S’mores Bundt Cake

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From overtimecook.com, this showstopper cake can be prepped in under 15 minutes.

Ingredients:

For the graham cracker streusel:

¾ cup graham cracker crumbs
2 tbsp. brown sugar
2 tbsp. grapeseed oil

For the chocolate cake:

5 large eggs
2/3 cup grapeseed oil
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 ¾ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
¾ cup soy/almond/coconut milk

For the marshmallow glaze:

1 ½ cups marshmallow fluff
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 tbsp. boiling water
Optional garnish-graham cracker crumbs

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350F and spray a Bundt pan well with floured baking spray.

In a small bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and oil until just combined. Set the streusel aside.

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In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the “s” blade, combine the eggs, oil, sugars, baking powder, baking soda, and vanilla until smooth.

Add the flour, cocoa, and milk, and pulse until just combined.

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Transfer half of the batter to the Bundt pan and cover with about 2/3 of the graham cracker streusel.

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Transfer the remaining batter and sprinkle the remaining streusel over it.

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Bake for 50 minutes.

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Allow to cool for at least 20 minutes in the pan before inverting.

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To make the glaze, combine the marshmallow fluff, vanilla and boiling water in a bowl. Mix until it is a pourable consistency then drizzle over the cake.

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Sprinkle with graham cracker crumbs.

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Macaron

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These are a difficult project. They take a lot of patience, but if done properly can be mastered.

Ingredients:

200 g almond flour
200 g icing sugar
200 g granulated sugar
50 g water
150 g egg whited, divided into 75 and 75, at room temperature

Directions:

Stack two baking trays on top of each other. Line with parchment paper or a silicon mat.

Process almonds and sugar in food processor. Sift out and large pieces of almond.

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Heat water and sugar on the stop. Mix and heat until sugar is dissolved and mixture reaches 245˚F.

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While heating begin whisking 75g egg whites in electric mixer on high. When they have stiff peaks either stop mixer.

Turn mixer on low, slowly pour sugar mixture into egg whites.

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Continue to whip on high for 5-7 minutes until cooled, glossy and firm.

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Mix almond mixture and other 75g egg whites (until just combined).

Fold egg whites into almond meal without deflating. Batter should be thick and flow slowly without over-mixing.

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Scoop into piping bag with circular tip (1/2 inch diameter).

Pipe 1 1/2 inch circles onto baking sheet. Hold piping bag about 1 cm above tray, and move tip quickly off the circle when finished piping.

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If top doesn’t smooth out, use a finger dipping in water to smooth out top.

Allow shells to harden for 30 minutes, tops should be dry and not glossy.

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Preheat oven to 320˚F.

Bake for 15 minutes, rotating halfway through.

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Fill with jam, nutella or buttercream icing.

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Cold Brew Cheesecake with Espresso Ganache

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Adapted from kitchen-tested.com, this cheesecake has multiple layers of coffee and is covered with a rich chocolate ganache topping.

Ingredients:

For the crust:

2 ½ cups chocolate baking or graham cracker crumbs
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
For the cold brew cheesecake:
24 oz. (three 8 oz. bricks) light cream cheese, room temperature
1 ½ cups light sour cream
3 large eggs, room temperature
¾ cup pure maple syrup
½ cup cold brew concentrate
½ tsp. kosher salt
¼ cup espresso liqueur

For the coffee liqueur ganache:

2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
½ cup whipping/heavy cream
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 tbsp. espresso liqueur

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 350F and line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper sprayed with nonstick spray.

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the “s” blade, pulse together the baking/graham crumbs with the melted butter until moistened.

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Transfer the mixture to the baking pan and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the crust from the oven and lower the oven temperature to 325F.

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While the crust is cooling, in a cleaned food processor bowl fitted with the “s” blade, combine the cream cheese, sour cream, eggs, maple syrup, cold brew, and salt until smooth.

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Transfer all but ½ cup of the batter to the baking pan.

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Add the espresso liqueur to the ½ cup batter and combine until smooth.

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Drizzle the mixture over the cake and swirl with a toothpick.

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Place a small bowl of boiling water beside the baking pan in the oven and bake for 35 minutes. Turn the oven off but leave the door closed for 15 minutes. Prop the oven door open for 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature.

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Place the pan in the fridge for 4-24 hours. To make the ganache, in a double boiler combine the chocolate chips and heavy cream until smooth.

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Add the butter and espresso liqueur and stir until melted.

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Pour the ganache over the top of the cheesecake and allow it to set for 30 minutes in the fridge before serving. The ganache will cover any cracks in the cheesecake.

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Instant Pot Jam

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During isolation we ran out of jam, but had plenty of strawberries so I starting looking up how to make jam. I didn’t have pectin and with passover approaching I didn’t want to use cornstarch. So that limited me. But I did have an instant pot!

I found this 3 ingredient strawberry jam recipe on The Belly Rules The Mind. I cut it in half just to try it, but it worked perfectly!

Ingredients:

4 cups quartered strawberries (or any other fruit)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp lemon juice

Directions:

Wash and cut strawberries. Add to instant pot with sugar and stir. Allow to sit for 1 hour.

Add lemon juice and Mix.

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Turn on instant pot and set timer for one minute. Turn off Keep Warm and allow pressure to naturally release for 15 minutes.

With an immersion blender or masher, puree the jam.

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Turn the instant pot onto saute to reduce the liquid (this took about 7 minutes for me).

Remove the foam layer on top and put into a glass container or jar. Seal (I used a Weck canning jar).

Allow jam to cool then refrigerate for up to two weeks

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Apple Cherry Layered Crumb Cake

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This delicious apple cherry combo cake is adapted from Kosher By Design Entertains. It does not require any electric equipment or cooktop to prep.

Ingredients:

3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 ¼ cups granulated sugar
½ tbsp. pure vanilla extract
¾ cup grapeseed oil
1 large egg
1 tsp. baking powder
3 large apples, peeled, cored and diced
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 can cherry pie filling

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350F and line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper sprayed with nonstick spray.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, vanilla, oil, egg, and baking powder until coarse crumbs form.

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In a separate bowl, combine the diced apples with the cinnamon.

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Transfer 1/3 of the coarse crumb mixture to the baking pan.

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Arrange the apples on top of the crumbs.

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Spread another third of the crumbs over the apple mixture.

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Pour the cherry pie filling over the crumbs in the pan.

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Spread remaining crumbs over the cherry pie filling. Bake for 50 minutes.

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Apple Pear Galette

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This recipe was based on a previous apple pie I made. I modified it to turn it into a galette which was simple and quick.

Ingredients:

For the Crust:

2 cups all-purpose flour
6 tbsp. ice water.
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup (1.5 sticks) butter or margarine
1 egg, beaten + 1 tsp water (can replace with melted margarine to be vegan)

For the Filling:

2 apples, thinly sliced
2 pears, thinly sliced
0.5 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup sugar
1.5 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
a pinch of salt

Directions:

Combine 1/2 cup flour, water and vinegar in a small bowl.

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In a large bowl, combine remaining flour, powdered sugar and salt.

Add margarine (cut into small pea sized balls). Cut into flour mixture with a pastry cutter or fork.

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Add wet ingredients to this mixture.

Wrap dough in saran wrap and refrigerate for 30mins – 1 hour.

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Mix filling ingredients in a bowl.

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Preheat oven to 400˚F

Roll out to approximately 1/8 of an inch.

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Transfer to a cookie sheet.

Place filling on dough with approximately 2 inches of crust around the edge.

Fold crust over top.

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Brush crust with egg wash. Sprinkle with coarse sugar.

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Bake for 35-45 minutes.

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Tahini Chocolate Chip Cookie Sticks

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This gluten-free snack from kitchen-tested.com has a short list of ingredients and comes together nicely despite the absence of flour.

Ingredients:

1 cup raw tahini
6 tbsp. pure maple syrup
2 large eggs
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
½ tsp. baking soda
1 ½ cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided
Sea salt flakes for sprinkling

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the “s” blade, combine the tahini, maple syrup, eggs, vanilla, and baking soda until smooth.

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Fold in 1 cup of the chocolate chips.

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Form one log on each of the 2 baking sheets. The dough will be very sticky so use a spatula to form the logs.

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Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle each loaf with ¼ cup chocolate chips, gently pressing them into the dough. Sprinkle each loaf with ¼ tsp. sea salt flakes. Allow to cool for 15-20 minutes before slicing into cookie sticks.

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Multigrain Higher Hydration Sourdough

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I’ve now continued to make sourdough and have slowly been altering my recipe with a little more water and different flours. Feel free to look at the last recipe to see my notes on starter and more detailed photos of the process.

Instructions:

150 g bubbly, active starter
375 g warm water
25 g olive oil
350 g All-Purpose Flour
150 g best for bread multi-grain flour
10 g sea salt or kosher salt
Flour for dusting

Directions:

Here is the active starter, which doubled after being fed.

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Whisk the starter, water, olive oil in large bowl.

Add flour and salt and squish together. Allow to rest for 30 minutes.

Once rested work dough into a ball, leave in bowl and cover.

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Perform stretch and folds at 1 hour intervals 2-3 times. Pinch a side of the dough, pull up and fold over itself. Turn bowl and perform on another side until you have moved the bowl 360˚.

Allow to rise for 6-12 hours.

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To shape the dough use a bench scraper to fold the dough over to the centre moving around the dough in a full circle. Flip the dough and cup the sides of the dough rotating in a circular motion.

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Either place in a bannton basket or in the dutch oven for the second rise (1-2 hours). I placed half this one in the banneton and the other half in a loaf pan. I baked the loaf pan inside the dutch oven as well.

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Preheat oven to 450˚. Drop temperature to 400˚ and bake covered for 40 minutes. Remove dutch oven lid and bake for an additional 20 minutes.

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Tahini and Olive Oil Granola

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Adapted from the cookbook “Sababa” by Adeena Sussman, I make this in large batches so that it can be snacked on directly from the container, or added to yogurt.

Ingredients:

5 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup raw almonds
1 cup raw cashews
1 cup unsweetened flaked coconut
½ cup shelled pumpkin seeds
4 tbsp. sunflower seeds
4 tbsp. sesame seeds
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 1/3 cups pure tahini paste
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2/3 cup coconut sugar
½ cup pure maple syrup
½ cup silan (date syrup)
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Optional-add in ½ cup dried cherries, cranberries, currants, chopped dates or blueberries once baking is complete

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F and line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine the oats, almonds, cashews, coconut, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, and salt.

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In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the tahini, oil, sugar, maple syrup, silan, and vanilla until sugar is dissolved.

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Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and stir together until combined.

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Divide the mixture between the two rimmed baking sheets and bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 5-10 minutes to prevent burning.

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Remove from the oven and let cool completely, break any clumps into smaller pieces, then stir in the dried fruit if using.

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Elaborate Vanilla Birthday Cake

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This is a vanilla cake that I threw together for a birthday that looked perfect for instagram. It was quite laborious but made during quarantine when we had all the time in the world (which is hopefully over by the time this is being posted, but we’ll see).

Give this a shot to try and impress a crowd.

The cake base is slightly modified from Earl Grey Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla “Buttercream”

Ingredients:

For the Cake:

1/2 cup strained and cooled tea concentrate (I used a vanilla oolong tea – 2-3 tbsp tea + 1/2 cup boiling water)
1 3/4 cup cake flour
1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 3/4 cup sugar
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
4 eggs
1 cup 1% milk
2 tsp pure vanilla extract

For the Icing:

1 cup (2 sticks) butter (softened)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons milk or cream

For the Ganache:

1/2 cup heavy cream
4 oz chocolate chips or dark chocolate

Directions:

For the Cake:

Preheat oven to 350° and spray 2-3 cake pans (depending on layers).

1) Steep tea (in filter) with 1/2 cup boiling water. Allow to cool

2) In a mixer combine flours, sugar, baking powder and salt. Mix on medium speed until well combined (about a minute).

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3) Add butter, a few cubes at a time until the mixture becomes like coarse sand.

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4) Add eggs one at a time

5) Add milk, vanilla and tea concentrate and beat well. Scrape down as necessary

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6) Transfer to prepared cake pans and bake for 35-45 minutes (depending on 2 or 3 layers).

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Allow to cool for 1 hour before preparing icing.

For the icing

1) Cream butter. Add vanilla extract and mix well.

2) Add sugar 1 cup at a time, adding milk or cream if not combining

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Ice in between layers and assemble the cake. Trim off excess on the top to ensure layers are even. Use a spatula to smooth out the edges.

I used fondant to cover the cake as well so I only put a “crumb coat of icing” however, you can also transfer the cake the fridge or freezer to cool before adding a top coat of icing.

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For the Ganache:

Before putting ganache on top, make sure cake is cold (in fridge or freezer for > 1 hour.

Melt chocolate and heavy cream over a double boiler until combined. Allow to sit for 10-15 minutes to cool.

Transfer to piping bag or ziplock and cut a small hole at the bottom.

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Pipe along the edges, pausing to allow ganache to drip down the sides of the cake. Cover the top in ganache and smooth out with knife.

For Decorations:

Top with anything you can find, laying it out in an organized manner. I used a mix of sprinkles, chocolate covered pretzels, candy canes, peanut butter cups, chocolate covered espresso beans and mini eggs. I also used icing to attach crushed mini eggs (using a cast iron skillet and a ziplock) around the edge.