Treat Yo’ Self Thursday #20, Here’s The Scoop

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We were a little grape happy

Last weekend my family and I took a trip to a local farm (Dubois Farms) and had the chance to pick Concord grapes for the first time, so naturally we went overboard and brought a few pounds of the fruit home (the natural smell of them = best olfactory marketing ever). I originally planned on just making a sauce of sorts to top some vanilla ice cream, but thought that was too boring (and not healthy enough) so I was inspired to dream up this dairy-free and vegan-friendly treat. Continue reading

Treat Yo’ Self Thursday #17, (Italian) Ice Ice Baby

The Italian equivalent to a slushy, granita, a Sicilian cousin of Italian ice is a semi-frozen shaved or scraped dessert made with sugar, water and other flavorings. It has a texture that varies from coarse to smooth (depending on the region), whereas Italian Ice is more sorbet-like in texture (freezes while being mixed, like ice cream).

My version of this icy Italian treat features fresh watermelon, strawberries, lime and an unlikely pairing that makes a delicious topping to drizzle on top.

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Strawberry Cheesecake Marshmallow Pavlova

It only took me five months to finally whip up a recipe from a Jamie Oliver cookbook I received for Christmas, but I did it, and boy, what a way to start off.

A twist on a recipe from Jamie Oliver’s latest cookbook, Jamie Oliver’s Comfort Food: The Ultimate Weekend Cookbook, my version of the “Dreamy Marshmallow Pavlova,” includes three additional ingredients: cream cheese, strawberry purée, and graham cracker. The result? A delicious cheesecake-like treat that is perfect for summer.

What is a pavlova you ask? A pavlova is a meringue-based dessert named after Anna Pavlova, a Russian ballerina that toured Australia and New Zealand in the 1920s. And as with any famous dessert (e.g. baklava), both countries lay claim to its creation. (It’s still widely debated between the two nations who baked the first one.) It’s said that a chef in Wellington, New Zealand was inspired by the fluffy tutu worn by Pavlova to use meringue as the base for the dessert.

History lesson done, now go forth and bake!

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