It has been over two weeks since I made jam this summer. I really didn’t want to make jam but I had to. Kind of the way that you have to make Christmas cookies. It’s in the genes.
Courtesy of Alice Medrich, Sinfully Easy Delicious Desserts
In this book, Alice offers “Fresh Cherries 3 Ways.” I’m providing you with the recipe for one plus her caveat, “Cheating with Frozen Cherries.” For the other two specialties, you’ll need to read the book. (Believe me, it’s worth it.)
Alice says, “These get better and better as they sit in the fridge, drawing flavor from the (Rain’s Choice) vanilla bean.”
The picture for this recipe was made with frozen cherries (it’s February here) so they aren’t as spectacular looking as fresh cherries. That said, they were delicious. Instead of using vodka, rum or brandy, I used raspberry wine to give the cherries a fruity boost. You could also use cherry brandy. I served them over Honey Almond ice cream and they were spot on! (VQ)
Served warm, topped with ice-cream after dinner or for breakfast on a crisp fall day, Caramel Apple Bars are a comforting treat any way you slice them. Perfect for an autumn picnic, these are like a bite of fresh apple pie, conveniently packaged as a cookie bar. If you like caramel and apples, you’ll be sure to love these Caramel Apple Bars.
Courtesy of Didi Davis: www.dididavisfoods.com
Classic butterscotch candy is made with butter, brown sugar, and flavored with lemon juice. Butterscotch sauce is an American dessert topping with the flavors of butterscotch candy.
Courtesy of Didi Davis: www.dididavisfoods.com
The provocative aroma of the vanilla envelops the cranberries in this tart-sweet combination. You may serve the tart with a dollop of whipped cream flavored with vanilla and confectioner’s sugar or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. For the pastry, if you do not have cake flour in your cupboard, use one cup of all-purpose flour instead. For the filling, if you cannot find fresh cranberries, use one bag (12 ounces) of frozen berries straight from the freezer. In fact, buy several bags of cranberries when in season and freeze them for use throughout the winter months.
Courtesy of Lauren Groveman: www.laurengroveman.com
This is my absolute favorite way to make fruit tarts. Baking the formed tart (technically a galette) without a pan and directly on top of a hot pizza stone, creates the crispest, most wonderful pastry crust. Having a pizza peel is helpful to transfer the galette to and from the oven
Courtesy of Lois Laidlaw
Courtesy of Chef Kjartan Skjelde
Courtesy of Mary Sommers
This will make one 10″ Tart. You will need a 10″ removable bottom tart pan.
Peel, cut in half and core 3 pears. Poach them until soft in the following liquid.
After pears are softened by poaching, cool them and slice them very thin from the stem end through the blossom end. Place them on paper towels to drain while you make the crust and the filling.
Courtesy of Dona Judith Galicia
This recipe comes from Papantla, Veracruz, the center of the Mexican vanilla growing industry. Although apples are certainly not a fruit we associate with the tropics, the apples come from the Sierra Madre Oriental, the mountain range that is only a few hours away.
This is a slight adaptation of a recipe from Vera Cruz. While Vera Cruz is largely a tropical state, there are mountainous areas with more temperate climates within the state as well as in the adjoining states of Hidalgo and Puebla where stone fruits thrive.
Courtesy of Chef Bev Shaffer
While I was writing VANILLA, I discovered that before Thomas Jefferson brought vanilla beans to the United States, the ice cream flavor of the moment was lemon. The idea of lemon ice cream sounded intriguing, but when I looked for recipes, all I could find were lemon sorbet and sherbet. I experimented and came up with a real winner. This recipe is ideal as a light dessert and “palate cleanser.” As it’s also lower in calories than regular ice cream, it avoids the category of “guilty pleasure.”
Courtesy of Gina Tassone, Vanilla Contessa
Almost everyone has experienced the frustration of bananas that have gone from perfect to mush, seemingly overnight. Summer is especially cruel to the sweet and perishable fruit. The Queen’s right-hand woman, Gina, a.k.a. the Contessa, has thoughtfully shared with us a great recipe for utilizing those overripe bananas. You will undoubtedly want to use this recipe often, as it’s quite good.
Courtesy of Beth Hensperger
Most coffee cake recipes, especially ones for winter, call for canned pineapple, but here the glistening fresh fruit layer is made from scratch and accented with pure vanilla, a most complementary culinary pairing. To choose a ripe pineapple, look for a strong sweet fragrance and yellow-brown skin that is not too green; the leafy crown will be a bright green and an inner leaf will detach easily when plucked from the center. Adapted from an old recipe clipped from Bon Appétit magazine decades ago, it is quite perfect in flavor and texture, and easily serves a large crowd. This is simply one of the best homemade coffeecakes.
Courtesy of Rose Levy Beranbaum
This cake was inspired by the height of the apple season, fall of 1991. It is reminiscent of Tart Tatin with cake instead of pastry (one could call it Gâteau Tatin!). The caramelized apples and walnuts, topping a velvety tender butter cake is a fabulous combination. I brought it, hot from the oven, to my cousin Marion’s house in Westchester for dinner, along with a special treat: Glensfoot cream, which is high in butterfat and not ultra pasteurized. She whipped it in a copper bowl, right at the table, perfuming it with Jack Daniel’s bourbon, and spooned a little onto the top of each portion of cake. It was perfect to temper the sweetness of the cake. We all loved it. This is truly a dessert made in heaven.