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raspberry muffins

it’s raspberry season folks. the last glorious summer hurrah before fall really kicks in.

time to celebrate with some seriously good muffins.

Raspberry Streusel Muffins

makes 12

2/3 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
4 tbsp butter, cold

2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3 tbsp butter, melted and cooled
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a standard muffin tin with 12 paper liners.

In a small bowl, make the streusel. Stir together all dry ingredients, then cut the butter into small pieces and add to flour mixture. Rub in butter thoroughly until mixture is very fine and sandy. Pick up the streusel mixture and squeeze it in your hand to form small clumps, repeating until streusel appears to have a much coarser texture. Set aside.

Next, make the muffin batter. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
In a large bowl, stir together melted butter, sugar and egg until well combined. Stir in half the flour mixture, followed by the buttermilk, vanilla and almond extracts. Stir in remaining flour mixture, mixing just until the dry ingredients are incorporated. Fold in raspberries (toss frozen berries in 2 tsp of flour to keep them from “bleeding” into the muffin batter).
Divide muffin batter evenly into prepared baking cups. Cups will be fairly full. Divide streusel mixture over the muffins (be generous, and don’t worry if some of the streusel doesn’t seem to “stick”)

Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.
Transfer muffins to a wire rack to cool completely. Cooled muffins can be stored in an airtight container. i took a bite to show you how delightful they look inside and all of a sudden….oops. yum yum yum. you’re going to want to make these. now.

recipe from baking bites

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sriracha bread

my husband puts sriracha on everything. and i mean everything.

if you have no clue what i am talking about, sriracha is a thai chili hot sauce.

i found this recipe and had so much fun making it. i’ve never really made bread before so there was a serious thrill every time i checked it only to see it had doubled in size multiple times. i mean it people, THRILL.

recipe from epicurious 


1 3/4 cups whole milk

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 tablespoons sugar

1 (1/4-ounce) package instant dry yeast

4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading

Vegetable oil or nonstick cooking spray, as needed

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/4 cup Sriracha

1 cup (4 ounces) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, warm the milk, butter, and sugar, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat as soon as the butter melts. The liquid should be lukewarm to the touch, around 100°F. Allow it to cool to that temperature if necessary. Sprinkle the yeast over the milk mixture and let sit for 10 minutes to proof. After about 10 minutes, there should be a layer of froth on the surface of the mixture, which signifies that the yeast is viable and ready to sacrifice its own life in the name of good bread.

In a large bowl, mix together the flour and salt. Pour the milk and yeast mixture into the bowl of flour and mix with a wooden spoon until a soft, ragged mixture is formed. Transfer the dough to a well-floured work surface and knead for 1 minute. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover with a kitchen towel, and allow it to rest, undisturbed for 20 minutes.

After its rest, turn the dough back out onto the well-floured work surface and knead until a soft, elastic dough results, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer the dough once more to the lightly oiled bowl, cover, and allow it to rest in a warm area of the house until doubled in size, about 2 hours.

Transfer the dough to the work surface and, using your hands, gently flatten into a 9-inch-wide rectangle. Spread the Sriracha over the dough, leaving a 1-inch border around the outside edges free of Sriracha. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the Sriracha, respecting the same border. It is this border that allows the dough to seal properly in the next step.

Roll the dough up tightly, lengthwise, similar to making a jelly roll. Press down on the last roll to seal and make a seam. Lightly oil a 9 by 5-inch loaf pan. Put the dough, seam side down, into the pan. Cover and return to the warm spot until the dough has again doubled in size and is cresting over the top of the pan, 2 to 2 1/2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Just before baking, make a 1/4-inch-deep slit down the center of the loaf using a serrated knife. Place the loaf pan on the center rack of the oven. Spray the inside walls of the oven and the top of the loaf with a generous misting of water to create steam. Quickly close the oven door and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the loaf from the pan and continue baking for an additional 10 to 15 minutes. The bottom of the loaf should sound hollow when tapped. Let the bread cool completely on a cooling rack before slicing for best results. Store refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

while i am not a big fan of spice, and this is definitely hot, it is delish. perfect for making a boring sandwich a lot more interesting!

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ikea stool diy

i am thankful for ikea. they helped us furnish our home without stealing all of our money.

one of the most useful purchases we made was this stool for $15.

after seeing this one that sells for $100…

i decided to perk mine up a bit.

i used acrylic paint and painters tape.  it worked beautifully! follow up with a coat of polyurethane varnish to keep the surface intact.

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dutch vanilla cheesecake.

happy labor day!

have some cheesecake.

dutch vanilla cheesecake


1 1/4 cups crushed honey graham crackers

1/4 cup melted butter

mix together in small bowl until well combined.  press crumb mixture evenly on the bottom of a 9×13 springform pan. set aside.

vanilla filling

24 oz cream cheese

2/3 cup sugar

1/2 cup whipping cream

5 tsp cornstarch

4 eggs

1 egg yolk

4 tsp vanilla extract [or 1/4 cup vanilla liqueur + 2 tsp vanilla extract]

cherry topping (optional)

in a large bowl combine cream cheese, sugar, whipping cream, and cornstarch. beat with an electric mixer until smooth. add eggs and egg yolk one at a time beating well after each addition. beat in vanilla. pour cream cheese mixture over crust.

bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. lower the temperature to 200 degrees and bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until the center no longer looks wet or shiny. remove the cake from the oven and run the knife around the inside edge of the pan. chill, uncovered.