Tuesday, June 30, 2009

TWD--Perfect Party Cake

I'm sad to say and sorry to report that cake is just not a favorite thing here at our house.  So when Dorie's Perfect Party Cake was chosen by Carol at mix, mix...stir, stir for our baking this week from Baking From My Home to Yours, I seriously thought about skipping out.  The cake (thank you for the photo, Dorie!) in the book looks....well, perfect and tasty and I was actually a little intimidated by the four layers. 

BUT, since I didn't make last week's selection, I decided to just buck up and make some party cake--my way.

I made just 1/4 of the recipe and followed the recipe with everything except I made homemade buttermilk by adding a little splash of lemon juice to some 2% milk and letting it sit for 5-10 minutes.  The batter whipped up in no time and with great ease.  I like this recipe for a lovely white cake!

Then I made four cupcakes and one cute, little 3 inch cake.


The boys have been asking me when I was ever going to use these cute cupcake holders that I bought a few months ago and I decided this was the time. 

Slapped a little raspberry jam in the sliced layer of the three-inch cake. 


I whipped up 1/4 of the recipe for the buttercream.  Shh, I really like buttercream icing.  But it is SO bad with a lot of butta!  I love watching it transform from foamy egg whites, to shiny marshmallowy goodness and then into a silky, smooth icing.


Let's party!



The boys thought the cupcakes were pretty cool.  I thought my attempt at decorating them was somewhat lame, but oh well.  I did it--I made perfect party cake. 

And it was really good!


Want a little slice?  (And I do mean little.)


The lemon, raspberry and coconut were wonderful together.


Party on--perfectly.

Hey, thanks all for visiting my blog.  I try to get to all those who especially comment on mine, but sometimes may not make it there with a comment.  Thanks so much.  If you're here not as part of the Tuesday's With Dorie group, thanks also and go check out all the other awesome Perfect Party Cake creations at the Tuesday's With Dorie blog, the list of everyone is on the right.  If you REALLY want this yummy recipe, well--go buy Dorie's book, or today for the low, low price of NUTTIN"-you can get it on the link at the top to Carol's blog, mix, mix...stir, stir. 

Monday, June 29, 2009

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Rice Krispies Treats! and Lime Tart/Ice Cream

First of all, I've got to tell you about some more Rice Krispy Treats I made a few days ago.  You may have seen my recent post for Cookie Crisp Rice Krispies Treats.  Well, that got me thinking and I came up with Cookie Dough Treats!  That's right.  All you cookie dough eatin' lovers out there--these are some Krispies for you!  I went in search of an edible, eggless cookie dough and settled on this good one.

Edible Chocolate Chip Cookies Dough, from Elyse and Risa

1 cup all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 stick butter, softened

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

Beat the butter and sugars together until creamy, add the vanilla and combine.  Stir in the dry ingredients and chocolate chips.  That's it.  And it's edible and yummy! 


I made the traditional Rice Krispies Treat recipe, 10 oz. marshmallows, 3 tablespoons butter and 6 cups of cereal.  You know the drill.  Pressed that into a 9x13 pan.  I took balls of the cookie dough--(in hindsight, it would have worked a little better if I'd have quick frozen the balls of dough, but it still worked fine)


I tucked the balls of dough in and around and all over the treats that were already pressed in the pan, then when I had about half the dough left, I just pressed it evenly over the top.  That wasn't enough though, so I made another half batch of Rice Krispies Treats and pressed that on top of the cookie dough infused treats that were already in the pan.  And I drizzled 2 ounces of melted semi sweet chocolate over the top.  Now we're talking.  These were perfectly gooey, sugary Krispies with just the right amount of added YUM from the cookie dough.  If you're a cookie dough lover and enjoy those Rice Krispies Treats, you've got to try these!



I bought some limes (regular ones, not key limes) recently and was hankerin' to do something with them.  I wanted a no-bake cream cheesy type something.  After looking all over the internet and not finding really what I wanted, I just threw some things together.  They were similar to many recipes out there, but I just did my own thing. 

No Bake Lime Tart, by Katrina


1 sleeve plus 6 rectangles graham crackers, crushed

1/2 cup pecans, toasted and cooled

6 tablespoons butter (I used salted, it's what I had), melted

zest of 1 small lime (about 1/2 teaspoon)


8 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened

14 oz. can fat free sweetened condensed milk

zest of 1 large or 2 small limes

juice of 2-3 limes (to your taste of tartness)

8 oz tub Cool Whip

Pulse the graham crackers and pecans in the food processor until fine crumbs.  Pulse in the lime zest.   Then pulse in the melted butter until combined well.  Press into 11 inch tart pan (or 9 inch for thicker tart).  Set aside.

In cleaned bowl of food processor, pulse the cream cheese until smooth.  Add the condensed milk, lime zest and juice and pulse together until combined.  Add the mixture to a large bowl and fold in the Cool Whip.  Spread over crust in tart pan.  Let set in refrigerator for a good 4 hours or more.  Serve with a garnish of lime.




It looks a little unset because it had only been in the refrigerator 2-3 hours when I served it.  It tasted okay.  I actually really wanted more of a cream cheese taste, so I'm going to try it again and use 16 oz. cream cheese.  Everyone had a piece.  It definitely would have gotten eaten as it was, but I got an idea to turn it in to ice cream the next day.  It really was even tastier and more set up the next day.  But with what was left (a little more than half of it), I scraped the filling out of the crust, added 1 cup fat free half and half and 2 tablespoons of more lime juice, whisked it up really good and poured it in to the ice cream maker.  The ice cream maker did its job for a good 20-30 minutes.  Then the ice cream sat in the fridge until snack time that night.


I don't actually totally love fruit in ice cream, but this was really good, creamy and just the hit of lime I was looking for!  The kids gobbled it up! (All except Parker who had gone with Kevin to run a couple errands and they stopped and got Subway.  Parker ate (he's only 7!) a whole foot long and a bag of chips and a soda by himself!  He was full!  Me, myself would never even be able to eat a foot long.  Kevin is molding these kids into himself!  Kevin eats a foot long in probably less than 5-10 minutes.  Ugh!  Anyway, the ice cream is good! ; )  It was also good that it had a little bit of crust in it.  It would be fun served with some crushed graham crackers on top.  You can see the flecks of it in the ice cream.


Hmmm, what ice cream should I make today? 

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Creamy CHOCOLATE Heaven!


I love this picture.  What is it?  Just about one of the best tasting and creamiest ice creams I have ever had.  It's definitely the best one I've ever made!  Where did this recipe come from?  Dorie Greenspan, of course!  I've been having so much fun with my new ice cream maker (and have probably been eating too much ice cream also!)  Well, this one is NOT the low fat/fat free kind of ice cream I eat, but man it was good!


Chocolate Ganache Ice Cream, adapted very slightly from Dorie Greenspan's Baking From My Home to Yours

6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

1  1/2 cups heavy cream

1 cup whole milk (I used 2%)

4 large egg yolks

1/3 cup sugar

Put the chocolate in a 2-quart liquid measuring cup or a large heatproof bowl.  Bring 3/4 cup of the cream to a boil.  Pour the cream over the chocolate and let it sit a minute, then, with a rubber spatula, stir the cream into the chocolate until smooth.  Set it aside.

Bring the milk and the remaining 3/4 cup cream to a boil in a medium saucepan.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk the yolks and sugar together until well blended and just slightly thickened.  Still whisking, drizzle in about one third of the hot liquid to temper the eggs so they won't curdle.  Whisking all the while, slowly pour in the remaining liquid.  Pour the custard back into the pan and cook over medium heat, stirring without stopping, until the custard thickens slightly and coats the back of a spoon.  If you run your finger down the bowl of the spoon, the custard should not run into the track.  The custard should reach at least 170 degrees F, but no more than 180 degrees F, on an instant-read thermometer.  Immediately remove the pan from the heat and slowly and gently stir the custard into the ganache.

Refrigerate the custard until chilled before churning it into ice cream.

Scrape the chilled custard into the bowl of an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer's instructions.  Pack the ice cream into a container and freeze for at least 2 hours, until it is firm enough to scoop.


You know you want a lick.  This is GOOD and would be great with any mix-ins that go with chocolate.  I am interested to try it with a semi sweet chocolate and maybe even a milk chocolate.  But you'd be proud of me, I used a 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate and it's really good.


While I was careful not to eat too much of this, I needed to make a frozen treat that I didn't feel quite so guilty about eating.  I went in search of a frozen yogurt recipe and after finding what seemed like thousands of different recipes online, I ended up making up my own with things I already had and guess what this was/is darn good.


Vanilla Fro Yo by Katrina

14 oz. can fat free sweetened condensed milk

1/4 cup fat free half and half

3/4 cup 2% milk

1 cup light cream

2 cups fat free vanilla yogurt (I used Dannon Light & Fit)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Whisk all ingredients together in a large bowl.  Churn in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer instructions.  Chill for a couple hours  or eat it soft serve. 


All of the vanilla mixture was a little too much to fit in my ice cream maker at one time, so I kept out about 2 cups and after finishing the churning of the vanilla one, I refroze the ice cream maker for a while and then made this Cherry Chocolate Chip Pecan Fro Yo.

I added about 1/2 cup fresh sweet cherries, pits removed and chopped, then mashed with 1 tablespoon sugar, a couple tablespoons toasted, chopped pecans and about 2 tablespoons mini chocolate chips.  While I don't really care for fruit in my ice cream, this was pretty darn good.  The boys ate it up!

I have made  a couple other ice creams as well and am really having fun with it.  The heat and humidity continues outside and I continue to find these to do without the oven.  The boys have continued to make forts all over the house with as many blankets as they can find.


Lunch in the fort.




A couple of shots of my beautiful roses Kevin gave me for our anniversary.



Cookie Crisp Rice Krispies Treats

These were so easy and yummy and I totally just made it up as I went along.  I have an abundance of Rice Krispies Cereal and that's perfect since it's so hot here that turning on the oven means we'd fry!


Cookie Crisp Rice Krispies Treats, by Katrina

2 tablespoons butter (I used salted because that's what I had)

2 tablespoons  corn syrup (You can probably leave this out as I was just playing around, but the butter and corn syrup kind of made it a little caramel-like in flavor.)

6 ounces marshmallows (I used a combo of large and small to use up some open bags!)

4 cups Rice Krispies cereal

1 cup Cookie Crisp cereal

1/2 cup Cookie Crisp cereal, crushed slightly

1-2 ounces milk chocolate, melted

Line a 9x9 baking pan with foil, spray lightly with cooking spray.  Set aside.  In saucepan on stove on medium, melt butter, add corn syrup and marshmallows.  Stir together with a wooden spoon until melted.  Remove from heat and add the 4 cups of Rice Krispies and 1 cup Cookie Crisp.  Stir until combined.  Dump mixture into prepared pan and spread evenly with a potato masher sprayed lightly with cooking spray.  It works beautifully and doesn't stick!  Melt chocolate in microwave safe bowl.  Put melted chocolate in a sandwich size plastic bag.  Snip off tiny corner and drizzle chocolate over the treats.  Put the 1/2 cup Cookie Crisp in another sandwich bag, beat with rolling pin to break them up.  Sprinkle the crushed cereal over the chocolate drizzled treats.  Let set.  Cut into squares. 


This is the coolest trick I just read about on Taste of Home's website (although I since looked and found the idea in many places on the internet.).  Where have I been?  This worked so well and all this time I've been dealing with sticky hands trying to press the mallowy treats into the pan.  Just coat a potato masher with cooking spray to mash down the cereal treats.  It doesn't stick at all!  Love it.


Now that these are gone, I have to say, though they were a little crunchy for what I like in a rice crispy treat, they tasted great.  And now I have another idea, so I'll be back with that!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

TWD Rewind--from January 29, 2008 Orange Berry Muffins and a Father's Day Ultimate Turtle Cheesecake

I'm sad to say and sorry to report that I was not able to make Andrea of Andrea In The Kitchen's pick this week for Coconut Roasted Pineapple Dacquoise, on pages 293-295 in Dorie Greenspan's book, Baking From My Home to Yours.  This dessert looks SO good and chock full of yummy fattening things.  I was actually going to give it a try, but the week just kind of got away from me and I ended up not doing it.  Go check out Andrea's dacquoise!  It looks just like Dorie's photo in the book!


Since I wasn't able to make this, I did want to make a Tuesday's With Dorie recipe that I missed before joining the group.  So on Father's Day this past Sunday (Kevin likes blueberry muffins), I whipped up the muffins from page three of the book.  They are Orange Berry Muffins.  But did I make orange berry muffins?  Well, no.  But sort of and close enough.  Really all I did was use lemon instead of orange.  (I would have liked orange better, but I didn't have an orange.)  There are great, simple muffins that I thought turned out really nice.  I'd make these again, but I'd use an orange next time.  Not that there was anything wrong with the lemon, I'm just saying. ;)


One dozen perfect muffins.


I made no other changes to the recipe except using lemon zest and juice instead of orange.  Mmmm, berries!

Sorry, Andrea about not making your pick this week.  It looks delish!  Check out the other blogger's daquoise by going to the Tuesday's With Dorie website and scrolling down to the blogroll list on the right.


Since you're here.  Here's the cheesecake I also made for Father's Day.  Kevin really likes cheesecake.  I usually just make a plain one and the only fruit he likes on top is canned cherry pie filling.  I decided to branch out here.  I have made a chocolate cheesecake before and he liked it, so I went with this because it looks and sounds so good.  It WAS good.  He liked it and so did some friends of ours who came over for dinner on Sunday.

I got the recipe from Kraft Foods website (also home to Philadelphia Cream Cheese, which is why I went looking for recipes there.)  You can get the recipe on the link to Kraft Foods.  I didn't change much.  Instead of 2 cups of Oreo cookie crumbs, I used one cup of mini Oreos and 1 sleeve of chocolate graham crackers.  It worked great.  I also toasted and chopped the pecans, which the recipe did not suggest doing.  That's it.  Otherwise, I made the recipe as it was written.  Oh, I also only use 1/3 less fat cream cheese when I make anything with cream cheese. 


Wanna a slice?


Sorry this is the last one and Kevin called it. ; )



It was so hot today (Monday) and it isn't supposed to cool off all week.  There was even a heat advisory out for the 97 degrees to feel like over 110+.  Ouch.  It was SO muggy, and sticky and eewwweeee outside.  I actually didn't even go outside and neither did Sam.  The other boys ran to neighbor's houses for a bit.  After Sam's nap when no one else was home, I decided to build him a fort out of blankets.  He thought it was pretty cool and set up camp inside of it with snacks and things to play with.



Now, what else can we do the rest of the week since it's going to keep being so hot out?  I've been having fun with my new ice cream maker and will get to posting some of that deliciousness soon!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Anniversary and Father's Day

Kevin and I were married June 20, 1997--12 years ago!  Yep, the years are flying by!  Sigh!

Friday night we went and celebrated by going to dinner at The Melting Pot.  Yummy fondues!  It was all yummy and I was full for the first time in a long time.  I never eat until I'm full anymore, but this one did me in--partly due in part to the fact that the water boy came back to our table what seemed like every 5 minutes and I drank a lot of water!  We had a great time and tried to take a couple pictures of ourselves. 


Smooch!  (Mom, I kissed a boy! ;) )  We got a chuckle out of my peeking over at the camera.


I Love you, Hon!  Don't know what I'd do without you and cannot thank you enough for everything you do!

Oh I have so many recipes and things to share with you all and simply just can't get it all done.!  Sigh.

Today for father's day, I made Kevin some pasta jambalaya (he loves that stuff!).  I got the recipe for this one  at cdkitchen.com for Water Street Oyster Bar's Pasta Jambalaya and while I did make a few changes, besides doubling the recipe, I followed it mostly.  Yes, Mom, I even used the onion!  (The things we do for love!)  Kevin actually helped me a bit with this as there was a lot of chopping and things to do.   He researched a little and found this recipe/restaurant was featured on the Food Network a number of times and is "the" pasta jambalaya of New Orleans.  $40 a Day with Rachel Ray featured it and they share the recipe on FN.  One thing about doubling this recipe would have meant that it would take one whole cup of butter to saute the meats and veggies.  I could not make myself do that, so I only used half a cup.  It was PLENTY!

Water Street Oyster Bar's Seafood Pasta Jambalaya, adapted by Katrina (Remember that I doubled this and my changes are in red, but I'm leaving the recipe for a serving of four as it was written and my changes include the doubled amount as well as a few other omissions and changes.)

1/2 cup butter, melted (I did NOT double this!)
1 cup
chicken breast meat, cut into strips (I used 3 chicken breasts)
16 (21/25 count) shrimp, peeled and deveined with tails removed (I used 1 lb. of shrimp, which was about 45 shrimp)
1/2 cup crawfish tails (I did not use this as I just didn't take the time to find them at the stores, but Kevin does like them!)
1/2 cup sliced andouille sausage (one cup)
1/3 cup sliced yellow onion (I used one medium onion, Kevin chopped it for me!)

1/4 cup sliced red bell pepper (I used about 3/4 of a red pepper)
1/3 cup sliced green bell pepper (I used one green pepper)
1/3 cup sliced zucchini (I used one medium zucchini)
1/3 cup sliced yellow squash (I used one medium yellow squash)
1 cup diced Roma tomatoes (I used 6 Roma tomatoes)
4 cups cavatappi pasta (I used one pound of whole wheat penne pasta)
8 tablespoons sliced green onion (I omitted this)
1/2 teaspoon chopped parsley leaves (I used about 1/4 cup of chopped parsley)

***Andouille Cream Sauce:***
1 teaspoon canola oil (I used a good tablespoonful of olive oil)
1 1/2 ounce yellow onion, diced (I used one medium shallot)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh garlic (I used 9 cloves of garlic)
3 ounces andouille sausage, casing removed (I used 7 ounces of sausage)
2/3 cup crushed tomatoes (I used a 14 ounce can of petite diced tomatoes)
2/3 cup cold water (I used a 14 oz. can of chicken broth)
1/3 ounce chicken base (I used broth instead of water and boullion as our friend who came for dinner is allergic to msg and boullion has msg!)
2 teaspoons cornstarch (I used 4 teaspoons cornstarch)
1 cup heavy cream (I used 2 cups cream)
2 teaspoons blackening seasoning (I used 4 teaspoons)
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (I used 1/2 teaspoon)
1/5 ounce jalapeno jack cheese, grated (What is 1/5 oz.?  It was such a small amount, we just guessed a double amount and used 1 1/2 ounces of pepper jack cheese) 

Heat butter in a large saute pan. Add chicken, shrimp, crawfish, sausage, onion, and bell peppers. Saute to cook shrimp and chicken, over medium heat. Add zucchini, squash, and tomatoes, and cook 2 minutes. Add Andouille Cream Sauce, toss well and bring to a boil. Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente, drain well. Pour pan contents over pasta, and toss with the sauce, pull shrimp, chicken and crawfish to the top. Evenly sprinkle green onion over pasta. Sprinkle parsley around rim of bowl and serve.
Andouille Cream Sauce:
Add the oil into a saucepan and place over moderate heat. Add the diced onion and saute for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic, mix well and continue to saute 2 additional minutes. Add the andouille sausage to the pan and saute for 2 minutes. Add the crushed tomatoes and mix well to thoroughly combine. In a mixing bowl using a wire whisk, combine the water, chicken base, cornstarch and heavy cream. Add the liquid to the onion mixture. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and allow to simmer for 8 to10 minutes over moderate heat. Add the dry seasoning and mix well to incorporate into the sauce. Add the grated cheese to the sauce and blend well. Allow the sauce to simmer for 2 additional minutes or until all the cheese has melted.


I ate just a little bit of this as I don't like shrimp or sausage OR ONIONS!  Kevin and everyone else liked it.  I made some yummy salad to go with it that I hope to blog about soon and some bread--Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day Bread!  YUM!  And so easy!

I also made Kevin a Turtle Cheesecake--no, not a turtle the animal, it was chocolate, caramel and pecans!  I'll post that later.

Here's a few recent pictures.  The other morning Sam woke up itchy with chigger bites (on his rear!!), so I made him a bath.  After his bath, he and Taylor were sitting in the chair together for a rare nice brotherly moment and Taylor told me to get the camera and take a picture of them to put on the blog.  CUTE!


And this last picture makes me laugh.  Here's Sam with a big old bowl of homemade chocolate ice cream (Stay tuned for the post on that!) and I can't remember why, but he was mad about something and I snapped a picture of his complete disapproval.  I think maybe I wasn't letting him eat the ice cream in the living room. 


How is it that a picture can just melt your heart, make you feel bad and make you laugh your head off at the same time!?  I mean, just look at him.  Awwwee, you just feel so bad for him, don't you?  The poor, leetle bebe! ;)


Thursday, June 18, 2009

EVERYTHING's Inside Oatmeal Cookies

I made some cookies today after opening one of my cupboards and finding many things that I needed to use up inside.  I had a little of this and a little of that and it was crowding a shelf in the cupboard.  Some things just had to go.  And by go, I mean--in a cookie.  These were/are really good.  I even (accidentally) over baked a batch, like 17 minutes instead of 11 and they are even good.  (Dad, you would love them!)

In the past, for some reason, I have not been very impressed (not sure why) with the Quaker oatmeal recipe that is always printed on their lid of oats, but decided today that is what I wanted the base of these cookies to be.  I wanted to give Quaker's Vanishing cookies another try.  So here's my adapted recipe for these:


EVERYTHING'S Inside Oatmeal Cookies, adapted from Quaker's Vanishing Oatmeal Raisin Cookies by Katrina

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs, room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla

1  1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon (I omitted this!)

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 cups old fashioned oats

Here's where it gets good!---(Remember, I'm cleaning out a cupboard)

1 cup shredded coconut (I used 1/2 cup sweetened and 1/2 cup unsweetened)

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1/2 cup yogurt covered raisins

3/4 cup dried pineapple rings, chopped

1/2 cup walnuts, chopped

1/4 cup cashews, roasted and salted, chopped

5 ounces Sam's Choice Tropical Trail Mix, including dried papaya, pineapple, golden raisins, banana chips, cranberries, apricots, almonds, cashews, and one whole macadamia nut. ha

1 cup Hershey's Premier White Chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Have two baking sheets lined with parchment paper.  Set aside.

Cream together the butter and sugars.  Add eggs and vanilla and beat well.  In separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, salt and oats.  Mix the dry ingredients into the creamed mixture, just until combined.  Stir in all the add-ins.  Drop by large tablespoonfuls or with a cookie scoop onto prepared baking sheets.  Bake for 10-12 minutes.  (I baked them for 11 minutes, except one dozen (not pictured) which baked for about 17 minutes, but were still good, just crispier!)  Let cool on baking sheet for 3 minutes.  Remove to cooling rack to let cool completely.  Makes about 4 dozen.


These are what I want in an oatmeal cookie.  Slightly crispy on the outside and perfectly chewy all over with lots of yummy flavors.   Thank you Quaker! (not sure what my problem was before!) ;)


As for cleaning out the cupboard--there's still more stuff in there!  Stay tuned!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

TWD--Honey Almond Ice Cream with Peach Crisp

Our chosen recipe for this week from Dorie Greenspan's great book, Baking From My Home to Yours is Honey Peach Ice Cream, found on pages 436-437.  But you can get the recipe today from Tommi at her blog, Brown Interior.  I love ice cream.  I just don't particularly love ice cream with fruit in it, not sure why, maybe I don't like frozen fruit.  So I didn't put fruit in it.  I did put the honey in and I put lots of sliced almonds and some almond extract.  But I also made some killer peachy (and a couple other fruits!) crisp to put the ice cream on.  All good!  I used 2% milk because that's what we had.  But I did use the heavy cream.    The coolest thing about this week's recipe--I got one of these today---


My wonderful husband got this for me for our anniversary that is coming up this Saturday.  12 years!  We have a really old ice cream maker, the kind you have to put ice and salt in to keep it cold.  At least it is electric, but the biggest problem with it--we can't find it!  It IS somewhere in this house.  I made up the ice cream this morning and put it in the fridge to chill.  Then I went hunting for the old ice cream maker.  Can't. find. it. anywhere!  I called Kevin at work to ask if he knew where it was and he didn't, but he asked me if I wanted an early anniversary gift.  You see, I put my "wish" list of things I would like sometime on his Amazon account, then he always knows what things I want and where to get them.  This is so perfect for him.  He hates shopping--in stores.  He loves shopping--online.  It's a great deal.  I get what I want and he gets what he wants. ;)  I told him a few weeks ago that sometime I'd like a new ice cream maker and I found one I wanted and put it on my list.  I didn't know he ordered it for me and already had it at his office.  What a guy.  After I called him, he dashed away from work for a few and brought it to me.  I'm so spoiled. 

I didn't realize the bowls of these ice cream makers need to chill, like for forever!  After many hours, I put the cream mixture in and let it whirl.  Forty minutes later, it still wasn't really very ice creamy.  I know the bowl wasn't completely frozen, so I removed the ice cream and chilled the bowl again. 

In the meantime, I made this delicious peach crisp to have with the non-peach, honey almond ice cream. 

I kind of got the recipe for this from a book I have called Lion House Desserts.  The Lion House is a great place in Salt Lake City with all kinds of LDS church history.  It is an old home-turned restaurant that used to be owned by Brigham Young.  They now have wedding receptions and functions like that there.  It is right next to the Salt Lake LDS Temple.  There food is SO yummy.  I almost can't even explain to you how good their food is.   I actually often forget that I have this book with so many yummy recipes in it.  So-there is a peach crisp recipe in the book, but I really did a lot of things different with it.  Here is the recipe as I made it.

Peach Crisp, adapted from Lion House Desserts Book by Katrina Smith


½ cup cold butter, cut into small pieces

¾ cup brown sugar

¾ cup all purpose flour

¾ cup old fashioned oats

¼ teaspoon baking powder

1/3 cup sliced almonds, toasted lightly (not in the Lion House recipe)


About 2 lbs. stone fruit (I used 5 small nectarines, 4 small peaches, 2 plums, it was 1 lb. 13 oz.)

1 teaspoon lemon juice

scant ½ teaspoon almond extract (not in the Lion House recipe)

1/3 cup brown sugar

½ teaspoon cinnamon

1 heaping tablespoon cornstarch

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium size bowl, mix together brown sugar, flour, oats, baking powder and cold butter with your hands, until mixture is well combined and crumbly Lightly toss almonds into mixture. Set aside.

In a small bowl, mix together cinnamon, brown sugar and cornstarch. Set aside. In a 9x5 white Pyrex dish (or whatever you have, this is what I used!) sprayed lightly with cooking spray, combine your sliced peaches, nectarines and plums. Drizzle with lemon juice and almond extract. Stir in cinnamon/sugar/cornstarch mixture and combine. Crumble crisp topping over the peaches. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown. I scaled the Lion House recipe down to only ¾ of the recipe and they used a 9x13 dish. I also used fresh fruit and they used canned peaches. I did not peel the fruit (In hindsight, I should have, but was too lazy, I didn't mind it with the peels, but Kevin didn't care for it that way.) Serve warm or cold with whipped cream or ice cream.



Hey, something's missing!  Though the ice cream still wasn't as set up as I wanted it to be, it is pretty darn tasty!  I'm SO looking forward to making lots of homemade ice cream, frozen yogurt and sorbets this summer!  Thanks for the fun pick this week, Tommi.  If you'd like to see what the other TWDers did with their ice cream this week, head on over to the Tuesday's With Dorie blog and scroll down on the right.


Here is the ice cream after only about 2 hours in the freezer and no, the peach crisp was not warm.

Here is the ice cream after it had been in the freezer for 3-4 hours.


And here it is after all night in the freezer.  Yep, I got up early this morning and scooped out some ice cream for a picture just for ya'll.  Too bad it's nothing better or more exciting than this!



Would you believe after taking these pictures this morning that I put it all back instead of eating it for breakfast?  Now that's a dedicated gal.  Though tempting as it was, I just can't eat something like this for breakfast.  If ya saw my gut, you'd understand! ;)

Now, the big question is--why didn't it set up better, you see, it was already melting pretty quickly?  Anyone?  Expert Rita?  I'm new to the whole ice cream thing.  I'll learn and it'll get better.  Is it because I used 2% milk and not whole milk?  Didn't cook it long enough on the stove?  It passed the not-running on the line on the spoon test.  But I didn't leave it on very long after that for fear it would burn.  Yes, I stirred it constantly.  I also had this fear in my mind that if I kept stirring it, it would turn to custard and be TOO thick.    All ya'll's expert advice is welcome! ;)  Thanks.

Thanks to everyone who comes and visits my blog and for all the fun comments.  I really appreciate it!


Now, some quick photos for you.  Sometimes my blog forgets that I have a bunch of boys!

Before another haircut--


After the cut.  He wanted the camera.



I let him have it.  Here are the pictures he took.


Hi, Dad!  Okay, he had a little point and aim help from me that he wasn't very happy about, but he pushed the button!


This one's for you, Mom!  Love ya!  Sam made me do it. ;)  Can you roll your tongue?

And finally, is there anything sweeter than a sleeping baby?  I went to wake him up yesterday as it was 5:30 p.m. and that's way too late for a nap to be going on and I thought he looked cute with his little face sticking out there.