Archive | July, 2010

Oreo Cake Batter Ice Cream

28 Jul

Since I had been raving to my friends how much I love my new ice cream maker I offered to make some ice cream for a group of my closest friends one weekend. I wanted to make something that would really impress them.

What was my answer? Oreo Cake Batter Ice Cream. Why Oreo Cake Batter Ice Cream? Well, there is a local ice cream chain called JP Licks. They make some of the best ice cream ever. They have one particular flavor that one of my good friends absolutely loves. Can you guess what it is? If you guessed Oreo Cake Batter than congratulations! You’re right! So I decided to try to see if I could replicate it. I searched and searched and found a couple of recipes for Cake Batter ice cream. Mr. Kitchen Misfit helped me pick out the recipe and I was good to go!

Oreo Cake Batter Ice Cream

Adapted from Annie’s Eats Cake Batter Ice Cream

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup yellow cake mix
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1.5 cups 2% milk
  • 1 cup crushed oreos

In a medium saucepan, combine 1 cup of the heavy cream with the yellow cake mix, sugar, and salt.  Heat over medium heat until warmed through.

Meanwhile, place the egg yolks in a medium bowl and whisk until smooth.  Combine the remaining cream, vanilla, and milk in a large mixing bowl with a fine mesh sieve set over the top.

When the mixture in the saucepan is warm, slowly pour a small amount into the bowl with the egg yolks to temper them, whisking constantly.  Continue pouring the cream mixture in a steady stream, whisking continuously until completely combined.

Return the mixture to the saucepan over medium heat.  Continue heating, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan, until the mixture thickens slightly and reads 170-175˚F on an instant-read thermometer.

Immediately pour the custard mixture through the mesh sieve into the bowl with the remaining cream and milk and mix to blend.  Cover and chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator.  Once the mixture is chilled through, freeze in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.  When you have about 5 minutes left, add the crushed oreos. Store in an airtight container in the freezer.

So what was the verdict? My friend who loves the Oreo Cake Batter ice cream at JP Licks told me it tasted just like the original. And needless to say, I came home with an empty container. Just a small side note, I found myself wanting more of a cake batter flavor, so next time I think I’ll add a little more of the cake mix. It’s all about your preference and taste!


Turkey Pesto Meatballs

21 Jul

I love me some meatballs. When my Momma would make meatballs, she always made a huge pot of them (She tends to make a lot of everything really), and every time I would walk past the pot I would dive in for a meatball. They were just THAT good.

These are NOT my Momma’s meatballs, but they are still pretty delicious. My Mom would make beef meatballs, and these are turkey. Although I think this recipe would taste delicious made with either beef, turkey, chicken, even lamb. You can buy store bought pesto but ever since I made my own homemade pesto, I haven’t gone back (Although, I have to admit, Whole Foods makes a delicious pesto). But I digress…

Turkey Pesto Meatballs

Adapted from Baked Bree’s Turkey Pesto Meatballs

  • 2lbs ground turkey breast
  • 1.5 cups bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup pesto (recipe to follow)
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan
  • 2 egg whites
  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix everything together in a big bowl. Take a large baking sheet and stick a wire rack on top. Roll into 1 inch balls and place on wire rack. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until meatballs are browned. Serve over pasta or in a sandwich.


Homemade Pesto

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 5 cups of basil
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1.5 cups Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste

Combine pine nuts, garlic, basil and Parmesan in a food processor. While the food processor is on, slowly add the olive oil until fully combined. Add salt and pepper. Serve immediately or chill in the refrigerator.

Lemony Shrimp with Artichoke and Linguine

14 Jul

I love simple dishes that have classic ingredients and just taste amazing together. I was looking for something simple to make and that would use the least amount of heat because it was day 329081 of the heat wave in Boston. What I really liked about this recipe is that I had it warm for dinner and the next day, I had it cold for lunch. Mr. Kitchen Misfit loved the dish so much that he actually had seconds and maybe one or two bites of thirds. This is coming from someone that doesn’t really like shrimp! You can easily tailor this recipe to your specific tastes, whether you like a lot of lemon, a lot of garlic, the possibilities are endless!

Lemon Shrimp with Artichokes & Linguine

  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/4 basil, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 2 tbsp whole grain dijon mustard
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 3 scallions, sliced thinly
  • 1 can artichokes, roughly chopped
  • 1 lb shrimp, de-veined and shelled
  • 1 package of linguine
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Asiago cheese

Combine juice, zest, extra virgin olive oil, basil, garlic and dijon mustard in a small bowl and set aside.

Combine artichokes, scallions and tomato in another bowl and set aside.

Cook linguine according to package directions and then heat up a saute pan using some extra virgin olive oil. Cook shrimp until pink, about 3-4 minutes.

Add veggies and cook for additional 4-5 minutes, until tender.

Transfer to a large bowl and combine pasta, shrimp and veggies and coat with the dressing. Make sure to mix thoroughly so all ingredients are combined with the dressing.

Transfer to plate and top with Asiago cheese. Eat up!

Mango Ice Cream Yumminess

12 Jul

Boston has been going through a tremendous heat wave over the past week (luckily it has finally settled down) and I must have been clairvoyant because about a week before I FINALLY ordered my precious KitchenAid Ice Cream Maker that I have been DYING to buy! I was giddy when it came in the mail and I couldn’t wait to use it.

Well I figured this past weekend would be the day to start. I had some leftover mangoes that I desperately needed to make, and I happened to have a Mango Ice Cream recipe bookmarked that was really simple and I had all the ingredients! That and the fact it was 90 degrees outside gave me plenty of motivation to make it.

Mango Ice Cream

Adapted from ecurry

  • 500ml of half and half
  • 2 cups mango pulp
  • 1tbsp lime juice
  • 3/4 cup sugar (add more if you want your ice cream sweeter)
  • 1 tbsp rum

Combine all ingredients except for the rum and then chill in the freezer for 30 minutes to an hour

Prep your ice cream maker and make according to directions. Should take about 20-30 minutes to reach soft serve consistency. When you have about 2 or 3 minutes left add the rum – This prevents crystals forming when you transfer to the freezer.

Transfer to a freezer safe container and freeze for 2 to 3 hours – Or eat now, whatever you want! Serve alone or with some delicious leftover chocolate cake.

I was VERY happy with the way the ice cream came out and I’m determined to make my own ice cream from now on. It’s so incredibly EASY and tastes so much better than store bought ice cream! Enjoy!

Not Your Average Birthday Cake

10 Jul

This past Thursday (7/8) was my husband’s birthday and I wanted to bake him a cake this year (He did turn the big 2-5 this year!). Let me tell you, I felt like I was on Iron Chef because I was trying to get it done before he got home from work. Not to mention it was a billion degrees inside the apartment because of the intense heat wave Boston is going through this week. I’ve decided that I would fail miserably if I was on Iron Chef because I can’t seem to process more than 2 things at a time. Or maybe it was because I though my brain was going to melt from the heat.

Anyway, my husband loves beer. So when I found this recipe for Chocolate Stout Cake I knew it was the birthday cake for him. I tweaked it just a little bit by using Sam Smith’s Nut Brown Ale instead of the Guinness. It made it taste kind of like banana bread. It had a lot of complex flavors, and I was happy that my husband liked it so much! I was in so much of a rush that I didn’t even write happy birthday on it, but I figured he was ok with that! So next time you want to step away from the traditional birthday cake, go ahead and try this one!

Not Your Average Birthday Cake (A.K.A. Chocolate Beer Cake)

Adapted from Chocolate Stout Cake by And Now for Something Completely Delicious

For the cake:

  • 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 2 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 14 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups plus 3 tablespoon sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup beer (I used Sam Smith’s Nut Brown Ale)
  • 2/3 cup freshly brewed coffee, at room temperature

For the chocolate ganache icing:

  • 8oz bittersweet chocolate chopped
  • 1 cups heavy cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour two nine-inch round cake pans lined with parchment paper.

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler over simmering water, stirring until smooth. Set aside. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each (Read this part a few times. I was wondering why the hell my butter and eggs weren’t becoming light and fluffy when I realized I HADN’T ADDED THE SUGAR. Massive FAIL). Add the chocolate, stout and then the coffee (the batter will look curdled at this point, that’s okay). Add the flour in two additions and beat thoroughly until smooth and creamy.

Pour batter evenly into the prepared cake pans and bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Leave the cake in the pans for 10 minutes and then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely. If cake layers are domed on top, trim with a knife.

To make the icing, heat the cream to boiling and then pour over the chocolate and whisk until smooth. Slather it on the cake and between each later and then enjoy!

Why Disney Isn’t the Happiest Place on Earth

2 Jul

I just got back from the happiest place on Earth, and it isn’t Disney. Nope, it’s a little camp based in Casco, Maine, called Camp Sunshine and I look forward to coming to this Camp EVERY.SINGLE.YEAR. I talk about it incessantly to my friends, and yet I feel that they don’t truly understand how much I love this place. Unless they have been there themselves. It’s magic.

More specifically, I usually go to the same week every year. You see, Camp Sunshine is a camp for families with children who have life threatening illnesses. The week that I go to is for the disease called Fanconi Anemia, a rare blood disease that has no cure. I love coming to FA Week because it’s the same group of families and volunteers that go every.single.year. I love these families like they are my own. I would do anything for them, and I would do anything to help them.

Tell me you can’t look at these faces and not immediately fall in love?

So what does this have to do with food? Well, I decided to bake something delicious (and easy!) to bring up to camp. The answer? Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars. After a quick Google search I found a really easy recipe over on Eat At Allie’s that I really enjoyed and they came out delicious and everyone at camp gobbled them up. So enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

Adapted from Eat at Allie’s Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

  • 2  1/8 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 12 tablespoons butter (1 1/2 sticks), melted and cooled slightly
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
Line a 9X13-inch baking pan with parchment paper (or foil), letting the excess hang over the edges of the pan by about 1 inch. Spray with non-stick cooking spray.

Whisk the flour, salt, and baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside.

Mix the melted butter and sugars in a large bowl until combined. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla and mix well. Add the dry ingredients into the egg mixture and stir until just combined. Then fold in the chocolate chips.

Press the batter into the pan and stick it in the oven until the top is golden brown and slightly firm to the touch. Should take about 20-25 minutes. Make sure they cool completely before you cut them up.

In my haste to get them packaged up before my husband ate them all, I neglected to take a pretty artistic picture of them all cut up nice. So this is what you get for the finished product.

Uncooked, but you get the picture. They were delicious, gooey and I would make them again in a heartbeat. And they were so simple to make, especially since I had absolutely no time the day before I left for camp. Enjoy and have an awesome 4th of July!

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