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Blackberry-Peach Crisp

You know those nights where company is coming over without much advance notice? That’s what this recipe is perfect for. It’s made of things that are always in my pantry and can be adapted to whatever fresh or frozen fruit you have in the house. I used the peaches and blackberries that came in our Local Box this week.

I originally made this dessert for just 2 people in 6 oz. ramekins. For company last night, I tripled the recipe and baked it in a pie dish.

Ingredients:

  • 2 c. fruit
  • 6 Tbsp. butter, softened
  • 1 c. oats
  • 3 tsp. flour
  • 1/3 c. brown sugar

Directions:

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Cut the fruit into small chunks (~1/2″) and spread it in the bottom of a pie dish.
  • Combine the remaining ingredients in a small bowl, then spread it on top of the fruit.
  • Bake for ~40 minutes. Let cool for a few minutes before serving.

Verdict:
The peaches were so sweet and the blackberries were a bit tart, so it was really a perfect combination of fruit for this crisp. The soft, fresh fruit is also a nice contrast to the crunchy, rich crumble topping. Such a quick, comfort food-like dessert. I’d highly recommend eating this with vanilla ice cream!

Comments { 1 }

Meyer-Lemon Muffins

I clipped this recipe from the Houston Chronicle a year and a half ago, and finally tried it out yesterday using some of my Local Box Meyer lemons. The results are very tasty. But my choice to go with paper liners was not the best one; they stick to the papers a bit, though they’re sticking less now that they’re a day old. The well-buttered muffin tins the recipe counsels would have given a crisper outer edge, though, which would have been nice.

Meyer Lemon Muffins

makes around 18 muffins

 
2 c flour
1 c plus 2 T sugar, divided
1 t baking soda
1 t salt
3 Meyer lemons, divided
2 eggs
1 c milk
1/2 c butter, melted
1/4 t cinnamon
 
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine flour, 1 c sugar, baking soda, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Set aside.
  • Cut two lemons into 1-inch pieces. Put them in a blender and pulse until finely chopped. In a small bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Add the milk, butter, and chopped lemon. Stir.
  • Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and pour in the lemon mixture. Stir just until all ingredients are moistened.
  • Spoon the batter into well-buttered cups of muffin pans, filling each 3/4 full.
  • Combine the remaining 2 T sugar and the cinnamon. Sprinkle about 1/4  t over each muffin. Cut remaining lemon into as many paper-thin slices as you have muffins. Top each muffin with half a slice of lemon.
  • Bake about 20 minutes, until golden brown. Run a small spatula or knife around each of the muffins to loosen, remove from the pan, and cool on a wire rack. Serve warm.
Comments { 2 }

Meyer-Lemon Squares

With the mercury dropping last night, we used Local Box butternut squash and onion to make warming polenta from the recipe that came in last week’s Local Box. Then for dessert: Lemon squares made with a Local Box Meyer lemon! Super easy, and quite tasty, too… the crust on these is reminiscent of shortbread.

Meyer Lemon Squares

1 cup flour
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup confectioner’s sugar
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons Meyer-lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350°. Mix flour, butter, and confectioner’s sugar. Press mixture into an ungreased 8-inch square pan, pressing up 1/2 inch on the sides. Bake for 20 minutes.

While crust bakes, beat remaining ingredients until light and fluffy. When the crust comes out of the oven, pour the filling over it. Bake 25 minutes longer or until set. Cool and cut into squares.

Comments { 3 }

Meyer-Lemon Sauce

When I was about 12, my family spent most weekends hiking in central Pennsylvania, where we lived then. One morning, we hiked with some friends of my parents’, to whose house we returned for a post-hike meal. Brenda served gingerbread pancakes with lemon sauce — and I copied the recipe from her that day. I may have been a strange twelve-year-old, but it’s one of my favorite recipes, still today. This version substitutes a Local Box Meyer lemon for a softer spin on the sweet-tart sauce. I made it last night and served it warm over fresh-baked gingerbread.

Meyer Lemon Sauce

1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1 egg, well beaten
juice and grated zest of 1 Meyer lemon

Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture boils. Skim off butter solids, if desired.

Comments { 2 }

Winter-Squash Chocolate-Chip Muffins

A refrigerator on-the-fritz inspired me to use Local Box acorn squash and butternut squash I’d roasted and frozen sooner than I’d expected!

Makes 12 muffins.

  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) butter, at room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked, mashed winter squash (I used acorn and butternut, but any variety will work.)
  • 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 heaping tablespoons flax-seed meal
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Butter muffing tins. Mix sugars, butter, and eggs in a large bowl until fluffy, under a stand mixer if you have one. Add squash and mix.

In a different bowl, combine the dry ingredients.

Ad dry ingredients to wet gradually, mixing to blend well. Stir in chocolate chips. Fill muffin tins 3/4 full with batter, then bake 20 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Cool 5 minutes in tins, then remove muffins from tins and let them cool completely on racks.

[Recipe adapted from Slashfood.]

Comments { 0 }

Chocolate Zucchini “Salad”

My husband took to calling this cake a “salad” because it was so heavy on the veggies — and because he wanted to justify eating it for more than just dessert. It’s a great way to use up even those Local Box zucchini that are a little past their prime:

  • 2 medium zucchini, trimmed and grated on a box grater or in the food processor ["Medium" is a relative term, of course. But the amount of zucchini needn't be precise; the cake is very forgiving.]
  • 8 T butter, at room temperature
  • 2 3/4 c flour
  • 1/4 c cocoa
  • 1 1/4 t baking soda
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 c vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 1/2 c buttermilk
  • 1 c chopped walnuts (optional)
  • confectioner’s sugar, for sprinkling
  1. Let grated zucchini rest in a metal strainer for 20 minutes or so, prodding with a wooden spoon occassionally to release as much water as possible. (You can also achieve this by balling it up in cheesecloth, if you have it, and squeezing.)
  2. Preheat oven to 325°. Butter a 9″ springform or other deep cake pan. Sift flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt to blend thoroughly.
  3. Beat butter and sugar in a mixer on medium speed until fluffy. Add oil, beating, then add eggs, one at a time, then vanilla, all while beating. Reduce mixer speed and add flour and buttermilk, alternately, in 3 batches. Stir in zucchini and, optionally, walnuts.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 1 hour and 20 minutes. Cool completely, then dust with confectioner’s sugar and serve.
Comments { 0 }