Monday, June 20, 2011

Rhubarb Crisp

I'll admit it. I'm a bad blogger sometimes. Nevermind the months of absence - but occasionally, I forget to photograph my treats. I guess that means I'll just have to make this one again!

Rhubarb is one of my many loves - I think made even more so since we really only can have rhubarb a few short months of the year. So, imagine if you will, my joy when my CSA box the first week came with some exceptionally beautiful rhubarb. Of course, the first CSA box (which ... I can go on and on about my life for my CSA) coincided with a cleanse I was doing. No sugar or carbs for Becky for 10 days. What am I to do with my rhubarb then? The answer ... freeze it and wait 10 days.

Finally, a couple of days ago, I heard the rhubarb calling to me from my freezer. So I found myself a crisp recipe and headed to the kitchen.

This crisp is amazing - it's a nice balance of sweet and rhubarb-y goodness. And! It's super easy. I will be making this again, some day. And then I will take photos - if I don't eat it too quickly.

Rhubarb Crisp

prep time: about 10 minutes
baking time: 45 - 55 minutes

Yields: 8x8 pan of crisp

  • 1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup oats (quick cooking or old fashioned)
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 4 cups sliced rhubarb (about 1/2" pieces)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 TBS cornstarch
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking dish.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the brown sugar, flour, oats, butter, cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix together until crumbly.
  3. Press half of the brown sugar and oats mixture into the buttered baking dish. Top with the sliced rhubarb.
  4. In a saucepan: combine the granulated sugar, cornstarch, water and vanilla. Cook together until clear, stirring frequently.
  5. Pour water/sugar mixture over the rhubarb (distributing evenly) and then top the rhubarb with the remaining crumb mixture.
  6. Bake for 45 - 55 minutes

Enjoy by alone, with ice cream or whipped cream!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Citrus Glaze

For your spice cupcakes and all your cupcake & muffin glazing needs...

Citrus Glaze

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Yields: 1/3 cup

  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 3 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • Whisk all ingredients together until well combine. Spoon onto muffins / cupcakes immediately.

Becky's Special Spice Cupcakes w/orange citrus glaze

Okay, so I'm doing a ton of baking this weekend. Nibbley Bits has some orders! Yup - it's been awhile, but people still ask sometimes.

Sitting here right now, I already have baked 94 cupcakes and 40 macaroons this morning. There are some meringues in the works tonight, but am waiting for the general humidity and the heat in my oven to go down. This is my new weight-loss plan. Bake when it's hot out and sweat off the weight. The key: don't eat everything I bake.

These are a new recipe that I'm super excited about. Hope you enjoy!

Spice Cupcakes

Prep time: 15 minutes
Bake time: 20 minute

Yields: 2 dzn cupcakes


  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for tins
  • 4 cups cake flour, sifted, plus more for tins
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • Pinch of ground ginger
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups milk, room temperature
1 recipe orange glaze

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush standard muffin tins with butter; dust with flour, tapping out excess. Alternately, you can use muffin liners

  2. Sift together cake flour, baking powder, salt, and spices three times. (This makes for a really well mixed, super fine mixture.

  3. With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream butter and brown sugar until pale and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in two batches, alternating with two additions of milk, and beating until combined after each.
  4. Divide batter evenly among prepared cups, filling each three-quarters full. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until golden brown and a cake tester inserted in centers comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes.
  5. To finish, place cupcakes on a wire rack set over a baking sheet; spoon glaze over cupcakes, and let set. Cupcakes are best eaten the same day they are glazed; keep at room temperature until ready to serve.
Enjoy for a nice light, delicate cupcake!

Well ... it's been awhile (and here's a recipe for coconut macaroons!)

Sorry for the long delay!

The baking bug hasn't been gone, but I've had a busy couple of months in the world of theater and some how blogging has fallen to the wayside. I've been all over the off-Broadway map lately. Well, not really. I've been hovering around midtown making appearances (and baked goods) at a few different theaters.

In the process of all this theater work, I decided to make my own macaroons for Passover this year. The ones in the tins are just so expensive! And I discovered something astonishing. Macaroons - super easy to make. In my almost 30 years on this earth, I didn't know that macaroons didn't need to be dry! I'm ruined. I will never be able to go back to the sad, dry, canned macaroons.

So, here you have it:

Coconut Macaroons

Prep time: 5 minutes
Baking time: 15 minutes

Total time: about 25 minutes
Yields about 4 dzn cookies

  • 5 cups flaked sweetened coconut
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla
  • (optional) 2/3 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips or chopped semi-sweet chocolate

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray.
  3. Beat the egg whites in a large bowl
  4. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well.
  5. Scoop out 1 inch mounds, placed about 1 inch apart, on a lined cookie sheet.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes, until just turning brown.
  7. Cool and store in a sealed container between sheets of waxed or parchment paper.
The macaroons will keep well in an air tight container for several days.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Holiday Pop-Up at Variety Coffee in Brooklyn!

Okay, I'm joining forces with some local bakers and we are creating a holiday pop-up at Variety Coffee in Brooklyn NEXT WEEKEND! (12/18 & 12/19). We will be manning the coffee shop from 10am - 5pm. Stop by and visit, check out the wares and perhaps walk away with something delicious for yourself. Please check out the poster!

Simply ... Blondies

Apparently I was wrong when I said I'd be blogging more. I don't know where the crazy idea I would have time came into my head. The act of touring a play to prisons, homeless shelters, etc. is actually quite a time-consuming and exhausting process. Add on-to that the terrible illness that laid me out for the count this week, and I'm slowly refinding my kitchen (and various parts of my apartment that are buried).
But, in exchange for a lovely hoodie I promised a butterscotch treat for a friend. So, I found this (delicious) recipe for blondies. Don't you love the barter system?

Blondies can be dressed up a number of ways ... this is just a very simple, straight-forward recipe.

Simply Blondies
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 20 - 25 minutes
Yields: 1 - 8x8 pan

  • 8 TBS butter, melted
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup of butterscotch chips
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter an 8x8 pan.
  2. Mix melted butter w/brown sugar - beat until smooth (I used a whisk)
  3. Beat in egg. Then the vanilla.
  4. Add salt, then stir in the flour. Mix in butterscotch chips.
  5. Pour into the prepared pan.
  6. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes, or until set in the middle.
Be sure not to overcook!!

Enjoy with a glass of milk or cup of coffee.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pumpkin Caramels

As you may have previously guessed ... I'm a little obsessed with all things squash come the cooler months. I've been on a HUGE squash kick lately. You may have noticed by all the recent pumpkin recipes ... heck, I've had squash for dinner the last two nights! Last night was spaghetti squash with pasta sauce. Easy, delicious, healthy. Tonight was just the opposite ... butternut squash risotto (recipe to come...)

And, Thanksgiving is seriously around the corner (we're in the home stretch!!) which means even more pumpkin. So, I've got a taste for pumpkin. Sue me.

For years upon years, I was terrified to make candy. It seems like a really daunting task. Everybody says that candy is difficult. Last year, however, my squash brain and curiosity got the best of me. Pumpkin caramels? I had to try it! These are DELICIOUS. Chewy, pumpkin-y, caramel-y. A nice crunch with the pumpkin seeds. Honestly, what's not to love?

So ... they aren't the easiest thing to make. Not because they are difficult, though. Just because you have to keep your eye on them. And it takes some time to cut them up and wrap them all. But overall, they're pretty easy to make.

If you feel like you have some time, and want to wow your friends (or have something sweet and delicious), then I'd recommend giving these a go.

Pumpkin Caramels

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 45 Mins
Yields: Approx 30 candies.

  • 1/2 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
  • 1 cup maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup dark corn syrup
  • 1 tsp pumpkin or apple pie spice *
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp fine salt
  • 2/3 cup canned pumpkin puree, room temperature (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 TBS unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Special Tools: Candy Thermometer

  1. Line an 8" x 4" loaf pan with waxed paper or aluminum foil. Brush the sides, but not the bottom, lightly with butter and sprinkle the pumpkin seeds in the bottom.
  2. Whisk the maple syrup, brown sugar, cream, corn syrup, pie spice, lemon juice and salt together in a heavy bottomed medium saucepan. Brush down the sides on the saucepan with water to remove every grain of sugar. Set the candy thermometer into the sugar. Cook the mixture over medium heat, without stirring, until the mixture reaches the firm ball sage, 248 degrees F, about 18 to 20 mins.
  3. Carefully stir in the pumpkin puree.
  4. Return to the heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the caramel reaches the soft ball stage, 240 degrees F, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in butter and vanilla.
  5. Pour the caramel over the pumpkin seeds in the prepared pan. Smooth to an even layer. Cool to room temperature.
  6. When full cooled, peel from the waxed paper or foil and cut into 30 (1-inch) squares. Wrap individually in parchment or waxed paper and store in an airtight container for up to a week.

*NOTE: As I've stated before and will probably state again, I just don't use pie spice. So I use my own mixture of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves & ginger.

Give as a gift or enjoy on your own!!