Sweet Pins: Ground Cherry Pie

School is back in full swing, and I can’t seem to find a minute to myself.  People tell me that someday, I will miss these days.  I’m not so sure.  Having nothing to do every now and then sounds pretty sweet to me.

I finally found some time today to take care of some of the produce my hubs grew this summer.  Every year, he tries something new.  Last year, it was scorzonara (I’m still not sure what that is).  This year he grew physalis pruinosa or ground cherries.  They are of the same genus as tomatillos and same family as tomatoes.  Never heard of them?  Me neither, but they have got to be the coolest thing ever!  First of all, they grow in these cute little packages much like the paper lanterns plants people decorate with.

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When they are ready to be eaten, they fall to the ground.  Hence the name “ground” cherry. My favorite part is that in order to get to the fruit, you need to peel open the little paper-like packages they come in.  It’s like Christmas!  It really is! The really cool thing is that they look like and have the consistency of small cherry tomatoes, only they taste like pineapples.  Yes, PINEAPPLES!

ground-cherries

Pinterest produced several recipes that looked delicious when I needed to find out what to do with these amazing little creatures.  One of my faves is for  Ground Cherry Pie from All Recipes.com.  This recipe is an old Mennonite recipe, has a crumb topping, and is so simple to make.  If you are lucky enough to find ground cherries at your local farm stand.  Grab them quick and make this pie.  It is so unique and yummy.  I guess you could call it… yumnique.

ground-cherry-pie-with-ground-cherries


Ground Cherry Pie

via allrecipes.com

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 – 3 cups ground cherries
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 TBSP all-purpose flour
  • 2 TBSP water
  • 1 (9″) unbaked pie shell
  • 3 TBSP all-purpose flour
  • 3 TBSP sugar
  • 2 TBSP butter

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Pour washed ground cherries into bottom of unbaked pie crust.
  3. Mix together brown sugar and flour and sprinkle evenly over ground cherries.  Sprinkle water over entire mixture in pie crust.
  4. Combine flour and sugar.  Cut in butter until mixture has a crumb-like texture.  Sprinkle this evenly over ground cherry mixture.
  5. Cook in 425 degree oven for 15 minutes then reduce oven to 375 degrees and cook for another 25 minutes.  Let pie cool completely before serving.

 

ground-cherry-pie

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Sweet Pins: Chocolate Zucchini Brownies

Let’s be honest.  No one really loves zucchini.  We just tolerate it because… well… sometimes we have to.  Right now, every meal I make consists of zucchini.  Zucchini casserole, zucchini muffins, zucchini bread (so far 3 different types), grilled zucchini, stir-fried zucchini, zucchini pizza, even zucchini “apple” pie. Why?  Not because I love it or even like it, I just have too much of it!

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My husband the gardener believes in planting every seed he buys.  I’m all for not being wasteful, but when it comes to zucchini, one plant is enough.  He did concede to thin down the zucchini crop a bit this year.  We went from 25 to 3 plants and it’s still too much!!!

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You think I’m alone in my zucchini disdain?  Nope.  There is a even a day called, National Sneak a Zucchini on Your Neighbors Porch Day, “DSC_0025.jpgcelebrated” on August 8th of each year.
Those of us with gardens know that this is really a sinister way of getting rid of all the zucchini that have invaded our lives.  Those of you who don’t… well, enjoy the stinking zucchini.  There’s more where that came from!

Trust me!

One of my favorite go-to recipes is one for Zucchini Brownies from A Family Feast.   I would not share this with you if I didn’t find it absolutely amazing.  Not only can you not taste the zucchini, but you can’t even see it!!!  My only wish is that it took more that 1 1/2 cups of that god-awful stuff.  Oh well, at least I get to enjoy the rich, moist, fudgy brownie goodness in between shredding more.

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Now if only I can find a recipe for zucchini wine…


Chocolate Zucchini Brownies

by A Family Feast

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces BAKER’S unsweetened chocolate
  • ¾ cup butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 eggs slightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ cups flour
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ cups shredded zucchini
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts (optional)

 Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a 13×9-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, making sure that the piece of foil extends over the side of the pan. Spray the foil with non-stick cooking spray.
  3. In a microwave-safe bowl, add the chocolate and butter and microwave on high for 2 minutes. Stir until the chocolate is completely melted.
  4. Transfer chocolate mixture to a large bowl.
  5. Stir in the sugar.
  6. Blend in the eggs and vanilla.
  7. Sift flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl.
  8. Add flour mixture to wet ingredients and mix thoroughly. Then add the zucchini and walnuts and stir to evenly combine.
  9. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with fudgy crumbs.
  10. Let cool completely. When cool, use the foil to remove the brownies from the pan and onto a cutting board. Cut before serving.

Chocolate Zucchini Brownies - pincrazed.com

 

Sweet Pins: Strawberry Sour Cream Streusel Muffins

So… I had this last minute idea to go strawberry picking. Wonderful idea, right?

Well…I just happened to pick the last day for picking and the hottest day of the summer.  Oops!  We were hot, we were scrounging for berries and we were getting crankier by the minute. Not fun!

Strawberry Picking

Lucky for us a wonderful lady appeared out of nowhere and told us of a magical, secret, berry-picking spot.

“Oh my dears, go just past the beans and the squash and you will find more sweet berries then you’ve ever dreamed of,” she revealed.

And then, she waved her magic wand, and ‘poof’ she was gone!

Okay there was no magic wand, but come on…I had you there for a minute.  Anyway, off we went to find this mysterious strawberry-filled land of which she spoke.

Alleluia!  Thank you sweet Strawberry Farm Fairy!  Not only were there tons of juicy, red strawberries, but there was shade nearby!!!  The day was saved, and we went home with lots of luscious berries to devour.  Hooray!

What does one do with such a large amount of strawberries?  I’m a big fan of making jam and strawberry pie, but I also like finding a new treat to try.

Here is a yummy little recipe for Strawberry Sour Cream Streusel Muffins I found on Pinterest from the blog Little Sous Chef.

These muffins are so light, sweet and delicate that they remind me of my favorite Strawberry Farm Fairy.  Hope you enjoy their magical deliciousness!

StrawberrySour creamStreuselMuffins (1)


Strawberry Sour Cream Streusel Muffins

Ingredients:

Muffins

  • 2 cups flour
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 TBSP baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 6 TBSP butter, melted
  • 1 ¼ cups sour cream
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups diced fresh strawberries, divided
Streusel Topping
  • 3 TBSP butter, softened
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup flour

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin tins with 16-18 muffin liners.
  2. Dice strawberries into small pieces.
  3. Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon into a medium bowl. 
  4. In a small bowl, mix together melted butter, sour cream and vanilla.  Add eggs, whisking together until smooth.
  5. Pour sour cream mixture into flour mixture and stir together until combined.
  6. Add 1 ½ cups diced strawberries to the above mixture and stir.
  7. Fill muffin cups with batter and sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup strawberries over the tops of the uncooked muffins.
  8. In the meantime, combine streusel ingredients, breaking butter and dry ingredients with a fork.  When it becomes a coarse mixture, sprinkle evenly over the tops of the unbaked muffins.
  9. Bake muffins for 20-25 minutes.

 

 

Sweet Pins: Rhubarb Dream Bars

Rhubarb.  You either love it or hate it.  I happen to LOVE it!

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My brother-in-law sent a huge bundle of rhubarb home with my husband after a recent trip north.  Now when I say I love rhubarb, I love it in moderation.  The amount I have currently in my fridge is nuts!

Luckily, I’ve done some pinning and came across a few recipes that looked totally yumskis.  Some were savory and of course most were sweet.

This dreamy, creamy rhubarb recipe from Noshing with the Nolands completely caught my eye.  Especially the word…EASY.  Gotta love easy!


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Rhubarb Dream Bars

Ingredients:

Crust

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup butter

Filling

  • 4 lg. eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 4 cups diced rhubarb

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.  Line the bottom of a 9×13 pan with parchment paper.  Make sure the parchment goes up on the sides to make it easy to remove the squares later.  Put crust ingredients into a food processor.  Process until butter in incorporated and press crumbly mixture into the pan.  Bake for 15 minutes.  Crust will be pale in color.
  2. In the meantime, mix together eggs, sugar, flour and salt.  Fold in rhubarb.  Pour on the hot crust and continue to bake for 40-45 minutes.
  3. Let the bars cool and remove using the parchment paper.  Cut into squares.

 


 

These bars are creamy with a smidge of that wonderful, rhubarb tartness.  Delish!

What’s your favorite way to eat rhubarb?

Rhubarb Dream Bars

Sweet Pins: No Bake Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake

My youngest has gotten into baking lately, and I let him loose on Pinterest to find something to make.  In no time, he’s back with this amazing recipe in hand. No Bake Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake from CincyShopper.com!  Hello, Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake?  Where have you been all my life?!?  Just look at this amazing photo!

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I scanned the ingredients thinking this recipe will be a great way for me to maintain my voluptuous curves.  I mean, can you go wrong with having to put Oreos and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups on your grocery list? Nope!  HEAVEN!

Wait!  Hold on!  Am I reading the directions right? Does that say Springform Pan!?!?  Crap!

Yes, I admit it, I’m afraid of a piece of baking equipment!  It comes in two pieces… it has a latch with a scary spring…  and at some point, you must unleash the pan and hope your creation stays put.  Who on earth came up with the crazy contraption!?! Thirty plus years of baking and never have I ever used the pan of the springform.  Crap, crap, oh crap!!!

Okay…deep breaths…we can do this…I can’t let the ten year-old smell my fear.  I calmly tell him that we need to call Mémère, our Springform (and everything else) expert, ASAP.

Once again Mémère saves the day!  Twenty minutes later, we have the dreaded contraption in our hands along with all our ingredients.  Despite a slight panic attack upon seeing the pan, we were on our way to making this most delicious of desserts. Guess what? It turned out to be painless!

My piece of advice for this recipe…do not fear the Springform Pan!  Oh, and buy extra Oreos and Peanut Butter Cups for snacking…just sayin’!


No Bake

NO BAKE PEANUT BUTTER CUP CHEESECAKE

Ingredients:

Crust

  • 24 Oreos
  • 5 TBSP butter, melted

Filling

  • 24 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 8 oz  Cool Whip (regular container)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 30 miniature Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, cut into quarters

Directions:

  1. Put Reese’s cups in freezer for 30 minutes to harden.
  2. Crush Oreos in food processor and add melted butter.
  3. Press mixture into bottom and partway up sides of springform pan.
  4. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes to firm.
  5. Cut Reese’s cups into quarters and divide into two parts (this can be done before freezing as well).
  6. Beat together cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla and peanut butter until well mixed.
  7. Fold in Cool Whip until uniformly blended.
  8. Fold in half of frozen Reese’s.
  9. Pour/spread into pan and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or until firm.
  10. Remove from springform pan and top with remaining Reese’s.
  11. You can also drizzle with chocolate syrup if desired.

 

This cheesecake is so creamy and rich with just the right amount of chunks of Reese’s goodness.  Well worth the wait and even the panic attacks! We have decided that this one is a keeper. I’m also thinking of buying my own Springform pan!  Who knew!?!

Sweet Pins: Sticky Bun Breakfast Ring

So what were my first posts on Pinterest?  Glad you asked…anything and everything for my sweet tooth!

One of my first successful attempts of a recipe from my board, For My Sweet Tooth (clever, huh?), was something called Sticky Bun Breakfast Ring.  Just the name alone sounds scrumdilyicious!  It was perfect for a warm winter morning in the Northeast!


Here is the recipe from The Jones Way via All Things Delicious and Too Stinkin’ Cute

 

Sticky Bun Breakfast Ring

Ingredients:

  • 2 small tubes refrigerator buttermilk biscuits OR 1 tube Pillsbury Grands buttermilk biscuits
  • 3 Tbsp. butter or margarine, melted
  • 1/2 c. pancake syrup
  • 1/3 c. packed, brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 c. chopped pecans (optional)
  • 1/4 c. chopped almonds (optional)

Directions:

  1. Spray a bundt pan with non-stick spray. Combine the melted butter and syrup in a small bowl and set aside.
  2. In another bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and nuts (if desired).
  3. Place about half of the syrup mixture in the bottom of the pan. Then sprinkle half of the brown sugar mixture on top. 
  4. Lay the biscuits on the bottom of the pan, overlapping edges (closely together) to form a ring. 
  5. Top with remaining syrup and sugar mixtures. 
  6. Bake at 375 degrees for approximately 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. 
  7. Cool for 1 minute in the pan, then invert onto a serving platter and dig in!

 


I so wanted to change a few things to make it even better.  What I didn’t do… put in the nuts (we’re nutty enough. Bah Dum Bum).  What I did do…followed the instructions.  Crazy, right?  Seriously though.  I was tempted to switch out the pancake syrup for real maple syrup, but stopped myself.  Why?  Been there.  Done that.  Two words…corn syrup!  Real maple syrup doesn’t have corn syrup, and corn syrup is what is needed to make this so gooey and sticky.  Trust me you don’t want to go there!