From our Food Goddess, TaMara:
I don’t know about you guys, but I’m having fun with these Thursday night recipe posts. Thanks for playing.
I love chocolate, so it’s usually my sweet of choice. But a very close second is fruit desserts. Strawberries, apples, oranges, blueberries, citrus anything, I love them all. So I have a wide range of fruit dessert recipes available:
Strawberry Bread, Orange Cookies, Key Lime Pie Bars, Coconut Lemon Cake (perfect for Easter dinner), pineapple and cranberry upside-down cakes, blueberry oatmeal cookies, the list goes on…and on.
It was hard to narrow down the recipe for tonight, I ended up choosing two, Perfect Apple Crisp and Sour Cream Lemon-Poppy Seed Cake. One is decadant, one is quick and easy. What fruit desserts make the top of your list? Hit the comments with the recipes. Next week: I’ll be traveling again, but I’m thinking pizza, since JeffreyW has so many varieties and I’m usually hunting perfect pizza places while I travel.
On to tonight’s recipes. This is one of the most requested birthday cakes at our office:
Sour Cream Lemon-Poppy Seed Pound Cake
You’ll want to prep the lemon juice, lime juice and zests ahead of time. You’ll need 2 lemons and 3 limes to complete the recipe.
2 ½ cups sugar
6 large eggs, room temperature
1 tbsp lemon zest
1 tbsp lime zest
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp lime juice
2 sticks (1 cup) melted butter, cooled slightly
1 cup sour cream
Dash of salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
3 cups flour
2 tbsp poppy seeds
Bundt or Angel Food pan, greased and floured
Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Mix sugar, eggs, zests, lemon, juice, limejuice, sour cream, butter and salt until well blended. Mix together flour and baking soda. Add flour mixture in three sections to egg mixture, mixing until blended, but do not over blend. Fold in poppy seeds. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 75-90 minutes until toothpick comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes, or until cool to touch, then remove from pan to cool completely, about 2 hours.
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp lime juice
Dash of vanilla extract
Whisk together until smooth. Pour over the top of cooled cake. Let stand about 10 minutes until set.
Next is a different take on apple crisp. I had seen video of a recipe that pre-cooked the apples in a cast iron skillet. The idea looked really good and since I’m all about cooking in my cast iron skillets, I thought I’d give it a whirl. And I have to say, that yes it did make the best apple crisp ever. It allows the apples to fully cook, then you can bake the “crisp” part at a higher temperature for a shorter time, giving it a really crisp top… [Click over to Whats4DinnerSolutions for recipe & pics.]
My favorite fruit dessert is dead easy. Peeled and quartered ripe pears poached in white wine with ginger and cloves. Serve warm with a scoop of lemon sorbet. Be prepared for gasps of “OMG!”. This is so easy you can set it up on a spare burner & let it simmer while you pay attention to the rest of the meal. Pretty tough to screw up.
All that looks very yummy indeed – I love fruit desserts, especially pineapple upside down cake.
Here’s a sorta-fruit dessert recipe that uses raisins and orange juice. The Jewish holiday of Purim is coming up next week (sundown 3/7 to nightfall 3/8) so I thought I’d have a go at making some of the traditional cookies, Hamantaschen with poppyseed-raisin filling.
(I’m not Jewish myself but have a lot of Jewish friends, so they’ve introduced me to a lot of awesome culture & cuisine.)
My excuse – you can put just about any fruit you want next to this & it will be orgasmic. Its the buttermilk that gives it a flavor you won’t believe.
2 1/3 cups heavy cream
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons powdered gelatin
2 cups buttermilk
Combine the cream, sugar and vanilla in a sauce pan and whisk to combine. Gently heat the mixture over low heat, just to to the boiling point. Remove the pan from the heat and let stand for 10 minutes. Then, gently whisking the gelatin and stir until it dissolves. Add the buttermilk and stir until smooth. Pour into ramekins, cups or glasses and chill for a minimum of a couple of hours.
I would not use real villila bean for this because it will settle in the ramikins & when turned out make the tops look dirty. Slice berries, kewis, fresh peaches, cherries you name it on this
Totally forgot my all time favorite: Carrot Cake, this recipe has lots of pineapple and coconut in it, so it’s really fruity, light and not terribly sweet.
My mom used to make this poppy seed filled cake. She made it from memory & I never learned the recipe – I’d kill to be able to reproduce it. The one you sounds pretty good.
A lesson to those of you with moms & grandmas still running the kitchen! Get the recipe this weekend, don’t assume she will always be there & you can get it any time.
I usually don’t do desserts (well, I eat them), so I have no recipes to contribute. That said, the sour cream lemon pound cake is being printed out as we speak. My John (who usually does the baking around here) loves, loves, loves pound cake.
I am making this when he comes home from the hospital. And he’ll be so proud of me for baking.
@RossInDetroit: Love poached pears, but never had them with lemon sorbet – sounds irresistible.
@Xecky Gilchrist: Those look really good.
Oh man, thanks for bringing back the food threads on BJ. We cannot live on politics alone – or as the Tunch poster says:
Thanks to Annie and Tamara,
(This is totally self-serving: my recipes are getting a bit stale as of late, and its always cool to read/see/hear what others are chowing down.)
@Schlemizel: Last time I made that, somehow I really messed it up. I haven’t done it since. You’ve inspired me to give it another try.
@Schlemizel: Glad to hear you think they look good – I’m never sure, when attempting recipes from outside my own upbringing (which consisted of baloney sandwiches and Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook stuff, though Ma had a good hand with it all.)
ETA: @TaMara (BHF): I am excited to try them!
LOL. Just read this, for when your sweet tooth can’t wait:
24-Hour Cupcake Machine
In Beverly Hills.
@geg6: I’m sorry, I must have missed John being in the hospital. Is it serious? I did catch up with you guys losing your dog…my sympathies, late though they may be, on that loss (Henry, right?). I hope John is home soon.
P.s. the cake recipe is pretty fool-proof, but don’t tell him that.
Oh. My. God. Now I’m afraid I’m going to die tomorrow, because the universe has already made my dreams come true.
@TaMara (BHF): A cupcake vending machine? That’s civilization!
Though for coin-driven culture it will be hard to top the 24-hour coin-op Church of Elvis in Portland, OR (I saw the ~1990 incarnation, not sure what it’s like these days).
Last summer I discovered Pavlovas and made several using a variety of fruits. I tried both chocolate and traditional and they were all great. The meringue is such a light base, it made a great combination with the fruit and didn’t give you a heavy feeling. Here’s Ina Garten’s recipe for a mixed berry one. http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/mixed-berry-pavlova-recipe/index.html
Mrs Martin makes something very similar to this – just without the poppy seeds. Lemon sour cream is one of my favorite deserts – just fantastic.
Thanks, TaMara. He had a double knee replacement yesterday. Horrible to watch him go through this (and the whole idea of them grinding down your bones just sends chills down my spine), but this will make his life so much better. He’ll be fine, but it will be a lot of hard work and pain to get there.
@TaMara (BHF): We have a friend who manages a Sprinkles. It’s a bad thing as she routinely drops by with the leftovers from the day and we really don’t need a dozen or two cupcakes showing up every week. But the kids love her – it’s like having Jesus pop by for a visit.
@geg6: My dad had that in September. The first few weeks were the worst. He was back to golfing by January. Big hugs to John.
@TaMara (BHF): Email me, please, I’ve tried several times to get in touch with no success.
@John Cole: As you wish. It is done.
(Why do I feel like I’ve been called to the principal’s office?)
I just announced to my husband that I’m leaving him to move in with you. I’m sure your wife and kids won’t mind — I don’t take up much room and I can sleep on the couch.
He is annoyed but not surprised since, after all, he did turn to me one sunny day and say, “You would punch a baby in the face for a cupcake, wouldn’t you?” And I was unable to deny it.
Most important news of the day.
@TaMara (BHF): Beverly Hills? Century City!
favorite fruit desert – the raspberry-rhubarb pie, below.
1. Make your favorite crust for a two-crust pie.
(I make an all-butter crust – two sticks salted butter, an additional 1/2 tsp salt, 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour, 3-4 tbs ice water)
2. Make filling, below. Mix sugar and cornstarch, mix into berries and rhubarb.
1 1/3 cups sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
3 1/2 cups raspberries
3 1/2 cups 1/2-inch pieces rhubarb (about 1 lb.)
This makes a tart pie, which I love – but you may need up to another 1/2 cup of sugar, depending on how sour your rhubarb and raspberries are.
3. Put filling into bottom unbaked crust. You can top with either a lattice top or a regular top crust – the lattice looks really pretty, though.
4. Brush top crust, in whatever form, with an egg wash, and bake – about 15 minutes at 375, then another 30 or so at 350 – watch carefully.
Also a big fan of Meyer Lemon/Buttermilk tart – big disadvantage of moving home to North Dakota from my beloved Bay Area is that I no longer have a Meyer lemon tree in the yard! (when friends came to visit this summer, they brought me about a 10-pound box of Meyers from their tree – I was in heaven!
@Martin: I’ll be in LA next week, it sounds like I should find one…
I am so going to make this cake. I think the fact that it’s lemon-lime, not just lemon, is going to make it extra delicious. Maybe for St. Patty’s Day, since I need an occasion to share it or else I’ll wind up eating the whole thing. I’m thinking adding some extra lime zest or a little green food coloring to the glaze would make it festive for the holiday. Love recipe — especially dessert — threads!
Sprinkles is good, but there are literally a hundred great cupcake places in LA. My current favorite is Dots Cupcakes, which has two locations in the Pasadena area.
I was going to post up an Apple Betty recipe, but since it’s fairly similar to TaMara’s Apple Crisp, I won’t repeat that. The only other mega-delicious fruit dessert I’ve made is a raspberry poppyseed cake that I think I got from her site anyhow. :P
I do have a few amendments/notes that I will make, however:
I’ve had great success substituting different fruits for the apples. One of my favorite Fourth of July desserts involves a mix of blueberries, raspberries (or strawberries), and apples. Very “red, white, and blue.”
My recipe also calls for “softened” butter (not melted), which is mixed with a pastry blender. While I have melted the butter on occasion, the “softened” butter is more of a flaky topping, in my opinion. Of course, I haven’t made Apple Crisp TaMara’s way ( … yet), but with my recipe, I prefer the softened butter to the melted butter. Of course, everyone’s opinion may differ on this subject.
@Mousebumples: I don’t have a cast iron skillet (and couldn’t use one on my kind of stovetop anyway) so I can’t make taMara’s recipe. So please post yours. :-)
@Mousebumples: I always used softened butter until those pesky folks at America’s Test Kitchen swore to me the melted butter would make for a crispier crust. It works at the higher temperature, but softened butter works better for the traditional cooking method at the lower temperature.
Love the berry crisps, too. I have a plum/nectarine crumble recipe that’s pretty good. Face it, throw that crumble topping on a lot of fruits and you’re good to go.
@WaterGirl: Fear not! You can cook your apples in any kind of skillet or saucepan and then transfer to a baking dish (instructions are at the end of the recipe on my blog) and it turns out just as good as if you cooked it in a cast iron skillet.
I’m not much of a sweets person. However, macerated berries over angel food cake is divine and semi-decent for you!
2 cups any berries you want (strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, snozberries)
3 tbsp sugar
juice of 1/2 lemon
Toss in a bowl. Let sit on counter for an hour then refrigerate. The room temperature will kick-start the maceration process. YUM!!
@TaMara (BHF): Yay!
@WaterGirl: Even though TaMara’s recipe will work for you, I’ll toss mine out here anyway. :)
4 cups sliced tart apples (4 medium)
2/3 cup Packed brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup oats
3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/3 cup margarine or butter, softened
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Arrange apples in greased 8×8 inch pan. Mix remaining ingredients and sprinkle over apples. Bake until topping is golden brown and apples are tender, about 30 minutes. Serve warm, with ice cream or cream. Makes 6 servings
If desired, Microwave uncovered for 12 minutes instead of baking in the oven.
I almost *always* microwave this, mostly because the 12 minute cook time is just about perfect to cover the “dining” time of my perhaps mildly uncivilized family. With the microwave recipe, it’s pretty much ready exactly on time for when we’re ready for dessert – and it’s piping hot and ready for serving.
I also find it freezes well, which is great for when I have leftovers. It’s a delicious dessert to enjoy, reheated, later.
I have recently rediscovered peach cobbler.
I like putting chinese 5 spice and lime juice on the peaches, baking them with butter and some sugar for a bit then plopping not-too-sweet drop scone batter on top and cooking until golden brown. Nummie.
@geg6: I have heard of a few people getting new knees & none of them ever regretted it. I think he will enjoy the change & hope you guys are back to better than usual very soon.
My Truth Hurts
The picture made me drool. Seriously.
If anyone’s still here, I just remembered another fruit dessert I made recently which is easy and I totally loved: Sharlotka a la Smitten Kitchen.
@Xecky Gilchrist: I always check in. Smitten Kitten is one of JeffreyW’s favorite cooking blogs. That looks really good.
OK, I’m late to the party as usual but I’ll share an old favorite ambrosia recipe. It’s great for picnics and barbecues, and usually when I make it, I eat it for breakfast, too. Mix a pint of sour cream, a drained can of pineapple chunks, a drained can of mandarin orange segments, a jar of drained maraschino cherries, and about half a bag each of sweetened flake coconut and mini-marshmallows in a big bowl, cover, refrigerate, eat. I never measure anything, so I guess just play with the ratios until it tastes right.