Raspberry Crumble-Topped Bars for Valentine’s Day

For Valentine’s Day, how about making these Raspberry Crumble-Topped Bars? I am a known chocoholic, so it is a BIG deal that I am putting a crumble shortbread filled with jam on my site! I have to say, this is a very delicious alternative to chocolate and I am so glad I got my good friend Lisa to talk me into giving them a try for our Valentine’s Sweet Treat Post. Lisa has been a regular contributor on the blog and is the best baker I know.  She can cook circles around me and I am so happy she made these bars for us. The recipe calls for strawberry filling which Lisa changed to raspberry (depending on your personal preference either would be yummy) and decorated a few in chocolate for me!  Lisa used the recipe from The Everyday Baker: Recipes and Techniques for Foolproof Baking which is a really wonderful cookbook. Every recipe comes with lots of tips and simple techniques to make even the beginner baker turn out masterpieces.  Now that I have had time to leaf through Lisa’s copy, I am looking forward to getting my own copy.  I can’t wait to hear if you make these bars and if so, how you like them!  Happy Early Valentine’s Day!

Just in time for Valentine's Day, Ridgely Brode shares a recipe for Raspberry Crumble-topped Bars on her blog, Ridgely's Radar.

 

Just in time for Valentine's Day, Ridgely Brode shares a recipe for Raspberry Crumble-topped Bars on her blog, Ridgely's Radar.

 

Just in time for Valentine's Day, Ridgely Brode shares a recipe for Raspberry Crumble-topped Bars on her blog, Ridgely's Radar.

Raspberry or Strawberry Crumble-Topped Bars from The Everyday Baker
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 16 Squares
Ingredients
  • Nonstick Cooking spray or softened butter, for preparing the pan
  • 12 Tbs (6oz/ 170g) unsalted butter
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 tsp pure Vanilla Extract
  • 2 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • ⅔ cups Granulated Sugar
  • 1½ tsp Baking Powder
  • ¼ tsp table salt
  • 1 cup Raspberry or Strawberry Jam
  • ⅓ cup Medium-Finely Chopped Walnuts (optional)
  • Confectioners' Sugar, for dusting (optional)
  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate, melted for decoration (optional)
Instructions
  1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350F. Line a 8-inch square baking pan (I like the straight-sided kind) with foil or parchment paper, leaving about a 1-inch overhang on two sides. Lightly grease the foil
  2. Cut the butter in half lengthwise and then cut each strip into 6 pieces. Pile onto a plate and slide into the freezer until ready to use.
  3. Put the egg and vanilla in a ramekin or small bowl and us a small fork to mix until blended. Put the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a food processor. Process until blended, about 2 seconds. Scatter the chilled butter pieces over the flour mixture and pulse until the mixture forms coarse crumbs and the butter is in very small pieces. Drizzle the egg mixture over the flour mixture, then pulse just until the dough forms moist crumbs and the butter is incorporated, about 20 seconds. Remove the dough from the bowl and divide in half.
  4. Scatter half of the dough in the prepared pan and, using lightly floured fingertips if necessary, pat it down into the bottom and corners of the pan to make a even layer. Using a spoon or small offset spatula, spread the strawberry jam evenly over the dough. Add the walnuts (if using them) to the remaining dough and, using fingers, mix and gently pinch the dough until it forms crumbles (there will be some big crumbles but mostly small). Scatter the crumbles evenly over the jam.
  5. For a soft texture, bake until the top is pale golden, 36-38 minutes. For a crunchy texture, bake until the top is golden brown and the jam is bubbling around the edges, 40-42 minutes. Move the panto a rack and let cool completely.
  6. To cut, use the foil on the sides of the pan to lift the cookie from the pan. carefully peel away the foil from the sides and set the cookie on a cutting board. Using a ruler as a guide and a serrated knife, cut crosswise in 4 equal strips and then cut each strip into squares (about 2 inches). I use a gentle sawing motion to break through the top crust and then firmly push down the knife. Dust lightly with confectioners' sugar just before serving or melt semi-sweet chocolate and drizzle over squares before serving, if desired.
Notes
Make Ahead:
The bars can be prepared through Step 3, covered, and frozen for up to 1 month before baking. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before baking.
The baked bars can be covered and stored at room temperature for up to 2 days.

Flavor Swap:
In place of Walnuts, use the same amount of any nut - even lightly salted peanuts are delicious in these cookies, especially when using grape jelly or jam.
In the place of strawberry jam, use the same amount of any fruit flavor jam or preserves

Just in time for Valentine's Day, Ridgely Brode shares a recipe for Raspberry Crumble-topped Bars on her blog, Ridgely's Radar.

 

Just in time for Valentine's Day, Ridgely Brode shares a recipe for Raspberry Crumble-topped Bars on her blog, Ridgely's Radar.

 

Click below for a Preview of the Everyday Baker

This is a Winner! Pulled Pork You Dream About

I am back with a Winner! I know, I have heard it all before.. a slow cooker recipe?!  Really?!?  I am not using that contraption.  I am a serious cook!  Well, let me tell you, to one serious cook from another not so serious cook.  You need a slow cooker.  If you are anything like me, you are a busy person and a slow cooker (crockpot) makes dinner happen any day of the week.   I get it, most slow cooker meals are recipes that call for meats that can take a beating and can come out heavy, dull, mushy, unappealing and lacking flavor.  Trust me on this, I will not let you make something, and then have to eat it, unless I know first hand it is worthy the 10-12 hours in a gosh darn contraption.  One such meal is the Pulled Pork. It is a tried and true family favorite.  It is four ingredients.. YES FOUR(!).. and the easiest thing you will ever make. It needs a little extra time to marinate in the BBQ sauce (we only use Sweet Baby Ray’s) so read the recipe.  Make the coleslaw, pile it all on a Martin’s Potato Roll and you will be in HEAVEN. Look at that .. TWO recipes in one.. you are set!

I have a HUGE favor to ask of those of you who do use a slow cooker… have a tried and true recipe that tastes really good?  Please share below in the comments.  We all thank you!

Looking for an easy, delicious Pulled Pork Recipe? This winner recipe Ridgely Brode makes for her family and shares on Ridgely's Radar is not to be missed!

 

Looking for an easy, delicious Pulled Pork Recipe? This winner recipe Ridgely Brode makes for her family and shares on Ridgely's Radar is not to be missed!

Pulled Pork Slow Cooker
 
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Ingredients
  • 4 lbs Pork Shoulder or Butt
  • 2 large or 3 small Onions, sliced
  • 1 cup Ginger Ale
  • ½ of 28 oz bottle of Sweet Baby Ray's Barbecue Sauce
Instructions
  1. Layer half of the sliced onions on the bottom of your slow cooker.
  2. Place the pork on top of the onions and then cover with the remaining sliced onions.
  3. Pour the ginger ale over the pork and onions.
  4. Cover the slow cooker, set the temperature to low and let it cook for 12 hours.
  5. Pull the pork out of the slow cooker and put on a rimmed cookie sheet.
  6. Either strain the onion liquid in a colander or pick out the onions and set aside Be careful, there may be some bones that you should take out.
  7. Take two forks and shred the pork, removing the fat, any bones and taking the good meat.
  8. Put the shredded pork and onions back into the slow cooker.
  9. Cover the pork with Sweet Baby Ray's Barbecue Sauce (the 4th ingredient!), using almost half of a 28 oz bottle. Mix it all together, cover and cook on low for 6 hours.
  10. We serve on Martin’s potato rolls with coleslaw
Notes
Pulled Pork takes a little more cooking time than the average slow cooker recipe but it only has 4 ingredients! Note: Be prepared, it takes 12 hours for the pork to cook before shredding so we usually put it all together and cook it overnight. When we wake up, we shred the meat and put it back in the slow cooker for another 6 hours.

 

Looking for an easy, delicious Pulled Pork Recipe? This winner recipe Ridgely Brode makes for her family and shares on Ridgely's Radar is not to be missed!

Classic Cole Slaw
 
Author:
Recipe type: Side
Ingredients
  • 1 bag Dole Classic Coleslaw
  • 1 cup Mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons White Wine Vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon Mustard
  • skim milk to thin it out.
Instructions
  1. Whisk Mayonnaise, Vinegar, Sugar and Mustard in a bowl until combined.
  2. If it is too thick, add the Milk to thin it out
  3. Place Ingredients of Cole Slaw bag in a serving bowl
  4. Add a portion of the Mayonnaise mixture and toss to coat the cabbage.
  5. Depending how much dressing you like on your salad, add more dressing until you are happy with the flavor.
  6. Chill in refrigerator until ready to serve

Looking for an easy, delicious Pulled Pork Recipe? This winner recipe Ridgely Brode makes for her family and shares on Ridgely's Radar is not to be missed!

 

 

Rosemary Roasted Cashews

I love a bowl of nibbles on the bar or set strategically on the coffee table or side tables for guests to grab.  One new favorite are these Rosemary Roasted Cashews that are served warm out of the oven with a touch of spice and just the right amount of rosemary and salt,  So good, I could eat them all!  We will be making them to have along side our St-Germain Champagne Cocktails for our New Years Eve Celebration.  Here’s to a Healthy and Happy New Year!  Cheers!

Ridgely Brode puts out dishes of these delicious Rosemary Roasted Cashews for her guests and shares the recipe on Ridgely's Radar

 

Ridgely Brode puts out dishes of these delicious Rosemary Roasted Cashews for her guests and shares the recipe on Ridgely's Radar

 

Ridgely Brode puts out dishes of these delicious Rosemary Roasted Cashews for her guests and shares the recipe on Ridgely's Radar

 

 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Serves: 3 cups
Ingredients
  • 1¼ pounds cashew nuts
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Place the nuts on an ungreased baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes until they are warmed through.
  3. Meanwhile, combine the rosemary, pepper, sugar, salt and butter in a large bowl.
  4. Toss the warm nuts with the rosemary mixture until the nuts are completely coated.
  5. Serve warm.

Ridgely Brode puts out dishes of these delicious Rosemary Roasted Cashews for her guests and shares the recipe on Ridgely's RadarRidgely Brode puts out dishes of these delicious Rosemary Roasted Cashews for her guests and shares the recipe on Ridgely's Radar

 

Ridgely Brode puts out dishes of these delicious Rosemary Roasted Cashews for her guests and shares the recipe on Ridgely's Radar

 Pair with St-Germain Champagne Cocktail

Celebrate the New Year with this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail

Looking for a festive Champagne Cocktail for New Years Eve? Then give this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail a try. It is delicious and looks elegant with the fragrant lavender sprigs and petals dancing in the champagne.  St-Germain is a liquere made in the artisanal French manner from freshly hand-picked elderflower blossoms.  The bottle is a beautiful artdeco style glass and looks well alongside a vase of lavender. Come back tomorrow for a easy to make nibble to pair with your cocktails.  Cheers!

 

Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode, Celebrates the New Year with this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail on her blog Ridgely's Radar

 

Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode, Celebrates the New Year with this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail on her blog Ridgely's Radar

 

Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode, Celebrates the New Year with this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail on her blog Ridgely's Radar

 

Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode, Celebrates the New Year with this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail on her blog Ridgely's Radar

 

Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode, Celebrates the New Year with this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail on her blog Ridgely's Radar

 

Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode, Celebrates the New Year with this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail on her blog Ridgely's Radar

 

Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode, Celebrates the New Year with this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail on her blog Ridgely's Radar

 

St-Germain Champagne Cocktail
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1½ ounces St- Germain
  • 4 ounces Champagne or Prosecco
  • 1 ounce club soda
  • Dried Lavender sprigs and petals
Instructions
  1. Pour St-Germain into a Champagne flute.
  2. Top with Champagne and club soda.
  3. Add a Lavender Sprig and petals
  4. Serve

 

Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode, Celebrates the New Year with this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail on her blog Ridgely's Radar

 

Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode, Celebrates the New Year with this St-Germain Champagne Cocktail on her blog Ridgely's Radar

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Setting a Festive Table for Christmas with Vintage Finds

Every year, I try to come up with a new way to set my table for Christmas and, this past Summer, I found a really beautiful vintage tablecloth and matching napkins which I have been holding on to until now to break out.  I love how the red berries set off the green leaves in the holly and wanted to highlight that when I set the table. It was so much fun to put it all together and I hope you enjoy seeing how it turned out. I still can’t believe Christmas is here… I  have a pile of presents to wrap and some dishes to prepare. I am going to keep it simple so that we can all relax (that means me too) and enjoy the festivities.  If you need a last minute dessert idea, this is delicious, or, if  you are looking for a make-ahead breakfast, for Christmas morning, this is a favorite in our house and won’t take very long to assemble.  Have a wonderful Holiday and Merry Christmas to you and your family!

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

Ridgely Brode, Lifestyle Blogger, sets her table for Christmas with a vintage table cloth and napkins on Ridgely's Radar.

 

 

I am Looking for a Bigger Coffee Maker

I love my cup of coffee,  I have one, maybe two cups a day and I want it to be good, really good.  I wake up excited for my coffee, sort of like my excitement for a glass of wine at the end of a long day, but todays post is all about coffee.  I like to make my own and it has to be strong.  Over the years, I have tried many coffee makers and brands of coffee.  Turns out, for me, expensive is not necessarily better. Currently at home, I am using Cafe 1820 – Costa Rican Ground Coffee 17.5 Oz – 500 Grams.  I discovered it a few summers ago while staying in Costa Rica and I buy it from Amazon.com.  It is a rich, delicious coffee.  YUM!

Lifestyle blogger, Ridgely Brode, is looking for a bigger coffee maker now that her son likes a cup too and is choosing between 6 models.

Lifestyle blogger, Ridgely Brode, is looking for a bigger coffee maker now that her son likes a cup too and is choosing between 6 models.

It use to be just me having coffee at home and now my oldest son seems to have picked up the taste and my trusty Cuisinart  4 cup with stainless-steel carafe with this gold tone filter is not going to cut it, especially when I use the whole carafe to fill my large cup!  I now make two rounds of coffee in the morning, one for me and one for him. And lets not even talk about this past weekend when we had guests, I think I made 6 rounds each morning…

Time to find a bigger coffee maker and buy more mugs!

Besides making good coffee, I would like the carafe to be dishwasher safe and sturdy.  I have lost many a glass carafe to the dishwasher and had a problem just getting a replacement carafe.  That is one of the reasons I have the stainless steel version now. I am interested in the BrewStation that holds the coffee in the machine and dispenses as needed (Check out the Krupp! Talk about an investment.. Yowzer).  Anyone have one of those?

Calling all coffee lovers reading this… Do you have one of the below 6 coffee makers?  Please let me know what you are using and love.. this coffee drinker (and son) would like to know!

Lifestyle blogger, Ridgely Brode, is looking for a bigger coffee maker now that her son likes a cup too and is choosing between 6 models.

to buy: 1. Black & Decker 12 Cup Thermal Coffeemaker  /  2. Cuisinart Black Steel Coffeemaker  /3. Hamilton Beach BrewStation   /  4. KRUPS Cup on Demand  /  5. BUNN HG 8 Cup Coffee Brewer  /  6. Mr. Coffee Optimal Brew 10 Cup