Category Archives: vegetable

rhubarb buckle

i had never heard of a buckle before in the baking world, until a few days ago when i received my cookie of the day recipe in my inbox from martha stewart. the world buckle just made me want to know more, and suddenly i wanted to bake everything that could be attached to that word. it’s also very fun to say. rhubarb buckle rolls of the tongue especially well. but anyways, from what i read, buckles are basically a rustic style baked fruit dessert similar to crumbles and crisps. my perfect dessert. i really do love chocolatey cakey sweets, but i think i’d almost always choose a warm, crumbly, cinnamony baked fruit dessert first.

makes about 9-12 bars | inspired by this martha stewart recipe

ingredients:

pastry:

  • 1 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 c. wheat flour
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 c. butter ( 1 1/2 stick butter) softened (not melted!)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/4 c. sour cream

filling:

  • 1/2 c. white sugar
  • about 1 1/2 c. chopped rhubarb (about 1/2 inch size pieces)

topping:

  • 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp. light brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 4 tbsp. (1/2 stick) butter, melted

directions:

preheat oven to 350°F. spray a 9×9 baking pan with cooking spray. stir together the rhubarb pieces and white sugar in a bowl, and let sit while you make everything else. to make pastry, whisk together the flours, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl. cut in the butter with two butter knives or a pastry cutter. in a separate smaller bowl, beat the egg and sour cream with a fork. mix this into the flour mixture with a fork. the mixture should now be moist, but a little clumpy looking.

pat about 3/4 of the pastry mixture onto the bottom of the baking dish. flatten slightly with a spoon. sprinkle the rhubarb mixture over this. then sprinkle the remaining pastry mixture over the rhubarb with your fingers.

make the topping by stirring together the flour, brown sugar and salt. then mix in the melted butter with the fork. sprinkle this topping over the rhubarb with your fingers. bake until golden on top and cooked through about 50 minutes. let cool completely on wire racks. 

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Filed under dessert, fruit, pastry, recipes, summer, vegetable

zucchini muffins

so these are an extension of an earlier post where i made a small zucchini cake. i had bought a zucchini to use as a topping for pizza, and had lots of leftovers as always. and like i said before, i really like baking new things when i’m forced to use up various ingredients. these sort of turned into breakfast muffins too because i happened to have a lot of other breakfast-y ingredients to be used up, like cranberries, raisins, and coconuts. any ingredients similar to these that you have can easily be added, so feel free to raid your pantry.

makes 10 muffins

ingredients:

  • 1 c. wheat flour
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • sprinkle of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 c. olive oil
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1 c. grated zucchini
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp. raisins
  • 1/4 c. dried cranberries
  • 1/4 c. shredded coconut

directions: 

preheat oven to 350° F. place cupcake liners in muffin pan. in a large bowl, beat the egg with a whisk. mix in oil and sugar, then zucchini. stir in the lemon juice. in another bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, and salt. stir this into the egg mixture. gently stir in the raisins, cranberries, and coconut. pour into muffin cups. bake for about 15-17 minutes, until the tops are light golden brown and the tops spring back when touched.

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Filed under breakfast, dessert, muffin, recipes, vegetable

carrot cake

spice cakes are some of my most favorite desserts of all time. i love bold, warm, cozy flavors. like chocolate, coffee, cinnamon, nutmeg and so on. i do like fruit in dessert, but not as much as things like that. and i realized i actually like vegetables in my dessert more than i do fruit. for example, sweet potato pie, pumpkin scones, zucchini cake/bread, and carrot cake. when i think of things like this, i get the warm fuzzies inside.

based on paula deen’s recipe

  • butter for greasing cake pan
  • 1 c. wheat flour
  • 1 c. all purpose flour, plus more for dusting cake pan
  • 2 c. sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 c. vegetable oil
  • 3 c. grated carrots (about 4-5 carrots)
  • 1 1/2 c. chopped nuts, optional
cream cheese frosting ingredients:
  • 1/2 c. butter (1 stick), softened
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 2 c. powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla, add more to taste

directions:

preheat oven to 350° F. butter and flour a 9×13 cake pan. in a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. add eggs and vegetable oil. blend until combined. add carrots and nuts, if you are using them. pour into cake pan. bake for about 40 minutes. at this point, insert a toothpick in the center to test if it’s done. if the toothpick doesn’t come out clean, bake for another 8-10 minutes. remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes. allow to cool completely before frosting.

to make the frosting:

cream together the butter and cream cheese. add in the powdered sugar and vanilla, and beat until all combined and fluffy.

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sweet potato whoopie pies + maple cream cheese frosting

this is my first time making whoopie pies. i always have thought the name is fun, and the actual fluffy sandwich cookie itself is fun to look at too, but until now i was only enjoying them through pictures. it was about time i tested some out for real. i ended up making this recipe because i had sweet potatoes to use up, yet my family didn’t need another pie today. so far we have 2 pumpkin pies and one mincemeat pie. it’s thanksgiving, and we have food traditions that i look forward to every year, and i wasn’t going to add something new to the mix this time. i did make sweet potato pie last year in germany because it was easier than paying a fortune for a can of pumpkin. it ended up being super popular (or i have really polite friends) and it tasted pretty close to pumpkin pie. i was asked for the recipe a few times though, which i still have yet to give (oops!). i promise though that i will make it before christmas and archive the recipe here, but for now i’m not going to crowd today’s dinner table with it. instead i’ll be offering a sample of my new sweet potato experiment, and a small one at that. the recipe that i adapted it from was rather small. it was only supposed to make about 10-12 mini sandwich cookies which i was thinking is maybe good since these are a new thanksgiving addition, but i scooped too big a few times, and now i have 9 mini whoopie pies to share. if it wasn’t thanksgiving and the theme of the entire day wasn’t all about sharing and being thankful for family and friends and whatever else, i might actually hide them in the back of the fridge and thank only myself for being such a good baker. but of course, i am extremely thankful to be with my family again this year. it has been two years since i’ve spent the holidays at home, and i’m quite happy to be able bake for them again. this recipe size is probably perfect for any normal occasion though. i hate when recipes make too much and you feel like you should start googling the nearest bake sale. this will make enough to share with a few people, and you can be sure that none will be wasted. even if you are baking these for yourself, you shouldn’t fear for leftovers in that situation either. have a very happy thanksgiving!

adapted from this recipe. cream cheese frosting recipe adapted from this.

cookie ingredients:

  • 3/4 c. cooked and mashed sweet potatoes (i used 2 big and 1 small potato and had a lot leftover to eat later)
  • 1/4 c. maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 c. flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. grond cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp. salt

maple cream cheese frosting ingredients:

  • 3/4 package cream cheese (8oz. pkg)
  • 3 tbsp. butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 c. powdered sugar
  • 2 tbsp. maple syrup

directions:

heat oven to 375° F. line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, or spray a little bit of cooking spray. beat the sweet potato with the maple syrup and brown sugar with an electric mixer until smooth. then add the vanilla and the egg, and beat until well combined.
in a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt).  add this dry mixture to the wet, and stir until fully incorporated. using a mini ice cream scoop or a small spoon, scoop batter onto prepared cookie sheet. try to make the scoops as smooth/round as possible because they will look prettier after they have baked. also note that the cookies won’t spread out when you bake them, but they do puff up. bake until cookies have puffed up and dry to the touch, about 8 or 9 minutes. let cookies rest on cookie sheet for 1 minute, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely (if you try to frost the still-warm cookies, the frosting will melt and be messy. waiting is worth it).
meanwhile, prepare the maple cream cheese frosting. clean the beaters, then beat the cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, and maple syrup together until smooth. when the cookies are cooled, spoon a small tsp. amount of frosting on one half of a cookie, and then sandwich with another piece. you now have a whoopie pie. chill the pies in the fridge until you are ready to serve.

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Filed under autumn, cake, cookie, dessert, holidays, pastry, recipes, vegetable, winter

zucchini patties

 i still had half a zucchini left after making the really tasty zucchinibirthdaycake. so i made these little patties which are an adaption from another smitten kitchen recipe. sometimes when i say recipes are adapted, it means that either i did not have all of the required ingredients so i improvised, or i somehow messed up the recipe and it doesn’t look like it does in the official recipe but i still like my results.

ingredients:

1 zucchini grated

1 egg beaten

1/2 c. flour

1/2 tsp. baking powder

salt and pepper

spices like garlic powder, thyme, herbes de provence (optional)

oil for frying (i used olive oil)

directions:

stir together the zucchini, egg, salt and pepper (however much you like), and any spices you prefer. i added some garlic powder and herbes de provence (a mixture of  things like thyme, oregano, rosemary, basil…). you can pretty much add whatever spices your like. also, if you’d like you can add some chopped onions or scallions. in a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder, then stir this into the zucchini and egg mixture.

in a large skillet, heat up a couple tablespoons of the oil until it’s hot, then drop spoonfuls of the zucchini mixture onto it. after about 3 minutes or so one side, flip them over. cook on that side for another 3 or 4 minutes. both sides should be golden brown. transfer them to a paper towel covered plate and let them drain off some of the oil. to keep them warm, you can pop them in a warmed oven until ready to serve.

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Filed under recipes, savory, summer, unbaked, vegetable

zucchini cake

in addition to birthday cookies, which i happily shared with friends, i also wanted cake for my birthday. i was searching earlier in the day for recipes to use a zucchini. i found one for zucchini bread which i modified into a zucchini (birthday) cake. also, my baby toaster oven isn’t big enough for a loaf of bread and i happen to have little glass pyrex pans that would instead make a yummy square cake. the original recipe is from smitten kitchen, which is my favorite food blog. my recipe is for a small pan, about 6 square inches. it was enough for 4 servings of cake .

with cinnamon butter frosting

ingredients:

  • 1/4 c. olive oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 3/4 c. grated zucchini
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 c. all purpose flour
  • 1/2c.  whole wheat flour
  • (or 1 c. all purpose flour)
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • sprinkle of salt
  • 1/4 c. chopped nuts ( i used hazelnuts)

frosting:

use cinnamon butter frosting recipe

directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 C).

Butter and flour the pan. In a large bowl, beat the egg with a whisk. Mix in oil and sugar, then zucchini and vanilla. In another bowl, combine the flours, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, salt, and nuts. Stir this into the egg mixture. Pour into baking pan. Bake for about 20-25 minutes, until the cake has risen and isn’t soggy in the middle. Meanwhile prepare the frosting according to the recipe. Let the cake cool for about 20 minutes or so before frosting, if you can resist.

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Filed under autumn, cake, dessert, recipes, summer, vegetable