Blooming Cookies and Other Spring Treats: Best of the Blogs
Ah, spring has definitely sprung, and there’s something in the waft of a balmy breeze that turns our thoughts in a decidedly sweet direction — really, though, it doesn’t take much to turn our thoughts to dessert.
But no, this time of year is different. In winter nothing satisfies our sugar cravings like rich chocolate cake (the denser the better), warm slices of cinnamony apple pie with that golden flaky crust, or a super-moist spice cake topped with snowy white cream-cheese frosting (the winter blues have a knack for disappearing on the scent of spice cake baking in the oven).
Come spring, though — well, like the blooming world outside, our favorite springtime desserts brighten and lighten. It was in this kind of sugary sweet springtime mood, when the puffy clouds look like marshmallow fluff or cotton candy, that we cruised some of our favorite food blogs, and we came across enough inspiration to last us well into June (when, frankly, our thoughts then turn to all things ice cream).
A bouquet of white lilies, right? Um, wrong! Those are cookies. We’ll say it again…COOKIES! Star-shaped sugar cookies with white fondant petals. This gives you some idea of how they come together, but you can get tons more step-by-step photos on the blog:
Apparently, this is all the handiwork of blogger Joanie, who doesn’t tell us much about herself except that she’s a stay-at-home mom who loves taking pictures of flowers — and making edible bouquets. (She’s gotta have the two luckiest kids in the world.) Here’s another of Joanie’s amazing creations:
Those are Chewy Coconut Peanut Butter Bars coated with chocolate then rolled in tinted coconut flakes, like so:
Oh, and these “blue hyacinths”? They’re actually ordinary Tootsie Rolls dipped in melted chocolate and piped with blue and purple frosting! Good golly — genius!
So, ok, as amazing as Joanie’s edible flowers are (and as much as we’d like a bouquet of sugar-cookie lilies for Mother’s Day), we need to do a whole lot more practicing with our pastry bag to perfect her technique. In the meantime, strawberry season is ramping up, so we’re in a berrilicious frame of mind. Joy the Baker has a heavenly recipe for Strawberry Cream Puffs with (get this) Milk Chocolate Sauce — oh what fluffy berry delight!
Of course, if the market abounds with strawberries, you know that rhubarb can’t be far behind. As kids, we were suspicious that anything that grows so green and leafy could actually be transformed into dessert (it was like our grandmothers were trying to trick us into eating something that resembled spinach). Thank goodness we came to our senses. One Perfect Bite shares a recipe for this wonderful Strawberry and Rhubarb Crisp (complete with a sweet, nutty streusel topping):
We have a tough time choosing between that and Tartelette’s gluten-free recipe, which looks no less comforting:
Strawberries and rhubarb are a classic pair; we’ll admit that we’d never thought to pair strawberries and apples. But Cannelle et Vanille’s description of this Apple and Strawberry Crumb Cake (which is also gluten-free no less) made us a believer: “Moist cake sweetened with muscovado sugar, layered with thin slices of apples and strawberries, and topped with oat crumble.” Yum!
Speaking of interesting cake combos, there was nothing particularly springy about these cupcakes (unless you think of a nice cold Coke on a warm day, but we digress…) We were so fascinated by Sprinkle Bakes’s Coca-Cola Cupcakes with Salted Peanut Butter Frosting that we had to share. Apparently, there’s something to be said for putting salted peanuts in Coke, something Heather (a.k.a. Sprinkle Bakes) remembers doing as a child with her dad. Who knew! These one-of-a-kind cupcakes are her homage to that.
Explore more springtime dessert recipes!