Raspberry Rhubarb Sorbet

With summer upon us, I think I am declaring this the summer of ice cream.  For a few years, I’ve had the attachment for my KitchenAid mixer that makes ice cream, but for a number of reasons I have not made much in terms of ice cream.  I’m ready for that to change.  So, when I came across this recipe on Pastry Affair, I knew I wanted to make it.  My love affair with rhubarb is well-documented here, here, here, here, and here.  So, the combination of raspberry and rhubarb in a sorbet that contains no dairy, sugar, and is pretty much real food-friendly was a no brainer.

Raspberry Rhubarb Sorbet.jpg

Raspberry Rhubarb Sorbet

12 oz rhubarb, chopped inch 1-inch sections
6 oz raspberries
1/2 c water
1 c honey
1 tsp vanilla

In a large saucepan, combine rhubarb, raspberries, water, and honey and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Lower the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until the rhubarb is soft and translucent.  Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract.

Allow mixture to cool for 10-15 minutes before transferring to a blender or food processor.  Process until smooth.  Chill for 3-4 hours or until cold.

Freeze mixture in ice cream maker, following the manufacturer’s instructions.  Transfer sorbet to an airtight container and freeze for 4-6 hours before serving.

Banana Raspberry Muffins

Remember how I mentioned trying to use up some things that are in my house?  Over the weekend I looked at my pantry and my freezer to decide what I should make to bring to campus on Monday for the students with whom I work.  With our being on a one course at a time curriculum, students have finals every four weeks, and this week happens to be one of those weeks.  When I can, I like to bring in a special treat to help recognize the fourth week with some snacks and treats in the office.

Back to my freezer.  I almost always purchase bananas with the intention of eating one each day and do a fairly good job, but end up getting a couple past the point of eating, so into the freezer they go.  So, I knew I needed to use up some bananas from my freezer.  I was also almost out of sugar, and was happy to get rid of white sugar in my cupboard.  I also had some left over sour cream, and raspberries in my refrigerator.  So, it seemed like an opportunity to put it all together.

I started with this recipe from the What’s Cooking, Love? blog.  I made a few edits to the recipe based on what I had in the house.  I also decided to make it into muffins, instead of a loaf of bread, so a few differences occurred.

Banana Raspberry Muffins

Raspberry Banana Muffins

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 c flour
1/2 c sour cream
2 mashed bananas
3/4 c raspberries
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Beat together sugars and butter.  Add vanilla, eggs, and beat in baking soda.  Slowly add the flour.  Mix in sour cream.  Then mix in bananas; then fold in raspberries.
Scoop into muffin cups (I was able to get 18 muffins out of the recipe) and bake for 30 minutes.

I was so happy with how they turned out and even more happy when I was able to take them to work to share with the students!

Lemon Cake with Raspberries

Continuing with my theme of recipes I have cooked recently, today I’m posting about the dessert I made the other day when the orientation staff came for dinner.  After the Creamy Gorgonzola Pasta and Bread with Raspberry Rosemary Honey Butter, we continued with the raspberries which are in season right now and tasty everywhere I’ve had them.  They might be entering my list of favorite foods.  Can I also just mention how much I’m liking cooking right now?  But that might be an avoidance of my comps.  They’re due on Thursday and I’m making the progress I want to be making…so we won’t worry too much about that.

For dessert, I made Lemon Cake with Raspberries and Pistachios, which I found on epicurious.  I do promise, however, that there will be a few recipes coming up from cookbooks soon, because I’m making an effort to cook out of those again as well.  Mostly I was looking for a dessert I hadn’t made with raspberries in it.  I didn’t want to can or freeze my raspberries, so I’ve been trying to cook with them and find different ways to use them.  This was a pretty effective way to do so.

I will note, however, that more and more I am recognizing how poor the lighting is in my kitchen.  I need to figure out how to improve that moving forward.

I’m not going to write much here because I need to get back to my comps manuscript, so here’s the recipe:

lemon cake with raspberries


 

Lemon Cake with Raspberries and Pistachios

Lemon Cake with RaspberriesNonstick spray
1 ¾ c flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp kosher salt
4 large eggs
1 ¼ c plus 2 Tbsp sugar
2 tsp vanilla
2 Tbsp lemon zest
1 Tbsp plus ¼ c lemon juice
¾ c olive oil
1 c fresh raspberries
3 Tbsp chopped unsalted, raw pistachios

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Coat a 9” diameter cake pan with nonstick spray.  Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl.  Using an electric mixer, beat eggs and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.  With mixer running, add vanilla and 1 Tbsp lemon juice, then gradually add oil, mixing until combined.  Fold in lemon zest and dry ingredients.

Scrape batter into prepared pan and smooth top.  Scatter berries over cake, then pistachios and 2 Tbsp sugar.  Bake cake until a tester comes out clean, 45-55 minutes.  Meanwhile, bring remaining ¼ c sugar and remaining ¼ c lemon juice to a boil in a medium saucepan, stirring to dissolve sugar; let lemon syrup cool.

Transfer hot cake (still in pan) to a wire rack and immediately brush with lemon syrup (use all of it).  Let cake cool completely in pan.

Can be made up to 2 days ahead.  Store wrapped tightly at room temperature.

Raspberry Rosemary Honey Butter

Last week I had a group of students and a colleague over for dinner.  As we prepare to adjust to some changes at work, I thought it was important for us to get to know each other and begin to form some new relationships.  I’ve enjoyed starting to work more closely with the Admissions staff, who are a great group of professionals and folks who have really helped to make the summer go more smoothly for us, somewhat by necessity (sharing space together in the building) and somewhat out of the kindness and collegiality that a small campus seeks and needs in order to function more smoothly.

Anyhoo, when some of the orientation staff came over for dinner, along with the admissions staff member who will be working with me on orientation,  I made a few new dishes, which I’ll continue to share in the upcoming weeks.  The main dish was the Gorgonzola Pasta that has become a favorite way to use summer vegetables in the meal.  But one of these things is something I keep eating all week because I don’t want it to go bad.  I put together a compound butter, if you will.  I don’t have a clever name for it, except one that states all of the different ingredients in the butter.  It was: Raspberry Rosemary Honey Butter.

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Raspberry Rosemary ButterRaspberry Rosemary Honey Butter

1 c butter, softened

2 sprigs rosemary

2 Tbsp honey

Handful of raspberries

Whip all ingredients except raspberries together until well mixed.  Add raspberries at the end, and only until just mixed, so as to not completely crush the raspberries.

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It was super-easy.  I read online a bit about compound butters, but then just took food that looked like it would taste good together and hoped for the best.  We ate it on fresh bread the first day when my guests were here, but since then I’ve been using it mostly for making grilled cheese.

grilled cheeseI bought some grain-filled bread and muenster cheese and have been eating these most nights this week.  It’s such a great combination with the gooey cheese and fruitiness of the raspberries.  I don’t think I could ask for a better flavor combination.  And, just when I can’t taste the rosemary, some of it sneaks through and I find myself having a sweet-savory-creamy combination of flavors in my mouth.  What could be more satisfying?

Try it yourself!  I hope you find it as tasty as I did!

Raspberry White Chocolate Bars

Over the weekend, we got together with several of my cousins on my mom’s side.  It was a great chance to see (almost) all the ladies in my family.  With my sisters and I being the youngest of the cousins, but having lots of cousins who are married and have kids, it was fun to see a bunch of the family members.  And, as always, we were not at a loss for desserts.  When my mom’s side is together, that’s almost always a given.  Desserts are all around.  As good Norwegians, desserts are the main part of the meal.  Everything else is a side.  Or at least, it feels that way.

I’ve got lots of good recipes to share which have been taste-tested by our family.  One of these recipes is for Raspberry White Chocolate Bars.  I don’t know where the recipe came from, other than my cousin Kim.  So I’ll credit it to her…but if you’ve seen it somewhere else, you know it’s delicious.

Some day I’ll make this recipe and take some photos, but for now, here’s the recipe.

Raspberry White Chocolate Bars

1/4c sliced almonds

1/2 c butter
1bag white chocolate chips
2eggs
1/2c sugar
1c flour
1/2tsp salt
1tsp almond extract
3/4 c raspberry jam

Preheat oven 325

Grease and flour an 8 or 9 inch square pan. Lightly toast almonds and set aside. Melt butter and 1 cup of white chips in microwave until
melted. Stir often. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, beat eggs until foamy. Gradually add sugar;beat at high speed until lemon colored. Stir in white chocolate mixture. Add flour,salt, and almond extract;mix at low speed until just combined.

Spread half of batter into prepared pan

Bake 15-20 minutes, or until light golden brown. Remove from oven, but leave oven on.  Meanwhile, stir remaining half of chips into batter; set aside.  Melt jam in microwave or over low heat in small saucepan. Stir.  Spread jam evenly over warm crust. Gently spoon teaspoonfuls of remaining batter over jam.(some jam will show through batter) sprinkle with almonds. Return to oven;bake an additional 30-40 minutes until toothpick in center comes out clean. Cool completely. Cut into bars.
Freezes well.