breads, mini pie, and ice cream

Summer Bakes and Desserts

breads, mini pie, and ice cream

I’m sad summer is fast approaching to its final days as fall is starting grace to cool evenings. You can feel the crisp air upon the horizon. Summer is one of my favorite seasons not only because of the warm temperatures but also for baking! Here I’m sharing some of my favorite summer bakes and desserts.

This summer I experimented with a range of bakes in all categories: ice cream, sandwich cookies, breads, mini dessert, and sheet cakes.

Ice Cream-Summer Chill

scoop of ice cream in a dish with espresso beans
Espresso Brownie Ice Cream

First up is a delicious new flavor of ice cream that I have come to LOVE! Espresso Brownie!!! If you are a coffee drinker this one is for you. Ice cream flavored with leftover brownies or ice cream sandwiches. Coffee beans are added to the milk and cream that is steeped on the stove, providing a fantastic coffee flavor. If that wasn’t delicious enough, then brownie pieces are folded into the finished ice cream!

Wonderfully topped with espresso beans for a little crunch and munch.

Sandwich Cookies

Oreo Sandwiches

First up in summer bakes is a collection of sandwich cookies. Oreos is the theme on two of these, both vanilla and chocolate. Both filled with a fluffy vanilla buttercream. Cookie stamps are used for the vanilla design and the chocolate are cut out with round scalloped cutters.

Double Peanut Butter

peanut butter sandwich cookies stacked on top of each other
Double Peanut Butter Cookies

I’m a huge peanut butter lover, so a cookie that contains peanut butter in the cookie and filling totally excites me. I’m getting my peanut butter fix in one treat!!! Woo Hoo!

Another idea if you love peanut butter, check out these Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookie Sandwiches and Shortbread Peanut Butter Chocolate Triangles.

Summer Bakes- Breads

As a baker and Pastry Chef, I have to admit that breads are my absolute weakness and my latest passion in the kitchen, definitely included in my summer bakes! There is just something about fresh baked breads that YOU can create right in your own kitchen. Additionally, I love baking loaves for friends, neighbors, and family.

Worthy memory, every time I bake bread and finish the kneading process, I flashback to a memory of my favorite and amazingly talented British Pastry instructor in culinary school. It was my first class on making bread and I always remember how he taught me how to know when dough is kneaded perfectly via the windowpane test and with the addition of more flour or water to achieve it.

Rustic Bread

Baking “Boule” breads is super easy way to get delicious home baked breads that are super rustic and delicious. Quick short cut of making the dough, allowing it to rise at room temperature, then placing it covered in the fridge. Whenever you are ready for a fresh loaf, simply take a section of dough out, shape, and bake!

Secret to a great rustic dough is making a steam oven. You can do this by placing a pan on the lower oven rack and filling it with hot water once you place the dough in the oven to bake. The crust bakes up perfectly colored and crispy. I can hardly wait to slice and eat!

TIP: Testing for doneness can be done by inserting a thermometer and achieving 190 degrees F in your finished baked bread.

Here displayed are two types of decorated breads, same recipe but the tops are cut into different patterns.

Sweet Loaves

Next up is the Cinnamon Bread Bakes. I’ve been a lover of cinnamon breads since I was a kid. Never imagining one day I could make my own! You can too!

These loaves are twisted for their classic French look. Another method I tried is rolling them and slicing them like cinnamon rolls and sectioning them in the loaf pan in different sizes. I can’t decide which method I like best…..

Check out my post on some favorite bread experiments, here.

Summer Cakes

Cakes most definitely get placed into the summer bakes rotation. These sheet cakes are made for residents in a local ministry here. When asked if I would like to make cakes for these precious women and men, I volunteered whole heartedly. I’m often known as the “cake lady” and love every minute of it!

The residents each write down their favorite flavor and icing and I get the fun opportunity to create their custom cake. The smile on their faces is enough to last me a lifetime and a true privilege and honor to make something special for them all.

Mini Dessert

mini chocolate cream pie decorated on a plate
Mini Chocolate Cream Pie

Rounding out the summer bakes is last but definitely not least, is a fun and simple mini dessert that is inspired by one of my favorite summer pies, Chocolate Cream Pie. However, one twist; It’s deconstructed into a mini dessert with all the traditional components of the dessert.

  • Chocolate Pastry Cream- made and placed in mini silicon round molds and frozen, then popped out
  • Oreo Cookie Crumbs
  • Whipped Cream
  • Chocolate Fans for garnish

These make great individual desserts and perfect two bite servings. I think one of my new favorite mini desserts now! They were a big hit with the family!

Now that summer is coming to a close, I’m just as excited to get in the kitchen with some new fall creations! Stay tuned!!!

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