Post #19: Nanaimo Bars

I am Canadian.  There, I said it.

Now that that's out in the open, let me also say that I have been in Texas for over 9 years now, so the 'Eh?' days are, for the most part, just a blurry memory.  However, this dessert, one of my favourites, is native to my motherland, and is still on my mind.  Canada isn't really known for its culinary prowess, but when we do make something good, it's damn good! 

My mom had been making these bars for as long as I can remember, and they pretty much incorporate everything I love in a good dessert: sweet, custardy, chocolate, coconut...well, you get the idea.  I find they are never impressive to look at, but please don't let that fool you!  This is a recipe that once you try it, you'll be hooked!

Nanaimo Bars

1/2 cup butter or 1/2 cup margarine, softened
1/4 cup granulated sugar
5 tablespoons cocoa
1 large eggs, beaten
1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
1 cup fine coconut


1/2 cup butter or 1/2 cup margarine
3 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons vanilla custard powder
2 cups icing sugar

2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips or 4 ounces chocolate
4 tablespoons butter or 4 tablespoons margarine


Melt first 3 ingredients in top of double boiler or heavy saucepan.
Add egg & stir to cook & thicken.
Remove from heat.
Stir in remaining ingredients& press firmly into an ungreased 9 x 9-inch pan.

Cream all ingredients together; beat until light.
Spread over bottom layer.

Melt chips & butter over low heat; cool.
When cooled but still runny, spread over middle layer.
Chill in refrigerator.


Post #18: White Chocolate-Vanilla Raspberry Filled Cupcakes w/ a Milk Chocolate Glaze

Oh, filled cupcakes!  They are precise, complicated, and finicky, and yet, I am drawn to them like a pirate to treasure.  

I adapted the recipe from Cupcake 29 at Ming Makes Cupcakes.  This blog is a wealth of delicious looking, albeit complicated cupcake recipes.  Ming's look way better than mine, but mine are also quite delicious!  

One thing I would change in making these in the future is the glaze.  Yes, the glaze is good, don't get me wrong, but these cupcakes deserve something more!  I'm thinking a white chocolate raspberry buttercream, or a thick and rich ganache. What do you think?

I also apologize for the crappy picture.  Natural light is at a premium in my apartment, and I baked these later in the afternoon, so this is the best I could do! 


Post #17: Homemade easy, a caveman could do it!

Hello, hello! 

I have decided to rejoin the wonderful world of blogging after a (too) long hiatus - partially because of work, and partially because I got lazy.  But let's not dwell on the past.  I'm here now, and that's what matters.  (Also, I have a lot of time on my hands now that I am the trophy wife of the recently graduated Dr. Pirate!)

If you have never tried your hand at homemade salsa, I would definitely urge you to do so!  Yes, it's easy (and delicious!) to buy a jar of Pace, but where's the satisfaction in serving that to a guest?  Besides, it's so easy to make salsa that there's no excuse not to!  Plus, you have so many choices!  This is how I made mine:

Pirate Salsa

2 tomatoes (the softer the better...more juicy!)
1.5 jalapeno peppers (I seeded one, and kept the seeds from the half. If you want it hotter, add more seeds!)
approx. 1/2 cup roasted corn
1 poblano pepper, roasted
approx. 1/2 of a good sized purple onion
a generous handful of cilantro
salt, pepper, cumin, garlic to taste

1. Chop all ingredients to your desired size, I kept mine rather chunky
2. Bring to a boil on the stove
3. Let cool, add cilantro, and eat!

I boat motored mine ever so slightly, just to make it a little more juicy. 
Next time, I'm gonna add black beans! YUM!