Sweet Inspiration – No. 5

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I don’t know about you, but I love fall. And this weather that we are having in Chicago is my absolute favorite. It’s chilly enough that boots and jackets are pulled out of storage and scarves are draped around necks, but not too cold that gloves and mittens and hats need to be worn. This is also the kind of weather that has me dying to make a big batch of soup, or sauce, or beans that I can eat for days and makes my house smells amazing. AND chocolate comes into more prominence in my dessert cravings. And with that, here’s this week’s round-up. Have an amazing weekend (and maybe have some cider to celebrate the beginning of fall)!

Bittersweet Chocolate Tartlets with Flaky Spelt Crust and Creme Fraiche from The Vanilla Bean Blog
Cue Jon Lovitz as “The Stoned Guy” from friends just saying “tartlet” over and over. I love small desserts. They always make me feel better about consuming more than one (or more than three). And this tartlet looks beautiful. The pictures are literally making my mouth water!

Raspberry Molten Chocolate Cake (GF and Vegan) from Beard and Bonnet
A friend of mine is currently on a medical diet which is crazy restrictive, so I of course want to bring her comfort foods…except that she can’t eat anything that I typically bake. However, this molten cake just might fit the bill. PLUS, plus, raspberry and chocolate…is there a more perfect pairing (ok, I can hear all of you saying chocolate and peanut butter or nutella, and hey, what about peanut butter and jelly…I get it). Get on this.

Chocolate Oil Cake from The Pretty Blog
This looks awesome. Obviously, I’m craving chocolate. But, mmm, flourless chocolate cake? Sign me up. I love how it’s dusted with cocoa powder, which hides any imperfections (even though it’s impossible that this has imperfections)!

Beer Brownies from Joy the Baker
Helllloooo – It’s fall and tailgate season. Beer + Brownies = a thousand times yes! I am definitely pulling this recipe out for my next fall party. Enough said!

Chocolate and Toasted Hazelnut Milk from Smitten Kitchen
Because it wouldn’t be a round-up without a beverage, this nutella-inspired bev looks especially tasty. I bet it would be delicious warm with some marshmallows on top. (For those that aren’t quite ready to embrace fall, Deb also posted a cucumber lemonade recipe that looks awesome! just add some gin or vodka and you have a summer party.)

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Bring on September – Sweet Inspiration No. 4

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I hope you had a nice Labor Day! These past couple weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind with work and some leisure travel. B and I were actually in Napa during the earthquake…kind of terrifying. Excluding “napaquake”, the trip was just what I needed to relax and recharge. (Especially because it involved the above (insert dramatic pause) chocolate-dipped salted caramel macaron from Bouchon Bakery…you guys…omg.

Given all of the recent travel, I haven’t been baking up as many treats (but I still have some coming this week), so we are going to do the round-up out of order this week. Given that we are entering the best part of summer (in my mind), which is to say the part that is about to be fall, some of these recipes are just begging to be made in order to soak up the last bits of the delicious summer bounty.

Weeknight Cobbler for Two from Joy the Baker
Good-NESS this looks delicious. Plus, it’s individualized, which means I can’t say that I’m making dessert and that I will “bring it in to work”, but really just hoard it all myself.

No-Bake PBJ Cheesecakes from Sugar and Cloth
For those that still don’t want to turn on the oven, but are looking for something tasty (and a little nostalgic), this might fit the bill.

Mojito Ice Cubes also from Sugar and Cloth by way of Lulus
Because porch-sipping and weekend day drinking don’t only happen in the summer (Plus, gives you the taste of a mojito without the alcohol, if that’s your jam)

Caramel Strawberry and Brie Toasts from Lady and Pups
Can we all just agree that brunch should be allowed everyday and that this should always be served?

Cherry Preserves with Honey and Rosemary from Food in Jars
Canning and preserving was one thing that I really wanted to get into this summer, but still haven’t. Maybe it’s going to be on my agenda for the weekend because I want to do is spread these preserves on toast with some really good, really fresh goat cheese. Yum!