Boxed lemon beauty

I think(?) summer has official hit Toronto so I figured it was time to clean out my cupboards! During my cleaning I stumbled upon a box of Lemon Cake mix. I keep 1-2 cake mixes around to make quick cake bars (usually when I find out that guest will be coming over, at the last minute!) I was taught you have to feed guest whenever they come over, no matter how small the offering is. #GrowingUpInTheMidwest

I did not feel like making cake bars of of this box and right away my mind turned to the beautiful, juicy blackberries I picked up from the market on Saturday! That was it I was going to make blackberry lemon cake!

Blackberry lemon cake 

1 box of lemon cake mix

3 eggs

1/3 cup oil

1 and 1/3 cup water

1 cup blackberries

Preheat your over to 350

In a mixer add your wet ingredients and mix for about 30 seconds, until everything is combined. Slowly add in your cake mix while the mixer is on. (I swear! This is the secrecy to any moist cake, loaf, muffin, etc.). Once your batter is ready, fold in about 1/4 cup of blackberries .

Spray a cake or pie pan with non-stick spray and scatter your remaining blackberries at the bottom of the pan. (You can add as many as you would like!) I like to spread them around so that every cake piece has a few blackberries. Pour your batter over the blackberry filled pan and put in the oven, bake for 50-60 mins.

Once the cake is cooked, remove it from the oven and let it cool for 30 minutes. After that, cover it up with aluminum foil. I let the cake sit over night or a few hours before serving so that is complete cools.

When you go to serve it you can sprinkle powered sugar or top with additional blackberries.

The great thing about this recipe is that it universal and you can change out the fruit or cake flavor:

Other cake and fruit combos (the possibilities are endless)

  • Chocolate cake with raspberries
  • Lemon cake with blueberries
  • Vanilla cake with strawberries

This is the perfect cake for anytime of the year but I find it extra delicious in the summer when there are BBQs, life celebrations and sunshine! xx

blackberry cake

Pumpkin: a craving you just can’t kick!

Here I am with summer around the corner (birds chirping, puppy potty training, girls in ‘festival clothing’) and yet I have had the strongest craving for something pumpkin. I sat and home and thought to myself what should I make? A pumpkin pie, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin squares? That night I found myself at the grocery store gleaming over the wonderful surprise that stores keep pumpkin puree on the shelves all year round. Time to tackle this craving. I got my puree and was out the door, it was time for me to get home and make my pumpkin loaf. 
 
I have said it before and I will say it again – remember – pumpkin puree does not have your ‘PSL’ taste. This taste is going to come from your pumpkin pie spice, so if you do not have that seasoning stop reading and go to the store to buy some. 
 
Pumpkin Loaf 
1 ½ cups flour
½ cup white sugar
½ cup brown sugar
¾ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin spice
2 eggs 
1 ¼ cup pumpkin puree
½ cup vegetable oil 
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ – 1 cup roasted and salted pumpkin seeds
 
Instructions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
Bowl #1: add all of the dry ingredients to this bowl; flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and pumpkin spice spices. Mix all of the dry ingredients together. 
 
Bowl #2 (make sure this bowl is larger as you will be adding the dry ingredients to it*) mix together the 2 eggs, the oil, pumpkin puree and vanilla. Once the liquid ingredients are mixed slowly add in the dry ingredients about ¼ cup at time. Do not over-mix this! Give it a 5 second mix each time you add a in your dry mixture. 
*Very helpful if you have a mixer to do this, but hand mixing is just fine (just fold ingredients together gently) 
 
Spray a loaf pan with non-stick spray and pour your batter in. Place the pumpkin seeds on top of bread (I covered the top of mine), gently pressing down so that the seeds are touching the batter. Bake for 45- 50 minutes or until your knife comes out clean.
 
I let my loaf cool in the pan for about 20 minutes. Once slightly cooled, I placed it on a cutting board and sliced away! 
 
Left over pumpkin? No problem! Whenever I have leftover pumpkin puree I add it to my oatmeal (EXTRA, EXTRA! RECIPE BELOW). 
1 bowl of plain quick cook oats
Pinch of salt 
Pinch of pumpkin pie spice 
Pinch of cinnamon
2 spoonful’s of pumpkin
1 spoonful of maple syrup (if you are feeling naughty)
Place your oats, salt, pumpkin pie space and cinnamon into a bowl and cook according to package directions. Once your oats have cooked add pumpkin (and maple) into your bowl. Once this is complete, you have the perfect little breakfast or snack!
 
This pumpkin loaf recipe is so simple, honestly the hardest part is not over mixing the batter (and even that is an easy task!). I hope you take some time a test out this loaf and share it with friends / family / co-workers. It will make you a rockstar in their eyes! xx
pumpkin loaf.JPG
 

 

Nutella banana cream dessert

This morning I woke up ready to make myself a beautiful vegetable quiche but to my surprise both of the pie crusts that I had bought a week ago were destroyed (crumbled, broken) so quiche was out of the question. Besides just baking up the pie crusts and eating them as they are, which I highly recommend doing one day in your life, I thought of different ways that I could use the crust as a base to a different dish. I have had a craving for a banana cream pie, so that is the direction I went!

Important to note: This is not your grandmas traditional banana cream pie! So if you are looking for that…you came to the wrong page.

Nutella banana cream dessert

2 broken pie crusts, baked until golden brown

3 bananans

2 packs of vanilla pudding

2.5 cup of cold milk

1 teaspoon cinnamon

Nutella (I would never limit you to how much you want to add…)

In a medium bowl, add in two packs of the vanilla pudding, cinnamon and milk, whisk until smooth. Place this in the refrigerator for 10 minuets.

Once your pie crusts have cooled, crumble the pie crust into a mix of large chunks and sand like texture. Place this at the bottom on a 8×8 pan. Once your crust is down, drizzle on your Nutella and top with two medium sliced bananas.

Take out your pudding and add one sliced banana, folding until the bananas are equally divided among the pudding. Add this to the top of your pie crust mixture and set in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve (up to one day).

Before serving, add sliced bananas around the ring of dessert and (if you would like) whipped cream! I would suggest serving in individual ramekins or fun little bowls.

Life lesson, before you go to throw something broken away think of how you can transform it!

BanCreamDessert