago: Gluten-Free Caramel S’mores Bars

Three years ago: Butterbeer Ice Cream
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Pistachio & Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies

These perfectly chewy milk chocolate chip cookies are full of chopped pistachios and toffee. Sweet, nutty, and chewy all in one.

Pistachio & Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies

Once you’ve found the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe, what do you next? Make variations of course! Even since I perfected my favorite chewy chocolate chip cookies I have been experimenting with different mix-ins. This latest creation was inspired by Trader Joe’s dark chocolate roasted pistachio toffee. I’ve already made two other recipes in the likeness of this treat, mini pistachio cupcakes and dark chocolate pistachio saltine cracker toffee, but now it was time for some cookies and instead of dark chocolate I used milk chocolate.

One year ago: Chicken and Roasted Red Pepper Pizza with Rosemary Beer Crust

Two years ago: Baked Turkey Ricotta Meatballs
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Sour Patch Kids Cake

Get a serious sweet-and-sour fix with this Sour Patch Kids Cake. Lemon cake, lemon frosting and a ton of Sour Patch Kids!

Sour Patch Kids Cake 1

More new nephew (newphew?) news! His name is Griffin Watson, born at 10:46 pm on 7/1/14 (at least in California), and weighed in at 6lbs 11 oz, 20.5 inches. Here’s another cute picture my brother shared (CLICK HERE). I cannot wait to see a picture of Luke and Griffin together! To celebrate I am giving you cake. Sour Patch Kid covered cake to be exact. The cake itself is lemon flavored, as is the frosting, and is decorated with Sour Patch Kid gummies and covered in any remnant Sour Patch sweet-but-sour sugar that collected at the bottom of the bag. “First they’re sour, then they’re sweet” indeed. Hopefully Griffin will be mostly sweet rather than sour, just like his big brother :-).

Sour Patch Kids Cake 2

This cake was actually made for a friend’s birthday. As you can guess when he told me he loved citrus things and Sour Patch Kids I took him at his word and made a lemony-Sour Patch covered cake. And he loved it! The inside was actually rainbow colored just like the surprise-rainbow lemon cake I shared awhile back (the method for creating that design ends up making 2 full cakes) which made it even more fun. The recipe here however does not reflect that method as I have left that secret to be discovered in the Surprise-Inside Cakes cookbook. If you haven’t checked it out yet you must!

One year ago: Fruit & Yogurt Popsicles

Two years ago: Shortbread Cookies
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Red, White & Berry Hand Pies

Red, white & berry hand-held pies are stuffed with cream cheese, strawberries, and blueberries. Perfect for any patriotic event!

Red, White & Berry Hand Pies 2

Today’s another big day for the USA soccer team, taking on Germany this afternoon in hopes of continuing on into the knockout round of 16. There are several scenarios in which this could happen: (1) USA beats Germany, (2) USA ties Germany,(3) USA loses to Germany while Portugal and Ghana tie, or (4) USA loses to Germany, Portugal or Ghana wins (therefore tying the USA) and USA scores enough goals to win the goal point differential tiebreaker. In other words the odds are decent but not solid enough to breathe easy. To make matters worse I have to DVR the game and somehow avoid all commentary from the outside world before getting home to watch it myself. I should just go ahead and stuff cotton into my ears now.

Red, White & Berry Hand Pies 3

But if you could care less about soccer or futbol, or whatever it is you want to call it, don’t worry I have a fun mini dessert for you today. These hand pies were made using a star-shaped mini pie press and are stuffed with cheesecake, strawberries, and blueberries which is why they are called red, white and berry hand pies. The star shape of the pie may have blended while baking but there’s also a star-shaped vent cut into the top and that same piece of star-shaped crust is placed on top of the crust for more flair. Patriot enough for the fourth of July, Memorial Day, or for cheering on our nation’s soccer team!

Red, White & Berry Hand Pies 1

One year ago: Creamy Chicken and Herb Skillet
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Funfetti Stuffed Chocolate M&M Cookie Cake

This double chocolate M&M cookie cake has a surprise in the middle – a Funfetti truffle layer! Top with Funfetti frosting and this cookie cake is perfect for any celebration.

Funfetti Stuffed Chocolate M&M Cookie Cake 2

I graduated with my PhD in microbiology almost 6 months ago and still have yet to solidify a big-person job. Although this fact is quite unsettling, I have to admit that time off from the real world has been incredibly nice especially after all that hard work. I’ve spent a lot of time with my dad and step mom, been able to travel around a bit to see family and friends, and can pretty much bake/cook, workout/hike/kayak/play pickleball or tennis whenever I want. There’s so much to do with all the events and activities in the village and then the Smoky Mountains are just an hour away.

To help pay the bills however (such as student loans and storage for all my stuff still in Memphis) I did pick up a part-time job working at the gym in town. I check people in, sell memberships, answer questions, and tidy up the place. It’s kind of related to microbiology – I’m killing a bunch of germs on all that equipment! Not quite what a PhD is useful for but at least it’s something in the meantime. The best part is that 99% of the patrons are incredibly friendly. People here seem genuinely happy and I can only hope that not only a place this this village will exist when it’s time for me to retire (it’s never too early to plan for retirement right?) but that I will also still be as active and happy as they are here.

Funfetti Stuffed Chocolate M&M Cookie Cake 3

However none of that has anything to do with this cookie cake, other than the fact that it has the potential to smack a smile on your face and celebrate life. This double chocolate M&M cookie cake isn’t just any old cookie cake, it also has a Funfetti truffle layer in the middle and Funfetti frosting. You guys know how much I love stuffing cake batter/cake balls into everything in sight and this cookie cake is no exception. I love how well the bright M&Ms and sprinkles contrast with the rich chocolate color. You don’t need a special occasion to make this cookie cake but it certainly would be a great birthday cookie cake! (It does happen to be my good friend Becky’s birthday today!)

Funfetti Stuffed Chocolate M&M Cookie Cake 1

One year ago: Everything Bagel Bites with Bacon-Scallion Cream Cheese Dip

Three years ago: Red Velvet Whoopie Pies
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Fresh Strawberry Pie

This easy strawberry pie is made with fresh strawberries, making the most of this seasonal berry. Serve with fresh whipped cream.

Fresh Strawberry PIe

I hope you are not tired of strawberry recipes yet because I have an easy fresh strawberry pie for you today. Strawberry pie is a rarity in my family because my dad typically makes pumpkin or apple the most and occasionally blueberry. So when he decided to make a strawberry pie using the strawberries from our most recent U-picking I was super excited. Since most of the strawberries were pretty small from this last pick of the season (I know the season is just starting for many of you but in TN it’s ending), they were dumped in the pie for easy assembly. However, if you have bigger berries you could place the strawberries in pie crust, tips up, and then pour the gelatin mixture over them. This would create a more dramatic appearance if you so desire. I just desire for it to be in my belly!

One year ago: Pork Loin Chops with Avocado-Manga Salsa and Spinach Quinoa
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USA Soccer Cake

Show off your American pride with this surprise-inside USA flag cake, decorated like a soccer ball for the World Cup. Also perfect for Memorial Day and the Fourth of July.

USA Soccer Cake 1

Today the USA soccer team takes on Ghana for their first game in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. USA is in Group G with Ghana (obviously), Portugal and Germany. In other words we’ve got some tough teams to play. To have any hope of being one of the two teams to advance from the group, team USA must beat Ghana as they are likely the most beatable. Unfortunately, Ghana has knocked the USA out of the last two World Cups. Obviously this means it’s time for a fun cake.

USA Soccer Cake 2

To celebrate game 1 for the USA, I originally planed to make cupcakes decorated as soccer balls but decided to take it a step further and try out my own version of a surprise-inside cake - a soccer ball decorated cake with a USA flag inside! Alternating layers of red and white cake are segmented with a round of blue cake which when cut, looks like a miniature flag. This cake would also be perfect for Memorial Day or the upcoming July 4th holiday.

USA Soccer Cake 3

One year ago: Cinnamon-Chocolate Chip Pancakes

Three years ago: Homemade Whole Wheat Pita Bread
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Gluten-Free Salted Caramel Peanut Butter Cookies

My favorite gluten-free peanut butter cookies with traditional criss cross pattern and topped with salted caramel glaze. Indulge your sweet tooth!

Gluten-Free Salted Caramel Peanut Butter Cookies 1

Not only is today the start of the FIFA World Cup, it is also National Peanut Butter Cookie Day! This gluten-free peanut butter cookie recipe is my favorite because it only requires 5 ingredients and results in perfectly chewy cookies. I enjoy it so much that I’ve used it for other cookies such as Salted Nutella Peanut Butter Thumbprint CookiesFlourless Buckeye Blossom Cookies, and Peanut Butter Birthday Bites. Today’s version gets a traditional criss cross stamp and then a drizzle of salted caramel. Rich and definitely sweet enough to satisfy the demands of your sweet tooth.

Gluten-Free Salted Caramel Peanut Butter Cookies 2

One year ago: Cream Cheese Peanut Butter Cookies Dipped in White Chocolate
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