Room for Seconds | Creative Dessert Storage

Turn a large bowl upside-down atop leftover cakes and tarts to create a simple, inexpensive dessert storage setup.  

Dessert Storage Tips | Flour Arrangements

We tend to forget that our kitchen sometimes looks like a bakery until friends comment about the quantities of dessert we seem to be stockpiling.  Last week, in addition to several types of cookies, part of an Angel Food Cake and a Peanut Butter Chocolate Tart lingered on the kitchen counter for days.  Aside from our crazy excesses, one thing people always notice about our collection of sweets is how we store cakes and tarts.

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Nut Job | Peanut Butter Chocolate Tart

This indulgent Peanut Butter Chocolate Tart features creamy, rich peanut butter filling tucked between a chocolate crust and chocolate ganache.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Tart | Flour Arrangements

I‘m on a mission to combine chocolate and peanut butter in as many different ways as I can.  You’ve got to have goals, right?

So far, I’ve shared recipes for Peanut Butter Chocolate Cake, Mini Peanut Butter Pies, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies, and Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Brownies. In case you’re wondering, the end is nowhere in sight.

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All Lit Up | 100th Day of School Cake

Learn basic tips for frosting and decorating through a six-year-old’s 100th day of school project  — a three-tiered cake!

100th Day of School Cake | Flour Arrangements

As we walked into school with my daughter’s 100th day of school project, a few parents and teacher raised their eyebrows as they smiled at Tessa holding her three-tiered cake laden with 100 birthday candles.

I suddenly understood that I’d become “that parent,” the one who helps her kid go nuts on a project, and I have to admit that I felt a bit silly.

I have a new appreciation this sort of madness, though, and I’ll think twice before I raise my eyebrows at another kid walking into school with an over-the-top project.

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Lighthearted | Strawberry Meringue Hearts

These crisp little Strawberry Meringue Hearts melt in your mouth with a sweet, hint-of-strawberry flavor that comes from freeze-dried strawberries.

Strawberry Meringue Hearts | Flour Arrangements.

Do you hate it when recipes leave you with a million egg whites?  Yeah, me, too.  Here’s the thing, though.  Extra egg whites are the perfect excuse to make light-as-air recipes like pavlova or angel food cake.  Since Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, I decided to turn some of the leftover egg whites from these Meyer Lemon Bars into petite pink meringue hearts.

I had planned to freeze the remaining whites to use later;  you  can store egg whites in the freezer for up to a year.  Fortunately, though, I was lazy about dividing them into usable quantities and labeling them. I ended up using every single egg white and then some on my quest to perfect the recipe.

Separating a few extra eggs was worth the effort, though:  these crisp little hearts melt in your mouth with a sweet, hint-of-strawberry flavor.  They’re adorable and delicious all at the same time.

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All Rolled Up | Olive & Prosciutto Pizza Rolls

Wrap up pizza’s warm, savory goodness in convenient little packages. Tender, flavor-packed pizza rolls are great alongside dinner or served as easy-to-eat party snacks.

Pizza Rolls | Flour Arrangements

I love pizza.  There’s just something about oven-warm bread slathered with sauce, savory toppings, and melted cheese. We make pizza at least once a week for dinner at our house, but it’s just never enough for me.  Sometimes I want to have pizza for dinner when it’s not what’s for dinner.

Enter pizza rolls….

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Pucker Up | Meyer Lemon Bars with Rosemary Pine Nut Shortbread

Bright lemon flavor shines against the subtle resinous backdrop of rosemary-pine nut shortbread in these Meyer Lemon Bars.

Lemon Bars with Rosemary Pine Nut Shorbread | Flour Arrangements

One year ago, while I was coveting the fruit on my neighbors’ citrus trees, I never dreamed that the small Meyer lemon tree we planted in our front yard would crank out so many lemons in such a short time.  While we don’t have quite enough for the lemonade stand of my kids’ dreams, we certainly have enough for baking plenty of dessert.

Lemon bars seemed like a great place to start with these tangy, almost-sweet Meyers.  As I set out to pick lemons, I couldn’t help snipping a few rosemary sprigs to chop up and add to the shortbread mixture. And since the lemon-rosemary-pine nut combination is such a hit in one of our favorite shortbread recipes, it seemed only right to add pine nuts to the recipe as well….

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Going Bananas | Banana-Chocolate Blondies

Full of sweet banana flavor and bursts of deep, rich chocolate, these Banana-Chocolate Blondies take this great flavor combination to new heights. Penuche frosting and a drizzle of chocolate add tempting, extraordinary flair to these tasty little bars.

Banana-Chocolate Blondies with Penuche Frosting | Flour Arrangements

My husband’s sister sent him a text the other day: “Tell Suzanne I made banana blondies with penuche frosting yesterday.  It came to me like a dream.”  I’ve often heard her talk about trying to replicate her mom’s penuche frosting — also called brown sugar or caramel frosting — but since she never liked the spice cake that her mom always frosted with it, she’s been casting about for the perfect medium for this ambrosia.  I was totally with her on the banana blondie idea, and here’s best part: she said the frosting perfectly replicated her childhood memory of penuche.

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Ants Go Marching | Ant-Proofing Sweeteners and Baked Goods

Creating makeshift moats is a simple way of ant-proofing sweeteners and baked goods during an ant invasion.  All you need are containers and water.

Ant-Proofing Sweeteners & Baked Goods

It’s been a long time since I’ve lived though a serious ant invasion.  I’d almost forgotten what it felt like.  Almost. It’s all coming back to me though as the ants continue their vigilant effort to find every last crumb in our entire house.

It turns out that letting your kids decorate your Christmas tree with candy canes is a really bad idea. As we made merry and enjoyed the season, the ants did, too, feasting unnoticed on the wrapped candies gracing our tree.  Judging by the caves and tunnels carved out beneath the plastic coating, they’d been at it for quite some time.

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