sweet potato meringue tart

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Again, straying away from the classics! We love the idea of replacing the traditional sweet potato casserole with this yummy dessert. It provides nearly all the same flavors, but is certainly a departure from the norm. We bet your guests will be oohing and aahing!

Sweet Potato Meringue Tart

Makes: 8-10 servings
Total Time: 4 hours

Ingredients:
for the crust-

  • 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup cold butter, cubed
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla

for the filling-

  • 4 (8oz) sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • ½ cup dark brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ cup heavy cream

for the meringue-

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3 large egg whites
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions
To make the tart dough – add flour, sugar and salt in a food processor and pulse a few
seconds, until combined. Add butter and pulse until mixture is crumbly and resembles coarse meal. Add egg and vanilla and pulse until the dough no longer looks dry and starts to stick together. Be careful not to pulse too much, the dough should still be crumbly.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and form into a ball. Flatten slightly with your hands to form a disc. Then wrap in plastic. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. At this point the dough can be refrigerated up to 3 days or frozen up to one month.

After at least one hour, take the dough out of the fridge and let sit on the counter for 5
minutes. Then roll out on a lightly floured surface to an 11-inch circle. Gently transfer to a 9-inch tart pan and press in firmly. Use a knife to trim away the excess then cover with plastic and place in the freezer for about 30 minutes. Freezing the dough will help with shrinkage while baking.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Cover the crust with parchment or aluminum foil and fill with pie weights or dried beans. Blind bake for 20 minutes then remove and let cool on a wire rack.

Turn oven down to 325°F.

Place the sweet potatoes into a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to medium-low, cover, and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and allow to steam dry for a minute or two. Transfer to a bowl and let cool.

Transfer cooled sweet potato to a clean food processor bowl and puree until smooth. Add
brown sugar, eggs, vanilla and bourbon and pulse until blended. Add cream and blend until incorporated.

Pour filling into the crust and bake for 45-50 minutes, until set and the top looks dry. Remove from oven and let cool completely.

Preheat the broiler.

In a small saucepan, combine the granulated sugar and water. Bring to a boil then cook over high heat without stirring until a candy thermometer registers 240°. This should take about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, beat egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer with salt until soft peaks form. Slowly drizzle in the hot syrup and beat at high speed until the egg whites are stiff, glossy and warm to the touch. Add in vanilla and beat until incorporated.

Mound the meringue over the pie, swirling decoratively. Broil the pie for about 30 seconds until the meringue is lightly browned. Cut into slices and serve.

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cake batter cookie bars

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One word: SPRINKLES. Need we say more? Probably not, but these yummy bars, are a great treat that all ages can partake in making! From whisking, to using appliances, putting them in the oven to frosting…these bars have it all! Not to mention, how sweet the end result will be. We have a feeling the kids will be running to the kitchen for these.

Cake Batter Cookie Bars
Makes: 18 bars
Total Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients

cookie bars-
• ½ cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
• ½ cup sugar
• ¾ cup brown sugar, lightly packed
• 2 eggs
• 2 teaspoons vanilla
• 1 cup all-purpose flour
• 1 cup yellow cake mix
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• ½ teaspoon salt
• ½ cup sprinkles

frosting
• 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
• 3 cups powdered sugar
• pinch of salt
• 1 teaspoon vanilla
• 2-3 tablespoons heavy cream
• sprinkles for decorating

Directions
Preheat oven to 350°F and line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper. Coat with butter and set aside.

In a large bowl (or the bowl of an electric mixer) whisk together the butter and both sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time whisking until incorporated. Add vanilla and mix.

In a small bowl combine flour, cake mix, baking powder and salt. Mix and then slowly add to butter/sugar mixture. Stir in sprinkles.

Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. Bake 22-24 minutes or until lightly brown. Remove from oven and let cookie bars cool completely in the pan.

To make the frosting, cream butter in the bowl of an electric mixer until pale and fluffy. Add 1 cup powdered sugar. Beat for several minutes, then add remaining powdered sugar, salt and vanilla. Beat until light and fluffy. Use heavy cream to thin as needed.

Spread frosting evenly over cooled bars and top with sprinkles.

homemade blueberry muffins

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Muffins are a great place to start with kids in the kitchen! They’re simple and typically well loved. Let the kiddos give you some creative input by allowing them to brainstorm ideas for substitutions or additions. Maybe adding in a few chocolate chips? Topping with an oat crumble? Using half blueberries, half blackberries? We love them all! We bet you’ll love what they come up with and how creative they can be!

Blueberry Muffins
Makes: 12 muffins
Total Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients
• 1 cup granulated sugar
• ½ cup butter, softened
• 2 cups all-purpose flour
• ½ teaspoon salt
• 2 teaspoons baking powder
• 2 eggs
• 1 teaspoon vanilla
• ½ cup milk
• 1 ½ cups fresh blueberries
• 3 tablespoons turbinado sugar

Directions
Preheat oven to 375°F and grease 12 muffin cups or line with muffin liners.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla and whisk to combine.

Sift together the flour, salt and baking powder. Gradually add to the butter mixture alternating with the milk. Fold in the blueberries with a spatula until evenly distributed, making sure not to overmix.

Fill muffin cups to the top and sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Bake for 30-35 minutes thentransfer to a rack to cool completely.

S’mores tart

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Chocolate S’mores Tart

Makes: 9-inch tart
Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes

Ingredients
crust
1½ cups graham cracker crumbs
8 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup sugar
pinch of salt

filling
12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
¼ cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 ½ cups heavy cream

marshmallow fluff
5 large egg whites, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions
Preheat oven to 350°F.

Using a food processor or blender, grind graham crackers into crumbs. Add crumbs to a
medium bowl and mix with melted butter, sugar and a pinch of salt. Mix until well combined.

Press crumbs evenly into a 9-inch tart pan, making sure the crust is compact. Pre-bake for 10 minutes then remove from oven and allow to cool.

To make the filling, place chocolate and butter in a large bowl and set aside. In a small
saucepan over medium-low heat, heat the heavy cream while whisking constantly. Bring to a low boil then immediately remove from heat and pour over chocolate. Stir, using a wooden spoon, until chocolate and butter are melted and ganache is smooth.

Pour the filling evenly into the crust and place in the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours, or until completely firm.

Before serving, in the top of a double boiler or a metal bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, combine egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar. Beat on low speed for 1 minute. Continue beating on low until a thermometer reads 160°F, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl, add vanilla, and beat on high until glossy, stiff peaks form and the mixture is slightly cooled, about 5 minutes.

cherry cream pie pops

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Who could turn one of these beauties down on a hot summer day? Certainly not us. We love that these pops combine some of our favorite things (did someone say: fresh summer fruit and creamy Greek yogurt!?) and they can be versatile with any summer fruit you’ve picked up at the market. Bring on the “fruit” and cream!

Cherry Cream Popsicles

Makes: 10 popsicles
Total Time: 4 hours 30 minutes

Ingredients
2 cups fresh pitted sweet cherries
¼ cup honey
juice of one lemon
¼ teaspoon almond extract
2 cups whole milk Greek yogurt
¼ cup honey
extra pitted sweet cherries, halved

Directions
Add 2 cups pitted cherries and ¼ cup honey to a blender or food processor and puree. Strain puree through a fine mesh strainer into a large measuring cup and discard any remaining solids.

Add the lemon juice and almond extract to the puree and stir to combine.

In a medium bowl, combine the yogurt and honey. Then add about half of the yogurt mixture to the cherry mixture and stir to combine.

Pour a small amount of the cherry mixture into 10 popsicle molds. Layer with the yogurt
mixture, dividing evenly amongst the molds. Top with remaining cherry mixture, leaving a little bit of room at the top.

Push a couple cherry halves down the side of each mold. Insert sticks and freeze until firm, about 4 hours.

strawberry biscuit cobbler

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Pies, cobblers, crumbles – oh my! Summer is not complete without these three things. This gooey, fruit cobbler is one to reckon with. Unlike pie crust, which can be somewhat hard to conquer, this cobbler is topped with a sweet biscuit dough that is oh so easy!

Strawberry Biscuit Cobbler

Makes: 8 servings
Total Time: 1 hour

Ingredients
8 cups fresh strawberries, hulled
½ cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
juice from ½ large lemon

2 cups all-purpose flour
½ cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons cold butter, cut into pieces
¾ cup buttermilk
heavy cream or milk for brushing
1-2 teaspoons sanding sugar

Directions
Preheat oven to 375°F and lightly grease a large, deep pie dish, cast iron skillet or 9x13inch baking pan.

After washing and hulling the strawberries, lay them out on a towel and pat gently until dry.

To make the filling, toss strawberries, sugar, cornstarch, salt, vanilla and lemon juice in a
medium bowl. Pour into the prepared pan and spread evenly.

For the biscuit topping, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Add the butter pieces and cut them into the flour mixture using a pastry blender or fork, until the butter is in pea-sized pieces.

Stir in the buttermilk until the dough is just combined, making sure not to overmix. Use your hands to bring together the dough if needed.

Using a spoon or measuring cup, drop dough onto the strawberries in even portions, flattening slightly. Brush dough with milk or heavy cream and sprinkle sanding sugar over the top of the biscuits.

Bake for 35-40 minutes in the preheated oven until the biscuits are golden on top and the filling is bubbly.

oh me, oh my… sweet summer pie

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We know that the summer temperatures can make it tempting to avoid the oven at all costs— but with the bounty of fruit that summer provides, we highly discourage that! I mean how else would you bake up a gooey strawberry pie? If you just can’t bear to turn the oven on, we recommend turning to a fruity pie pop, homemade ice cream or a no-bake tart. This season doesn’t last long, so check out our recipes this week and take full advantage of this yummy time of year!

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Coconut Mint Ice Cream

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If this presentation isn’t beyond fun – we don’t know what is! Little touches (like coconut ice cream bowls!) are the key to a memorable shower. Sprinkle in a few of these spectacular details and you’re sure to leave everyone in awe. Not to mention, the light, refreshing treat that is this coconut milk ice cream!

Coconut Mint Ice Cream

Makes: 8 small servings
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes + ice cream machine

Ingredients
3 cups full fat coconut milk (2 cans)
2/3 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 handfuls 20 or so sprigs of mint + extra for garnish
¼ teaspoon salt
4 small coconuts, halved (optional)
chocolate sauce8
ounces high quality dark chocolate, chopped
2 teaspoons coconut oil
2 teaspoons agave
pinch of salt

Directions
In a small bowl, whisk ½ cup of coconut milk with 3 tablespoons of cornstarch until fully
dissolved.

In a small saucepan, heat the remainder of the coconut milk over low heat with the sugar. Stir until the sugar dissolves. Whisk in the cornstarch mixture, salt and sprigs of mint. Bring to a low simmer and stir.

Remove from heat after 5 minutes or so. Cover the pan and let it steep for 30 minutes. Then, place in the refrigerator until chilled, another 30 minutes or so.

Strain out the mint and follow directions according to your ice cream maker.

For the chocolate sauce- simmer water in a small saucepan, then place a glass bowl on top to create a double boiler. Add the chocolate, coconut oil and agave to the bowl. Using a rubber spatula, stir until fully melted. Remove from heat and set aside until ready to use.

To serve, place several scoops in a halved coconut, top with chocolate sauce and a sprig of mint.

homemade baked donuts

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Raise your hand if you’re drooling! *both hands up here* We absolutely love these homemade baked donuts and think they should be at every celebration. Baking instead of frying definitely takes a bit of complication out of the recipe (and makes them a little healthier!) and the glaze provides a great way to add pops of customized color!

Homemade Baked Donuts with Vanilla Glaze

Makes: 8 Donuts
Total Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
¼ cup milk
¼ cup yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
vanilla glaze½
cup powdered sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1-2 tablespoons milk
optional: food coloring and sprinkles

Directions
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a donut pan with a nonstick spray and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the sugar, egg, milk, yogurt, melted butter and vanilla.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until no clumps of flour remain and everything is well combined. Be careful not to overmix.

Spoon the batter into the donut pan or use a large Ziploc bag to pipe into each cavity, filling ¾ of the way full.

Place the pan in the oven and bake 8-10 minutes.

Remove the pan from the oven and allow to cool 5-10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the glaze, whisk together the powdered sugar, vanilla and salt. Add 1 tablespoon of milk, and whisk to combine. If it’s too thick, add additional milk, about ½ teaspoon at a time until the desired consistency is reached. Add food coloring as desired.

Once the donuts are completely cool, dip them into the glaze. Return to the wire rack and add sprinkles. Allow the glaze to set for 30 minutes before serving.