Hereditary Comforting Chocolate Bread Pudding


Sometimes you just need a little comforting. This was one of those times. I had the post bad movie blues after watching the “horror” movie Hereditary. I’m not a jump-scare movie person, so I was very excited to see a movie that supposedly had some substance to it and maybe some chilling moments. I had heard it compared to the Babadook, a really good horror movie that dealt with grief. I watched it a couple of years after I lost my son and it had really helped to see some of my darker feelings in a movie, making me feel that I wasn’t alone. This movie however, was nothing like the Babadook. I dealt with some grief, but only in a superficial way and as far as chilling or scary goes, the scariest thing about this movie was that it was over two hours! I was so mad that I had spent money and so much time on this movie! As I fast-walked to my car, I heard the other two people that had sat in front of me in the theater say, “thank God that’s finally over!” At least I wasn’t alone in my opinion!

So I decided to stick with the comforting aspect for my dessert, and believe me, the chocolate helped! You can watch my full movie review and recipe demo at:

Dark Comfort Chocolate Bread Pudding

2 cups milk
4 eggs
Dash salt
6-10 slices brioche bread, cubed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup sugar
3 Tablespoons cocoa powder
1 cup chocolate chips

Butter six 1-cup ramekins or one 1-quart ovenproof souffle baking dish. Place bread cubes and 1/2 of the chocolate chips evenly among the ramekins or in the baking dish.IMG_1736.JPG

In small pan over low heat, place remaining chocolate chips, sugar, cocoa powder, and 1 cup of the milk. Stir constantly until just until chocolate is melted. Remove from heat. Transfer to large bowl and add remaining milk. Whisk in eggs, salt and vanilla until thoroughly combined.IMG_1738.JPG

Pour mixture evenly over bread cubes/chocolate chips and let sit 30 minutes for bread to absorb chocolate mixture. Ramekins or baking dish should be about 3/4 full, or possible overflow will occur.IMG_1743.JPG

Bake at 350 degrees for 45-55 minutes until set and no longer runny in the middle. Get your favorite banky and cuddle up!

Serves about 6.

Jurassic World Lemon Lava Cookies

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom was not what I’d expected. I’d expected it to be good! I’d expected a lot more lava and volcanoes and a lot less dinosaurs running upstairs and downstairs in mansions. But oh well, I’m sticking with my Lemon Lava cookie recipe and the dinosaurs can go chase themselves! Maybe Fallen Franchise? Just sayin’.

Full review on YouTube:

This recipe is my take on the chocolate crinkle cookie recipe that I used to make around Christmas time. Only instead of chocolate showing through the powdered sugar “snow”, this is “lava” (lemon flavored cookie) showing through the “hardened ash” (black sanding sugar). When you look at them, you’re not expecting this bright lemony flavor, then
wow…Delicious! (I found my black sanding sugar at Joann’s.)

Lemon Lava Cookies

2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
Zest and juice from 2 lemons
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Yellow food coloring
Orange food coloring

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, sift or whisk together the flour baking powder and salt.

Mix together the butter, sugar and lemon zest until light and fluffy. Mix in eggs, beating well after each. Add lemon juice and vanilla extract and mix thoroughly. (do NOT add food coloring at this point unless you want the dough to be all one color.)


Slowly stir in dry ingredients and mix just until combined. Now you can add the food colors, just mixing into the dough, but not mixing colors together too much. This will give you that nice lava look.


Put sanding sugar in a small bowl. Scoop cookie dough into 1-2 Tablespoons, depending on the size cookie you want, remembering they will spread a little. Roll into a ball, then dip one side in the sanding sugar and place sugar side up onto a lightly greased baking sheet, 2 inches apart.

Bake 10-13 minutes. Because of the black sanding sugar, it will be hard to tell when the cookie are done, If you lightly touch the cookie on top, it should feel set, and should be just lightly brown on the bottom.

Transfer to a wire rack to cool and store in an airtight container.

Makes approximately 2 dozen.









  • 2 cups all purpose flour








This recipe

Lemon Lava Cookies

Wonder Woman Warrior White Chocolate Pound Cake with Wazberries and Blueberries


Wonder Woman is definitely one of the best “superhero” movies I have seen in a long time. Gal Gadot was perfect for the part and Chris Pine played his role beautifully as well. It was a strong movie with strong roles and strong emotions, so I believe this strong, sturdy (and delicious) pound cake fits the bill. It’s full of patriotic raspberries and blueberries and a little whipped cream on the side, making it a great dessert for fourth of July as well! So easy to make, using a pound of this and a pound of that (that’s why it’s called a pound cake)! Full movie review and recipe, go to:

Wonder Woman White Chocolate Pound Cake with Berries

1 pound butter, room temperature

1 pound granulated sugar

1 pound eggs, (without shells), about 8-9 eggs, please weigh

1 pound all purpose flour

1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

1 pint fresh raspberries

1 pint fresh blueberries

Wash and dry berries, set aside.

In mixer bowl with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar together til light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and flour alternately, first one egg, then a little flour, then egg, and so on. Stir in vanilla. Gently fold in berries.

Pour into greased and floured 9-10 inch bundt pan, OR 3 loaf pans.

Bake at 350 for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until cake tester inserted comes out clean.

Cool in pan 10-15 minutes, then invert cake onto serving plate and remove pan, let cool completely.

Serve with fresh berries and sweetened real whipped cream and feel the power!raspberries-693653_640




Depp Dark Chocolate Cracked Cake with Blackberry Coulis



Aye, matey, that’s the stuff! Pirates of the Caribbean FIVE! And please, Pirates of the Caribbean LAST! Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge Johnny Depp fan (even named this cake after him) but enough with the rum drinking, carousing Jack Sparrow character.

This movie was great in the CG department. The ghost sharks, the half-decayed pirate ghosts and Javier Bardem, who played the vengeful Captain Salazar all made the movie worth seeing. HOWEVER, they could have told the “story” in an hour and a half, and without the younger versions of Orlando Cant-Get-Past-Puberty Bloom and Kiera Enough-With-The-Toothy-Grin Knightly, who really didn’t lend much to the story. I really didn’t care about these characters at all and found myself glancing at my watch because of the poor pacing and OVER 2 hours of swashbuckling! Full review and recipe demo at:

So here is my recipe, which takes a much shorter time than watching the movie, but pays homage to Captain Salazar’s cracked face. Javier Bardem did not disappoint and neither will this cake. It’s actually supposed to fall and is very decadent and dark and delicious.

Depp Dark Chocolate Cracked Cake with Blackberry Coulis

12 ounces semi sweet chocolate chips

1 stick (1/2 cup) butter

6 eggs, separated, room temperature

1 cup granulated sugar (1/2 cup for egg whites, 1/2 cup for yolks)

1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar

2 tablespoons dark rum

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Butter and small amount of cocoa powder or flour for dusting pan

Preheat oven to 350.

Prepare 9 or 10″ springform pan: grease pan with about a tablespoon of butter, then dust with cocoa powder (can use flour).

In a small saucepan or double boiler, over very low heat, melt the chocolate chips and butter together, stirring and watching carefully. Let cool, just a bit. (If added to beaten egg mixture while hot, you’ll cook your eggs!)

While chocolate mixture is cooling, beat egg whites with cream of tartar and when foamy gradually add 1/2 cup sugar. Beat until stiff but not dry. Set aside.

Right away, in separate bowl, beat egg yolks til thick, about 3 minutes, then gradually beat in the remaining 1/2 cup sugar. Stir in melted chocolate mixture, rum and vanilla.

Fold in 1/3 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, then add chocolate mixture to egg whites, folding in carefully until just combined…you don’t want to deflate your whites, matey!

Pour into prepared pan and bake for 25 minutes, turn oven down to 300 and bake 25 minutes more. Remove from oven and let cool for 20 minutes on wire rack. Place a piece of damp paper towel over cake, still in pan, to make surface crack. Can assist the cracking process by pushing lightly on surface when cool.

Cool completely in pan. remove outer pan rim to serve. Dust with confectioners sugar if desired. Serve with whipped cream and Blackberry Coulis (recipe follows).

Blackberry Coulis Sauce

2 cups blackberry puree (can use frozen or fresh fruit or buy frozen puree)

1 cup granulated sugar

1-2 Tablespoons water

1 teaspoon lemon juice


Puree blackberries in a food processor. Place in medium saucepan with sugar, water and lemon juice, cook over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Press mixture through a fine sieve to remove seeds.

Let puree mixture cool completely, store in refrigerator.

Makes about 1 and 1/2 cups.


Aprons available in my etsy shop: MyCelestialDesigns

Going In Style Jumble Pie


So my latest review is of the movie “Going In Style”, with Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman and Alan Arkin…..funny guys right? Sorry to disappoint, but no. Maybe it was the script, maybe the director (Zach-can-you-believe-this-guy-has-a-career-Braff), or maybe just a remake of a movie that didn’t need a remake in the first place. Whatever the reason, this movie was a “jumble” of things put together, with a bank heist, a puppy, a non-caring father, a scene with Morgan freeman in a scooter basket (one of the highlights) and a very unnecessary love interest, played by Ann-didn’t need-a-facelift-Margret! Since this movie was such a jumble, I decided to make “Jumble Pie”, which is basically a mixed berry pie, or tart as pictured above, but this one has a layer of chocolate ganache on the bottom crust and I used cherries along with blackberries and raspberries. See full review and recipe demo on You Tube on my channel “Sweet Movie Review” at:

Going In Style Jumble Pie

Tart/Pie Sweet Crust:

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

8 ozs. (1 stick) butter, grated or cut in small pieces

1 egg, lightly beaten

1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

In medium bowl, combine powdered sugar and salt. using a fork or pastry blender, cut in cold butter pieces until mixture resembles small crumbs.

Stir in egg, then mix in flour (easiest to use hands), fluffing and gently mixing until just combined—do not overwork. Cut in 4 portions for tarts, or leave as whole disc for pieIMG_0747

Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes. Can be kept well wrapped in refrigerator for 3 days, or frozen one month, thaw in refrigerator before using.

Meanwhile make fruit filling.


Berries, cherries, or other mixture of fruits for cooking, about 2 cups

1/4–1/2 cup water or fruit juice (depending on juiciness of fruits)

3 Tablespoons cornstarch

1/4 cup granulated sugar (or more depending on tartness of fruit)

1-2 Tablespoons lemon juice

Wash and prepare fruit. In a medium pan, whisk together cornstarch and sugar.

Over medium heat, while whisking, pour in water or juice, and fruits. Whisk and stir until thick. Off heat, stir in lemon juice. Let cool.IMG_0754

While fruit filling is cooling, remove crust dough from refrigerator, roll into desired size for tart or pie pan, place into pan gently, lifting and making sure you get the dough into the “corners” of the pans. Remove excess dough.IMG_0773

Line with a square of parchment paper and fill with pie weights (I use dry beans). This keeps your pastry from puffing, called “blind baking”.IMG_0780

Bake in a preheated oven for about 8 minutes, then lift out parchment paper with beans (save for another time), and continue baking until light brown, about 5 minutes.

Let cool completely.

Meanwhile make ganache.

Chocolate Ganache:

1/3 cup heavy cream

1/3 cup chocolate chips

Place chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl. On stove, over medium high heat, heat heavy cream, watching carefully, until cream starts to rise to the top of the pan. This happens more quickly than you think!

Remove from heat and immediately pour over chocolate chips and let sit for just a couple of minutes. Stir gently with a whisk until completely blended.

Pour into pie shell or tart shells. Refrigerate about 30 minutes until completely cool.

Spoon in completely cooled filling over chilled ganache and chill pie or tarts completely before serving. Garnish with sweetened whipped cream if desired.

Makes 1- 9″ pie or 4 – 4″ tarts.











Suicide Squad Lime Puddin’

imageI recently saw Suicide Squad and while I did like parts of it, I was a little disappointed by how little screen time the Joker had. So here is my tribute to the Joker, one of my favorite characters, with which I thought Jared Leto gave a terrifying performance! See full review and recipe demo here:

Suicide Squad Lime Puddin’

3/4 cup sugar

3 Tablespoons cornstarch

1 cup milk

1 egg yolk

1/4 cup lime juice

1 Tablespoon butter

Green food coloring (optional)

Lime Zest (optional)

Cut up fresh fruit if desired

Toasted coconut if using

In small saucepan, whisk sugar, cornstarch and egg yolk, then gradually whisk in milk. Add lime zest at this point if using.

Bring to a boil, stirring constantly until thickened and mixture coats the back of a wooden spoon. Mixture will thicken more upon cooling.image

Off heat,whisk in lime juice. Add food coloring at this point if using.

Pour through fine sieve into a bowl with the butter in it.

Stir until butter is melted.

While still warm, place piece of plastic wrap directly onto puddin’ surface, then chill 2-3 hours before serving.

Serve over fresh fruit if desired. I used mango, pineapple, kiwi, strawberries, bananas,  and blackberries.

Top with toasted coconut if desired.suicide squad

Makes about 1 and 1/2 cups.

Slow Southern Matthew McConaughey Sauce a.k.a Chocolate Pecan Molasses Mud

20160630_160647029_iOSDid you ever wonder what it was like to be back in the 1860’s and be in a very bloody war for 10 minutes and then just lazily row through the swamps of Mississippi and just use your slow southern drawl to just say whatever comes to mind and just be sittin’ there whittlin’ a stick…and then maybe come upon a very grisly murder scene, and then go right back to just bein’ lazy and talkin’ bout stuff?

Well, that’s just what Matthew McConaughey’s latest movie, ‘Free State of Jones’ was like. It started out pretty great, right in the middle of the Civil War, then the story kinda stopped so Matthew could just drawl on about whatever came to mind. So, what came to my mind was molasses: slow, dark, takin’ its sweet time doin’ slow things what molasses done. So here’s my recipe which is incredibly sweet and delicious (like Matthew M.), and even though you may not be molassessss’s number one fan, I encourage to make this rich delicious sauce for ice cream, waffles, whatever tickles your southern fancy!

 Chocolate Pecan Mississippi Mud

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup molasses

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1/2 cup heavy cream

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 to 1 cup pecan halves (or as many as you can afford!)

Melt butter over low heat in a small saucepan. Whisk in sugar and molasses. Bring to a rolling boil and boil for about 2 minutes on medium heat, whisking occasionally.

20160630_160940115_iOSRemove from heat and add chocolate chips, stirring to melt. When chocolate is melted completely, add cream and vanilla and stir. Then fold in pecans.

Serve cold or warm over ice cream and refrigerate leftovers. Soooo good!


10 Cloverfield Bananas Foster Souffle


Why a souffle to represent 10 Cloverfield Lane? Big build up, flat finish, that’s why! And Bananas Foster because it’s a typical Louisiana dessert. Even though I didn’t see or hear any evidence of the movie taking place there, I read that it was indeed filmed in Louisiana. For full review and how to recipe, go to

It might seem a little strange that we start off making a dessert by making a white sauce, but then it was strange seeing John Goodman shaking his money maker!

Anyway, we start with a white sauce: melting the butter, adding the flour, whisking in the milk. 20160313_201320865_iOS

This is just before whisking in the milk, cooking just enough to cook the flour taste out of it! So after you’ve added the milk and it’s smooth, OFF HEAT add extract, and sugar, stirring til dissolved. Stir in yolk:20160313_202238359_iOS

Now, just fold into that, your beaten egg white and cream of tartar mixture and you’re ready to spoon the mixture into your prepared (buttered and sugared) ramekin.20160313_202154348_iOS

NOTE: This recipe is for 1 serving (1 ramekin), just multiply ingredients by number of servings.

Bananas Foster Souffle

Butter and granulated sugar for coating ramekins

1 Tablespoon butter

1 Tablespoon flour

Dash salt

1/4 cup milk

1 egg, separated

1 Tablespoon granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon rum or vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

2 Tablespoons brown sugar

Dash ground cinnamon

1/2 small banana, thinly sliced


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Coat inside of each ramekin with butter and sprinkle with sugar, shaking out excess.

Add brown sugar in a layer to prepared ramekins. On top of brown sugar, add a layer of thinly sliced banana.

In small saucepan, melt butter on low-medium heat. Add flour and whisk, cook while watching for 1 minute, being careful not to let mixture brown. While whisking add milk and stir until smooth. Remove from heat. Add extract and sugar and stir until sugar is dissolved. Set aside, let cool.

Meanwhile, beat egg white with cream of tartar until very stiff.

To cooled white sauce mixture, stir in beaten egg yolk until smooth. Fold in stiffly beaten egg white mixture until just blended. Spoon into prepared ramekins on top of banana slices and brown sugar.

Bake for 15-20 minutes without opening oven door, until puffed and brown.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve immediately!

Serves 1.20160314_163645811_iOS20160313_204240399_iOS

So good! Custardy, rummy and warm! 10 Cloverfield Lane was good for suspense, but now gonna go rent Cloverfield (2008) for some action!





Gods of Egypt Rice Pudding


Rice pudding has always been a comfort food for me. I know with most people, it’s either a love thing or a hate thing, and raisins add another dimension to that! My mom used to make it for my dad, so it brings back a sense of home whenever I make it. I needed some comfort after I saw Gods of Egypt! My main question for that movie is “What were they thinking?” For my whole movie review and recipe basics visit:, and don’t forget to “like” and/or subscribe 🙂

This is a pretty simple recipe for Rice Pudding which is a favorite dessert in Egypt. For special variations, you could always add raisins, dates, cranberries, pretty much whatever you want. You can eat it right from the stove (well, I mean put it in a dish first!) or after the rice mixture cooks, you can put it in the oven to bake for a nice brown top (the pudding, not you!)

Egyptian Rice Pudding with “Sand”

2 cups cooked rice

1-2 cups of milk

1/3 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs, beaten

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional)

“Sand” Topping:

1/2 to 3/4 cup vanilla wafers, measured then crushed

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Dash nutmeg

2 tablespoons brown sugar

To still warm rice in pot, over low heat add milk, (amount depends on where you are cooking it. If cooking on stove top only, then add less milk, about 1 cup. If baking in the oven, then you need to add about 2 cups). Add sugar and stir to dissolve and combine, still over low heat. Cook on low to medium for about 15 minutes. You should still have some milk not absorbed, add more milk if necessary (more milk if baking in oven).

Off heat , stir in beaten eggs. If not baking pudding, continue to cook for at least 3 minutes, constantly stirring, so as to not get eggs scrambled! If you do plan on baking the pudding, you can skip this stove top cooking part, as the eggs will cook in the oven. Either way, remove from heat and add vanilla. You can add raisins at this point, or other extras, and cinnamon and nutmeg, if desired.

If you cooked the pudding with the eggs in it for 3 minutes and plan to serve it now, then sprinkle on your “sand” topping and serve.

If you want to bake your pudding, put rice/sugar/egg/vanilla mixture into a greased oven proof casserole dish or individual ramekins and bake until golden brown on top, about 30 minutes, adding “sand” topping during the last 10 minutes of baking time.

Serve warm or cold. Refrigerate leftovers.

And no, I don’t usually wear this much makeup,it was just for the movie review! Much respect to those of you who wear eyeliner…don’t know how you do it! Obviously, I don’t know how to do it!



Revenant “Beary Good” Bear Claws


20160225_152856724_iOSAhhh, the buttery flaky deliciousness of Danish pastry filled here with a sweet brown sugar and almond filling, just waiting for you to take that first crunchy, tender bite! After seeing the movie Revenant with Leonardo DiCaprio, I’ll never look at a bear claw the same way again, and these too,  will make you growl with delight! See the full movie review and how to make these giant “paws” on Sweet Movie Review:

In honor of one of the best, nominated for an Oscar, movies of the year, a wonderful recipe for Bear Claws, with my own almond filling!

Revenant Review Bear Claws

1 recipe Danish pastry dough ( I used the one from Baking With Julia by Dorie Greenspan)

Almond Filling:

1 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted

1/2 cup brown sugar, packed

1 egg white, divided

2 Tablespoons butter, softened

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1 Tablespoon flour

1/4 cup sliced almonds, (not toasted), for garnish

Place cooled toasted, sliced almonds in the bowl of food processor and process until very fine, but not a powder or paste. Add brown sugar and butter and mix in processor, then add 2 Tablespoons of the lightly beaten egg white, the almond extract and the flour, making a nice nutty almost paste, but still with fine bits of nuts in it.

Fill pastry or cover tightly and refrigerate.

To shape bear claws, after final chilling of the dough, roll dough into an approximate 14″ x 10″ rectangle, and using a spoon or pastry bag, filled with filling, pipe a 1″ wide line of filling down the middle the length of the pastry.20160225_161219186_iOS

Fold lengthwise up to just over the filling and press down, then bring other side down to just over the previous dough seam and press. Then turn narrow pastry over, so that the seam is on the bottom. Trim short edges to make even, then continue to cut crosswise into 3-4 bear claws, depending on the size you want.20160225_161401074_iOS

On the folded side opposite the filling side of each “claw”, make 3-4 cuts about 1-2 inches in, just until you get to the filling. Then spread the “toes” slightly by bending the pastry.20160225_161628515_iOS

Place on parchment lined baking sheet and cover loosely with plastic wrap to rest for about 30 minutes.

After the dough has rested, brush with remaining egg white, sprinkle with untoasted sliced almonds if desired, and place in 375 degree oven until golden brown about 12-18 minutes.

These are the best served warm, the same day, watching Leonardo and cuddled up with a blanket!….Or watching your blanket and cuddling with Leonardo…even better!

Makes approximately 8 Bear Claws.