Monday, November 14, 2011

Coffee Cake..isn't just for coffee

Apple Sour Cream Coffee Cake
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup sour cream
2 cups peeled, diced apples
1 cup caramel bits or cinnamon chips, optional
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans, optional
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 TB cold butter
Cream together shortening, sugar, vanilla. Add eggs and beat well. Into a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, salt, and soda; add to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream. Fold in diced apples and bits or chips (optional)
Pour batter into a greased 13x9x2-inch pan. Sprinkle with topping.
Bake apple sour cream coffee cake at 350° for 25 to 30 minutes.
Topping :  In a medium bowl, combine ingredients, except nuts..  Mix with pastry blender until crumbly.  Stir in chopped pecans.

Saturday, November 12, 2011


I received a BEAUTIFUL  picture of  The Holy Family that my neighbor and dear friend illustrated.  What to do?  So today I spent some time FRAMING it.  Using my Silhouette, I created a mat for the outline.  Then using vinyl..thus..the wise men! Thank you Scott and your sweet wife, Helen for the gift.  I will treasure it forever!
PS..I am NOT good at even taking pictures..this is the best I could do!

VALENTINE'S DAY is coming soon.. Oh a month or more away, but if you are like my 11 year will remind me the night, box...etc.  So I started NOWBEAR HUG treat bags.. well I just have the topper done.  Thinking just black dots for the eyes instead of the wiggle eyes.  Anyway, I will fill a small clear cello bag with PINK GUMMY BEARS left over from my oldest daughter's wedding.  Slam bang, DONE!




Moist Pumpkin Spice Muffins
1 cup All-purpose Flour
½ cups Sugar
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1-½ teaspoon Cinnamon
¼ teaspoons Ground Ginger
½ teaspoons Nutmeg
½ teaspoons Salt
4 Tablespoons Butter, cut into pieces
1 cup (heaping) Pumpkin Puree
½ cups Evaporated Milk
1 whole Egg
1-½ teaspoon Vanilla
½ cups Golden Raisins or chocolate chips (optional!
Crumb Topping:
Combine with pastry blender
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup oats
1/2 tsp cinnamon
3 TB unsalted butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Generously grease 12 muffin tins.
Sift flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar.  Add evaporated milk, egg, and vanilla. Pour flour mixture into wet ingredients.  Add raisins or chocolate chips. Fold gently until mixture is just combined. Pour into a greased muffin pan Sprinkle with topping.

Bake for 25 minutes. Allow to cool in pan for 15 minutes, then remove and allow to cool. 

French Toast..Fall Style

Pumpkin French Toast
Makes  6 slices
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup pumpkin puree
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
Beat well then add
1 cup heavy whipping cream
Beating well again.
Preheat griddle to 325 degrees.  Spray lightly with pan spray.  Dip bread, both sides.  Place on griddle.  Turn once golden brown and continue baking until bottom is also golden brown.


Caramel Apple Pie
1 1/2 cups ginger snap crumbs
3 tablespoons sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup caramel ice cream topping
1 cup chopped pecans
Apple Filling:
5 Granny Smith apples (peeled, cored, sliced very thin)
5 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Cream Cheese Topping:
8 oz. cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup heavy cream, whipped
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup caramel ice cream topping
1/4 cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. In a medium bowl, combine the crumbs, sugar, and melted butter. Mix well and press into a 10-inch pie plate and up the sides. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes until golden in color. Remove pie shell from oven and cool completely. Pour caramel into pie shell and sprinkle with 1 cup of chopped pecans. Refrigerate pie shell while making apple filling.
3. In a large (12-inch) skillet over medium heat, melt butter and add brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. Stir with a wooden spoon. Add apples and stir. Cook over medium to medium-high heat for 15 to 20 minutes until apples are softened and tender. Let cool for 10 minutes and pour into pie shell. Reduce oven to 350 degrees F.
4. In a medium bowl, using a hand-held mixer on low speed, combine cream cheese and sugar for about 1 minute until smooth. Add egg, lemon juice and vanilla and beat for 1 minute or until fully blended. Pour over apple filling in pie shell. Bake for 30 minutes until an inserted knife comes out clean. Remove pie from oven and let cool. Refrigerate for 4 hours. Let stand outside the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
5. Top with whipped cream, caramel and pecans, and swirl with a knife. Slice and serve.

Pumpkin Mousse Pie
9 ounces graham crackers
3/4 cup plus 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
3 tablespoons Dutch-process cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus 1 tablespoon for dusting
1/4 teaspoon plus a pinch ground nutmeg
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup brandy
2 tablespoons unflavored powdered gelatin
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 1/2 cups Pumpkin Puree, or canned
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Heat oven to 325 degrees. In a food processor, combine graham crackers, 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, cocoa powder, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, and pinch nutmeg; process until finely ground. Transfer to a medium bowl; mix in butter with a wooden spoon. Press mixture onto bottom and sides of a 10-inch tart pan. Bake until set, 12 to 15 minutes. Set crust aside to cool.
In a small bowl, place brandy and 2 tablespoons water. Sprinkle gelatin powder over liquid; set aside to soften, 10 minutes. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat eggs on medium-low speed until fluffy. While the mixer is running, combine remaining 3/4 cup sugar and 1/4 cup water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until temperature registers 245 degrees (firm-ball stage) on a candy thermometer, about 5 minutes. Immediately turn mixer to high speed. Carefully drizzle sugar mixture into eggs in a thin stream; continue to beat until mixture increases in volume and is pale yellow, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, place bowl with softened gelatin over a saucepan of simmering water; stir until gelatin has dissolved.
Turn mixer to low; add gelatin mixture to egg mixture. Add pumpkin puree, remaining 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, the allspice, ginger, salt, and sour cream; combine. Pour filling into pie crust; refrigerate until set, 4 hours or overnight.
To serve, whisk heavy cream, confectioners' sugar, and vanilla in a medium bowl until stiff. Pipe or spread whipped cream over the top of the pie.  Sift remaining tablespoon cinnamon on top. Serve chilled.

The Famous and most incredible...Libby's Pumpkin Pie.. use NO other recipe!

LIBBY'S® Famous Pumpkin Pie
This is the traditional holiday pumpkin pie. This classic recipe has been on LIBBY'S® Pumpkin labels since 1950. This pie is easy to prepare and even easier to enjoy. Just mix, pour, bake for a delicious homemade tradition.
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 large eggs
1 can (15 oz.) LIBBY'S® 100% Pure Pumpkin
1 can (12 fl. oz.)  Evaporated Milk
1 unbaked 9-inch (4-cup volume) deep-dish pie shell
Whipped cream (optional)
MIX sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger and cloves in small bowl. Beat eggs in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk.

POUR into pie shell.

BAKE in preheated 425° F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350° F; bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate. Top with whipped cream before serving.

Chocolate-Peanut Butter Truffle Pie

1 box Pillsbury® refrigerated pie crusts, softened as directed on box
Truffle Filling
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 cup dark chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Peanut Butter Filling
1 cup whipping cream
1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
1 tablespoon shortening
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped salted peanuts

Heat oven to 450°F. Bake pie crust as directed on box for One-Crust Baked Shell, using 9-inch glass pie plate. Cool completely on cooling rack, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in 2-quart saucepan, heat 1/2 cup whipping cream over medium-high heat until hot. Remove from heat; stir in 1 cup chocolate chips and the vanilla until smooth. Spread truffle filling in bottom of baked crust. Freeze 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in medium bowl, beat 1 cup whipping cream with electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form. Set aside. In another medium bowl, beat cream cheese, peanut butter and powdered sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth; fold in whipped cream. Carefully spread over truffle filling. Refrigerate until set, about 2 hours.
In small microwavable bowl, microwave 1/4 cup chocolate chips and the shortening uncovered on High 30 to 60 seconds, stirring every 15 seconds, until melted. Drizzle chocolate over pie; sprinkle with peanuts. Cut into wedges to serve. Cover and refrigerate any remaining pie.


It's a matter of POPPING those delicious little things into your mouth..over and over..can't yummy.... And the fun can make truffles from about ANYTHING!

Oreo Truffles
1 package Oreo cookies
1 8oz. package cream cheese (softened)
12 oz. milk chocolate or use chocolate melts
Crush cookies in food processor.  Add cream cheese and pulse until mixed.
Roll the mixture into 1″ balls and place on wax paper covered cookie sheet.
Melt chocolate in a double boiler, or in a heatproof bowl set over simmering water, ensuring the bowl does not touch the surface of the water. Remove from heat,
Dip balls into chocolate, tap off extra and set aside on wax paper covered cookie sheet to dry. Sprinkle the tops with chocolate sprinkles, if desired.
Once dry, refrigerate and enjoy! Can be stored in an air tight container in freezer.

Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Truffles
3 lbs. powdered sugar
1 lb. cream cheese, softened
4 cups peanut butter
3 packages chocolate chips or melts
Combine the powdered sugar, cream cheese, and peanut butter in a large bowl and mix until  well blended. Chill for 1/2 hour.
Roll the dough into balls and chill them.
Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in a double boiler.  Then, dip the balls into the melted chocolate, and cool them on wax paper. Store the peanut butter balls in the refrigerator.

Peanut Butter Truffles
3 lbs. powdered sugar
1 lb. margarine
4 cups peanut butter
3 packages chocolate chips or melts
1/3 cup chopped peanuts, optional for topping
Combine the powdered sugar, margarine, and peanut butter in a large bowl and mix them with your hands until everything is well blended. Chill for 1/2 hour.
Roll the dough into balls and chill them.
Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in a double boiler.  Then, dip the balls into the melted chocolate, sprinkle with chopped peanuts and cool them on wax paper. Store the peanut butter balls in the refrigerator.

Red Velvet Truffles
1 box red velvet cake mix, and ingredients to make the cake or make your own
1 can (16 oz) prepared cream cheese frosting
1 lb candy coating, white or dark chocolate
Sprinkles or small candies to decorate (optional)
1. Prepare and bake the red velvet cake mix according to the directions of the package for a 9x13 cake. Once baked, allow the cake to cool completely.
2. Crumble the cake into a large bowl and work it with your hands until it is in small pieces. If desired, reserve a few spoonfuls of crumbs to use as decorative toppings on the finished truffles.
3. Spoon three-fourths of the frosting into the bowl and stir with a rubber spatula until the mixture is well-combined. It should be very moist and hold together if you squeeze a ball of cake between your fingers, but not too wet or greasy. If the cake mixture is still a bit dry, add more frosting to get it to the desired consistency.
4. Using a small cookie or candy scoop, scoop out small balls of cake and roll between your palms until they are round. Place the cakes balls on a baking sheet covered with aluminum foil, and refrigerate them while you prepare the candy coating.
5. Place the candy coating in a medium microwave-safe bowl and microwave it until melted, stirring after every 45 seconds to prevent overheating.
6. Using dipping tools or a fork, submerge a cake ball in the melted candy coating. Remove it from the coating and drag the bottom across the lip of the bowl to remove excess coating. Replace the dipped truffle on the foil-covered baking sheet. If desired, top it with a sprinkle of cake crumbs, small candies, or other decorations while the coating is still wet. Repeat with remaining cake balls.
7. Refrigerate the truffles to set the coating completely, about 20 minutes. These cake truffles are best served at room temperature, and can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Truffles

½ cup white chocolate chunks or chips
2 cups white chocolate almond bark (I think I used around 4-5 cubes)
1/3 cup gingersnap cookie crumbs, plus more for garnish
1/4 cup canned pumpkin purée
1/4 cup graham cracker crumbs, plus more for garnish
1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of fine salt
2 ounces cream cheese, softened

Melt the 1/2 cup of white chocolate chips in a double boiler over medium-low heat or in the microwave for about 1 minutes. Stir often to keep the chocolate from burning. Transfer to a large bowl. Add gingersnap crumbs, pumpkin, graham cracker crumbs, sugar, zest, cinnamon, salt and cream cheese and beat with an electric mixer until smooth. Transfer to a shallow bowl, cover and chill until just solid enough to roll into balls, about 2 hours.
Line a large sheet tray with parchment paper. Melt remaining 2 cups white chocolate almond bark and transfer to a small, deep bowl. Roll 1 heaping teaspoon of the pumpkin mixture into a ball in your hands, then drop into the chocolate. Working quickly, gently spoon chocolate over to coat. Using a small spoon or fork, lift the truffle out of the chocolate, shake off excess and transfer to prepared sheet tray. Dollop a bit of extra chocolate on any parts that remain exposed, then sprinkle a few gingersnap or graham cracker crumbs over the top, if you like.
Repeat process with remaining pumpkin mixture and chocolate, then chill truffles until chocolate is completely set, about 1 hour.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Truffles
Same as above but add 1/3 cup mini semi sweet morsels to filling

Chocolate Chip-Cookie Dough Truffles
1/3 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate pieces
4 ounces dark chocolate or semisweet chocolate, chopped
4 ounces chocolate-flavor candy coating, chopped
1 tablespoon shortening
Line a 15x10x1-inch baking pan with waxed paper; set aside. In a medium bowl beat butter, brown sugar, and vanilla with an electric mixer on medium speed until combined. Beat in flour just until combined. Stir in chocolate pieces. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place on prepared baking pan. Cover; freeze about 30 minutes or until firm.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan heat chopped chocolate, candy coating, and shortening over low heat, stirring until melted and smooth. Remove from heat.
Line a tray or baking sheet with waxed paper. Using a fork, dip balls into chocolate mixture, allowing excess chocolate mixture to drip back into saucepan. Place dipped balls on prepared tray. Let stand or chill about 30 minutes or until set. Lightly drizzle with the remaining melted chocolate mixture.

Mint Oreo Truffles
Adapted from Bakerella
1 package mint oreo cookies
1 8oz. package cream cheese (softened)
12 oz. white chocolate
2-4 tablespoons vegetable oil (optional)
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
green food coloring
Finely crush 5 cookies in a food processor or place them in a ziploc bag and crush into a fine consistency. Reserve for later.
Crush remaining cookies and stir in softened cream cheese. Use the back of a large spoon to help mash the two together.
Roll the mixture into 1″ balls and place on wax paper covered cookie sheet.
Melt chocolate in a double boiler, or in a heatproof bowl set over simmering water, ensuring the bowl does not touch the surface of the water. Remove from heat, and stir in peppermint extract. Add green food coloring until desired shade of green is reached. If your brand of white chocolate melts a little thicker, you can use vegetable oil to thin it.  Alternately, you can replace the white chocolate with white chocolate candy melts.
Dip balls into chocolate, tap off extra and set aside on wax paper covered cookie sheet to dry. Sprinkle the tops with the 5 crushed cookies for decoration.
Once dry, refrigerate and enjoy!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

THE Best Homemade Wheat Bread EVER

I have yet to master bread until now....  This recipe is amazing and came out perfect the first time.

Homemade Wheat Bread
1 loaf
1 cup warm water (110-115 degrees F)
1 tablespoon milk
2 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons instant active dry yeast
1. Combine first 6 ingredients in a large mixing bowl and yeast; stir.  wait for about 5 minutes until yeast mixture is bubbly.
2. Add flours and knead until dough is smooth and elastic, about 10-15 minutes. Place dough in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover with a clean towel and let rise until doubled, about 40 minutes.
3. Punch dough down; knead for a few minutes until smooth and then form into a loaf. Place in greased loaf pan and cover. Let rise in a warm place until almost doubled in size, about 30 minutes.
4. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. If loaf starts browning too soon, lightly lay a piece of foil on top of the loaf to prevent too much darkening.
5. Remove bread from oven, coat with butter (if desired - it does make a softer crust) and allow to rest in pan for a few minutes. Remove to a wire rack and cover with a cloth. Slice and enjoy while still warm!  Leftover bread can be stored in an airtight bag or frozen until needed.