Roasted Rhubarb Cornbread Cake for Breakfast or Dessert

Servings: 9 serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

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Roasted rhubarb cornbread is wholesome and delicious. Can be made with apples too. Low sugar.

Roasted rhubarb cornbread cake, a lower-sugar, lower-fat cousin of the muffin.

When I was little, cornbread was one of my favourites. Mom called it Johnny Cake and would sometimes bake a pan to serve with supper. Because it’s a little sweeter than many dinner breads I always felt like I was eating a bit of dessert along with my soup or stew or whatever was served for our main meal.

That’s the beauty of cornbread. It can travel from breakfast to supper to dessert. Not too sweet, lower in fat than many quick breads, it feels like a treat even though it’s much healthier than most muffin recipes.

  • Roasted rhubarb cornbread is wholesome and delicious. Can be made with apples too. Low sugar.
    Roasted rhubarb cornbread cake, a lower-sugar, lower-fat cousin of the muffin.

One recipe, many variations.

This particular recipe was adapted from the 1932 edition of The Guide To Good Cooking, published by Five Roses Flour and edited by Jean Brodie, a popular food writer in Toronto. I have my grandmother’s copy of the cookbook. In the book, the basic recipe is for cornmeal muffins offers a slight adaptation for fruit-topped Johnny Cake.

I make my rhubarb cornbread with fine cornmeal, which is really more of a corn flour. From time to time I’ll use a medium grind, or I’ll do half-and-half.

Try rhubarb cornbread with your favourite summer fruit.

As we roll through summer I plan on making this cornbread recipe with strawberries, raspberries, peaches and apples.

Let me know if you try any variations.

Roasted Rhubarb Cornbread Recipe

Serves 9

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup flour
  • ½ cup cornmeal (fine or medium)
  • 2 ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • 1/3 tsp. salt
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ¼ cup plus 3 Tbsp. sugar, divided
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 2 Tbsp. honey or maple syrup
  • ¾ cup cold milk
  • 1 egg white
  • 4-6 stalks of rhubarb

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Line an 8″x 8″ pan with parchment paper or grease it well.*
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lay the washed rhubarb on top. Sprinkle over 2 Tbsp. of sugar and bake for 5-10 minutes, until the rhubarb is tender.
  3. Remove and let cool.
  4. Reduce oven temperature to 375 F.
  5. In a medium bowl combine the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  6. In a large bowl beat the butter and gradually add the sugar. Beat in the egg yolk then the molasses and honey or maple syrup.
  7. Mix in the dry ingredients in three additions, alternating with the milk (beginning and ending with the flour mixture.)
  8. Beat the egg white to stiff peaks and fold into the batter.
  9. Scrape into prepared pan and lay the soft rhubarb on top of the batter. Sprinkle over remaining Tbsp. of sugar.
  10. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden and the top springs back when lightly touched. Serve warm or room temperature.

*This recipe can be baked as muffins (makes 12)

Nutritional info: Per generous piece.

  • Calories: 194.5,
  • Fat: 11.6 g,
  • Saturated Fat: 7 g,
  • Cholesterol: 50.7 mg,
  • Sodium: 214.9 mg,
  • Carbs: 21.9.
  • Sugar: 17.4 g,
  • Protein: 2 g,
  • Fibre .5 g,
  • Potassium: 176.4 mg,
  • Vitamin A: 115 mg

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If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email. We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. It includes cooking tips, menu ideas, featured recipes and more. Here’s the link to subscribe.

Gingerbread Pudding – a Christmas Dessert for Kids

Servings: 4 serving(s)

Prep time: 25 minutes

Total time: 85 minutes

Cooking time: 60 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Gingerbread Pudding is a great treat. It's easy to make, has a lovely creamy texture, and isn’t overly sweet. Best served with crispy cookies.

Gingerbread Pudding is a quick and easy Christmas Dessert for Kids.

I love the energy level in the house during these final few days before Christmas. My kids are so wound up that I just stand back and watch their shenanigans, thrilled with the fact that they still get so excited.

Gingerbread Pudding is a great treat. It's easy to make, has a lovely creamy texture, and isn’t overly sweet. Best served with crispy cookies.

An easy last-minute dessert.

There is much cooking left to be done between now and Sunday, for everyone I’m sure. If you’re still in search of a kid-friendly dessert for your holiday celebrations this Gingerbread Pudding is a great treat. It’s easy to make, has a lovely creamy texture, and isn’t overly sweet. Best served with crispy cookies, like these Molasses Almond Tuiles.

This is the perfect recipe to make along with Chewy Coconut Macaroons. The pudding recipe calls for four egg yolks, and the macaroons use up the four egg whites you’ll have leftover.

The recipe is from the December 2016 Canadian Living magazine, always a great source of delicious and well-tested recipes. This pudding is the custard filling for the Chocolate Gingerbread Cream Pie

Gingerbread Pudding Recipe

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 2 tsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • Pinch of cloves
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • ¼ cup whipping cream

Instructions

  1. In a heavy saucepan, whisk the egg yolks with ½ cup of the milk, sugar, cornstarch, molasses and spices.
  2. In another pot, heat remaining 1 ½ cups of milk over medium just until bubbles start to form around the edges. Slowly whisk into egg yolk mixture and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, for 3-4 minutes (until thick enough to mound on a spoon).
  3. Strain through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl. Stir in vanilla and place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding. Refrigerate until chilled.
  4. When ready to serve, whip ¼ cup of whipping cream to stiff peaks and gently fold into pudding.
  5. Serve sprinkled with cinnamon.

 

 

Easy Pumpkin Cake with Molasses Cream Cheese Glaze

Servings: 6-8 serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 65 minutes

Cooking time: 45 minutes

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Easy pumpkin cake with molasses cream cheese glaze is moist, light textured and not too sweet.

Are you in search of the perfect cake for fall?

This moist, light textured and oh so easy pumpkin cake is just what October called for. It seems to suit the season of falling leaves and cooling days. Not heavy and not too sweet. Not bundled up in frosting.

Easy pumpkin cake with molasses cream cheese glaze is moist, light textured and not too sweet.

The simple cream cheese glaze is the perfect foil for this cake.

Because the cake is so moist it doesn’t need a lot of icing (and we all know that sometimes cream cheese frosting can overwhelm a cake). That makes the drizzle just perfect.

And a drizzle is the easy way out for those, like me, who lack the skill and patience to frost a cake just right.

Easy pumpkin cake with molasses cream cheese glaze is moist, light textured and not too sweet.

Of course there is no need to frost the cake. A dusting of icing sugar would suit it well and the simplicity of our easy pumpkin cake makes it great for snacking too.

Although I used fiddly mini bundt cake pans for my photographed version, this cake is really best suited to a simple tube pan.

The recipe was slightly adapted from Rose Reisman. On her website, The Art of Living Well, you’ll see she’s a master of creating healthy and nutritious recipes that are delicious too.

Easy Pumpkin Cake with Molasses Cream Cheese Glaze Recipe

Slightly adapted from Rose Reisman

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 Tbsp. Crosby’s fancy Molasses
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin purée
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. salt

Icing:

  • 1/4 cup light cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 2 tsp. water

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease and flour a 9” tube pan.
  2. In a large bowl beat the beat the brown sugar with the oil. Beat in the eggs then the molasses, yogurt, and pumpkin.
  3. In another bowl whisk the flour with the spices, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture and whisk until no lumps remain.
  5. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes, until the cakes starts to pull away from the sides of the pan and a tester comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached.
  6. Remove to a wire rack and let cool in the pan for about 15 minutes. Gently remove from pan and let cool completely.

To make the icing:

  1. Beat together the cream cheese, molasses, icing sugar and water. Set the cooled cake on a serving plate and drizzle the icing over the cake.

 

Double Chocolate Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread

Servings: 12-14 slices serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 65 minutes

Cooking time: 45 minutes

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This is an extra moist, intensely chocolate zucchini bread that’s refined sugar-free. (Chocolate chips are optional.)

Double chocolate whole wheat zucchini bread: an extra moist, intensely chocolate zucchini bread that's refined sugar-free. Sweetened with molasses and honey

Solve your back to school lunch box challenges with double chocolate whole wheat zucchini bread.

It’s not yet mid-September and already we’re having a hard time ensuring our kids pack reasonably healthy lunches. Fruit and protein aside, I like to have little treats on hand for snack time but my kids are tired of homemade cookies. And they’re at the stage where homemade granola bars aren’t nearly as appealing as store bought.

I remember being the same, growing up in a house where homemade baked goods were on the counter almost every day. (Through junior high and high school I was obsessed with Dare maple leaf cookies and those little Vachon chocolate-coated cakes with the dollop of caramel in the middle.)

I’m pretty sure my kids’ palates will lead them back to homemade cookies but in the meantime, I left double chocolate whole wheat zucchini bread on the counter for them this morning.

Double chocolate whole wheat zucchini bread: an extra moist, intensely chocolate zucchini bread that's refined sugar-free. Sweetened with molasses and honey

This is an extra moist, intensely chocolate zucchini bread that’s refined sugar-free. (Chocolate chips are optional.) It makes good use of the local zucchini that is so abundant in the markets right now.  Use green or yellow zucchini or summer squash for this recipe.

If you use whole wheat pastry flour the texture will be a bit more crumbly than when made with regular whole wheat flour. The texture is always lovely whatever flour you use.

*Update* This recipe is so adaptable. I have made it using 2 cups of grated zucchini, I have omitted the honey and simply added an extra tablespoon of molasses instead, and I have reduced the chocolate chips to 1/3 cup. Every time it’s delicious.

Double Chocolate Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread Recipe

Makes 12-14 slices

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup oil (olive or canola)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1 cup + 2 Tbsp. whole wheat flour or whole wheat pastry flour
  • 6 Tbsp. cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ cup dark chocolate chips, divided (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and line a 9”x 5” loaf pan with parchment paper or grease and flour it well.
  2. After you grate the zucchini (on the coarse side of a box grater), grab a handful at a time and squeeze it over the sink to remove a bit of the moisture.
  3. In a large bowl whisk oil with the eggs (adding one egg at a time). Whisk in molasses, honey and vanilla. Stir in zucchini.
  4. In another bowl whisk the flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
  5. Add the molasses mixture to the flour mixture and stir until almost combined. Stir in all but 2 Tbsp. of the chocolate chips.
  6. Scrape batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle evenly with remaining 2 Tbsp. of chocolate chips.
  7. Bake 40-45 minutes or until the bread feels set when tapped on the top.
  8. Let cool for about 15 minutes before removing from pan.

Nutritional info: Per Slice

  •  Calories: 151,
  • Fat: 7.8 g,
  • Saturated Fat: 1.6 g,
  • Cholesterol: 27.5 mg,
  • Carbs: 19.3 g,
  • Sugar: 9.5 g,
  • Fibre: 2 g,
  • Protein: 3.1 g,
  • Potassium 238 mg

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email. We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. It includes cooking tips, menu ideas, featured recipes and more. Here’s the link to subscribe.

 

Sweet Cornbread Cake Recipe with Summer Berries

Servings: 8 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 70 minutes

Cooking time: 55 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Sweet cornbread cake recipe with summer berries is extra moist and delicious.

Make sweet cornbread cake your new summer dessert.

If you’re a fan of cornbread you know that it has a natural, wholesome sweetness. Slathered with butter and a little jam or eaten plain alongside soup it’s the only bread I know that can travel from breakfast to dinner to dessert.

Sweet cornbread cake recipe with summer berries is extra moist and delicious.

But a true dessert cornbread (in my books) needs to be a little sweeter than your standard recipe. That’s why I love this sweet cornbread cake recipe. It’s sweeter than my other cornbread recipes (has 10 Tbsp. of sugar) but still isn’t as sweet as a regular cake, which means the cornmeal taste isn’t lost. A little molasses  rounds out the flavour, and molasses is also drizzled on top for added stickiness.

Sweet cornbread cake recipe with summer berries is extra moist and delicious.

This cake needs no frosting. Simply serve it with sweetened fresh berries. Sweet cornbread cake suits all of your favourite summer fruit, from rhubarb compote to strawberries, raspberries, sliced peaches, blueberries…

Sweet Cornbread Cake Recipe

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup fine or medium cornmeal, spooned in
  • 1 ½ cups flour, spooned in
  • ½ cup + 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. Baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 3 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses, divided
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • 1 ¼ cups milk or buttermilk

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and line an 8” baking pan with parchment paper
  2. In a large bowl whisk the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  3. In another bowl beat the eggs with 2 Tbsp. of the molasses. Whisk in the oil, butter and the milk. Gently whisk the wet mixture into the dry, stirring just until no lumps of flour remain.
  4. Pour into prepared pan.
  5. Bake about 45 minutes, until the edge of the cake is pulling away from the sides of the pan and a tester comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached.
  6. Let cool in pan for about 10 minutes then remove to a cooling rack.
  7. Drizzle with remaining Tbsp. of molasses before serving.

This cake is delicious served warm.

 

 

Crumble Top Baked Apples

Servings: 2 serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

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crumb top baked apples, like individual apple crisps, only faster

Like individual apple crisps, only easier.

Crumble-top baked apples are like individual apple crisps, only easier. They make a great snack but also transition well to dessert when served with cream or ice cream. They really don’t need anything to be satisfying.

After testing the recipe a couple of times at home I introduced it at my afterschool cooking class at my daughter’s school. Sixteen enthusiastic kids make them without a hitch.

Although their ease to prepare is part of the appeal, they also look pretty in a bowl in a very wholesome sort of way.

crumb top baked apples, like individual apple crisp, only faster

The instructions may seem a little fiddly at first since you bake the apples in two steps but once you have made them a couple of times you won’t even need to measure anything. The crumble top quantities below are more of a guide. I have spread the mixture across three apples instead of two and I have also made extra crumb top, on occasion.

When it comes to slicing the peeled apples, I use a gentle rocking back and forth motion to carefully make the slices without going all the way through the apple. If you do end up slicing all the way through it’s no big worry. Just continue along according to the instructions below.

crumb top baked apples, like individual apple crisp, only faster

 

Crumble-Top Baked Apple Recipe

Makes 2 apples

Ingredients

  • 2 large, firm apples, like Honey Crisp, Pink Lady or Granny Smith
  • 2 Tbsp. butter, divided
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses, divided
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 3/4 tsp. cinnamon, divided
  • 1 Tbsp. flour
  • 2 Tbsp. rolled oats
  • Pinch of salt

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400°F. Line a baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. Melt 1 Tbsp of butter over low heat. Remove from heat and stir in 1 Tbsp of molasses and ½ tsp cinnamon. Set aside.
  3. Peel the apples and cut in half from top to bottom. Core the apples (use a melon baller or spoon).
  4. Place the apples cut-side down on a cutting board. Cut slices into the apple, 1/4-inch apart, stopping just before you cut through the bottom.
  5. Place the apples in the baking pan, flat-side down. Brush the apples with melted butter and molasses mixture.
  6. Cover pan with foil, and bake for 10-15 minutes, until apples are soft (but not collapsing).

While apples are baking prepare the streusel topping:

  1. Combine remaining Tbsp. of butter with, remaining ½ Tbsp. of molasses, the brown sugar, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, flour, oats, and a pinch of salt.
  2. Remove apples from oven and top with streusel.
  3. Increase the oven temperature to 425 F
  4. Return apples to oven, uncovered. Bake 10 minutes.
  5. Serve with cream, ice cream or on their own.

Pecan Praline No Churn Ice Cream

Servings: 1 litre of ice cream serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 400 minutes

Cooking time: 380 minutes

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Pecan Praline No Churn Ice Cream is deliciously simple. No ice cream maker required. Recipe yields a super creamy ice cream studded with decadent salted pecan praline.

You’re either going to love me for posting this recipe, or you’re going to hate me.

(Or maybe a bit of both.)

In July we ran a recipe contest with Food Bloggers of Canada members. The challenge was to create recipes that suited summer using molasses. There were three categories: Salad & Side, Barbecue Main Dish, and Something Sweet. This Pecan Praline No-Churn Molasses Ice cream was the winner in the Something Sweet category.

The recipe was created by Stacey Mebs of the blog Bake. Eat. Repeat. There are all kinds of great recipes on her site and I guarantee that if you visit her you’re bound to come away with a recipe or two you’ll want to make.

Pecan Praline No Churn Ice Cream is deliciously simple. No ice cream maker required. Recipe yields a super creamy ice cream studded with decadent salted pecan praline.

Who knew homemade ice cream could be so simple?

This Pecan Praline No Churn Ice Cream is almost too easy to make. The pecan praline bakes up in just a few minutes and can be cooled in the fridge if you’re in a hurry to get the ice cream in the freezer. The whipped cream-sweetened condensed milk mixture is deliciously simple. Together they create an outstanding ice cream that will have you dizzy with wonder. That’s how I felt anyway when I realized that I could make something this delicious so easily, and without an ice cream maker.  

This ice cream is truly creamy…artisan-ice-cream creamy…expensive-ice-cream creamy. And the lightly salted pecan praline makes for a perfect pairing of cream and crunch.

Pecan Praline No Churn Ice Cream (with molasses) Recipe

By Stacey at Bake. Eat. Repeat.

Yield: about 1 liter (1 quart) of ice cream

Ingredients

For the praline:

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 tablespoon butter, melted
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup pecans

For the ice cream:

  • 1 can (300 ml) sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 tablespoons Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 2 cups heavy cream

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, molasses, butter, cinnamon and salt. Add the pecans and stir until they are well coated. Spread the nuts on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes until they are bubbling and dark in colour. Remove from the oven and allow them to cool completely. Chop the cooled and hardened pecan praline into small pieces.
  2. Line a 9×5 inch loaf pan with parchment paper. In a small bowl, whisk together the sweetened condensed milk and the molasses. Whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Drizzle in the condensed milk mixture and continue to whip until all the condensed milk is incorporated into the cream and the mixture is thick.
  3. Fold the chopped pecan praline into the cream mixture, and spread this in the prepared pan. Cover and freeze for at least 6 hours. 

Here are the other winners in our Summer Barbecue Recipe Contest:

Grilled Nectarine Salad with Chipotle Molasses Dressinggrilled nectarine salad with chipotle molasses dressing

Blueberry Bourbon barbecue Sauceblueberry bourbon barbecue sauce

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Chocolate Swirl Gingerbread Solves Everything

Servings: 4-6 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 35 minutes

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chocolate swirl gingerbread

Chocolate Swirl Gingerbread looks fiddly but is oh so easy.

The first cake I learned to bake was a Jell-O cake. It was a plain white sponge cake that you poked all over with a skewer and poured the hot Jell-O mixture over top so it seeped into all of the little holes. It kept the cake moist but left garish jabs of red in each slice of cake.

That is about as fiddly as I ever got with cake, except for my mom’s annual birthday cake.

chocolate swirl gingerbread

I’m also not one for frosting, which is pure laziness on my part. I happen to believe that a really good cake should be able to stand on its own and cakes that I frost look like they have been frosted by a four year old. A sprinkling of icing sugar instead saves the effort and the feeling that I need to apologize.

Chocolate Swirl Gingerbread solves everything.

You simply drizzle melted chocolate over top of the cake batter in a deliberate sort of way and then pull a butter knife through it to make a design. Not too fiddly, very pretty when baked and no frosting required.

chocolate swirl gingerbread

Chocolate Swirl Gingerbread Recipe

Slightly adapted from Martha Stewart

  • 1 1/2 cups flour (spooned in)
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper (optional)
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter an 8-inch square pan or line it with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl combine flour, brown sugar, ginger, baking powder, salt, pepper, and cloves.
  3. Combine the butter and water in a pan and warm over medium heat until the butter melts.
  4. Pour butter mixture into dry ingredients and stir until almost combined.
  5. Stir in molasses and egg. Stir until combined.
  6. Pour half the batter into the prepared pan.
  7. Using a spoon, drizzle half the chocolate over the batter. Pour remaining batter on top, and drizzle the remaining chocolate over in a zigzag pattern (or in strips about 1 ½” apart.)
  8. Draw a butter knife through the batter (perpendicular to the chocolate lines) to make a design.
  9. Bake 30-35 minutes until the top springs back when lightly touched.

This cake is a little crumbly but oh so delicious.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email.



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Ginger Pear Apple Crisp

Servings: 6-8 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 75 minutes

Cooking time: 60 minutes

Take me to the recipe

 

 

ginger pear crisp

I say crisp you say crumble (and sometimes in France they say “grumble”)

My friend Laura tells a funny story about the time she spied Apple Grumble on a menu at a bistro in France. It’s an endearing error in translation that seems to suit this rustic dessert.

ginger pear crisp

For me crisps are as much about the texture as they are flavour. Those with soft fruit and crunchy topping are always my favourite. And I like the flavour to be slightly tart and buttery. I rarely, if ever, add spices. Except for ginger pear apple crisp, that is.

Along with their luscious texture pears have an earthy fall flavour that can use a little edge from ginger. Just a little, mind you, to lift the flavour.

Melting the butter before blending it with the topping helps to make the topping extra crisp in this dessert as does the addition of good old-fashioned rolled oats.

ginger pear crisp

There aren’t many desserts in our house that can also be a breakfast stand-in. In fact fruit crisp is the only one.  (I don’t actually ginger bake pear apple crisp for breakfast but leftovers have a way of making their way onto the breakfast table, which is fine by me.) 

Ginger Pear Apple Crisp Recipe

Filling:

  • 4 pears, peeled and chopped
  • 2 apples (not too crisp) peeled and chopped*
  • 2 Tbsp. flour
  • 1/3 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • ¼ tsp. ginger

Topping:

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup flour
  • ½ tsp. ginger
  • 1/3-1/2 cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup butter, melted

*Can replace apples with additional pears

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl toss the pears and apples with the flour then add the molasses, lemon juice and ginger.
  2. In another bowl whisk the rolled oats, flour, brown sugar and ginger. Pour over the melted butter and stir until well blended.
  3. Scrape the pear mixture into a good-sized casserole dish (high-sided for a deeper crisp) and top with the flour mixture.
  4. Bake at 350 F for 50-60 minute or until filling starts to bubble up. (Actual cooking time will depend on the depth of your baking dish.)

 

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6 Scrumptious Blueberry Recipes

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blueberry recipes

I love and lament the arrival of blueberries.

Blueberries are one of my favourite fruits but they appear as summer is winding down and back-to-school is closing in. Still, there’s something thrilling about stuffing my freezer with these blue beauties – so I can savour August all year long.

The blueberries are plentiful along the trails near our home where we often walk. We usually stop to nibble for a bit and even our dog used to “pick” a few once we guided her nose to the fruit on the stem. I lack patience for picking though so the berries we freeze come from local markets.

Wild-grown New Brunswick blueberries are my favourite and although I have seen bags of frozen blueberries in the big grocery stores that are labeled “wild” they just don’t taste the same.

Most of our blueberries go into morning smoothies but there is never a shortage for baking. I’m happy to throw blueberries into just about anything that I bake.

Here is a collection of six of my favourite blueberry recipes from the past couple of years:

blueberry buttermilk cornbread

Blueberry Cornbread – A deliciously moist cornbread dotted with plump blueberries and lightly sweetened with molasses. Perfect with breakfast, for snacking or dessert.

blueberry peach cobbler

Blueberry Peach Cobbler (Pudding Cake) – A warm and comforting cobbler that combines some of the best fruit of summer – blueberries and peaches.

blueberry wheat germ muffins

Blueberry Wheat Germ Muffins – A light textured muffin made with yogurt. Extra healthy and nutty flavoured thanks to the wheat germ.

blueberry muffin recipe

Best Blueberry Muffins – My favourite blueberry muffin recipe that’s ever adaptable. The recipe includes 10 flavour variations, all delicious.

blueberry-flax-gingerbread

Blueberry Flax Gingerbread – This is a great snacking cake made healthier with the addition of ground flaxseed.

blueberry molasses scones

Blueberry Molasses Scones – One of the most beautifully textured scones that I have ever made. A great way to showcase the perfect flavour pairing of blueberries and molasses.

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Blueberry Peach Cobbler tastes just like summer

Servings: 4-6 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

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blueberry peach cobbler

I love August. I love how the simple act of flipping the calendar somehow makes the air feel different. I love the abundance in the markets, I love the baskets of Ontario peaches and how everywhere you turn there are gorgeous pints of plump New Brunswick blueberries.

I know the summer clock is ticking once August arrives but all the same, I can’t resist all that August offers.

blueberry peach cobbler

This is an easy dessert that lets me indulge in two of my favourite summer fruits – peaches and blueberries. The two combine beautifully in this delicious cobbler, or pudding cake as some might call it. Eaten right out of the oven drizzled with fresh cream, every bite tastes like a warm August afternoon.

The recipe can be adapted for any fruit or fruit combination and of course you can serve it with ice cream too.

Blueberry Peach Cobbler Recipe

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 ½ tsp. cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 3 cups blueberries
  • 1 cup chopped peaches (about 2 peaches, skinned and chopped)
  • Juice and zest of half a lemon
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 ¾ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. ginger
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Directions:

  1. Butter an 8”x 8” glass or ceramic dish and preheat oven to 400 F

For the fruit:

  1. In a small saucepan whisk the cornstarch into the water then stir in the blueberries, peaches, molasses and lemon juice. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook 3-5 minutes until slightly thickened.
  2. Remove fruit from heat, stir in the lemon zest then scoop out ½ cup of mixture and set aside. Pour remaining fruit into the prepared baking dish.

For the cake topping:

  1. In a large bowl whisk flour, baking powder, sugar, ginger and salt. In a small bowl whisk together egg, milk, butter and vanilla. Add wet to dry and mix just until incorporated.
  2. Pour batter over fruit in baking dish then pour extra ½ cup of fruit mixture over the batter.
  3. Bake 25-30 minutes until golden and bubbling.

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Strawberry Rhubarb Pudding Cake

Servings: 4-6 serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

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strawberry rhubarb pudding cake
“Pudding Cake.” Don’t you just love the sound of it?

Where I grew up we’d call this a cobbler but the sound of the words “Pudding Cake” can just about make my mouth water. Warm desserts are irresistible especially now that it’s spring and fresh local fruit is beginning to appear.

strawberry rhubarb pudding cake

The “pudding” is a deliciously tart fruit compote of strawberries and rhubarb topped with a ginger scented sponge cake. Where the “pudding” meets the cake is a delightfully moist mixture of cake and compote, but the cake on top keeps its crumb structure so each mouthful offers a great variety of textures.

strawberry rhubarb pudding cake

You could use this recipe through until Thanksgiving, just substituting in-season fruit as you go.

As with my Ginger Cardamom Rhubarb Crisp recipe, I prefer to serve this dessert with a drizzle of fresh cream, but whipped cream or ice cream would be good too.

Strawberry Rhubarb Pudding Cake Recipe

Adapted from Epicurious.com

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 ½ tsp. cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • 2 cups chopped rhubarb*
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 ¾ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. ginger
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

* Can substitute other fruit (raspberries, cherries, peaches, blueberries…)

Instructions:

Butter an 8”x8” glass or ceramic dish and preheat oven to 400 F

For the fruit:

  1. In a small saucepan whisk the cornstarch into the water then stir in the molasses, sugar and add the rhubarb. Bring to a gentle simmer, add the strawberries and cook 3-5 minutes, until it starts to thicken.
  2. Remove from heat, taste to see if it’s sweetened to your liking, scoop out ½ cup of mixture and set aside.
  3. Pour remaining fruit into the prepared baking dish.

For the cake part:

  1. In a large bowl whisk flour, baking powder, sugar, ginger and salt.
  2. In a small bowl whisk together egg, milk, butter and vanilla.
  3. Add wet to dry and mix just until incorporated.
  4. Pour batter over fruit in baking dish then pour extra ½ cup of fruit mixture over the batter. 
  5. Bake 25-30 minutes

Eat hot or warm drizzled with cream.

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strawberry rhubarb pudding cake

Ginger Cardamom Rhubarb Crisp Recipe (like a pie without the fuss)

Servings: 8 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 55 minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes

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ginger cardamom rhubarb crisp

I have eaten a lot of rhubarb crisp in my day.

Fruit crisps are just about the easiest dessert going…Like a pie without the fuss. You get that addictive combination of tart, soft, saucy fruit and a crisp, buttery topping plus they take all of five minutes to throw together.

Fruit crisps, or crumbles (which ever name you prefer) were my mom’s go-to dessert to feed a crowd when I was growing up.  They’re one of the best ways to showcase and enjoy in-season fruit and easy to whip up, especially when you hate to come in from the garden to get supper on.

Rhubarb crisp (any fruit crisp, really) has been an all-time favourite of mine. Something about the way the fruit bubbles up from under the crust and creates a toffee-like sauce around the edges, and that sweet buttery topping…

ginger cardamom rhubarb crisp

I know ice cream is a popular accompaniment to rhubarb crisp but I prefer a little cream alongside. It adds a richness to the sauce but doesn’t take over.

If you want to get your kids cooking I’d say start them with rhubarb crisp. They can pull the rhubarb, give it one tart bite (so they can understand the magical transformation of rhubarb cooked with sugar) and then get chopping. The topping doesn’t have to come together perfectly to make a great crust.

If you’d like to make a gluten free rhubarb crisp:

Substitute ground almonds or brown rice flour for the flour called for in the topping and to thicken the filling.

A big thank you to baker extraordinaire, Movita Beaucoup, for the cardamom + rhubarb idea.

ginger cardamom rhubarb crisp

Ginger Cardamom Rhubarb Crisp Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 5 cups chopped rhubarb
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp. cardamom
  • 2 Tbsp. flour

 Topping:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • ½ cup butter

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F
  2. In a medium bowl combine rhubarb with sugar, molasses, spices and flour. Toss to coat and scrape into a 9” by 9” (or thereabouts) baking dish.
  3. In another bowl combine the flour, oats, sugar and ginger.
  4. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or rub with your fingers, until the mixture forms pea-sized chunks.
  5. Sprinkle over rhubarb mixture and bake for 35-40 minutes, until fruit is bubbling and topping is starting to brown.
  6. Serve with a drizzle of fresh cream.

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Something about the way the fruit bubbles up from under the crust and creates a toffee-like sauce around the edges, and that sweet buttery topping…

Silky Molasses Butter Tarts Two Ways

Servings: 12 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 35 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Take me to the recipe

The prep time for these tarts does not include the time it takes to make your pastry from scratch. If you’d like to use homemade pastry plan for 15 minutes extra prep time plus some chilling time for the dough.

Silky molasses butter tarts

A tale of two tarts…

Two versions, one extra molasses-y. Take your pick; they‘re both delicious.

Using molasses in a butter tart results in a sweet, smooth filling that is tangy-sweet. It’s rich to be sure but has much more flavour than butter tarts that call for corn syrup. Combined with a flaky homemade pastry these tarts are sweet heaven.

The method is identical for both, it’s just the filling proportions that are a little different, resulting in two versions that are each delicious in their own way.

I’m not a fan of raisins in my butter tarts but if that’s what you prefer feel free to substitute the walnuts for golden raisins.

 

sweet and silky molasses butter tarts

Sweet and silky Molasses Butter Tart Recipe

Creamy-sweet with a rich flavour and subtle tang from the molasses. This version has a milder molasses flavour than the version below.

Makes 12 butter tarts

Filling:

  • ¾ cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tsp. cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts

sweet and silky molasses butter tarts

Dark and delicious Molasses Butter Tarts

Adapted from Anna Olson

Noticeably darker, this version has more molasses, more butter and a more intense tangy-sweet flavour than the tart recipe above.

Makes 12 butter tarts

Filling:

  • ¾ cup brown sugar, packed
  • ¾ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tsp. cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts

Flaky Butter Tart Pastry:

From Bridget’s Green Kitchen

  • 2 ½ cups flour (can use white whole wheat or spelt flour)
  • 2 tsp. granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup cold butter, cut into pieces
  • ½ cup cold water

Instructions for the pastry:

In a food processor combine the flour, sugar and salt. Add the butter and pulse until it is cut into pea-sized pieces. Add cold water and pulse until pastry starts to come together. Turn out onto a lightly floured counter and gather together, kneading ever so lightly if that’s what it takes to form it into a ball. Pat into a disk and chill for at least an hour.

To make the buttery molasses tart filling:

The method is the same for both recipes.

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Roll pastry to 1/8” thick and cut into discs that are large enough to line your muffin tins. Chill pastry in pan if you have time.

To make filling:

  1. In a medium bowl whisk brown sugar, molasses and butter. Whisk in eggs, then vinegar and vanilla.
  2. Fill pastry-lined muffin cups about ¾ full and sprinkle over the chopped walnuts.
  3. Bake the tarts for 20-25 minutes until filling starts to dome and pastry is golden.
  4. Cool tarts in the tin and remove carefully. Best served at room temperature.

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie – gluten-free

Servings: 8 serving(s)

Prep time: 10 minutes

Total time: 40 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Think of everything you love about a warm chocolate chip cookie and then imagine that in a pie, a chocolate chip cookie pie.

chocolate chip cookie pie is gluten-free

You know the taste of slightly warm chocolate chip cookies? Warm enough that they’re a little gooey with chocolate that practically drips when you take a bite…? That would be a chocolate chip cookie pie.

chocolate chip cookie pie is gluten-free

It’s a celebration kind of pie. March Break has officially begun in my house so a special dessert is in order. This pie is dessert tonight, a decadent treat that is the stuff of my kids’ dreams.

Never mind that it’s made with almond flour and coconut (so is gluten free).

Enjoy it served slightly warm with sweetened Greek yogurt or a little whipped cream. chocolate chip cookie pie is gluten-free

Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie Recipe

Adapted from All day I Dream About Food

Ingredients:

  • 1 ¼ cups almond flour
  • 3/4 cups finely shredded, unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ cup chocolate chips

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325F and grease a 9-inch oven-proof skillet or pie pan.
  2. Whisk together the almond flour, coconut and baking soda.
  3. In another bowl beat butter and sugar then beat in molasses, egg and vanilla.
  4. Stir almond flour mixture into butter mixture and stir until well combined.
  5. Stir in chocolate chips.
  6. Spread dough in prepared pan and bake 25-30 minutes, until golden brown.
  7. Cookie will be very soft and a little jiggle-y in the middle.
  8. Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving.

chocolate chip cookie pie is gluten-free

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Grandma’s Biscuits with Molasses and Old-Fashioned Treat

Servings: 12 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 30 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

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Old fashioned flaky biscuits with molasses

Old fashioned flaky biscuits with molasses are a classic treat…

Our family recipe for biscuits was passed down from my great grandmother but how far back it really goes we don’t know. It’s one of those recipes that has just always been around. Mom said Ila (my grandmother) wasn’t one to make homemade bread but there were always biscuits. Ila called them Momma’s biscuits, because she grew up eating them too.

My grandmother used a glass to cut her biscuits into rounds and she sprinkled them with sugar before baking when they were to be used with shortcake. Sometimes she used a small shortbread cookie cutter to make mini biscuits that she’d fill with egg salad for one-bite sandwiches. And sometimes they’d eat them hot out of the oven with butter and molasses.

They’re a flaky biscuit and unusual in that they call for 8 tsp of baking powder (that’s not a typo).  You can adapt the recipe to sweet or savoury dishes by playing with the amount of sugar. For shortcake use 3-4 Tbsp of sugar. To eat alongside a meal use 1-2 Tbsp. of sugar. The recipe works well with all sorts of flours too (whole wheat, spelt, whole white, kamut or conventional white flour.)

The key to flakiness is to not work the dough too much (little pebbles of hard butter are good), roll out the dough gently, don’t twist the cutter as you’re pushing it through the dough and don’t pat your biscuits down (something I taught my kids as they learned to make these at my side).

Grandma’s Biscuits with Molasses

  • 3 ½ cups flour
  • 2-4 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 8 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup butter, very cold and cut into pieces
  • 1 1/3 cups milk, soured with 1 Tbsp fruit vinegar
  1. Combine the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder in a bowl.
  2. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or two knives until it’s pea-sized.
  3. Make a well in the center and pour in the milk. Stir gently with a fork until the dough just comes together (there will still be flour in the bottom of the bowl).
  4. Scrape the dough onto a lightly-floured counter – leftover flour and all – and knead until it just comes together (no more than 10 times).
  5. Roll out gently until it’s about an inch thick.
  6. Cut into desired shapes.
  7. Arrange on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake at 400F for 12-15 minutes. Spread with butter and drizzle with Crosby’s Fancy Molasses!

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