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Tuesdays With Dorie: Sweet Ricotta Pie and Limoncello Cupcakes April 14, 2015

Slacker here.

Well not completely because as usual I did the recipes on time but I just “forget” to post.

Last weeks Tuesdays With Dorie recipe was for Sweet Ricotta Pie, which is located on page 376 in Baking With Julia. The traditional flavor with this pie was suppose to be anise, which I love but I was on the fence if anyone else would be helping me eat the pie.  I ended up swaping out the anise for vanilla extract and freshly grated orange zest. To bring out the flavor of the orange zest (1Tbsp) I combined it with the sugar and rubbed them together until the sugar was moist and fragrant.  The pie actually turned out great, but the lattice was a pain in the butt. The pie was not too sweet and I happened to also eat it for breakfast, opps.


This Tuesday recipe is for the Limoncello Cupcakes located on page 194 in Baking Chez Moi. Since I was happily reminded about this recipe when I opened my email this morning and saw the post for Leave Your Link (LYL). I incidently didn’t have some of the ingredients on had, most notibly Limoncello and Greek Yogurt.  I didn’t have time to drag two kids to the liquor store, so I opted to use Cointreau in its place along with orange zest. 

There seems to be an orange theme.  I did have lemons, but oh well.  My orange zest was in the freezer because I have taken to zesting any citrus that I am going to peel or juice and store it in the freezer. So, I actually didn’t have any oranges which we will get to juice for the frosting in a bit. For the Greek Yogurt, I subtituted sour cream and it worked fine. When I got to the icing I noticed that Dorie previously stated that the recipe makes a bit for each cupcake. I like a bit more than just a dollop, so I made 1.5 recipes with some modifications. Just realized that I might have been a bit butter happy because I used a bit more than I was suppose to: 1 stick plus 3 Tbsp butter, 3 cups confectioner’s sugar, 2 Tbsp Cointreau, 2 tsp vanilla extract, 1 Tbsp water or milk, 4 drops orange oil.

I guess part of me was trying to double it and the other part didn’t want to waste the sugar 🙂 

I did use the sugar syrup and just substituted Cointreau for the Limoncello, but I did not put the filling of orange or lemon marmalade.  Which, I kind of wish I would have because the cupcakes were a bit dry.  Nothing that drinking tea wouldn’t fix or milk in my husband’s case. Everyone loved the cupcakes. All day I was asked when they could have them.  Emma ate the icing off hers and the Maureen ate the cake.



Days 11 and 12 VEGAN!!! September 15, 2014

Day 11

I went ALL out for dinner.

I made Chickpea Cutlets with Sweet Vidalia Onion Sauce (Veganomicon), Caulipots (Appetite for Reduction), and Green Beans with SautĂ©ed Mushrooms and Onions.  For dessert we had…




Boom, mind exploded.

I have made the Chickpea Cutlets before and remembered really liking them.  I decided to do the Sweet Onion Sauce with them because I always have onions on hand.  For the sauce I did think it wasn’t saucy enough so I added Vegetable Stock to it for more liquid and then I thickened it up with a slurry of flour and vegetable stock. When I was making dinner I was trying to have everything ready when Mike got home, so I actually made the sauce all the way thru (except for thickening it) and had the cutlets formed and ready to sautĂ© up.  I also made the Caulipots (Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes) a bit early because I knew they would stay warm.


I also made small plates up for each of the girls, Maureen (1 years old) tried every thing on her plate and seemed to enjoy it. Emma was passed out on the couch because she had a big day with her Grandma. But Emma did wake up to have some Green Pie, and declared that she loved the pie and it was the best pie ever. Mike actually liked everything, and ate it all.  He also suggested that I make the Caulipots for Christmas because he really liked those.

Day 12 

I made the Blueberry Maple Bran Muffins (Isa Does It) for breakfast and the whole family gobbled them up.  I did omit the maple extract because I couldn’t find any.  So I guess I should say, I made Blueberry Bran Muffins.  Both girls loved them and I really couldn’t get enough of them. Someone should have probably slapped my hand a few times when I went over and grabbed another one to eat.  Emma actually had two muffins and Maureen threw a mini fit until we have her bits of her own muffin.  She the proceeded to eat the rest of one of Emma’s muffins.


Eating vegan has been going very well, but as you will see from my posts it has been pie and baking. So it hasn’t been very healthy, but it has been yummy.  I am still keeping up with my 5k training so I haven’t been worrying about it and I haven’t gained weight either.


Vegan Banana Toffee Pudding Pie with Rad Whip September 23, 2013

Filed under: Baking,Pie,Vegan — pastrybrush @ 2:02 pm
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I have been making a lot of Vegan meals and desserts this past week. I just haven’t had the time to post about it.

I am going to start off with the sweet stuff first because who doesn’t want to eat dessert before dinner 🙂

I decided to make the Banana Toffee Pudding Pie (Banoffee Pie) topped with Rad Whip. These recipes can be found in Vegan Pie In The Sky on pages 114 and 199, respectively. This pie just intrigued me by the picture because it looked so good. Then came the “unicorn tear magic” of the Rad Whip.

For the recipe of the pie, the pre-baked crust was really straight forward using non-hydrogenated shortening as the fat. Which turned out a nice flakey crust with no weird aftertaste, which sometimes accompanies a crust made with Vegan Butter. The filling was also very easy. You cook down coconut milk and brown sugar until a dark caramel like consistency and then you add your thickening agent let thicken, and then your flavorings. You then layer your bananas and the toffee pudding, let cool, and top with Rad Whip.

Now the Rad Whip can be the tricky part. I didn’t have any problems until I had to whip it up the final time. I guess the “unicorn tear magic” wasn’t working for me that day, but let me start at the beginning of my Rad Whip adventure. First thing first, I would like to thank my husband for the AMAZING Vitamix blender he got me. This thing is crazy, to grind up the soaked cashews with coconut milk it only took 30-60 seconds and it wasn’t gritty at all. Yay, for not having to wait 5 minutes. Everything went very smoothly (pun intended). I streamed in the Almond Milk/Agar mixture, added flavorings, placed it COLD metal bowl in freezer and waited 30 minutes. When I took it out of the freezer it reminded me of a very firm set Jello or rubber. I knew it was going to take a bit for the first whipping, so I wasn’t too worried. It did come together but it didn’t beat up as much as I thought it would, but into the fridge it went to sit overnight. The next day I brought it out for the final whip. I started to whip it up and just noticed it wasn’t coming together, it started to look almost grainy but it wasn’t at all. I whipped it as much as a could, placed it in the fridge, and did some research.

I guess others have had problems with it not whipping up correctly. The advice was to check date on Agar powder, which I was good on because it was brand new. Next advice was maybe it wasn’t cold enough and to put back in fridge and try again, if that doesn’t work stream in another tablespoon of coconut oil and that should bring it together and help it whip up. I tried one more time to whip it up and it still looked almost like it was separating. I decided that I needed to re-emulsify the mixture, so in it went into the blender and it came together and emulsified again. Yay, no more grainy looking Rad Whip. Since the mixture wasn’t cold anymore, I placed it in the fridge for 2 hours to rest. I finally took it out to whip up and it worked for the most part. I decided to top the pie and be done with it.

The tasting has to have been the best part. I cut out a piece, sat down, and thoroughly enjoyed this pie. Mike also sat down and had a piece with me and also liked it. The next morning Emma gets up and asks for a piece of pie and proceeds to poke at it in the fridge. I didn’t think pie was a good idea for breakfast for her….for me it was a fantastic idea but I wasn’t about to eat pie in front of her. We eat our sweets when the girls are asleep 🙂

After Emma finished her breakfast, and then right before lunch she got a piece of pie. She proceeded to eat the Rad Whip off the top and say, “yum, yum.” She left half of the filling and crust and when I proceeded to finish her pie she asked for a few bites and the requested more. Which I couldn’t allow and just made her lunch. She proceeded to forget about the pie until the next day, which I didn’t cave in. It was the third day and last slice of pie is when I caved, and made Mike share his last piece of pie with Emma 🙂



Basil Peach Pie September 16, 2013

Filed under: Baking,Pie,Vegan — pastrybrush @ 8:00 am
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The other weekend, we drove down to Atlanta, GA, to see my niece get baptized. On the drive down we saw a few places that you could get fresh peaches, and thought about stopping and getting some on the drive back. We ended up not stopping because when you are drive 9+ hours with a 2 year old and a 3 month old (at the time) and everyone is asleep, the last thing you want to do is stop. So my in-laws actually ended up bringing us some peaches back when they came home the next weekend.

We ended up with a full peck of very juicy and sweet freestone peaches. We were mostly just eating them and I used a few for smoothies. Emma really LOVED the peaches she would ask for one and the eat it like an apple. You couldn’t slice it up for her or she would get upset, and if you didn’t watch her she would keep grabbing peaches and take a bite out of each one.

I decided with the last few peaches I would make a pie. I used the recipe in Vegan Pie In The Sky. I ended up having WAY more than the 6 cups the recipe called for. I did use my deep dish pie pan, however, I didn’t increase the amount of flour or sugar in the filling. The pie was sweet enough, but it was a bit on the watery side so it needed the extra flour. Especially with how juicy the peaches were. I forgot that using flour makes the filling cloudy and I thought about using tapioca but figured I would just follow the recipe. Also, I am one of those people that likes cinnamon in my peach pie, but I didn’t know how cinnamon and basil would be together. Funny thing is the filling was so simple that it actually reminded me of the flavor of canned peaches.

The pie crust had me wary because it consisted of 8 tablespoons of Earth Balance Buttery Sticks and 8 tablespoons of non-hydrogenated shortening. It was mainly the Buttery Sticks because sometimes I really can taste the soy in the baked goods that I make with them. The crust actually turned out great and I actually didn’t notice the flavor of soy in the pie crust that much.


Tuesdays With Dorie: Baked Yogurt Tart July 2, 2013


This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie recipe is the Baked Yogurt Tart, which is located on page 378 in Baking With Julia. The recipe is actually really straight forward: pre bake pie crust, mix filling, put in crust, top with fruit, and bake. The longest time is just waiting for the crust to cool and then the tart to cool enough to eat it 🙂

The recipe calls for non fat plain yogurt but I just used regular. I did have some extra filling so I filled two ramekins with the rest of the filling and baked beside the tart. To make the tart look pretty, I didn’t add all of the blueberries. Taste wise I should have said who cares what it looks like and dumped all the blueberries in because it was a tad bland. I did top it with strawberries because I was afraid if I baked the strawberries in the crust that it would release too much liquid and the tart wouldn’t set.

Overall very yummy and would definitely make again.


Tuesdays With Dorie: Blueberry Nectarine Pie July 31, 2012

Filed under: Baking,Baking With Julia,Pie,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 4:10 am
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This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie is being hosted by Hilary of Manchego’s Kitchen and Liz of That Skinny Chick Can Bake. The recipe they were chosen for is the Blueberry Nectarine Pie which is located on page 384 in Baking With Julia.

I think for the past month I have made a pie each weekend, and of course I haven’t posted about any of them. So far I have made a peach pie and a cherry pie. I have actually never made a blueberry pie so this was a first for me. I decided to add half the zest of one lemon instead of a “large pinch” like the recipe calls for. I did this because I love the flavor of lemon and it pairs so perfectly with the blueberries that I couldn’t help myself. I also added 2 tbsp of tapioca after the filling was cooked. I didn’t think that 1 1/2 tbsp of flour was enough to thicken all of the filling.

The pie was absolutely FABULOUS. The only problem I had with the recipe was the pie crust. I chilled the shortening and the butter, and the whole time I was thinking that this is WAY too much shortening. I only had to add half of the water called for to get the dough to come together and I probably didn’t even have to add that much. I was thinking it might have been that I used half whole wheat pastry flour and half all-purpose, which is probably the case. The dough rolled out fine but when I went to put it into the pie pan it fell apart. It was also very crumbly when trying to serve a piece of pie. It had the sandy texture of shortbread. The crust was good, it was just giving me a hard time. I guess that is what I get for not having enough all-purpose flour in the house.

We will see what happens for the next pies I make because I still have 1/2 a recipe of dough in the freezer.



Tuesdays With Dorie: Pizza Rustica April 9, 2012


As I sit here, writing this entry, relaxing to the quite sounds of a sleeping house, I sip my coffee….

YES, I am drinking coffee at 11:00 pm. The caffeine really does not have any effect on my sleeping habits. I could drink a pot and still roll over and pass out. I have that much talent 🙂

Last weeks Tuesdays with Dorie was hosted by Emily of Capital Region Dining and Raelynn of The Place They Call Home. They had the honor of rocking out with Pizza Rustica, which is located on pages 430-431 in Baking With Julia. I actually made this recipe on time and we ate it for dinner last Monday. I just had a bout of procrastination and now one week later, BOOM, here it is.

This recipe was actually EXTREMELY easy to put together and have for dinner the same night. It came out absolutely perfect. The flavor of the pizza was perfectly balanced. The saltiness of the prosciutto and the Pecorino Romano cheese was the perfect balance to the slightly sweet crust. I served it with a small salad and it was a nice dinner. Mike actually really liked the “quiche,” as he likes to call it. He actually polished it off in less than two days. The pizza was good slightly warm, cold, and at room temperature. The day after we ate it, I cut a slice and walked around the house eating it for breakfast :). It is perfect for any meal.

For Easter I did a catch up Tuesdays With Dorie recipes of Dorie’s Florida Pie (cross between a key lime pie and coconut pie with a meringue on top) and Dorie’s French Pear Tart. I have made the Pear Tart before which is fantastic, but it was my first time to make the Florida Pie. The Florida Pie came together pretty quick and it was fantastic and my father-in-law loved it. Sorry no pictures of the pies.