Showing posts with label blueberries. Show all posts
Showing posts with label blueberries. Show all posts

Monday, February 25, 2013

Blueberry Cheesecake

Cheesecake and I are not friends. I hate how good it taste. I hate that it comes in a variety of wonderful flavors. I hate to share my cheesecake. However, I will be your best friend if you share your cheesecake with me until it is gone.
New York Style Cheesecake with a Blueberry topping
Crust:
8 oz. vanilla wafer cookies (about 2/3 of the box)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
8 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Directions:
  1. In a food processor, finely ground the vanilla wafer cookies.
  2. Add the sugar and salt. Pulse a couple of times.
  3. Add the melted butter and mix together.
  4. Press the crust mixture into the bottom of a buttered 9 1/2 inch Springform pan. Set aside.
Cheesecake filling:
5 (8 oz.) packages of cream cheese, softened
2 cups sugar
3 Tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 tsp vanilla
5 large eggs
2 egg yolks

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
  2. On the outside bottom of the Springform pan, cover the bottom and half way up the sides with aluminum foil so no water can enter the pan.
  3. Place the Springform pan in the bottom of an oven safe roasting pan.  (So, the Springform pan is sitting inside the roasting pan and is ready for a water bath.)
  4. In an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese for about 3 minutes until smooth.
  5. Add the sugar and flour and cream for about 5 minutes until smooth.
  6. Add the vanilla and mix for about a minute.
  7. On low speed, add the eggs one at a time. Scrap down the bowl before adding the next egg. 
  8. Add the egg yolks one at a time. Scrap down the bowl after each addition.
  9. Pour the filling on top of the cookie crust inside the Springform pan.
  10. Boil some water and carefully pour the hot water into the oven safe pan so the outside of the Springpan is sitting in a water bath. Only fill the roasting pan with water half way up the side of the Springform pan. Make sure no water spills onto the creamcheese filling. (This will help prevent the top of the cheesecake from cracking. I have never had water leak into the base of my cheescake yet since I lined it with the aluminum foil. Please see youtube for some examples of a water bath if desired.)
  11. Bake the cheesecake for about 10 minutes. The top of the cheesecake should be puffed and golden brown.
  12. Reduce the temperature to 250 degrees and cook for about 45 minutes to an hour. The cake should be mostly firm with the center slightly wobbly if the pan is shaken gently.
  13. Very carefully, remove the pan from the oven and run a knife on the outside edge of the cheesecake to loosen it. 
  14. Allow the cheesecake to cool in the Springform pan.
  15. Chill the cheesecake for at least 6 hours. Make sure to loosely cover the cheesecake without allowing the plastic wrap to touch the top.
Blueberry topping:
1 (15 oz.) package of frozen wild blueberries
1 lemon zested and juiced
1/4 cup of sugar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp cinnamon

Directions:
  1. In a small saucepan, combine the blueberries, lemon zest, lemon juice, sugar, cornstarch, and cinnamon.
  2. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  3. Reduce to low and simmer for about 10 minutes.
  4. Allow to completely cool before spooning the mixture on top of the cheesecake.
The cheesecake recipe is adapted from Smittenkitchen. The blueberry topping is adapted from Tyler Florence

One year ago.............................I made Stove Top Mac and Cheese.
Can I just eat it now?
Did you already know...............
-Cheesecake has been around since ancient Greece.
-It is believed that cheesecake was served to the Olympians during the first Olympic games.
-The Romans adapted their own version of cheesecake after conquering Greece.

Friday, August 17, 2012

A Birthday and a Wedding

Let's party like it's my sister's birthday! What a wonderful way to celebrate Friday by a birthday. When anyone asks who is younger I always say I am. Usually, the person says I thought so and I think they are great since they must know I am older especially with a 7 year difference.
 Happy Birthday Sam!
The other exciting event today is my other sister is getting married! It is going to be beautiful. Everyone should marry a person who makes them a better person and I'm glad my sister has found that man. I held a bridal shower this past weekend for her and I made these cupcakes for her.
Blueberry cupcakes
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cup cake flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2/3 cup milk
1 1/2 fresh wild blueberries

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 
  2. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter sugar until light and fluffy.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after adding each egg. 
  5. Add in the sour cream, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract.
  6. Gradually add the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  7. Add the milk and stir until the batter is smooth.
  8. Gently fold in the blueberries.
  9. Fill each cupcake liner 2/3 full.
  10. Bake for 16 to 18 minutes.
  11. Remover from the oven and transfer the cupcakes to a cooling rack.
  12. Allow the cupcakes to cool to room temperature before frosting.
Recipe adapted from the Pastry Affair.
Did you already know...
Some wedding folklore is:
-The luckiest day to marry is suppose to be Wednesday.
-To ensure wedding bliss, the bride should wear gold earrings. -It is considered good luck for the bride to find a spider on her wedding gown.
 To my sisters, I hope you both have a perfect day!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Berry Lemonade

My favorite drink is Sweet Tea. Oh, today's blog isn't about Sweet Tea but my second favorite drink: the great, the tangy, lemonade. Yea! My favorite friend asked if I still had some blueberries left. My supply is slow diminishing but don't worry I am going to freeze the rest.
Some children have their Dad build them tree houses. My oldest daughter had her Dad build her a lemonade stand. It turned out pretty good. My youngest children have already been trying to talk me into letting them put up the stand. Then I would have to share my lemonade and that is pretty hard. Now, the sweets I make I have no problem sharing but lemonade is a different problem.
Berry Lemonade
2 cups water for the sugar syrup
2 cups sugar for the sugar syrup
3 cups water
2 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
2 cups of fresh berries (I used blueberries and raspberries.)
3 cups ice cubes

Directions:
  1. In a medium saucepan, combine 2 cups of water with the 2 cups of sugar to make the sugar syrup.
  2. Heat the water and sugar over medium heat and boil for 10 minutes.
  3. Allow the sugar water to cool and refrigerate for about 30 minutes or until ready to use.
  4. In a large pitcher, combine 2 cups of the chilled sugar syrup, 3 cups of water, lemon juice, and lime juice.
  5. In a small bowl, add 1 cup of the fresh berries and smash for about 20 seconds.
  6. Add the smashed berries and the remaining 1 cup of fresh berries to the pitcher. Stir well.
  7. Add the ice cubes and serve.
Recipe adapted from The Pastry Queen by Rebecca Rather.
Did you already know....
-One lemon will produce about 2 to 3 Tbsp of juice.
-According to Guinness World Records, the largest lemon weighed  11 lbs. 9.7 oz.
-The largest lemon was grown in Israel in 2003.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Blueberry Muffins

Since I have been making everything with blueberries this week, my youngest daughter begged for blueberry muffins. She loves them! She really loves them. I don't think you realize how much she loves them. My youngest daughter asks me to bake one thing and it is always blueberry muffins. When my husband gets his coffee at a coffee chain, she wants a blueberry muffin.
 I made this recipe and my daughter ate four of them in one day. I know I posted a blueberry muffin recipe last year which was very good but not four in a day good. I have bookmarked this recipe awhile ago and I'm glad I finally made it. If you have blueberries on hand, this is the recipe to make. These muffins taste just as good the next day. I can't tell you if they taste good the following day since we didn't have any left.
Baking Illustrated's Blueberry Muffin
2 cups all purpose flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
1 cup sugar
4 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 1/4 cups sour cream
1 1/4 cups fresh wild blueberries

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a cupcake tin with the muffin liners and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt until combined.
  4. In another medium bowl, whisk the egg until well combined about 20 seconds.
  5. To the egg, add the sugar and whisk vigorously for about 30 seconds. 
  6. Add half of the slightly cooled melted butter to the egg mixture and whisk to combine. 
  7. Add the remaining butter to the egg mixture and whisk to combine.
  8. Add the sour cream to the egg mixture and whisk just to combine.
  9. To the flour mixture, add the blueberries and gently toss to coat the berries.
  10. Fold the egg mixture to the flour mixture until the batter comes together for about 30 seconds. There may be some spots of flour remaining but it is fine and the batter should be very thick. Do not overmix.
  11. Divide the batter evenly in the lined cupcake tin. 
  12. Bake the muffins for 15 minutes and then rotate the pan from front to back.
  13. Cook the muffins for another 10 to 15 minutes and the muffins are light golden brown. The muffins are done when checked with a toothpick and the toothpick comes out clean.
  14. Remover the muffins from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for at least 5 minutes.
Recipe adapted from Brown Eyed Baker.
Did you already know...
-In 1948, Bill Rosenberg opened a doughnut restaurant named Open Kettle.
-Two years later, the restaurant was renamed Dunkin Donuts.
-In 1978, Dunkin Donuts added muffins to their menu.
(It wouldn't have taken my daughter 30 years to add muffins to the menu.)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Blueberry Pies

Oh, blueberry pie! How easy you are to make! I really don't know why I don't make you more often. Maybe there are other pies that compete with you like strawberry or peach. How silly of them since there is no slicing involved except to serve you. 
Mini Blueberry Pies
7 cups fresh wild blueberries, picked over and cleaned
1 cup sugar plus additional for sprinkling
3 Tbsp all purpose flour, plus more for the work surface
pinch of coarse salt
2 pie crust dough
2 Tbsp unsalted butter

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the blueberries, sugar, flour, and salt.
  3. Gently toss to coat the blueberries. Set aside.
  4. On a floured work surface, roll out one pie crust dough to about 1/8 inch thickness.
  5. Take a large glass and cut out circles.
  6. In a cupcake tin, place each circle in the individual cups.
  7. Spoon the blueberry filling on top of the dough in the cupcake tin until it reaches just below the edge of the dough.
  8. Dot a little of the butter on top of the blueberry filling.
  9. Roll out the other pie crust dough to about 1/8 inch thickness. 
  10. Cut out desired shapes and place over each blueberry filling. Press down lightly to seal.
  11. Bake the pies about 30 minutes and golden brown.
  12. Remove the cupcake tin from the oven and allow the pies to cool before serving since the filling is very hot.
Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart Living 2002 Annual Recipes.
Did you already know...
-During the Civil War, blueberries were canned and shipped to the Union Troops.
-In Maine, wild blueberries are grown on over 60,000 acres.
-The bilberry is a cousin of the blueberry.
 I hope you have a wonderful week even though it is Monday!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Blueberry Pie Bars

This weeks Project Pastry Queen recipe was picked by Amanda of Homekeeping Adventures. These pie bars are so delicious! I substituted the blackberries for blueberries. I am definitely making these bars again and try other types of fruit. Please make sure to check out the other member's version of this recipe.
Since there are so many different types of berries in season, I didn't want to use frozen. My husband is not a big fan of fruit desserts and he thought these were great. Everyone that came by to visit thought these bars were delicious. The best part about this dessert is that it is a pretty easy dessert to make. I have over six cups of blueberries still to use so guess what will be posting next?
Blueberry Pie Bars
Crust and Topping
3 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes

Fruit Filling
4 large eggs
2 cups sugar
1 cup sour cream
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
2 lbs. wild blueberries, picked over and cleaned

Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease a 9x13 inch baking pan with cooking spray.
  3. In a food processor, add the flour, sugar, and salt. Pulse for 45 seconds.
  4. To the flour mixture, add the butter. Pulse until the butter is evenly distributed into the flour about 30 to 60 seconds.
  5. Reserve 1 1/2 cups of the crust mixture to use as a topping.
  6. Press the flour mixture into the bottom of the greased pan.
  7. Bake the crust for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Allow the crust to cool for 10 minutes.
  9. To make the filling, whisk the eggs in a large bowl.
  10. Add the sugar, sour cream, flour, and salt to the eggs. Combine well.
  11. Gently fold in the blueberries.
  12. Spoon the mixture evenly over the crust.
  13. Sprinkle the reserved crust mixture evenly over the filling.
  14. Bake the blueberry pie bars for 45 to 55 minutes, until the top is lightly browned.
  15. Allow to cool at least 1 hour before cutting into the bars.
Recipe adapted from The Pastry Queen cookbook by Rebecca Rather.
Did you already know...
-The wild blueberry is one of four native fruit crops to North America.
-Maine produces 15% of all blueberries in North America.
-The top fruit export of Canada is the blueberry.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Blueberry Season

Are you blue? Have you been having some bad luck lately? Yesterday was Friday the 13th and it is over. Only good luck ahead for all of us, right? I will admit the only thing blue lately for me would be all the blueberries I have been eating. My husband can not say the same since he just had knee surgery-yes ouch!
 It is blueberry season here in Maine and I have picked over 6 cups of wild blueberries lately. So, please forgive me now but I will be posting some blueberry recipes in the next coming days. I have warned you. Don't worry I will be going raspberry picking in a couple of days. Then I may surprise you one day when you are expecting another blueberry recipe and they are gone like all my blueberries.
I decided to remake the Ultimate Streusel Cake with Streusel Filling into a blueberry coffee cake. This remake was suggested by my oldest daughter and it came out pretty good. My husband really liked it and he doesn't eat fruit often.


Blueberry Coffee Cake 
Streusel Filling:
1/2 cups brown sugar
1/4cup sugar
3/4 cups almonds, toasted and chopped
1/4 cup all purpose flour
3Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature

Cake:
2 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp coarse salt
10 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1  cups sour cream 
1 cup of blueberries ( I used wild Maine blueberries)

Icing:
2 1/2 cups of powder sugar

1/4 cup milk

1 tsp vanilla extract
Additional powder sugar, for dusting if desired


Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Grease the Bundt pan.
3. Combine all the ingredients of the streusel filling together. Store in the refrigerator until needed.
4. In another bowl to make the cake, whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a bowl.
5. In a third bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

6. Add the eggs, vanilla, and sour cream to the butter mixture. Mix until just combined.

7. Slowly, add the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Mix until just combine.

8. Spoon half of the batter into the Bundt pan. Top with two thirds of the streusel filling.

9. Spoon the rest of the batter into the Bundt pan covering the streusel filling.

10. Top with the remaining streusel filling.

11. Bake until golden brown and cake tester comes out clean, about an hour.

12. Transfer cake to wire rack and let cool for 20 minutes.

13. When the cake is cooled enough, remove cake from pan.

14. In a medium bowl, prepare the icing by mixing the powder sugar and milk until well combined. Drizzle over cake.

15. Dust with powder sugar.


Adapted from Martha Stewart Living 2002 Annual Recipes. 

Did you already know...
-The most common knee injure is a torn meniscus.
-Each knee has 2 meniscus which is the cartilage that acts like a cushion between the shinbone and thighbone.
-By forcefully rotating or twisting the knee, the meniscus can become torn.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

PQ: Pound Cake Rum or No Rum?

Rum or no rum? Rum or no rum? Dilemma's of life! This weeks Project Pastry Queen was the Totally Rummy Pound Cake picked by Shawnda. I just couldn't decide if I wanted to go with Rum. Why? It isn't because we don't like rum in this household. (If you shy around alcohol, you need to be absent from my husband's birthday bashes.) Since it was my son's birthday weekend, (yes weekend since it was a sleepover), I figured I would make a twist.
I decided to substitute the rum with lemons and blueberries. A lot of snow has melted and I am crossing my fingers for Spring. I really do try to ignore that groundhog especially when he predicts 6/8/12 more weeks of winter-remember I live in Maine.
I thought maybe one loaf pan would be enough. I was wrong. Since I had a lot of batter left over, I did a lot of mini loafs. Another great thing about mini loafs size is they are easier to ship to family members.

Blueberry Lemon Pound Cake
1 1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted lightly (optional)

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 1/2 cups sugar
5 large eggs
3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup sour cream
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 cup fresh blueberries

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease bread pans with cooking spray.
  3. Arrange the toasted almonds on the bottom of the bread pans.
  4. In a mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until fluffy about 1 minute.
  5. After scrapping down the sides, add the sugar. Beat for 2 minutes on medium-high speed until incorporated.
  6. Scrap down the sides of the bowl again and then add 1 egg at a time until mixture is fluffy about 1 to 2 minutes.
  7. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  8. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and alternate with the sour cream until all the flour and sour cream is incorporated on medium-low speed.
  9. Stir in the vanilla extract, almond extract, and the lemon juice. Mix well. 
  10. Gently fold in 2/3 cups of the blueberries. 
  11. Spoon the batter evenly into the pans about 2/3 full. Top the batter with the remaining blueberries.
  12. Bake the pound cakes for about 1 hour and 20 minutes for the large loaf pan and about 30 minutes for the mini loaf pans. If the top is browning too quickly before the loafs are completely cooked through, cover the cakes with parchment paper. The pound cakes are done when the cake springs back when touched lightly.
  13. Allow to cool for at least 15 minutes before removing from the pan.
Recipe adapted from The Pastry Queen Cookbook.
Please check out the other Project Pastry Queen members posting of the Totally Rummy Pound Cake or if desired a glaze for the pound cake. Then you will have to decide rum or no rum in the glaze. Enjoy!
Almond crust
Did you already know.............
-In 1934, Myers's Rum was introduced in the US. 
-(Prohibition ended in 1933 for any curious minds.)
-Myers's Rum is made with pure Jamaican molasses.
-Myers's Rum is matured for about four years in oak barrels.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Blueberry Muffins

What is your favorite muffin? I would have to say my family loves blueberry muffins. I have made some many blueberry muffins over the years. I have made a brown butter blueberry muffin that is wonderful the day I bake it. It would be my favorite but I don't really like it the next day. Muffins have to taste great the next day since it will our breakfast while we rush out the door. 
 I made these blueberry muffins and they tasted great the next day. I love Maine wild blueberries but they aren't in season right now. So, I used the frozen wild blueberries and the recipe came out so well my youngest ate so many of the muffins I thought she was about to turn into Violet the blueberry girl from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.
To Die For Blueberry Muffins

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
 milk
1 cup blueberries, frozen

Topping ingredients
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup butter, cubed
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 
Line the muffin tin with muffin liners.
Mix the 1 1/2 cups flour, 3/4 cup sugar, 1/2 tsp salt, and the 2 tsp baking powder.
Place the vegetable oil in a 1 cup measuring cup. Add the egg and top the cup with milk until the 1 cup measuring cup reaches the 1 cup mark.
Fold in the blueberries.
Fill each muffin cup to the top.
If desired the crumb topping, combine the 1/4 cup sugar, 1/8 cup flour, 1/8 cup of butter, and the 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon. Mix with a fork and sprinkle on top of the muffins.
Bake the muffins for 20 minutes or until done.
Let cool before serving.

Recipe adapted from allrecipe.
Did you already know...........
-Roald Dahl wrote Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in 1964. 
-The book was adapted into the musical film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory starring Gene Wilder.
-In 2005, Tim Burton directed Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
-The main difference is Charlie and the Chocolate Factory focused more on Charlie while Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory focused more on Willy Wonka.
-Mr. Dahl also wrote James and the Giant Peach and Matilda.

Which movie did you like better? 

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