marble cake

Not to be a grammarian, but shouldn't the word be marbleD? Or marbleiZED? But marble cake it is, and this loaf combines the two great flavors of chocolate and vanilla. I think I fell in love with the idea of something marbleized when I visited Florence in 1987. At Il Papiro, the gorgeous papers, stationery sets, and journals were and still are all created by hand by Italian artisans. The undulating swirls, rhythmic and beautiful, delight the eye.

So you can understand why I love the marble loaf. The best part about making this (aside from eating it) is being able to whirl the two batters together. I get to be that Florentine artist for a few moments, creating yet stifling the urge to go swirl-crazy.


sun-dried tomatoes, feta, and oregano muffins {sms}

Hello! I have been missing out for awhile now on all the baking fun at Sweet Melissa Sundays. We are near the end of baking through Melissa Murphy's The Sweet Melissa Baking Book— can you believe it— and this week, I am hosting. We have tried all the other versions of her savory muffins; this Mediterranean combination is fantastic would be perfect with a quiche or egg dish. On its own isn't too shabby either.


caramelized shrimp

"Yay, me!" (The Husband always tells me I'm my best cheerleader. Haha.) I can't help it, but I always feel such a sense of accomplishment when I finally cook a recipe that's been patiently sitting and waiting around— in this case, since February 2002. It's been so long, the paper is yellowed.


fourth of july marshmallow pops

These are a funtastic treat for kids. Simple to make and super festive.

Thanks to the amazing Amy Locurto for the creative idea.

You'll need the following:

White candy melts
Lollipop sticks
Red and blue sprinkles
Floral foam
Container of some sort
Red tissue paper, shredded

Place the floral foam into the container. 
Put sprinkles into dishes. 
Melt the candy melts as per instructions. 
Take a marshmallow, insert a stick, dip into the candy melts, dip into the sprinkles and insert into the foam. (The Daughter preferred using her fingers to hold the marshmallow when dipping the red/white/blue design.)
Use the red tissue paper to cover the floral foam.

strawberry rhubarb cobbler

For this month's Baking with Dorie baking group, Ryan of Behr Necessities chose a fantastic dessert, Cherry Rhubarb Crisp. I ended up with Strawberry Rhubarb, and I was happy with the result. This is the second time I've done a strawberry rhubarb combo dessert, and I must say, I love the tartness which the rhubarb brings. I've always loved Granny Smith apples, which you could used to substitute in, if rhubarb is unavailable.

The whole wheat biscuit topping added an earthy, wholesome quality to the cobbler, and here I substituted buttermilk instead of whole milk (which I'd forgotten to purchase.) 

The one tiny complaint is that I wish the juices had been thicker. Does that mean I should have used more cornstarch? I'm not sure, but since I have extra rhubarb, I know I'll be trying it again...

Eaten hot out of the oven, with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream... dessert heaven!


black bottom cream cheese brownies

Sometimes you want a brownie. Sometimes you want it with nuts. Then, there are times when *just* a brownie won't do.

This is one of those times. With handfuls of chocolate chips added for good measure, this cream cheese brownie satisfies the deepest desires of chocolate and creamy decadence.

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