Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Key Lime Bars

I saw this recipe on KSL's Studio 5 last week and knew that I had to try it. Luckily, I already had all of the ingredients so it was pretty simple to throw together. I made a couple of changes to the recipe, I think that the bars should have more crust on the bottom, I think that will make the whole bar turn out better, so instead of the half of the crumb mixture being reserved for the top, I would reserve 1/4 to 1/3 of the crust mixture. I can't wait to try this with pie fillings, I think that it would be awesome with apple, and blueberry, maybe even cherry!

Key Lime Bars

1/4 cup lime juice (could use juice from 2-3 limes, I used key lime juice I found at the grocery store)
1 large egg yolk
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
10 tablespoons butter, softened slightly, but still cold
1 cup flour
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 pinch of salt

To get your butter softened slightly, but still have it work, you can leave it at room temperature for about 15 minutes. 

Preheat oven to 350 and spray and 8 x 8 baking dish with baking spray.

Whisk together the lime juice, egg yolk and sweetened condensed milk in a small bowl and set aside.

In a separate bowl, I used a large one to avoid making a huge mess, using a pastry cutter (or you can use a fork or even two knives) mix together the remaining ingredients. If you don't feel as though the butter is breaking down as well as you would like, you can use your hands and the heat from them will soften the butter a little bit more and make it work better. You want to end up with a crumbly mixture that doesn't have large chunks of butter in it. 

Press 2/3 of the crumbly mixture in to the bottom of the prepared pan and bake for 9 to 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and pour the lime mixture over the top. Sprinkle the remaining crumbly mixture over the top and bake for another 15 minutes. 

Allow to cool and place in the fridge for a couple of hours before serving. 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Blueberry Smoothies

This is one of my very favorite ways to use up fruit. I sometimes buy fruit simply to make these awesome smoothies. Our family enjoys drinking them and I feel good that I'm giving them healthy things to eat and drink. I got this recipe several years ago from a Jello ad in a magazine and I've kind of just adapted it. There's really no set recipe. You can do it to your own taste, and I love that you can use whatever fruit combination or any kind of pudding you want to.

Blueberry Smoothies

Fruit - I've used raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, bananas you can use whatever you
want in whatever combinations you want. If I'm using bananas I usually use 2 very ripe bananas. Usually for the berries I've used about a half of the container of strawberries and the blueberries and raspberries usually come in smaller containers, so I've used the whole thing. Blueberries and raspberries are small enough that you don't need to cut up your fruit, but if you're using larger fruit make sure to slice it up.

Pudding - half a 4 serving box or about 1/4 cup. You can use whatever you would like or have on hand, make sure it's instant. I've used vanilla, french vanilla, white chocolate, cheesecake. I'm sure that chocolate would be awesome with some of those fruits too.

1/3 cup of sugar - you need to sweeten up that fruit.

Milk - I have to be honest, I never measure this, but just pour it in on top of everything else in the blender until the amount is up to about the 4 or 4 1/2  cup line on the side of the blender. 

Blend all ingredients, I usually start out with the slowest speed and then make sure to blend on the highest speed as well, just so the fruit isn't in huge chunks. 

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Caramel Syrup

Breakfast is one of our family's favorite traditions. We always have it Sunday after church. It seems like everyone's always starving by then and it's something that can be thrown together quickly. This is one of our favorite syrups, it tastes pretty awesome on pancakes, Belgian waffles (those are my favorite!) and I make an awesome baked French toast that it goes great on too! Did I mention that it's super simple? 

Caramel Syrup

1 cup brown sugar
1 cup whipping cream
1 cup light corn syrup

Combine ingredients in a saucepan and cook over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is combined. It really doesn't take very long at all! 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

French Bread

This is an amazing recipe for French bread. I love that you can also make Hoagie and Sandwich rolls with it. And I definitely need to try the Cheesy Garlic Bread Swirls too! I love how easy it is, and I really like that it raises way faster in our house than the recipe says, that makes it so much simpler to make!

French Bread
Our Best Bites, Mormon Moms in the Kitchen pg 32

1 tablespoon yeast
1 1/2 cups warm water
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 egg, separated
4-5 1/2 cups flour
2 tablespoons cold water

Add the sugar and the yeast to the warm water in the bowl of your stand mixer, cover and allow to proof for 10 minutes, it should be bubbly.

Add salt, oil, and egg yolk and combine. Save the egg white for later. Add 3 cups of flour and mix well. Add enough remaining flour to make a soft dough, I usually just add enough that the dough comes together in a ball on the attachment of the stand mixer. Knead in the mixer for 2-3 more minutes. Cover and allow to rise. The recipe calls for 1 hour and 45 minutes, maybe it has to do with the kind of yeast I use, but I've never allowed it to rise for more than an hour, by then it's pretty much filled up the bowl I've put it in.

Punch down the dough and shape into a loaf shape. (This is where you can shape into Sandwich rolls or Hoagie rolls) Place on a cooking sheet sprayed with cooking spray and allow to rise. Again the recipe calls for about 1 1/2 hours. For me, by half an hour the loaf is looking huge and I don't want it to rise any longer than that, maybe just watch it closely. 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Take your reserved egg white, mix with the cold water and brush the loaf with the mixture. Bake for 10 minutes before re-brushing the loaf with the egg and water mixture. Allow to finish baking for 8 to 10 more minutes.