Chef Antonia Lofaso’s Pound Cake & Peaches Sundae + An Interview

This is a sponsored post but as always, all opinions are my own.

On Tuesday afternoon, I had an amazing opportunity to interview Chef Antonia Lofaso. French Culinary Institute graduate and Top Chef All Star, Antonia recently partnered with Breyers to create family friendly recipes that use the best ingredients to create life-long memories.
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I was incredibly nervous to talk with her but she made it so easy and had so much to share with me. We talked all things Breyers, weeknight meals, afterschool snacks, Top Chef and restaurant ownership. We talked about her partnership with Breyers first and she said a major reason she decided to work with them was because Breyers has committed to using milk and cream from cows that have not been treated with artificial growth hormones and their vanilla will come from sustainably sourced and Rainforest Alliance Certified vanilla beans from Madagascar. The fact that Breyers cares and holds high standards for their customers is a major win for all of us. Pound Cake and Peaches Sundae 6
What stuck out most to me was her passion for food and the memories it has created throughout her life. She said her partnership with Breyers was a natural one since she grew up eating it. She told me her mom would set up sleepovers where they would lay in bed, watch movies and eat Breyers Natural Vanilla, pound cake and melon. Her dad would come home to everyone in bed asleep with remnants of their dessert strewn about. When her mom found out about the Breyers partnership, she jumped up and told Antonia she just had to do something with the pound cake sundae they used to make. That’s what I love about food, it brings us together, creates forever memories and brings us back to childhood.
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All of the recipes Antonia created for Breyers evoke memories whether it’s of her childhood or her own daughters. The Tropical Ice Cream Sandwich was created to pay homage to her daughter who is half Jamaican and the Toasted Almond and Vanilla Arancini is a play on her Italian roots.

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Although our conversation was over the phone, I could tell she just lit up when talking about the recipes she created and the memories they evoked. They all seemed to hold a special place in her heart but I felt this Pound Cake and Peaches Sundae was where it all started for her and her family with Breyers so it was only right to feature it alongside the interview.
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I expected to enjoy this sundae. I mean, it’s ice cream and cake and fruit. But I’m not a huge fan of peaches so I wasn’t sure it would be my favorite. Well, I truly loved this dessert. The maceration of the peaches brought out so much flavor and sweetness then combine it with the warm, heavy pound cake and cold creamy Natural Vanilla Breyers for an absolutely divine sweet treat.

We were rebels and had this before dinner last night to ensure I had good light to photograph it. I kind of wanted to say screw it to dinner and just have another serving of the sundae. I figured that wouldn’t be the best example to set for my children so I didn’t but I may have it for lunch tomorrow. YOLO.

I can’t wait to share some great tips, advice and ideas from Antonia with you all on Wednesday. And a little something I learned about myself through the process.

Pound Cake and Peaches Sundae
recipe from Antonia Lofaso

2 fresh peaches, diced
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp. granulated sugar
2 tsp. thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
4 (1/4-inch thick) pound cake slices
1 cup Breyers® Natural Vanilla Ice Cream

1. Mix peaches, lemon juice, sugar and basil in a small bowl. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Spray with coconut oil spray then toast each side of the pound cake, about 1 minute each.

2. To make each sundae, place a slice of toasted pound cake on a plate, then top with a 1/4 cup scoop of Breyers® Natural Vanilla Ice Cream and cover generously with macerated peaches.

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Fruit Salsa with Cinnamon Sugar Chips

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With graduation parties and barbecue’s in full swing, I thought it was the perfect time to share this fruit salsa. Is it an appetizer? A snack? Dessert? All of the above. We even ate it with a spoon for breakfast one morning. Of course, it’s always better with chips but that’s kind of my life motto about everything.
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I made this a few weeks ago for Noah to take for snack at school. They encourage healthy options when you bring in snack for the class which I totally love. The kids gobbled it up and the recipe was requested by several teachers. I call that a success.

Although it does take a little time to prep and chop all the fruit and make the chips, the process is really simple and absolutely worth the time. I say put everyone in your family to work to cut down on prep time. As always, Noah climbed up on the counter with his kid knife and was my little sous chef. Plus, it makes a HUGE batch so it will feed a crowd at a party or your family for a few days.
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The fruit is dressed in a mixture of honey and lime that adds a nice touch of sweet and tartness.

This fruit salsa is a light, refreshing option that you don’t have to feel guilty about which means you can spare a little room for dessert. Am I right?
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Fruit Salsa with Cinnamon Sugar Chips

1 lb. strawberries
6 oz. raspberries
6 oz. blackberries
3 kiwi
2 peaches
1 pineapple
1 (15 oz.) can mandarin oranges, drained
1 lb. grapes

3 Tbsp. honey
1 lime, juiced

40-50 flour tortillas
Coconut oil spray
Cinnamon sugar

1. Finely dice all the fruit. Place in a bowl and gently mix. In a small bowl, whisk together the honey and lime juice. Keep separate until ready to serve. Once ready, gently stir in the “dressing.”

2. For the cinnamon sugar chips:  preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and cook the tortillas for about 20-30 seconds per side, being careful not to burn. Slice each tortilla into 8 triangles (I use a pizza cutter to make quick work of it). Place triangles on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spray the tortillas with coconut oil spray then sprinkle with desired amount of cinnamon sugar. Bake for 5-8 minutes, until lightly browned and crispy.


Sneaky Green Smoothie

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I have always been skeptical of smoothies with spinach. It just sounds weird and disgusting and too “granola” for me. But, I bit the bullet and gave it a try in an attempt to get in more veggies. And turns out you can’t even taste the spinach. I promise! What’s better than a delicious smoothie that is really, really good for you? Not much. We have been making them everyday the past week and haven’t gotten tired of them yet!

As you can tell, Noah loves these smoothies! He couldn’t keep his hands off this one I was trying to photograph, even though he already had his own. He wanted the “smoovie in the breakable cup.”

He loves helping make them and had to put his apron on before dumping in all the ingredients.
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You can use any frozen fruit you like and feel free to mix it up to create different flavors. Another yummy variation that I adore is strawberry (replace the berries and peaches), pineapple, banana and a handful of shredded coconut. You will feel like you are on the beach somewhere! Delish!

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Just to prove that you can’t taste the spinach…I gave one to Joel and didn’t tell him there was spinach in it and he totally didn’t know. And still doesn’t {insert evil laugh here}. Well, unless he’s reading this now.

Secret Green Smoothie
yields 1 large or 2 medium servings

2 cups ice cubes
1 cup orange juice (or water if you don’t want added sugar and calories)
1 banana
1 cup frozen blueberries
4-5 slices frozen peaches
1/4 cup frozen raspberries
1/4 cup frozen pineapple chunks
2 big handfuls fresh spinach

Place all ingredients into a blender and pulse until it’s smooth and no chunks remain.

Baked Oatmeal

I have to admit I am not a huge fan of breakfast food. Sweets in the morning are just too much for me most of the time (although I do sometimes get a hankering for pancakes or doughnuts). It’s just not my thing. I would much rather munch on some kettle chips and swig a cherry coke…but I don’t….usually…please don’t judge me.  A bowl of cereal is usually my breakfast choice because it’s quick and easy which is necessary with a very busy toddler. When family comes to visit, though, I like to make a hot, home cooked breakfast for them.

This baked oatmeal is almost as quick and easy as a bowl of cereal but is much more tasty and impressive (and I don’t even care for oatmeal). It is made up the night before so all you have to do is throw it in the oven in the morning. Your guests will wake up to wafting smells of cinnamon, blueberries and peaches, yum! And although it does have quite a bit of sugar, the oatmeal and fruit bring nutrition that makes it a much better option than heavy pancakes or doughnuts (although they hit the breakfast table for guests around here too).

Baked Oatmeal
recipe from Penzey’s
serves 4-6
prep time: 15 minutes, baking time: 45 minutes

½ cup butter, softened
¼ cup white sugar
½ cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 cup milk
½ – 1 tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. baking powder
3 cups regular or quick cooking oats (I used old-fashioned)
½ cup fresh or frozen blueberries
1 peach, skinned, chipped, pit removed*
2 Tbsp. Turbinado sugar, for sprinkling (optional)

1. Beat together the butter and sugars. Mix in the eggs, milk, cinnamon, salt, baking powder and oats. Beat well. Add the fruit.

2. Pour into a greased 8-inch square pan. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.

3. In the morning, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Uncover the pan and sprinkle with turbinado sugar, if desired. Bake in preheated oven until firm, about 45 minutes. You can also bake the oatmeal right away without refrigerating overnight with good results.

*Note: Switch the fruit depending on the season and personal preference.