Oatmeal Shortbread

In honor of St. Brigid’s Day, February 1st, I am reposting my favorite shortbread recipe.

Shelly's Cookery

It was snowing outside and it happened to be the Feast of St. Brigid (February 1st) . So I was making Oatmeal Shortbread. I had hoped we would have a fire in our firepit but it happens to be under a couple of feet of snow at the moment. Not happening. So I got out the candles and went to the business of making our feasting food.

My family bought me a beautiful shortbread pan that is made by Brown Bag. The one I have is called “British Isles”. The design pattern has the Scottish Thistle, Irish Celtic Knotwork, Tudor Rose and a Welsh Dragon. I admit I liked this one best as it was mine and my husband’s heritage in one dish. The pan is heavy and works wonders. On the recipe I am doing, I admit the design doesn’t show up as much. It looks impressive in other…

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Summer fruits-Raspberries

I keep hearing all this talk about how it’s the last few weeks of summer. Um, no. Fall starts September 23rd and I plan to get every last drop I can out of this summer.

One of my favorite things about summer is all the fruit. I am sucker for it. I tend to eat more vegetarian in the hot months but that goes along with how my body works best. If I eat to heavy or greasy food I feel like crap. I’ve noticed my most intense burger cravings happen in the fall and late winter.  Now in the summer, I love to eat fruit and lots of it.

raspberries in my garden

raspberries in my garden

Just about 15 years ago when we bought our little beach house it had no gardens at all. The first spring my husband went straight to work putting in some beds for me to grown things I love. At our old house we had blackberries that grew wild on the side of the house ,  along with an old cherry tree smack in the middle of our yard. My kids loved that tree and it was sad when we moved and the tree and the house were taken down  to build a large office building.  I enjoyed a larger garden at the old house, but here I’ve worked with what I have and have never been disappointed.  When my husband put in the beds I knew I wanted berries. We bought a blueberry bush and a raspberry bush. I had no luck with the blueberry bush and honestly think something ate it as it just vanished. The raspberry bush grew and turned into many bushes.  Each summer I get two crops from them. One short crop that I usually use for snacking and then a second crop that is larger and  easier to make jams, syrup, freeze some , bake some and of course snack on.

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This year, with less kids home now and maybe even better weather for the berries and more attention they got early this spring, I had a larger first crop than normal and was able to make some fresh raspberry syrup for waffles for the family.

I shared my waffle/pancake mix , now I am going to share how really crazy easy it is to make a fresh syrup for yourself.  The best part, you control what goes into it.  The junk you put in it the more you can taste the natural sweetness of the berries and not a bunch of chemicals. If you don’t have fresh berries you can use frozen but I really suggest using fresh when every possible. Nothing wrong with frozen at all. But if you got a pick your own farm locally, go pick some and come home and enjoy some time in the kitchen making up your own stuff from scratch and see how different it feels and tastes.

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Berry syrup

  • 3 cups of berries
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1 Tbs of butter

Wash and drain fresh berries and place in a pot. Mash lightly with a masher or a fork.  Add sugar and water and cook on med heat till mixture comes to a low boil. Turn heat to simmer and stir often to keep from burning to bottom of pot.  Simmer mixture for about 20 mins or untill thick. Pour into a jar or serving dish and use  right then or place jar of syrup , once cooled, in fridge for up to 5 days.

Enjoy this syrup on pancakes, waffles, scones, or even ice cream! Add to yogurt or mix with granola.

*Extra berry tip, if your going to freeze your berries, place them on a cookie sheet and put in freezer. Once frozen, you can pour them into a bag. This makes it easier to get out just the amount you want when you need them. I love adding frozen berries to smoothies, baked goodies and pancake batter.

Untill next time!

Shelly

Got lemons? Make cupcakes of course!

Health coaches are not some strange mythical creature that never eat anything bad or sweet. I am finding this is the usual thought when I share I am a health coach. No my dear friend, and I am only speaking for myself here, I eat sweets and junk food. Just there’s a trick to it all. 

So with spring here, and a holiday weekend upon us here’s a great sweet recipe that honestly you can feel a lot better about making up. Reason being is you are not going to use a mix and you wont be using some can of frosting. So that in it of itself saves you extra calories and odd chemicals for your body to digest.

Besides it’s a holiday weekend. Enjoy it and dump the diet please. Holdiays are about fun and enjoyment. Not diets and limits. Need permission? Ok I grant you permission to eat that cream filled egg  this weekend. Just this weekend though. And not cases of them every day all weekend long.

Besides there is a real health benefit to lemons. I am going to be sharing that next week with a really delish recipe and a video with more details from my very own kitchen!  

For now let’s enjoy a sweet treat that will brighten up your spirits after a long, long , long winter. 

  

Lemon Filled Cupcakes with Lemon Glaze

Makes 8 cupcakes

For the cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cup of cake flour (the non self rising kind)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 4 1/2 freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter (that’s 1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup of sugar + 2 Tablespoons of sugar
  • 2 tablespoons +4 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup + 2 2 tablespoons cream cheese, softened (that’s about 4 ozs)
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 and then line 8 cupcake pans with liners
  2. Mix together flour, baking soda and salt. Whisk in lemon zest.
  3. In another bowl cream 1 cup + 1 Tablespoon sugar, plus 2 teaspoons of lemon juice untill smooth.
  4. Beat in on egg at a time inot sugar mixture untill smooth. 
  5. Combine your mixed wet ingredients with your dry mixed ingredients untill you have a nice batter.
  6. In another bowl mix together cream cheese, remaining 1 tsp of zest, 2 tablespoons of sugar and 2 teaspoons of lemon juice untill you have a smooth lemon cream.
  7. spoon batter into each cupcake pan to only fill about half way.
  8. Now spoon about a tablespoon or so of lemon cream to top each pan with batter. 
  9. Spoon remaining batter over lemon cream filling. and smooth out the tops.
  10. Bake in oven for 20 mins or untill golden brown.
  11. remove from pans and allow to cool. Once cool top with glazw.

How to make glaze:

  • 1/2 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 cups of confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • zest of one lemon
  1. mix lemon juice with sugar untill dissolved in a microwable bowl. 
  2. Whisk in butter and lemon zest.
  3. Microwave for 30 seconds.
  4. Whisk untill smooth and drizzle over cooled cupcakes and allow to set.

Decorate or enjoy as is!

See you next week!

Shelly