Sunday, April 28, 2013


As those of you who follow my blogs know, my 8-year-old granddaughter is a baker.  Baking is her passion and she really is good at it.  I give her free reign in my kitchen (with supervision from grandma!) to bake to her heart is content.  Yesterday she tried something new, she calls it her Cherry Cream Cheese Brownies.  She saw a picture of something similar and wanted to make it.  Fortunately I had a box of brownie mix, a brick of cream cheese, and a can of cherry pie filling on hand.  Here is a picture of her creation and the recipe for making it.

1 box family-sized brownie mix
1/2 cup canola oil
3 eggs, barely beaten
1/4 cup water
1 brick (8-oz) cream cheese, softened
5 tbsp butter, softened
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 tbsp white 100% whole-wheat flour
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 can (21-oz) cherry pie filling
1/2 tsp almond extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix the brownie mix with the canola oil, the 3 eggs, and water together in a large mixing bowl. Do not make the brownie mix using the ingredients on the back of the box.

Spray an 9 x 13-inch baking pan with nonstick canola or olive oil. Spread the brownie batter into the pan; set aside.

In another large mixing bowl beat the cream cheese and butter together until fluffy.  Add the sugar and beat in.  Add the 2 eggs, flour, and vanilla extract and mix until blended.  Using a large spoon, drop spoonfuls of the cream cheese mixture over the brownie batter.  Use a butter knife to cut through the cream cheese mixture to make a marbled pattern.

Mix the almond extract into the cherry pie filling.  Drop by tablespoonfuls over the top of the mixtures.

Place into the preheated oven and bake 45 to 60 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Brownie will be getting browned around the edge, do not over bake.

Cool before cutting. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


This is a recipe I got several years ago from Southern Living, if I remember correctly.

3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 cup sour cream
2 cups all-purpose flour*
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp grated nutmeg

Grease and flour a 9 x 13-inch baking pan; set aside.

In a large mixer bowl, beat the butter at medium speed until fluffy; gradually add the granulated sugar, beating well.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each one.  Add the sour cream, mixing in well.

In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt until well blended.  Add this mixture to the butter mixture, beating well to blend.  Spread the batter into the prepared baking pan.

Combine the brown sugar, pecans, cinnamon and nutmeg together in a small bowl.  Sprinkle this mixture evenly over the batter.  Cover pan and refrigerate around 8 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Remove pan from refrigerator, uncover, and bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

*I never use all all-purpose flour.  It is much healthier to use 1 cup all-purpose and 1 cup 100% whole-wheat white flour.

NOTE: This makes a good brunch or weekend breakfast cookie cake as you basically do the preparation the night before.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


My friend Patti Crane posted this cookie recipe on her facebook page.  I thought you might enjoy this recipe  so I am posting it here for you.

Gooey Butter Cookies

1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened 
1/2 cup butter, softened 
1/4 teaspoon vanilla 
1 egg
1 box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® yellow cake mix

Heat oven to 375 degrees. In medium bowl, beat cream cheese and butter with spoon until well blended. Stir in vanilla and egg. Add cake mix; stir until well combined. Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll in powdered sugar to coat. Place 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 11 to 15 minutes or until set. Remove from cookie sheets to cooling

Sunday, April 21, 2013


1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup finely chopped peanuts (salted peanuts are best if you can tolerate salt)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small bowl, mix the crumbs and peanuts with the butter.  When well combined, press firmly into the bottom and up sides of an ungreased 9-inch pie plate.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes.  Allow to cool before filling.

1 pkg (4-serving size) regular (NOT INSTANT) chocolate pudding and pie filling mix
1 3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup chunky peanut butter
2 medium-size firm bananas

Prepare the pudding/pie filling mix according to package directions substituting the 1 3/4 cup milk for that called for in the directions.

Remove from the heat and stir in the peanut butter until melted.  Allow to stand 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Slice the bananas into thin slices covering the bottom of the pie shell.  Carefully pour the filling over the bananas.  Press plastic wrap over the filling and refrigerate pie for at least 3 to 4 hours but no longer than 48 hours.

Remove the plastic wrap.  Garnish the pie with chocolate dipped banana slices that have been sprinkled with chopped peanuts, if desired.  Or just garnish with whipped cream, if you prefer.

Friday, April 19, 2013


6 tbsp butter
1 oz semisweet baking chocolate, chopped
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup 100% whole-wheat white flour
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
2/3 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 1/2 cups milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 pint vanilla ice cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Microwave the butter and baking chocolate together in a small bowl just until melted.  Stir mixture with a whisk just to combine; stir in the yolk until well blended.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, 3/4 cup of the granulated sugar, 1/3 cup of the cocoa, the baking powder, and salt until blended.  Stir in 1/2 cup of the milk, the butter/chocolate mixture, and vanilla extract until smooth.  Spread the batter into an ungreased shallow 2-quart baking dish.

Mix the remaining granulated sugar, remaining cocoa powder, and the brown sugar with a fork in a bowl until blended.  Sprinkle mixture over the batter in the baking dish.

Heat the remaining 2 cups of milk in a microwave just until simmering (do not boil).  Slowly pour the hot milk over the mixture in the baking dish; do not stir!

Bake 45 minutes at 350 degrees.

Spoon the cake into serving bowls and top each serving with a small scoop of ice cream.

Note: This cake should be served hot.  Otherwise the pudding layer will be absorbed by the cake layer.

Note: This is a recipe I got from a Woman's Day magazine years ago.


1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups old-fashion oats
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 cups unsalted butter, cut up
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter
4 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
3 cups honey-roasted peanuts
2 pkg (10-oz each) peanut butter chips
2 pkg (8-oz each) toffee bits

In a medium bowl, whisk the flours, oats, baking soda, and salt together.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter and brown sugar together at medium speed for approximately 3 minutes until light and fluffy.  Beat in the peanut butter and vanilla extract.  Add the eggs, one at a time; beat just until combined.

Using low speed, beat in the flour mixture just until combined.  Stir in the peanuts, peanut butter chips, and toffee bits.

Cover the dough and refrigerate 2 to 3 hours up to overnight, until firm enough to shape.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Cover cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Drop cookie dough by 1/4 cup of dough per cookie onto the prepared cookie sheets.  Gently form dough into balls then flatten to about a 1-inch thickness.  Freeze on baking sheets 10 minutes.

Bake at 375 degrees 10 to 12 minutes until light brown around the edges.  Cook on a wire rack, on the cookie sheets, for 3 minutes before removing to racks to cool completely.

Yield: Approximately 36 cookies.

Note: This is my adaptation of a recipe I got some years ago from Cooking Club.

Thursday, April 18, 2013


2 cups cake flour
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp water
6 tbsp plain yogurt
1/3 cup water
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line 24 muffin tins with paper liners; set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together.

In a small bowl, combine the water and yogurt.

In a separate large bowl, beat the butter using an electric mixer on medium to high speed until fluffy; add the sugar and beat about 3 minutes until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each.  Beat in the vanilla extract.

With the mixer on low speed, add the flour/cocoa mixture alternately with the yogurt mixture and beat just until blended.  Spoon mixture into the prepared muffin cups filling each 2/3s full.

Bake at 350 degrees for around 20 minutes until a wooden toothpick inserted in the centers comes out clean.  Place on wire rack in the pan for 5 minutes to cool slightly.  Remove from pans and cool completely on the wire rack/s.

Frost with your favorite frosting when completely cooled.  Decorate as desired.

Yield: 2 dozen cupcakes

Tuesday, April 9, 2013


Sharing this recipe from a fellow blogger.  Haven't tried it but it sure looks good.

2 cups crushed fresh strawberries
1 (6 ounce) package strawberry flavored gelatin mix
3 cups miniature marshmallows
1 (18 ounce) package yellow cake mix, batter prepared as directed on package
Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Spread crushed strawberries on the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking pan. Evenly sprinkle strawberries with the dry gelatin powder, and top with mini marshmallows.
Prepare the cake mix as directed on the package, and pour on top of the marshmallows. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 40 to 50 minutes. Cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Run a knife around the pan to loosen the sides, and turn the cake out onto a serving tray. Store cake in the refrigerator. ~