Sweet Baked Life

my sweet journey through life…


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Cherry Slab Pie

Tradition with a twist; sweet cherries surrounded by flaky pie crust, baked in a sheet pan and drizzled with a lemony glaze becomes a tasty Cherry Slab Pie – perfect for any summertime celebration.

Cherry Slab Pie @ SweetBakedLife

As I drive through the streets in my neighborhood, American flags are proudly swaying in the ever so gentle breeze. Families are preparing to celebrate our great nation by coming together with food, festivities and fun!

Kids will be jumping in pools while parents and friends will be chatting with ease. Hot dogs, hamburgers and the like will be prepared outside on a hot grill as the sun beats down on everyone.

Visions of cherry pie, apple pie and s’mores swirl in the imagination of the cooks. Will they go the traditional route, or will they surprise their guests with a new variation of the favored treat?

Cherry Slab Pie @ SweetBakedLife

The sound of the hard-working air conditioner will hum in the background as lively music floats through the air. Some will dance, some will swim and all will have a good time.

And every once in a while, one may seek shelter in the cool comfort inside, where sweet treats and freshly prepared side dishes sit happily on the counter tops waiting to be devoured.

The warmth of the day will spill into the evening. Some will attend perfectly timed displays of fireworks where large crowds come together and partake in the celebration, while others will find comfort in making memories of their own by lighting up the night sky with sparkles, loud sounds, and beautiful visions.

Cherry Slab Pie @ SweetBakedLife

Memories of red-white and blue decorations, clothing, food and parades dance in my mind.

It seems like only yesterday that we painstakingly wrapped our bikes with streamers and took part in the community’s annual parade. There were floats, bikes, dogs, and people walking. There was even a beauty queen wearing a sparkly crown and waiving to the spectators as she sat a top a glimmering convertible car.

This is home. This is family. This is old memories being rekindled and new memories being made. This is life. Share and treasure it.

Cherry Slab Pie @ SweetBakedLife

CHERRY SLAB PIE

  • Servings: 10-12
  • Difficulty: easy
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by: Sheila | Sweet Baked Life Cherry Slab Pie @SweetBakedLife

Ingredients:

For the Pie
2 packages Pillsbury refrigerated pie crusts, softened
6 cups frozen cherries, thawed and drained
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
zest of 1/2 lemon
Juice of 1 lemon
Pinch of salt
2 tablespoons heavy cream

For the Glaze
1 cup confectioners sugar
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons milk

Instructions:

Heat your oven to 375 degrees.

After the cherries are thawed and drained, add them to a large bowl along with the sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, lemon zest and salt. Gently stir to combine and set aside.

Open one package of pie crust and unroll the two crusts; placing one on top of the other. Roll them out together on a lightly floured surface to create a rectangle that is slightly larger than your sheet pan. Transfer to a 15×10-inch rimmed baking sheet and gently press down into pan. Then pour the cherry mixture on top of the crust.

Repeat the process for the second package of pie crust. Gently place over the cherries. Pinch the edges of the bottom crust and the top crust together. With a fork, use the tines to crimp the edges, as well prick the top of the crust all over. Brush with heavy cream.

Bake for about 45 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbling. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool – about 1 hour.

For the glaze, add the confectioner’s sugar, lemon juice, and milk. Stir until smooth. You may need to add a bit more lemon or milk until you get the consistency you like. With a spoon drizzle the glaze over the top of the pie. Slice into squares and enjoy!

Cherry Slab Pie @ SweetBakedLife

Now, as this homemade Cherry Slab Pie is eaten with glee, good times will be remembered.

Happy 4th of July! Happy Summer!

Sheila

 

{Recipe inspired by Martha Stewart}

 


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Peanut Caramel Tart

Get ready to sink your teeth into this purely decadent Peanut Caramel Tart!

Peanut Caramel Tart } Sweet Baked Life

Today I’m taking the simple flavors reminiscent of being at a baseball game; peanuts and caramel, to bring you this amazing tart and a little story about my son’s recent experience on his high school baseball team.

Even though high school baseball ended a few weeks ago, I still wanted to celebrate the season, my son and his team. You see, my son had not played baseball in about 6-8 years. But he had a goal. A goal to make in on the high school JV baseball team. With hard work, perseverance, determination, and the right attitude he was able to get a spot on the team.

He had practice six days a week and games three days a week. He was on a mission! The coaches were encouraging and his teammates were supportive! He felt part of something great– it was such a positive experience for him. And over the course of the season, he progressively got better and was actually put into a few games. He was proud to be part of the team and if someone asked him what his position was he happily answered, “Right bench.” Peanut Caramel Tart } Sweet Baked Life

So, if you want to score a home run, you have got to make this to-dye-for Peanut Carmel Tart.

This fabulous layered treat has a soft and fluffy peanut butter base, topped with gooey sweet caramel, salty peanuts and smothered in chocolate ganache! When you cut these into rectangular pieces they’ll remind you of a delicious candy bar — like Snickers!

Now, this tart does not take much training; it requires no driving (unless you need something from the store), you don’t have to sit for hours outside in the heat or cold waiting for the outcome (you will be in the comfort of your kitchen), there is no coach needed (only you), and you will not experience any frustration from an irritating umpire who makes a wrong call (just add more chocolate).

You’ll just easily whip up this dessert – the peanut butter base comes together in a snap. And what could be easier than add with caramel and sprinkling peanuts? And the ganache, well, that is pretty much just melting chocolate with warmed cream! Yep, it’s simple and the outcome is amazing! Truly a grand-slam in my kitchen!

Peanut Caramel Tart } Sweet Baked Life

PEANUT CARAMEL TART

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
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By: Sheila | Sweet Baked Life

Ingredients:

3/4 cup light brown sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 large egg
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup salted peanuts
3/4 cup caramel sauce
1/4 cup heavy cream
4 ounces milk chocolate, chopped

Instructions:

Heat your oven to 350 degrees.

Add the brown sugar, butter and peanut butter to a large mixing bowl of a stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, cream until smooth and fluffy. Add the egg and beat until fully combined.

With the mixer on low-speed, add the flour, baking powder, and salt. The mixture will be soft and crumbly. Pour the mixture into a rectangular tart pan and using your fingers, press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides.

Bake for 20-23 minutes, or until golden brown and set in the middle. Cool completely on a wire rack.

When cool, sprinkle the peanuts over the peanut butter base to create an even layer. Then top with the caramel.

To make the ganache: In a small bowl, add the chopped chocolate and set aside. In another small bowl, add the cream and microwave for about 30-60 seconds, until almost boiling. Pour the cream over the chocolate and let sit for a 3-5 minutes, then stir until smooth. .Cool slightly then pour over the tart. Place tart in refrigerator to allow the ganache to set. When ready to eat, remove from refrigerator, slice and serve.

Peanut Caramel Tart } Sweet Baked Life

Get inspired to make this dreamy Peanut Caramel Tart and the fans will be cheering for more!

Sheila

 

{Recipe inspired from Baking A Moment}

 


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Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

Swing into spring with these bright and tangy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins!

Tangy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins | Sweet Baked Life

With all the beautiful things that spring has to offer — why is the rain still lingering? And what’s up with the wind?

Oh well, I guess the rain and wind are just part of the season changing! But I wish it would just be bright and sunny every day!

So, in honor of spring, and all the things I love about this time of year, especially the sunshine, I thought I would delight you with these pretty and pleasing Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins.

Tangy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins | Sweet Baked Life

Funny story about these sweet, spring muffins — you see, my teen son has been obsessed with Dutch Bros coffee lately. Don’t you know, EVERY ONE goes there? We have two of these shops close to our home and when my husband is traveling, and I have to take my son to school, he begs me to take him to the “IN” coffee shop. I usually give in (sucker!), as it’s much easier for me to drive through to get my coffee, then make it at home (long story here — see this post).

So, one morning while waiting in the line of (1,000) cars to order, my son happened to spy the menu. He immediately asked, “What are muffin tops?” I quickly looked over to make sure I understood his question, just confirming he was talking about food, not someone’s figure (LOL)! And sure enough this special coffee place was selling the tops of muffins! And, as you know, the best part of the muffin is the TOP! Ingenious!

As I explained a “muffin top” to him, he was intrigued, and asked if he could get one for his breakfast. He scarfed it down immediately and told me it was incredible. Oh no, going to this place on a regular basis could cost me a small fortune!

Tangy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins | Sweet Baked Life

Well, that got me to thinking…I  told him that I could make Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins and he could have them for breakfast. He thought that was a good idea, considering it’s a miracle if I can get that boy to eat anything in the morning. The following weekend, I gathered all my ingredients, lemons, poppy seeds, and the basics of flour, sugar and butter and I was happily on my way to bake!

I also decided to double the batch; that way my son could have them for his breakfast, I could take some to work for breakfast or a snack, and I could also give some to my traveling husband — everyone would get a special treat in the morning. And who wouldn’t want sweets for breakfast? No arguments in this family!

These poppy seed scattered muffins hve a dense yet fluffy texture and the combination of sweetness from the sugar and tang from the lemons is perfect! They also have a nice crunch from sugar sprinkled tops! Now, I did not make my muffins as large as the coffee place, but I did get “two thumbs up” from the kiddo! (mom smiling here!)

Tangy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins | Sweet Baked Life

LEMON POPPY SEED MUFFINS

  • Servings: 12-18
  • Difficulty: easy
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By: Sheila | Sweet Baked Life Tangy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins | Sweet Baked Life

Ingredients

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1 cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup milk, room temperature
1 stick unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
2 tablespoons poppy seeds

Instructions

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with baking cups and set aside.

Into a medium bowl, add flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt – whisk until incorporated. In another medium bowl, add the sugar, eggs, lemon zest, lemon juice, and milk and whisk until smooth; then whisk in butter. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients, and stir until just combined. Then fold in the poppy seeds.

Fill muffin cups about 1/2-3/4 full and sprinkle the tops with sugar. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until slightly golden on the top. Cool for about 5 minutes then transfer to a rack and cool completely. Repeat with remaining batter (depending on your muffin tin, this recipe will either yield 12-18 muffins).

(Note, this recipe can be easily doubled.)

Tangy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins | Sweet Baked Life

Tangy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins | Sweet Baked Life

If you are in need to of a quick and easy breakfast, whip up a batch of these Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins — they’re delicious and will satisfy you and your family without having to wait in a long line at the hot coffee spot!

Happy Spring!

Sheila

 

{recipe adapted from Martha Stewart}


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Rocky Road Fudge

Get ready to sink your teeth into sweet squares of Rocky Road Fudge!

Super easy Rocky Road Fudge | Sweet Baked Life

Why do so many people like Rocky Road Fudge? Simply put, it’s darn good! And it’s probably because of the amazing combination of chocolate, marshmallows and walnuts!

My husband is one of those people who LOVES Rocky Road Fudge. It really is his all-time top candy to eat! His favorite place to get this treat is from See’s Candies. In his honest opinion, See’s makes the best candy. Ever. Period. End of discussion. I have to admit, I also like this traditional candy shop. I have been a fan of their confections ever since I was a little girl. I adore the sweet smell of chocolate and of course, the free samples with every visit!

Now it seems, every time my hubby is craving something sweet, he will ask, “Are you going to See’s? And if so, bring me back some Rocky Road Fudge.” And about 99% of the time, it’s a, “nope” from me! That’s because I don’t really like going to the mall — that’s where the closest See’s store is located, and I would rather make the candy than buy it! Go figure!

Super easy Rocky Road Fudge | Sweet Baked Life

And, let me tell you, this recipe is so easy — it only takes 4 ingredients and does not require baking!

Once ready to eat you will be delighted by the texture of smooth, rich chocolate engulfed with fluffy marshmallows and crunchy walnuts. I added lots of marshmallows and walnuts — just the way the hubs likes it!

Be warned, a little piece goes a long way. And, if you have a family who likes sweets (like mine), you may just want to make a double batch! It’s also great for snacking on in the middle of the night to satisfy that sweet craving! It’s also a great gift to share with someone special — that is if you can make it and get it out of the house without letting your family know what you’re up to!

The boys loved this stuff! Winner! I’m already thinking about making more!

Super easy Rocky Road Fudge | Sweet Baked Life

Rocky Road Fudge

By: Sheila | Sweet Baked Life

Ingredients:

1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
1 package (12 oz) milk chocolate chips
4 cups mini marshmallows
2 cups walnut pieces

Instructions:

First, prepare an 8×8-inch baking pan with a coating of non-stick spray. Then line with parchment paper, and repeat with the spray and set aside.

Into a large bowl, add the sweetened condensed milk and chocolate chips. Microwave on high for 1 minute, then stir and microwave for about 30 second intervals until chips are melted. Be sure to take care in melting as not to scorch the chocolate. Stir to ensure chips are melted and smooth.

Add the marshmallows and walnuts, then fold until incorporated. Pour into your prepared pan and smooth to an even layer. Sprinkle a handful of mini marshmallows on top and gently press down. Place in the refrigerator until set, or overnight. Then remove from pan, slice into small squares.

Note, my husband likes a lot of marshmallows and walnuts, you can use less if you prefer. Also, no need to chop the walnuts, when you slice the candy the nuts will be sliced.

Super easy Rocky Road Fudge | Sweet Baked Life

Surprise your family or friends today and whip up a batch of this rich Rocky Road Fudge!

Sheila