Friday, January 31, 2014

PEANUT BUTTER CUP BROWNIES

One of my old high school friends, Patti Crane, shared this recipe with me.  They look really good and she says they are delicious, everyone loves them.

Peanut Butter Cup Brownies…

Bring to boil:
1 cup butter
1 cup water
2 Tbsp cocoa

Remove from heat; let cool.

In a bowl mix in with cocoa mixture:
2 cups sugar
1 tsp soda
2 cups flour
½ cup buttermilk
½ tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray or grease 40 mini-muffin cups. Spoon batter evenly into muffin cups, about 1 heaping teaspoon in each.


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

BANANA PECAN TORTE

1 cup butter, softened
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
4 eggs
2 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 4 medium to large bananas)
2 tsp vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 cup chopped pecans, toasted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Grease and flour three 9-inch round cake pans; set aside.

In large mixer bowl, cream the butter and sugar; add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each one. Beat in the bananas and vanilla extract.

Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt; add to the creamed mixture alternately with the buttermilk. Stir in the pecans.  Divide the batter evenly into the three prepared pans.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Remove from oven and allow to cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool completely.  When completely cooled, assemble with the frosting recipe below.

FROSTING:
1 pkg (8-oz) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Toasted chopped pecans for garnish

Beat the cream cheese, butter, and powdered sugar in a mixing bowl until blended. Stir in the vanilla extract.

Assemble cake by placing one layer on serving plate; top with 1/3 of the frosting. Top frosting with the second layer; top with another 1/3 of frosting. Add the last layer and top with the remaining frosting. Sprinkle the chopped pecans over the top.


Monday, January 27, 2014

RED VELVET CUPCAKES WITH CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

These recipes are from C&H Sugar. The cream cheese frosting is yummy and holds its shape well.

For the cupcakes:
1 1/4 cups vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon white vinegar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Red food coloring (See Kelly's Notes)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
For the frosting:
2 (8-oz.) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups cold heavy whipping cream
Make the cupcakes:
Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a cupcake pan with liners.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the oil, buttermilk, eggs, white vinegar, vanilla extract and enough red food coloring until the mixture is well combined and reaches your desired color.
In a separate medium bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and cocoa powder.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, 1/2 a cup at a time, mixing between each addition to avoid any lumps in the batter.
Fill each cupcake liner about 3/4 full with batter and bake for 18 to 20 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Transfer the cupcakes to a cooling rack to cool completely while you make the frosting.
Make the frosting:
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Sift the powdered sugar into the bowl, beating to combine, then add the vanilla extract.
Remove the paddle attachment and attach the whisk attachment. Stream in the cold heavy cream, whisking at medium-high speed until the frosting is thick enough to pipe. (This may take several minutes, depending on your mixer speed. Aim for stiff peaks.) Transfer the frosting to a piping bag fitted with your desired pastry tip. Pipe the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes and serve immediately.
Kelly's Notes:
To get the deep, dark red color in the photos, I use a gel-based food coloring. Regular water-based food colorings are less concentrated and thus require more to achieve the same rich color. If you are using the water-based food coloring in this recipe, you'll need about 3 tablespoons to achieve a good color. If you're using the gel-based food coloring, start with 4 to 5 drops and add more as needed.
This frosting recipe makes enough to pipe tall, thick swirls onto the cupcakes. If you'd rather slather the cupcakes using less frosting, divide the frosting recipe in half.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

ORANGE BANANA NUT BREAD

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 tbsp canola or coconut oil
2 eggs
3 medium-size ripe bananas, mashed (you want close to 1 1/4 cups)
3/4 cup orange juice
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Grease two 8-inch loaf pans; set aside.

In a mixing bowl, combine sugar, oil, and eggs; mix together well. Stir in the bananas and orange juice.

Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; add to the banana mixture, mixing just until moistened. Stir in the walnuts.

Divide the batter evenly into the prepared loaf pans.  Bake at 325 degrees 50 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool in pans for 10 minutes.  Remove to a wire rack to cool completely.



Friday, January 24, 2014

CREAMY STRAWBERRY PIE

1-1/4
cups  graham cracker crumbs
2
Tbsp.  sugar
1/3
cup  butter, melted
3/4
cup  boiling water
1
pkg.  (3 oz.) JELL-O Strawberry Flavor Gelatin
4
oz.  (1/2 of 8-oz. pkg.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
4
cups  fresh strawberries, divided
2-1/2
cups  thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, divided

Mix graham crumbs, sugar and butter; press onto bottom and up side of 9-inch pie plate. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Add boiling water to gelatin mix in medium bowl; stir 2 min. until completely dissolved. Beat cream cheese in large bowl with whisk until creamy. Gradually whisk in gelatin until blended. Place bowl in larger bowl filled with ice water. Let stand 5 to 8 min. or until gelatin is thickened, whisking occasionally.
Reserve 4 large strawberries for garnish; chop remaining berries. Stir 1-1/2 cups COOL WHIP into gelatin mixture, then chopped strawberries. Refrigerate 20 min. or until thick enough to mound; pour into crust. Refrigerate 3 hours or until firm.
Spread remaining COOL WHIP to within 1 inch of edge of pie. Cut reserved strawberries in half, leaving on green leaf tops; use to garnish pie.
Note: This is a Kraft Foods Recipe.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

FRESH APPLE SHEET CAKE

  • 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2 cups sugar 
  • large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 pounds Granny Smith apples (about 4 large), peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick wedges 
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Bake pecans in a single layer in a shallow pan 5 to 7 minutes or until lightly toasted and fragrant, stirring halfway through.
  2. Stir together butter and next 3 ingredients in a large bowl until blended.
  3. Combine flour and next 3 ingredients; add to butter mixture, stirring until blended. Stir in apples and 1 cup pecans. (Batter will be very thick, similar to a cookie dough.) Spread batter into a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch pan.
  4. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack (about 45 minutes). Spread your choice of frosting over top of cake; sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup pecans.
NOTE: I like this Browned Butter Frosting on this cake but that is your choice.

  • 1 cup butter
  • (16-oz.) package powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • Cook butter in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, 6 to 8 minutes or until butter begins to turn golden brown. Remove pan from heat immediately, and pour butter into a small bowl. Cover and chill 1 hour or until butter is cool and begins to solidify.
  • Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until fluffy; gradually add powdered sugar alternately with milk, beginning and ending with powdered sugar. Beat mixture at low speed until well blended after each addition. Stir in vanilla.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

PEANUT BUTTER CRISPIE BALLS

I got this recipe from a friend who got it from Nicole's Nifty Nook (I hope that is right!). I know my nine-year-old granddaughter will love making and eating these!

4 tbsp butter
5 cups marshmallows
3/4 cup peanut butter
6 cups puffed cereal (I used Rice Krispies)
Dipping Chocolate if desired

Instructions
1.In a medium saucepan melt butter
2.Add in marshmallows and stir until melted
3.Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter until smooth
4.Gently stir in cereal until just combined
5.Let cool for 10 minutes then form into small balls (about 1 1/2 inch wide)
6.If desired dip into melted dark, milk or white chocolate and decorate as desired

Notes
Each ball is 2 WW+ points (with or without the chocolate)

Nutritional Info (without chocolate)
Calories: 73 Total Fat: 3.5 g Saturated Fat: 1.1 g Trans Fat: 0.1 g Cholesterol: 2.7 mg
Sodium: 43.8 mg Total Carbs: 9.9 g Dietary Fiber: 0.3 g Sugars: 5.2 g Protein: 1.4 g



Sunday, January 19, 2014

BANANA-PEANUT BUTTER SMOOTHIES

1/2 cup milk
1 carton (6-oz) Greek yogurt
1 fully ripe banana
2 tbsp creamy peanut butter
2 tbsp honey
1/2 cup ice cubes

Place all ingredients except ice cubes in blender container; blend until completely blended.

Add the ice to blender container and blend on high until thickened.

Serve immediately.

Yield: 2 cups

This recipe is from Kraft Foods.

Friday, January 17, 2014

LAYER AFTER LAYER LEMON PIE

The basis of this recipe is one I got over a dozen years ago from Kraft Foods. Easy, tasty pie.

1/3 cup strawberry jam
1 9-inch Graham cracker pie shell
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1 tbsp sugar
1 tub (8-oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed, divided
1 1/2 cups cold milk
2 pkg (4-serving size) lemon-flavored instant pudding mix
Additional whipped topping for garnish, if desired.

Spread the jam over the bottom of the pie shell (heat a few seconds in microwave if necessary for easier spreading).

Mix the cream cheese and sugar together in a bowl using a wire whisk. Whisk until smooth.  Gently stir in half of the whipped topping; spread mixture over the jam.

Pour the cold milk into a large bowl; add the pudding mixes and beat with a wire whisk until blended, 1- 2 minutes. Gently stir in the remaining half of the whipped topping. Gently spread the mixture over the cream cheese layer.

Refrigerate pie for 4 hours or until set.

Garnish with more whipped topping before serving, if desired.
























Wednesday, January 15, 2014

SWEETHEART JAMWICHES

This is a recipe I got from Southern Living over ten years ago.  Very good but simple recipe.

  • (15-ounce) package refrigerated pie crusts
  • egg white, lightly beaten 
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • (3-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 (10-ounce) jar seedless raspberry preserves or strawberry jam
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate morsels
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • Red sparkling sugar (optional)
  1. Unfold pie crusts on a lightly floured surface, and roll to press out fold lines. Cut with a 2-inch heart-shaped cookie cutter. Reroll remaining dough, and repeat procedure. (There should be a total of 46 pastry hearts.) Brush 1 side of each pastry heart with egg white, and sprinkle evenly with granulated sugar. Place pastry hearts on 2 ungreased baking sheets.
  2. Bake at 400° for 7 to 8 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove hearts to wire racks, and let cool.
  3. Stir together cream cheese, powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons butter, and almond extract until blended.
  4. Spread cream cheese mixture evenly on unsugared sides of half the hearts; spread about 1/2 teaspoon preserves over mixture. Top with remaining hearts, unsugared sides down.
  5. Microwave white chocolate morsels and 1 tablespoon butter in a glass bowl at HIGH 1 minute or until melted. Stir until smooth. Place mixture in a small heavy-duty zip-top bag; seal bag. Snip a tiny hole in 1 corner of bag, and drizzle over tarts. Let cool completely; sprinkle with red sparkling sugar, if desired. Place in candy boxes, if desired.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

ORANGE CHIFFON CAKE

2 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 1/3 cups sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
5 large eggs, separated
3/4 cup orange juice
3 tbsp orange zest
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
Orange Icebox Pie Filling (recipe below)
Orange Buttercream Frosting (recipe below)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Grease and flour 3 9-inch round cake pans; set aside.

In mixer bowl combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar; make a well in the center. Add the oil, egg yolks, and orange juice to the well; beat at medium-high speed 3 to 4 minutes or until smooth.  Stir in the orange zest.

In a cold mixer bowl beat the egg whites and cream of tartar at medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the whites into the flour mixture. Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared pans.

Bake cakes for 18 to 20 minutes at 350 degrees until a wooden toothpick inserted in the centers comes out clean.  Remove from oven and cool on wire racks in the pans for 10 minutes; remove from pans and allow layers to cool completely on wire racks.

ORANGE ICEBOX PIE FILLING:
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 can (14-oz) sweetened condensed milk
3 large eggs
1/2 cup thawed frozen orange juice concentrate
2 drops red liquid food coloring
4 drops yellow liquid food coloring
3 tbsp butter
1 tbsp freshly grated orange zest

Whisk together the milk and cornstarch in a 3-quart heavy saucepan; whisk until cornstarch is dissolved.
Whisk in the milk and eggs until blended; whisk in orange juice and food colorings. Bring to a boil over medium heat while constantly whisking.

Bring the mixture to a boil and boil 1 minute continuing to whisk constantly. Remove from the heat. Whisk in the butter and orange zest.

Pour the filling into a deep bowl. Place the bowl into a larger bowl filled with ice. Stir often for 10 minutes or until cooled.

Place 1 cake layer on cake plate and top with 1/3 of the filling. Top with another layer and another third of the filling. Repeat with the last layer and filling.  Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours.

ORANGE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 pkg (16-oz) powdered sugar, divided
1/3 cup milk
2 tbsp freshly grated orange zest

Beat butter at medium speed of electric mixer until creamy.  Gradually add 1 cup of the powdered sugar to the butter; beat at low speed until blended.

Add the milk, beating until blended.  Gradually beat in the remaining powdered sugar. Stir in the orange zest.
Use frosting to frost the sides of the cake.

Note: This cake can be completed completely and frozen in a protective container for up to 1 month!






Saturday, January 11, 2014

CHOCOLATE BANANA CREAM PIE

This recipe came from a lady in Washington state who combined her love chocolate and her husband's love of banana cream pie into this tasty treat.

1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup whipping cream
3 egg yolks, lightly beaten
1 tbsp butter or margarine
2 tbsp vanilla extract
1 (9-inch) pastry shell, baked
4 squares (1-oz each) semisweet chocolate, melted
2 medium-size firm bananas, sliced
Whipped cream for garnish, optional
chocolate shavings for garnish, optional

In a saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch, and salt; gradually add milk and cream until smooth.  Cook, stirring, over medium-high heat until thickened and bubbly, about 2 minutes.  Add a small amount to the egg yolks; mix well.  Return the egg yolk mixture to the pan and bring to a gently boil. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter and vanilla.  Pour half of the mixture into the pastry shell; cover and refrigerate.

Add the melted chocolate to the remaining mixture and mix well.  Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Do not stir.

Arrange the bananas over the custard filling in the pastry shell. Carefully spoon the chocolate mixture over the bananas. Refrigerate pie for at least 2 hours before cutting to serve.

Garnish with the whipped cream and chocolate shavings, if desired.


Thursday, January 9, 2014

PEACHY AMARETTO PIE

1 (9-inch) unbaked pastry shell
1 pkg (8-oz) cream cheese, softened
1 can (14-oz) sweetened condensed milk
2 eggs
3 tbsp amaretto liqueur
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
1 pkg (1 lb) frozen peach slices, thawed and well drained*
2 tbsp peach preserves

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Bake pastry shell for 15 minutes at 375.

While shell bakes, in large mixer bowl beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Gradually beat in the milk until smooth. Add the eggs, 2 tablespoons of the amaretto and 1 teaspoon of the almond extract; mix together well. Pour the filling into the pie shell.

Bake pie for 25 minutes or until set at 375 degrees. Remove from oven and allow to cool in pan on a wire rack.

Arrange the peach slices atop the pie.

In a small saucepan, combine the preserves, remaining amaretto and the remaining almond extract over low heat; cook, stirring, until hot.  Spoon over the top of the pie.

Chill pie before serving.

Garnish with a decoratively sliced strawberry in the center of the pie, if desired.


Leftovers should be refrigerated.

*May use 3 medium-sized fresh peaches that have been peeled, seeded, and sliced, if desired.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

CHOCOLATE MALT SANDWICH COOKIES

Cookies:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup Dutch process cocoa powder
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup malted milk powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
12 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, room temperature

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, malted milk powder, baking soda and salt.

With electric mixer on medium-high speed, add the vanilla then the butter, a few pieces at a time, and mix until the dough looks like wet sand and holds together when pinched; takes about 5 minutes.

Scrape the dough onto a sheet of parchment paper and pat into a 1/2-inch thick round. Cover round with another sheet of parchment paper and refrigerate approximately 10 minutes until the dough is slightly firm.

Roll out the dough between the parchment paper to 1/4-inch thick.  Peel of the top sheet of the paper and cut the dough into squares or rounds using 1 1/2-inch to 2-inch cookie cutters.  Reroll the scraps and repeat the process (refrigerate dough if it becomes to soft).

Place the cookies 1-inch apart on the prepared cookie sheets.  Bake 8 to 10 minutes until the cookies are set and no longer shiny.  Remove from oven and allow to cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Filling:
4-oz white chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 tbsp malted milk powder
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup heavy cream

Combine the white chocolate, malted milk powder, salt, and vanilla in a large bowl.

Bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat, then pour over the chocolate mixture in the bowl; stir until smooth.

Refrigerate until cold, about 25 minutes.

Beat with a mixer until thick and spreadable, about a minute.

Spread about 2 teaspoons of the filling on the underside of of half the cookies. Top with the remaining half of the cookies to form sandwich cookies.

May be stored in the refrigerator up to 5 days.


Monday, January 6, 2014

TWO TONE MARBLED FUDGE

2 pkg (11-oz each) classic white baking chips
3/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chips, divided
nonstick cooking oil spray
1 can (14-oz) sweetened condensed milk

Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil, allowing foil to extend over 2 ends.  Coat foil with the cooking spray; set aside.

In a large saucepan combine the white baking chips with the sweetened condensed milk. Heat and stir over very low heat until melted and smooth.  Watch very carefully to avoid scorching!  Quickly pour half the white mixture into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the chocolate chips; top with the remaining white mixture.  Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup of chocolate chips over the top.

Allow to stand 1 minute for the chips to soften.  Using a knife, gently swirl the mixtures together to give a marbled effect.

Cover and allow to stand at room temperature 2 hours or until firm.

Lift the cooled, firm fudge from the pan using the extended foil to lift. Place on a cutting board and cut into 1-inch pieces.

May be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days or refrigerated up to 2 weeks.


Sunday, January 5, 2014

AMISH SUGAR COOKIES

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sugar
1 cup powdered sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cream of tartar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Beat the butter, oil, and both sugars together in a large bowl; beat in eggs until well blended. Beat in vanilla extract.

Combine the flour with the baking soda and cream of tartar; gradually beat into the egg mixture.

Drop dough by teaspoonfuls (not rounded) onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake at 375 degrees 8 to 10 minutes until lightly browned.  Remove cookies to wire racks to cool.

Yields approximately 5 dozen cookies.