Archive for the ‘desserts’ Category


zucchini and green apple salad

August 26, 2022

Without a doubt my favorite new recipe so far this summer! This is beyond “a keeper” into the territory of “one of my favorite salads of all-time”! Happy to share this recipe from Didem Şenol‘s Aegean Flavours, which I read on a wonderful Turkish food blog called Pantry Fun. I’ll include both the original, and the version I made with what I had.


1 large zucchini
1 large sour green apple like Granny Smith
a few spikes of garlic chives and a handful of mint leaves from my garden
half of a small container of goat cheese, crumbled
just a tiny bit of vinegar and olive oil
half a lemon, juiced
a sprinkle of nigella seeds, salt, and pepper

I sliced the zucchini and apple on a mandoline, tore the herbs by hand, and then added the other ingredients and mixed everything together.


2 green courgettes/kabak

1 green apple/yeşil elma

½ bunch of dill/dereotu

1 spring onion/taze soğan

a handful fresh mint leaves/nane

150g lor peyniri OR goat’s cheese/keçi peyniri

20g nigella seeds/çörekotu

sea salt

freshly ground black pepper

juice of half a lemon

100ml vinegar/sirke

extra virgin olive oil/sızma zeytinyağı

Slice the courgettes and apple as finely as possible. I used a mandolin slicer. Place the apple slices in water with lemon to prevent them from discolouring. Finely chop the dill, spring onion, and mint and mix with the courgette, apple and cheese. Add the nigella seeds. Add the vinegar and salt, and then finally the olive oil and mix together. The recipe states that if you add the olive oil first, the salad won’t absorb the vinegar. I would say, go carefully with the vinegar and taste the salad as you add it. You don’t want it to be overpoweringly vinegary.

write-up by Claudia at Pantry Fun – original recipe by Didem Şenol

Absolutely wonderful, fresh, delicious, and healthy. August is the perfect time of year for a no-cook recipe! The goat cheese and lemon are tangy, and the garlic chives and nigella seeds add just enough interesting flavor while still allowing the apple and zucchini taste to shine through. I didn’t have any dill in the house, but I can only imagine that the addition of fresh dill would make this salad almost too delicious to eat. I plan to eat this again and again!

Looking for more healthy plant-based summer recipes? If you like fresh raw salads, fresh fennel and cucumber salad in yogurt sauce is a favorite of mine. Cucumber salads are so budget-friendly and infinitely adaptable, and of course cooling, refreshing, and hydrating in increasingly hotter summers. I love a charred onion and cucumber salad (vegan!) and a Sichuan style cucumber salad and, if you love the mint and lemon in the zucchini and green apple salad, you’ll love this five-minute healthy cucumber, lime, and mint salad.


haupia (vegan hawaiian coconut milk pudding)

May 2, 2022

Creamy vegan dessert? I didn’t believe it, either. I’ve had a lot of vegan desserts, and they have ranged from absolutely delicious (chocolate chip cookie dough bites!!!) to totally…. uh… acceptable (looking at you, vegan sweet potato julius)

I thought deeply creamy, rich, indulgent vegan desserts were a fantasy. I mean, sure, I have made wiggly little coconut and red bean desserts, which are very similar, but they contained a can of dairy milk. Vegan desserts can have amazing flavor and texture, but creamy is usually reserved for dairy. This, however, is fully vegan and fully rich. We’re talking “you can’t finish a whole batch of this even if you try” style indulgent.

I mostly followed the instructions from Onolicious Hawai’i – but learned in a video by born-and-raised-in-Hawaii Relle of Keeping it Relle that haupia made with pasteurized/cooked/canned coconut milk tends to create a more pudding-like rather than “Jell-o jiggler” consistency. Other recipes adjust for this by calling for one extra tablespoon of starch. I’ll try this next time, and report back.

Thanks to Hawaiian acquaintances a2 and Lyrakil for the suggestion and encouragement to cook this.

  • 1 can (full-fat, not light) coconut milk
  • 5 tablespoons cornstarch 
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup water


  1. Mix cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Mix till the cornstarch is completely dissolved. Set aside.
  2. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the whole can of coconut milk and sugar. Whisk together, and keep whisking until it’s just about to boil.
  3. Slowly pour in the cornstarch/water mixture while whisking.
  4. Turn the heat to low, and keep cooking for 10-15 minutes. You’ll want to stay at the stove at this whole time, and whisk pretty frequently. You’ll know the haupia is ready when it gets much thicker (almost “gluey”) and starts to pull away from the side of the saucepan when you whisk.
  5. Pour into a greased (or parchment paper lined) 8×8 pan. Let cool at room temperature for 15 minutes. Then cool in the fridge for 1-2 hours until set. Cut into squares and enjoy chilled

    recipe created by Onolicious Hawai’i – please visit for gorgeous photos, and more info! also check out Keeping it Relle‘s version

Yes, yes, and yes. Simple, fast, doesn’t make a huge mess, not super labor-intensive, and 100% vegan. Would it be absolutely sacrilege to add some minced candied ginger, or a bit of nutmeg? I plan to make this again and again, especially for vegan friends, experimenting with a bit more corn starch for a wiggly jiggly result that’s more true to the authentic Hawaiian style. Very tasty and well worth the minimal effort!

Coconut not your jam? If you’re into vegan or raw desserts, you might enjoy a raw banana cream pie, raw vegan brownie bites (which are extra-tasty mixed into vegan pudding,) or my favorite raw vegan dessert of all time, chocolate chip cookie dough bites!


wiggly little coconut adzuki bean puddings (椰汁紅豆糕)

June 2, 2021

This is really cute. Pink and jiggly. Possibly the only cute food I am willing to enjoy. & it’s delicious. Thanks to Buzz in the Kitchen for this recipe!

100g red Adzuki beans
100g corn starch
400ml coconut milk
100ml evaporated milk
700ml red bean water/water
150g sugar

Soak red beans for an hour and cook in water till the beans are soft (same method as cooking red bean soup). Strain red beans and keep both red beans and water for use later. You can use leftover red bean soup as well.

Mix coconut milk, evaporated milk and corn starch in a bowl and stir well.

Re-heat the red bean water. Switch to low heat, pour in cornstarch mixture and stir in one direction till thicken. Keep stirring to prevent lumps forming. Turn off fire and stir in the red beans.

Pour mixture into a mold/baking tray that has been rinsed with cold water. Let it cool and refrigerate for 2-3 hours. Invert pudding onto a plate, cut and serve.

recipe by Buzz in the Kitchen

I really can’t say enough good things about this pudding. It’s so easy! So fast once your beans are cooked! It’s sweet, but not cloying. The Adzuki beans add texture and a savory note to the pudding. The coconut flavor is strong. I was expecting cleanup to be a nightmare due to the corn starch, but my saucepan came clean pretty quickly. The thickening process took a bit longer than I was expecting, but totally worth the time spent.

It looked a little clumpy when it was done, but it came out smooth with an almost Jello-like consistency. I poured the finished pudding into small glass containers instead of one large pan like Mummy B and I definitely recommend this method if you plan to eat this throughout the week. It’s really delightful turning the little individual puddings upside-down onto a plate to admire the wiggliness.

Again, I am not a “cute foods” person. I find most “cute” food, like lunches cut to look like cartoon characters, somewhere closer to creepy. There is, however, no denying that the cuteness is inherent in the food, and is not a reflection on the observer. Want to fight about it? I do! Please fight me so I can feel alive again.

Thank you again to Buzz in the Kitchen for this totally delightful recipe. Definitely going into my rotation stack.


chewy banana oatmeal cookies

March 21, 2021

Wow, these cookies are CHEWY! We’re talking super-chewy. As in, lots of old-fashioned oats, not a lot of flour. If you’re looking for a healthier cookie (not TOO healthy; it’s still got butter) with lots and lots of fiber, and something that still tastes decent when you cut the sugar, you’re in business with these cookies.

It’s also a cool old-timey recipe!

  • 3/4 cup salted butter, softened (I used unsalted, though – if you do, too, be sure to add some salt)
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed (I cut the sugar by quite a bit, due to my ulcers, but I’d recommend the original quantity of sugar if your doctor didn’t tell you otherwise)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup mashed bananas
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 3 cups old fashioned oats

1. Mix together butter, brown sugar, sugar, egg, vanilla extract and mashed bananas until well combined.
2. Add flour, cinnamon, baking soda, cloves and cornstarch and mix until combined.
3. Stir in oats.
4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
5. Spoon tablespoons of dough onto a greased cookie sheet (or cover with parchment paper – that’s what the original recipe recommends.) Flatten dough a little bit, into thick discs. They will spread a little when baked.
6. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until edges just start to golden.
7. Remove from oven and cool on cookie sheet for 3-4 minutes, then move to cooling rack to finish cooling.

original recipe from life, love, and sugar‘s grandmother, from West Virginia, and adapted by yours truly, the ulcer enby friedsig

These were the first cookies I made since the holes appeared in my digestive system. Since this recipe calls for twice as much oats as flour, you know these are VERY chewy. I wanted something that incorporated this (very overripe) banana I let go too far. Due to this, the banana flavor was cloying, and almost artificial tasting, so I’d recommend using a banana that hasn’t gone all the way black. The cookies are good. I would definitely like them better if I had followed the recipe and used all that sugar, haha. If you like a super-chewy cookie with a very different vibe than your everyday oatmeal cookies, give this one a whirl! Much healthier than all my favorite cookies, like my penpal Chris’ favorite gingersnaps, and these highly forbidden blueberry and dark chocolate oatmeal cookies.


total failure cinnamon mug cake

March 8, 2021

Did you ever make a recipe that was so disgusting you were actually impressed with how bad it was?

The texture was absolutely heartbreaking.

The taste was bad, don’t get me wrong. But the texture was really just impressively bad.

The top and outer edges, fully cooked, took on a leathery, almost rubbery consistency. To the best of my recollection, real cake is light and fluffy, and does not bounce back to shape when you squish it with a spoon or knife. The cooked parts of this “cake” bounce back to shape like a rubber ball. The center of the cake was absolutely the same texture as gelatin, and extremely greasy. Was the outer edge overcooked and the middle just underdone? No part of this cake seemed to be cooked the right amount.

The taste was mostly just melted butter.

If the adjectives you look for in cake include “rubbery,” “like Jell-o but worse,” and “greasy” – this is the recipe for you!

I love to experiment with new recipes, so this isn’t my first (or fiftieth) kitchen disaster. But I think this is the most 2020/2021 recipe I’ve ever seen. It’s really just unpleasant.


  • 3 tablespoon All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 tablespoon Brown Sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon Cinnamon Powder
  • ¼ teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 3 tablespoon Milk
  • 3 tablespoon Melted Butter
  • ½ teaspoon Vanilla Extract


  • Whisk together flour, sugar, cinnamon powder, and baking powder in a bowl.
  • Stir in milk, butter, and vanilla extract until smooth.
  • Pour the batter into a microwave-safe mug, leaving space from the top to keep the batter from overflowing as it cooks.
  • Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes.

recipe by create yum (misnomer?)

Sorry, Kim. This is not how to create yum. It’s been nearly two years since I had the opportunity to add a recipe to my NOPE tag – and no, these aren’t as gross as the glue-balls or the soup-balls. With that 1:1 ratio of flour to butter, you know this cake is more delicious than stale bread. But it is not a good cake, and you should not eat it.

For a dessert that you don’t resent or regret, can I recommend a banana cream pie, a ginger snap cookie, or a lemon cake? Maybe you’d prefer one of my other 90+ dessert recipes? Or maybe you want to punish someone with a disgusting cake, in which case, oh baby, do I have a mug cake for you!


cornflour pancakes with apple compote

September 9, 2020

Did you ever crave something you’ve never eaten before?

I couldn’t stop thinking about healthy, fluffy buckwheat pancakes with apple compote… combined with a corn griddle cake/pancake hybrid, thanks to photos of a cheesy cornbread waffle.

Here’s what I did.


CORN FLOUR PANCAKES version one (makes three large pancakes)

1 c all-purpose flour (or gluten-free all-purpose flour blend)
1/2 c corn flour
1/2 Tablespoon baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt

2 eggs
1.5 c. plain kefir, yogurt, buttermilk, or milk

recipe adapted from some buckwheat pancake recipe


1/2 c corn flour
1/2 c all purpose flour
1.5T. sugar
0.5 T. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
1 egg
1/2 c. (about a cup) plain kefir, yogurt, buttermilk, or milk
1/8 c. veg oil

recipe by cook fast eat well



Sliced a few apples, and added a few tablespoons of water, a sweetener like honey, a sprinkle of salt, and a few whole spices.

Of course, you can substitute anything sweet for the honey, like sugar, maple syrup, date syrup, sweetened molasses, or anything similar.

I chose star anise, cloves, and Chinese licorice. For the sweetener, I used a few chopsticks’ worth of ginger honey (it’s crystallized and the mouth of the jar is too narrow for a spoon!)

Heat it on medium until hot, and then simmer on low heat, stirring often if you used a lot of sweetener, or stirring occasionally if you went with a low-sugar compote.

from epicurious


PANCAKES #1, August 2020: These corn flour pancakes are not as “corny” as I was picturing. Not sure I would have known these used masa by the flavor or appearance alone. They looked like your average, everyday pancakes. I adapted a healthy buckwheat pancake recipe, and the extra egg did make these pancakes a little more dense than fluffy. It tasted mostly of egg. I think next time I will use a recipe that’s a little more similar to cornbread, with a little oil, and less egg.

If you’re looking for a greasy cornbread, this won’t cut it for you.

If you just want a simple pancake recipe to switch up your Sunday mornings – here it is!

PANCAKES #2, September 2020: Cook Fast Eat Well made a mistake with this. The original recipe calls for a cup of cornmeal, a cup of all-purpose flour, and a cup of milk. Obviously, in retrospect, this isn’t nearly enough liquid for pancake batter. I added in more kefir slowly, and stopped when the consistency looked about right. Probably doubled the original amount. These pancakes are super fluffy. The oil really helps the consistency, and they look more delicious, too, with that amazing crispy crust around the edge. However, again, these are not heavy, greasy cornbread. If you want a breakfast pancake, this is a great choice. My kefir is extremely bitter, so if you have old, sour kefir, make sure to add something with a strong flavor, like cinnamon, or more sugar. These are definitely the better of the two pancakes.

COMPOTE: The compote, of course, was pretty good. The spices added a really interesting flavor. Definitely a recommended way to get your seasonal produce!


gajar halwa (Indian carrot pudding)

November 15, 2019

It’s dessert weather. If you want something to trick your loved ones into eating vegetables with something sweet and creamy and delicious, this is the ticket! Thanks to veg recipes of India for this one! If you like a soft, rich dessert that warms you from the inside, you’ll love this dessert!


8 to 9 medium tender juicy carrots or 650 grams (gajar) – yields approx 4 to 4.5 cups grated carrots
4 cups full fat organic milk
4 tablespoons ghee (clarified butter)
10 to 12 tablespoons regular sugar or organic unrefined cane sugar OR 180 to 190 grams sugar – add as required
5 to 6 green cardamom (choti elaichi) – powdered finely in a mortar-pestle or about ⅓ to 1 teaspoon cardamom powder
10 to 12 whole cashews (kaju) – chopped
10 to 12 almonds – sliced or chopped
2 tablespoons golden raisins (kishmish)
1 pinch saffron strands (kesar) – optional

combine milk with rinsed, peeled, grated carrots.

simmer and stir until milk has reduced and become thick (might be a while)

add ghee, sugar, and cardamom – continue to simmer and stir

add the rest of the ingredients when the pudding has reduced quite a bit, and continue simmering until consistency is thick.


recipe by Dassana of veg recipes of India


I had a hard time eating the whole batch myself, so make sure you cut the recipe if you’re cooking for one, because this makes a lot of dessert! I like the consistency. It’s not exactly smooth like an American pudding, but not chewy like a British pudding, either. This is definitely its own thing! Definitely recommended.


hot and sweet plum chutney

August 15, 2019

Nigel Slater’s plum chutney is just what plum season needs. If plum and mustard sounds like a weird combination, think of it kind of like a peach salsa – sour, sweet, hot, and flavorful.

1 1/2 pounds plums
12 ounces onions
a generous 3/4 cup raisins
1 cup light muscovado sugar (I cut this quite a bit)
1/2 teaspoon crushed dried chile (or more if you like it hot!)
1 teaspoon salt (I cut this by at least half and it was fine)
2 teaspoons yellow mustard seeds
2/3 cup cider vinegar
2/3 cup malt vinegar
1 cinnamon stick

1. Halve the plums and discard the pits. Peel and coarsely chop the onions. Put the fruit and onions into a large stainless steel or enameled pan with the raisins, sugar, chile, salt, mustard seeds, vinegars, and cinnamon stick. Bring to a boil, turn down the heat, and leave to simmer for an hour, giving the occasional stir to reduce the risk of the chutney sticking.

2. Spoon into sterilized jars and seal.


from Nigel Slater via seriouseats

Thought it was just okay… until the next day. After sitting in the fridge for 24 hours, the flavors melded together and I ended up eating it on everything from eggs to chicken. Adds that perfect kick of flavor to almost anything. Next time, I’ll add more chili and turn it into more of a hot sauce! I’d also like to try it blended, although I’m not sure you can still call it chutney without the chunky-but-mushy texture. Y’all know I still prefer a fermented condiment, like cortido, or a Chinese-style hot chili oil, but this is among my favorite vinegar-based condiments. If you like chutney, check out my favorite peanut mint chutney, or this traditional tomato chutney.

Substitutions? I chose some very acidic plums, but it still didn’t need the whole cup of sugar. If you’re using a sweeter fruit, you might not need more than a pinch of sugar. I couldn’t find malt vinegar, so I used about a cup of apple cider vinegar with a splash of unseasoned rice vinegar. & there’s no way this small batch of chutney needs an entire teaspoon of salt. Otherwise, followed it surprisingly closely, and – yes – I recommend it!


apricot sage cornmeal cookies

June 10, 2019

Do you like a different kind of cookie? There’s no chance someone else will show up to the potluck with this one!

•1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
•3/4 cup sugar
•1 large egg
•3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
•1/2 teaspoon baking soda
•1/4 cup chopped dried apricots
•2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage leaves (see notes)
•1/2 cup cornmeal
•1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4t salt

Preheat oven to 350°F. and lightly grease 2 baking sheets.

In a bowl whisk together butter, sugar, and egg until smooth. Sift in flour and baking soda and add apricots, sage, cornmeal, and salt, stirring until combined.
Drop dough (no larger than tablespoons) about 1 inch apart onto baking sheets and bake in batches in middle of oven 10 minutes, or until pale golden. Cool cookies on sheets 2 minutes and transfer to a rack to cool.


by Gourmet magazine


Honestly, I wouldn’t call these “savory cookies”. 3/4c flour to 3/4c sugar – they are just as sweet as you are imagining.

Do not make these cookies very large like I did, or they’ll be a bit raw in the middle when the outer edges are perfectly crispy. The second batch (smaller cookies) turned out crispy and evenly baked. I used dry sage powder instead of fresh sage leaves, and next time I will try to find another substitution, because the dry sage was too subtle. Maybe apricot-tarragon next time? I added pecans because I was craving nuts, and so they turned out to be apricot-pecan cookies instead of sage. Pecan meal would be good with this sandy texture. I like that this recipe makes just a small number of cookies. I also like the addition of cornmeal. It tastes like the crispy crust on the edges of a sweet cornbread. It isn’t revelatory, but it’s a nice change of pace. (Use very fine powder cornmeal; don’t be like the woman in the review who complained that the coarse cornmeal she used nearly broke her teeth.) Overall, this recipe isn’t my favorite cookie, but I definitely plan to make it again with a few tweaks.


sweet potato julius (orange creamsicle smoothie)

February 25, 2019

1 cup almond milk or other milk
1 medium sweet potato, baked whole
2 medium oranges, peeled
1 Medjool date, or more to taste, pitted
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Dash of sea salt
Dash of ground cinnamon

blend everything on a high/smoothie setting; serve with ice


recipe adapted by friedsig from mckel hill via epicurious


Much closer to liquid sweet potato pie than an orange julius. This recipe was definitely strange. I used the one orange the recipe called for, but the sweet potato flavor far overwhelmed the orange flavor. Next time, I’ll use 2 oranges. The recipe called for 1 t vanilla, but I used 1/2t. The vanilla flavor was detectable but maybe a little too subtle. I think next time I’ll use 3/4t. It was sweet enough without extra honey or other sweetener. I was hoping for a creamsicle, but instead it tasted like a sweet potato pie smoothie. I definitely didn’t hate it, but didn’t love it, either. A good use for leftover baked sweet potatoes. I’ll make it again some time that I am craving a smoothie in the middle of the winter when the only ripe fruit are citrus.