Watermelon & Coconut Ice Cream

My wife and I absolutely love watermelon. Its too bad really–you can only get your hands on it for such a short window at a reasonable price. They’ll be overpriced, small, and so-so flavor leading up to July, then, just before July 4th, they’re huge, incredible, and dirt cheap. In roughly a week, its all downhill from there again. So this year, I stocked up. As I stared at the 3 gigantic melons on my countertop, I wondered what I could possibly do with them before they go bad. Being as predictable as I am, my ice cream instinct kicked in. I was happy with the sorbet I made last year, but wanted to try something different since that particular sorbet freezes a little harder than I prefer.

Watermelon & Coconut Ice Cream

I was hesitant about this one. Watermelon, while distinct, has a very delicate flavor, and so I was concerned that heavy things (like cream)… click to read more…

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake

A while back, I had seen that the Daring Baker’s made a cheesecake, and it struck me that I had never done so myself. Since then, I’ve had the itch–one of those desserts I needed to do soon–and I’ve finally scratched it. I decided plain cheesecake wasn’t for me–I love it, but I just couldn’t make it when dressing it up with some extra flavors seemed so easy. So today, I fell back to one of my favorite flavor combos of all time: chocolate and peanut butter.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake

Now there are many approaches to cheesecake, the two major distinctions being baked vs frozen. This cheesecake is of the baking variety, and if you have any aversion to this kind thinking its at all challenging, I promise you, its not. As a matter of fact, its dangerously easy–and I say dangerous because making a cheesecake with such little effort…well, I’m sure… click to read more…

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Dulce de Leche Brownies

Brownies are a wonderful thing, and you can never have too many varieties of them. Fluffy, dense, crisp, whatever–they’re chocolatey, awesome comfort food that everybody enjoys. So in that spirit, I couldn’t resist an opportunity to use one of my favorite sweet sauces: dulce de leche again, so I promptly baked a batch of David Lebovitz’s Dulce de Leche Brownies.

Dulce de Leche Brownies

In the process of baking these, I had my doubts. The batter looked a little odd and thick, and I expected a small, so-so yield. I was of course, a fool for worrying. They were without a doubt delicious–the crunch of the pecans, the crisp, buttery edges, the swirls of rich dulce de leche, and the dense, deeply chocolate flavor… click to read more…

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Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Honey Pecan Frosting

There’s a number of reasons I prefer making cupcakes over full cakes. Number one is probably my ineptitude with cake decorating. Beyond that, they just seem easier–easier to make, easier to serve, easier to eat, and they taste just as good. It had been a long time since I last made cupcakes, and I wasn’t about to endeavor on a full on cake.

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Honey Pecan Frosting

For these particular cupcakes, I opted for the flavor that always seems to draw my wife and I to cakes: chocolate. I wanted it to have some intrigue to it though, so its not just chocolate–I wanted something darker. So for the cupcake batter, the foundational flavors are both cocoa and molasses for something a bit more like click to read more…

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Roasted Banana Ice Cream w/Dulce de Leche Swirls

When I made this, we were in that seasonally awkward period where no fruit is really in season or all that appealing. Plus, my wife and I were on something of a banana kick, so it only seemed natural that I make ice cream.

Roasted Banana Ice Cream w/Dulce de Leche Swirls

This was really simple to make a far as ice creams go–no eggs, no custard, etc. Instead, you roast some bananas with a bit of butter and brown sugar to really intensify the sweet and unique flavor. Once pureed, this gives the same texture an body as a more traditional egg-centric ice cream.

The ice cream had a very strong, molassesy banana taste that I fell in love with. I also mixed in chunks of banana and swirls of dulce de leche just to make things more addictive and punchy in flavor, and all I can say is wow, this is… click to read more…

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Brioche French Toast with Strawberry Compote

After having made sticky buns recenly, I found myself with brioche dough handy. I’ve finally come to terms with a fundamental part of the breakfast food pyramid missing from my repetoire of go-to day-starters: the morning-time cousin of bread pudding, yes, French Toast.

Brioche French Toast with Strawberry Compote

French Toast, like many “common” breakfast items, might seem less than exciting to many given how many sad, sorry versions are so readily available out there. This is meant to change that in a big way. Heck, this borders on dessert given how incredibly rich this is.

The secret here is simple: the key behind a good French toast is good bread. For this, I baked a loaf of brioche–a dense, rich, buttery bread that is delicious in it’s own right (which is why I had to eat some… click to read more…

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