For the crust:

1 3/4 cups ginger snap/vanilla wafer crumbs
3 tablespoons sugar
Pinch of salt
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted

For the cheesecake:
2 pounds (four 8-ounce boxes) cream cheese, softened
1 1/3 cups maple sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 teaspoons blackberry extract
1 teaspoon lemon juice
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/3 cups sour cream or heavy cream, or a combination of the two

To make the crust:

  • Butter a 9-inch springform pan—choose one that has high sides. Mine is square.
  • Stir the crumbs, sugar and salt together in a medium bowl. Pour over the melted butter and stir until all of the dry ingredients are uniformly moist.
  • Turn the ingredients into the buttered springform pan and use your fingers to pat an even layer of crumbs along the bottom of the pan and about halfway up the sides. Don’t worry if the sides are not perfectly even or if the crumbs reach above or below the midway mark on the sides.
  • Center a rack in the oven, preheat the oven to 350°F and place the springform on a baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes.
  • Set the crust aside to cool on a rack while you make the cheesecake.
  • Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F.
To make the cheesecake:
  • Working in a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the cream cheese at medium speed until it is soft and truly creamy, about 5 minutes.
  • With the mixer running, add the sugar and salt and continue to beat another 4 minutes or so, until the cream cheese is light. Beat in the vanilla and blackberry extract.
  • Add the eggs one by one, beating for a full minute after each addition. Reduce the mixer speed to low and stir in the sour cream and/or heavy cream.
  • Give the batter a few stirs with a rubber spatula, just to make sure that nothing has been left unmixed at the bottom of the bowl, and scrape the batter into the springform pan.
  • Bake the cheesecake for 1 hour and 30 minutes, at which point the top will be browned (and perhaps cracked) and may have risen just a little above the rim of the pan. Turn off the oven’s heat and open the door a crack.
  • Allow the cheesecake to sit for another hour.
  • After 1 hour, carefully remove from the oven and leet the cheesecake come to room temperature on a cooling rack.
  • Run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen sides.
  • When the cake is cool, cover the top lightly and chill the cake for at least 6-8 hours, although overnight would be better.
  • Remove springform sides. The easiest way to cut cheesecake is to use a long, thin knife that has been run under hot water and lightly wiped. Keep warming the knife as you cut slices of the cake.
  • Wrapped well, the cake will keep for up to 1 week in the refrigerator or for up to 2 months in the freezer. It’s best to defrost the still-wrapped cheesecake overnight in the refrigerator.
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2 + 1/3 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 + 1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 + 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 + 2/3 cups sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon grated orange peel
6 + 6 tablespoons butter, room temperature
2 JUMBO eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vinegar
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
2 cups blueberries

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Sift together the 2 cups flour, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 2/3 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg and orange peel in a large mixing bowl.
  • Whisk together the eggs, 6 tablespoons butter, buttermilk and vanilla.
  • Gently fold in the blueberries.
  • Pour liquid mix into flour mixture and beat until smooth with a hand mixer.
  • Pour into a prepared 9×9 pan.
  • In a small food processor process all the remaining ingredients except the walnuts until smooth.
  • Using your hands form small flat pancakes with the mixture and scatter over cake batter until well covered.
  • Poke a few holes down into the cake for the streusel to run into or run a knife through creating a swirl.
  • Scatter walnuts evenly over top.
  • Bake 1 hour.
  • Serve warm with a dab of butter melting on top of each piece.
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4 medium navel oranges, room temperature
3 squares unsweetened chocolate
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
2 Jumbo eggs
1 cup whole milk
2 cups flour

  • Heat oven to 325 degrees.
  • Generously grease a Bundt pan (I like a decorative Nordicware or Wilton pan)
  • Squeeze oranges, saving pulp
  • Melt the chocolate in the microwave. Then add 1/2 cup of the sugar, the cinnamon and 1/2 cup of the orange juice, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Cool.
  • Mix the baking soda into 2 teaspoons of orange juice.
  • In a large mixing bowl cream the shortening with 1 cup sugar. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each.
  • Alternate the milk and flour, sifting the flour into the cream mixture and blend until smooth.
  • Add the baking soda mixture and blend well.
  • Add the cooled chocolate mixture and blend well.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
  • Level pan by dropping on counter top to remove air bubbles.
  • Bake until springy 55-60 minutes.
  • Cool 10 minutes and then invert onto platter.
  • Cool before frosting.

1/2 cup butter, softened
5 cups sifted powdered sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice, pulp and all
2 teaspoon orange zest

  • Beat butter until fluffy.
  • Beat in 1/2 of the powdered sugar until smooth.
  • Add orange juice, vanilla and orange peel. Blend until smooth.
  • Slowly add the remaining sugar and blend until silky.
  • Adjust sugar and orange juice until desired consistency and flavor is reached.
If you don’t have this mess in the end, you did it wrong!
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GOOD MORNING EVERYONE!  Tamy here filling in.  I hope you enjoy this Apple crisp.  It’s simple and simply delicious!!!


2-3 large Granny Smith apples (4 Cups)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup apple juice

2/3 cup flour
1/2 cup old fashioned oatmeal
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 small box cheesecake flavored instant pudding

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine all CRISP ingredients and mix well. Pour into an un-greased stoneware pan.
  • In a mixing bowl combine the topping ingredients and mix until crumbly.
  • Sprinkle topping over apple mixture.
  • Bake 45-60 minutes or until apples are tender and topping is crisp and golden.
  • Serve warm with a scoop of French vanilla ice cream.
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Apple and Almond Cake

I’m so happy to be guest posting for Our Krazy Kitchen and Save Room for Dessert.  Dessert I believe is very necessary in life.  A mouthful of a luscious dessert is a little treat which can make a meal memorable. Alternatively a sweet pick-you-up in the mid afternoon with a cup of tea is a tradition I grew up with in England and happily continue to this day! 

I hope you enjoy this apple and almond cake, it’s a lovely flavor combination and tastes just as good the next day – if it lasts that long.


2 sticks unsalted butter (room temperature if possible)
1 1/2 cups sugar
Zest of an orange
4 eggs
1/4 cup sour cream
Juice of an orange
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup ground almonds
1 teaspoonful cinnamon powder
1/2 teaspoonful allspice
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 teaspoonfuls baking powder
1/2 teaspoonful of baking soda
1/8 cups flaked almonds
2 large or 3 medium apples (peeled and chopped)
1-2 teaspoonful sugar (for sprinkling)

Heat the oven to 350 F

Cream the butter, sugar and orange zest together until really light and creamy.

Add the eggs, one at a time, scape the bowl down after each addition.  Beat well.

Peel and chop the apples, rub with lemon juice to stop the apples turning brown.  Set aside.

Combine the sour cream and orange juice in a measuring jug.

Combine the flour, ground almonds, cinnamon, allspice, salt, baking powder and baking soda in another bowl.

Pour half the flour mixture into the butter mixture and gently combine.  Add the sour cream mixture, combine but do not over mix.  Add the rest of the flour mixture and gently combine.

Toss half the apple slices in a teaspoon of flour and fold into the batter.

Pour the mixture into a greased, 11 inch springform panArrange the rest of the apples in a pattern on the top.  Scatter the sliced almonds and a tablespoon of sugar on top.

Bake for 50 minutes to an hour.  The cake is done when risen and golden and a wooden tooth pick inserted comes out clean.

Cool in the pan for 10 minutes or so, then remove and cool on a cooking rack. 

Dust with confectioner’s sugar before serving and a dollop of whipped cream.


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1/3 cup butter, melted
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2/3 cups sour milk
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups flour, sifted
2 small VERY RIPE bananas, well mashed
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup maple syrup

  • Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
  • GREASE loaf pan or 8×8 baking dish.*
  • With a wooden spoon blend the butter, sugar and eggs.
  • Blend in bananas until well mixed.
  • Sift dry ingredients together.
  • Add dry ingredients and mix well with swift strokes.
  • Add vanilla and raisins.
  • Bake 45-55 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.
  • Immediately invert on to serving plate.
  • Wait 15 minutes for cooling.
  • Warm the maple syrup in the microwave for 30 seconds.
  • Using a toothpick, pierce holes into the top of the cake.
  • Drizzle maple syrup over the cake and allow it to drip down the sides.

*Works really well in today’s decorative bundt style pans.

Recipe (page 142) adapted from ‘A Thousand Ways to Please a Husband’ by Louise Bennett Weaver and Helen Cowles LeCron

I seriously adapted this one into a modern easy to use recipe.

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Baked Pears with Butterscotch Sauce–Save Room for Dessert

Baked Pears with Butterscotch Sauce
4 ripe but firm pears
1/2 lemon
3 oz. (6 Tbs.) butter, cut into pieces
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2/3 cup heavy cream
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Tbs. Scotch whisky (optional)
  • Heat the oven to 375°F.
  • Cut pears in half lengthwise and, using a melon baller or spoon, scoop out the cores.
  • Rub them all over with the lemon half to prevent browning.
  • In a large (10-inch), heavy-based, ovenproof skillet, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Add the sugar and brown sugar and stir to dissolve.
  • Arrange the pears in the pan, cut side down, in a single layer.
  • Bake the pears uncovered, basting occasionally with the liquid in the pan, until they begin to soften and color slightly. Depending on the pears’ ripeness, baking time can range from 20 minutes to 1 hour (mine only took about 25 minutes).
  • Remove the pears with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  • Transfer the pan to a burner and boil the mixture left behind over medium-high heat until it reaches a rich, golden-brown color and smells like caramel, 2 to 5 minutes. Slowly whisk the cream into the caramel until smooth. Add the vanilla, salt, and Scotch, if using. Serve the sauce over the warm pears.

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White Chocolate Chip Macadamia Nut Cream Cheese Cookies–Save Room for Dessert

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday with family and friends.
White Chocolate Chip Macadamia Nut Cream Cheese Cookies
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
8 oz package of cream cheese, softened
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
12 oz bag of white chocolate chips
2 cups macadamia nuts
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. Whisk to combine and set aside until later.
  • Beat the cream cheese and the butter on medium speed until creamy and light, should take about 2 minutes.
  • Add the brown sugar and then mix well.
  • Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed and add the egg and vanilla. Beat on medium speed for 1 minute.
  • Slowly, add the flour mixture a little at a time, until well combined.
  • Fold in white chocolate chips and macadamia nuts.
  • I suggest placing the dough in the freezer or refrigerator for a few hours. In my experience the cookies come out better. But, this step isn’t necessary. Roll dough into walnut size balls then place on a greased cookie sheet.
  • Bake for 12 minutes, or until the edges are golden in your pre-heated oven. Let rest on cookie sheet for 5 minutes then move to a wire rack to cool completely
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Roasted Banana Pudding

Roasted Banana Pudding 
5 ripe unpeeled medium bananas (about 2 pounds)
2 cups half-n-half
2/3 cup sugar, divided
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 (12-ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed and divided
45-55 vanilla wafers, divided
  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Place bananas on a jelly-roll pan covered with parchment paper.
  • Bake at 350° for 20 minutes.
  • Remove 2 bananas; cool completely.
  • Peel and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices.
  • Bake the remaining 3 bananas at 350° for an additional 20 minutes.
  • Carefully peel and place the 3 bananas in a small bowl, and mash with a fork until smooth. *The original recipe calls for 3 sliced bananas and 2 mashed bananas. If you want more banana pieces in your pudding you may want to do this.
  • Combine half-n-half and 1/3 cup sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer (do not boil).
  • Combine remaining 1/3 cup sugar, cornstarch, salt, and eggs in a medium bowl; stir well with a whisk.
  • Slowly add hot half-n-half mixture to sugar mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. It’s very important that you mix these together very slowly and stir constantly. If the hot mixture is added too quickly it can cook the eggs! So take it slow and don’t stop whisking!
  • Return this combined mixture to pan.
  • Cook over medium heat until thick and bubbly (about 3 minutes), stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
  • Add mashed bananas, butter, and vanilla, stirring until butter melts.
  • Place pan in a large ice-filled bowl for 15 minutes or until mixture comes to room temperature, stirring occasionally. If you don’t have a large enough bowl, fill the bottom of your sink with ice.
  • Fold half of whipped topping into pudding.
  • Spread 1/2 of the custard evenly over the bottom of an 8x 8-inch baking dish. Top evenly with vanilla wafers and half of the banana slices.
  • Spoon remaining custard over banana slices.
  • Repeat procedure with vanilla wafers, banana slices.
  • Spread remaining half of whipped topping evenly over top.
  • Crush several wafers; sprinkle over top of whipped topping.
  • Refrigerate for 1 hour or until chilled.

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Homemade Mounds Bars–Save Room for Dessert

Homemade Mounds Candy Bars
7 ounces sweetened condensed milk
2 cups powered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (14 ounce) bag flaked coconut
24 ounces dark chocolate chips
  • Mix the first four ingredients together. The mixture will be very firm.
  • Form into desired shape (I formed mine into an oval shape). Place on cookie sheet and cover with plastic wrap.
  • Refrigerate for about an hour.
  • Melt chocolate chips in the microwave on 10 second intervals in a microwave safe bowl.
  • Dip coconut bars into melted chocolate. After covering each bar with chocolate I placed them on the end of a fork and tapped them on the side of the bowl to remove the excess chocolate.
  • Place each bar on wax paper and allow chocolate to harden.
I got 25 candy bars out of this mixture.
Please come visit me at Paper Plates and China
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