Lemon-Poppy Seed Cake with Strawberry Cream Cheese Glaze

I was walking around today and got the greatest urge to bake a cake. And not just any cake; I specifically wanted to make a lemon-poppy seed cake with strawberry cream cheese frosting.

I also really wanted the pride that came along with making some kind of recipe of my own, so I went for it, and here is the delicious results. Although the frosting came out more like a glaze, it is still good and still really worth making. Since I didn’t need a lot of cake, this recipe only makes one cake round and enough glaze to cover it. You can multiply the ingredients by the number of layers you want to make a stacked cake. I apologize for the long recipe name.

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Marshmallow-Lemon Snowdrifts

Usually I leave the cookie making up to other members of my family, but this year, my mom and I decided to contribute to the group by trying out this cookie. We are both a big fan of citrus flavored things, and this cookie has a good citrus bite to complement the sugar cookie and marshmallow frosting. They were a bit labor intensive for a cookie, but the result is worth it.

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Baked Apple with Crisp Topping

My entire food systems lab had been leading up to one thing – our special event. Each team in lab had to produce a dinner for 24 guests. Luckily for me, I had a fabulous team and our event went on without a hitch.

This was my favorite dish from the dinner, my group’s favorite dish, and 22 out of 24 guests’ favorite dish. With apples coming into season (at least in the U.S.), this dessert is perfect for making the most out of the seasonal fruit. The presentation is absolutely adorable and it is a great way to end a meal (especially if you add a scoop of Vanilla Bean Ice Cream to it).

Another bonus, this recipe can be prepped a few hours in advance. The topping and the apple can be prepared and then assembled later before dessert is served or the apple can be cooked and then served 1-2 hours later; it all depends on your preference and schedule. However you want to do it, this dessert makes for a really easy addition to your holiday meal.

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Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

No matter the time of year, there is always something about ice cream that makes it delicious. Bonus points if it is home made. I have made this recipe a few times now and have always gotten very positive responses for it. The texture and flavor is reminiscent more of a custard than and ice cream, but when it tastes that good, who really cares about naming technicalities? Not this girl. Also, even though you can make this recipe without a thermometer to check the temperature of the mixture, I  recommend using one if you have it already. The vanilla bean can be substituted for 1 tablespoon vanilla extract; you will have a better vanilla taste using the vanilla bean.

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