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3 Dessert Recipes to Make at Home for the Holidays in Delaware

Adobe Stock | Марина Долбус

A Delaware pastry chef, two Newark café owners and one of our own employees share their dessert recipes in time for the holidays.

Dru Tevis is a confections connoisseur. The corporate pastry chef for SoDel Concepts creates unique desserts for the restaurants’ menus and when it comes to family and holiday celebrations, he likes to bake outside the box. Here, he shares a unique cookie recipe that’s sure to pleasantly surprise your guests.


Dru Tevis, corporate pastry chef of SoDel Concepts, knows how to make crowd-pleasing desserts. This year, trade in your typical sweets for lemon crinkle cookies, soft and rich with a citrus bite./Photo courtesy of Sodel Concepts

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

  • Ingredients:
  • 4 ounces butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/4 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon liqueur
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • Powdered sugar, for coating

Combine butter, sugar, eggs, egg yolks, lemon juice, lemon liqueur and vanilla extract. Next, add flour, baking soda and salt, and mix to combine.

Scoop dough, and generously coat with powdered sugar.

Shake off excess sugar before lining on sheet tray.

Bake at 325 F for 8 to 10 minutes. (If cookies aren’t spreading much by 6 minutes, remove from the oven and lightly bang the sheet tray two or three times, and then return to oven. Avoid pressing down on the cookies, as this will mess up the “crinkling” that happens while baking.)

Pistachio-Matcha Bear Claw

Olivia Brinton and Sam Ross, the owners of Peach Blossom Eatery in Newark, know a thing or two about baking. This recipe grew from their love of pistachios and traditional pastry styles, Ross explains. The addition of matcha came because they felt so many pastries are overly sweet and the ingredients’ true flavors are lost. The matcha brings both an earthy quality to the flavor and a hint of holiday green. Have a super sweeth tooth? Ross suggests a light drizzle of sugary glaze or honey.

Dough ingredients:

  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter (very cold)
  • 2 packages of active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sugar

Add flour to the bowl of a food processor. Cut butter into small cubes and mix into flour until butter becomes the size of a bean.

In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in warm water and let sit for 5 minutes. Then stir in the cream, salt, eggs and sugar.

Next, take flour and butter mixture and fold it into the wet ingredients with a rubber spatula until all the dry flour is lightly moistened. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight (or a minimum of 4 hours). Batter can last in refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Next, place dough onto a lightly floured surface and dust with more flour. Pound out the dough, then smooth out a 16-by-20-inch piece with a rolling pin.

Fold the dough into thirds, making three layers. Spin the dough 180 degrees and repeat the rolling and trifold process. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes. While dough chills, prepare filling.

Filling ingredients:

  • 1 egg white
  • 1 1/2 cups pistachios
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon matcha powder
  • 1 teaspoon honey

Mix in food processor until it has a paste-like consistency.


On a lightly floured surface, roll the chilled pastry into a 16-by-18-inch rectangle. Cut into four long strips.

Spread 2 tablespoons of filling down the center of each strip. Roll the dough over the filling and place the seam side down. Use a rolling pin over the strip to help create a stronger seal.

Cut each strip onto five even pieces and then cut three slits in each strip to create the “toes.” Curving them slightly into a half-moon shape, place each pastry on a baking sheet with parchment paper. Allow them to rise in a warm place until they appear puffy.

Brush with egg wash (beaten eggs with a splash of water).

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown.

If a sugar or honey glaze is desired, brush over pastries as soon as they come out of the oven warm. Dust lightly with matcha powder. Let cool and enjoy.


The secret to the cookie crinkle? Allow the powdered sugar to break up naturally while baking./Adobe Stock | Марина Долбус

From Our Family to Yours

Delaware Today’s administrative assistant and office “grandmother” Pat Rothermel is one heck of baker. Here, she shares a lighter holiday dessert to balance out those heavy pies and puddings.

Pat’s Perfect Pound Cake

This buttery-soft pound cake recipe has been in Pat Rothermel’s family for over 80 years. While delightful on its own, Rothermel says there are many ways to serve it. Add strawberries and whipped cream for a shortcake. For something decadent, pair with ice cream and chocolate sauce. Enjoy your sweets the European way? Turn it into a breakfast treat by warming it in the toaster.

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 60–90 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
Servings: 10

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 eggs
  • 3 cups flour
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 pound or 2 sticks of butter
  • 1 cup of whole milk
  • 2 of teaspoons vanilla extract (not imitation)
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract


  • Preheat oven to 350 F.
  • In a bowl, cream room-temperature butter and shortening with a mixer.
  • Next, slowly add sugar, a little at a time. Then, add room-temperature eggs, beating after each egg.
  • In a separate bowl, stir dry ingredients together. Add to mixture, alternating flour and milk (be sure to begin and end with flour). Mix in vanilla and lemon.
  • Pour into a tube pan greased with shortening and then floured, then bake for 1 to 1 1/2 hours (or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean).

RELATED: Your Holiday Menu Needs These Recipes From Delaware Chefs 


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