Lots of Lemons

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lemon dill biscuits


Complaining rarely works this well. After grumbling about my lack of a lemon tree, I opened up emails from three different friends offering me lemons the very next day! Since I have yet to incorporate “no” into my vocabulary, piles of lemons now occupy half of my kitchen countertops.


Although lemon cake is probably the most popular dessert in my family, I wanted to use the lemons in a more savory application too. I nixed the traditional option of a marinade for fish—too many picky eaters—and settled on buttery biscuits instead.   Continue reading for recipe.


February 20, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . Baked Bliss, Satisfying Sides. 14 comments.

Two Cakes in One, Twice the Fun!

lemon cupcakes with coconut frosting and chocolate filling

After presenting Dad with a lemon-lemon bundt cake for four years in a row, I baked him his other favorite cake for his birthday last year, in the form of German-ish chocolate cupcakes. As another year elapsed, I debated over what to make in 2012. Lemon-lemon? German chocolate? Both? Neither?


Dad planned a backpacking trip up in the mountains for his birthday this year, so I had a little extra time to dither over his dessert. After scratching my head long enough to look like Einstein, the light bulb in my head finally flickered on. I would combine the two!   Continue reading for recipe.

September 23, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , . Baked Bliss, Delicious Desserts. 5 comments.

“Cheesy” Celebrations

As soon as summer hit, it infected my friends and me with the celebration craze. Birthdays, graduations, and now… MCATs!


My old roommate, a beautiful and smart lady, spent the past 6-8 months studying for her exam. She holed herself up in the library for hours each week, pouring over textbooks and clicking through online practice exams. At the end of last week, it all culminated in a grueling 4½-hour test.


Although it’ll take a little while before she receives her scores, I wanted her to celebrate keeping her textbooks shut for a few months! So I baked her a cheesecake, her 2nd all-time favorite cake (carrot cake just barely won 1st place). And when med schools send out their acceptances, she’ll definitely need to celebrate again!   Continue reading for recipe.

July 12, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , . Baked Bliss. 5 comments.

Little Girl, Lots of Love

After my mini muffin tin arrived in the mail, I really wanted to make a batch of true mini muffins. (Cornbread just doesn’t count!) The problem? Most of the recipes on my “To Try” list involved fruit. With such tiny little cups, only one apple chunk, blueberry, or raspberry would fit inside!


But then I remembered another tasty option: lemon poppy seed. Growing up, I loved this flavor more than any other. I always picked off the thin slivered almonds pressed into the top before peeling down the sides of the wrapper to pick at the bottom first. Even though the soft sugary top begged to be eaten, I still managed to save the best for last! (Most of the time…)   Continue reading for recipe.

May 18, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . Baked Bliss, Midweek Meals. Leave a comment.

When Tradition Becomes Entrenched

The guys in my family—well, the ones on my dad’s side—all share the same first name. It’s a tradition to pass the name down from father to son, but a second tradition is for them not to go by that name. Many have gone by their middle names, and some by nicknames.


A third tradition is for the men to ask for lemon-lemon cakes for their birthdays. Somehow, a love for lemons must get passed on along with their namesake. Why else would I get requests year after year after year for a lemon bundt cake with lemon icing from multiple male family members? (In case you were wondering, chocolate cake is the tradition for the girls. We’re just predictable like that.)   Continue reading for recipe.

August 15, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , . Baked Bliss. Leave a comment.

A Vegan’s Guide to Vending Machines

We’ve all been there. Stayed too late at work, forgot to bring healthy snacks, desperately need to cram food into our mouths. The vending machine starts to look like an angel come to rescue us from our hunger pains, but navigating the choices gets tricky for a vegan. Oreos, chocolate chip cookies, even Chex mix—all nixed. So what can a vegan safely snack on?   Continue reading for recipe.

May 31, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . Have a Heart. 4 comments.

The Sunshine in My Kitchen

Bright, creamy, and luscious, these lemon bars are the polar opposite to the rain drumming on my roof and the thunder rattling the dishes in my sink. Yes, thunderstorms. In May. I double-checked three different calendars to make sure I had the date right. With this unseasonably frigid rain and a broken heater, I used the excuse of baking to turn on the oven, heat up the house, and pretend it was actually spring by making this sunny batch of lemon bars.   Continue reading for recipe.

May 17, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , . Baked Bliss. 6 comments.

“Zukes Alors!”

My zucchini and pepperoni pizza took care of half a zucchini, but 27 more sat chilling in my fridge. And although I find both zucchini bread and muffins irresistible, I wanted something slightly more creative, something that reflected the warm spring sunshine that finally made an appearance this past weekend. A bag of juicy lemons picked from my parents’ backyard caught my eye, and the wheels in my brain started turning.    Continue reading for recipe.

April 21, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . Baked Bliss. 2 comments.