Cuban-Style Guava Caramel Bread Pudding

Cuban-Style Guava Caramel Bread Pudding

I have a question. Who decided that soaking bread in milk and eggs and baking it would be so damn good!?

I don’t know who did it but I’m so glad they invented it!

Every holiday season at family gatherings, there always seems to be bread pudding all up on our Christmas Eve dessert tables. It’s such a delicious dessert! Sometimes, part of a delicious breakfast too.

And guess what? It doesn’t have to be the holidays for you to enjoy this amazing tasting bread pudding!

Sweet, moist, cinnamon-spiced, and boozy bread pudding drizzled with a homemade guava caramel sauce and candied maple pecans.

 

 

Traditional bread pudding (at least the way it was made when I was growing up) is usually made with condensed milk, evaporated milk, whole milk, eggs, sweet spices, and… raisins. Ew.

I, however, wanted to give a modern twist to traditional bread pudding and today I’ve done just that.

Next level bread pudding coming your way!

So, the actual bread pudding is made Cuban-style, of course. Who would I be if I didn’t honor the traditions of my childhood? And also, I just love condensed milk so much.

Where does the “next level” part come in? Well, I made a super simple homemade guava caramel sauce that is a TO DIE FOR. I adapted my salted caramel sauce recipe and added guava and allspice.

OMG.

I also made candied maple pecans for some added crunch but really to replace the raisins because again, ew. Unless raisins are covered in chocolate, I just honestly have 0 interest in them. #sorrynotsorry

Sweet, moist, cinnamon-spiced, and boozy bread pudding drizzled with a homemade guava caramel sauce and candied maple pecans.

 

 

If you only have guava paste at home, you can use that too! Just simply place about three 1-inch thick slabs of the guava paste in a microwavable bowl with a tablespoon of water, and microwave it for about 30 seconds, until it becomes a thick liquid. Add that to the caramel mixture and you’re good!

This guava caramel with the candied maple pecans was such game changer for the traditional Cuban-style bread pudding.

I’m in love.

Can't wait to make this Cuban-style guava caramel bread pudding! #asassyspoonClick To Tweet

What are some of your favorite recipes to make this time of year?

I love baking so much – and making these warm comfort foods make me the happiest girl ever!

Sweet, moist, cinnamon-spiced, and boozy bread pudding drizzled with a homemade guava caramel sauce and candied maple pecans.

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Leftover Cranberry + Turkey Turnovers (Thanksgiving Pastelitos!)

Leftover Cranberry + Turkey Turnovers (Thanksgiving Pastelitos!)

If you’ve ever visited Miami, currently live in Miami, or have ever had Cuban pastries, you’d totally think these are pastelitos de guayaba (guava pastries).

Honestly, I wouldn’t blame you. If you’re a regular around here, you’d know that I have quite the love affair with guava. See here. So you wouldn’t be wrong about thinking it’s a guava pastry.

But guess what? These are NOT guava pastelitos (aka turnovers). Although, if you’re looking for the recipe, click here.

These turnovers are actually SAVORY!

They are turnovers for Thanksgiving leftovers. That rhymes! Specifically, cranberry & turkey turnovers.

I mean anything you make with puff pastry is goals, am I right?

Leftover Cranberry + Turkey Pastries. Repurpose Thanksgiving leftovers by making savory sweet pastelitos (aka pastries or hand pies) using puff pastry sheets!

So, here’s the deal.

I always hear of people wondering what to do with Thanksgiving leftovers. In my head, I’m always like…umm, eat them?

What else would you do with delicious leftovers except eat them all until there’s none left? Either that or give them away.

Now in the spirit of creativity, I thought, well what if we fill delicious Thanksgiving leftovers inside puff pastry.

Sweet potato casserole with shredded leftover turkey?

Or what about a pastry filled with cranberry and brie?

Leftover mashed potatoes and green bean casserole?

Cranberry and turkey?

See where I’m going with this? Thanksgiving leftovers get a second chance at being a star and turn into a turnover!

I made this recipe using leftover cranberry sauce and shredded turkey with store-bought puff pastry.

And it was BOMB.

It may look like a Cuban pastry but it’s actually next level repurposing action. And it’s delicious!

You can always just eat your leftovers if you’re in a food coma. Totally acceptable.

But if you’re up for the fun challenge, think of all the pastry possibilities you can make!

The recipe included here is a guide but the ingredients is up to your imagination.

As I love to say… CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE!

Leftover Cranberry + Turkey Pastries. Repurpose Thanksgiving leftovers by making savory sweet pastelitos (aka pastries or hand pies) using puff pastry sheets!

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Classic Sweet Potato Casserole

Classic Sweet Potato Casserole

There’s just something comforting about the smell of cinnamon, the sweetness of the warm mashed sweet potatoes, and toasted marshmallows that just make me happy.

I mean… all types of food make me happy but you know what I mean. ;)

Would you consider sweet potato casserole a dessert or a side dish?

Hard to decide, right?

I’ve always considered and enjoyed this as a side dish. Kinda like a pregame to the real dessert. OH YEAH. I know a lot of people that rather enjoy sweet potato casserole as dessert. Either way, it’s a win win!

Whether it’s a potluck, Thanksgiving or just dinner with the fam, this classic sweet potato casserole is by far the BEST side dish!

A simple yet classic sweet potato casserole made with cinnamon, pecans and then topped with toasted mini marshmallows!

For Thanksgiving, I make this every year. Every time, there’s a potluck, I bring sweet potato casserole. If it’s Friendsgiving, guess what I’m bringing? You guessed it – sweet potato casserole.

Let’s talk about how incredibly easy it is to bring all this together.

You literally throw a bunch of sweet potatoes (peeled and cut in cubes) in a Dutch oven or pot, cook them until tender and then mash them UP.

You mix in all the spices which is what gives these mashed sweet potatoes its cinnamon sweet flavor. It just compliments the sweet potato so well.

Here’s the best part. You can stop right here and make the rest tomorrow.

Say whaaaa. Yep, you can totally make this ahead of time.

Once the sweet potato mixture has cooled and all the spices are well combined, add the mixture to the casserole dish or baking pan that you will be making it in and place it in the fridge until the next day.

The next day, you bring the casserole dish to room temperature then top with pecans and mini marshmallows. Bake for about 15-20 minutes in the oven and that’s it!

Ta-daaaa. See how easy that is?! That’s why I make this every year!

A simple yet classic sweet potato casserole made with cinnamon, pecans and then topped with toasted mini marshmallows!

You just can’t go wrong.

Adding this classic sweet potato casserole to my to-do list! #asassyspoonClick To Tweet

Alternatively, you can, of course, make it all in one shot and serve warm. The final outcome will always be ooey gooey, cinnamon-y and crunchy. I promise there won’t be any leftovers.

A simple yet classic sweet potato casserole made with cinnamon, pecans and then topped with toasted mini marshmallows!

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The Best Thanksgiving Shortcuts for Sides & Dessert

The Best Thanksgiving Shortcuts for Sides & Dessert

Thank you The Fresh Market for sponsoring this post. Visit a store near you to get everything you need for a memorable and delicious holiday!

Let’s face it, we’ve all been there.

You have a potluck tomorrow at work and you have no idea what to make nor have the time to really do anything too fancy. Whether it’s Friendsgiving or that Thanksgiving potluck at work, there’s no better way to save time and eliminate stress than by “dressing up” store-bought items!

I’ve teamed up with The Fresh Market to bring you these quick and easy Thanksgiving ideas. The Fresh Market is offering traditional holiday fare, as well as simplified, time-saving solutions for the favorite meal of the year!

Let’s start with…this cheesy baked whipped potato casserole using The Fresh Market’s Yukon Gold whipped potatoes.

Did you know you can buy store-bought mashed (or whipped) potatoes and turn them into a cheesy casserole? It’s easy!

You just mix them up with cheese and spices then transfer them to a baking dish. Sprinkle more cheese on top and bake to perfection. You’ll look like you’ve been peeling potatoes all day!

Yum! Look how good that looks!

Next, you can liven up dinner rolls with a simple herbed butter or in this case – a sweet butter. When you make herbed butter, all you need to do is mix unsalted butter with your spice of choice. You can even add some garlic in there! Mmm.

With the same idea in mind, you can make a sweet butter with cinnamon, honey and salt. Just mix it all together and voilà!

This cinnamon honey butter compliments these sweet potato biscuits perfectly.

Lastly, take any store-bought pie to the next level with a simple homemade bourbon whipped cream. Making whipped cream at home is beyond easy. All you need is heavy cream and patience.

Place heavy cream in the mixer and beat until soft peaks form. Be sure to keep an eye on it, sometimes it can turn from cream to butter in seconds!

Once those soft peaks form, you can fold in any ingredient you want. In this case, you fold in a tablespoon of bourbon and salt. Keep whipping the mixture until you see stiff peaks form then chill until serving time.

That’s all folks!

Aside from these items, The Fresh Market’s meal solutions deliver a range of options for Thanksgiving like perfectly-cooked turkey made ready to heat and serve, cranberry relish with walnuts, mashed sweet potatoes, and corn soufflé.

For now, grab these three simple recipes below so you can ‘fake it til you make it’ at Thanksgiving this year!

Don’t worry, it’ll be our little secret. ;)

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Cuban-Style Three Meat & Plantain Stuffing

Cuban-Style Three Meat & Plantain Stuffing

Ok, so here’s the deal. I’m ALLLLLL about traditional American Thanksgiving.

From sweet potato to corn to green bean, I love all the casseroles. Cornbread, turkey, cranberry sauce, stuffing, I love all of it!

My family on the other hand? Not so much.

When you grow up in a Cuban family, they ain’t about that cornbread life.

Casserole? What’s that? No rice!? Wait, no Cuban bread!? Turkey!? But, turkey is too dry. Here’s an idea, let’s put a TON of bacon strips on it and fry it.

Guys, this is my life.

If it were up to my Cuban family, Thanksgiving would be EXACTLY like Christmas Eve.

Do you know what a Cuban Christmas Eve looks like?

Tons of pork with crispy skin because the entire pig was made/smoked in a box under ground in your backyard.

I’m not joking. See here.

There’s also tons of different kinds of rice, black beans, plantains – fried, sweet, boiled. Desserts like flan, rice pudding, bread pudding, basically Christmas Eve dinner is what every dinner looks like on any given day in a Cuban household times 1000.

Cuz you know ain’t nobody cooking a giant pig in the ground in the backyard every week.

Bottom line: We don’t mess around when it comes to Christmas Eve. This is the day we look forward to all year. This is our time to SHINE! Noche Buena is where’s it’s at.

This is why I believe Thanksgiving should be done differently. Maaaaybe with a little Cuban twist because it’s the only way to compromise in a Latin household.

“Yes mom, we’ll have pork on Thanksgiving.” Shhh, don’t tell her I hid it in this stuffing!

Cubes of toasty French bread mixed with ground beef, ground pork, diced ham, herbs, spices, sliced almonds, chopped olives, and sweet plantains! The BEST stuffing you'll ever try!

I remember the one time we fought for Thanksgiving to be completely, authentically American was a huge ordeal.

“It’s just one dinner, mom!”

Everything seemed to have been running smoothly – we had mashed potatoes, cornbread, sweet potato casserole. It was all happening! And I was ecstatic. Finally, we can have a dinner that’s actually different than all the others!

That was until my mom walked to the dinner table with a bowl of white rice. Nooooooo. Stoooop. WHYYY.

“But the meal is not complete without rice.”

Mom, you don’t get it.

At least this Cuban-Style Three Meat & Plantain Stuffing is accepted at the table. And why wouldn’t it be – it’s basically every Cuban’s dream.

Salty diced ham, ground pork and ground beef with spices, sliced green olives, sliced almonds, and sweet plantains for a little sweetness because HELL TO THE YES!

Bringing some Cuban flavor to Thanksgiving dinner this year with this Three Meat & Sweet Plantain Stuffing! #asassyspoonClick To Tweet

Cubes of toasty French bread mixed with ground beef, ground pork, diced ham, herbs, spices, sliced almonds, chopped olives, and sweet plantains! The BEST stuffing you'll ever try!

Whether you’re looking to bring some Cuban flair to a potluck, Friendsgiving, or your Thanksgiving table, this one’s a winner in my book.

I hope you make this and you absolutely LOVE it!

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3-ingredient Brown Sugar Glazed Kielbasa Bites

3-ingredient Brown Sugar Glazed Kielbasa Bites

I’ve been making these bites for years!

What started as a little experiment has now turned into a delicious recipe… er obsession.

Quite possibly, the recipe I make the most often when I have company over. My friends ask for Brown Sugar Glazed Kielbasa Bites almost every time they come over my house and, even when I go over their house!

Yep, I’ve even made these in other people’s home.

The obsession is real.

My friends and I have been affectionately calling them coke sausage through the years. Ha!

This is why I always have kielbasa sausages on hand. They are an awesome appetizer and a quick bite to make when you have unexpected company.

Thankfully, they are SUPER easy to make and come together in no time.

And I mean, it’s only 3 ingredients!

The caramelization waiting time is really the hardest part of this recipe. Just be careful not to eat them too soon after you transfer them to a plate.

Sugar gets HOT.

They are definitely hard to resist but you don’t want to burn your mouth (speaking from experience here).

Also, please note, not all stoves are created equal. As I mentioned above, I’ve made these kielbasa bites before in other kitchens.

Sometimes it takes 10 minutes, other times it takes 35 minutes. You will have to eyeball the glaze to see when the brown sugar + coke mixture thicken. You know your stove better than I do.

Use your best judgement when making these.

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