The Baker Upstairs: 2018

6.20.2018

Strawberry Hand Pies

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These delicious and adorable strawberry hand pies are easy to make, and the perfect summer dessert!

These delicious and adorable strawberry hand pies are easy to make, and the perfect summer dessert!

Who else LOVES strawberries? I mentioned earlier this week that we picked an abundance of fresh strawberries at a local farm, and we have had a great time finding ways to use them! These strawberry hand pies were an instant favorite with everyone in my family, and they've already requested that I make them again with each successive batch of berries that we pick this summer. They're so simple and fun to make, but they look very impressive, too! I love the layers of flaky pie crust, the sweet strawberry filling, and the crisp sugary top. You could definitely substitute another summer fruit, like peaches, apricots, blackberries, or blueberries in these pies, and I'm sure they'd be equally delicious. They're surprisingly sturdy, so they would be great for sending in a lunch box or bringing on a picnic. I served them with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side, and my whole family loved them!
Strawberry Hand Pies

2 cups strawberries, hulled and quartered
1/3 cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling
2 teaspoons corn starch
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 recipe homemade pie crust (or 1 package refrigerated pie crust)
1 egg
1 tablespoon water

To make the filling, mix together the strawberries, sugar, corn starch, and lemon juice. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, and simmer 5 minutes, or until thickened. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature. When the filling has cooled, preheat the oven to 425. Line two baking sheets with silicone or parchment. Roll out the pie crust and cut it into 24 4-inch circles. Cut vents in 12 of the circles (I used a heart-shaped cookie cutter, but you could cut vents with a knife instead if you prefer). Spoon about 1 tablespoon of filling onto the 12 remaining circles, then place a vented circle on top of each. Press gently with your fingers to seal, then seal with a fork all the way around. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and water. Brush the egg mixture over the top of each pie, then sprinkle with sugar. Bake 18-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool before serving.
These delicious and adorable strawberry hand pies are easy to make, and the perfect summer dessert!

6.18.2018

Simple Strawberry Jam

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This simple and delicious homemade strawberry jam is so easy to make. It's the perfect way to enjoy those sweet summer berries!

This simple and delicious homemade strawberry jam is so easy to make. It's the perfect way to enjoy those sweet summer berries!

It's finally berry season here in Oregon! Since we had such a great time picking and preserving berries last year, I have been looking forward to berry season all through the long cold winter. Our favorite u-pick farm (Smith Berry Barn, for you Portland locals) opened for strawberry picking a couple of weeks ago, and we couldn't wait to go pick some ripe berries. Last year we mostly picked shuksan berries, which I really liked, but they were so small that they were difficult to work with. This year we picked mostly Benton berries, and they were much easier to use for canning and cooking. They're sweet and plump, and we love them!

I ended up making 3 batches of this jam with the berries (for 21 jars total), and had enough leftover for some strawberry hand pies (recipe coming soon!), a batch of strawberry sauce, and some strawberry cream cheese bread. This simple strawberry jam preserves all the flavor of those gorgeous ripe strawberries, and tastes amazing on top of everything! We love to eat it on toast, biscuits, pancakes, and use it in peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. It has the perfect strawberry flavor, and comes out great every time!

This simple and delicious homemade strawberry jam is so easy to make. It's the perfect way to enjoy those sweet summer berries!

Last year I discovered the easiest way to wash a big batch of strawberries, and now it's the method I use every time. (It's not exactly brain surgery, but it has made my life easier, so I'll share it with you!) First, add all the strawberries you want to use to a colander, then place the colander in a bowl that is just slightly larger than it. Run cold water over the berries until the water is up to the top of the colander. Gently agitate the strawberries for a few minutes with your hands to shake loose any dirt or grit. Lift the colander out of the water, and they're ready to use. I'm always amazed by how much dirt I find in the bottom of the bowl afterwards!

This simple and delicious homemade strawberry jam is so easy to make. It's the perfect way to enjoy those sweet summer berries!

I let my kids help me make the jam this time (usually I'm too impatient when I'm canning to let the little ones help) and we had so much fun making it together. They helped me wash and hull the strawberries, and they especially loved mashing them with the potato masher. They got so exuberant that I ended up with some bright red berry juice splattered on the ceiling, but they had such a great time that it was totally worth it. :)

This simple and delicious homemade strawberry jam is so easy to make. It's the perfect way to enjoy those sweet summer berries!

I will caution you that when the jam is boiling on the stove, it tends to splatter a little, so I would suggest using the longest-handled spoon or spatula you have, and standing back as far as possible. As far as keeping the jam, I've added instructions for freezer jam and canned jam below, so feel free to use whatever works best for you. Either way, you won't be able to get enough!

This simple and delicious homemade strawberry jam is so easy to make. It's the perfect way to enjoy those sweet summer berries!
Simple Strawberry Jam

around 6 cups fresh strawberries (to make 4 cups mashed berries)
4 1/2 tablespoons regular pectin
1 teaspoon butter
4 cups sugar

To make the jam: Wash the strawberries well to remove any grit. Hull the strawberries (I find it easiest to hull them using a spoon), then place them in a shallow dish. Using a potato masher, lightly mash the strawberries. Pour the strawberries and strawberry juice into a large measuring cup, and fill to 4 cups. Pour the mashed strawberries into a large pot and whisk in the pectin. Add the butter to the pot, and heat over high heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture reaches a boil. Pour in the sugar all at once and mix to combine. Return the jam to a boil, then boil three minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and let sit five minutes. Skim the foam off the top of the jam, if desired.

Freezer directions: Ladle the jam into clean, freezer-safe containers. Freeze for up to 6 months. When ready to use, place in the fridge for a few hours to thaw.

Canning directions: Before preparing the jam, fill a large pot or canning pot about halfway with warm water. Place 7 half pint sized mason jars into the water and add water to cover completely. Bring the water to a simmer, and simmer until ready to use. Place 7 canning lids in a small pot, add water to cover, and heat over low heat until ready to use. When the jam is done, retrieve the jars from the simmering water, and ladle the jam into the jars, filling to 1/2 inch from the top. Wipe the top of each jar, then place a canning lid on top, and securing with a band (being careful not to twist it too tight). When all the jars are filled, return them to the canning pot and bring the water to a boil. Cover and boil for 10 minutes (adding additional time as needed to adjust for altitude). Remove from the canner and let sit until cool. Check to make sure the lids have sealed (they should not move up and down when you press on the middle of the lid) then store for up to 18 months. Refrigerate any unsealed jars or opened jam jars and use within 1-2 weeks.

adapted slightly from freshpreserving.com
This simple and delicious homemade strawberry jam is so easy to make. It's the perfect way to enjoy those sweet summer berries!

5.28.2018

Blueberry Muffin Bread

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This blueberry muffin bread is so tender and sweet, and topped with a delicious buttery streusel. Perfect for breakfast or dessert!

This blueberry muffin bread is so tender and sweet, and topped with a delicious buttery streusel. Perfect for breakfast or dessert!

If you haven't noticed from my various Instagram posts, my husband seems to schedule himself to work for every holiday. When we lived in Utah, I didn't mind as much because I could just go hang out with my family while he was working. Since we're in Portland now, and my family is 700+ miles away, it just generally means that holidays are long, boring days for me and the kids. Everything is closed, all of our friends are busy with their own families, and I'm usually too exhausted to think of something fun to do. The holiday pay is nice, don't get me wrong, but it can be a little lonely and disheartening. I'm trying to train my brain to think about things in a more positive way, so lately I've been choosing to see it as something kind that my husband is doing for his co-workers. If he is at work on the holiday, it means another nurse gets to spend the day with his or her family. So it's really a good thing, right? 

Since I know from experience how hard it can be to work holidays as a nurse, I always try to bake a treat to send along with my husband to share with his co-workers. It has earned me (and him, I think) quite a positive reputation on his unit. (Incidentally, I visited his unit a few weeks ago to drop off some treats for nurses week, and found myself with my own little set of groupies. It was pretty awesome!) In celebration of Memorial Day today, I made this delicious blueberry muffin bread to share. It's a fun twist on my favorite blueberry muffins, and it turned out fantastic!

This blueberry muffin bread is so tender and sweet, and topped with a delicious buttery streusel. Perfect for breakfast or dessert!

I don't know which part of this bread is my favorite - the plump and juicy blueberries, the buttery cinnamon streusel on top, or the sweet and tender muffin base. This blueberry muffin bread is perfect for breakfast, brunch, or dessert, or for sharing with co-workers when it's a holiday and you're stuck at work. I hope all those awesome nurses are enjoying their day today, and that a sweet little snack helps the day go by faster!

This blueberry muffin bread is so tender and sweet, and topped with a delicious buttery streusel. Perfect for breakfast or dessert!
Blueberry Muffin Bread

for the bread:
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup oil
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries

for the streusel:
1/4 cup sugar
5 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons butter, cut into cubes
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 400. Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt. In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the oil, egg, milk, and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Gently fold in the blueberries. Scoop the batter into the prepared loaf pan, spreading evenly. To make the streusel, whisk together sugar, flour, and cinnamon with a fork. Cut in the butter using a fork or your fingers to form a crumbly mixture. Sprinkle the streusel over the top of the muffins. Bake 35-40 minutes, or until lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
This blueberry muffin bread is so tender and sweet, and topped with a delicious buttery streusel. Perfect for breakfast or dessert!

5.22.2018

Reese's-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

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These Reese's stuffed chocolate chip cookies combine two favorite treats into one decadent cookie!

These Reese's stuffed chocolate chip cookies combine two favorite treats into one decadent cookie!

If you're ever wondering how to make a dessert better, adding some Reese's candies is a pretty safe bet. It certainly worked for these chocolate chip cookies! Seriously, though, who can resist a warm, soft, chewy chocolate chip cookie, stuffed with a melty Reese's mini? Not me, that's for sure!

I made these cookies a few weeks ago when I found a forgotten bag of Reese's minis on the top shelf of the cupboard, behind some mixing bowls. I'm honestly shocked that a forgotten bag of Reese's could even exist in my house, since my kids seem to have an extrasensory ability to find candy, wherever it is hidden. I knew that if I brought the bag of candy down and placed it in one of my usual hiding places, the kids would find it and demolish it within a day or so. I decided the best solution was to bake something with it instead! Chocolate chip cookies are always quick and easy to make, and adding the Reese's just makes them all the more delicious.

These Reese's stuffed chocolate chip cookies combine two favorite treats into one decadent cookie!

Be careful to seal the dough all the way around the candy, to prevent the candy from leaking out the bottom of the dough as they bake. The Reese's chocolate gets very melty and kind of spreads within the cookie, and you don't want to lose any of that deliciousness to the baking sheet.

These Reese's stuffed chocolate chip cookies combine two favorite treats into one decadent cookie!

I liked these cookies best when they were still warm from the oven, although they were totally melty and gooey. Yum! Just eat them with a stack of napkins and a glass of cold milk handy, and you'll be fine. :)

These Reese's stuffed chocolate chip cookies combine two favorite treats into one decadent cookie!

Reese's Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

12 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
26-30 Reese's minis

Preheat the oven to 350. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone liners and set aside. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, mix together the butter, brown sugar, and sugar. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla, and mix until combined. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt, and mix to form a soft dough. Gently fold in the chocolate chips. Roll the cookie dough into golf ball sized balls. Flatten each ball slightly, then place a Reese's mini in the middle of the dough. Wrap the dough around the candy, sealing it closed. Place seam side down on the prepared baking sheet. Bake 11-13 minutes, or until the bottoms are lightly golden brown.
These Reese's stuffed chocolate chip cookies combine two favorite treats into one decadent cookie!

5.17.2018

How to Cook Frozen Ground Beef in the Instant Pot

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Forgot to thaw ground beef for dinner? No worries - just throw it in the Instant Pot! It's so quick and easy, and makes perfect ground beef!

Forgot to thaw ground beef for dinner? No worries - just throw it in the Instant Pot! It's so quick and easy, and makes perfect ground beef!

Hi friends! I mentioned a few months ago (see here) that I purchased a box of 40 pounds of ground beef, and I'm still trying to work my way through it. I'm a little over halfway through, and so far the biggest hurdle is remembering to thaw it before dinner time. I always mean to dig it out of the freezer the night before and put it in the fridge to thaw, but somehow I always forget. Never fear, though - Instant Pot to the rescue! This Instant Pot ground beef is both easy to make and delicious too. 

Forgot to thaw ground beef for dinner? No worries - just throw it in the Instant Pot! It's so quick and easy, and makes perfect ground beef!

I love that I can just throw in my frozen blocks of ground beef, and have perfect crumbled ground beef in less than an hour. I like to make a big batch so I can put the extra in the freezer to throw into spaghetti sauce, or make quick tacos. If you'd like, you can put the ground beef on top of the trivet, but I'm usually too lazy to pull it out, and it turns out just fine without it. I like to use beef broth to add a little bit of flavor, but you could easily substitute water instead. It does take a little elbow grease to break up the meat with a wooden spoon, but the texture turns out great. This is seriously a lifesaver on those nights when I've forgotten to thaw the ground beef, which is all too often!

Forgot to thaw ground beef for dinner? No worries - just throw it in the Instant Pot! It's so quick and easy, and makes perfect ground beef!
Instant Pot Ground Beef

2-4 pounds frozen ground beef
1 cup beef broth

Add the ground beef to the Instant Pot. Pour the broth over the top. Cover the Instant Pot, and make sure that the switch on the top is set to seal. Cook at high pressure for 22 minutes, let naturally release for 10 minutes, then manually release the pressure. Break the ground beef up into pieces using a wooden spoon. Drain the ground beef, then store until ready to use.

Note: The directions above are for frozen beef. If using fresh beef, reduce the cook time to 15 minutes.

5.15.2018

Homemade White Chocolate Pudding

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This rich and silky smooth white chocolate pudding is so easy to make at home, and way better than store-bought!

This rich and silky smooth white chocolate pudding is so easy to make at home, and way better than store-bought!

I have to admit, I am totally addicted to making store-bought staples at home. From homemade jam to hamburger buns, I just love being able to make food from scratch! Sometimes it's a bit of a toss-up between the deliciousness of making it at home, and the inconvenience of spending a lot of time making something I could easily buy. Every now and then, though, I come across a homemade recipe that's super easy, but still tastes delicious. Win! 

This rich and silky smooth white chocolate pudding is so easy to make at home, and way better than store-bought!

This homemade white chocolate pudding is just that. It's super easy to make, has just a few ingredients, and takes only a few minutes (along with some time to cool down and thicken). Since my family is totally obsessed with pudding, it's imperative for me to have an extra delicious homemade version that I can whip up at a minute's notice whenever the pudding cravings strike. We love this white chocolate pudding because it's so thick and creamy, silky smooth, and tastes amazing. I'm not always a big fan of white chocolate, but I absolutely love it in this pudding! 

This rich and silky smooth white chocolate pudding is so easy to make at home, and way better than store-bought!
Homemade White Chocolate Pudding

1/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons corn starch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 3/4 cups whole milk
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vanilla

In a medium saucepan, whisk together the sugar, corn starch, and salt. Whisk in the whole milk and heavy cream until combined. Add the chocolate chips and bring to a simmer over medium heat, whisking frequently. Reduce heat to medium low and cook 2-3 minutes more, or until thickened. Remove from heat and whisk in the vanilla, then pour into serving dish(es). Place a layer of plastic wrap over the top of the pudding and refrigerate until cool (you can also eat it warm, but it won't be quite as thick).
This rich and silky smooth white chocolate pudding is so easy to make at home, and way better than store-bought!

For more delicious homemade pudding recipes, be sure to check out some of my favorites below:



5.12.2018

Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

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This delicious chocolate chip cookie cake is so easy to make, and perfect for any occasion!

This delicious chocolate chip cookie cake is so easy to make, and perfect for any occasion!

In our family, it always seems like May is the busiest month! We've got all the end-of-school events to attend, plus field trips, homework projects, teacher gifts, and play dates. Along with all the school craziness, we have two family birthdays and Mother's Day to celebrate. My husband's birthday is on the 20th, and my oldest daughter's is on the 8th. Our loose rule is that our kids can have a birthday party with friends every other year (since we're all pretty introverted and easily overwhelmed by parties). My daughter Abby had a fun birthday party with friends last year (you can see all the fun details here), so we had a pretty low-key birthday for her this year. We went out to lunch at her favorite restaurant, visited a local museum, and ended the night with a pizza party and this delicious chocolate chip cookie cake.


I usually like to make a pretty elaborate cake for Abby (you can see previous examples herehere, and here), but this year she wanted to try something new. I had seen this cake on my cute friend Allie's blog and had been dying to make it, so it seemed like the perfect cake. It was super easy and quick to make, and everyone loved it! We served it with some whipped cream and sprinkles on top, and it was the perfect way to celebrate my adorable girl (who is now 11!). We are definitely going to be making a lot more of these cookie cakes, since they're so easy to make and infinitely customizable. My husband has already requested a Reese's version for his own birthday next week, and I can't wait to try it!

This delicious chocolate chip cookie cake is so easy to make, and perfect for any occasion!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

12 tablespoons butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
2 tablespoons corn starch
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350. Grease a 10 inch quiche pan or springform pan and set aside. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the butter, brown sugar, and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla, and mix until combined. Add the flour, corn starch, baking soda, and salt, and mix until just combined, being careful not to over-mix. Fold in the chocolate chips. Press the batter into the prepared pan in an even layer. Bake 22-25 minutes, or until golden brown.

adapted from Baking a Moment
This delicious chocolate chip cookie cake is so easy to make, and perfect for any occasion!

For more delicious chocolate chip recipes, be sure to check out the recipes below:



4.19.2018

Salted Chocolate Chunk Cookies

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Salted chocolate chunk cookies - these amazingly delicious cookies have the perfect texture and are loaded with gooey chocolate chunks!

Salted chocolate chunk cookies - these amazingly delicious cookies have the perfect texture and are loaded with gooey chocolate chunks!

Of all the things I bake, I think chocolate chip cookies are probably my favorite. They are my go-to when I'm having a tough day, or when I need something delicious to share with guests. They're quick and easy to make, and everyone loves them! I've never been a very patient person, so it has always appealed to me that I can whip up a batch in about thirty minutes, and have hot gooey cookies any time I want. Lately, though, I've been really working on my patience (since life seems to have blessed me with an abundance of situations designed to test my patience), and so I thought the time was ripe to test out the theory that refrigerating my cookie dough overnight would make it taste better. The result (to my chagrin) was that chocolate chip cookie dough, when refrigerated overnight, bakes up into the perfect cookies. They're perfectly crisp on the outside, soft and tender on the inside, and have a totally amazing texture. If my regular cookies are a 9 on a scale of 1-10, these cookies are an 11!

Salted chocolate chunk cookies - these amazingly delicious cookies have the perfect texture and are loaded with gooey chocolate chunks!

I used an ice cream scoop to make my cookies gigantic, but you can definitely make these with a smaller cookie scoop if you so desire. The combination of dark chocolate chunks and sea salt is so delicious, and adding the salt gives the flavor an awesome boost.

Salted chocolate chunk cookies - these amazingly delicious cookies have the perfect texture and are loaded with gooey chocolate chunks!

I don't know if I have the patience to refrigerate my cookie dough every time I have a chocolate chip cookie craving, but it's worth it for an insanely delicious cookie. These are pretty much just cookies perfected!

Salted chocolate chunk cookies - these amazingly delicious cookies have the perfect texture and are loaded with gooey chocolate chunks!
Salted Chocolate Chunk Cookies

12 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
2 1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups dark chocolate chunks
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt (I love Jacobsen Salt)

In a large bowl, mix together the butter, brown sugar, and sugar. Add the vanilla, egg, and egg yolk, and mix until combined. Add the flour, baking soda, and salt, and stir until combined. Fold in the dark chocolate chunks. Refrigerate the dough overnight. The next day, preheat the oven to 350 and line two baking sheets with silicone or parchment. While the oven is preheating, let the dough sit out on the counter to soften slightly. Scoop into large balls (I used an ice cream scoop) and sprinkle with sea salt. Bake 11-13 minutes, or until lightly browned on the edges. Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.
Salted chocolate chunk cookies - these amazingly delicious cookies have the perfect texture and are loaded with gooey chocolate chunks!

4.12.2018

Easy Homemade Horchata

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This delicious and refreshing homemade horchata is so easy to make, and tastes amazing!

This delicious and refreshing homemade horchata is so easy to make, and tastes amazing!

Who else is totally obsessed with horchata? I totally cannot get enough of it! Several years ago I worked across the street from a tasty Mexican fast food restaurant, and I would walk over nearly every day on my lunch break and get a giant cup of cold horchata and a bowl of chicken tortilla soup with a stack of freshly made tortillas. It was the perfect lunch, and the perfect way to pull myself back together when I was all stressed out from work. Since we moved to Portland, I haven't been able to find a good place close by that has good horchata. (I'm sure one exists, but I just haven't found it yet.) I've seen recipes for homemade horchata on Pinterest, and decided to try it out. The result was this incredibly delicious, creamy and sweet, easy to make horchata! It has a fantastic flavor, and it's incredibly refreshing. I think it's best served over lots of ice and slurped up with a straw. It is pretty much my new favorite drink!

The horchata does take a little time to make, since you need to let it sit overnight, but the hands-on time is minimal, so it's just a little effort for a big payoff. I would definitely recommend straining it through a nut milk bag (they're pretty easy to find on Amazon or at health food stores) because there will be a lot of sediment that needs to be strained out. As far as the sugar goes, I like my horchata pretty sweet, but if you prefer it less sweet, you could definitely add less. This is definitely one to try!
Easy Homemade Horchata

1 cup raw almonds
1/2 cup white rice
1 cinnamon stick
6 cups water, divided
2/3 cup sugar (more or less to taste)

Heat a small pot of water to boiling over high heat. Add the almonds to the boiling water and boil for one minute, then drain and rinse with cold water. Squeeze the almonds to remove the skins. Discard the skins and add the blanched almonds to a quart size jar. Add the white rice and the cinnamon stick to a coffee grinder or food processor and blend until finely ground. Pour the rice mixture into the jar, then add three cups of water. Shake gently to mix, then let sit overnight. The next day, pour the mixture into a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Strain through cheesecloth or a nut milk bag, squeezing to get all of the liquid out. Stir in the remaining water and the sugar until dissolved. Refrigerate until chilled, and serve over ice. Shake before serving.

adapted from Jennifer Meyering
This delicious and refreshing homemade horchata is so easy to make, and tastes amazing!

4.07.2018

Lemon Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

Yum
This lemon cream cheese coffee cake is so tender and flavorful, and perfect for breakfast, dessert, or entertaining!

This lemon cream cheese coffee cake is so tender and flavorful, and perfect for breakfast, dessert, or entertaining!

Why hello there, friends! Long time, no see. :) It has been way too long since I shared a recipe here! Life has been super busy lately, but I thought it would be fun to post today in honor of National Coffee Cake Day. This lemon cream cheese coffee cake is easy to make, super delicious, and has an amazing lemon flavor thanks to the addition of some delicious fresh lemon curd. It's the perfect dessert to serve company, or to enjoy for breakfast, brunch, or dessert!

The cake layer is tender and moist, with a nice mellow vanilla flavor, then it's topped by a sweetened cream cheese layer, tangy lemon curd, and buttery streusel. It all bakes together into a fantastic layered cake that looks beautiful and tastes amazing! I should warn you, since there has been confusion in the past, that this cake does not actually contain coffee. I've always thought of coffee cake as something that is to be served alongside coffee (or in my case, hot chocolate), but I suppose there is much confusion on the subject, based on the number of negative comments I've received. If you're looking for a cake that contains coffee, feel free to look elsewhere! This lemon cream cheese coffee cake is pretty delicious without it. :)

This lemon cream cheese coffee cake is so tender and flavorful, and perfect for breakfast, dessert, or entertaining!

Lemon Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

for the cake:
2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, cold
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup sour cream
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract

for the filling:
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 cup lemon curd (make your own using this recipe)

Preheat the oven to 350F. Spray an 8 or 9 inch springform pan with cooking spray and set aside. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the flour and sugar. Grate the cold butter into the flour and sugar, and mix until the butter pieces are no larger than pea-sized. Measure 3/4 cup of the mixture, and set aside. Add the baking soda, baking powder and salt and mix well. In a small bowl, mix the sour cream, egg and vanilla extract until combined. Pour the sour cream mixture into the flour mixture, and mix until just combined.

To make the cream cheese filling, beat the cream cheese on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add in the sugar and egg and beat until combined. Spread the cake batter evenly in the prepared pan. Pour the cream cheese mixture over the cake batter, being careful to leave a margin of 1/2 - 1 inch of cake batter uncovered around the edges. Spread the lemon curd on top of the cream cheese mixture. Sprinkle the remaining 3/4 cup crumbs over the lemon curd. Bake for 50-55 minutes, or until light golden brown on top, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes before removing.
This lemon cream cheese coffee cake is so tender and flavorful, and perfect for breakfast, dessert, or entertaining!

For more tasty coffee cake recipes, be sure to check out these fabulous posts 
from my Celebrating Food blogging friends below:


Coconut Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake from Creations by Kara
Coffee Cake Muffins from Pretty Providence
Sour Cream Coffee Cake from Savory Experiments
Easy Carrot Coffee Cake from An Italian in my Kitchen
Peach Coffee Cake from Real Mom Kitchen
Vegan Coffee Cake Muffins from Namely Marly
Slow Cooker Coffee Cake from 365 Days of Slow Cooking
Cinnamon Coffee Cake Muffins from My Mommy Style
Mason Jar Pecan Streusel Coffee Cake from Premeditated Leftovers
Grandma's Cinnamon Coffee Cake from Simply Stacie

and even more delicious coffee cake recipes from around the web:

Fresh Raspberry Coffee Cake from The Baker Upstairs
Strawberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake from The Baker Upstairs
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Coffee Cake from Somewhat Simple
Peach Streusel Coffee Cake from Somewhat Simple
Mixed Berry Coffee Cake from One Little Project
Lemon Raspberry Coffee Cake from Lemon Tree Dwelling
Coffee Cake Muffins from Damn Delicious
Raspberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake from OMG Chocolate Desserts
Blueberry Coffee Cake from Glorious Treats
Apple Crisp Coffee Cake from Spicy Southern Kitchen
2 Minute Coffee Cake in a Mug from Heather Likes Food

Happy National Coffee Cake Day!

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