Italian

BHG Guest Blogger

Guest Blogger: Grandbaby Cakes

Hi everyone, I’m Jocelyn, the blogger, recipe developer and photographer at Grandbaby Cakes!  I am so honored to guest blog for BHG’s Delish Dish today!  If there was any magazine that was front and center in my home growing up, it was definitely Better Homes and Gardens.  I’ve got a great Strawberry Shortcake Tiramisu to share!


 

On Grandbaby Cakes, I love sharing unique twists on traditional recipes that have been passed down from my grandmother.  One of my Big Mama’s (grandmother) vintage recipes I simply adored indulging in was strawberry shortcake.  In fact, I celebrate my birthday each year with one.  When spring finally surfaces and gorgeous bright berries are in season, I get excited to make one of my own from scratch.


 

For this post, I knew I wanted to update this classic universally loved dessert, and when I saw this wonderful tiramisu recipe in the BHG recipe archives, I was sold.  I am the biggest fan of tiramisu.  Since my trip to Italy last year, I have tried recreating this dessert in every way possible on my blog.  From banana pudding tiramisu to even cookie dough tiramisu, I have tried it all but I knew a Spring remix was just what the doctor ordered to take this dish over the edge.  Strawberry shortcake tiramisu is perfect for Easter, spring entertaining or your last course for any Sunday dinner.


 

The original BHG version was already such a wonderful recipe so I didn’t have to make many changes to create the impact I wanted.

  • I replaced the original angel food cake with ladyfingers to provide more of a classic tiramisu taste.
  • I added two teaspoons of seedless strawberry jam and a couple drops of red food coloring to the cream cheese mixture.  It turned this super cute pink color and the jam added just the perfect hint of additional strawberry flavor I needed.

 

  • I also omitted the sour cream from the remaining whipped cream.  I wanted the whipped cream to shine when paired with the fresh strawberry slices mascerated in a couple of tablespoons of granulated sugar and lime juice.

After 12 long and patient hours, I finally had my first bite.

 

And then my second…. and third.


 

Honestly, it took a lot for me to walk away from another slice of this at 9 in the morning.  I have never had such a delightful tiramisu, and the nostalgia of my childhood came flooding back.  This dessert is a great reminder of the vintage strawberry shortcake recipe I enjoyed as a kid but with an adult flair.  I have no doubt that this dessert would become a favorite of yours as well.

 

To see the full recipe and instructions, click HERE!  Happy Baking!

 


Michael Wurm, Jr.

Italian Pesto Pasta Salad

While this summer is quickly coming to an end, I’m doing all I can to hang on to every last day. I’m also trying to still squeeze in as many of my favorite summertime foods as possible. A quintessential dish for this time of year is pasta salad. I’m a huge fan of the classic, but I also like to mix things up a bit and try something new.

BHG has a fabulous collection of Tasty Pasta Salads. As I was scrolling through, I was immediately attracted to this Italian Pesto Pasta Salad. Although my heritage is German and Irish, I enjoy lots of Italian foods. Maybe I lived in Italy in a previous life? Anyway, this was the dish I wanted to try.

With toasted basil pesto, spicy arugula, pine nuts, and cheese, I knew this would be a winner! I also wanted to give it a little twist of my own, so I added some sun-dried tomatoes for even more flavor.

This dish can be made in under thirty minutes. Because I had store-bought pesto, I was able to pull everything together while the pasta was cooking. Speaking of pasta, I used cavatappi, instead of elbow macaroni. I’m obsessed with these spiral noodles. With all of their nooks and crannies, they do such a great job of holding onto flavor. For the sun-dried tomatoes, I used the oil-packed and julienned kind. I drained them along with the cannelloni beans. After they were drained, I let them rest on a towel to further eliminate moisture.

Once the pasta was cooked and cooled, everything went into a bowl, starting with the pesto sauce and ending with the arugula. I used a vegetable peeler to slice in small strips of Parmigiano-Reggiano. Toasted pine nuts finish the dish with a perfect little crunch.

If you love Italian food as much as I do, you need to give this tasty pasta salad a try. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

As I mentioned above, I followed BHG’s recipe for Italian Pesto Pasta Salad. You can find the recipe here. To that, I added one 8.5-ounce jar of oil-packed, julienned sun-dried tomatoes, drained. I also substituted cavatappi for elbow macaroni.

Now get out there and enjoy these last days of summer! And let us know what some of your favorite summer foods are.

Michael Wurm, Jr – Inspired by Charm


Delish Dish Editor

Artichoke and Tomato Pasta

Hi it’s Beth again, assistant food editor for bhg.com, and I have a confession to make. I love pasta. I love that it’s always quick, always delicious, and easy to throw together. So when I saw this Artichoke and Tomato Pasta recipe from the May issue of Better Homes and Gardens, I knew I had to try it. Since it uses  ingredients I already had in my cupboard – canned tomatoes, artichokes, garlic, and pasta – I didn’t even have to go out and buy any groceries. Which is awesome especially when you’re trying to throw together a quick meal on a Monday night and don’t want to have to make that extra trip to the store.

The prep for this recipe was seriously a breeze. I cooked the pasta while I put together the sauce which included sweet onion, garlic, tomatoes, chopped artichoke and just a dash of salt and pepper. In the world of  homemade pasta sauce, the simpler, the better in my book.

Also, I may have used a little more Parmesan cheese than the recipe called for, but then again I tend to lose all self-control when I’m around Parmesan. A few fresh basil leaves finished off this simple twist on plain old spaghetti. I used fettucine noodles and liked how they really held up the chunky tomato sauce.

And that’s it! In minutes, I had a satisfying pasta dinner that I will definitely be making over and over again on those busy weeknights when you just want something quick and delicious. Get the recipe here!


Delish Dish Editor

Make-Ahead Holidays—Now’s the Time to Start!

Seasons greetings, everyone! Jessica Christensen, senior editor with Better Homes and Gardens special interest titles here to welcome you to December—the busiest baking time of the year. I love baking during the holidays (and any time, really) but with my 9-month-old son demanding the majority of my time this year, my baking is going to be more structured and organized—as in make-ahead everything!

Which leads me to last weekend. When my son’s nap time rolled around, I set to work on a batch of rolls to freeze for Christmas dinner. My choice: Feather Rolls, a time-tested recipe from our BH&G archives. Like the name implies, these rolls are soft, tender, and light as a feather (thanks to the secret ingredient of mashed potato!).

However, since I don’t eat dairy products (long story), I had to find a substitute for the butter. My solution to that problem: Earth Balance margarine, the best non-dairy, high-fat margarine on the market for baking. It contains 100 calories per tablespoon, just like butter, so it behaves in much the same way. It’s also free of hydrogenated oils, which is not true of most margarines.The dough came together beautifully—made from flour, sugar, margarine, mashed potato, water, salt, and yeast. Once the ingredients were mixed together, it was a simple matter of kneading the dough until it formed a smooth ball.

Now here’s a big perk of the Feather Rolls recipe—the dough can rise in the refrigerator for 2 to 24 hours. So when I got completely distracted for the rest of the day playing an endless game of peekaboo, it was no big deal. The next day I turned the dough out, cut it into 16 pieces (the recipes says 15 pieces, but it’s much easier to get equal sizes from an even number of bread pieces), formed each piece into a rough ball, and placed the pieces in a 13×9 pan to rise for 40 minutes. The awkward 16th piece of dough had to squeeze in on one end of the pan, but I’m OK with that. Then it was just a hop, skip, and a jump to hot and yeasty baked rolls.

Once the rolls were cool, I wrapped them up in a layer each of plastic wrap and foil, and then placed them in a larger baking dish with a tight fitting lid. Then off to the freezer they went, where they will stay until the big holiday festivities later this month. I plan to pull them out of the freezer the morning of the feast to thaw and then bake them for about 10 minutes at 350°F to warm them up.

Then, because I was “on a roll” I decided to make up a double batch of Mini Focaccia.  I used half of it to make a large focaccia round, and then split the other half of the dough up to make mini focaccia. I topped it with fresh rosemary (from a summer plant I brought inside that is now struggling to survive in my window). I learned long ago that this recipe needs to either be eaten immediately or frozen to keep it from getting tough and dried out. Fresh bread doesn’t last nearly as long as store-bought. So after it was baked off to the freezer it went.

Three cheers for planning ahead! What baked goodies are you going to prep and freeze for the holidays this year?