Posts Tagged ‘crust’

Maple Brown Sugar Pastry Braid

Maple Brown Sugar Pastry Braid
Maple Brown Sugar Pastry Braid

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Strawberry Pop-Tart Pie

Strawberry Pop-Tart Pie
Strawberry Pop-Tart Pie

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Strawberry Coconut Cream Pie Bars

Strawberry Coconut Cream Pie Bars
Strawberry Coconut Cream Pie Bars

Strawberry Coconut Cream Pie Bars


Recipe by: Willow Bird Baking, with filling adapted from All Recipes
Yield: 9 bars

These Strawberry Coconut Cream Pie Bars are an incredible mixture of coconut cream pie and strawberry cream pie — just perfect for a beautiful spring dessert. Seriously, they are SO GOOD. They’re easy to make, too (no pie crust rolling)!

Crust Ingredients:
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup powdered sugar

Filling Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
1 1/2 cups coconut milk
2 eggs
3/4 cup white sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup flaked coconut
1/4 teaspoon coconut extract
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Topping Ingredients:
1 1/2 strawberries (I had some leftover, but I always buy two packs just in case)
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
red food coloring (optional; I skipped this)

Directions:
Make shortbread crust: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Prepare an 8-inch square baking pan by lining it with parchment paper. Cut the butter into the flour and powdered sugar and press into the baking dish (I used a food processor to cut the fat into the flour — about 6-10 pulses — and then the bottom of a glass to press the mixture into the pan). Bake 18-20 minutes or until light brown. Set on a wire rack to cool.

Make coconut cream filling: Combine the half-and-half, coconut milk, eggs, sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a large saucepan and bring it to a boil over medium-low heat, whisking constantly until it’s thick and bubbling (this can take anywhere from 10-20 minutes. Just do it. It’s worth it.) Add coconut and vanilla extracts and the shredded coconut and stir. Pour this filling over your cooled crust, letting it cool for a bit on the counter before sticking the whole thing in the fridge to chill until firm, about 2 to 4 hours.

Assemble and make glaze: Slice most of a pound of strawberries in thin slices lengthwise and layer the slices in pretty alternating diagonal rows on the top of the coconut cream. Set this in the fridge to chill while you make your glaze.

Crush remaining 1/2 cup of strawberries and boil with water in a saucepan over medium-high heat for two minutes. Strain through a fine mesh sieve and discard the pulp. Pour a little of the resulting strawberry juice into the glass with the cornstarch and stir to make a slurry. Put the rest of the juice back into the saucepan over medium-high heat and gradually whisk in sugar and cornstarch slurry. Cook until thickened. If you want, you can tint this glaze with food coloring to desired hue, but mine was plenty bright enough! Cool the glaze slightly (I transferred mine to a heat-proof measuring cup with a pour spout to cool for a bit) and then pour over top of strawberry slices on your pie. Chill bars before serving.

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French Silk Pie Bars (and a Surprise-Inside Cakes giveaway!)

French Silk Pie Bars
French Silk Pie Bars

French Silk Pie Bars


Recipe by: Willow Bird Baking adapted from Brown Eyed Baker
Yield: 9 bars

If you love French Silk pie, this is your kind of dessert! A buttery shortbread crust forms the base for creamy chocolate mousse and fluffy whipped cream. Use Pioneer Woman’s tutorial for making cute chocolate curls to boost the presentation!

Crust Ingredients:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup icing sugar

Filling Ingredients:
1 cup heavy cream
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
3 eggs
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into ½-inch pieces

Topping Ingredients:
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 teaspoon gelatin
2 tablespoons cold water
4-5 tablespoons powdered sugar
chocolate curls (optional)

Directions:
Make shortbread crust: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Prepare an 8-inch square baking dish by lining it with parchment paper. Cut the butter into the flour and icing sugar and press into the baking dish (I used a food processor to cut the fat into the flour — about 6-10 pulses — and then the bottom of a glass to press the mixture into the pan). Bake 18-20 minutes or until light brown. Set on a wire rack.

Make the filling: Melt your chocolate by heating in 30-second intervals on half power, stirring between each. Once melted, set the chocolate aside as you complete the filling. In a chilled bowl, beat the heavy whipping cream to stiff peaks. Place it in a bowl in the fridge to chill until it’s needed. In the heatproof bowl of a stand mixer, beat together eggs, sugar, and water for 5 minutes until pale yellow and slightly thickened. Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water to form a sort of double boiler. Heat, whisking occasionally, until a candy thermometer reads 160 degrees F.

Put the bowl onto the stand mixer carefully and beat on medium speed until cooled to room temperature and thickened, about 8 minutes. While beating, add in the chocolate and vanilla. My chocolate almost seemed to stick to the bowl and get difficult here, but I just turned the mixer up for a few seconds and all was well. Beat in the room temperature butter a piece at a time, mixing between each. Fold in the whipped cream until no white streaks remain, and then pour the mixture over your cooled shortbread crust and smooth the top. Cover and chill the bars for at least 3 hours or overnight.

Make the topping: In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the 2 tablespoons cold water to soften for 2 minutes. Heat for 15 or so seconds in the microwave, whisking to dissolve the gelatin. Whip 1 cup heavy whipping cream to stiff peaks, adding the gelatin and powdered sugar halfway through. Chill in the fridge until set.

Want to see some of my own “surprise inside” cakes? I’ll be honest: I use a special pan to craft my heart-shaped creations. Amanda’s book will help you to be much more crafty!

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Lemon Cream Pie Bars

Lemon Cream Pie Bars
Lemon Cream Pie Bars

Lemon Cream Pie Bars


Recipe by: Willow Bird Baking, using Lemon Curd from Fine Cooking
Yield: 20 tall bars

These bars are a BRIGHT burst of sunshine! The lemon flavor isn’t the knock-you-out sort, but a sweet, smooth punch in a bed of whipped cream. You’re gonna love these!

Crust Ingredients:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter (I use Plugrá Butter)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar

Lemon Curd Filling Ingredients:
6 tablespoons butter, softened at room temperature (I use Plugrá Butter)
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon gelatin
2 tablespoons cold water
4 cups whipping cream
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
6-8 drops yellow food coloring (optional)
2 tablespoons powdered sugar

Topping Ingredients:
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon cold water
1 teaspoon gelatin
5-6 tablespoons icing sugar
grated lemon zest (for topping, optional)
fresh raspberries (for serving, optional)

Directions:
Make shortbread crust: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Prepare a 9 x 13 in. baking dish by lining it with parchment paper. Cut the butter into the flour and icing sugar and press into the baking dish (I used a food processor to cut the fat into the flour — about 6-10 pulses — and then the bottom of a glass to press the mixture into the pan). Bake 18-20 minutes or until light brown. Set on a wire rack.

Make the lemon curd: Cream butter and sugar together until pale, fluffy yellow (2-3 minutes). Slowly beat in eggs and yolks and then the lemon juice. The mixture will look curdled, but don’t worry. Pour it into a heavy saucepan and heat over low heat, stirring constantly, until the butter melts and the mixture smooths out and no longer looks curdled. Turn heat up to medium and stir constantly until the mixture thickens and reaches 170 degrees F on a candy thermometer (about 10-15 minutes). When you run your finger across the back of a wooden spoon used for stirring, it should leave a clear streak in the curd. Stir in the lemon zest.

Pour the curd into a shallow bowl and press plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd. Chill in the fridge until cold. It’ll thicken more as it cools.

Make the lemon cream: Make sure your curd is totally cool before beginning this step. In a bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the 2 tablespoons cold water to soften for 2 minutes. Heat for 15 or so seconds in the microwave, whisking to dissolve the gelatin. Whip 4 cups heavy cream to stiff peaks, adding the gelatin, lemon extract, food coloring, and powdered sugar halfway through. Stir in about 1/3 of the cream into the lemon curd to lighten it, and then gently fold in the curd into the rest of the cream. Pour the mixture over the cooled shortbread crust and spread evenly. Chill in the fridge until set.

Make the whipped cream: In a bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the tablespoon of cold water to soften for 2 minutes. Heat for 15 or so seconds in the microwave, whisking to dissolve the gelatin. Whip the 2 cups cream to stiff peaks, adding the powdered sugar and gelatin halfway through mixing. Dollop the whipped cream over the lemon cream and gently spread it around. Zest a lemon over the top for garnish. Chill, remove from pan, slice into bars, and enjoy with fresh raspberries, if desired.

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Coconut Cream Pie Bars

Thanks, Foodie, for sponsoring this post. It’s pie month, so I made you some Coconut Cream Pie Bars!


Coconut Cream Pie Bars
Coconut Cream Pie Bars

Coconut Cream Pie Bars


Recipe by: Willow Bird Baking with filling adapted from All Recipes
Yield: 12-16 bars, depending on size

THESE ARE SO AMAZING. MAKE THEM NOW.

Crust Ingredients:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup icing sugar

Coconut Cream Filling Ingredients:
3 cups half-and-half
3 cups coconut milk
4 eggs
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2/3 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup flaked coconut
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Whipped Cream Topping Ingredients:
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon cold water (for stabilizing)
1 teaspoon gelatin (for stabilizing)
3-4 tablespoons icing sugar
1 cup coconut, for toasting

Directions:
Make shortbread crust: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Prepare a 9 x 13 in. baking dish with a foil sling (I use one long sheet across the length of my dish, and two overlapping short sheets across the width of my dish — just arrange it so that it has some overlap and overhang to help you pull the bars out after they’re finished). Cut the butter into the flour and icing sugar and press into the baking dish (I used a food processor to cut the fat into the flour — about 6-10 pulses — and then the bottom of a glass to press the mixture into the pan). Bake 18-20 minutes or until light brown. Set on a wire rack.

Toast coconut for the topping: Spread about 1 cup of the coconut flakes out on a baking sheet and bake in the oven along with your shortbread crust for 3-6 minutes, stirring every minute or so, until the coconut is golden brown. Spread it out on a plate to cool completely.

Make coconut cream filling: Combine the half-and-half, coconut milk, eggs, sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a large saucepan and bring it to a boil over medium-low heat, whisking constantly until it’s thick and bubbling (this can take anywhere from 15-30 minutes. Just do it. It’s worth it.) Add coconut and vanilla extracts and the 1 1/2 cups of untoasted coconut and stir. Pour this filling over your cooled crust, letting it cool for a bit on the counter before sticking the whole thing in the fridge to chill until firm, about 2 to 4 hours.

Make whipped cream topping: Put 1 tablespoon cold water in a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the top. Let it soften for 2 minutes before microwaving it for 30 seconds and whisking to dissolve the gelatin. Using a chilled bowl and beater, whisk the 2 cups of heavy cream and icing sugar together until the cream forms stiff peaks, stopping to add gelatin mixture about halfway through. Dollop the cream over your bars and gently spread it around. Sprinkle on toasted coconut. Chill until ready to serve to let the whipped cream set up. Use the sling to pull the bars out of the dish, slice with a sharp knife, and enjoy!

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Sassy Sausage Breakfast Pie

Sassy Sausage Breakfast Pie
Sassy Sausage Breakfast Pie

Sassy Sausage Breakfast Pie


Recipe by: Adapted by Willow Bird Baking from my mother-in-law’s recipe
Yield: 8 servings

Oh my gosh, pie crust and sausage, y’all. This breakfast pie is the bee’s knees. Mike’s mom always makes it for Christmas breakfast and we dream of it all year long! I added a little jalapeño (which you can adjust to your taste) to give it a slight kick, but it won’t make your nose run or eyes water. I recommend serving this with a sweet side — maybe fruit and some coconut meringue dip, which I’m sharing on the blog later this week — and mimosas for a special Sunday brunch.

Ingredients:
9-inch pie shell, unbaked (homemade or store-bought)
1 pound breakfast sausage
1 1/2 cups grated Gruyère cheese (or other Swiss cheese)
4 eggs
1 cup half and half (or light cream)
1/4 cup chopped orange/yellow bell pepper
1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 medium jalapeño, finely chopped (adjust to your heat preference — this gives a slight kick)
1/4 cup chopped onion
salt and pepper

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Roll out the pie dough and place it in a pie plate, crimping the edges. Place this in the refrigerator while you prepare the filling.

Brown the sausage and drain on a paper towel lined plate. Mix the cheese and sausage and place into the pie shell. In a medium bowl, lightly beat the eggs and cream together. Mix in the peppers and onion. Salt and pepper the mixture. Pour it into the pie shell over the meat and cheese, adjusting to be sure all the ingredients are spread out. Bake for 40-45 minutes until set and golden. Cool on a rack for 10 minutes before slicing and serving. I love to serve the pie with Frank’s Hot Sauce, which complements the flavor perfectly!

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Willow Bird Baking’s 13 Best Recipes of 2013

Willow Bird Baking's 13 Best Recipes of 2013

Happy New Year! My head is spinning with thoughts of resolutions and responsibilities for the upcoming year, but let’s relax first and just enjoy some edible reflection, shall we? You guys have good taste. Here are Willow Bird Baking’s 13 Best Recipes of 2013, as chosen by your visits. At the end, I’ve included a few recipes that didn’t make the “Most Popular” list but are actually some of my favorites from the year!

Want to gather lots of amazing recipes from other blogs, too? I’ve just created a Best of 2013 Recipes Pinterest board where you can see “Best of” posts from some of my favorite blogs. This is one of the best times of the year to gather top eats from around the internet! While you’re there, make sure you follow me on Pinterest. I’m kind of a food lover, in case ya didn’t know. My pins are gonna make you hungry.

Without further ado, Willow Bird Baking’s 13 Best Recipes of 2013:

1. Lemon Cheesecake Morning Buns
Lemon Cheesecake Morning Buns

These things totally deserve their “Most Popular” title. They are absurd.

2. The Ultimate Moist, Fluffy, Ridiculous Coconut Cake
The Ultimate Moist, Fluffy, Ridiculous Coconut Cake

YOU KNOW HOW I FEEL ABOUT COCONUT.

3. Pumpkin Cheesecake Pillow Popovers
Pumpkin Cheesecake Pillow Popovers

These use premade crescent dough! So easy.

4. Key Lime Pie Cheesecake with Sky-High Meringue
Key Lime Pie Cheesecake with Sky-High Meringue

Tangy, sweet, and stunning! Such a show-stopper.

5. Gooey Chocolate Coconut Cream Skillet Cake
Gooey Chocolate Coconut Cream Skillet Cake

DID I MENTION HOW I FEEL ABOUT COCONUT.

6. Strawberry Coconut Cream Pie
Strawberry Coconut Cream Pie

CO.CO.NUT.

7. Boozy Icebox Cake
Boozy Icebox Cake

It’s like regular icebox cake, but (duh) better!

8. Bailey’s Hazelnut Chocolate Tiramisu
Bailey’s Hazelnut Chocolate Tiramisu

Bailey’s makes any dessert totally nuts.

9. Chocolate Poke Cake with Whipped Coconut Icing
Chocolate Poke Cake with Whipped Coconut Icing

COCONUT, Y’ALL (and my new favorite frosting in the universe).

10. Biscoff Spread Gooey Butter Cake
Biscoff Spread Gooey Butter Cake

I don’t know what got into me, but I have no regrets.

11. White Sheet Cake with Fluffy Whipped Icing
White Sheet Cake with Fluffy Whipped Icing

Just like those awesome sheet cakes you buy at the store (with the fluffy frosting, not the weird crusty stuff).

12. Lasagna Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
Lasagna Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

Hearty, delicious meal.

13. Pumpkin Tres Leches Cake
Pumpkin Tres Leches Cake

Pumpkin and Tres Leches: two of my faves combined.

…And a few of my personal favorites from this year:

1. Samoa Monkey Bread with Ganache Dipping Sauce
Samoa Monkey Bread with Ganache Dipping Sauce

It’s a crime that this recipe didn’t go viral. It’s nuts!

1. Buttery Coconut Almond Pull-Apart Bread (with Heavenly Coconut Cream Glaze)
Buttery Coconut Almond Pull-Apart Bread (with Heavenly Coconut Cream Glaze)

Coconuttttt.

1. Flan Tres Leches Cake
Flan Tres Leches Cake

For when you can’t decide between making flan and making tres leches cake, and also you’re feeling a little crazy. So good.

1. Limoncello-Spiked Shortbread Icebox Cake with Fresh Raspberries
Limoncello-Spiked Shortbread Icebox Cake with Fresh Raspberries

The shortbread makes all the difference here! And the Limoncello, obv.

1. The Ultimate Sausage Breakfast Buns
The Ultimate Sausage Breakfast Buns

Pure decadence. Don’t skip the syrup drizzle.

1. Gooey Carmelitas
Gooey Carmelitas

Gooey, chocolatey masterpiece.

1. Lemon Raspberry Gooey Butter Cake
Lemon Raspberry Gooey Butter Cake

Bright, springy, fresh! I love lemon.

1. Sausage & Corn Chile Con Queso Taco Ring
Sausage & Corn Chile Con Queso Taco Ring

Again, HOW did this recipe not go viral? TASTE IT. JUST TASTE IT. It’s like the best thing I’ve ever eaten.

1. Dutch Roomboter Banketstaaf (Flaky Pastry with Almond Filling)
Dutch Roomboter Banketstaaf (Flaky Pastry with Almond Filling)

This is also the best thing I’ve ever eaten. Don’t question me.

Don’t forget to see what others have cooked up on my Best of 2013 Recipes Pinterest board. Happy happy happy almost-2014!

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Spiked Mocha Mousse Bars

Spiked Mocha Mousse Bars
Spiked Mocha Mousse Bars

Spiked Mocha Mousse Bars


Recipe by: Willow Bird Baking
Yield: 9 servings

I was surprised by how quick and simple this recipe turned out to be — and how amazing! I loved spiking it with creamy Bailey’s Hazelnut Liqueur. Forget buying a fancy coffee; why not make a fancy coffee bar for dessert?

Crust Ingredients:
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons icing sugar

Ganache Ingredients:
6 tablespoons heavy cream
about 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips (I love Ghirardelli’s 60% cacao chips)

Coffee Mousse Ingredients:
1 3/4 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
2 tablespoons water
4 1/2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
3 tablespoons Bailey’s Hazelnut Liqueur (or Kahlúa)
2 cups well-chilled heavy cream
chocolate covered espresso beans (optional, for topping)

Directions:
Make the shortbread crust: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Prepare a 9 x 9 in. baking dish with a foil sling. Cut the butter into the flour and icing sugar and press into the baking dish (I used a food processor to cut the fat into the flour — about 6 pulses — and then the bottom of a glass to press the mixture into the pan). Bake 18-20 minutes or until light brown. Set on a wire rack to cool.

Make the ganache: While the shortbread is baking, place the chocolate in a medium bowl. Bring the cream to a simmer in a medium saucepan (or microwave it for a couple of minutes). Once the cream reaches a simmer, pour the cream over the chocolate and let it stand 1-2 minutes. Whisk in small circles until a smooth ganache has formed. Set it aside until your crust is finished and has cooled for a few minutes, and then pour it over the crust (it’s okay if it’s not cooled all the way). Place the chocolate covered crust in the fridge to chill until the ganache is set into a firm layer.

Make the coffee mousse: Prepare a large bowl of ice water and set aside as an ice bath (I just stopped up my sink and used it). Place 2 tablespoons of water in a small saucepan and sprinkle the envelope of gelatin evenly over the top. Let it soften for 2 minutes. Add in the sweetened condensed milk and instant espresso powder. Heat the mixture over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the gelatin is dissolved and the mixture is smooth, about 2-3 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat, whisk in the Bailey’s (or Kahlúa), and then transfer the saucepan to the ice bath. Cool, whisking frequently, until the mixture is cold and thick.

In the meantime, whip the chilled heavy cream to stiff peaks. Stir about 1/3 of the whipped cream into the cold espresso mixture to lighten it up, and then pour this mixture into your remaining whipped cream, folding it in gently until there are no streaks. Pour this mixture over your chilled ganache. Chill the entire dessert until it’s set up nicely (a few hours). Lift the bars out of the pan, slice into 9 servings, top each bar with a chocolate covered espresso bean, and serve.

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Strawberry Lemonade Cheesecake Bars with a Shortbread Crust

Strawberry Lemonade Cheesecake Bars with a Shortbread Crust


Recipe by: Adapted from King Arthur Flour (crust) and Shared Sugar (cheesecake)
Yields: about 18 bars

These cheesecake bars are the perfect summer treat: sweet, creamy, tangy, buttery, and easy to prepare!

Crust Ingredients:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar

Cheesecake Layer Ingredients:
32 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
4 eggs
5-6 tablespoons lemon juice, depending on how tart you usually like your lemonade!
lemon zest from one lemon (reserve a little to sprinkle on top)
1 cup sugar
strawberries, quartered*
powdered sugar for topping
*Note: I probably bought 2 pints of strawberries but didn’t quite use them all. I didn’t quarter mine because I thought they’d be pretty whole, but they were a bit hard to eat and I’ll quarter them next time I make this recipe!

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 350°F. Prepare a 9 x 13 in. baking dish with a parchment paper sling. Cut the butter into the flour and confectioners’ sugar and press into the baking dish (I used a food processor to cut the fat into the flour, and then the bottom of a dish to press the mixture into the pan). Bake 20 minutes or until light brown. Let cool on wire rack.

In a bowl with an electric mixer, add the cream cheese, eggs, lemon juice, lemon zest, and sugar. Mix until the ingredients are creamy and the cream cheese is fully incorporated. Pour into the pan with the cooled crust. Then evenly distribute the strawberries.

Bake 30-35 minutes or until filling is set. Remove from the oven and cool completely. Then refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Remove the cheesecake from the pan using the parchment paper. Cut into bars and sprinkle with powdered sugar and/or lemon zest.

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