Our 22 Juiciest Watermelon Recipes for Summer

Watermelon is as intimidating as it is delicious. It’s the ultimate summer fruit, yet its refreshing charm can be diluted by the sheer obstacle of dealing with one. Lugging it, chopping it, storing it—it can be daunting. The hulking melon, like m…

Watermelon is as intimidating as it is delicious. It's the ultimate summer fruit, yet its refreshing charm can be diluted by the sheer obstacle of dealing with one. Lugging it, chopping it, storing it—it can be daunting. The hulking melon, like most things in life, is always scarier before you dig in. Quarter it, put your apprehensions aside, and consider your options. These 22 watermelon recipes for summer make such quick use of the seasonal fruit that you might even want to buy two. 

1. Tomato Watermelon Salad With Mint Vinaigrette 

Cool off on a hot summer day with this refreshing fruit (yes, fruit!) salad made from two kinds of tomatoes—cherry and heirloom varieties—plus an entire pound of watermelon. Dress it up with a light citrus vinaigrette accented with fresh mint leaves.

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No Churn Crème Fraîche and Blueberry Ice Cream

This no churn blueberry and crème fraîche ice cream is a super simplified v…

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This no churn blueberry and crème fraîche ice cream is a super simplified version of one of my favorite ice cream recipes from my book, Sweeter off the Vine, and you don’t need any special equipment to make it! I know when I want ice cream, I don’t want to wait a full 24 hours for the bowl of my ice cream maker to freeze. Not to mention the fact that there is usually so much other stuff in my tiny freezer that the bowl doesn’t even fit.

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No churn ice cream recipes all have pretty much the same ingredients: heavy cream, sweetened condensed milk, and whatever flavorings you’re in the mood for. This version swaps a bit of tangy cultured crème fraîche, for the heavy cream which gives the base a bit of tangy richness. The gorgeous blueberry ripple adds bright berry flavor and beautiful color.

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The base comes together in no time flat, all you need to do is whip the cream and creme fraiche, then fold it into the sweetened condensed milk. That mixture is layered and swirled with the blueberry sauce in a loaf pan. You do have to wait for the mixture to freeze overnight, so don’t forget to plan ahead. You could substitute just about any berry or stone fruit for the blueberries here in equal quantity.

No Churn Crème Fraîche and Blueberry Ice Cream

Makes about 4 cups

The subtle tang of crème fraîche and sweet blueberry sauce are a perfect pair in this easy to make creamy frozen treat. Substitute any berries or stone fruit you like for the blueberries.

 

Blueberry Swirl

1 cup/140g blueberries

3 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

 

Base

1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk

1 tablespoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste

Pinch salt

1 cup/240ml heavy cream, cold

1 cup/225g crème fraiche, cold

 

In a small saucepan, combine the blueberries and sugar with 1 tablespoon water and smash with a potato masher. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat and cook until the blueberries are broken down and the liquid has thickened until syrupy, about 3 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice. Blend the mixture with an immersion blender, then transfer to a heat proof container and refrigerate until completely cold.

When the blueberry mixture is cold, make the base.

To make the base: In a large bowl, whisk the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt.

In a separate large bowl combine the heavy cream and crème fraiche and use an electric mixer to whip the mixture to stiff peaks. 

Stir a large spoonful of the cream into the condensed milk to lighten it, then add the remaining cream and fold it until just combined. 

To assemble: Spoon 1/3 of the base into a loaf pan, then spoon 1/3 of the blueberry mixture over the top. Use a skewer to swirl the blueberry into the base. Repeat 2 more times with the remaining base and blueberries. Loosely cover the pan then freeze until firm, 6 hours or overnight.

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The Only Summer Dessert I’ll Turn the Oven on For

When dreaming of Italy, which happens far more often nowadays, I find myself trying to recreate past trips through recipe development. We all know food is a virtual transport to past times in our lives, so when I can create a dish that resembles the l…

When dreaming of Italy, which happens far more often nowadays, I find myself trying to recreate past trips through recipe development. We all know food is a virtual transport to past times in our lives, so when I can create a dish that resembles the look, feel, and flavor of something enjoyed abroad, memories of happy adventures flood my mind. It’s almost as good as returning to my beloved homeland.

My family hails from Calabria, and I adore visiting that region. But during my last few trips to Italy, instead of staying in one location, I was fortunate enough to do a bit of domestic travel. The more I moved around within a country, the more I began to notice similarities and differences in customs, geography, and of course, local food culture.

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No Bake Blueberry Cheesecake

In the heat of summer, I am always looking for fun low (or no) cook ways to…

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In the heat of summer, I am always looking for fun low (or no) cook ways to make and enjoy a little dessert. Give me all of your icebox cakes, no bake bars, and no bake cheesecakes! No bake cheesecake has all of the rich cream cheese flavor of it’s baked counterpart, but it is a bit lighter in texture and so easy to make. There are no water baths to fuss with and no worry about the top splitting on you.

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This no bake cheese cake is a great base for all sorts of summer fruit, but it would also be delicious with caramel or chocolate drizzled over the top instead. This version uses a literal heap of gorgeous fresh blueberries.

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The salty pretzel and nutty browned butter crust comes together quickly too, no baking required. It also ensures that the whole dessert is nice and balanced, and not too sweet. For a sweeter version feel free to substitute graham cracker or biscoff cookie crumbs for the preztels. You could even skip browning the butter in favor of just melting it, but the browned butter adds a ton of great flavor so I wouldn’t!

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The topping is a combination of fresh and cooked blueberries, the cooked ones make it a little saucy and help the blueberries stick together instead of sliding all over the place. I topped the whole thing with a few small leaves from my basil plant that look little little blueberry leaves. Mint would work too but the herbs are totally optional.


No Bake Blueberry Cheesecake

Salty pretzels make a perfect base for this not to sweet cheesecake, but you could use graham crackers or biscoff cookie crumbs for a sweeter version - use gluten free cookies to make this desert for your gluten avoiding friends and family. The blueberry topping is partially cooked which creates some sauciness that helps the blueberries stick together, but if that’s a bridge too far for lazy summer cooking, you can just pile the top with lots of fresh blueberries. They may roll of when you slice it though!

 

Crust

175g/ 1 1/2 cups finely ground pretzels

50g/ 1/4 cup granulated sugar

340g/12 tablespoons unsalted butter

Filling

450g/ 1 pound cream cheese, at room temperature

100g/ 1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon vanilla paste or extract

240ml/ 1 cup heavy cream, cold

Topping

490g/ 3 1/2 cups blueberries

1 tablespoon sugar

1 teaspoon cornstarch

Mint or basil leaves if desired


To make the crust: Combine the pretzels and sugar in a large bowl. Melt the butter in a small saucepan set over medium heat. Cook the butter while scraping the bottom and sides of the pan occasionally with a rubber spatula. The butter will foam, then the solids will turn deep golden brown and smell nutty. Once the butter has browned pour it over the pretzels in the bowl then stir to combine. Let the mixture cool for a minute or two then pour it into a 9-inch pie pan. Carefully press it evenly on the bottom and up the sides of the pan, a 1/3 cup measure is a great tool for this. Set the pan in the freezer while you prepare the filling.

To make the filling: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment mix the cream cheese and sugar on low speed until combined. Turn the mixer up to medium and beat until smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl occasionally to ensure even mixing. 

Add the vanilla and lemon and stir to combine.

Switch to the whisk attachment and with the mixer on low, add the heavy cream. Turn the mixer up to medium high and whip until the mixture comes to stiff peaks, about 3 minutes.

Spoon the filling into the chilled crust and smooth the top. Refrigerate for about 8 hours or overnight. 

To make the topping: When you are ready to serve the cheesecake put 280g/2 cups of the blueberries in a large bowl and set aside. Combine 140g/1 cup of the blueberries, 2 tablespoons of water, and 1 tablespoon sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Cover the pot and cook until the blueberries have burst and released their juices, about 2 minutes. 

In a small bowl stir the cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of water, slowly pour it into the blueberry mixture in the pot while stirring constantly. Bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring constantly for 45 seconds, until thick and glossy.

Pour the mixture over the blueberries in the bowl and stir to combine. Pour the blueberries over the chilled cheesecake and scatter the remaining 70g/ 1/2 cup blueberries over the top. Sprinkle mint or basil over the top and let the pie sit for a few minutes before slicing. Store leftovers in the fridge for a few days.  

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An A-Z Guide of the Most Common Types of Apples

Apples and peanut butter are the ultimate energizing snack, and a steaming cup of cider makes us wish for days spent on a hayride, wrapped in a flannel blanket. Come fall, I’m all about apple pies, cobblers, crisps, galettes, pandowdies, cakes, applesa…

Apples and peanut butter are the ultimate energizing snack, and a steaming cup of cider makes us wish for days spent on a hayride, wrapped in a flannel blanket. Come fall, I’m all about apple pies, cobblers, crisps, galettes, pandowdies, cakes, applesauce, apple butter...do I sound like Forrest Gump yet? While a few apple varieties are accessible year-round, the full bounty is at its peak between late August and early November. Depending on factors such as the climate and growing conditions in a particular area, the specific time when these apple varieties are in season can vary year to year. There are hundreds (HUNDREDS!) of varieties of apples, with many that you and I have probably never even heard of because they are cultivated independently by small farmers. I could never adequately cover each and every variety, so here I’m focusing on the most common types of apples that you can find in grocery stores and pick each fall at your favorite orchard.

In each description, I share when exactly you can find these varieties at their peak. But if you’re out for an autumnal day of family fun at an apple orchard and find that some types of apples are a little past their prime, don’t just pass them up. Instead, grab a few of those slightly smooshed ones that other pickers are sure to ignore, bring them home, and make your own applesauce or mulled cider (the riper the better for these recipes!).

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Real Deal Cherry Pie

I had the good fortune of a day off right at the beginning of sour cherry s…

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I had the good fortune of a day off right at the beginning of sour cherry season last week (What, you don’t mark the weeks of summer using hyper-seasonal fruit as a guide? Just me?) so I put on some sunscreen and a hat, hopped in the car, and went in search of a u-pick farm. I was not disappointed to find a row of trees, heavy with fruit and not a soul in site at a farm a few hours from Brooklyn. It was a hot, hot day and the scent of the last strawberries in the field nearby filled the air as I filled up my bucket with precious sour cherries. 

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When I got home with my bounty, pie was the only choice. Instead of a traditional round, I went slab style and baked it in a quarter sheet pan. If you don’t have a quarter sheet pan or two, I highly recommend picking one up. At roughly 9x13x1, they are the perfect size to bake focaccia, a few cookies, toast nuts, or roast just about anything…but back to the sour cherries.

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Pitting cherries can be kind of a pain, but since sour cherries are so soft, I usually skip the pitter and just use my thumb to ease out the pits. It’s a bit of a sticky, drippy process so you can move your operation to the sink to make clean up super easy.

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I like my fruit pie fillings pretty simple, especially when the fruit is so special (and hard earned). This one is just sweet enough to highlight the cherries without totally overtaking their tart bite. I also added a bit of vanilla bean paste to round out the flavor, but a little bit of extract will do the trick too.

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The all butter pie crust has a bit of rye flour and brown sugar for toasty depth that is delicious with just about any fruit if sour cherries aren’t available where you live. It might be a little intimidating to roll out such a big piece of dough, but don’t you worry. To add both flakiness and structure to the dough, this recipe calls for a series of folds. The folds will make the dough both exceptionally delicious and easier to roll out and move around. Win-win. Check out the gif above to see how it’s done.

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Don’t worry if your dough rips a bit when you roll it out though, you can always pinch it back together. If you have time, make your dough the say before you plan to use it. A long rest will hydrate the dough and make it easier to roll out.

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I realize, it is a little unfair to share this recipe because sour cherries can be hard to get your hands on, but you still have a few more weeks to seek them out. Frozen will work in a pinch too, or substitute an equal amount of your favorite summer fruit - you will need a little less sugar for sweeter fruit.

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Real Deal Cherry Pie

Makes one 1/4 sheet slab pie

This pie makes the best of one of summer’s most fleeting pleasures, sour cherries. They are only available for a few weeks in late June/early July, but they are worth the wait, and the trouble of pitting them. The crust uses a bit of rye flour which adds some nutty and creamy flavor to the crust, and pairs beautifully with fruit desserts. Use an equal amount of all purpose flour if you have rye flour on hand. This filling recipe was lightly adapted from Deb at Smitten Kitchen, who adapted from Martha Stewart, and loves sour cherries as much as I do. 

Rye Crust

340g/2 2/3 cups all purpose flour

170g/1 1/3 cups rye flour (I used Abruzzi Heirloom Rye from Anson Mills)

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

10-12 tablespoons ice water

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

340g/1 1/4 cups unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon sized pieces

Filling

900g/about 6 cups pitted sour cherries

3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon (165g) sugar (I used a natural cane sugar here, but granulated works too)

30g/1/4 cup cornstarch

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste

Pinch salt

 To finish

1 egg, for egg wash

Turbinado sugar to finish

To make the crust: Add the flours, brown sugar, and salt to a large bowl. Stir them together until combined. Add the apple cider vinegar to the ice water. Working quickly, add the butter to the flour and toss to coat. Then use your fingers or the palms of your hands to press each cube of butter into a flat sheet. Keep tossing the butter as you go to ensure that each butter piece is coated with flour. The idea is to create thin, flat shards of butter that range from about the size of a dime to about the size of a quarter. Sprinkle about 6 tablespoons of the water over the flour mixture and use your hands to mix gently, making sure to get all of the way down to the bottom of the bowl. Continue to add more water a couple of teaspoons at a time. 

You have added enough water when you can pick up a handful of the dough and squeeze it together easily without it falling apart. 

Press the dough together, then pat it into a rectangle. Fold the dough into thirds like a letter, then split it in half, form each half into a rectangle and wrap each piece in plastic wrap. Chill the dough for at least one hour before using, or overnight. I prefer an overnight rest if possible.

When you are ready to bake the pie, heat your oven to 400ºF.

Add the pitted cherries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, vanilla bean paste, and salt to a large bowl and stir gently to combine.

Roll one piece of the dough on a lightly floured surface into a rectangle about 11x15. Gently tuck it into a metal quarter sheet pan, letting the excess hang over the sides. Roll the other piece of dough into a rectangle about 10x14. 

Pour the cherries into the dough lined pan and top with other piece of dough. Gently fold the bottom dough up and over the top and press gently. Refrigerate the pie until the crust is firm, about 15 minutes.

While the pie chills, beat the egg with a few drops of water to make the egg wash. When the pie is nice and chilled gently brush the surface with egg wash and sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Cut a few vents in the top then bake until the crust is deep golden brown and the juices are bubbling, 45-60 minutes.

Let the pie cool on a rack before serving warm or at room temperature. Ice cream is optional, but highly suggested.

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It’s Summer Jam Season—Here’s How to Make the Most of It

We’ve teamed up with our friends at All-Clad to bring you Pans With a Plan—a series sharing smart techniques, tasty recipe ideas, and all sorts of handy tips for cooking novices and seasoned pros alike. Here, food writer and recipe developer Posie Brie…

We’ve teamed up with our friends at All-Clad to bring you Pans With a Plan—a series sharing smart techniques, tasty recipe ideas, and all sorts of handy tips for cooking novices and seasoned pros alike. Here, food writer and recipe developer Posie Brien shares her top tips for making summer jams, with a little help from All-Clad’s D3® Stainless 8-Quart Stockpot.


If you ask me, produce—specifically, fruit—is the real star of summer. I wait all year long for ripe peaches and crimson cherries at the farmer’s market, their juice dribbling down my fingers with each bite. I'll buy as many nectarines and plums as I can carry home without bruising any, and I eat blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries by the handful. But what I most look forward to are summer jams.

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31 Summery Fruit Desserts Bursting With Flavor

For some people (okay, for me), the July farmers’ market generates as much excitement as crippling anxiety. There’s just so much there—what to do with all of it? To help you narrow it down, we’ve gathered our best summer fruit desserts. You’ll find trifles layered with berries and cream, plus cupcakes inspired by every kid’s favorite summer beverage (strawberry lemonade). There are easy no-bake desserts for when you don’t want to turn on an oven…and let’s be honest, no one wants to turn on the oven when it is nearly triple-digit temperatures outside. But there’s also plenty of ice cream recipes for those same triple-digit-temperature days. And, if worse comes to worst, eating your summer fruit raw—or with a dusting of confectioners’ sugar or a drizzle of honey—is always a good option.

1. Mango-Raspberry Trifle With Toasted Coconut

Springy, spongy, and sweet as can be, this trifle begins with a homemade Madeira cake. Once baked and cooled, it’s cut into cubes and layered with a raspberry-mango jelly, rich custard, fresh raspberries, and chopped mangoes.

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For some people (okay, for me), the July farmers' market generates as much excitement as crippling anxiety. There's just so much there—what to do with all of it? To help you narrow it down, we've gathered our best summer fruit desserts. You’ll find trifles layered with berries and cream, plus cupcakes inspired by every kid's favorite summer beverage (strawberry lemonade). There are easy no-bake desserts for when you don't want to turn on an oven...and let's be honest, no one wants to turn on the oven when it is nearly triple-digit temperatures outside. But there's also plenty of ice cream recipes for those same triple-digit-temperature days. And, if worse comes to worst, eating your summer fruit raw—or with a dusting of confectioners' sugar or a drizzle of honey—is always a good option.

1. Mango-Raspberry Trifle With Toasted Coconut

Springy, spongy, and sweet as can be, this trifle begins with a homemade Madeira cake. Once baked and cooled, it's cut into cubes and layered with a raspberry-mango jelly, rich custard, fresh raspberries, and chopped mangoes.

Read More >>

Sohla’s Magic Ratio for Turning Any Fruit into a Crumble

Every month, in Off-Script With Sohla, pro chef and flavor whisperer Sohla El-Waylly will introduce you to a must-know cooking technique—and then teach you how to detour toward new adventures.

When playing around with dessert, you usually have to tr…

Every month, in Off-Script With Sohla, pro chef and flavor whisperer Sohla El-Waylly will introduce you to a must-know cooking technique—and then teach you how to detour toward new adventures.


When playing around with dessert, you usually have to tread carefully. Swap brown sugar for white sugar in a delicate chiffon cake, and you’ll change the moisture, the pH, the way the leavening reacts in the batter...in other words, it’ll be a hot mess. But fruit crumbles are endlessly forgivable, no structural integrity necessary. You can run wild and free and create whatever crumble is calling your name. Today I’ll show you how.

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Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies

These Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies are soft, perfectly chewy, and flavored with plenty of lemon zest and juice. Your family will love these bright sugar cookies! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve made these Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies in the past 10 years, but it’s been a lot. I originally posted this recipe …

The post Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies appeared first on My Baking Addiction.

These Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies are soft, perfectly chewy, and flavored with plenty of lemon zest and juice. Your family will love these bright sugar cookies!

Stack of chewy lemon sugar cookies. The top cookie has a bite taken out of it.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve made these Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies in the past 10 years, but it’s been a lot.

I originally posted this recipe in 2010 after finding it on Rock Recipes and after 10+ years, I thought it was time to share them again with new photos and updated text.

These Chewy Lemon Cookies are simple to make and bursting with lemon flavor, which in my opinion makes them the perfect cookie for summer!

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The post Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies appeared first on My Baking Addiction.