Danish salted-butter cookies

Sugar Cookie Hearts

From the moment I saw this recipe for Danish Salted-Butter Cookies all I could see were visions of heart shaped cookies with bold pink sugar.

So I made it happen.

Sugar Cookie Hearts

Would you believe me if I told you that I actually followed the recipe?

I wouldn’t believe me.

But I did.

Okay, almost, I’m a rebel without a cause but with a desire to never follow the rules. I used our Vanilla Bean Sugar instead of the plain ol’ granulated sugar & a vanilla bean that the recipe calls for.

Here’s how to bring heart-shaped cuteness into your life:

2 sticks chilled salted butter, cut into pieces

3/4 cup Vanilla Bean Sugar

2 large eggs

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling out the dough

1 cup sanding sugar

2 cookie cutters, I used a large and a small heart shaped cutter, Bon Appétit suggests using a 3″ diameter and a 1.5″ diameter cutter.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine butter and vanilla bean sugar, beat until very light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Beat in 1 egg. Reduce speed to low; gradually mix in 2 cups of flour.

Form the resulting dough into a disc, wrap it in plastic and chill until firm, about 2 hours.

Place the racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 350°F.

Let the dough sit at room temp for a minute or two, roll out on a lightly floured surface (I used a non-stick baking mat, BA suggests using parchment paper). In order to insure the dough is rolled out to equal thickness I placed a dowel on either side of the dough and rolled it out until my roller was flat on both of the dowels!

Cut out your cookies and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Ball up scraps into a disc, wrap and place in the fridge to chill before rolling out again.

Beat the last egg with a teaspoon of water. Brush the cookies with the egg wash and sprinkle on your sugar!!

Freeze for 10 minutes. Bake, rotating baking sheets halfway through, until edges are golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Can be stored in an airtight container for a few days.

Sugar Cookie Hearts

Stay sweet,

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

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Strawberries in January

January Strawberries

In the midst of the bitter cold of a Carolina winter, I often find myself daydreaming about fresh juicy strawberries.

I think about how, if they were in season, I’d eat strawberries and homemade whipped cream for dessert after every meal!!

January Strawberries

This year, however, there’s no need for daydreams.

This is actually happening. It’s been so warm and mild this winter that there are fresh juicy local tasty strawberries sitting on the counter waiting to be devoured one by one.

There’s no recipe in this post, I’m just bragging because the appearance of springtime fruits in winter has made me giddy with excitement.

Hope y’all have a great weekend,

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

January Strawberries

Foolproof vanilla ice cream

Because sometimes the only cure for a bad day or bad pie is a little vanilla ice cream.

Vanilla Ice Cream

All you need is an ice cream maker and the following ingredients:

1 cup milk

1 cup vanilla bean sugar

3 cups heavy cream

Combine milk and sugar and stir until sugar dissolves then stir in heavy cream. That’s the long and short of it, now follow your ice cream maker’s instructions to turn this base into ice cream!!

Vanilla Ice Cream

Stay cool, stay sweet,

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

 

Blueberry Yum Yum revisited

We made our first round of blueberry yum yum a few weeks ago. And we followed the recipe, sort of. If you didn’t write the recipe down last year, here it is: THE BEST BLUEBERRY RECIPE.

The only thing we changed was the creamy filling. Instead of using frozen whipped topping we made our own whipped cream using 1 cup heavy whipping cream and 1/2 cup vanilla bean sugar. We mixed in that homemade whipped cream with local cream cheese that we picked up at the farmers market from Charleston Artisan Cheesehouse!!

And it was divine.

It’s what summer blueberry daydreams are made of:blueberry day dreams

It was so good we wanted to share it with everyone. But how were we going to share an 8×8 pan of goodness at the market?? Talk about awkward. We had to come up with a way to transport all that yum in a more efficient manner.

Blueberry Yum Yum minis

So we made the yum yum in the sturdiest cupcake liners we could find, and it worked beautifully!

Whether you decide to make an 8×8 dish or a bunch of mini yum yum cupcakes it’s going to be delicious.Blueberry Yum Yum minis

Stay sweet,

Charleston Spice Co.

Beautiful Blackberry Cobbler

Blackberry Cobbler

Maybe you were a little overenthusiastic at the last couple of markets and bought a bunch of blackberries in a fit of excitement. Or maybe you saw all the blackberries and thought, darn, what the heck do I do with those?

Here’s a good option from Southern Living:

Blackberry Cobbler

Here’s what ya need:

FOR COBBLER

4 cups fresh blackberries

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 large egg

1 cup sugar

1 cup all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons ground ginger

6 tablespoons butter, melted

FOR WHIPPED TOPPING

chilled metal bowl

1 cup heavy whipping cream

2 tablespoons vanilla bean sugar (you can use less or more sugar depending on how intense you want the flavor and sweetness to be!)

Fresh mint sprigs for garnish

Preheat oven to 375 F. This is also a good time to place a metal bowl in the freezer if you plan on whipping up your own whipped cream.

Place blackberries in lightly greased 8 inch square baking dish and sprinkle with lemon juice. Stir together egg, sugar, flour, and ginger in a medium bowl until mixture looks like coarse meal. Sprinkle on top of blackberries and drizzle melted butter over all. Bake for 35 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly. Remove from oven and let cool a bit.

While the cobbler is cooling you can make some whipped cream. Combine heavy whipping cream and sugar in your chilled metal bowl and whip it, whip it real good. Once you’ve beat that cream into whipped cream, chop up some mint to throw on top of your cobbler as you dish it out!!

Blackberry Cobbler

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

 

Dreamy Creamy Chocolate Ice Cream

Chocolate Ice Cream

Things are starting to heat up here in Charleston. In anticipation for warmer nights and hotter days we are testing out ice cream recipes.

Here’s what ya need for cool creamy chocolaty ice cream goodness:

1 cup cocoa nib powder

2/3 vanilla bean sugar

1/2 firmly packed brown sugar

3/4 cup water

4 cups heavy cream

Mix the first four ingredients together and using an electric mixer or by hand stir until sugars are dissolved. Pour in the heavy cream and blend. Pour into your ice cream maker and follow the direction of your machine from there!!!

Stay cool,

Charleston Spice Co.

Lavender Lemon Cheesecake

Mothers Day cheesecake 2015

This is how my dad said “thanks” to his mom this year. Pretty nice lookin’, huh? It’s pretty tasty too.

Forget cards and gifts and wine and hugs! Show up to a party with this thing and you’ll be the life of the party, people might start bowing when you walk into the room. This cheesecake is darn delicious and your friends and family will definitely keep you around in the hopes that you’ll make it again.

Here’s what ya need:

Crust

2 cups chocolate graham crackers

6 tablespoons butter, melted

Filling

4 8oz cream cheese packages, room temp

1 1/3 cups lavender flower sugar

3 eggs, room temp

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

2 tablespoons grated lemon peel

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Topping

2 cups Greek yogurt

3 tablespoons Vanilla Bean Sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Glaze

3/4 cup water

1/3 cup fresh lemon juice

1 egg yolk

1/2 cup sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon grated lemon peel

For crust: Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter 9 inch cheesecake pan. Mix crumbs and butter and press into bottom of pan. Bake 5 minutes and cool.

For filling: Preheat oven to 350 F. In electric mixer, beat cream cheese until soft. Slowly blend in sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time. Add lemon juice, peel, and vanilla extract. Pour mixture onto crust and bake until slightly puffed, about 40 minutes. Keep oven temp at 350 F.

For topping: Blend all ingredients and spread on top of cake. Bake for 15 minutes, topping will look runny but take it out and let cool for 30 minutes.

For glaze: Combine water, lemon juice, and yolk in heavy small saucepan. Stir in sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Bring to a boil over low heat, stirring constantly, about 10 minutes. Add butter and lemon peel and stir until butter melts. Cool glaze for 20 minutes. Spread on cake and let cool completely.

Refrigerate until well chilled before serving. (Will be fine in the refrigerator up to 3 days after making!!)

Enjoy!!

Charleston Spice Co.

Mothers Day cheesecake 2015