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Archive for the ‘Desserts’ Category

cheesecake_final

A couple of days before Father’s Day I handed BeeBop my copy of Hershey’s Classic Recipes and told him to pick out anything in it that he’d like for his special Father’s Day treat. What he chose was this classic no-bake cheesecake. And, although the title says it’s no-bake, you do actually bake the crust but not the filling. But don’t let that keep you from trying this one. The short baking time for the crust doesn’t heat up the kitchen too badly on these hot, hot summer days.

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RedVelvet_final

It’s been a really long time since I baked a cake. I don’t even remember the last one I did bake. So, last weekend I thought it was just time for one. And what could be better than a good old Red Velvet Cake? With all that yummy cream cheese and toasted pecans. How can you resist something like that?

Red Velvet cake is actually a chocolate layer with red food coloring added and then frosted with a cream cheese icing. I started wondering about the origins of Red Velvet, a cake well known throughout the South, so I did a little internet searching. Turns out not much is known about its origins, but there is general agreement on its popularity!  I love this quote from Angie Mosier, a food writer from Atlanta, who said “It’s the Dolly Parton of cakes: a little bit tacky but you love her!” Perfect description of the luscious Red Velvet.

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Lemon Meringue Pie

LemonMeringuePie_final

Lemon Meringue Pie brings all kinds of wonderful memories to mind. Especially memories of my Daddy. It was one of his most favorite things in the world. Actually, he liked pretty much anything lemon.  I think it was probably his favorite flavor. Lemon pie, hard lemon candy. If it was lemon, he liked it. I never, ever take a bite of lemon meringue pie without thinking of him and how much I miss him.

I’m so lucky that I currently have five generations of living family members. My Mama, her mother, my daughter and her two children. That’s really something. Daddy lived to see that, too. He knew my oldest grandchild for a few months before he passed away. Almost every time I go back home, Mama and I go to the city cemetery for a visit. I think he knows we check on him.

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banpud_finalI was perusing food blogs today, as usual, and I came across one where someone who grew up in the Midwest was extolling the virtues of southern cuisine. Pimento cheese specifically. This blogger talked about how he grew up on a diet of pretty bland fare and only discovered the wonders and variety of southern cuisine after he had reached adulthood. This got me thinking. I really need to get back to what I know and do best. What I call Southern Farmhouse cooking. There are, of course, all kinds of different southern cuisines…creole, cajun, tex-mex, then there’s the whole coastal thing from the Carolinas right on around through Key West and New Orleans and more. Southern cuisine is so varied and complex, it’s even thought of by Southerners in regions of its own. Keep reading…

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bakedalaska_final1

This is a real oldie, but goodie. Baked Alaska. I remember my Mama making this for us when we were children and also to serve at dinner parties. I thought it was the most elegant dessert I’d ever heard of and my Mama was the most elegant mama I knew because she knew how to make it. Actually, it is pretty cool to take a dessert with a nice warm meringue out of the oven, slice into it and find that cold ice cream in the middle. I still love it.

The Baked Alaskas you see in my photos are meant for two people to share. If you want to do individual ones, just use one slice of cake and half a “slice” of ice cream.  You’ll see what I mean as we go along.  Also, of course, you can put your own spin on this and use other combinations like chocolate cake with pistachio ice cream (looks like the earth and grass with clouds above as you cut into it) or a white cake with peach ice cream and meringue.  You can cut the cake out with a round cutter and top with a scoop of ice cream instead of a slice like I do. Yum, either way.

This is really simple. You can do this. Even if you don’t cook much. 

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poundcake_withberriesI’ve used this pound cake recipe for as long as I can remember. The original recipe came from a First Baptist Church cookbook. With all due respect to the ladies of the First Baptist Church, I made changes to the original. And to tell the truth I think this recipe makes the best pound cake I’ve ever had. It’s moist. It’s buttery and the buttermilk gives it an extra pleasant sumthin’-sumthin’.

You can do lots of different things with this. You can serve it like I did this time with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and warm mixed berries or use it for the base of a fantastic strawberry shortcake. Or, you can do like BeeBop and I do sometimes and slice it and toast it (yes, with a little butter) for breakfast.  What? You never heard of pound cake toast?!?! I dare you to try it.

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Outrageous Chocolate Cookies

choc_cookies_finalThis is a Martha Stewart recipe that I’ve made many times. They’re soft and chewy with a slight crunch on the outside. Kind of a cross between a brownie and a cookie. So good with a glass of milk!

I made these for BeeBop to take to his office for Valentine’s Day. I didn’t eat a single one. I thought he might bring a few back home. Nope. Not one left.

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