Desserts – LaDonna Rose: Cookbooks from Alaska Mon, 18 Jun 2018 13:00:08 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Pineapple Delight Cake Mon, 11 Jun 2018 13:00:20 +0000 20120510-115314.jpg

I like to cook almost anything, but I really love to bake! Cooking requires knowledge and practice, but real, serious baking requires more chemistry, more precision, and for extremely beautiful results a certain creativity and decorating ability.

There’s nothing I like to do more than roll up my sleeves, put on an apron, and start sifting the flour and measuring the sugar and butter. I bake a lot, but I’m always willing to try a new recipe and decorate another cake.

I love visiting the newest bakery in town and search for bakeries while on vacation, looking for a fresh idea.

It’s important to me to make baked goods–cakes, cookies, breads and pies-that are delicious to eat and beautiful to look at. I strive to make the recipes in my cookbooks simple, clear, and easy to follow.

I think you will find this special Pineapple Delight Cake from my Alaskan Rock’n Galley cookbook a wonderful addition to your repertoire. I hope that you bake it right away. Your family will adore you and your friends will cheer for more.

Pineapple Delight Cake

1 pkg. yellow cake mix
1 1/4 cup buttermilk
4 egg whites
1 egg
1 (8-ounce) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 cup cold milk
1 (3-ounce) pkg. instant vanilla pudding mix
1 (14-ounce) can crushed pineapple
1 (8-ounce) frozen whip topping, thawed
1/2 cup flaked coconut, toasted

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9X13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

In a mixing bowl; beat cake mix, buttermilk, egg whites and egg with an electric mixer on low speed until moistened. Beat on high for 2 minutes. Transfer to baking dish. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until toothpick tests clean. Cool on wire rack.

In another mixing bowl; beat cream cheese until fluffy. Gradually beat in milk. Gradually add pudding mix. Spread over cooled cake. Spoon drained pineapple over pudding mixture.

Top with whipped cream and sprinkle with coconut.

Serves 8.

What’s the best thing you’ve ever baked?

]]> 0
Ole’s Butter and Brown Sugar Squares Mon, 28 May 2018 13:00:56 +0000 Let’s just say Ole’s Butter and Brown Sugar Squares are utterly rich and sugary and if that’s not enough, they’re topped with a whiskey buttermilk butterscotch sauce. Yum!


for the squares:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 cup chopped pecans

for the whiskey buttermilk butterscotch sauce:
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup low-fat buttermilk
½ cup (1 stick) butter
2 tablespoons corn syrup
2 tablespoons whiskey
1 cup toasted chopped pecans, optional
whipped cream, for serving


make the squares:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.

Using a hand or stand mixer, cream the butter and sugars on medium-high speed for 2 minutes until nice and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then add the vanilla, beating until smooth. Reduce the mixer speed to medium-low and add the flour, baking powder and salt. Stir in the pecans.

Pour the batter into the baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes or until tests done. Let the cake cool in its pan for 15 minutes. Cut into squares and serve with a spoonful of the sauce.

make the sauce:
Combine sugar, buttermilk, butter and corn syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly and simmer until the butter has melted and the mixture is smooth. Stir in the whiskey and nuts. Serve warm or at room temperature. Cover and keep refrigerated.

Makes 16 squares

]]> 0
Key Lime Moose in Gingersnap Bowls Thu, 03 May 2018 13:00:37 +0000 Don’t let the fancy name scare you, gingersnap bowls are easy to make. Filled with this refreshing moose, Key Lime Moose in Gingersnap Bowls is the perfect dessert!


for the moose:
½ cup (1 stick) butter
6 egg yolks
2 whole eggs
1 cup Key lime juice
¾ cup granulated sugar
1½ cups heavy cream
2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
zest of one lime, minced, optional

for the gingersnap bowls:
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons corn syrup
nonstick cooking spray
whipped cream, for serving (optional)


make the moose:
In a heat proof bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water, melt the butter. Add yolks, whole eggs, juice and sugar. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until thick, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, (pressing over the surface) and chill until cold, about 1 hour.

Using a hand or stand mixer, beat the cream and sugar until stiff peaks form. Fold cream, cold curd and zest together in a large bowl. Cover and chill until set, at least 1 hour or overnight.

make the gingersnap bowls:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, with rack in center. In a bowl, whisk together flour and ginger. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium. Add sugar and syrup, cook over low, stirring with a wooden spoon, until sugar dissolves, 5-8 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in flour mixture. Cool completely, about 25 minutes.

Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. Making two cookies at time, drop batter by level tablespoons onto sheet, at least 6 inches apart. Bake until batter spreads and is golden in center, 9-11 minutes (cooking times will be shorter for later batches). Coat baking sheet with more cooking spray before each batch. Let cool 30-40 seconds. Working quickly with a wide metal spatula, slide cookies onto two over-turned cups; mold with your fingers. Cool completely; remove from cups. Store in airtight container up to a week. To serve, fill bowls with mouse and top with whipped cream.

Serves 4-6

Recipe hint
Gingersnap bowls aren’t hard to make, but they require careful timing and patience. Now I won’t lie ‒ I broke a few getting started, so if it happens to you, don’t get frustrated. Trust me, the process gets easier as you go!

]]> 0
Cookie Brittle Thu, 19 Apr 2018 13:00:52 +0000 Attention: This cookie brittle is straight up addictive. It will call you from the counter top all day long and when you go out, you’ll think about it on your way home and feel the need to eat a piece before you even remove your coat. This is that sort of thing. You have been warned.


1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon sea salt
1½ teaspoons almond or vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sliced almonds
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Using a hand or stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar, salt and almond extract together on medium-high speed until nice and fluffy. Reduce the mixer speed to medium-low and add the flour. When the dough has absorbed the dry ingredients, stir in nuts and chocolate chips and mix until they are well distributed.

With your fingers, press dough onto the baking sheet. Dough will completely fill the pan but won’t spread. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the edges are nice and golden. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and allow to cool for 30 minutes. Then break apart.

Makes about 2 dozen pieces

Recipe hint
Make sure you press the dough as thin as you can–the thinner it is the more glorious it will be. Pop it into the oven and bake until it’s a golden color. Now comes the hard part…waiting until it is totally cool before you break it up into brittle pieces. Lift up the mass and start breaking it up into whatever size pieces you like. After which you can give it away, keep it for yourself or split the difference.

]]> 0
Chocolate Mocha Baked Alaska Mon, 19 Feb 2018 14:00:32 +0000 The secret to this wonder is in its construction. Cake and ice cream are frozen together, then covered with meringue. The meringue acts as insulation, protecting the ice cream from the heat. The cake acts as a buffer from below and shields the ice cream. Baked Alaska is truly a unique treat. Your family will love it!


8 ounces semi sweet chocolate, broken into pieces
1 cup heavy cream
1 purchased pound cake, (about 14 oz.)
6 tablespoons coffee liqueur, (or 4 Tbl. strong coffee)
1 quart coffee ice cream
muffin pan
muffin liners
chill baking sheet in the freezer

for the meringue
6 egg whites, room temperature
½ teaspoon cream of tartar
⅛ teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Heat chocolate and cream in a heavy small saucepan. Whisk over low heat until mixture is smooth. Chill 30 minutes until spreadable. Reserve extra ganache (icing) for plating.

Line muffin pan with muffin liners or pieces of plastic wrap, leaving overhang.

Prepare the pound cake, slicing it horizontally into four layers. Cut rounds from each layer; matching the size of your muffin pan openings.

Press ¼ cup ice cream into the lined muffin tin. Leave ½ inch space on top for the cake round. Pour 1 teaspoon liqueur (or 2 teaspoons coffee) onto each round, then spread with 2 tablespoons ganache. Place a cake round on top of the ice cream, ganache side down. Cover the pan tightly with plastic wrap and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours.

the meringue:
Beat egg whites in a mixing bowl until foamy. Add cream of tartar and salt.
Beat at medium-high speed until the whites hold a soft peak. Beat in the vanilla. Gradually add the sugar 1 tablespoon at a time. Continue beating until stiff glossy peaks form. (The meringue needs to be sturdy to form “insulation” and keep the ice cream from melting).

To assemble:
Line the frozen sheet pan with parchment paper. Place the Alaskas on the parchment, cake side down. Quickly, remove the cupcake liners from the frozen ice cream. Generously cover each Alaska with 1 cup of meringue, spreading to form cloud-like swirls. Be sure the meringue reaches the parchment, creating a barrier so the ice cream doesn’t leak. Place in freezer until ready to bake.

To bake:
preheat the oven to 500°F. Take Alaskas directly from the freezer to the oven with rack in the top third. Bake 2 to 3 minutes just until the tips are lightly browned. If a little ice cream leaks, don’t worry about it. Carefully transfer
Alaskas to chilled plates. Spoon warm ganache around dessert and serve.

Makes 12 servings

The name Baked Alaska originated at Delmonico’s Restaurant in New York City in 1876 and was created in honor of the newly acquired territory of Alaska.
February 1st is Baked Alaska Day.

Preparation Tips:
Assembling Alaskas ahead (as little as a day or up to a week) insures the ice cream is frozen solid. This is important so it can withstand the heat. A Jumbo muffin pan, custard cups and ramekins (small ceramic bowls) also work great for forming individual portions. Line it with pieces of plastic wrap.

Lemon Meringue Pie Thu, 18 Jan 2018 14:00:02 +0000 We all have so many fond memories of Kay’s Kitchen in Ketchikan, Alaska. The famous peanut butter pie, apple pie, cherry cream cheese. For me it was the luscious lemon meringue pie. This is a fun and easy recipe to follow, because Kay made her pies sweet, simple and delicious!


1 (9-inch) pie shell, baked
1 ⅓ cups, plus ⅓ cup sugar
6 tablespoons cornstarch
½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
4 eggs separated
1 ½ cups boiling water
2 tablespoons butter
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
mint leaves, optional


Preheat the oven to 350°F.

In a heavy saucepan, combine 1 ⅓ cups sugar and cornstarch; add the lemon juice. In a small bowl, beat egg yolks; add to the lemon mixture. Gradually add the boiling water, stirring constantly. Over medium heat, cook and stir until mixture boils and thickens, about 8 minutes. Remove from heat. Add butter; stir until melted. Pour into prepared pie shell.

In a small mixer bowl, beat egg whites with cream of tartar until soft peaks form; gradually add remaining ⅓ cup sugar, beating until stiff but not dry. Spread on top of pie, sealing carefully to edge of shell. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. Cool. Chill before serving. Garnish with mint if desired.
Refrigerate leftovers.

Makes one 9-inch pie

Nanaimo Bars Thu, 11 Jan 2018 14:00:28 +0000 Over the years, Ole and I have taken our fishing boat north through the Inside Passage. One of the fun stops along the way is a town called Nanaimo in British Columbia. Many of the local coffee and donut shops along commercial street sell these creamy chocolate treats called Nanaimo Bars. I’m hooked on this slice of heaven, one bite and you will be too!


for the bottom layer:
½ cup unsalted butter, softened
¼ cup sugar
⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 large egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup sweetened coconut
½ cup walnuts, chopped

for the middle layer:
¼ cup unsalted butter, softened
2-3 tablespoons milk or cream
2 tablespoons instant vanilla pudding
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups confectioner’s sugar

for the top layer:
4 ounces semisweet chocolate
1 tablespoon unsalted butter


Butter an 8 by 8 inch baking dish. Set aside.

the bottom layer:
In a saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Stir in the sugar and cocoa
powder and then gradually whisk in the beaten egg. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens (1 – 2 minutes). Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract, graham cracker crumbs, coconut and chopped nuts. Press the mixture evenly onto the bottom of the prepared dish. Cover and refrigerate until firm, about an hour.

the middle layer:
In your electric mixer or with a hand mixer, beat the butter until smooth and creamy. Add the remaining ingredients and beat until the mixture is smooth. If the mixture is too thick to spread, add a little more milk. Spread the filling over the bottom layer, cover and refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes.

the top layer:
In a heat-proof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, melt the chocolate and butter. Spread the melted chocolate evenly over the filling and refrigerate until the chocolate has set.

To serve, to prevent the chocolate from cracking, using a sharp knife, bring the squares to room temperature before cutting. Enjoy!

Makes about 25 squares

Mystery Bars Thu, 04 Jan 2018 14:00:50 +0000 I have made a lot of bar cookies in my life, but these Mystery Bars are definitely the best. Don’t be surprised if someone asks you for the recipe!


40-50 saltine crackers
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 cup lightly packed light brown sugar
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup walnuts, chopped


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the saltine crackers in a row on the baking sheet, without any gaps.

Combine the butter and brown sugar in a saucepan and cook over medium heat until the mixture comes to a boil. Stirring constantly, boil for 3 minutes.

Spread the mixture over the crackers to cover completely. Bake until the caramel is bubbling, about 3 minutes.

Remove the baking sheet from the oven and quickly sprinkle with the chocolate chips, let them melt a bit and spread evenly around. Sprinkle nuts over the top.

Allow them to cool in the refrigerator for a few minutes before breaking apart into pieces.

Makes about 2 dozen pieces

Add or substitute peanut butter chips.

Raspberry Fool with Cardamom Cookies Mon, 09 Oct 2017 13:10:46 +0000 This Raspberry Fool turns tangy raspberries and luscious whipped cream into a simple yet elegant dessert in a snap. Fold fresh raspberries—either lightly mashed or fully puréed—into a good quality whipped cream for a light, fluffy dessert that will wow your guests (and leave them disbelieving the dessert’s simplicity). The liqueur is optional, but note that orange liqueur adds a lovely sweet citrus note that deepens the rich, berry flavor of this fool.


for the cardamom cookies:
1½ cups (3 sticks) butter, softened
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
2½ cups all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons ground cardamom
½ teaspoon sea salt

for the fool:
2 cups fresh raspberries
½ cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon orange liqueur, optional
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract


make the cookies:
Using a hand or stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until well blended. Add the zest, flour, cardamom and salt. Turn the mixer on low speed and blend until the dough comes together in a ball. Shape the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic and chill for an hour.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough to a thickness of about ½ inch. Use a 2-inch cookie cutter to cut out circles of dough. Place the cookies on baking sheets with about ½ inch between the cookies. Bake on the center rack of the oven until the cookies are lightly browned, 12-15 minutes. Let the cookies cool before removing from pan. Serve with Raspberry Fool.

make the fool:
Set a medium-mesh sieve over a medium bowl. Use the back of a wooden spoon to push 1 cup of the raspberries through the sieve, smearing the berries back and forth across the mash until only seeds and pulp remain. Scraping any purée from the bottom of the sieve. Stir in the sugar and orange liqueur into the purée.

In a medium metal bowl, combine the cream, confectioners’ sugar and vanilla and beat with an electric hand mixer on high speed until soft peaks form, about 2 minutes.

Pour the raspberry mixture over the cream. Use a butter knife to gently stir the mixture so that thin streaks of raspberry juice runs through the cream. Spoon the mixture into four glasses or small dessert bowls and top with the remaining raspberries.

Makes 4 servings

Variation: Feel free to substitute blackberries, salmonberries, strawberries or blueberries.

Rhubarb Crumble Mon, 11 Sep 2017 13:00:42 +0000 This Rhubarb Crumble is quick and easier to make than pie. It’s versatile, too, because you can add strawberries in the spring or apples in the fall. I usually pop it into the oven shortly before we sit down to eat so it’s still warm for dessert!


for the topping:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup lightly packed light brown sugar
½ cup old-fashioned oats
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
sea salt
½ cup (1 stick) cold butter, cut into small pieces

for the filling:
7 cups fresh rhubarb (about 2 lb.)
⅓ inch-thick sliced
1 cup lightly packed light brown sugar
¼ cup cornstarch
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
sea salt


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Evenly coat an 8 x 8-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

make the topping:
In a food processor, combine the flour, brown sugar, oats, cinnamon and ¼ teaspoon salt and pulse several times to combine. Add the cold butter and pulse until the mixture has the texture of course meal and clumps together when squeezed lightly, about 1 minute.

make the filling:
Combine the rhubarb, brown sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, lemon zest and ¼ teaspoon salt in a large bowl and stir with a spatula until evenly mixed. Transfer the rhubarb mixture to the baking dish and sprinkle the topping evenly over the fruit; the pan will be very full, but the crumble will settle as it bakes.

Bake until the topping is lightly browned, the rhubarb is tender (probe in the center with a skewer to check) and the juices are thick and bubbly around the edges, 45-60 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool and to allow the juices to thicken, at least 15 minutes.

Serves 4

Recipe hint
If using frozen rhubarb, I would just make sure the rhubarb was well defrosted and drained first.