I am kind of obsessed with making caramels. Ever since I found how easy they were I can’t stop making them. This isn’t fairing well for trying to lose those extra Turkey pounds either. I started with theNutella Sea Salt Caramels and have now graduated to chocolate covered caramels. Specifically Peppermint Pattie chocolate covered caramels. I’ll give that a minute to sink in.
Holiday baking is in full swing (at least in our house). One of the quickest and easiest things to make and share with friends and family are cookies. Dozens and dozens of cookies. Who doesn’t love cookies? I mean really. In preparation for our cookie-fest we have stocked up on all of the baking essential like: flour, sugar, butter, pure vanilla extract, chocolate in every form possible and a few fun garnishes (think nuts, coconut flakes and the like). I was a girl scout after all and we like to be prepared.
Soft chewy caramels that have that ribbon of ooey gooey sticky goodness that pulls away when you bite into them. Yes that’s a very good thing. Nutella Sea Salt Caramels I don’t even have words. I’m not sure why exactly it’s taken me so long to try making my own caramels. I honestly thought it was going to be a long drawn out process not to mention the possibility of severe burns. Hello it is candy making after all. Hot bubbling sugar mixture combined with the queen of clumbsy yes it could happen. Guess what? It wasn’t hard at all.
I’m not going to lie. This is the best pudding I’ve ever eaten in my life. I know you’re thinking Paula it’s just pudding. Oh no no no no no no no no (did you see me waving my finger and shaking my head ’cause I was). It’s Vanilla Caramel BUDINO (okay still pudding but much sexier in Italian) and my eyes rolled back into my head when I tasted this. Let me back up a bit. Sus and I took a little trip to Beverly Hills a few weekends back. We holed up at the posh Beverly Wilshire (you know the one where they filmed THE Pretty Woman) and had planned on eating as much ridiculously good food as possible.
My BABY is turning 15 this Sunday. I am not okay with this. How did this happen? She went from pig tails and tutus to stealing borrowing my clothes and shoes in what seems like 60 seconds. Now she’s traded in the tutus for sparklier things (she is my child after all). She is a beautiful smart funny and kind young woman (and no I’m not okay with the shoes thing either) that I couldn’t be more proud of if I tried. Anyone have any Kleenex? I think I’m going to need some.
For me food = memories. There are so many foods that I associate with very specific people, places or events. For instance, I can’t think of Divinity without thinking of Christmas. My Grandma. My Mom. My Grandma, who I miss dearly, was a whiz in the kitchen. She was a pinch of this, a smidge of that and “baby just look at it, it’ll tell you when it’s done.” She was one of those people who you knew you wanted whatever she was cooking. Especially when she made divinity.
I have to apologize. I haven’t posted anything Nutella in way too long (covering eyes with hands). The shame. I hope I can make it up to you with this peace offering. Cake. Who doesn’t love cake? Especially one that is a cross between a brownie and a cake and is overflowing with Nutella-liciousness. AND since it’s flour less it’s practically healthy right? If not, please don’t ruin it and tell me. I’m holding onto that one thank you.
If you’re looking for a way to jazz up a simple vanilla panna cotta dessert we have a refreshing option. Mango Panna Cotta. We absolutely adore mangos in our house. My kids eat them like they were candy. And I’m okay with that because mangos are sweet, juicy, and are packed full of vitamins and nutrients. I can’t cut them open fast enough for my kids to enjoy. Lucky for me some varieties are available year round.
Hello October. And HELLO how can it already be October? Sigh. I thought we’d start out the month with a bang. In my opinion you can’t ever go wrong with chocolate. Ever. We’re not going quite as extreme as Sweet & Spicy Nutella Covered Bacon (which btw is ridiculous! As in you must try it soon) but we’re stepping outside of the dessert box. A little. Chocolate Dessert Ravioli.
It doesn’t get much sweeter than a newborn baby. The smell of their heads (oh how I wish that could be bottled), the cute as a button coo’s and those baby feet. I melt. Every. Single. Time. Our sweet friend Jen Schall from My Kitchen Addiction is expecting her first child, a daughter, very soon. Since we can’t all be present to throw Jen an actual baby shower a few of us are joining together to throw her a virtual baby shower to celebrate! Surprise Jen!
I just got back from a fantastic trip to Prince Edward Island where I consumed my weight in seafood. I ate an embarrassing amount of lobster, mussels, blue fin tuna (holy wow), scallops, oysters and anything else they put in front of me. What did I want when I got home? Chocolate. Deep dark decadent chocolate with a splash or two of Amaretto thrown in for good measure. Would you like to join me? I “might” have one left and I probably shouldn’t eat 5 of these otherwise I’ll be permanently wearing elastic pants and that’s just not attractive. At all. Sigh.
Have I ever mentioned that my most favorite dessert in the whole wide WORLD is Tiramisu? I am completely totally madly deeply passionately spoon over container in love with it. What’s not to love right? It’s made with a creamy MASCARPONE mixture that is sandwiched between espresso dipped lady finger layers. Add to that a splash of Amaretto and a dusting a dark chocolate cocoa powder. How can that be bad?
I can not believe I do not have any cavities. Seriously. I have the biggest sweet tooth. Always have. I suppose I can thank my Mom and her insistence on brushing and flossing 3 times a day ; ) In addition to having a little thing for desserts I also have a thing for cocktails. Put the two of them together I am a happy camper. This luscious little number above starts out with my homemade LIMONCELLO. If you’ve never made your own get on it. Grab a bag of lemons and some moonshine and you’re on your way.
Cheesecake is awesome. Period. What can we say about cheesecake that hasn’t already been said. What I have learned is that people are serious about cheesecake. There are definite opinions as to what should be and shouldn’t be included in one. For me cheesecake should be rich, creamy and decadent. And should always include chocolate. Okay well not always but you can’t really go wrong with chocolate or coffee. Espresso to be exact.
I know what you’re thinking. A cake without flour? I’m the first to admit that it sounds crazy but it’s true and oh so shockingly good. Since it has no flour it’s practically healthy cake right? Okay so not quite but it sounded good. This is the most fantastic gluten free cake I have tasted to date. If you wouldn’t have told me it was flourless before taking a bite I would have never know. It’s chocolate-y, fudge-y, and so decadent you’ll want a glass of milk nearby.
Me oh my peach bourbon pies! Just the sound of that does a Georgia girl’s heart good. I think it’s the law that if you’re from Georgia you like peaches. What’s not to like about them? They have a soft fuzzy exterior, they smell divine and when they’re sweet and juicy and drip off of your chin when you eat them there’s not much better. Well maybe when you bake them into pies, with bourbon. And a dollop of french vanilla ice cream and a little more bourbon. Where’s my fork?
Being a Southerner cobbler has been part of our dessert repertoire since I can remember. My Mom was the queen of cobblers so I learned from the best. You can make cobbler with just about any fruit but cherry happens to be my favorite. It’s also happens to be the most expensive fruit. Thank goodness for Sam’s Club. They’ve got the goods and at a great price to boot so as long as cherries are in season I’m good to go!
Susan and I are co-hosting a virtual dessert pot luck with a few of our uber talented friends. We’ll each be showcasing one fabulously flexible FlexiPan. I made layered Strawberry and Vanilla Panna Cotta in my Round Tray Flexipan! Who wants a bite? People that have never made panna cotta always assume that it’s fussy and difficult to make. Of course they’d think this because restaurants charge out the wazoo for this dessert when in fact the big secret is that it couldn’t be simpler. It’s almost scandalous isn’t it? With a little cream, sugar and gelatin you’re on your way to making one of the easiest and creamiest desserts on the planet.
Don’t be shocked, but I made a cake. AND decorated it. More than once. Yes this cake was a journey in the making, 3 x’s to be exact. It started out with a LONG consultation with SUSAN, who pretty much knows everything there is to know about decorating cakes. If there was a girl version of Ace of Cakes, it would be her. Queen of Cakes if you will (that has a nice ring to it doesn’t it, I smell a show) She assured me I could do this. I’ve dabbled with fondant before but it still terrifies me. She used words like easy, beginner, no problem, you got this. I countered with many a side eye.
Today I am tickled to be sharing a recipe straight out of the pages of my friend SUSAN‘s brand spankin’ new cookbook. If you’re a fan of frozen desserts then you MUST pick up a copy of her book “The Everything Ice Cream, Gelato, and Frozen Desserts” cookbook.. It’s filled with 300 (that’s almost enough for a new one every day of the year) cold concoctions including this doozy of a gelato pictured above – Chianti Gelato.