Spring Blossoms

Friday, February 29, 2008

Black Walnut Cake


1 cup chopped black or English walnuts
3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk

FROSTING:
1-3/4 cups sugar
4 egg whites
1/2 cup water
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS
In a bowl, toss walnuts with 1/4 cup flour; set aside. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla; mix well.
Combine the baking powder, salt and remaining flour; add to the creamed mixture alternately with milk. Stir in the reserved nut mixture.
Transfer to a greased and floured 10-in. tube pan. Bake at 350° for 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
In a heavy saucepan, combine sugar, egg whites, water and cream of tartar. With a portable mixer, beat on low speed for 1 minute. Continue beating on low speed over low heat until frosting reaches 160°, about 9 minutes.
Pour into a large mixing bowl; add vanilla. Beat on high speed until frosting forms stiff peaks, about 7 minutes. Frost the cake. Yield: 12-16 servings.

Apricot Cranberry Cake


3 cups biscuit/baking mix
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup (8 ounces) plain yogurt
1/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1-1/2 teaspoons almond extract
2 cups chopped fresh or frozen cranberries
3/4 cup chopped dried apricots
1/2 cup chopped almonds

GLAZE:

1 cup confectioners' sugar
4 teaspoons orange juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS
In a bowl, combine the biscuit mix and sugar. In another bowl, combine the eggs, yogurt, orange juice, oil and almond extract. Stir into biscuit mixture just until combined. Fold in the cranberries, apricots and almonds.
Transfer to a greased and floured 10-in. fluted tube pan. Bake at 350° for 50-55 minutes or until toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing to wire rack to cool completely. In a bowl, combine the glaze ingredients until smooth. Drizzle over cooled cake. Yield: 12-16 servings
From Quick Cooking

14-Karat Cake


1-1/3 cups sugar

2 eggs
2 egg whites
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/3 cup canola oil
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
3 cups shredded carrots
1/2 cup golden raisins
6 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese
1 tablespoon butter or stick margarine, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
3 tablespoons flaked coconut, toasted

In a mixing bowl, combine the first five ingredients until smooth. Combine the flours, baking soda, salt and spices; add to the egg mixture and mix well. Stir in carrots and raisins. Pour into a 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.
For frosting, in a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla until smooth. Beat in sugar. Frost the cake. Sprinkle with walnuts and coconut. Refrigerate. Yield: 18 servings
From Light & Tasty

Cranberry Nut Bread


2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup butter
1 egg
3/4 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon grated orange peel
1-1/2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

DIRECTIONS
In a bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Beat egg, orange juice and peel; stir into dry ingredients just until blended. Add the cranberries and walnuts.
Spoon batter into a greased and floured 8-in. x 4-in. x 2-in. loaf pan. Bake at 350° for 65-70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. Yield: 1 loaf.
From Taste of Home

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Amish Pudding

7 c. milk
3/4 c. cornstarch
1/4 c. flour
1 1/2 c. sugar
5 eggs, beaten
3 tbsp. vanilla

CRUMBS:
1-1/2 package or 34 graham crackers
2 tbsp. sugar
1/4 c. melted butter

Bring milk to a boil, remove from burner, mix cornstarch, flour, sugar, add beaten egg, mix until smooth. Add to milk stirring constantly, set back on burner (medium heat). Bring to a boil again stirring constantly until smooth, add vanilla, set aside to cool.

Put graham crackers in a plastic bag. Crush with a rolling pin. Put in a dish add sugar and butter, mix well. Press crumbs in a 13 x 9 pan. Let set for 1 hour. Pour in cooled pudding. Top with whipped topping. Can also add bananas.
Stan in PA

Orange Crunch Cake

1 cup (2 sticks) butter
2 cups granulated sugar
2 tablespoons grated orange zest (colored portion of the peel)
Juice and grated zest (colored portion of the peel) of 1 lemon
5 eggs
3 cups sifted cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
1 cup chopped pecans

Syrup
1/4 cup butter
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup orange juice

Procedures:
Generously butter and flour a 10-inch tube or Bundt pan and set aside.

In a large bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar on high speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Stir in orange and lemon zest and lemon juice. Add eggs, one at a time, beating thoroughly and scraping down sides of mixing bowl with rubber spatula between each addition.

In a large bowl, sift flour again, along with baking powder and salt. Add flour mixture to creamed butter mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition.

Sprinkle pecans into bottom of prepared pan. Pour batter into pan and bake in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 1 hour or until cake tests done. Remove from oven and place pan on wire rack to cool for 5 minutes.

Prepare glaze: Place butter, sugar and orange juice in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until sugar is dissolved, about 3 minutes. Pierce cake with a fork and pour hot glaze over warm cake. Let cake cool completely before releasing from pan.

Nancy's Kitchen

Monday, February 25, 2008

Marinated Pork Roast


1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup grated onion
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 teaspoon lemon juice
3 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 boneless whole pork loin roast (2 1/2 pounds)
1/4 cup white wine or chicken broth
1/4 cup honey
1 tablespoon brown sugar

1. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine the first six ingredients; add pork roast. Seal bag and turn to coat; refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight, turning several times.

2. Drain and discard marinade. Place roast on a rack in a shallow, foil-lined roasting pan. Bake, uncovered, at 350°F for 25 minutes.

3. In a small bowl, combine the wine or broth, honey and brown sugar. Brush half over the meat. Bake 15 minutes longer. Brush with remaining honey mixture. Bake 10-20 minutes longer or until a meat thermometer reads 160°F. Let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.
Light and Tasty Magazine

Potato Stroganoff Casserole

1 1/3 c. water
2 tbl. Butter
½ c. milk
1 ½ c. instant mashed potato flakes
1 to ½ lb. ground beef
1/3 c. chopped onion
1 (8 oz. pkg.) brown gravy mix
½ c. water
1 – 2 (5 oz.) jar(s) sliced mushrooms, drained
1 c. sour cream
¼ tsp. dill week
paprika to taste

Heat oven to 350 ºF. In medium saucepan, combine 1 1/3 c. water and butter. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Add milk and potato flakes. Stir and set aside. In large skillet, brown beef and onion. Drain. Add gravy mix, 1.2 c. water and mushrooms. Cook and stir until thickened. Remove from heat. Stir in sour cream and dill weed/ Spoon into ungreased 1 ½ qt. casserole. Top with mashed potatoes and sprinkle with paprika. Bake at 350 ºF for 15 to 20 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
NANCY'S KITCHEN

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Butterscotch Haystacks


Fun holiday goodies...fun to make and delicious, too!

1 can Chow Mein noodles
1 12-oz. pkg. butterscotch morsels
1 cup salted peanuts
Medium microwave safe bowl
Waxed paper Cookie sheet
Directions

In medium microwave dish, melt butterscotch chips. It is best to heat for 30 seconds, then stir, repeating this process until morsels are completely melted. Stir in peanuts. Gently fold in noodles until coated with butterscotch. Drop by spoonful onto waxed paper cookie sheet. Flash chill in freezer while you prepare the next cookie sheet. Hint: have a cup of water handy to dip "pushing" finger into between spoonfuls.

Ice Cream Sandwiches


This is a chocolate shortbread recipe. You may use any tender cookie recipe. You merely need a cookie that crumbles when bit rather than squishing the ice cream out. Both sugar cookies and shortbread cookies make excellent ice cream sandwiches. The shortbread cookies from our Tally Nut Sandies work well as do the chocolate and vanilla sugar cookies from The American Classic Sugar Cookie Kit.

3 one-ounce squares of semi-sweet baking chocolate
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup butter
1 cup powdered sugar
1 dash salt
4 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour

Ice cream

Directions

1. Melt the chocolate and one tablespoon butter in the microwave. Set aside.
2. Cream the remaining butter and powdered sugar together. Add the salt.
3. Add the four egg yolks, beating after each. Add the vanilla.
4. Add the flour in three parts, beating after each addition.
5. Scrape the dough onto a large sheet of waxed paper. Pat the dough into a square or round log. Wrap it in waxed paper and smooth the edges into a uniform log. Refrigerate the log for at least an hour.
6. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the dough into 3/16-inch thick slices. Place them on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for eight to ten minutes or just until set. Cool on a wire rack. Once cooled, place the cookies in the freezer to chill.
7. Once the cookies have chilled, fill them with slightly softened ice cream. The top sides of the cookies should be facing out. Place the sandwiches in the freezer until they are completely firm.

FROM: THE PREPARED PANTRY

Monday, February 18, 2008

Caramel Cake


Caramel Cake Recipe
Paula Deen

For the cake:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
4 eggs
3 cups sifted self-rising flour
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the filling:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
2 cups packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the frosting:
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/3 cup heavy cream, or more if needed
1 (16-ounce) box confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup chopped nuts, optional


For the cake:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 3 (9-inch) cake pans.
Using an electric mixer, cream butter until fluffy. Add granulated sugar and continue to cream well for 6 to 8 minutes. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour and milk alternately to creamed mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Add vanilla and continue to beat until just mixed. Divide batter equally among prepared pans. Level batter in each pan by holding pan 3 or 4-inches above counter dropping it flat onto counter. Do this several times to release air bubbles and assure you of a more level cake. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown.

For the filling:
While cake is baking, in a saucepan, combine butter, brown sugar, and milk. Cook and stir over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Remove cake layers from oven and allow cake to remain in pans as you prepare to stack and fill. Remove first layer and invert onto cake plate. Pierce cake layer with a toothpick over entire surface. Spread 1/3 of filling mixture on cake layer. Top with second layer, repeat process. Top with last layer and repeat process again.

*Cook's Note: As I stack layers together, I stick them with toothpicks to prevent cake from shifting.

For the frosting:
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat and stir in brown sugar and cream. Bring to a boil, and transfer to a mixing bowl. Add confectioners' sugar and vanilla. Beat with a handheld electric mixer until it reaches a spreading consistency. At this time it may be necessary to add a tablespoon of heavy cream, or more, if frosting gets too thick. Just be sure to add cream is small amounts because you can always "add to", but you can't take away. Frost cake and sprinkle top with chopped nuts, if desired.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Artichoke-Cheese Braids


INGREDIENTS
3/4 cup drained finely chopped artichoke hearts (from 14-oz can), patted dry with paper towels
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 can (8 oz) refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
1 jar (2 oz) diced pimiento, drained, patted dry with paper towels
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon grated Parmesan cheese

DIRECTIONS
1. Heat oven to 375°F. In small bowl, mix artichokes, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese and the mayonnaise.
2. Unroll dough and separate into 2 long rectangles; place crosswise on opposite ends of ungreased large cookie sheet. Press each into 11x4 1/2-inch rectangle, firmly pressing perforations to seal.
3. Spoon half of artichoke mixture lengthwise down center of each rectangle in 1 1/2-inch-wide strip. Top each evenly with pimiento.
4. On long sides of each rectangle, make 15 cuts about 3/4 inch apart almost to edge of artichoke mixture. For braided appearance, fold strips of dough at an angle halfway across artichoke mixture with ends of strips slightly overlapping, alternating from side to side; pinch to seal.
5. Bring ends of each braid together to form ring; press ends together to seal. Carefully brush tops of rings with egg; sprinkle with 1 teaspoon Parmesan cheese.
6. Bake 13 to 18 minutes or until deep golden brown. Cool 5 minutes. Carefully loosen braids from cookie sheet with wide spatula; slide onto serving plate. Cut between strips into thin slices; serve warm.

Cranberry Fluff Fruit Dip with Fruit Wreath


Dip
1 (7-oz.) jar marshmallow creme
1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup frozen cranberry-orange sauce, thawed
Fruit Wreath
1 bunch curly endive
2 red apples, sliced
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 small clusters seedless red grapes
3 small clusters seedless green grapes
5 or 6 strawberries
1 star fruit, sliced, if desired
2 tablespoons pomegranate seeds, if desired

DIRECTIONS
1. In small bowl, combine marshmallow creme and cream cheese; beat until smooth. Stir in cranberry-orange sauce.
2. Line large platter with endive leaves. Place bowl of dip in center. Dip apple slices in lemon juice; arrange in circle about 1 inch from edge of plate, overlapping slices. Arrange grapes and strawberries on apples randomly around dip. Tuck slices of star fruit among other fruit. Sprinkle pomegranate seeds over endive

Honey-Mustard Drummies


The perfect party snack -- easy and delicious!

INGREDIENTS
20 chicken wing drumettes
1/3 cup honey
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons soy sauce

DIRECTIONS
1. In ungreased 12x8-inch (2-quart) glass baking dish, arrange chicken drumettes in single layer.
2. In 1-cup microwave-safe measuring cup, combine honey, mustard and soy sauce; mix well. Microwave on HIGH for 30 seconds. Stir until well blended. Drizzle honey mixture over chicken, brushing as necessary to coat chicken. If desired, cover and refrigerate up to 2 hours.
3. Heat oven to 375°F. Uncover dish; turn chicken drumettes. Bake 50 to 60 minutes or until chicken is tender, glazed and no longer pink next to bone, turning chicken once halfway through baking time.
4. Just before serving, brush with honey mixture from dish.

Sharp Cheddar Cheesecake


Cheesecake
2/3 cup crushed crisp rye or pumpernickel crackers
3 tablespoons butter, melted
2 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup whipping cream
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
2 eggs
8 oz. (2 cups) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup chopped roasted red bell peppers (from 7.25-oz. jar)
1/4 cup sliced green onions
Garnish
Green onion curls, if desired
Roasted red bell peppers, cut into shapes with cutters, if desired

DIRECTIONS:
1. Heat oven to 350°F. In medium bowl, combine crushed crackers and butter; mix well. Press evenly in bottom of ungreased 9-inch springform pan. Bake at 350°F. for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown.
2. Beat cream cheese in medium bowl until light and fluffy. Add cream, Worcestershire sauce, mustard and eggs; beat until smooth and well blended. Stir in shredded cheese, roasted peppers and 1/4 cup green onions; mix well. Spread over partially baked crust.
3. Bake at 350°F. for 35 to 40 minutes or until center is set. Cool 30 minutes.
4. Loosen edges of cheesecake with small metal spatula or knife. Cool an additional 30 minutes. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.
5. To serve, carefully remove sides of pan. Place cheesecake on serving platter. Garnish with green onion curls and roasted pepper cutouts. Surround cheesecake with apple and pear slices or assorted crackers.

Crescent-Wrapped Cranberry and Brie


INGREDIENTS
1 (8-oz.) can Refrigerated Crescent Dinner Rolls
1 (8-oz.) round Brie cheese
3 tablespoons whole berry cranberry sauce or cranberry chutney
1 tablespoon chopped pecans
1 egg, beaten
8 small seedless red or green grape clusters
1 pear, unpeeled, sliced
1 apple, unpeeled, sliced

DIRECTIONS
1. Heat oven to 350°F. Spray cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray. Unroll crescent roll dough. Separate dough crosswise into 2 sections. Press dough to form 2 squares, firmly pressing perforations to seal. Cut corners off both dough squares and reserve to use for cutouts. Place 1 dough round on sprayed cookie sheet.
2. Cut cheese crosswise into 2 equal layers. Place bottom half of cheese on center of dough circle on cookie sheet. Spread cranberry sauce over cheese. Sprinkle with chopped pecans. Top with remaining cheese half. Bring dough up around side of cheese, pressing and pinching dough.
3. With small cookie or canapé cutter, cut shapes from reserved corners of dough; set aside. Place remaining dough on top of cheese round. Press dough evenly around side of cheese. Brush dough with beaten egg. Top with cutouts; brush with additional beaten egg.
4. Bake at 350°F. for 20 to 30 minutes or until deep golden brown. Cool 15 minutes before serving. To serve, place warm pastry-wrapped cheese on platter. Arrange fruit around cheese.

Chutney-Glazed Meatballs


Meatballs
1 1/2 lb. lean ground beef
1/2 cup Plain Bread Crumbs
1 tablespoon instant minced onion
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup milk
1 egg, slightly beaten
Sauce
1/2 cup chutney
1/2 cup ketchup
1 (8-oz.) can tomato sauce
1 teaspoon grated ginger root

DIRECTIONS:

1. Heat oven to 375°F. In large bowl, combine all meatball ingredients; mix well. Shape into 1-inch meatballs. Place in ungreased 15x10x1-inch baking pan.
2. Bake at 375°F. for 25 to 30 minutes or until meatballs are browned and thoroughly cooked in center.
3. In large saucepan, combine all sauce ingredients; mix well. Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until bubbly.
4. Add meatballs to sauce; stir to coat. Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring occasionally.

Mini Reuben Turnovers


2 oz corned beef (from deli), cut into pieces
1/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese (1 oz)
2 tablespoons well-drained sauerkraut, squeezed dry with paper towel
2 tablespoons stone-ground mustard
1 can (8 oz) refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
1 egg, beaten, if desired
Thousand Island dressing, if desired

DIRECTIONS:

Heat oven to 375°F. In food processor bowl with metal blade, place corned beef, cheese, sauerkraut and mustard; pulses 2 times for 3 seconds each or until finely chopped.
2. Remove half of dough in rolled section from can; refrigerate remaining half of dough in can. Unroll half of dough and separate into 2 rectangles; press each into 7 1/2x5-inch rectangle, firmly pressing perforations to seal. Cut each rectangle into 6 (2 1/2-inch) squares.
3. Place 1 teaspoon corned beef mixture on each square. Fold 1 corner to opposite corner, forming triangle and pressing edges to seal; place on ungreased cookie sheet. With fork, prick top of each to allow steam to escape. Brush tops with egg. Repeat with remaining half of dough and corned beef mixture.
4. Bake 9 to 14 minutes or until golden brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheet. Serve warm with salad dressing, if desired.

Sausage and Cheese Crescent Squares


2 (8-oz.) cans Refrigerated Crescent Dinner Rolls
1 lb. hot or mild bulk pork sausage
1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese
8 oz. (2 cups) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

DIRECTIONS:

1. Heat oven to 375°F. Unroll 1 can of dough into 2 long rectangles. Place in ungreased 13x9-inch (3-quart) glass baking dish; press over bottom and 1/2 inch up sides to form crust.
2. Brown sausage in large skillet over medium heat until thoroughly cooked, stirring frequently. Remove sausage from skillet; discard drippings. Add cream cheese to same skillet. Cook over low heat until melted. Add cooked sausage; stir to coat. Spoon evenly over crust in baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese.
3. Unroll second can of dough on work surface. Press to form 13x9-inch rectangle; firmly press perforations to seal. Carefully place over cheese.
4. Bake at 375°F. for 21 to 26 minutes or until golden brown. Cool 15 minutes. Cut into small squares

Creamy Smoked Salmon Cups



4 oz cream cheese (from 8-oz package), softened
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon lemon-pepper seasoning
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
2 teaspoons small capers, drained
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 box (10 oz) frozen corn & butter sauce, thawed
4 oz smoked salmon, flaked
2 cans (8 oz each) refrigerated crescent dinner rolls (8 rolls each)

DIRECTIONS:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1. Heat oven to 375°F. Spray 48 mini muffin cups with CRISCO® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray.
2. In medium bowl, mix cream cheese and sour cream until well blended. Stir in lemon-pepper seasoning, chives, capers and salt. Stir in corn until well mixed. Fold in salmon.
3. Separate dough from both cans into 8 rectangles; press perforations to seal. Cut each rectangle into 6 (2-inch) squares. Press 1 square in bottom and up side of each mini muffin cup. Spoon slightly less than 1 tablespoon salmon filling into each cup.
4. Bake 10 to 18 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool 2 minutes; remove from pan to serving platter. Serve warm

Crescent-Wrapped Brie


1 (8-oz.) can Refrigerated Crescent Dinner Rolls
1 (8-oz.) round natural Brie cheese
1 egg, beaten

DIRECTIONS:

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Unroll dough; separate crosswise into 2 sections. Pat dough and firmly press perforations to seal, forming 2 squares. Place 1 square on ungreased cookie sheet. Place cheese on center of dough.
2. With small cookie or canapé cutter, cut 1 shape from each corner of remaining square; set cutouts aside.
3. Place remaining square on top of cheese round. Press dough evenly around cheese; fold bottom edges over top edges. Gently stretch dough evenly around cheese; press to seal completely. Brush with beaten egg. Top with cutouts; brush with additional beaten egg.
4. Bake at 350°F. for 20 to 24 minutes or until golden brown. Cool 15 minutes. Serve warm.

Green Chile and Cheese Foldovers

Biscuits wrap around green chiles and cheese in these sassy appetizers.

INGREDIENTS:

4 oz. (1 cup) finely shredded Muenster or Monterey Jack cheese
2 tablespoons finely chopped green onion tops
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
Dash salt
1 (4.5-oz.) can chopped green chiles, drained
1 (16.3-oz.) can Refrigerated Buttermilk Biscuits

DIRECTIONS:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1. Heat oven to 375°F. Spray large cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray. In small bowl, combine cheese, onions, cilantro, salt and green chiles; mix well.
2. Separate dough into 8 biscuits. With serrated knife, cut each biscuit in half horizontally to make 16 rounds. Press or roll each to form 3 1/2-inch round. Place 1 tablespoon cheese mixture in center of each round. Fold dough over filling; press edges with fork to seal. Form each filled biscuit into crescent shape. Place on sprayed cookie sheet.
3. Bake at 375°F. for 11 to 16 minutes or until golden brown. Cool 5 minutes. Serve warm.

Little Apricot Appetizer Tarts


Just four ingredients add up to an easy and awesome appetizer.

INGREDIENTS:
2 cans (8 oz each) refrigerated garlic butter crescent dinner rolls (8 rolls each)
1 cup finely shredded pepper Jack cheese (4 oz)
1/4 cup Apricot Preserves
1/4 cup Chopped Pecans

DIRECTIONS:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1. Heat oven to 375°F. Spray 24 mini muffin cups with No-Stick Cooking Spray.
2. Unroll each can of dough into a large rectangle; press perforations to seal. Cut each rectangle crosswise into 12 strips, about 1 inch wide. Place each strip in muffin cup, pressing dough to cover bottom and side, making sure all seams are sealed and forming 1/4-inch rim above cup.
3. Spoon 2 teaspoons cheese into each cup. Top each with 1/2 teaspoon preserves and 1/2 teaspoon pecans.
4. Bake 14 to 20 minutes or until crust is deep golden brown. Cool 5 minutes; remove from pan. Serve warm.

Sloppy Joe Casserole


1 lb. lean ground beef
1/2 cup sliced green onions
1 (15.5-oz.) can sloppy joe sandwich sauce
1 (11-oz.) can Whole Kernel Corn, Red and Green Peppers, undrained
1 (6-oz.) can Refrigerated Buttermilk Biscuits

DIRECTIONS
1. Heat oven to 375°F. In large skillet, brown ground beef with onions; drain. Stir in sandwich sauce and corn. Cook 2 to 3 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring occasionally.
2. Spoon mixture into ungreased 1 to 1 1/2-quart casserole. Separate dough into 5 biscuits; cut each in half. Arrange, cut side down, around outside edge of hot mixture with sides of biscuits touching.
3. Bake at 375°F. for 15 to 20 minutes or until biscuits are deep golden brown.

Italian Meatball Sub


10 frozen cooked Italian-style meatballs, 1 to 1 1/2 inch (from 16-oz bag)*
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 small onion, halved lengthwise, sliced
1 cup tomato pasta sauce
2 hoagie buns, split, toasted
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (1 oz)


DIRECTIONS
1. Place meatballs on microwavable plate. Microwave on High 2 to 3 minutes or until meatballs are hot.
2. Meanwhile, in medium skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat until hot. Add mushrooms, bell pepper and onion; cook 4 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until vegetables are tender.
3. Add pasta sauce and meatballs; mix well. Cook, stirring occasionally, until thoroughly heated.
4. Spoon 5 meatballs and half of sauce into each hoagie bun. Sprinkle with cheese.
*For meatball melts, arrange the sandwiches on a cookie sheet and broil 1 to 2 mins. or until cheese is bubbly.

Maple-Walnut Pumpkin Pie


Crust
1 Pillsbury® refrigerated pie crust (from 15-oz box), softened as directed on box
Filling
1 can (15 oz) pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated)
2 eggs
2 tablespoons real maple syrup or maple-flavored syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
Streusel
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cold butter or margarine
Topping
1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
Chopped walnuts, if desired

DIRECTIONS
1. Heat oven to 425°F. Place pie crust in 9-inch glass pie plate as directed on box for One-Crust Filled Pie. In large bowl, beat filling ingredients with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Pour into crust-lined pan. Bake 10 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in small bowl, mix 1/4 cup brown sugar, the chopped walnuts and flour; cut in butter until crumbly. Set aside.
3. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F. Sprinkle streusel over pie. Cover crust edge with 3-inch-wide strips of foil to prevent excessive browning.
4. Bake 30 to 35 minutes longer or until knife inserted 1 inch from edge comes out clean. Cool completely, about 2 hours. Serve or refrigerate until serving time.
5. To serve, in medium bowl, beat whipping cream and 2 tablespoons brown sugar with electric mixer on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Serve pie with whipped cream; garnish with chopped walnuts. Store in refrigerator.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Dolloped Sweet Potatoes


4 small sweet potatoes
1 package (3 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon butter, softened
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
Directions:
Scrub and pierce sweet potatoes; place on a microwave-safe plate. Microwave, uncovered, on high for 10-13 minutes or until tender, turning twice. Meanwhile, in a small mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter, brown sugar and pumpkin pie spice.
Cut an "X" in the top of each potato; fluff pulp with a fork. Dollop with cream cheese mixture. Yield: 4 servings.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Red Velvet Cake with White Truffle Frosting


1 box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® German chocolate cake mix
1 1/4 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 bottle (1 oz) red food color
1 tablespoon baking cocoa
Frosting
1 1/2 cups white vanilla baking chips
2 1/4 cups vanilla frosting (from two 1-lb containers)

1. Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pans). Grease or spray bottoms only of two 8-inch round cake pans. In large bowl, beat cake ingredients with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds; beat on medium speed 2 minutes. Pour into pans.
2. Bake and cool as directed on box for 8-inch rounds. Slice each cake layer in half horizontally to make a total of 4 layers.
3. In medium microwavable bowl, microwave baking chips uncovered on Medium (50%) 4 to 5 minutes, stirring halfway through microwave time. Stir until smooth; cool 5 minutes. Stir in frosting until well blended. Place 1 cake layer, cut side up, on serving plate; spread with 1 cup of the frosting. Repeat with second and third cake layers. Top with remaining cake layer, cut side down; frost with remaining frosting.

Raspberry Walnut Torte


Ingredients:
1-3/4 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup ground walnuts
1-1/2 cups whipping cream
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
3 eggs
8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/8 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla
12 oz. jar seedless raspberry preserves

Preparation:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, and ground walnuts. Stir well with wire whisk to mix. In a small bowl, beat the whipping cream until stiff peaks form and set aside. In large bowl, using same beaters, beat together sugar, vanilla and eggs for 5 minutes at highest speed, until light and fluffy.
Alternately fold dry ingredients and the whipped cream into the egg mixture. Begin and end with the flour mixture, and treat the batter very carefully.

Grease and flour 2 9" round cake pans line bottoms with waxed paper. Pour the batter evenly into the pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until top springs back when touched, and cake layers begin to pull away from edges of pan. Cool 15 minutes, then remove layers from pans, peel off waxed paper, and cool completely.

In large bowl, combine cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, 1/2 cup whipping cream, 1/8 tsp. salt and 2 tsp. vanilla until light and fluffy, scraping sides of bowl often. You may need to add a bit more powdered sugar or cream as needed to get a light and fluffy frosting consistency.

Now split each layer of the cake in half. To do this, place toothpicks around each layer, sticking out around the edge, to mark the halfway point. Using a serrated knife, carefully cut the cake layers in half. You will then have four layers. Here´s a new trick I learned from Martha (you know who I mean!). To transfer the delicate layers, carefully slide a very thin cookie sheet, without edges, in between the cut layers. Then slide it onto the serving plate.

Place the bottom half of one layer on the serving place and spread with 1 cup frosting. Top with top half of that cake layer and spread with 1/2 cup raspberry preserves. Repeat with third and four layers, topping with frosting and raspberry preserves, respectively, reassembling the layers back in their original form. Then frost the sides of the cake with the remaining frosting. If you like, you can pipe frosting in a decorative pattern on top of the preserves that top the cake. Store in refrigerator.

Okay, now that you are thoroughly threatened by this recipe, there is an easier way! Don´t cut the cake layers in half. Simply put the two layers together with about 1/2 cup of raspberry preserves, then frost top and sides with the cream cheese frosting - pile it on. You'll still have a wonderful cake, with less work.

User Reviews

Berries and Cream Cake Roll


Ingredients:
Crisco® Flour No-Stick Spray
4 large eggs, separated
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup Pillsbury SOFTASILK® Cake Flour, or Pillsbury BEST All Purpose Flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Powdered sugar
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 cup Smucker's® Strawberry Preserves, or SMUCKER'S Low Sugar Strawberry Preserves
Fresh fruit and mint sprigs for garnish, if desired

Directions:

HEAT oven to 375°F. Spray 15x10x1-inch jelly roll pan with no-stick cooking spray.
BEAT egg whites on high speed for 4-5 minutes or until stiff peaks form. In another bowl, beat egg yolks for 3 minutes or until slightly thick and light lemon colored. Add sugar and vanilla to egg yolks; continue to beat for 1 minute. Sift together the dry ingredients. Add to egg yolk mixture. Fold in beaten egg white. Pour into prepared pan spreading batter evenly.
BAKE for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Sprinkle powdered sugar onto a clean kitchen towel. Loosen cake edges from pan. Immediately invert onto towel. Gently roll cake with the towel into a log, starting at the long end. Cool completely, about 45 minutes.
BEAT whipping cream until stiff. Stir preserves slightly in order to spread smoothly on cake. Unroll the cake. Carefully spread with preserves, then with the whipped cream. Reroll cake without towel. Wrap in plastic wrap. Chill for 2-3 hours or overnight.
SPRINKLE with powdered sugar and garnish with fruit and mint, if desired, before serving.
Yield: 12 Servings

Chicken Parmesan


Ingredients:
2 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1 cup panko (coarse) or plain bread crumbs
1/4 cup Canola Oil
3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
8 ounces linguine, cooked according to package directions
3 cups prepared marinara sauce, heated

Directions:

Cut the chicken breasts in half horizontally to form 4 thin cutlets, or pound chicken breasts to 1/4-inch thickness and slice each chicken breast half into 2 cutlets, for a total of 4 cutlets.
Beat egg and ¼ teaspoon salt in a small pie plate. Mix breadcrumbs, ¼ teaspoon salt and a few grinds of pepper in another small pie plate. Dip both sides of each cutlet in the egg, then the bread crumb mixture.
Heat all-vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the cutlets and sauté until golden brown on each side, 5-6 minutes total.
Heat broiler in oven. Transfer cutlets to wire rack over cookie sheet or jelly roll pan. Sprinkle each with mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
Broil 4-5 inches from heat source until cheese melts and begins to brown, about 2 minutes.
To Serve: Divide pasta between 4 serving plates, top with warm marinara sauce and then chicken.

TUXEDOED STRAWBERRIES


Ingredients:
24 to 26 strawberries
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons Crisco® All-Vegetable Shortening
1 1/2 cups white chocolate, chopped

Directions:

Line a large baking sheet with wax paper. Wipe strawberries clean. Dry with paper towels.
Place semi-sweet chocolate chips and 1 tablespoon shortening in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on 50% power, or defrost, for 45 seconds. Stir. Repeat until chocolate is soft and shortening is melted. Stir until mixture is smooth. Repeat process with white chocolate and remaining 1 tablespoon shortening.
Holding 1 strawberry by its green top, dip 3⁄4 of berry into melted white chocolate. Let excess drip off. Repeat with remaining berries. Place on prepared baking sheet.
Dip each white chocolate-dipped berry at an angle into melted semi-sweet chocolate, creating one side of the “lapel”. Repeat at an angle on the other side of the berry. Place on prepared baking sheet.
Place a small amount of melted semi-sweet chocolate into a small resealable plastic bag. Cut small tip off one corner. Pipe on buttons and a bowtie. Refrigerate about 1 hour or until chocolate coating is firm.
TIP
Can be prepared up to 8 hours ahead but they are best eaten the same day. Keep refrigerated.
Yield: 24 to 26 strawberries
WWW.CRISCO.COM

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Fresh Corn Salad



8 ears fresh corn, husked and cleaned
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1-1/2 tsp. lemon juice
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt, optional
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/8 to 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 largge tomatoes, seeded and coarsely chopped
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/3 cup chopped green pepper
1/3 cup chopped sweet red pepper
-----------------------
In a large saucepan, cook corn in enough boiling water to cover for 5 to 7 minutes or until tender. Drain, cool and set aside. In a large bowl, mix oil, vinegar, lemon juice, parsley, sugar, salt, if desired, basil and cayenne pepper. Cut cooled corn off the cob (should measure 4 cups). Add corn, tomatoes, onion and peppers to the oil mixture. Mix well. Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight. Yield: 10 servings

From: "Taste of Home

Christmas Eve Mice


24 double-stuffed Oreo cookies
1 cup (6 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips
2 tsp. shortening
24 red maraschino cherries with stems, well drained
24 milk chocolate kisses
48 sliced almonds
1 small tube of green icing gel
1 small tube of red icing gel
---------------------
Carefully twist cookies apart; set aside the halves with cream filling. Save plain halves for another use. (Or munch on them while you make this recipe!) In the microwave or heavy saucepan, melt chocolate chips and shortening; stir until smooth. Holding each cherry by the stem, dip in melted chocolate, then press onto the bottom of a chocolate kiss. Place onto the cream filling of the cookie, with cherry stem extending beyond cookie edge. For ears, place slivered almonds between the cherry and kiss. Refrigerate until set. With green gel, pipe holly leaves on the cream. With red gel, pipe holly berries between leaves and pipe eyes on each chocolate kiss. Store in an airtight container at room temperature. Yield: 2 dozen.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Apple Kuchen



3/4 cup butter or margarine
3/4 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
5 Golden Delicious apples, pared and cored
2 Tbsp. melted butter or margarine
2 Tbsp. brown sugar, packed, to sprinkle on top

Directions
1. Cream butter and sugar and add eggs. Beat until light and fluffy. Add vanilla. Stir in flour and salt to make a smooth dough.

2. Spread into a buttered 13-by-9-inch dish or 10 or 11-inch buttered tart pan with removable bottom.

3. Halve the apples. Make cuts in the apples 1/4-inch apart but not all the way through, so the halves still hold together.

3. Press the halves flat side down, making an attractive arrangement on the top of the batter. Brush apples with melted butter. Sprinkle with the brown sugar.

4. Bake at 425

Thursday, February 7, 2008

White Chocolate Berry Cake


For the cake:

6 egg yolks
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 1/3 cups self-rising flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
5 1/2 oz white chocolate, melted

For the filling and topping:

9 1/2 oz white chocolate, melted
2 cups mixed summer berries

TO MAKE THE CAKE:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter two 9-inch springform pans and line bases with parchment or waxed (greaseproof) paper.

Combine the egg yolks, 1/4 cup of the milk,
and the vanilla in a bowl.

In a large bowl, combine the flour and sugar. Add the softened butter with the remaining 3/4 cup milk and add to dry ingredients. Beat on low speed to combine, 3-4 minutes. Gradually add the egg mixture in 3 batches, beating well after each addition. Add the melted white chocolate and beat to combine, about 2 minutes. Pour the mixture into the prepared pans. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.


TO MAKE THE FILLING AND TOPPING:
Spread one-third of the warm melted white chocolate over 1 cake layer using a large metal spatula.


Place the berries, reserving a few for decoration, on top of the cake layer spread with the chocolate. Place the second cake layer on top and cover the assembled cake with the remaining melted white chocolate. Decorate with the reserved berries and serve.

Source: Close-up on Cakes

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