Tag Archive fruit

Strawberry Vanilla Shortcake

Strawberry Vanilla Shortcake

It’s been a perfect storm in the Secrets of a Home Cook kitchen. First, baker extraordinaire, Dorie Greenspan’s been talking up her strawberry shortcake recipes and with strawberry season in full swing, it’s all I want to eat right now. Second, my mom (mom extraordinaire) brought me gorgeous vanilla beans from her recent trip to India. The result is my own version of strawberry vanilla shortcake. It really is a very easy recipe with vanilla beans throughout. They’re a bit pricy but worth the few extra dollars and you can find them right next to the extract in the baking aisle.

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Blood Orange Oatmeal Cookies

Blood Orange Oatmeal Cookies

There’s a certain fascination with a blood orange. Ordinary on the outside, the inside is like Andy Warhol pop art, bloody red and otherworldly. They thrive in cooler weather so they’re in season right now and it’s worth seeking them out. It’s a sweet and less acidic orange, great for snacking or the main ingredient in these showstopper blood orange oatmeal cookies.

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Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

When comfort food and a traditional recipe collide it can only mean one thing: pineapple upside-down cake. This moist and dense cake with a sticky caramel topping was a dessert staple in the good old days but it’s so much better today with fresh pineapple and raspberries (for that bright red touch). Fresh fruit vs. canned takes an old-fashioned dessert to a new sophisticated level and this easy-to-follow recipe means you can make it any time.

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Orange Cranberry Tea Bread

Orange Cranberry Tea Bread

Share the love this Thanksgiving with the gift that keeps on giving. Orange cranberry tea bread is a thoughtful hostess gift not only because it’s homemade (by you), but also, it’s a nice addition to the Thanksgiving table or a hassle-free gift for breakfast the following morning. While you’re at it, make an extra so you’re all set for breakfast too.

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Apple Pie with Pretzel Crust

Apple Pie with Pretzel Crust

When it comes to Thanksgiving memories, one thing’s for sure, you don’t mess with tradition or recipes. But, there’s no reason why you can’t take a classic apple pie and add a tiny twist. In this case a mere handful of crushed pretzels in the crust. Salty, crunchy pretzels liven up the crust especially when using coarse, raw sugar. The sweet and salty combo is a perfect compliment to the rustic, earthy apples. Maybe the Pilgrims didn’t do it, but there’s no reason why you can’t make apple pie with pretzel crust.

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Peach Pandowdy

peach pandowdy

As the September weather ebbs and flows from cool to hot to cool again, that seasonal change is even more evident at the farmers market. Right this very moment, it’s evenly split between summer peaches and fall apples. Next week the apples will outnumber the peaches and the week after that, quit possible just apples (as it should be). So, grab those last fruits of summer and make peach pandowdy. This authentic southern recipe comes by way of my sister-in-law, Kelley. Read on for Kelley’s secret to what makes this one a keeper.

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Golden Plum Ginger Jam

Golden Plum Ginger Jam

What’s a home cook to do with too much summer fruit, in this case, yellow plums? Make a quick batch of refrigerator golden plum ginger jam. When it comes to homemade jam, the canning process is what’s daunting, but actually making the jam is a simple combination of cooking fruit and sugar. The result is the best jam you’ve ever tasted. Store in the fridge and it will last for months, if it lasts that long.

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A Simple Fruit Crisp

A Simple Fruit Crisp

The thing about summer stone fruit (peaches, plums, nectarines and apricots) is that for a few months it’s everywhere and then it’s gone. When it’s in season, like right now, it’s heavenly but the delicate flavor can quickly turn squishy and overripe just days after you buy it. If you’re a stone fruit ‘hoarder’ like Secrets of a Home Cook, with too much fruit on your hands all summer long, you can give it a second life by making a simple fruit crisp (you probably already have the ingredients).

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Scallops with Lemon Chive Oil

Scallops with Lemon Chive Oil

Scallops with lemon chive oil is one of those recipes that takes only 10 minutes to cook and are full of lean protein with the glorious taste of the sea. With the freshest ingredients and home cook’s confidence you can make scallops perfectly cooked, just like a four-star restaurant. Add lemon and local chef, Carolyn Hough’s chive oil and you’ll knock it out of the park.

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Blueberry Buckle

BLueberry Buckle

Every time I bake blueberry buckle, I’m reminded of my dear friend Carolyn Hough and the first time we met over freshly baked blueberry buckle. If I’m a cook, she’s a chef and a very, very, good one. Classically trained at the Culinary Institute of America and then a professional chef at some pretty swanky restaurants including Charlie Trotters in Chicago. But my favorite tidbit about Carolyn is that she’s been baking sourdough bread from scratch everyday for over a decade. This is no ordinary sourdough. It’s lovingly made with a starter from grapes instead of yeast because grapes create a natural sourdough. In the culinary world, that is very cool. Lucky for us her signature sourdough is for sale along with lots of other goodies in her little shed called Panetica, Latin for bread and ethical. The offerings change weekly and this week, among them is my very own buckle.

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