Monday, March 26, 2012

White Chocolate Fruit Tart

Last Friday was my birthday and on Thursday a few of us went out to lunch to celebrate. My friend Heather made this amazing White Chocolate Fruit Tart and I just had to share the recipe I will be trying this on my own for sure!!! The white chocolate filling was amazing, the crust was perfect and the fruit complimented it all nicely!. I think when I try it I may go with all berries for a change. But hands down, this is KILLER!!!!!

The recipe is courtesy of
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 (10 ounce) package vanilla or white chips, melted and cooled
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (20 ounce) can pineapple chunks, undrained
  • 1 pint fresh strawberries, sliced
  • 1 (11 ounce) can mandarin oranges, drained
  • 2 kiwifruit, peeled and sliced
  • GLAZE:
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  1. In a small mixing bowl, cream butter and confectioners' sugar until light and fluffy. Gradually add flour; mix well. Press into an ungreased 11-in. tart pan with removable bottom or 12-in. pizza pan with sides. Bake at 300 degrees F for 25-30 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.
  2. For filling, in a small mixing bowl, beat melted chips and cream. Add cream cheese and beat until smooth. Spread over crust. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Drain pineapple, reserving 1/2 cup juice; set juice aside. Arrange the pineapple, strawberries, oranges and kiwi over filling.
  3. For glaze, in a small saucepan, combine sugar and cornstarch. Stir in lemon juice and reserved pineapple juice until smooth. Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Cool; brush over fruit. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving. Refrigerate leftovers.

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Last week I was in the mood for Oatmeal Raisin Cookies. I had most of the ingredients, just needed some raisins! As usual I went to and found a chewy Oatmeal Raisin cookie recipe adapted from, but was on The Nerd's Wife blog.
They came out delish! The only thing I did differently was to add a little brown sugar to the top of the cookies before they went into the oven.
Oatmeal Raisin Cookies- Adapted from Smitten Kitchen and The Nerd's Wife:
1/2 cup (1 stick or 4 ounces) butter, softened
2/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt (I often use a half teaspoon, but I like more salt in my baked goods)
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
3/4 cup raisins

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the sugars, butter, egg and vanilla.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, soda, cinnamon and salt.
Add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture and mix well. Add the oats and raisins and stir together well. Drop by the tablespoon on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat. They should be about two inches apart.
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until the edges have just started to turn brown.

The centers should still be a bit gooey.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Peach Crumb Bars

While looking through Pinterest last week, I came across these peach crumb bars from the Brown Eyed Baker. I had recently been in the mountains and bought some homemade peach jam and had a few peaches, so I was dying to try it out! Now it did not call for peach jam, but I only had 4 peaches, so I figured I would add some jam in the mixture!

I also used 1/2 cup of brown sugar and 1/2 cup of white sugar in the dough mix versus one cup white. This was a super easy dessert to make and very tasty. I will make these again for sure and next time try apples or blueberries. I think honestly any fruit would be great to use.
The tray did not last long at all as I brought some to friends and kept way too many for myself that I enjoyed both for breakfast and dessert;)

Peach Crumb Bars- adapted from Brown Eyed Baker
Peach Crumb Bars
Yield: 24 bars
For the Dough:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar- I used 1/2 brown and 1/2 white
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cold
1 egg, lightly beaten
For the Filling:
5 cups diced or sliced peaches (about 7 peaches, peeled)- I used 4 and some homemade peach jam.
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 9×13-inch baking pan.
2. For the Dough: In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Use a pastry blender to cut in the butter, and then the egg. The dough will be crumbly. Pat half of the dough into the prepared pan. Place the pan and the remainder of the dough in the refrigerator while you prepare the filling.
3. For the Filling: Place the diced (or sliced) peaches in a large bowl and sprinkle with lemon juice. Mix gently. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Pour over the peaches and mix gently.
4. Spread the peach mixture evenly over the crust. Crumble the remaining dough over the peach layer.
5. Bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until the top is slightly brown. Cool completely before cutting into squares.
(Dough recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen; Filling recipe from Allrecipes)

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Gigi's Cupcakes

About two weeks ago I stumbled upon this new cupcake bakery over in the South Park area of Charlotte, Gigi's Cupcakes. How I did not already know it existed still blows me away, as I am always on top of new places opening up..especially when cupcakes are involved and it is only about 5 mins from my house!!
My friend Kristen and I decided to venture on in after our pedicures and see what it was all about. To our surprise we learned it was a chain. Neither one of us had ever heard of it before, but it seems they have over 50 locations all over the US.
On the counter sat a coupon and a daily menu and we all know how much I love menu's so I grabbed both! Since the coupon was for buy 3 get one free, we had to get 4 right?!?
 It was about 20 or 30 mins before closing time, so unfortunately they were out of quite a few selections. However, there were still plenty to choose from and I think we made some pretty good decisions on our choices!
They always have a special of the day and that day it was "Tropical Breeze". Now I could be wrong on the exact description as it is not listed on their menu, but I think it was a key lime cake with a cream cheese frosting, possibly flavored a bit and topped with toasted coconut! Either way, it was actually my favorite of the 4 we got!
The next one we got was called "Midnight Magic- Chocolate Chip".
And our last two were "Wedding Cake and Nodini Cannoli".

 I have to say over all every one of these was delish. If I had to say anything, maybe there was too much icing, but that is personal preference really. But on the flip side of that, the icing was amazing! It is rare that you come across icing that is not too sweet and this was just right...maybe that is why they put some much, as they know you can probably handle it;) As far as the cupcakes themselves, awesome, light, moist and fluffy, another rarity when it comes to a fancy cupcake!

So if you have not been by to check this place out, get on it!! It is definitely worth checking out. And for those of you who bought the Groupon for it earlier this week, you will not be disappointed!

Gigi's Cupcakes of
Charlotte, North Carolina

Mon-Sat: 10 am - 7 pm

Sun: 11 am - 5 pm

Phone: (704) 643-7117 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (704) 643-7117 end_of_the_skype_highlighting

4732 Sharon Road, Suite M.
Charlotte, North Carolina 28210

Located in South Park's Sharon Corners Shopping Center!