Fruit


When Betty suggested Fruit as the theme for May’s Let’s Lunch I jumped on the FB wagon right away. YES!! Fruit!! I love fruit but I don’t eat it as often as I should. NOT canned fruit, Fresh! Every year we pick pears from our trees and blueberries from our bushes. Hubs plants tons of watermelon and cantaloupe. Usually we have lots and give most of it away, but sometimes, like last year we didn’t have much. The weather!! This year, hopefully, it will be different.

My favorite fruit has always been the cantaloupe. My PawPaw always had two things waiting for me when I went for a visit – Twinkies and, if it was summer, cantaloupe. He was the best PawPaw! So for as long as I can remember I have loved cantaloupe and always associate them with my PawPaw!

Hard to believe but sometimes you can have TOO much cantaloupe. I am always looking for new ways to use them. So, when the Lets Lunch theme was FRUIT I knew I had to share a couple of my favorite Cantaloupe recipes.

For an easy treat how about a Cantaloupe Smoothie

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    1 cup plain non-fat yogurt
    + 1 cup frozen cantaloupe cubes
    +2 Tbl Splenda (or 2 Tbl sugar)

Mix all ingredients together in a blender (or Magic Bullet).

This is so refreshing. I drink a lot of these in the summer – IF we have cantaloupe!

Recipe from Low Carb Smoothies by Dana Carpender.

But, there are only so many smoothies you can enjoy.

How about PIE!

Pie!!


    Cantaloupe Pie

I always thought Cantaloupe had too much moisture to make pie, but it is more like a squash than an actual melon. It has more substance, so the meat can be made into a pie. I perused several recipes and came up with this one:

    1 large or 4 cups ripe cantaloupe, peeled, seeded, pureed. {I diced and put in the food processor, pulsing until smooth.}
    1 cup sugar {mine was pretty sweet so I used less sugar, but you need to taste your melon first}
    1/3 cup AP flour
    1/3 corn starch
    1/4 tsp salt
    3 egg yolks

Place the cantaloupe puree in a large saucepan over medium heat.
In a large measuring cup whisk together the sugar, flour, cornstarch, and salt and stir into cantaloupe.
Cook and stir until the mixture comes to a low boil and begins to thicken. {Keep stirring constantly or the mix will begin to resemble tapioca, which isn’t a BAD thing, but…}
Beat egg yolks and water together.
Gradually mix some of the hot cantaloupe mixture into the egg/water mix to prevent yolks from curdling.
Pour yolk/cantaloupe mixture back into saucepan and continue to cook for about 2 more minutes.
Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

At this point you need to think about a crust and a topping. Some of the recipes I found used a basic pie crust. Some used a sweet crust. I used a basic pie crust, but I think it would be better with a

Sweet Crust.

    1 cup AP flour
    3 Tbl powdered sugar
    8 Tbl (1 stick)margarine or butter

Preheat oven to 350F (175C).
Place flour and sugar into a large bowl.
Cut in magarine (butter) until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Press dough into the bottom and up the sides ofa deep dish pie plate (9″)
Bake crust for about 20 minutes
Set aside to cool.

Once cooled pour the cantaloupe mixture into the crust.

And the topping??

Well, we liked ours with whipped cream, but I also saw some with meringue. And some with a cream cheese/sugar/whipped cream topping. They would all be good with this pie.

This is a good pie. Mine had the tapioca texture, but we didn’t mind that. It tastes like cantaloupe (DUH!!) but it is a different taste.

Keeper in this household.

What else is on the Let’s Lunch Menu? Check with Betty Ann over at Asian in America.

Sometimes all you really want for dessert is something light and sweet. Not cake, not pie, not cupcakes. Fruit would work. Not fresh, but baked. Like Dorie’s baked apples filled with fruits and nuts.

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Simple. Filling. NOT heavy. Perfect.

Apples are cored, filled with butter, fruit, and nuts. Then topped with the reduced sauce (apple juice and butter) and just a little whipped cream. Yes, it was good!

I used chopped pecans, cinnamon, nutmeg, and KAF fruit cake chopped fruit. The apples baked for about 50 minutes but could have gone a little longer.

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The recipe is on page 394 of Dorie’s around my french table

And find out how the other Frenchy Doristas felt about this little treat.

Cherries are finally in season and easily obtainable here in the Deep South. Just in time to make this weeks French Fridays with Dorie selection.

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    whole-cherry clafoutis

I had never made a clafootis before so this was a new adventure for me.

Dorie’s is made without a crust and with whole cherries. Be careful. So easy! The semi-tartness of the cherries are rounded out by the slightly sweet pudding like ‘cake’.

I made 1/3 of the total recipe resulting in a small 7″ square. And it probably would have been better, and thicker, in a smaller dish.

The recipe is on page 452 of Dorie’s around my French table.

Check out more clafoutis on the FFWD website.

Strawberry Season. I can think of lots of wonderful sweets to make with fresh Strawberries. Pie. Cake. But the first thing that comes to mind is usually ICE CREAM!.

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      Rich Strawberry Ice Cream

    2 cups fresh strawberries stemmed and halved.
    2/3 cup sugar
    1/2 cup milk
    1 1/2 cups heavy cream
    1 Tbl vanilla extract
    dash salt

Add 1/3 cup sugar to the chopped strawberries and let sit about 30/40 minutes.
Place strawberries and remaining ingredients in a blender and process until smooth.
Cover and refrigerate until ready to freeze. Pour contents into ice cream maker.
Devour!! {Okay, that’s not really part of the recipe, but this IS good ice cream.}

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This is a composite of several recipes because I couldn’t find one I really liked that was quick.

September must have been a better month for baking. Only one TWD catch-up.

    Flip-Over Plum Cake

While we like plums, the Hubs is more of a fan, I found out today that we really don’t care for them cooked. For that reason alone we did not ‘flip’ over this cake. We liked the cake. Just not the plums. And since I made 1/4 recipe and used one whole plum there was more plum than cake. And that was unfortunate because we liked the cake.

Dorie had us stirring the plums with cinnamon, ginger, corriander {I left this out}, and sugar to make a nice syrup I forgot about the cinnamon so added it to the cake batter instead. THAT was a good choice.

Sorry, Dorie, we didn’t flip-over this one, but it is not your fault. Just don’t care for cooked plums.

Chosen by Becky of Project Domestication (her 2nd pick) the group baked it on September 27, 2011. Her’s was lovely. As were those from the other TWD members. You can find the recipe on Becky’s Blog or on page 42 of Dorie’s Baking From My Home to Yours.

Once upon a time, Far Far… oh, sorry, got a little carried away…

So. Far Breton. What is it? I didn’t know until I made Dorie’s. It is a “custardy cake” from Brittany. It is not a common dessert here in the US. And if it was, it still would be rather unknown here in the Deep South. I like learning new things and new desserts, as many of Dorie’s have been to me, is twice as good because the new knowledge is EDIBLE!!.

The Far Breton was the choice of Nicole of Cookies on Friday on November 1, 2011. You can find the recipe on her blog.

I only made 1/3 of the recipe. And since I don’t have a small cake pan I was going to use my 5″ Spring form. Well, that didn’t work. I walked into the kitchen and the batter was leaking out of the pan. I quickly poured the batter and the cherries into two 4″ cake pans. Luckily I didn’t lose much of the batter.

The fars rose beautifully in the oven but by the time I made it back into the kitchen with the (new) camera they had already collapsed.

But these were so good. Creamy and soft. The Brandied cherries all floated to the bottom but that was okay. B said the sunken top would be perfect for a huge scoop of ice cream. Unfortunately, the Far disappeared before I could make that happen. Ah, well, next time!!!!

I guess the TWD catchup posts will be a little out of order. Trying to finish before the Holiday Baking Season begins.

Another first. If this was BwJ/TWD SCOUTS I would be adding another badge to my sash. This is the first Chiffon Cake I have made. I didn’t know how easy it was.

Thanks to Mary Bergin who contributed this lovely cake to Baking with Julia.

I made 1/2 of the recipe in a 5″ springform. It rose beautifully and then immediately collapsed when I took it out of the oven. But once I turned it over, you couldn’t tell.

The streusel running through it was a perfect touch. A little extra crunch.

The only thing I can say is, “GOOD CAKE!”.

You cand find the recipe on Marlise’s blog The Double Trouble Kitchen and Susan’s blog The Little French Bakery. It is also on pages 241 – 243 in Baking With Julia.

And please visit the other Baking with Julia members for their deliciousness.

    Wednesday!

Halfway through Phyl’s Ice Cream Week and that means today’s theme is Sorbet.

Sorbet is a frozen dessert made from sweetened water flavored with fruit (typically juice or purée), wine, and/or liqueur. Mine is made with pineapple, and lots of coconut – cream and milk. What better mixture than pineapple and coconut? Tropical and refreshing!! Perfect for summer. While I don’t often take a drink when I do I prefer sweet drinks and this is my favorite so when I saw this recipe I knew I had found my selection for Sorbet Day

All it needed was a tiny umbrella on the side of the bowl!!

Piña Colada Sorbet
{adapted from Fearless Homemaker}

2 15 1/4 ounce cans pineapple chunks and juice {I wish I could have found a GOOD fresh Pineapple!}
1/4 cup Splenda
1 cup light coconut milk
2/3 cup cream of coconut

Place pineapple, juice, and Splenda in a blender and process until smooth.
Combine pureed pineapple mixture, coconut milk, and cream of coconut in a bowl; stir well with a whisk. cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.
Pour mixture into the freezer can of an ice-cream freezer. Freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Once frozen, spoon sorbet into a freezer-safe container; cover and freeze for 2 hours or until firm.

And Amy was right – IT.IS.ADDICTIVE!!!!! Every once in a while you run across a piece of pineapple. and in between the distinct taste of coconut. “SIGH” Maybe next time I will add some toasted coconut!!

Phyl has a nice Slushy for adults!
Rebecca’s gone tropical with Mango.
Abby made a neat ice cream accessory
Di made a raspberry treat!!

I admit it! I cheated! There!! I said it and I don’t feel bad at all.

Tuesday of Ice Cream Week is Frozen Yogurt. And I didn’t have all the ingredients I needed for making what I wanted so I improvised. I seem to be doing that more and more all the time.

Have you ever wondered if you could make frozen yogurt by just pouring regular yogurt into an ice cream maker? I had. For quite a while.

And the answer is…..

    YES!!!

I went on Bing and asked that question. I got various answers. Helpful, sorta. I figured all I had to lose was the price of a quart of yogurt so I just did it!! I used:

    1 quart Strawberry low fat yogurt
    3/4 cup Splenda {you can use the same amount of sugar}

and simply poured it into the ice cream maker. Viola!! Frozen Yogurt!! After about an hour in the freezer it was perfect. Not too hard, still creamy (despite what I had read!) and delicious.

This is dangerous information. All I have to do now is buy regular yogurt (think of all the flavors out there) and throw it into the ice cream maker.

Visit Phyl, and Rebecca, Abby,and Di for their ice creams.

Wowza! But I missed a lot of July TWD selections. Seven to be exact. Good thing I love to spend time in the kitchen – even in the hot weather. And it has been HOT in July! Plenty of 100+ days temp wise. Little rain. LOTS of humidity!! What DID people do before Air Conditioning???

Summer, of course, means lots of fresh fruit and many of the pics for July were fruit based. Such as….

    Summer Fruit Gatte

Dorie gave us plenty of choices for this galette, a free form ‘pie’ where the crust is folded up over the filling. There is so much in season right now in Louisiana – plums, peaches, figs, nectarines. But the peaches were so juicy and sweet I could not pass them up. One big ripe juicy peach was just perfect for one small 6″ galette. The crust and peaches are baked first for a few minutes then the custard is poured in around the fruit before baking the entire galette a little longer. What you end up with is a peach ‘pie’ with a sweet filling in all the little nooks and crannies left by the slices of peach. Eh… YUM!!! On July 29, 2008, this was a popular pick from Michele of Michelle in Colorado Springs and you can find the recipe on her blog. (Pg 366 in BFMHTY} If you have lots of fresh summer fruit this is the recipe for you. Quick. Not fussy. Delicious.

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On July 15, 2008, the TWD bakers were in the kitchen making Chocolate Pudding.

After my miserable attempt at making the Split-Level Pudding in October 2009, I was a little leery of this one. THAT one never set up and ended up going down the drain – literally!!

But this time….

    ….it came out PERFECTLY!!

So perfectly that I am never ever buying box pudding again. It was sooo creamy. Like pudding should be. And this one did NOT go down the drain.

I only made 1/2 of the recipe and that was perfect for two ramekins. Thank you, Dorie, for perfect pudding. And than you, Melissa of Melissa’s Kitchenfor helping me conquer PUDDING!! The recipe is on her page. (Page 383 in BFMHTY) Melissa served hers with Whipped Cream and Chocolate Sprinkles. So Cute!!

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Last, for this TWD Catch-up installment, I give you….

    Brioche Plum Tart

I had planned to make this one back when I was making up the Pecan Honey Sticky Buns and Brioche Raisin Snails because they were also made with Brioche dough. But after reading the recipe I discovered the recipe was just different enough to warrant a separate post.

So glad I did because these tarts deserve to be on their own. The dough was a sweet contrast to the somewhat tart plums {not what I had planned but…}I used Muscadine Jelly for the base because it tends to go with every other type of fruit out there without overpowering the taste.

Denise of Chez Us was the host for this lovely little Tart July 14, 2009. She opened her post with,


    “Lightly sweetened brioche dough is pressed into a tart pan and filled with jam and fresh plums, to make a wonderful breakfast treat.”

1/2 of the dough recipe and two nice plums were enough for three 4′ tarts.

And she is absolutely correct. GREAT breakfast!! The recipe is on her blog. (Page 54 in BFMHTY)

THat takes care of July TWD selections. August will be a potpouri of recipes as I only missed one so I am filling in. Maybe I CAN finish before the end of the year!!!!

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