• Chocolate espresso tart Chocolate espresso tart

    Chocolate espresso tart

Chocolate espresso tart

I’m rather late in blogging about this because I’ve already made it several times. It’s been such a hit that I went to buy the rectangle-shaped tart pan as seen on the photo of Canadian Living because I knew I’d make it again. And it’s not one of those items sitting in my cupboards slowly gathering dust, I’ve actually used it to make this delectable tart, and I’ll likely make it again soon. In fact, selfishly, half the reason I’m blogging this is so I don’t lose the recipe for it. Sorry for the less-than-stellar photos, but the problem with this tart is that it never seems to hang around long enough for me to take a great picture. And believe me, these photos don’t do it justice. It’s beautiful in its stark simplicity but if you prefer to jazz it up a bit, some fresh raspberries will do the […]

  • Alton Brown’s Over the Top Blueberry Muffins Alton Brown’s Over the Top Blueberry Muffins

    Alton Brown’s Over the Top Blueberry Muffins

Alton Brown’s Over the Top Blueberry Muffins

One of my oldest childhood memories is my dad taking me to a bakery near our old apartment in Scarborough, Ont., when he bought bread on Saturdays, and treating me to a freshly baked blueberry muffin. I still remember the smell of the bakery and the taste of that warm muffin. This must be why I’m not a big fan of fruits in baked goods of any kind, but I’m a sucker for blueberry muffins. And whenever I’m having a particularly stress-filled morning, and need a bit of a quick comfort, I reach for a muffin. That doesn’t bode well for my perpetual diet, I know, but sometimes I make a huge batch like this and freeze most of it. If you know Alton Brown from television, you know he’s not your typical celebrity chef. He’s much more cerebral than the rest and uses science to explain what works and what doesn’t. […]

  • Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars

    Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars

Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars

For the second year in a row, I took my two sons – and my dad – apple-picking just north of the city. The landscape is beautiful, everyone feels very self-sufficient and productive after bringing home the fruit they picked themselves, and there’s some grandpa bonding time too. This year, however, I was a bit more prepared. I knew I would need to pull some more apple recipes out of my hat because the apple sauce I made lovingly last year with the leftover apples just sat there taunting me. So when I saw this recipe for Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars on Pinterest, I knew I’d be making it. I’m not really an apple pie kind of girl, to tell the truth. But… the salted caramel sold me. Substitutions: None Would I make this again? No, because, it was delicious when it came out of the oven but kind […]

  • Chai spice biscotti Chai spice biscotti

    Chai spice biscotti

Chai spice biscotti

There is so much to love about biscotti. You need to double bake it so it’s nearly impossible to get the consistency wrong, it stays fresh longer than your average cookie, and best of all, it’s the perfect biscuit to dip inside your morning coffee. But I like my biscotti to be either old-school Italian, with some pistachio or a hint of lemon, or to have some kind of modern twist, like this recipe from Chatelaine. The usual chocolate almond biscotti don’t interest me. But this biscotti was absolutely delicious. It hit all the right notes with me, slightly savoury and peppery while finishing on a sweet note. The result is a completely unexpected taste sensation that you’ll crave time and time again – particularly for anyone who loves Indian flavours like I do. Substitutions: None, but I tried to grind some of the spices in my small marble mortar […]

  • Drunken blondies with pumpkin spice morsels and butterscotch chips Drunken blondies with pumpkin spice morsels and butterscotch chips

    Drunken blondies with pumpkin spice morsels and butterscotch chips

Drunken blondies with pumpkin spice morsels and butterscotch chips

“The Back In The Day Bakery Cookbook” is one of my most beloved titles. I have dozens and dozens of cookbooks, and this one is the kind I reach for when I am looking for the ultimate recipe. So when my good friend and kindred spirit, Jenn, brought me a bag of pumpkin spice morsels I knew I had to use them in something fantadiddlytastic. I’m hit or miss when it comes to brownies, either they are too cake-y or too dry. Or cookie-like. They rarely hit the mark with me, so I usually choose to indulge my allotted calories elsewhere. But – a blondie? I can never resist a blondie. And this one is something special. The recipe below has been modified from the Drunk Blondies recipe from the Back In The Day Bakery Cookbook. Ingredients: 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon fine sea […]

  • Homemade Butterfinger Candy Bar Homemade Butterfinger Candy Bar

    Homemade Butterfinger Candy Bar

Homemade Butterfinger Candy Bar

Did you know, that there is a use for all that candy corn that’s left over after Halloween? Yup, and you just might want to buy extra, after reading this blog post, just to make this recipe. And if you don’t have any pantry like I do, I’m sure a bulk food store will stock some. Once you have it in hand, you’re halfway there. You’ll need some candy corn, chocolate or dipping chocolate and peanut butter. I must admit that I wish I took greater care when dipping the candy bars in the chocolate or that I made a greater effort to cut them all to the same size, but I was somewhat rushed because my kids were around and probably demanding something – urgently. I must admit, it did cross my mind, that if I tried too hard to make them look perfect, I was defeating the purpose […]

  • Coconut Macaroon Nutella Nests Coconut Macaroon Nutella Nests

    Coconut Macaroon Nutella Nests

Coconut Macaroon Nutella Nests

Maybe for the first time in years, I am blogging about something mere minutes after I finished making it. After all, Easter weekend is fast approaching and if I want to be of any inspiration, I should hit “publish” on this post before the grocery stores are closed. Am I right? So, here we are. I figured this would be something I could make with the kids as an Easter activity. My 5-and-a-half year old helped me mix the ingredients for the coconut macaroons and then both he and my 2-year-old helped me decorate the nests with the candy eggs. Even if you don’t make it to the grocery store in time, there’s a good chance you have these ingredients on hand if you are an amateur baker. Here’s the recipe, it’s a good one. As I started writing this blog post, I was reminded that I had made something […]

  • Skinnytaste’s Coconut Panna Cotta Skinnytaste’s Coconut Panna Cotta

    Skinnytaste’s Coconut Panna Cotta

Skinnytaste’s Coconut Panna Cotta

I spend a lot of time looking for Weight Watchers-friendly recipes, but I often draw the line at desserts. After all, that’s why I’m a believer in Weight Watchers, I have whatever I want, but smaller portions. After all, what is a dessert without butter and sugar? Fruit for dessert? Blasphemy! Sorbet? Blyach. Still, the recipe for Skinnytaste’s panna cotta caught my eye the other day and I was compelled to immediately buy the ingredients to try my hand at making it. The recipe I’ve linked to is the vanilla panna cotta version whereas I made Skinnytaste’s coconut version instead. But it’s not so different. Substitutions: Instead of the milk, I used 3/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk beverage. Instead of the cream, I used 2 cups canned light coconut milk. Also, 1/4 cup honey in place of the sugar. I skipped the lime zest suggestion entirely and topped my panna […]

  • Raspberry Sweetheart Cookies (or, palmiers) Raspberry Sweetheart Cookies (or, palmiers)

    Raspberry Sweetheart Cookies (or, palmiers)

Raspberry Sweetheart Cookies (or, palmiers)

I made these in February, which, admittedly was weeks ago. But this isn’t the first time I’ve made palmiers, nor will it be the last. If you have a box of puff pastry in your freezer, and sugar, and I always do, palmiers are very easy to whip up. I was inspired to make these heart-shaped cookies from this Today’s Parent recipe. But you should know, any time you use puff pastry, that the directions will need to be modified based on your oven. Read on to find out more. Substitutions: If possible, I like to think of the the first batch as a test one, when it comes to any recipe using puff pastry. It gives me the opportunity to figure out whether I need to adjust the time in the oven and the thickness of the palmiers. In this case, for the second round, I cut my palmiers […]

  • Martha Stewart’s Buttermilk Cake with Chocolate Frosting Martha Stewart’s Buttermilk Cake with Chocolate Frosting

    Martha Stewart’s Buttermilk Cake with Chocolate Frosting

Martha Stewart’s Buttermilk Cake with Chocolate Frosting

Dearest friends, family and blog readers (Are there any of you left? ‘Cause I’m hearing an echo in here), let it be known that for me, baking, 0ffers a brief escape. If I bake you something, it’s because I am inspired to use my hands, or perhaps it’s because I need a break from the hard news that comprises my day-to-day life as a journalist, or because it’s simply because I love you. No, I don’t have more time than you. In fact, I probably have less time than you. And that will be the case until my two boys are a bit older. So for me to fit in a cake or cookies, or cupcakes, I had to give up some much-needed sleep or some precious TV time. So just say thank you, and bask in the fact that I have special feelings for you. With that said, I bring to […]