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Lemon-Lime Basil Shortbread Cookies

Got plenty of extra citrus hanging around your kitchen,along with an abundance of fresh grown basil? Well combine lemon, limes and a hint of basil for a delicious cookie that taste like you bought them from a gourmet bakery! 

Recipe adapted from Bon Appétit Summer 2012


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Ingredients:

1 cup of all-purpose flour
1/2 cup of powdered sugar plus more for pressing cookies
1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes.
2 Tbsp of sliced fresh basil leaves
1 tsp of finely grated lemon zest
1 Tbsp of freshlemon juice
1/2 tsp of finely grated lime zest
1/4 tsp kosher salt
Sanding Sugar (optional)

Directions:

Pre heat oven to 375 degrees. Place flour, 1/2 cup of powdered sugar, butter, basil, both zest, lemon juice, and salt in a food processor. Pulse until large, moist clumps form. Measure level tablespoonfuls of dough; roll between your palms to form balls. Place on a large baking sheet spacing 2 inch rounds, dusting cup with powdered sugar and press cookies into 2 inch rounds, dusting cup bottom with powdered sugar as needed to prevent sticking. Sprinkle tops of cookies with standing sugar, if using.

Bake until edges are brown, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire wake; let cool.

 

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A Blueberry Cheesecake, That’s Skinny Too…

Found this gem on Pinterest. Now you can indulge in a blueberry cheesecake and not feel a bit guilty. This “skinny blueberry” delight is only 5.9 grams of fat, while keeping its flavor, sweetness and richness.
Very easy to make, no pots or pans, it’ll set in your icebox!
Recipe courtesy of “Self Magazine”

 

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups finely ground reduced-fat graham cracker crumbs

4 teaspoons light (reduced-fat) butter, melted
2 cups fresh blueberries (or frozen and thawed)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons powdered unflavored gelatin
8 oz reduced-fat cream cheese
8 oz fat-free cream cheese
14 oz fat-free sweetened condensed milk
Several fresh mint leaves

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly coat a 9″ springform pan or glass pie pan with melted butter or light olive oil

 

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Using a food processor or by hand break up graham crackers till a fine texture. 

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Combine crumbs and butter in a bowl and then press into pan. Bake 10 minutes.

 

 

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Puree 1 1/2 cups blueberries and mix with lemon juice in a microwave bowl.

Sprinkle gelatin on top and let stand 10 minutes.

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Microwave on medium 10 seconds to dissolve gelatin, then beat with an electric mixer or food processor at medium speed. Beat in cream cheeses and condensed milk.

 

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Pour mixture over baked crust and refrigerate until set.

Garnish with mint and remaining blueberries.

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THE SKINNY
313 calories per serving, 5.9 g fat (3.5 g saturated), 52.3 g carbs, 1.8 g fiber, 11.4 g protein

Related articles

Blueberry Cheesecake Recipe (lifefoodhappiness.com)

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National Blueberry Cheesecake Day (ireport.cnn.com)

Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream (utterlyruins.wordpress.com)

It’s National Blueberry Cheesecake Day! (ireport.cnn.com)

 

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Heavenly Chocolate Angel Food Cake With Fresh Berries and Cream

There’s a reason angel food cake is a favorite dessert among many — it’s tender, light as air, and tastes, well, heavenly.

The Divine Angel food cake is known for being a delicious, light and fluffy cake, made with almost no fat or cholesterol.

Angel food cake is made with just six ingredients, and none of those six are butter, oil or egg yolks. which makes it low in cholesterol and fat-free. Now lets put a spin on this classic dessert, by adding just a little unsweetened cocoa powder and you really can satisfy your chocolate craving with no extra calories, grams of fat or guilt. 

This recipe calls for cake flour now before you go pick up a rather small box for around five bucks, I’ll tell you how to make your own and its as easy as 1-2-3

To make cake flour:

Simply take 1 cup all-purpose flour leveled, then remove 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour and replace with 2 tablespoons corn starch. Sift both flour and corn starch through a sieve five to six times to make sure the two are well blended together. And that’s it!

INGREDIENTS

For the traditional Angel food cake.
1 cup cake flour (spooned and leveled)
1/4 teaspoon salt
12 large egg whites, room temperature
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Berries and Cream, for serving

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To satisfy your chocolate craving add the following steps the recipe above.
Take out 1/4 cup of cake flour and replace with 1/4 unsweetened cocoa powder, and put cake flour and cocoa powder through a sieve several times till it’s all blended together. Also reduce the vanilla extract from 2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon.

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DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl sift flour and salt in a sieve set and set aside. With a hand mixer, beat egg whites on medium-high until the whites get foamy, about 1 minute.

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Next Add cream of tartar and beat until soft peaks form. While mixing gradually add sugar and beat until stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes.

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Add in vanilla and beat to combine.

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Transfer egg-white mixture gently into a large bowl. In batches, using the sieve again, sift flour mixture over egg-white mixture.

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Use a rubber spatula and while turning the bowl fold in the mixture. Do not stir quickly, use a whisk or hand mixer.

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Carefully spoon batter into an ungreased angel food cake pan with a removable bottom.

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Using a spatula smooth the top of the batter, then using a knife or small spatula push through the batter to release any air bubbles.

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Bake until cake is golden and springs back when lightly pressed, 35 to 40 minutes. Invert pan; let cool in pan, 1 hour. 

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Use knife to release cake from bottom of pan, and remove.

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Top with fresh berries and cream and enjoy!!!

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Its A Double Feature Starring “Chocolate” ….

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Chocolate Mousse, Its one of the easiest and most satisfying deserts around. What’s your favourite chocolate mousse recipe, and how do you like to serve it? I like to serve mine in a pie crust. What’s not to like about a rich  chocolate mousse topped with a semi sweet whipped topping, or a topping with a hint of mint that just cuts through the rich chocolate velvety mousse 

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A mousse (French for chocolate foam) is a prepared food that incorporates air bubbles to give it a light and airy texture. It can range from light and fluffy to creamy and thick, depending on preparation techniques. A mousse can be sweet or savory. Dessert mousse are typically made with whipped egg whites or whipped cream, and generally flavored with chocolate or puréed fruit.

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The two versions I have here are both adapted from Hershey’s

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Chocolate Mousse Pie
Ingredients;

1 envelope unflavored gelatin
2 tablespoons cold water
1/4 cup boiling water
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup HERSHEY’S Cocoa
2 cups (1 pt.)cold whipping cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 package packaged graham cracker crumb crust (6 or 9 oz.)
Refrigerated whipped light cream in pressurized can or frozen whipped topping, thawed

Directions;

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Sprinkle gelatin over cold water in small bowl; let stand 2 minutes to soften. Add boiling water; stir until gelatin is completely dissolved and mixture is clear. Cool slightly.

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Mix sugar and cocoa in large bowl; add whipping cream and vanilla.

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Beat on medium speed, scraping bottom of bowl often, until mixture is stiff.

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Pour in gelatin mixture; beat until well blended.

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Spoon into crust.

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Refrigerate about 3 hours. Garnish with whipped cream and chocolates.

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Store covered in refrigerator. 6 to 8 servings.

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Chocolate Mint Mousse Pie

 

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Ingredients;

1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
1 tablespoon cold water
2 tablespoons boiling water
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup HERSHEY’S SPECIAL DARK Cocoa
2 Tbsp Hersey’s cocoa powder
1 cup (1/2 pt.)cold whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 baked 8-inch or 9-inch pie crust, cooled

Mint Cream Topping recipe below 

Directions:

Sprinkle gelatin over cold water in small cup; let stand 2 minutes to soften. Add boiling water; stir until gelatin is completely dissolved and mixture is clear. Cool slightly, about 5 minutes.

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Stir together sugar and cocoa in a medium bowl;

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add whipping cream and vanilla. Beat on medium speed of mixer until stiff, scraping bottom of bowl occasionally.

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Add gelatin mixture; beat just until well blended.

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Pour into prepared pie crust.

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Mint cream topping; spread over filling. Refrigerate at least 2 hours.

Mint Cream Topping

 

1 cup cold whipping cream
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
several drops green food color

Beat in a medium bowl until stiff. About 2 cups topping.

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Cool Refreshing Mango Orange Sorbet

Craving something cool and refreshing on a hot afternoon?
Well how does a mango-orange sorbet sound, made from fresh-cut mangoes and oranges.

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Ingredients:

6-7 large ripe mangos
2 large oranges, segmented, including the zest of one orange.
1-2 cups simple syrup

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Directions:

Ice cream maker
Food processor

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Using a food processor place all ingredients, and pulse 3-5 times

Simple Syrup, is equal parts water and sugar combined and heated till all sugar is dissolved.

Simple Syrup, is equal parts water and sugar combined and heated till all sugar is dissolved.

Pour in 1/2 cup simple syrup continue to pulse 3 times, then add another 1/2 cup simple syrup. Continue to add syrup till smooth or desired texture. Pour into ice cream maker set to desired settings.

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In a few hours you’ll have a freshly made fruit sorbet! Fruit Juices can be used in place of simple syrup.

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Don’t forget to enjoy! 

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Orange Creamsicle Ice Cream With Candied Orange Peel

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Do you remember having orange creamsicle ice cream bar during the summer. It was an orange popsicle on the outside with a creamy ice cream center and those flavors just married again and again.

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Well I got a wonderful easy version of the orange creamsicle that is very easy to make using only six ingredients, plus you wont need an ice cream maker to make this.

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Now I’ll admit when I made this ice cream I went a little over the top by making candied orange rinds as a garnish. If you want to make them its an added treat both visually and taste wise and really not hard to do at all, but if you don’t have the time its okay to omit this step completely, however candied orange rinds taste better than candy orange wedges and the bonus; you control the amount of sugar versus candy loaded with lots of it.

Candy orange wedges are loaded with sugar, corn syrup and even more sugar...

Candy orange wedges are loaded with sugar, corn syrup and even more sugar…

If you do not know how to segment an orange we will be doing that too. There really is no other way to make this ice cream pop without segmenting, well unless you peel the orange old school and you’re a fan of the bitter white pith and skin. In other words if you want real fresh orange flavor and you really want to push this ice cream over the top, then use some of the zest too.

So grab the kids or surprise them with this smooth citrus delight!!

Ingredients For Ice Cream

1 3/4 cup Coconut milk, full fat
4 medium Oranges, zest and segmented
4 tbsp Sugar or sweetener (honey, powdered sugar, maple syrup)
1 tsp Vanilla extract
1 tsp orange extract (optional)
8 oz heavy whipping cream (optional)
1-2 tsp orange zest

Directions:

Zest one of the oranges and set zest aside.

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Peel and segment oranges.

 

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Rest the orange on your cutting board with the stem end pointing to the left or the right. Carefully slice off about 1/2 inch from the stem end. Repeat with other side.

Note: Cut deep enough so that you expose the bright orange flesh.

Using even downward strokes, slice the skin away from the flesh and discard.Make sure you take your time, and start at the top and slice downward as you work your way down the orange.

Using even downward strokes, slice the skin away from the flesh and discard.

 

Make sure you take your time, and start at the top and slice downward as you work your way down the orange.

Make sure you take your time, and start at the top and slice downward as you work your way down the orange.

Cut between the membranes to segment the orange.

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This will release the orange segment onto your knife.

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You can set them aside on a plate or

bowl.

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Lay flat on a sheet tray lined with wax paper or parchment paper and freeze until hardened.
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In a blender or food processor, add coconut milk and frozen orange sections.

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Add the sweetener of your choice along with vanilla and orange extract.

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Blend until smooth.

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Using a hand mixer on high-speed, whip heavy cream until soft peaks form and pour into a medium freezer proof bowl.

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Fold in orange mixture with whipped cream until well incorporated

Freeze until solid.

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When ready to serve, let it sit out for a few minutes to make it easier to scoop.
Garnish with some candied orange peel and orange zest!

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Enjoy!

Candied Orange Peel

Ingredients:

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4 orange peels, cut into 1/4 inch strips

Now using a similar cutting technique your going to clean up the orange peels by removing the white pith.

Now using a similar cutting technique your going to clean up the orange peels by removing the white pith.

Make sure you are slicing away from you

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Leaving you just the top layer of the orange.

1 cups white sugar
1/2 cup water

Using a large sauce pan, bring water to a boil over high heat.

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Place cut up orange peel in large saucepan and boil for 20 minutes, drain and set aside.

In medium saucepan, combine sugar and 1/2 cup water, and orange peel

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Bring to a boil and cook until mixture reaches what is called a thread stage or 230 degrees F (108 degrees C)

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Use candy thermometer, or you can test by dropping a small amount of sugar liquid in cold water and it forms a soft thread.

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Stir in peel, reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Drain.

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Roll peel pieces, a few at a time, in remaining sugar.

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Let dry on wire rack several hours. Store in airtight container.

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Garnish your homemade orange creamsicle and impress everyone!!!

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Triple Chocolate Layer Cake

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With cooler weather who doesn’t crave a rich chocolate cake with a glass of milk or hot cocoa. I adapted from Hershey’s a triple layer, double chocolate, with not one type of frosting, but two, and using both Hershey’s chocolate cocoa powder and Hershey’s special dark cocoa powder! Yes you will OD or go into a chocolate coma after indulging this super moist, triple layer cake with a chocolate butter cream filling and topped with a double chocolate ganache!

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Talk about going to “Chocolate Heaven”

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Ingredients:

2 cups sugar
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup HERSHEY’S special dark cocoa
1/2 cup Hershey’s cocoa powder

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1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

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2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

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1 cup boiling water

 

Directions:

Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans.

Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans.

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Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

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Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely.

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Chocolate Butter Creme Frosting-Filling

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine
2/3 cup HERSHEY’S Cocoa
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

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Melt butter. Stir in cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk, beating to spreading consistency.

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Add small amount extra milk, if needed. Stir in vanilla. About 2 cups frosting.

Make a child smile by handing over the beaters to lick!!!

Make a child smile by handing over the beaters to lick!!!

Double Chocolate Ganache Topping

1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup Hershey’s special dark cocoa powder
1/2 cup Hershey’s cocoa powder
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup sugar

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Heat heavy cream in a small pot. Be careful to not let it boil over. Once it begins to boil, remove from the stove.
Pour heavy cream into bowl of cocoa powder. Stir and mix until chocolate is completely melted, add vanilla and sugar.

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Let ganache cool and set before frosting top of cake.

If top of cake is not even/flat use a serrated bread knife to trim the top of the cooled cake before frosting it.

If top of cake is not even/flat use a serrated bread knife to trim the top of the cooled cake before frosting it.

 

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Chocolate buttercream frosting for the layers.

Chocolate buttercream frosting for the layers.

Spread an even layer of frosting along the top of each layer. If frosting gets on the sides of the cake its okay. Once the buttercream frosting sets, you can add more frosting or top with the chocolate ganache.

Spread an even layer of frosting along the top of each layer. If frosting gets on the sides of the cake its okay. Once the buttercream frosting sets, you can add more frosting or top with the chocolate ganache.

 

Once the buttercream frosting sets, you can add more frosting or top with the chocolate ganache.

Once the buttercream frosting sets, you can add more frosting or top with the chocolate ganache.

 

Finished off with a double chocolate ganache!

Finished off with a double chocolate ganache!

 

Kid tested and approved!!!

Kid tested and approved!!!

YUM!!

YUM!

 

 

 

 

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