My son, Matthew, was heading to our camp for the weekend with friends and I wanted to send them off with some goodies. I didn’t have much time but there was butter softened on the counter so I decided cookies would be the fastest treat to put together. Then I couldn’t decide what kind to make so I used my base cookie dough and added a little bit of everything that was in the cupboard.
The combination of all of those different chocolates and flavours smelled just heavenly. The cookies were cooled and packaged and off the boys went. I had kept a few for my husband just so that there wouldn’t be a riot. He thought the taste was amazing, but one problem they had no name. So as he is stuffing the last bite in he says “triple crown”. So the Triple Crown Cookie was born, even though technically they have 4 flavours in them…oh well…
So if you need some cookies last minute, these really are quick to throw together and feel free to add whatever type of chocolate chips you have on hand. Maybe your combination will be even better than mine.
So it is a Saturday morning at the lake and you have your niece and nephew visiting and it is already 25 ºC outside and they expect some home baking for breakfast – what do you do? Well you could make muffins that tastes just like a donuts. Yes, that really is something you can do! The oven won’t be on too long and if you bake them nice and early you won’t melt. At least that is what I tried to tell myself! A swim afterwards will help.
This is by far one of my favourite square recipes. Blondies are all about caramel flavour with bites of white chocolate – could a simple square ask for anything more? Not to knock all of those chocolate confections, but if there is a choice between caramel and chocolate, I’m going for the caramel!
My raspberry bushes are keeping me in business this summer with a full bowl of ripe gorgeous berries every day! I have only 3 bushes but it must be their location in the back yard that makes them so happy. They are against the wooden fence and face east so they have sun until about 4 o’clock every day. I planted them 3 years ago and for the past 2 years they have done extraordinarily well- bearing fruit right through to the end of September. I looked at every garden centre this spring to find more bushes of the same type but no luck. I will just have to hope that they spread their roots and multiply.
So here is another recipe to use some of those beautiful red delicious raspberries that are begging to be eaten this time of year. This is a a light cake with a crumbly streusel topping and is amazing served warm with vanilla ice cream or perfect for breakfast with a cup of coffee. Either time of day you will enjoy the burst of raspberry and the crunch of the brown sugar topping.
Banana and peanut butter – 2 flavours that just go together. But have you ever had them together in cake form? This is two breakfast items all fancied up and pretending to be dessert, but if you want you can have it for breakfast!
The other great thing about this recipe is that it is all mixed in one bowl. Dry ingredients, followed by wet ingredients, followed by eggs and there you have it – your cake is ready to bake! The banana gives it great moistness and that amazing flavour. I prefer to bake this in a 9×13 pan, but feel free to do in 2 round pans and make it a really pretty cake.
The frosting has just a hint of peanut butter, not too overpowering. Just enough to enhance the fluffy frosting and give that great combination of banana and peanut butter. It makes quite a bit of frosting so that you can spread it on nice and thick so that every bite has it’s fair share.
2 large very ripe bananas, peeled and broken into chunks.
½ cup butter, room temp
¼ cup sour cream
¼ cup milk
2 eggs,room temp
1 tsp vanilla
½ cup butter, room temp
2 tbsp smooth peanut butter
4 cups of icing sugar
2 tbsp heavy cream
½ tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 ℉ and grease a 9x13 cake pan.
In the bowl of a stand mixer or large mixing bowl if using a hand mixer, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the sugar, banana, butter, sour cream and milk. Mix on low speed until combined, then at med speed for 1 minute.
Add the eggs and vanilla and beat a further 2 minutes.
Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth top.
Bake for 25-35 minutes or until golden and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Place on rack to completely cool.
Meanwhile for frosting:
Beat butter and peanut butter together. Add 2 cups of icing sugar and beat until smooth. Add vanilla and cream and beat until fluffy. Gradually add remaining icing sugar.
This recipe for crisp is simple and absolutely delicious and is the perfect backdrop for all of that summer fruit bounty around us. You can use whatever fresh fruit is in season and every combination always turns out wonderful. For this one I used fresh raspberries from my garden, wild blueberries I had picked at camp and peaches from the farmer’s market.
Berry Muffins – tender and moist packets filled with raspberries and blueberries. These muffins make a decadent breakfast treat or a wonderful afternoon pick-me-up. They are so yummy you could even serve these with ice cream for a casual dessert. So what ever time you decide to have one of these you will be smitten with the burst of berry flavour.
The batter comes together quickly in a bowl and like most muffin recipes, no electricity required! Melt the butter in the microwave and let is come to room temperature. When you do whisk the wet ingredients together it will resemble curdled milk but that is fine, it will all work out. When folding the berries in, add them just before all of the flour is incorporated so that the berries won’t all be broken up. Fresh berries work best in this recipe, but you can use frozen blueberries, just toss them with a teaspoon of flour first before you add them to the batter.
I have been making this pizza dough ever since it was published in Bon Appetit a while back. It has even replaced my go-to recipe for our wood-fired pizza oven so that tells you just how good it is. I have gone back to baking my pizzas in a pan! It results in a thicker crust, but it is nice and crispy and chewy and has a fantastic texture.
This dough is very forgiving and most times I will make it in the morning and put it in a very large bowl, cover it and let it rise all day until it is time to bake pizza. I find that the longer the dough rises, the better the flavour is. I have even put it in a plastic bag and kept it in the fridge for a few days before baking it and it was fantastic.
So back to the wood-fired pizza oven, because this dough has a quite a bit of oil in it, it is very difficult to put on a pizza peel and slide onto the stone. I can tell you this because I tried it and ended up with a really ugly looking calzone stuck to the bottom of my pizza oven! It smelled really good until it started to burn, but then at least I could scrape it off and start over. So if you do decide to slide it directly on to your stone, ensure you sprinkle lots of cornmeal down first ! That’s when I decided to make the pizza on a baking sheet and put the sheet directly on to the stone. That pizza was terrific!
If you don’t have a pizza oven, no worries, this pizza will cook up beautifully in a really hot oven. I like at least 450ºF. Remember to always put your pizza stone in the oven before you turn it on, this way it will have lots of time to absorb the heat. It is a good idea to let the oven come to temperature and then wait at least another 10-15 minutes for the stone to get really good and hot. If it is a hot day and you still want to make pizza, you can use your gas/propane bbq to cook your pizza, just put your pizza stone on the grill and let it heat up and away you go – a pizza oven outside!
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for bowl, plus more for pan
2 teaspoons sea salt
4 cups all-purpose flour
1½ c warm water
Whisk together yeast and 1½ cups warm water (105–110°) in bowl of stand mixer; let stand until yeast starts to foam, about 5-10 minutes.
Add in 2 Tbsp. oil, then flour and sprinkle salt on top.
Using dough hook, mix on low speed until dough comes together, then continue to mix with dough hook until smooth and soft. This usually takes about 5 - 7 minutes.
Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, turning it a few times so that it is well coated. Ensure the bowl is large enough that will allow the dough to at least double, more is better. Cover loosely with plastic wrap.
At this point you can refrigerate the dough if using the next day. If using same day, put in draft free spot and let rise. If the dough starts to climb over the top, gently push down with the palms of your hands through the plastic wrap.
Best if you let rise at least 4-6 hours, preferably 8.
When ready to make pizza,coat a sheet pan or a cookie sheet with raised edges liberally with olive oil. Gently turn dough out of bowl onto pan. Let it rest for 10 minutes before attempting to work with the dough.Then using your fingers work the dough out into the pan, if it starts to spring back, let it rest again. You may need to do this a few times before you have it reaching all sides.
Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let it rise again about 30 minutes. At this point put your pizza stone in the oven and preheat to 450 degrees. Once the dough has puffed, gently spread your sauce and add your toppings.
Place on pizza stone and bake for about 15-20 minutes or until golden around the edges and cheese is melted.
With a wooden or metal spatula, slide the pizza onto a wooden cutting board. Let sit for 5 minutes before slicing.