How do you like your S’more?

 Posted by at 2:03 pm on August 10, 2015  No Responses »
Aug 102015

Today is National S’more Day! I know. Who really needs a reason to celebrate S’mores, but why not. We’ve been enjoying them all summer, and I thought I’d share some of our favorite combinations so far.


Ultimate Peanut Butter- Peanut Butter Cookies + Marshmallow + Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup


Salty Caramel- BIG Ritz + Ghiradelli Chocolate Caramel square + Marshmallow


The Grasshopper- Chocolate graham cracker + Ghiradelli Mint Chocolate Square + Marshmallow

Strawberry & Banana- Graham cracker + Marshmallow + Dark chocolate + Strawberry slice + Banana slice

Double Dark chocolate- Chocolate chip cookies + dark chocolate + marshmallow

Other things I want to add:


Dulce de Leche


The possibilities are endless. What’s your favorite combo?


Here’s some links to my favorite S’more recipes from the past. Dreaming about everything S’more. Happy S’more making!

IMG_8349  IMG_8416  IMG_8418

Her first golden marshmallow. We’ve been practicing A LOT!

Dark Chocolate Chip S’more Cookie

S’more Scones

S’more Cupcake from 101 Gourmet Cupcakes



Happy National Sugar Cookie Day!

 Posted by at 1:45 pm on July 9, 2015  No Responses »
Jul 092015

My world has been crazy. Buying and moving to a new house, and getting the old house ready for new tenants. There hasn’t been much time for baking. But things are about to change. I have a dream kitchen and I’m so ready to create again.

I’m craving something sweet and raspberries are just starting to ripen on the vine. So, naturally I’m going to be putting the two together into an amazing cookie.

My sugar cookie recipe can be found (here). Just top the cooled cookies with the sour cream butter cream frosting and fresh raspberries.


And an easy twist to my butter cream frosting.

Sour Cream Butter Cream frosting

1/2 cup sour cream

1/2 cup soft butter

1 tsp vanilla extract

3 3/4 cup powdered sugar

Cream together the butter and the sour cream, adding the vanilla once the mixture is smooth. Add the powdered sugar slowly, stopping the mixer before each addition. Cream together on medium speed for 2-3 minutes or light and fluffy. Top your sugar cookie with the frosting and then add the fresh raspberries. Yum.


Happy baking!

Summer Berry Pavlova with Lemon Curd

 Posted by at 3:58 pm on May 28, 2015  1 Response »
May 282015

Today on Studio 5, I’m sharing an easy Pavlova recipe. Pavlova is a beautiful, light meringue dessert typically topped with fruit and sweetened whipped cream. There are two countries that claim it’s origin, Russia and Australia. And since I’m all about upping the flavor profile, I added a creamy lemon curd and tossed my fruit in a lemon marmalade to give it that glossy finish that we all crave and love. Plus the fruit had a little more lemon flavor with the homemade marmalade. Perfection on a plate.

You can watch the segment here:



Summer Berry Pavlova with Lemon Curd

4 egg whites, separated at room temperature

1 cup sugar

2 tsp. cornstarch or all purpose flour

1 tsp. white vinegar

1 tsp. vanilla extract (optional)

Fresh seasonal fruit

Whipped cream, sweetened

Lemon Curd (below)

Whisk together the egg whites until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. You are looking for soft peaks, and a glossy look to the egg whites.


While the egg whites are mixing, gently pour the sugar in the bowl, in a steady stream until it’s combined well, another 2 minutes. Stop your mixer and add the cornstarch (or flour) vinegar and vanilla (optional).

Gently fold the cornstarch (or flour) vinegar and vanilla (optional) into the egg whites with a rubber spatula without deflating.

Trace a 9”circle using a pie plate on parchment paper, turning the paper upside down on a cookie sheet so the Pavlova doesn’t have a pencil or pen mark. Spread the egg whites gently inside the circle, with and place in the Pavlova in a 180 degree preheated oven for 90 minutes.


Turn the oven off and let the Pavlova cool to room temperature. Approx 1 hour. Top with cooled lemon curd, whipped cream and berries.

*Tips: Adding the vanilla will turn your egg whiles a pale brown. Vanilla is not necessary in the recipe. Pavlova does not travel well, it will flatten out and loose it fullness. Older egg whites are best. Separate your egg whites and keep them in a sealed container for about a week. Then make the recipe.

Lemon Curd

6 egg yolks

1/2 cup sugar

1 tsp. cornstarch

Juice and zest of 2 medium lemons

6 tbsp. cold butter

In a medium sauce pan, combine egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch juice and lemon zest. Whisk together over medium heat, until sauce comes to a simmer. Stir for 1 minute, then remove from the heat and add butter, whisking until incorporated one tbsp. at a time. Set aside and chill until Pavlova is cooled and you are ready to serve.


The perks of making two recipes? Leaving one for the awesome crew and one for me! Just kidding. I shared with my family.

And then there’s always as I was leaving KSL Broadcast House, I literally came close to taking out the amazing Sheri Dew (Former counselor in the General Relief Society Presidency of the LDS Church and CEO of Deseret Book) when I exited the elevators. Glad she was unmarked by the glorious Pavlova and I was able to mumble a few words in return. She said my Pavlova was beautiful. Thank you Sheri Dew.

Happy Baking everyone!

P.S. Always be ready to channel Julia Child.

Banana Foster French Toast on Studio 5

 Posted by at 10:37 am on April 28, 2015  No Responses »
Apr 282015

IMG_7240Today I got to make a great new recipe for Studio 5. I love these challenges. And for some reason, sweet breads can be tricky. A few tips when making sweet breads;

1- Don’t over mix the batter. Stir until just combined. And better yet, stir by hand. Using a mixer can over mix the batter, causing a rubbery bread. No one wants that.

2- Leave your bananas or other fruits on the chunky side. I like this texture the best- it also allows you to see what you are eating. And it tastes better.

3- When adding nuts to the recipe, I suggest roasting them first. Bring out more flavor and that enhances your bread. It’s all about what’s on the inside that counts. Roast your nuts, at 350 degrees in a single layer on a baking sheet for 5-8 minutes. Check often to avoid burning.

So let’s get baking! Shall we???



Banana Bread

1 ¾ cup all purpose flour

½ cup sugar

1 tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. baking soda

Pinch of salt

1 tsp. roasted cinnamon

3 medium ripe bananas (approx. 1 lb.), mashed but chunky

2 eggs, slightly beaten

1 tsp. vanilla extract

¼ cup buttermilk

1 cup roasted pecans or walnuts (optional)

In a small bowl, mix together the dry ingredients; flour, sugar, baking powder and soda, salt and cinnamon. Whisk together. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, mash the bananas, add the eggs, vanilla and buttermilk. Stir until combined.IMG_7242

Gently pour wet ingredients into the dry, bringing together until just mixed. Do not over mix, as it can cause rubbery bread.


Pour the mixture into a well greased and floured bread pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes, or a knife comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool before cutting.


For the french toast mixture I whisked together:

3 large eggs

1 tsp. rum extract

1 cup whole milk

1 tsp. roasted cinnamon

Slice the banana bread into at least 1/2″ wide slices. Place the bread into the egg/milk mixture and coat both sides well. Place the coated bread into a heated skillet with some butter, or even coconut oil. Brown on both sides, just a few minutes is all it takes. Top with caramel sauce (recipe below) and sliced bananas.
Rum Caramel Sauce

1 cup brown sugar

½ cup butter

Pinch of salt

½ cup heavy whipping cream

1 tsp. rum extract or 1 tbsp dark rum

1 medium banana, peeled and sliced

In a medium sauce pan, cook butter and sugar together for 2-3 minutes. Then add the salt, heavy cream and whisk together. Cook for another 1 minute while stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and add the rum and sliced bananas. Serve over warm banana French toast. Top with whipped cream if desired.


Happy Baking!

Ali’s Samoa Cupcake

 Posted by at 6:00 am on April 10, 2015  No Responses »
Apr 102015


I love when I am challenged to come up with a new recipe, especially for those I love. I work with Alison at Cardio Barre, she is one of our fabulous instructors. She, like many of the rest of us have an obsession with Girl Scout Cookies. I made sure to stock up, did you?!? So challenge accepted!

Ali’s Samoa Cupcake

1 box dark chocolate cake mix

1 cup sour cream

3 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup whole milk

2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips

1 cup heavy whipping cream

1 cup toasted coconut

4 tbsp. butter

4 tbsp. heavy whipping cream

1/2 cup brown sugar

pinch of Kosher salt

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Mix together the cake mix, sour cream, eggs, vanilla and whole milk. Batter will be thicker. Scoop batter into paper liners, filling 3/4 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-13 minutes, until cake springs back when lightly touched. Cool the cupcakes completely before frosting.

Ganache: Heat 1 cup heavy cream until just before simmering. Pour over 2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips. Let stand for 2 minutes. Stir to combine the chocolate, until smooth; set aside.

Caramel Sauce: In a small skillet, melt butter and sugar, stirring to make sure the sugar is dissolved. Cook on medium heat for 2 minutes while stirring. Remove from the heat and add the 4 tbsp. heavy whipping cream, and vanilla. And whisk to combine. Set aside to cool.

To assemble the cupcake, frost the cupcake with a medium piping round tip, leaving a hole in the center to place the caramel. (see picture below)IMG_6877

Then drizzle with the chocolate ganache, more caramel and top with your toasted coconut. Perfection if I do say so myself.

Happy Baking!



Italian Breakfast Casserole

 Posted by at 6:00 am on April 8, 2015  No Responses »
Apr 082015


Lately I’ve been obsessed with breakfast for any meal, whether it’s lunch or dinner…. in fact my family loves it as dinner. So at least once a week, we have breakfast for dinner.

I found this recipe online, and tweaked it a bit, because some of the things I didn’t have on hand. It’ still turned out delicious, and my friends who had lunch with me all asked for the recipe, and I’ve made it a bunch of times since then.

Italian Breakfast Casserole

1 pkg. crescent rolls (I got the flat one for pizzas)

Ham slices to cover

Salami slices to cover

1 small onion, sautéed

2 cups fresh spinach

8 eggs

½ cup roasted red peppers, sliced

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

½ cup Parmesan cheese

Place your crescent roll on the bottom of a 9×13 lightly buttered dish. Layer the ham slices to cover the crescent dough followed by the salami slices to cover.

In a skillet, cook the diced onion until soft, about 2-3 minutes on medium. Add the roasted red peppers, and spinach. Cook for 1-2 more minutes.

Place the cooked onion mixture on top of the meats, in a single layer. Then mix together the eggs, pouring over the veggies. Top with all the cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.


Recipe adapted from Kevin & Amanda.

My top 10 sugar cookie tips

 Posted by at 6:00 am on April 3, 2015  No Responses »
Apr 032015


Have you ever searched Sugar Cookie recipes on the internet? Trust me, there are millions of recipes that can pop up. How do you know it’s tried and true? That the recipe is exactly what you want? Well, first, I’d tell you to make one of my cookie recipes. You can find one here, and here, or you can buy my cookie book, 101 Gourmet Cookies which has quite a few awesome sugar cookie recipes. Ha! But here are my favorite tips for making the best sugar cookies. Ever. My goal is for you to have an awesome baking experience. Because that’s how it should always be. Right?

Sugar Cookie Tips

1)   Sour cream in recipes makes for a nice soft cookie.

2)   Cream of tartar gives more of a chewy texture.

3)   Don’t over power with flavoring. A hint of vanilla or almond extract or emulsion does the job. Simple is the best.

4)   Baking powder causes the cookie to rise and become fluffy. Baking soda cause some rise, but not as much.

5)   Soften the butter to room temperature. Don’t rush to microwave, because warm butter will cause flat greasy cookies. Do the finger print test.

6)   Make sure you chill your dough. Some do it before rolling out, some after.

7)   Minimize the amount of using the dough, cutting and moving around. It will get warmer and your cookies will not turn out they way you      want.

8)   Roll your cookies to 3/8-1/2” thickness. Too thin, and the cookies will be crispy. Too thick, and they will not cook evenly.

9)   Rotate your baking sheet 180 degrees half way through baking time.

10)  Use real butter. Gives better flavor and texture to the cookie. Unsalted is best, but (gasp) you can use salted too.



One Skillet Chicken Picatta on Studio 5

 Posted by at 10:08 am on March 31, 2015  No Responses »
Mar 312015

I usually appear on Studio 5 with a sweet treat in tow- and this time it was a little bit different. I was able to do a favorite go to meal that my family loves. And I have a few I like to keep the ingredients on hand for such a night, when I’m tired or have a million places to be. This meal takes less than 20 minutes start to finish. And it’s healthy, for the most part, and delicious. Did I mention that all 4 kids + the hubby loves it.


The recipe can be found here.

Happy dinnertime!

A new recipe: Choco Cherry Cups on Studio 5

 Posted by at 8:52 am on March 31, 2015  No Responses »
Mar 312015


I made this recipe especially for Studio 5. You can watch the segment below.  Fantastic sugar cookie variation, with lots of flavor, and it’s super pretty. I love pretty food.


Sugar Cookie Cheesecake Cherry Cups

Cookie cups:

½ cup softened butter

1 cup powdered sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp. almond extract or emulsion

1/3 cup sour cream

Pinch of salt

½ tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. baking soda

2 cups flour

Cream together the butter and sugar until light in color and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Then add the eggs, extract, and sour cream, until combined. Then add the dry ingredients, and mix until all ingredients come together. Using a small cookie scoop, place a tbsp. into a mini muffin baking tin. This recipe will make about 24 mini cups. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool 1-2 minutes in the pan. Use a small spoon to press the center of the cookie down, making room for the cream cheese filling. Cool completely before removing the cookie from the pan.

Cream cheese filling:

4 oz. cream cheese, softened

1 tsp. vanilla extract

¼ cup sour cream

½ cup powdered sugar

Cream together the ingredients listed above until nice and fluffy. Scoop a small teaspoon sized amount into the middle of the cooled cookies. Top with cherry pie filling and drizzle with melted chocolate for garnish.