All From The Tart

Orange Chocolate Tart

Orange Chocolate Tart

Last weekend I needed to do a little cleaning in our refrigerator since we tend to forget things and then some new science project starts to happen, ewww!  I forgot that I had a couple of oranges and thought what can I make with oranges hmmmm. I love to challenge myself ( who knew!) so I found in my fridge that was needing to be used soon Ricotta cheese,and oranges  what can I make with the two combined. I came across this recipe Orange Ricotta tart with Chocolate ganache  from the baked by an introvert blog.

Believe me when I say I have never made a tart before so I was a little hesitant to start this, but once again I love a challenge. It certainly was not hard to do  at all , and I do have a confession  I am terrible at making crust for  pies so when I made the crust for this tart it turned out perfect!

The Filling part was easy and simple, but to be honest from the recipe that I followed if I had to change it I would a little bit by adding an egg to the mix to make it fluffy since without that egg the recipe was more crust then filling to me. I would also suggest orange extract is fine to use, but if you want more orange flavor use the juices from the oranges that you have it really brings out the natural flavor  of orange in the desert. I also would add 1/3 cup of ricotta cheese to the 1 cup that the recipe calls for , once again to make it a little more filling added to the  tart.

For the Chocolate piece I used dark Chocolate it certainly made this a rich flavored tart, and if you are like me a Chocoholic then this would be perfect for you Bone appetit!


For the crust:
    • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
    • 2 tablespoons sugar
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 large egg, room temperature
    • 1-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
For the filling:
    • 1  1/3  cup ricotta cheese, room temperature
    • 1 egg room temperature
    • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
    • 3 tablespoons sugar
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon orange extract I would recommend adding more of the orange juice from the orange in the mix 1 table spoon
    • 1 tablespoon orange zest
    • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
For the ganache
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped fine I added more Chocolate but that is because I am a chocoholic.


  1. Make the crust: In a medium bowl, cream together the butter and sugar, until fluffy. Stir in the salt and vanilla. Add the egg, beat until well blended. In a small bowl, combine the flour and baking soda. Stir with a whisk. Add flour mixture to butter mixture 1 Tbs at a time. Toss with a fork until a soft dough forms. Gently knead the dough until it sticks together in a ball.
  2. Shape the dough into a disk. Wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350F degree. Grease and flour an 8-inch springform pan. Place wax paper in the bottom. Press the dough out into the bottom of the pan, press up the sides of the pan about half way.
  4. Make the filling: In a medium bowl, cream together the cheese and butter. Beat in the sugar, salt, orange extract, and orange zest. Beat in the flour until well blended. Spread the mixture into the bottom of the crust. Bake for 25 minutes. Set pan on a wire rack to cool. Remove the tart from the pan.
  5. Make the ganache: Place the cream and corn syrup in a small saucepan. Heat over low heat until cream begins to simmer. Remove from heat. Add the chocolate, stir until the chocolate is completely melted. Let the ganache cool. Pour it over the filling, used a silicone spatula to spread the ganache evenly over the tart. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.


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Happy Fourth of July

Fourth Of July Wreath

Bandana Wreath for Fourth of July

Fourth of July holiday always makes me remember those great childhood memories being with my big family at my grandparents farm. We would all get together either in the back yard area near the garden that they had or inside depending on what the weather was like. Living in Washington state you would never know if it was going to be hot or not. My family was huge 14 Aunts and uncles all together with their own children each couple had either 2 to 4 kids so add that up in your head. We would have three big picnic tables full of food which would turn out to be a great big potluck. All of us kids would play outside around the barn or out around the land. Hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken on the BBQ grilling away hmmmmm smelled so good. The best part was eating the water melon and having water melon fights messy yes, but so much fun.

Then when the sun went down it was time for those fireworks, and kids running around with the sparklers. The Ohhhhs and the awwws when the bright colors would appear in the sky. Best Memories ever, but we would not have those memories if it wasn’t for the men and women in service who fight for our Country, for our freedom, for us to enjoy life. They are the true hero’s who are so selfless and signed themselves up to do the hardest job ever. So this blog message is for them, Thank you for everything I salute you.


So I have a couple of things that I wanted to share this holiday how to make a wreath for Fourth of July, and  instead of apple pie the traditional treat I made a caramel apple cake. For something light to start off with I made some zucchini bites  horsd’oeuvres.

To each and everyone of you Happy Fourth of July!

Carmel Apple Cake (2)

Caramel Apple Cake


Zucchini Bites  (2)

Zucchini Bites


How to make a Fourth of July Wreath

1 18 inch floral wire wreath

6 red bandanas, 6 white bandanas, 6 blue bandanas

stars you can get paper stars or wood stars

Glue Gun to glue the stars on the wreath.

Cut all bandanas in half then tie them on the wreath


How to make zucchini bites

Yield: Makes 2-3 dozen zucchini bites


1 1/2 cups packed shredded zucchini (no need to peel the zucchini)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 – 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup panko or regular bread crumbs
1/4 teaspoon dried basil (or 1-2 teaspoons fresh)
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and lightly coat with cooking spray or lightly grease an unlined baking sheet.
Place the shredded zucchini in a clean kitchen towel and wring out all the excess water over the sink until the zucchini is really dry.
Place the zucchini and remaining ingredients in a medium bowl and mix until combined.
Drop the mixture by tablespoonfuls on the prepared baking sheet and lightly press the mounds with your hands to flatten slightly.
Bake for 16-20 minutes until the edges are golden.

Recipe Source: adapted from this recipe at Skinnytaste (used more zucchini, omitted the onion, added basil and garlic, changed the type of bread crumbs, increased oven temp, etc.)

Caramel Apple Cake

1 Box of Pillsbury Caramel Apple cake mix

3 Apples- I used Fuji  Apples

1 8oz cream cheese  Softened

1cup of Granola

1/2 cup of brown sugar

1 cup of sugar

1 table spoon of cornstarch mixed in 2 tsp of water

1 table spoon of lemon juice

caramel sauce



start with the cake mix and follow directions by mixing all ingredients set aside.

Next Cut up all the apples thin slices and stick them in a pot over medium heat on the stove, add the lemon juice and the 1 cup of sugar and cook down. Mix corn starch in 2 tsp of water make sure the mixture is blended in the water before adding it to the Apples. Once the corn starch is added then stir that in the apple mixture and once it starts to bubble stir. Once the apple mixture has gotten thicker set aside.

Poor the cake mixture in the pan use half the mixture first  then lay the apple mixture on top of the cake mixture. Last poor the remainder of the cake mixture on top of the apple mixture. Now bake as directed on the cake mix box.

Once the cake is done baking let it cool before putting the frosting on top.


While the cake is cooling mix the cream cheese with 1 cup of sugar if you have caramel sauce add some to the frosting mix and mix. set aside


Next take a cup of Granola and cook it over the stove in 1 cup of brown sugar. Let the sugar mixture melt down and the granola get brown color. To let the Granola mixture cool down before putting over the frosting set it aside on wax paper.

Once the cake is cool then add the Frosting to the cake, and last but not least add the granola mixture on top ( make sure it is complete cool before adding to the frosting).





Lemon Ricotta Cookies

Lemon Ricotta Cookies

Lemon Ricotta Cookies

The other day I was watching my favorite channel the food network channel and Giada De Laurentiis was on I love watching that woman do Italian dishes she inspires me. Well She made these cookies on that segment and I absolutely love Anything lemon so I had to try this out! 

These Cookies are absolutely beautiful and I never say that about a cookie the word beautiful. When making these the smell of the lemons was such a  fresh clean scent , and the Ricotta Cheese in the Cookies just makes them soft you can’t even tell there is Ricotta Cheese in it!  Adding the Glaze to it so sweet by itself ( yes I had to lick the spoon ) but once you put it on top of the cookie it just beautifully balances it out. Some of my friends have tried this and they wanted more. This is definitely a keeper in my house hold .

Thank you Giada for this wonderful dessert you shared it is so much fun to watch and learn from one of the greatest Chefs.

Lemon Ricotta Cookies
Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 (15-ounce) container whole milk ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 lemon, zested
Glaze: 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 lemon, zested
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.


In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In the large bowl combine the butter and the sugar. Using an electric mixer beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating until incorporated. Add the ricotta cheese, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Beat to combine. Stir in the dry ingredients.

Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Spoon the dough (about 2 tablespoons for each cookie) onto the baking sheets. Bake for 15 minutes, until slightly golden at the edges. Remove from the oven and let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 20 minutes.


Combine the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a small bowl and stir until smooth. Spoon about 1/2-teaspoon onto each cookie and use the back of the spoon to gently spread. Let the glaze harden for about 2 hours.

Raspberry White Chocolate Chip Cookies



My dear friend Beth came down to visit me during the memorial Day Weekend, and we had such a wonderful time catching up ( she lives in Washington state). She had requested for me to bake something with her, and I thought what an awesome idea bake drink wine and keep on baking. I might actually make a shirt with that saying sounds like a great idea!  Anyway we were so busy doing all kinds of stuff that I thought what the heck am I going to bake easy, and fast.

I had taken a look in the refrigerator to see what I could come up with found some fresh raspberries, white chocolate chips, and white Chocolate pudding mix.  The Alchemist in me came out and we baked these awesome cookies. I have to be honest it actually took a little while to bake them since I only could bake one tray at a time so I think it took us 2 hours 😦 that was a little to long since we were both beat and wanted to sit down and relax. Of course it was totally worth the wait cause these cookies were so dreamy that I actually ate more then I should have.

The raspberries were just right not to sweet not bitter and the combination with the white Chocolate made it so delicious. the best part of making these was adding the white Chocolate pudding mix in the cookie batter. When you add this it really makes your Cookies soft and fluffy I would say cake like.

Once we were done baking those we sat down kicked off our sandals and ate them while watching a classic from the 80’s “Sixteen Candles” Beth has never seen it before ( Yes I know what you’re thinking right I thought the same thing when she told me!) It was a great girl night with baking and watching a movie while eating the end results.


Raspberry White Chocolate chip cookies
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 large box (5.1 oz) Instant Hershey’s white Chocolate pudding mix
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup White Chocolate Chips ( I actually use half the bag can’t resist)
1 cup fresh raspberries, halved

With a hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugars. Add the pudding mix and mix until well blended. Add the eggs and the vanilla  and mix well. Add the flour and baking soda and continue mixing. Stir in the white Chocolate chips  and then very gently fold in the raspberries.

Drop cookies by rounded teaspoonfuls (I use a cookie scoop) onto a greased cookie sheet (or a high quality non-stick cookie sheet). Bake for about 10 minutes at 350. Enjoy!


Chocolate Cream Pie with cheese cake filling

Chocolate Cream pie with Cheese cake filling


How many of you must have chocolate ? I know I always have a weakness for it and always have something Chocolate in my house, my purse or my drawer at work. It seems to save the day or as I like to say give me super powers of energy. Today I realized I had a box of Chocolate pudding in my cupboard, and thought what can I do to spice  Chocolate Pudding . I love Chocolate pudding, but I get bored eating it just plain, so I thought what can I do to make it stand out. I noticed that I also had some cream cheese in my fridge and thought what am I going to do with this since we really never eat cream cheese unless I am making some kind of dip, or a cheese cake. Light bulb came on and I decided let’s see how cheese cake filling with Chocolate pudding would taste like. I had a frozen pie crust on my freezer that needed to be used so that saved me time to make the crust.  I like to use Marie Calendars Frozen pie crust when I am lazy and do not want to make my own pie crust. I also had some cool whip in the freezer which I forgot that I had so this was going to be perfect. I thawed out the pie crust, cool whip, and the cream cheese , the pudding was instant pudding so I did not have to cook it.  this recipe was easy and pretty much took like 15 minutes to make .

When my husband and sat down to have this desert we felt like it was a Marie Calendar pie. It was so incredibly good that I can’t wait to make it again.


Chocolate pie with cream Cheese filling
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. + chilling
MAKES: 6 servings

1 package (3 ounces) cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons sugar
1-3/4 cups milk, divided
2 cups whipped topping, divided
1 pie crust  ( 9 inches)
1 package (3.9 ounces) instant chocolate pudding mix
Miniature semisweet chocolate chips, optional

Coco Powder to add in the top of the pie

First you want to bake your pie crust set it aside to cool down.

In a small bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and 1 tablespoon milk until smooth. Fold in 1 cup whipped topping. Spread evenly into crust.
In a small bowl, whisk pudding mix and remaining milk for 2 minutes. Let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set. Pour over cream cheese mixture. Chill until set.
Just before serving, garnish with remaining whipped topping ,chocolate chips and Coco Powder ( I like to use dark Chocolate powder) .


Happy Easter




March is the month that our friend the Easter Bunny comes to visit children. He takes the eggs the children decorated and hides them for them to find. In the end the children always get excited when they find that hidden basket full of candy and toys. I use to love Easter as a kid the only problem was I would get up in the middle of the night looking to see where he hid my basket first I didn’t care about the eggs  . Yes I was terrible with surprises and I guess you could say still am.  Moving forward to today I don’t have children, but I have one special little person in my life my niece. I love to spoil her and make things for her, but of course this year Auntie got a little to busy and procrastinated so instead I bought her this cute felt Easter Basket at Michael’s . Honestly this is so easy to make by using felt, glue gun and a little bit of sewing and pow you got yourself a cute Easter basket. My preference is this basket is the cutest thing compare to a plastic one don’t you agree?


Girl Scout Samoa pie

Another thing about Easter is you get to gather with family and friends and what else but enjoy each others company while enjoying great food. I always love to bake for our family, and this time I thought I would do something different. March is not only the month of Easter, St. Patrick’s day , but what else Girl Scout Cookies! Those dang girl scout cookies you love them and hate them all at the same time. I have been such a good girl this year and have not bought any of my favorite Thin mints, or the Samoa ones. You end up being a sucker for those little girls who try so hard to shine while learning to sell those evil things. Just kidding  I have to admit to you  I was a brownie when I was a little girl. I thought what would be cool then to make something that represents those famous cookies so I made for our Easter Gathering this Girl scout Samoa Pie. So easy to make, and yet so good. Just eating one slice is better then buying 10 boxes of those cookies right? It taste just like those cookies and is a hit in my household.

The one thing I have to remind everyone is today is not only about being with family and friends, but also to remember Jesus has risen on this day. Easter is not just about the Easter Bunny and the Easter egg hunts it is more then that. So I would like to say God Bless everyone and Happy Easter.



Girl Scout Cookie Pie

Yield: one 9-inch pie, serves 8 to 16

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: about 35 to 37 minutes, divided

Total Time: about 4+ hours (or overnight), for cooling


1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), melted
1 large egg
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, for sprinkling
1 1/2 cups sweetened shredded coconut, loosely laid in measuring cup (not packed)
two-thirds of one 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk (about 10 ounces)
4 to 5 ounces salted caramel sauce
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted for drizzling


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 9-inch pie dish very well with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a large, microwave-safe bowl melt the butter, about 1 minute on high power.
  3. Wait momentarily before adding the egg so you don’t scramble it. Add the egg, brown sugar, vanilla, and whisk until smooth.
  4. Add the flour, salt, and stir until just combined; don’t overmix.
  5. Turn batter out into prepared pie dish, smoothing the top lightly with a spatula. Bake for about 10 to 12 minutes or until edges firm up slightly and center will have begun to set up a bit.
  6. Remove pie dish from oven, and evenly sprinkle 3/4 cup chocolate chips over the crust.
  7. Evenly sprinkle the coconut.
  8. Evenly drizzle the sweetened condensed milk
  9. Evenly drizzle the caramel sauce
  10. Return pan to oven and bake for about 25 minutes, or until there’s slightly bubbling near the edge of dish and the center has dried out some and looks more set. Cookie pie will firm up more as it cools. In the last 10 minutes of baking, watch it like a hawk because the coconut, caramel, and sweetened condensed milk will all be prone to burning; better to under bake than over bake if you’re unsure.
  11. Allow pie to cool in dish on a wire rack while you melt the chocolate for drizzling by adding 3/4 cup chocolate chips to a small microwave-safe bowl and heat to melt, about 1 minute on high power. Stop to check and stir and heat in 10-second increments until chocolate can be stirred smooth.
  12. Using a spoon (or pastry bag or zip-top bag with corner cut off if you want to be fancier but I didn’t bother), evenly drizzle the chocolate in long vertical lines, parallel to each other, spaced about 1/2-inch apart. Pie doesn’t have to be cooled to add the chocolate drizzle.
  13. Allow pie to continue to cool on wire rack for at least 4 hours (or overnight) before slicing and serving. Don’t slice too early because chocolate drizzle needs to set and interior of pie needs to firm up or you’ll have a literal hot mess. Pie is best fresh, but will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 5 days, or in the freezer for up to 6 months.



Healthier chocolate mousse is this for real?

Chocolate Mousse 2


Your not going to believe this a healthier way of eating Chocolate? Yes it is true and this recipe I have made in the past, and totally forgot about it till I realized I still had Tofu in my fridge. That is correct I said tofu now don’t knock it if you have not tried it. Tofu sometimes I think has a bad rap, and really it should not. You can use Tofu in so many ways from Regular Entree’s to Desserts it is so true.

This Dessert is so easy to make takes like 10 minutes if you have a blender or a food Processor. It is so creamy and rich you would never know that tofu was really the main ingredient. I made this the other night for my Hubby and I, he was very impressed by it. To make it really have that rich flavor you really need to buy the dark Chocolate Chips along with some Baileys Irish Cream Liquor . I know it is a little late blogging this since you could of enjoyed this for Valentines day, but hey who cares you can enjoy this any time without the Guilt.


Baileys chocolate mousse

Yield: 4 servings

Total Time: 10 minutes

16 oz Firm  tofu
1 cup dark chocolate chips, melted, I always use Ghiradelli
1/3 cup Baileys Irish cream Ummm excuse me I used more then that I used really 1/2 cup
1 Table spoon of Peanuts
1 tsp cacao powder


In a safe microwavable dish melt the chocolate chips in 45 second intervals stirring in between. Set aside.

In your food processor place the tofu and Baileys and pulse until smooth, you really want it nice and smooth and no lumps , It should take 1-2 minutes. Add the melted chocolate chips and pulse until everything is well incorporated. You may have to scrape the sides of the food processor a couple of times.

Divide mixture between four individual glasses and garnish with the cocoa powder and chopped peanuts  if you like. Place mousse glasses in the refrigerator for at least 2-3 hours to harden.

Chocolate Mousse