Passion Fruit Lemon Squares

PASSION Is In The Air

It is our Summer season (technically a long one in south Florida)!!!! I like to highlight seasonal fruits when making my desserts. Passion fruit is a tart, but sweeter seeded fruit.  You do not have to use the seeds, you may strain it, and just use the juice. I like the way they look in the lemon square. If you would like to leave out the passion fruit juice, and just do lemon that is alright as well. These will have be buttery, sweet, tart, and salty!!!!

Different Lemon bar renditions:

Ginger, Lime, blueberry, or strawberry.

You can take a simple dessert and make it your own.

What are the benefits of Passion fruit?

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Passion fruit has the ability to prevent cancerous growth, stimulate digestion, boost immune function, improve eyesight, increase skin health, regulate fluid balance in the body, lower blood pressure, boost circulation, and improve bone mineral density. Furthermore, it reduces signs of premature aging, lessens inflammation, improves sleeping habits, and eliminates asthma. These all come from its nutrients, minerals, and the vitamin content of the fruit, which includes antioxidants, flavonoids, vitamin A, vitamin C, riboflavin, niacin, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper, fiber, and protein. (*)

Passion Fruit Lemon Squares/Bars

Yield:8-10
Bake: 350°F Crust: 15-25 min Custard: 15-20 Minutes(when the custard is set)
Ingredients:

Crust:
1/2 Cup Butter (cubed)
1 Cup All-Purpose Flour
1/4 Cup Powder Sugar (Extra fro dusting at the end)
2 Lemon Zest
Dash Ginger Powder(less then a Pinch, and less then 1/4 Tsp)Optional

Filling:
1 1/2 Cups Sugar
1/3 Cup All-Purpose Flour
3 Eggs
1/4 Tsp Salt
1/4 Cup Lemon Juice
2 Passion Fruit (Fresh) Optional

Directions:
1. In a bowl mix by hand all the crust ingredients: Butter, Flour,
Powder Sugar, Lemon Zest, Ginger Powder. Meal the butter in-between 
the palms of your hand (like a biscuit method) until it forms a dough
2. Grease the pan. (10 inch round or rectangle)
3. Press the dough 1 centimeter thick at the bottom of the pan.
4. Bake at 350°F for 15-25 minutes.
5. Let cool for 15 minutes.
6. In another bowl mix together all the Filling ingredients with a 
whisk.
7. Pour the filling over the crust and bake for 15-20 minutes (until the custard is set).
8. Let cool for 30 minutes in the cooler before cutting them!
9. When ready to serve dust with powder sugar!!

Enjoy!! 

Smoothie Bowl

Happy Sunday!!! 

I always try to keep it happy, and healthy. I usually have a shake in the morning for breakfast, but thought it was time to switch things up a bit. I have seen the smoothie bowl start to get popular, so I decided to try one for myself. I tested one out for first time this week at a the FRESH FUSION CAFE in davie. Honestly that place was awesome, and delicious!! I went home, did some research, and came up with my own rendition.

The base of the smoothie is usually a frozen Acai berry pure or dragonfruit puree, some form of  fresh juice or coconut milk, frozen fruit, and some others add protein powders as well. It is illegal to sell Acai in the fresh form in the states. You can purchase the blended frozen pack in the frozen fruit section at whole foods. The topping to the bowl is your choice of chopped seasonal fruit, granola, honey, nuts, and I like to add bee pollen. Its adds a hidden sweetness, helps with your allegeries, the color is beautiful, and adds a crunchy texture. Just remember if your buying bee pollen to purchase it from a local source, because; your allergies are too things around you, not from pollen from other countries. Your nearest whole foods will carry two brands. One that is generic, and one that is local. The granola I like to make from scratch. For convince I understand to purchase it, but I like to make it form scratch! If you need help or a recipe just email me!!

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SMOOTHIE BOWL

YIELD:3 Smoothie bowls
INGREDIENTS:
BLENDER PART:
1 Packet Acai Berry
1-2 Cup Fresh Juice, Water, or Coconut Milk
2 Cups Assorted Frozen Fruit(peaches, all berries, bananas, kiwis, & mango)
TOPPING:
1/2 Cup Granola, (or Homemade granola just email me for a recipe if 
you need help!!)
1 Tsp Bee pollen
1 Cup Chopped Assorted Fresh Fruit
1 Tsp Honey
DIRECTIONS:
1. Blend, the Acai Berry packet, Frozen Fruit, and liquid of your 
choice to a thick smoothie paste. Serve one bowl, and the rest 
reserve in the freezer to have ready to eat for other days. Just pull it out and put it in the refrigerator the night before.   
2. Slice, or chop assorted fruit on top.
3. Sprinkle 1/2 Cup of Granola on top of the smoothie.
2. Sprinkle the top with honey, and bee pollen.

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Honestly these bowls are super filling, healthy, and yummy! You will not regret it!!

Japanese An Pan

First & Foremost Happy Fathers Day

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Happy Fathers Day to all the wonderful Daddy’s!! My father has a special place in mine, and everyone hearts really! He’s the most sweetest (well maybe bittersweet..haha), devoted, loving, and most hardworking person I know. He’s always pushing me to thrive for higher standards, and to chase my dreams. Thank you for everything you have done for me I love you, and am so appreciative that I got you to be my daddy!!!

I try to do something versatile, and different every week for my followers. This week I tried to implement one of my dads personal experiences in life with the pastry I choose to make this week.  My dad used to travel, and work in Japan on a monthly basis for years. This week I’m making An Pan, which is Japanese sweet red bean bread. Its a very soft, and sweet bun (almost steamed) with a blended sweet red bean paste inside. You can change the fillings, but this is the most traditional. They are delicious as a snack, or for breakfast with a cup of coffee/tea!! All my recipes are usually totally created from my own, with this one I used some help and tested it out and its awesome. I tweaked the recipe a tad bit. *Aeriskitchen is a Korean blog. It is where I first saw it!

An Pan 

Yield: 10-12
Bake: 350° 13-18 min
Ingredients:
3 1/2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
2 1/2 Cups Red bean paste (local Asian store) (you can make it from   scratch as well, just email me to help you!)
2/3 Cup Lukewarm Water
2/3 Cup Lukewarm Milk
1/2 Cup Sugar
1/4 Cup Melted Butter (additional melted butter for brushing)
2 Tsp Fast Active Dry Yeast
2 Tsp Salt

Directions:
1. Mix all ingredients together with a dough hook, until incorporate.
2. Wrap and keep in the oven to Rise for 30min- 1 Hr. You want it to double in size.
3. Roll and cut 2 inch pieces. Round and let sit for 15 Minutes. 
4. Roll and flatten. Place one spoon full of red bean paste in the  
center. Close the dough and flatten (make a hockey puck)
5. Cut 3-4 slits in the doughs edges.
6. Brush melted butter on top, and bake for 13-18 minutes. Until      golden brown. 

Italian Lemon Cookies

Happy Mothers Day

SHOUT OUT TO ALL MOMMAS!!

First and foremost Happy Mothers Day to all mommas, especially MINE! I love you very much, and appreciate all the loving things you have done for me, all the loving words you have said to me, all the loving devotion you put in me, and all the loving faith and support you have for me! I know its not only my momma, I’m sure we all feel this way, and I would like to take this well deserved time to acknowledge, and appreciate all the sacrifices they do for us!!

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My Momma ❤
Everyone has that specific dish, and/or specific dessert your momma makes that is soooo good, and they bring it to every dinner/event they attend! For my momma it is either her tiramisu, or her LEMON COOKIES!  I promise to post her tiramisu one day as well, so just keep up with me on my blog! These lemon cookies were actually from my Nonna- Lina. I watched her, and made these with her practically my whole childhood. Once again, she never really measures or writes recipes that are fully accurate. Italians will understand hah..but nonetheless this is the recipe we bake today! If your Italian, then you know exactly what cookie I am talking about. They are on every dinner table with coffee after every meal!! Or they are being shipped to every person in the whole family for Christmas, with an assortment of different Italian Cookies. These are the family favorite though.

Not only are they good as the after dinner coffee/tea cookie, they are great to bring as a gift, or to a dinner party. My momma has fun, and tries to be cute and festive with them. If there is a holiday, or theme dinner party, she will color the icing with the appropriate color scheme. For example before my baby cousin Gianna was born, we had a pumpkin gender reveal party. It was a girl!!

ITALIAN LEMON COOKIES

YIELD:20-25 Cookies 
BAKE TEMP: 350°F 10-12 Minutes
INGREDIENTS:
Cookie Dough:
1/2 Cup Sugar
1/4 Cup Crisco Shortening
3 Eggs
2 Tsp Lemon Extract
1 Lemon Zest
1 Tsp Lemon Juice
2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1 1/2 Tsp Baking Powder
1/4 Tsp Salt

Icing:
3 Cups Powder Sugar
1 Lemon Juiced and Zested
1 1/2 Tsp Lemon Extract
1-2 Tsp Milk

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Cream shortening, sugar, and zest together.

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Scrape sides of the bowl, and add/mix in the eggs, lemon juice, and extract.

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Add the flour, salt, and baking powder.

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DO NOT OVER MIX! Just mix until incorporated.

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Grab a pinch of dough at a time and roll into logs, and then tie into a KNOT. ** Putting a touch of oil on the board, and your hands prevents the dough from sticking.

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These cookies do not spread very much, so pack them in!!

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Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit 10- 12 minutes! You want them soft, DO NOT OVER BAKE!

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ICING: Mix all ingredients to an Elmers glue consistency. You want it pasty, but not liquidy.

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After the cookies have cooled down for 30 minutes. Dunk the tops in the lemon icing.

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After going through all the cookies, repeat the process a second time for a thicker coating.

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After all the cookies are glazed place in the cooler for 20 minutes so the coating can get hard, and you can store them!!!

Once again HAPPY MOTHERS DAY (DOG MOMS TOO!!), and happy Sunday!! See you next week! Let me know what you think!!! Thank you, and come bake with me!! They need a Happy Dog Parents Day or Happy AUNTS/UNCLES DAY haha.

CHEWY Nutella & Peanut Butter Cookies

Give the gift of…..

NUTELLAAA-ELLLAA -ELLAAA- ELLAAAA

For starters growing up, Nutella was basically a main food group in my household. Nutella became popular in the states more so around 10 years ago. Unless you had European parents who gave you this as a child, and introduced it to all your friends(ME), you didn’t know about it. Nutella was created in 1964, by a pastry chef who lived in Piedmont Italy. It was first created as a chocolate cream for patisseries to use. The inventor,  Pietro Ferrero had a son who perfected it into a chocolate spread that we eat today! My mom used to give it to us with BREAD, croissants, crepes, crackers, fruit, or the best way in my opinion…..ON THE SPOON! I have so many childhood memories with Nutella, and the tradition Has moved down with my niece.

You can use Nutella to bake with. In my opinion honey, and peanut butter are a match made in heaven with this spread!!! Considering mothers day is next week, I am giving the gift of Nutella! My mom personally loves peanut butter & nutella, so I decided to make a cookie for her!! These cookies are so rich, chewy, and moist.  They are perfect with a glass of milk, tea(my favorite), or in this case her favorite which is COFFEE! I tend to show my love through baking as a gift. Material objects are over rated! Of course I need my professional tester…… CARAMIA!

         Nutella & Peanut Butter Cookies

Yield:15-20 cookies
BAKE:350°F
INGREDIENTS:
2 Eggs
1/2 Cup NUTELLA
2 Tsp Baking Soda
1/8 Tsp Baking Powder
1/2 Cup Honey
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
2 3/4 Cup All Purpose Flour
1 Tsp Salt
1/2 Cup Sugar
2 Sticks of Butter 
2/3 Cup Creamy Peanut Butter

Directions:
1. Cream together the butter and sugar.
2. Add, and mix the peanut butter.
3. Add the eggs, vanilla, and honey.
4. Add the dry ingredients and mix: flour, salt, baking powder, 
and baking soda. 
5. Swirl in nutella with a fork.
6. Place the cookie batter in the fridge for 15 minutes before 
scooping to become more firm. 
7. Scoop golf ball size scoops “2” inches apart.*** 
8. Bake at 350°F for 8-12 minutes.
9. Let rest for 20 minutes, and ENJOY!!!!

**I like big CHEWY cookies. These will spread and baking to a thin   chewy cookie that are softball size. If you want to get a higher     quantity, and like smaller cookies, you can make them a smaller scoop size just watch the baking time. It might take 2-3 minutes shorter  in time since they are smaller. 
*** remember to bake just till the edges are golden brown, and a     little on the top if you want them this chewy!! They carry over and cookie 3-5 minutes after taking them out od the oven as well!!

PLEASE EMAIL ME IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS!!!!