Funfetti Biscotti and Marshmallow Melts

Today was the first snowfall of the season. In my opinion it is waaay too early for that so I decided to bake some fun treats to lift my spirits. One of the few good things about cold weather is all the yummy hot drinks that go hand-in-hand with it. Therefore, I decided to make biscotti and a delicious surprise that can be added to hot chocolate (or coffee) – a chocolate ball filled with homemade marshmallows!

This biscotti recipe is not mine and I find it to be more like a shortbread stick than a truly crunchy biscotti – but it is still absolutely delicious and perfect for dunking.

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Strawberry Cream Cheese Cake

When I was younger I never ate cake. At birthday parties I would just have some ice cream and for my own birthday I would always request pie, so as an adult I struggle to make cakes as I’ve had much less experience eating them than the average person.

I was inspired to turn a strawberry cheesecake into a cake since the Ontario strawberries have been so delicious and abundant right now. This is a white chocolate cake with a strawberry  coulis filling and cream cheese buttercream. And honestly it was amazing. Like so good.

You may notice the white lumps in the blue frosting… I made once batch of cream cheese frosting and realized it wasn’t enough so I had to make more. It was before work and I didn’t have the time (or patience) to bring any more butter up to room temp so I used some cold. Hence the lumps. Oh well, it kind of looks cool? Pretend it was intentional ūüėČ

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Lemon Meringue Tartelettes

Lemon is definitely my favourite flavour. I love how the sourness cuts through the sweetness of any dessert, and how light and refreshing it is at the end of a meal. Lemon meringue pie is obviously the most classic version of a lemon dessert – sour lemon curd with a sticky sweet meringue all stuffed into a flaky crust. Perfect.

I experimented with techniques for decorating the tarts, so leave a comment and let me know which is your favourite!

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Coconut and Lime Macarons

I know, I know. More macarons.

I just love them as a base for creating and experimenting with new flavours. Eclairs/profiteroles work well for this too, but you get to dye macarons all sorts of fun colours and that’s definitely the best part.

Today I was feeling a summery vibe and made some coconut and lime macarons which were inspired by the flavours in these eclairs on Hint of Vanilla blog (which is amazing by the way).

For the first time ever I actually under-mixed my macronage (if anything I usually over mix) which means my macarons were a bit less smooth than usual. But they still look pretty good.

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Croissants

Honestly who doesn’t love croissants? They are flaky, buttery and rich and you can step up your sandwich game just by using one. They taste soo good with ham and swiss broiled on, or chocolate (or nutella) drizzled over top.

This recipe can also be used to make pain au chocolat – which was my original intention. The issue was I didn’t have any chocolate batons, nor the patience to make my own. It’s just as easy to drizzle a little chocolate on top if I’m in the mood. Since this recipe makes 24 croissants you can freeze some after baking and enjoy them all month long.

Croissant (17)Not the most beautiful lighting in these photos, I started them at a dumb time and therefore ended up finishing them at midnight… Continue reading

French Crullers

French Crullers are a light and airy doughnut with a delicious sweet glaze. There are actually 2 types of cruller: some made from a twisted dough and these french ones that are made with pate a choux. They go perfectly with a hot cup of coffee.

They’re surprisingly easy and can actually be deep fried or baked.

Note: Fire chief dad says to always have a lid for your pot nearby when deep frying!

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Froot Loops Macarons

The problem when I make macarons is the amount of tasting that takes place.

First I try a shell when the pan comes right out of the oven, then I decide that I should try another once they have¬†cooled down. I usually try one from the next tray to go in the oven too. Next I make the filling and, of course, it gets multiple tastes while being made. Finally I have to try one fully assembled and by now I’m starting to feel a little ill from all that sugar.

I usually end up freezing my macarons because for the next few days I am quite sick of them and in no mood to eat another.

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Chocolate, Hazelnut and Strawberry Entremet

It’s another hot weekend, so that means another cool dessert! This beauty is an entremet: a layered mousse cake usually with different textured components. Right now the strawberries have been amazing so I used that as my starting point and decided nothing goes better than strawberries and chocolate.

The cake itself will take a while, simply because things need time to freeze. The layers are a vanilla sable, chocolate hazelnut panna cotta, strawberry gelee and chocolate mousse, all covered in a chocolate glacage. There is some coconut in the decoration because I didn’t have anything else on hand… (some of the chocolate wafer crumbs from the salted caramel semifreddo would have been fantastic in place of the coconut).

The glazing process is super fun and it looks amazing, just check out that mirror finish!

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Salted Caramel Semifreddo with Raspberry Sauce and Chocolate Crumb

It’s been hot lately and, sadly, I don’t have an ice cream maker. This means when it comes to summery desserts I can’t accompany them with fresh homemade ice creams or sorbets. There are a number frozen desserts that don’t require churning: some examples are granitas, parfaits (no not a layered breakfast, it’s also ¬†a form of no churn ice cream), and semifreddos.

Today I made a semifreddo: a frozen italian dessert that has a mousse-like consistency. This one is a sweet salted caramel that is offset with a bitter chocolate crumb and a tangy raspberry sauce.

I attempted to create a rocher¬†(or a one-handed quenelle) from the semifreddo but it’s not the most beautiful, since my semifreddo was a bit too firm. I’m still fairly happy with it. (I’m trying to work on stepping up my plating)

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Cinnamon Sugar Brioche Rose

Brioche is a bread that, depending on where you live, can be hard to find. It’s made with eggs and lots of butter to give it a much richer flavour than your average white bread. In this recipe it is rolled thin, sprinkled with cinnamon sugar, rolled, cut and coiled to create a beautiful looking loaf. (It also smells insane good while it’s baking.)

My loaf never looks quite as lovely after baking, I’m assuming one of the reasons is that I use a 9 inch spring form instead of the suggested 10 inch. That means I end up with a taller and less “rose”-like bread (I’d say mine looks more like a mushroom).
Brioche Cinammon Sugar Rose (11) Continue reading