Pear Almond Tart

pear frangipane tart
This is an absolutely gorgeous dessert.¬†While it’s very pretty with a dusting of confectioner’s sugar, the original browned filling looks like toasted marshmallows! But be warned it will take a good six hours and plenty of fridge space to make. There is much chilling and letting come to room temperature, but the pay off was well worth it! With a buttery crumbly crust, a rich creamy filling, and soft almost melty pears, I’ll definitely make this over and over again. Luckily, much of it can be made in advance.

The recipe is adapted from Smitten Kitchen, but I’ve reduced the sugar and butter in a few places. Due to my smaller tart tin, I’ve also reduced the number of pears from 3-2, but even then I had to shorten my pears. There is quite a bit of tart dough left over that you can save to patch other tarts, but you can also make a good-sized hand pie. :D Continue reading

Brownie Ice Cream Cake

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It tasted like brownie batter ice cream.
Straight from the freezer, the line between ice cream and brownie was indistinguishable and I finished my slice before I could puzzle out the difference between the fudgey milk chocolate brownie and the chocolate ice cream with a fudge swirl. There was also hokey pokey ice cream, a New Zealand import of butterscotch ice cream with bits of honeycomb. Yum! Unfortunately, a cruel trick of fate meant that my slice was pure chocolate.

True to Deb from Smitten Kitchen’s word, the brownie did not turn rock hard and had a little bit of give for a chew-tastic experience. I made this for a friend’s birthday, and we ate the slices the silence. Continue reading

Creamy Raspberry Coconut Smoothie

raspberry smoothie
Until the blender started smoking yesterday morning, I was on a bit of a smoothie kick. The smoothie that murdered the blender was not the delectable coconut raspberry smoothie I’ll detail below, but a truly ill-conceived “green” smoothie with romaine lettuce. It tasted like lettuce, despite the tablespoon of cocoa powder and half a cup of raspberries. I have had delicious green smoothies and juices before, but somehow this one was a disaster in more ways than one.
Continue reading

Pesto Mayo Chicken Mushroom Sandwich

pesto chicken mushroom sandwich
I made pesto today, and frankly, it was disappointing. I usually add lemon zest and juice, but I forgot to buy some and the result was grassy and a tad bitter. This was also the first time I made it with Thai basil and it didn’t have the bright green color that I was used to. I made chicken pesto pasta for lunch, and I had to add a ton of Parmesan to make it palatable. Continue reading

Super Easiest Omelet

feta chicken omeletThe key is to really grease the skillet.
I used to not like omelets. All too often, they’re overcooked and or undercooked with cold filling. Yuck! To avoid this problem, I don’t cram my omelets full of stuff and they’re absolutely perfect with you only have a tiny bit of leftovers.

Or you can always cook the filling first like in David Lebovitz’s Kimchi Omelet. However, I don’t think it will work as well with a cheesy filling. Continue reading

Idiot Proof Chicken Stock

I hate celery. The only time I buy it is when I make chicken stock, which is just stupid. There are recipes all over the internet that may have five ingredients or fifteen, but mine has just three: a chicken carcass, an onion, and a carrot.

Don’t have an onion or a carrot, no problem. Just throw the bones into the freezer until you get them.

Of course, you can make it fancier by roasting your bones and vegetables first or adding a bouquet garni. But you’re not looking for fancy, you’re looking for idiot proof.

What does one do wit chicken broth? Well, at the very least, you can use it to cook instant ramen to make it instantly chicken ramen. But you can also use it in pasta recipes, risotto, and soups (including kickass tortilla soup or Thai noodle soup. Or even dog food. I don’t salt my broth. Continue reading

Chilled Chocolate Chip Cookies

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She was my best friend’s best friend. My best friend transferred junior year of high school so she had a best friend from her old school, and one from her new school (me). Naturally, I was apprehensive about meeting the “other BFF” and therefore hung onto her every word.

We made chocolate chip cookies and I remember her distinctly saying, “This is a good chocolate chip recipe. The best recipes rest the dough.” Continue reading

Blueberry Crumb Cake

blueberry crumb cake
I knew this recipe was going to be great when I mixed the lemon zest, sugar, and butter. It smelled like sunshine and balmy summer! The feedback was also positive, and it’s a pretty straightforward, dense cake

While I really enjoyed the cake, traditionalists, be warned. This is not your usual cinnamon-scented coffee cake. There is no cinnamon in the actual cake, and I’m not sure how much I’m a fan of cinnamon plus lemon plus blueberries. I will definitely make the crumble topping again, but I’m less fond of the cake recipe. Continue reading