Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Daring Bakers' Challenge- Fraisier

Jana of Cherry Tea Cakes was our July Daring Bakers’ host and she challenges us to make Fresh Frasiers inspired by recipes written by Elisabeth M. Prueitt and Chad Robertson in the beautiful cookbook Tartine.

This challenge recipe was perfect for a hot, summer day- it’s so light!  I made a lemon chiffon cake and filled it with fresh strawberries, blueberries and whipped cream.  This dessert was simple, but delicious.  I love the fresh berries in the filling, and I'll definitely plan on making this recipe again!

I made a lemon chiffon cake

Place the bottom half of the cake in the bottom of the springform pan, and line the sides of the pan with strawberry halves

Pipe whipped cream around the strawberries

Add a layer of whipped cream and berries

Place the other cake half on top and add a layer of whipped cream

Lemon Chiffon Cake

1 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
¾ cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup vegetable oil
3 large egg yolks
¼ cup water
1/8 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ½ teaspoons lemon zest
5 large egg whites
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar

1. Preheat oven to 325°F
2. Line the bottom of a 9 inch spring form pan with parchment paper.  Do not grease pan
3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and baking powder.  Add all but 3 tablespoons of the sugar and all of the salt, and stir to combine.
4. In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, egg yolks, water, lemon juice, vanilla, and lemon zest.  Combine mixture with dry ingredients and mix for about one minute, until mixture is very smooth.
5. Beat egg whites in a mixing bowl on medium speed, until frothy.  Add the cream of tartar and continue beating until whites hold soft peaks.  Slowly beat in the remaining sugar and continue beating until whites hold stiff, shiny peaks.
6. Scoop about 1/3 of the egg whites into the yolk mixture, and fold in gently with a clean spatula.  Carefully fold in the remaining whites until just combined.
7. Pour batter into prepared spring form pan and bake for 40-50 minutes.  A toothpick inserted in the center of the cake should come out clean.
8. Remove cake from oven and cool on a wire rack.  Unmold cake by running a knife around the side of the pan and removing the spring form sides.

Simple Syrup

½ cup sugar
½ cup water

Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil.  Allow sugar to completely dissolve and remove from heat.  Simple syrup can be kept in the refrigerator for up to one month.

Whipped cream

2 cups heavy cream
2/3 cup confectioner’s sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Use an electric mixer to beat the heavy cream until it holds soft peaks.  Add the confectioner’s sugar and vanilla and beat until combined.

Assembling the Fraisier

Simple Syrup
Whipped Cream

1. Cut cake in half horizontally to form two layers.  Place one layer of cake in bottom of spring form pan and brush with simple syrup.
2. Hull strawberries and cut them in half.  Line the sides of the spring form pan with the strawberry halves, forming a ring.  Place the strawberry halves with the cut sides against the side of the pan
3.  Pipe whipped cream between the strawberries and along the top of the cake
4.  Add a layer of blueberries and sliced strawberries, and cover with more of the whipped cream.
5. Place the second layer of cake on top.  Brush cake with more simple syrup, and spread remaining whipped cream on top.
6. Cover cake and refrigerate for a couple of hours, until set.
7. Remove sides of spring form pan and enjoy!

Cake recipe adapted from the lemon chiffon recipe found at

-Posted by Jennifer

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

I tend to be kind of particular about everything I eat or drink, but I'm especially bad about milk.  It has to be chocolate (as in it came that way from the store, not mixed with syrup at home) and it must be from Jersey cows.  So when my dad decided he wanted mint chocolate chip ice cream made with Jersey cow milk/cream for Father's Day I knew it would be some of the creamiest ice cream ever!

Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

2 ½ cups milk
2 ¾ cups sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 ½ cups half and half
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
6 cups whipping cream
2 teaspoons peppermint extract
½ teaspoon green food coloring
12 oz. (2 cups) grated semisweet chocolate or chocolate chips

Scald milk until bubbles form around the edge of the pan.  Remove from the heat, add the sugar and salt, stirring until dissolved.  Stir in the remaining ingredients EXCEPT for the chocolate chips.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes, covered, then freeze according to instructions.  Once done, remove the mixing paddle and stir in the chocolate chips.

Makes 4 quarts  

*I used very little food coloring.  Also, we used the mini chips.

- This recipe was included in the instruction manual for my Rival Electric Ice Cream Maker.

~Posted by Karen

Monday, July 11, 2011

Sour Cream Chocolate Tart

If you're ever in Athens, Georgia, I highly recommend that you eat at the Grit. Aside from being one of the best vegetarian restaurants I've ever been to, they also have a wide array of delicious desserts.  I don't get to visit Athens often, but luckily the restaurant also has a cookbook full of their most famous recipes.  This tart reminds me of a sugar cookie topped with chocolate cheesecake!

Prepare and chill crust.

Prepare chocolate-sour cream filling.

Bake and enjoy!

Sour Cream Chocolate Tart

1 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup sugar
¼ tsp salt
½ cup (1 stick) butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1 egg
1 tsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract

¾ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 ½ cups sour cream
1 egg, beaten
½ cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 375°F
2. Prepare crust: Whisk together the flour, sugar and salt.  Cut butter into the mixture until particles are very small and well combined.  Beat together the egg, milk and vanilla, and toss with the flour mixture until mixture can be formed into a ball.  Press the dough evenly into the bottom and sides of a 9-inch tart pan.  Refrigerate dough while preparing the filling.
3. Place chocolate chips and 1 tablespoon sour cream in saucepan and warm over low heat until chocolate is melted.  Beat together all of the ingredients for the filling with an electric mixer on medium speed, until mixture is very smooth.  Pour filling into crust and place tart on a cookie sheet.
4. Bake tart for 35 to 40 minutes, until crust is browned and center of tart jiggles when shaken.  Cool completely.

Adapted from recipe for Sour Cream Chocolate Tart from The Grit Restaurant Cookbook by Jessica Greene and Ted Hafer, available for purchase at

-Posted by Jennifer

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake

When Jennifer came to visit, I wanted us to make some kind of dessert together.  However, since she was only here for the weekend, it needed to be something that's easy to mix up and not too involved.  This cake is perfect because it goes together quickly and then bakes for we had plenty of time to sit and catch up!

Mix it all up, throw it in the oven....

...and enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake

2/3 cup chopped pecans
¼ cup butter, softened
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 (12-oz.) package semisweet chocolate mini-morsels

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.  Grease and flour a 12-cup bundt pan.  Combine the first 3 ingredients with a fork, and sprinkle in the prepared pan.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In a heavy-duty, electric stand mixer, beat butter, sugars, and vanilla until fluffy, 3-5 minutes.  Add the eggs one at a time.  Add the flour mixture and buttermilk alternately, beginning and ending with flour, beating on low.  You may need to stop and scrape the bowl.  Add the chocolate chips and spoon into the bundt pan.
  4. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes.  Cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then remove from the pan to cool completely.  If desired, garnish with whipped cream and cherries.

Serves 12

Recipe from the May 2010 issue of Southern Living Magazine.  Subscribe here and see the recipe here!

-Posted by Karen