Saturday, December 31, 2011

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Shot / Drink

     One of my favorite drinks of all time is the Pineapple Upside Down Cake. I've had it both as a shot and a drink. I primarily like it as a drink because it is so DELICIOUS that I want to savor it for as long as possible! It really tastes more like dessert with a subtle kick than drinking alcohol. I may also be partial to it because of the great memories with friends that come to mind. In leui of the new year, I thought I would share the recipe. 

For the Shot:

  • 1/2 oz pineapple juice (chilled)
  • 1/2 oz vanilla vodka
  • splash of grenadine
  1. Mix pineapple juice and vanilla vodka in a shaker with ice until chilled. Strain into shot glass.
  2. Add a splash of grenadine and let settle to the bottom. 
  3. Serve and enjoy!
(Courtesy of BarMeister)

For the Drink: 

  • 3 oz (1 double shot) of vanilla vodka
  • 5 to 13oz pineapple juice (chilled), depending on the size of the glass/your taste
  • splash of grenadine
  1. Fill a tall glass with ice.
  2. Mix vodka and pineapple juice in a shaker. I would suggest tasting before straining into glass to see if the drink is strong enough/too strong for your taste. Add more pineapple juice if too strong or more vodka if not strong enough. That's the beauty of mixing at home - you can mix until it tastes perfect! 
  3. Strain into glass.
  4. Add a splash of grenadine. Let it settle to the bottom.
  5. Enjoy!
(Adaption from BarMeister's Recipe

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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Breakfast Pizza

  • 1 (8-ounce) can reduced-fat refrigerated crescent dinner roll dough
  • Cooking spray
  • 12 ounces breakfast sausage
  • 1 cup frozen shredded hash brown potatoes, thawed
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (or use Original Mrs Dash)
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons grated fresh Parmesan cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 375°.
  2. Separate dough into triangles. Press triangles together to form a single round crust on a 12-inch pizza pan coated with cooking spray. Crimp edges of dough with fingers to form a rim.
  3. Cook sausage in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until browned, stirring to crumble. Drain.
  4. If you like your hash browns crunchier, cook in skillet until lightly browned. 
  5. Top prepared dough with sausage, potatoes, and cheese. Combine milk, salt, pepper, and egg substitute, stirring with a whisk. Carefully pour milk mixture over sausage mixture. Sprinkle with Parmesan. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until crust is browned.
(Adapted from Cooking Light)

Adventures with this Recipe:

     Word of advice: If you don't put this on a pizza pan or some other pan with a lip around the edge, make sure you place aluminum foil under the crust and form your own border. 

    I decided to make this on my air-bake cookie sheet (lined with foil for easy cleanup) because I don't have a pizza pan, only a pizza stone that I did not want egg/cheese baking/burning into it. So about 5 minutes before I was going to take it out, I checked on it only to discover that the egg had run not only out of the pizza and onto the pan, but also had dripped down into the bottom of the stove. NOT HAPPY. I knew that the egg was obviously runny, but I had expected that if it did in fact escape out of the pizza that it would probably just cook in place on the air-bake sheet. I was mistaken. What a mess. The upside: It still tasted delicious!

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Monday, December 26, 2011

Parmesan Squash Bake

  • 2 medium zucchini
  • 2-3 medium butternut/summer squash
  • 1 medium sweet yellow onion, diced
  • 1/2-1 c. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4c. extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • sea salt to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a small pan, heat about 1 tbsp of olive oil. Pan fry the diced onion until soft and translucent, about 7 minutes. Add in the garlic and fry for another minute or so. Pour the onion mixture into the bottom of a 9x9 baking dish.
  3. Slice the zucchini and squash into thin slices. Layer them into 4 rows across in the dish, over the onions. Slowly drizzle the olive oil over the pieces until they are evenly coated. Sprinkle with sea salt.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes, uncovered. Sprinkle the Parmesan over the top of the dish. Bake for another 15-20 minutes, or until the vegies are soft and slightly golden brown.
(Courtesy of Sunday Baker )

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Sunday, December 25, 2011

Cast Iron Skillet Cookie

(Picture is before baking)
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream (or milk or half and half - whatever is on hand)
  • Chocolate Chips - I used 1/2 bag Semi-Sweet & 1/2 bag Milk Chocolate (I would suggest adding whatever flavor of "chips" you like... I want to expirament with butterscotch and toffee chips in the future. Don't worry - there will be an update)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease skillet with a light coating of canola oil (Rubbed on via a paper towel).
  2. In bowl, stir together flour, baking soda and salt
  3. In separate bowl, mix butter and sugars until light and creamed together
  4. Add egg, vanilla, and cream and stir to incorporate
  5. Combine with flour mixture until well mixed
  6. Stir in chocolate chips
  7. Press lightly into cast iron skillet
  8. Bake about 35-40 minutes or until edges are golden 
  9. To remove from skillet: Allow to cool completely and place plate over the top of cookie. Turn skillet upside down while holding plate in place. If your skillet is well seasoned, it will fall out without a problem. Place your serving plate on the backside of the cake and hold in place as you flip it right side up again. 

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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Eggnog Cheesecake Bars

  • 1½ cups of graham cracker crumbs
  • ¾ cup + 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 16 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ¾ cup eggnog
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon brandy (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon + 1½ teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, plus extra for dusting
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8-inch or 9-inch square baking pan with aluminum foil and coat with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. Stir together the graham cracker crumbs, 3 tablespoons of granulated sugar, and the melted butter.
  3. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake until the crust is just brown around the edges, 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool.
  4. Meanwhile, beat the cream cheese with a mixer on medium speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the remaining ¾ cup granulated sugar and beat for an additional couple of minutes, until smooth. Add the eggs and yolk, eggnog, brandy and vanilla and beat again until completely combined and smooth. Finally, beat in the flour, nutmeg and salt and mix until smooth.
  5. Pour the filling over the crust. Set the pan in a larger pan (a 9×13-inch works for this), and add enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the baking pan. Bake until just set, 40 to 45 minutes. Remove the baking pan from the water bath, and transfer to a wire rack. Let cool for 30 minutes, then refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
  6. Cut into 1½x3-inch bars. Lightly dust the tops of the bars with freshly grated nutmeg just before serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
(Courtesy of Brown Eyed Baker and Martha Stewart)

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Friday, December 9, 2011

Beef and Broccoli

  • 1 pound flank or sirloin, sliced thinly across the grain
  • 1 pound broccoli florets, blanched
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp cornstarch, dissolved in 1 tbsp cold water
  • Beef Marinade:
    • 2 tsp soy sauce
    • 1 tsp Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
    • 1/2 tsp cornstarch
    • 1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • Sauce:
    • 3 tbsp oyster sauce
    • 1 tsp Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
    • 1/4 cup soy sauce
    • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  1. Make the marinade: Stir together the beef marinade ingredients in a medium bowl. Add the beef slices and stir until coated. Let stand for 10 minutes
  2. Make the sauce: Stir together the sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside. 
  3. Blanch the broccoli: Cook the broccoli in a small pot of boiling, salted water until tender-crisp, about 2 minutes. Drain thoroughly. 
    • If you want to cheat: buy a bag of frozen broccoli florets that steam in the bag. I cooked it in the microwave for only the minimum time per bag instructions.
  4. Heat a large frying pan or wok over medium-high heat until a bead of water sizzles and instantly evaporates upon contact. Add the sesame oil and swirl to coat. Add the beef and immediately spread the strips out all over the surface of the wok or pan in a single layer (preferably not touching). Let the beef fry undisturbed for 1 minute. Flip the beef slices over, add the garlic to the pan and fry for an additional 30 seconds to 1 minute until no longer pink.
  5. Pour in the sauce.
  6. Add the blanched broccoli and bring to a boil.
  7. Pour in the dissolved cornstarch and cook, stirring, until the sauce boils and thickens, 30 seconds.
  8. Serve over rice and enjoy!
Courtesy of Can You Stay For Dinner - Beef and Broccoli

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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Glazed Pork Chops

  • 4 boneless pork chops
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Hungarian paprika
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp McCormick Salt Free/MSG Free Garlic & Herb Seasoning 
    • (original recipe calls for 1/2 tsp garlic powder & 1/2 tsp salt - I didn't have the garlic powder and I really don't like adding salt if at all possible)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. In a bowl, mix the brown sugar and spices until well combined.
  3. Rub the brown sugar/spice mix all over both sides of the pork chops. Use all of the spice mix.
  4. Heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil in a skillet over medium/high heat. When the oil is hot, add the pork chops. Cook the pork chops for about 5 minutes on each side or until they are nicely browned.
  5. Transfer chops to a foil-lined pan/casserole dish sized to accommodate the chops. Pour excess juice from the skillet over the chops. Bake in the oven for an additional 5 minutes to ensure they are thoroughly cooked (should be white in the middle).
  6. Remove the chops from the oven and drag each side around in the thick glaze that has formed around the chops in the pan prior to serving.

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Friday, December 2, 2011

Coconut Chicken Curry

A New Frontier...

Cooking a curry dish is a first for me. I have always loved eating curry dishes out at restaurants but I have felt a little intimidated to try this at home. For my first attempt at curry, I was thankful this dish came out very tasty. Next time I fix this dish, I will try pork and probably add some spice. It was good and flavorful by itself but I like mine with a little more kick. Enjoy!

  • 1 – 1.5 lbs cooked, shredded chicken
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 8oz can tomato sauce
  • 1/2 sweet yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small bag (abt 1 dozen) red potatoes, chunked
  • 3-4 carrots, sliced
  • 1 can water chestnuts, sliced
  • 3 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • salt to taste
  • rice

Chicken Prep:
  • Either Bake chicken at 350 degrees for ~30 minutes (until done). OR Boil chicken 30-45 minutes. OR cheat/save some time and buy a rotisserie chicken at the grocery store.
Vegetable Prep:
  • While the chicken is baking, bring a medium stock pot of water boil for the carrots and potatoes. Add the carrots first since they take a little longer to cook. After about 10 minutes add the potatoes to the pot and continue to boil for about 20-30 minutes (or until potatoes and carrots are tender). Drain vegetables.
Rice Prep:
  • I used jasmine rice to serve under the chicken curry. Follow package directions for whatever serving size you would like to prepare. The package I used suggested using chicken stock and white wine instead of water. This gave it a much richer flavor. I fixed 8 servings of rice which traditionally calls for 3 cups of water. I substituted 2 1/2 cups of chicken stock and 1/2 cup of wine.                                  
Curry Directions:
  1. In a large, deep pot, saute onions and garlic in olive oil until onions are near translucent. 
  2. Add curry powder and shredded chicken, stir until well mixed. cook for another minute.
  3. Add potatoes and carrots. Continue to stir. 
  4. Add coconut milk, tomatoes, and tomato sauce. Keep stirring
  5. Add sugar and salt to taste (mine came out without needing salt). keep stirring until well mixed. I let it cook for another minute.
Serve chicken over a bed of rice and enjoy!

Inspired by Leah’s Coconut Chicken Curry

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Thursday, December 1, 2011

Honey Lime Chicken Enchiladas

  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup lime juice (about 2 large limes)
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, finely minced or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 2 large breasts), cooked and shredded
  • 6 small flour tortillas
  • 2 cups of Mexican cheese blend, shredded 
  • 1 14-oz can of red enchilada sauce (mild or medium, to your taste)
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup of heavy cream
  • 1 Tablespoon of chopped cilantro, to garnish
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 
  2. In a small bowl, whisk thoroughly together honey, lime juice, chili powder and garlic. 
  3. In a medium bowl, pour this mixture over the chicken and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  4. The original recipe used a griddle to heat the tortillas. I placed the tortillas between 2 damp paper towels and heated them in the microwave for 45 secornds.
  5. Spray the sides and bottom of a 9x13-inch baking dish lightly with cooking spray. 
  6. In a medium bowl combine the enchilada sauce and the heavy cream. Spread about 1/2 cup of the mixture in the bottom of the oiled baking dish. 
  7. Add about 2 tablespoons of the chicken mixture to the center of each tortilla in a line. 
  8. Cover the chicken with a large tablespoon of cheese, then roll the tortilla up from one side to make a rolled enchilada.
  9. Place the enchilada seam side down in the baking dish. Repeat with the remaining chicken, cheese and tortillas. 
  10. You will use about 1 & 1/2 cups of the cheese for the filling and set the remainder aside for topping the enchiladas in the pan. 
  11. Pour the remaining enchilada mixture over the top of all the enchiladas. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
  12. Bake the enchiladas for 30 to 35 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbly and starting to brown on top.
Inspired by Honey Lime Chicken Enchiladas

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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Creamy Corn Casserole

This is probably one of the easiest casserole in my recipe box. I love dishes that you can just dump and go!  

  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 (8.5 ounce) package dry corn bread mix
  • 1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 (14.75 ounce) can creamed corn
  • 1 cup sour cream     
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C), and lightly grease a 9x9 inch baking dish.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine butter, eggs, corn bread mix, whole and creamed corn and sour cream. Spoon mixture into prepared dish.
  3. Bake for 45 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the top is golden brown.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Herb Roasted Turkey

Adventures in Turkey Cooking

     When I followed the recipe exactly, the original recipe called for only 1 cup of wine in the bottom of the roasting pan. After 1 hour of baking in the oven, the wine had evaporated to the point of leaving a scorched residue in the bottom of the pan. I immediately took the turkey out and placed it in a traditional roasting pan without the rack. I then added 1 cup wine to 1 cup water mixture to the bottom of the roasting pan and continued to bake for another half hour. I checked the turkey again and added an additional 1 cup wine to 1 cup water mixture to the pan. The turkey was saved and thankfully did not taste like burnt wine. I didn't need to baste the turkey with the drippings like I have in the past. I believe it retained its moisture due to the olive oil in the rub and roasting for the first hour skin side down. Regardless of the challenges, it turned out wonderful and the family raved about it!    

  • 1 whole bone-in turkey breast, 6 1/2 to 7 pounds
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons good olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 cup dry white wine / 3 cup water mix


  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. 
  2. In a small bowl, combine the garlic, mustard, herbs, salt, pepper, olive oil, and lemon juice to make a paste. Loosen the skin from the meat gently with your fingers and smear half of the paste directly on the meat. Spread the remaining paste evenly on the skin.  
  3. Place the turkey breast, skin side down on a rack in a roasting pan.
  4. I kept the lemon rinds and placed them in the turkey cavity while roasting for more flavor. 
  5. Pour 1 cup wine and 1 cup water into the bottom of the roasting pan and place in oven.
  6. Check the turkey every half hour to hour to see if you need to add more wine/water mix to the bottom of the pan.
  7. After 1 hour, turn turkey skin side up. 
  8. Roast the turkey for a total of 1 3/4 to 2 hours, until the skin is golden brown and an instant-read thermometer registers 165 degrees F when inserted into the thickest and meatiest areas of the breast. (test several places)
  9. If the skin is over-browning, cover the breast loosely with aluminum foil. When the turkey is done, cover with foil and allow it to rest at room temperature for 15 minutes. Slice and serve!  
Original recipe courtesy of Herb Roasted Turkey by Ina Garten 2008

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Monday, November 28, 2011

Broccoli Cheese Casserole

  • 2 pounds frozen broccoli florets or fresh blanched broccoli florets, drained
  • 4 cups crumbled crackers (recommended: Ritz crackers)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly chopped thyme leaves
  • 1 teaspoon freshly chopped oregano leaves
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 stick melted butter
  • 1 pound Velveeta cheese, cubed small
  • 1 pound Camembert, sliced thin
  • Cooking spray
  1. Preheat oven 450 degrees F.
  2. In a large stock pot of boiling salted water, blanch broccoli florets for 3 minutes. Remove from water and shock in a large bowl of ice water. Remove from ice water and drain on a paper towel lined platter. Set aside.
  3. Using a plastic bag, crush crackers. Add the thyme, oregano, paprika, cayenne, pepper and melted butter until well combined. Set aside.
  4. In a large casserole dish lightly greased with butter add broccoli and cheeses. 
  5. Pour cracker topping on top of cheese and broccoli - use only enough to cover the top. The topping definitely has a kick! 
  6. Wrap with foil and bake for 15 to 20 minutes in oven.
  7. Remove from oven. Take foil off and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving. 
Courtesy of Broccoli-Cheese Casserole by Aaron McCargo, Jr.

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Saturday, November 26, 2011

Green Bean Bundles

  • 1 1/2 lbs green beans, trimmed
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar, packed
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 ounces bacon
  1. Fill a large saucepan with water and bring it to a boil over high heat.
  2. Wash and trim the beans.
  3. Add the beans to the boiling water and blanch for 3 to 4 minutes, until the beans are pliable but still crunchy.
  4. Drain the beans and run them under cold water. Pat dry with paper towels or a clean dish towel and place them in a shallow ovenproof casserole.
  5. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  6. Stir in the dry mustard, brown sugar, garlic and salt.
  7. Pour the butter mixture over the green beans, cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
  8. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  9. Make a bundle of 8 or 9 beans, wrap half a bacon slice around each bundle, securing with a toothpick, and arrange in a single layer in the same casserole used for marinating.
  10. Bake, uncovered, for 45 minutes or until the bacon is cooked and the beans look wrinkled.  Serves 6-8.
Courtesy of The Pastry Queen Christmas Cookbook by Rebecca Rather via The Brown Shed

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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

  • 1 can (13.5oz) graham cracker crumbs 
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 sticks butter, melted
  • 4 tsps. pumpkin pie spice, divided 
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (14 oz.) can Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin (about 2 cups)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup chopped nuts


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 
  2. Combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar, butter and 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice in large bowl until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. 
  3. Press into bottom of 15 x 10-inch jellyroll pan.
  4. Using a hand mixer, beat cream cheese in large bowl until fluffy. Gradually beat in sweetened condensed milk; beat in remaining 2 eggs, pumpkin, remaining 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice and salt; mix well. Pour over crust; sprinkle with nuts.
  5. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until set. Cool. Chill. Cut into bars.
Pumkin cheesecake portion courtesy of Eagle Brand Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars, graham cracker crust portion courtesy of my aunt

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Friday, November 18, 2011

Mint Chocolate Cake Balls

Secret Ingredient - Andes' Creme De Menthe Baking Chips
Ok, I admit, I may have a problem with Cake Balls, but they are just so yummy, bite-size, and hard to resist. I came across this idea for Mint Chocolate Cupcakes and thought this would be a great idea for cake balls, especially with the holidays approaching. If you love Thin Mints, this is the Cake Ball for you.

Before dipping
What I used this time:
  • Dark Fudge Chocolate Cake Mix
  • Follow normal cake directions and add 1/4 tsp Peppermint Extract to mix before baking
  • Allow to cool completely and crumble cake as usual 
  • Mix 1 pkg Andes Creme de Menthe Baking Chips before adding 1/2 can Cream Cheese Frosting 
  • Roll into balls and dip in chocolate almond bark
Green decors to finish!

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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Raspberry Lemonade Cake Balls

Here's a modification of the Red Velvet Cake Balls and Pink Lemonade Cake recipes that I tried tonight that came out pretty tasty, if I don't say so myself. Click on the above links for those recipes.
Final Product
My Modifications:
  • Primarily follow the Red Velvet Cake Ball recipe 
  • Use raspberry lemonade frozen (thawed) concentrate instead of water in cake mix. 
  • Use prepared cream cheese frosting instead of pink lemonade butter cream frosting
  • Use vanilla (white) almond bark instead of chocolate  
Cake after going thru the food processor
After being mixed with frosting and rolled into balls

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Monday, November 14, 2011

Red Velvet Cake Balls

  • 1 box Red Velvet Cake Mix
  • 1/2 can cream cheese frosting (not whipped)
  • 1 package chocolate almond bark
  • 1/4 package white almond bark
  • wax paper
  1. Bake cake mix to box directions in a greased and floured 13x9" cake pan.
  2. Allow to cool completely then place in food processor to crumble to a fine consistency.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, use your clean hands to blend in 1/2 can cream cheese frosting (enough frosting to "wet" the cake mix completely - this will determine how cakey/gooey the inside of the cake balls will remain)
  4. Roll mixture into 1" balls and place on wax papered cookie sheets
  5. Chill in freezer for ~15 min or the refrigerator for a few hours
  6. Place ~1/2 package of chocolate in a large measuring cup and melt chocolate in microwave per package directions.
  7. Dip cake balls in melted chocolate (I use a fork to scoop them out of the chocolate) and place on fresh wax paper-covered cookie sheets. Add and reheat chocolate as needed to complete all of the cake balls.
  8. Allow cake balls to cool/set up completely.
  9. Check the bottom of the cake balls to make sure they haven't sprung a leak. If so, redip only the bottom of the cake ball and allow to setup again.
  10. Use the melted white almond bark and a fork to drizzle a decorative white flourish over the top.
Inspired from Bakerella's Red Velvet Cake Balls 

Modifications to Make It Your Own
  • Use any number of flavor combinations - combine any cake flavor with any frosting flavor of your choice.
  • With lighter cakes (white/yellow) add food coloring before baking to get wacky & bright combinations.
  • Use candy melts instead of almond bark to change the outer coating color.
  • Add sprinkles/cake decors before the cake balls set up.
  • Raspberry Lemonade Cake Balls Pin
  • Use Wilton's Mini Cookie Cutters to gently press cake mixture thru to make shapes other than balls. This can be very time consuming and the simpler the shape, the easier it is to press.
Mint Chocolate Cake Balls
Pin It 

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Wednesday, November 9, 2011

BBQ Pulled Pork

  • 2 1/2 pounds pork shoulder (a larger cut of meat is ok to use without adjusting the rest of the ingredients)
  • 1 sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon original salt-free Mrs. Dash (or you can use salt if you like)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 cups ketchup (or use 1 cup ketchup and 1 cup prepared BBQ sauce)
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line large roasting pan with aluminum foil. 
  2. Cut pork shoulder crosswise into 1/4 inch slices. 
  3. Combine sliced pork (including bone), onion, garlic, brown sugar, dry mustard, Mrs. Dash, pepper, ketchup, and Worcestershire sauce in roasting pan; mix well, and cover. 
  4. Place in oven, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 8 hours or until the meat is tender (the meat will fall apart and off the bone when done). 
  5. Pour off excess juice, remove bone, and shred meat with 2 forks. 
  6. Enjoy!
Inspired by BBQ Pork Two Ways Recipe

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Sunday, November 6, 2011

Classic Pecan Pie

Prep Time:  15 minutes
Cook Time:  55 to 60 minutes 
Yield:  1 pie

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup Karo® Dark Corn Syrup
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 & 1/2 cups (6 ounces) pecans
  • 1 (9-inch) unbaked or frozen deep-dish pie crust
For Amaretto Pecan Pie
  • 2 tablespoons almond-flavored liqueur, such as Amaretto
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Chop pecans in blender to make pecan meal. 
  3. Beat eggs slightly with fork in medium bowl. Add sugar, Karo® Corn Syrup, butter and vanilla (+/- Amaretto); stir until blended. Stir in pecans. Place pie dough in pie pan. Pour pecan filling into pie crust. 
  4. Bake 55 to 60 minutes or until knife inserted halfway between center and edge comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.

Inspired from Karo Syrup - Classic Pecan Pie and modified by my great-grandmother

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Saturday, November 5, 2011

Pink Lemonade Cake

Grocery List
  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 1 can frozen pink lemonade concentrate 
  • vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs 
  • red food coloring
  • confectioner's sugar
  • 1 stick salted butter
Pink Lemonade Cake
  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 3/4 cup frozen pink lemonade concentrate, thawed
  • 1/2 cup water 
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs 
  • 4 drops red food coloring
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Grease and flour one 13"x9" cakepan 
  3. Combine all of the ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix using an electric mixer on low for 30 seconds, then increase the speed to medium for another minute. 
  4. Pour into cake pan and bake to package directions (usually around 35 minutes - until toothpick comes out clean)
  5. Allow to cool completely 
Pink Lemonade Buttercream Frosting
  • 3 cups confectioners sugar
  • 1 stick salted butter (room temperature)
  • 3 tbsp frozen pink lemonade concentrate, thawed
  • 2 drops red food coloring
  • 4-5 drops vanilla extract
  1. Combine all ingredients using a electric mixer - start slow until combined then increase speed and beat frosting until it s light 
  2. You may need to make more/adjust fluidity of frosting depending on how you like it. This is the "doin' it 'til it looks right" that I have trouble with. To make more I suggest adding in this ratio: 1 cup confectioners sugar to 1 tbsp pink lemonade concentrate to 1/3 stick of butter.   
Assembly - for a 2 layer cake
  1. Cut cake in half. Carefully place one half on plate of choice.
  2. Apply frosting blending outwards with a wide spatula to all sides. 
  3. Place 2nd half of cake on top.
  4. Apply frosting blending outward and down the sides. Viola!
I will probably attempt cake balls with this combination in the future!

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My Recipes

My name is Kathleen and I wanted to create an easily accessible place for tried and true recipes. Cooking has become a more recent enjoyment of mine. There are a few things that you need to know about me: I still don't know how to "do it 'til it looks right" and I have a habit of leaving no utensil unused by the time I am finished. I blame both of these attributes on my fairly analytical mind and knowledge of germs. Frequent hand-washing definitely a must in the kitchen and the thought of cross-contamination actually does turn my stomach. The good part is you will never have to worry about food poisoning coming out of my kitchen! I'm working on cleaning as I go to help with the amount of washing at the end of my endeavors. Some of the recipes I have acquired have been from other websites and I will give credit where due; others will be family concoctions.  All photos will be my originals. I hope you enjoy!

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