baking · Healthy Eating · muffin

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Greek Yogurt Muffins

Once a week I like to indulge in a breakfast with a little something sweet. I recently came across a recipe that I loved! Also, muffins with a struesel topping are always a favorite of mine. That crunchy, sweet topping adds a nice crunch and sweetness that make them perfect for breakfast or snacking.

Continue reading “Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Greek Yogurt Muffins”
baking · cakes · dessert

Angel Food Cake – A Perfect Spring Dessert!

Angel food cake is a perfect spring dessert. Its light texture is perfect alone or with strawberries that are in the market right now. It’s also low in calories, so if winter added a few pounds, you won’t feel guilty about indulging! I was also amazed at how few ingredients it takes to make one. There are lots of eggs, but other than that, it’s just a few other things added!

I made this last week, and there’s really no comparison to this and what you buy in the bakery department of your grocery store. The texture is so much better. Mine had a nice brown, sugar-y edge that gave it a delicious texture. My only warning is not to make this on a rainy, humid day. Beaten egg whites don’t respond with that kind of atmosphere…I speak from experience!

Here’s the simple recipe from Taste of Home ~

Angel Food Cake

Ingredients

  • 1-1/4 cups egg whites (about 9 large)
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar, divided
  • 1 cup cake flour
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions

  1. Place egg whites in a large bowl; let stand at room temperature 30 minutes. Sift 1/2 cup sugar and flour together twice; set aside.
  2. Place oven rack in the lowest position. Preheat oven to 350°. Add cream of tartar, extracts and salt to egg whites; beat on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining sugar, about 2 tablespoons at a time, beating on high until stiff peaks form. Gradually fold in flour mixture, about 1/2 cup at a time.
  3. Gently spoon into an ungreased 10-in. tube pan. Cut through batter with a knife to remove air pockets. Bake until lightly browned and entire top appears dry, 35-40 minutes. Immediately invert pan; cool completely, about 1 hour.
  4. Run a knife around side and center tube of pan. Remove cake to a serving plate.

Eggs are usually marked lower in spring, which makes this dessert an incredible value. Give your hand a try at this wonderful cake and I doubt you’ll be buying the ones in the plastic containers at your grocers!

baking · breakfast · Gifts

Peach Cream Cheese Danish

Breakfast perfection!

For quite a few years I have been baking these Cream Cheese Danishes because after making them the first time, I was hooked! I usually make them for gifts at Christmas time, but save one for our family’s holiday breakfast!

It’s hard to believe these are light, but they are, but they taste every bit as good as any danish you could purchase at a lovely bakery! I made this recipe up last week and have been enjoying a little sliver with my coffee, fruit, yogurt and granola each morning. It’s made this a much anticipated meal! It’s soooo good!

These do take a little time, but I usually make the dough in the evening, stick it in the fridge, and then finish making them the next day. They are so worth the effort! You get four large danishes out of this recipe. Whoever you choose to share this with, will be your humble servant for life! (!) Okay, maybe not life, but they’ll love you for your kindness!

I like to set them on a piece of thin cardboard, covered with foil, then slide them into one of my large bread bags and tie with a ribbon. The cardboard will keep the delicate danish from breaking. You could top these with almonds, if you wish!

Here’s the lightened up recipe from Cooking Light ~

Peach Cream Cheese Danishes

  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ⅓ cup butter
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 (8-ounce) carton light sour cream
  • 2 packages dry yeast (about 4 1/2 teaspoons)
  • ½ cup warm water (100° to 110°)
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten 
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour 
  • Filling:
  • ⅔ cup Peach preserves – Or your favorite flavor!
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 (8-ounce) blocks 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • Cooking spray 
  • Glaze:
  • 1 ½ cups sifted powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fat-free milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  • Step 1 To prepare dough, combine first 4 ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat; cool. Dissolve yeast in warm water in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Stir in sour cream mixture and 2 eggs. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Gradually stir flour into sour cream mixture (dough will be soft and sticky). Cover dough; chill 8 hours or overnight (my preference).
  • Step 2 To prepare filling, combine preserves and next 4 ingredients (preserves through 1 egg) in a medium bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended.
  • Step 3 Divide dough into 4 equal portions. Turn each portion out onto a lightly floured surface; knead lightly 4 or 5 times. Roll each portion into a 12 x 8-inch rectangle. Spread one-fourth of filling over each portion, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Starting at a long side, carefully roll up each portion jelly roll fashion; pinch seam and ends to seal.
  • Step 4 Place 2 loaves on each of 2 baking sheets coated with cooking spray. Cut 4 (1/4-inch-deep) “X”s in top of each loaf with scissors. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 25 minutes or until doubled in size.
  • Step 5 Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Step 6 Place 1 baking sheet in oven (cover remaining loaves to keep from drying). Bake at 375° for 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Repeat procedure with remaining loaves. Cool loaves slightly.
  • Step 7 To prepare glaze, combine powdered sugar, milk, and 1 teaspoon vanilla, stirring with a whisk. Drizzle warm loaves with glaze.

These are amazingly easy…really! I hope you’ll try them! You’ll keep making them, like I do. I’m sure!

Could you enjoy a little danish with coffee in the morning? It makes morning even sweeter in my book!

baking · Cookies · Lightened Up Recipe

Cocoa Fudge Cookies

I love it when simple meets delicious! These fudgy cookies can be mixed right in a saucepan and spooned onto the baking sheet. They end up crispy around the edges and soft in the middle.

I made these last weekend for a girl’s trip I went on, and they were the perfect ending to our poolside lunch! They were also the perfect little snack in the middle of the day! If you love chocolate AND a soft cookie, this is your recipe!

Cocoa Fudge Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour 
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 7 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
  • ⅔ cup granulated sugar
  • ⅓ cup packed brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup plain low-fat yogurt 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • Cooking spray

Directions

  • Step 1 Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Step 2 Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, soda, and salt; set aside. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat; stir in cocoa powder and sugars (mixture will resemble coarse sand). Add yogurt and vanilla, stirring to combine. Add flour mixture, stirring until moist. Drop by level tablespoons 2 inches apart onto baking sheets coated with cooking spray.
  • Step 3 Bake at 350° for 8 to 10 minutes or until almost set. Cool on pans 2 to 3 minutes or until firm. Remove cookies from pans; cool on wire racks.

I failed to mention that these are only 78 calories! Cooking LIght does a great job at providing low cal treats! These Raspberry Strippers are another favorite cookie recipe I found on their site.

Are you a crispy cookie lover or do you prefer a soft cookie?

Happy baking!

cakes · dessert

Gingerbread Cake with Fresh Whipping Cream

Oh, the flavors of Christmas! Can we get enough? Surely gingerbread would be one smell and taste associated with Christmas baking. However, you don’t need to go to all the fuss of gingerbread houses or decorated gingerbread men to get that delicious, reminiscent flavor.

When I was growing up, we usually always had dessert with supper, and one treat I loved was Gingerbread Cake. I can still see the metal pan, filled with the gingery goodness. My mom would serve it topped with a dollop of whipping cream. Yum; it made the house smell so good, and it tasted even better.

I was glad to find a recipe from Cooking light for a Gingerbread cake that took me back to my childhood. This recipe has a Lemon Glaze to pour over it, if you wish. I’ve made that and love it, but for December, I’m sticking to whipping cream as the garnish! It only takes a few minutes to whip this together!

Gingerbread Cake
1/3 cup butter, cut into small pieces
2/3 cup hot water
1 cup light or dark molasses
1 large egg
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
 Cooking spray
Glaze
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 cup frozen reduced-fat whipped topping, thawed
Ground cinnamon (optional)

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350°.

Combine butter and hot water in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk until the butter melts. Add molasses and egg, and stir with a whisk until blended. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, salt, and cloves. Add flour mixture to the molasses mixture, stirring just until moist.

Spoon batter into a 9 x 9-inch cake pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool gingerbread in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes.

For Glaze: Combine sugar and lemon juice, stirring until well blended. Pierce top of gingerbread liberally with a wooden skewer. Pour glaze over gingerbread. Cool completely.

Top each serving with the whipped topping. Sprinkle gingerbread with cinnamon and garnish with lemon slices, if desired.

I love serving this warm and then topping it with fresh whipping cream and a dusting of cinnamon. This would make a great weeknight dessert to serve to your family. Why not put it on your menu for this week and add some Christmas-y smells and tastes to your supper meal? It would make a great memory recipe for your family!

What recipe evokes memories from your childhood?