Coconut Key Lime Cake

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Coconut Key Lime Cake

 

Coconut Key Lime Cake

3 C. cake flour, sifted (12 oz.)
2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
1 3/4 C. sugar
2/3 C. butter, softened
3/4 C. coconut water
1/4 C. Key lime juice
1 t. vanilla
6 egg whites

Coconut Key Lime Seven Minute Frosting
1 1/2 C. sugar
1/4 t. cream of tartar
1/8 t. salt
2 T. coconut water
3 T. Key lime juice
2 egg whites
1 1/2 t. vanilla

2 1/2 to 3 C. shredded sweetened coconut

 

Spray 3 nine inch pans with baking spray. Line the bottoms with a parchment circle, then spray that a bit.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.

In a small measuring cup, combine the coconut water and the Key lime juice and set that aside.

In a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar for about three to four minutes. Add the vanilla and beat for just a few seconds. Add the flour mixture and alternate with the coconut water mixture.

In a clean bowl, beat the egg whites to soft peaks.

Fold the egg whites into the batter just until incorporated. Divide the batter into the three prepared pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

When done, cool the cakes in their pans for about 10 minutes. Turn them out and cool completely on a cooling rack.

Prepare the frosting by combining all of the ingredients, except the vanilla in a heat proof bowl. Beat with a hand mixer for about a minute. Place the bowl over a pot of boiling water without letting the bottom of the bowl touch the water. Resume beating with your mixer for 7 minutes. Remove the bowl from the heat and beat in the vanilla.

To assemble the cake, place one layer on a cake stand. I like to place three strips of parchment in a triangular shape under the outer edges of the cake for easy clean up. Then scoop about a 1/3 cup of frosting over the top and spread to the edges of the cake. Repeat with the next two layers. Frost the sides with the remaining frosting. Now, the fun part…get a handful of coconut and go around the sides of the cake, lightly pressing it into the frosting. You can cover just the sides, or the entire cake, like I did.

Notes:

  • The cake was adapted from Cooking Light’s Fresh Coconut Cake.
  • Be really careful about not letting the bottom of the bowl touch the boiling water when making the frosting. You will end up with a crunchy and grainy texture if it does. I use a pot small enough to allow the bowl to sit on top.

Blueberry Cake

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Blueberry Cake

 

Ingredients

Blueberry Cake Ingredients:
    • 3 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    • pinch of salt
    • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
    • 2 cups granulated sugar
    • 6 eggs
    • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
    • 2 pints (4 cups) fresh blueberries
Glaze Ingredients:
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract

Method

To Make The Cake:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease and flour a bundt pan, and set aside. (See tips below for how to properly grease/flour a pan. Also, I used a 10-cup large bundt pan.)

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt until combined.

Using an electric mixer with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar together on medium-high speed for about 3 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to medium-low. Add vanilla, almond extract, and eggs (one at a time). Continue beating for an extra 2 minutes, scraping down the pan once or twice so that everything is well mixed. Add in half of the flour mixture, and beat on low speed until just combined. Add in half of the Greek yogurt, and beat on low speed until just combined. Repeat with the remaining flour mixture and Greek yogurt, beating until just combined. (Do not overbeat.) Fold in the blueberries by hand, reserving a dozen or so extra berries on the side.

Sprinkle the reserved blueberries evenly around the bottom of the prepared bundt pan. Then pour batter evenly into the pan on top of them, and spread the top of the batter with a spoon until it is smooth.. Bake for 60 to 75 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near center of cake comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack for at least 30 minutes, or until the metal pan is lukewarm to the touch (and not hot). Invert the cake onto a cooling rack or serving dish, and let it cool completely. Drizzle with the glaze.

Serve immediately, or store covered for up to 5 days.

To Make The Glaze:

Whisk ingredients together in a small bowl until smooth. If the glaze is too thick, add more milk. If it’s too thin, add more powdered sugar.

recipe courtesy of gimmesomeoven.com

The Best Potato Salad

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The Best Potato Salad

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds mixed fingerling potatoes, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp. prepared mustard
  • 1 Tbsp. pickle juice
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 cup peas, cooked and drained
  • 1 cup corn, cooked, cut off the cob
  • 8 slices fully cooked bacon, chopped in large pieces
  • 1/2 cup bread and butter pickles, chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery, chopped
  • 1/4 cup red sweet peppers
  • 1/4 cup chives

Directions:

Bring water to boil in a large pot; add in 1 Tbsp. of salt plus the chopped potatoes. Bring to a simmer and cook for abut 10-12 minutes, until the potatoes are tender. Drain well.

In a small bowl, make the dressing by adding the mayonnaise, mustard, pickle juice, sugar, and garlic. Mix together and set aside.

Cook the peas and corn and allow to cool. Chop the bacon, pickles, celery, sweet peppers, and chives.

Toss the potatoes gently with the dressing; allow to sit for about 10 minutes.

Add in the remaining ingredients; salt and pepper to taste. Gently toss until mixed together.

 

Recipe courtesy of reluctantentertainer.com

 

Potato & Green Bean Salad

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Potato & Green Bean Salad

Ingredients

  • 4 cups potatoes, cooked – use your favorite variety of potato – cut bite size
  • 1 pound of green beans, cooked (cut to bite size if you like)
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1 small red onion, chopped small
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano (or your favorite herb blend with oregano)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, pressed
  • salt & fresh cracked pepper to taste
Dressing
The recipe calls for Newman’s Own Olive Oil & Vinegar Dressing.  You can also make your own or use your favorite vinegar and oil dressing from the store.  I have used Good Seasons Zesty Italian Dressing – excellent on this salad too!
  • In a small bowl or jar, pour desired amount of dressing (at least 1/3 cup) and add the pressed garlic and oregano to the dressing and mix.
Directions
Place cooked potatoes, green beans and onions in a large bowl.  Add desired amount of the oil and vinegar dressing mixture, lightly toss. Salt and pepper to taste.  Chill in fridge or serve immediately. Enjoy!
Tips
Have fun with this recipe.  You don’t need to peel the potatoes, do what you prefer.  I cut my potatoes to bite size and boiled them until ready.   Be sure to use fresh green beans or frozen – skip canned.  I use green bean steamers (12 oz). You could use a sweet onion, like vidalia, in place of the red or green onion, or in addition.  Add more veggies if you like.  A sweet oil and vinegar dressing would be great. Sandi makes her salad ahead of time and chills it overnight.  I made my salad and served it right away. I had leftovers and added a little more dressing when serving it the next day.
Recipe courtesy sweetlittlebird.com

Food – White Bean & Bacon Soup

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White Bean & Bacon Soup

Ingredients
  • ½ pound bacon, chopped
  • 1 TBS olive or grapeseed oil
  • 1 TBS butter
  • 1 cup small-diced onion
  • ½ cup diced carrots
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 15-ounce cans of Cannellini beans (white beans), drained and rinsed
  • a few pinches salt and pepper
  • 1 TBS herbs (like basil or Italian seasoning)
  • 2 dashes of Tabasco or a sprinkling of red pepper
  • 32 (4 cups) ounces of chicken stock
  • ¼ cup pesto
Instructions
  1. In a large heavy-bottom pot over medium-high heat, cook the chopped bacon until crisp.
  2. Remove the pot from the heat. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon, drain it on a paper towel and place it in a small bowl for later use.
  3. Discard all but 1 TBS of the bacon fat. Add the olive oil and butter to the bacon fat and return the pot to the heat. Once melted, add your onions and carrots and allow them to cook till softened, stirring occasionally – about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic and stir frequently for about 2 minutes.
  5. Add the beans, salt & pepper, seasoning(s) and stock. Stir well.
  6. Add Tabasco/red pepper and half of your reserved crispy bacon; simmer over med-low, covered, for 45 minutes to an hour.
  7. With 10 minutes left to go, use a spoon to mash about ¼ of the beans, which will make the soup a bit creamier. Reduce the heat to low until the soup is finished cooking. Remove from the heat, taste, and adjust your seasoning.
  8. Let the soup sit for at least 10 minutes prior to serving. When ready to serve, ladle into small bowls, top with a dollop of pesto and some crispy bacon and enjoy! This soup is fabulous reheated as well.

Recipe courtesy of musingsofahousewife.com

Food – 5 Ingredient Pear Pomegranate Salsa

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5 Ingredient Pear Pomegranate Salsa

Ingredients

2 fresh pears (any kind), cored and diced
1 fresh pomegranate, seeded (see my tutorial on how to open and de-seed a pomegranate)
half a red onion, diced
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
juice of half a lime

Method

Toss all ingredients together until combined. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve immediately, or store in a sealed container for up to 2 days.

Recipe Courtesy of gimmesomeoven.com

Food – German Chocolate Cake

German Chocolate Cake

For the cake:
2 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chopped
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
6 tablespoons water
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 ¼ cup + ¼ cup sugar
4 large eggs, separated
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the filling:
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup sugar
3 large egg yolks
3 ounces butter, cut into small pieces
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup pecans, toasted and finely chopped
1 1/3 cups unsweetened coconut, toasted

For the syrup:
1 cup water
¾ cup sugar
2 tablespoons dark rum

For the chocolate icing:
8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 ½ ounces unsalted butter
1 cup heavy cream

1. Butter two 9-inch cake pans, then line the bottoms with rounds of parchment or wax paper. Preheat the oven to 350°.

2. Melt both chocolates together with the 6 tablespoons of water. Use either a double-boiler or a microwave. Stir until smooth, then set aside until room temperature.

3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, or by hand, beat the butter and 1 ¼ cup of the sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in the melted chocolate, then the egg yolks, one at a time.

4. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

5. Mix in half of the dry ingredients into the creamed butter mixture, then the buttermilk and the vanilla extract, then the rest of the dry ingredients.

6. In a separate metal or glass bowl, beat the egg whites until they hold soft, droopy peaks. Beat in the ¼ cup of sugar until stiff.

7. Fold about one-third of the egg whites into the cake batter to lighten it, then fold in the remaining egg whites just until there’s no trace of egg white visible.

8. Divide the batter into the 2 prepared cake pans, smooth the tops, and bake for about 45 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Cool cake layers completely.

While the cakes are baking and cooling, make the filling, syrup, and icing.

To make the filling:

1. Mix the cream, sugar, and egg yolks in a medium saucepan. Put the 3 ounces butter, salt, toasted coconut, and pecan pieces in a large bowl.

2. Heat the cream mixture and cook, stirring constantly (scraping the bottom as you stir) until the mixture begins to thicken and coats the spoon (an instant-read thermometer will read 170°.)

3. Pour the hot custard immediately into the pecan-coconut mixture and stir until the butter is melted. Cool completely to room temperature. (It will thicken.)

To make the syrup:

1. In a small saucepan, heat the sugar and water until the sugar has melted. Remove from heat and stir in the dark rum.

To make the icing:

1. Place the 8 ounces of chopped chocolate in a bowl with the corn syrup and 1 ½ ounces of butter.

2. Heat the cream until it just begins to boil. Remove from heat and pour over the chocolate. Let stand one minute, then stir until smooth. Let sit until room temperature.

To assemble the cake:

Remove the cake layers from the pans and cut both cake layers in half horizontally, using a serrated bread knife.
Set the first cake layer on a cake plate. Brush well with syrup. Spread ¾ cup of the coconut filling over the cake layer, making sure to reach to the edges. Set another cake layer on top.

Repeat, using the syrup to brush each cake layer, then spreading ¾ cup of the coconut filling over each layer, including the top.

Ice the sides with the chocolate icing, then pipe a decorative border of chocolate icing around the top, encircling the coconut topping.
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