Bananas Foster Cheesecake

I have set fruit on fire before. Remember peaches foster?

Bananas Foster Cheesecake

(And in case you are wondering this flame was produced in my mother’s kitchen. Yes she was concerned.)

I honestly believe that any soft fruit could be used in this type of application. Pears are one I haven’t tried yet but I think would be spectacular. Plums would also probably be tasty. Apples maybe if they were sliced thin enough and cooked long enough.

Bananas Foster Cheesecake

All in all though we are talking about fruit cooked in butter, rum, and brown sugar.  Then set on fire. What is not to love?

When perusing my cookbooks for a cake to make my brother in law for his birthday we stumbled on a recipe for a banana foster cheesecake. Um. Yes please.

Bananas Foster Cheesecake

The recipe was a bit extravagant and I finally decided to look for another one when it called for cooking the cheesecake in a water bath. I just don’t have the patience for that. Besides the very idea totally stressed me out. I quickly went on the hunt for another recipe and was rewarded with this incredibly simple one.

In all reality I was already stressed out because we are in the height of canning season. Tuna, tomato sauce, salsa, and peaches have all been processed this past week and put up for the winter. I love getting it all done but it truly makes me a crazy person at times. Mercifully it is done and now all I have left is apple sauce and maybe grape jelly.

Bananas Foster Cheesecake

So with the week I was already spending in the kitchen adding a daunting cheesecake recipe made me cranky. But you know what?  After making this I wondered why DON’T I make cheesecake more often? I keep thinking it is hard and every time I make it I am reminded that it is in fact pretty easy. I am not an expert at it by any means but it is delicious and no one who ate it complained.

So happy happy birthday Ryan. I am glad you picked this dessert and I am glad I stuck with it despite the crazy week.

And in case of the apocalypse come to my house. We are well stocked.

Bananas Foster Cheesecake

Bananas Foster Cheesecake (serves 10-12 easily)
Adapted from Will Cook for Smiles

For Crust:
1 1/2 cups finely crushed graham crackers
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
5 tbs butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla

For Cheesecake:
2 medium bananas, sliced
4 tbs butter
3 tbs dark brown sugar
4 tbs light rum
1/4 tsp cinnamon
3 8-oz cream cheese bricks
1/2 cup of light brown sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup of bananas foster sauce form above
2 tbs sour cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tbs corn starch

For Topping:
3 medium bananas, sliced in 8
3 tbs butter
2 tbs dark brown sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
3 tbs light rum

Grease a 9-inch spring form, set aside. Preheat the oven to 325.
For crust: Crush the graham crackers to fine crumbs. A bottom of a glass works great. Mix in the sugar, melted butter and vanilla. Stir very well. Press graham crackers into the pan, evenly, all over the bottom and about half way up the side. Set Aside
In a medium pan, melt 4 tablespoons of butter on medium-high heat, add sugar and cinnamon and stir well. Add banana slices and saute for about a minute. Pouring carefully, add the rum. The alcohol may ignite on its own, but if it does not then use a long match or lighter to ignite it. Cook until flame dies out. Take out the bananas and layer them evenly over the crust. Set the juice aside to cool down.
For Cheesecake
Beat the cream cheese and sugar in a mixer until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs, one at the time, beating after each addition. Add the corn starch, vanilla extract, sour cream, and the bananas foster sauce. Make sure that all ingredients are well combined. Pour the cheesecake batter into the pan with crust and bananas. Bake for 50-55 minutes. Cool completely.
For Topping:
In a medium pan, melt 3 tablespoons of butter on medium-high heat, add 2 tbs dark brown sugar and 1/4 tsp cinnamon and stir well. Add banana pieces and saute for about a minute. Pouring carefully, add the rum. The alcohol may ignite on its own, but if it does not then use a long match or lighter to ignite it. Cook until flame dies out. Top the cooled cheesecake with the warm topping. Serve immediately.

Bananas Foster Cheesecake

Peach Coffee Cake Bread

We have already talked about my love of peach season. We have chatted about my preference of crisps over cobblers, enjoyed the deliciousness that is peaches meet olive oil, and even made a little frozen yogurt.

Peach Coffee Cake Bread

Somehow there seem to be peaches in piles at our house at all times. Piles. Literally. It is a lovely lovely problem.

We are eating them out of hand about as fast as we can but I am enjoying baking with them as much as possible. Soon the last of my favorite peaces will be ripe (Improved Elbertas) which I will can and then we swiftly will dive into pears and apples and pumpkins along with the rest of fall. I love fall don’t get me wrong but I will miss the peaches.

I have been avoiding Pinterest lately because it is replete of christmas decorating ideas and recipes involving pumpkin. A couple of days ago I gave in and mercifully ran across a few recipes that still called for summer bounty.

Peach Coffee Cake Bread

This was originally a recipe for blueberry coffee cake bread. With all the peaches in the house it didn’t make sense to me to use the blueberries I froze earlier this summer. What a perfect substitution it was! This cake tastes like peach cobbler but it fits perfectly in your hand rather than needing a bowl and a spoon.

Canning of peaches happens next week. Hopefully I can squirrel away away a few for making one more batch of this bread before peaches bid is adieu.

Peach Coffee Cake Bread

One year ago today: Lentils, sausage and swiss chard

Peach coffee cake bread (makes one loaf)
Adapted from Erica’s Sweet Tooth

For the cake:
2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup sugar
1/2 stick butter, softened
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk
1-1/2 cup of coarsely chopped peaches

For the topping:
3 tbsp cold butter, cubed
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease bread pan and line with parchment. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla, and cream for an additional 2 minutes. In a separate bowl, whisk together salt, baking powder, and flour. Slowly add this mixture to the butter mixture with mixer on medium to low speed. Add buttermilk in a steady stream, with mixer still on low. Continue to mix until everything is evenly incorporated (about 3-5 minutes). Use a spatula to fold in the fresh peaches and pour batter into prepared pan. In a bowl, mix together brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Cut in the cold butter until mixture is crumbly. Add crumb mixture to the cake pan and gently press down. Bake in the oven for about 60 minutes. Remove from oven and let it sit for about 10 minutes before removing the pan.

Peach Coffee Cake Bread

Peach Frozen Yogurt

Um. So this is batch three actually.

First batch accidentally got left in the fridge post churching and freezing. Second batch went to a bbq and was inhaled before I could snap pictures. Third batch- here you go. I actually divided it in to two containers this time. One for pictures and one for eating.

Peach Frozen Yogurt

I worry that after discovering how easy making frozen yogurt this way is that I will never make ice cream again.

This is a perfect I have fruit that is going bad recipe. Cut it up, mix in some sugar, add yogurt, puree, freeze. Ta da!

Peach Frozen Yogurt

Ok sure I am not sure this would would with something like apples but pears, apricots, any berry, perhaps even banana? I don’t know. I am going to happily keep making frozen yogurt with anything on hand that sounds good.

And yes, in case you are wondering, I am using the delicious homemade yogurt for this. I recommend making your own yogurt for this but if you aren’t up for it please go find the very best full fat plain yogurt you can get your hands on. I am partial to the one at Trader Joes.

Peach Frozen Yogurt

While peaches are plentiful and I am on this yogurt kick I fully intend on making a few more pints of this and stashing it away in my freezer for the coming months. To ensure lots of ice cream churning my ice cream bowl is going from the freezer to churning to the sink to be washed to directly back in the freezer. I will not be caught with tasty fruit and yogurt and unprepared.

Perhaps a tad on the crazy side but at least you can know when you come to visit there is a very real possibly of deliciousness in the freezer. You are welcome. And yes, come over anytime.

Peach Frozen Yogurt

One year ago today: Peaches Foster (Makes peaches foster then make frozen yogurt with them? On my to do list)

Peach Frozen Yogurt (makes about a quart)
From David Lebovitz

1 pound peaches peeled pitted and sliced.
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup lain whole milk yogurt
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Slice the peaches into small pieces. Toss in a bowl with the sugar until the sugar begins to dissolve. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours, stirring every so often. Transfer the peaches and their juice to a blender or food processor. Add the yogurt and fresh lemon juice. Pulse the machine until the mixture is smooth. Chill for 1 hour, then freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Peach Frozen Yogurt

Homemade yogurt

I feel like I am late to this party.

Homemade yogurt has come up in conversation a few times over the past couple of months. We have been getting incredible raw milk from a local far and I know several of the mamas have made yogurt with the milk as it was just turning sour (a great alternative versus pitching it).

Homemade Yogurt

I however have pitched the little bits of milk here and there that have soured on me. This past weekend I had three extra quarts of milk and I knew the time had finally come to make my own yogurt.

Why on earth did I wait so so so long!?

Homemade Yogurt

The process was absurdly easy. Milk, sauce pan, heat, allow to cool slightly, add a little bit of yogurt with live cultures, let sit. The result? The most amazing rich and thick yogurt ever. I am beyond impressed.

Add yogurt to the incredibly long list of things I never ever want to buy again. Also I can’t believe it is cheaper than store bought yogurt. The stuff we get from Trader Joes is $2.50 per quart and this came out to right around $1.75 per quart. Plus I know the cow it came from.

Homemade Yogurt

What do you think? Is making your own yogurt for you? I promise you that you wont be disappointed…. Now I just need to get around to making some granola….

(Oh! You know what else you can do when you have three quarts of yogurt in your fridge? Make frozen yogurt. Coming next week!)

Homemade Yogurt

One year ago today: Cherry Pie

Homemade Yogurt (makes 1 quart)
From David Lebovitz

1 quart whole milk (I used raw)
1/4 cup plain whole milk yogurt

Sanitize a clean a 1 quart jar by pouring boiling water in it and letting it stand 5 minutes. Drain the water (carefully, as the water and the jar will be hot), and let the jar dry.

Heat the milk in a saucepan fitted with a thermometer, or use an instant read thermometer, until the milk reaches 180 F. Remove from heat. When the temperature drops to 115 F (This took about a half an hour), stir in the 1/4 cup of yogurt, then pour the mixture into the jar and cover it. Put the yogurt in a slightly warm place, and leave it undisturbed for 10 to 12 hours. The longer fermentation will yield a more tart yogurt. Chill the yogurt thoroughly, at least three hours. The yogurt will thicken up once cool.

Two notes: First- I simply tripled the batch and made all three quarts at the same time with great success. So double and triple with confidence. Second- make sure the yogurt you add to the warm milk is yogurt that has live active cultures. Just read the label. It will tell you.

Homemade Yogurt

Peach Olive Oil Cake

Wow.

Subtle. Grassy. Every so slightly sweet. Perfectly moist. Complex.

Peach olive oil cake. Subtle and amazing.

Outstanding.

I am into subtle flavors these days. I have not had the brain capacity to devote to my cooking or this blog that I would like but when I DO sit down and peruse recipes I am drawn to the unique but not overpowering flavors. Remember the honey lavender cupcakes? These are very similar.

A flavor you wouldn’t quite expect but once you taste it you just can’t seem to get enough. To say the least I am more than please with how this turned out.

Peach olive oil cake. Subtle and amazing.

A perfect dessert for when you don’t want something too sweet. Or, if like me, you just simply bought too many peaches and happen to have some outstanding olive oil on hand.

One bit of advice. Don’t skimp on the olive oil. I hummed and hawed about this recipe for a while because I wasn’t sure I wanted to invest that much great (and expensive) oil into an unknown. I am so so so happy I did. The oil I used was incredibly green and had a fantastic forward taste. Use the very best oil you can afford for this recipe. I may be biased but I would recommend a Spanish oil. They are my favorite.

Peach olive oil cake. Subtle and amazing.

This cake also makes me feel kinda grown up. Refined complex flavors but a very short ingredient list.

Going on my to make again list for sure.

Peach olive oil cake. Subtle and amazing.

One year ago today: Rosemary Shortbread

Peach Olive Oil Cake (serves 12)
From Food and Wine

3 ripe peaches, thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3 large eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with parchment paper and coat with vegetable oil spray. In a bowl, toss the peaches with 1/4 cup of the olive oil, 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of the sugar and the salt. Let stand until juicy, about 15 minutes. In a bowl, whisk the eggs, the remaining 3/4 cup of sugar and 1 1/4 cups of olive oil. In another bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and baking soda. Whisk the dry ingredients into the egg mixture. Fold in the peaches and juices. Scrape the batter into the pan; bake for 35 minutes, until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool slightly. Sprinkle with powdered sugar if desired. Best eaten still warm.

Peach olive oil cake. Subtle and amazing.

Peach Raspberry Crisp

Hold on tight. It is peach season.

Peach raspberry crisp

I love love love fresh peaches. In my not so humble opinion they are best eaten while standing in the orchard and they still warm from the sun. I say they because I always wind up eating two or three while picking them. Juice dripping down my arms leaving brown sticky streaks…. Best part of summer if you ask me.

Peach raspberry crisp

When I bought my first box of peaches recently I instinctively knew  I would make this crisp. In fact I am surprised I haven’t shared it with you before. Totally my go to I have too many peaches and they are all ripe right now dessert. Yum.

Peach raspberry crisp

See I kinda don’t do anything halfway. Remember all the strawberry recipes? I’m not going to link to them because frankly that was out of control. I  just couldn’t stop myself from buying them. They were SO good. Peaches are the same way. The box I bought Saturday was 18 pounds. Sure I shared some with family and friends but you can only get through so many peaches so fast that way. Baking is a natural consequence of such a large box.

Peach raspberry crisp

And I am hands down a crisp person. I don’t mind a cobbler but the nice crunchy oatmeal topping of a crisp is my favorite. My favorite part of this crisp is how the sweet intense peaches get a lovely floral background taste from the raspberries and orange zest. It sounds like a strange combination at first but just trust me- it is absolutely perfect.

Well mostly. I was more than a little annoyed with how much it bubbled up around the edges. I have made this so many times and never have had that happen. Whatever. It tasted amazing just the same.

Well at least no one who had it for dessert complained. Take it up a notch and serve with vanilla ice cream and you are sure to impress everyone.

Peach raspberry crisp

One year ago today: Waffles

Peach Raspberry Crisp (serves 10-12)
From the Barefoot Contessa

4 to 5 pounds firm, ripe peaches (10 to 12 large peaches)
1 orange, zested
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 1/2 cups plus 2 to 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 pint raspberries
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup quick-cooking oatmeal
1/2 pound cold unsalted butter, diced

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the inside of a 10 by 15 by 2 1/2-inch oval baking dish.

Peel the peaches either with a knife or by immersing them in boiling water for 30 seconds, then place them in cold water. The skins will slip right off. Slice them into thick wedges and place them into a large bowl. Add the orange zest, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup brown sugar, and 2 tablespoons of flour. Toss well. Gently mix in the raspberries. Allow the mixture to sit for 5 minutes. If there is a lot of liquid, add 1 more tablespoon of flour. Pour the peaches into the baking dish and gently smooth the top.

Combine 1 1/2 cups flour, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup brown sugar, salt, oatmeal, and the cold, diced butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until the butter is pea-sized and the mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle evenly on top of the peaches and raspberries. Bake for 1 hour, until the top is browned and crisp and the juices are bubbly. Serve immediately, or store in the refrigerator and reheat in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 20 to 30 minutes, until warm.

Peach raspberry crisp

Zucchini, Banana, and Flax Muffins

Our garden is going to town.

So much stunning produce straight from my backyard.

As always we have planted more zucchini than is prudent. To add insult to injury we planted the tomatoes in front of the zucchini this year so we can barely get in our garden. It was poor planning.

Zucchini, banana, and flax muffins. Super healthy.

This means that we don’t get out in it every day like we probably should. There are loads of things to pick but getting past the gate is kinda hard at the moment. I love the tomato plants mind you but we are so not putting them there next year.

Needless to say we are struggling with picking the zucchini before it grows to the size of a baseball bat. In my defense I am confident they are growing overnight. One evening I left a tiny zucchini behind thinking I would pick it the next day. Miraculously I braved the jungle that is the garden the very next day and the stupid zucchini was the size of my arm. Sigh.

Zucchini, banana, and flax muffins. Super healthy.

Oh well. More zucchini bread for us.

While I love zucchini bread as much as the next person it does have a lot of sugar and oil. I was looking for a healthier option when a friend made muffins very similar to these. The first time I made them they were fantastic but still had a lot of sugar. The second time I cut the sugar in half and they were still excellent.

I am thrilled. Little loves them. No one feels guilty eating them, not even for breakfast.

All around win and a total keeper of a recipe.

Zucchini, banana, and flax muffins. Super healthy.

One year ago today: Fruit Crumble Bars- revisitedVanilla Bean Latte Cupcakes

Zucchini, Banana, and Flax Muffins (makes about 15)
From Martha Stewart

1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup ground flaxseed
1/2 cup lightly packed light-brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups coarsely grated zucchini
1/3 cup mashed ripe banana (about 1 banana)
3/4 cup whole milk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin tray with paper liners. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, flaxseed, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Add zucchini and banana and stir to combine. In a small bowl, whisk together milk, egg, and vanilla. Add milk mixture to flour mixture and stir until combined (do not overmix). Divide batter among muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Let muffins cool completely in pan on a wire rack, about 30 minutes.

Blueberry Galette

Do you have a plethora of blueberries?

Blueberry Galette

While it may feel like we have too many right now I have to keep assuring myself that we have NOT overdone it. Every July we head out to the local blueberry patch and pick for several hours. We generally end with around 40 pounds of berries and they are all destined for the freezer.

I love having berries that we picked at the ready all winter long.

Blueberry Galette

Having that many fresh berries in the house at once can be a blast. We freeze them as fast as we can but there are only so many trays that fit in the freezer at once. Often I would walk in to the kitchen to find Nathan picking out a handful of the biggest berries only to shove them all in his mouth AT ONCE. Then he would grin like a little child it was cute.

Little discovered the deliciousness that are mostly frozen blueberries and ate through more bowls than was probably prudent on our part. It was very cute to see his blueberry smeared smiles.

Blueberry Galette

Aside from just munching on berries all day my favorite thing to do is to put these tasty berries in pie crust. I already did a pie a couple of weeks ago and didn’t want to make another. Then I happily remembered about galletes.

Galettes are simply free form pies. No muss. No fuss. You make the dough, roll it out, slide it on to a sheet tray, dump the filling on it, haphazardly fold the crust around it, and bake. So simple.

Blueberry Galette

And it looks stunning.

And tastes even better.

I was beyond pleased with both the presentation and flavor. And the cornmeal pate brisee? Brilliant. Light and flaky with a little something more.

I’m a happy camper. And I have a full full freezer.

Blueberry Galette

One year ago today: Lemon Blueberry Scones and Cheese Crackers

Blueberry Gallete (serves 10-12)
From Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook

Cornmeal Pate Brisee (makes enough for two):
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cold, cut into small pieces
1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water

Filling:
5 cups fresh blueberries
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup corn starch

1 slightly beaten egg
sugar for dusting

Place the flour, cornmeal, salt, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor, and pulse several times to combine. Add the butter, and process, until the mixture resembles coarse meal, about 10 seconds. With the machine running, pour the ice water through the feed tube in a slow, steady stream, until the dough just holds together. Turn out dough onto a clean work surface. Divide in half, and place each half on a piece of plastic wrap. Flatten each to form a disk. Wrap, and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 1 day before using.

Preheat over to 350 F. Place all of the ingredients for the filling in a bowl and stir till combines. Roll out 1/2 the dough into a circle about 14 inches wide. Slide on to a parchment lined baking sheet. Carefully pile the filling in the middle of the dough circle leaving a 2 inch circle all around. Carefully fold the border up over the fruit mixture, overlapping where necessary and pressing gently to adhere the folds. Gently brush the crust with the beaten egg and sprinkle with sugar. Bake till golden brown and bubbly, about 1 hour. Allow to completely cool before serving.

Blueberry Galette

Blueberry Pie

Happy Fourth!

Blueberry Pie

Well a day late. Sorry about that.

See yesterday I was with my family and friends making and enjoying this pie and loads of other delicious foods.

Blueberry Pie

It was a busy at home day and of so much fun. We ate burgers, chips, watermelon, potato salad, corn on the cob, and this delicious pie with vanilla ice cream.

Would you believe that one year ago today was the mini version of this exact same pie? It is pretty cool actually. Seems silly to copy and paste the recipe from then but I seriously didn’t do anything different. It was easy and, as you can see, it looks impressive.

Blueberry Pie

The best part? It was also absolutely delicious.

Blueberry Pie

One year ago today: Mini Blueberry Pies

Pate Brisee (Makes enough for one double or two single-crust 9 inch pies)
From Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, cold, cut into small
1/4 cup ice water, plus more if needed

Dump flour and salt into the food processor; pulse to combine. Add butter, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs about 10 pulses 1-2 seconds each. (To mix by hand, combine dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, then cut in butter with a pastry blender.)
Turn machine on add ice water through feed tube in a slow, steady stream, just until dough holds together without being wet or sticky. Test by squeezing a small amount of dough together; if it is still too crumbly, add a bit more water, 1 tablespoon at a time. Turn out dough onto a clean work surface. Divide in half, and place each half on a piece of plastic wrap. Shape into flattened disks. Wrap in plastic, and refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight. The dough can be frozen for up to 1 month; thaw overnight in the refrigerator before using.

Blueberry Pie

Blueberry Pie (serves 8-10)
From Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook

Pate Brisee (see above recipe)
8 cups blueberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cornstarch
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon heavy cream

On a lightly floured work surface, roll out half the dough to 1/8-inch-thick circle, about 13 inches in diameter. Drape dough over a 9-inch pie pan, and transfer to refrigerator to chill for about 30 minutes. Heat oven to 425 degrees. Whisk together egg and milk to make egg wash, and set aside. Combine blueberries, lemon juice, sugar, cornstarch, and turn onto chilled bottom crust. Dot with butter. Roll out the remaining dough to the same size and thickness. Using a star shaped cookie cutter but out 20-25 stars. Brush the rim of the crust with the egg wash, then carefully lay the stars over the berries overlapping them slightly. Remember they will shrink when they cook. Transfer the pie to the refrigerator to chill until firm, about 30 minutes. Brush with the egg wash, and bake for 20 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for 30 to 40 minutes more or until juices are bubbling. Let cool completely before serving.

Blueberry Pie

Strawberry lemonade cake

Now this is the story all about how
My life got flipped, turned upside down
And I’d like to take a minute just sit right there
I’ll tell you how I became the prince of a town called Bel-air.

Well not the prince of Bel-air but the queen of crazy town. In a good way. Mostly. Last Saturday I made a trek to the Portland airport to pick up a very dear friend Laura, her nearly three year old son, and her niece.

Strawberry lemonade cake

I have my routines and ways of doing things here at home. Doubling the size of my household (which now includes my toddler and a very noisy older toddler) has been overwhelming. I love them to death and I am thrilled beyond reason to have them here but I can’t wait till we are all in a routine and the days flow easier. They are here for seven weeks so there is lots of time to adjust.

Strawberry lemonade cake

So life flipped upside down for sure.

So when life is chaotic, routine and familiarity makes it all better. For me that place is in my kitchen. Yesterday was Laura’s birthday and we couldn’t let it pass by without a cake. The very first cake the two of us have made together. What a blast. She even enjoyed shooting the cake with me.

Strawberry lemonade cake

Happy birthday Laura. Love you to the moon and back.

This cake is also a test run for a shower next month. I intend to make it four layers rather than just two but otherwise this was absolutely perfect.

Enjoy.

Strawberry lemonade cake

One year ago today: Lemon Blueberry Cake (funny it is also lemon cake)

Strawberry Lemonade Cake (serves 12+)
From Two Peas and their Pod

For the cake:
1 cup butter, at room temperature
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon zest
2 1/2 cups all-purpose  flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
1/3 cup cup fresh lemon juice
1 cup buttermilk
8-10 large strawberries, hulled and sliced

For the frosting:
1 cup butter, softened
5 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons whole milk
2-4 large strawberries, mashed

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and butter two 9-inch round baking pans with baking spray. Line the bottoms with parchment paper rounds.

In bowl of stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, place the butter, sugar and lemon zest. Beat until light and fluffy. In a separate bowl, mix together dry ingredients and set aside. With the mixer on low speed, add the eggs, one at a time, combining thoroughly in between. With the mixer still running, add the lemon juice. (batter will look curdled, but it’s not). Add one third of the dry ingredients and 1/2 cup of the buttermilk. Repeat, adding another third of the dry ingredients and the remaining 1/2 cup buttermilk. Add the remaining third of the dry ingredients and mix until completely combined and the batter is light and fluffy.

Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans (using a scale makes sure they are the same). Bake the cakes for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let the cakes cool before removing from the pans.

While the cakes are cooling, make the strawberry buttercream frosting. Combine the butter and powdered sugar in the bowl of your stand mixer. Mix together on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the milk and strawberries and mix on high speed until the frosting is very fluffy and pale pink in color, with flecks of strawberry.

Invert one of the cake rounds onto a cake plate; generously spread with frosting and top with strawberry slices. Repeat with the remaining layer of cake and frosting. Frost the sides of the cake. Put in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes to allow the frosting to set. Serve at room temperature.

Strawberry lemonade cake