Grapefruit Pie

I love citrus and grapefruit is one of my favorites.  It reminds me of being at my grandparents house in Florida and picking the tart fruit right from the tree!  As I was testing my key lime pie last year I started thinking about the possibility of grapefruit pie.  I’ve tried different variations of grapefruit pie over the last year and finally came up with one that I think is perfect.  As I researched grapefruit pie, I realized that they all use the actual wedges, and made a fruit pie, while I wanted more of a custard.  So I juiced the grapefruit and simmered it and reduced it by half so it was super sweet and super tart.  I also used the zest of one whole grapefruit to make sure it had tons of flavor.  Then I took the custard base that I use for the key lime pie and used the grapefruit juice and zest instead.  I couldn’t be more happy with the results and I hope you like it too!

~Jannawhipped-cream-birdie 3

Ingredients for filling:

1 cup grapefruit juice, I used Ruby Red but any variety will do (One very large grapefruit will give you about 1 cup)
Zest from your grapefruit
1 14oz can of sweetened condensed milk
3 large egg yolks
1 9″ graham cracker crust  (or you can use a ready made crust)

Ingredients for crust:

2 cups of graham cracker crumbs
2 Tbs granulated sugar
5 Tbs unsalted butter, melted

Ingredients for whipped cream:

2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 cup powdered sugar
1 vanilla bean
1 tsp vanilla extract
*If you don’t have a vanilla bean you can double your vanilla extract.
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Method:

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a 9 inch pie plate mix the graham cracker crumbs with the sugar.  Pour the butter into the dish and mix with a fork until all the graham cracker is coated.  Press mixture onto the sides of the dish and then press into the middle making an even thickness throughout.  Set aside.

To make the whipped cream, put the heavy cream into a cold mixer bowl (I stick mine in the freezer beforehand for a few minutes).  Using the whisk attachment and the mixer on high, whip the cream until it thickens up and forms peaks (3-4 minutes).  Turn the mixer off and add your vanilla and powdered sugar.  Turn the mixer on medium to incorporate the sugar and vanilla.  Once finished, put the whipped cream into a lidded air-tight container and store in refrigerator.  You will need your bowl and whisk attachment again so you’ll need to wash it.
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Squeeze grapefruit juice into a small bowl or sauce pot.  Strain out seeds and big clumps of pulp.

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Simmer in sauce pot on med/high heat to reduce by half.  This will take approximately 10-15 minutes.  Keep an eye on it and stir occasionally.  You will end up with 1/2 a cup of reduced juice.  Add the zest and cool in an ice bath.  (Don’t skip the ice bath!  You do this so you don’t cook the eggs by adding hot juice.)

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Once the juice isn’t hot to the touch (it’s okay if it’s warm) add it, the sweetened condensed milk, and egg yolks to a mixer bowl.  Using your whisk attachment again, blend on high until well incorporated, 1-2 minutes.

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Pour the filling into the pie crust and bake for 15 minutes.  grapefruit5

Let pie rest out of the oven for 10 minutes before chilling it in the fridge.  Top with homemade whipped cream and serve cold.
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Gooey Marshmallow Treats

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Also known as Rice Krispies Treats, these simple squares are a fun finger food that will instantaneously transport you back to childhood.  Rice Krispies Treats were invented in 1939 by Malitta Jensen and Mildred Day at the Kellogg Company home economics department as a fund raiser for Camp Fire Girls. (source: Wikipedia)
And what’s not to love?  Crispy rice cereal is generously coated in fluffy sugary marshmallows so it’s bound to be delicious.  Best of all, they are fast, easy and inexpensive.  Yes, they are full of carbs, sugar and delicious full-fat butter.  But that’s what dessert is all about!  Indulge a little….

Ingredients:
16 oz mini marshmallows, divided
4 oz butter + some for greasing (Coconut oil can be used for a dairy-free treat.)
1/4 tsp salt
6 cups crisp rice cereal
OPTIONAL: 1 cup chocolate chips, mini chips, mini m&m’s, caramel chips, etc.

Directions:

Generously grease a 9×13 pan with butter.

In a large pot, melt butter on medium-low heat.  Stir in HALF the mini marshmallows and continue to stir until they are completely melted and form a gooey cream.

Add salt and stir.  Remove from heat immediately.

Pour cereal into the pot and fold it into the melted marshmallows until all cereal is thoroughly coated with marshmallow.
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Add the additional whole marshmallows and any optional chips that you want.  Quickly fold them into the cereal.  You don’t want this second addition of marshmallows to melt, it’s so delicious when you bite into a fluffy whole marshmallow!

Turn the mixture out into your buttered pan and press it flat with clean, buttered hands.  It’s delicious when it’s warm, but they will cut much more easily if you allow them to cool completely.  RC

*Tip: If you have leftover chips, consider melting them and drizzling over the top of the cut squares.  Yum!
Gooey Marshmallow Treats

The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies You Will Ever Eat!!!!

Janna:  I’m not kidding when I tell you these will be the most fantastic chocolate chip cookies you will ever eat!  They are easy and fun to make (my kids always take over), and they stay moist and chewy!  I’ve done variations on these cookies like, adding caramel bits, butterscotch chips, peanut butter chips, nuts or coconut!   If you decide to use peanut butter chips may I suggest you use milk chocolate chips instead of semi sweet as milk chocolate and peanut butter compliment each other better!  The sky’s the limit!!!

Ingredients:

2 ¼ cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 package vanilla instant pudding powder (3.4 oz)
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
¾ cup granulated sugar
¾ cup brown sugar (light or dark)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.  (My oven is electric and tends to run hot so I set the dial at 350 degrees.  See notes below on varying oven temperatures.)

In large bowl combine flour, pudding mix, baking soda and salt, set aside.  In stand mixer, beat butter, both sugars and vanilla until creamy.

Add eggs and blend well, beat in flour mixture about a cup at a time.  Stir in chocolate chips.



Using a spoon or cookie scoop, make about 1 ½ inch portions and place onto cookie sheet about 2 inches apart.   Watch for cookie dough bandits!!


Bake for 9-11 minutes or until edges are slightly brown.  Test cookies by lightly pressing with your finger on to the top, if it looks or feels too doughy cook them for an additional minute.  Remember that once the cookies are out of the oven they will continue to bake a little until they cool, it’s okay if they look slightly underdone.  If you like your cookies a little crunchier, bake for an additional minute or so but watch them closely.

Makes about 36 2-inch cookies.

Varying oven degrees are tricky.  I’ve been baking these cookies for years and the bake time changes dramatically with each oven, from about 8 minutes to up to 13 depending on your oven.  If you’re unsure about how your oven heats, invest in an oven thermometer.
I know you and your family will enjoy these, mine never last more than a day!  The vanilla pudding mix, adds a delicious vanilla flavor and also keeps the cookie soft and chewy even if over-baked.  This recipe is easily doubled and stores well in the freezer baked or unbaked.