Dessert Recipes


Pinipig Cookies

Pinipig Cookies

Pinipig are flattened and toasted glutinous rice grains, the Southeast Asian equivalent of Kellogg’s corn flakes. Its name probably derives from the root word piga, which is Tagalog for squeeze.
The rice grains for pinipig are harvested while still young and green. Admittedly, I have never seen fresh green pinipig, not even in the Philippines, because [...]

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Vanilla-Rhubarb Soup with Strawberries

Vanilla-Rhubarb Soup with Strawberries

It’s easy to get carried away at Farmer’s Markets, where the compulsion to grab random things you’ve never used takes over. Letting fresh ingredients sit on the counter for too long defeats the purpose of going to such markets, so I always look for recipes that make the most of seasonal produce.
If you happen to [...]

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Mung Beans and Sticky Rice in Coconut Milk

Mung Beans and Sticky Rice in Coconut Milk

Let’s say you’re browsing a cookbook that represents the recipes of your childhood (in my case, it would probably be this one). You find that one forgotten recipe that gives you pause and makes you wonder why you haven’t made it all these years. Reading through the recipe causes sudden cravings and you know, almost [...]

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Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

Even if the recipe name sounds like a few rounds of word association, there’s nothing disjointed about the flavors in this ice cream. Fresh strawberries are mashed with sugar to draw out its nectar and folded with cheesecake ice cream. The rich custard base is blended with cream cheese and lightened with lemon zest and [...]

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Chocolate Cherry Vanilla Ice Cream Cake

Chocolate Cherry Vanilla Ice Cream Cake

Gotta love it when experiments in the kitchen turn out great. I’ve always wanted to do some sort of ice cream cake. With the chocolate cake and vanilla ice cream recipes featured in this month’s Daring Bakers challenge, I came up with this idea. From top to bottom:

Flourless chocolate cake moistened with Kirschwasser (German “cherry [...]

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Tarte Tatin in Vol-au-Vents

Tarte Tatin in Vol-au-Vents

Preparing a Tarte Tatin in this way guarantees a crisp and flaky crust. Unlike traditional Tarte Tatin recipes, the puff pastry crust is baked separately from the caramelized apples. The basket-shaped puff pastry crust is made ahead of time and filled right before serving.
In addition to looking spiffier than the typical brown disk, I think [...]

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Chocolate Rose Water Ganache Tart

Chocolate Rose Water Ganache Tart

Flavors don’t have to be big and bold all the time. Subtlety has its merits but when using rose essence, a light hand is very necessary. It can easily turn the simplest desserts into a mouthful of potpourri — you don’t want to end up with food more appropriate in the bathroom than on a [...]

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Flan de Naranja – Orange Custard

Flan de Naranja – Orange Custard

Flan de Naranja is a light and silky custard dessert topped with soft caramel. Instead of milk or cream, this recipe uses freshly squeezed orange juice brightened with its own zest.
This light, dare I say healthy, flan recipe is also as easy as custard desserts get. There is no need to precook the custard, which [...]

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Pasencia – Filipino Meringue Cookies

Pasencia – Filipino Meringue Cookies

If there is one cookie I’ve had the most of in sheer volume alone, pasencia cookies would easily top the list. This is one of those things you mindlessly snack on while reading a book or waiting for dinner to get done.
This recipe is an easy way to use up those pesky small amounts of [...]

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Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche Sauce

Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche Sauce

Two-in-one recipes are more fun when booze is involved. That is fact. In this recipe, we end up with bonus snifters of basic vino caliente, or South American mulled wine, to go with blushing red poached pears. Granted, there isn’t anything exclusively South American about the spiced wine component, but vino caliente sounds much cooler [...]

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Easy Pear Tart Recipe

Easy Pear Tart Recipe

Marcella Hazan reassures in her trademark impassioned tone, “Only an active campaign of sabotage could ruin it,” as if to say, “You can’t possibly screw this up, you donkey.” With that in mind, I’ve never had as much confidence in trying out a new recipe.
She insists on using Bosc or Anjou pears and singles out [...]

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Pain d’épices – Fruit and Spice Cake

Pain d’épices – Fruit and Spice Cake

If you replace molasses with honey and add rye flour to your old-fashioned gingerbread recipe, you’ll end up with a basic pain d’épices, the French take on gingerbread. As its name implies, “bread of spices” is all about the fragrance and warmth of ground aromatics. There are endless spice mix variations and each recipe seems [...]

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Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël

This contemporary version of Bûche de Noël is the perfect opportunity to make something extra festive for Christmas. Instead of a roulade and buttercream icing in the traditional French yule log, this modern take is composed of a silky mousse layered with crème brûlée and crispy chocolate praline.
I decided to set the entire mousse cake [...]

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Angel Food Cake Recipe

Angel Food Cake Recipe

If you’ve ever had bad airline food, looked out from your window seat, and wished you could eat cloud instead, it would probably be a lot like having angel food cake. Light, airy, and sweet, a generous wedge of angel food is interesting enough on its own but even better served with fruits or chocolate.
Its [...]

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Hot Chocolate with Caramel and Cinnamon

Hot Chocolate with Caramel and Cinnamon

Pierre Hermé’s hot chocolate recipe calls for milk sweetened with cinnamon-infused caramel. A mug of spiced hot chocolate in the dead of winter sounds tough to resist, doesn’t it? I usually skip drinks unless there’s caffeine or booze involved, but this definitely counts as an exception.
Which is not to say that this hot chocolate drink [...]

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Dulce de Leche Ice Cream

Dulce de Leche Ice Cream

Anyone who hasn’t tried Haagen-Dazs’ dulce de leche ice cream will have a hard time guessing what flavor this is. Not quite caramel or butterscotch, this is one of those ice cream flavors that make people go, “Oh my gulay* this is so good. What flavor is this?”
Dulce de leche ice cream comes  in a [...]

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Applesauce Spice Cake

Applesauce Spice Cake

When it’s so cold outside that a hot oven is no longer effective in raising the temperature, bake something with spices in it. Cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg give a sense of comfort and warmth in this recipe for spiced applesauce cake. Served with a hot mug of spiced whatever, preferably heavily spiked with alcohol, it [...]

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Dulce de Leche Recipe

Dulce de Leche Recipe

You know you’re on the right track if your most trusted recipe sources agree on procedures for classics such as this one. This recipe for dulce de leche, a thick caramelized milk sauce essential in South American desserts, is adapted from Alton Brown, Saveur, and Wayne Gisslen.
While the instructions and cooking times differ slightly, all [...]

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Lenguas de Gato – “Cat’s Tongue” Cookies

Lenguas de Gato – “Cat’s Tongue” Cookies

It wasn’t easy growing up the youngest of five siblings. My three older man-brothers took it upon themselves to toughen up my prepubescent self when I got too good at Donkey Kong and Super Mario Bros. Sore thumbs abruptly turned into sore everything when boxing gloves and elbows in the solar plexus during intense games [...]

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Chocolate Brownie Cookies

Chocolate Brownie Cookies

These cookies were originally dubbed “Chocolate Indulgence” before I decided to call it something less cryptic. Whatever you choose to call it, it’s sure to satisfy the worst cravings for chocolate.
The cookies somehow combine the best qualities of brownies and french macarons into one. The center remains soft, moist, and chewy like brownies but the [...]

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Apple Hazelnut Chocolate Cake

Apple Hazelnut Chocolate Cake

This cake reminds me of Iron Chef: Battle Apple and Chocolate. I kept thinking that apples and chocolate can’t possibly pair well because I couldn’t think of any recipes that highlight both ingredients. Think of apple desserts and caramel likely comes to mind. As far as chocolate desserts go, even if many fruits taste great [...]

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Gingersnap Cookies

Gingersnap Cookies

It took several tries to get the crisp texture and cracked tops characteristic of gingersnap cookies, tweaking the recipe a little each time. When I finally noticed that I’ve been mistakenly using baking powder instead of baking soda, it turned out that the original recipe was perfect straight out of the box.
Baking soda is used [...]

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Sachertorte – Austrian Chocolate Cake

Sachertorte – Austrian Chocolate Cake

Sachertorte is the cake for chocolate lovers — a layered chocolate cake filled with apricot jam is coated in chocolate ganache and finished with a chocolate glaze. In this recipe, you can easily tweak the chocolate bittersweetness by using the cacao percentages of your choice in the cake, ganache, and glaze.
Unfortunately, I can’t say how [...]

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Caramel Cake with Caramelized Butter Frosting

Caramel Cake with Caramelized Butter Frosting

After completing this month’s Daring Bakers challenge featuring Shuna Fish Lydon’s recipe for caramel cake, I hereby demote Cake Wrecks from hilarious to merely amusing and witty.
Making cakes is back-breaking work and I’ve learned to appreciate the time and effort involved with all things frosted, regardless of how uninspired, bizarre, or wrong it is. I [...]

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Crispy Apple Chips

Crispy Apple Chips

Crispy apple chips were originally meant for garnishing desserts but it also makes for an addictive light snack. Paper-thin apple slices are soaked in a simple syrup and dried in a very low oven to keep the fresh apple flavor intact.
Granny Smith apples are perfect for this recipe — drying intensifies its tartness, but the [...]

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Blueberry-Cranberry Bread

Blueberry-Cranberry Bread

This blueberry and cranberry loaf is based on a recipe for “election day bread,” which originally had raisins, candied citrus, and spices. Considering its name, doesn’t it make more sense studded with reds and blues?
But since blueberries are in season during the warmer months and cranberries during the cooler months, this combination doesn’t make sense [...]

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Calabaza en Tacha – Candied Pumpkin and Guava

Calabaza en Tacha – Candied Pumpkin and Guava

Calabaza en tacha is traditionally served during the Mexican Day of the Dead celebrations but it’s never a bad idea anytime fresh pumpkins are available. Lightly spiced and intensely sweet, it can be enjoyed on its own as a light snack, as a breakfast item with milk, or as a dessert with plain vanilla ice [...]

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Suji Halwa – Indian Semolina and Raisin Pudding

Suji Halwa – Indian Semolina and Raisin Pudding

Cooking suji halwa is a lot like preparing risotto, but with a lot less stirring. Coarse-ground semolina is first toasted and rendered aromatic in ghee, the Indian version of clarified butter. Raisins and a simple syrup are then poured over the semolina and stirred over low heat until the sweet liquid is fully absorbed.
Since the [...]

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Pumpkin Pavé – Spiced Pumpkin Filling on Streusel

Pumpkin Pavé – Spiced Pumpkin Filling on Streusel

Are your attempts at pumpkin pie dough getting you down? Can’t roll it out because it’s either too tough or crumbly? Is it sticking to your counter and rolling pin even with heavy dustings of flour? Did the crust turn into a soggy mess after baking?
Ditch the pie dough and bake it on streusel instead.
Baked [...]

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Hobakjuk – Korean Pumpkin Porridge

Hobakjuk – Korean Pumpkin Porridge

This version of hobakjuk, a Korean porridge made with pumpkins or squashes, is all about texture. Velvety pumpkin puree is mixed with tender azuki beans, chewy sweet rice balls, and crunchy pine nuts. And because everyone knows that pumpkins and spices go hand-in-hand, a light dusting of ground cinnamon ties everything together.
I’m just a bit [...]

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Apples Steamed with Red Bean Paste

Apples Steamed with Red Bean Paste

If you have a nagging need to apply heat to apples before enjoying it, try steaming for a change. Cooking and baking cultivars such as Granny Smith Apples can be steamed with good results, changing its distinctive crispness into a spoonable consistency. Steaming also intensifies the flavor of apples while retaining much of its fresh [...]

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Gyung Dan – Korean Sweet Rice Balls

Gyung Dan – Korean Sweet Rice Balls

This light Korean snack highlights the chewiness and natural sweetness of sweet rice flour. Boiled until floating, sweet rice balls are really easy to prepare and has endless variations. Dry coatings such as sesame seeds, roasted soybean powder, and cinnamon sugar cling readily to its surface. Gyung dan can also be stuffed with sweet fillings [...]

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Shanghai Red Bean Crêpe

Shanghai Red Bean Crêpe

Pureed red bean paste is wrapped in a thin blanket of crisp-fried crepes in this sweet Shanghai classic. Traditionally served on its own, toppings such as toasted sesame seeds and light syrups are certainly welcome. My favorite addition is Japanese kinako, an aromatic flour of roasted soybeans, adding a subtle nuttiness that always plays well [...]

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Sweet Azuki (Red Bean) Paste – East Asian Dessert Introduction

Sweet Azuki (Red Bean) Paste – East Asian Dessert Introduction

Sweetened azuki bean paste opens the door to East Asia, where it is widely used in a variety of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean sweets. Whether used in bread or pastry fillings, sweet soups, pancakes, or ice cream, the essential azuki bean is usually highlighted as the main flavor. Its assertiveness is best complemented with neutral [...]

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Chocolate Pots de Crème

Chocolate Pots de Crème

Chocolate pot de crème is my dessert of choice for intimate gatherings because it is easily scalable and can be made a day in advance. A silky custard baked in single-serving portions, pots de crème can be topped with fresh fruits, whipped cream, or chocolate shavings to make a dainty-looking but unfussy dessert.
You may already [...]

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Pane al Cioccolato – Italian Chocolate Bread

Pane al Cioccolato – Italian Chocolate Bread

I grinned like an idiot as I lifted the dark brown loaves from the charred baking stone with bare hands. The soft crust smiled back with its wide open slashes, a sight that every bread maker hopes for upon opening the oven door. It didn’t matter that my calloused fingertips started to burn or that [...]

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Chocolate Éclairs by Pierre Hermé

Chocolate Éclairs by Pierre Hermé

Making pâte à choux has always been intimidating but now that I’ve tried it once, I can’t wait to use it again. Gazing at the colorful options behind glass display cases in local pastry shops, I’m thinking, “I can’t make any of this.” Now I can proudly cross out éclairs, cream puffs, profiteroles, and Paris-Brest [...]

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Pan de Higo – Spanish Fig Cake

Pan de Higo – Spanish Fig Cake

Do you twist Oreos apart and eat the filling by itself? Doing the same filling finagling maneuver with Fig Newtons is a lot messier but I can’t help it. The is-it-cake-or-is-it-cookie sawdust exterior merely gets in the way of fig enjoyment by jamming itself in between teeth and up roofs of mouth. It’s nothing more [...]

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Sables à la Poche Cookies

Sables à la Poche Cookies

The thought of gently clasping a star-tipped pastry bag to make cookies was laughable until fairly recently. It may not seem obvious from posts that involve feats of manual dexterity and shameless whipping, but I am, in fact, a red-blooded male.
While I appreciate any passing mention from fellow bloggers that find my posts somewhat amusing, [...]

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Berries and Grilled Cheese Skewers

Berries and Grilled Cheese Skewers

The current object of my cheese obsession, the grill-worthy Finnish Juustoleipa, is quite enjoyable broiled until slightly charred but still firm and squeaky. Being a fresh cheese, it stays relatively mild even with the heating and can definitely use a bit of help to make it more interesting.
If there’s anything I learned from the entries [...]

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Swiss Meringue with Raspberries and Almonds

Swiss Meringue with Raspberries and Almonds

I’ve never made any form of whipped egg white dessert before but these Swiss meringue cookies surprisingly came out as good as I could hope for. The scent of raspberries permeated the cookie and the slivered almonds added a nice textural contrast to the crisp meringue. The low and slow baking temperature also concentrated the [...]

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Indonesian Nutmeg Tea Cookies – Kue Kering

Indonesian Nutmeg Tea Cookies – Kue Kering

Somehow I ended up bringing home more nutmeg than I can realistically use in a lifetime. I get way too excited when visiting Middle Eastern and Indian groceries and end up buying spices cheap and in bulk. Five pounds of turmeric for the price charged at Whole Foods for a thimble-full? Why the hell not. [...]

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Steamed Peaches with Honey Dates

Steamed Peaches with Honey Dates

This deceptively simple steamed dessert has only three ingredients — peaches, dates, and brown sugar. I wasn’t too excited about it at first because I like peaches raw and I’m not too fond of dates. Since I was steaming chicken for dinner and had some fresh peaches on hand anyway, I figured that I might [...]

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Egg-Free Ice Cream

Egg-Free Ice Cream

This egg-free ice cream recipe is my first choice for trying out dry flavorings such as tea, coffee, and spices. It’s best for highlighting more delicate ingredients since egg yolks have a pronounced presence in homemade ice cream sometimes. I can’t recommend it for watery or fatty ingredients such as fresh fruit or chocolate couverture. [...]

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Mangoes and Cream – 7 Ways to Indulge

Mangoes and Cream – 7 Ways to Indulge

Mangoes and cream sounds as classic a food pairing as peas and carrots, peanut butter and jelly, or spaghetti and meatballs to my ears. This combination lends itself to so many variations, each with its own distinctive character.
The recipe and variations that follow are based on malai aam, a classic Indian dessert of mangoes and [...]

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Blueberry Mint Brioche Pudding

Blueberry Mint Brioche Pudding

What can you do to make buttery brioche buns better? Why, soak it in vanilla-infused cream and milk, of course. Adding fresh antioxidant-rich blueberries isn’t such a bad idea as well, mainly so you can convince yourself that the resulting mess of creamy goodness is somewhat healthy.
Since this is based on a Daniel Boulud recipe, [...]

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Red Wine Granita

Red Wine Granita

This sweet red wine granita is quite possibly the sneakiest way to incapacitate boring (or bored) guests. Do your visitors think they’re too sophisticated to get plastered? Call it a “Citrus-Infused Frozen Sangria Sorbet” and they’ll be downing Jager Bombs in no time. Having meatheads over to watch a UFC pay-per-view? Claim that your antioxidant-rich [...]

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Lambic Sorbet

Lambic Sorbet

Belgian lambics rely on spontaneous fermentation from naturally occurring wild yeasts, giving this beer style its acidity and distinctive tartness. It doesn’t sound too different from the process that makes sourdough sour, does it? The particular style used in this sorbet recipe is fruit lambic — fresh whole fruits are added once the fermentation starts.
There’s [...]

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Polvorones Sevillanos

Polvorones Sevillanos

I had my mind set on having some polvoron for the weekend but didn’t have any powdered milk, a key ingredient. Getting a polvoron fix is serious business for me but I’m not about to run to the nearest Goldilocks (there are none). Good thing I have a recipe for a similar Spanish treat [...]

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