Saying goodbye to summer is hard, but saying goodbye to these summer treats is harder
We are so sad to see you go...
Sure, every season has its advantages. Winter time means buckets of hot cocoa, spring is full of refreshing garden salads, and in the fall you get to practically bathe in pumpkin-flavored things. But summer — summer is a special time for food. Everything is light, zesty, and super simple. But most importantly, we get to serve a myriad of frozen treats that satiate and hydrate us on a hot summer day. We are so sad that these treats will soon be out of season, so make sure you make them soon!
Concord Grape Granita Recipe
Concord grapes are so sweet and juicy that they seem to explode in your mouth. Using the juice to make an icy granita is one of my favorite ways to enjoy this superfood. The addition of lime provides a nice tart flavor to balance out some of the sweetness. The fresh mint infused into the syrup and the sprinkle of salt gives it a bit of finesse and makes this light dessert even more refreshing. This is a perfect recipe for splurging on a high-quality sea salt like fleur de sel — sprinkled over the granita just before serving, it will give the treat a burst of flavor, visual appeal, and even texture. — Kitchen Confidence by Kelsey Nixon
Click here to see the Concord Grape Granita Recipe
Orange Cream Ice Pops Recipe
This take on a classic frozen treat is both refreshing and bursting with bright orange flavor. Made with yogurt and fresh orange juice, this tasty ice pop is a healthy choice for a summer sweet tooth.
Click here to see the Orange Cream Ice Pops Recipe
Frozen Grape and Banana Skewers with Chocolate Drizzle Recipe
It doesn't get any easier (or more fun) than these fruity, chocolaty frozen treats on a stick. They're great as an after-school snack for the kids, or anytime you've got a large group of people to feed. Make sure to use firm-ripe bananas for this recipe.
Click here to see the Frozen Grape and Banana Skewers with Chocolate Drizzle Recipe
Coleslaw is another 4th of July must-have, and the staple ingredients (shredded cabbage and carrots, mayo, Dijon mustard, and a little grated onion) are just enough to complement your other dishes tastefully without overpowering them). Make this recipe the day of your party to keep the coleslaw crisp and flavorful.
These portable fresh fruit cones look so elegant and appetizing and are much more sanitary than a communal fruit bowl. They look a little like the cones of sugared nuts you might buy at a ballgame but are much healthier.
20 Ideas That Will Inspire You To Host A Coffee Party
Have you noticed that c offee is everywhere? We see it in TV ads, on billboards, in shopping malls, on menus, in magazine ads, on Pinterest, etc… it literally is everywhere! Thousands of consumers ingest this delicious, invigorating beverage every single day. So, let’s just go ahead and say it together, “Coffee is good!” Since this seems to be the case, today we are featuring 20 ideas that will inspire you to host a coffee party!
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Recently, while looking through some family photos and I came across pictures from my daughter-in-law’s bridal shower. It was a super fun, coffee-themed bridal shower. (Below is a picture of the cake that was served). A local bakery made the delicious cake that perfectly fit the whole coffee theme. When I came across this picture I started thinking about hosting a coffee party… just for fun! No particular occasion necessary.
Notice the cute decor on the sides of the cake?
DIY Coffee Themed Centerpiece
Anna and I also created coffee-themed centerpieces for Becky’s bridal shower. A simple dessert plate + coffee beans + a coffee cup + wrapping paper + a red rose + Turtle Pecan Biscotti = an easy centerpiece that is not only cute, but it smells delicious!
Since so many people enjoy this glorious beverage, Anna and I wanted to share a few more ideas that might inspire you to host your very own coffee themed party!
Coffee Beans and Mason Jars
Who knew coffee could be so adorable! Find directions here.
Send your guest home with cute Coffee Jar Favors. Find directions here.
Polka Dot Coffee Mug Gift
For a fun DIY gift, grab a cute mug and fill it full of coffee related stuff. Find directions here.
Java Chip Smoothie
Because you really do need a healthy drink sometimes. This drink is also GF and Paleo plus I think you’ll be surprised at some of the ingredients. Make this in a large batch for a party. Find the recipe here.
Mocha Truffle Brownies
Sometimes you just need a bit of chocolate to go along with your coffee. Find the recipe here.
Chilled Amaretto Coffee Affogato
How about a pretty drink to finish the day? Find the recipe here.
Mocha Crinkle Cookies
Did someone say “cookies” and “mocha” in the same sentence? Find the recipe here.
Mocha Puppy Chow
A new twist on puppy chow. Find the recipe here.
Chocolate Covered Coffee Beans
Well, hello there, beautiful chocolate covered espresso beans. Find the recipe here.
Chocolate Coffee Truffles
Need I say more? Find the recipe here.
Turtle Coffee Cocktail
Coffee: grow-up style. Find the recipe here.
Mocha Caramel Ice Cream Dessert
So refreshing. So delicious. And it’s gluten-free. Find the recipe here.
Chocolate Espresso Caramels
Tasty little morsels. Find the recipe here.
Edible Coffee Cups
And then there’s these. Find the recipe here.
Chocolate Chip Mint Cupcakes
Everything tastes better with a hint of green. Find the recipe here.
Coffee Buttercream Frosting
Because frosting tastes good on just about everything. Find the recipe here.
Salted Caramel Mocha Nutella Brownies
A new twist on a favorite dessert. Find the recipe here.
DIY Coffee Corner
Every day is a coffee day! Make your very own Coffee Corner in your own home. Find directions here.
No matter how you incorporate it, coffee can make the day much more enjoyable!
- 4 smooth, thin-skinned limes
- 1 c. sugar
- 6 c. cold water
- 6 Tbsp. sweetened condensed milk
Speaking of ice….after I poured & served the first couple of glasses I realized I was out of ice! How could that be. It’s one of the things I’m fairly neurotic about…making sure we always have ice! I began to panic because my husband hadn’t even had a glass yet…but I happened to see the frozen strawberries that I use to make my morning smoothies and voila!…. Strawberry Brazilian Lemonade was born. :-) (One must always keep an open mind about these things!)
It was delicious with the frozen berries! They made the drink cold and sweet and a slightly thicker consistency which was kind of nice for a change. But, I’d be hard-pressed to choose one version over the other at this point. They were both delicious, refreshing, and summery! :-)
But whether you stick with the original drink or add a twist with frozen berries…just make sure you give it a try!
Day 1: Hello ORGANIC twinkies!
Did you miss my recipes for ORGANIC hostess treats, whoopie pies, cream-filled chocolate sandwich cookies (you know what I’m talking about), etc. that were published in the 2010 April/May MaryJanesFarm magazine “Garden Secrets” issue?
With all the recent hubbub about Hostess going under, it felt like the perfect time to dig out my homemade hostess recipes and share them with you. Should you need a twinkie fix … and the company can’t provide or … OR, you want to eat an organic, better-for-you twinkie, I’ve got you covered. (I don’t want you going all Woody-Harrelson-in-Zombieland on me.) How ironic is it that the company who makes Twinkies, the yellow spongy cake that will supposedly last for an eternity, is going bankrupt around the end of the Mayan calender on Dec. 21st? Many people have taken this to mean it’s seriously the end of the world. I might make myself a foil hat and dance around while eating homemade ORGANIC twinkies! (My organic version doesn’t last forever anyway.)
While in my kitchen late one night in 2010, my first attempt to make a cream-filled “canoe” gave me fits.
But after two days and an embarrassing amount of not-quite-right cake that I fed to my compost, I finally got it right. It’s a recipe for only 8 treats (the indents in a NorPro canoe pan) because the key is how some of the wet ingredients are whipped just before you fold in the final ingredients. The second half didn’t come out of the oven as light and airy (because it sat on the counter waiting for its turn in the oven). So here’s my tip: Follow my recipe to the T, even my instructions to lightly butter the pan. Oil spray didn’t work as well. If you want to double the recipe, you’re going to need two pans so they can both go into the oven at the same time.
You’ll need a “Cream Canoe” pan (below, I bought mine on Amazon). The canoe pan comes with a 9-piece decorating set, perfect for injecting a creamy surprise inside or putting a swirl on top (stay tuned for my hostess cupcakes recipe coming tomorrow).
MaryJane’s Organic CREAM-FILLED CANOES
Copyright MARYJANESFARM Magazine, April/May 2010
PREP TIME: 50 MINUTES
COOK TIME: 20 MINUTES
MAKES: 8 canoes
¾ cup white organic unbleached flour (I use the quality specialty flour that I sell. I’m just saying. If you start introducing variables, I can’t guarantee you’ll meet with perfection like I did.)
¾ t baking powder (non-aluminum)
1/8 t salt
¼ cup water
3 T organic butter
2 organic eggs
½ cup organic sugar
¼ t organic vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly butter pan and set aside.
2. In a small bowl, thoroughly combine flour, baking powder, and salt.
3. In a small saucepan, heat water and butter just until butter melts.
4. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat eggs, sugar, and vanilla until smooth and thick, about 6 minutes.
5. Fold flour mixture into the eggs/sugar/vanilla mix just until blended. Add the water and melted butter mixture and fold again just until blended.
6. Using a spoon, fill each impression in canoe pan half-full. (Do not overfill.)
7. Bake until cakes are golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 18–20 minutes. Turn out onto a cooling rack, bottom sides down. Let cool and fill with Organic Cream Filling by injecting filling along the bottom in three places.
Substitute organic white rice flour (www.BobsRedMill.com), use 1 t baking powder, and use 3 eggs.
MaryJane’s Organic CREAM FILLING FOR CANOES
¾ cup organic sugar
½ t cream of tartar
¼ cup water
1 T light organic corn syrup
2 organic egg whites, at room temperature
1 t organic vanilla extract
1. In small saucepan, combine sugar, cream of tartar, water, and corn syrup. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low, and using a candy thermometer, cook until mixture reaches 230°F. (Do not stir while mixture comes up to temperature).
2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat egg whites until soft peaks form.
3. Slowly pour hot syrup into egg whites while beating. Beat on high speed for 2 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Add vanilla and beat 5–7 more minutes, until stiff peaks form.
4. Put filling into a cake decorator, using a #7 tip (or use the frosting/cream filling kit that comes with the canoe pan), and gently inject filling into three places along the bottoms of the canoes. -copyright MARYJANESFARM Magazine April/May 2010
These Key Lime Pie Bars Are The Salty-Sweet Dessert We're Craving RN
Those with a creative eye know firsthand that inspiration is all around us. Whether you're energized by the earth tones of nature, a color-filled walk through a local farmer's market, or even by a quick scroll through Instagram, you never know what might spark a new creative project.
In the spirit of inspiring your next masterpiece, we're excited to partner with Bounty to fuel the next generation of artists and designers forward by launching a national design competition. We're calling on graphic designers to apply for a chance to see their work featured on a new Brit + Co and Bounty paper towel collection, set to launch in 2022.
Aside from the incredible exposure of having your illustrations on paper towels that'll be in stores across America next year, you'll also receive $5,000 for your art a scholarship for Selfmade, our 10-week entrepreneurship accelerator to take your design career to the next level (valued at $2,000) and a stand alone feature on Brit + Co spotlighting your artistry as a creator.
The Creatively You Design Competition launches Friday, May 21, 2021 and will be accepting submissions through Monday, June 7, 2021.
Who Should Apply: Women-identifying graphic designers and illustrators. (Due to medium limitations, we're not currently accepting design submissions from photographers or painters.)
What We're Looking For: Digital print and pattern designs that reflect your design aesthetic. Think optimistic, hopeful, bright — something you'd want to see inside your home.
How To Enter: Apply here, where you'll be asked to submit 2x original design files you own the rights to for consideration. Acceptable file formats include: .PNG, .JPG, .GIF, .SVG, .PSD, and .TIFF. Max file size 5GB. We'll also ask about your design inspiration and your personal info so we can keep in touch.
Artist Selection Process: Panelists from Brit + Co and P&G Bounty's creative teams will judge the submissions and select 50 finalists on June 11, 2021 who will receive a Selfmade scholarship for our summer 2021 session. Then, up to 8 artists will be selected from the finalists and notified on June 18, 2021. The chosen designers will be announced publicly in 2022 ahead of the product launch.
For any outstanding contest Qs, please see our main competition page. Good luck & happy creating!
A Love Letter to Hostess Ho Ho’s and Twinkies – NOT
Full disclosure: I ate Ho Ho’s and Twinkies as a kid and loved them just like the other kids. But, I was a child and didn’t know any better. I’m not a kid any more and wouldn’t think of eating them now. We didn’t know better back in the 40’s and 50’s. My mom used to give us Wonder Bread slices slathered with butter and topped with sugar as a treat. My dentist safaried in Africa on that treat years later.
Let’s look closely at a package of Ho Ho’s. There are three cupcakes inside. I was amazed to see that the serving size is all three, the whole package. Usually, they break it down to a smaller number to reduce the caloric count. One serving of the Ho Ho’s yields 370 calories, according to Calorie Count.
If you don’t pay much attention to calories, let me explain. I weigh around 150 pounds and can consume 2100 calories a day to maintain that weight. The 370 calories in a serving of Ho Ho’s comes to nearly a quarter of my daily allowance of calories. That takes the place of almost an entire meal.
The three cupcakes contain 17 grams of fat of which 13 grams are saturated fat. That’s a mouthful, or should I say an artery full of fat. The government recommends that we not eat more than 21 grams of saturated fat in a day. This is more than half that amount in a single snack.
There are 30 mg of cholesterol which doesn’t seem too off-putting.
Some 220 mg of Sodium are high, but I have seen worse.
Total carbohydrates come to 54 grams. Okay.
Only one gram of fiber. Most of us are lacking in fiber intake. This snack doesn’t help. Adults need around 40 grams of fiber a day. Ho Ho’s leave us 39 grams short.
Sugars come to 42 grams. A teaspoon of sugar amounts to 4.2 grams, so this is 10 teaspoons of sugar. Gag much?
Lastly, there are two lonely grams of protein. The average adult needs over 50 grams a day. So, again, Ho Ho’s pretty much leave you at the starting gate when it comes to your need for protein, nature’s building blocks.
This little breakdown shows why junk food in general and Ho Ho’s in particular are called empty calories. You use up nearly a quarter of your daily food budget yet are left with meager amounts of nutrients that you need to show for it.
Another problem I have with this is that eating all that sugar and fat is like taking a cattle prod to your taste buds. No wonder people get hooked on junk like this. They get accustomed to that explosion of flavor in their mouth. Regular natural foods begin to taste mild by comparison, almost tepid. Our palates start to crave that jolt we get from the 10 teaspoons of sugar combined with all that fat.
I consider Ho Ho’s among the junkiest of junk foods. They damage us when we eat them, pervert our palates, distort our eating habits and contribute precious little to our health – a vicious downward spiral.
As far as Hostess going out of business is concerned, Of course I am saddened by the loss of 18,000 jobs, especially around Christmas time. I have been out of work. It sucks. You know that innocent children are going to get the short end of that this holiday season.
But, don’t forget the big picture. Some 60 percent of us are overweight and 30 percent obese. Another ten per cent of us have type 2 diabetes, a preventable disease that stems from inactivity and poor eating habits. Those are some of the reasons health care costs are raging out of control and our teenagers are coming down with adult onset diabetes. You can read further about the ravages of obesity elsewhere on the blog.
If you are one of those folks who craves the sugar hit, I hope you realize your need to work your way off it. Start with fresh fruits, melons. I find that fresh pineapple is a wonderful cold sweet treat. Don’t be afraid to allocate a period of time to getting your palate clean. You didn’t sugar it up in a day. You can’t expect to clean it up in one day either.
I think we are all better off this Christmas season if the ho ho’s are coming from Santa and not from Hostess.
In October 2013 a Connecticut College release said, “In a study designed to shed light on the potential addictiveness of high-fat/ high-sugar foods, Joseph Schroeder, associate professor of psychology and director of the behavioral neuroscience program, and his students found rats formed an equally strong association between the pleasurable effects of eating Oreos and a specific environment as they did between cocaine or morphine and a specific environment. They also found that eating cookies activated more neurons in the brain’s “pleasure center” than exposure to drugs of abuse.
I'm Todd Wilbur, Chronic Food Hacker
For 30 years I've been deconstructing America's most iconic brand-name foods to make the best original clone recipes for you to use at home. Welcome to my lab.
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I never thought dinner rolls were something I could get excited about until I got my hand into the breadbasket at Texas Roadhouse. The rolls are fresh out of the oven and they hit the table when you do, so there’s no waiting to tear into a magnificently gooey sweet roll topped with soft cinnamon butter. The first bite you take will make you think of a fresh cinnamon roll, and then you can’t stop eating it. And when the first roll’s gone, you are powerless to resist grabbing for just one more. But it’s never just one more. It’s two or three more, plus a few extra to take home for tomorrow.
Discovering the secret to making rolls at home that taste as good as the real ones involved making numerous batches of dough, each one sweeter than the last (sweetened with sugar, not honey—I checked), until a very sticky batch, proofed for 2 hours, produced exactly what I was looking for. You can make the dough with a stand mixer or a handheld one, the only difference being that you must knead the dough by hand without a stand mixer. When working with the dough add a little bit of flour at a time to keep it from sticking, and just know that the dough will be less sticky and more workable after the first rise.
Roll the dough out and measure it as specified here, and after a final proofing and a quick bake—plus a generous brushing of butter on the tops—you will produce dinner rolls that look and taste just like the best rolls I’ve had at any famous American dinner chain.
In the Bush’s Beans commercials, Duke, the family golden retriever, wants to sell the secret family recipe, but the Bush family always stops him. The dog is based on the Bush family’s real-life golden retriever, and the campaign, which began in 1995, made Bush’s the big dog of the canned baked beans market practically overnight. Their confidential baked beans formula is considered one of the top 10 biggest recipe secrets in the U.S.
Bush Brothers & Company had been canning a variety of fruits and vegetables for over 60 years when, in 1969, the company created canned baked beans using a cherished recipe from a family matriarch. Sales jumped from 10 thousand cases in the first year to over 100 thousand cases in 1970. And just one year later sales hit a million cases. Today Bush’s makes over 80 percent of the canned baked beans sold in the U.S., and the secret family recipe remains a top food secret, despite Duke’s attempts. A replica of the original recipe book—without the original recipe in it (drat!)—is on display at the company's visitor center in Chestnut Hill, Tennessee.
I chose to hack the “Country Style” version of Bush’s Beans because I don’t think the Original flavor has enough, uh, flavor. Country Style is similar to Original, but richer, with more brown sugar. The recipe starts by soaking dry small white beans in a brine overnight. The salt in the water helps to soften the skins, but don’t soak them for more than 14 hours or the skins may begin to fall off.
My first versions tasted great but lacked the deep brown color of the real Bush’s beans, which include caramel coloring—an ingredient that can be hard to find on its own. I eventually discovered that the “browning” sauce, Kitchen Bouquet, will add the dark caramel color needed to our home version of the beans so that they’ll look just like the real thing.
This recipe was our #5 most popular in 2019. Check out the other four most unlocked recipes of the year: Texas Roadhouse Rolls (#1) KFC Extra Crispy Fried Chicken (#2), Olive Garden Braised Beef Bolognese (#3), Pizzeria Uno Chicago Deep Dish Pizza (#4).
To get their Extra Crispy Chicken so crispy KFC breads the chicken two times. This double breading gives the chicken its ultra craggy exterior and extra crunch, which is a different texture than the less crispy Original Recipe Chicken that’s breaded just once and pressure fried.
As with my KFC Original Recipe hack, we must first brine the chicken to give it flavor and moisture all the way through, like the real thing, then the chicken is double breaded and deep fried until golden brown. KFC uses small chickens which cook faster, but small chickens can be hard to find. If your chicken parts are on the large side, they may not cook all the way through in the 12 to 15 minutes of frying I’m specifying here. To be sure your chicken is cooked, start frying with the thickest pieces, like the breasts, then park them in a 300-degree oven while you finish with the smaller pieces. This will keep the chicken warm and crispy, and more importantly, ensure that they are cooked perfectly all the way through.
On my CMT show Top Secret Recipe I chatted with Winston Shelton, a long-time friend of KFC founder Harland Sanders. Winston saw the Colonel's handwritten secret recipe for the Original Recipe chicken, and he told me one of the secret ingredients is Tellicherry black pepper. It's a more expensive, better-tasting black pepper that comes from the Malabar coast in India, and you should use it here if you can find it. Winston pulled me aside and whispered this secret to me when he thought we were off-camera, but our microphones and very alert cameramen caught the whole thing, and we aired it.
I first published this hack in Even More Top Secret Recipes, but recently applied some newly acquired secrets and tips to make this much-improved version of one of the most familiar fried chicken recipes in the world.
This recipe was our #2 most popular in 2019. Check out the other four most unlocked recipes of the year: Texas Roadhouse Rolls (#1), Olive Garden Braised Beef Bolognese (#3), Pizzeria Uno Chicago Deep Dish Pizza (#4), Bush's Country Style Baked Beans (#5).
Getting a table at the 123-year-old original Rao’s restaurant in New York City is next to impossible. The tables are “owned” by regulars who schedule their meals months in advance, so every table is full every night, and that’s the way it’s been for the last 38 years. The only way an outsider would get to taste the restaurant’s fresh marinara sauce is to be invited by a regular.
If that isn’t in the stars for you, you could buy a bottle of the sauce at your local market (if they even have it). It won't be fresh, and it's likely to be the most expensive sauce in the store, but it still has that great Rao's taste. An even better solution is to copy the sauce for yourself using this new and very easy hack.
The current co-owner of Rao’s, Frank Pellegrino Jr., told Bon Appetit in 2015 that the famous marinara sauce was created by his grandmother many years ago, and the sauce you buy in stores is the same recipe served in his restaurants. The ingredients are common, but correctly choosing the main ingredient—tomatoes—is important. Try to find San Marzano-style whole canned tomatoes, preferably from Italy. They are a little more expensive than typical canned tomatoes, but they will give you some great sauce.
After 30 minutes of cooking, you’ll end up with about the same amount of sauce as in a large jar of the real thing. Your version will likely be just a little bit brighter and better than the bottled stuff, thanks to the fresh ingredients. But now you can eat it anytime you want, with no reservations, at a table you own.
You might also like my #1 recipe of 2019, Texas Roadhouse Rolls.
A requirement of any visit to Chicago is eating at least one slice of deep dish pizza in the city that perfected it. Deep dish pizza quickly became a Chicago staple after Ike Sewell and Ric Riccardo opened the first Pizzeria Uno in 1943 and served a hearty new style of pizza constructed in a high-rimmed cake pan. The yeast crust was tender and flakey, like a pastry, and the cheese was layered under the sauce so that it wouldn’t burn in a hot oven for the long cooking time.
While researching a home hack of this now-iconic recipe, I discovered an unexpected technique that I hadn’t seen in other deep dish recipes. Employees told me the pizza crusts are partially cooked each morning to cut down on the wait time for customers. Before the restaurant opens each day, cooks press the dough into a pan and then sprinkle it with a little shredded cheese. The shells are then partially baked and set aside. Later, when an order comes in, the pizza is built into one of the par-baked crusts and finished off. This way customers get their food faster, and the tables turn over quicker.
Copying that delicious, flakey crust was the task that took me the longest. After two weeks of baking, I finally settled on a formula that was a mash-up of yeast dough and pie crust and made a perfectly tender deep dish crust, with great flavor that exactly mimicked the original. If you like Uno, you will love this.
Regarding the cheese: be sure your cheese is at room temperature, not cold, or it may not melt all the way through. Also, it’s best if you buy cheese by the block and shred it yourself. Pre-shredded cheese is dusted with cornstarch so that the shreds don’t stick together in the bag, and it won’t melt as smoothly as cheese you shred by hand.
This recipe will make enough sauce for two pizzas. I just thought you should know that in case you get the urge to make another deep dish after this one disappears.
This recipe was our #4 most popular in 2019. Check out the other four most unlocked recipes of the year: Texas Roadhouse Rolls (#1) KFC Extra Crispy Fried Chicken (#2), Olive Garden Braised Beef Bolognese (#3), Bush's Country Style Baked Beans (#5).
There’s one copycat recipe for these famous biscuits that’s posted and shared more than any other, and it’s downright awful. The dough is formulated with self-rising flour, baking powder, powdered sugar, shortening, and buttermilk, and many complain that the recipe creates dough that’s much too loose and the resulting biscuits are a complete disaster. Yet there the recipe remains on blogs and boards all over the interweb for unsuspecting home cloners such as yourself to waste time on. But that won’t happen anymore, because I have made a good copycat Bojangles' buttermilk biscuits recipe that works the way it should, guaranteeing you’ll get amazing golden buttermilk biscuits that look and taste just like a trained Bojangles’ pro made them.
In addition to the obvious overuse of buttermilk, the popular recipe I found online has many problems. The author gets it right when calling for self-rising flour, which is flour containing salt and a leavening agent (aka baking powder), but why would the copycat Bojangles biscuit recipe be designed to use self-rising flour and then add additional leaving? Well, it probably wouldn’t. Biscuits are job number 1 for self-rising flour, and the leavening in there is measured for that use, so there’s no need to add more. If you were planning to add your own leavening, you’d probably start with all-purpose flour, which has no leavening in it. And let's just be clear: baking powder tastes gross, so we want to add as little as possible, not more than necessary.
It’s also important to handle the dough the same way that workers at Bojangles’ do. They make biscuits there every 20 minutes and there are plenty of YouTube videos showing the preparation technique. In a nutshell, the dough is mixed by hand (in the restaurant they use their hands because the quantity is so large, but for this recipe use a mixing spoon), then it’s folded over a few times on a floured countertop before it’s rolled out. This gentle handling of the dough prevents the gluten in the flour from toughening and adds layers, so your biscuits come out of the oven tender and flakey.
For the best results, find White Lily flour. This self-rising flour is low in gluten and makes unbelievably fluffy biscuits. If you use another self-rising brand, you’ll still get great biscuits, but the gluten level will likely be higher, the biscuits will be tougher, and you’ll probably need more buttermilk. Head down to the Tidbits below for details on that.
And I noticed another thing most copycat Bojangles biscuit recipes get wrong. For biscuits that are beautifully golden brown on the top and bottom, you’ll want to bake them on a silicone baking mat (or parchment paper) at 500 degrees F. Yes, 500 degrees. That may seem hot, but this high temp works well with self-rising flour, and in 12 to 15 minutes the biscuits will be perfectly browned.
Counterintuitively, it’s the lower temperatures that end up burning the biscuits, while the higher temperature cooks them just right. At lower temps the biscuits must stay in the oven longer to cook through, which exposes the surfaces to more heat, and they end up too dark on the outside, especially the bottom. For even better results, if you have a convection setting on your oven, use that and set the temp to 475 degrees F. Your biscuits will look like they came straight from the drive-thru.
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Apple Dumpling Cobbler
Almost every day at work, I go for a walk at lunch.
Nowhere too extravagant just a lap around our parking lot full of cars and machines we manufacture. Two laps equal 1 mile.
Sometimes, I’ll do just 2 or 3. Other times, I’ve done 4 or 5.
Most of the time I walk by myself to clear my head sometimes, I have a walking buddy.
It’s the only form of exercise I get during the day because when work is over, I go straight home, make dinner, then dive into work, whether it’d be for the blog or for a project I’m working on.
Now that fall is here, you can feel the chill in the air. I’m starting to wear my jacket on walks and wishing I had a cup of hot apple cider to drink.
Even though I’m going to miss summer, chiller weather means the apple festival I’ve always gone to growing up is approaching.
That guarantees I’ll be eating one of my favorite apple desserts – apple dumplings.
And instead of posting a traditional dumpling recipe, I decided to modernize it and make an Apple Dumpling Cobbler.
Less work, more apple goodness to share.
If you’ve ever made apple dumplings for a crowd, then you’ll appreciate this cobbler.
It has the same components as a dumpling – apple, pie crust, and cinnamon syrup – but you don’t have to spend time cutting squares and wrapping apples.
I think paired with the right casserole dish, this could make a great gift. If you’re invited to a dinner party, offer to bring this for dessert and give it to the host or hostess.
Or maybe you know a family who could use a quick pick me up. Maybe your work is having a potluck. Or bring it to your next game day party.
I can’t wait for the apple festival, which will be this upcoming weekend.
The farm puts all kinds of apples into bins for you to fill your bag, at least five varieties if not more.
Then you can buy a cup of hot or cold apple cider as you walk about the craft area.
Finally, you can buy apple dumplings for lunch and fresh pressed apple cider in jugs to go.