This bad boy should become every cooks best friend.  Meet the aloe plant.  Just slice one of those green, spiked leaves open and squeeze the burn soothing aloe out. I have burned myself countless times in the kitchen.  Putting some of this on helps take away the pain.  I’ve nurtured this aloe plant since it was a little baby.  It’s a self-pruning house plant that needs little water, so you won’t have to worry about keeping a constant eye on it.

This bad boy should become every cooks best friend.  Meet the aloe plant.  Just slice one of those green, spiked leaves open and squeeze the burn soothing aloe out. I have burned myself countless times in the kitchen.  Putting some of this on helps take away the pain.  I’ve nurtured this aloe plant since it was a little baby.  It’s a self-pruning house plant that needs little water, so you won’t have to worry about keeping a constant eye on it.

Fun Cupcake Idea
Great for birthdays and celebrations.

Fun Cupcake Idea

Great for birthdays and celebrations.

Blackberry, Key Lime Tart

Lemon Tart Dough
Butter- 8 ozSugar- 8 oz
Eggs- 1 1/3 ozVanilla- to tasteLemon Zest- 2 lemons
Sour Cream- 1 1/3 oz 
Cake Flour- 1 lbBaking Powder- 1/8 oz
1. Cream together butter and sugar2. Mix in eggs, vanilla, and lemon zest3. Add sour cream4. Mix in cake flour and baking powder5. Roll out tart dough to 2.5 mm 6. Place in tart tin, dock, and bake until golden brown at 350*F 7. Cool 
Pastry Cream
Milk- 1 qtVanilla Bean- 1/2 bean
Sugar- 4 oz Corn Starch- 4 ozEggs- 4 large eggs or 8 oz
Butter- 2 oz
1. Heat milk and vanilla bean and bring to a boil in heavy bottom pot2. Mix sugar, corn starch, and eggs thoroughly 3. Temper sugar mixture with the hot milk and combine.  Bring back to a boil for 2 minutes.  Stir constantly!4. Place on mixer with a paddle and mix in the butter.  Mix till cool. Cover and store in cooler
Blackberry Jam
Blackberries- 1 pintSugar- 1/2 cupPectin- Until thickened slightly
1. Cook down blackberries with sugar2. Push cooked blackberries through strainer or chinois to remove seeds3. Put back in pot. Add pectin stirring and heating until thickens
Mix together blackberry jam with pastry cream when cooled. Set aside.
Key Lime Filling
Sweet Condensed Milk- 14 ozEgg Yolks (large)- 3 oz or 3 yolksKey Lime Juice- 1/2 cup
1. Combine condensed milk, egg yolks, and key lime juice. Blend until smooth2. Pour filling into deep pan and bake at 350*F for 15 minutes, or until set3. Cool 
1. Pipe every other stripe with blackberry pastry cream and key lime filling.2. Take skewer and drag through the very top of fillings so that they run into one another switching direction after each stripe.  (Down stroke, Upward stroke)3. Top rim with toasted coconut and center with fresh blackberries 

Blackberry, Key Lime Tart


Lemon Tart Dough

Butter- 8 oz
Sugar- 8 oz

Eggs- 1 1/3 oz
Vanilla- to taste
Lemon Zest- 2 lemons

Sour Cream- 1 1/3 oz 

Cake Flour- 1 lb
Baking Powder- 1/8 oz

1. Cream together butter and sugar
2. Mix in eggs, vanilla, and lemon zest
3. Add sour cream
4. Mix in cake flour and baking powder
5. Roll out tart dough to 2.5 mm 
6. Place in tart tin, dock, and bake until golden brown at 350*F 
7. Cool 

Pastry Cream

Milk- 1 qt
Vanilla Bean- 1/2 bean

Sugar- 4 oz 
Corn Starch- 4 oz
Eggs- 4 large eggs or 8 oz

Butter- 2 oz

1. Heat milk and vanilla bean and bring to a boil in heavy bottom pot
2. Mix sugar, corn starch, and eggs thoroughly 
3. Temper sugar mixture with the hot milk and combine.  Bring back to a boil for 2 minutes.  Stir constantly!
4. Place on mixer with a paddle and mix in the butter.  Mix till cool. Cover and store in cooler

Blackberry Jam

Blackberries- 1 pint
Sugar- 1/2 cup
Pectin- Until thickened slightly

1. Cook down blackberries with sugar
2. Push cooked blackberries through strainer or chinois to remove seeds
3. Put back in pot. Add pectin stirring and heating until thickens

Mix together blackberry jam with pastry cream when cooled. Set aside.

Key Lime Filling

Sweet Condensed Milk- 14 oz
Egg Yolks (large)- 3 oz or 3 yolks
Key Lime Juice- 1/2 cup

1. Combine condensed milk, egg yolks, and key lime juice. Blend until smooth
2. Pour filling into deep pan and bake at 350*F for 15 minutes, or until set
3. Cool 

1. Pipe every other stripe with blackberry pastry cream and key lime filling.
2. Take skewer and drag through the very top of fillings so that they run into one another switching direction after each stripe.  (Down stroke, Upward stroke)
3. Top rim with toasted coconut and center with fresh blackberries 

When Ross carefully pulled one of these beautiful little guys out of the ground, brushing off the excess dirt around the bulb, I was incredibly surprised that those two slender leaves had been a ramp.

It’s wild ramp season! A few weeks ago we went ramp hunting in the nature preserve. (Shh!) A ramp; also known as, wild garlic or the spring onion, has a strong garlic odor but a solid onion flavor.  They never grow in the same place twice and are highly valued in the culinary world; where they are treated like scallions and leeks. They are so valued, that there are entire ramp festivals in many parts of North America; where they are commonly found in the late winter to early spring. 

(Source: foodmakessense)