Category Archives: Dessert

maple walnut brittle

Maple Syrup-Sweetened Treats Print

So, I have something a little different for you with this post; I’ve been busy gathering an amazing collection of maple syrup-sweetened treats that I thought you all might want to check out and try some time. Of course, if you’ve been following Dreaming Dessert for a while, you’ll have noticed that I use maple sugar or maple syrup almost exclusively to sweetened the desserts and treats I bring to you. In my wanderings on the net and Pinterest, I discovered such a selection of incredible maple sweetened treats that I had a heck of a time choosing from all of the awesome-looking options; the photography is so amazing, I want to eat them off the screen!

Maple Apple Breakfast Crisp
Maple Apple Breakfast Crisp from Celebrating Sweets

maple walnut brittle
Maple Walnut Brittle at Seasons and Suppers

Maple Syrup-Sweetened Treats
Pumplin Spice Granola from Gimme Some Oven

This granola would be oh so good over some vanilla yogurt! Mmmmm….

maple sweetened apple butter
Slow Cooker Maple Sweetened Apple Butter at An Oregon Cottage


Coconut Oil Peanut Butter Fudge from The Honor System

This fudge is vegan and gluten free. That means there’s no calories, right? 😉

I hope you find this selection of maple syrup-sweetened treats as enticing and irresistible as I do!
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Maple Baked Pears with Toasted Pecans

Maple Baked Pears with Toasted Pecans Print

In keeping with the healthful dessert eating trend I began at the first of the year, (I’m not sure that once really creates a “trend”, but bear with me…), I thought you all might want to try these Maple Baked Pears with Toasted Pecans. They’re soooo easy! There’s all of five ingredients in this baked-until-tender, maple syrup-sweetened, toasty pecan, pear dessert. They’re perfect for a weeknight dessert craving without carrying all of that guilt baggage into the next day. Top these pears with a dollop of vanilla yogurt, lightly-sweetened whipped cream or creme fraiche, (yeah, it’s a bit of a splurge…) and you have a perfect dinner party dessert. I’ve reduced the amount of maple syrup and vanilla from the original recipe, which you can find over at the delightful blog, Sally’s Baking Addiction.

Maple Baked Pears and Toasted Pecans

pear still life

Ingredients

  • 4 Anjou pears
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup pecans, coarsely chopped, lightly toasted*

Directions

Preheat oven to 375°F

  1. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment or foil.
  2. Cut pears in half, then trim a small, thin slice off the other side so the pears won’t tip over when placed on the baking sheet. Use a melon baller or teaspoon to scoop out the seeds.
  3. Place pears, facing up, on the baking sheet. Sprinkle with cinnamon.
  4. Mix the maple syrup and vanilla extract together in a small bowl. Drizzle all but 2 tablespoons over the pears, reserving remaining syrup for after the pears are baked.
  5. Bake pears for 30 minutes or until soft (test with a fork). Remove from the oven and immediately drizzle with the remaining maple-vanilla syrup mixture. Sprinkle with toasted pecans and serve warm.
NOTE: *To toast pecans: Spread 1/2 cup pecans on an ungreased, rimmed baking sheet. Bake in a 350°F oven for 4-5 minutes (The nuts will have just started to brown. Watch carefully to insure that the nuts don’t burn.)

If you have any leftovers, they’ll keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Serves: 8

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pumpkin creme brulee

Pumpkin Creme Brulee Print

Thanksgiving is nearly upon us! How did that even happen?! Maybe it’s just me, but it seems like once we get past September, the year picks up some serious momentum! If you’ve been feeling a sense of urgency about what to prepare for the dessert end of things on the Turkey Day table, I think I have a solution for you with this Pumpkin Creme Brulee.

Like all creme brulees, this one is creamy-smooth with that to-die-for crackly sugar topping that creme brulee fans love, but it’s the maple pumpkin deliciousness that brings this one to a new level of yum! What’s so great about this dessert is that it really is pretty simple to prepare and you can make it ahead of time so it’s one less thing to deal with and take up precious oven time on the big day. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

pumpkin-cream-brulee

pumpkin-cream-brulee

Ingredients

  • 8 egg yolks
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/3 vanilla bean, split
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup maple sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
Preheat oven to 325ºF

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, mix egg yolks with a hand mixer until frothy.
  2. Heat about 6 cups of water to boiling. (This will be poured into the pan that will hold the creme-filled ramekins).
  3. Add cream to a medium pan and scrape vanilla bean seeds into the cream. Stir in maple syrup and 1/4 c. maple sugar, and turn on heat to med-high. Stir constantly, bring cream to a simmer. Remove from heat.
  4. Very slowly whisk some (a few tablespoons at a time) of the hot cream into the egg (until the mixture is lukewarm), then whisk in the remainder of the cream.
  5. Add the rest of the ingredients (except for the 2 tablespoons maple sugar) and whisk until combined. Place ramekins into a large pan (a 13 x 19 cake pan should be fine) and pour mixture into your ramekins. Carefully fill the pan half full with hot water. This will maintain a good moisture level inside the oven while the custard is baking.
  6. Bake until the custards set, 55-60 min. Test the custards for doneness by shaking them lightly; if they don’t jiggle in the middle, they’re done. Place them in the fridge for a couple of hours to chill.
  7. To brûler your custards, sprinkle 1/2 tablespoon maple sugar on the tops of each chilled custard and using a cooking torch, carefully and slowly heat the sugar until it hardens. You can also put them under a broiler but watch them very carefully so they don’t burn, turning often.
  8. Pop them back into the fridge to chill for an hour or so longer.
Serves: 4

Barely adapted from: Jenn Cuisine

NOTE: The maple sugar that you sprinkle on top of the custards will burn more easily than regular granulated sugar, so if you’d rather not take the extra time it requires to more slowly brulee the maple sugar, then go ahead and use superfine white sugar in the same quantity.

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Peach Shortcake

Peach Shortcake Print

The sweet season of summer is so short that I’m doing my level best to get every last drop out of it; and that includes eating as many old and new favorite summertime treats as I can jam into these few brief months. And I just had to fit this Peach Shortcake recipe in before all of the wonderful, juicy peaches are past their peak and can no longer be found in the grocery stores. The original recipe comes from a Cook’s Illustrated cookbook, but I changed up the shortcakes quite a bit; they’re more of a “sturdy” scone than the usual shortcake – just a personal preference that I hope you like too. Here’s to enjoying all of summer’s delights!

Peach Shortcakes

Peach Shortcakes

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs. firm, ripe peaches, peeled, pitted and sliced ¼-inch thick, divided
  • 6 tbsp. maple sugar, divided
  • 2 tbsp. peach schnapps
  • 2 cups flour
  • ¼ cup maple sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut in small cubes
  • 2/3 cup sour cream or buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • ⅛ tsp. almond extract

Directions

Preheat oven to 400⁰F
    For the fruit:
  1. To prepare the fruit, combine about three quarters of the peach slices in a large bowl with the maple sugar. Toss to combine and let stand 30 minutes. Combine the remaining peaches, remaining sugar, and peach schnapps in a medium microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high until the peaches are bubbly, about 90 seconds, stirring a couple of times during cooking. Crush the peaches with a potato masher. Let stand 30 minutes.
  2. For the shortcake:
  3. Combine dry ingredients (through salt) in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times until blended. Add in cubes of butter and pulse until butter looks like small pebbles in the flour mixture, about 30 seconds.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, whisk sour cream, egg and vanilla together until thoroughly combined; pour this mixture in a steady stream into the flour-butter mix in the processor; stop when the dough begins to come away from the sides of the processor and forms a loose ball.
  5. Turn the dough out onto a generously floured counter or large board, turning and kneading the dough 20-25 times.
  6. Scoop dough with a greased, 1/3 cup measuring cup and place 1 1/2” apart on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  7. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 13-15 minutes or until lightly golden brown.
  8. For the whipped cream:
  9. Add the heavy cream and sugar to a chilled bowl of an electric mixer; mix on medium-high until stiff peaks form. Blend in the almond extract.
  10. To assemble:
  11. Split each biscuit and place the bottom half on a serving plate. Spoon a few tablespoons of the crushed peach mixture over the biscuit, then top with some of the peach slices and a dollop or two of whipped cream. Place remaining half of biscuit on top.
Serves: 6

Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated, August 2008

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Chocolate Flourless Torte Print

Ah, the holiday of love! Hearts and flowers and above all….chocolate! Smooth, delicious, and richly decadent don’t even come close to describing this Chocolate Flourless Torte! I’m just going to say it right now: “This is my all time favorite dessert that I’ve posted so far on Dreaming Dessert!” And that is no small thing either, ‘cuz I like a whole lot of what I’ve shared on this site. But this…this, I L.O.V.E. Those of us bakers who are also confirmed chocoholics have a certain kitchen cred when it comes to recommending a chocolate dessert and this one couldn’t come more highly touted. I don’t want you to be intimidated by this dessert either; despite it’s appearance, it’s really a breeze to make. I hope you fall in love with this divine chocolate torte, as I did! Happy Valentines!

Chcolate Flourless Torte

Chcolate Flourless Torte

Ingredients

    For the torte
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup maple sugar or ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 9 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced
  • 2 ¼ cups bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips (Guittard or other premium brand)
  • 6 large eggs
  • For the ganache
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 cup bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips

Directions

Preheat oven to 350°F

    For the torte:
  1. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9-inch-diameter springform pan. Line bottom of pan with parchment round; butter parchment thoroughly.
  2. Wrap 2 layers of heavy-duty foil around outside of pan, crimping it close to the sides of the pan, bring foil to top of rim.
  3. Combine 1 cup water and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Simmer 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. Melt butter in large saucepan over low heat. Add chocolate and whisk until completely smooth. Whisk sugar syrup into chocolate. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool.
  5. Add eggs to chocolate mixture and whisk until well blended.
  6. Pour batter into prepared pan. Place cake pan in a large, 3” deep oven-safe skillet or roasting pan. Carefully add hot water to the skillet or pan so it comes halfway up sides of the foil-wrapped cake pan.
  7. On the center oven rack, bake cake until the middle no longer moves when pan is gently shaken, about 40 minutes. Check at 35 minutes.
  8. Remove cake from water bath; transfer to a cooling rack. Cool in pan to room temperature.
  9. For the ganache:
  10. In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring whipping cream to a simmer. Remove from heat.
  11. Add chocolate and whisk until smooth and creamy. Pour over top of cake still in pan. Gently shake pan to distribute ganache evenly over top of cake.
  12. Refrigerate cake in pan until ganache is firm.
  13. Serves: 16

    Adapted from: Simply So Good

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Grilled Pound Cake With Berries

Grilled Pound Cake with Berries Print

Who says yummy desserts have to take hours to prepare? Not me, of course, because I promised you delicious and easy, and with Grilled Pound Cake with Berries, that is what you get. The sugars in the pound cake are brought out by the heat of grilling which helps to balance the tart lemon curd and tangy berries, but I don’t think this dessert is really complete until you top it with sweetened whipped cream. Of course, it’s up to you… Just sayin’… If you want to modify this recipe, try a different fruit curd (raspberry is nice) – or change out the fruit to strawberries and blackberries. Summer’s heat is still going strong so this no-bake treat is a nice one to have in the “box”. If you try this, let me know what you think.  Enjoy!

Grilled pound cake with lemon curd & berries

Grilled pound cake with lemon curd & berries

Ingredients

  • 1/2 of a Sarah Lee pound cake, cut in 1-inch slices (4 slices)
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 cup lemon curd
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • Sweetened whipped cream, optional (but recommended)

Directions

Preheat grill to 400ºF

  1. Spread butter on both sides of each slice of pound cake.
  2. Using indirect heat, grill the slices for 4-5 minutes per side or until there are medium-brown grill marks on the cake. Be careful that they don’t burn.
  3. Place each piece of pound cake on a small plate; spread ¼ cup of lemon curd on each, then sprinkle with blueberries and raspberries. Spoon or pipe whipped cream on top.
Serves: 4
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