Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti. Our friend Mike makes the best.
“Don’t give cherries to pigs or advice to fools.” Irish Saying
I found this Irish saying a few days ago, which by the way, seems to make sense. I’m not sure if I’ve ever given cherries to pigs. Growing up on a farm, I do remember feeding pigs table scraps, which may have accidentally included a stray cherry. But mostly they were fed a combination of a commercial feed product that when mixed with water we called “slop”.
And as far as fools go, I suppose that over the years, I could have unwittingly given advice to one or two.
But one thing I know for sure is I’ve never prepared, served, purchased or eaten any type of fruit fool. A Googling I went and found a recipe from Whole Foods and being a fool and not waiting until cherries are in season, I decided to make this for St. Patrick’s Day using canned cherries.
This fool is a simple combination of cream with brown sugar and vanilla extract added and then beaten in a mixer until it became whipped cream. I folded in a mixture of cherries, almond extract and lemon juice which as been cooked stove top to form a compote-style mixture. The whole thing was then topped with sliced almonds that had been coated with honey and baked. We liked this dessert simply because it wasn’t too sweet.
Being St. Patrick’s Day, of course we served this dessert after our corned beef brisket, cabbage and potato dinner.
Our brisket was placed in the crock pot using a bottle of hard cider for the liquid. It was topped with about 1/4 cup brown sugar and 2 tablespoons of horseradish mustard. For the sake of texture, I cooked the potatoes and cabbage separately. Bob quickly noted that the cabbage should have been boiled, I agreed. I quickly noted that roasting the potatoes was also an “Irish” mistake. Bob agreed.
Anyway, we’re not complete fools. Rye bread, sauerkraut and Swiss cheese have been purchased for Reuben Sandwich leftovers.
Isn’t it grand to be Irish for a few days? Which by the way, I recently read somewhere that a pig was to blame for the invention of this traditional meal. Irish immigrants who couldn’t afford bacon used a cheaper cut from beef, salted to render and spiced to create what we now know as corned beef.
- Honey Almonds:
- ⅓ cup sliced almonds
- 1 tablespoon honey
- Cherry Brown Sugar Fool:
- 1 cup pitted fresh sweet cherries
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a baking mat (e.g. Silpat).
- In a small bowl, coat nuts with honey. Spread nuts on the baking mat. Bake 7 to 10 minutes, until golden. Transfer nuts to a bowl to cool. Coarsely chop, and set aside.
- In a small saucepan, combine cherries, lemon juice, almond extract, sugar and water. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until cherries begin to break down and juices boil and thicken, about 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat, and transfer to a small bowl. Place bowl in a larger bowl of ice water, and stir mixture occasionally until cold.
- In a separate bowl, combine cream, brown sugar, and vanilla and beat until stiff peaks form; fold in ⅓ cup of the cherry sauce. Combine, but not fully — there should be beautiful cherry streaks running through the fresh cream.
- Divide among four dessert dishes, and spoon remaining cherries over tops. Garnish with the honey almonds.
Cherry Fool…It’s What’s for St. Paddy’s Dessert.
This is a repost of a recipe that didn’t make the journey over to my new site when I switched from WordPress.com to WordPress.org. I’ve made this pineapple cake several times since I first wrote about it. Always a crowd pleaser.
I got the recipe from our friends Greg and Cauleen who got the recipe from Greg’s cousin Jimmy’s wife, Lisa, who got the recipe from her 2nd cousin’s wife Micky Duffy who brought it to Lisa’s bridal shower 29 years ago. Each invitee to that shower was asked to bring their favorite recipe to share with the bride-to-be. Which by the way, isn’t that a wonderful idea?
Jimmy and Lisa live in Missouri and visit Greg and Cauleen each Summer. This photo of them was taken on a day trip to Vail. During their visit, we were invited over to Greg and Cauleen’s for what I thought was to be an innocent afternoon meal, meet cousins Jimmy and Lisa, and enjoy your normal run of the mill pot luck food, only to find myself blindsided by a couple of fabulous food discoveries. A bottle of the best BBQ sauce I’ve ever tasted which was a Missouri souvenir they brought to Greg. And this delicious cake that Lisa prepared for the pot luck, which upon my first bite had me begging for the recipe…and I don’t even like cake.
First let’s talk about Blues Hog barbecue sauce that hails from Perry, Missouri. An original recipe created by Bill Arnold, the Pit Master and Chef of the Blues Hog Cookers. Their website tells me that the formula is award-winning and made from the highest quality sugars and spices in a way which sets their standards high above other commercial sauces. It contains no preservatives, is low in calories and contains no fat. The sauce has been successful in winning many competitions and is being sold and shipped all over the United States and foreign countries.
To me the flavor was a perfect blend of spicy and sweet and as their web site says “sticks to your meat”. I can’t remember what Greg grilled, but I most certainly remember how good that sauce tasted.
Barbecue schmarbecue…let’s take a look at this cake.
Not only did Lisa serve up this delicious cake, but just happened to have with her the original hand written recipe that was given to her 29 years ago. A food blogger’s dream come true. You really should give recipe this a try. It’s a super easy cake to make and with a can of crushed pineapple, incredibly moist and dense. When topped with that cream cheese, pecan frosting, every bite is divine and addicting.
Thanks to Lisa for sharing this with me, it’s now my go-to “wow them” recipe. And believe me there’s a reason Micky Duffy underlined “very good’
Micky Duffy’s Pineapple Sheet Cake…It’s What’s for Dessert.
Oh look! I baked.
Well, if preheating my oven and using a cake mix counts? This is a super easy cake with a caramel filling and a topping of whipped cream and crushed Butterfinger candy bars that will have your crowd stampeding to the table.
Colorado Western Slope Peaches are making abundant appearance in our grocery stores, farmer’s markets and our kitchen. Beautiful fuzzy fruit full of wonderful juicy flavor. We’ve been cherishing every single bite. With our record-breaking hot summer temperatures and traditional Colorado cool evenings, this year’s crop has seemed even better than ever.
This dessert is one of my favorite things to make during peach season. Years ago, Whole Foods was serving up bite-sized servings of this dessert during an in-store demo. Quite a frenzied crowd had gathered, but with persistence, I managed to get a dribble by dribble description of how to make this at home.
Simple fresh flavors that work so well together. Caramelized peaches flavored with vanilla, lemon and butter and topped with a big dollop of creamy mascarpone cheese most certainly makes for a wonderful treat. Let’s take a look.
- 2 Tbs unsalted butter, melted
- 2 Tbs fresh lemon juice (1 lemon)
- 2 Tbs sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 whole peaches — firm/ripe/halved
- 8 oz mascarpone cheese
- 1 package raspberries
- Vanilla dessert shells
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large shallow baking dish combine butter, lemon juice, sugar and vanilla. Add peaches and turn to coat with butter mixture. Arrange, cut side down in a single layer.
- Roast until peaches are tender and cooking liquid is syrupy, 15 – 20 min, brushing with cooking liquid halfway through. Serve peaches warm or at room temperature topped with a dollop of mascarpone and raspberries in dessert shells. Drizzle with cooking liquid.
Vanilla Roasted Peaches with Mascarpone and Raspberries…It’s What’s for Dessert.
In 1984, President Ronald Reagan designated July as National Ice Cream Month and the third Sunday of the month as National Ice Cream Day. And what a perfect way to celebrate was to be invited to tour the Blue Bell Ice Cream plant here in Denver. Barb over at Creative Culinary, Karen at Savoury Table and I were pampered with a private tasting of products along with an education about the company which was founded in Brenham, Texas in 1907.
I hope this post finds everyone basking in the wonderful Holiday Season. I picture all of you enjoying the postmortem of the season; browsing through new cookbooks, playing with gifted electronics, fiddling with new kitchen gadgets, grazing on leftovers and most importantly, enjoying family. I know one thing for sure, I don’t remember feeling one single hunger pang since before Thanksgiving.