Wednesday, May 30, 2012

No-Bake Butterscotch Pretzel Bars

These are crunchy, sweet, salty, and velvety smooth all at the same time... the light & crumbly peanut butter bottom is the part I can't resist!! If you like butterscotch you will LOVE this treat!!
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter
6 tablespoons butter, melted
2 cups crushed pretzels (about 6-1/2 ounces)
1-11 ounce package (about 2 cups) butterscotch-flavored pieces
1/4 cup whipping cream
1/2 cup coarsely crushed pretzels
1/2 cup chopped peanuts
1. Line a 13x9x2-inch pan with foil. Lightly coat the foil with cooking spray; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, stir together powdered sugar, peanut butter, and melted butter. Stir in 2 cups crushed pretzels. Press mixture firmly into the bottom of prepared pan.
2. In a heavy medium saucepan, combine butterscotch pieces and whipping cream. Stir over low heat until pieces are just melted.
3. Carefully spoon and spread butterscotch mixture over crumb mixture in pan. Sprinkle 1/2 cup coarsely crushed pretzels and the peanuts evenly over butterscotch mixture; press gently.
4. Cover and chill for at least 2 hours. Cut into bars to serve. Store in refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Sticky Toffee Pudding

This is just too dang super duper yummy in my tummy CRAZY good!!! The cake (pudding) starts out very dense, and smother it in this sweet, sticky toffee sauce until the cake has soaked it all up and it becomes the ultimate yummiest dessert you've ever had!! Ever? I think so.

1/2 cup butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
2 eggs
3 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup boiling water

Toffee Sauce-
1 cup butter
2 3/4 cups brown sugar
1 pint whipping cream
1 tsp butter extract

First grease a 9x13 in cake pan. For the pudding cream the butter & powdered sugar, add eggs & beat till smooth. Gradually mix in flour (mixture will be dry) Boil 1 cup of water & add baking soda to water. Gradually mix in hot water, mix until well combined. Spread batter into prepared pan and bake @ 350 for about 30 minutes or until cake is light golden. (Cake will feel kinda hard & dry, don't worry you didn't mess this up!! Keep going) In a medium saucepan combine all the toffee sauce ingredients over medium heat, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer & simmer about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Poke holes in cake with a fork (poke it good, the more you poke the more that yummy sauce can seep down into it) Pour half of the warm sauce over cake & let it absorb for about 30 minutes. Serve cake with fresh whipped cream & extra warm toffee sauce. That's it, you are officially in heaven!!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Coconut Lime Ice Cream w/ Dulce de Leches

Cool, creamy, tart, & tangy are just a few words for this super refreshing treat!
3/4 cup half and half
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1/4 cup granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
4 large egg yolks
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
1 Tablespoon finely chopped lime zest
1 teaspoon coconut extract
1. In small sauce pot, combine the milk, coconut and salt. Stir with a wooden spoon over medium heat. Continue simmering until it has reduced to by about a fourth. Cover and allow to steep for one hour. After one hour, strain the coconut milk into a measuring cup. Reheat milk mixture over medium-low heat.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk egg yolks. Once milk mixture is hot, temper the yolks by adding half of the mixture into the eggs, whisking constantly. Return mixture to saucepan, and heat until thickened.
3. Pour sweetened condensed milk, lime juice and zest into a large mixing bowl, over an ice bath. Strain custard into the cream, stirring until cooled. Add coconut extract, stir, and place in refrigerator until thoroughly chilled, about 5 hours or overnight.
4. Once chilled, add to ice cream maker and follow manufacturer’s instructions.
For the Dulce de Leche- This is the EASIEST version for this thick caramel sauce...1 ingredient! 
1 can of sweetened condensed milk (14 oz) 
Pierce a small hole on top of can (can opener works great for this) Place can in a small  saucepan, add enough water to go 3/4 of the way up the can. Simmer on low for about 3 hours. Remove from water & let rest about an hour to cool. Pour over ice cream, cakes...makes a great dip for apples. Store leftovers in a plastic container in refrigerator. Now how easy was that?!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Berry Creamy Cheesecake

  • This oh so easy to make cheesecake is so creamy delicious & smooth...with  a sweetened pretzel almond crust you will be in berry-licious heaven!! Great way to use up all those fresh berries that come this time of year!!
  • 1 1/2 cups small pretzel twists (2 ounces; about 33)
  • 2 tablespoons sliced almonds, toasted
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 envelope unflavored gelatin
  • 1 1/2 8 ounce tub light cream cheese, softened
  • 1 8 ounce carton light dairy sour cream
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 8 ounce container frozen light whipped dessert topping, thawed
  • 1 cup quartered or halved fresh strawberries
  • 1 cup fresh mixed berries (blueberries, blackberries, raspberries)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For crust: 1. In a food processor, combine pretzels and sliced almonds; cover and process until finely crushed. Add butter & brown sugar; cover and process until combined. Press pretzel mixture on the bottom of an 8- or 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.
For filling: 2. Place the water in a small saucepan; sprinkle with gelatin (do not stir). Let stand for 5 minutes to soften. Cook and stir over low heat until gelatin dissolves; set aside to cool slightly.
3. In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, sour cream, powdered sugar, and almond extract; beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add gelatin mixture; beat until combined. Fold in whipped topping.
4. Spread half of the filling evenly over cooled crust. Top with half of the berries & quartered strawberries. Spread the remaining cream cheese mixture over berries. Cover and chill cheesecake for 4 to 24 hours or until set. Run a long sharp knife around edge of cheesecake to loosen; remove side of pan. Cut cheesecake into wedges. Top each serving with some of the remaining berries & strawberries.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Chocolate Cupcakes with Oreo Buttercream Frosting

Best cupcake/cake recipe...EVER!! 
Really any cake mix would work for a yellow cake mix using a vanilla pudding mix instead or any flavor pudding too! It's the sour cream that makes these cupcakes so incredibly moist and fluffy! I've been making this same recipe for years and now I'm happy to share it with all of you!

1 box devils food cake mix
1 small chocolate fudge pudding mix (dry)
¼ cup flour
½ cup vegetable oil
1 cup water
4 eggs
1-8 0z. container sour cream

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Combine all ingredients in the order given
  3. Put cupcake liners in muffin tin
  4. Fill each liner about 2/3 full
  5. Bake in pre-heated oven for about 25-30 minutes or until cupcakes spring back when touched
  6. Let cool & frost
  7. DELISH!!! Yield:2 dozen cupcakes

Oreo Buttercream Frosting
¾ cup butter, softened
¼ cup shortening
½ cup milk
¼ tsp salt
1&1/2 tsp vanilla
2 lbs powdered sugar
2 cups finely crushed oreos
Combine all ingredients to spreading consistency
Mix in crushed oreos

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Strawberry Cream Cookie Snaps

  • How cute are these little cream filled cookie snaps?! Almost too cute to eat...almost. They take a little extra work but are sooo worth it!! It's strawberry season folks so put them to good use in this Strawberry-licious recipe!! 
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons seedless strawberry jam
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh strawberries
  • Additional sugar 
    • For filling, in a small bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar and jam until blended. Fold in whipped cream and food coloring if desired. Chill.
    • In a small bowl, whisk the sugar, flour, egg whites, vanilla and salt until smooth. Whisk in butter until blended. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Preparing four cookies at a time, drop batter by 1-1/2 teaspoonfuls 4 in. apart onto prepared pan. Bake at 400° for 5-8 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.
    • Immediately remove one cookie at a time from parchment and form into a tube around a greased clean round wooden clothespin. Press lightly to seal; hold until set, about 20 seconds.
    • Remove cookie from clothespin; place on waxed paper to cool. Continue with remaining cookies. If cookies become too cool to shape, return to oven for 1 minute to soften. Repeat with remaining batter.
    • Just before serving, pipe or spoon filling into cookie shells. Dip end of cookie into strawberries and additional sugar. Refrigerate leftovers. Yieldabout 2 dozen. Recipe adapted from Taste of Home

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Almond Joy Bars (with or without the almonds)

If you like Almond Joys then you will LOVE these Almond Joy Bars! They can also be made without the almonds and you could call them Coconut Mounds Bars?? Whatever you call them they are pretty dang good!! Oh yeah, it makes ALOT so you can either share with your friends & neighbors (they'll love you for it) or cut the recipe in half. 
 10 tbsp softened butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
28 oz. sweetened condensed milk
28 oz. shredded coconut
1 tsp vanilla
4 1/2 cups dark chocolate chunks (you your favorite chocolate here)
1/3 cup whole almonds (optional)
Preheat oven to 350° F . Line a sheet pan (10x15) with aluminum foil and coat with canola or vegetable spray. *Note-use a smaller pan if cutting recipe in half. 
 In a small bowl, cream butter and brown sugar until combined. Add the flour and salt. Carefully mix to combine until it resembles chunky bread crumbs. Transfer into the prepared pan and evenly press the batter into an even layer. Bake for 8 minutes. Cool on a wire baking rack while preparing the coconut topping.
In a large bowl, combine the condensed milk, coconut, and vanilla. Spread over the crust and bake for another 20-25 minutes, until it begins to brown.
Melt the chocolate over a double boiler. Stir until melted and smooth. Pour over cooked coconut bars and spread into an even layer. If using almonds place them evenly over the top of melted chocolate. Allow to cool then refrigerate until hardened, about 1 hour. Cut in little squares. ~Recipe adapted from Just a Pinch

Friday, May 4, 2012

Raspberry Rolls with Lemon Vanilla Icing

These raspberry rolls are so razzle-berry perfect! Drizzled with a vanilla lemon icing and bites of tart berries you won't believe how heavenly they are! Oh WoWzA!! Too good for words! 
    1 cup milk
        2/3 cup sugar
        1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast
        1 stick unsalted butter, softened
        2 large eggs
        2 tsp finely grated lemon zest
        1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
        4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
        One 12-ounce package frozen raspberries, not thawed
        1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
        1 teaspoon cornstarch
        3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
        3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
        1 1/2 tbsp heavy cream
         1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
      1 tsp good vanilla extract

    In a small saucepan, warm the milk over moderately low heat until it's 95°. Pour the warm milk into the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the dough hook and stir in the sugar and yeast. Let stand until the yeast is foamy, about 5 minutes. Add the softened butter, eggs, grated lemon zest and sea salt. Add the flour and beat at medium speed until a soft dough forms, about 3 minutes. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until the dough is soft and supple, about 10 minutes longer. Scrape the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it with your hands 2 or 3 times. Form the dough into a ball and transfer it to a lightly buttered bowl. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm place until doubled in bulk, 1 to 2 hours. Butter a 9x13 glass baking dish & set aside.  Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and, using a rolling pin, roll it into a 10-by-24-inch rectangle. In a medium bowl, toss the frozen raspberries with the sugar and cornstarch. Spread the raspberry filling evenly over the dough. Tightly roll up the dough (cinnamon roll style) to form a log & cut into 12 pieces  and arrange them in the baking pan, cut sides up. Scrape any berries and juice from the work surface into the baking pan between the rolls. Cover the rolls and let them rise in a warm place until they are puffy and have filled the baking pan, about 2 hours.   Preheat the oven to 425°. Bake the rolls for about 10 minutes, reduce oven temperature to 350 & bake another 10-15 minutes or until they are golden and the berries are bubbling. Transfer the pan to a rack to cool for 30 minutes.   In a small bowl, whisk the confectioners' sugar with the butter  heavy cream & lemon juice & vanilla extract until the glaze is thick and spreadable. Top warm rolls with icing. Are you drooling yet?? YuMM!!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Quinoa Pudding (like a rice or tapioca pudding)

This recipe has me so excited about eating healthy! I know it's a dessert but it's filled with all the whole grain goodness of Quinoa! And I for one am not going to feel too guilty about that! ENJOY! 
1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed well and drained
1 cup water
1/2 cup sugar (sugar substitute would be fine )
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tbsp corn starch
1 egg
3 cups milk (almond or coconut milk would work too!)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Place quinoa and water in a small sauce pan with a tight-fitting lid. Bring to a boil, covered, over medium heat. Stir, cover, and reduce heat to low. Cook for 15-20 minutes, or until quinoa is clear rather than white in the middle, and little "tails" appear. In a large sauce pan, whisk together the sugar, salt, cinnamon, & corn starch. Add the egg and whisk well. Whisk in the milk. Add the cooked quinoa. Heat milk mixture over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until boiling. Let bubble for 30 seconds and then remove from heat. Stir in butter and vanilla extract. Allow pudding to cool, uncovered, for about 30 minutes. Stir and serve warm! Leftovers can be refrigerated and served cold.