Sunday, June 21, 2009

Coconut Layer Cake

This recipe is from epicurious. It turned out delicious!

2 3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup canned sweetened cream of coconut
4 eggs, separated
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup buttermilk

Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In another bowl, beat sugar, butter and sweetened cream of coconut in large bowl until fluffy. Beat in egg yolks and vanilla. On low speed, beat in dry ingredients and then buttermilk, each just until blended. Using clean beaters, beat egg whites with pinch of salt in another bowl until stiff but not dry. Fold egg whites into batter.

Divide cake batter between two buttered and floured 9" diameter cake pans. Bake cakes at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until tester inserted into center comes out clean. Cook cakes in pans on rack for 10 minutes. Run small sharp knife around the pan sides to loosen cakes. Turn cakes out onto racks and cool completely.

FROSTING:
2 - 8oz. packages cream cheese
1/2 cup butter
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup sweetened cream of coconut
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups coconut

Combine all frosting ingredients until well mixed. Place 1 cake layer on cake plate. Spread 1 cup frosting over cake layer. Sprinkle 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut over the top. Top with second cake layer. Spread remaining frosting over top and side of cake. Sprinkle remaining coconut over cake, gently pressing into sides to adhere.

Sweet Chex Mix

Warning - horribly addictive! This is great to give as neighbor gifts for Christmas.

2 cups sugar
3 cubes butter (1 1/2 cup)
2 cups white karo syrup
1 - 12-14 ounce box corn chex
1 - 12-14 ounce box rice chex
1 - 12-14 ounce golden grahams
2 cups coconut
1 cup sliced almonds

Mix together the cereals, coconut and almonds. Combine the sugar, butter and karo syrup in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook for 6 -8 minutes. Pour the karo syrup mixture over the cereal mixture. Stir until completely coated. Spread on waxed paper to cool.

I also love to add Mn'M's for that chocolate fix!

Best Freakin' Chocolate Cake

I renamed this cake because it is sooooo incredible. You will never want to make another chocolate cake again! It is suppose to be three layers but unfortunately when I was taking one of the pans out of the oven, it hit something (I have NO idea what) and flipped over. Now if it had landed pan side down, it could have been saved. But it landed upside down and was not saveable. So sad! :( But on to the recipe...The Best Freakin' Chocolate Cake!!

3 cups brown sugar
1 cup butter
4 eggs
2 teaspoon vanilla
2 2/3 cup flour
3/4 cup cocoa
1 Tablespoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cup sour cream
1 1/3 cup boiling water

Cream brown sugar and butter. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each egg. Beat on high speed until light and fluffy. Blend in vanilla. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt - add alternatively with sour cream. Mix on low just until combined. Stir in water until blended. Pour into 3 greased and floured 9 inch round pans. Bake for 35 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool for 10 minutes, then remove and cool completely.

FROSTING
1/2 cup butter
3 - 1 ounce squares unsweetened chocolate
3 - 1 ounce squares semi-sweet chocolate
5 cups powdered sugar
1 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons vanilla

In a saucepan, melt butter and chocolate squared over low heat. Cool several minutes. In a mixing bowl, combine sugar, sour cream and vanilla. Add chocolate mixture, beat until smooth. Frost.

Note: I always have to use more powdered sugar than the frosting recipe calls for. I think it's because I use low fat sour cream. But just in case, I thought I had better mention I need about 7 or 8 cups of powdered sugar for this frosting.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Sheetcake Brownies

These brownies may not look like much, but trust me - they are highly addictive! In college, I would make these and my five roommates and I would sit around the coffee table, each with our own fork and dive in!! So delicious!

1 cup margarine or butter
4 Tablespoons cocoa
1 cup water
2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 eggs

Bring the margarine/butter, cocoa and water to a boil in a saucepan. Remove from heat and add the sugar and flour. Mix well. Add the vanilla, baking soda and buttermilk. Mix well. Add the two eggs and mix well. Pour into a greased cookie sheet. Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees. While still hot, frost.

FROSTING
1/2 cup margarine or butter
4 Tablespoons cocoa
5 Tablespoons water
1 pound (16 ounces) powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Bring the margarine/butter, cocoa and water to a boil in a saucepan. Remove from heat and add the vanilla. Add the powdered sugar until the icing turns lighter brown and loses its gloss.

Hot Fudge Sauce

You know that ice cream place you've been to that has the BEST hot fudge sauce in the world and you go back there just for the hot fudge sauce? Well, my friends, THIS IS that hot fudge sauce!! You will never buy it at a store again. I grew up with this recipe and remember Sunday nights with vanilla ice cream and this amazing hot fudge sauce. It's so good, you could just eat it with a spoon and skip the ice cream. And I'm totally not kidding.

1/2 cup and 2 Tablespoons butter
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1 can evaporated milk

Melt the butter in a saucepan. Mix in the sugar and cocoa. Gradually add the evaporated milk. Boil on medium heat for 5 minutes until thick. Enjoy!!!

Note: I make this with low fat or fat free evaporated milk. The taste is just as wonderful, in fact it doesn't change at all, the only difference is the thickness of the hot fudge. The more fat in the evaporated milk, the thicker the hot fudge.

Roasted Veggies

I LOVE roasted veggies. You all probably have your own way of doing it but I thought I'd share mine. In the picture above I used yukon potatoes, sweet potatoes and beets. YUMMY! Then toss them in olive oil, oregano and basil. Bake at 350 degrees until soft. If it was just me eating them, I'd only do sweet potatoes and beets. Delicious! :) These goes great at barbeques.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Snicker Salad

This salad is super easy. I got the recipe from my friend, Emily. However, I used French Vanilla pudding this time I made it. For some reason, people thought it was potato salad because of the color. Next time, I'm totally using the pistachio pudding because I LOVE it and it would work perfect with this recipe. Have fun and use your favorite!

1 - 3oz box of pudding
1 cup milk
8 oz whipped topping
sliced strawberries and bananas - enough for your liking (my friend has always used apples but I changed it)
2 -3 snickers, chopped and frozen (or if time is short, you can add them not frozen)

Mix together the dry pudding and milk until thick. Add the whipped topping. Stir in the strawberries, bananas and snickers. Let set in the fridge for 1/2 to 1 hour.

Chinese Cabbage Salad

I have made this salad a million times before, however, this time I used already shredded cabbage because crutches are a cooks worst enemy. I wouldn't do it again. So just a word of advice. I've also added cooked, shredded chicken before. If I remember right, my Mom got this recipe from Shirley Hastings.

2 Tablespoons sesame seeds
2 cups slivered almonds
1 package Ramon noodles, broken up
1 head of cabbage, shredded
1 cup oil
4 teaspoons sugar
6 teaspoons vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
flavor packet from noodles

Brown the sesame seeds, almonds and Ramon noodles until golden brown. Toss with the cabbage.

Heat the oil, sugar, vinegar, salt and flavor packet from noodles until warm. Add to the cabbage mixture just before serving.

Beef Storganoff

This is a childhood (and adulthood) favorite! Yummy! Everyone always loves this dish - even picky children. It's the kind of meal that makes you lick your plate clean. And the best part for me, I can get the meat cooked and the sauce done in the time it takes the noodles to boil. Not to mention, company is always impressed by this dish and yet it's so easy to make.

8 - 12 ounces beef steak (like round or sirloin) cut into thin strips
2 Tablespoons margarine
1 garlic clove, minced
chopped onion, to your liking
2 Tablespoons margarine
1/4 cup flour
1 can beef consume soup
1 can mushrooms (do not drain)
2 Tablespoons ketchup
1 cup sour cream
noodles

Brown the steak in the margarine (I usually just brown just by itself) with the garlic and onion. Add the rest of the margarine and the flour, stir. Slowly add the consume and the mushrooms. Simmer a little, then add the ketchup and sour cream. Heat up but do not boil. Serve over noodles.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Raspberry Orange Salad

1 package salad greens
1 can (11 oz) mandarin oranges, drained
1 cup fresh raspberries
1 cup Mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
Raspberry Vinaigrette dressing (I totally buy the Kraft kind, someday I'll make my own and I'll share it with you!)

Combine all ingredients, except the dressing. Add as much dressing as you like. Super yummy and super easy!

Lemon Pull-Aparts

I went to a super fun class at Rhodes rolls the other day and learned TONS and TONS of fun recipes for Rhodes rolls. Now you could use any type of frozen rolls but I am using Rhodes rolls because I got them for FREE!! As I make some of the recipes, I'll share them here. Yumminess!

1 dozen frozen rolls
1/4 cup sugar
1 lemon rind, grated

Glaze:
1/2 Tablespoon butter, melted
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice

You know how frozen rolls always tell you to let them raise until double in size? Okay, do the same thing here but before they are double in size (about 3/4 of the way there) cut the rolls into quarters. Then let the pieces continue to rise (raise??). Sprinkle the sugar and lemon rind on the rolls. Bake at 325 degrees for 15 minutes. Combine the glaze ingredients and drizzle over the rolls while still warm.

Super Easy Crockpot Chicken Cordon Bleu

I hope this picture looks appetizing. This really is quite delicious. For this recipe, I buy the chicken fresh and ask the meat department to send it through the tenderizer twice for me. That way the chicken is super easy to roll up. And they always tenderize it for free!

6 chicken breasts
6 slices of ham
6 slices of Swiss cheese
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup chicken broth
2 Tablespoons flour
2 Tablespoons water

Place a slice of ham and a slice of cheese on each chicken breast, roll up and secure with toothpicks. Place in the crockpot. Combine the soup and chicken broth. Pour over the chicken rolls. Cook on low for 4 1/2 hours to 5 1/2 hours or hight for about 2 1/2 hours. Thicken sauce with a mixture flour and water. Cook about 20 minutes longer.