Thursday, December 26, 2013

Ice Cream Pretzel Cake





Our family loved a dessert we had at a local restaurant, so I invented my own version for a birthday party,, It was a big hit. It's simple to make ahead and just pull out of the freezer when you need it.

Ice Cream Pretzel Cake

MAKES: 16 servings

Ingredients:
  • 1-1/4 cups crushed pretzels
  • 6 tablespoons cold butter, cubed
  • 3/4 cup hot fudge ice cream topping, warmed
  • 2 packages (7-1/2 ounces each) chocolate-covered miniature pretzels
  • 1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream, softened
  • 1/4 cup caramel ice cream topping

Instructions:

Place crushed pretzels in a small bowl; cut in butter until crumbly. Press onto the bottom of a greased 9-in. springform pan. Cover and freeze for at least 30 minutes. Spread fudge topping over crust; cover and freeze.

Set aside 16 chocolate-covered pretzels for garnish. Place remaining pretzels in a food processor; cover and process until crumbly. Transfer to a large bowl; stir in ice cream. Spread over fudge topping. Drizzle with caramel topping. Garnish with reserved pretzels. Cover and freeze for at least 8 hours or overnight. Yield: 16 servings.

Note: If you are unable to find chocolate-coated pretzels, use 1 package (11-1/2 ounces) milk chocolate chips, 4 teaspoons shortening and about 110 miniature pretzel twists. In a microwave, melt chips and shortening; stir until blended. With a fork, dip pretzels into chocolate mixture to evenly coat, reheating chocolate if needed. Let stand on waxed paper until set.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Sinful Cinnamon Rolls




The cool thing about this recipe is, that you can make the dough the night before.  Then, all you need to do the next morning, is take it out, let it come to room temp, assemble the rolls and pop them in the oven. 

Sinful Cinnamon Rolls

Ingredients:

DOUGH:
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 pkg active dry yeast
  • 4 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt

FILLING:
  • 1 cup melted butter, plus more as needed
  • 1/8 cup ground cinnamon for sprinkling
  • 1 cup sugar, plus more as needed
  •  
Instructions:

Mix milk, vegetable oil, and 1/2 cup of sugar in a pan. Scald the mixture (heat until just before the boiling point.) Remove from heat and let it cool 45 minutes to 1 hour.

When the mixture is lukewarm to warm, but NOT hot, sprinkle in package Active Dry Yeast. Let this sit for a minute and then add 4 cups of flour. Stir mixture together. Cover and let rise for at least an hour.

Next, add 1/2 cup flour, the baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir mixture together. From here, you could cover the dough and put it in the fridge until you need it—overnight or even a day or two, if necessary. Just keep your eye on it and if it starts to rise out of the pan, just punch it down. Or, of course, you can just go ahead and make the rolls.

Sprinkle surface generously with flour and roll the dough into a thin rectangular shape, about 1/4" thick. Brush melted butter on top, then sprinkle sugar over the butter, and finish with a generous sprinkling of cinnamon.

Starting with the wide end, roll the dough tightly towards you in a neat line. Next, pinch the seam to the roll to seal it. Spread 1 tbsp of melted butter in each pan/dish. With a sharp knife, begin cutting the dough into 1 inch slices, and laying them in the pans. Let rest for 20-30 minutes. Bake at 375 degrees for 13 - 17 minutes, or until golden.


FROSTING:

Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. maple flavoring
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/8 cup melted butter
  • 1/8 cup brewed coffee
  • Pinch of salt
Instructions:

Mix together all ingredients, and stir well until smooth. It should be thick but pourable. Taste and adjust as needed. Generously drizzle over the warm rolls. Go crazy and don't skimp on the frosting!


IF MAKING AHEAD FOR CHRISTMAS MORNING:   Instead of popping them into the oven, just put them straight  into the fridge and let them rise for the 2nd time in the fridge overnight (they'll rise VERY slowly in the fridge). Then, in the morning let them sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes, and then pop them in the oven as directed.



Thursday, December 12, 2013

Saltine Toffee





Made these last night w/toasted sliced almonds to take on our tacky light tour. I opened my roll of foil & realized I didn't have enough so used parchment w/spray w/fingers crossed & it worked great. Saw review 2day where someone else used it. Only oddity was my crackers were on the bottom. I'm guessing I simmered too high or too long but it didn't hurt the taste. I used dark brown sugar & it didn't burn as other reviewer. Also I placed in the freezer cuz I was running out of time & they were ready in A snap. They were a big hit--even the driver asked 4 2nds. Ty 4 a yummy, super easy recipe.

Recipe >> Saltine Toffee @ asoutherngrace.blogspot.com

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Lazy Ice Cream Cake





We all love ice cream cake, but who has the time to make it? Thankfully the lazy ice cream cake actually exists, and we can all roll around the neighborhood with happy bellies.

Lazy Ice Cream Cake

Ingredients:
  • 12 ice cream sandwiches, any flavor
  • Ice cream, any flavor- softened
  • Ice cream topping, such as caramel, hot fudge, strawberry, etc.
  • Whipped Topping

Directions:
  1. Line an 8" x 8" pan with saran wrap. Using half the sandwiches, make a single layer.
  2. Cover the ice cream sandwiches with softened ice cream- try to make an even layer. (used about ⅓ of a tub of Cookies 'n Cream.)
  3. Cover the ice cream with a thin layer of hot fudge
  4. Finish the layers off with the remaining ice cream sandwiches.
  5. Throw the pan in the fridge for about an hour so the ice cream can harden.
  6. nce the ice cream has hardened, invert the pan onto the plate you'll serve it from.
  7. "Frost" the cake with the whipped topping.
  8. tried to get fancy and made lines of caramel & chocolate sauce, then dragged a toothpick in alternating directions to create the design.
  9. Return the cake to the freezer until ready to serve.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Pecan Pumpkin Pie




Won my work's pumkin pie contest with this one! The Orange Zest is definitley something that sets this one apart!

Pecan Pumpkin Pie

makes 1 - 9 inch pie

Ingredients:
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups solid pack pumpkin puree
  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup pecan halves

Instructions:
  1. Combine eggs, sugars, flour, spices and salt. Blend in pumpkin. Gradually add milk; mix well.
  2. Pour into 9-inch pie shell. Bake in 450 degree F (230 degrees C) oven 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) and bake 40 to 50 minutes longer.
  3. Sprinkle pecan mixture over pie the last 10 minutes before removing from the oven.
  4. To Make Topping: Combine 2 tablespoons butter, 1 tablespoon grated orange rind, 1/4 cup brown sugar and 3/4 cup whole pecans.



Source: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Pecan-Pumpkin-Pie-I/Detail.aspx

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Blueberries and Cream Pie With No Roll Pie Crust



I must admit I was a bit hesitant about the no roll crust but, much to my delight, it came out great! Also, the filling is lovely, and the lack of a top crust allows you to thoroughly enjoy the flavorful berries. Also, this pie is not too sweet and relies on the berries for its wonderful taste. This one goes in the permanent recipe box!

Blueberries and Cream Pie With No Roll Pie Crust

Servings: 6


Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 4 cups blueberries
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons sugar, for whipped cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, for whipped cream

Directions:

  1. Put first five ingredients in a 9 inch pie pan.
  2. Mix with a fork until well blended and pat into the pan.
  3. Push the pastry up the sides and form a nice edge with your thumb and finger.
  4. Prick the crust with a fork to prevent bubbling of the pastry during baking.
  5. Preheat oven to 400.
  6. Rinse berries and pick out any undesirable ones.
  7. After the berries have drained pour onto a paper towel to dry somewhat and then pour them into the pastry shell.
  8. In a small bowl combine the sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt.
  9. Stir in the milk and 1/2 cup whipping cream.
  10. Whisk until smooth.
  11. Pour over the berries and bake for 45 minutes.
  12. After about 30 minutes, check the pie.
  13. If the edges are getting very brown, cover with strips of aluminum foil.
  14. Cool on a wire rack and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.
  15. To make whipped cream, beat 1/2 cup very cold whipping cream until stiff.
  16. Chill the bowl before whipping the cream to improve the results.
  17. Add vanilla and 2 tbsp sugar.
  18. Serve a dollop of whipped cream on each serving of pie.

Triple-Chocolate Pumpkin Pie





A hidden layer of bittersweet chocolate coats the crumb crust, semisweet imparts a silken smoothness to the customary custard, and a drizzle of milk chocolate on top teases the eye -- and the appetite.


Triple-Chocolate Pumpkin Pie

SERVINGS:12

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups finely ground graham cracker crumbs (about 16 crackers)
  • 3 ounces (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons packed light-brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate (preferably 61 percent cacao), finely chopped
  • 6 ounces semisweet chocolate (preferably 55 percent cacao), chopped
  • 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin
  • 1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
  • 3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Ground cloves
  • 1 ounce milk chocolate, melted

Instructions:

Make the crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine graham cracker crumbs, butter, sugars, salt, and cinnamon in bowl. Firmly press mixture into bottom and up sides of a deep, 9 1/2-inch pie dish. Bake until firm, 8 to 10 minutes.

Remove from oven, and sprinkle bittersweet chocolate over bottom of crust. Return to oven to melt chocolate, about 1 minute. Spread chocolate in a thin layer on bottom and up sides. Let cool on a wire rack. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.


Make the filling: In a large heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water, melt semisweet chocolate and butter, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat.

Mix pumpkin, milk, brown sugar, eggs, cornstarch, vanilla, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and a pinch of cloves in a medium bowl. Whisk 1/3 pumpkin mixture into chocolate mixture. Whisk in remaining pumpkin mixture until completely incorporated.

Transfer pie dish to a rimmed baking sheet, and pour pumpkin mixture into crust. Bake until center is set but still a bit wobbly, 55 to 60 minutes. Let cool in pie dish on a wire rack. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 8 hours (preferably overnight). Before serving, drizzle melted milk chocolate on top. Serve immediately.



Source: http://www.marthastewart.com/312484/triple-chocolate-pumpkin-pie

Strawberry Pretzel Salad





Strawberry Pretzel Salad

Servings: 8 to 10 servings

Ingredients:
  • 1 8-ounce can crushed pineapple
  • 2 cup boiling water
  • 2 10-ounce packages frozen strawberries
  • 2  3-ounce packages strawberry gelatin dessert mix
  • 1  8-ounce container Cool Whip
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1  8-ounce package cream cheese
  • 3 tablespoon sugar
  • 3/4 cup melted butter
  • 2 cup crushed pretzels

Instructions:
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. For the crust, mix the pretzels, butter, and 3 tablespoons of sugar.  Press this mixture into a 9x13-inch pan and bake for 7 minutes.  Set aside and allow to cool.
  3. In a mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese and 3/4 cup of sugar.  Fold in the Cool Whip, and spread over the cooled crust.  Refrigerate until well chilled.
  4. In a small bowl, dissolve the gelatin in the boiling water, and allow to cool slightly.  Add the strawberries and pineapple, and pour over the cream cheese mixture.  Refrigerate until serving time.
  5. To serve, cut slices and serve with a dollop of Cool Whip.




Source: http://www.pauladeen.com/recipes/recipe_view/strawberry_pretzel_salad/

Dinner Rolls





These warm, buttery rolls only take a little hands-on prep (the yeast does all the work), kids love to help shape them, and they fill the house with a delicious aroma,,

Dinner Rolls

YIELD: Makes 30

Ingredients:
  • 1/4 cup warm water (115 degrees)
  • 2 packets (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups warm whole milk (115 degrees)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for bowl and pans
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 6 to 6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for work surface

Instructions:

Place water in a small bowl; sprinkle with yeast, and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. In a large bowl, whisk together milk, butter, sugar, salt, and 2 eggs. Whisk in yeast mixture.

Using a wooden spoon, stir in 6 cups flour, 1 cup at a time, until you have a soft, shaggy dough (if necessary, add up to 1/2 cup more flour). Turn dough out onto a floured work surface; knead until smooth and elastic, 5 to 10 minutes. Butter the inside of a large bowl; place dough in bowl, turning to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap; let stand in a warm spot until dough has doubled in size, about 1 1/4 hours.

Butter two 13-by-9-inch baking pans. Divide dough in half. Roll each half into a 15-inch rope; cut each rope into 15 1-inch pieces. Press each piece into a disk, then shape into a ball. Arrange dough balls in prepared pans. (To make ahead: Wrap pans well, and freeze, up to 2 months.) Cover pans loosely with plastic; let stand in a warm spot until rolls have doubled in size, about 1 1/4 hours (2 hours more if frozen).

Preheat oven to 375 degrees, with racks in upper and lower thirds. In a small bowl, beat remaining egg until blended; brush onto rolls. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes, rotating pans back to front and top to bottom halfway through. Let rolls cool 15 minutes before serving.

COOK'S NOTE:
The rolls can be shaped in advance and frozen for up to 2 months. No need to defrost -- just add 2 hours to the second rise.



Source: http://www.marthastewart.com/312832/dinner-rolls

Black Pepper Shrimp




Black Pepper Shrimp

Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients:
  • 3 lb fresh shrimp, unpeeled
  • 8 tablespoon butter
  • 3 tablespoon garlic, chopped
  • 4 tablespoon freshly ground pepper

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Wash and drain shrimp, and place in a shallow baking pan.  In a saucepan, melt the butter, add the garlic, and saute for 3 to 4 minutes.  Pour butter mixture over shrimp and toss to coat.  Pepper shrimp until shrimp are well covered.  Bake until pink, approximately 5 minutes, turn, bake a few minutes longer, and pepper again.  You must use a heavy hand with the pepper.

Serve shrimp with warm bread and salad.


Vegan Cupcakes





These taste amazing and are quick to make! You can play around and substitute different milks, oils and extracts; just about any will work,,

Vegan Cupcakes

makes 18 cupcakes

Ingredients:
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups almond milk
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, warmed until liquid
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract

Instructions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease two 12 cup muffin pans or line with 18 paper baking cups.
  2. Measure the apple cider vinegar into a 2 cup measuring cup. Fill with almond milk to make 1 1/2 cups. Let stand until curdled, about 5 minutes. In a large bowl, Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together the almond milk mixture, coconut oil and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir just until blended. Spoon the batter into the prepared cups, dividing evenly.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven until the tops spring back when lightly pressed, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool in the pan set over a wire rack. When cool, arrange the cupcakes on a serving platter. Frost with desired frosting.


Source: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Vegan-Cupcakes/Detail.aspx

Bacon-Wrapped Chicken Breasts with Chile Cheese Sauce





I love the intense, smoky flavor of chipotle peppers, which are actually dried and smoked jalapeƱos. Use more or less of the peppers depending on how sassy you like your food!

Bacon-Wrapped Chicken Breasts with Chile Cheese Sauce
Servings: 4

Ingredients:
  • 8 slices bacon
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut in half lengthwise (making 8 long pieces)
  • 1 10.75-ounce can condensed cheddar cheese soup
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon chopped canned chipotle peppers or bottled chipotle hot pepper sauce (or to taste)
  • Dash Worcestershire sauce

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil; set aside.

Wrap a slice of bacon around each piece of chicken and place on the baking sheet. Bake about 20 minutes or until cooked through. Remove chicken from the oven. Preheat the broiler.

Meanwhile, in a saucepan, bring the soup, milk, chipotle pepper, and Worcestershire to a simmer over medium heat. Turn off heat; cover to keep sauce warm.

Broil the chicken 4 to 5 inches from heat for 1 to 2 minutes or until the bacon is really sizzling. Serve chicken topped with the cheese sauce.



Source: http://thedeenbros.com/index.php/recipes/recipe_detail/bacon-wrapped_chicken_breasts_with_chile_cheese_sauce/

Lemon Chicken Piccata





This delicious chicken dish is exquisite and easy to prepare. The light and luscious lemon sauce really pops without being too acidic; it is simply divine. Serve it with herb-roasted potatoes or lemon-rice,,

Lemon Chicken Piccata

makes 4 servings

Ingredients:
  • 3 large skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cut into 1/2-inch medallions
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, or as needed
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 lemon, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained and rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons minced Italian (flat-leaf) parsley

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 200 degrees F (95 degrees C). Place a serving platter into the oven to warm.

Season the chicken breast pieces with salt and pepper and dredge them in flour. Shake off excess flour. Heat the vegetable oil in a skillet; pan-fry the chicken pieces until golden brown on both sides, about 3 minutes per side. Work in batches and do not crowd skillet, adding oil as needed . Place the chicken pieces onto the warmed platter in the oven. When finished with all the chicken, drain most of the oil from the skillet, leaving a thin coating on the surface of the pan.

Cook and stir the minced garlic in the skillet until fragrant, about 20 seconds. Pour in the chicken broth. Scrape and dissolve any brown bits from the bottom of the skillet. Stir in the lemon slices and bring the mixture to a boil. Let cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce reduces to about 2/3 cup, 5 to 8 minutes. Add the lemon juice and capers; simmer until the sauce is reduced and slightly thickened, about 5 minutes more. Drop the butter into the skillet and swirl it into the sauce by tilting the skillet until the butter is melted and incorporated. Add the parsley; remove from heat and set aside.

Arrange the chicken medallions on serving plates and spoon sauce over each portion to serve.





Source: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Lemon-Chicken-Piccata/Detail.aspxhttp://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Lemon-Chicken-Piccata/Detail.aspx

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Cinnamon Rolls





"Here's an easy alternative to buying those famous cinnamon rolls in the mall. They taste exactly the same, and the dough is made in the bread machine,,

Cinnamon Rolls

makes 16 rolls

Ingredients:
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 cup warm milk
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups bread flour
  • 1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons milk

Instructions:
  1. In the pan of your bread machine, combine water, melted butter, vanilla pudding, warm milk, egg, 1 tablespoon sugar, salt, bread flour and yeast. Set machine to Dough cycle; press Start.
  2. When Dough cycle has finished, turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll into a 17x10 inch rectangle. Spread with softened butter. In a small bowl, stir together brown sugar, cinnamon and pecans. Sprinkle brown sugar mixture over dough.
  3. Roll up dough, beginning with long side. Slice into 16 one inch slices and place in 9x13 buttered pan. Let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 45 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes. While rolls bake, stir together cream cheese, softened butter, confectioners' sugar, vanilla and milk. Remove rolls from oven and top with frosting.


Source: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Cinnamon-Rolls-III/Detail.aspx

Chewy Peanut Butter Brownies





These brownies have been a favorite in my family since I was a small child. Because they're so popular, I usually double the recipe. Great with chocolate frosting!

Chewy Peanut Butter Brownies

makes 1 9x9 inch pan

Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup margarine, softened
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C ). Grease a 9x9 inch baking pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, cream together peanut butter and margarine. Gradually blend in the brown sugar, white sugar, eggs, and vanilla; mix until fluffy. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt; stir into the peanut butter mixture until well blended.
  3. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes in preheated oven, or until the top springs back when touched. Cool, and cut into 16 squares.


Source: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Chewy-Peanut-Butter-Brownies/Detail.aspx

Triple Chocolate Pumpkin Pie





Ah, Pie. Pie is a weird form of dessert to me. You can throw anything into a pie crust; it seems nothing is off limits. People put weird things in pie, and it makes me nervous. "What's going to happen when I cut into this thing?" is what I'm usually thinking.

I have a thing against cooked fruit. It's weirdly sour and is usually not cooked all the way through (I'm looking at you, apples). However, pumpkin pie is a mainstay at the holidays, and one I enjoy. But, it's a little boring and expected, so at thanksgiving I took this baby out for a spin.

It's rich. It's decadent. It has just enough pumpkin flavor without being just pumpkin, and has a rich, chocolatey, velvety texture and a yummy, perfect graham crust.

It had a tough time at thanksgiving competing with the 4 other desserts we had going on, so I suggest making this as a stand-out dessert, with no competition from all those bars and cookies floating around this time of year.

Oh, and did I mention this thing is pretty easy? Let's get going!

Recipe >> Triple Chocolate Pumpkin Pie @ Closet Cooking