Almond-Scented Cherry Pie with Amaretti Cookie Crumble and Whole Wheat Pie Crust

Almond-Scented Cherry Pie With Amaretti Cookie Crumble

April 20, 2016

My momma makes a nearly unbeatable classic cherry pie, delicately scented with almond extract and hugged by a pretty, pastry-crimped lattice top. Divine with a scoop of Bluebell vanilla ice cream, slices are best served sitting on the couch or porch reconnecting with family.

She says it’s a lot of trouble to make a pie, but I don’t know if I believe her. She always says it with a smile and quick-working hands that suggest it may not actually trouble her all that much (or maybe the reward just far outweighs the effort…).

It doesn’t matter whether you fill the crust with fresh-picked fruit from an orchard or canned summer fruit off the grocery shelf, cherry pie always tastes like love and laughs and joy. I think it’s because no matter what ingredients you use, pies are a bit of effort. Not too much, mind you – just enough. Like breaking a sweat hiking to reach a stunning mountain view, or digging in the garden under the summer sun to plant new flowers.

A little effort makes the reward sweeter.

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Chez Panisse Almond Torte (High Altitude)

Chez Panisse Almond Torte – High Altitude

March 26, 2016

As much as I love to bake, I have only a handful of dessert recipes that I rely on time and time again. I’m usually more interested in trying new recipes or experimenting with elaborate concoctions that, while fun to play with, aren’t always the most practical to whip out for an unexpected visitor or last-minute craving.

So I was much intrigued and hopeful when I ran across this classic, simple Chez Panisse Almond Torte recipe featured on Alexandra’s Kitchen. Made with pantry staples and fresh items you almost always have on hand, it was the perfect recipe – images of tender, buttery, almond-scented cake, hot out of the oven at a moment’s notice enthralled me, and I ran to the kitchen to whip up this easy masterpiece.

And it was a huge disaster.

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St. Patrick’s Day Cardamom Matcha Pavlova with Lucky Charm Marshmallows

Cardamom Matcha Pavlova With Lemon Curd Whipped Cream

March 15, 2016

Sifting through a pile of St. Patrick’s Day’s most relevant breakfast cereal, I found myself full of questions.

Could I name all of the Lucky Charms from memory? Wouldn’t the cereal be luckier if there were seven charms rather than the current eight? Is the cereal mascot offensive to the Irish, or perhaps just unflattering to leprechauns?

I contemplated, discarding chipped horseshoes and broken rainbows, fishing out only the best and most-charmed marshmallows to bring my pavlova luck.

Are balloons really charmed? I feel like that’s a stretch. Same goes for hourglasses.

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Win March Madness with Baskin Robbins’ Warm Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches – Giveaway

Warm Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

March 11, 2016

You only thought March Madness was about basketball.

No, no. March Madness is literal, a mental state of being – a place in time where you are so sick of winter, you are *this close* to losing your mind. The back-and-forth teasing of warm, sunny, summer-promising days in the midst of an inevitable return to winter chill and drear, pushing you ever-closer to utter insanity.

I’m beyond ready for summer – long days, hot sunshine, grilling on the porch, licking up melty ice cream cones. But no, we get none of that right now. Stuck in the doldrums, somewhere between hot and cold, I wait for the day I can throw my coats back in the closet for a few blissful warm months.

For me, it’s still too cold for ice cream. I need those sweet, sweet 90 degree sweat-drenchers to get me in a mental space for a frosty dessert.

Usually.

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Passionfruit Mousse Semifreddo

Passionfruit Mousse Semifreddo

March 1, 2016

Is there such a thing as too much passionfruit?

I think not.

A few weeks ago around Valentine’s Day, Jason and I booked a Brazilian cooking class at one of our favorite cooking schools in Denver. Though there are a few good options around town for cooking experiences, we prefer the shiny new facility, professional program – and let’s be honest, the easy parking – at The Kitchen Table Greenwood Village. They really set up a perfect date night, with a dimly lit, nicely-appointed dining room, welcome cocktails and fancy nibbles to begin your evening.

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