White Russian Milkshakes #IceCreamWeek

By Coleen

Ice Cream Week continues with White Russian Milkshakes — coffee ice cream, whipped cream vodka and coffee liqueur for a frozen twist on the classic cocktail!

White Russian Milkshakes by @TheRedheadBaker for #IceCreamWeek

Welcome to Day 2 of Ice Cream Week 2014! This year the event is hosted by Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen. We have teamed up with 25 amazing bloggers to bring you ice cream treats all week long. It’s going to be an epic week full of frozen treats!

This post is a little long, so I won’t be offended if you want to skip right to the recipe, or to the giveaway.

The Giveaway

Our sponsors for the event have provided us with some great prizes. A huge thanks to Cake Boss, Anolon, Microplane, WÜSTHOF, Page Street Publishing andQuarry Spoon. Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen have tossed in a bonus prize of a Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker because they think everyone should own one!

Here’s what is up for grabs, One Winner Takes All:

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The Recipe

I’m a big fan of cocktails that involve chocolate, coffee, and/or whipped cream. The White Russian can, depending on the recipe, contain all three. What can make those cocktails even better? Making them into boozy milkshakes!

The White Russian reminds me of the Snowpocalypse of 2010. We got over three feet of snow in one day. We stocked up on food and alcohol, and prepared ourselves to be stuck in the house for several days. Since we couldn’t go anywhere, what was the harm in having cocktails at 1 in the afternoon? We watched bad television, had our cocktails, and had a fun afternoon!

These milkshakes are a great summertime version of that cocktail. If you like yours extra slushy, add a cup of ice to the blender.

White Russian Milkshakes by @TheRedheadBaker for #IceCreamWeek

5.0 from 1 reviews
White Russian Milkshakes #IceCreamWeek
Serves: 1
  • 1 cup coffee ice cream, softened
  • 1 shot (1½ oz) coffee liqueur
  • 1 shot (1½ oz) whipped cream-flavored vodka
  • Whipped cream, for garnish
  • Grated semisweet chocolate, or chocolate syrup, for garnish
  1. Place the coffee ice cream, coffee liqueur, and flavored vodka in a blender. Blend on high speed for about 20 seconds, until well-combined but still thick.
  2. Pour into a chilled glass, garnish with whipped cream and grated chocolate or chocolate syrup.

Adapted from Epicurious

Stop by to visit all our Day 2 Ice Cream Week Participants:

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Disclaimer: I was not compensated monetarily or with any product(s) for participating in this blogging event. The #IceCreamWeek Giveaway is open to U.S. and Canada residents only. ONE winner will receive ALL the prizes listed. Giveaway ends at midnight on August 31st. See official giveaway rules here.

Raspberry Lemonade Ice Cream Pie #IceCreamWeek

By Coleen

I’m kicking off #IceCreamWeek with a light and fruity no-churn ice cream pie! Raspberry lemonade ice cream pie is the perfect summer treat!

Raspberry Lemonade Ice Cream by @TheRedheadBaker #IceCreamWeek

Welcome to Ice Cream Week 2014! This year the event is hosted by Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen. We have teamed up with 25 amazing bloggers to bring you ice cream treats all week long. I hope you have as much fun as we did. Break out those stretchy pants and celebrate Ice Cream Week with us!

This post is a little long, so I won’t be offended if you want to skip right to the recipe, or to the giveaway.

The Giveaway

Our sponsors for the event have provided us with some great prizes. A huge thanks to Cake Boss, Anolon, Microplane, WÜSTHOF, Page Street Publishing and Quarry Spoon. Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen have tossed in a bonus prize of a Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker because they think everyone should own one!

Here’s what is up for grabs, One Winner Takes All:

10497007_10152531870867525_6493490744230426769_o 10505180_10152531871677525_1053351498798526815_o

The Recipe

To kick off Ice Cream Week, and since today happens to be National Ice Cream Pie Day, I made a no-churn ice cream pie. Lemon juice and zest give intense lemon flavor, and raspberry puree adds a sweet contrast.

The recipe starts off similar to “real” ice cream, with cooking egg yolks over a double boiler. However, instead of churning, you fold in whipped cream before freezing the mixture. By making the ice cream this way, it doesn’t freeze as hard as regular ice cream, so it’s ready to slice and serve straight from the freezer.

I thought the recipe could benefit from even more raspberry flavor. That can be achieved with using a larger amount of raspberry puree, or by adding a splash of raspberry extract. If you want a pinker color, using more raspberry extract might help, otherwise, add a drop of pink food coloring.

We thought this was a really refreshing summer treat. The creamy sweet-tart ice cream contrasted with the slightly salty, crunchy graham cracker crust. And we didn’t feel full and heavy after eating a not-so-small slice.

Raspberry Lemonade Ice Cream by @TheRedheadBaker #IceCreamWeek

Raspberry Lemonade Ice Cream Pie #IceCreamWeek
Serves: 8
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 2 tbsp
  • 1½ cups whipping cream
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • ⅓ cup lemon juice
  • Zest of half a lemon
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Graham cracker crust (storebought or homemade)
  1. Place the raspberries and 2 tbsp of sugar in a food processor. Process until liquified. Press the liquid through a fine-mesh sieve to remove the seeds, discard the seeds and leftover pulp. Refrigerate until ready to use (can be made up to a day in advance).
  2. Beat the whipping cream until soft peaks form; refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Place the remaining cup of sugar in a the bowl of a stand mixer. Set the bowl over, but not touching, simmering water. Add the egg yolks, lemon juice, lemon zest and salt. Whisk constantly until thick and fluffy and the sugar dissolves.
  4. Take the mixture off the simmering water and place it on a stand mixer. Beat with the whip attachment until doubled in volume and cool to the touch.
  5. Stir a quarter of the whipped cream into the egg mixture. Fold in the remaining whipped cream quickly but gently, to retain the whipped texture. Then fold in the raspberry puree.
  6. Scrape the mixture into the graham cracker crust and freeze for at least 8 hours.

Recipe adapted from Kitchen Simplicity

Make sure you swing by for a scoop from each of today’s Ice Cream Week Participants:


Other Blogs participating later this week:

Special Guest for the Week is Lindsay Clendaniel of the blog, Scoop Adventures. We’re very excited to have her join us. Lindsay is the author of Scoop Adventures which is chock full of ice cream goodness.

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Disclaimer: I was not compensated monetarily or with any product(s) for participating in this blogging event. The #IceCreamWeek Giveaway is open to U.S. and Canada residents only. ONE winner will receive ALL the prizes listed. Giveaway ends at midnight on August 31st. See official giveaway rules here.

French Toast with Blackberry Sauce

By Coleen

Treat yourself to an indulgent breakfast: rich French toast topped with blackberry sauce! Garnish with a dollop of whipped cream or a sprinkling of confectioners sugar. 

French Toast with Blackberry Sauce by @TheRedheadBaker

Child-free mornings are meant for indulging: extra sleep, and leisurely, “grown-up” breakfasts. What’s a grown-up breakfast? Pretty much anything that takes longer than 30 seconds in a microwave to cook.

Normally, we go out for brunch when Liam spends the weekend with his grandparents. But as I’m between contract jobs, we opted to cook a special breakfast at home: French toast with blackberry sauce.

The blackberry sauce mostly came about because we had a package in the fridge that needed to get used up. I had intended to leave it on the “chunky” side, with bits of whole blackberry in it, but when I squeezed the lemon juice into the sauce, a lemon seed found its way in, so I had to strain the whole mixture to get it out.

French Toast with Blackberry Sauce by @TheRedheadBaker

This was such a treat. Typical breakfasts lately have been a cup of coffee, and whatever I could grab in between making Liam’s breakfast, getting Liam ANOTHER cup of milk, stopping the dogs from eating whatever bits of breakfast Liam drops in his lap, turning on an episode of Thomas the Tank Engine for Liam, need I go on?

There was a bit of leftover blueberry sauce after all the French toast had been eaten, and it solidified into jelly when refrigerated, which was delicious when smeared on a slice of regular toast.

Bonus? Any leftovers freeze beautifully, and cook up in less than 30 seconds in the microwave for when the toddler comes back home.

French Toast with Blackberry Sauce by @TheRedheadBaker

French Toast with Blackberry Sauce and Whipped Chevre
Serves: 4 (2 slices each)
For the blackberry sauce
  • 1½ cups (7.5 ounces) fresh blackberries
  • 3 tbsp water, divided
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ of a lemon
For the French toast
  • 8 thick slices of white bread, stale
  • 4 eggs
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  1. Place the blackberries, 2 tbsp of water, and the sugar in a saucepan. Simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.
  2. Grate the zest of the lemon, then squeeze the juice through your palm (to catch any seeds) into the saucepan. Stir well.
  3. In a small bowl, stir together the cornstarch and the remaining tablespoon of water. Add to the saucepan, and cook for about a minute.
  4. Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, pressing down on the solids with a spatula. Discard seeds and any remaining pulp. Stir the vanilla extract into the sauce. Set aside.
  5. In a shallow, wide mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, whole milk, vanilla and cinnamon.
  6. Preheat a griddle to 300 degrees. Dip each slice of bread in the egg mixture for 5 seconds, then flip and soak second side for 5 seconds. Then place on the griddle. Repeat for each slice of bread. Cook until browned on the bottom, then flip and cook until second side is browned.
  7. Serve 2 slices per person, topped with blackberry sauce and whipped chevre.


Small-Batch Vanilla-Plum Preserves {no canning required} and a giveaway

By Coleen

Plums contain lots of natural pectin, so making preserves is easy! Vanilla-plum preserves make a delicious topping for your breakfast! 

Small-Batch Vanilla-Plum Preserves by @TheRedheadBaker

I first heard about these vanilla-spiced plum preserves YEARS ago in an issue of Food Network Magazine. I saved the recipe, and have been dying to make it ever since.

That said, I’m a little intimidated by canning. And I was hesitant to invest money in all the necessary equipment. So, it’s been filed away ever since, gathering dust.

I had a few jars here and there, but they were meant to hold small batches of homemade condiments and spice mixes; they were not suitable for canning. I featured one of those Kilner jars in my Homemade Sriracha post, and the distributor of those jars, Pacific Merchants, contacted me to offer a gift card to give away to my readers.

Small-Batch Vanilla-Plum Preserves by @TheRedheadBaker

I was trying to decide what to make in conjunction with the giveaway that could feature one of their products. That was when I discovered that if you plan to consume preserves relatively soon after you make them, you don’t NEED to go through the canning process!

A non-canned batch of preserves will last about 3 to 4 weeks in the refrigerator. This recipe makes about a cup. I use about two tablespoons per bagel, or per two slices of toast, so this will last me through 8 breakfasts.

These preserves were so tasty, I want to make another batch (and maybe I’ll finally jump into canning, so I can make a big batch!). I thought they would be tart, but they were just the right amount of sweet. I loved the subtle vanilla aftertaste.

Pacific Merchants $50 gift certificate giveaway

Pacific Merchants has offered a $50 gift certificate to one lucky reader of The Redhead Baker. Not into canning? Pacific Merchants sells so much more! Acacia wood serving bowls, trays and utensils; fermenting crocks; placemats; and more! If you’re interested in cooking (which you probably are if you read my blog), then there’s something for you.

Simply scroll down to the bottom of this post and enter to win! The only required entry is to leave a comment on this blog post; all others are optional, but provide you with additional chances to win!

In addition, anyone who reads this blog can get 15% off their purchase at PacificMerchants.com by using the code Redhead15!

Small-Batch Vanilla-Plum Preserves by @TheRedheadBaker

4.8 from 5 reviews
Small-Batch Vanilla-Plum Preserves {no canning required}
  • 6 small ripe plums, skin on, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 inches of vanilla bean
  • 3 inches of cinnamon stick
  • Juice of ¼ of a lemon
  1. Place half of the plums in a medium, non-reactive saucepan with the sugar. Split the vanilla bean in half, and scrape out the seeds. Add the seeds and the vanilla bean halves to the plums with the cinnamon stick and lemon juice.
  2. Set the saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Let simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes, until the plums begin to break down and the mixture boils.
  3. Add a candy thermometer to the mixture, and if it's not already, bring the mixture to 220 degrees (the point at which the mixture will gel when cooled).
  4. Let the mixture cool for 30 minutes. While the mixture cools, soak one 8-ounce (or two 4-ounce) glass storage jars in hot water (putting hot preserves in cool glass jars can cause the glasses to break).
  5. Return the plum mixture to a boil, and add the second half of the plums. Reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for another 5 minutes, until the newly-added plums are very tender. Fish the cinnamon stick and vanilla bean halves out with tongs.
  6. Remove the glass jar(s) from the hot water and wipe dry. Use a funnel to fill the jar(s). Wipe any spilled preserves from the neck of the jar(s). Twist the lid(s) on, and let the jars cool on the counter for about two hours, then place in the refrigerator. Use within 3 to 4 weeks.

Recipe adapted from Food Network Magazine

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Disclosure: Pacific Merchants is supply the $50 gift certificate as prize for this giveaway. I was not compensated with cash or products for conducting this sweepstakes.

Giveaway Terms & Conditions

  • Odds of winning depend on total number of entries received
  • Giveaway ends at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on Sunday, August 17, 2014
  • Winner will be selected at random by the Rafflecopter widget
  • Winner will receive one (1) gift certificate valued at $50 to be redeemed at http://www.pacificmerchants.com
  • Prize must be claimed within 7 days or it will be forfeited, and another winner chosen
  • Prize can only be claimed by an individual age 18 or older with a US address
  • Official giveaway rules can be found here

Oven-Dried Cherries #SundaySupper

By Coleen

Savor the flavor of sweet summer cherries all year long! Make dried cherries in your oven, then keep them in an airtight container for a taste of summer, even in the winter!

Oven Dried Cherries by @TheRedheadBaker for #SundaySupper

There are so many reasons that summer is my favorite season: warm weather, long days full of sunshine, swimming, barbecues, flip flops, and abundant fresh produce.

Sadly, summer doesn’t last forever, at least not in Pennsylvania. The weather will begin to cool down, the days will get shorter … then things will get downright miserable. NOT looking forward to winter, can you tell?

Oven Dried Cherries by @TheRedheadBaker for #SundaySupper

Sure, there are some fruits and veggies that you can buy “out of season,” but they don’t always have the same flavor as in-season produce, and they’re also usually more expensive. So today’s #SundaySupper is all about saving that peak flavor.

I actually came across this recipe earlier in the summer. Whole Foods had their annual cherry fest, selling cherries for $2.99 a pound. Cherries normally sell for about $6.99 a pound, so this was definitely a steal! I came home with 12 pounds of cherries!

Between Dave, Liam and I, we polished off half of those cherries in about a week! I sent another two pounds to daycare with Liam for Snack Share Wednesday. I used another two pounds for other recipes. I was left with about a pound and a half of cherries that were getting precariously close to the end of their shelf life. Then someone told me I could dry them in my oven!

If you want to try it on your own, you’ll need to choose a day that you’ll be home all day. Oven-drying has to be done “low and slow,” so it takes a while. But you’ll be left with dried fruit just like you buy in pouches at the grocery store that will keep very well in an airtight container. Grab a handful whenever you need a quick taste of summer!

Oven Dried Cherries by @TheRedheadBaker for #SundaySupper

5.0 from 3 reviews
Oven-Dried Cherries #SundaySupper
If you don't have an oven-safe wire cooling rack, you can dry the cherries directly on the silicone baking mat or parchment paper, but the cherries will need an additional two hours in the oven.
  • Fresh cherries (1 lb of pitted cherries will yield about 4 oz of dried cherries)
  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper, then place an oven-safe wire cooling rack over top.
  2. Remove the pits and stems from the cherries, and space them evenly on the wire rack.
  3. Place in the oven for six hours.
  4. Remove and allow to cool completely on the wire rack.
  5. Transfer for an airtight container to store.

Drying method from The Kitchn

Learn how to …

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Sunday Supper Movement Join the #SundaySupper conversation on Twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7 p.m. ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Raspberry Swirl Pound Cake #CookbooksandCalphalon

By Coleen

Fresh raspberry puree creates a pretty pink, fruity swirl inside this tender, buttery pound cake.

Raspberry Swirl Pound Cake for #Cookbooks&Calphalon

My foodie friend, Colleen from Souffle Bombay, was thinking about just what cookbook it was that made her fall in love with cooking recently, then she decided to ask the same question to a number of her foodie friends, myself included, and #CookbooksandCalphalon was born! Enjoy 17 food bloggers stories as well as the recipes that go along with them as we celebrate our love of cooking and the perfect pairing of Cookbooks and Calphalon!

My story? Well, I like food. Making it, eating it, sharing it. And since a career in the culinary industry didn’t work out, I started this blog to share my love of cooking and baking.

I’ve always liked food. As soon as I was old enough, I was the designated birthday-cake-baker in my family (yes, that included my own). I was a bookworm kid, and you would be just as likely to find me with my nose in a Babysitters’ Club book as my mom’s tattered old Betty Crocker cookbook.

Raspberry Swirl Pound Cake for #Cookbooks&Calphalon

That old cookbook had recipes for just about everything, from appetizers to drinks to main dishes to desserts. One of the first things I made out of that cookbook was pound cake. The recipe below is not from that book, as it’s long-since fallen apart. But it does remind me of my early baking attempts.

Pound cake got its name because when the recipe was first developed in the 1700s, it was made with a pound of butter, a pound of flour, a pound of eggs, and a pound of sugar. Yikes!

The recipe has been refined since, and the ratios altered, and new flavors added. This one uses the juice of fresh raspberries to create a pretty pink swirl, and adds a mild raspberry flavor. If your raspberries are not very ripe, you can add a small splash of raspberry extract to enhance the raspberry flavor.

#Cookbooks&Calphalon First Prize

This wouldn’t be complete without a fun giveaway for you to enter—you can’t cook without cookware and you can’t use cookware unless you can cook, right? So when you’re done drooling over this pound cake, take a moment to scroll to the bottom of the post and enter our awesome Cookbooks and Calphalon Giveaway!

Also, now through September 1st, Calphalon is celebrating couples! From the first meal they create together in their new home to the meal they share on their 25th anniversary, couple cook up memories! The cookware they choose serves as the foundation for which these “Couples Cooking” memories are made.

#Cookbooks&Calphalon Second Prize

Calphalon wants to recognize these #CouplesCooking moments by asking couples to share pictures of the meals they cook together for a chance to win $1,000 in Calphalon cookware! Calphalon is inviting couples to post photos of the meals they prepare with their significant other on Calphalon’s Facebook page. To enter, couples will be asked to share why the dish is unique or special to them and use the hashtag #CouplesCooking. How fun is THAT?

Follow the #CookbooksandCalphalon fun on social media for great recipes, tips and more and good luck in BOTH giveaways!

Raspberry Swirl Pound Cake for #Cookbooks&Calphalon

5.0 from 3 reviews
Raspberry Swirl Pound Cake
  • 3 tbsp whole milk
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1½ cups (5¼ oz) sifted cake flour
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¾ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 13 tbsp unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 3 oz fresh raspberries
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8x4-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a small bowl, lightly whisk together the milk, eggs and vanilla.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix all the dry ingredients (flour through salt) on low speed until combined (about 30 seconds).
  4. Add the butter and half the egg mixture, and beat on low speed until all dry ingredients are moistened, then beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Scrape down the bowl.
  5. Add half of the remaining egg mixture, beat for 20 seconds, and scrape down the bowl. Add the last of the egg mixture and beat for 20 seconds.
  6. Remove ½ cup of the batter and place in a small mixing bowl. Press the raspberries firmly through a fine-mesh sieve with a rubber spatula until you get a tablespoonful or so of thick juice. Add to the reserved cake batter and mix until well-combined.
  7. Scrape ⅓ of the vanilla batter into the prepared pan. Add half of the raspberry batter down the middle, and use a butter knife to swirl with the vanilla batter. Add another ⅓ of the vanilla batter on top, then scrape the rest of the raspberry batter down the middle, and swirl again. Top with the remaining vanilla batter and smooth it out with a knife or spatula.
  8. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack, then remove the cake from the pan to cool completely.

Adapted from Rose Levy Berenbaum’s “Perfect Pound Cake” (found in The Cake Bible)

Don’t forget to check out the other #CookbooksandCalphalon recipes! 




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Disclosure: I was not compensated to write this post with money or products to write this post. Thanks to Page Street Publishing and Calphalon for offering fun prizes!

Southwestern Turkey Burgers

By Coleen

Have a healthier barbecue — lean ground turkey burgers flavored with chili powder and roasted poblano peppers, dressed with chili-spiced mayo.

Southwest Turkey Burgers by @TheRedheadBaker #CLBlogger

In summertime, we usually end up having burgers at least once a week. And since I prefer to use 85/15 ground beef (85% meat/15% fat), well, those calories can add up. And that’s before you smother them in melty cheese.

I made this recipe a little reluctantly. My only past experience with turkey burgers was … less than yummy. It was flavorless and dry. Unlike beef burgers, turkey burgers must be cooked all the way through for safety reasons, which contributes to the dryness.

But I’ve been on a chili powder kick lately, and I just couldn’t pass these up. I’ve been spicing everything up with chili powder, ancho chili powder, chipotle chili powder …

Southwest Turkey Burgers by @TheRedheadBaker #CLBlogger

These burgers are the complete opposite of flavorless and dry. Chili powder and roasted poblano peppers add tons of flavor. The original recipe called for regular chili powder, but I use chipotle chili powder, because I prefer the smoky flavor.

The burgers are topped with mayo mixed with yet more chili powder, which adds more moisture. The original recipe does not call for any cheese, and we didn’t miss it at all. If you want to add some, a slice of Colby Jack, or some crumbled ricotta salata would be delicious!

Green poblano peppers are on the milder end of the chili pepper spectrum, so don’t worry about using gloves or removing the seeds before roasting.

We served these with Trader Joe’s frozen fire-roasted corn, but they would also be great with some baked sweet potato fries.

The original recipe contains 320 calories, 8.5 g of fat, 27 g of protein, 32 g of carbohydrates, and 2.6 g of fiber. I didn’t alter the recipe very drastically, so the recipe as written below probably isn’t too far off from that. That’s about half the fat of a typical homemade beef cheeseburger!

Southwest Turkey Burgers by @TheRedheadBaker #CLBlogger

Southwestern Turkey Burgers
Serves: 4
  • 2 poblano chiles (about ½ pound)
  • ½ oz plain bread crumbs, plus more if needed
  • ¼ cup 1% milk
  • ½ tsp chipotle chili powder, divided
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp ground red pepper
  • 1 lb lean ground turkey breast
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 tbsp mayo
  • 4 whole wheat hamburger buns, split and toasted
  • 4 slices plum tomato
  • 4 iceberg lettuce leaves
  1. Set broiler to high. Cut the tops off the peppers and split them in half. Line a baking sheet with tinfoil, then spray with nonstick cooking spray. Place peppers, skin-side down, on the baking sheet and broil for 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Place the peppers in either a brown paper bag, or in a large bowl covered with plastic wrap. Let sit for 15 to 20 minutes. Peel the skins off the peppers, then dice.
  3. Combine bread crumbs and milk in a large bowl and set aside for 5 minutes. Then add ¼ tsp chili powder, cumin, salt, black pepper, red pepper, ground turkey and diced peppers. Gently combine, then divide into four ½-inch thick patties.
  4. Spray a grill or skillet with nonstick cooking spray and cook burgers for about 3 to 5 minutes per side, until a thermometer reads 155 degrees. Remove from the grill or skillet and let rest for a few minutes, to allow carryover cooking to finish the burgers.
  5. While the burgers are resting, stir together the mayo and the remaining ¼ tsp of chipotle chili powder. Spread the mayo on one half of each of the buns, then top each with a patty, tomato slice and lettuce leaf.

Recipe slightly adapted from Cooking Light

Pizza Dough by Hand

By Coleen

Reclaim the lost art of making bread dough by hand! No electric mixer or bread machine is needed to make this delicious pizza dough.

Pizza Dough by Hand by @TheRedheadBaker

Have you ever seen a yeast bread recipe that mixes in either a mixer or a bread machine, and skipped over it because you don’t have that appliance? After this post, you’ll never have to do that again.

Yeast breads have been baked long before the invention of mixers or bread machines. It’s time to reclaim the lost art of baking bread by hand.

When I was in culinary school, “bread station” was one of my favorites. I didn’t always understand what I was doing or why I was doing it. But there are so many different things to make with only a few simple ingredients.

I decided to demonstrate this process with you by using my favorite homemade pizza dough recipe from Annie’s Eats. In all of the pizza recipes you’ll find on my blog, that’s the crust I use.

Pizza Dough by Hand by @TheRedheadBaker

Unkneaded dough

All that the dough hook on a stand mixer or a bread machine basically does is mix and knead the dough for you. Kneading is a process of working the dough to create chains of gluten. These chains are what create the structure of bread. If you didn’t knead the bread, your dough would not rise.

How do you knead? Well, you pull fold the back of the dough up over the front, and push it away from you with the heel of your hand, give it a quarter turn, and repeat. Sound a little confusing? Here, I made a video:

How do you know when you’re done kneading? What does “smooth and elastic” mean? Under-kneaded dough is flopping, tears easily, and looks ragged. Well-kneaded dough holds its shape, bounces back quickly when poked, and if you stretch out a portion of the dough, it becomes almost see-through.

On the other hand, what about over-kneading? Good news — it’s almost impossible to over-knead dough. Why? You’ll probably get tired before the dough gets to that point. If you’re kneading dough in a machine, over-kneading can happen, and the dough will feel dense and won’t fold. If that happens, let the dough rise a little longer than called for by the recipe, to let the dough relax.

There is no “magic number” for knowing when enough kneading is enough. Though yeast dough is finicky, it’s surprisingly forgiving when it comes to kneading. Your dough can be a little under- or over-kneaded and still come out well.

And best of all, homemade pizza dough is (A) inexpensive to make and (B) keeps well in the freezer, so go ahead and practice all you want!

Pizza Dough by Hand by @TheRedheadBaker

5.0 from 1 reviews
Pizza Dough by Hand
Serves: 4
  • ½ cup warm (95 to 105 degrees) water
  • 2¼ tsp instant yeast
  • 4 cups (22 oz) bread flour, plus ¼ cup more if needed
  • 1½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1¼ cup room temperature water
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  1. Sprinkle the instant yeast over the warm water, stir, then set aside to dissolve for 5 minutes.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the 4 cups of bread flour, kosher salt, room temperature water and olive oil. Add the dissolved yeast, and mix well.
  3. Dust a clean work surface with bread flour. Scrape the dough onto the floured surface, and knead in a rhythmic manner for 8 to 10 minutes, until the dough is smooth and elastic. Shape dough into a ball, and place in a well-oiled mixing bowl. Spray the top of the dough with cooking spray, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, then with a kitchen towel. Set aside in a warm, dark area to rise for 90 minutes to two hours, until the dough doubles in size.
  4. Once risen, punch the dough down to remove as much air as possible. Divide the dough into two equal pieces.
  5. If not using immediately, roll each portion of dough into a tight ball. Wrap each in plastic wrap. Place both dough balls inside a gallon-sized zip-top freezer bag, and place in the freezer.
  6. On the day you plan to make pizza for dinner, preheat then oven (and your pizza stone!) to 500 degrees an hour before you plan to bake. Remove the plastic-wrapped dough ball from the freezer bag and place in the refrigerator first thing in the morning (if making pizza for lunch, put dough ball in the fridge the night before). Remove from the refrigerator and unwrap the plastic. Let sit at room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes. Then pat into a disk and stretch into a 12-inch circle.
  7. Top your pizza as desired, reduce the oven temperature to 450 degrees, and bake pizza for 12 to 18 minutes, until crust is golden brown. Cut into 8 slices.

Recipe from Annie’s Eats

And in case you’re wondering, the topped pizza is Cooking Light’s Summer Veggie Pizza.

Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Nutella Ganache Topping

By Coleen

Creamy peanut butter cheesecake is layered over an Oreo crust and topped with rich nutella ganache!

Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Nutella Ganache Topping by @TheRedheadBaker

I love cheesecake. Can you tell? If I had to pick something to call my “signature dish,” it’d be cheesecake.

So when Carla over at Chocolate Moosey told me about a blog event called Cheesecake Day hosted by Roxana of Roxana’s Home Baking, I jumped to sign up.

I had a heck of a time trying to choose a cheesecake recipe to make. Should I go chocolate-y? Fruity? Then, we spent Father’s Day at one of our favorite Philly restaurants, Catahoula, and they had a fabulous peanut butter cheesecake on the dessert menu. I had to recreate that cheesecake at home.

Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Nutella Ganache Topping by @TheRedheadBaker

The question I see most often regarding cheesecakes is how to prevent it from cracking. First, ensure all of your ingredients (not just the cream cheese) are at room temperature. This ensures that they will blend together well. And secondly, even if the recipe you’re following doesn’t include it, use a water bath.

What is a water bath, and what does it do for cheesecake? To make a water bath, you place your springform pan inside a larger baking pan, and pour boiling water into the larger pan before placing the whole setup in the oven.

Why go to the extra trouble? First, cheesecakes are thickened with eggs. Eggs set (cook) at a much lower temperature than most other baking ingredients. Cheesecakes start off baking at a high temperature to set the cake, then finishing “low and slow” (at a low temperature for a long time). If the egg proteins cook too quickly, they will tighten up and shrink, causing your cheesecake to crack. The water bath acts as insulation, keeping the batter from overheating and cooking the egg proteins too quickly.

Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Nutella Ganache by @TheRedheadBaker

One final trick to preventing cracks is to let the cheesecake cool slowly. And definitely use a paring knife to separate the cheesecake from the springform pan before placing it in the refrigerator. The cake will definitely shrink once chilled, and if it’s still clinging to the side of the pan, it can crack.

Although, if after all these precautions are taken, and the cheesecake still cracks, I just remember the wise words of a chef at my culinary school: cover the cheesecake with some sort of topping! Whether it’s melted chocolate or whipped cream, or fresh fruit, just cover up the crack! No sense in wasting a perfectly tasty, if slightly imperfect, cheesecake.

This cheesecake is just amazing. The cheesecake itself is light and creamy, almost silky, which contrasts with the thick, rich ganache topping. The combination of chocolate and peanut butter and Nutella is one of my favorite flavor combos.

This recipe is definitely getting added to my “Must make again!!” file.

Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Nutella Ganache Topping by @TheRedheadBaker

5.0 from 2 reviews
Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Ganache Topping
Equipment needed: 8-inch springform pan; large offset spatula; a 10-inch or larger cake pan
Serves: 12
For the cheesecake:
  • 15 Oreo cookies, cream removed
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • ¾ cup creamy peanut butter
For the ganache:
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 2 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • ¼ cup Nutella spread
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place the Oreo cookies and the sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until reduced to fine crumbs. Add butter to the crumbs, pulse until all ingredients are moistened.
  3. Scrape crumb mixture into the bottom of an 8-inch springform pan and tamp down to an even layer. Wrap the bottom of the springform pan in a double layer of tin foil. Bake for 10 minutes, then set aside to cool. Keep oven at 350 degrees.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat cream cheese, brown sugar and sour cream for several minutes. Scrape down the bowl, then add the first egg. Beat until well-combined, then scrape down the bowl and add the second egg. Beat until well-combined, then scrape down the bowl and add the third egg and the vanilla. Beat until well-combined. Add peanut butter and mix until evenly combined.
  5. Scrape the batter into the springform pan and spread evenly.
  6. Place the springform pan inside the larger cake pan. Carefully pour boiling water into the larger cake pan, being sure not to splash any into the cheesecake batter.
  7. Use oven mitts to carefully transfer the cheesecake in the water bath into the oven. Bake for 15 minutes. Lower the oven temp to 200 degrees, and bake for another 2 hours.
  8. Remove from the oven, and remove the cheesecake from the water bath. Let cheesecake cool at room temperature for at least an hour.
  9. Run a thin knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the cheesecake from the sides. Place the cheesecake in the refrigerator overnight.
  10. The next day, remove the sides of the springform pan from the cheesecake. Then, make the ganache: place the chopped chocolate in a small bowl. Place the heavy cream in a small saucepan. Place the saucepan over medium-high heat and bring the cream to scalding (small bubbles form around the edge of the pan). DO NOT BOIL. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate, let sit for a minute, then stir until the chocolate is melted and incorporated with the cream. Stir in the gananche. The ganache should be pourable/spreadable consistency. If too thick, add another tablespoonful of cream and stir.
  11. Transfer the ganache to a spouted measuring cup. Pour over the center of the cheesecake, then use an offset spatula to spread to the edges of the cheesecake, letting the ganache drip down the sides.
  12. Place cheesecake back in the refrigerator, uncovered, for an hour to set the ganache. Then place a cover (such as a large tupperware bowl) over the cheesecake to prevent the ganache from seeping.

Cheesecake recipe adapted from Bake or Break; Ganache recipe from Culinary Couture

Don’t forget to check out the other Cheesecake Day recipes!

Baked Cheesecakes:

No Bake Cheesecakes:

Cheesecake Beverages:

Cheesecake Cookies and Bars:

Cheesecake Desserts and Treats:

Frozen Cheesecakes and Treats:

Tropical Sangria Popsicles

By Coleen

My favorite summer cocktails in frozen form! The flavors of coconut, mango and pineapple mix together with white wine in these tropical sangria popsicles!

Tropical Sangria Popsicles by @TheRedheadBaker

While browsing the July 2014 issue of Cooking Light, I came across an article on 5 easy ice pop recipes: strawberry-balsamic, melon mimosa, cappuccino, vanilla yogurt and spiced plum, and cucumber-chili-lime.

I love ice pops almost as much as I love ice cream. When I was a kid, I attended a summer day camp, and ice pops were almost always our afternoon snack. At the local YMCA swimming pool, when the lifeguards called “Adult swim!”, the kids all ran to the snack stand to get ice pops.

As soon as I saw that ice pop article, I immediately ordered a set of popsicle molds from Amazon. That ice pop article had given me an idea.

Tropical Sangria Popsicles by @TheRedheadBaker

Though popsicles remind me of my childhood, I wasn’t going to make a kid-friendly popsicle. Cooking Light’s mimosa popsicle sounded really good, but I didn’t have any sparkling wine on-hand. I did, however, have white wine. And what cocktail can you make with wine? Sangria.

I remembered that I had recently seen a tropical sangria on The Healthy Maven’s site. Flavored with coconut, mango and pineapple — what better beverage for a summer day?? And these flavors translate so well into frozen form. These are a delicious adult treat! But if you do want to make them kid-friendly, use 1 cup of white grape juice instead of white wine.

One thing homemade popsicles have over homemade ice cream is that they are so much easier to make, and they are ready faster. One tip for getting these popsicles out of their molds: fill a bowl with scalding water. Dip the popsicle molds into the hot water for 4 or 5 seconds, then gently ease the popsicle out of the mold.

Tropical Sangria Popsicles by @TheRedheadBaker

Tropical Sangria Popsicles
Serves: 6
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 tsp sugar
  • 1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1 cup white wine (something inexpensive, I used Cupcake Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc)
  • ½ cup diced mango
  • ½ cup diced pineapple
  1. In a small saucepan, combine the water and sugar. Place over high heat and bring just to a boil, then remove from the heat and add the coconut. Stir to combine. Set aside for 30 minutes to 4 hours.
  2. Strain the water mixture into a clean saucepan and discard the flaked coconut. Bring the water mixture to a boil and cook for about 5 minutes, or until reduced to a cup of syrupy liquid. Set aside to cool.
  3. Once the coconut syrup is cooled, combine it with the cup of white wine.
  4. Mix together the mango and pineapple, and spoon some of the fruit into each of six (1/3-cup-capacity) popsicle molds. Then pour some of the liquid into each mold. Place the molds in the freezer and let sit for at least four hours.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 popsicle Calories: 148 Fat: 5g Carbohydrates: 27g Sugar: 15g Sodium: 49g Protein: 1g

Inspired by Cooking Light and The Healthy Maven

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