• July 4th Recipe Roundup

    I ‘ll be honest with you all, I did absolutely nothing this weekend. Not. One. THING. And oh boy it was lovely. I bopped around the house, I re-watched Stranger Things in preparation for this week, and I only wore real clothes for about 2 hours across both days combined. I sat on the porch with a glass of wine and a Martha Stewart magazine and felt RELAXED. And then, for the cherry on top of the laziest weekend, I realized that this is a literal 3 day week followed closely by a 4 day weekend!!! But not just any 4 day weekend, July 4th weekend!! It’s the most important barbecue weekend of the year, are you ready???

    That is a perfect segue into this post, what to make for your barbecue. If you listen to me, I’m not saying that you definitely will be the most popular person at the party, but I’m also not NOT saying that, you know? A good barbecue has gotta have a good snack spread, a cocktail (or mocktail), those classic BBQ foods like burgers + dogs, and my favorite part, DESSERT. Because this is Sweet D, I’m bringing my favorite desserts to recommend, but because I’m also an equal opportunist, I have a few other dishes as well.

    Before we dive in, here are 5 things to be happy about today:
    ONE. A new cookbook giving you fresh inspiration. (Today’s is this one and I’m already obsessed.)
    TWO. Latte art.
    THREE. Me time.
    FOUR. Climbing atop an observation tower.
    FIVE. Cozy bed jackets.

    Okay let’s barbecue!!

    Tomato Burrata Salad.

    So I know this was also included in my Memorial Day recipe roundup, but it’s making a return appearance for a REASON. It can be prepped in 10 minutes, better yet, it can be done in advance because the tomatoes only taste better sitting in the olive oil dressing. It looks so fancy and photogenic with those beautiful burrata balls broken over the top, and highlights the best fresh flavors of summer.

    Blueberry Slab Pie.

    This is another repeat classic, because nothing says barbecue like pie, and nothing makes it easier to serve pie to a crowd than one that can be cut into squares and feeds 20 people. Plus, if you’re feeling particularly creative, there could definitely be some kind of American Flag sitch in the pie crust, but I’ll leave that up to you.

    Tart Cherry Clafoutis.

    Still one of my favorite desserts to date, a clafoutis is a custardy baked dessert that holds your fruit of choice in beautiful little jammy pockets, and honestly it was enough to make me tear up. In this most special tart cherry season, this dish highlights and compliments their brightness perfectly into one slice and serve dessert.

    Classic Focaccia.

    If you’ve seen the Netflix series Salt. Fat. Acid. Heat., you will recognize this recipe as the one Samin Nosrat makes in Italy, which I fell in love with almost instantaneously. It’s simple and perfect and so satisfying. It can be easily customized with herbs or vegetables, but it makes for excellent finger food. I don’t know about you but if I went to a party and this was on the food table, I would cry tears of joy.

    Cinnamon Plum Apricot Pie.

    This pie was an unusual one, with perfect sweetness from the apricots and plums, and warmth from the cinnamon. I had combined the two fruits since I was short on the season’s apricots, but since it’s early enough in the summer, an all apricot pie would be just beautiful. And I haven’t even gotten to the best part of this dessert, which is the vanilla pouring custard that goes on top in great pools. Basically what I’m saying is you need this pie rn.

    Blueberry Buttermilk Cake.

    Ah, the Blueberry Buttermilk Cake. Not the flashiest of desserts, but one of the underestimated heroes for sure. Those jammy blueberries and that crunchy cinnamon sugar lid are just perfection, and it’s a perfect vehicle for a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

    Lemon Meringue Pie.

    There are few things in this world that I love more than lemon desserts. Lemon bars, lemony cheesecake, and best of all, lemon meringue pie. For those who weren’t around last May, I made this pie and was so excited to try my new kitchen torch, only to realize that I am a fool and the butane had to be purchased separately. I actually have yet to try again with a torched meringue, but it feels like this week is the time!!! I mean, just LOOK at that layer of lemon curd. Omg.

    Cornmeal Peach Cobbler.

    My god I love this cobbler so much. Bubbly peach filling is one of life’s greatest pleasures, don’t you think? But WAIT, you don’t know true happiness until you combine it with cornmeal biscuits!!! They’re incredibly low maintenance drop biscuits that get golden and crisp, perfect for soaking up the cinnamon-y peach goodness.

    Cheesecake Pudding Pie.

    Looking for a cheesecake without the 8 hour chilling time of an actual cheesecake? Well, look no further. I don’t even know that there’s anything else that I need to say here, do you? CHEESECAKE. PUDDING. PIE. The end.

    Sweet Corn Layer Cake with Blueberry Jam Buttercream.

    Unpopular opinion that will soon be popular opinion, skip corn on the cob and instead serve your corn in the CAKE. But not just any cake, one topped with a rich, fruity buttercream and stacked into 2 perfect layers. Take the unconventional approach and impress everyone you know!

  • Black and Blue Buttermilk Tart

    Okaaaaaaaaay hello! Happy Tuesday, how was your weekend? Mine involved a trip to the gardens with a dear friend, a family viewing of Toy Story 4 in which I bawled my eyes out, and…COOKING! Specifically a baked pasta and this gorgeous summer tart recipe. *Cue the fake shock lol* I go through this weekly Sunday dilemma where I spend all day wondering what to cook for Sunday dinner. I have an instagram folder full of recipes I’ve saved and yet when the time comes, I can’t think of anything. This week I was saved by Smitten Kitchen, with this summery pasta bake. The best part is, remember that garden I mentioned a few weeks back? Guess where all the herbs came from?? I felt like fricken Ina Garten strolling right outside and cutting herbs for myself. All that’s missing is the Hamptons house, but that can’t be far behind right??

    Anyway, for dessert I made this GORGEOUS summer tart recipe, which I literally found by chance. I haven’t picked up a magazine in my house in ages, but I happened to open up a new Southern Living magazine on Saturday afternoon and was immediately drawn to this recipe. Originally made with a Ritz crackers crust, I changed it to a chocolate cookie crust because why not, plus I thought it complemented the berries nicely. I was particularly proud of how this looked with all the berries on top, feel free to call me for all your food styling needs in the future lmao. The filling is rich with a little tang, almost like a cheesecake but in tart form, so really what’s not to like?

    I warn you all to not make the same mistake I did though. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a fool who often fails to read a recipe through before diving right into them. Do we remember this? Good. So I was about halfway through the filling of this tart when !!!! I noticed that it has to chill for approximately 8 hours before serving. Keep in mind this was at 3:30 when dinner was at 6. Yeah. I’m a fool. Miraculously, chilling the filled tart in the freezer for 45 minutes and then into the fridge until serving seemed to work just fine, but I would always recommend following the recipe if time allows.

    Don’t forget about your 5 things to be happy about today, share them with your friends and strangers!!
    ONE. Your favorite TV show starting a new season.
    TWO. Finding a silver lining in something that felt hopeless.
    THREE. Having a second chance at something.
    FOUR. Hair masks.
    FIVE. Playing cornhole in the backyard during a barbecue.

    Let’s bake!

    Black and Blue Buttermilk Tart

    The most perfect combination of chocolatey crust, rich cheesecakey filling, and the season's ripest berries, this summer tart recipe is one you'll want to make over and over.
    Prep Time30 mins
    Cook Time20 mins
    Inative Time8 hrs
    Total Time8 hrs 50 mins
    Course: Dessert
    Keyword: blueberries, summer, summer recipe, tart

    Ingredients

    Chocolate Cookie Crust

    • 2 cups chocolate cookie crumbs ex: chocolate wafers or oreo cookies
    • 4 Tbs unsalted butter melted

    Black and Blue Buttermilk Tart

    • ¾ cup heavy cream
    • 1 vanilla bean or 2 tsp vanilla bean paste
    • tsp unflavored gelatin from 1 pouch
    • ½ cup white sugar
    • 12 oz. cream cheese softened
    • ¾ cup buttermilk
    • blueberries + blackberries for topping

    Instructions

    Chocolate Cookie Crust

    • If using chocolate wafers, pulse the cookies with salt in a food processor until they are even crumbs. If using oreos, separate the cookie from the filling and then do the same. Measure out 2 cups of crumbs and add to a medium bowl, along with the melted butter.
    • Stir until the mixture is evenly moistened, then pour into a tart pan with a removable bottom. Using your hands and a small dry measuring cup, press the crumbs into the bottom and sides of the pan. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, and then allow to cool completely before filling.

    Black and Blue Buttermilk Tart

    • Pour heavy cream and scraped vanilla bean + pod (or vanilla bean paste) to a saucepan, and mix. Sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the mixture and let sit for 5 minutes. Whisk in the sugar and heat on medium until the sugar and gelatin are dissolved.
    • Transfer mixture to a food processor, then add the cream cheese a little bit at a time. Pour in the buttermilk and process until the mixture is smooth. Pour into a cooled tart crust and chill in the refrigerator for 8 hours, up to overnight. Before serving, top with berries. YUM!!!
  • Rhubarb Mint Margaritas

    Jump to Recipe

    You know when you have a lot on your mind, and you forget that you have things to bake/ cook/ write about and suddenly it’s Monday? No? Just me? Okay well yeah that happened to me which is why today’s post is a margarita recipe. I think we all deserve a drink. I did, however, make a strawberry rhubarb pie on Saturday with the freshest strawberries I’ve ever had, but I won’t be posting it here because I still can’t get the thickness of the filling right. Bakers who make Strawberry Rhubarb pie, do you use tapioca, cornstarch, or something else entirely? This time around, I went with tapioca and it was still so runny! I cut out a slice before it was cool which definitely didn’t help, but still. ANYWAY.

    This week, I was supposed to be taking a Chocolate Cake Decorating class in Brooklyn under the direction of one of my absolute faves, Erin McDowell. To my dismay, I received a call Monday morning that due to a water main issue, the class was cancelled. Guess I have to make my own chocolate cake to make up for it!! This is one of two cake decorating classes I’ll be taking this year because I’m insane. The other is at Bon Appetit (!!!!) with Claire Saffitz of the Test Kitchen and it was well worth the money I paid tbh. Like I said last week, this is the year of stepping up my layer cake game, and I’m not messing around!!

    Anyone who knows the Lewis family knows that we love a good margarita. And because I’m me, I like to try different flavor combinations here and there. So, just because I don’t have a strawberry rhubarb pie recipe for you, doesn’t mean I can’t still talk about rhubarb. As you can see, this isn’t just any margarita recipe. RHUBARB. MARGARITAS. I hope it excites you as much as it excites me. This drink is a little sour, a little sweet, and so refreshing, not to mention its literally the most gorgeous color. Am I going to have to add a Drinks section on my recipes page?? This is the first drink recipe on Sweet D!! Look at us doing big things.

    Okay before we get started, here are 5 things to be happy about today:
    ONE. The smell of ripe strawberries.
    TWO. Taking a day off in the middle of the week without any real plans.
    THREE. Giving your room a good clean on a Sunday afternoon.
    FOUR. Drinking enough water in a day.
    FIVE. Gummy vitamins for adults.

    Let’s drink!! {Adapted from here and here!}

    Rhubarb Mint Margaritas

    A little sweet, a little tart, with a gorgeous hot pink color, this is the perfect summer drink for your next barbecue!!
    Prep Time15 mins
    Cook Time15 mins
    Total Time30 mins
    Course: Drinks
    Keyword: drinks, margarita, rhubarb, tequila
    Servings: 8

    Ingredients

    Rhubarb Mint Simple Syrup Ingredients

    • 2 cups rhubarb chopped
    • ¼ cup fresh mint leaves
    • 1 cup water
    • 1 cup white sugar

    Rhubarb Mint Margarita Ingredients

    • 1 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
    • 1 cup white tequila
    • 1 cup Cointreau
    • 1 cup Rhubarb Mint Syrup
    • flaky salt for the rim
    • mint leaves for garnish

    Instructions

    Rhubarb Mint Simple Syrup Steps

    • To a saucepan, add rhubarb, mint, sugar, and water, and cook over medium high heat for about 15 minutes, until the sugar is dissolved and the rhubarb is beginning to soften.
    • Strain the syrup through a mesh sieve into a mason jar or other heat-safe container, and allow to chill before using.

    Rhubarb Mint Margarita Steps

    • In a large mason jar or cocktail shaker, combine the lime juice, tequila, cointreau, and rhubarb simple syrup and shake until well mixed.
    • Take a wedge of lime and run it around the rim of your glass, then press into a plate of flaky salt. Add ice and serve a generous portion into each glass. Garnish with more mint and enjoy!!

    Looking for more rhubarb content? Look here, here, and here!