Sunday, July 27, 2014

Chocolate Cherry Scones

I can remember that a previous employer had a person in management that would take time out for afternoon tea .  I find this unusual , especially since most offices always have a counter full of coffee pots.  However, a tea time break may be just the thing to brighten up the afternoon.

As always, tea time should include some tasty food.  As far as I am concerned, scones have been overlooked.  Scones, for some reason, are not an item you see very often in bakeries but there is no doubt that they are just as worthy as cookies or cupcakes. Also, there is enough of a variety to appeal to everyone.  Some are savory, others sweet and the base can have a bready quality or skate very close to being cookies.

In this particular recipe, the harmony created with the sweet dried cherries and the semi sweet chocolate does create a craving for seconds. Also, there is a hint of something extra, which is cinnamon.

Take some time for yourself and friends with an afternoon tea and don't forget the scones! This recipe makes about 1 dozen scones.

Cherry Chocolate Scones
adapted from Gifts From the Kitchen

Ingredients/ Scones
3/4  cup or 3 oz coarsely chopped cherries
1/2 cup miniature semi sweet chocolate chips
1tbs baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp gnd cinnamon
2 cups flour
1 1/3 cups heavy cream

Ingredients/ Topping
melted butter
Cinnamon sugar or sparkling white sugar

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 425 degrees.   In a large bowl, sift together cinnamon, salt, flour and baking powder.  Then stir in sugar.  Mix in the dried cherries and chocolate chips.

Add 1/3 cup of cream to the batter.  Using a pastry cutter or large fork, blend the cream into the dry ingredients.  Repeat this process, adding and mixing in the cream until the mixture can be formed into a ball of dough.

Lightly dust a flat surface with flour and place the ball of dough in the center.  Knead the dough about 15 times, turning after each time. Roll out the dough into a 3/4 inch thick mass. Take a 2 1/2 inch biscuit cutter and cut out rounds. Dust bottom edges of cutter occasionally between cuttings. Continue with the process, re-rolling scraps when needed.

Once all the dough has been cut into circles,  place on baking sheet about 1 inch apart . If one of the sides of the scone has flour on it, place that side up.  Bush the top of the scones with butter and sprinkle on the cinnamon.  Place the sheet in the oven for the scones to bake until light brown.  They should take about 20 minutes to be done. Scones will be firm to the touch.

Let cool in pan about 5 minutes then serve warm or let cool completely to serve at room temperature.
                              **LAST YEAR: French Strawberry Cake**

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Coconut Almond Topped Peach Pie

The window of time for the best peaches seems to be pretty small in Texas.  Intending to get fresh fruit for the pie, I was disappointed only to find a sad selection of small hard peaches at the grocers.  Not the tender juicy ones I had in mind.  However, I came across had a note in a pie recipe book stating that sometimes the frozen ones are better because they are flash frozen at the peak of freshness.  So I went ahead and got frozen peaches.

When it comes to fruit pies, the fruit should be the most prominent thing you taste.  Some pies have just too much filling so you are tasting the syrupy type base more than the fruit.  As you can see in the picture, the syrup base keeps the peaches clinging together as opposed to floating in the base.

The crunchy topping is a great alternative to using pie crust.  It not only imparts a nice texture, it adds a little bit more flavor to the dessert.  Let's not forget that it is much easier to make than a pastry crust top for the pie!

Coconut Almond Topped Peach Pie
adapted from Pie by Ken Haedrich

Ingredients/Pie Crust
1/4 cup cold butter (cut into 1/4 inch pieces)
1/4 cup cold vegetable shortening (cut into pieces)
1/4 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp sugar

Ingredients/ Filling
1 1/2 tbs fresh lemon juice
zest from 1 lemon
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup plus 3 tbs sugar
2 tbs cornstarch
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
2- 1lb bags of frozen peaches, thawed in a large bowl

Ingredients/Pie Topping
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup sweetened coconut
6 tbs or 3/4 cup cold butter (cut into 1/4 inch pieces)
1 tbs milk
2/3 cup sugar
1 cup flour

For the pie crust, sift together the flour and salt.  Stir in the sugar.  Pour mixture into a food processor.  Add the butter cubes and pulse several times to cut into the dry ingredients.  Scrape the bowl and fluff with a fork.  Do the same with the pieces of shortening.  Drizzle 2 tbs of water over mixture and pulse until blended.  Fluff and then sprinkle additional 2 tbs of water over dough and pulse again. Empty dough into bowl and test texture. Mixture should clump together in your hand.  If still too dry, knead in a teaspoon of water.

Then sprinkle flour on a flat surface and empty bowl of dough on top of flour.  Knead the dough a few times and form into a 3/4" thick disk.  Wrap disk in plastic wrap and place in refrigerator for at least and hour or overnight.

Once chilling time is complete, roll disk out on a floured surface to form a 13" circle.  Then invert into a 9 1/2 inch deep dish pie pan.  Make sure dough is covering all of the interior of the pie pan, so there are no bubbles of air.  Using your fingers or the tines of a fork, sculpt the extra dough hanging over the edge of the pie pan to make the upper edge of the crust.

Place pie tin in the freezer for 15 minutes.

The filling starts with tossing the lemon zest, lemon juice, 1/3 cup sugar and peaches together in a medium size bowl.  Set aside for 10 minutes for peaches to release more juice.  Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

In a small bowl, stir together the cornstarch and the remaining 3 tbs of sugar.  Add to the peach mixture, stirring to make sure everything is evenly distributed.  Then mix the nutmeg and vanilla extract into the fruit filling.  Pour filling into the chilled pie crust and smooth the top.  Place in oven to bake for about 35 minutes.

While pie is baking, make the topping.  Fill food processor with coconut, almonds, flour , sugar and salt.  Press the pulse button about 6 times, running each pulse session about 5 seconds.  Then drop in butter cubes and run food processor until the mixture turns into crumbs.  Lastly, pour in milk and process until consistency is uniform.  Pour the crumb mixture in a bowl and test to see if the crumbs will clump together in your hand.  Put in refrigerator until pie has been removed from the oven.

Once pie is removed from oven, reduce temperature to 375 degrees.  Take crumb topping and dump into center of pie and smooth.  Then lightly pat down so crumbs form a solid coating over the peaches.

Cover a baking sheet with foil and place on the bottom rack of the oven.  Then place pie on the rack above.  Bake for about 30 minutes, or until filling is thick and bubbly.

Remove and let cool for at least an hour prior to cutting and serving.

Tips and Notes:
1. The recipe states, partially frozen peaches instead of thawed.  To insure even baking of the crust as well as the filling, I thawed out the peaches completely before mixing to make filling.

2.  When it comes to making the dough, you can use other processing methods such as by hand and by using a mixer.

3. To make sure the bottom crust fully bakes, the freezer time should not exceed 15 minutes.

4.  While the recipe states dump the crumbs into the center of the pie and spread, I sprinkled them on top, this helps make the topping even. Also, not that the crumb mixture does seem like a lot, but the volume insures a crumbly top coat instead of the crumbs melting into the peach filling.
                                        **LAST YEAR: Pecan Tassies**



Sunday, July 13, 2014

Frosted Banana Bars

When it comes to recipes that include bananas, most of us find ourselves turning to these type of recipes when we have over ripe bananas.  That was not the case here.  I bought the bananas the day before baking.

Based on the results, I am left wondering about the specifics of the ingredient list in regards to the bananas. Over ripe, medium ripe, ripe or just the listing of banana.  These variations have a definite impact on the flavor and texture of the bars.  Since my bananas were just purchased, the end result was that the bars had just a hint of banana flavor.

The frosting would have been a better match if the bars had a stronger flavor.  The flavor of the cream cheese was too strong of a match for the subtle banana base. If I was to make this again I would use over ripe bananas and perhaps some banana extract. However, note that the ingredients listed below are those as stated originally.

The recipe did have some positive points.  The bars were moist and the frosting remained creamy even after a few days. The amount of confectioners sugar used in the frosting is a variable according to what consistency is desired, but bear in mind that the more sugar the dryer it will be after it sets. So if you are looking for something banana, this may be a good one to test out with those over ripe bananas.

Frosted Banana Bars
adapted from Taste of Home, Best Loved Recipes

2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup softened butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 medium ripe bananas, mashed (about 1 cup)
1 cup sour cream
1 tsp vanilla extract

3 3/4 to 4 cups confectioners sugar
1/2 cup softened butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
1-8 oz package cream cheese, softened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare a 10 x 15 x 1 inch baking pan by greasing the interior. Sift together the flour, salt and baking soda.  Set aside.

Add the butter and sugar to a bowl of a stand mixer.  Beat on medium high for 2 minutes, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl.  The batter should be very light and fluffy after this process.  Add one egg and beat for 30 seconds and repeat with the remaining egg.  Then add the sour cream and vanilla.  Beat on medium speed until evenly distributed into the batter.

Fold the sifted ingredients into the batter in increments of 1/3.  When no dry streaks remain, fold in the mashed bananas.  Spoon batter into prepared pan and smooth the surface with a spatula.  Place in oven and bake until it has a golden hue and tester comes out clean.  This should take about 20-25 minutes.  Remove and let bars cool in pan completely without cutting.

To prepare the frosting, add the cream cheese, vanilla and butter to a mixing bowl.  Beat for 1 minute on medium high speed to reach the same consistency as stated in the first mixing step of the bar batter.  Sift in 1 cup of the confectioners sugar and beat until smooth.  Continue to add the sugar in increments and beat after each addition until desired consistency is achieved.

Smooth the frosting on the cooled bars and refrigerate until read to cut and serve.
                                            **YEAR 2012: Apricot Brie Croissant Pockets**

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Chocolate Truffle Cookies

When I bring food to my co-workers I am faced with a timeline.  Each person indulges in the dessert at a different time.  Saving for later, eating right then and saving until tomorrow poses an issue.  Anything that is cold is hard to serve, as well as anything that drys out at room temperature after cut.  All I can do is use the company refrigerator and advise when it is best to be eaten.

I am sure that we would all agree that there is nothing quite as tasty as a freshly cut, fudgy brownie.  With this cookie recipe, you can forget about the timeline. The thin, crackly exterior protects all the fudgey goodness that lies on the inside, so sitting for several hours has no impact on the texture.

Like brownies, these are delicious served on their own.  However, another serving suggestion (from none other than my over-the-top adviser) is to pair these with homemade vanilla ice cream.  Be sure to plan in advance, for the dough requires about 3 hours chilling time before baking. This recipe makes about 4 dozen cookies.

Chocolate Truffle Cookies
adapted from Taste of Home Best Loved Recipes

3 eggs
1/3 cup butter
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups semi-sweet choc chips or a 12 oz bag
4 oz unsweetened chocolate
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp baking powder
2 tbs unsweetened natural cocoa
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup flour
confectioners sugar (optional for dusting)

Place butter, unsweetened chocolate and 1 cup of  semi-sweet chocolate chips in a double boiler and place over medium heat.  Once all ingredients are melted, stir until batter is smooth and remove from heat.  Set timer for 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, sift together salt, baking powder, cocoa and flour.  Set aside.

Add sugar and eggs to another bowl.  Beat with mixer on medium high until thick and light in color. It should take about 2 minutes to reach the correct consistency.  Add the vanilla extract and beat again until evenly distributed. 

At this point, your timer that was set for the melted chocolate to cool should have already gone off.  If not, wait for it to complete.  Then pour the chocolate batter into the sifted ingredients.  Using a spatula, scrape all of the chocolate batter into the dry ingredients and stir until no dry streaks or lumps remain.  Lastly, fold in the other cup of the chocolate chips.  Cover batter and place in refrigerator to chill for no less than 3 hours. 15 minutes prior to the 3 hour completion, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Once the chilling time has expired, remove a cup of dough from the batch and place the rest of the dough back in the refrigerator.  Measure out pieces of the dough for 1 inch balls by using a spoon or scoop. Lightly flour your hands and shape the pieces into circles/ balls. Place each ball about 1 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake cookies for about 10-12 minutes.  Cookies will not spread that much.  When done, cookies will be set, puffy and cracked on the surface.  Let rest on cookie sheet for 4 minutes and transfer to a rack to finish cooling.

Repeat this process with the remainder of the dough.  Then, if you choose, dust with confectioners sugar.

Tips and Notes:
1.  These cookies are not very large, so I used mini chocolate chips instead of the regular size.
2.  They really do not require the confectioners sugar, this option is basically for appearance.
3.  The chocolate chip measurement is by weight as well as volume, but with the mini chips I found that the 12 oz bag came up a little short of the 2 cups.
                                        **LAST YEAR: Fudge Swirl Cheesecake Ice Cream**

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Cherry Dr Pepper Cupcakes

A co-worker in my office is turning 19, so for her birthday I wanted to do something a little different and something fun.  The idea of baking using carbonated drinks, such as Coke or root beer has been around awhile, but I have not really used soda too much in recipes on my blog.

This particular recipe originally used Coke, but I decided to try it with Dr. Pepper.  Actually, I think it was the little cans I spied in the grocers that had me latch on to this particular soda.  I had mentioned this recipe to a few people and their first thought was that there were too many flavors in this to even taste good.  Kind of takes me back to a review I saw on a recipe once..."every one in the family went to bed with upset stomachs!"  That review just happened to be tied to another cherry chocolate combination.

This recipe actually does have a great balance of flavor which is key when you have a lot of different flavor ingredients coming together.  Having soda, cocoa, cherries and cream in one recipe can have its challenges.  However, there is not one flavor here that is overpowering and each flavor compliments the others.  Also, the separate flavors can be recognized in each bite. This recipe makes about 2 1/2 dz cupcakes.

Cherry Dr Pepper Cupcakes
adapted from Homemade by Holman and discovered on Pass the Sushi 

2 eggs
3 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 cups Dr Pepper ( not diet)
1 can cherry pie filling
1/4 cup plus 2 tbs cocoa
3 cups flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup or 2 sticks butter, room temp

Ingredients Glaze
3-4 tbs Dr Pepper
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1 tsp whipped cream stabilizer (optional)
1/4 cup plus 2 tbs powdered sugar
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
maraschino cherries (optional for decoration)

Prepare the muffin tins by greasing the top edge of each cavity and lining with cupcake liners.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Start by making the cake batter.  Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl.  This will take about 1 minute at medium high speed with the mixer.  Add one egg and beat for 30 seconds, then do the same with the second egg.  Set aside.

In one medium size bowl, sift together the cocoa, flour, salt and baking soda.  In another bowl, pour in the Dr. Pepper. Let it sit so that all the foam is gone.  Then stir in the buttermilk and vanilla extract.  Again, let it sit for 3 minutes for the carbonation to settle.

Using a wooden spoon, mix in 1/4 of the sifted ingredients to the butter batter until thoroughly combined.  Pour in 1/3 of the Dr Pepper mixture and stir.  Repeat process in the same intervals, ending with the last 1/4 of the sifted ingredients.  Then beat at medium speed until all lumps are gone.

Fill each cupcake liner 2/3 full with batter.  Place pan in oven and bake until top springs back when lightly touched or tester comes out clean.  This should take about 18-20 minutes.  Remove muffin tins and let cupcakes rest for 5 minutes in pan.  Then transfer to a wire rack to complete cooling.

While this is cooling, strain the pie filling into a small bowl and reserve the liquid.  Take the cherries and toss into a blender.  Pulse cherries a few times and then stir back into the liquid filling.

Once the cupcakes have cooled, cut a cone shaped core out of the middle of each cupcake using a paring knife.  Then cut the corner off of a zip lock back and insert a large piping tip or use as is.  Fill with the cherry filling and pipe into the cored out center of the cupcake, smoothing the top.

The next step would be glazing the cupcakes. Sift powdered sugar into a bowl and pour in Dr. Pepper.  Stir mixture and check consistency.  If it is too runny, add more sugar and if too thick add more Dr. Pepper.  Once the desired consistency is achieved, spoon onto cupcakes, leaving a small border on the edge so it will not drip down the sides.

After the glaze is set, chill a bowl in the freezer for 10 minutes.  Remove and fill with cream and beat on low speed for 1 minute.  Then add the stabilizer and powdered sugar.  Beat on medium high until it holds stiff peaks.  Decoratively pipe the cream on top of each cupcakes and place 1 maraschino cherry on top.

Tips and Notes:
1. For appearance purposes I cut the top off of mini cans of  Dr.  Pepper.  Due to the sharp edge of the can, it is not recommended to serve the cupcake placed inside the can.
2. The pie filling can size is questionable, but I did have a lot left over.  Since the filling is from a can and not prepared, start with 1/2 cup and then make another if you run out. The chopped cherries will add more volume to the original amount of the filling.
3. Do not be concerned if cake crumbs or filling gets swirled into the glaze as you are smoothing it on top of the cupcake.  The whipped cream topping with conceal most of this.
                                         **LAST YEAR: Peach Amaretto Bread Pudding**

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Bavarian Key Lime Pie

I can remember the first time in Florida when I tasted a key lime pie.  It was in a restaurant located in Destin.  I had one of those: "probably won't like it but at least should try it attitudes."  Not sure why the thought, since I am a big fan of lemon, especially lemonade.  After one ice cold bite of the tart smooth filling with the slight crunch of the graham crust...well lets just say I had a real attitude adjustment in regards to eating key lime pie.

Since then I have made several key lime pies at home.  The one thing that bothered me was that the pie never seemed to have much depth to it.  The filling never really baked up close to the lip of the pie pan.  In scanning the net, I found a pie shop that had double-decker pies.  That is where I got the idea to make this particular pie.

The top layer is white chocolate Bavarian cream and the other layer, of course, is the tangy key lime filling. Also, it has the traditional graham cracker crust.

This pie is really a great cold dessert to serve up in the heat of the summer.  I had a few visitors here that spent most of the day outside that simply devoured the pie after dinner.

Bavarian Key Lime Pie
crust and key lime filling adapted from Bubbie's Homemade Pies
Bavarian layer adapted from Penzey's spices

1/3 cup or 5 1/3 tbs melted butter
1 1/2 cups Graham Cracker crumbs
3 tbs sugar
pinch of salt

Ingredients/Key lime layer
1/3 cup key lime juice
1 cup sweetened condensed milk
3 eggs
1/2 tsp cream of tartar

Ingredients/White Chocolate Bavarian Cream layer
1 1/2 tsp  unflavored gelatin powder
4 oz chopped white choc bar
2 tbs cold water
1/4 and 2 tbs sugar
1 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup heavy cream
4 eggs yolks, room temp

For the crust, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Then mix together butter, sugar, salt and crumbs.  Pour in melted butter and stir until all the crumbs are moistened.  Transfer mixture to an 8-10 inch pie tin and press evenly into pan.  If you have another of the same pie tin or plate, place it on top of the crumb mixture in the other pie pan and lightly press down.  This will help compact the crust.   Remove the top tin and place crusted tin in fridge for 30 minutes.

Once chilling time is complete, place tin in oven and let crust bake for about 8 minutes.  Remove and let cool to room temperature before filling.

Start on the Key lime filling by preheating the oven to 300 degrees.  Whisk the eggs until frothy.  Then beat in the sweetened condensed milk along with the cream of tartar.  Run the mixer on medium high for 1 minute.  Change the speed to low and pour in a steady stream of key lime.  Once all the key lime has been mixed in, increase the speed to medium high and beat for 5 minutes.  Then fill the crust with the mixture.

Place filled pie tin on the middle rack and then put an empty jelly roll pan on the rack underneath.  Let the pie bake for about 15 -20 minutes.  The pie sets up after it is removed from the oven, so coming out of the oven it will still jiggle in the center a little.  Do not let the filling brown on the edges, that means it is overcooked.

Remove pie and let cool at room temperature for 20 minutes, then transfer to a refrigerator to chill and make note of the time.

For the chocolate layer, start by setting up a double boiler to simmer.  Then break up chocolate and place in top bowl to melt. Keep warm so chocolate stays melted.  Next is the gelatin; fill small bowl with the water and sprinkle gelatin over top.  Then stir, making sure no dry powder remains on top. Set aside so gelatin can dissolve.

In a stand mixer bowl, add egg yolks, sugar and vanilla extract. Beat until frothy.  Set aside.  Place a small saucepan over medium high heat and cook milk until simmering but not boiling. Remove from heat.  Turn on stand mixer to medium low and start mixing the egg yolks/sugar batter again.  As you continue to mix, pour in a steady stream of the hot milk.

Once combined, pour batter back into saucepan and heat over medium low until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon.  This should take at least 15 minutes.  Then check the white chocolate, making sure it is still melted. If not, heat up again and then add to batter in saucepan and mix until combined. Lastly, stir in the gelatin/water mixture until all is smooth.  Strain into a bowl and let cool.

After batter has cooled, whip 1 cup of heavy cream to medium peak stage.  Stir 1/3 of the whipped cream into the batter.  Remove pie from refrigerator and pour the white chocolate batter over the top.  Then pipe the remaining whipped cream around the edge of the pie.

Place the pie back in the refrigerator to chill.  Chilling time should be a total of 4 hours from the first time it was placed in the refrigerator.  After the 4 hours, it is ready to be served.

Tips and tricks:
1. Should you not be patient and find that the white chocolate mixture when cooled is not the right consistency, you can recover by cooking up in the microwave by using the defrost button. Run for about a minute and stir.  Repeat the process until right consistency is achieved.

2.  The Bavarian cream recipe can be doubled, should you want more white chocolate flavor paired with the lime.

3.  Adding key lime zest will give it an extra punch of lime flavor.  However, keep in mind that this addition will eliminate the smooth texture of the pie.

4.  Also for a more decorative touch you can insert slices of lime, curve side up, in the whipped cream.
                                    **LAST YEAR:Chocolate Irish Cream Cheesecake*

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Virginia Blackberry Roll

I like all kinds of fruits, however, it is the dark fruits I like most.  Maybe it is the dark color, but I feel that those fruits seems to have more flavor.  Also, while farmers are growing bigger and bigger strawberries, strawberries seem to have less and less flavor.  Lets just hope farmers do not opt to make larger and larger blackberries.  I really like them just the way they are, so I can continue to pass on the grapes as a snack and go for the blackberries.

This recipe is basically a blackberry cobbler, but formed in a different way.  The blackberries are encased in a buttermilk biscuit dough and then sliced to serve.  I think that the way this is formed allows for more of the juices to penetrate the biscuit.  Biting into that bottom purple piece of biscuit is my favorite part.  However, I am not sure how definite that answer is when a scoop of vanilla ice cream is added!

I hope everyone is enjoying time with family and friends to celebrate Father's Day today!

Virginia Blackberry Roll
adapted from Classic Home Desserts

Ingredients/Berry Filling
4 cups rinsed blackberries
juice of 1/2 lemon
pinch of salt
3 tbs quick cooking tapioca

Ingredients/ Biscuit Dough
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup or 1 stick butter (cubed and cold)
1 tbs baking powder
3 cups flour
3 tbs sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
pinch salt
1 egg
2 tsp milk

For the berry filling, add all filling ingredients in a large bowl and mix until berries have an even coating and set aside.

Start making the dough by sifting together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Mix in the sugar and pour into a food processor.  Drop in cubes of butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  Then turn the machine on and pour a steady stream of buttermilk into the dough.  Let run until the dough comes together.  If it still appears to be a little dry, mix in an additional tablespoon or two of buttermilk.

Roll out some wax paper on a flat surface and lightly dust with flour.  Also, butter the interior of a 9 1/2 x 2 1/2 inch loaf pan. Line the bottom and long sides (leaving some extra overhang) of the pan with parchment paper and butter the surface.  Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Take dough out and roll out to a rectangle about 11x14 inches.  Trim sides to make straight and reserve trimmings.  Using the wax paper, flip the dough into the loaf pan, lightly pressing the sides to adhere to the interior of the pan.  Your dough should overhang the long sides and just come up to the top of the pan on the short sides.  Trim the dough where needed on the short sides and cut about an inch off each long side overlap of dough.  Set dough trimmings with the others.

In a small bowl, crack the egg and add the milk.  Blend with a wire whisk until a little frothy.  This is the egg wash for the dough. 

Fill the dough lined loaf pan with the blackberry filling, making sure it is all even.  Then fold over one long side of dough over berry mixture.  Brush with egg wash and then fold the other long side of the dough over and press to seal edge.  Make any folds as needed to seal the short ends as well.

Form the reserved dough trimmings into a ball and roll out. Using a cookie cutter, cut out desired shapes.  Place decoratively on top of roll and brush with egg wash.

Place a cookie sheet lined with foil on the bottom rack of the oven.  Then place the loaf pan above, in the next rack up.  Let bake for 30-50 minutes.  Once golden, sprinkle the top with sugar and let bake and additional 10 minutes.  Mine took a total of 40 minutes because I baked in a dark pan.  For a glass pan, it recommends 50-60 minutes.

Remove and let cool in pan for 30 minutes then transfer to pan with a lip to catch juices as you slice.  Serve slightly warm by itself or add a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Tips and Notes:
1. Recipe stated to serve in pan that you baked it in.  I did the parchment lining and transferred it for a nicer presentation.
2.  My crust browned pretty quickly, so occasionally peek in on it and if it gets too brown, cover lightly with foil.
3.  For more thickness on top and less decoration, trim off less dough.
                                          **LAST YEAR: Raspberry Lemon Muffins**