Dial up the cute factor at your holiday table with these fun and creative holiday desserts, ranging from easy Santas crafted from strawberries to ambitious baking projects like a buche de Noel. Turn on some festive tunes, gather the whole family, and put even the littlest hands to work stirring batter and decorating with candies. The more the merrier!
One of my favorite things about December is embracing all things mint. We add that glorious flavoring to hot cocoa, brownies, cookies and most definitely cake. This cake in particular features four moist layers of dark chocolate cake and a delicate minty buttercream slathered between the layers. The cake is covered in chocolate buttercream and topped off with a mint-green chocolate curl for both decoration and an extra boost of mint flavor. Check out the decadent recipe below.
Now that the turkey’s been carved (and made into countless sandwiches), sweets season is officially upon us. We’ve all got visions of sugarplums, cookies, cakes and doughnuts dancing in our heads — so kick off your December baking with these sure-to-please recipes.
Katie Lee takes a traditional (and adorable) cookie and makes it even more playful by reimagining it in the flavors of your favorite childhood sandwich.
The chill in the air can mean only one thing: It’s pie season. If you’re a pie veteran, someone who rolls up his or her sleeves and pulls on an apron enthusiastically each fall, we’ve got the perfect book for you. And if you’re a pie rookie, someone who shudders at the thought of crusts crumbling and fillings overflowing, we’ve got the perfect book for you too. They’re one in the same: Art of the Pie by Kate McDermott.
Art of the Pie is full of tips that are as simple to implement as they are effective in taking your pies to the next level. It features all the classics you’d expect to find (Blueberry Pie, Quintessential Apple Pie, Lemon Meringue and Pumpkin Pie, to name a few) as well as some new and some forgotten dishes, like a Shaker Lemon Pie, Chess Pie, and rhubarb paired with spices and berries and custard — oh, my! McDermott is a veteran at coaxing the best out of pie bakers (experienced and novice alike) at Pie Cottage, the studio where she teaches the recipes and techniques featured in Art of the Pie. Our favorite bites of advice are below, as is McDermott’s recipe for Cranberry Pie (pictured above) for you to try at home.
Here are our picks for the best of McDermott’s pie-making tips:
Let’s face it: Homemade pies are a labor of love. Between getting the dough just right, choosing the right filling, rolling out the dough, blind baking the crust and finally crafting a pretty top crust, making pie from scratch requires some serious effort … and a few tricks. These clever gadgets will help you bake the perfect pie and enjoy the entire delicious process from start to finish.
Sure, you can spend time painstakingly cutting and weaving a pretty latticework pie crust. Or, you can simply lay a single sheet of dough over the oh-so-handy Lattice Piecrust Cutter ($20; pictured above) and use a rolling pin to press the dough into the pattern. Voila: near-effortless pie perfection.
My husband proposed to me again after I made him this cake. It was a complete shock to me, as he is not a big sweets eater. We have come to a comfortable understanding in our lives: I make desserts every day, I ask him to sample them, and he nods that they are fine.
But not with this cake!
Here’s a brilliant way to change up your seasonal pie baking without having to skip all your favorite flavors: Don’t change the filling; change the crust. We’ll always love a traditional pastry or graham cracker base for a pie, but one of these crust alternatives just might become a new classic in your house.
Crispy Rice Cereal
A little peanut butter is all it takes to morph crunchy cereal into a moldable mix for a playful pie crust. We topped this version with strawberry ice cream and fresh strawberries to mimic everyone’s favorite childhood sandwich.
Get the recipe: 4-Ingredient Peanut Butter-Strawberry Ice Cream Pie (above)
This is the cake for fall. The cake that will make people take their phones out and share it on social media, tagging you with #AmazingCake #BestBaker #CakeGoals #Wow. The cake no one will let you cut into until they have the perfect picture for Instagram. (Helpful hint: The Hefe filter is amazing for this cake!) This is the cake that will boost you to “legendary” status among friends and family. This is the cake that people will love to look at but love to eat even more. This is the cake that will make you the most-popular baker in the neighborhood. This is the cake that everyone will talk about — all the time. It’s just that good!
OK, so what is this cake? It’s a fresh apple-cinnamon beauty, and it’s the perfect way to usher in fall. It takes advantage of the “naked cake” trend and reveals its thick, rich layers of moist, apple-studded cake and fluffy frosting — that perfectly sweet caramel buttercream is the ideal complement to the traditional fall flavors of apple and spice. But here is where it gets decadent: the homemade mini butterscotch-dunked apples adorning the top of the cake. The final touch? Caramel drizzled over every nook and cranny, of course!
Baking can be a testy topic. Half science, half magic, it often demands precision and attention to detail that can be intimidating to even seasoned home cooks. Here’s the good news: Tessa Huff of Style Sweet CA is here with her new cookbook, Layered, to dispel baking myths and to tell us how to fix common baking mistakes. Layered will inspire even timid home bakers to fire up their ovens and create something that’s as beautiful as it is delicious.
Read on below to hear from Huff about how to prevent overbaked treats and stubborn frostings, then get her recipe for the over-the-top-indulgent Cinnamon Roll Cake pictured above.
Moist, sweet and ideal for morning treats and after-dinner snacks alike, banana bread is a back-pocket staple that delivers tried-and-true results every time. But when you’ve just about had your fill of the classic version you know and love, and want something a little different, look no further than these transformed banana breads from The Kitchen. On this morning’s new episode, the co-hosts shared two new takes on the traditional banana bread, and both recipes are easy to make and full of craveable flavors.