This is a recipe I’d been wanting to try a while back in… January, I want to say, and peaches came on a good sale, so I decided to try to make this. The yeast I used for this was a bit old, so it probably didn’t rise properly, so I’ll want to give this another shot again soon. Macreating the peaches, though? Incredibly good idea, and definitely a thing I want to do again, especially when the Japanese peaches come into season at Mitsuwa. This may not have been perfect, but it was still real damn good.

Salty Peach Vanilla Focaccia

Ingredients

Dough

  • .5 c milk, warmed to lukewarm (microwaved about 30-40 seconds)
  • 2 t sugar
  • 1 t active dry yeast
  • 1.5 c flour
  • 2 T sugar
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 egg
  • half a stick (.25 c) unsalted butter, softened

Topping

  • 1 large peach (or 2 medium ones), pitted and sliced
  • 1 T maple syrup
  • 1 T dark brown sugar
  • 1 t vanilla bean paste
  • flaky sea salt

To start the dough, take the warmed milk, 2 t sugar, and active dry yeast, and mix together in a small bowl, until foamy. Whisk together the flour, 2 T sugar, and lemon zest, and then slowly add the egg and yeast starter, until you have a dry, kind of shaggy dough. Add the butter all in one go, and then work your dough together until you have a smooth, elastic dough. Cover your bowl, and then let rise for 1.5 to 2 hours, until it’s roughly doubled in size. 

Meanwhile, while the dough rises, toss your peach slices with the maple syrup, dark brown sugar, and vanilla bean paste, and cover and set aside to macreate while your dough rises. 

After the dough has doubled, punch it down and spread it out on a baking sheet into a rectangleish shape (or as close as you can get to one). Pour the juices over the bread, and then press the peach slices into the dough. Cover with plastic, and then let rise again until doubled in size, roughly another 45 minutes. 

In the last ten minutes, preheat the oven to 400, and bake the bread for 15 to 20 minutes, until golden brown and cooked all the way through. Sprinkle the bread with sea salt, and then enjoy your ridiculously good dessert bread!

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This recipe, just on general principle, is pretty fantastic. Roasted berries, brie, and a balsamic maple vinaigrette – can’t really go wrong there. However? Do this right when you’ve got strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries at the farmer’s market concurrently, and I’m pretty sure this will blow it all out of the water. (Also be sure that your berries are cooled when you mix the brie in, the triple cream I used ended up melting into the berries and juices. Not that I’m complaining.)

A brief side note: I find both quinoa and kale to be overused and overpriced, so unless they really add something to a meal, I usually tend to omit them. This is one of those cases in which I did. If you’d like this recipe with the original kale and quinoa, click the linked recipe below!

Roasted Berry and Brie Salad

Ingredients

  • assorted berries, in whatever quantity you’d like (used a combination of strawberries (hulled and halved), blackberries, and blueberries at a 2:.5:1 ratio)
  • olive oil
  • sugar (used brown sugar to 
  • sea salt
  • fresh cracked pepper
  • 4 oz brie (I used a triple cream, Delice de Bourgogne)
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 T balsamic vinegar
  • 1 T maple syrup
  • 1 T whole grain mustard

Preheat your oven to 400, and line a baking tray or glass pan with foil. Take your berries, toss them with olive oil and sugar to coat, and sprinkle with sea salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste. Put them in the pan, and roast for about ten minutes, until slightly softened. LET THEM COOL. Seriously, do this, or the brie will melt into the juices (which isn’t a bad thing, per se, but if you want the cheese to remain whole, let the berries cool.)

Once your berries are cooled enough, put them into your serving or storing container, and cut your 4 oz of brie into small chunks, and put it into the berries, tossing lightly to combine. 

To make your vinaigrette, combine the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, and a bit of fresh cracked sea salt and pepper, and whisk together to combine. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad, toss lightly again to coat, and then enjoy your ridiculously awesome summer dish!

Notes for future: keep brie separate until the last possible moment prior to serving, make in smaller quantities. 

I had some extra salmon from the Japanese glazed pan-seared salmon I made last week, and wanted to use it up before it went bad.  The recipe I used was originally made for use with scallops, but honestly, it works pretty well with the salmon; I just pan sear it, and then make the sauce and pour it over the seared salmon.  I also give more detail in my directions than in the original recipe, as it assumes you know certain things.

Maple-Miso Salmon

Ingredients

  • salmon
  • olive oil
  • .25 c rice vinegar (reduced from original recipe bc I didn’t have .5 c on hand)
  • 2 T maple syrup
  • 2 T white miso paste

Heat your olive oil over high, and pan sear your salmon, cooking for three minutes on each side, enough to leave the center still good and pink. 

Reduce your heat to medium high, and add your vinegar, maple, and miso, stirring with a whisk to get the miso paste to combine into the maple syrup and vinegar.  It may not fully combine, and that’s okay.  Simmer, until reduced and thickened.  

Pour your sauce over your salmon, and enjoy!

EDIT: But make sure your salmon is still good first. That’s important. Urk.

All right, so, I’ve technically had the component bits of this made since sometime last week (the cupcakes were made sometime late last week, the frosting was made shortly thereafter), I just hadn’t put the frosting on one of the cupcakes for the final shot. And since they’ve been stored in the fridge, they’re not that pretty, and are kinda sticking together.  So, the final result isn’t exactly the prettiest thing in the world, but, deal.  😛 

Also, if you don’t like pumpkin, you might want to tune out of this blog for a bit – I got three big cans of pumpkin puree last shopping trip, and there will be much baking of things involving pumpkin in the near future. 😛

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
Makes appx 14 cupcakes

Ingredients

  • 1 stick butter at room temp
  • 1 c packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 c white sugar
  • 2 c flour
  • 2 t baking powder
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1 t ground ginger
  • dash ground nutmeg
  • pinch ground cloves
  • .5 t salt
  • pinch black pepper (I think I forgot this)
  • 2 large eggs
  • .5 c buttermilk mixed with 1 t vanilla
  • 1.25 c pumpkin puree

Frosting

  • 16 oz (2 8 oz packages) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 stick butter at room temp
  • 2 c powdered sugar
  • .25 c pure maple syrup (I used closer to .5 c)

Cream your butter and sugars together until they’re nice and fluffy (usually takes about 5 minutes). Meanwhile, combine the remainder of your dry ingredients (flour, baking soda and powder, spices) in a separate bowl.  (I didn’t do this by accident, and just ended up adding all the dry ingredients in stages into the bowl, and added the wet ingredients last.)  Then add your eggs to your creamed butter and sugar, and switch between adding your dry ingredients and the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour. Add your pumpkin last, and beat the mixture until it’s smooth.

Preheat your oven to 350 (mine was at 325), and start scooping the batter into the cupcake tins – try to get each cup at least ¾ths of the way full, these will puff up.  Bake your cupcakes between twenty to thirty minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean (mine tended towards the thirty minute mark).

While your cupcakes are baking, make your frosting!  Basically, throw all your ingredients into a bowl and mix it until you have a wonderful, smooth frosting!

I kept my frosting in a separate, smaller container to frost my cupcakes as needed, and just to have a spoonful of every once in a while. And you will need to store the cupcakes in the fridge – the buttermilk makes them a bit more susceptible to mold.