Oatmeal Raspberry Chocolate Cheesecake bars

IMG_2232[1]

I’m on a huge major intense dark chocolate kick right now …

Not that I’m actually eating it all the time, but all I want to do is shovel trunk loads of dark chocolate chips in my face.

I think it has to do something with the intensity of the smell, the depth of the taste – heh, you would think I was an actual food intellect there for a second.

IMG_2254[1]

I’m not.

But I have something delicious and jazzy to share with you!!

LOOK AT THESE BARS!!

IMG_2261[1]

Also, give me all the berries right now – raspberries especially. Ahh … gimme gimme gimme. Funny fact, one of the reasons I actually really like raspberries besides the crazy colour, and taste, is they don’t require much effort to eat. I can squish them in my mouth and we’re good to go … HOW FREAKING LAZY DOES THAT MAKE ME SOUND?! Mehh … it’s the weekend, let’s embrace it.

IMG_2245[1]

Also, these bars have oatmeal in it = breakfast food. Actually, it covers all four major food groups; which means this could totally count as a meal … riiiiigggghhhht?! Mehh … it’s the weekend, let’s embrace it.

Oatmeal Raspberry Chocolate Cheesecake bars

For the Crust:

  • 2   cup Flour
  • ½  cup quick cook oats
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 cup softened Butter
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 2/3 cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • ½ cup fresh raspberries
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips

For the Filling:

  • 8 oz softened Cream Cheese
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

IMG_2234[1]

Directions

Preheat oven to 350. Line a 9×11-inch baking pan with foil and spray with nonstick spray.

Whisk together flour, oats, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and cornstarch for crust.

Cream together butter, brown sugar and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and whip to incorporate. Combine wet and dry ingredients.

Fold in dark chocolate chips and raspberries. Set aside

In a separate bowl, combine all of the filling ingredients.

Press ½  of the crust mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan.

Top with filling mixture

Crumble remaining topping over the filling mixture.

Bake in a 350 oc oven for 1 hour.

Allow to cool at room temperature and then refrigerate for 2 hours ( refrigerating is optional, but allows for neat slicing).

IMG_2268[1]

Honey Roasted Plum Pound Cake

IMG_8943

Mmmm the smell of this cake alone will have you swoon!! And if that doesn’t work look at all that crumb!!

Funny story — I know that prunes are really dehydrated plums – but I always wondered, how the heck do every day plums that we see, end up looking like those prunes ?!? There’s no similarity how is this even possible ( yes …  these are the things I wonder about 😦 )

And then I found these!!

IMG_8887

Ontario Blue Plums … don’t these look more like prunes?!!?

… Prunes are a weird way to start today’s post, I apologize – the cake makes up for it.

And the crumb topping … ohhh the crumbs.

IMG_8939

I’m definitely one of those lovely ( read : slightly annoying) people that stand over things like this carefully picking away at the most crunchiest ( completely toasted) crumbs. That’s also the reason that I make extra crumb mixture … you can definitely half the recipe and still have more than enough for a delicious topping.

And shall we talk about this honey roasting business .. so good! It makes your home smell like fall … and with the cinnamon in the cake … ahhh i can’t even deal!

IMG_8891 IMG_8907

Honey Roasted Plum Pound Cake

Roasted Plum Pound Cake 

12 blue plums cut in half

1/4 cup Honey

1/2  cup water

2 cups all- purpose flour

1/2 cup cake flour

1/2 cup margarine

1/2 cup milk

2 large eggs

1 tsp cinnamon powder

1 tsp ginger powder

1/2 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla

IMG_8913 IMG_8919

Crumb topping 

1  cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup Rolled oats

1/4 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup melted margarine

IMG_8924 IMG_8923

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 of – on a large baking tray, spread halved plums skin side down – drizzle with honey.

Bake for 40 minuets.

Remove from oven and allow to cool.

In a large bowl, whisk together flours, cinnamon, ginger powder, baking powder and baking soda.

In a medium sized bowl, whisk margarine, milk, eggs and vanilla.

Plums should be cooled by now. Place all of the plums and any syrup that was created into a blender. Add water. Blend until plum sauce created ( approximately 3 minuets on high)

Add plum mixture to whisked liquid ingredients.

Add all of your wet ingredients, to the dry. Mix well.

In a small bowl, combine all of the crumb topping ingredients. Crumble with your fingers.

Lower oven temperature to  350 oc.

IMG_8928

Fill a prepared loaf pan, and sprinkle with crumb topping.

Bake for 50 minutes.

IMG_8945

Enjoy!!

Peach Blackberry Croissant Custard Cake

IMG_5332 IMG_5327  IMG_5326

As if anything says sum-sum-summmaaa time like fresh berries, peaches, sunshine and cake.

It’s very possible I just added the cake part, but look how peeerrrrdy this cake is.

IMG_5401

It’s a stunner!! It’s all bright and fruity and custardy and pretty deerrn easy to make.

Your weekend needs a little cake.

Life needs cake.

I need cake.

IMG_5358

Heh. So fun fact – every week when I do the grocery shopping there are a couple items you will always find in my trolly

  • Milk
  • 5 oranges, 2 apples, 2 pears, strawberries ( if they’re in season)
  • Kale
  • Snacks for Mr. LTSL … which means any one of the following, Apple Danishes, butter croissants or Belgian waffles and Jello.

… every week I pick up a container of either Apple Danishes, butter croissants or Belgian waffles for Mr. LTSL and normally it finishes once Friday rolls around.

IMG_5360

Except when there are leftovers and I have to find something delicious and snazzy to do with it. So I make cake.

IMG_5323

Peach Blackberry Croissant Custard Cake  

2 Large Peaches

1/4 cup water

1 cup + 1 tbsp granulated sugar ( separated 1 cup x 1tbsp)

4 stale croissants, torn into 8 pieces each

1 ½ cup blackberries (separated ¾ cup x ¾ cup)

4 eggs plus 2 egg yolks

3/4 cup whole milk

1 cup cream

1 tsp almond extract

1 tsp vanilla extract

¼ cup brown sugar

1/2 cup ground almonds

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/3 cup sliced almonds

1 tbsp turbino sugar

IMG_5335IMG_5342IMG_5350

Directions : 

IMG_5357IMG_5360IMG_5363 IMG_5374

Preheat oven to 325. Liberally spray an 8-inch cake pan.

Heat water and  1 tbsp of sugar in a large pan over a medium heat, add peaches and cook until the water is absorbed by the peaches . Remove from heat, and allow to cool.
In a large bowl, whisk eggs, yolks, remaining 1 cup sugar, brown sugar, milk, cream, almond extract and vanilla extract until well combined.

In a separate bowl mix ground almonds with cinnamon and ground ginger.

Add 1/3 of torn croissants to your prepared cake pan.

Add ½ of peach mixture and toss in ¾ cup of blackberries. Over your fruits , add ½ of your spiced almond mixture.

Make a second layer, using the exact same process.

Last, add remaining 1/3 of torn croissants, pressing down gently to secure all of your flavour. Pour your liquid mixture over your cake and allow to stand for 1 hour.

Next, top with sliced almonds and turbino sugar.

Bake for 45 minutes.

Remove from oven, and allow to cool completely -this also helps the liquid mixture settle – should take approximately 45 min.

 IMG_5407 IMG_5403 IMG_5411

Slice & Enjoy!!

Raspberry Rose Gin Lemonade

IMG_5923

I’m back from Cuba… and if I’m being honest real life is so blah compared to vacation life.

IMG_6332[1]

Real life = responsibilities. Waking up early. Eating healthy. working out. Grocery shopping. Doctors appointments. Aka BLLLAAAAHHH … as compared to vacation life where my most pressing decisions were; pool or ocean ? What colour bikini should I wear? To nap, or not to nap? Let’s eat French fries at 3:00 am with Cuban ketchup that tastes like barbecue sauce!!

IMG_6329[1]

Is there a world, where real life could equal vacation life? If so, can someone show me the magic door … I’ll race you to it.

In case anyone was wondering, the trip was amazing … the beach was BEAUTIFUL … the food was surprisingly pretty good ( I honestly had absolutely no expectations for good food)… and the drinks were mehh; for those who know me, I’m a Gin girl. The gin in cuba was just different, I couldn’t drink it …. So I had Vodka and OJ / Lemonade all week … I know snnnnooorreee.

????????????????

And while they tasted incredibly strong, they weren’t … there were at least a dozen times I should have been drunk… and I just wasn’t.

Soooo … in a way, I’m glad to be back … and to have my gin (how much of a lush do I sound like?!?)

????????????????

 Raspberry Rose Gin Lemonade

6 cups water

2/3 cups sugar

1 cup lemonade concentrate

1/4 tsp salt

1 tbsps rose water

¼ cup Gin

1/2 cup crushed raspberries

Sprigs of fresh Thyme ( it just makes things pretty… and it’s completely optional)

IMG_5916 IMG_5940 ????????????????

Directions: 

Place 2 cups of water and the sugar in a large saucepan and bring to a boil.

Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat and let cool.

Mix the lemon concentrate, salt, and cooled simple syrup together.

Add remaining water to taste. Stir in rose water.

In a large pitcher add crushed raspberries & gin.

Add lemonade. Mix well.

Chill for 2 hours, or serve immediately over ice.

IMG_6002 IMG_6006 IMG_6008

So Fresh, So Clean, So Summer!! Cheers ❤

IMG_6009

Victorian Sponge tea Cake

IMG_6021 IMG_6024

Woooooooooooo it’s May 2-4 weekend … except it’s not May 24th heh. But we’re full on celebrating Queen Victoria’s birthday.

Happy Birthday Vicky-darling, you look marvelous in your blingout crown and swanky dresses!!

What that means for us regular folks iss…..

Fireworks

Strawberry Short cake

Suuuunnnshhhiiinnne

And the cottage …

IMG_6027

YEEESSSS – for most Canadian’s this weekend is the official – unofficial first weekend of summer!! And I can’t wait to get it started 🙂 … ironically I also always start celebrating my birthday this weekend … even though it’s still a couple days away. It’s part of our family tradition… while I refuse to blow out my candles earlier than the actual day ( apparently it’s bad luck) I WILL be indulging in cake, ice cream, and wearing pretty things that make me want to shoot sparkles out of my fingertips.

I’m puuuuuuuuuuuuuumped!!

Mr. LTSL and I actually have a crazy packed weekend ahead of us … spending the weekend at my parent’s place … engagement … wedding … Food Truck Eats at peller estates ( HELLO … pretty much my idea of a mini Disneyland … and there will be wine) .. picnics at the lake… brunching… laughing … loving… did I mention there will be cake?!

Speaking of cake, look at this beauty.

??????????????????????????

Victorian sponge… it’s a thing. And its crazy delicious … and wicked *that word that rhymes with joist  … but starts with an “M” and makes my blood crawl when anyone says it*aaaannnd it’s so pretty and dainty.

Whether with a cup of afternoon tea, or downed with ice cold lemonade … I feel like you should get jiggy with this cake ( I welcome anyone that wants to pull me out of the 90’s … except don’t because I secretly want to forever be Kelly Kapowski)

This would also be an amazing base for a strawberry short cake … ooorrr double/triple the recipe for a layered naked cake …. WINNING!

????????????????

Victorian Sponge tea Cake

 Ingredients:

4 eggs, room temperature

2 cups sugar

1 tbsp vanilla extract

1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup cake flour

2-1/4 teaspoons baking powder

1-1/4 cups 2% milk

2/3 cups butter

Raspberry jam

Icing sugar ( for decoration)

Berries ( optional, for decoration)

????????????????

Directions:

   IMG_6014

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a large doughnut pan or an 8 inch cake pan . Set aside.

2) In a large bowl, beat eggs thick and lemon-colored. Gradually add sugar and vanilla.

3) Sift flours and baking powder. Gradually add to batter, beating at low speed just until smooth.

4) In a small saucepan, heat milk and butter just until butter is melted. Gradually add to batter and beat just until combined.

5) Pour baking pan. Bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.

6) Once cooled –  on one half spread with a thick layer of raspberry jam, on the second half spread with cool whip. Sandwich the two halves together

7) heavily dust with icing sugar & top with berries if desired

??????????????????????????

Happy days my lovely interweb friends

Sunday’s with Joy: Strawberry Cookie Dough Frozen Greek Yogurt

You know how every Monday I come here and gush over how amazing Joy is – – I tell you she’s cute and funny … and would make such a great best friend.

I plead that you should go out and buy her cookbook, because I read it as my bed time story

every.single.night.

to make sure I have sweet dreams.

Well, nothing is different this week, except – – I’m here to bring you my new-found love affair.

Sunday night got hot and heavy – – you heard me, it was an intense ménage a trois!!

Me

Strawberry Cookie Dough Frozen Greek Yogurt

And A spoon.

HOT HOT HOT

Please tell me you want in on this action!!

If frozen yogurt doesn’t get you hot a bothered, Joy made Strawberry Cookie Dough Ice Cream in her book – – get to know it.

I knew just reading the title alone I would be in BIG trouble if I made a batch of the ice cream.

So I made a couple of adjustments, ( just so I would feel okay about getting personal with it 😀 lol).

I made frozen Greek yogurt instead.

CreamyYES . RichYEESS . HealthySUREE.

I doubled the strawberries and diced them into small pieces. Fruit = health food. Added fruit = more FroYo for me   😀 

I halved the cookie dough – but cut them in tiny pieces so I still got tons of cookie dough in each bite.

It’s all about tricking yourself … and it worked.

The verdict: There’s no more yogurt left 😦 

For the complete ice cream recipe refer to Joy’s lovely cookbook bible.

Or get crazy with your own frozen yogurt by using my recipe below.

Strawberry Cookie Dough Frozen Greek Yogurt 

Greek Yogurt Base

3 Cups Full Fat Plain Greek Yogurt

1/4 Cup Sugar

1/2 Cup Honey

1 Tsp Almond Extract

1 Tbsp Vodka

Directions:

Mix all of the above together, until well incorporated.

Cover with cling wrap and chill for at least 1 hour ( I left mine over night )

Cookie Dough

1) 

2) 

3) 

4)

5)

6)

The Final Master Piece 

1) 

2) 

3) 

4) 

5) 

I’ll leave you two alone now 🙂

Enjoy each sweet moment of bliss

xox