“…as Northern Michigan as Cherry Pie.”

“…as Northern Michigan as Cherry Pie.”

One of the sweetest features of northern Michigan’s cuisine is its cherries, and by extension, pies and crumbles. As local journalist Nancy Krcek Allen writes, “Apple pie has been hailed as the all-American dessert, but cherries prevail in these parts.”

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Blue Moon Ice Cream

blue moon ice cream

 

Blue Moon, a flavor of ice cream found in the U.P. and surrounding areas, tastes like Fruitloops, according to some. This sounded like fun. I’d never heard of this flavor before, and I like trying new things. It isn’t in grocery stores in New England. I don’t have an ice cream maker, either, but I decided to ad-lib something together that would allow me to approximate its flavor.

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Dark Chocolate Cherry Cookies

chocolate cherry cookies from MichiganOur first recipe from Upper Michigan is for dark chocolate cherry cookies. The prospect of desserts inspire me to cook more than anything, so I began my vicarious journey through the U.P. with this recipe.

It was simple enough to follow, except the author left out the measurements for how much brown sugar to add and when to add the eggs. I improvised with a cup of brown sugar, added chopped pecans, and added the eggs to the melted butter and sugar mixture before adding in the dry ingredients. Dried dark sweet cherries at our local Trader Joe’s replaced tart ones, as they were the only variety on the shelf.

While whisking together the ingredients, the dough became unusually creamy, much like how Cold Stone ice cream looks when it’s being mixed on the counter. After you add in the chocolate, it’s even better.

Note: the cookies were very crumbly when freshly baked—let them sit a few minutes and the flavor will become even better, and the cookie will still retain its soft texture (but hold together).

Beautiful.

 

 

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Lamingtons with Cream and Raspberries

lammy sammy

Today I tried the lamingtons with the dessert whip and raspberry jam inside. Delicious lammy sammies!

 

Lamingtons

Lamingtons

Before this food adventure, I’d never heard of lamingtons before. Just as with the pavlova, it appears that New Zealanders and Australians argue about the ownership of the dessert—a spongey butter cake dipped in chocolate and rolled in coconut that is ubiquitous at bake sales. New varieties are popping up, but a popular special one is raspberry jam and whipped cream sandwiched between two lamingtons. Continue Reading…

Anzac Biscuits

anzacbiscuits

Anzac biscuits (or cookies, as we’d call them in the States) are so important to Australian history because they were one of the main foods that moms and wives baked for their soldiers fighting in Gallipoli in World War I. The biscuits keep well for months, which is why they were so popular. That part of Australian history is so important that there’s even an Anzac day.

Anzac biscuits are heavenly morsels made without eggs, so they’re perfect for those with allergies or vegans (just sub the butter for margarine). This was the first recipe that I came across with unfamiliar ingredients, but even if you’re not in Australia, you can make it work! I’ll show you how I adapted the recipe so that it can be made even without any special ingredients.

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Pavlova

Pavlova

Pavlovas are an example of working like heck to get to heaven. That’s at least how it seems without an electric blender—or a whisk. That’s right. I don’t have a whisk. And I set out to make pavlova. I’m don’t feel as proud as I do foolish.

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Jello Fruit Cocktail Cake

cake

I have to admit that before reading about this, I’d never heard of anything like it. The only thing that comes close is a recipe from a vintage cookbook from the 60s. I’d always thought it was a fad and that people had decided against it. Are memories really made of this as /u/isle_say  says? If that’s true, it must be pretty good. Only one way to find out!

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Wheat Cakes

Wheat Cakes

Let’s revisit the confetti bar post, in which I had said that /u/Ocarina_21 on Reddit said:

That sort of square thing with variously coloured marshmallows and I think peanut butter. It’s at all sorts of Saskatchewan events, but I don’t think I’ve ever been told what it’s called. And then if you’re a masochist, there’s that vile “puffed wheat cake” 

As you know, the confetti bars were absolutely amazing. I was curious about this puffed wheat cake—I researched a bit and found that people seemed to have very mixed feelings with regards to it. Some love it and some hate it, but some people who like it still can’t really forgive their mom for trying to pass off grains as dessert.

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Confetti Bars

Confetti Bars

 

In my book, the local treats everyone always prepares count for even more than dishes that originate in the region but that no one really makes.

The suggestion was made for me to use Reddit to crowdsource ideas. I hadn’t used it much before, but I’m glad I started. There’s a certain thrill in knowing you’re actually communicating with the real people who are experts in your topic of interest—in this case, Saskatchewan food.

Under /r/saskatchewan, I submitted “Saskatchewan Recipes,” under which I asked: What are some recipes or foods from Saskatchewan?

/u/Ocarina_21, replied:

That sort of square thing with variously coloured marshmallows and I think peanut butter. It’s at all sorts of Saskatchewan events, but I don’t think I’ve ever been told what it’s called. And then if you’re a masochist, there’s that vile “puffed wheat cake” 

I went on a quest to hunt down the name of this recipe. I Googled “recipe marshmallows peanut butter saskatchewan” and this was the first result with Saskatchewan in it: 

Marie, the author, says this about the recipe: 

Anyway, confetti bars. Haven’t had em in a long time, and have noticed that they definitely aren’t the ubiquitous party/ holiday treat here, that they are back home. You can’t go to a Canadian potluck, Christmas dinner, or wedding social without coming across these things! I’m not taking any credit for the recipe itself, as it’s one that you just learn as a kid, and absolutely everyone knows.

And then, in the comments, were more testaments to the Canadian-ness of the treat, including this one from Heather:

Definitely a Canadian thing. Grew up in Saskatchewan, where they were always to be found wherever people brought baking, but it’s been harder than I thought to find a recipe, and the only recipes I’ve found have been on Canadian sites (is it a prairies thing?)

I was sold. I went out to the store in search of colored marshmallows and butterscotch chips.

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About

bwfacecircle

Join me as I generate random coordinates on the planet and attempt to learn to cook those regions' cuisines.

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Live at home like a traveler.
—Henry David Thoreau

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