Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Black Eyed Peas Casserole for New Years Day

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I first posted this recipe back in 2007.  My now ninety-six year old neighbor has made this forever on New Years Day, and yes, she will be making it this year as well, and it is absolutely fantastic.  Pair it with some crusty fresh bread and a green salad and it’s just the best, ever!!!

So here it is again, if you make black-eyed peas for luck on New Years Day, this is a winner!

2 cans black-eyed peas, I drain and rinse for a more subtle flavor
2 cans italian stewed tomatoes  
1 lb. sweet italian sausage, with casing removed  
1 large onion  
2 tablespoons of italian seasoning  
1 teaspoon of oregano, if desired

Brown onion and sausage, drain, crumble and dump all in a crockpot, simmer on high for 3-4 hours, meanwhile cook a cup or so of pasta, any small pasta will work and stir it in at the end.  

This is so good, and so easy….

Enjoy and Happy New Year

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Bacon Cinnamon Rolls

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Oh so easy for the holidays.  Just precook the bacon a bit, roll in the cinnamon rolls and bake for 12 minutes.  

Just had to share ~ Jan

Friday, December 5, 2014

A Lodge Cast Iron update for you...

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I was making these grilled cheese sandwiches at lunch (that’s 1 carb bread ladies, and it’s awesome).  I’m now using cast iron almost exclusively and loving it.  It gives food such wonderful flavor and I took a deep breath and listened to my sons, I don’t use soap on my skillets, I  soak them a bit in hot water and use my trusty Lodge scrubber on them.  This was really hard for me to do, but I’ve done it for a few months and hubby and I haven’t had food poisoning, so it must be okay.  And the best part, my skillets are now as smooth as a babies bottom, I can even fry eggs in them with no sticking.

So, I have a few favorite things to show you.   The first is a Lodge Scrub Brush.  John had one of these, I told Ryan about them, he looked them up on Amazon and we both ordered.

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\What a great brush this is, I use it exclusively on my cast iron and it does a fine job.  $9.97 Prime, it’s a great price, too! 

Here’s the link

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Then I bought the Lodge Silicone handle.  It fits all sizes of Lodge skillets, and keeps your hands cool when you use them.  It’s only $6.00 Prime.

You can buy it here

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And for only $4.62 you can get these great pot scrapers.  Perfect for getting all of the residue off your skillets when you’re washing them.  It’s not Prime, but it is an add-on.  Here’s the click

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And finally, this grill scraper.  You all know how hard it is to get between the ridges of a grill pan, well this little gadget will fix that problem for only $4.43 or $9.99 for a four pack, all Prime.

Here’s the link

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I bought this 9” preseasoned skillet back in September specifically to make this Trisha Yearwood’s appe recipe that I posted on Jan CAN Cook.  This pie is a winner, and just as good, if not better with peach pie filling.  Want the recipe?  Grab it here!

But back to this 9” skillet.  It’s fantastic, my grab it every day, go to skillet of choice.  It’s on Amazon for $23.22 Prime and worth every penny.  A must have if you want to make that pie, a larger skillet won’t work.  Here’s the link to the skillet

These Lodge accessories would make great stocking stuffers, that pie would be amazing during the holidays, but you really do need to treat yourself to this skillet.  I’m telling you, it’s the perfect size!  

And I also have a great blog entry on how to make old cast iron new again, hubby is working on that little project for you.  It’s coming in a week or so… ~ Jan

Monday, November 24, 2014

Thanksgiving Recipes

It’s that time of year again, and I have Thanksgiving recipes from several years ago that my friends shared with me.  Busy day, but here’s a quick link, I’ll put them in the sidebar later.

Just click on the picture, you will link to the original file and from there, just click on individual recipes.  They’re good ones!!!!

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And while I’m at it, I might as well give you the link to the Christmas ones, too.

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Sunday, November 16, 2014

20 Creative Pie Crimping Techniques

 

 

Just in time for Thanksgiving.  Thanks, Libby!!!!

Hammie Sammies, the Creamy Version

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After I posted my recipe for Hammie Sammies, my cousin, Phyllis emailed me with her version.  This one has mayo and Phyl is a great cook, so I’m sure it’s yummy!

I pound baked ham
1 dozen dinner rolls ( the Hawaiian rolls are too sweet for our taste).

I mix about 1/2 cup of mayonnaise and 1/2 cup salad dressing together .. Add garlic powder and onion powder to taste

Spray bottom of pan with Pam

Cut rolls in half .. Spread a light coating of mayo mixture on rolls

I take ham and cheese and alternate on bun

I use mozzarella or provolone cheese

After I get all 12 rolls assemblied I brush a brown sugar mixture on top of them

1 stick of butter
1/2 cup of brown sugar
Garlic powder to taste
Onion powder to taste
Dab of Worchester sauce

I melt all in saucepan

Put in refrigerator about an hour or overnight

Bake at 350 degrees till cheese is melted - about 20 minutes

I have used roast beef and pepper jack cheese

I like them on croissants

Friday, November 14, 2014

Hammie Sammies

 

Mini Baked Ham Sandwiches | Lunch | King s Hawaiian Recipes


Hammie Sammies are a huge hit, my friend Nisha made them for a tailgating party and declared them a “must try.”  My neighbor, Julie had them at a shower and said they were fantastic.  This is on our family’s list to make this holiday season, since you make them the night before, it’s an easy fix ahead meal to pop into the oven during this busy time.

Here’s a variation of the original recipe from King’s Hawaiian Rolls

Mini Baked Ham Sandwiches

Prep time: 10 min

Cook time: 20 min

Serving Info: 12 people

Ingredients

1 pound deli ham shaved

1 pound swiss cheese thinly sliced

1 1/2 sticks butter

1 1/2 tablespoons Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard

1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire Sauce

1 small onion, diced

2 12-pack  KING’S HAWAIIAN Savory Butter Dinner Rolls (you won’t need all of these, but you do need two packages to fill a 9x13 pan

Optional:  1 Tablespoon of poppy seeds

Preparation

1. Melt butter, saute onions until soft and whisk in dijon mustard, worcestershire sauce and poppy seeds if desired

2. Cut the entire pack of rolls in half, horizontally (keeping all top and bottom halves separately intact).

3. In a 9x13 inch pan sprayed with Pam, place bottom half of rolls and cover with ham and cheese.  You will need to use a few rolls from the 2nd pack to fill the pan.

4. Cover ham and cheese stacks with top half of rolls.

5. Drizzle butter mixture over top of rolls, making sure onion is evenly distributed.

6. Refrigerate over night.

7. Bake covered at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, uncover and bake an additional 5-10 minutes and, once finished, separate for serving.

Some recipes call for part of the sauce to be drizzled over the ham and cheese, then put on the top roll and drizzle on the rest.  Nisha just drizzled hers over the top and it worked great.

Taste this before drizzling to see if you want additional mustard or Worcestershire Sauce, some people prefer it a bit more tangy...

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Monday, November 10, 2014

Perfect Chicken and Dumplings

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Yes, these are wonderful.  Stephanie, from So Simply Stephanie,  has a post about how to make them, the lady knows her stuff.

Check out the how to’s here...

Turtle Pretzels

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Super Easy!!!

Ingredients:

1 10 oz. bag Mini Pretzels

1 8 oz. package Unwrapped Rolos

1 small package pecan halves

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 350.Put parchment paper on a baking sheet.Lay pretzels down on the parchment paper.

Place a Rolo on each pretzel.Bake for 3-5 minutes watching for them to soften but not melt.

Take out of the oven and add 1 pecan half per pretzel.Let cool completely.

 

 

 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

German Chocolate Pie, oh my....

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Ingredients

  • 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons cold lard
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons ice water
  • FILLING:
  • 4 ounces German sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • TOPPING:
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup butter, cubed
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 cup flaked coconut
  • 1 teaspoon McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans

Directions

  • In a small bowl, mix flour and salt; cut in lard until crumbly.
  • Gradually add ice water, tossing with a fork until dough holds
 together when pressed. Shape into a disk; wrap in plastic wrap.
  • Refrigerate 30 minutes or overnight. 
  • Preheat oven to 400°. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to
  • a 1/8-in.-thick circle; transfer to a 9-in. pie plate. Trim pastry
  • to 1/2 in. beyond rim of plate; flute edge. Line unpricked pastry
  • with a double thickness of foil. Fill with pie weights, dried beans
  • or uncooked rice.
  • Bake 11-13 minutes or until bottom is lightly browned. Remove foil
  • and weights; bake 6-8 minutes longer or until light brown. Cool on a
  • wire rack. Reduce oven setting to 350°.
  • In a microwave, melt chocolates in a large bowl; stir until smooth.
  • Cool slightly. Whisk in milk, egg yolks and vanilla; stir in pecans.
  • Pour into crust. Bake 16-19 minutes or until set. Cool 1 hour on a
  • wire rack.
  • Meanwhile, in a small heavy saucepan, combine brown sugar, cream and
  • butter. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve
  • sugar. Remove from heat.
  • In a small bowl, whisk a small amount of hot mixture into egg yolks;
  • return all to pan, whisking constantly. Cook 2-3 minutes or until
  • mixture thickens and a thermometer reads 160°, stirring
  • constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in coconut and vanilla; cool 10
  • minutes.
  • Pour over filling; sprinkle with pecans. Refrigerate 4 hours or until
  • cold. Yield: 8 servings.
 
SHORT VERSION... pie shell cooked till golden brown, chocolate pie filling in shell , then can of german chocolate icing on top of this... nuts ,shaved chocolate, and cool whip to garnishNutritional Facts: 
1 piece equals 801 calories, 54 g fat (24 g saturated fat), 215 mg cholesterol, 227 mg sodium, 75 g carbohydrate, 5 g fiber, 12 g protein.
Recipe Source: Taste of Home



Laura Bush's Texas Buttermilk Coconut Cream Pie

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1 unbaked nine-inch pie shell

½ stick melted butter

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

½ cup sweetened, shredded coconut, plus ½ cup of toasted coconut for garnish

1/3 cup buttermilk

Mix ingredients, pour into pie shell, and bake in 350 degree preheated oven for 40-45 minutes until set.

Melt a tablespoon of butter in a skillet, add 1/2 cup of coconut and toast until golden brown.  Garnish the pie with whipped cream and sprinkle with the toasted coconut.

Adapted from a recipe from Americas-Table

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Lemon Filled Croissants

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I found this recipe on The English Kitchen.  It’s a must try for all the lemon lovers in my life.  I’m posting the recipe, but please go to the original poster’s website for complete instructions and pictures.  These look AMAZING!!!!!  Here’s the original link

Lemon Filled Croissants

*Lemon Filled Croissants*
Makes 6

Quick, easy and only using four ingredients.  (Five if you count the cardamom) Buttery soft croissants filled with tangy
lemon curd,dusted with demerara sugar and ground cardamom and baked to perfection.

1 package of refrigerated croissant dough
6 heaped TBS of good quality lemon curd
6 TBS *demerara sugar
milk to brush
ground cardamom to dust (optional)
Icing sugar to dust (optional)

Preheat your oven to 200*C/400*F/ gas mark 6.  Line a baking tray with baking parchment.   Lightly spray the paper
with nonstick spray.  Set aside.

Unroll your croissant dough, and cut apart into 6 triangles.   Place one portion of lemon curd at the wide end of each
croissant.  Gently spread it down about half way the length of the dough towards the point, and leaving the edges free.  
Roll up,starting at the wide end towards the small point, totally encasing the lemon curd.   Gently twist either end
closed and place each on the prepared baking sheet, narrow pointed side down.  Brush each with some milk. 

Sprinkle with the *demerara sugar and dust lightly with ground cardamom if desired.

Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until well risen and golden brown.  Remove from the oven.   Serve warm and dusted with
icing sugar if desired.
 
*substitute demerara sugar with regular or coarse sugar

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Trisha Yearwood's Skillet Apple Pie

Skillet Apple Pie with Cinnamon Whipped Cream Recipe  Trisha Yearwood  Food Network

What’s not to love, apples, cinnamon, buttery pie.  And it only takes a few minutes to make.  This is a must-try in my kitchen, maybe it is in yours, too.  

Ingredients

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup light brown sugar
2 refrigerated rolled pie crusts, such as Pillsbury
One 21-ounce can apple pie filling
2 tablespoons cinnamon sugar

Cinnamon Whipped Cream:

2 cups whipping cream, chilled
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 tablespoons sugar


Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Melt the butter in a 9-inch cast-iron skillet; set aside 1 tablespoon of the melted butter for the top crust. To the melted butter, add the brown sugar and melt them together on medium heat, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and line the skillet with one of the pie crusts. Pour the apple pie filling over the crust and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the cinnamon sugar. Use the second pie crust to cover the filling. Brush the top with the reserved melted butter, then evenly sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon cinnamon sugar on top. Cut vents in the middle of the pie. Bake for 30 minutes. Serve hot, topped with a generous dollop of cinnamon whipped cream.

Cinnamon whipped cream:

Chill a large metal mixing bowl and a wire beater attachment in the freezer for about 20 minutes. Pour the cream, cinnamon and sugar into the cold mixing bowl and beat until soft peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes; the mixture should hold its shape when dropped from a spoon. Don't overbeat or you'll have sweetened butter!

Photo courtesy of  FoodTV




Monday, September 8, 2014

Tupelo Honey Buttermilk Biscuits

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"A good biscuit starts with good flour," says Jason Roy, owner of Biscuit Head who serves the famous Tupelo Honey Cathead Biscuits. Like many Southern cooks, he uses self-rising flour because it's pre-mixed to include a blend of hard and soft wheat as well as a leavening ingredient for the perfect rise—something you can't get in plain all-purpose, cake, or pastry flour. (Want to reallydo as the Southerners do? Try White Lily self-rising flour, available nationwide at specialty supermarkets and online.)

Whether you use shortening, lard or butter as your fat of choice, "snap it in" like Brian Sonoskus, chef of Tupelo Honey Café, does. "Pinch the flour and fat together like you're snapping your fingers," he explains. This creates thin sheets of butter that create puff pastry-like layers in your biscuits.

For soft and fluffy biscuits, blend the liquid and dry ingredients just until the dough "resembles cottage cheese," Sonoskus says. This stops you from activating too much gluten in the flour and ending up with a tougher biscuit that doesn't rise as high. But even if you mix too much, don't worry. "Denser biscuits have their place—they're better for making sandwiches," he rationalizes.

Gently shape biscuits with an ice cream scoop instead of a biscuit cutter. That's what Roy does to make Biscuit Head's oversized cathead biscuits, so-called because they're as big as a cat's noggin. Whether you make them big or small, it's an incredibly easy and foolproof technique. Don't have a spring-loaded scoop? Use a measuring cup and a silicone spatula.

Use real buttermilk if you can get it. Both chefs pledge allegiance to Asheville-based Cruze Dairy's whole-milk buttermilk for its unsurpassed creaminess and acidity. Look for local farms in your area to get the good stuff, not the watery low-fat substitutions found at the supermarket.

Ready to try it yourself? Here's Tupelo Honey's much-sought-after recipe:

Tupelo Honey Buttermilk Biscuits

Makes 10 biscuits

  • 2 cups White Lily self-rising flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅓ cup chilled shortening, cut into pieces
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • Melted butter

Preheat the oven to 425°F and position the oven rack slightly below the center of the oven. Lightly butter a round cake pan or cast-iron skillet.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the flour, sugar and salt. Snap the pieces of shortening with your fingers until the shortening pieces are no larger than peas. Make a well in the mixture and pour in the cream and ⅔ cup of the buttermilk. Using your hands or a rubber spatula, sweep in the flour and turn the dough until the dry ingredients are moistened and the dough resembles cottage cheese, adding enough of the remaining ⅓ cup buttermilk to reach this consistency.

Sprinkle the rolling surface with flour. Turn the dough out onto the surface and sprinkle the top with flour. With floured hands, fold the dough in half and pat the dough into a ⅓- to ½-inch-thick round, using additional flour as needed. Flour again if necessary and fold the dough in half a second time. If the dough is still clumpy, repeat the folding process for a third time. Pat the dough into a 1-inch-thick round. Dip a 2-inch biscuit cutter into the flour and cut out biscuits, ensuring you do not twist the cutter.

Place the biscuits in the pan, sides slightly touching. Brush the tops of the biscuits with melted butter and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until light golden brown, rotating the pan 180°F after 6 minutes. Remove from the oven and brush the biscuits again with melted butter.

Reprinted with permission from Tupelo Honey Cafe: New Southern Flavors from the Blue Ridge Mountains by Elizabeth Sims with Chef Brian Sonoskus, Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2014.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Limoncello Tom Collins

 

Tom Collins

 

1½ cups good vodka, such as Grey Goose 
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (6 lemons) 
6 tablespoons sugar syrup (see note) 
¼ cup Italian Limoncello liqueur 
1½ cups cold club soda, such as Pelligrino 
Ice cubes 
Sliced lemon, for serving 

Combine the vodka, lemon juice, sugar syrup, and Limoncello in a large pitcher. Just before serving, pour in the club soda and stir. Fill highball glasses with ice and pour the mixture over the ice. Garnish each drink with a slice of lemon and serve cold.

Makes 4-6 drinks

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

LEMONADE PIE, NOT THE ONE YOU'RE USED TO...

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I first posted this recipe back in 2009, it’s a family favorite and worth repeating.  Perfect for the 4th of July weekend, with fresh blueberries and strawberries for garnish… ~ Jan

Prep: 10 min., Freeze: 4 hrs.

Yield

Makes 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 2  (5-oz.) cans evaporated milk
  • 2  (3.4-oz.) packages lemon instant pudding mix
  • 2  (8-oz.) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 2  (3-oz.) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1  (12-oz.) can frozen lemonade concentrate, completely  thawed
  • 1  (9-oz.) ready-made prepared graham cracker crust
  • Garnishes: whipped cream, fresh mint sprigs, lemon slices

Preparation

1. Whisk together evaporated milk and pudding mix in a bowl 2 minutes or until thickened.
2. Beat cream cheeses at medium speed with an electric mixer, using whisk attachment, until fluffy. Add lemonade concentrate, beating until blended; add pudding mixture, and beat until blended.
3. Pour into crust; freeze 4 hours or until firm. Garnish, if desired.

Note:  The original recipe called for partially thawed lemonade concentrate – that’s what I did, but when I incorporated it with the softened cream cheese, the cream cheese congealed into small pieces, and it was really difficult to get it smooth again.  This can easily be remedied by using thawed concentrate.  ~ jan

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Vlasic Farmer's Garden pickles

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There are pickles and then there are pickles. Oh my, these are just the best!  My buddy, V, introduced me to these a few weeks ago, they’re in the condiment section of your grocery store, they’re not refrigerated and I’m hooked.  

The Garlic Dill Slices are extremely thick, that’s what makes them so good.  If you’re a pickle lover and haven’t tried these, pick up a jar and you will see what I mean.  Four stars on this one, V!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Kahula Roasted Marshmallow Shots

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Oh my, I saw this Kahula shot in a roasted marshmallow on Facebook and had to share.  They also suggested dipping the marshmallow in graham cracker crumbs and then pouring in chocolate liqueur.

I don’t normally imbibe, but I could seriously like this chocolate version...

Thursday, June 5, 2014

DELICIOUS LEMON CHICKEN

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I made Lemon Chicken last night, it was quick, easy to prepare and absolutely delicious.  Hope you enjoy this as much as we did.  ~ Jan

1 lb. chicken tenderloins
2 lemons
2 egg whites
1/2 Cup flour
salt and lemon Pepper Seasoning

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Put a mixture of butter and olive oil in oven proof skillet, slice a lemon, add to butter mixture and heat.  

Meanwhile, pat chicken tenderloins dry with paper towel, season with salt and lemon pepper.  Dip in beaten egg whites, then put in large plastic zip lock bag, shake well and place in skillet with the bubbling butter oil  mixture.  Brown well on one side, turn and immediately put in preheated oven to finish.  Don’t cover skillet.  Bake for 15-20 minutes until chicken is cooked, take out of oven and squeeze juice of lemon over chicken and serve.  

Enjoy, this is wonderful!  ~ Jan

 

Sunday, May 25, 2014

THE BEST GREEK YOGURT YOU WILL EVER EAT...

Making greek yogurt

This is seriously the best yogurt you will ever put in your mouth!

I’ve been making my own Greek Yogurt for a couple of years now.  I first heard about how to do it from Paula at Salad In a Jar, tried it, and was instantly hooked.  I’ve made it many times now, both with whole milk, 2% and skim, and of course making it with whole milk is by far the best!   It’s high in protein, satisfying, so creamy and smooth, there is no comparison to homemade and the yogurt you buy in the store.  And it’s strawberry season, homemade greek yogurt topped with fresh strawberries and blueberries is completely decadently delicious!

I’ve blogged about it before, and updated it several times after I invested in a Boullion Strainer and a YoGourmet Electric Yogurt Maker.  And somethings are just too good not to share again.

So let’s go back into my archives on this Memorial Day eve, and read again about how to make the most amazing yogurt you will ever put in your mouth.

Try it, you will love it, I pinky swear you will.  ~ Jan

Jan Makes Greek Yogurt

 

 

Monday, May 19, 2014

MAGNOLIA BAKERY'S PEANUT BUTTER & JELLY CUPCAKES

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Peanut Butter Cupcakes
Makes 36

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1¼ cups whole milk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1½ cups creamy peanut butter
4 oz. butter (at room temperature)
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
6 large eggs
Jelly, for filling

1. Preheat oven to 325°. Line the cupcake pan with paper liners.

2. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside.

3. In a liquid measuring cup combine milk and vanilla; set aside.

4. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, place peanut butter, butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar. Beat on medium speed for 3 minutes.

5. Add eggs to the creamed mixture, one at a time, beating well after each addition and making sure to scrape sides and bottom of bowl.

6. Add flour mixture and milk with vanilla in three parts beginning and ending with the flour mixture, blending just until combined after each addition.

7. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the mixer bowl.

8. Bake 22-25 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean and cupcakes start to pull away from the sides of the pan.

9. Remove from the oven and cool in the pan for 20 minutes. Remove from the pans and cool completely.

10. Using the blunt end of a wooden spoon, punch a hole into the center of each cupcake. Place jelly in a piping bag or small plastic bag with the end snipped off. Squeeze about 1 tbsp. of jelly into the center of each cupcake. Ice generously with buttercream frosting (recipe below).

Peanut Butter Buttercream Frosting

1½ cups creamy peanut butter
8 oz. butter (at room temperature)
½ cup whole milk
1 tbsp. pure vanilla extract
5 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted before you measure
2 cups jam (any flavor)

1. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat peanut butter and butter until light and fluffy and butter is completely incorporated (no lumps). Do not overmix.

2. In a liquid measuring cup, combine milk and vanilla; set aside.

3. Add half of the confectioner’s sugar and half of the milk-vanilla mixture and beat on low speed until just incorporated.

4. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.

5. Add the remaining confectioner’s sugar and milk-vanilla mixture and beat on low speed until just incorporated.

6. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. Icing should be smooth and creamy—do not over mix.

Adapted from a recipe from People Magazine
Photo Courtesy of People Magazine

Saturday, May 17, 2014

GUY WELLIVER'S FAMOUS SCALLOPED CABBAGE

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Back in the 70’s there was Guy Welliver’s Smorgasboard in Hagerstown, Indiana.  It’s gone now, but back in the day they had the most wonderful food, we went on special occasions and it was unlike any smorgasbord you’ve ever eaten at.  Everything homemade, delicious midwestern dishes, homemade breads, the most decadent desserts and their specialty,  Scalloped Cabbage.

It was hubby’s very favorite dish, the man just adored it.  It was a simple dish, cooked cabbage, a Bechamel sauce, lots of cheese and toasted buttered crumbs on top.

I recreated it in my kitchen and it has been a favorite ever since.  It can be made ahead and baked at the last minute, it travels well, it’s just a great comfort food cabbage recipe.

4 cups cabbage, coarsely chopped
2 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 cup milk
8 ounces Velveeta Cheese, cubed

Boil cabbage in a dutch oven with salted water until tender, this takes approximately 15 minutes.  I have on occasion used chicken stock instead of water for a richer flavor.

Meanwhile, prepare the white sauce.  Melt butter over low heat, stir in flour, salt and pepper, cook over medium heat stirring constantly until smooth and bubbly, remove from heat.

Gradually stir in milk, heat to boiling, stirring constantly (a whisk works well); drop in the chunks of Velveeta and boil and stir 1 minute.

Pour drained cabbage in a 9” casserole, pour cheese sauce over the top and top with buttered bread crumbs.

Buttered Crumbs:

1 cup breadcrumbs (pulse torn pieces of bread in a food processor until fine
2-3 Tablespoons melted butter

Mix together and sprinkle over the top of the cabbage

Bake in a 375 oven approximately 30 minutes until casserole is bubbly and crumbs are brown

Note:  I’m a huge fan of Velveeta for cheese sauces.  I find that cheddar separates and is oily, but Velveeta melts into a Bechamel sauce beautifully.

Also, if you like a lot of sauce you might want to double the Bechamel.  This is one of those recipes that you just  play with and make it your own ~ Jan 

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Texas Sheet Cake

Sheetcake

I’ve loved Texas Sheet Cake since my mother introduced it to me in the 70’s.  It’s a family favorite, we’ve tried all kinds of different variations, including peanut butter, and Coca-Cola sheet cake, but we always come back to this recipe.  It’s just the best, moist, gooey, delicious, decadent dessert.  What could be better… ~ Jan

For the Cake:

  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) of unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 cup water
  • 6 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
  • For the Frosting:

    • 1 stick (1/2 cup) of unsalted butter
    • 6 tablespoons of milk
    • 4 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa
    • 1 (1 pound) box of powdered sugar
    • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
    • 1 cup of chopped pecans, toasted,optional
    • 1 cup coconut, optional

    Instructions

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 13 inch pan with Pam.  Some recipes call for making this in a jelly roll pan, but our family likes thick cake, so I always make it in a 9x13.

    In a measuring cup, measure out 1/2 cup of buttermilk. Add 2 eggs to that and beat until well blended; set aside. Whisk together in a large bowl, 2 cups sugar, 2 cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Make a well in the center and set aside.

    In a medium saucepan, combine the 2 sticks of butter, the 2 tablespoons oil and 1 cup of water and bring to a near boil. Remove pot from the heat and whisk in 6 tablespoons of cocoa, until smooth. Stir in 1 teaspoon of vanilla and add this mixture to the sugar and flour mixture; stir until well blended. Slowly add in the buttermilk and egg mixture and stir well.

    Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake at 350 degrees until the center is set, about 20 to 25 minutes for a sheet cake, about 35 to 40 minutes for a regular 9 x 13 inch pan. While the cake is cooking, toast the pecans in a dry pan, tossing regularly until fragrant, about 5 minutes, set aside to cool.

    When cake is about 5 minutes from being done, prepare the frosting. Do not do the frosting ahead of time because it will quickly stiffen. Heat the stick of butter and 6 tablespoons of milk in a saucepan just until it comes to a boil. It will need to be very hot. Remove from the heat and whisk in the remaining 4 tablespoons of cocoa. Mixture will thicken. Add in the powdered sugar and vanilla and quickly beat with a wooden spoon until smooth, returning to a low burner if mixture thickens too quickly. Immediately stir in coconut and nuts if desired and pour the frosting all over the cake. Working quickly, use a spatula to gently push the frosting out to the edges and to cover the cake evenly. Sprinkle top evenly with the additional toasted pecans, if desired. Set entire pan aside on a wire rack and allow the cake to cool completely before slicing.

    Cook's Notes: When the cake comes out of the oven, quickly poke holes all over it and then pour the icing on top.

    Tips: This will be a very moist cake, so you aren't looking for a dry surface when it is done. As always, take care to not overcook your cake. If you shake the pan and the cake doesn't jiggle, it's done! Frosting will set fast, so ya gotta move fast! If your frosting stiffens too quickly, you can also thin it with a little additional milk if needed, and return it to a low heat.  This cake is better after it sits overnight, even better after it ages a couple of days, but who can wait that long!


    Wednesday, May 7, 2014

    Pink Lemonade Strawberry Shortcake

    Pink Lemonade Shortcake RU225720

    Ingredients

    • 6 cups sliced strawberries
    • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (optional)
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 tablespoon baking powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 cup butter
    • 1/2 cup buttermilk or sour milk*
    • 1/4 cup frozen pink lemonade concentrate, thawed
    • 1/2 teaspoon finely shredded lemon zest
    • 2/3 cup whipping cream
    • 1 8 - ounce carton mascarpone cheese or tub-style cream cheese
    • 3/4 cup sifted powdered sugar
    • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
    • Lemon zest (optional)

    Directions

    1. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together strawberries and, if desired, the granulated sugar. Set aside.
    2. For the shortcake: In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. Cut in the butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Make a well in the center; add the buttermilk, lemonade concentrate and the 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest all at once. Stir just until dough clings together.
    3. On a lightly floured surface, knead dough gently for 10 to 12 strokes. Pat dough into an 8-inch circle on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in a 400 degrees oven for 16 to 18 minutes or until golden. Cool slightly.
    4. Meanwhile, for Lemon Mascarpone Cream: In a medium mixing bowl beat the whipping cream with an electric mixer on low speed just until soft peaks form. Add the mascarpone cheese, powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon lemon zest; beat until fluffy (mixture will thicken as it is beaten).
    5. Using a large serrated knife, gently split warm shortcake horizontally into 2 layers. Using a wide spatula to help support the layers as you move them, place bottom layer on serving platter. Spread with about two-thirds of the mascarpone cheese mixture. Spoon some of the strawberries onto mascarpone cheese layer. Again using a spatula to help support the layer, add shortcake top. Spread with the remaining mascarpone cheese mixture and top with more of the strawberries. Sprinkle top with additional lemon zest, if desired. Pass any remaining strawberries. Serve immediately, cutting into wedges and passing any remaining strawberries.
    In a hurry?  Substitute the Bisquick Recipe on the Box for the Shortcake.  Not quite as good, but still positively yummy.  ~ Jan
     
    Adapted from a Midwest Living Recipe

     

     

    Monday, April 28, 2014

    Strawberry Lemonade Layer Cake

    NewImage

    Tie on an apron, put on a Patsy Cline record, and create a masterpiece...

    Ingredients

    • 1 cup butter, softened
    • 2 cups granulated sugar
    • 4 large eggs, separated
    • 3 cups cake flour
    • 1 tablespoon baking powder
    • 1/8 teaspoon table salt
    • 1 cup milk
    • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
    • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
    • Shortening
    • Strawberry-Lemonade Jam
    • Strawberry Frosting

    Preparation

    1. Preheat oven to 350°. Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add sugar,
    beating until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition.

    2. Stir together flour and next 2 ingredients; add to butter mixture alternately with milk, beginning and ending
    with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended. Stir in zest and juice.

    3. Beat egg whites in a large bowl at high speed until stiff peaks form. Gently stir one-third of egg whites into
    batter; fold in remaining egg whites. Spoon batter into 4 greased (with shortening) and floured 9-inch round
    cake pans.

    4. Bake at 350° for 16 to 20 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in
    pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks, and cool completely.

    5. Place 1 cake layer on a serving platter, and spread with about 1/2 cup Strawberry-Lemonade Jam,
    leaving a 1/2-inch border around edges. Spoon 1 cup Strawberry Frosting into a zip-top plastic freezer bag.
    Snip 1 corner of bag to make a small hole. Pipe a ring of frosting around cake layer just inside the top edge.
    Top with second and third cake layers, repeating procedure with filling and frosting between each layer.
    Top with last cake layer, and spread remaining Strawberry Frosting on top and sides of cake.

    Strawberry-Lemonade Jam

    Ingredients

    • 2 1/2 cups coarsely chopped fresh strawberries
    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
    • 3 tablespoons cornstarch

    Preparation

    1. Process strawberries in a blender until smooth; press through a wire-mesh strainer into a 3-qt. saucepan,
    using back of a spoon to squeeze out juice; discard pulp. Stir in sugar.

    2. Whisk together lemon juice and cornstarch; gradually whisk into strawberry mixture. Bring mixture to
    a boil over medium heat, and cook, whisking constantly, 1 minute. Remove from heat. Place plastic wrap
    directly on warm jam; chill 2 hours or until cold. Refrigerate in an airtight container up to 1 week.

    Strawberry Frosting

    Ingredients

    • 1 (8-oz.) package cream cheese, softened
    • 2/3 cup sugar, divided
    • 2/3 cup chopped fresh strawberries
    • 1 drop pink food coloring gel (optional)
    • 8 oz. Cool Whip
    • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

    Preparation

    1. Beat cream cheese and with an electric mixer until smooth; then fold in Cool Whip, add strawberries
    and food coloring (if desired); beat until blended.

    Adapted from a recipe from Southern Living

    Photo courtesy of Southern Living