Cherry Pie Chocolate Shortbread Bars

Disclosure: I received free Bing Cherries from Hale Groves in exchange for developing a recipe. As always, all opinions and recipes are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that support The Emotional Baker!

Chocolate and cherries collide in these shortbread bars. They are topped with streusel and a white chocolate drizzle.

Cherry Pie Chocolate Shortbread Bars

Would you prefer to just go with the flow or fight everything with resistance, stubbornness and lots of tears?

Former me (& a little bit of present day me) chose the latter. Especially when my family went out to eat on beach vacations.

Cherries

If we didn’t go where I wanted to (which consisted of probably one place,) I pitched a huge fit, pouted, and probably created a huge scene – what a nightmare!

Cherry Pie Chocolate Shortbread Bars

The only thing that would calm me down was a special drink – the infamous Shirley Temple, my favorite carbonated drink, in a gorgeous hue, with a cherry on top! Even back in the day, I believed in not wasting anything because I even tried to eat the stem!

After all that, I still wasn’t happy until we stopped at my favorite frozen custard spot. Each day they have a special flavor and I couldn’t miss one.

Cherry Pie Chocolate Shortbread Bars

Well, these days I’m perfectly happy making dinner at home and, of course, baking all my favorite sweet treats.

This summer I’ve been having entirely too much fun baking with fresh fruit. From strawberries, to blueberries to peaches – can’t it always be fruit season?!?

Cherry Pie Chocolate Shortbread Bars

These cherry bars are a mash-up of some old TEB recipes. I took the chocolate shortbread from my Chocolate Pecan Shortbread Bars and the streusel from my Banana Streusel Muffins to create the perfect complement to this cherry pie filling. & just to make these even more special, I drizzled some white chocolate on top. You have to try these bars!

Cherry Pie Chocolate Shortbread Bars

Are you easy to please or more demanding?

PS: Following the TEB garden saga? This vegetable turned out to be a Spaghetti Squash! I see lots of stuffed squash in my future :)

Cherry Pie Chocolate Shortbread Bars

Ingredients

    Filling:
  • 3 cups cherries
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • Shortbread:
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup margarine
  • Streusel Topping:
  • 4 tbsp margarine
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • White Chocolate Glaze:
  • 1/3 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp canola oil

Instructions

    Filling:
  1. In a saucepan, combine cherries, sugar, water and cornstarch. Bring mixture to a boil. Stir continuously. Lower heat and cook for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in almond extract. Set aside.
  2. Shortbread:
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 inch square pan. Line bottom with parchment paper. Grease paper.
  4. In medium bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Cut margarine up in tablespoon segments. Use hands to incorporate margarine and flour.
  5. Press dough into prepared pan.
  6. Bake for 10 minutes.
  7. Streusel:
  8. Combine margarine, brown sugar, sugar and flour. Use fingers to incorporate ingredients.
  9. Assembly:
  10. Spread cherry filling on cooked shortbread. Sprinkle streusel topping on top of cherries. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until cherries are bubbling and streusel is golden brown. Allow to cool completely.
  11. Slice into bars.
  12. Melt white chocolate chips in microwave for 45 seconds at 50 percent power. Add canola oil. Stir until smooth. Transfer melted chocolate to zip lock bag. Cut end. Carefully drizzle chocolate over bars.
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Cherry Pie Chocolate Shortbread Bars

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Strawberry Peach Popsicles

Disclosure: I received free Popsicle molds from koji in exchange for developing a recipe. As always, all opinions and recipes are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that support The Emotional Baker!

Cool off with a refreshing strawberry and peach flavored pop

Strawberry Peach Popsicles

First visual sign of summer – glowing lightning bugs.

First auditory sign of summer – the sweet hum of cicadas.

But this year, I thought maybe it wasn’t a magic year since I haven’t heard them. (you know how cicadas live underground for 13 or 17 years and then emerge?)

Like most bugs – ants and bees – I have a special relationship with these unique insects.

Strawberry Peach Popsicles

One summer, on a hot and humid marathon training run with my dad, I had quite the surprise encounter with one.

We were trying to get that last half mile in – without having to go up any hills – so, we were running around a softball field. As you can imagine, I was already feeling pretty bad.

Then, just suddenly, out of nowhere, I heard this horrible, shrill cry and my foot was vibrating! & this huge insect started flying towards me! Of course, my first thought was, bee! (revisit my horrific encounter with these dudes) But, I realized what it was and I calmed down. My dad enjoyed my freakout 😉

image

After a long run and a scary encounter with a bug, it’s always nice to cool off with a delicious pop. These strawberry peach pops are the perfect solution.

PS: Don’t worry – the cicadas have arrived!

Strawberry Peach Popsicles

What are your favorite things about summer?

Strawberry Peach Popsicles

Ingredients

    Peach Layer
  • 1 banana, frozen in quarters
  • 140 grams frozen peach slices
  • 1.25 cup orange juice
  • Strawberry Layer:
  • 1 banana, frozen in quarters
  • 140 grams frozen strawberries
  • 1.25 cup orange juice

Instructions

    Peach Layer:
  1. Place ingredients in blender in order listed. Blend until smooth and creamy, scraping the sides and stirring throughout. Transfer to another bowl.
  2. Strawberry Layer:
  3. Place ingredients in blender in order listed. Blend until smooth and creamy, scraping the sides and stirring throughout.
  4. Assembly:
  5. Pour small amounts of each blended fruit mix in popsicle molds, alternating between layers. Follow mold instructions, freezing overnight or until firm and frozen.
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Strawberry Peach Popsicles

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Multi Herb Pesto

 Cilantro, parsley and pecans blended to create the perfect sauce for pizza, pasta and sandwiches

Multi Herb Pesto

Help! Gardening expert needed ASAP!!

My small little herb garden has been overtaken by . . . I have no idea!

Garden

Back in the fall, I finally convinced my family to start composting all our fruit and vegetable scraps. We didn’t use any fancy chicken wire or an official composter, just a yard waste can. I set out after every meal – whether it was 6 degrees, snowing or pouring rain – to dump everything from juiced limes to that pesky celery that I can never use entirely.

Multi Herb Pesto

This spring we tried to decide how to use this luscious (let’s be real – nasty) compost. Since I love to make basil pesto, I thought an herb garden would be the perfect use.

First, we planted basil, curry leaves, thai basil, rosemary and cilantro. Unfortunately, only the basil survived. (Oh, & how could I forget – the curry leaves did, too!)

Multi Herb Pesto

But these random plants didn’t want those two to be lonely. At first, I thought they were just pumpkins, but now I don’t know. I’ve been through several hypotheses – spaghetti squash, cantaloupe, acorn squash, tiger stripe pumpkins. Can you help?

Garden

Garden

Since it didn’t look like I was going to make large pesto batches from our garden’s supply, I went in search for an alternative. Thus, this pesto was born. It combines cilantro, parsley and just a smidge of basil 😉 I love to incorporate pecans and nutritional yeast. If you’d prefer to use different herbs, or even spinach, feel free. This is the best versatile recipe.

Multi Herb Pesto

Hope you make lots of pizza and pasta with this awesome sauce!

Multi Herb Pesto

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cilantro - one large bunch
  • 2 cups parsley - one large bunch
  • Small handful of basil leaves - about 10 leaves
  • 1/2 cup raw pecans
  • 1.5 tsp salt
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Instructions

  1. Combine cilantro, parsley, basil. pecans, salt, garlic and nutritional yeast in food processor. Scrape down sides of processor frequently. With processor running, slowly drizzle in olive oil. Process until smooth.
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Multi Herb Pesto

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Coconut Almond Butter Granola

Caramelized oats filled with crunchy coconut, nuts and dried fruit

Coconut Almond Butter Granola

Granola. Bread. Cookies. The three recipe formulas I have memorized.

However, with each new variation, I run the risk of losing the recipe if I don’t write it down right away. & most of the time I don’t.

& when I do, it’s on a scrap piece of paper that I carelessly toss in my “cookbook corner.”

Coconut Almond Butter Granola

When a post is approaching and I remember I have to type up the recipe, my heart starts to beat rapidly with the fear that I’ve lost that vital information.

I’ve been trying to do better by typing them up right away, but at the moment I have nearly 20 recipes that haven’t been officially saved!

This granola, however, I made sure I saved right away because I’m pretty sure it’s one of my new favorites. You can never have too many granola favorites can you?

Coconut Almond Butter Granola

Today I’m sharing this recipe on My Cooking Spot, so be sure to check it out :)

Or stick around here and check out some of my go-to granolas:

Chai Tea GranolaChai Tea Granola

Cashew Butter GranolaCashew Butter Granola

Do you have a recipe organization system?

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Blueberry Lime Loaf

Fresh blueberries paired with lime and swirls of blueberry jam

Blueberry Lime Loaf

Blueberry envy.

Combined with homesickness. Let me tell ya – it’s worse than the flu.

Blueberry Lime Loaf

See, my first week of college corresponded with my mom receiving a giant bucket of blueberries. I knew in advance that these bad boys were gonna be coming in, right as I was going out – & it sent a serious pang through my body. Not only was I going to miss my best buds, Winston, Smokey and Punk’n, I was going to miss some serious blueberry baking.

The day of the berry arrival, I called home as my mom was preparing some muffins. (She makes the best lemon blueberry muffins!) I don’t remember the specifics of what muffin variety she was making, but I remember her asking for advice on making a vegan batch. At that moment, I wanted nothing more than to be back home in the kitchen with her.

Well, I survived, even though I’m sure I missed out on some awesome baking.

Blueberry Lime Loaf

This summer (or technically I guess it was spring) we had a brief period of blueberry overload. So, I put it to good use by making a Memorial Day galette, and this pretty awesome loaf. The lime flavor is subtle, but pairs perfectly with the blueberries. The blueberry jam intensifies the overall blueberry flavor.

I highly recommend you never let a summer go without blueberry baking 😉 You won’t regret making this loaf!

Blueberry Lime Loaf

Do you have a favorite summer fruit to bake with?

Blueberry Lime Loaf

Ingredients

    Jam:
  • 1 cup blueberries, frozen, thawed or fresh
  • Loaf:
  • 2.5 cups all purpose flour
  • 1.5 cups sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 5 oz vanilla soy yogurt
  • 1 cup cashew milk
  • 1/3 cup lime juice
  • 3/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Zest of 3 limes
  • 1.5 cups blueberries
  • Glaze:
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • Zest of one lime
  • 1 tbsp boiling water

Instructions

    Jam:
  1. Add blueberries to a small saucepan over medium heat. Heat until mixture begins to boil. Stir constantly and use a fork to smash berries. Cook about 10 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Refrigerate until ready to make loaf.
  2. Loaf:
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 5 loaf pan and muffin tin.
  4. In a medium bowl, combine, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  5. In a large bowl, combine yogurt, milk, lime juice, oil and extract. Fold dry into wet and mix until most lumps are eliminated. Fold in lime zest, blueberries and blueberry jam. Divide batter into loaf pan until three quarters full. Divide rest of batter among muffin tins - makes about 6 muffins.
  6. Bake loaf for 60-70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Bake muffins 15-18 minutes. Allow to cool in pan for about 30 minutes. Then carefully remove from pan, transfer to wire rack and allow to cool completely.
  7. Glaze:
  8. Place zest and powdered sugar in small bowl. Whisk in boiling water until smooth. Spread over loaf.
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Blueberry Lime Loaf

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