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Apple Crostata Recipe Recipe

Apple Crostata Recipe

06.24.11 by Jackie

I really enjoy baking apple desserts. There is something so enticing about the smell of fresh baked apple goods that I just can’t get enough of. Today, I made an apple crostata, which is not your average apple pie.

First, I made an apple pie filling flavored with raisins, cinnamon and vanilla. Unlike last time for my blueberry crostata, I didn't use polenta for the dough, but instead I used regular all-purpose flour, cold butter and ice water. Once the dough rounds are formed, I nested a little of the pie filling in the center, then folded each edge inward. The finishing touch is a brush of egg wash along with a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar.

I usually serve apple desserts with a scoop of vanilla ice cream to top them off. I think the warm apples and cold ice cream complement each other so well. Next time you're planning a tea party or a get-together with your friends or family, serve these apple crostatas and your guests will be in for a treat.

Apple Raisin Pie Recipe with Picture
Note: The first picture is when the crostata is formed, right before going into the oven.


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Rau Cau Dua: Vietnamese Coconut Jello Recipe Recipe

Rau câu is Vietnamese jello made with agar agar, which is a seaweed by-product, similar to gelatin (except it's vegetal). Several months ago, family friends came for dinner and brought delicious rau câu made with nước dừa ("coconut juice" in Vietnamese). We usually serve the more traditional Vietnamese dessert made with sweetened condensed milk and flavor it with layers of chocolate, mocha, pandan and sometimes durian, but I really like the flavor of this variation. I was also pleasantly surprised at how easy this version was to make. All you need is a few cans of coconut juice with pulp and agar agar. How simple is that?

The coconut jello has another great advantage. It has the same texture as pana cotta, so you can serve it to children without being scared of any spilling or any accidents on your floor. I've adopted this cube version whenever I make it for kids. You can use the same recipe using your children's favorite drinks. It's mess-free and melts in your mouth. They’ll love it!


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Raspberry Buttermilk Cake Recipe Recipe

The secret of this moist raspberry cake recipe is buttermilk. It creates a light, fluffy texture that goes beautifully with a hot cup of tea. You could add any berries you like. This time I paired fresh raspberries with crunchy pistachios.

I baked the cakes in 6 mini molds and topped each dessert with fresh raspberries and crushed pistachios as a reminder of the flavors used in the cake batter. Heavenly!


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Mexican Chocolate Flan Recipe Recipe

Mexican Chocolate Flan Recipe

05.03.11 by Jackie

Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican army's unlikely victory over French forces in 1862. The celebrations here in the Bay Area are always fun and I wanted to get in on the festivities. I love chocolate desserts, so I made a spiced chocolate flan.

I flavored the custard with Mexican chocolate, cinnamon and a small amount of cayenne pepper for a pleasant warmth at the end. Enjoy!


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A Dessert Fit for a King: Banana Flan (Prince William's Favorite Dessert) Recipe

Unless you’ve been under a rock, you’ve probably been inundated with news about the pending royal nuptials. And even though I already had mine years ago, I am a sucker for fairytale weddings. Food is one of the keys to an amazing event, and since banana flan ("banana cream pie" in America) is Prince William's favorite dessert, I made half a dozen of them so the 6 girls in our family can nibble while watching the wedding on TV. The recipe is pretty simple; I made puff pastry pie shells that I filled with regular custard that I filled in   and topped with grilled bananas. The flavor is very similar to banana pudding, which is definitely nothing to complain about. I adapted the recipe from Chef Darren McGrady's Eating Royally. Chef McGrady was the personal chef to Prince William, Prince Harry and Lady Diana until her death in 1997.

I'm going to try my hardest to watch it live, but I’m not sure I'll be able to stay up so late. One thing I do know is that I'll be enjoying banana flan and hot tea (oh so British!) while staring at Kate Middleton's wedding gown and waiting for the couple's smooch from the balcony of Buckingham Palace.

Royal Wedding William and Kate

Congratulations William and Kate!


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