Summer Peach Pie

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In my opinion, there’s no better way to start the month of August than a tasty peach pie! What do you think?

Several days ago, a friend of ours gave us a peach pie from Arcangeli Co. (Aka Norm’s Market) which is located in the small community of Pescadero, California. I’ve never been to the market before, but judging from the pie, I’m sure the other stuff in there is delicious!

Although the pie looks just like any other from the surface, this pie was unlike any other pie I’ve had. It tasted natural, no preservatives and added flavors. The crust had a plain taste, only slightly sweeter than an average biscuit. The filling of the pie was peach pieces with a peachy syrup, no surprise there. The filling tasted like a Dole Fruit cup (one of my favorite snacks), except sweeter. The combination between the plain and the sweet was perfectly balanced for me because I don’t like things that are overly sweet. I thin k that this pie would go particularly well with a glass of milk, whipped cream, and some strawberries, or even just a mug coffee or hot chocolate.

Will I ever try this again? Maybe, if I lived a little closer to Pescadero. If this pie was sold in our nearby Safeway, I’d be pretty tempted to buy it. If I bought the pie again, I’d try their different flavors such as apricot or apple.

I would recommend this pie to folks who prefer pies that are plainer in taste. If you need something to satisfy your sweet tooth, this isn’t the pie you should try (That rhymed!) but it’s a nice dessert to have otherwise.

Fun Fruit Popsicle Recipe

Hey everyone! Instead of doing the usual review on sweet treats, I will be sharing a recipe that I’ve seen several times around the internet. It’s a simple but fun and very healthy fruit popsicle recipe that will make your day a little cooler!

Healthy, colorful, tasty!

This recipe only requires a few things:

-An assortment of fruit (Strawberries, cherries, watermelons, melons)

-Water

-Popsicle stands

Directions:

1. Slice up your fruits into small, bite-sized pieces. The amount of fruit you slice up depends on how many popsicles you want to make. In this batch, I used about 4 strawberries, 2 small chunks of cantaloupe, 2 small chunks of honeydew, 4 grapes, and 5 cherries.

Slice up the fruit into bite-sized pieces.

2. Find your possible stands and fill them up with the fruit, layering the fruit inside in different ways to create a more colorful result. Afterwards, fill each popsicle container with water up to the top.

3. Stick the popsicles into the freezer to chill. The popsicles should be ready in 3-4 hours :)

Enjoy!

****NOTE****

If you would like to have a sweeter popsicle, substitute the water for lemonade or any type of fruit juice.

Start of summer means… Snickers ice cream! (Baskin Robbins)

What time is it? Summer time! My school year ended 2 days ago, which means that I will have more time to post reviews. (Yay!) 

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Snickers Ice Cream

Treating yourself with a cold treat as a way to begin our hottest season is a perfect idea. So on the last day of school, I bought an ice cream cone from Baskin Robbins in the flavor “Made with Snickers”which I had on a sugar cone. The chocolate covered sugar cones were tempting though. “Made with Snickers” is a vanilla ice cream with chunks of chocolate, peanuts, and swirls of caramel. Sounds tasty? You’ll find out soon.

If you are a fan of peanut butter or just plain peanuts in general, you will love this ice cream. I personally do not like peanuts at all (I cough when I eat them. Allergic reaction?), which was just a minor problem because peanut flavors  tastes better IN ice cream. Also, I didn’t think it particularly tasted like Snickers. Maybe some more chocolate flavoring would have made the ice cream have a more Snicker-y taste? One ice cream that does taste like snickers though is the Snickers Ice Cream Bar.

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But that’s another story. 

Other than my minor complaints, everything else was good. It was a decent quality ice cream typical of the Baskin Robbins brand. It was packed with buttery, delicious ice cream and gooey caramel. Mmmmm.

In case your wondering, this ice cream flavor tastes very similar to the popular BR flavor “Gold Ribbon” which also has chocolate and caramel

So, will I ever buy this flavor again? Maybe, but I’ll probably try another flavor like Strawberry Lemonade Punch. This ice cream is worth a try though, especially for all the peanut and Snickers Fans!

 

Betty Crocker Super Moist Yellow Cake Mix and Vanilla Whipped Cream Frosting Review

Yes, it’s for another homemade cake review… but this time, the cake is made from a box instead of from scratch.

Here is a picture!! 

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We used the Betty Crocker Super Moist Yellow Cake Mix that you can purchase at any super market.Image

The cake was made for my mom’s birthday. I personally like the strawberry cake flavor the best, but since it was her birthday,she got to pick, of course.

For the frosting, we made our own whipping cream frosting by using a very simple recipe similar to the recipe on this link:  http://www.finecooking.com/recipes/vanilla-whipped-cream-frosting.aspx

And, here’s a special idea for our cake that you can add to yours. Before you combine the cakes from the 2 cake pans, frost the middle and add some sliced strawberries. So, when you put the cakes together, there will be a layer of frosting and strawberries in the middle. Yum. As an embellishment, added a strawberry on top. Lookin’ good.

Alright… it’s time for the review. I will be reviewing both the cake mix and the whipping cream frosting.

THE CAKE MIX:

Taste: It was pretty amazing. The cake had a perfect sweet flavor to it, but it wasn’t overly bouncing-off-the-wall sweet. It had a nice yellow color to it (hence the name) that complemented our white frosting. The cake cooked nice and moist. I personally think that there is nothing worse than a dry cake… just blegh! 

Price: Between 2-5 dollars

Calories: 160 mix, 240 prepared (There are 12 servings per container)

Recommend: Yes!! Cherry Chip, Strawberry, Rainbow Chip, and Chocolate Fudge are some other flavors you should try!

THE WHIPPED CREAM:

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Taste: Very tasty!!! I love the fluffiness and the lightness. We didn’t add that much sugar to it because my mom does not like things too sweet. It still tasted really good though, but I recommend adding the suggested amount of sugar or else it’ll be too plain… even with the strawberries.The whipped cream was also really easy to spread.

Recommend: Oh yeah!!

Homemade San Francisco Themed Cake

Hey everyone! This weeks treat is going to be a little different because it is homemade! Personally, I think homemade baked goods are always the best.

 

                             

This week’s treat was made by my group  for a class at school. Our cake theme is formally known as “I lost my heart in San Francisco”. Note that the plane banner says “Go Giants”. The cake itself is not made from a box, but from a grandmother’s recipe. We used tubbed buttercream frosting for the dirty icing layer, and the outer layer is made using a buttercream recipe from foodnetwork.com, which I will include on the bottom.  We also dyed the icing in several different colors such as blue, teal, and purple for extra fun.

Fondant was used for the plane, the cityscape, and the stars. The fondant was bought in a package, and we dyed them different colors and flavored it with vanilla extract. Personally though, I think fondant is yucky, but it looks nice on cakes!

The cake flavor was vanilla yellow cake that was actually made up. Unfortunately, I do not have the recipe with me right now, but I will post it soon! My next post will hopefully be the recipe for my cake and a review for the recipe. Stay tuned in!

 

Oh, here’s the buttercream frosting recipe… before I forget about it!

Quick Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

 

YIELDS: 10-12 seervings

TIME: 12 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons whipping cream

Directions

In a standing mixer fitted with a whisk, mix together sugar and butter. Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes.

Add vanilla and cream and continue to beat on medium speed for 1 minute more, adding more cream if needed for spreading consistency.

Link: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/gale-gand/quick-vanilla-buttercream-frosting-recipe/index.html

 

 

Fenton’s Ice Cream By Guest Contributor Rick Kowalczyk

Guest Contributor:  Rick Kowalczyk, Novice Food Blogger

I was invited by the Executive Director and CEO of Sweet Pages to prepare a summary and review of a very interesting concoction that I was fortunate enough to share with the CEO’s wonderful Mom, Mrs. CEO.

We were out and about and found our way into Fenton’s Creamery where we decided to try one of their well-known treats… The Fenton’s Special!  As described in the menu, and pictured below:   “Renowned for generations as guaranteed to fill even a growing boy! Made in a tall glass with alternating layers of pineapple, strawberry, chocolate fudge and caramel sauces with Vanilla, Strawberry, Chocolate & Toasted Almond ice cream. Crowned with your choice of sherbet slices, almonds, whipped cream and cherry.”

Yum!

20 minutes later....

Wow Factor

Even in a restaurant known for impressive ice cream treats, the “Fenton’s Special” turns heads as it makes its way across the restaurant to your table.   “What is THAT?” other patrons say as the overflowing treat impresses with size, color, and variation of flavors that aren’t typically served together.  Sure there are other impressive desserts that make you question and re-question your order, but the “Fenton’s Special” is truly unique.   You can’t help but  be impressed as the server sets the overflowing treat in front of you.  That special moment of anticipation before the first bite is a great one.  You’ll think to yourself… ‘This is going to be good’ and then challenge… ‘This better be good.”

Visual Appeal

As the photos illustrate, the “Fenton’s Special” gets high marks for visual appeal.  Sherbet, ice cream, toppings, and whipped cream all on the same concoction… who does that?  Bottom line, it looks good, more than good.  If it didn’t look so tasty you might want to stare at it for a while and just enjoy the view.  The bright colored sherbet catches your eye, but it also makes you wonder if all the flavors will blend well together.

Flavor

When it comes down to flavor, there is a lot to like, but personal taste is also a factor here.  Personally, I am not typically a big fan of mixing fruitier flavors with warm caramel, chocolate, and sweet ice creams. I often find that kind of mix to be unbalanced.  However, the Fenton’s Special is an exception to my normal inclination on mixing these flavors.  Working my way from the top cherry and whipped cream, through the sherbet slabs, and into the toppings and ice cream until the sound of my spoon in the bottom of the glass tells me I’m done is an excursion to a wild place called Flavor Town.  The mix of traditional treats is anything but traditional, making for an enjoyable flavor adventure that is not your typical ice cream shop fare.  I’m sure everything at Fenton’s is good, but the Fenton’s Special is both good and different.  The unique blend of flavors is very enjoyable, work fairly well together, and make for an interesting and fulfilling ice cream experience.

Value

If memory serves me correct, the Fenton’s Special checks in at about $10, making it a premium priced treat.  However, it is also so substantial that it can more than readily support the spoons and sampling of two people, making it a really terrific option for a date.  Imagine sitting next to your sweety, chatting, and using long spoons to slowly and meticulously work through the adventure that is the Fenton’s Special together.  That will make for a great experience and a special time together.  In fact, that is exactly what I did and can attest that in spite of the very cold dessert, everything else was very warm indeed.  Great experience, and I would do it again in a flash.  Most likely, however, on our next trip to Fenton’s, we will repeat the sharing experience, but will likely test other selections on the dessert menu as well.

The final verdict on the Fenton’s Special is YES.  Do it.  Share it.  Enjoy it.   And take pictures.  It will make for a great experience that will leave you more than satisfied.

 BONUS!!!!: MEET “MRS. CEO” (AKA the Mom)

Mrs. CEO

Homemade Eight Treasure Rice (Babao Fan)

As some of you may know, Chinese New Years just passed (January 23). This year, it was the year of the dragon! Rawr!!

To celebrate Chinese New Years, we we had homemade Babao Fan at  a friend’s party (which literally translates to “Eight Treasure Rice”) for desert. It’s a traditional Chinese dish that has been made for centuries as a desert, and basically, the main ingredients are glutinous rice, red bean paste, and some dried or fresh fruit like raisins or cherries (optional).

Here is a picture of our delicious homemade Eight Treasure Rice:

Homemade Eight Treasure Rice (aka Babao Fan)

This won’t quite be like my other reviews because it is homemade unlike my other treats… but let’s get to it!

Presentation: Simple but colorful,and very unique. For some reason, I don’t think it really looks like a desert… maybe it’s just me.

Taste: I don’t think there is any treat out there in the in the world that I know of that tastes quite like the Eight Treasure Rice treat. This is a warm treat, about the temperature of a freshly baked double chocolate brownie (mmm!!). The rice part is sweet and very sticky because every thing is stuck together by a sticky syrup. Surprisingly, rice and syrup goes well together… who knows?

The red bean paste is probably my favorite part. It’s even sweeter than the rice (strange because usually red bean paste is bland), and it really gives the rice some flavor. If you’ve never had red bean paste before it tastes sweet and floury, sort of like marzipan.

I’m pretty sure the orange part was some for of fruit. I wouldn’t like the orange part by itsself, but as a whole, the sour part balances out the sweetness.

Price: It was homemade, so I can only tell you how much the ingredients cost. I would say that the ingredients could cost between 5 to 15 dollars depending on how many of the ingredients you have at home. ( I will have a link for a recipe on the bottom)

Overall: Pretty good! It’s unlike most deserts because of its Chinese origins. It is sweet, and warm, which can sometimes better than cold  desert like ice cream, especially on a cold winter evening!

It takes a considerable amount of effort to make, but it is a very unique and traditional treat that I think many people will enjoy.

Here’s a link to the recipe for Eight Treasure Rice: http://eggwansfoododyssey.com/2011/01/20/eight-treasure-rice-pudding-chinese-new-year-dish/ 

Note: The eight treasure rice treat in this review did not use this recipe, but it looks similar. Try it out though :)

Happy belated Chinese New Year!!

Chocolate Pastry With Citrus-Flavored Filling

Ready for yet another delectable treat review?

This delicious treat was purchased today at the Half Moon Bay Moonside Bakery.

The size of the pastry was about 3 inches tall, 2 inches wide, and 4 inches across. The top of the pastry is covered with soft, milky chocolate. The pastry itself has a cake-like taste, and the filling has an unexpected light and creamy citrus taste. It has a very fluffy texture, similar to the Yoplait Whips yogurt texture.Who would’ve ever thought that citrus flavoring could ever go with chocolate!

Review time!

Presentation: Great! From just looking at it, my mouth is watering. The filling looks very creamy and the chocolate cover looks absolutely delicious. The little chocolate roll on the top makes the pastry even more yummy!

Taste: Very very enjoyable.The chocolate covering was melty and delicious and went perfectly with the citrus-flavored filling. The citrus-filling itself was great. Creamy, fluffy, light, yet flavorful at the same time. I enjoyed licking the leftover filling from the wax sheet that came with the pastry. And, the pastry itself helped balance the creamy texture of the chocolate and the filling. Yum!

Price: Expensive!! 5.50 for one.

Overall: A very nice and tasty treat. The presentation was wonderful and  mouthwatering.The taste was very good, and unique because the filling was citrus-flavored instead of the usual milk or chocolate flavored fillings. The price was… quite expensive though which I think was the only downside.

Buy Again?: Definitely, although probably not often because of the price.

Where to buy: Half Moon Bay Moonside Bakery in California. Look it up!

Sheng Kee Honey Cake

When I went to buy my cake from the Sheng Kee Bakery yesterday for a New Year’s celebration, I saw these little cakes there sitting next to the cash register. It didn’t look like anything special, but for some reason I felt like trying it, so I ended up persuading my parents to buy it. Here’s what it looks like (Sorry, the wrapper was already taken off):

I cut a small slice off for myself:

My slice of cake

I couldn’t wait to try the cake. The yellow part of the cake  was very soft and spongy, and the dark brown crust part was sweeter and had a strong taste of honey. If I had a bit of whipped cream and strawberries to go with it, then it would be quite good!

So… let’s get to the review part!!

Presentation: Very plain. It looks pretty good though, but I think that the Sheng Kee bakery should have added a few embellishments to the cake. (Like maybe a few pieces of fruit and frosting, yah know?)

Taste: Pretty good, although it was kind of plain. I really liked the texture of the cake because it was very soft and chewy. It could have been a little sweeter, but that’s just my opinion.

Price: 1.75 or something like that. Not bad for that size of cake… cheaper than Starbucks!

Overall: A decent cake and a nice treat to have sometime, especially for breakfast or for tea. A little plain looking though. A perfect desert for honey lovers.

Buy Again?: Probably, but I’d try adding a few strawberries to go with it, because otherwise it would be a little too plain.

Where to buy: Sheng Kee Bakeries