One of my go-to ice creams growing up and even now is the Good Humor Strawberry Shortcake bar. It’s nostalgic, easy to eat and so delicious. The vanilla and strawberry flavor combination is on point. The texture is amazing with both the creamy and the crunchy. If I had to choose one ice cream to go with over and over again, it’s likely the strawberry shortcake bar. With spring coming up, I wanted to get a head start and have some homemade strawberry shortcake ice cream to get my fix in. This ice cream is creamy, full of strawberry flavor, and has that wonderful texture difference that you get with the bar version. It’s so good and worth the effort.
I have a cheat that I can teach you. It’s called “healthy” desserts. See, my brothers always give me a hard time about having to eat certain desserts that I make for my posts all by myself. How do I mitigate their teasing? Well, I put fruit on my dessert. That dessert then technically becomes a “healthy” dessert at that point. So, they can’t say much and I feel less guilty. One of my favorites “healthy” desserts to eat is a tart. Some people are daunted at the thought of making tarts, but that’s something I’ve never understood. Tarts are very easy to make and man are they delectable. Normally, tarts are filled with pastry cream. However, I chose to fill this version with lemon curd filling and top it with blueberries and strawberries. Like I said….healthy! Lemon and berries just works. It’s a match made in heaven. And man oh man do the angels sing when I take a bite of this healthy dessert.
As promised last week, I’m bringing you my ultimate trifle. A trifle is a dessert that consists of layers of cake, creams, sauces, fruit, etc. I love trifles because this is one of those dishes that really is mistake free and allows you to show your creativity. You can mix and match any combination of elements as long as this fit flavor wise.
Here, I’m making my ultimate trifle. It has fruit, sauce, whipped cream, chiffon cakes and a creme anglais. You can make it in an any container and keep it refrigerated for a few days. This trifle is so dang good.
To start out, you’ll need a bowl or container to make your trifle in. I’m just using a regular big bowl. You can really do this in any order, but here’s how I made mine. So, I started by cutting up both cakes and layering the chocolate cake first. I’m using chiffon cakes I had left over in the freezer, but you can use any cake you have on hand. Pound cakes will give you a little more substance. A little more of a bite, than a chiffon, since chiffon’s are so soft. After chopping up the cake, I break it into smaller pieces, breaking them up with my fingers and then gently patting it down.
Next, I put the blueberries and blackberries in the next layer. Just spread them.
Next, I poured my creme anglais over the berries. You can double the recipe to cover the berries a bit more.
Next, I cover that layer with some whipped cream.
Next, I cover that layer with the vanilla cake, breaking it up the same way I did the chocolate.
Then, I place my strawberry sauce and fresh strawberries on top of this layer.
After that, I place the last layer of whipped cream on top and that’s it!
Like I said. Trifles are very easy to make. They are also so delicious! Give it a try and get creative.
See how I do it:
- 1 8" vanilla cake
- 1 8" chocolate cake
- 2 cups creme Anglais
- 1 container blueberries
- 1 container blackberries
- 1 container strawberries
- 1 cup strawberry sauce
- 3 cups heavy cream
Make your creme anglais and strawberry sauce ahead of time
Make your whipped cream and set to the side until ready to use.
In your container or bowl, begin by layering one cake. Cut the cake into cubes and then break them up into smaller pieces into the bowl. Pat it down gently.
Place the blueberries and blackberries on top of that layer evenly.
Pour the creme anglais over the berry layer and spread evenly.
Cover with some whipped cream until covered.
Cut up the other cake and follow the same breaking up into smaller pieces procedure with this one and cover the whipped cream layer with the cake. Pat down gently.
Cover this layer with strawberry sauce and fresh sliced strawberries.
Cover with whipped cream for the final layer.
Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.
Refrigerate covered for about 3-4 days to store.
You can do this is in pretty much any order you'd like. If you want to swap out berries, sauces, cakes, you can! Lasts refrigerated for a few days.
This strawberry sauce is so versatile. You can use it to top ice cream, cheesecakes, cakes, and pretty much anything else you want. Though it’s not strawberry season at the moment, Spring and Summer is just around the corner, so we may as well get ready for it the right way. The sauce is delicious, but not overpowering like some may be. I’ll personally be using this sauce to make a tasty trifle. Watch out for that next week!
Start by placing some whole strawberries to the side. You’ll cut off the tops and slice these, but you won’t put them into your sauce until after it’s cooked. Cut off the tops and slice in half the rest of the berries. Place in a saucepan with the sugar.
Cook on a medium to medium-low heat for about 15 minutes or until thicker. Stir occasionally. A wooden spoon is best for this recipe.
Once it’s done cooking, it should look something like this.
Take off the heat and pour into a separate bowl. Add in the lemon zest and vanilla and mix.
Blend with your immersion blender until desired thickness is reached. If you want it thinner, add in some water or lemon juice when in the cooking process. It will obviously be tarter if you go the lemon juice route. You can also strain it after you blend it and just add the liquid to some sliced berries and mix.
Enjoy with some ice cream, cheesecake or in a trifle, like I’ll be doing. Keep covered, refrigerated for up to a week.
See how I do it:
Cut the tops of the strawberries and slice them in half. Leave two whole berries to the side and slice them as well. Place in a saucepan along with the sugar. Cook on a medium to medium-low heat for about 15 minutes until the sauce thickens. Remove from the heat and pour into a seperate bowl. Add in the lemon zest and vanilla and mix. Use a immersion blender to blend to the consistency you'd like. Enjoy! Refrigerate covered for up to a week.
Cut the tops of the strawberries and slice them in half. Leave two whole berries to the side and slice them as well. Place in a saucepan along with the sugar.
Cook on a medium to medium-low heat for about 15 minutes until the sauce thickens.
Remove from the heat and pour into a seperate bowl.
Add in the lemon zest and vanilla and mix.
Use a immersion blender to blend to the consistency you'd like.
Refrigerate covered for up to a week.
Sorry guys for missing last week. There has been a lot going on. Between work, finals, having to do a dessert table for my aunt’s graduation party and catching a cold over that time. To say it’s been crazy lately is a huge understatement. I’m still recovering from the illness, so I decided to give you something very easy to make.
Jams, although they seem easy to make, can be more complicated then they need to be. Some people think you need canning jars, pectin and thermometers. All that is not necessary. People are just over complicating it for no reason. This recipe will yield a delicious jam that thickens beautifully in no time. Oh yeah, and it tastes so good! No pectin is needed. No thermometer and no canning jars. Lastly, you can also substitute the strawberries for any other berry, as well.
Start by cutting of the green tops of the strawberries and cutting the berries in half and then in half again, into chunks.
Wash the chunks when finished and set aside.
Wash and peel and core a Granny Smith apple and cut it in half. When peeling, it doesn’t have to be perfect.
Begin grating half the apple. You can use a box grater or a microplane, though, a microplane will take you longer.
Set aside some sugar. I use some vanilla sugar that I make by leaving an old vanilla bean in the sugar jar over time. Regular boring sugar works as well.
In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the strawberries, sugar and grated apple. Stir occasionally.
Heat this mixture for about 10-15 minutes and until it thickens significantly. Stir throughout this process.
Take off the heat and stir in the lemon juice.
Pour the mixture in a small canning jar or a ramekin or bowl. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least four hours or up to overnight. It will thicken and improve in flavor as it sits.
This jam will last up to two weeks in a wrapped container in the fridge.
See how I do it:
- 8 oz fresh or frozen strawberries, hulled, washed and diced in chunks
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar or homemade vanilla sugar
- half a granny smith apple, peeled and grated
- 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
Combine 1/2 pound fresh (or frozen, thawed) hulled, quartered strawberries and the 1/3 cup sugar in a saucepan.
Stir and heat over medium heat, use the rubber spatula to break up the strawberries.
Stir in 1/2 peeled, coarsely grated large Granny Smith apple. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring and breaking up strawberries, until sugar dissolves.
Simmer until jam is thickened, 10-15 minutes. Stir in 1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice.
Transfer to a bowl or jar; let cool. Cover and chill until set, about 2 hours or overnight. Keep chilled; serve within 2 weeks.
You can really use any berry here. Jam will last wrapped in container in fridge for up to two weeks.
So, I was sitting there on my lunchtime, at work and I noticed that this Wednesday was national sponge cake day. Yes, there is such a thing. In fact, there are many national food “holidays.” Who knew? Not wanting to be a Grinch, I decided to go with it. So to honor the holidays, I thought, I’d share a great chiffon recipe, I received from our C.M.P.C (Certified Master Pastry Chef) at school. Chiffon sponge cakes are known for being less sweet than the butter based cakes. They are also, of course, spongier and lighter. This is due to having a meringue incorporated into the batter. Fruit and whipped cream are the perfect complements for this light and fluffy cake and though it is a little bit of extra work, it’s well worth it. Taste it and you’ll agree.
We will be making a meringue, so it’s important to have room temperature eggs.
Start out with some hot water. Sift in some good cocoa powder. The cocoa is the only thing that will provide the chocolate flavor in this cake, so use good quality cocoa, because you will be able to taste it. Whisk in the cocoa until well combined.
Add in the egg yolks and oil and whisk well. Add in the vanilla and whisk well.
Sift together your dry ingredients, including the sugar. Dump it into the wet ingredients and fold in carefully.
Whisk for a smooth batter.
With your mixer and whip attachment, begin whipping the egg whites and cream of tartar on medium speed until tracks begin to form. Gradually add in the sugar and turn it up to high until stiff, moist peaks form.
Gently fold in the meringue all at once.
Wipe the cake pans with a very damp towel. You should see the water streaks on the pan clearly. Pour in the batter in the pans. Spin the pans to let the air out.
Bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick comes out with moist crumbs.
Once out of the oven, flip the pans on a sheet pan and cool upside down until completely cooled.
If you’re making a whipped cream and fruit layer cake, prepare your whipped cream and fruit while the cakes are cooling. Unmold by running a sharp paring knife around the edges and tapping the pan on the counter hard.
Top with whipped cream and fruit or any way you’d like and enjoy!
See how I do it:
- 1/2 cup very hot water
- 10 oz cocoa powder
- 1/3 cup vegetable or salad oil
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 egg yolks
- 4 oz cake flour
- 6 oz granulated sugar
- 10.63 grams baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
- 3/4 cup egg whites
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 2 oz granulate sugar
Preheat your oven to 350°F.
In a large moon bowl, sieve the sifted cocoa into the very hot water.
Add the rest of the wet ingredients from the second set of ingredients.
Whisk until smooth.
Sift together the dry ingredients from the third set of ingredients and add them to the wet ingredients in the bowl. Fold in until mostly absorbed, then switch to whisk for a smooth batter.
Begin whipping the whites and cream of tartar in an 8 quart mixer, ideally, on medium speed. When you see tracks form and the whites are 3/4 whipped, add the granulated sugar gradually.
Finish whipping the whites on high speed until you get firm, moist peaks.
Fold the meringue all at once into the batter until a uniform color is achieved. Take your time and be gentle not to deflate the meringue.
Pour the batter equally into two 8" cake pans that have been wiped out with a very damp cloth. Wet streaks should be visible.
Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs.
Immediately out of the oven, turn the pans upside down on a sheet pan and let them cool completely that way.
Un-mold and enjoy!
Who doesn’t love cheesecake? It’s perfect anytime and it’s so versatile. Flavors vary from Oreo to pumpkin to red velvet. New flavors seem to be created on a daily basis. But if you’re not as adventurous, you can always come back home to the traditional. You can’t go wrong with the traditional cheesecake. A graham cracker crust, the creamy middle and the topping of strawberry puree. It’s so delicious and goes really well anytime, but especially in the spring or summer. This recipe is the one we used in class. The first time I tasted it, I felt like I was on cloud nine. The crust is slightly spiced, the middle is super creamy and light and of course the tartness and sweetness from the strawberries really goes well with the subtle cream cheese tang. If you’ve never made cheesecake, try this recipe and I guarantee you’ll never doubt your cheesecake skills again.