Jessica’s Morning Oatmeal


Good morning!  We were staying with our kids recently and Jessica pulled this dish of oatmeal from oven, hot & fruity & just a bit crunchy.  Add some warm milk and it’s the loveliest breakfast.

So I brought that recipe home and here’s my version– the best baked oatmeal yet!  (and we’ve eaten our share of baked oatmeal, let me tell you…)

2 cups oats
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 cup kefir or buttermilk
1 cup water
1 egg
3 tab. unsalted butter, melted & cooled slightly
2 tsp. vanilla
1 pound fruit (pears, nectarines, blueberries)*
garnish:  a pitcher of cream (or milk) to serve/more syrup (optional)

In a bowl, mix together the oats, almonds, baking powder and salt.  Set aside.

In another bowl, stir up the maple syrup, buttermilk, water, egg, vanilla and 1/2 of the melted butter.  Set aside.

Cut the fruit to small chunks and spread it on the bottom of a 9″ square of 9″ deep round making dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray.  Spoon the oat mixture over the fruit.  Then carefully pour the liquid mixture over the top of it all.

Bake the oatmeal at 375 degrees for 35 to 45 minutes until the oats are cooked through.  Drizzle the remaining butter over the oatmeal and serve with cream and syrup if you want a little more sweetness.

*I used 2 nectarines, 1 pear, 1 cup of blueberries (all unpeeled–easy!)

Blueberry Broccoli Avocado Salad with Poppyseed Ranch Dressing

Hi all– Should I apologize for the extra long title of this salad??– I just wanted you to know the yummy components and plus also the lovely dressing on top!

Took this salad along to my brother’s house for our Easter dinner.  And liked it so much we had it again last night!  It’s bright and fresh and I can say it works well with Easter ham or a slice of mushroom pizza!


5 cups of your favorite salad greens
1/2 cup broccoli, chopped
1 avocado, chopped
1 cup fresh blueberries
1/4 cup crumbled feta
1/4 cup dried cherries (or cranberries)
1/4 cup pecans, chopped

Poppyseed Ranch Dressing:
1/2 cup unflavored yogurt
1/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 tsp. tarragon vinegar
1 tsp. sugar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp. poppy seeds
1/8 tsp. garlic powder
1/8 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. freshly ground pepper

Layer the salad ingredients in a pretty bowl.

Then stir together the ingredients  for the dressing until they are thoroughly blended.  It makes more dressing than we needed on our salad, so there’s more in the fridge for another day.

Blueberry Topped Cheesecake

Hello all–  It’s pretty entertaining to watch my Larry eat a piece of cheesecake.  He appreciates that it’s rich and creamy– and you only need the tiniest bite to get that burst of flavor.  Plus he wants to make it last as long as he can.  I’m more of a gobbler.  So when I’m scraping the last crumbs off my plate, Larry is just beginning to nibble it away.  Honestly.

And this blueberry topped cake is really nibble-worthy.  It’s especially soft and creamy (I think it’s the sour cream)– and I got the recipe from my sis, the baker– so you know it’s a good one!


1  1/2 cup graham crackers, crushed
2 tab. sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted

24 oz. cream cheese (3  8oz. blocks)
1 cup sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1  1/2 cup sour cream

1/3 cup blueberry fruit spread
3 cups blueberries*

Crush the graham crackers in a plastic bag with a rolling pin, until they are fine crumbs.  In a bowl mix together the crumbs, 2 tab. sugar and melted butter.  Press the mixture into a 9″ springform pan (or deep pie dish).

For the filling, use an electric mixer to thoroughly beat together the cream cheese and 1 cup sugar– until it is fluffy and not gritty.  Then beat in the eggs, vanilla and sour cream.

Spoon the mixture over the crust and put it into a 350 degree oven for 60 to 70 minutes until it is set (and just slightly jiggly in the pan– it will firm as it cools).

With a thin knife, cut around the edge of the cheese cake to release it from sticking to the sides of the pan. Let it sit at room temperature for an hour.   Then set the cheesecake into the fridge for at least an hour until the are ready to serve it.

To make the blueberry topping, melt the blueberry fruit spread in a saucepan on low heat on the stove top.  Then mix in the berries and spoon let it cool before you spoon it over the cheesecake.

*I used frozen blueberries, but fresh would be better when the season rolls around!

Lemon Blueberry Muffins


Hi all– It’s pretty quiet around here.  Christmas tree down–check.  Clutter picked up and stashed–check.  Gifts all stowed in cupboards and closets–check.  Kids all gone & settled back in their own homes–check.  Sort of missing the hub-bub of ten people filling up our little house.

Here’s one Christmas week leftover still waiting to be shared.  Citrusy, sweet muffins were our quick breakfast one morning– sort of add a little sunshine on a gray sky day.  Add a mug of tea.  Perfect.

1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup lemon juice (about 1 large lemon)
1/2 cup milk
grate peel from 1 large lemon
1 cup blueberries (6 oz. pack)
a little extra sugar


First take the lemon and grate off all the peel. Set aside.  Then juice the lemon and strain out the seeds.  Set aside.

In a mixing bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar.  Next mix in the eggs, oil, lemon juice and milk.  Last, fold in the lemon peel and blueberries.

Spoon the batter into a muffin tin lined with paper liners (makes about 10).  Dust the tops with a slight sprinkle of sugar.

Bake them up at 350 degrees for 20 to 22 minutes, until they are slightly browned on top and firm to the touch.  Delicious warm with a big mug of tea.


Blueberry Streusel Coffee Cake

IMG_3121Hi friends– This is not the first blueberry cake to cross paths with this blog.  It’s an old favorite of mine and when I saw this streusel-ly version I jumped right on it.

I’m taking it to “Snack’n’Yak”.  Our group at church skips class time this first Sunday of the year.  We all just bring food and catch up after the busy Christmas break– hear all the news about kids come home for Christmas, about celebrations and about plans ahead for the New Year.  I’m looking forward to it…


1/4 cup melted butter (4 tab.)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped fine

1/2 cup sugar
6 tab. canola oil
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup flour
1  1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/4 cup blueberries, divided*

3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 to 2 tab. milk

To make the streusel, melt the butter in the microwave.  Then stir in the 1/2 cup flour, brown sugar and walnuts.  Set aside.

For the cake, stir together the sugar, oil, sour cream, milk, egg and vanilla.  Then mix in the flour baking powder and salt.

Scoop the batter into a 9″ or 10″ cake pan than has been sprayed with cooking spray.  Sprinkle 1 cup of the berries one the batter.  Then with your fingers, sprinkle the streusel over the top.  Take the remaining blueberries and distribute them over the streusel.

Pop the coffee cake into a 350 degree oven for 35 to 40 minutes until it is firm to the touch and cooked through.

While the cake is cooling, whisk together the powdered sugar and milk for the glaze.  Add one tab. of the milk first and if it seems too thick, add a bit more.  Drizzle it over the cooled cake and you are ready to eat it up!

*I used Trader Joe’s tiny organic frozen berries.  I like how they look pretty on a cake.


Blueberry Frozen Yogurt & Cream Cake


IMG_1443Hi friends–  When the kids were little and Larry and I were thinking about going out to get ice cream cone we had a little code — “What do think about going out for some frozen dairy dessert?”  –so we could talk it over without kid’s opinions on an ice cream outing added into the conversation.

And this summer dish is a perfect plate of “frozen dairy dessert”– without the ice cream.

The minute I saw this creamy frozen cake in an old magazine, I knew I just had to put one together as soon as it felt like summer around here.  So last week when my young moms group came for dinner, I had it tucked away in the freezer.  Oh, the sweet berries, the coolness on a warm night, the tart yogurt underneath and the cream. I do love cream.  And the lovely thing is that it’s rather large, so we’ve been nibbling on slices all week since.


2 cups vanilla cookie crumbs*
1 cup chopped walnuts
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted

Frozen Cake:
2 1/2 cups blueberries (plus a bit more for garnish)
1 cup sugar
16 oz. cream cheese (2 packages), room temperature
3/4 cup powdered sugar, divided in 2 parts
2 cups unflavored or vanilla yogurt (16 oz.)
2 cups heavy whipping cream

In a large bowl combine the cookie crumbs, walnuts, and brown sugar.  Stir in the butter until it’s all well coated.

IMG_1472Turn the mixture into a 10″ springform pan (any 10″ pan) that has been sprayed with cooking spray  Set it into the freezer.

Frozen Cake:
With a food processor or stick blender, puree the 2 1/2 cup blueberries and the sugar.  Set it aside.

In a separate bowl, use an electric mixer to beat together the cream cheese for about 3 minutes until it’s creamy.  Then beat in 1/2 cup of the powdered sugar and yogurt.  Add the blueberry & sugar mixture and fold it in as well.

In yet another bowl, beat the whipping cream with 1/4 cup of powdered sugar until stiff peaks form.

Then fold the whipped cream into the blueberry mixture.

Spoon it all into the prepared curst and pop it bake into the freezer for at least 4 hours.

When you’re ready to serve it, take it out of the freezer for about 10 minutes to thaw just a bit.  Garnish with safe leaves** and more berries.

Warning:  I had to cut this with a butcher knife because it was still pretty frozen– that’s OK, it was super delicious and lasted nicely on the plates.

*For the cookie crumbs, I just bought a 69 cent package of Maria cookies and went after them with a rolling pin!
**I used leaves from the berry vines in the yard.  Mint leaves a bright a pretty too.  Just make sure they aren’t a poisonous variety if you’re extracting  them from your yard, like I tend to do.




Blueberry Crumb Cake

IMG_0905Hi all–  So many reasons for cake these days–We had Mother’s Day, in our family lots of May birthdays, graduations, showers, retirements and end of school celebrations.  It’s going to be a cake-filled few weeks for us here!

So here’s a pretty little cake that is just sweet enough. It’s filled with ripe juicy berries and topped with the crunch of those toasted almonds.  I hope you like it…


Crumb Topping:
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter (1/2 stick)
1/2 cup toasted almonds**
powdered sugar for dusting

1/4 cup canola oil
2/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup unflavored yogurt
1 cup blueberries*
2 more tab. flour

IMG_0914To make the topping, stir together the 1/3 cup flour and the 1/3 cup sugar.  With a pastry blender (or 2 forks) cut in the butter until it’s resembles coarse crumbs.  Set aside.

For the cake, stir together the oil, 2/3 cup sugar, and egg.  Then mix in the flour, baking powder and salt.  Next mix in the milk and yogurt.  In a separate bowl toss the blueberries in the 2 tablespoons of flour just to coat them.  Then fold them into the cake– do not mix them too much–they are tender, you know.

Spoon the batter into an 8″ square or round pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
Sprinkle the crumb topping over the cake.  And then the drop the toasted almonds all over the top.

Pop it into a 350 degree over for 40 to 50 minutes. Dust it with powdered sugar through a sieve once it’s cooled a bit.  Luscious served warm with coffee or cooled for dessert later with a plop of whipped cream.

*I used frozen blueberries.  Leave them frozen until the last minute and then toss them in flour to keep them from sinking and also to keep them from coloring the batter purple as you mix them in!

I like the organic tiny frozen berries from Trader Joe’s for baking.  A cupful is so many berries to flavor the cake through.

**Toasted almonds found already toasted and ready to use at Trader Joe’s  (raw almonds would work well too)