Crest Cottage Creations

Food, Family, and Fun in our little cottage…


Strawberry Frozen Yogurt Pops

The strawberries we have been getting from our CSA are so delicious.  I probably eat a pint on the drive home!  Luckily, they are having a great year for strawberries and there are always plenty to go around.  
 I wanted to make some into frozen yogurt.  I didn’t really make a specific recipe.  I just put a bunch of strawberries into the blender with yogurt…
Blended it…
Poured it into the ice cream maker…
And froze it!
Unfortunately, I found it a little too icy for my taste.  I still wanted to eat it, though, so I let it melt in the fridge.
I poured the melted no-longer-fro-yo into ice pop molds and refroze it…. Perfect!  It was a great pre-work snack!


Black Forest Milkshake

When I made this milkshake and took pictures of it, John looked shocked and said, “You are going to post that?!” You’ll see why shortly. 
First, I filled up a cup with John’s home made chocolate ice cream (so good, by the way!)
Then, I added in some home made yogurt.
So far, so good, right?  Well, to make it a black forest I added in maraschino cherries and the liquid in the jar.  John was so shocked, because of the fake sugar and fake food coloring, and all that junk, but I’m not militant about it.  Sometimes, something’s got to give.  With all the other goodness in this milkshake, the little bit of junk in the cherries isn’t going to kill me.
Anyway, I blended it up with my immersion blender.  AND I enjoyed it.  Immensely.


Yummy Brownies!

The other night after dinner, I decided that I needed brownies for dessert.  We didn’t have butter, so we came up with a coconut oil type.
First, John mixed together 2/3 cup of coconut oil, 2 medium eggs, and 1 cup sucanat together with the hand mixer. 
Then, we added in 1 cup of flour, 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder, some salt, 1/2 a teaspoon of baking powder, and some vanilla. 
We spread it into a buttered pan and threw it in the 350* oven for 25 minutes.
The result?
Perfection.  Lightly coconutty, nicely chocolatey, and the texture was perfect. Success!

This post was shared on the Hearth and Soul Bloghop and Simple Lives Thursday!


Coconut Oil Mounds Candies

When I saw this recipe, I knew I had to try it.  I looooove me some chocolate!  It was so easy to make, and both John and I love it.  Check out the original link, and I’ll show you the changes I made.
First, I combined coconut oil and coconut palm sugar in a pot.
When it was all melted, I added in cocoa powder. 
Once it was all combined, we added salt, vanilla, and shredded coconut.
I mixed it all together!
It was carefully spooned into an ice cube tray and refrigerated.
When all is said and done, it was DELISH!  It tastes like a Mounds Bar!
This post was shared with Fat Tuesday!

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Yummy Easy Peanut Butter Cookies

Apparently I am jumping back into the swing of things by making lots of desserts.  Up this time?  Peanut Butter Cookies.  
I can’t believe how east these cookies were.  I decided at around 9:15 at night that I Had. To. Have. Cookies.  I didn’t have any butter defrosted, and there wasn’t much left in the fridge.  That severely limited the cookie choices I had.  I started with this recipe and went from there. 
First, I combined a cup of my home made peanut butter, a little less than 3/4 of a cup of turbadino sugar, an egg, a tsp baking soda, and a splash of vanilla in a bowl.  
 Then, I mixed it together.
Third?  Rolled it into little balls.
Lastly, I baked it at 375* until they looked done.
The verdict?  They filled a need, but they weren’t amazing.  I think the sugar needed to be more finely ground.  And I needed less of it in the cookies.  On the plus side, they were quick and easy and used very few ingredients.  With a few more tweaks, they will be a great quick snack!

This post was shared on Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays!


Chocolate Pudding!

John and I LOOOOOVE us some chocolate pudding!  I wanted to share this super duper easy recipe that we have concocted.  It is incredibly thick and rich but not overpoweringly so.  Check it out!
First, we grab the double boiler and mixed together 1/4 cup cornstarch, 1/2 cup Rapadura, and a pinch of sea salt.
Then, we added in 2 cups of raw cream and 1 cup of raw milk.  
When it was added in, we started to boil the water in the bottom pot.  Occasionally, we stirred it.  The most important thing is to make sure it doesn’t boil at this point.  After about 20 minutes, the mixture was nice and thick. 
That meant it was time to melt in the chocolate!  We used 2 3.5 oz bars of 90% dark broken up (minus all the pieces we ate first!)
We stirred it up until it was all melted.  
When it was all blended, we added a tsp of vanilla and then removed it from the boiling water pot. 
Once everything was combined, we stuck it in the fridge to cool.  It was thicker after 45 minutes, but still warm.  2 hours later?
It is thick and delicious… perfect with some graham crackers!
This post was shared on Fight Back Friday.

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Cranberry-Cider Muffins

While the weather has been wacky here in NJ this year, there has been a definite chill in the air more often than not this month.  Perfect baking weather!  We received cranberries in our CSA recently, and I decided to make cranberry muffins with them.  YUM!
First, I assembled the ingredients (mostly to photograph, but also to be prepared):
Then, I mixed together 1/2 cup grassfed butter and 1 cup of coconut palm sugar.  That’s John’s favorite sugar to bake with at the moment.  
They were beaten together, and then 2 pastured eggs were added to the mix, one at a time.
In a separate bowl, I stirred together 2 cups of flour, 2 teaspoons of baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda.
I slowly poured the dry ingredients into the first bowl.  
As I did that, I also added in 1 tsp and 1/2 a cup of Apple Cider.  Every recipe I saw called for orange juice, but I didn’t have any.  I decided to go seasonal and use the cider.  
Now, it was time for the cranberries.  I chopped up 2 cups in the food processor.
When they were all chopped, I folded them into the batter. 
Each was spooned into a muffin spot for baking.
After 25 minutes at 375* they looked like this:

They were so delicious!  Moist, tart, AND sweet!!!!

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Sweet Easter Treat

Happy Monday!  I hope you all enjoyed a nice long (delicious) Easter weekend.  Today, I am going to be sharing one of the delicious sweet treats I made for our Easter dessert: 
This recipe comes from Kitchen Simplicity.    Feel free to click on over there for the official recipe. 
To start, I melted down some white chocolate chips with butter and raw milk cream.
I stirred it and stirred it and stirred it, until eventually it melted. Once that happened, I mixed in lemon extract and a pinch of salt.
After that was all mixed together, I stuck it into the fridge to cool.  After about 2-3 hours, it was ready to be rolled into truffles.  
Once it was rolled (like teeny tiny meatball), it was dunked into powdered sugar. 
Each one was set on a baking sheet and stuck into the fridge to solidify. 
Then, of course, I forgot to take a picture.  I was so busy setting it up in the basket and decorating it that I forgot.  So, excuse the quality of the camera-phone photos.  
 They are delightfully lemon-y and quite rich.  The best part? They are super easy to make and can be made in advance (as long as you keep it in the fridge). 

This post was featured on Tasty Tuesday with 33 Shades of Green!

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Pop-Tarts Part 2- Filling and Baking

Part 2 of 2 in Pop Tarts.  For Part 1, click here!
When we last left off, the dough was in the fridge cooling off.  In the meantime, I made the jelly filling.  It is just cornstarch and jelly!
3/4 cup of jam and 1 Tablespoon of cornstarch mixed with a Tablespoon of water went into a pot and were stirred up over a low heat.  When they were all gooey and mixed, I set the pot aside to cool.
At this point, the dough was almost cool, so I beat up 1 egg to be used to seal the tarts.
Oh there you are, nice cool dough!
Let me cut you into equal pieces and then add the jelly mixture to each center!
Half the rectangles got jelly, then the other half were covered in egg wash and placed eggy-side-down on top of the jelly.  Then the edges were pressed together with a fork.
After making some fork holes over the jelly so they didn’t explode, they were baked for 20 minutes at 350. 
I have to say, they were delicious.  My first venture into pastry-making was a resounding success.  All of John’s friends were jealous when they were in the airport at the crack of dawn and they were chewing on airport food cardboard and John had home made yummy pop-tarts.  
Of course, there was a bit of dough that wasn’t used.  I rolled it out…
Cut it into pieces, and covered it in butter, cinnimon, and sugar.  Then went into the oven with the pop-tarts and were AMAZING!

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Pop-Tarts Part 1-Dough

There is a really really good chance that I am the best wife in the world.  I know, I know, that sounds conceited.  I get it.  But listen.  I mean read.  That sounded weird.  
John was going to a bachelor party.  For 4 days.  In Las Vegas (we live in NJ).  Not only was I all like “have a great time!” I also asked if he wanted me to pack him with any snacks.  WHAT?! Who does that?? 
He asked for home-made pop-tarts.  Ouch.  I had mentioned a while back that they were on my list of things I was going to try someday.  As in not soon.  I had never made pastries of any sort, so I wasn’t looking forward to this attempt.  I guess he knew this and figured this was his chance to get them made.  What is it about men and their pop-tarts?!
Lucky for you, I hate to disapoint him, so here you have it.  Part 1 of 2 on making pop-tarts.  >>Cue applause<<
I based my recipe upon this recipe.  It was a great jumping point!  I started by mixing together 2 cups of whole wheat pastry flour, 1 Tablespoon of sugar, and 1 teaspoon of sea salt.  I then cut up 1 cup of grassfed butter and added it to the food processor. 
I processed it all until there were still little bits of butter visible. 
As you can see, you need to be able to mush it together to form a ball.  That’s when you know it is processed enough. 
The processed dough was then added to a big bowl.  1 large (free-range) egg and 2 Tablespoons of raw whole milk were mixed in.
Until it was dough-ey in consistency. 
I rolled it out on a silicone baking mat until it was pretty thin, but didn’t break apart, then stuck it in the fridge to harden up.  That is a VERY important step.  Melty dough is frustrating.  Trust me.
“Pop” by tomorrow (hahaha) to see the filling and the finished tart!
This post was featured on Healthy Kids hosted by Creating Nirvana!