It was my sweet dad’s birthday on the weekend and we had him and my mom over for brunch on Sunday. We were supposed to have them for dinner, but with a snow storm looming (can you believe it?) we decided to do brunch instead so they could get home before the weather turned.
We went for the typical brunch fare – scrambled eggs, sausages, oven baked home fries and the organic sourdough bread we made on Saturday at Jessica Ross’s (Jess Ross the Baker) workshop.
I know you don’t really need dessert at brunch but I wanted a little something since it was a birthday celebration.
I didn’t have much time, the oven was already in use for the potatoes and sausages, so I needed a no-bake recipe. A quick google search landed me on The Foodie Teen’s website and her zesty lemon and coconut cheesecake bites.
They were easy, no-bake and I had all the ingredients on hand in my cupboard. Wonderful, the parents would be arriving in just over an hour so definitely doable!
My husband always teases me that I’m not a great baker because I never read the recipe in full and always get halfway through and realize I either don’t have an ingredient, didn’t prepare something properly, skipped a step, forgot to add something etc.
And he’s right. I’m usually in a rush, glance at a recipe and get halfway in and realize I did something wrong, have to do a workaround, or make an adjustment or substitution. It usually works out in the end but I’d save myself a lot of hassle and grief if I just read through the recipe first.
Last week I made a batch of apple muffins. I had one apple left that needed to be used up before going bad and thought, “What can I do with that?” Muffins. Great.
Found a recipe, gave it a quick glance and jumped in. Halfway through I became confused. After adding in my shredded apple, I noticed down further it says to add in one chopped apple.“Seriously. Two apples?” That wasn’t listed properly in the ingredients. Bad recipe!
“What can I use to replace an apple?” I had no other fresh fruit. No applesauce. No zucchini. Hmmmm what about a carrot? Fairly similar consistency, sweetness and amount of liquid. I think that could work. Done. Turned out great.
Tip: Read your recipe thoroughly before you jump in to prepare it.
Everything was going great with the little cheesecake bites until I got to the end of the recipe and read, “Return the bars to the fridge and leave there for 2-3 hours, until firmed up.”
Two to three hours? Damn it! I didn’t have that much time. I had less than an hour at best. At this point I had to admit to Mike I made a mistake. “These might not be ready for our brunch. What do you think I should do? Maybe I’ll put them in the freezer.” He cautioned that the recipe didn’t say “freeze” (he’s a bit of a stickler for following recipes exactly) so they might not freeze properly.
I decided to let them sit for 30 minutes in the fridge and if not set, I’d try the freezer for the last 30 minutes. That’s what I did and they were perfect. Not frozen solid. Still a little pliable in the middle, and since they are made mostly of coconut, they softened up pretty quickly at room temperature.
Everyone loved them. The perfect little touch of sweetness after a heavy brunch. Zesty lemon flavour, smooth creamy texture. I’ll definitely be making these again.
And who knows, since my recipe “almost disasters” always turn out in the end, I might not change my ways. I might continue to rush, wing it and skim recipes to give them my own “non-intended” creative flare and unique touch 😉 We’ll see.
You can get the recipe here from The Foodie Teen.
Over to you. Are you someone who reads every little detail of a recipe and follows it to a “T” or do you like to wing it, glance and give recipes your own unique flare? Tell me in the comments, I’d love to know I’m not alone 🙂