Tag Archives: strawberry

Strawberry-Almond Shortbread Bars

Okay, here it comes — cover your eyes if you’re not in for a bitch fest or if you hate delicious summer fruit (psych! no one hates delicious summer fruit).

What is up with the weather?

I’m starting to feel like we’re getting a bum deal on our yearly allotment of summer heat around here.

The markets I saw in Europe were bursting with rainbows of fresh fruit (even in May!) and reading about the “warm desserts for cold winter nights” from my foodie friends Down Under is making my eye twitch — your nightly low is my daily high!

Uh, like… hello? This is jealousy talking — can I come visit you?

I went to the local farmers market last Sunday, armed with cloth bags and cold, hard cash for bundles of berries, and what did I see? Strawberries, strawberries, strawberries!

Aaaand that was pretty much it. Just strawberries — all of our other local crops are late.

So, what do you do when life gives you strawberries? Make strawberry bars!

These sweet and sticky bars are full of fresh strawberry flavour and buttery nuttiness, all while being soft in the middle and crunchy on top — oh, and did I mention that they have a delicate and crumby base?

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Strawberry Cinnamon Coffee Cake

Cake isn’t the only thing I have on the brain these days.

I’ve been thinking about New York City, too!

Not that I’ve ever been, but, c’mon, I have to go — you’re not a real foodie if you haven’t eaten in NYC (and Daisy has been torturing me with her posts)! That said, I can’t tell you if New York style coffee cake is actually popular in New York or not.

Out here on the west coast it’s not all that common — just because people are too healthy!

They just want oatmeal and egg whites for breakfast before they drive off in their Jetta to go do yoga in their Lululemon and grab a latte from Starbucks.

Not my thing. Cake and an opportunity to sleep in for me, please!

Coffee cake ought to be crazy popular around here, though — I mean, just look at it.

Look at this cake: a sweet, crumby, melt-in-your-mouth topping, with light and fluffy layers of tangy, vanilla-scented cake, sandwiching soft strawberry and cinnamon filling.

Beat that, dry toaster bagels and mass-produced muffins! Ha!

In other news, I just recently finished a class project that tickled my serious cake-on-the-brain itch all over again: having to make a rolled fondant-covered wedding cake.

I gotta admit, at first I was really, really, really not pleased with having to do this project — I mean, there’s no cake inside that cake!

See, I’m what my chefs have been calling a “production” person — as in, I’m more interested in what goes inside the cake/pie/tart/cookie than I am about how it looks on the outside.

But doing a wedding cake was more fun than expected, and by the end I was surprisingly into it.

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RosĂ©y Strawberry Cream Tart

Once upon a time, I only wanted to get drunk on fruity, girly cocktails.

I ate a lot of instant noodles, played a lot of video games, skipped a lot of school, and was content in my adolescent lifestyle.

When I went back to school and got serious, though, everything changed — I started out at Langara College, where I actually began to fit in, feel respected, and succeed (all at the same time!) for the first time in my life.

It was me on my path to becoming a proper adult.

Anyways, because I’d always liked reading and writing, I took a lot of English classes while collecting enough credits to transfer to UBC.

It didn’t take too long to notice that one of the many things my much-admired English profs were always talking about was wine.

Reading and drinking wine. Getting nice bottles of wine. Giving nice bottles of wine. Even the characters in the classic literature I read always seemed to be drinking in luxurious wine.

I knew what I had to do to be a proper adult, an adult like the English profs I aspired to emulate: I had to drink wine, too — even though I hated it!

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Strawberry Lassi Muffins

For those of you who haven’t tasted the silky bliss of a sweet strawberry lassi, lemme tell you all about it.

A lassi is an Indian smoothie, and while there are many different regional variations of lassi, the sweet versions start with fresh fruit, often mango or strawberry.

The fruit is then blended together with thick yogurt or cream, honey, rose water, cardamom or cumin (curry smoothie — yikes!), and ice. The result is rich, satisfying, and perfect with a bowl of warm vegetable curry or (my favourite) shahi paneer.

Geez… and now I’ve gone and given myself a mad hankering for Indian food.

Paneer cravings aside, these muffins were another one of my happy accidents (weird how they often seem to involve cardamom) — originally intended to be cupcakes for a friend’s birthday, the batter didn’t rise up and smooth itself out during like I expected it to do.

So, what did she get for her birthday instead? Muffins with strawberries, creamy ricotta, honey, rose water, and cardamon  — less fancy than cupcakes, but more practical! Especially for those breakfast-on-the-run-type mornings.

Cupcakes are totally overdone these days anyways, right? Yeesh.

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Strawberry Shortcake Cookies

I read an article in one of Vancouver’s local junk-papers the other day.

It said that new research has shown that eating just a few strawberries a day is even better for you than eating an apple a day.

Now, I’m a little on the cynical side, and so I’d usually write the article off — the timing of it is just too contrived: strawberries are coming into season, lots of berries in the supermarkets, they run an article in the paper, and people are racing to buy these super berries that are just so conveniently available!

The world works like that. It really does.

But then I remembered a practice session from one of my past Japanese classes…

Our teacher was having the class talk about what we do for the sake of our health, and she told us that she eats five strawberries a day, without fail.

Then she told us that it’s been five years and she hasn’t been sick once since she started doing it.

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Tres Leches Cake with Strawberry Margarita Whipped Cream

Wow! It’s been nearly two weeks since I’ve updated — and with good reason, too, since I’ve been down in Mexico.

Havin’ fun, sippin’ margaritas, chillin’ on the beach, gettin’ my face burnt off… no joke.

I burnt myself so badly that I peeled and bled in some places. Lovely stuff.

Although me and my boyfriend had to hole up in our room during the day, we were still about to get out and about after dark.

The food at the place we stayed at was definitely top-notch, and even if the sun had dried up our appetite for big, buffet-style dinners, we were definitely not dessert-skipping type people.

Which brings me to three milk cake — or, as it’s known in Mexico, tres leches cake.

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