You’re a Peach!

Happy long weekend to my Canadian friends and family! It’s been a loooooong time since I posted two blog posts in the same week, let alone a couple days from each other. I feel like I’m on a bit of a roll! 😉

I actually have another recipe that I’m sure you’ll enjoy – Peach Pie!! ❤ Turns out it’s now Matt’s new favourite. It actually pushed his beloved strawberry rhubarb pie aside to second place, and that says a lot! To be honest when I told him I hoped to bake a peach pie with all of the peaches we bought, he eagerly washed, peeled and sliced each one to give me a head start on making it! This pie is SO yummy! I even made the crust (yay me!), which always seems like such a process (ugh!). I was more partial to Tenderflake crust, but after asking around I discovered that a homemade pie shell isn’t actually all that hard. And all this recipe called for is 4 ingredients! You can handle 4 ingredients, right? 😉 I’ll walk you through it. 🙂

Streusel Topped Peach Pie

  • Difficulty: medium
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Peach pie

Ingredients

    Filling:
  • 1/4 c. sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 lbs. (approx. 4 cups of Peaches – halved, pitted, cut into 1/2″ slices & cut in 1/2 crosswise
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • Pie Shell:
  • 1 c. flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 6 Tbsp. butter, cold
  • 4 Tbsp. water, ice cold
  • Streusel Topping:
  • 3/4 c. flour (all-purpose)
  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 c. butter, cold

Directions

Filling:
1. Make filling by whisking sugar & cornstarch in a large bowl.
2. Add peaches & lemon juice; toss to combine. Set aside.

Crust:
1. Mix together flour and salt in medium sized bowl.
2. Cut in butter with pastry blender (or forks) until mixture is pebble sized crumbs.
3. Add water and blend until mixture pulls together.
4. Roll into ball and place on lightly floured surface.
5. Roll out dough to about 13″ circle.
6. Gently roll dough around rolling pin and unroll over pie pan.
7. Gently press into pan and turn edge under (I didn’t have time to make it pretty, but you can if you wish!)
8. Spoon peach filling into your pie crust.

Streusel Topping:
1. In medium bowl, mix 3/4 cup flour, the brown sugar and cinnamon.
2. Cut in butter, using pastry blender (or fork or pulling 2 table knives through mixture in opposite directions), until mixture looks like coarse crumbs.
3. Sprinkle streusel topping evenly over pie filling.
4. Place pie onto a baking sheet (to prevent bubbling mess in oven), and bake at 375f for 35-45 minutes.
5. Pie will be done when filling is bubbling and crust is golden brown.
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Mmm – this pie is so good! Juicy peaches in a flaky crust…It’s the perfect thing to bring along to your next potluck or BBQ. Enjoy!

Try my keylime pie recipe!

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Key Lime

Happy first day of Summer friends and followers! June 20th and what a beautiful first day of Summer it was. The sun was shining and I was just craaaaving a key lime treat! Seems to me that tangy sweet lime accompanies warm, Summer days well and so I decided to whip up somethin’ to embrace the change of seasons 😀 .

I love citrus flavours, but I’m admittedly not much of a pie person (cue the gasp!). But hubby loves ’em and I can dig a slice once in awhile. Now, I have never attempted to bake a lime pie before. But why not try? The recipe I found was super easy and I was able to successfully bake it while Levi was napping – which is definitely a plus. It took about 30 minutes, and it is SO addicting. You won’t be able to stop at just one slice ❤ .

Key Lime Pie

Confession time: So I did NOT use actual key limes. They are just waaay too small to be bothered with and too hard to find (gave up searching after 2 stores :P! ) So I used plain, ol’ limes and it really made no difference on the taste factor in my opinion.

Key Lime Recipe

So, if the mood strikes ya, try out this recipe! The crust is simple for being homemade, and I love the whipped topping. I’m sure if you were in a REAL hurry, you could just use a store bought pie crust and a can of whipping cream. The pie would still be delightful, no doubt! 🙂

Enjoy the rest of your week!

 

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Jumbo Raspberry Chip Muffins

Let me just say this: there’s raspberries AND chocolate in these muffins, so I pretty much guarantee you’re going to love them!

I made these muffins for Matt to take with him to work (or that’s what he THINKS at least 😉 ) but I was feeling pretty good (getting my energy back!) and really wanted to bake. Plus I’ve been digging fruit so I decided to roll with it. So he took a few…and I got to keep some to enjoy as well, of course!

Ingredients:

– 3 c. all-purpose flour (careful not to over measure)

– 4 tsp. baking powder

– 1/2 tsp. salt

– 1 tsp. cinnamon

– 2 lg. eggs (at room temp)

– 1/2 c. granulated sugar

– 1/4 c. brown sugar (I used light)

– 1 c. milk (at room temp)

– 1/2 c. coconut oil, melted (you CAN use canola/vegetable oil)

– 1 tsp. vanilla extract

– 2/3 c. white chocolate chips (dark or semi sweet would be delightful, too!)

– 1 & 1/4 c. fresh raspberries*

Raspberry & Chocolate Chips

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425′. Brush muffin tray with oil/spray with non-stick spray. Set aside.

In a large bowl, gently whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Mix until all combined. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs and both sugars until combined. Mix in milk, oil, and vanilla extract. Mixture will be a bit of a pale yellow. Fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix everything together by hand. Avoid over mixing which would result in tough, dry muffins.* Gently mix until all the flour is off the bottom of the bowl and no big pockets of flour remain. The batter will be extremely thick and lumpy. Fold in the chocolate chips, then very gently (to avoid them from leaking their colour), fold in the raspberries.

Spoon batter into prepared muffin tin, filling all the way to the top.* Sprinkle tops with extra sugar. Bake at 425′ for 5 minutes.* Keeping the muffins in the oven, reduce temperature to 375 and continue to bake for 14 minutes until tops are lightly golden. Insert a toothpick into the centre and it should come out clean. Allow to cool for 10 minutes. Muffins taste better the same day, but they will last for up to 5 days if stored at room temperature in an airtight container.

*Be sure to read below for details and rationale for baking temps, etc…*

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These muffins are so good!!! Super – moist and they come out extra tall if you fill the batter to the brim in your muffin tins. Baking them at a higher temp for the first 5 minutes (before lowering the oven temperature) lifts the muffin top up quickly and creates a tall crust.

They taste like your favourite bakery style muffins – you really should try them. Muffins from scratch are super easy, especially if you have a recipe to follow ;). These would be great with dark chocolate chips or semi as well. I actually wanted to use semi-sweet, however I didn’t have enough chipits left in the bag! Then I saw that I had a full bag of white chocolate chips and I actually did a bit of both (even though the recipe states “white chocolate”)! Be sure to use fresh raspberries as the frozen ones have too much juice – leakage.
Tart, sweet, and decadent all in one bite 😀 . Put away the cereal, don’t toast that bagel and you’ll thank me later! 😉

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“P – A – R – T – WHY?! ‘Cause I Gotta!”

Jim Carrey, anyone? 😉 Matt loves him. And this post is about Matt’s graduation / 30th birthday par-tay (which finally took place last Saturday!) 😉 When I had first spoke about throwing this party for him, the tentative date was set for end of March. However, we went on our “house hunting trip” and so the party needed to be postponed. Since it was in celebration of two milestones, and his birthday is April 29th, an April party was perfect!

I had it at Matt’s brother’s church in Niagara Falls, which was the perfect location as this is where our families and most of our friends are! I had use of their kitchen including stoves and fridges, and any utensils/serve ware  that I didn’t have enough of. I had drove down from the base where Matt had been training (where our rental is) while Matt was working at the base where we got posted to. He came to the Falls once he was done his shifts, and met me there. I came down a week earlier because it was my sister-in-laws baby shower (baby boy!) :D. This allowed me to have time to book a cake to be made, and to shop around for any last minute decor. My sister, was a big help with the set up. She also took these pictures for me of the finished result:

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The ladder had an extinguisher on it, a “fire helmet”, an ‘M’ for Matt, and a the firehalls Dalmatian ;). My nephews and friends kids, loved playing with with stuffed puppy and tearing off the balloons!

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The candy bar had ‘burning buildings’ on them, and a chalkboard stating the top movies/ music / toys on the year 1985 (when Matt Q’s born!). A photo collage was created thanks to the help of my sister! It telly was a little more tricky to put together than I bargained for. Pictures of Matt growing up with family and friends were included. There was ones of him camping, drumming, and dating me, and our wedding day. I tried to capture the 30 years of his life so far, and to include a picture from all the guests that came to the party!

“Burning Embers” were Reece’s Pieces (beside the ‘burning apartment building). “Water buckets” were filled nearby with blue Carribean and blueberry jelly beans.

Hot Tamales were the spicy, hot candies.



I did a “Stop, Drop, and Roll” with Gobstoppers, Gumdrops, and Tootsie Rolls. Most of these candies are Matt’s favourite!


Nib Licorice was “Rescue Rope”…

…and Cheesies were “Flames” at this party 😉 !

My sister helped me dip pretzels in red chocolate to make “matches”.

  

Chairs were set up along the outside of the walls, and kind of grouped together to encourage conversation. We did buffet style with the food tables in the centre of the room. Matt’s favourite food, Italian, was out. Matt’s mom provided homemade lasagnas, and then spaghetti with a homemade meatsauce was also there with of course chillies and parm. Garden salad, Caesar and garlic bread accompanied the pasta dishes. I made a (red) punch, and then of course bottled water was also provided for this firefighter themed party 🙂 .





I displayed a couple of his textbooks, his graduation certificate of completion, and a couple cool firetrucks I picked up for our new house (maybe for in the family room?).

Everything was was done kind of rustic, and red, orange and yellow ( including dinner plates, napkins, etc), with a touch of black and white (Dalmatian).

The cake was SO good and was white, with strawberry filling (Matt’s fave) and buttercream and had his grad day picture on it. It was served amongst cookies with tea and coffee.

About 40 people came, which was a great turn out, and everyone seemed to have a great time! There were many cards and well wishes given and Matt loved it. He thanked me numerous times afterwards, and I know it meant a lot to have the support of his family and closest friends there. We are looking forward to the adventures that lie ahead and even though we’ll be moving away from where we grew up, we know we have loved ones praying for us back home!

 

A Sweet Visitor and An Even Sweeter Coffee Cake

My sister came up to visit us a couple weekends ago. It’s such a blessing to be staying in a place where we have room for guests to stay when they come to visit! My sister and I are super close, more so now than when we were younger. There are eight years in between us, and when you’re graduating elementary school, while your sister is starting elementary school, it’s hard to relate to one another. But as we’ve grown into adulthood, we developed a strong bond and she is my very best friend. We have more in common now, too, which makes spending time together even more enjoyable.

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She spent the weekend here, and it was nice just to talk and visit. I haven’t seen her since the holidays, so it was nice to catch up. We went to the mall, watched a few movies, and went out for lunch a couple of times. Some much needed quality “girl time”. And of course, we HAD to find some time to bake in there. I think she likes to bake just as much as I do (or is she just being the agreeable younger sibling to her first born sister? 😉 ).

We decided to bake a coffee cake. Something sweet that would accompany our addiction favourite morning drink…you guessed it – COFFEE! We’re pretty big fans of any caffeinated bevy. A cinnamon streusel coffee cake. Streusel means “something strewn” in old German – easy to throw together! It’s topped with a sweet glaze, which is perfect for it. And has a delicious inner circle of cinnamon. Everyone needs a solid coffee cake recipe in their repertoire, so here ya go!


Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake:

Ingredients:

Streusel Topping and Center:

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup light brown sugar, packed

1 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

course salt

1 1/2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

1 1/2 cups pecans, coarsely chopped

For the Cake:

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/4 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

course salt

1 cup granulated sugar

2 lg. eggs

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 cup sour cream (I used plain greek yogurt)

For the Glaze:

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

2 tbsp. milk

Directions:

Make the streusel topping: Mix together flour, 3/4 cup brown sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1 teaspoon salt. Cut in butter using a pastry cutter or rub in with your fingers until small to medium clumps form. Mix in 1/2 cup pecans. I put some plastic wrap on the top, and popped it in the fridge until I was ready to use it.

For the streusel center: Mix together remaining 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1 cup pecans.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Make the cake: Butter a 9-inch tube pan. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon salt into a bowl.

Beat butter and granulated sugar with a mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, then vanilla. Beat in flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with sour cream (or greek yogurt!), beginning and ending with flour. Continue to beat until well combined.

Spoon half the batter into pan. Sprinkle streusel center mixture evenly over batter. Top with remaining batter, and spread evenly using an spatula. Sprinkle streusel topping mixture evenly over batter.

Bake until cake is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 50 mins – 1 hr. Once a bit cool, remove from pan and transfer to a wire rack. Let cool completely.

Make the glaze: Once completely cooled, you can glaze it up! Mix together confectioners’ sugar and milk. Drizzle over cake, and let drip down sides. Let set for 5 minutes before serving.

** Best enjoyed with a hot cuppa java 😉 **

Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake

Recipe adapted from Southern Food

{Check out my cinnamon scone recipe here!}

Glazed Cinnamon Scones

These scones are one of the best I’ve ever tasted – flaky, soft, and beautifully delicious! Once they’re baked they get drizzled with a glaze…SO GOOD! They’re perfect for a brunch or a party/shower. Even good just with a coffee or a cuppa tea. 😉

Glazed Cinnamon Scones


Glazed Cinnamon Scones:

Scone Ingredients:

2 cups flour

2 tsps. b.powder

1/2 tsp. b.soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 cup butter, cold or frozen

1 egg, separated

3 tbsp. honey

1/3 cup buttermilk (or 1/3 c. milk mixed with 1/2 tsp. of lemon juice – creates buttermilk 😉 )

Crumb Topping (can be adjusted to your liking):

1-2 tbsp. sugar

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Glaze (can be adjusted to your liking:

1 cup powdered sugar

1-3 tsp. milk (enough to make consistency of glaze)

1/2 tsp. vanilla

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400*. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut in butter (frozen is better in scones – it will melt while it’s baking and create buttery, flaky goodness!). Mixture should look crumbly with the butter cut in.

In a small bowl, separate egg white and yolk. Set the white aside.

In a separate medium sized mixing bowl, whisk egg yolk, honey and buttermilk (or milk and lemon juice combo). Add to the dry ingredients bowl. Stir until just combined (over mixing can result in dry scones).

Form dough into a ball and place on a floured surface. Roll/pat out to 1/2″ in thickness and 8″ in diameter. Cut into 8 (or more, if you like smaller scones) equally – sized pieces.

Transfer to a greased baking sheet (or what I use – my Pampered Chef bar pan). Whisk the egg white until froth forms and brush over the tops of scones. Mix sugar and cinnamon “crumb topping” together and sprinkle over egg-white-topped scones. 😀

Bake at 400* for 10-12 minutes.

Mix together powdered sugar, milk and vanilla until glaze forms. Drizzle over scones after they bake.

ENJOY!

*Recipe adapted from The Coupon Project*


 image2Starbucks Cinnamon Scone Hack

Lemon Poppyseed Loaf (Starbucks Copycat Recipe)

The other day I was at the mall with a friend and we stopped in at Starbucks for a coffee latte. I saw the lemon poppyseed loaf slices, and I couldn’t resist. It’s always so good! It was the perfect midday indulgence…
I figured there HAD TO BE a way to replicate this at home! Of course, Pinterest has a bunch of Starbucks Copycat recipes, including their drinks and baked goods. Are you even the slightest bit surprised?! 😉

Now, I know that most bakers would prefer to use butter in their baking for the flavour factor, and most times I would agree. But the fact that this recipe calls for oil instead caught my eye. There are certain instances in which oil can really help to deliver the moistness that so many loaves lack. And then there was the fact that this recipe yields 2 loaves instead of 1. Well, it seemed to me that it was about perfect and I decided I just HAD to give it a go!

The verdict? This recipe is ahhh-mazing. The loaves had just the right amount of lemon I was craving. They were moist and delicious, similar to a pound cake. And easy too! You really can’t go wrong here. Perfect recipe for a weeknight dessert, or an afternoon snack. 🙂


Lemon PoppySeed Loaf (Starbucks Copycat Recipe)

Adapted from: A Farmgirl’s Dabbles

Yield: 2 loaves

 For the Lemon Loaf:

3 cups AP flour

2 cups sugar

1 1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 1/2 Tbsp. poppy seeds

1 1/2 cups milk

1 cup + 2 Tbsp. canola oil

3 lg. eggs

3 tsp. lemon extract (or you can use vanilla an add lemon zest)

For the Glaze: 

1 cup sugar

1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/4 tsp. vanilla

1 Tbsp. butter (melted)

Directions:

1.) Preheat oven to 350’f. Generously grease (or spray with cooking spray) two 8 1/2 x 4 1/2″ loaf pans.

2). In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine dry ingredients (flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, and poppy seeds. Mix on lowest speed until combined.

3.) In a separate medium sized bowl, combine milk, oil, eggs, and lemon extract (or vanilla and lemon zest, if using). Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry with mixer on lowest setting. Mix until combined. Beat on medium speed for 1 minute.

4). Pour into prepared pans and bake for approximately 1 hour; or until a toothpick has been inserted into the loaves and comes out clean.

5.) While the loaves are baking, make the glaze. In a small mixing bowl, combine the icing sugar, lemon juice, vanilla and melted butter. Whisk until smooth.

6.) Once loaves are finished baking, remove from oven and spread icing glaze over both. Allow loaves to cool for 15 minutes in the pans. Run a knife along the sides of the pans, to loosen the loaves. Turn upside down onto a cooling rack and allow to completely, and for the glaze to harden.

Lemon Poppyseed Loaf


You’re welcome ;). Lemon desserts are so delightful and remind me of Spring. Which, of course, is right around the corner :). Ahh, yes – the power of positive thinking! Hope you had a wonderful weekend!