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    Entries in fruity (30)

    Tuesday
    Sep172013

    Cheesecake Fruit Dip

    I don’t really know where this idea came from.  I suppose it was just one of those random moments of inspiration.  I’m quite happy with this one, though, so whatever, I’ll take it.  The fabulousness really does live up to the name.  Cheesecake Fruit Dip.  Just imagine a bowl of cheesecake in which you dip fresh fruit.  And the best part is, it only requires 2 ingredients and about 3 minutes to put it together. 

    Here’s what you’ll need:

    • 8 oz. cream cheese
    • ½ cup Trader Joe’s Crunchy Cookie Butter

    If you don’t have a Trader Joe’s by you, you can probably get speculoos at whatever store you shop at, but they might not have a crunchy option.  Speculoos is a spread made from speculoos cookies, which are basically graham crackers.

    If you don’t want to wait for your cream cheese to come to room temperature, you can give it 10 seconds in the microwave.  Then just smoosh it around until it’s nice and soft and creamy.  I like to use Neufchatel rather than regular cream cheese because it’s lower in fat and still tastes fabulous. 

    Add the cookie butter.

    Then just stir until it’s fully incorporated. 

    Serve with whatever kind of fruit you like.  I chose strawberries and sliced apples.  You could even dip bits of chocolate in it, if you like chocolate cheesecake.  Because seriously, you'll think you just made cheesecake in like 3 minutes.  

    What’s your favorite kind of cheesecake?

     

    Tuesday
    Jun252013

    Cookies on Demand - Summer Reruns

    ** Remember when you were a kid and over the summer the only thing on tv was reruns of shows you watched last fall? Welcome to the blog version.**

     

    Refrigerator Cookies: Despite the name, you still need to bake them.

    It’s bloody fucking hot in here, but I really wanted to make cookies. And the no bake sort are good for warm days, but I really wanted to try some kind of creamsicle approximation for Lyra Marlowe. I just couldn’t figure how to do that without turning on the oven. Next week though, you’re getting no bake. Freaking srsly.

    I may still breakdown and buy myself an air conditioner, but really, it’s probably only 30 degrees in here (Celsius people, if it was 30 F this would be a whole other bitch) and I’m almost getting used to it. Besides I’m pretty sure my neighbours are appreciating the show. As if you wouldn’t be wandering around in skin only with this much heat and no AC.

    So, rather than bake at night after the building has had all day to soak up the heat, I decided to bake first thing in the morning and give the building a head start in its heating up. I put the dough together the night before, then baked while I drank coffee, and then I glazed them in the evening. Of course, by then it was meltingly hot in here again, so I had to take the vodka out of the freezer to make room for them while the glaze hardened.

    The morning baking wasn’t too bad an idea. And I set a pot of cold water over the burner where the oven vent is. Changed it every batch, and it seemed to make a decent heat sink. Had to keep the lid on though. I don’t need more humidity in here either…

    Yeah, yeah, I’ll quit bitching and get to the goodies.

    Creamsicle Refridgerator Cookies

     

    What you need

    Super Vanilla-y Cookie “Filling”

    1 cup butter

    1 cup sugar

    1 egg

    1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract

    2 ½ c flour

    ½ tsp baking powder

    ¼ tsp salt

     

    OMG Orange-y Coating

    2 ½ c icing sugar

    1 orange

    What you gotta do:

    As with all cookies, have everything at room temperature, and start by creaming the butter and sugar until they’re nice and fluffy.

    Add the egg and vanilla, and keep mixing. Yup, it’s a lot of vanilla, and yup, it has to be real. I’d like to try this again with vanilla beans (and maybe vanilla sugar too) in place of the extract to see if the flavour is quite the same. If you give it a shot, let me know how it works, k?

    Rather than sifting flour, I scoop up a cup and sprinkle it down into the bag a few times. This lightens the flour without dirtying a sieve and or second bowl.

    Pile in the flour, and sprinkle the baking powder and salt over top.

    Give the dry stuff a bit of a mix of its own before starting to stir it into the butter.

    Just keep stirring, just keep stirring….

    The dough will be very soft but not sticky. Eventually it’ll pull all the flour off the sides of the bowl and start forming a ball. Let it. Help it.

    Split the ball into 2 or three chunks and put them on plastic wrap.

    I tried using parchment paper, but it didn’t work. It’s too stiff and it doesn’t stick to itself. Plastic wrap worked much better.

    Plop the chunks down in the middle, elongate them, roll the plastic wrap around them, and roll and stroke them into nice long sausage like shapes. If you want your sausage longer, hold the wrap at one end, wrap your hand around the base and draw your hand with constant pressure along the length. No really. Do it. Totally works for making sausages longer.

    Once you’ve got the dough sausages to your desired length and thickness, twist the ends of the plastic and put them in the fridge.

    If you’re really that concerned about having perfectly round cookies, roll the sausages every hour or so. But if your special brand of OCD doesn’t show up in cookie shape, ignore them for a few hours or days.

    When you get around to baking, preheat the oven to 375, line a baking sheet with parchment, and slice the logs to about ¼ inch thick.

    They don’t spread much so you can fit quite a few on a cookie sheet. The more you can get in the oven at once, the less time the oven has to be on, heating your tiny humid apartment.

    Bake them for no more than 10 minutes. Don’t let them get too brown on the bottom. They’re meant to look like the vanilla ice cream inside the creamsicle, not dolce de leche… hm…

    Right, vanilla. Take them off the pan as soon as you can, and let them cool on a wire rack. Look! I gots me a shiney new wire rack! (damn thing doesn’t fit in the sink though).

    Once they’re cool, you can eat them as is. You’ll totally want to because the whole place will have a fabulous vanilla smell. Or, you can turn them into creamsicles!

    Zest an orange and finely mince the zest. (a word that is both noun and verb! Fun!) Combine it and the powdered sugar in a bowl.

    Juice the orange. (juice! Another one! What is it about citrus fruit that makes it so nouny and verby?). Yeah, could totally do with Taneasha's awesome citrus juicing apparatus.

    Add the juice to the sugar in small amounts,

    stirring well each time.

    I really do this by look and feel, and it's something that can be easily adjusted if you go too far in one direction or the other, but in total, I used less than ¼ cup to get a glaze that was reasonably runny, but not too watery.

    Pour the glaze over the cookies, letting it drip down the sides. Oh, make sure you’ve got parchment under them to catch the drips.

    Once you’ve poured all the glaze on and let it drip for a bit, move the rack onto another sheet of parchment and scrape the glaze drips off the first one.

    Use the drips to (mostly) fill in (most of) the last of the unglazed areas.

    If you want the glaze to set quickly, put the whole rack in the freezer for about 15 minutes.

    Keep them refridgerated if it’s so hot in your apartment that you work up a sweat just combing your hair.

    Take them to work where it’s nice and air conditioned. If it weren’t for school, I’d be doing a ton of overtime in my nice air conditioned office. Hell, even the trailer at the job site has air conditioning!

    What do you do to beat the heat?

     

    **this was originally posted in the summer of 2012, but it's late, I'm tired, and I've actually run out of sugar**