I swear that summer flies by every year. It feels like there are endless summer weekends and nights in late June and then I blink and we're creeping into August and starting to review the back to school supply lists. This summer, we're enjoying the ocean here and there, the break in the kiddos' extra-curricular activities and the slower pace that the break brings AND we're gearing up for the arrival of #3, due in late September. It's starting to sink in that his (yep- it's a he) arrival is quickly approaching. His older sisters are enjoying their new bunk beds for the most part...with a few expected, sisterly arguments sprinkled in here and there, but his nursery is no where near ready. I need to buckle down and just do it.
The combination of high temperatures and my third trimester make this week's recipe extra appropriate. Raspberry season has been in full swing here in New England and I was graciously given a bunch of raspberries from a friend's garden so it was time to break out the ice cream maker. If you don't own an ice cream maker and have been on the fence about getting one, I recommend this Cuisinart model. I purchased it a few years ago with an amazon gift certificate I got for my birthday and it's pretty awesome...and dangerous. There could be no ice cream in the house and then 20 minutes later there is fresh ice cream in the house without going anywhere. Dangerous. I could eliminate that issue by not always storing the ice cream container in the deep freezer so that it's ready to go on a moment's notice, but I just don't do that.
I used a bar of Lindt White Chocolate for the chocolate chunks in this recipe, but you can substitute your preferred chocolate chips, chocolate bar or dark chocolate would be a nice combination. Get out your blender and ice cream maker and let's dig into summer!
Raspberry White Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream
-2 cups whole milk
-1 1/2 cups cream
-2 cups raspberries
-1 cup sugar
-1 teaspoon vanilla
-1 1/2 cup raspberries (you can use more if you like)
-1 white chocolate bar or your choice of chocolate chips, chunks etc.
If using a similar ice cream maker to the one I use referenced above, you need to make sure that the ice cream container has been in the freezer for several hours before you make the recipe. In a blender, combine the milk, cream, sugar, vanilla and 1 cup of raspberries. Reserve the additional 1/2 cup of raspberries to add to the ice cream later. Blend together. Set up the ice cream maker. Pour the ice cream mixture into the ice cream container and turn on the machine to begin to churn. You will want to churn the ice cream for 15-20 minutes.
While the ice cream is churning, chop your chocolate. Once the ice cream is at the consistency of a very soft, soft serve ice cream (usually in 10-15 minutes), pour the chopped chocolate and additional raspberries into the ice cream maker and allow to churn with the ice cream for the last 5-7 minutes. You can stop the ice cream machine once the consistency is that of a thick, soft serve ice cream and can serve immediately, or if you prefer a thicker ice cream then pour the ice cream into a freezer safe dish, cover and place in the freezer for an additional hour or so and then enjoy. Ice cream can be recovered and stored in the freezer, but keep in mind that you will need to allow to thaw a little bit before serving each time as there are no artificial softeners in the recipe.
Enjoy your summer and send me any tips to get this nursery done!
These cookies might be one of the weirdest flavor combinations I've given a try, but I really like them. I was staring at some unused rhubarb in my fridge this weekend and started brainstorming about possible recipes so that it wouldn't go to waste. I recently made this Vegan Rhubarb Strawberry Banana Oatmeal Bread over on the Peaceful Dumpling and I love Rhubarb/Strawberry Crisp and Pie, but I wanted to try something different. I began to think of the flavors in a Rhubarb Crisp and came up with cinnamon, oatmeal and brown sugar so I set out to the store to find some cinnamon chips to make cookies. No luck. Cinnamon chips might be a fall only type item along with all the pumpkin spice chips that will be descending upon us soon so I had to think of something else. I had my hands on some white chocolate chips, which I still think could be a good combination, but I've made Cranberry and White Chocolate Chip cookies before and I was still wanting to try something a little bit different. A package of butterscotch chips caught my eye, which isn't a flavor I've baked with much at all...maybe even ever, but I thought the sweetness of the butterscotch might pair well with the tangy rhubarb.
These cookies came out soft, sweet and there's just a hint of the tangy rhubarb that's nice but not overwhelming. I pureed the rhubarb first as I knew cookies would only take 10-15 minutes to bake versus a pie or crisp that would be in the oven for 45-60 minutes and I didn't think chunks of uncooked rhubarb would be too delightful.
I've had many baking bloopers in my time in the kitchen and I was fairly certain these cookies would also be added to the list, but I'm glad I took the risk. I like them. They still seem like an odd flavor combination, but once I tasted them I also couldn't help but wonder about turning them into ice cream sandwiches around homemade strawberry ice cream. They're soft enough to be a nice compliment to some ice cream and that strawberry, rhubarb flavor combo might just be to die for. What do you think? Should strawberry ice cream to go with these cookies be the next kitchen project?
Until I decide that one, here's the recipe for you to try. Stay cool in the summer sun friends.
Rhubarb Butterscotch Oatmeal Cookies
(makes approximately 25-30 cookies)
-1/2 cup butter (room temperature)
-3/4 cup brown sugar
-1/2 cup white sugar
-1 tsp vanilla extract
-3/4 cup rhubarb puree
-1 cup flour
-1 cup oatmeal
-1 tsp cinnamon
-1 tsp baking powder
-1/2 tsp salt
- 1 package butterscotch chips
Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. In a food processor or high powered blender, puree rhubarb and set aside 3/4 cup for the cookies. In a large mixing bowl, add the butter, sugars and cream together. Add in the vanilla extract and eggs and continue to mix together. Mix in the rhubarb puree. In a separate bowl, stir together the oatmeal, flour, salt, baking powder and cinnamon. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix together. Fold in the butterscotch chips.
Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a small scoop, scoop out the cookie dough onto your baking tray, leaving room in between the cookies. Bake for approximately 14 minutes. Remove from the oven. Allow to cool on the tray for a few minutes and them transfer to a wire cooling rack. Enjoy!
I touched on this in my last post but I'm declaring here and now that May/June is the new December. I've been trying to get away from using the word "busy" but I'm not sure what the better way to describe it is. Schedule too full? A lot of cool, amazing, fun things going on that this almost third trimester pregnant lady can barely keep up with? No matter which word or phrase I settle on the bottom line is that we had a whirlwind of school musicals, dance rehearsals and recitals, end of year activities and June is a big birthday month around here. It was all wonderful but I'm looking forward to the slower pace of long summer evenings!
On the baking front, this was the month of the birthday cakes. My go-to recipe is this lovely white cake from scratch by Goodie Godmother. I've posted about this before over on Instagram and this is a recipe to try if you've been looking for an easy and delicious white cake from scratch. I modified it to an orange and cranberry version for Christmas and I made an Oreo version for my daughter's communion last year. Super simple to change it up!
The first birthday required rainbows and we went with simple vanilla white cake with vanilla buttercream, topped with white chocolate strawberries and all the rainbow sprinkles. I had strict instructions that she wanted a rainbow birthday. I'm still trying to practice that smooth buttercream finish on a cake and this was a good practice run....I'm getting there! I think I fuss too much and keep trying to perfect the frosting finish and make things worse. Many moons ago, I took one of those cake decorating classes at Michael's with a good friend and I remember our sweet instructor telling us to stop fussing at a certain point, but it's so hard to not be Type A about it and just get that last little bump smoothed out...which then ends up creating 3 more.
The second birthday checked off a goal from our baking bucket list as my daughter and I baked macarons for the first time! This "little one" is Paris obsessed these days and loves everything teal so she wanted a Paris themed cake. She's talked about macarons for months. I said we would give them a go but I admittedly was intimidated. My baking style is totally "a little bit of this, a little bit of that" and macarons are. not. that. They are precise. I needed to use a scale...and a stop watch...and my Vitamix....and a mesh sieve....but we moved forward anyway and we had success for a first try with the very helpful tutorial by Turquoise Toffee. I can't say that each cookie came out like these photos. I baked a few too close together and they crumbled, but they were great for taste testing. We kept these simple with a vanilla, teal macaron filled with vanilla frosting. I'm pretty sure we'll try new flavors soon as they're just too pretty to not make again.
Aannnd for the cake, we continued with the teal and Paris themes by plopping this giant Eiffel Tower stand on top as a cake topper after the cake was filled and frosted with likely too much vanilla buttercream (but is there really such a thing as too much vanilla buttercream? I'm asking for a friend). This cake was made with the same recipe, but somehow I did something wrong this time because the cake was made the day of the birthday party but I found it a little dry. I know it's me and not the recipe because I've made it so many times before. I'm chalking it up to distracted baking, which has happened around here before...more than once. I've had experiences in the middle of a recipe only to get distracted by kids or dogs and then return to the recipe and forget where I was mid-measurement and then oops. Too much flour, too little flour....no sugar...oops. I'm not sure what the specific culprit was this time but I will pay more attention next time. Really...I will.
That's June in a nutshell for me. I hope that you have had a wonderful month and enjoy all that summer sunlight!
wife, mom, faith, fitness, yoga, baking and constantly cleaning my kitchen.