Archive for Fruit

Blueberry Tarts

Sunday, July 30th, 2017

Blueberry tart made with puff pastry makes an easy summer dessert.

Makes 4-6

Ingredients

  • 1 puff pastry sheet, thawed
  • 2 cups blueberries
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons corn starch
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg, beaten with 1 Tablespoon of water

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

In a bowl, stir together the blueberries, sugar, cinnamon, corn starch and lemon juice & salt.

Cut puff pastry sheets into 4-6 squares. Spoon the blueberry mixture in the center of the dough, leaving a 1- inch border. Gently fold the dough border over the filling pleating it to make a circle or square.

Place puff pastry on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Brush the crust with egg mixture and sprinkle top with sugar if desired.

Bake until the crust is golden. Serve with ice cream or whip cream.

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Watermelon and Feta Appetizer

Wednesday, August 10th, 2016

Watermelon, feta, mint and balsamic vinegar is all that is needed for this healthy and refreshing summer appetizer!

Ingredients: 

  • Watermelon (cut into cubes or slices)
  • Feta cheese (cube or crumbled)
  • Mint leaves
  • Balsamic vinegar

For Slices: 

Cut the watermelon into wedges Place on a serving platter.  Top with crumbled feta cheese and mint leaves. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar.

For Bites: 

Cut the watermelon and feta cheese into cubes. Skewer the watermelon, mint and feta cheese onto a toothpick. Assemble on a serving platter. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar.

For Salad:

Cut watermelon into cubes. Place on a serving platter. Top with feta cheese and mint leaves.  Drizzle with balsamic vinegar.

 

Wine Pairing: 

A chilled glass (or bottle) of Rosé is the perfect wine for summer  and is every bit refreshing as the watermelon.

 

 

Chocolate Strawberry Pizza

Monday, April 18th, 2016

Enjoy strawberries in a variety of ways while they’re at their peak from April until June.  This easy, elegant dessert will be a crowd pleaser at your next gathering or perfect to sip with Champagne for Mother’s Day.

Since I wanted to add chocolate, I decided to make this with just strawberries, but you can add other fruits to your liking or omit the chocolate..

Serves 8-10

Ingredients:

  • 1 package refrigerated sugar cookies
  • 3-4 cups strawberries (washed, dried, hulled and sliced)
  • 8 oz mascarpone  or cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup powered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup semi sweet chocolate ( chopped) or chips
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Lightly spray 12- 14-inch pizza pan or baking sheet with  cooking spray. Cut cookie dough into 1/4-inch slices and arrange in a single layer on the pan. Press down evenly with your fingers to cover the pan. Bake approximately 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely.

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In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, combine mascarpone cheese, sugar, and vanilla until smooth. Spread over cookie crust.

Arrange fruit over cream cheese in circles or be creative and come up with different designs!

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 To melt chocolate, add chocolate and heavy cream in bowl. Microwave in 30 second increments until chocolate is melted.

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Once cooled, add some of the chocolate in a ziplog or piping bag. If using a ziplog, cut a slit in one side of the corner.  If you don’t want to take this extra step, just use a spoon to drizzle  chocolate on top.

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Drizzle chocolate over fruit.  Cut into wedges if using a pizza pan or in squares if using a baking sheet.

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Use the rest of the chocolate in the bowl to dip your whole strawberries. Enjoy!

 

Salted Caramel Apples

Monday, October 13th, 2014

Looking for a fun project for your kids this holiday season? These salted caramel apples will be  perfect  for your holiday gatherings or gift giving. What I love about making caramel apples is that the possibilities are endless!

When choosing apples. it’s best to pair the sweetness of the candy with a tart apple like granny smith, but if you’re not fond of tart apples choose the same type of apples that make good choices for apple pie such as gala, fuji, etc.

I saw this  bag of tiny apples when I went to store and thought these would be perfect for caramel apples as it’s much easier to hold and eat, especially for kids.

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If you prefer not to make the caramel sauce from scratch, you can also melt some caramel candy with a couple Tablespoons of milk in a microwave or use a double boiler method over a stove top.

Makes 6-8 apples  (depending on size)

Ingredients

  • 6-8 apples
  • 2 sticks of unsalted butter ( 1 cup)
  • 1 cup corn syrup
  • 2 cups  brown sugar
  • 1 (14 oz) can of sweetened condensed milk  (you can substitute with heavy cream)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Sea or fleur de sel salt (optional)
  • Toppings desired such as nuts, chocolate, candy, oreos, coconut, etc

Equipment needed:

  • Wooden skewers, chopsticks or craft sticks
  • Candy thermometer

Directions: 

Wash apples to remove any wax coating and dry them thoroughly.

Set apples stem side up and push sticks into each apple.  Place apples in a baking sheet lined with parchment /wax paper or silicone baking mat and set aside in the fridge while you make the caramel (cold apples work better for dipping).

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Combine butter, corn syrup, sugar, condensed milk in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Cook until mixture reaches 234-240° F on a candy thermometer, which is the soft ball stage. This can take up to 25-30 minutes. Stir as needed. While the caramel is cooking, prepare toppings in individual bowls.

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When the caramel is done, remove from heat, add vanilla and stir well.  Next, place saucepan in an ice water bath to cool OR transfer caramel to small bowl that will fit all your caramel and make dipping easier.

Dip apples one at a time into the caramel, lift straight up, letting any excess drip back into the pan and sprinkle salt around  the apple. Next, dip into your toppings desired.  Be fun and creative!

Place apples, stem side up on the prepared baking sheet. Refrigerate until set about 15 minutes.

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If you want to give these as gifts, chill the apples for at least an hour, then place in cellphone bags and wrap with ribbons found in your local craft store. Leave the wrapped apples in the fridge, up to about 5 days until ready to give.

What are your favorite toppings? Please share on the comments! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Party Sangria

Monday, July 29th, 2013

Sangria is perfect for summer parties and barbecues. Here is a recipe that will please all your guests so make a few batches as it will go quickly!  Sangria is best chilled overnight to let all the flavors blend together.

  • If using berries such as strawberries, raspberries or blackberries, add these fruits when you add the club soda before serving as the fruits will become soggy if left overnight.
  • If  you’re not a fan of club soda, you can substitute with ginger ale.
  • You can  substitute with prosecco instead of wine.
  • If you are using sweet or dessert wine, omit the sugar in the recipe ( unless you really like it sweet!)

Serves 4-6

Ingredients

  • 1 bottle red or white wine
  • 1/4 cup  sugar
  • 1/3 cup Brandy
  • 1/3 cup Cointreau or Triple Sec
  • Fruits desired such as: lemon, lime,  peach, pear, apple, pineapple, etc
  • 1 cup club soda ( or more as desired)
  • Mint for garnish (optional)

Directions:

In a pitcher, combine all ingredients except for club soda and mint.

Chill in the refrigerator for few hours or overnight.

Before serving, add club soda and mix well. Garnish with mint,  if desired.

 

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Strawberries with Red Wine and Balsamic Reduction

Monday, November 26th, 2012

Strawberries and balsamic vinegar are a great combination and even better when you add red wine!  There are many varieties of balsamic vinegar to choose from but for a reduction, you don’t need to choose an expensive brand but don’t buy the cheapest either.

Reduce the vinegar and wine in half by simmering and the end result is an amazing sauce that will compliment well with fruit, salads, meat or cheese. Served with strawberries or any berries, this makes an easy and healthy dessert.

No refrigeration is needed and you can store the sauce in a jar or squeeze bottle and have it ready when ever you need it!

Serves 4-5

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar ( brown or white)
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 pint strawberries, stemmed and halved ( or quartered)  lengthwise
  • Mint for garnish (optional)

Directions:

Simmer wine, balsamic vinegar, sugar and salt in a small saucepan until reduced to half, approximately 15 minutes (stir or whisk occasionally). Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Allow to cool. The sauce will thicken further upon cooling.

Place strawberries in a glass, bowl or plate and drizzle sauce over top. Garnish with mint, if desired.

Since berries can become mushy, you can make the sauce ahead but don’t leave the sauce in the berries for more than 3-4 hours.

 

 

 

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