Sunday, August 2, 2015

NANNY'S CHOCOLATE FUDGE BROWNIE CAKE

This is a fast and easy cake for anyone to make.  I have made this twice in the last week,  Mr. Mike arrived in town and I had to bake a cake for him.  Then  Mr. Dick asked for this cake again for his birthday.  
I found this on Pinterest which is Nanny Pat's favorite cake.   You can find the recipe with pictures and frosted with chocolate icing.   

It's fudgy, dense and a chocolate lovers cake.   So, I am going to add this to my "keeper" list.  I do have to admit that I prefer to bake a cake from scratch but sometimes we all need a fast an easy cake recipe.   Go check out love foodies, and check out Nanny Pat's 70th birthday.







Nanny's Chocolate Fudge Brownie Cake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, spray bundt pan with Pam spray.  Use could also grease cake pan with shortening and dust with flour.  

1 box of chocolate cake mix (15.25 ounce)
1 box of fudge brownie mix (17.6 ounce )
4 eggs
1 cup oil
1 1/4 cup water

Using your hand mixer blend until mixed.  Pour into a Bundt pan that has been greased and floured.  Bake at 350 for about 50-55 minutes.   Check often and bake until a toothpick comes clean when inserted in center of cake.  Let cool completely before removing to a cooling rack.   Frost with chocolate or white icing.  Enjoy 

Icing from Nanny
In a small microwave safe bowl add 1/2 can of ready to eat icing and microwave for 30-45 seconds then drizzle over the completely cooled cake.   







       Enjoy a fresh Maine lobster.................or two

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

TUSCAN SAUSAGE AND WHITE BEAN SOUP


It's been forever since I have posted a recipe that we enjoyed...........so today I am sending out a recipe for a wonderful soup.  I made this sometime ago but I will surely be making this again when the weather cools.   I didn't want to misplace this soup recipe.  It's a keeper for sure.   I found this on Pinterest and followed it to Mel's Kitchen.   melskitchencafe tuscan-sausage-soup.  






1 pound of sweet Italian Sausage use a good quality sausage for the best taste 
1/2 to 1 cup of chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped yellow onions or leeks
3 cloves garlic, chopped
6 cups chicken broth   I used (2) tubs of Knorr's Home style chicken stock 
2 (14.5) ounce cans diced tomatoes  I used Del Monte diced tomato's
1 (15) ounce can Great Northern or Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 Tbsp dried basil
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 1/2 cups uncooked shell pasta
9 ounces of spinach leaves, coarsely chopped I used frozen chopped spinach
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Using a good size size dutch oven I sprayed the bottom with Pam and removed the casing from the sausage and cut in bite size pieces and cook the sausage over medium heat until until browned. About 3-4 minutes 

Add the chopped carrots, onions, and garlic and cook and stir until until the sausage is done. If any grease is in the bottom of pan you can drain this

Add the broth, if using the tubs add the amount of water per the directions on the box.  Add the tomatoes, beans, basil and the salt and pepper.   

Bring the soup to a boil then add the ***pasta, reduce the heat to low and cover the dutch oven.  Cook for about 8-10 minutes or until the pasta is tender.   Keep your eye on this so not to over cook the pasta.   Stir often  Add the chopped spinach either fresh or frozen.   Cook for a minute or so more till the spinach has wilted if using fresh.   Serve with grated fresh Parmesan cheese and enjoy

***I cooked my pasta in another pot following the package directions.  After I made the soup I covered and place in the refrigerator to allow the flavors to blend.   When ready to serve I add the pasta to the bowl then add the hot soup over the hot pasta and sprinkle with fresh grated Parmesan cheese.   Enjoy    

Thursday, March 19, 2015

CREAM CHEESE CRUMB CAKE

Want this for breakfast this weekend?   Its pretty easy to put together....Go visit baking blond and you can print off this recipe......It's pretty good and I'm thinking this is a keeper.  

Another Pinterest find from baking blond.  I changed this and baked in my black cast iron spider so I adjusted the baking time a little.   She baked hers in a 8 inch baking pan and the spider was a little bigger then 8 inch.   


I followed the directions as listed in the recipe from Baking Blond.  Love the crumbs on top.  The only problem is that you have a layer of those crumbs, then a later of cream cheese so to determine if the cake was done was a bit tricky.  I used tooth picks and poked around,  then I pushed the crumbs in the center of the cake to help in deciding if the cake was done.....it baked beautifully soft, and yummy.  


Ingredients
  • Cake:
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil
  • Cream Cheese Layer:
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • Crumb Topping:
  • 1¾ cups flour
  • ½ cup packed light-brown sugar
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon (optional)
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, melted


Preheat oven to 325 and bake using a 8x8 inch sprayed baking dish


Using a medium size bowl, add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt and  whisk together.  In another small bowl add the milk, egg, vanilla and oil and mix then add to the dry ingredients and mix.  Pour this into the sprayed baking dish and spread the batter even.

Mix the cream cheese that is softened, with the sugar and the egg.  Mix then spread this evenly over the cake batter.

In the same bowl add the ingredients for the crumb topping and mix together then sprinkle this evenly over the cream cheese mixture.   Bake for about 35 minutes but that will depend on the size of your baking dish.   

Keep refrigerated 

Enjoy   Andi  



Monday, January 26, 2015

BAKERY STYLE CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

Another Cookie but not just a cookie but a Chocolate Chip Cookie.........Found on Pinterest by lovely little kitchen -soft-bakery-style-chocolate-chip-cookies made by Julie.  Adding cornstarch to the dough makes these little gems what they are.  Soft, and sweet.   Go over and visit Julie she has a lot of recipes.   







SUPER SOFT BAKERY STYLE CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
Serves: 24 large cookies
Ingredients:
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips  (little over 1 bag of mini chips)
Learn Basic Steps for Safe Cooking
Directions:
  1. In the bowl of an electric or stand mixer, cream together butter and sugars on medium speed.
  2. Add eggs one at a time and mix.
  3. Add vanilla and mix.
  4. In a separate bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, cornstarch and salt.
  5. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients on low speed until just incorporated.
  6. Mix in the chocolate chips.
  7. Scoop the dough into 24 balls using an ice cream scoop onto an extra baking sheet. Cover and chill the dough balls for at least an hour.
  8. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  9. Place six of the dough balls at a time onto a Silpat or parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 12-13 minutes. The edges of the cookies will just be turning golden brown, and the center will be soft. Transfer the cookies to a cooling rack.
Notes:
*Chilling the dough before baking helps to prevent the cookies from spreading too much as they bake.
** I like to scoop my cookie dough into balls before chilling, because it is so much easier to scoop dough that is soft. I just scoop them onto an extra baking sheet, and then transfer them to a different one six at a time when it is time to bake.



I made my cookies a little smaller and the dough was not put in the refrig.  

Sunday, January 25, 2015

CHICKEN SALAD

Homemade Chicken Salad

If you like chicken salad then this recipe is for you.   A keeper for sure

this recipe came from cappuccino and cashmere

Homemade Chicken Salad

4 cups of cooked and diced chicken see below for how I poached my chicken tenders
1-2 stalks of celery,  finely diced  (I used 2 stalks)
4 scallions, sliced thin or I used a red onion
1 teaspoon of dried dill   (or use 1 1/2 tsp of fresh dill)
2 Tbsp of fresh parsley  (I used 1/2 tsp of dried parsley) because the chicken was poached with parsley and pieces were on the cooked chicken 
1 cup of mayonnaise
2 tsp of lemon juice
1 tsp Dijon mustard
2 tsp of kosher salt
pepper  

Mix all the ingredients together then add the diced chicken and mix.  Place in the refrigerator until ready to use.  

I poached my chicken: 

I used 2 1/2 lbs of chicken tenders
1 tub of Knorr's Homestyle Chicken Stock (they come in little tubs)
3 1/2 cups of water
1 Tbsp of dried parsley
1/2 tsp of dried thyme leaves
1 small onion, halved
1 stalk of celery cut in half

In a medium saucepan add the water and the Knorr's tub of chicken stock and stir to combine and dissolve the stock.  Reduce the heat to low and add all the remaining ingredients and cover and allow to cook for about 10-20 minutes this time will be adjusted pending the size of the chicken that you use.  After the chicken is firm to the touch.  Remove from the heat and allow to rest in the broth for about 30 minutes.   Then move to a cutting board and cut into bite size pieces.  




Sunday, December 7, 2014

CRANBERRY ORANGE COOKIES


Cookies, I love cookies and these will be a favorite for me.   They are easy to make, crispy on the edge and soft and yummy in the middle. 
I found this recipe for these cookies at  fake ginger and  Pinterest.  So, if you like baking with dried cranberries and orange zest and a sugar cookie is a favorite for you, you will love these cookies.   




Cranberry Orange Cookies

I got 27 cookies 

3/4 cup of butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup dried cranberries, finely chopped  ( I used about 3/4 to one cup and I chopped by hand)
1 Tbsp orange zest  ( I used 2 regular size oranges to get the orange zest for the cookie and the sanding sugar)

Rolling sugar:
1 Tbsp of orange zest  
1/2 cup of sugar    ( I used about 1/3 cup of white sugar)

In a small bowl add the sugar and the orange zest and using your fingers to rub the two together until its mixed.   

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In a mixing bowl add the butter, and sugar until light and fluffy.   Then beat in the egg. In another bowl add all the dry ingredients and whisk them together.  Then add a little at a time and mix with your electric hand mixer.   Then after all the dough is mixed together add and mix by hand the orange zest and the finely chopped cranberries.   Place the dough in the refrigerator while you are making the orange zest sugar for rolling the cookies in.   

I used my cookie scoop and rolled in balls, then roll in the sanding sugar. Then I used a jelly jar to flatten the cookies.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 10-13 minutes or until lightly golden brown on the edges.   






Love in every bite........

Mr. Dick just hung this window frame for me.   I'll change out the swag for each season.

Two of my favorite girls..........Princess Morgan and Grand girl Cora.........She's three.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

CHICKEN PIE & 100 YEAR OLD PIE CRUST RECIPE

I have tried several chicken pie recipes lately and happy to say I have found my new recipe from a family feast /turkey-pot-pie/  This Chicken Pie was perfect.  Comfort in a bowl & full of flavor and a happy belly..............I also tried a new recipe for pie crust.  Its from "Yankee Magazine" and the recipe is over 100 years old.   Love it and I am going to use this recipe for my Thanksgiving pies this year.  Its flakey and love in every bite.  Enjoy




Chicken Pie is from  afamilyfeast and its the best.  A big thank you to Jack for sharing this great recipe with us.  So, I used chicken and not turkey but I will be making this again after the big Turkey day.   Go check it out and give this pie a try with your leftover turkey from Thanksgiving.   I didn't use their recipe for the pie crust.  I used a new one from Yankee Magazine.   You could also use a store bought pie crust.  





this make one 2 crusted pie

2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup of lard (no substitutes)
dash of salt
1 Tbsp cider vinegar
1/2 cup of milk 

In a medium size bowl add the flour, and the lard (only lard) comes in a box sold near the shortening in the grocery market.  Use your pastry blender and mix this together until mixed well.  Then in a small bowl add the milk, salt and vinegar and mix.  Then add the liquid to the flour and mix with the pastry blender.  Then form in a ball and wrap with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator for about 2 hours.   I rolled mine between 2 sheets of waxed paper.  



With the left over pie crust I made a rustic apple pie.  I used the recipe from the ina-garten/apple-crostata- Barefoot Contessa for her Apple Crostata.   





Enjoy and thank you for taking a peek at my world!!!




Sunday, October 19, 2014

PAM'S 50TH BIRTHDAY.....A "BITTERSWEET TIME"

Lemon Velvet Cake

What a great recipe, this Lemon Velvet Cake will amaze all lemon lovers. I first saw this cake on Pinterest and knew that I needed to make this for Pam.  Her birthday was soon approaching and Lemon desserts are a favorite of hers.  

With the help of others we had a surprise 50th birthday party for her.  


Rock Recipes to get recipe   I made the lemon cake as directed but I changed it a bit.  I added a lemon curd in the middle.  I used a box of lemon pudding/pie filling mix "durkee and reduced the water by 1/4 cup and followed as directed on the box.  After the pudding was thick and beautiful yellow. I put the filling in a small bowl and then placed a piece of plastic wrap directly on the pudding and put in the refrigerator overnight. The next morning I squeezed the juice from one lemon and mixed it all together. 
So, lets frost this cake, when frosting the middle of the cake, make a dam with the frosting, around the edge of the cake, this allows the filling to stay in place in the middle and not to weep out when the top layer is placed on top .  Continue to frost the top and sides of the cake.   I used my new and favorite butter-cream icing  that you can get here....that really frosts me.   




The Birthday Girl & Hubby 




Pumpkin Whoopie Pie's made by Kathy 
These Whoopie pies are full of all the flavors and scents of fall.  Wonderful recipe 



Bittersweet wreath made by Heidi 
 Thank you I love it


Rented potty house and a wash station 




Mr. Dick getting ready for a fire in the pit.........
Happy Birthday Ms. Pam enjoy being 50 years old. 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

STRAWBERRY PECAN SHORTBREAD CRUMBLE BARS

Another find from Pinterest........... I used homemade Strawberry Jam but I think next time I will use  Raspberry Jam.  A keeper for sure, the shortbread is perfect, moist, buttery and full of pecans and love in every bite.  And easy and fast to put together.


I found this recipe at   Baking Bites  made by Nicole

Strawberry Pecan Shortbread Crumble Bars
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup pecans, finely chopped
1 cup butter, softened
1 large egg
3/4 cup strawberry jam/preserves 
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees line a 9 inch baking dish with aluminum foil and spray with Pam spray.  
In a bowl add the flour, sugar, salt and chopped pecans (I roughly chopped mine) and whisk together. Add the beaten egg and the softened butter.  I used my pastry blender tool to mix all this together.  Save out 2 cups of this that will be used for the topping.  The remaining will be the shortbread base.  Place this mixture into the foil lined baking pan and gently press this evenly.  Spread the jam evenly over this base.   Then sprinkle the 2 cups of shortbread over the top of the jam and bake for 40-45 minutes at 350 degrees or until the top is lightly golden brown.   Cool in the pan then lift out using the foil and cut the bars in squares.        Enjoy




Sunday, September 28, 2014

SWISS ROLL CAKE

I love this cake, I really do!   I had to change the original recipe a little because of the filling having to be place in the refrigerator and we just didn't have the room.   Took this cake this weekend to a "home warming" cookout and to celebrate the warm weather that "Maine" had this weekend.............I still love this cake, how it looks likes a giant whoopie pie. The cake is moist, the filling is the best buttercream that I have ever had and the chocolate topping.  Well, who would turn away from melted chocolate chips  Take a peek





Swiss Roll Cake

2 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 cups applesauce

In a medium size bowl add the flour, cocoa, salt and baking soda and whisk together.  Set aside

In your mixing bowl add the sugar, eggs, oil and applesauce.  Mix to blend.   Add the dry ingredients to the bowl a little at a time and continue to mix.   

The original recipe says to prepare by dividing the mixture between 2 greased and floured 10 by 15 inch rimmed baking sheets.  I used 2 greased and floured round pans.  Or you could do what Rachel did was to use 2 greased and floured 9x13 inch pans with parchment paper in the bottom to help in the removal of the finished cake.   I didn't line my round pans with parchment paper.  But, I did grease and flour them.  After they are cool I ran a knife around the edge and they both came out nice.   I did make these the day before and wrapped in waxed paper then in freezer paper and placed in the freezer.  

Bake at 350 degrees and the baking time will depend on the size pan you use.  Just watch them so you don't over bake them.  The original says 20-30 minutes.   

My favorite Buttercream:


I cut the recipe in half and used the entire bowl full of icing in the middle of this Swiss Roll Cake......

1 cup of shortening plus 1 1/2 Tbsp 
1/8 tsp salt
1/3 cup of sour cream
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp butter extract
1/4 cup of dry coffee creamer
1 pound of powdered sugar  (I used my scale to weight the sugar)

Place all in the mixer and  blend well.  If you have any left you can keep stored in a covered container in the refrigerator for up too two weeks.  Just mix again and use.   This icing on the cake doesn't require refrigeration.   

Chocolate Topping:

1 package of chocolate chips (I used a bag of mini chips)
5 Tbsp of butter

In a small saucepan, melt the butter then add the chips and stir until melted.  The chips will harden fairly fast so work quickly.  If needed dip a knife in hot water and continue to spread the chocolate icing.  
When cutting the finished cake you can use a knife that has been run under hot tap water.  That will help to cut through the thick chocolate topping.  


       Classic Yellow Cake with Buttercream Icing                                        
                   Recipe for Wicked Whoopies
Wicked Good Maine Whoppie Pie's