Food & Drink

Sweet summer treats from Martha Stewart

This pound cake will stay fresh for two days at room temperature when covered -- not that it’ll last that long.
This pound cake will stay fresh for two days at room temperature when covered -- not that it’ll last that long. Jonathan Lovekin

It’s summertime and the living is, well, easier. When your clan starts looking for something tasty and sweet, as it is sure to do, why not offer up one of these tantalizing, finger-friendly treats? They’re delicious, easy to make and guaranteed to fly off the plate.

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Chocolate-chocolate chip skillet cookie

If you love chocolate, you’ll flip for our twist on a chocolate-chip skillet cookie. With gooey morsels and a cocoa-filled batter, it’s a double hit of fudgy flavor. Plus, all the ingredients can be stirred up in a single bowl, for a quick cleanup that’s just as divine.

Serves 10 to 12

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  •  3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons Dutch-process cocoa powder
  •  1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  •  1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1  1/2 cups (10 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix butter and sugar with a wooden spoon. Stir in egg and vanilla, then flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Stir in chips.

2. Transfer batter to a 10-inch ovenproof nonstick skillet; smooth top. Bake until just set in center and pulling away from sides, 20 to 22 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes; loosen edges. Turn out onto a wire rack. Reinvert onto a plate, slice and serve.

Nutritional analysis per serving, based on 10: 280 calories, 15 grams fat, 37 grams carbohydrates, 3 grams protein, 40 milligrams cholesterol, 173 milligrams sodium, 2 grams dietary fiber, 46 percent of calories from fat.

Orange-barley poundcake

Rich, buttery poundcake is always a crowd-pleaser, but this velvety version will have friends and family eyeing another slice. Its secret weapons? Cream cheese for a subtle tang, low-in-gluten barley flour for a delicate crumb and orange zest, which adds a scrumptious spin on flavor.

Makes one 9-inch loaf

  • 1  1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 1  1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  •  3/4 cup barley flour, such as Arrowhead Mills
  • 1  1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  •  1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 navel orange
  • 1  1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon orange liqueur

1. Heat oven to 325 degrees, with rack in lower third. Butter a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan. In a bowl, whisk together flours, baking powder and salt. With a vegetable peeler, peel zest from half of orange into about 5 strips; squeeze and reserve 2 teaspoons juice. Pulse zest strips with granulated sugar in a food processor until finely ground.

2. In another bowl, beat butter and cream cheese on medium until smooth. Add orange-sugar mixture; beat on high until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in vanilla and eggs, one at a time, on medium. Add flour mixture; beat on low until just incorporated. Pour batter into pan; smooth top with a spatula.

3. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until cake is golden brown and a tester inserted in center comes out clean, 1 hour, 15 minutes. (If browning too quickly, tent with foil.) Let cool 30 minutes in pan on a wire rack. Remove from pan; let cool completely on rack, about 2 hours.

4. In a bowl, whisk together confectioners’ sugar, reserved orange juice and liqueur until smooth. Spread glaze over cake; sprinkle finely grated zest from remaining orange half over top.

Nutritional analysis per serving: 376 calories, 16 grams fat, 54 grams carbohydrates, 5 grams protein, 94 milligrams cholesterol, 187 milligrams sodium, 1 gram dietary fiber, 39 percent of calories from fat.

Carrot-cake thumbprint cookies

You can have your cake and eat it, too — as a cookie! The bases for these thumbprints are studded with grated carrots, chopped pecans, golden raisins and rolled oats. The creamy filling features fresh goat cheese (cream cheese would work in its place) and a swirl of apricot jam. The result? Layers of flavor in every bite.

Makes 1  1/2 dozen

  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted, plus  1/2 stick, room temperature, for frosting
  •  1/3 cup packed light-brown sugar
  •  1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk, room temperature
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  •  1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  •  1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  •  3/4 teaspoon coarse salt
  •  3/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  •  3/4 cup packed finely grated carrots (from about 3)
  •  1/4 cup golden raisins, chopped
  •  3/4 cup pecans, finely chopped
  •  1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 ounces fresh goat cheese or cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1  1/2 teaspoons apricot jam

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together melted butter, brown and granulated sugars, and yolk. In another bowl, whisk together flour, ginger, cinnamon and salt. Stir flour mixture into butter mixture to combine. Mix in oats, carrots and raisins. Cover and refrigerate 30 minutes.

2. Roll dough into 1  1/2 -inch balls; roll balls in pecans to coat. Space 2 inches apart on parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake 10 minutes. Remove from oven; press an indentation into center of each cookie with the end of a wooden spoon. Bake until golden brown on bottoms, 10 to 12 minutes more. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; let cool.

3. In a bowl, beat remaining  1/2 stick butter and confectioners’ sugar on medium until smooth. Beat in goat cheese until just combined. Swirl in jam. Fill center of each cookie with goat-cheese mixture; serve.

Nutritional analysis per cookie: 173 calories, 10 grams fat, 19 grams carbohydrates, 3 grams protein, 29 milligrams cholesterol, 94 milligrams sodium, 1 gram dietary fiber, 52 percent of calories from fat.