When I was growing up, both my mom and grandma took us to a grocery store called, The Fresh Market. To my knowledge, they are across the United States, so I’m sure you are probably familiar with it.
Apart from having organic food items, they had and still do have an AMAZING Bakery!
Well, it was considered AMAZING to a little child growing up.
We all had our favorite things we loved and pretty soon those things became something we couldn’t live without when we would go to there. At least that is what we would tell anyone who took us, in hopes we could sweet talk them into buying something for us.
We weren’t spoiled, right?
I remember my sister’s favorite were the Chocolate Eclairs. Mine were whatever Sugary Confection looked good that day…… (I never have met a baked good I didn’t like). AND…….My brother’s were the Cinnamon Twists! (Which also, eventually, became my favorite as well)
Well, when my brother and I moved away from Raleigh, we moved to an area that didn’t have a Fresh Market. Well, at least not initially.
Within a few years of living here, they actually, to our surprise, built one, not too far from our house! I was literally in heaven! Nothing will get this girl more excited than when a new awesome grocery store hits town! The first thing on my list to buy there were going to be……. you guessed it,
However, that wouldn’t happen. 🙁
I went to the store and didn’t see them. After asking an employee where they were, he told me that I must have been a Fresh Market customer for a LONG time, because they stopped making them years ago.??????????
WHAT?!?!?! , I thought?
I guess I hadn’t gone that often when I still lived in Raleigh, because I reckon I would have known this!?!?
They had some “other version ” of them now. But Y’all!!!! Let me just tell you…….
“Other Versions” just don’t cut it when you want the REAL VERSION of something. Not when you grew up having One Version of it and One Version only. Uh uh!
So, long story short….. (TOO LATE!)
I decided to make my “OWN VERSION”!
So, I hope you like them.
Here is what I did:
I took one sheet of Puff Pastry. I used Pepperidge Farm’s, but use whatever brand you like. I only had one sheet, so the recipe will be based off that. If using 2 sheets, and I definitely recommend doing that, because you will want MORE!……. just double the rest of the ingredients.
Lightly dust a counter surface with flour so that you can work with the pastry sheet and it will not stick to the counter. *You honestly don’t need much.
Mine came lined with sheets of parchment paper, so I thought it would be a great idea to use this as a “ruler” of some sort or at least something that would give me a straight edge to cut the strips with. Using a pizza cutter,
I cut several strips of the puff pastry. Make sure to cut an even amount, as you will twist two together. *NOTE: I would go back and cut the strips thinner next time. They don’t have to bake as long when they are thinner. However, these did just fine and tasted great!
Then, I took a very small amount of milk and brushed it lightly on the strips to act as a “glue” for the cinnamon and sugar.
I mixed together 1 teaspoon of cinnamon with a 1/4 cup of sugar.
I heavily sprinkled the cinnamon and sugar mixture over all of the strips. Then, I turned them over and did the exact same thing to the other sides.
Time to TWIST! Take two strips and cross them at the top, pinching together. Taking both strips, I twisted them all the way down and pinched them again at the bottom to seal.
This is what they look like when twisted. Then, I cut them in half and made sure all the ends were pinched together as well.
Smaller cut strips getting ready to go into the oven on 400 degrees for 12-15 minutes. (*Thinner ones will be less)
And VOILA! Make sure to let them cool completely. As they cool, they will become stiffer and will in turn have this “crunch” to them that is simply DIVINE! That is exactly the way they used to be at The Fresh Market too! 🙂
I have to say that I was proud of myself. I surprised my brother with a few and I really hope he liked them! If he didn’t he can give them back because I know a few peeps around these parts that will gobble them up!
When the kids came home from school, they devoured them. Even my oldest, who is not a big sweet person (not sure she is really my kid……) LOVED THEM!
Then, both her and her sister decided that they would go best with Apple Cider. If you haven’t seen my Cider Recipe, you can check it out here.
Until next time…….
Recipe: Cinnamon Twists
– Flour for dusting
– 1 Frozen Puff Pastry Sheet, thawed
– 1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
– 1/4 Cup Granulated Sugar
– Small amount of milk for brushing Pastry
– Take a small amount of Flour and lightly dust a counter or cutting board surface. Take Puff Pastry sheet, and lie flat on lightly dusted surface.
– Using a pizza cutter or knife and straight edge, cut strips in puff pastry sheet, remembering to do an even number for twisting purposes. Cutting thinner strips may work better. However, wider ones work just as well. Line strips on working surface.
– Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the Cinnamon and Sugar.
– Using a pastry brush, lightly brush surface of pastry sheets with milk.
– Heavily dust each strip with Cinnamon/Sugar mixture. Flip strips over and repeat on other side.
– Carefully, take two strips and criss-cross strips on one edge. Proceed to wrap strips around each other and secure other end just like the beginning.
– Lay strip down on cut in half, remembering to pinch the cut edges together so that they will hold their shapes. Repeat steps with remaining strips.
– Lay strips on a baking sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes until puffy and golden brown. Sprinkle with additional Cinnamon/Sugar mixture if you wish.
– Allow the strips to cool completely. *If you do this, they will become crispier and fantastic! If you eat them to soon, they will not be as crispy!
A lot has been happening around here lately. For starters………………..
MY BABY BROTHER GOT MARRIED!
We are so so so happy for him and his new wife. We gained a sister, friend, and an entire new family that we deeply care for and love!
Now they just need to start having babies and my life will be complete. No pressure, right? LOL!
Well, Mom and Dad were here as well and one of the last nights they were here, we had everyone over for Sunday dinner and mom made Apple Pie! I have made it before, but when Mom is in town, it’s best to just leave things like this to the “professionals”. 😉
I LOOOOOOOVE HER APPLE PIE!
It always has this Rustic quality to it and I love that she never tries to make it too “fake looking”. Everything is from scratch, including the crust.
Just let me set the stage for you. It’s a crisp cool day in Fall. The aroma from the kitchen is taking over the house as the cinnamon and sugar fills the air. As you bring your fork to your mouth filled with that bite of perfection…….. um YEAH! That happened here that day! The crust was slightly crunchy, while the filling was a thick cinnamon apple yumminess!
Come on y’all, it’s FALL!!!
Why not get in the kitchen and bake you up some Apple Pie?
You know you want too! And just in case, because I love you so much……..Here is Mom’s recipe!
Recipe: Rustic Apple Pie
– 2 Homemade or Prepared Deep Dish Pie Crusts (*You will need 2 crusts, one for the bottom and one for the top. *NOTE: Crusts perform better when refrigerated well. If frozen, make sure to thaw completely and chill in fridge until you need it.)
– 15 Granny Smith Apples, Peeled, Cored and Sliced (*NOTE: Slice no larger than a 1/2 inch in thickness or apples will not cook properly)
– 1 Heaping Tbsp. Cinnamon
– 2 Cups Sugar
– 1 Tbsp. Cornstarch
– 4 Tbsp. Unsalted Butter
– 2 Tbsp. Milk
– Small amount of additional cinnamon and sugar for dusting the top of pie.
– Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
– Take a 9in. pie plate and spread first crust evenly over bottom. Refrigerate.
– Place apple slices into a large mixing bowl.
– In a separate bowl, combine cinnamon and sugar and cornstarch.
– Add Cinnamon mixture to apples and mix well using hands, making sure all apples are coated well.
– Remove pie plate from fridge and add apple slice mixture. *NOTE: Apples will mound up in dish. This is normal and makes for a great pie!
– Cut 4 Tbsp. Butter in half and dot over apple mixture evenly.
– Top apples with remaining pie crust. Pinch all around edges of pie to “seal” crusts together. *NOTE: This can be done by using a fork or by index finger and thumb method all the way around.
– Brush top of pie with 2 Tbsp. Milk.
– Lightly dust top of pie with additional cinnamon and sugar.
-Cut 2-3 slits (1 in. long) in top of pie crust for steam to escape during baking.
– Bake pie in oven for 15 minutes.
– Turn temperature down to 350 degrees and continue baking pie for an additional 45 minutes.
– If at end of baking, pie is not golden brown, turn temperature back to 400 degrees and watch closely for 5 minutes. *That should do the trick! 😉
*APPLE PIE ALWAYS TASTES BETTER WITH VANILLA ICE CREAM! ……….. just sayin !
I hope you enjoy the recipe!
The other night, we had my brother’s sweet girlfriend’s family over. We were meeting them for the first time, so we were very excited! We did really simple cookout food. Just hamburgers, pasta salads, baked beans, deviled eggs…… and a Peach and Blueberry Crisp for dessert!
I had never made it before and I usually NEVER do a new recipe for company. Especially company I have never met!
We put everything together a few hours before everyone got there so we could spend time with everyone without having to worry about slaving over a stove in the process.
We blanched the peaches in boiling water first, then transferred them quickly to cold water. *This helps the skins peel off really easily. Then we sliced them in big chunky pieces…… added some extra goodies like lemon zest, lemon juice, sugar etc. and then tossed in some blueberries and layered on the bottom of a stoneware baker.
I could have just ate the dessert as it was then and there, but instead…… we added some more goodness!
The kids wanted to help me so I let them spread the crumble for the “crisp” part on top.
I love recipes like this that allow the kids to jump in and help, and allow me not to worry. You really cannot mess this topping up. It’s very easy! Just spread on top like you want! Then pop it into the oven for 45 minutes!
This is what it looked like before going into the oven……………
Now! Let me just take a “sidebar moment” to tell you something.
I rock in Dance Central 3.
Yes, I ROCK!
You may be asking yourself, “What on earth does that have to do with a Peach and Blueberry Crisp?”
Well, I’ll tell you.
After the crisp had gone about 45 minutes, my mom and I decided to check on it. We both decided that the topping wasn’t “browned” enough for our taste. SO! We thought, let’s broil it on low for a few minutes!
Just about that time, my oldest daughter started to say she was the best at Dance Off 3 and knowing this was untrue, I decided to challenge her to a duel! I looked at mom at that point, and she said, “I got this! Go! Go show your 9 year old who is boss!”
Well, in the middle of my 3 minutes duel, I smelled something……….. I didn’t smell the sweet aroma of a perfectly browned Peach and Blueberry Crisp bubbling away in the oven.
I smelled something far worse! It was the UNPLEASANT aroma of a perfectly BURNT Peach and Blueberry Crisp BURNING AWAY in the oven!
“MOM!”, I yelled.
(*Mom was no where to be found!) Mom had actually gone outside to tell everyone it was time to eat and walked away for a minute too long and POOF! *Sorry I called you out mom! I may have just lost my one and only reader! 😉
Well, there was only one thing to do. We did what every other smart, honest cooks would do………
We scraped off the burnt parts……….
REdid the topping………..
Plopped that stuff back on…………….
And put her back in the oven for 8 minutes and kept on truckin!
And may I say it turned out just fine!
And no one knows about our little mishap but ME, MOM,
And mom’s dog, Pepper! 😉 Shhhhhh!
Recipe: Peach and Blueberry Fruit Crisp
– 2lbs. firm, ripe peaches (6 to 8 peaches)
– 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
– 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
– 1/2 cup granulated sugar
– 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
– 1 cup fresh blueberries (1/2 pint)
For the crumble:
– 1 cup all-purpose flour
– 1/3 cup granulated sugar
– 1/4 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
– 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
– 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
– 1/4 lb (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, diced
– Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
– Immerse the peaches in boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minute, until their skins peel off easily. Place them immediately in cold water. Peel the peaches, slice them into thick wedges, and place them in a large bowl. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, granulated sugar, and flour. Toss well. Gently mix in the blueberries. Allow the mixture to sit for 5 minutes. Spoon the mixture into ramekins or one large baking dish. * I used a 13 x 9 in. pan.
– For the topping, combine the flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar salt, cinnamon, and the butter into the of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix until the butter is the size of peas. *If you do not have a mixer, no problem! Just mix well in a bowl and break up the diced butter with a fork or pastry cutter until the butter resembles small peas. Rub the mixture with your fingertips until it’s in big crumbles, then sprinkle evenly over the fruit. Place in oven and bake for 40-45 minutes or until the top is browned and juices are bubbly.
– Serve warm or at room temperature. Vanilla ice cream goes great with this!
CALLING ALL DADS!
Every Mother’s Day, I fantasize that my husband is losing sleep over the perfect meal to cook me with his 3 perfectly hair combed children in their best Sunday dresses and suit.
As he pours over countless cookbooks, he realizes that he has not yet vacuumed and dusted, which he quickly attends to. His children are making their beds and tidying up their rooms JUST BECAUSE they want to and JUST BECAUSE being clean feels SO good! (This is my fantasy, remember?)
Where am I, you ask?
Well, of course I’m at the Spa getting pampered by a crew of estheticians who want to make me feel good about my self JUST BECAUSE they care that much!
Then I stop dreaming………….. I wake up……………
to the sound of my 2 girls screaming and fighting and pulling eachother’s hair (that is not perfectly combed, by the way) JUST BECAUSE the other one took her pink furry pillow without asking. My son is throwing his little basketball everywhere but actually IN the basketball goal, which is followed up by a crashing sound. Not to mention the girls took it upon themselves to fix “breakfast” which may or may not have consisted of Nutella, Crackers, Half & Half, Cold Left Over White Rice, and Cheezits.
I know, Yummy.
All this, while my husband still sleeps soundly in his bed……. (Love ya Baby!) 😉
Well fellas, to help you out and make your #1 lady think you poured over cookbooks all day, I’m going to help you out with this Super Easy Dessert!
Why not try to make these Mixed Berry Tartlets. Heck, if you want to impress her even more than the fact that you made these to start with……. tell her they are Mixed Berry Tartlets with a Lemon Drizzle.
You only need 7 things and there is a chance that you may have a few of the ingredients already!
Here is what you need to do:
Cut up an 18 oz. package of Strawberries and add to a mixing bowl.
Throw in a couple of handfuls of fresh blueberries and sprinkle mixture with 1 Tablespoon of Sugar…… Toss to Combine. Set aside.
Take a package of Ready Crust Graham Cracker Tartlet minis.
Brush them with a little bit of egg white. (*You don’t have to, but it gives the crust a nice brown color when baking)
Put the tartlets on a cookie sheet and bake according to the package instructions for only 5 minutes. *I think it was 375 degrees, but might have been 350. Make sure you check!
While that is baking,
Squeeze the juice of 1 lemon into bowl and whisk in 1/2 cup of Powdered Sugar.
Your lemon drizzle should still be runny, but slightly thick like this. Set it aside.
Now take 1 cup of Heavy Whipping Cream. (*If you can’t find “Heavy”, regular Whipping Cream is fine) TIP for DAD: Creams like this have their own section next to the milk area in the Grocery Store. 😉
Find mom’s electric hand mixer and put the whisk attachment on. Beat on low at first unless you want to have the entire thing on your clothes. Add 1 Tablespoon Granulated Sugar and eventually go to highest setting and beat until cream becomes a thick whip with “stiff peaks” like this. BE CAREFUL! If you whisk too long, it could turn into butter! YIKES!
DAD: If making this whipped cream on your own proves to be too overwhelming, no one will judge you for buying Cool Whip! However, if you REALLY want to impress mom, go for the homemade stuff and earn those brownie points!
After the tartlets have baked and cooled, mound them up with the berry mixture. (You will probably have leftover berries)
Spoon the lemon drizzle over each tartlet to your liking. A couple spoonfuls each is fine.
Top each with whipped cream.
And garnish with fresh strawberries!
Mom will be SO SURPRISED and touched that you went the extra mile JUST BECAUSE you love her so much!
Recipe: Mixed Berry Tartlets
– 18oz. package Fresh Strawberries
– Couple Handfuls of Fresh Blueberries
– 1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
– 2 Tablespoons Granulated Sugar, Divided
– Juice of 1 Lemon
– 1/2 Cup Powdered Sugar
– 1 Package Ready Crust Graham Cracker Tartlet Minis
– 1 egg white (Optional)
– Dice up Strawberries and add to a bowl. Add the Blueberries and Sprinkle with 1 Tablespoon of the Granulated Sugar. Set aside.
– Brush 1 eggwhite (optional) over the crusts and bake according to package instructions. Set aside to cool when finished.
– While crusts are baking, combine lemon juice and powdered sugar by whisking until smooth. Set aside.
– With the whisking attachment of an electric mixer, whisk remaining tablespoon of granulated sugar with the 1 cup of heavy whipping cream in a bowl. Whisk until mixture forms “stiff peaks”. Set aside.
– To assemble, take cooled tartlets, and mound each one with berry mixture.
– Add a couple of spoonfuls of lemon drizzle to each tartlet.
– Top with whipped cream.
– Garnish with fresh berries.
– Stick in the fridge for atleast 10 minutes. If making ahead, desserts will keep just fine in the fridge!