Just Desserts | 5 Fall Inspired Sweets and Treats

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Fall just got a little sweeter with these 5 delicious and simple sweets and treats to  make and bake this season from Marthas Vineyard Chef Marnely Murray.

Pear Oatmeal Crumb Cake

Pear Oatmeal Coffee Cake

    Ingredients

    for the cake

    • 2 ounces unsalted butter
      3.5 ounces granulated sugar
      1/4 cup milk
      2 tablespoons sour cream or yogurt
      1 large egg
      1 tablespoon vanilla extract
      1 teaspoon lemon zest
      1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
      4.75 ounces flour
      1 teaspoon baking powder
      1/2 teaspoon salt

    for the topping

    • 2 ripe pears, peeled, cored, chopped
      2 tablespoons rolled oats
      2 tablespoons granulated sugar
      1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

    Instructions

    1
    Preheat your oven to 370F and greasy a loaf pan. Set aside.
    Using your mixer, cream the butter and sugar together for about 10 minutes. This is key to a fluffy cake. Take the time to scrape the sides of the bowl as well during this time as well.
    Whisk together the milk, sour cream (or yogurt), egg, vanilla, and lemon zest in a separate bowl.
    Once butter and sugar are creamed, add this liquid mixture. Incorporate until mixed thoroughly.
    Add the nutmeg, flour, baking powder, and salt, and mix until combined. Do not over mix.
    Pour into the prepared loaf pan and set aside while making the topping.
    To make topping, stir together the chopped pears, oats, sugar, and nutmeg. Sprinkle this mixture over the batter. Bake in the oven about 35 minutes, or until golden brown around the edges.

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    Spiced Apple Pumpkin Cake

    Spiced Apple Pumpkin Cake

      Ingredients

      • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
        1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
        1 tablespoon pumpkin spice blend
        1 teaspoon baking powder
        1 teaspoon baking soda
        1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
        2 large eggs
        1/2 cup pumpkin puree
        1/2 cup vegetable oil
        3 medium apples, peeled, cored, and grated
        powdered sugar, to serve

      Instructions

      1

      Preheat the oven to 350F and lightly oil an 8×8 inch square baking pan. 
      In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, spice blend, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. 
      In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, pumpkin puree, oil, and grated apples together. Mix the dry ingredients with the wet ones and mix until it’s all incorporated (do not over mix!) 
      Pour batter into a greased pan and bake for 35-45 minutes, until golden brown. Serve warm or room temperature with a sprinkling of powdered sugar.

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      Red Wine Brownies

      Red Wine Brownies

        Ingredients

        • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
          1 cup milk chocolate chips
          1/2 cup cocoa powder
          1/4 teaspoon salt
          3 large eggs
          1 cup granulated sugar
          1/2 cup dark brown sugar
          1 tablespoon vanilla extract
          3/4 cup all purpose flour
          1/4 teaspoon baking powder
          1/2 cup dried cranberries
          1/4 cup red wine, preferably Merlot

        Instructions

        1
        Preheat the oven to 350F and grease an 8 by 8 inch square pan.
        In a small saucepan, melt the butter with chocolate chips, cocoa powder, and salt over medium heat.
        In a large bowl, mix the eggs, sugar, and vanilla extract. Remove melted chocolate/butter mixture from the pan and let cool for five minutes. After five minutes, whisk into the sugar and eggs.
        Add the flour, baking powder, and cranberries until well mixed. Drizzle in the red wine last and just fold in.
        Scrape the batter into the pan and bake for 35-45 minutes until the top is set but the middle is still a bit soft.
        You can scoop and serve immediately but it will be very fudgy. Instead, let sit overnight in the refrigerator and cut into squares to be enjoyed.

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        Plum Pistachio Ricotta Crostata

        Plum Pistachio Ricotta Crostata

          Ingredients

          for the dough

          • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
            1 teaspoon kosher salt
            3 tablespoons granulated sugar
            1 stick unsalted butter, chilled
            1/4 cup ice cold water

          for the filling

          • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
            1 teaspoon vanilla or orange extract
            1/4-1/2 cup pistachios
            4-8 plums, depending on size, pitted and sliced
            1 egg, for egg wash
            extra pistachios for the top

          Instructions

          1
          To make the dough, plus all the ingredients while drizzling in the ice water, in a food processor until it comes together. Place in a bowl and let rest for 15-30 minutes.
          In the meantime, preheat the oven to 375F and sprinkle a baking tray with cornmeal. In the same food processor, grind the pistachios for the filling and then blend with ricotta and extract to form a nutty paste.
          Roll out the dough on a floured surface and spread the ricotta/nut paste at the bottom, in a circle about 5 inches wide. Layer the sliced plums around, tuck the galette over, and sprinkle a few more pistachios on top. Slide on to the baking tray, brush an egg wash over the dough, and bake until golden brown round the edges, about 30 minutes.
          Serve warm or room temperature with a dollop of whipped cream and crushed pistachios.

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          Dark Chocolate Dipped Spritz Spiced Cookies

          Dk Chocolate Dipped Spritz Spiced Cookies

            Ingredients

            • 2 egg yolks, hard-boiled
              1 stick unsalted butter, softened
              1/4 cup granulated sugar
              1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour 
              1 tablespoon vanilla extract
              1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice 
              1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
              2 tablespoons cacao nibs

            Instructions

            1

            Preheat your oven to 350F. Line a baking tray with parchment paper. 
            Press the egg yolks through a fine-mesh strainer and in your mixer, cream the egg yolks, butter, and sugar until fully incorporated. 
            Add the flour, vanilla, and pumpkin pie spice, but do not over mix. 
            Using the OXO cookie press, press the cookies through onto the baking tray and bake for 10-12 minutes. Let cool while you melt chocolate chips over a double boiler or in the microwave. 
            Once chocolate is melted and cookies are cool, dip half the cookies, place on a newly lined baking tray and sprinkle with cacao nibs. Let set in the fridge for 10 minutes until chocolate hardens.

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