Kick your summer up a notch with this easy peasy, super refreshing cocktail. It’s the fresh muddled raspberries that do it for me. And raspberries are fruit, so this is healthy…right? It’s been miserably hot the past couple weeks, so I haven’t been using the oven and stove as much, which is why this spritzer became a thing. The cocktail certainly helped cool us down!
With Valentine’s Day in sight, I wanted to get a head start on some themed cooking and baking. Originally, I was planning on making strawberry macaroons, as I’ve never tasted or made the cookie. However, I was in a lazy mood and didn’t feel like baking something that would demand too much effort.
I decided to bake cupcakes instead, especially since I had some adorable new liners that I’d been craving to use. I chose a Martha Stewart recipe for raspberry cupcakes with pink buttercream frosting and lacy chocolate hearts—primarily because they looked absolutely adorable in the photo that accompanied the recipe. I was unsure about making the chocolate hearts because of the tedious process, but am so glad I took the time to make them.
I substituted a few ingredients in the recipe and the cakes turned out moist and delicious. The finely chopped raspberries in the batter were a pleasant surprise when biting into the cupcake.
I topped the cupcakes with my reliable and fool-proof recipe for sweet and smooth buttercream frosting. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any leftover berries, but next time I would definitely add fresh raspberries to the frosting to give the cupcakes a little extra zing.
Oh, and I got to use my brand new, gorgeous Kitchen Aid professional mixer—definitely a wise investment. :)
Last night, I hosted a dinner party at my house with some close friends. Like my parents’ party last weekend, I had a tapas style dinner accompanied by a plethora of white and red wine. We had a fabulous variety of foods—baked brie with jam, maple syrup and brown sugar, stuffed jalepeños, cheese crostinis, caesar salad with homemade dressing and pesto sandwiches.
I made mini pesto sandwiches, sausage and cheese stuffed jalepeños, a fruit tart and a peanut butter pie.
My neighbor often makes this fruit tart when my parents have dinner parties. She always expresses how simple it is to make the tart and doesn’t understand my family’s obsession with the dessert. However, my guests last night seemed to understand the tart addiction and cleared the platter in no time. This dessert might actually be my favorite Paula Deen recipe—her knack of creating dessert recipes never ceases to amaze me.
Ok, I know I just made lime bars (here), but I recently found this recipe for raspberry lemonade bars and couldn’t resist—I had to make them. Since I have always relied on my lemon bar recipe for the filling and crust, I was somewhat hesitant on trying a new recipe. I am sure glad I did, however, because these bars were absolutely fantastic.
At times, I’m very impatient when it comes to baking. In regards to these bars, I wanted them to cool in 5 minutes so I could try a bite. Instead of letting the bars chill in the fridge for an hour or so, I figured they’d be just fine after 20 minutes (and they were). My first bite into one of these sweet treats was complete ecstasy. The refreshing raspberry lemonade flavor made them the perfect summer dessert.
Once you’ve finished making the bars, I would suggest keeping them in the fridge so the crust does not get soggy. This way, the bars will stay fresh for more than a few days. If you’re not wild about a ton of filling on top of your bars, just pour half or 3/4 of the mixture on top of the crust. This will tame the sweetness of each bar a bit. (FYI: I used all the filling).