Sunday, December 27, 2009

Cranberry Pecan Bread

We did Christmas breakfast after opening presents. My son made his usual fabulous quiche (best ever I think) and I brought this to have for a sweet treat.

(adapted from Cooks Illustrated)

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup chopped pecans, toasted
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
1/3 cup fresh orange juice
2/3 cup buttermilk
6 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
1 large egg, beaten lightly
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups craisins

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9x5" loaf pan; dust with flour, tapping out extra, or use Pam. Stir together the orange zest, orange juice, buttermilk, butter, and egg in a small bowl. Whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a large bowl. Stir the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients with a spatula until just moistened. Gently stir in the cranberries and pecans. Do not overmix. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Bake 20 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 degrees. Continue to bake until the loaf is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 35 to 45 minutes longer. Cool in the pan 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and cool at least 1 hour before serving. The bread can then be wrapped and stored at room temperature for several days.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas!

My Christmas Wish To YOU
By Catherine Pulsifer
If I could wish a wish for you, it would be for peace and happiness
not only now, but for the whole year through!
I wish that there always be food on your table.
And that you always remember those less fortunate.
May you always take time to share,
and thank those who share with you.
I wish for time, so you may reflect on the blessings that you have,
and that you express your love to those who are dear to you.
May you never feel lonely, because there are those who care.
That you realize: you are special, you are unique,
you make a difference, not only at Christmas, but all year!
I wish for your thoughts to be positive ones,
that you never quit, that you never give up,
and that you continue to learn.
I wish for the love, peace, and joy of Christmas be yours always.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Cookie Exchange 2009

My friend Trudy hosted a cookie exchange at her house this year. We had to bake 8 dozen of a cookie to share with the other bakers. We had a nice assortment of goodies all packed so nice. Below is a picture of the table with all the cookies. I also took a couple of appetizers so we could have something besides sweets to eat. Trudy and I both had made a Rachel Ray appetizer from one of her magazines in the past, Corny Bites. These are really good and easy to throw together. I also took the cranberry/horseradish over cream cheese that I posted at Thanksgiving time. Trudy has the most beautiful Christmas tree with hundreds of ornaments she has collected. We had such a good time sharing baking stories and played a right/left game for a door prize. We think the next time we do this we might do an 'Appetizer Exchange'. I think that's a great idea as a change from the normal cookie exchange.

Here's the table of cookies:

Here are the cookies I made.


1 cup butter (no substitutes), softened
1 cup confectioners sugar
2 teaspoon vanilla 2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt

1 package (3 oz.) cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioners sugar
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
1/2 cup flaked coconut

TOPPING: (optional -- I didn't do this)
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 tablespoons water
1/2 cup confectioners sugar

In a mixing bowl, cream the butter, sugar, and vanilla. Combine flour and salt; gradually add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Shape into 1 inch balls. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets. Make a deep indentation in the center of each cookie. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until the edges just start to brown. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. For the filling, beat cream cheese, sugar, flour and vanilla in a mixing bowl. Add pecans and
coconut; mix well. Spoon 1/2 tsp. into each cookie. For topping, heat chocolate chips, butter and water in a small saucepan until melted. Stir in sugar. Drizzle over cookies.


1 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
1 large egg
1/2 cup frozen corn kernals, defrosted
48 scoop shaped tortilla chips
Chopped chives or cilantro for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix cream cheese, pepper jack cheese, egg, and corn together. Place a teaspoon in each scoop. Bake for 20 minutes. Sprinkle with chives or cilantro.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Banana Cookie Bars

Time to begin taking treats to work for the holiday season. I went in search of something new to make and keeping in mind ingredients I had on hand. I used the handy Blog Search and found a couple of entries for this recipe. One at Genesis of a Cook and also at Anna's blog at Cookie Madness. These are a little twist to the normal Magic Cookie Bars.


1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/8 tsp. salt1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup confectioner sugar
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
2 bananas, mashed
2 cup dark chocolate chips
1 cup pecans
2/3 cup shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 13 x 9 inch baking pan with parchment paper. Spray the paper with Pam. In a large bowl, stir together flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Set aside. In another bowl, beat butter and confectioner sugar until creamy. Add dry mixture. This will be a very stiff dough. Press mixture into prepared baking pan and bake for 15 minutes.

In a medium bowl, mix together condensed milk and bananas together until smooth. Once the crust has baked for 15 minutes, take out and pour the banana mixture over it. Combine the chocolate chips, pecans and coconut together in a bowl and sprinkle over the top. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Let cool completely, roughly around 10-15 minutes. Then, chill in the fridge for about an hour. To chill quicker, place in the freezer for 25 minutes.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Sour Cream Coffee Cake

We had a birthday breakfast celebration at work yesterday for a coworker. I went in search of a coffee cake recipe to make. I just love Besides getting great recipes, you have other cooks who have posted reviews and made comments about changes they made. According to the group who ate this, it was a good cake.


1 cup butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x13 inch baking pan. In a large bowl, cream together 1 cup butter and white sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the sour cream and vanilla. Mix in 2 cups flour, baking powder, and salt. Spread 1/2 of batter in the prepared pan. This batter is really thick and this is a bit of a challenge, but just work with it and it.

Prepare the filling: In a medium bowl mix 1/3 cup flour, brown sugar, 2 tablespoons melted butter, and cinnamon. Sprinkle cake batter with 1/2 the filling. Spread second half of batter over the filling, and top with remaining filling.

Bake 35 minutes in the preheated oven or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Pumpkin Roll

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. My son and daughter-in-law hosted this year. The tables were absolutely beautiful. My son did his usual amazing job of a brined, roasted turkey and also this year there was fried turkey. Everyone brought side dishes and desserts. It was a veritable feast and then some. In addition to my usual traditional dishes I made a pumpkin roll and also an appetizer of cranberry sauce with a little 'twist' poured over cream cheese and served with crackers.


3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup pumpkin

1 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan, line with wax paper. Grease paper. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice. Beat eggs and sugar in large mixer bowl until thick. Beat in pumpkin. Stir in flour mixture. Spread evenly onto prepared pan. Bake for 15 minutes or until top of cake springs back when touched. Immediately loosen and turn cake onto a dish towel that has been sprinkled with powdered sugar. Carefully peel off paper. Roll up cake and towel together, starting with narrow end. Cool on wire rack.

Beat cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter, and vanilla in small mixer bowl until smooth. Add nuts. Carefully unroll cake. Remove towel. Spread cream cheese mixture over cake. Reroll cake. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour, overnight is best. Sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving, if desired. I saved just a little of the cream cheese filling for decoration.

The ingredients in this might sound a bit odd, but trust me, this stuff is good. The horseradish gives it a little 'kick' and the onion is not overpowering. I kind of reminds me of jalapeno jelly.


1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
2 tablespoons horseradish (not the sauce)
1/4 cup sugar

Bring all ingredients to a boil. Let sit until cool. Pour over cream cheese brick and serve with crackers.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Chicken/Spinach Lasagna

My son's birthday and I made dinner for him and his family and a college friend. A break from the traditional lasagna. This one has a white sauce with spinach and chicken. I looked at several recipes and came up with my version.


2 cups cooked, diced chicken (I used boneless breasts)
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic minced
1/4 cup butter
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup half and half
1 package Stouffer's spinach souffle, thawed
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 egg
2 cups ricotta cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt, pepper, garlic powder, and Italian herbs to season sauce to your taste.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Reserve 2/3 cup mozzarella cheese for top of lasagna. Saute onion and garlic in butter. Cool. In a medium size bowl, combine remaining 1 1/3 cup mozzarella, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, soup, onion and garlic, and half and half and set aside. In another medium size bowl, combine spinach souffle, egg and ricotta. Mix well, then combine with soup mixture and mix all together. Season to taste.

In the bottom of a 13x9 inch baking dish, spread a little of the sauce. Cover with 3 cooked lasagna noodles. Then layer sauce, cheese, chicken, and more noodles and repeat, ending with a layer of sauce. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over top and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until hot and bubbling. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Pumpkin Praline Cheesecake

We are having our Thanksgiving feast at work tomorrow. It is early, but many people will be out of town, so this day worked best. I am taking my usual broccoli casserole. I decided to try a different pumpkin cheesecake than the Paula Deen one I made before. I have to say Paula's didn't split but this one did. The praline topping covers it up nicely though. I used Paula's crust and a couple of different recipes for the filling and this is how I made it:


1-3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs2 tablespoons light brown sugar1/2 teaspoon cinnamon1 stick melted butter(I also added about 1/4 cup of ground pecans)In a medium bowl combine crumbs, sugar, cinnamon. Add melted butter. Press into a 9 inch springform pan that has been sprayed with Pam and press into bottom and up the sides. Set aside.

1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 15 oz. can pumpkin
4 8 oz. packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup packed light brown sugar
2/3 cup granulated sugar
5 eggs

Heat oven to 450 degrees. In a small bowl, mix flour, cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice and pumpkin. Set aside. In a large bowl or stand mixer, beat cream cheese at medium speed until smooth and creamy. Gradually beat in brown sugar and granulated sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time at low speed just until blended. Beat in pumpkin mixture until smooth. Pour liquid over crust.

Bake for 10 minutes at 450 and then reduce to 370 and bake for another hour or until outside of cake is set but center still jiggles slightly when shaken. Allow to rest in oven for 30 minutes with door open. Cool pan on cooling rack for 30 minutes. Refrigerate at least six hours before serving, overnight is best.

1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons evaporated milk or cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans

Bring butter, brown sugar, and milk to a boil. Remove from heat and add vanilla. It will thicken as it cools. Add pecans. Pour over cheesecake.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Chocolate Chip Cake

I suppose if it weren't for birthdays at work I wouldn't have a blog. This picture is really crummy, but the reviews on the cake were much better. It's not often I use a cake mix, but if you add enough ingredients it masks it pretty well. This goes together in a snap, very easy to make and turns out a really nice cake.

Chocolate Chip Cake

1 yellow cake mix
1 small box instant vanilla pudding (dry)
4 eggs
1/2 cup oil
1 (8 oz.) sour cream
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup flaked coconut

Beat cake mix, pudding mix, oil, sour cream and eggs together until well blended, about 3 minutes. Stir in chips, nuts and coconut by hand. Grease tube pan. Pour cake mixture into pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Turn oven off, open door and let cake set in pan for 1 hour before removing to cake server.

This could be dusted with powdered sugar and served or make the icing below.


1/2 stick of butter melted
2 heaping tablespoons cocoa powder
3 tablespoons milk or cream
1-1/2 cups powdered sugar

Blend all ingredients until smooth. Drizzle over cake.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Lemon Blueberry Sour Cream Cake

It's been so long since I posted to my blog. I just haven't made anything blogworthy recently. It was brought to our attention at the office that we hadn't had any goodies in a while. I've had this recipe for a while waiting to try it. I have read a message board on AOL for many years. There are a lot of good cooks on there who share their recipes or share what they had for dinner, etc. There is a particularly great cook on there who posted this recipe that came from a bed and breakfast inn called the Campion House. I had frozen some fresh blueberries a while back and had all the ingredients so voila. I had lots of compliments on this, so I'd call it a winner.


3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teapoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
2 teaspoons lemon extract
3 cups granulated sugar
6 eggs
1 cup sour cream
2 cups blueberries

Grease and flour tube pan. In medium bowl, sift flour, soda and salt. In large mixing bowl, cream butter; add lemon extract and gradually add sugar. Beat 2 minutes. Beat in 2 eggs at a time, beating until thoroughly mixed after each addition and 2 to 3 minutes after last addition. On lowest speed, add half the flour, beating only until blended. Add all the sour cream, then the balance of the flour. Mix until smooth. Stir in blueberries. Pour into prepared pan and bake at 350 degrees for 60 to 80 minutes. Cool 20 minutes in pan, then turn onto a cooling rack.

I glazed this with the juice from one lemon and about 1 cup powdered sugar

Friday, September 11, 2009

Going Bananas

Another birthday at work. The birthday girl didn't request a particular cake, so I went in search of something different I hadn't made before. I had made a Fresh Banana Cake in the past but this one was a bit different. This recipe is all over the Internet, so I thought it must be a good one. From the comments, I think it might just be a winner. Following is how I made it.


¾ cups butter
2 cups granulated sugar
3 whole eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups all purpose flour
1-½ teaspoons baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1-½ cups buttermilk
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1-½ cups mashed ripe bananas (about 3)


1/4 cup butter, softened
1 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup chopped, toasted pecans

Preheat oven to 275 (that’s not a typo, check your oven to be sure it is working properly.) My oven is kind of slow, so I used 300 degrees. Grease a 9×13 pan. In a small bowl, mix mashed bananas with lemon juice; set aside. In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
In a large bowl, cream 3/4 cup softened butter and the 2 cups sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time, then stir in 2 teaspoons vanilla. Beat in the flour mixture alternating with the buttermilk. Stir in banana mixture. Pour batter into the prepared pan.

Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour (it took mine 1 hour, 10 minutes), or until toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove pan from oven and place directly into freezer for 45 minutes. This will make the cake very moist.

For the frosting: In a large bowl, cream 1/4 cup butter and cream cheese until smooth. Beat in 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add powdered sugar and beat on low speed until combined, then beat on high until frosting is smooth. Spread on cooled cake. Sprinkle pecans (optional).

Monday, September 7, 2009

Dinosaur Birthday Cake

I had a birthday a few weeks ago. I've been watching my sugar intake recently, so my son baked this sugar-free cheesecake for my birthday. My 3-year-old grandson decided that Gram needed a dinosaur on her cake, so he decorated it. For someone who hasn't had many treats lately, this tasted just great to me!


24 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup extra-fine whole milk ricotta cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups sugar substitute (he used Splenda)
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon no sugar added vanilla extract
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 eggs
3 egg yolks

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray an 8 inch springform pan with nonstick vegetable oil cooking spray. Set aside. In a shallow roasting pan big enough to fit the cake pan, pour about 1-inch of water and place it on the center rack of the oven to preheat. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat softened cream cheese, ricotta, sour cream and sugar substitute on low speed for about 1 minute until well blended. In a separate bowl, using a wire whisk, mix heavy cream, vanilla, lemon juice, eggs, and egg yolks until blended. Turn the mixer on medium speed and slowly pour the egg mixture into the cream cheese mixture. Beat just until blended and then turn off; be careful not to over-whip. Pour batter into the greased springform pan. Place pan into the heated water bath. Bake for 15 minutes, and then lower the oven temperature to 275 degrees. Continue baking for 1 1/2 hours, or until top is light golden brown and cake is pulling away from the sides of the pan. Turn the oven off when finished cooking and leave the cake in the oven to cool for 3 more hours. (This will keep the cake nice and tall.) Then remove cake and refrigerate before serving. Serve chilled.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Grill Gone Wild

It's rare to see 'real food' on my blog as I mostly just bake. My son is the griller when he visits at my house, so I thought I'd showcase his masterpiece from this weekend. He took thick boneless porkchops and cut them into chunks and marinated in Stubbs Pork Marinade (a Texas thang y'all). Alternated with green pepper, onion, mushrooms, zucchini, and cherry tomatoes. This along with some Poffenberger's smoked sausage (from Bellville, TX) and we had a feast.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Double Chocolate Dream Cookies

I'm taking cookies to work today. I was browsing online for recipes and happened upon this one at and had the ingredients on hand. I think they will go over well.


2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup baking cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
1 12-ounce package semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in a small bowl. Beat butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar and vanilla in a large mixing bowl until creamy. Beat in eggs for about 2 minutes or until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake for 10 minutes or until cookies are puffed. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

White Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

My blog has been seriously neglected lately. I just haven't had an occasion to bake anything. I thought it was time to take something to work though and was in a baking mood. I was looking online for a recipe for ingredients I had on hand and came across this one on All Recipes. I've not been eating sugar for several weeks, so I'll have to take them to the 'taste testers' at work and hope for good reviews.


1 cup butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
2 cups white chocolate chips (I used a bar of White Ghiardelli chocolate chopped up)
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease cookie sheets. In a medium bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar and white sugar until smooth. Stir in the eggs and vanilla. Stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt, stir into the creamed mixture. Finally, stir in the rolled oats, white chocolate, and pecans. Drop by tablespoons onto the prepared cookie sheets.
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes in the preheated oven. (These took about 14 minutes in my oven). Remove from baking sheets to cool on wire racks. I got 5 dozen cookies from this recipe.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Hershey's 'Perfectly Chocolate' Cake

Another birthday at work last week. This picture is just awful, but the cake turned out much better. There are probably as many chocolate cake recipes as there are chocolate chip cookie recipes. I think this is one of the easiest and best ones. So, if you're ever looking for a good one, here it is.


2 cups granulated sugar
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup Hershey's cocoa powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 3 8-inch round baking pans. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely. (This can be made in 2 9 inch pans, a 9 x 13 pan, bundt pan, or into cupcakes.

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
2/3 cup Hershey's cocoa powder
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Melt butter. Stir in cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk, beating to spreading consistency. Add small amount additional milk, if needed. Stir in vanilla. About 2 cups frosting.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Paula Deen's Grandmother Paula's Sour Cream Pound Cake

We had an early 4th of July luncheon today at work. I decided to try out my new Nordic Ware bundt pan that my son and daughter-in-law got me for Mother's Day. I have several Nordic Ware bundt pans and I love each one of them. I like to make pound cakes and these pans make them turn out really special.

I decided to try Paula Deen's Grandmother Paula's Sour Cream Cake recipe. To keep with the red, white, and blue I served it with strawberries, blueberries, and whipped cream. The stars don't show as well in the cake picture, but I thought it was a good cake for 4th of July.

Hope everyone has a safe and fun 4th.


1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter, softened
3 cups sugar
1 cup sour cream
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3 cups all-purpose flour
6 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together. Add the sour cream and mix until incorporated. Sift the baking soda and flour together. Add to the creamed mixture alternating with eggs, beating each egg one at a time. Add the vanilla and pour the mixture into a greased and floured 10-inch tube pan. Bake for 1 hour 20 minutes.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Sauce Pan Brownies

When I was a girl I lived in West Texas. Within walking distance (wasn't everything back then?) was our grocery store, drug store, 5&10 store, and a bakery called the Snow White Bakery. I remember going in there and the smells were just amazing. They made the most awesome brownies. I've never really found a brownie that compared but these are fairly similar, except the ones from my past were frosted. These are so easy to make and turn out a really great brownie.


2 sticks butter
4 1 ounce squares Baker's (unsweetened) chocolate
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 eggs
1 cup chopped pecans (toasted)

Melt butter and chocolate together in a sauce pan. In a separate bowl, mix flour, sugar, baking powder. Add melted ingredients and stir well. Add eggs one at a time. Beat thoroughly. Spread in a greased 9 x 13 pan. Bake in a preheated oven for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Let cool. Cut into squares.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Butter Pecan Dump Cake

Dump cakes are those kind of recipes that have so many different types but usually just consist of some sort of fruit or pie filling 'dumped' into a pan, usually some pineapple added, then a cake mix and butter. This one is just a little different but is a very good variation.


1 (29 ounce ) can of sliced peaches with syrup (do not drain)
1 package of (dry) Butter Pecan cake mix
1 cup flaked coconut
1 cup chopped pecans
1-1/2 sticks butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Pour peaches with juice into pan. Sprinkle dry cake mix over peaches. Spread coconut over cake mix and add pecans. Pour melted butter over all slowly and evenly. Bake in a preheated oven for 45 to 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let stand at least 15 minutes before serving. Great with ice cream.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Notes on Cooking

I was watching The View this week (well, I fast forward mostly as their talking over each other really is annoying sometimes). Anyway, they had the co-author of this book on the show, Lauren Costello. Just in the few tips she presented on the show, I am getting this book. When searching to order it I came upon the blog that they have which has even more tips. I think any cook would love this book as it really gives some great ideas. I love cookbooks, but this one has not one recipe in it, but it is filled with great tips that any cook would use.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Monkey Bread

Today at work we had a surprise breakfast celebration for a young man who is getting married and just bought his first home. I took Monkey Bread and also Banana Bread. Monkey bread is another one of those recipes that has been around for a long time and has a few variations. Pardon my retro Tupperware cake carrier plate, it's not the best picture.


4 cans refrigerated biscuits (not the flaky kind)
1 cup granulated sugar
2-3 teaspoons cinnamon (I used 2)
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 sticks butter (3/4 cup)
Chopped pecans (optional) You can use raisins if you like also.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-10 inch tube pan. Mix white sugar and cinnamon in a medium sized plastic bag. (I used a plastic container with a lid.) Cut the biscuits into 4 pieces. Place several quarters at a time in the sugar and cinnamon mixture and toss to coat. Arrange the pieces in the greased pan. Layer with pecans or raisins. Continue layering until all the biscuit pieces are coated and in the pan. In a small saucepan, melt the butter with the brown sugar until dissolved well. Pour over layered biscuits. Bake 35-40 minutes until brown. A good idea to put a cookie sheet under as this raises pretty high and you don't want a spillover. Let bread cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a plate. Pull apart and enjoy!

I also wanted to use my new Nordicware loaf pan I got on eBay. I love Nordicware pans. I used my usual 'go to' banana bread as it makes a lot of batter. The picture doesn't do the sliced pieces justice -- this has a really nice crumb to it. This recipe made this large loaf and also a small 8 inch loaf. You can get the recipe from an earlier post Banana Bread.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Top Ramen Salad

This is a recipe that is seen at many potluck dinners (we call them covered dish dinners down this way, but I know that is a term that not used everywhere). When I looked on Wikipedia I saw many different variations of the term, some quite interesting. In any case, this recipe has as many variations as the occasions it is served. It's a good salad for a hot summer day.


1 package coleslaw mix
5 green onion sliced thin (tops included)
1 cup sliced almonds
2 packages ramen noodles, broken up (I used oriental flavor and poured hot water over them to hydrate them)
1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/2 cup oil (I used a little less than 1/2 -- not quite to the top)
1/3 cup granulated sugar + 2 tablespoons
1/4 cup vinegar (I used rice wine vinegar) + 2 tablespoons
1 packet flavoring mix from the noodles

Mix oil, sugar, vinegar, and flavoring packet. In large bowl, mix together coleslaw mix, onions, almonds, and broken ramen noodles. Add dressing and toss. Let stand for a few hours.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

The Good Earth

A friend of mine who is still displaced from Hurricane Ike is living on a farm. When she came for a visit she brought along some vegetables she had harvested from the garden there. Here is a great squash casserole recipe compliments of Paula Deen that makes good use of squash in a most tasty way. As with all of Mizz Paula's recipes, this is not for the WW conscious.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Strawberry Shortcake Cookies

Somehow through a frugal blog or message board I came across an offer for a free subscription to Martha Stewart's magazine. There's not a lot in there that relates to me or my lifestyle, but on the last page of each issue is actually a recipe that is 'down to earth'. This month's recipe was Strawberry Shortcake Cookies. I thought they looked pretty good for something different from the usual chocolate chip, peanut butter, oatmeal, etc. type of cookie. These went together pretty easily and are not too bad. Check out the link to the recipe here Martha Stewart's Strawberry Shortcake Cookies.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Congo Squares

There is a tea room in Fredericksburg, Texas that is named the Peach Tree Tea Room. It is a lovely place with the most delicious food. They have a gift shop and sell their family cookbooks. I was lucky enough pick up a 'like new' copy of one recently. There are some great recipes in there. I happened to have all the ingredients for this one and decided try this recipe. It's another keeper for sure.


1 cup melted butter
2-1/2 cups brown sugar, packed
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 eggs
1 cup pecans, chopped and toasted
1 cup chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt the butter and pour over the brown sugar. Let this set while you measure the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Add the eggs gradually to the butter mixture and beat well. Add vanilla. Mix in the dry ingredients. Stir in the pecans and chocolate chips. Pour into a greased 9 x 13 baking pan. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes. Let cool before cutting.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Bake Sale

My small community is having a bake sale today to raise funds for the Heritage Society. They do it the weekend of Mother's Day. Maybe someone will buy something so their mom doesn't have to cook. I made a few things to take over to the bank this morning. There were some beautiful goodies there for sale. In addition to taking my Lemon Jello Cake I took the following things for the sale.

(Cake Mix Doctor recipe)

1 (18.25 oz) chocolate cake mix
1 (3.9 oz.) package dark fudge instant pudding mix
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chocolate syrup
1 tablespoon instant coffee granules
4 eggs
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large bowl, combine cake mix, pudding mix, milk, oil, syrup, coffee crystals, and eggs. Beat on low speed to blend, then beat on medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes. Gently stir in chocolate chips and pour batter into greased and floured bundt cake pan.

Bake for 55 minutes to 1 hour or until cake tester comes out clean. Let cake cool in pan for 10 minutes, and then turn out onto cooling rack. Because of time constraints I just sprinkled powdered sugar. It can also be glazed as follows.

To make it look extra special, drizzle white over the dark chocolate glaze. It adds just a little extra something to the appearance of the cake.

Chocolate Glaze

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2/3 cup evaporated milk

Combine chocolate and milk in small saucepan. Cook and stir over low heat until blended and mixture comes to a boil. Lower heat and cook, stirring constantly until thickened.

White Chocolate Glaze

Place 1/2 cup white chips and 1/2 teaspoon shortening (do not use butter, margarine, spread or oil) in small heavy seal-top plastic bag. Microwave at high for 45 seconds. Squeeze gently. If necessary, microwave an additional 10 to 15 seconds; squeeze until chips are melted. Make small diagonal cut in one bottom corner of bag; squeeze mixture onto cake as directed.

1/3 cup butter, softened
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 medium ripe bananas, mashed
2 cups flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sour cream
3/4 cup toasted pecans

In a mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, until well blended. Stir in vanilla and bananas. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add to banana mixture alternately with sour cream. Stir in nuts. Pour into a greased and floured 10" bundt pan. Bake in a preheated 350 degrees for 50 minutes or tests done with toothpick. Cool, then dust with powdered sugar before serving.

1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg, beaten
1 cup milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9x5x3 loaf pan. Mix 1/3 cup sugar and cinnamon together and set aside. Combine flour, baking powder, salt and remaining 1 cup sugar in a large bowl. Combine egg, milk and oil and add to flour mixture. Stir by hand just until moistened. Pour half the batter into prepared loaf pan. Sprinkle with half the cinnamon sugar mixture. Repeat with remaining batter and cinnamon mixture, then draw a knife through batter to marble. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then remove and cool on a wire rack. Wrap and store bread overnight before slicing.

Friday, May 1, 2009

First Place

Well, I did it - I took first prize for my entry. I was really surprised. I won a really nice basket full of all kinds of kitchen things. We had a nice picnic. The weather was really warm and muggy, but we were under some nice trees with a bit of a breeze. I worked the 'fruit table' and filled bowls with melon, strawberries, bananas and grapes. I didn't think the line would ever end! I think my eyes are sunburned! It was really nice to win though. Our company also gave us Coleman lanterns and a $50 WalMart gift card for the upcoming hurricane season. Thank you Gulf Coast Center.

Spring Fling

This is the entry I'm taking to the picnic. I am so nitpicky (is that even a word?) I don't think this is a winner on taste, but maybe I'll get points for presentation! I made this bread back in December and I think it is a good bread -- maybe not great for a competition though. Jamaican Jungle Bread. Maybe next year I'll help organize the event and take the pressure off myself (although doing that part is hard work too). We'll see how it goes.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Mississippi Mud Bread

So, our annual company picnic (Spring Fling) is today. We enjoy barbecue, competitive volleyball, and competitive ping pong at one of our facilities which is actually a ranch. The smack talk gets pretty wild amongst the teams over who will win volleyball, but that is often nothing compared to the competition of the 'bake-off'. Last year's category was chocolate cake and I won first place. This year's category is quick breads. I have been off for a few days and have been 'practicing' some different recipes. When using my trusty Google, I came across this website Recipes for Everyday Cooking that had so many quick breads, surely there would be a winner in there. Here is one I made yesterday. It is very good. Whether or not a winner, this recipe is a definite keeper.


2 eggs
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup milk (I used buttermilk)
1/2 cup sour cream
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
4 teaspoons instant coffee granules
1/2 cup chopped toasted almonds

Beat together first 5 ingredients until well blended. Beat in melted chocolate and vanilla. Combine and add the remaining ingredients and stir until dry ingredients are just moistened. Pour batter into a 9 x 5 loaf pan that has been greased. (Recipe calls for 4 mini-loaf pans. Bake in a 325 degree oven for 55-60 minutes or until cake tester inserted in middle comes out clean. Allow to cool in pans for 15 minutes then remove and finish cooling on a rack. When cool, drizzle on Chocolate Coffee Glaze.

Chocolate Coffee Glaze:

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules
3 tablespoons chopped toasted almonds

Stir together until blended. Drizzles over bread and sprinkle almonds.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

How to Peel a Potato

I haven't had an occasion to cook anything lately. While browsing around on a food message board this week I came across this You Tube video done by Dawn Wells (Mary Ann on Gilligan's Island) on how to peel a potato. It's pretty amazing. How to Peel a Potato.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter!

When I was married, my late mother-in-law would make homemade yeast rolls for Easter. Although I do have her handwritten recipe, I am very challenged when it comes to making yeast breads. My sister tells me she makes refrigerator rolls, but her recipe was made with 5 pounds of flour! I went in search of an easy recipe and found this one. I 'practiced' last week and these turned out really easy and tasted good. Sadly, today for Easter dinner they did not turn out as good as these did -- bah! They really are easy though and worth trying again and again until I get it perfect.


Mix together 1 egg, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 cup sugar

Dissolve 1 packet yeast in 2 cups lukewarm water

Combine the egg mixture and the yeast mixture.

Stir in 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I actually used Gold Medal Better for Bread flour)

Mix well.

Stir in 2-1/2 more cups of flour.

Mix well.

Add 3 tablespoons melted shortening or butter.

Stir again until all flour is incorporated. Let rise until doubled. Stir down and refrigerate. About and hour and half before you want to serve the rolls form into rolls and place into a greased pan. Let rise. Bake at 350 until golden -- about 14 minutes. This dough will last up to a week in the refrigerator.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Glazed Lemon Bread

I seem to be on a lemon kick these days with my baking. I needed something small to make for a friend's birthday who did not want a big fuss over a cake, so I'm hoping a few slices of this might work. For some reason this sunk in the middle but it didn't affect the taste. It could have been because in between baking this I was having a stand down with a gecko in my kitchen. He didn't have a nice accent like the Geico gecko, or I would have let him stay......:o)


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 cup milk
2 large eggs
1 stick butter, melted
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla

Juice of 1 large lemon
1/3 cup granulated sugar

Grease and flour a 9 x 5 loaf pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine flour, salt, baking powder, and lemon zest in a bowl. In another bowl mix eggs, melted butter, milk, lemon juice, and vanilla. Add dry ingredients. Pour into prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes until golden brown and knife inserted in middle comes out clean. Leave in pan.

Prepare glaze by combining sugar and lemon juice in a pan and heating on medium heat until sugar is dissolved.

Poke holes in bread and drizzle glaze over bread while still in the pan. Leave in pan for about 15 minutes until glaze is soaked in. Remove from pan and let finish cooling.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Mexican Chicken Cornbread Bake

I have an abundance of church/school fundraiser cookbooks. This recipe appears in several of them, so I have had it on my to-try list for a while.


1 stick butter
1 onion, finely chopped (I used half of a large one)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (15.25 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained (I used the Mexicorn with black beans in it)
1 (15 ounce) can cream-style corn
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 (8.5 ounce) package corn bread mix (I don't care for the sweetness of Jiffy, but I found Martha White and used that)

2 large boneless, skinless chikcen breasts boiled and cut into pieces
1 small jar canned green chiles, chopped
1 can cream of mushroom soup (can use cream of chicken or cream of celery)
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 (8 ounce) package Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (I like it spicy so I used half pepper jack and half cheddar)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease 9x13 inch baking dish. Melt butter and saute onion and garlic until tender, about 4 to 6 minutes; set aside. In another bowl, combine drained whole kernel corn, cream style corn, salt and eggs. Beat in muffin mix. Fold in cooked onion mixture. Pour into prepared baking dish.

In a large bowl, combine chicken, green chiles, soup, sour cream, salt and pepper. Spoon over corn mixture to within 1 inch from edge. Sprinkle top with cheese. Bake in preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until edges are golden brown. This is even better the second day.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Lemon Sugar Cookies

There's a cookie sale being held at work for a fund raiser in the next couple of weeks. I was asked to make some cookies for the event.


1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup butter, softened
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda

Lemon sugar mixture:
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 cup sugar
Pulse in a small food processor until mixed together

Cream the butter with the sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, vanilla, lemon zest, and lemon juice until blended well. In another bowl mix flour, salt, cream of tartar, and baking soda. Add to wet mixture. Chill dough for at least an hour.

Take about a tablespoon of chilled dough and roll into balls about the size of a walnut. Using a fork dipped into lemon sugar mixture, press down the cookie dough until flat. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes until just lightly browned. Note: These cookies spread quite a bit so don't crowd on the cookie sheet.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Chocolate Pound Cake


2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cups butter (3 sticks), softened
2-1/2 cups granulated sugar
5 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 teaspoons instant coffee granules dissolved in 1/4 cup hot water
1 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Prepare a bundt pan using butter or spray and set aside. Mix together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, at least 3 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time and stir in the vanilla. Beat in the flour mixture alternating with the dissolved coffee and buttermilk. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake for 60-70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 15 minutes then turn out onto a plate and cool.


1/2 stick butter, melted
3 tablespoons milk
2 heaping tablespoons cocoa powder
1-1/2 cups powdered sugar

Mix together with a mixer and pour over cake. Can scatter a few pecans over.

Lemon Jello Cake

I made a few cakes this weekend to take to a memorial for a dear friend/coworker who I had worked with for over 30 years. It was a beautiful service and I'm so happy we were able to honor him with such beautiful memories. As was said in his service, Namaste George.


1 yellow cake mix
1 package (3 oz.) lemon Jello
3/4 cup oil
3/4 cup water
4 eggs

Juice of 2 lemons
1 cup powdered sugar

Beat cake mix, dry Jello, oil, water and eggs for 5 minutes with mixer. Pour into a greased bundt pan (or 9 x 13). Bake at 350 degrees for 38-43 minutes. While cake is baking, combine juice of 2 lemons with powdered sugar. When cake is just out of oven, use a fork and make many holes in cake all over. Pour lemon juice mixture over cake.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Raspberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

I love going to the library. I was a 'library kid' growing up. I worked in the library when I was in high school. One of my first jobs out of high school was working in a public library in Jefferson City, Missouri. I love the smell of books and love going in used book stores too. As exciting as the electronic world is and as awesome as the Kindle sounds, I still think I'd prefer to have a real book to turn the pages and enjoy. When I go to the library I usually get a book on CD to have in my car, see what new books have come in, and also check out a cookbook. This past week's cookbook I checked out was The Best of Country Cooking published by Reiman (who do Taste of Home magazine -- one of my favorites). This recipe looked good so I gave it a try. I took it over to a friend's house who didn't mind that I had taken a piece out for the photo.


2-1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup butter
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sour cream
1 egg
1 teaspoon almond extract (I used vanilla)

1 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup raspberry jam

1/2 cup sliced almonds added to reserved crumb mixture

Combine flour and sugar, cut in the butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Remove 1 cup crumbs for topping. To remaining crumb mixture add baking powder, soda, salt, sour cream, egg, and almond or vanilla extract. Blend well. (This will be like a moist pie dough). Spread batter over bottom and 2 inches up the sides of a greased and floured 9 inch springform pan. For filling, combine cream cheese, sugar and egg. Blend well. Pour over batter in pan. Carefully spoon jam over cream cheese filling. Combine reserved 1 cup of crumb mixture with 1/2 cup slivered almonds. Bake at 350 for about 55-60 minutes or until cream cheese filling is set and crust is a deep golden brown. Cool 15 minutes. Remove sides of pan. Refrigerate leftovers.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Pecan Praline Cake

Another birthday at work this week. I found this recipe on Not a great presentation, but we served it with ice cream and there were no complaints.


2 cups light brown sugar
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
2 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon soda
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cocoa
1 teaspoon vanilla

Warm buttermilk and butter together in a small pan. Put in mixing bowl. Add sugar and eggs. Beat thoroughly. Add dry ingredients mixed together. Beat well. Add vanilla. Bake in greased and floured 9 x 13 inch pan at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes.

1 stick butter, melted
6 tablespoons milk
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup pecans, chopped

Mix all ingredients. As soon as cake is done, spread mixture on top of cake. Turn oven on broil. Place cake on bottom rack in oven and cook until icing bubbles and is a light brown. This takes only a few minutes.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Oatmeal Cookies

I read Anna's Cookie Madness blog every day. No doubt, if a blog is titled Cookie Madness, then surely the cookies will be great. This recipe for oatmeal cookies was posted the other day and I had the ingredients on hand so gave them a try. They are very good. I had hired someone this weekend to do some projects around the house and gave him some for his hard work. Following is the recipe as I made them.

3/4 cup shortening
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 large egg
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup chopped pecans (toasted)

Beat the first 6 ingredients (shortening through vanilla) together in a mixing bowl. Combine flour, salt, cinnamon, soda, and oats. Add pecans. Stir dry ingredients into creamed mixture. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or grease cookie sheets. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls spacing 2 inches apart and bake at 350 degrees 15 minutes. I used a cookie scoop and got 3-1/2 dozen cookies.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

A Great Giveaway

I'm not big on entering blog giveaways, but this is one I would love to win. Diana (Freestyle Mama) over at Custom Blog Designs is giving away a blog makeover in honor of her one year blog anniversary. I can attest to her designs as she made my little signature. The best part is that when you purchase a blog design a portion of it goes to a very good cause, the Starfish Foster Home. So, in addition to getting a great blog design, you get to help out a deserving charity.

Valentine's Day and a Bake Sale

I love hearts and so it would only go that I love Valentine's Day. The Heritage Society of my little community had its annual bake sale held on Valentine's Day, so a good reason to make something that fits the occasion. I love a reason to use this particular bundt pan so I looked for a good pound cake recipe. This recipe makes a huge amount of batter. It calls for a 12 cup pan, I think this pan is about 10 cups maybe. I made this cake and also a small loaf pan with the batter. This rises quite a bit, so next time I would fill the bundt pan about 2/3 full and use a large loaf pan to use all the batter. It is a good cake. I just made a simple glaze of milk and powdered sugar and vanilla to pour. It would be fine without that too. There were some beautiful cakes and goodies at the bake sale.

3 sticks butter, softened
1 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
3 cups granulated sugar
6 eggs
2 teaspoons baking powder
pinch of salt
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup chopped pecans (toasted)

Cream 3 sticks butter with cream cheese until blended well. Add 3 cups of sugar and continue to cream mixture. Add 6 eggs, one at a time. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla. Blend together 3 cups flour with 2 teaspoons baking powder and a pinch of salt. Add pecans. Pour batter into prepared pan that has been greased well. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour 20 minutes. Check at 1 hour. Cool completely. Glaze if desired.

2 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons milk -- enough to make a nice consistency
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

I also made these 'Truly Different Cupcakes'. I don't know why they are called that, as they are basically just a brownie cupcake. I don't know who thought they were truly different, but I've always seen them called that.

2 sticks butter, blended together
4 squares baking chocolate
4 large eggs
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon vanilla
3/4 cup chopped pecans (toasted)
Melt together butter and chocolate. Stir in sugar, flour, and vanilla. Add eggs and stir. Do not mix with a mixer. Pour into cupcake papers 2/3 full and bake for 25 minutes at 325 degrees. makes about 18 cupcakes.

Saturday, January 31, 2009


We celebrated my grandson's 3rd birthday today at his house. His happiness came from the Iron Man birthday cake, ice cream, and candles.....oh, and balloons of course. For the adults I made a few things to take to the party.


1 bag fresh or frozen cheese tortellini
4 tablespoons fresh minced parsley
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/3 fresh lemon juice
4-6 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large pot, cook tortellini according to package. Drain. Mix all of the ingredients above together in a bowl. Let the pasta marinate in the mixture for a few hours, then thread 4 inch skewers with 3 tortellini each.


This recipe comes from the Pioneer Woman blog. It is an incredible blog and you see her recipes all over the place. Everything she makes is great and she shows each recipe in great detail. Here is a link to her recipe for Olive Cheese Bread.