One of the things I was most looking forward to Paris was the chocolate. I’ve been lucky to have experienced high quality European chocolate before and I was ready to indulge again.

Jean-Charles Rochoux is a well known Parisian Chocolatier. He not only makes mouthwatering chocolates but also creates some unbelievable chocolate sculptures as well.

When we stepped into the small shop, we were surprised to see Monsieur Rochoux himself at the register and helping customers. After oohing and ahhing over the chocolates, we decided to follow the tourists in front of us and order as they had.

Rochoux offers several sizes of mixed chocolate boxes where you can select from all his variations. Since we had no idea which ones were good, we let him choose. He asked a few questions like milk or dark, gift for female or male, and then went to work, hand selecting chocolates for each of our gift boxes. The boxes themselves were also quite nice, and when he rung up our order, he even autographed the bag for the chocolates.

I had an idea to use fresh blueberries in cookies. Then I came across a recipe for lemon blueberry cheesecake cookies from Betty Crocker. Well, that idea sounded even better, so I decided to try it out.

The Betty Crocker one uses premade sugar cookie dough and then adds pieces of cream cheese and blueberries. I didn’t have any premade cookie dough, so I made my own.

Recently I was approached by Blogher to write a piece on leftovers for their Leftover Makeovers series. It’s been a while since I’ve done a writing assignment so I gladly accepted the opportunity. Here’s my feature on ideas for working with leftover fruit. It took me quite a while to compile these ideas, so I hope you find them helpful!

When I was little, a harvest of fruit from my mom’s garden, a return from picking at the orchards, or a great discount during the last minutes of the farmers market meant only one thing: a race to consume as much fruit as possible before it spoiled and the fruit flies took over.

My family ate fruit for breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner. We consumed apricots, peaches, and plums in the double digits, daily. At first it was enjoyable, even exhilarating. But after a few days, it would get tiring and repetitive, and keeping up consumption with supply always seemed to be a losing war.

When I moved out on my own, gifts of boxes of fruit gave me a headache. Without my siblings, I couldn’t possibly consume all of it. Then I started my food blog, and found all sorts of recipes and ideas for using leftover fruit. So now when I get presented with boxes of fresh fruit, I say “Bring it on. I’m ready for the challenge.”

Summer is a bountiful season for so many of my favorite fruits. I love them all — peaches, cherries, strawberries, apricots, mangoes, and lychee. I still always end up with more fruit that I can eat, though, so I find other uses. I bake, I freeze, I puree. Here are some of my favorite ways to use up too much fruit.

1. Baked goods