Sunday, May 3, 2015

Blackberry Topped Banana-Chocolate Dessert Shell

Blackberry Topped Banana-Chocolate Dessert Shell

I had a difficult time choosing what to post this week. Usually, whatever I pick has to feel like the right item at that particular time, and nothing I came up felt right. It was not until yesterday morning when the idea came to me in the produce aisle. You see, blackberries were $2 for a 12-ounce carton. That is incredibly cheap for where I am. They were dark, big, and juicy. So I picked up a couple of cartons. It occurred to me that the berries would be perfect to use on dessert shells. And what would be better than to top them on my Banana-Chocolate Dessert ShellsNothing right? I didn't think so!

Blackberry Topped Banana-Chocolate Dessert Shell



Mother's Day is sneaking up fast. This easy, simple, and quick dessert would be an ideal special treat for Mom or mother figures in your life. Who wouldn't appreciate a beautiful, home-made dessert with fresh ingredients made especially for them? You don't even have to let them know that it took you under 30 minutes to make. If you are stuck doing the cooking on Mother's Day, this quick recipe is a life saver that can be made a day ahead and assembled the day of.

Blackberry Topped Banana-Chocolate Dessert Shell



Blackberry Topped Banana-Chocolate Dessert Shell



And please don't limit yourself to whipping this up just on Mother's Day. I'm going to take advantage of all the fresh fruits of the upcoming months. Similar versions of this recipe will make several appearances in my sweet treats rotation from now and throughout the summer.

Blackberry Topped Banana-Chocolate Dessert Shell



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 Click To Print Recipe


Blackberry Topped Banana-Chocolate Dessert Shell:

6 Banana-Chocolate Dessert Shells (click on link for recipe)

24 ounces blackberries
2 tbsp. agave nectar
2 tsp. fresh lime juice 
1 cup heavy cream
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tbsp. powdered sugar


Make Banana Chocolate Dessert Shells according to instructions on link.

While shells bake and cools, place half of the blackberries in a large bowl. Use a potato masher to smash berries into lumps to release the juices. If splashing occurs, tent bowl with plastic wrap while smashing. In a small bowl, whisk agave nectar and lime juice. Pour into smashed berries. Blend well. Gently stir in the whole blackberries. Set aside.

Beat heavy cream with an electric mixer, starting on low and increasing to medium high, until soft peaks form. Add vanilla extract and powdered sugar. Beat until peak holds it shape. 

To assemble: Scoop 1/6 of the berries and juices into each dessert shell. Top each with a scoop of whipped cream. Makes 6 servings.



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Sunday, April 26, 2015

No-Knead Artisan Bread


No-Knead Artisan Bread

If you are a loyal Grey's Anatomy follower like me, you must have been grieving after the last episode. I think all of us fans were screaming a collective, "SAY IT ISN'T SO!" How could they kill off McDreamy? Whose McDreamy eyes am I supposed to look at now that he is gone? (I really hope my husband isn't reading this post!) Fortunately, I love all the characters and the writing, so I'll continue to watch...but under protest.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Apricot Thyme Glazed Bacon Sticks

Apricot Thyme Glazed Bacon Sticks

We are bacon lovers in my house. If I want the gang to come running, all I have to say is BACCCON! And they come running faster if it's glazed bacon sticks. There is no such thing as left overs when it comes to these crispy, salty, sweet, and herbaceous bites of goodness. They are sticky and finger-licking good!    

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Shrimp Fra Diavolo


Shrimp Fra Diavolo

One of my favorite dine-out dishes is Shrimp Fra Diavolo. I love carbo-loading on this slightly spicy tomato sauce-based pasta dish with sweet, tender shrimp. And when it is accompanied by really garlicky garlic bread—YUM! one of the best pasta dinners ever!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Springtime Potato Salad



I hope your spring is starting out on a good foot. I am looking forward to enjoying more outdoor activities that do not include freezing to death. This potato salad is a perfect side dish for those upcoming picnics, and cookouts. It is springtime in a bowl. The verdant asparagus and peas, the sunny eggs, the fresh mint, and the citrusy lemon all provide a mouthful of seasonal freshness and flavor. The sweet, tender red creamer potatoes provide a perfect backdrop that permits all of the other colors to pop.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Candied Vanilla Sugar Wafers



Let me ask you this, how is your sense of direction? I am one of those unfortunate souls who has none. I can go somewhere literally 100 times but when left to my own device to navigate...you'd think I have never been there. My husband, on the other hand, can go somewhere just once and ten years later would remember how to get there and the landmarks along the way. Seriously, how does that man do it? Such a showoff! :)

Monday, March 23, 2015

Monterey Chicken Nachos


Monterey Chicken Nachos

Nachos is a popular snack in my household as it is in many. My husband is the biggest fan of all and often snacks on this salty, cheesy guilty pleasure. However, he prefers it very plain—with only American cheese and salsa. He's a man with simple needs (haa haa). I, on the other hand, like it to be more substantial with other things going on.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Lemon Coconut Cheesecake Bites




I am so glad spring is almost here (four more days if you have not been keeping track)! I hope the mountains of snow in my yard disappear before my annual Easter party and egg hunt that I host for the daycare children and their families. It is actually more of an egg gathering than a hunt since we cover the front lawn with stuffed plastic eggs and let the kids go at it. It is a fun time for all. Keeping my fingers crossed  for lots of sunshine and warmth in the upcoming few weeks!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Italian Chicken Pasta Salad

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Hello there! It looks as if spring is going to arrive after all. The snow has finally started to melt, so we are making some progress. And with the time change this weekend, I can still see glimmer of lights at 7:00 PM. Hooray!! Unfortunately, we have not weathered this winter without some casualties. Our next door neighbor has been hospitalized for over two weeks after he fell off the ladder while cutting down a large tree branch with my husband and our son. He suffered major injuries on his legs and has a broken thumb and will undergo a second surgery this week. His prognosis is good, thank goodness, but he has a long road to recovery. On a less severe front, both my husband and I have wiped out on ice in our yard, and our kids have had near misses driving on icy roads. We are hoping the worst is over and are SOOOOO READY for spring!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Mini Mint Chocolate Icebox Cake


Mini Mint Chocolate Icebox Cake

Icebox cake is one of the easiest cakes to make. It rose to popularity in the 1920s and 1930s (thanks Wikipedia!) and is traditionally made with two ingredients: chocolate wafers and sweetened whipped cream. And best of all, as the name suggests, there is no cooking required. The wafers and whipped cream are layered and frozen to ice cream consistency.