Blueberry Pie

We live in one of the best locations in the world for blueberries and wild ones in Nova Scotia are a rare find. We found some wild ones in the middle of our province and picked enough for a pie! Blueberries are full of antioxidants and are delicious off the bush or baked up in a yummy pie! This pie recipe has an all butter crust to add to the flavour of this homemade pie.

Pie Crust:

In a food processor mix together:

  • 2 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt

Add in and pulse until the butter is broken into small bits:

  • 1 cup cold butter

Pulse the flour and butter mixture with:

  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • 6-8 tbsp ice water

Pulse only until a soft dough is formed. Separate into 2 discs and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

Filling:

  • 5 cups blueberries
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch
  • juice of half a lemon

Combine together in a bowl. Roll out bottom crust, fit into a pie plate, fill with the blueberry mixture, and roll out the top crust and place on top. Crimp the edges (discarding the excess), brush some cream on top and sprinkle with sugar.

Bake at 425 degrees F for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 degrees F and bake for another 25-30 minutes or until well browned and bubbly. If crust gets too browned, cover with foil part way through baking. Cool and then serve.

 

Lemon Cheesecake Squares

I was looking for a lemon bar recipe that doesn’t take too many eggs for a large pan so it would be easy to replicate. I found a recipe online that has cream cheese in it that only takes 4 eggs for a large pan. Cream cheese is your friend if you are egg allergic or do not eat eggs! This is the modified recipe using yogurt as egg replacement along with a couple more tweaks to the original recipe to make it stable.

Lemon Cream Cheese Bars

Base:

Mix together:

  • 2 cups graham crumbs
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

The cut in until crumbly:

  • 1/2 cup cold butter

Press into a tin foil lined 9 by 13 pan and bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees F .

Top:

In a large bowl, mix together until creamy:

  • 2 pkgs softened cream cheese (250g each)
  • 1 and 3/4 cups white sugar

The add in and mix well:

  • 1 cup plain unsweetened yogurt (equal to 4 eggs)
  • zest of 4 lemons
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 6 tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Pour over top of baked crust and bake another 30 minutes at 350 degrees F until the top is set. Cool completely and refrigerate for a few hours before cutting.

 

 

Caramel Latte Cake

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This cake is my version of a caramel latte that you can find at your local coffee shop. I have used my chocolate chip layer cake recipe as the base for this cake, omitted the chocolate chips and added espresso powder. The frosting recipe is one I have used for other cupcakes and cakes with added espresso powder.

Caramel Latte Cake

Cream together:

  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 1 and 1/2 cups sugar

Then add in and mix well:

  • 1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil

Then mix in:

  • 3/4 cup plain unsweetened yogurt (equal to 3 eggs)
  • 3 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp espresso powder

In a separate bowl, sift together dry ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt

Alternate mixing in dry ingredients and the milk mixture into the batter:

  • 1 and 1/4 cups milk with 1 tbsp vinegar

Divide the batter between 2 parchment lined 9 inch cake pans. Bake 350 degrees F for approximately 35 minutes. Cool.

Frosting

Caramel Espresso Frosting

Melt butter in a small saucepan and then add in the brown sugar, cream and salt:

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 and 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup heavy cream (35%)
  • pinch of salt

Make sure the sugar and the salt is dissolved and bring to a boil on medium-low heat for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in:

  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tbsp espresso powder

Allow to cool to room temperature (reserve a 1/3 cup for drizzle) and then gradually beat in the icing sugar until the consistency you want:

  • 4-5 cups icing sugar

When the cake is cool, fill and frost the top. Drizzle the reserved caramel on top.

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Lemon Blueberry Cream Cheese Loaf

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Nova Scotia is renowned for its blueberries and I love all things blueberry as does my family. That includes muffins, cakes, crisps, and fresh blueberries with cream! They are all delicious! I wrote this recipe to take on a camping trip. This recipe makes 2 loaves and will transport and keep nicely for a couple days, if they last that long!

Lemon Blueberry Cream Cheese Loaf

In a large mixing bowl, cream together:

  • 3/4 cup softened butter
  • 1 pkg room temperature cream cheese (250g)
  • 1 and 3/4 cups sugar

Then add in:

  • 1 cup plain unsweetened yogurt (equal to 4 eggs)
  • Zest and juice of 2 lemons (about 1/3 cup)

Then add in sifted dry ingredients:

  • 4 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt

Mix until combined and then add in:

  • 1/4 cup milk

After the batter is just mixed, fold in:

  • 3 cups blueberries, dusted with flour

Bake at 350 degrees F for approximately 70 minutes, in two parchment lined loaf pans. This makes 2 large loaves.

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Banana Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting

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A last minute request from school for cupcakes when you have an egg allergic child means you can’t run out to the bakery and buy a dozen. Luckily I had some bananas on the counter which inspired me to write a new cupcake recipe!! Banana Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting! These would also be yummy with a chocolate frosting or a maple frosting.

Banana Cupcakes

In a large mixing bowl, cream together:

  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 1 and 1/4 cups brown sugar

Then add in and mix well:

  • 1 cup mashed bananas
  • 3/4 cup plain unsweetened yogurt (equal to 3 eggs)
  • 1 tsp vanilla

In a separate bowl, sift together dry ingredients

  • 2 and 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt

Alternate the dry ingredients into the batter with:

  • 1 cup milk plus 1 tsp vinegar

Mix together well. Scoop into paper-lined cupcake tins approximately 2/3 full. Bake at 350 F for approximately 18-20 minutes.

Caramel Frosting

Melt butter in a small saucepan and then add in the brown sugar, cream and salt:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream (35%)
  • pinch of salt

Make sure the sugar and the salt is dissolved and bring to a boil on medium-low heat for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and add in:

  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Allow to cool to room temperature and then gradually beat in the icing sugar until the consistency you want:

  • 3 cups icing sugar

Frost the cooled cupcakes.

Coconut Cream Cheese Bundt Cake

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I have a new bundt cake pan so I have been anxious to try it out. I have been thinking about a coconut cake and decided cream cheese and lime would make a tasty combination with the coconut. I really love how this cake bakes up nice and sturdy, yet moist and delicious!

Coconut Cream Cheese Bundt Cake

In a large bowl cream together:

  • 1 pkg cream cheese softened
  • 1/2 cup butter softened
  • 1 and 1/2 cups sugar

Then add in and mix well:

  • 1/2 cup plain unsweetened yogurt (equivalent to 2 eggs)
  • juice of 2 limes
  • 1 tsp vanilla

In a separate bowl, sift together:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 cup coconut
  • Zest of 2 limes
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt

Then alternate adding in the dry ingredients into the batter with:

  • 1 and 1/2 cups coconut milk

Mix well. Bake 350 degrees F for approximately 45-50 minutes.

Glaze:

  • 1 and 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Mix together until smooth. Pour over cooled cake and top with toasted coconut.

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Crunchy Top Brownies

 

IMG_3720Valentine’s Day calls for a new brownie recipe!! I had a request from a reader to make brownies that have a crunchy top. After some research, I was able to make a pretty great batch.  These brownies are chewy with a crunchy top and a rich fudge-y, chocolate-y taste! The secret to making the top crunchy is the chocolate chips which get melted and added to the batter.

Crunchy Top Brownies

In a small saucepan, melt:

  • 1/3 cup butter

Add the butter into a mixing bowl with:

  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Mix well. Then add:

  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt (equal to 2 eggs)

Mix well, then add in:

  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted

Mix well and then add the dry ingredients. Mix until combined.

  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

Bake at 325 degrees F in a parchment lined 8 by 8 pan for 30-35 minutes. Cool in the pan on a wire rack.

Recipe Note: If you want to have these with a different twist, replace 1/4 cup of the chocolate chips with mint chocolate chips to make mint brownies!

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