Magnolia’s Cherry Squares

Magnolia's Cherry Squares

Hello, hello! Today I’m bringing you a recipe from my favorite bakery in NYC, or anywhere for that matter, Magnolia Bakery. If you aren’t familiar, it’s a very well known bakery here in NYC known mainly for their cupcakes. These cupcakes are so good that at 9 1/2 months pregnant I walked about 10 blocks to get some at 10.30pm (those of you who have been that pregnant know what kind of commitment that is.) I sat in my house and ate two (do not judge me) and at a little after midnight my water broke. So in my personal life, they are somewhat magical. I don’t eat them often, because since the aforementioned pregnancy/water breaking/baby birthing extravaganza I’ve been trying to slim down quite considerably and unfortunately they’re not exactly low cal. These delicious Cherry Squares come from the More From Magnolia: Recipes From the World Famous Bakery cookbook and are a way I can indulge in some Magnolia goodness from my very own kitchen and without many of the calories. I tweaked the recipe a touch, which you’ll see in the pictures, just cutting it down to make only 9 bars instead of the 24 that the full recipe yields, other than that I made no other changes and the recipe with all the original ingredient amounts is what is posted here. They’re made entirely from pantry staples, simple enough to whip together for a week night dessert, tasty enough to pull out if you have company and if you can believe it each 2 inch square is only 138 calories!



  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup canned cherry pie filling (it would be delicious with strawberry or blueberry filling also!)
  • Confectioners sugar, for sprinkling before serving
  • Butter flavored baking cooking spray

Magnolia's Cherry Squares


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray a 13×9 inch baking pan with baking cooking spray.
  3. In a large bowl cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla and beat. Add the flour and mix thoroughly.
    Magnolia's Cherry Squares
  4. Spread the dough evenly into the prepared baking pan. With a sharp knife or a toothpick score 24 2-inch squares. Place one teaspoon of the cherry pie filling in the center of each scored square.
    Magnolia's Cherry Squares
  5. Bake for 30-35 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean from the center.
    Magnolia's Cherry Squares
  6. Cool completely. Sprinkle generously with confectioners sugar just before serving.

Enjoy and if you are interested in checking out more recipes from Magnolia Bakery, pick up the cookbook here, I highly recommend it!


Photo Project: Prague, Czech Republic


This gallery contains 14 photos.

One of our top three favorite cities that Karen and I have ever visited has to be Prague. Western Europe is so beautiful and diverse and are home to our other two favorite cities, but the history and architecture of … Continue reading

Recipe: Mama’s Maple Mustard Roasted Salmon

There are some things that my mother made as I grew up that I just cannot duplicate. No matter what I do or how hard I try, it just never tastes exactly the same. I think that’s probably a good thing, I’m not sure I’d want my mom’s Roasted Shrimp Pesto Pasta to taste quite as good at my house, it’s environmental. Her pot roast? If we’re not sitting around the table in the dining room on a Sunday it just wouldn’t be the same, even if it was. There is one dish, however, that I think I come pretty close to duplicating (and I say close because since I couldn’t do it exactly I have slightly tweaked her recipe, sorry Mom!) It’s super simple with huge, layered flavors, and best of all it’s nice and healthy. I love making this recipe because it always makes me think about my mom which is even sweeter now that I have a kid-o of my own.

My very patient and non-judgmental wife will tell you that shortly after I found out I was pregnant I went through my recipe box and pulled out the cards to my very favorite recipes, the ones that I think I do really well and make pretty often. The ones that must be absolutely perfect. The ones that no matter where he is or how old, I will always do best in his opinion. The ones that, FAR in the future, when made for him by a girl/boyfriend or wife/husband, he will eat all of, smile sweetly and rave about how delicious it is (because we raised him to be that kind of man) but secretly, in his mind, he’ll be thinking: “No one makes that as well as my mom. I should call her.” Then he will. He will not forget. I have these cards in the very front of my recipe box, ready to be made anytime. Or all the time.

This one is sort of like that for me. It’s pretty close to my mom’s, though not exactly the same. It always makes me think of her, and it always makes me want to call.  Sometimes I do forget though.



  • 1 lb salmon
  • 1/4 onion, very thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp whole grain mustard
  • 1 tsp dry mustard
  • 2 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Place salmon, skin side down, in baking dish and season with salt and pepper. Top with onion slices.Maple Mustard Roasted Salmon
  3. In a small bowl mix Dijon mustard, whole grain mustard, dry mustard, syrup, lemon juice and salt and pepper.
    Maple Mustard Roasted Salmon
    4.  Spoon maple mustard mixture over the salmon.
    Maple Mustard Roasted Salmon5.  Spoon about 6 to 7 drops of water in the cooking pan around the salmon and cover dish tightly with tin foil. Roast about 10 minutes then remove the tin foil and roast an additional 2 minutes.
    6.  Remove from oven and serve immediately.

*Note: Cooking time on salmon should be adjusted based on thickness of your salmon. If you have a thin piece you will want to decrease cooking time. Be careful not to overcook, salmon is finished when easily flaked with a fork.

Kids’ Kitchen: Mini Turkey Meatloaves

Mini Turkey Meatloaf

Happy Saturday! Last week I went on a marathon food making session for my increasingly picky little angel, which was much needed. To tell the truth, my success came in varying degrees from ice cold (Veggie Burgers) to luke warm (Green Veggie Pancakes) to hotsy-totsy-making-a-batch-every-week (these MIni Turkey Meatloaves.) I’ll share all these recipes here next week, but I thought today I’d give you what the goods were in this house, these delightful little meatloaves. They’re made in a muffin tin and packed full of lean protein and veggies so they’re perfect for your little one’s lunch or dinner. I served River’s with some red sauce, since lately he will eat basically anything as long as (and ONLY) if it’s totally doused in the stuff. Enjoy them!

*makes 12 mini meatloaves


  • 1 lb ground turkey breast
  • 1/2 zucchini, shredded
  • 1/2 large onion, finely diced
  • 1 small carrot, peeled and finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely diced
  • 1/2 cup flat leaf parsley, finely diced
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp worcestershire
  • 1/2 tbsp oregano
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan
    Mini Turkey Meatloaf


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Spray muffin tin with cooking spray.
  3. In a large bowl add all ingredients except for the parmesan. With your hands mix ingredients very well until thoroughly combined.
  4. Fill each muffin cup about 3/4 of the way full with the meatloaf mixture, packing it down with a spoon or your fingers. Sprinkle some parmesan cheese on top of each muffin cup.
    Mini Turkey Meatloaf
  5. Bake on center rack for about 20 minutes or until cooked through to an internal temperature of 165 degrees.
  6. Cool and serve.
    Mini Turkey MeatloafMini Turkey Meatloaf

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Happy Valentine’s Day, all! I know it’s cheesy, but I love Valentine’s Day. LOVE IT. River and I had a Valentine’s Day party for his little buddies on Monday, so we’ve been celebrating all week, basically. Today, I’m celebrating my favorite Valentine!


In honor of Valentine’s Day, some love-y wisdom to inspire you:

“When love is not madness, it is not love.”
Pedro Calderon de la Barca

“We loved with a love that was more than love.”
Edgar Allen Poe

“I love thee to the depth and breadth and height my soul can reach.”
Elizabeth Barrett Browning

“We are nothing, and we are everything. Look up — every star another world, but what I seek, near or far, is love’s outline in your face.”
Jeanette Winterson

K and I have big plans tonight for an indoor picnic with some pizza delivery and more chocolate than is advisable. I genuinely cannot wait. What about you guys, big plans for Valentine’s day dates?

Whatever you’re doing, happy love day, everyone. Wishing you all the sweetness, kisses and chocolate that today is all about!