Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Cream Puff in a pan...

Fall has arrived. momLife has begun. (A ministry at our church that I am very involved in and keeps me pretty busy.) And now maybe I will have some regular time to begin blogging again???

Here is a yummy favorite of mine. I found the recipe originally in a Pampered Chef cookbook. Jason's aunt makes a version too - it is a recipe that works great for diabetics because it can be done with a sugar free version of pudding. Marilyn makes it that way so that Jace's grandma can enjoy it. I hope you'll give it a try. The cream puff is made in basically the same way as the top layer of Swedish Pastry.

The recipe:

1 c. water
1/2 c. butter
1 c. flour
4 eggs
8 oz of cream cheese softened
2 (4 oz each) packages of vanilla instant pudding mix
2 c. milk
12 oz frozen whipped topping thawed
1/4 c. chocolate syrup (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Bring the water and butter to a boil in a 2-quart sauce pan, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and stir in flour. Add the eggs one at a time, whisking them in as they are added. Add a dash of salt and a 1 t of almond flavoring if you like.

Spread the batter in a greased 10 x 15 baking dish (I like to line mine with wax paper and grease that). Bake for 25 minutes. Cool. It will look like this:

Beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the pudding mix and the milk. (Add the milk first, then the mix - it will help you avoid lumps in this layer.) Beat until well combined.

Spread this mixture unto the baked layer. Top with the whipped topping. Drizzle with chocolate syrup if desired.

Makes 36 servings.



Monday, July 4, 2011

Hurry, bake this while you can still find some rhubarb....

I want to blog more regularly and instead I seem to blog more irregularly or let's face it, never. Sigh. I have taken several photos of recent and even not so recent things I have made; they just never seem to make it to the blog. Here's to trying to remedy that somewhat. First up:

Rhubarb Bread...

This is a recipe that my mom always made for us when we were kids. A yummy treat to make when rhubarb pies and rhubarb crisps have been over done. :) Which is really never but this bread is really good so find a little rhubarb before it's too late to come by and try this recipe.

The recipe:

1 1/2 c. brown sugar
2/3 c. oil
1 egg
1 c. sour milk or buttermilk
1 t. soda
1 t. salt
1 t. vanilla
2 1/2 c. flour
1 1/2 c. raw, diced rhubarb
1/2 c. nuts (if you like them - I skipped them, I think my mom always used walnuts)

Mix together and pour into two greased bread pans. This time I baked mine in one 7 x 10 inch glass pan, like a cake. It worked out great. For all the baking I do, I really don't have any good bread pans. But I liked baking this in a cake form. And it baked at the same temp for basically the same amount of time. Just slightly less.

Top with 1/2 c. sugar and 1 T butter pinched together. Bake at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for 50 to 60 minutes; or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

This is a slightly sour bread but it mixes with that sweet topping and it's so good topped with a little bit of butter! And as it sits the sweetness increases because that sweetness on top melts into the bread. Enjoy!!!!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Cupcakes with Libby

I had the fun of helping a young friend, who has found she loves making cupcakes, learn to decorate them in some fun and special ways today. We had a great time talking about the different pastry bag tips and techniques. We made some lovely, yummy treats.

Thanks Lib for a fun morning!!!!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Pretty Packages...

Wrapping something with an extra special tag and ribbon can turn an ordinary bar cookie into a beautiful valentine...

Find the basic recipe for these cookie bars here. (If you look up this post, also take note that I have been very unsuccessful at posting more often to this blog :( Maybe someday, I'll get more in the habit.) Instead of mixing in white chocolate chips and dried cranberries, substitute 1 1/2 cups of chocolate chips. Allow to cool completely and cut into hearts with a cookie cutter. Wrap in plastic wrap and add a tag and a bow. I know your Valentine would enjoy this pretty package...

Friday, December 17, 2010

Christmas Baking: Some new things for you to try...

I have been baking like a crazy person! I am still not done making everything I plan to make but who knows, I may be forgoing some of the plan because I am running out of days! Here is a tray of some of the things I've made lately. Jace took this to work the other day. The buckeyes aren't baked but I have a great recipe for them. Maybe I'll share that another day. I really love making candy at Christmas (chocolate candy). :) And of course I made some sour cream sugar cookies. These are especially lovely, if I do say so myself. I love white frosting with sanding sugar or edible glitter.

Okay, on to the recipes in this post. The bars on the far left of the picture are called Caramel Chip Bars. But my family affectionately knows them as Excedrin Bars. My dad nicknamed them this after deciding they were worth the headache he would get after eating them. :) His sister makes them each year for our family Christmas. They are a Taste of Home recipe, you can find here. They are a rich and super sweet cookie, I like them cut really small.

And finally, I tried these Pistachio Cookies for the first time this year. They were a simple (started with a cookie mix), festively colored option (the green cookies in this picture). I made them for a cookie exchange with my moms small group.

The recipe:

1 pouch of sugar cookie mix (like Betty Crocker, 1 pound, 1.5 ounce)
1 box of pistachio instant pudding and pie filling
1/4 c. flour
1/2 c. butter, melted
2 eggs

Mix and drop by teaspoon full unto baking sheet. Press down slightly with fingers to flatten. Bake at 350 degrees for 9 to 11 minutes. Cool 2 minutes on the cookie sheet and then remove to wire rack.

I made these two ways. The first batch I mixed in 1/2 c. of dry roasted, salted pistachios slightly chopped and 1/2 c. dried cranberries before baking. These aren't in the picture - I really liked them. They were a recipe I found on All Recipe's site. And the second way, add a 1/2 teaspoon of almond flavoring to the cookie dough and 1 c. of mini chocolate chips. After you remove them from the oven, put a thumbprint in the center of each cookie and add a chocolate covered pistachio by sticking it down with a bit of almond frosting piped on in the thumbprint depression.

Enjoy! And have a very Merry Christmas!!!!!!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

After school snack: Apple Cider Breakfast Bars

I made these bars for the kids recently that I found on the back of the cider jug. They were an intriguing combination. And required me to reduce cider which I had never tried before. As usual with me, I plunged ahead anyway and I think I did it right??? :) It was fun to do. I did have to pour the reduced cider into a measuring cup a couple times to check how close I was to the correct amount and had to pour it back into the pan then and go a bit further. It ends up not giving the bars a cider flavor but an extra sweet flavor. Maybe they would have had more apple taste if I had used dried apples with the cider reduction, I just didn't have any on hand.

The recipe:

1 1/4 c. sugar
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 c. peanut butter
1/2 c. softened butter
4 c. toasted o's cereal
1 c. cider
1/2 c. chopped dried apples (optional)
1 egg
1 c. oats
1/2 t. salt
1 T vanilla
1 1/2 c. flour

Heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Boil apple cider and chopped dried apples (if using) in a saucepan until reduced to 1/4 c. Mix sugar, butter, peanut butter, cider, vanilla, and egg in a large bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients except the cereal. Then gently stir in cereal. Pour (more scoop) into an ungreased 9 by 13 inch baking dish. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown. Cool and cut into bars.

I liked this recipe and I think I'd make them again but I was kind of surprised by how the texture of the o's was changed by baking. It gave the bars a chewy texture. The kids gobbled them up and they made a super after school treat. Give them a try and see what you think.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Pumpkin Cookies...

Here are some recent pumpkins I made. I was inspired by these pumpkin decorated cupcakes. I decided that three small circle cookies made from my sour cream cookie recipe and decorated with my almond frosting would be cute decorated in this same way.
This takes a ton of frosting! :) I should have used my very smallest round cutter. About an inch in diameter would be the right size. And make your frosting very stiff -
use extra powdered sugar. And don't forget to pipe frosting between the cookie layers.

I wrapped them up and shared them with my mom's group small group.
They were cute and yummy! Give it a try in these next few days before Halloween. But maybe plan to make only part of the batch into these and cut the rest with a pumpkin shaped cookie cutter. Otherwise you will need 10 sticks of butter and lots and lots of time. :)