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Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Key Lime Pie



I tried this out for the first time. I'm so hooked on all things key lime after traveling through the Keys. It was such a fun time, and I had to learn how to make this pie!

I'd say it worked out amazingly. It was my first go, and wow, was it easy!

I found a good receipt, and adapted it as follows:


Crust:
 1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
 2 tablespoons sugar
 5 tablespoons butter, melted

 Filling:
 1 (14 ounce) can Sweetened Condensed Milk
 2/3 cup fresh lime juice
 1/2 cup sour cream
 2 teaspoons grated lime peel

 Topping:
 1 cup heavy whipping cream
 1/4 cup powdered sugar
 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

 Directions
 Heat oven to 325 degrees F. Combine graham cracker crumbs and sugar. Add melted butter and stir until evenly moistened. Press mixture into bottom and sides of a 9-inch pie plate to form crust. Bake 10 minutes or until crust begins to brown. Cool 15 minutes on wire rack.

Whisk sweetened condensed milk, lime juice and sour cream in large bowl until blended. Stir in lime peel. Pour filling into crust. Bake 10-18 minutes or until tiny bubbles begin to form on surface of pie. Cool completely on wire rack.

Beat cream, powdered sugar and vanilla in large mixing bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until stiff. Top pie with whipped cream. Chill at least 1 hour before serving. Best served the same day.

(I've tried freezing mine so I'll keep you posted if it worked well!)

Adapted from here

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Lemon Cake - The best you've ever had


I was going through my freezer and forgot I had lemon curd in there (I made it a while ago!). I had a dinner party, and a family lunch the next day so I made a big batch of lemon cake.

I found this recipe and was really excited to make it. I adjusted a few things and make it 100% better (Ha, in my humble opinion, and those of my family, that couldn't get enough of it!)


Ingredients
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter , softened - (I used veggie oil)
2 cups granulated sugar
4 eggs
5 tablespoons lemon juice - (I used 6 tbsp of lemon curd)
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups milk
2 tablespoons lemon zest - (I didn't put any in, it was already in the curd)

Icing - (I doubled the recipe, I love a lot of icing!)
1/4 cup solid vegetable shortening
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter , softened
2 tablespoons lemon juice - (I used 2-4 tbsp of lemon curd)
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest - (I didn't use this, it was already in the lemon curd)
2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
Additional lemon juice or milk , as needed



Instructions:

Step 1
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 10 x 10 in. pan with vegetable pan spray.

Step 2
 In medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt; mix well. In large bowl, beat butter and sugar with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs, lemon juice and vanilla; mix until smooth. Add flour mixture to butter mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition. Stir in lemon zest. Place batter in prepared pan.

Step 3
Bake 30-33 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes on cooling rack. Remove from pan; cool completely.

Step 4
For icing, beat shortening and butter in large bowl with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add lemon juice and zest; mix well. Gradually add sugar, one cup at a time, beating well on medium speed. If icing is dry, add additional lemon juice or milk and beat at medium speed until light and fluffy. Color as desired with icing color. Ice cake and if desired, garnish with fresh lemon zest curls and mint.

I thought the above cake was pretty, this picture (below) is what it really looks like.


Salted Peanut Butter Brownie



I love peanut butter and chocolate, putting the two together is a baked piece of heaven! So, when I found this recipe I was thrilled. I added even more cocoa then is listed below to make it that much richer, and it really added to the contrast of the peanut butter and chocolate.

If you love either of those two things, and a rich dessert, this recipe is the way to go.


Brownie:
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) butter
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-process)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cold large eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
Prepare an 8 inch square pan by spraying with pan spray. Line the bottom and sides of the baking pan with parchment paper or foil, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides. Spray the foil or parchment with pan spray.
Preheat your oven to 325.
Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa, and salt in a heat-proof bowl and place over a large pot of simmering water. The bottom of the bowl should rest in the pot but not touch the water.
Stir occasionally. When the butter is just about melted, remove the bowl and let the residual heat continue to melt the butter. Stir until smooth. Carefully touch the cocoa mixture. It should feel warm, not hot. (If hot, wait until warm to add the eggs).
Once the cocoa mixture is warm you can stir in the eggs, one at a time. Wait until each egg is completely incorporated before you add the next. Stir in the vanilla. Once the mixture looks cohesive and shiny stir in the flour. (Stir 40 times after the flour has been completely incorporated).
Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes up with a few moist crumbs. This will take about 20-25 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack.
Once cool, frost with peanut butter frosting and sprinkle with flake salt.

Peanut Butter Frosting:
6 Tablespoons (3/4 stick) softened butter
¾ cup peanut butter
1 cup powdered sugar
pinch salt 
1 teaspoon flake salt
Cream the butter and the peanut butter until combined. Slowly stir in the powdered sugar until completely incorporated. Spread over cooled brownies. Sprinkle the flake salt all over.

Adapted from here

Funnel Cake; My New Best Friend


I'm not sure if you're ever had funnel cake before, but it's DELISH!

I've had it at festivals, and Disney World, and well, I can't get enough of it. We've made it a few times with friends, and I think it's even become a New Year's Day tradition.

SO, if you haven't tried it, it's a must.

Ingredients
2 cups milk
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) melted butter
Powdered sugar, for topping


Directions 
Combine milk, egg, vanilla in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine flour, salt, baking soda, and sugar and gradually add to wet ingredients. Beat with a mixer until a smooth batter forms. Fold in melted butter. Pour batter into a funnel or squeeze bottle while using your index finger to stop the flow of the batter. Bring the funnel over the hot oil and release your finger to start a stream of batter while moving the funnel in a circular motion to create spiral-like shapes. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes until golden brown and slightly puffed. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Adapted from here

Monday, 17 March 2014

Healthy Chai Seed Chocolate Pudding (no seed lumps)


I had to be on a very restricted diet, for health reasons, a while back and couldn't find a receipt that fit my needs. I searched through a ton, never found something I liked, and finally just played around until I got it just the way I like it.

I wish I would have written this all out sooner so I apologize if you don't get perfect results but seriously, this stuff is amazing! In fact, I think I might make it again right now!


You will need: 

1 can coconut milk

1/2 cup cocoa (you might want to add more, I usually do)

Coconut Sugar - to taste (I started with 1/4 cup. You could use any sweetener of your choice but I liked this because it 1) Fit within my diet and 2) It helped thicken)

1/4 cup chai seed (I'll be honest, I didn't measure so it could have been a bit more! Play around :)


Throw it all in your Vitamix and blend away.

I have a Vitamix so it shreds the seeds amazingly well. Some blenders wouldn't cut the seeds so you will end up with little seed crunches (which I don't like).

If you have trouble with this try putting the coconut milk in first, then the seeds, let it sit for 10 minutes and then blend.

The mixture will be runny but pore it in a bowl and it should set (as the seeds absorb the liquid).




If you google "Chai Seed Pudding" it won't look anything like this but this is how mine looks and I wouldn't go back to dairy pudding after this! No way! 

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Two-in-One Holiday Bar

The recipe listed below is a Pillsbury recipe but for some reason when I searched for it I couldn't find a thing on it! I ended up finding the photo and another recipe for it here, but I thought I would still type out the recipe I used because I know it's great.

I promised I would post this recipes because you ladies loved it so much at the info desk and in the nursery (at my church, the two of 3 areas I volunteer in) so here you go! I hope you enjoy it!!

Rating: I give these a 5! (1 being "I'll never bake them again" and 5 being "They are now one of my favorites")

Base:
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
2 cups flour
1 cup diced mixed candies fruit
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans (I prefer slivered almonds)

Glaze:
1 cup icing sugar
1-2 tablespoons milk

Heat oven to 350F
Combine sugar, butter and beat until it's light and fluffy.
Add vanilla and egg; beat well.
Add flour; mix well.
Spread dough in ungreased 15x10x1 inch baking pan.
Sprinkle half of the pan with the candies fruit and the other half with the chocolate chips and nuts.
Press toppings lightly into the dough.

Bake for 25-30 minutes or until edges are brown.
Cool for an hour.

In a small bowl combine icing sugar and milk. Add additional milk if need be.
Blend until smooth.
Drizzle over cooled bars.
Let stand until set.
Cut into bars.

Yields: 48 bars

Marshmallow Salad


I couldn’t seem to find this recipe online or in my cooking books either, and well yet again I asked on facebook and I ended up with three different versions. This is the one I like the most and the one I was looking for. I’m going to make it as one of many things for Christmas dinner!

- 1 tub Nutria Whip or Cool Whip
- 1 box Jell-o Powder (flavor of your choice)
- 2 cups Mini Marshmallows
- Can of Pineapple (drained)
- Can of Mandarin Oranges (Drained)
- ½ cup Coconut

Mix whip cream and Jell-o powder together (leave little behind for sprinkling on top). Mix in mini marshmallows, pineapple (crushed works best), mandarins, and coconut. Scoop into nice bowl. Sprinkle remaining Jel-lo powder on top. Put in fridge to set (2 hours in best).

Have any good ideas, or substitutes for this....share them, leave a comment, I’d love to hear from you!!
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