Sunday, August 24, 2008

Dan has a new post you should check out.

As you may know Dan is my son. He has started a blog about his veggie garden. He has a new post with a recipe you should check out.

Urban Veggie Garden

I have not done much in the kitchen as I have been on midnights. Seems this shift is all working and sleeping, and we are working 6 days a week which is also not helping the creating part of my life. Anyway, I hope to do something this week. Although Dan was trying a cookie recipe which did not turn out as cookies but turned into amazing brownies. So when I get my camera back from my daughter that is on holidays in Nova Scotia I will put up the recipe for you to see and try.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Nicole's Famous Crackers

I made these today. I found them on Our Sweet Life's blog. Well they are delicious, easy to prepare and you will not be able to eat just one.

Nicole's Famous Crackers


1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
a package of saltine crackers
chocolate chips
any nuts chopped or crushed (I used slivered almonds)

Preheat the oven to 400. Get a cookie sheet out, cover with foil and lay crackers out all over the cookie sheet. Take the stick of butter and brown sugar and melt together in a small pot over medium heat don't stir until it is all melted!!, now wait for the sugar/butter to caramelize (you will notice big bubbles)- once that happens, remove the pan from the heat and use a spoon to drizzle the caramelly goodness all over the crackers. Then sprinkle the crushed nuts on top.
Bake for 5-7 minutes. Take the crackers out and IMMEDIATELY sprinkle the chocolate chips over them, then transfer off the cookie sheet to cool before the chocolate chips re-harden.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Urban Veggie Garden

Dan has a new post on his blog about his garden and raspberry picking.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Minted Blackberry Cheesecake

I bought the Gourmet August 2008 issue. On the cover was a cheesecake with black berries. We went to Taylor Farm in Dundas, Ontario, to buy wild blue berries and they had black berries so we decided to try the cheesecake. Dan found a recipe for a light as a cloud cheesecake, it was ok. I think if you made the cheesecake in the gourmet recipe it would be much better. I will put up the light as a cloud recipe as well for you if you would like to try it. We did not use the mint as I do not like it. Also added 4 tbsp. sugar to the berries.

For Crust

3/4 stick unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup blanched almonds, finely chopped

For Filling

3 (8oz.) packages cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup white sugar
2 tbsp. flour
1/4 cup half and half
3 large eggs

Make Crust:
Preheat oven to 350ºF with rack in middle. We used a 8" high top spring form pan with the removable buttom.

Beat together butter and brown sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to low and add flour and almonds, mixing until combined and dough begins to clump together.

Press onto bottom of baking pan with floured fingers.

Bake just until a shade darker and edges begin to pull away from pan, 20 to 30 minutes. Cool crust completely in pan.

Make filling and bake:
Reduce oven temperature to 325ºF.

Beat together cream cheese, sugar, and flour with cleaned beaters at medium speed until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Reduce speed to low and add half-and-half, then eggs 1 at a time, mixing until incorporated. Pour filling into crust.

Bake in a hot water bath until set 1 1/2 inches from edge but center is still wobbly, 40 to 45 minutes. (Center will set as it cools.) Transfer pan to a rack and cool completely, about 2 hours. Chill, uncovered, at least 2 hours.

Cheesecake can be chilled (loosely covered once cold) up to 3 days.

Minted Blackberries

3 cups blackberries
4 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp chopped mint
2 tsp fresh lemon juice

Stir together all ingredients in a bowl or airtight container and let macerate at room temperature 30 minutes.

Blackberries can be chilled (after macerating) up to 2 hours.

Once cheesecake is cooled remove from pan and slice, place on plate and add the blackberries on top and drizzle the blackberry juice over the top.

This is the recipe we used for the cheesecake

Light as a cloud Cheesecake

(8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
4 large eggs, separated
1 1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).
In a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese until soft. Add sugar and flour and beat until thoroughly blended. Stir in egg yolks, sour cream, cream, and vanilla.
In a separate bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat egg whites until frothy, then add powdered sugar and beat to form stiff peaks. Fold the whites into cheese mixture and pour into crust. Bake for 45 minutes, or until center is set.
Cool, then chill before serving.


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