Macerated Balsamic Blueberries with Mascarpone

by Heather on September 2, 2015

macerated balsamic blueberries with mascarpone @denigris1889 @heathersdish

If ever there was a crop that I look forward to the most during the hot summer months, it’s blueberries. I could likely eat my weight in the fruit at any given time. Raw, freshly picked, even (gasp!) unwashed from the vine – yes, I could do it. Add these sweet little bites to baked goods of any kind and I’m all over that too. Truly I could eat them in any possible way, and getting a chance to share them with friends just sends me over the moon too!

 

Now that we’ve talked about my obsession with blueberries, let’s chat about macerated berries. You add a little sugar, a little acid, and let berries go on their magical journey to utter greatness. If you’ve never tried macerated blueberries, you must add this goodness to your repertoire. Pair with high-quality balsamic vinegar and creamy mascarpone atop crispy bread and you have pure magic. 100% amazing, all on a little piece of bread.

So before summer escapes us, make this and share with the ones you love! Get the recipe for macerated blueberries with mascarpone here!

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Triple Ginger Apple Streusel Coffee Cake

by Heather on September 1, 2015

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of KitchenAid. All opinions and text are mine.

Triple Ginger Apple Streusel Coffee Cake from @kitchenaidUSA and @heathersdish #KitchenAidContest #sponsored

You guys know I love coffee, right? Besides the fact that I’ve only ever talked about that deep and abiding love no fewer than 85,000 times on here over the past six years – and yes, I checked the math on that. Not only is it delicious, not only does it wake me up in the mornings (and afternoons at this point), but the connection that a steaming cuppa Joe brings is unparalleled. It’s comforting, like a good friend and a cozy chair…or all three at the same time.

 

There isn’t much that can improve upon a moment like that except for one thing – coffee cake. The name alone conjures up images of comfort and joy, amen? A slice of perfectly sweet, moist, crumbly, fresh-from-the-oven ups the ante on any coffee date!  I love this coffee cake in an almost unexplainable way, but I’m going to sum it up in two words: ginger and apple.

 

Despite the fact that I abhorred ginger anything when I was pregnant, I actually really enjoy the spicy bite that it adds to sweet and savory dishes. And apples? Well, I really feel like no explanation is needed there. They are by far my favorite fruit almost year-round, and the versatility alone is magical. I love the way the sweet-tart from Granny Smith apples pairs with the complexity of the three different kinds of ginger. I also love that the chunks of apple and pieces of candied ginger almost look identical in the finished product, so you never know if you’re about to hit some major spice or a great bite of sweet-tart. Either way, this is a match made in heaven!

 

Let’s pretend that we’re hanging out today – I’ll bring the coffee and the cake, and you bring your sweet self and maybe a cozy blanket. And we’ll chat about life’s silly, life’s mundane, life’s epiphanies, and life’s lessons together!

Triple Ginger Apple Streusel Coffee Cake from @kitchenaidUSA and @heathersdish #KitchenAidContest #sponsored

Last summer we went to a peach orchard toward the end of the summer. It was before I found out I was pregnant with A, although I think I had a feeling what was going on inside of me. It was such a sweet moment getting to watch W explore a new place while he picked peaches and gingerly placed them in the bag. He thought it was great to pull the wagon filled with summer’s candy around in between the trees and around our fellow peach-pickers! My hope is that this year we’ll get to do the same thing, but with apples. As a kid I always loved going apple picking because it meant gallons of my mom’s homemade apple sauce was on the horizon. I also loved getting to see where our food came from and, of course, drinking the free apple cider at the orchard.

 

Speaking of apples, did you know that KitchenAid is having an awesome apple challenge that you could enter and win an entire suite of KitchenAid appliances? And a chance to cook with Chef Zakarian? AND your recipe to be in an edition of Food Network Magazine? It’s totally true, and I think you SHOULD enter. Goodness knows you can cook up a storm, and with apples as the star you really can’t go wrong! Just enter on Twitter or Instagram, or on the sweepstakes site. P.S. when you win I want to come over for dinner…

 

This past weekend I went to a blogging conference (that I’ll recap later) and got to spend some alone time driving to and from the hotel. Through the woods, past picturesque deer munching quietly on the side of the road, over the highway and then back into civilization – I made the trip 6 times total and enjoyed every moment that I had to listen to podcasts and the radio. Did I tell you that the radio in my car is broken? That’s what happens when you let a toddler stick an unprecedented amount of coins into the CD player…

 

Baking season is coming up fast, and the other day I found myself daydreaming about what I’ll be making for the holidays this year. Two years ago my stand mixer broke, and I was terrified of the fact that I might have to bake without it. Thankfully KitchenAid was able to help me out and I had a refurbished one a few days later – and you could say that the holidays were saved. It’s honestly one of the pieces of kitchen equipment I don’t know if I could live without!

 

Do you remember when you were a teenager and thought that anyone in their 30’s was practically ancient? Because I totally remember feeling that way…but now that I’m IN my 30’s it really is starting to feel like I’m hitting a sweet spot. Not that life is always rosy and perfect and easy, because it’s not. But I’m finding the beauty in the imperfection a lot more often, and I’m able to extend grace to myself and others a lot more easily than I used to. Kind of makes me wonder why I couldn’t just be this cool when I was younger!

 

If we were having coffee I would probably have just talked your ear off, and then realized that I was being rude not asking how life is for you right now. Is there anything I can help you with? Can I pray for you? Should we do dinner sometime soon? I’d get you another slice of cake, a warm-up on that cuppa, and settle in for some more sweet time together with a dear friend.

Triple Ginger Apple Streusel Coffee Cake from @kitchenaidUSA and @heathersdish #KitchenAidContest #sponsored

TRIPLE GINGER APPLE STREUSEL COFFEE CAKE

Makes one 8-x 8-inch coffee cake

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/4 cup all purpose flour, divided
  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/3 cup candied ginger, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1-1/4 cup brown sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 3 tablespoons fresh grated ginger
  • 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
  • 1/4 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325ºF.
  2. Spray an 8- x 8-inch square cake pan with nonstick spray and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl combine 1 cup of all purpose flour, 1 cup of whole wheat pastry flour, the candied ginger, baking powder, ground ginger, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Make sure that the candied ginger is coated in the dry ingredients and not in a large clump.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together 1 cup of brown sugar, vegetable oil, eggs, applesauce, and grated ginger until smooth and creamy.
  5. Add the dry ingredients and the apples to the wet ingredients and gently fold until just combined.
  6. Pour into the prepared cake pan.
  7. In a small bowl, combine the butter, remaining flour, remaining brown sugar, remaining cinnamon, remaining salt, and the granulated sugar until crumbly.
  8. Spread the crumble mixture evenly on top of the batter.
  9. Bake at 325 for 55-75 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  10. Allow to cool completely before slicing.
  11. Enjoy!

From the first-ever black stainless steel to the first-ever five-door refrigerator, KitchenAid pushes the limits with our appliances, so our home cooks can do the same with their cooking. See the revolutionary new line of KitchenAid appliances or visit the Kitchenthusiast™ blog for recipes, tips and more.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of KitchenAid. The opinions and text are all mine.

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