Category Archives: desserts


Apple Fritters

Although they are available all year round, apples are at their best around fall or autumn. Apples are a staple in our house. They make for a good quick snack and always a welcome treat in any lunch pack. But sometimes when we have bought too much and aren’t eating them fast enough, I find ways to use them up quick and the best way to do that is to cook them into something. The easiest is to simply cook them up in butter and sugar and use them to top anything as we did with the Dutch baby pancakes. You can also make apple pie or incorporate them into breads or bread puddings. This time around, I had a taste for something fried so I thought I would make them into bite sized apple fritters.

The recipe is at the end of this post.

Mix all the liquids together. (melted butter, eggs, milk)

In a separate bowl, mix all your dry ingredients and the chopped apples.

Add the liquids and mix just until it comes together as a dough. It will be thick just like in the photo. You want it that way so you can form your spoonfuls easier.

Heat up your oil in a deep fryer and do a couple of test runs to test the temperature of your oil. You want it hot enough to brown your fritters nicely, but also cook it all the way. As you can see, this first one was a bit overdone on the outside.

Not only was it too dark on the outside, the inside was also still raw. I started the oil at about 375F for deep frying but oviously that was a bit too hot. Let the oil cool a bit and try again.

I turned the heat down to about 350F and they started to brown a little bit more calmly but not too long that they stayed in the oil too long to absorb too much of it.

These came out perfectly and cooked all the way inside.

You can leave them bare like this or roll/sprinkle them with powdered sugar.

See, perfectly cooked, yummy and not greasy.


Apple Fritters
Recipe type: Dessert
If you love fried dough and if you love apples, then this recipe is perfect for you.
  • 2 cups Flour
  • ¾ cup Sugar
  • 3 teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 3 Tablespoons melted Butter
  • 2 Eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla
  • ½ cup Heavy Cream or Milk
  • 2 teaspoons Cinnamon
  • Dash of Salt
  • 3 Apples, peeled, cored and diced
  • Oil for frying
  • Powdered Sugar
  1. Mix all the ingredients together except for the apples until you have a smooth batter
  2. Add in the apples and mix
  3. Heat oil in a deep fryer to 350 degrees
  4. Using two spoons, form the batter into 1 inch balls and drop into fryer. Cook until nicely browned and cooked through.
  5. Drain excess oil on paper towels or on a rack and sprinkle with powdered sugar.




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Dec17 031

Sticky Bread Pudding with Apples


What do you do when you have bread that is on the verge of getting too old and apples that are destined for the compost bin? Why it sounds like the makings of apple bread pudding to me! And it smells so delicious while it’s cooking, no one will ever know you’re salvaging food destined for disposal. lol!

Apples that have been sitting around too long…


Old bread that is drying out and no one else will eat…

There’s no measurements for this, so just follow through the photos and make your own adjustments and variations. You really can’t go wrong with bread pudding!

So let’s start by putting generous pats of butter at the bottom of your pan. I used a 9×9 in. square pyrex dish. You can either melt the butter or softhen and spread all over the bottom of your pan.

Peel, core and cut up your apples.

Spread the apples across the bottom of the pan and sprinkle with cinnamon.

If you like nuts, you can also sprinkle some on top of the apples.

Now get a cup or so of brown sugar (I only had light, but you can use dark brown sugar too) and sprinkle it all over the apples and nuts. This will caramelize into a gooey bottom for your pudding.

Now take your bread and tear it up over the apples and sugar. Since I was using a soft bread, I didn’t pre-soak it.

If you happen to use a hardier bread like a baguette though, I would recommend soaking it in the milk and egg mixture for 30 mins to an hour before pouring the mixture over the apples.

Mix together about 2 cups of milk, 1/2 cup of sugar and 4 eggs and pour over the bread.

Bake in 350 degrees F until it is fluffy and brown at the edges. About 45-55 mins.

It will collapse into itself a bit when it starts to cool, but that’s ok. Let it cool completely to get the gooeyness underneath to settle.

Just when you think you can’t stand waiting anymore, it will be cool enough to cut through and enjoy with a cup of coffee. Yumm! Just for added decadence, you can drizzle cream cheese frosting on top!




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Dec15 011

Old Fashioned Buttermilk Chesspie

chess pie
I love custard like desserts and I love pies! I kept seeing this Chesspie recipe in several of the Southern cookbooks I own and online, and I have been wanting to try it since.
I found this recipe from Deep South Dish and it seemed unbelievably simple and easy to make. I did love that hint of lemony aroma and taste that took away that sometimes overpowering egginess of egg pies.
When I posted this photo on facebook, one of my friends commented that his grandmother used to make a chocolate chesspie. Now I'm intrigued! I'll have to try the chocolate version next.
Old Fashioned Buttermilk Chesspie
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
  • 1½ cup Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Cornmeal
  • 2 teaspoons All-purpose Flour
  • Pinch of Salt
  • ½ cup Butter, melted and cooled
  • ½ cup Buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla
  • 4 Eggs
  • Zest from 1 Lemon
  • Juice of ½ a lemon
  • 1 Unbaked Pie Shell
  • Whipped Cream and Nutmeg (optional)
  1. Pre-bake pie shell according to package directions.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  3. Whisk together all ingredients (except whipped cream and nutmeg) and pour into the pie shell.
  4. Bake for 30-35 mins until set.



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Sept30 013

Bibingkang Malagkit – The Shortcut Version

I tried out the a new shortcut to an old bibingka (rice cake) favorite today and I must say, it didn’t turn out half bad at all! This glutinous rice cake is called Bibingkang Malagkit in Tagalog but in Ilocano, we usually call it Inkiwar which roughly translates to ‘something stirred’.

When my grandmother used to make this rice bibingka, it usually involved a long arduous process of grating the coconut, extracting the coconut milk and then spending an inordinate amount of time stirring the mixture over a hot stove, the effort to stir becoming more difficult as it gets thicker and stickier. Thus the name, inkiwar or stirred. My aunts who were tasked to do the stirring always complained of sore arms afterwards!

Well, you won’t find that here 🙂

Here is a shortcut, a variation to my previous post of this sticky rice cake, that I just came up with this morning after seeing my friend Sha’s post on facebook of her biko (another term usually applied to this type of bibingka).

Bibingkang Malagkit - The Shortcut Version
Recipe type: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: Filipino
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8
Sweet glutinous rice cake, usually served as dessert or snack. Also great for breakfast with coffee!
  • 3 cups Glutinous Rice
  • 2 cups Water
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil
  • 1 can (13.5 oz) Coconut Cream
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 can Condensed Milk
  1. Combine rice, water, salt and coconut oil in an appropriate size pot. Bring to a boil and turn off the heat.
  2. Mix the coconut cream and brown sugar in another bowl until well blended.
  3. Transfer the rice into a baking dish. I used a 9x9 square Pyrex dish.
  4. Pour the sugar and coconut cream mixture over the rice and mix well.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees F for 50 minutes or until most of the liquid is absorbed and the edges are starting to brown.
  6. Pour the condensed milk over the top and bake for another 15 minutes until the milk is caramelized.
  7. Cool before slicing.


 Coconut Cream

For this recipe, you can use either coconut cream like I did, or coconut milk. There isn’t much difference from the two, except that the coconut cream is richer and thicker so I use it for rice cakes such as this one and I use the coconut milk for curries and other savory dishes that call for coconut milk.

By pre-cooking the rice, you cut down on the overall cooking time. The traditional way of cooking this rice cake would have been to cook the rice in the coconut milk and sugar mixture, thus the constant stirring required so as not to have the coconut milk separate and/or the rice stick to the pan. I added the salt because my that’s what my grandma used to do, but it’s also to counter some of the sweetness later on. The virgin coconut oil, I added for the aroma and flavor and because I still have a jar of it in the cupboard. The oil is optional if you don’t have it.

If you noticed, I pre-cooked the rice in only two cups of water. That’s because you don’t want to cook it all the way just yet. You wan’t to cook it only part way or al dente if such a thing applies for rice. Transfer the rice into a baking dish, which in this case, I used a 9×9 inch square Pyrex dish.

I only had the light brown sugar so you can see how pale it is. Next time, use the dark brown sugar or add a tablespoon of molasses for a richer flavor. I didn’t have either of those this time. — Pour the sugar and coconut cream mixture over the rice…

and mix well until you have no lumps. Put it in the pre-heated oven and bake it for about 50 minutes or until it is browned at the edges.

When it looks like this, you can stop here and it’s good to go. But I wanted a sweet sticky topping so I went a step further…

Pour a can of condensed milk over the top and put it back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes until the top is bubbly and caramelized.

I couldn’t resist taking a photo while it was all bubbly in the oven! But you can tell how my oven is heating up unevenly because the back part is already browning but the front is still looking pale. It probably didn’t help that I kept opening the oven to check it out. lol!

When the condensed milk has caramelized, take it out of the oven and let it cool before cutting into it. For me, the best part are the corners and edges where it is almost crusty and a bit chewy. I let the kids have the soft, crust free center slices. They don’t know what they’re missing! 🙂



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Triple Chocolate Mousse Cake

Are you on Pinterest yet? If not, you’ve got to go on there. It’s addicting. That’s where I found this recipe and it’s there that I have pinned several recipes that I want to try out. The photo looked so tempting that I just had to try it. While I had a few mis-steps as you can see from the photos below, we have fallen in love with this recipe and have made it a few times since then. As a matter of fact, I still have a couple of slices in the freezer from when we made it for my daughter’s birthday a couple of weeks ago.

The recipe is at the end of my post. It is the exact same recipe from MUPPY’s  with just a few adjustments that I made in the measurements and instructions.

Here’s a few notes on the mishap I made the first time I made the recipe (I did better the second time):

The major mistake was not reading the pan size correctly. Here, I used a 8 inch pan instead of a 10 inch pan. The cake filled the pan, leaving no room for the mousse layers.

So what did I do to fix it? I ate it…

I took the sides off the springform pan off, cut the cake in half, and put the bottom layer back together with the sides of the pan.  Since I had to peel off the paper liner around the pan, I also replaced the parchment paper collar around the cake (this is to make sure the mousse/cake separates from the pan without breaking). The extra cake that I cut off…. it was delicious with a cup of coffee while I waited for this dessert to set!

The other mistake (which is not as bad as the first one) is that I did not realize that by cutting the excess top of the cake layer off, the sides kind of shrunk in. So when I poured the mile chocolate layer, it filled in the sides so you couldn’t see three layers on the outside shot, just two: milk chocolate and white chocolate. That’s because the dark chocolate cake is buried under there.

After the chocolate milk layer is set, pour the white chocolate mouse layer on top and return to the refrigerator or freezer to set.

See, all ended up still looking delicious and tasted like it too! Note on this photo, the outer edge of the bottom layer where it pulled away from the side. Try to avoid that by using the right sized pan 🙂

Triple Chocolate Mousse Cake
  • 6 Tbsp. Butter
  • ¾ cup Dark Chocolate
  • 4 large Eggs, separated
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • ⅓ cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. Flour
  • 1 oz. package of Unflavored Gelatin powder + 2 Tbsp. Hot Water
  • ½ cup White Chocolate chips
  • ½ cup Milk Chocolate chips
  • 4 Egg Yolks
  • ¼ cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 cups Heavy Cream (separated)
  • 6 Tbsp. Butter
  • ¾ cup Dark Chocolate
  • 4 large Eggs, separated
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • ⅓ cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. Flour
  • 1 oz. package of Unflavored Gelatin powder + 2 Tbsp. Hot Water
  • ½ cup White Chocolate chips
  • ½ cup Milk Chocolate chips
  • 4 Egg Yolks
  • ¼ cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 cups Heavy Cream (separated)
  • 1 oz. package of Unflavored Gelatin powder + 2 Tbsp. Hot Water
  • ½ cup White Chocolate chips
  • ½ cup Milk Chocolate chips
  • 4 Egg Yolks
  • ¼ cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 cups Heavy Cream (separated)
  • 1 oz. package of Unflavored Gelatin powder + 2 Tbsp. Hot Water
  • ½ cup White Chocolate chips
  • ½ cup Milk Chocolate chips
  • 4 Egg Yolks
  • ¼ cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 cups Heavy Cream (separated)
  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Grease and line sides of a 10 inch springform pan
  3. Combine butter and chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and melt in the microwave on high for one minute, stirring at the 30 second mark.
  4. Stir melted chocolate and butter mixture until smooth and let cool slightly.
  5. Beat egg whites and slowly incorporate brown sugar until it forms stiff peaks.
  6. In another bowl, whisk the egg yolks and vanilla, then add the melted chocolate and butter until well blended.
  7. Whisk in a third of the stiff egg whites mixture into the chocolate mixture.
  8. Fold in the remaining egg white mixture into the chocolate mixture until combined.
  9. Pour the batter into the prepared springform pan and bake for 20 minutes or until the cake springs back when gently touched in the center.
  10. Leave cake to cook in the pan while you prepare the mousse layers.
  11. Dissolve the gelatin powder in the hot water, set aside.
  12. In a saucepan, combine the 4 egg yolks, ¼ cup sugar and 1 cup of cream and whisk together over low heat until it just starts to thicken.
  13. Remove from heat and whisk in the gelatin mixture until it is well blended.
  14. Strain the custard mixture.
  15. Place the milk chocolate chips in one bowl and the white chocolate chips in a second bowl.
  16. Divide the hot custard mixture evenly between the white and milk chocolate bowls to melt them.
  17. Stir each bowl until the chocolates are melted and well mixed into the custard and smooth.
  18. Whip the remaining one cup of heavy cream until thick and again divide evenly between the bowls of white and milk chocolate custards.
  19. Fold in the whipped cream gently into the chocolate custard mixtures.
  20. Pour the milk chocolate mousse over the dark chocolate cake base and put in the freezer or refrigerator for 15 minutes to set.
  21. Next, pour the white chocolate mousse on top of the milk chocolate and return the pan to the freezer or refrigerator until set.
  22. If you are letting the mousse set in the refrigerator, it may take overnight. If you put it the freezer, it should be set in about an hour.
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Feb24 007

Flan with Meyer Lemon

Meyer lemons were on sale at the grocery store last week. I didn’t really have anything in mind for them, but they were so beautifully brilliant and smelled so good that I just had to buy them. So far, I’ve only used them to flavor my tea, too lazy to do any cooking.

I was especially tired and lazy last Thursday and didn’t really feel like cooking, but my sister-in-law’s birthday was the next day and my husband had promised her my coconut cake. I made myself cook if he promised to clean up after me and do the dishes. We had a deal.

We turned out a glorious coconut cake for his sister and she was happy to get it. But the thing with making coconut cake with seven minute frosting is that you are left with extra egg yolks. I didn’t feel like letting the yolks sit in the refrigerator waiting to be used in something then having to be thrown away when no possibility lends itself, so I decided to whip up a quick batch of flan to use them up.

I didn’t follow my recipe for the classic leche flan, but decided instead to work with what I had on hand and that’s where the meyer lemon idea came in. It turned out to be great idea.

The flavor was not so overwhelming that it could be called a lemon flan. The aroma and flavor of the lemons was very subtle but you can definitely sense their presence. It cut down the cloying sweetness and richness usually associated with flan. Too bad my husband and youngest daughter are not crazy about flan… this is all for me! 🙂

Flan with Meyer Lemon
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
  • 4 Egg yolks
  • 1 whole Egg
  • 1 14oz. can of Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • ½ cup Milk
  • 1 tsp. Lemon Juice
  • Zest from one Meyer Lemon
  • ½ cup sugar (for caramel sauce)
  • 1 tablespoon water
  1. Make the caramel sauce: You can melt the sugar in a separate pan then pour into the bowl that you're going to cook the flan in but since I try to dirty up the least amount of dishes, I pour the ½ cup of sugar and a tablespoon of water directly into the metal pan (7 in. diameter in this case) and put it directly over the heat. Over medium heat, let the sugar caramelize until it is syrupy and amber colored. Swirl it around so it covers the bottom of the pan. Take it off the heat and let it cool for a few minutes while you're whipping up the flan mixture.
  2. Combine the eggs, milks, lemon zest and lemon juice in a bowl and whisk until well blended.
  3. Pour into the prepared pan.
  4. Cover pan tightly with foil and place it in a large enough pan that you can add enough water to come up at least halfway of your pan for the flan.
  5. Place the pan in an oven that's been pre-heated to 350 degrees F. Bake for 1 hour 20 minutes or until the flan is set (firm) and not 'jiggly' in the middle.
Why the one whole egg? Well while I was separating the eggs for the 7 minute frosting, I messed one up. Ergo, I had 4 yolks and 1 whole. I'm sure this would work with 4-6 eggs. Don't be afraid to experiment. With the proportions above, I had just enough to fill that one 7 inch round pan whereas the classic flan recipe makes enough for two pans. This is perfect if you're not cooking for a party.


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Coconut Soup Dessert: Ginataan Halo-Halo

Coconut Soup Dessert
Whenever my family made this Filipino dessert, they just called it Guinataan and we all knew what was coming. When I published my original post on Guinataan on this blog years ago, I received several comments correcting my nomenclature and to an extent they were right. Ginataan is a general term to describe anything cooked in ‘gata’ or coconut milk. So since I am updating this recipe with a better photo, I thought I would also be more specific with the title also using my daughters’ name for it, Coconut Soup.

:Coconut Soup Dessert or Ginataan Halo-Halo

: A typical Filipino dessert cooked in coconut milk.

  • 1 12 oz pack of rice flour
  • 6 cups of water
  • 4 cups of coconut milk
  • 2 plantains, cubed
  • 4 small sweet potatoes, cubed
  • 2 cups of cooked tapioca balls
  • 1 cup of sugar, give or take a couple of tablespoons (to your taste)
  • A dash of Salt – to temper the sweetness
  1. Instructions
  2. To make the dough balls, moisten the rice flour with water just until it sticks together. Roll the dough into 1/4 inch balls.
  3. Boil 6 cups of water in a pot, and when it comes to a rolling boil, gently drop the dough balls, stirring occationaly so they don’t stick to the bottom of the pan or to each other.
  4. Cook until tender or until they rise to the top. By the time they are cooked, the water should be slightly thickened also.
  5. Add to this the coconut milk and let it come back to a simmer but not a rolling boil. A rolling boil will cause your coconut milk to separate, according to my mom.
  6. You can also add about 3/4 cup of the sugar and a dash of salt. When it comes up to a simmer, add the sweet potatoes and plantains (saba if you can find it) and cook until they are tender.
  7. Add the tapioca pearls and adjust the sweetness to your taste.

Note: If you can afford extra richness, you may serve this topped with additional coconut cream. Yumm!

The recipe above is as I first posted it. For this recent version, I added/changed a few of the ingredients.

For one, I used a few taro roots. Those are the whitish chunks you see next to the sweet potatoes.
We also only had green tapioca pearls. I thought they added a nice color contrast to the dish, don’t you?
green tapioca
Another addition that is not too obvious in the photo is fresh guavas. I liked it, it reminded me of how my grandmother made it but the girls were not too crazy about the strong flavor of the guava. Feel free to experiment with the ingredients and see what works for you.
And if you’re wondering what type of bananas to use, you can use ripe plantains but if you can find these other variety of bananas in your ethnic grocery store, I think they taste much better. They have more flavor. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you what they are called exactly.

Preparation time:

Cooking time:

Meal type: dessert

5 : ????? 1 review(s)

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