Saturday, April 30, 2011

Creamy White Chocolate-Strawberry Pie

 Our Easter pie last week.  It was delicious and super easy to make.

Baked pie crust  (see my favorite recipe here)

3/4 C white chocolate chips
8 oz Neufchatel cream cheese, softened
5 Tbsp sugar
1/3 C plain or vanilla yogurt
1 qt fresh strawberries

1/2 C white chocolate chips

Put 3/4 C white chocolate chips in the top of a double boiler over water (for tips on double boilers, go here).  When the chips start to shine, start stirring until smooth.  Remove from heat and set aside to cool until needed.

Beat cream cheese until fluffy (about 4 minutes).  Gradually add the sugar while continuing to beat.  Add the cooled white chocolate and beat till smooth.  Add the yogurt and beat till smooth.  Spoon into pie shell.  Cover with foil and refrigerate for 1-2 hours.

Clean and hull berries.  Arrange on a layer over the pie, cut sides facing down.

For garnish, melt remaining white chocolate chips.  Let cool for a moment and then spoon into a parchment paper bag, cutting so it has a very fine tip (or spoon into a plastic sandwich bag, push the chocolate into a corner, and snip a very small hole in the corner).  Drizzle over pie.

Recipe from Po!

Cake Decorating Classes

I signed up for a cake decorating class just for kicks.  I thought it would be fun.  And it was, but it required me to make cake on a weekly basis.  Through this class, I learned two things:  1)  I don't like butter-cream frosting (the kind of frosting we were supposed to bring every week), and 2) Cake is pretty low on my preferred desserts list.  If I were to actually choose to make a cake, it would not be the traditional frosted cake.  It would be gooey and dripping in something delicious and fatenning - not frosting. 

Needless to say, I didn't sign up for the 2nd month class.

But, so long as I took the class, here are some pictures.  I forgot to take pictures of the 1st week, and the 3rd week my frosting was to thin and was sliding all out of place before I got home.

We were supposed to write something on the cake, but the class was out of time and I decided I'd rather go home and see my pretty puppy (and my husband) then stay late and write on the cake, like everyone else was doing.

I will say, though, the chocolate frosting recipe I made was pretty good:

Whisk together 4 Tbsp cocoa and 3 C powdered sugar.  Add 1/4 C butter, 1 tsp vanilla, and 2 Tbsp milk.  Beat with mixer.  Gradually add 1 additional Tbsp milk as needed to get desired consistency.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

An Addition to our Family!

Welcome Tina, our 3 year old chocolate lab!

When she returns with the tennis ball, she rolls over onto her back and looks at you with the ball in her mouth.  So cute.

Tina with her 2 loves.  #1 Geoff  (I'm pretty sure she know which of us wanted her the least and so she spends all her energy doting on him.)

Love #2:  Her bone

Friday, April 15, 2011

Banana Bread

I adore banana bread.  Not the super sugary stuff that you can buy from stores or bakeries, but the delicious, hearty bread my mom always made.  Favorite way to eat it: toasted with a little butter. (If only butter weren't so repulsive sounding right now.  I keep having vivid dreams where I eat something with butter on it and then immediately throw it up because it was so nasty.  To many dreams like that, and you'd want to stop eating butter, too.)

Mix together:
1 C sugar
2 Tbsp oil
1 egg

Stir in:
3/4 C milk
1 C mashed bananas

Sift together and then add:
2 1/2 C flour (I do 1 C brown flour, the rest white)
3 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt

3/4-1 C shopped walnuts

Pour into well greased bread pans.  Bake at 350 for 50+ minutes (I forgot to set the timer, so I don't know how long mine actually baked).  Remove from pan onto a wire rack to cool.

This is the only recipie where I actually sift the dry ingredients together before adding them to the wet.  I almost always skip that step, but I've found that if I skip that step for banana bread, it doesn't turn out as well.

Original Recipe from my Grandma!