Monday, September 24, 2012

Sugar Cookie Crust Fruit Pizza

Siena's birthday cake...she only ate the fruit.


8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened 

1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp.vanilla extract

1/4 tsp. almond extract
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt 

1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened

3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest 

Fresh Fruit
1 cup raspberries
1 cup blueberries
1 cup kiwi, sliced (omitted this time)
1 cup peaches, sliced
1 cup strawberries, sliced 


1. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a large mixing bowl cream together the butter and sugars until smooth. Add the egg, vanilla, and almond extract and mix until just incorporated. Slowly incorporate the flour mixture into the creamed butter and mix until blended. Remove dough from bowl and press into a greased 10 inch tart pan or pizza pan. 

2. Bake at 325  for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the edges just start to brown. Remove from oven and let cool on a cooling rack.

3. In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, and lemon zest until smooth. Spread evenly on the cooled crust. 
Arrange fresh fruit in desired pattern on top of filling and chill until ready to slice and serve.

slightly adapted from Kelsey's Kitchen

Friday, September 21, 2012

Cherry Crumble

At the end of July, my sister-in-law came for a visit from Washington and brought us fresh blueberries and cherries from her rural farming community. We enjoyed eating them everyday, but despite our best efforts we couldn't quite put the dent in the cherries that we did in the blueberries. It was really just a good excuse to make a quick treat. I mean, I had to, right? We loved this so much we made it again two days after the first go.


6 Tbsp. butter
1 1/8 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
6 Tbsp. packed brown sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
2 heaping cups fresh pitted cherries
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. almond extract
1/4 cup raw almonds
1/4 cup old-fashioned oats
2 Tbsp. butter


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. 
2. In a large saucepan, melt butter. Remove pan from heat; stir in oats, flour, brown sugar, and salt until a dry, crumbly mixture forms. Press 3/4 of the mixture into the bottom of a greased 9" square pan, making a firm, even layer. 
3. In a bowl, combine cherries with sugar, flour, and almond extract. Layer cherry mixture on top of crumb crust. 
4. In a food processor, plus almonds, oats, and butter. Add to remaining crumb mixture in the saucepan. Sprinkle on top of cherry mixture. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until top is lightly browned. Serve warm or at room temperature...possibly with ice cream on the side!

adapted from All Recipes

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Massaged Kale Salad

While this salad may sound kinda high maintenance, it is really pretty simple. It has a lot of the usual suspects, but this time they are paired with kale, which was a nice change.


1 bunch kale
3/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt or sea salt
1/4 cup finely diced red onion
1/2 cup dried cranberries
3/4 cup small-diced apple
1/3 cup toasted sunflower seeds
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/3 cup crumbled Feta cheese


1. Wash the kale and pat it dry. Slice off the stiff stems below the leaves and continue slicing the stem away from the leaf until you have cut a thin v-shape into the kale leaf and removed the tough stem all the way up. Stack the kale leaves two or three at a time, roll them up, and slice the leaves into thin ribbons.
2. Place the kale ribbons in a large mixing bowl. Add the salt and massage it into the kale with your hands for two minutes. You’ll notice the kale start to turn a darker green and the texture of the kale will begin to soften a bit.
3. Toss in the red onions, dried cranberries, apples, and sunflower seeds. In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar and sugar. Pour over the salad and toss. Sprinkle feta cheese over the top and serve. The salad can be refrigerated for up to a day before serving, in fact, I think it's better after it's had time for all the flavors to really combine.

from Mel's Kitchen Cafe