White Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake

November 17, 2014

I recently went to a Ruby Tuesday (don't judge me - I love the salad bar) and I became entranced by the tabletop ad that had a picture of a White Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake. It looked so good. But, cheesecake would pretty much completely negate the purpose of eating salad so I passed. 

It haunted my thoughts. I couldn’t stop thinking about it while I did my grocery shopping. I’d pick up a bag of chocolate chips and get lost in thoughts of creamy, rich white chocolate cheesecake, drizzled with cherry sauce and chocolate. I finally caved and decided I would make my own, so I picked up the ingredients I thought I would need and headed back home with every intention of making it right that second.

…and then I decided to fall asleep on the couch, so I didn’t.


A couple weeks went by (and I was still thinking about it), so this past weekend I decided it had to be done. I piled all the ingredients on the counter and got to work. Now mind you – I was half winging it because I couldn’t remember what the description for the one at Ruby Tuesday was, and I also knew it was going to be at least slightly different anyway because I wanted to use cherry filling and theirs didn’t have that. I believe theirs is more of a cherry mousse (which sounds amazing, but I had no idea where to start with that).


I started with my basic cheesecake recipe, and then made a few small additions of melted white chocolate and chocolate chunks. I wish I had used more white chocolate, so in the recipe below I doubled the amount so that you have a richer white chocolate taste to yours. And about that white chocolate…

Use the good stuff. I’m not messing around here. Don’t use white chocolate chips, don’t use an off-brand, use the good stuff. You will absolutely regret it if you use a lower quality white chocolate. So what is the good stuff, you ask? I used a Ghirardelli White Chocolate Baking Bar (you’ll want to use two). I meant to take a picture of it in it’s packaging, but I got so engrossed in the process I completely forgot. This is not the first time I’ve mentioned how important using a good white chocolate is, and it won’t be the last.


When I was at the store, there was a package of cream cheese that stood out on the shelf – it got my attention and I wasn’t quite sure why, so I leaned forward to pick it up and check it out when I realized it was Cabot brand. I’m fairly sure this is a new addition to their product line (don’t quote me on that) because if I had noticed it before, I absolutely would have bought it sooner. I lived in Vermont for a long time, and one thing I grew to love while I was there was Cabot. Cheese, butter, whipped cream… mmm. Anyway, back to my shopping trip. I picked up a few packages and was very excited to give them a shot in this cheesecake recipe.  I should note that I used their Neufchatel Cheese, which is 1/3 lower fat than typical cream cheese – great for your diet, not so great for your cheesecake’s consistency. I knew going into it that the filling wouldn’t be as firm and I was okay with that – but for a more traditional cheesecake, go for the real, full-fat thing.

See? Messy messy.
As for the cheesecake itself, it turned out completely delicious and rich – just the way I wanted it to. It was not, however, very pretty. This is due to the lower fat cream cheese I used and like I said – I anticipated it wouldn’t be as firm. Because of the looser consistency and the cherry filling in the middle, it kinda falls apart when I cut into it. For the purpose of eating and enjoying it, I don’t care. For the purpose of photographing it and convincing you that it’s delicious… I care a lil’ bit.


There are two things you want to do to prevent worst-case scenarios during the baking process:
  1. Place your cheesecake on a baking sheet filled with water while it cooks – this will give it the moisture it needs and keep your cheesecake from drying out and help prevent cracks on the surface.
  2. Wrap the outside of your spring form pan with aluminum foil – at least two layers.  Feel free to add more if you’re super paranoid (like me).


All in all, I’m pretty happy with how this creation came together because it tastes so freaking good, but I would like to give you a few tips so that yours ends up prettier than mine:
  • Use full-fat cream cheese so that your cheesecake has a firmer consistency
  • When you pour the cherry filling into the middle, don’t let it spread to the edges. I didn’t do such a hot job at that part.
  • Crush your Oreos in a food processor rather than the plastic bag and rolling pin method – they both work, but the finer crumb you have, the better your crust is going to stick together.
  • Don’t place parchment paper on the inside of the pan. While some people recommend it and it definitely helps keep the filling intact, it makes the process of removing the cheesecake from the pan and placing it on a serving platter nearly impossible. So you see that picture above? Ignore the paper on the inside and just wrap the outside with foil.

Despite how messy it was, I still think it looks mouth-watering. Just look at the way the cherries are spilling out - I just want to grab a spoon to scoop them out the picture and shove them in my face. 


I gave a sample to a coworker, and here's our conversation:
Me: "I used reduced fat cream cheese, so it’s not as firm as normal."
Him: "If I eat too much of this you'll be saying the same thing about me."
Now go make this for your next dinner party and listen to people ask for seconds, because let's be honest - isn't that every baker's dream?

White Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake

A creamy white chocolate cheesecake full of chocolate chunks, cherry filling and coated with a dark chocolate drizzle. 

[Makes one cheesecake, serves 8-12]
Ingredients
18 Oreos, crushed
1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
4 8-ounce packages of cream cheese (I recommend Cabot)
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
5 eggs
4 ounces white chocolate, chopped
1 1/2 cups dark chocolate, chopped into chunks and divided
1 can cherry pie filling
1/4-1/2 cup water
Whipped cream, optional
Cherries (maraschino or fresh, optional)

Directions

1) Preheat oven to 475° F. Place a baking sheet with a large lip inside while it preheats. You'll be adding water to this just before you place the cheesecake inside. Don't do it now, otherwise it will evaporate!

2) Wrap the outside of the pan with at least two layers of aluminum foil - this will prevent water from seeping in from the water bath. Set aside. 

3) Remove the filling from each of the Oreos and then crush them in one of two ways:
- Place the wafers in a plastic bag and use a rolling pin to crush them as fine as you can get them.
- Place the wafers in a food processor and pulse them into a fine crumb. 


4) In a medium microwave safe bowl, melt butter in the microwave. Add crushed Oreos and stir to combine. Press crumb mixture into the bottom of your prepared spring form pan, and slightly up the sides. Place it in the freezer while you prepare the cheesecake filling to let it firm up. 

5) In a small bowl, whisk eggs briefly until yolks are broken and mostly combined with whites. Set aside.

6) In a large mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, sour cream and vanilla on medium speed until combined and creamy. Add eggs and mix until just combined. 

7) In a small microwave safe bowl, melt white chocolate in 30 second increments, stirring each time until completely melted.

8) Add melted white chocolate to the cream cheese mixture and combine on low speed until just combined. Add 1 cup of the dark chocolate chunks and stir to combine.

9) Remove crust from freezer and pour in half of the cheesecake filling. Pour the can of cherry filling into the center, trying your best not to let it reach the edges. Pour the rest of the cheesecake filling on top.

10) Carefully add water to the pan in the oven. Now, just as carefully, place the cheesecake onto the pan. Bake for 10 minutes at  475° F, then turn the oven down to 350° F and bake for another 45-55 minutes. It's done when the top of the cheesecake turns a light brown color. Remove from the oven to cool. Once completely cooled, cover with foil (you could use the foil that was wrapped around the pan - look at you, recycling) and place in the fridge overnight. It needs to be in a minimum of 5 hours, but I prefer overnight just to be safe. 

11) Melt the remaining 1/2 cup dark chocolate chunks and drizzle over the top of the cheesecake in whatever manner your little heart desires. Slice and serve with whipped cream and a cherry on top. Enjoy!

Kitchen Stocking Stuffers from The Container Store

November 14, 2014
image via The Container Store
I have this problem. I love organizing, but I don't have enough time to do it as much as I want to. Everything has it's place and I pretty much always ensure that that's where things stay, but there's so much more I wish I could do. On my desk at work, on the kitchen counter at home, under the bed... you name it, I want to organize it.

I'm starting to wonder if I should pick up a side job at The Container Store. It's one of my happy places. When I'm surrounded by so many clean lines, containers of every size (gee, who would have guessed), and entire sections dedicated to arranging your kitchen... Sigh.  My problem is that I don't have 168473103935 extra dollars lying around to buy out the entire store, so I have to settle for the occasional visit and small purchases once or twice a year.

I should mention that I have another problem: I have an addiction to kitchen gadgets. I need them. It's like a "collect them all" game to me. Butter Boys, strawberry hullers, onion savers... I WANT THEM ALL. My boss shares the same addiction, so it makes me feel a little bit better. Maybe she and I should start a support group.

So imagine the joy I experienced when a little booklet appeared in the mail last week with the phrase "Don't worry Santa, we've got this!: 2014 Stocking Stuffers" on the cover. To me, stocking stuffers mean small things. And unless we're talking about diamond jewelry, small things tend to be less expensive.

As I flipped through the little catalog, I was practically squealing with joy at how freaking adorable some of the stuff is. I immediately whipped out my little Post-it Flags (of course I have those at the ready - this is not my first rodeo) and started bookmarking pages with the enthusiasm of a kid arriving at Disney World. While I pretty much just want all of it, I wanted to share a few of my favorites with you. I'm sure there's someone in your life that would appreciate these trinkets in their stockings this Christmas, so take note!

ButterStix™ Zero Dust Chalk
Think of how great this would be for holiday entertaining! You wouldn't have to worry about picking up the wrong glass, and it eliminates every host's fear that their cute little wine charms might go missing by the end of the party. Easy and reusable!

image via The Container Store

Scoop'n Scrape Spatula
As much as I adore rubber spatulas, sometimes they just don't do the trick and you really need something smaller and more manageable. This would be absolutely perfect for getting that last little bit of dough out of my Kitchen Aid where the ingredients tend to collect around the little bump at the bottom of the bowl.

image via The Container Store

Lid Lifters
The cuteness factor here is ridiculous. I can't even handle it. These would bring a whole new level of adorable to my cooking... not that it really had much of an adorable-factor to begin with.

image via The Container Store

Tumble Trivets
I feel like I'd need to use these to gauge how I really feel about them, but I like the idea of being able to accommodate any size container without trying to frantically pile ten trivets on the table or counter to prevent kitchenpocalypse from occurring.

image via The Container Store

Crumb Catcher Vacuum
This falls under the category of "completely unnecessary". So let me start by saying that I do not feel that I am incapable of cleaning a few crumbs off of my counter, nor do I have a kitchen so large that I feel this contraption would be necessary. BUT LOOK HOW CUTE!

image via The Container Store

Now go peruse your nearest TCS and pick up a bunch of goodies for your friends and family. If you aren't lucky enough to have a store near you, you can find it all online! Plus, if you spend $100 or more on their stocking stuffer items, you'll get free shipping. And don't pretend you can't fill your cart with a hundred dollars-worth of stuff to cover everyone on your holiday shopping list. I mean, c'mon - let's be realistic here.

Disclaimer: The Container Store has no idea who I am and I was not compensated for this post. I'm just an organizational freak who loves their store!

Leftover Candy Cookies

November 3, 2014

At my age, trick-or-treating is frowned upon. If I dress up as Batman and wander door to door asking people for food, I'd probably get arrested. Or at the very least, scolded and have doors slammed in my face. So instead, I stay inside and let the age-appropriate children do the hard work. 

Now, I just sit on my couch and watch horror movies while a big bowl of candy sits idly by, just waiting to be distributed to superheros and princesses. I try to have a decent selection -- chocolate candy (with and without peanuts), fruity candy, chewy candy, hard candy. It kinda kills me that I can't hand out homemade treats because parents are afraid of razor blades and poison, because I'd much rather do that. But, I can't. So I buy giant bags of assorted candy and hand them out in exchange for an enthusiastic, "Trick or treat!".

I have to tell you a story about this Halloween. A little girl (dressed as Jasmine, from Aladdin) walked up to my door and asked very politely for five pieces of candy to give her group of friends that are too shy to ask. I let her pick the candy, she thanked me and said "Happy Halloween!", and then walked over to her friends and gave them each a piece. She had five friends with her - she didn't even take a piece for herself. She wasn't carrying a bag, didn't stick any candy in her pockets, nothing. She just melted my cold, black heart.

But because of that sweet, thoughtful little girl, I ended up with a bunch of leftovers. Okay, fine - it was because I wildly over estimated how much candy I needed for the neighborhood kids. I needed to get that candy out of my house, but since Halloween fell on a Friday this year I was going to be trapped in the house until Monday with it all, I had to come up with a plan. I knew I couldn't get rid of all of it, but I could at least get rid of some... by injecting them into baked goods. 


It's so simple. Chop and crush up the candy, throw it in with some cookie dough and bake it. You only have to adjust a standard chocolate chip cookie recipe a little bit to account for the extra sugar in the candy - just reduce the granulated and brown sugar a bit and you're good to go!

You can use all different kinds of candy - Hershey's chocolate bars, Mr. Goodbars, Butterfingers, Crunch Bars, KitKats... the list goes on and on. But you don't want to use just any candy you have left in your bowl - trying to chop up Starbursts and toss them in isn't going to have the best results. I try to stick to chocolate candies that don't have any kind of soft nougat and caramel that can be chopped up without it sticking all over the knife. Although, if you have those tiny, square, snack-sized Milky Ways you can stick one in the middle of the cookie and wrap the dough around it... that's pretty darn good. But make sure you stick the dough in the fridge for a few hours to let it firm up before you pop them in the oven, otherwise it might melt all over the place and you don't want that. 


Keep in mind you could do this after Christmas or Easter, too - you'd just end up with a different combo of flavors (like peppermint at Christmas, where a chocolate cookie might be even better - mmm!). 

This is a great way to use up some of your leftover Halloween candy so that you don't just plop down on the couch with the bowl, covered in wrappers with chocolate all over your face. The people who live with you will thank you.

Leftover Candy Cookies

An easy way to use up leftover holiday candy using a basic chocolate chip cookie recipe. Chewy and chock-full of flavor!

[Makes 18 cookies]
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup M&Ms
  • 3 snack size Mr. Goodbars, finely chopped
  • 3 snack size Kit Kats, finely chopped
  • 3 snack size, Hershey's bars, finely chopped
Directions

1) Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a baking sheet with a non-stick silicon mat and set aside. 

2) Chop up your candy bars as small as you can and pour into a small bowl, candy dust and all. Set aside.

3) In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside. 

4) In a large bowl, cream together butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar. Add egg and vanilla, mix until well combined. 


5) Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Add chopped candy bars and M&Ms and stir until combined. If you feel like the dough has gotten too warm, wrap it in plastic wrap and toss it in the fridge for a few hours to let it firm up again. Okay, don't actually toss it - you might knock a carton of milk over or something. 

6) Using a medium-sized cookie scoop, place dough onto prepared baking sheet an inch apart. Bake for 12 minutes, or until the edges start to turn gold. Let cool on baking sheet for a few minutes, then move them to a cooling rack to cool completely. Enjoy!

Favorite Food Blogs

October 24, 2014
As someone trying to give her blog legs and get it off the ground, I have a great appreciation for those who have accomplished this feat. I have a lot of work to do: acquire sponsors, new food props (yes, this is a thing), better photography equipment, redesign the site.... okay, I'm starting to get overwhelmed. I'm just going to stop right there.

It's not easy, especially in the food blog genre. You're trying to entice people with imagery and the power of the written word. Ever tried making steamed brussel sprouts sound exciting? Not. Easy. So I wanted to share with you a handful of the lovely ladies I follow so that you can revel in the beauty that is each of their blogs and their unique, delectable creations. Let's dive in!


Sally's Baking Addiction
images from sally's baking addiction
Sally is completely adorable and relatable. She recently got married and her dog attended in formal attire, which obviously melted my heart. She seems like the type of person I could genuinely be friends with, and it would just be a bonus that she makes ridiculously delicious-looking food. She's even sweet enough to include a series of posts about how to get your own food blog up and running - I'm taking your advice to heart, Sally - you're kind of my idol. Just sayin'. 


images from averie cooks
All of Averie's recipes make me happy. Just... happy. Take a look through her recipe index and I dare you not to smile (and drool). Her photography is light and airy, and it makes everything look like it should be floating on a cloud. A cloud of blondies and melty chocolate chip cookies. Remember these? You can thank Averie for the inspiration. 


images from bread + barrow
I came across Meg's blog through a friend of a friend (who can be spotted in her most recent post looking lovely as ever in an orange and blue top), and it turned out she's a local living on the North Shore of Massachusetts. Her photography is absolutely breathtaking and I feel like I'm immersed in the scenes she portrays in her posts. She makes gorgeous, intricate meals seem completely possible and less daunting that they appear. I just want to have brunch with her (as long as she promises to cook). 


images from smitten kitchen
First of all, Deb has a similar sense of humor as I do so I enjoy her posts even more for that reason. Also, JUST LOOK AT IT. Sweetbabyjesus. I've been hooked ever since I came across her Hot Fudge Sundae Cake. Then I read more about her and read this in her bio:
"What I’m wary of is: Excessively fussy foods and/or pretentious ingredients. I don’t do truffle oil, Himalayan pink salt at $10 per quarter-ounce or single-origin chocolate that can only be found through Posh Nosh-approved purveyors. I think food should be accessible, and am certain that you don’t need any of these things to cook fantastically."
And I yelled an enthusiastic "YES!" at my computer screen. Obviously she heard me. I adore the fact that she has a tiny (and gorgeous, by the way) kitchen and can still manage to concoct such beautiful recipes. It gives me hope that I can do the same!


images from joy the baker
And then there's Joy. Oh, Joy. A woman after my own heart. She started the way I have: self-taught and obsessed with sweet treats. She works hard and it shows. The hardest part about looking through her blog is deciding where to start. She even has vegan and gluten-free recipes, like the pie pictured about - that thing is gluten-free. Are you freaking kidding me? Get in my belly.

Disclaimer: None of these ingenious women have any idea who I am - I'm just a fan and frequent blog-stalker.

30.

October 17, 2014

I had no idea what to do to celebrate my 30th birthday. Friends and I discussed being ridiculous and doing some sort of 80s-themed roller-skating party. I also considered just taking the day off and going apple picking. I'd been dreading the day and I kind of just wanted to curl up and hide for those 24 hours, but I knew that would just make it worse because I’d lie around, be mopey, and dwell on it. 

So in the end, I didn’t do anything on my birthday. I went to work, had kind of a crappy day (although kind gestures from some of my coworkers helped – more on that below) and came home where the boyfriend made lobster and corn for dinner. I also put a giant bow on Penny's head, just because. She didn't have a care in the world. 

My coworkers do nice things for me like giant tubs of cheesy poofs and Baking Bad shirts. BAKING BAD.
If you watch Arrested Development, you'll get the joke. 
In lieu of a birthday celebration, I took a half-day the next day to go apple picking and picked up a batch of apple cider donuts from Honey Pot Hill orchard down the road (so. freaking. good.) as well as some of their cider so that I can make my own donuts at home (remember these?). 


I also made plans with a small group of girls from work to do a painting party at Paint Misbehavin’ in Hudson the following week that benefitted CaRMaH (Cat Rescue of Marlborough and Hudson). I’m very much a dog person, but I can’t say no to events that benefit any kind of animal. 

photo by Val D'Aquila
Much to the delight of my friends, the group brought in three cats that were up for adoption to keep everyone entertained and melt people’s hearts: Fame, Fortune and Bernard. Fame and Fortune were tiny little kittens, and Bernard was mostly blind and purred like crazy. 


Bernard was one of the more talkative cats I’ve ever met – if I made a sound signaling him to come over and hang out, he’s talked at me the whole way over. It was adorable – just wish I knew what he was saying. I bet it was super interesting, so I was probably missing out.

photo by Val D'Aquila
photo by Val D'Aquila
photo by Val D'Aquila
photo by Val D'Aquila

 

This event proved I'm still not very good at art (and Presh -- in the glasses with the amazing dog portrait -- IS)... or at following instructions. The goal was to paint a cat, but Presh and I went off the reservation and painted dogs while Val and Emily took their cats in their own adorable directions.


I learned it from watching Penny. (photo by Val D'Aquila)
So far, 30 isn't very exciting. It has not made me any more adult. I don't suddenly have wrinkles and my metabolism hasn't tanked (yet). Nothing has really changed at all, other than writing a scary new number and having people say more than ever, "You're not getting any younger." Yes, thank you. I'm aware of how time works. Here's to hoping that what they say is true - that your 30s are the best years of your life. Fingers crossed.


Apple Strudel Monkey Bread

October 13, 2014

Monkey bread has never really been my thing. Don't get me wrong - it tastes delicious, it's filling and smells amazing. But... it's messy. And I have a thing about messy food. I'm just not a big fan of my hands being all sticky, because then I try to pick up a glass of milk and now my glass is sticky. Then I pick up a napkin to clean my hands and my glass, and now my hands are stuck to the napkin and it starts falling apart and it's glued to my fingers. And then I need to go wash my hands and I decide to grab a fork to eat the rest of it so that I don't get messy again and start to worry that people will judge me for eating it with silverware instead of with my hands like an animal. And by the time I get back someone has stolen the rest of my monkey bread because I took too long to decide how much other people's perceptions of my breakfast consumption mattered.

[deep breath]

And that's why monkey bread has never really been my thing. 


Apple strudel on the other hand is very much my thing. And it occurred to me while I was writing this post that I've never posted my apple strudel recipe. I need to get on that.

Anyway. I eat apple strudel with a fork or spoon - mostly because I consume massive portions in one sitting and it always has to be accompanied by a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Eating ice cream with my hands would be difficult and awkward. So, silverware it is. 


I started thinking that if I combined apple strudel with monkey bread, it would give me an excuse to eat it with a fork and not be judged. I also thought that if I made it in a loaf pan instead of a tube pan it would be easier to break apart since they'd just be slices and not little cubes you have to fanangle to break apart. And since I didn't have a recipe on hand for monkey bread, I decided to cheat a little and take the easy route. I just grabbed a can of biscuits and the ingredients for the filling of my apple strudel. And my strudel isn't complete until it's topped with an icing glaze, so obviously that happened.


When it's served warm, it smells exactly like apple strudel and tastes like it, too! Ooey, gooey apples covered in cinnamon sugar and vanilla glaze. So. Good. You won't even miss the typical crisp strudel pastry crust, I promise. Go ahead - grab another slice before you let others dive in. I won't tell. Oh, hell - grab the whole plate and lock yourself in the pantry and finish it off. I'm sure you deserve it. 



Apple Strudel Monkey Bread

A German take on the classic monkey bread - soft biscuits oozing with diced apples, sugar and cinnamon and topped with a sweet icing glaze.

[Makes 16 pieces, torn from loaf]
Ingredients
Bread + Filling:
1 can homestyle or buttermilk biscuits (8 large biscuits)
2 large apples, diced (try using Cortland)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 cup raisins, chopped (optional)

Glaze:
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon milk (more if needed)
Directions
Bread + Filling:
1) Preheat oven to 350° F. Spray 9x5 loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.

2) Cut each biscuit in half to double the amount of biscuit discs. Press each between the palms of your hand to flatten and stretch them out a bit. The goal is to get them wide enough to fit the width of your loaf pan. Set aside.

3) In a medium bowl, toss your diced apples in the lemon juice - this will keep them from turning brown (and adds a little zing). Add brown sugar, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, nutmeg, ginger and raisins (if desired). Stir to combine.

4) Pour your filling mixture into a large saucepan and warm over medium heat. Stir occasionally until apples are soft and sauce starts to thicken. Remove from heat and let cool for a few minutes.

5) Hold loaf pan in one hand vertically and at a slight angle, and place one of your biscuits at the bottom (flat against the side). Spoon about a tablespoon of the filling mixture on top of the biscuit, as much in the center as possible. Top with another biscuit and press the bottom and sides against the biscuit below it to help seal the filling and prevent it from leaking out the sides. Spoon another tablespoon of filling on top and continue this process until you've used all the filling and biscuits, finishing with a biscuit. 

6) Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 35 minutes. Uncover and continue baking until top of the loaf is browned. Let set in pan for 5-10 minutes, then remove from pan and place on a platter to finish cooling. 

Glaze:
1) In a small bowl, combine confectioners' sugar, vanilla, butter and milk and stir briskly to combine. You want to be able to pour the glaze, so add more milk  to thin it out if necessary.

2) Pour glaze over top of loaf in whatever way your little heart desires. Serve slices warmed and enjoy!