Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The Best Lemon Buttercream Frosting

I FORGOT TO MENTION: FRESH LEMON JUICE IS AN ABSOLUTE MUST!! This is an absolutely fantastic recipe. It has actually become my base icing for many different things... 

1. Omit the lemon and replace it w/ strawberry juice - and you have strawberry icing. 2. Make sure the butter is still fairly hard and add some body temperature melted chocolate and you have chocolate icing (again, omit the lemon!) 3. Add some very ripe mashed banana (just a tablespoon!) and you have delicious banana lemon icing. 4. Instead of lemon use a couple tablespoons of Bailey's Irish cream and you have a fantastic whippy icing for adults (absolutely delicious on chocolate cake)... 


I do have a couple tips regarding the original recipe. If you find the consistency to be too hard (which will very likely happen) I would not add more lemon unless you really like a very powerful lemon flavour. Instead add a few drops of milk or cream (it will not curdle if you add it once the other ingredients have already been beaten). 






Another way to combat too hard icing is to make sure your butter is absolutely at room temperature. Finally, for those on a tight budget - margerine works just fine!

Get the recipe here >> The Best Lemon Buttercream Frosting @ twosisterscrafting.com

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Reese’s Peanut Butter Bars

I made the recipe EXACTLY as instructed -- no substitutions, no reductions or increases in ingredients. You know, the way you're supposed to if you're going to review a recipe. :) 

After doing so, I have three tips: 1. I found the texture of the bottom peanut butter layer in the finished bars to be somewhat "grainy," for lack of a better term, and I processed my graham crackers VERY fine. I suggest mixing them with the melted butter and then letting them sit until they have gotten completely mushy before you add the peanut butter. 

2. About prepping the pan and cutting them: I lined my pan with that nonstick liner that's parchment on one side and foil on the other side, with the foil side down. (No pan cleanup makes this a real bonus.) After refrigerating the bars overnight, I turned the full brick out CHOCOLATE SIDE DOWN -- very easy if you use the liner -- onto a piece of waxed paper and let them sit for 15 minutes so they got soft enough to cut. I used a pizza cutter, but whatever works for you. Using this method I had very little cracking of the chocolate layer, and they're quite attractive. 



3. Store them in the fridge unless you like this sort of thing gooey or unless you keep your house VERY cool. The butter in the PB layer makes them good, but it doesn't hold up well at room temperature. I layered mine with waxed paper in a Tupperware container and they are holding together quite nicely. This is an easy and delicious treat. The instructions just need some tweaking.


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Tuesday, August 30, 2016

No Bake Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies

These are quick no bake peanut butter rice krispie cookies topped with a delicious chocolate kiss.

No Bake Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies

Serves: 26

Ingredients

  • ½ cup corn syrup
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup peanut butter, creamy
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 cups rice krispie cereal
  • 26 chocolate kisses, unwrapped







Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan mix together corn syrup and brown sugar over medium heat, stirring constantly until it comes to a full boil.
  2. Then remove from heat and stir in peanut butter and vanilla.
  3. Have the cereal in a big mixing bowl and add the peanut butter mixture to the cereal. Stir until well coated.
  4. Drop by 1½ inch balls onto a cookie sheet lined with waxed paper or parchment paper. Push a chocolate kiss into the center of each cookie ball and form the cookie around the base of the kiss.
  5. Let cool for a few minutes so they can set up.
  6. Store in an airtight container.

Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

A moist scrumptious bread with chocolate and spices that even the kids will love. It's a great way to use up all of those extra zucchinis in your garden

This bread is really good. I made a few changes, because I know what I like in a quick bread. I like it to be really moist and I find that the recipes with sour cream in them are best acomplished in this way, so I added 1 cup sour cream. I was also concerned with it not being chocolatey enough, so I added a few tablespoons of cocoa to the dry ingredients. I also added extra chocolate chips. I also did what other reviewers suggest, and add the choc chips to the dry ingredients so they don't sink and it worked well. I added a little more zucchini also. 




And seriously, this is the absolute best bread I've put zucchini into ever! And I've been making different zucchini bread recipes all week. (I have a ton of zucchini in my garden). With the changes I made, I would consider it about perfect! I'll make it again and again. You would never know it had zucchini in it. It's perfectly moist and delicious. Like a rich chocolate cake. Just wonderful!


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Friday, August 26, 2016

Lighter Mini Cheesecakes with Oreo Crust

HEAVEN!!!!!! This it the type of cheesecake that is thick and creamy, not that light fluffy .. These bite-sized cheesecakes are easy to make and a big hit at parties. Garnish with melted chocolate or your choice of sliced fruit or berries.

I altered this recipe to make 24 mini cheesecakes. I lined a mini muffin pan with liners and added just enough crushed oreos (12 regular sized crushed in a ziploc bag with a rolling pin) to cover the bottom. I halved the filling and it made just enough to fill all 24 liners to the top.




I added a splash of vanilla to the filling as well and only cooked it for about 12 minutes, or until it was almost set. I topped them off with one mini oreo each, and it took almost the whole box of Snack Packs to do the job, as each baggie only had about 9 cookies in it :( overall, i was really pleased with how they turned out. Can't wait to eat them this weekend at a friend's party!

Get the recipe here >> Lighter Mini Cheesecakes with Oreo Crust @ yummyhealthyeasy.com

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No-Bake Chocolate Eclair Cake

This is a very quick and simple no bake dessert cake. It uses graham crackers and a pudding mixture. It tastes just like an eclair, but there is enough for a crowd!! It is a great recipe for children who are learning to cook, there is no baking involved or any power kitchen tools. Just a bowl and a spoon!
This was my second time making it, and I'm glad I did because the first one I made was not that great. My family and I thought the store-bought frosting I put on the first one was way too sweet, as well as way too much. Also, I used cheesecake flavored pudding on the first one and we didn't really care for that flavor either. 





This time I decided to use the vanilla flavor pudding (as per recipe) and make a chocolate ganache for the topping. OMG heaven!! I made it the night before to allow the flavors to set and took it to a potluck at work. Everyone was fighting over the leftovers & they all wanted the recipe. I cannot begin to describe how delicious this is for such a simple dessert (took less than 10 minutes to put together).

 I think the ganache is what really made the difference this time. (2/3 cup heavy whipping cream brought just to a boil, then pour over 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips...I used Ghirardelli, whisk until smooth and pour over cake. Then allow to refrigerate overnight to set.) You have to try this recipe...trust me, you won't be disappointed!

Get the recipe here >> No-Bake Chocolate Eclair Cake @ onelittleproject.com
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Ice Cream Tacos

I made these over the past weekend for a surprise dinner for family and we loved them! I was a little skeptical about how easy they would be to actually eat, but the consistency was perfect for biting into and not crumbling everywhere.

 






These ice cream-filled "tacos" are fun to make and eat. They're great party treats, and kids have a ball putting them together.

Get the recipe here >> Ice Cream Tacos  @ mostlyhomemademom.com

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Nutella No Bake Cookies

"Easy no-bake cookies with cinnamon and Nutella® flavors for an elegant-tasting cookie!"

The girls who will be eating these will LOVE these! The cookies are easy to make and taste yummy. I followed some ideas given by Marie C. on the Buzz and used the recipe as a liner for bird nests for Easter. I used a small cookie scoop with the dough leveled off and then free-formed a nest with them. 






After they cooled, I used a recipe for the nests found here on AR and put some of that in a muffin tin, placing the nest inside that. Using a knife I pushed up the chow mein noodles to hold around the nest. They came out from the muffin tin easily after refrigeration with a nudge from a table knife. These will be place cards for Easter dinner. Thanks, sueb for the yummy recipe!

Get the recipe here >> Nutella No Bake Cookies @ insidebrucrewlife.com

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Pecan Pie Cookies

Wonderful mini pecan pies. Perfect for cookie parties where you want to make something slightly different. You can spice up the cookies by adding cinnamon, ginger, or nutmeg to the cookie mix..
I am only going to comment on the filling since I used my own pastry for this recipe. I prepared the filling according to the dircections. However, when I make these cookies again, I will not pre-cook the filling. Doing so can make the filling too hard/chewy in the even that the cookies over bake, and it is easy to over bake these so watch carefully. 





When I make these again I will simply combine the ingredients and fill as per the recipe directions. Do not be tempted to use more than the specified amount of filling or the filling will bubble out of the muffin cups as the cookies bake. I also feel the filling could benefit from some flavoring. I added 1 1/2 teaspoons dark rum and 3/4 teaspoon vanilla. The addition of these 2 ingredients really made for some delicious cookies. With some changes, this is a very tasty cookie that is certainly worth making.

Get the recipe here >> Pecan Pie Cookies @ spendwithpennies.com

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Pan Fried Cinnamon Bananas

What a fun treat and would yummy! I love these in the morning with grits and eggs

Simple and delicious. I actually let mine bubble for quite a while to thicken in up a little more. The next time I make this, I think I'll reduce the rum for a little while, and THEN add the butter. I also used spiced rum, and that gave it a nice kick. I doubled the recipe so I think we'll have it with pancakes tomorrow. 





I tored it by separating the bananas and the liquid so the bananas wouldn't get mushy. They'll be SO good over pancakes, and after boiling it for a few minutes, the rum mix is thick enough to use as syrup. Yum! This might be my new favorite pancake syrup.

Get the recipe here >> Pan Fried Cinnamon Bananas @ onelittleproject.com

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Cream Cheese Banana Bread

I have been using this recipe for a few years now, and it remains my family's favorite for banana bread! The combination of bananas and cream cheese make this a very moist bread

This came out great! I liked that it was more "moist and fluffy" versus "heavy and dense". I like my breads nice and sweet. If you do to, here is what I changed to make it perfect: For the bread I dropped the white sugar to 3/4 cups and added 1/2 cups brown sugar. To the filling: I doubled the amounts and used 1/4 c. brown sugar, 1/8 c. white sugar, 1 1/4 c. finely chopped pecans, 4 tsp. cinnamon, and 3 T BUTTER. 


I used a pastry cutter to mix it until coarse and crumbly. I sprinkled a little around the greased pan. Then I put 1/2 in the middle of the batter and 1/2 on the top of the loaf. It came out sooooo delicious! More like banana coffee cake... but oh, so good! I brought it to a party and it disappeared instantly! This has become my permanent recipe!

Get the recipe here >> Cream Cheese Banana Bread @ yummiestfood.com

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Thursday, August 25, 2016

EASY BANANA CREAM PIE

So, so good for a hot summer afternoon or picnic. I can't agree more with 'kate'- DEFINITELY DO NOT BAKE THIS PIE. I've baked DOZENS of pies in the last 7 years, and I've never come across a banana cream pie that was baked. 

Might be a typo in the recipe. I must add, a baked-from-scratch pie crust is unparelleled in flavor and texture, so those who are intimidated: PLEASE DO YOURSELVES A FAVOR AND TRY IT! YOU WILL SHUN STORE-BOUGHT BRANDS =) Some of us have claimed the filling was runny; I highly suspect that the custard was not cooked to its full thickness. 





Remember: the custard should be at a constant SIMMER; meaning, small bubbles should be forming around the edges for about 3-5 minutes. If the custard is at a constant simmer, keep stirring and dip a spoon into it. Lift it out. With your finger, mark a line down the back of the spoon. The line should stay distinct and not meld together so easily. That means its ready. BTW, I once made this pie without the bananas. All I did was stir in 2 TBS. banana liquer into the custard along with the butter and vanilla. 

I suppose if I added the bananas, it would that much better. To really wow your guests, consider whipping your own sweetened cream instead of the whipped topping. Oh yes, and do not substitute skim milk- it will also negatively affect the consistency of the custard.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Cheesecake Brownies

Jazz up an out-of-the-box brownie mix with an easy cheesecake topping."

I made these for a birthday party. I followed the directions (used margarine). I used the "Best Brownie" recipe on this website because it makes great brownies. This recipe was awesome! Basically it tastes just like fudge-y/chocolate cheesecake but without the crust and no cracking in the centre like a regular cheesecake. Everyone liked them. 




They took about 31 minutes to bake in my oven, the Best Brownie recipe usually takes about 10 minutes in my oven so that's a lot of extra time. Anyway, you should definitely try this one! Since my first attempt, I have made mocha cheesecake brownies (3 tsp instant coffee, 1 tsp cinnamon) and peanut butter cheesecake brownies (1 ice cream scoop of cruncy peanut butter) with this recipe. The peanut butter one was especially good!

Get the recipe >> Cheesecake Brownies  @ lilluna.com

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Homemade Galaxy Ice Cream

First of all, let me start off by telling you how delicious this ice cream was. Seriously tasted JUST like bluebell vanilla ice cream! No joke!!

And the color combination all whipped together?! So fun and enjoyable to eat!

Top with any sprinkle of choice and enjoy your way to ice cream heaven

If you dream of traveling into space, then fire up your rocket launcher, cause we have a treat that will blast you into orbit. Edible candy bowls straight from the Milky Way will hold any cryogenically frozen treat. Even aliens will love these extraterrestrial delights!









This ain’t no space junk my stellar friends! Bowls that you can devour are more practical, as keeping your payload light is a priority when traveling at warp speed. :D :D

Get the recipe here >> Homemade Galaxy Ice Cream @ someofthisandthat.com

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The Best Lemon Bars

Tart, rich and perfection, all rolled into one! Wow your friends with this simple recipe. Hint: No Substitutions!"


Excellent, everything a true lemon bar should be. Buttery, tender and tart. Definitely use at least 1/2 cup of lemon juice or more. I've made this recipe many times and find that 2/3 cups lemon juice (juice of 3 large lemons) gives this the perfect tartness. (add 1 extra tablespoon flour if using 2/3 cup juice) I also added the zest of 2 of the lemons. 




I made this in an 8 X 11 dish (smaller than what the recipe calls for) and found it ideal. The crust is the perfect thickness and there is enough lemon custard in each bite to satisfy. This recipe makes a lot of crust and does spread into a 9 x 13 dish easily, but makes a thinner bar. If using the smaller baking dish (i.e, 8 X 11), make sure to increase cooking time of the crust and filling an extra 5-10 min each. As another reviewer stated, it's better to overcook then undercook the crust. Also, add 1/4 teaspoon salt to the crust for more flavor. This will be my master recipe for Lemon Bars.


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Flower Shaped S’more Pie Pops

I hate to be the only person to not like these, however I was less than impressed. They literally taste like melted chocolate in a pie crust. The marshmallow completely melts and there’s no marshmallow taste in the end product.

These DO NOT taste like s’mores at al!!! They are also time consuming to make, especially for the end product. Sorry to be the Debbie-Downer, it is what it is, and that’s not anything like s’mores.



Get the recipe here >> Flower Shaped S’more Pie Pops @ onelittleproject.com

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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Original Glazed Donuts (Krispy Kreme Recipe Copycat)

This was a great doughnut recipe. I must say that I do not care for the glaze recipe. It was a little too "vanilla tasting for me. I about 2/3 cup of powdered sugar and 1 1/2 Tbsp. milk to sort of tone it down. This made 25 - 3 1/2 to 4 inch doughnuts (as well as the doughnut holes).

I did double glaze a few of the doughnuts as another viewer suggested and it gave it a thicker glaze that you find on many bakery doughnuts. As far as the doughnut preparation, I began by mixing the yeast and hot water together.

I also added 1 tsp. of sugar to the yeast mixture in order to give the yeast something to feed off of, and i set it aside about 10 minutes to let it proof. This allows the yeast time to activate. I did knead the dough after mixing in all the flour because my dough had a slight batter appearance. I floured my board really well and kneaded it for about 3-4 minutes until it had enough flour in it to make a firmer dough but not stiff. I probably ended up adding about 1/4 to 1/3 cup of flour on my board to get it to the right consistency.





After rolling them out, I did let them rise about 14 minutes longer than called for because I was busy getting the glaze ready. They were very fluffy. Overall this recipe was great. The kids even said to keep this recipe!

Get the recipe here >> Original Glazed Donuts (Krispy Kreme Recipe Copycat) @ theworktop.com

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Homemade Frosted Coffee

This is a 'cheaters' iced cappuccino! Very easy to make, and very good!

Coffee is one of those things that varies drastically by the individual. That said, you need to tailor this recipe to suit your tastes. I like mine on the extra cream, extra-extra sugar side.

I didn't have a spare jar to shake with, so I heated a 1/4 C water in a measuring cup for 30s in the microwave, then stirred in the instant coffee (a little shy of 2 tsp because I found this a tad potent), 3/4 tsp stevia powder, and 1/4 tsp cocoa powder.



I poured it over ice in a glass and added the milk and a splash of heavy cream. Excellent! I made quite a few of these yesterday!

Get the recipe here >> Homemade Frosted Coffee @ anightowlblog.com

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Thursday, August 18, 2016

Brownie Marshmallow Crunch Bars

These are absolutely divine!! I am always asked to bring these for our school's bake sale and they are always the first to go! If there are any leftovers (which is doubtful) I prefer to keep the in the refrigerator.

If you didn't guess from the ingredients, these are insanely sweet, but they're really good. Cut them small - a little goes a long way. And have a tall glass of milk close by.





Next time I think I'll try pressing the rice cereal into the marshmallow fluff, then drizzle the peanut butter/chocolate over the top to make them a bit prettier. Don't expect these to look fancy, but they are really tasty. I'm sure they'd be a kid pleaser!

Get the recipe here >> Brownie Marshmallow Crunch Bars @ fromvalerieskitchen.com

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Sugar Cookie Dough Frosting

This is the best basic cookie frosting. Just change out extracts for different flavors (starting at 1/2 tsp to taste)and add your food coloring. Great for decorating, the frosting set up nicely after a few hours, SLOWLY add more milk if it is too thick to get the consistency you want. Just remeber this is not a glaze it is a frosting!





*** Just a quick update I use this recipe but now only do about half the confectioners sugar. Not to sweet just enough to compliment the cookie with out the frosting being the only thing you taste. I first cream my shortening (smart balance is transfat free) then add the sugar. when It turns crumbly I slowly add the milk to the consistency I am looking for.

Get the recipe here >> Sugar Cookie Dough Frosting @ chef-in-training.com

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White Christmas Truffle Cake

First, five stars for the original recipe. However, I was making this for a family party, and needed a bitter version for those who dislike white chocolate. After experimenting, I found that a half recipe fits nicely in a 2" deep, 6" diameter cake pan. 

Milk chocolate can be substituted for at least two-thirds of the chips used in the cake. Milk chocolate can also be substituted for the icing if you cut the cream in half (makes sense since milk chocolate already contains some milk). 



Whatever you do, Do Not Substitute White Chocolate! That came out so thin and sour that I thought the cream was bad. If you want a white topping, mix confectioners sugar with a little cream and vanilla extract.

Get the recipe here >> White Christmas Truffle Cake @ vikalinka.com

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Healthy Raspberry Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

This was pretty high in fat, so I did everything I could to lighten it, and it was successful. I used Egg Beaters, Splenda Sugar Blend, and substituted half of the oil with applesauce. Even with these modifications, this bread came out melt-in-your-mouth moist and flavorful. I don't mind raspberry seeds (now blackberries, that's a different issue), so I didn't sieve them.

I wanted to have some chunks of raspberries in the bread, so I just lightly mashed them and added them along with the flour. I was concerned that if I beat the raspberries with the mixer, it would totally pulverize them. Thicknik, my apologies for the changes, since I don't usually do that the first time through.





I had an idea of what I wanted, and this still is a delicious bread. For others who are watching their diet as I am these days, this will give them an option. Either the way it's written or the way I prepared it, it's still a winner.

Get the recipe here >> Healthy Raspberry Chocolate Chip Banana Bread @ bakerbynature.com

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Sugar Free Low Carb Coffee Ricotta Mousse

This recipe does NOT taste like it's WW… If you are a chocoholic like me and my family, you need to try this recipe!!!!! It is potent enough to satisfy any chocolate craving- so much so that you may as well just add a glass of milk to the recipe to sip as you enjoy the mousse :)



On to the details…. My Magic Bullet started smoking when I tried mixing up the ricotta and cocoa powder….. oops! So I tried our blender which is pretty heavy duty, and I had to blend the snot out of it, but I think it did good (Wondering if the ricotta was room temp if it would blend easier?). Other than that, relatively easy and turned out AMAAAAAZING!!!! Will for sure be making this recipe again! My 2 1/2 year old helped me finish some up and told me to go get more!

Get the recipe here >> Sugar Free Low Carb Coffee Ricotta Mousse @ sugarfreemom.com


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Soft Glazed Pumpkin Sugar Cookies

These cookies are very good,...soft, fluffy, moist, subtle spices, and just enough pumpkin flavor. Texture was similar to a muffin top. I was attempting to get a denser consistency, so I baked the cookies for only about 12 min and substituted 1/2 of the white sugar with brown. 

Also, I used almost the whole 15oz can of pumpkin puree, which made the dough stickier to work with, but the end product still tasted great (although not dense like I was hoping). I uploaded 2 photos of the finished cookie, iced and not iced. For the iced ones, I dropped 1 tablespoon of the mixture and lightly flattened them. 





No spreading whatsoever...even the little "peaks" from dropping onto the sheet remained intact. So for subsequent batches, I smoothed the drops of dough with my fingers. The icing was way too sweet for me. For the un-iced ones, I flattened them with a sugared bottom cup. I liked the un-iced ones better...simple and basic in flavor.

Get the recipe here >> Soft Glazed Pumpkin Sugar Cookies @ laurenslatest.com
 
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Wednesday, August 17, 2016

20 Minute Honey Garlic Shrimp

Very good. I made half the recipe and had it marinating most of the day. I also marinated pieces of green pepper, onion, grape tomatoes and whole mushrooms. When it came time for dinner, the vegetables were skewered separately from the shrimp. I put these in the oven first while I put the shrimp on their own skewers. 





(This gave the veggies about 15 minutes more time to cook). Then I basted the shrimp and put them in the oven at 350 for 3 minutes, turned them over and basted them on the other side. I did soak my wooden skewers so they wouldn't burn but I forget to spray them with Pam so the food would slide off easier. Also next time I would remove the shrimp tails and also serve with rice.


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Caramel Apple Crisp Cheesecake

This recipe is a crowd pleaser. You will be asked for the recipe many times once you serve this! Also, it's easy to make the day before, refrigerate and then serve cold with some vanilla bean ice cream.
This recipe is a crowd pleaser. You will be asked for the recipe many times once you serve this! Also, it's easy to make the day before, refrigerate and then serve cold with some vanilla bean ice cream.

BUT it's extremely UNHEALTHY...all the butter and sugar?!? So I made some little changes for a HEALTHIER VERSION!!! Is it as healthy as a bowl of spinach? No. But it's healthier than the original and also tastes better.

Changes in the crust: Use whole wheat or white whole wheat flour (King Arthur and use only 1.5 sticks of unsalted butter. A splash of cinnamon doesn't hurt either.

Changes in the apple layer: Use one or two MORE APPLES!!

Changes in the cheesecake: Use reduced fat cream cheese!!





I did adjust a few things after reading the comments, I reduced the streusel and crust by a 1/4 and added 1/4 of a tsp. of cinnamon to each. I also added 1/3 cup of chopped and toasted walnuts to the streusel. I used 5 apples and simmered them in the sugar and spices for about 20 minutes. It gave it more of an apple pie feeling as one reviewer suggested. I upped the cheesecake by 1 1/2 and cooked it for about 45 minutes and then put it in the fridge overnight, the next morning it cut perfectly. Lastly, I omitted the caramel and served it with homemade whipped cream.

Really delicious!!! I was even given the compliment that this was, by far, the best dessert I have ever made.

Get the recipe here >> Caramel Apple Crisp Cheesecake @ cakescottage.com

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The Best Homemade Cheesecake

This cake is easy to make, and it's so delicious. Everyone that's tried it has said it tasted just like the ones in a deli! You'll love it!

OK - I don't want to be rude, but this is the deal: this is a perfect recipe, and if it fails for you, it's your fault, not the recipe's. A couple of things you should know about cheesecakes: OVERBEATING WILL CAUSE A CHEESECAKE TO CRACK. Beat cream cheese with sugar only until smooth. Proceed with a wooden spoon for the rest of the recipe. OVERBEATING WILL CAUSE A CHEESECAKE TO HAVE THE "WRONG" TEXTURE. Air bubbles, gritty/not creamy texture, etc., are fixed my the same instructions above. OVERCOOKING WILL CAUSE A CHEESECAKE TO CRACK.




Do NOT cook this cheesecake until it's set. Matter of fact, don't check it at all. Put the cheesecake in the oven, set the timer to 60 min., turn the oven off, and forget it. I mean it! Don't open the oven, just leave it alone to do its thing. And that's it. A beautiful cheesecake. Far from bland: this is a PURIST'S cheesecake. It's great as is, but also a great foil for other flavours. I serve mine with passionfruit pulp or mango puree.

Get the recipe here >> The Best Homemade Cheesecake  @ plainchicken.com

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Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Cajun Chicken Pasta

"Cajun cooking is a combination of French and Southern cuisine. It is robust, country style cookery - and so is this dish! Laissez le bon temp roulez and bon appetit

Excellent recipe! Made a couple changes...made 8 servings...used 2 pounds boneless chicken breasted cut into bite size pieces, shook in zip lock bag with 2 tablespoons and 2 teaspoons of cajun seasonings. Melted 2 tablespoons of low fat butter and cooked chicken over medium heat for about 7 minutes. Removed chicken to bowl so it wouldn't dry out. Melted 2 more tablespoons of low fat butter on same pan, sauteed 16 ounces of fresh sliced mushrooms, 12 ounces of frozen chopped green and red pepper and 10 ounces of frozen chopped onion.





Cooked until mushrooms were soft then added all the other seasonings from the original recipe. Used 1/2 cup of light cream and 1/2 cup of heavy cream. Heated through then added the chicken for a few more minutes on low. Mixed in 1 pound of cooled bow ties pasta. Mixed in some grated parmesan cheese.

Get the recipe here >> Cajun Chicken Pasta @ damndelicious.net

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Whipped Cream Cream Cheese Frosting

A decadent whipped cream and cream cheese frosting that has everyone asking if they can lick the bowl. It pipes very well


I use 1 3/4 cups of POWDERED SUGAR instead of regular sugar for frosting! It firms it up enough to be a better frosting. If your cake is sweet, you might consider using less powdered sugar (cutting back on the sugar in the frosting makes for an excellent mix with a sweet cake). If you do decide to use less sugar, add 1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon of cornstarch to firm. Be sure to beat heavy whipping cream in an entirely separate bowl, and then beat together with cream cheese mixture. Definitely, freeze beaters and bowl before whipping the cream and deep chill frosting afterwards. 


 


If you are concerned about it not being stiff enough for decorating I would do the following. Dissolve 1 Tablespoon unflavored gelatin in 2-3 T boiling water. Strain out lumps if necessary. While beating the finished frosting very fast with mixer pour in hot gelatin mixture. I know this may seem odd-beating quickly and adding hot liquid but it works. Keep beating for a minute or two until it is well mixed (if not there will be lumps of gelatin). The frosting will stand up much better for decorating, I've used it many times for borders, writing and other (nothing too fancy though). The frosting will hold its shape after it is decorated for a few days.

Overall, this is the best cream cheese frosting/filling I've ever had!

Get the recipe here >> Whipped Cream Cream Cheese Frosting @ themerchantbaker.com

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S'Mores Cheesecake

Bring a little of the campfire indoors any time of the year with this stunning dessert. The creamy chocolate cheesecake, graham crust and toasted marshmallows all team up to make a truly delectable dessert

Great recipe! Delicious and so beautiful.

I made this for a BBQ & had trouble right away with the graham crust, too much crackers for the amount of butter, added another Tablespoon & continued. After the overnight chill when I took the rim off of the springform pan most of the crumbs crumbled around the bottom of the plate, not a good look ! The cheesecake part was wonderful but the chocolate layer was just to thick. I'm going to make this again but drop the crumbs down to 1 1/2 cups, leave the butter at 6 T & reduce the chocolate by half. Hope this help's anyone making this for the first time."




Tips:
This is a breeze to make. Do not use the water bath. All that did was make my crust soggy. The cake cracked anyway. You are topping with so much stuff no one will ever notice. Also I chilled and then added the hot fudge and marshmallows and toasted right before serving. This made the top have a nice crisp to it.


Get the recipe here >> S'Mores Cheesecake @ willcookforsmiles.com

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Saturday, August 13, 2016

Cheesecake Bites

I made these for a catering for my mother and her church ladies group. They were made ahead and frozen and after thawing were fine. I wasn't sure how to dip quickly so I took an old fork and bent it so I could rest the square on it and submerse it in the chocolate. 







I used a small soup mug so the chocolate was as deep as possible - and the mug held the heat in so I didn't have to warm up as often. I used a spoon in the other hand to make sure it was completely covered, then presto - out of the chocolate and onto the waxed paper! Incidentally - all but two of the recipes I used for the catering were from Taste of Home (the other were my own) and it turned out GREAT!!

Get the recipe here >> Cheesecake Bites @ glutenfreeonashoestring.com

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Chocolate Covered Cheesecake Bites

Satisfy your cheesecake craving with these bite-sized treats. Dipped in chocolate, these sweet, creamy delights are party favorites. But be warned...you won't be able to eat just one! 

I made these and they taste delicious. The cheesecake is the most important part, and it is moist and rich and tangy and just plain yummy. The chocolate coating came out perfectly. My only change was in the dipping. After the first couple of tries with the fork, I decided to just hold them by the crust and dip the tops. Who sees the bottoms anyway. Came out perfect, saved me time and effort too.




These little cheescake squares taste just as good as something found in a gourmet shop, or by mail, they taste that GOOD! I want to make some flavored with orange extract, and some with chocolate added to the cheesecake batter as well.
 


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Friday, August 12, 2016

No Churn Cookie Monster Ice Cream

Cookie Monster desserts have always been popular on Pinterest. You've probably seen those "Pinterest Fail" cupcakes with Cookie Monster chowing down on a real cookie. But now, thanks to Coachella, a new Sesame Street dessert is taking social media by storm. Are you ready for Cookie Monster ice cream?

 



One of the most talked about food trucks at Coachella this year was Afters Ice Cream. While all their flavors sound incredible, the electric blue Cookie Monster flavor was by far the most popular on social media. You can order this trendy scoop on a cone, or go wild and order it between a milky bun.

Want to try this trend for yourself? Ourfamilyofseven.com created their own version of this social media phenomenon so you can make it at home.

This recipe uses some blue food coloring, but it didn't come out as bright as the treats from Afters Ice Cream. It's also no-churn, which is a bonus for people who don't have the money or space for an ice cream maker.

Get the recipe here >> No Churn Cookie Monster Ice Cream @ ourfamilyofseven.com

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Copycat Dole Pineapple Whip

It's creamy, pineapple soft-serve that's swirled high in a plastic parfait cup or used in a tropical soda float, and it's divine enough to make you forget that your nose is sunburned and you totally wore the wrong shoes for Disney and you swear you're being followed—not by a hitchhiking ghost, as the Haunted Mansion would have you believe—but by a kid who will never, ever stop screaming.

Ah, vacation, right?

 



Since we can't just hop on the monorail any day of the week and order a Dole Whip—and we don't live close enough to the Dole Plantation in Hawaii, where it's also sold—we set out to make one ourselves. One that wouldn't require an ice cream maker, either.

Turns out, it's a lot easier than you think. We followed the same basic premise as our no-churn ice cream, but instead of using heavy cream, we whipped up a frozen banana, pineapple and coconut milk with our sweetened condensed milk.

If you're vegan—or just not that crazy about sweetened condensed milk—you could always substitute it with a can of cream of coconut. Just scrape out the hardened coconut cream and whip that with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, then blend in the other ingredients.

Leave it in your freezer for a few hours, and you've got a creamy, scoop-able dessert that's every bit as satisfying as the real thing.

Get the recipe here >> Copycat Dole Pineapple Whip @ cincyshopper.com

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Glazed Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Bread

Very tasty bread,. I used sour cream instead of yogurt as that is what I had on hand, and it came out very well. Next time around I’m going to swap out half of the flour for white whole wheat.

I adapted it slightly to take out the white sugar by adding a mashed banana and 1/2 cup honey. I also used coconut oil rather than vegetable. I made the glaze but like another poster, it sort of just became sweet applesauce and I quit on it before I used up all the powdered sugar in the house.. But even with out the glaze, they were perfect and sweet. Light but dense, almost like a crumb cake. 


These loaves seem short, and I usually bake mini loaves, so I started with 4 this time and they cooked well. I may try for 3 the next time, so that they will be a bit taller.

But all in all, a very good addition to my quick bread recipe collection.

Get the recipe here >> Glazed Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Bread @ lovelylittlekitchen.com

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Glazed Cinnamon Scones

These just turned out wonderful. I used some of the tricks I read and they were perfect. I added two tsp of cinnamon and I put the egg in the measuring cup then added 1/2 milk and 1/2 half and half cream and the dough consistency was perfect. I added raisins and almonds to mine. 



When I took the dough from the bowl, it was crumbly, but I was able to easly mold it into a dough ball and flatten it and cut it into about 12 good size scones. I also added a bit of lemon zest.... If people had dough that was too wet, they really need to try putting the egg in the measuring cup first, then adding the milk. If you want quick easy scones, this recipe is for you!!! I will make again.

Get the recipe here >> Glazed Cinnamon Scones @ moneysavingmom.com

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Deep Fried Cookie Dough

I made these tonight and thought they were fabulous! The batter was absolutely PERFECT, nice crunch on the outside and soft of the inside, wonderful flavor! 



We even threw some double stuffed Oreos in and I wasn’t sure at first how they’d turn out because of the batter not being very thick on it, but those my husband enjoyed more than the cookie dough! I’m imagining if you want a “thicker” batter to stick on something like the Oreos you could just use less milk? I thought it was perfect for the cookie dough though!
I hate deep fryers, so I just heated oil in a pot.


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The Best German Chocolate Brownies

German chocolate brownies. Just like German chocolate cake but richer. One of these little babies is enough. Well, maybe two.
It smells like your first step into a fudge shop. The frosting is sweet and creamy with a hint of crunch. Your teeth glide effortlessly through the dark chocolate. It's a fudgy brownie-lover's brownie if ever there was one. And the secret ingredient - sea salt - peeks out unexpectedly every few chews, taking it to a whole new level.





The brownie was a cinch to throw together. I used sea salt because I was completely out of regular salt (I know!) and it turned out to be one of the most memorable aspects of the brownie for me.
The frosting, on the other hand, took me far too long because I had the heat too low on the stove. After an hour of stirring (and cleaning and doing other odds and ends around the kitchen) I realized my frosting should have thickened long ago. Once I turned the heat up a tiny bit, it thickened right up. Keep this in mind if you're standing there more than 30 minutes with no thickening.


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Thursday, August 11, 2016

Flourless Marshmallow Crunch Brownies

This is the second year I've made these to pass out to friends and neighbors during the holidays and I always get such great compliments on them. They are so gooey and delicious, and the crunch from the rice crispy puts it over the top! I recommend using Betty Crocker's fudge brownie mix and under bake by a few minutes so that when you put the marshmallows on top and continue cooking the brownies won't get too done by the end. Cover the entire brownie mix with the marshmallows because once they're baked you don't want to try and spread or smear them or you'll just get a mess. Really let it cool before pouring the chocolate/peanut butter topping on so the marshmallows won't smear off. 

 



Everyone LOVED it! It is now one of our favorite desserts. Next time I am going to try some of it without the rice krispies because I think that I personally will like it better without them but everyone else liked the crunch.


Get the recipe here >> Flourless Marshmallow Crunch Brownies @ yammiesnoshery.com

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Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes

Just made these at the request of my mom and they leave a lot to be desired. Sorry, but the pictures are quite misleading as to how these “cupcakes” are going to turn out. The recipe doesn’t call for enough flour to actually make a true cupcake (cake-like, firm, and holds shape); the result is more like mini pumpkin pie/souffles. They’re not stable enough to hold their shape which is why I’ve noticed A LOT of comments mentioning they deflated. If anything either increase the amount of flour and decrease the eggs and milk to make a true pumpkin cupcake, to give stability and more cake-like texture.







These would do very well as a mini-pumpkin pie in a pie shell/crust, but as a cupcake…a little more work fine tuning the recipe is needed. It needs a better balance of wet to dry ingredients.

*Note: followed the recipe precisely.

Get the recipe here >> Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes @ cakescottage.com


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Whole Lemon Pie

An awesome summer pie! Excellent with BBQ or potluck if you want a light, lemony dessert. I like to make my own graham cracker crust (buy the ready to use Keebler Graham cracker crumbs) since it tastes so much better - sweeter, crunchier and homemade tasting. I think the ready made crusts always taste stale and they crumble and fall apart when you cut into them. Like others, I added about 5-6 drops of yellow food coloring, added 1.5 teaspoon lemon extract and increased lemon juice to 2/3 cups (use quality bottled lemon juice). 




Sweet and tangy, similar to a lemon chiffon pie and will take you a whole 15 min. from start to finish. TIP- Freeze this, especially if you add more lemon juice. Trust me, it won't be 'frozen', but will taste like a silky key lime pie coming out of the freezer. The fridge isn't cold enough to firm this up. I also make this in a 9 in. springform pan which makes serving and cutting very easy.


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Garlic & Oregano Pizza Dough

I used this for a pizza party I had recently, and it was a huge hit! It works best with white pizzas (using olive oil and herbs or pesto as a sauce). The crust is amazingly tasty, and quite flavorful. It also cooks up incredibly crispy on the outside, and tender and chewy on the inside. It's a perfect pizza dough.





This crust is completely different from the first one I blogged about. Yes, it’s flavoured, but it’s also a thick, chewy and bready dough. Completely different from the last recipe which yields a crunchy thin crust


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Wednesday, August 10, 2016

The Only Chicken Breasts You Should Be Eating Are Stuffed With Dip


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Bland chicken breasts? Not when they’re breaded, fried, and stuffed with the world’s best party dip.

Spinach Dip Chicken Bombs

Makes 8

INGREDIENTS
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 5 ounces baby spinach
  • Salt and pepper
  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups panko bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup canola oil, for frying

 





Directions:

1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the spinach, season liberally with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring often, until spinach is wilted, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the cooked spinach, cream cheese, mozzarella, and garlic powder, and stir to combine.

3. Slice chicken breasts in half crosswise. Cut a slit into the center of each half to make a pocket. Take a heaping spoonful of the spinach dip and pack it into the pocket. Pinch the edges of the chicken closed.

4. Place the flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs in three separate bowls. Take 1 piece of stuffed chicken and roll it in the flour, shaking off any excess. Dip the floured chicken in the eggs, then dredge in the bread crumbs, making sure to coat all sides evenly. Repeat to bread the remaining chicken.

5. Heat the canola oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Fry the chicken until the bread crumbs are golden brown, about 4 to 5 minutes per side. Remove from pan and drain. Serve!

Spinach Quiche Cups

Just made these and they were delicious!! My husband and I love lemon juice on our eggs, so I added a lemony twist to the recipe: I cooked the mushrooms in fresh lemon juice and did the same with the spinach, cooking until all the juice had evaporated. I also added a sprinkle of lemon zest to the egg batter before pouring it into the muffin cups. 





Other than that, I followed the recipe exactly, using extra sharp cheddar as my cheese of choice. The final product has a lovely lemony flavor and was whole heartedly enjoyed by the hubby! Thank you so much for the recipe! It's a keeper! (Also, I used a regular muffin tin with non stick cooking spray, and the quiches popped right out. I was afraid they would stick, but I had no problems!)

Get the recipe here >> Spinach Quiche Cups  @ manilaspoon.com

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Strawberry Cheesecake Salad

I made this for a church picnic and for a Friday night family night fruit salad. Along with our Ravioli Lasagna. It was a HUGE hit. it was so simple and fast to make. even my special needs son was able to get a thrill in helping me make this. Everyone at church was asking for this recipe. 






It allowed for me to keep with the fresh fruits we needed for nutrition but also a fun part at the the same time. Great and amazing compromise favorite. This will definitely be a make again favorite in my house and a recipe I will pass on to my daughter in her homemade cookbook binder we are making her for her soon graduation.


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Shrimp and Avocado Taco Salad

Very nice recipe, similar to a shrimp/avocado salad I had in New Orleans with a few changes. Tossed the chopped lettuce leaves with a bit of lemon juice/spritz of oil and S&P. I halved the avocados and placed the lettuce inside.



I squeezed some lemon on the shrimp and mixed with the dressing....but I cut the worcestershire sauce down to 3/4 tsp and added 3/4 tsp. of crystal hotsauce.(my favorite) but Franks or any other would work great and amount added could be to taste. Placed the shrimp mixture on top of the lettuce. Little spice/heat in each bite with the cool lettuce and avocado. It was delicious and thanks Inga for a great base recipe.

Get the recipe here >> Shrimp and Avocado Taco Salad @ iowagirleats.com

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Dill Pickle Dip

Wow, sooo much easier than making the wraps! Used dill pickle relish as suggested by others and also added some sour cream to make this a little creamier. We will definetly be making this one again! Update 5/31/12, I make this dip often and it was once requested that I bring some spicy pickle dip. I chopped up some jalapeno's and added with everything else (maybe 2 tbsp of sliced jalapenos chopped)...amazing, but the longer it sits the hotter it gets!


 



My family liked these even better than pickle wraps. The dill pickle flavor really comes through and by using the dill pickle relish is adds just enough pickle juice to keep the cream cheese spreadable. It was gone in no time, everyone wanted the recipe and I was told, I didn't have to mess with pickles again, if I promised to bring this dip in place of them. Loved the recipe, super easy, and I would recommend using dill pickle relish rather than dicing up pickles, unless you have pickles and no relish, then go with the dicing, as I think it would be just as great either way.


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Lemon Crumb Muffins with Lemon Glaze

I have made this recipe twice; on the second time around I made a few changes that made a delicious difference. I halved the recipe, and used low fat sour cream, then I added the juice of 1 1/2 lemons to the batter, I tasted the batter to make sure it had the tang of lemon before I was satisfied. I used the full recipe for the crumb topping, in other words doubled it for a halved recipe. 





When the muffins came out of the oven I drizzled a glaze of fresh squeezed lemon juice and powdered sugar over the top and in the crevices of the warm muffins, it made them even moister and more lemony. I will make this recipe over and over for my family and gifts for friends. If you love lemon you will love these changes.

Get the recipe here >> Lemon Crumb Muffins with Lemon Glaze @ bakedbyrachel.com

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Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Almond Meltaway Cookies

I made a batch of these for Christmas and they were lovely. With the almond in the cookies and the vanilla in the icing they are wonderful. I sprinkled finely chopped almonds on top too.





I would add a bit less almond extract to the icing next time, but otherwise very light and delicious. The one thing I had trouble with though was the “rolling” of the dough… It was more like drop a glob onto the baking sheet and gently spread with a spoon!


The mixture was soo soft and sticky there was no chance of rolling. Either a little more flour or a little less butter next time, but there will definitely be a next time. These were yummy.




Get the recipe here >> Almond Meltaway Cookies @ thenovicechefblog.com

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Low-Carb Cheesy Baked Cauliflower Tots

I love these! make them all the time. To continue the low carb theme, try almond meal (not powder) instead of the bread crumbs, also try a low carb Marinara sauce instead of usually sugar heavy ketchup. And for easy clean up, I use parchment paper and put a spoonful of the mix on it, then shape them in the pan.

 


The only pressure point to the recipe is chopping the cauliflower. I chopped it in the food processor but only pulsed it 3 or 4 times, no more than a few seconds because it can over process very quickly. If you are not sure or think you’ll mess it up, I suggest just chopping it up with a knife real quick.

No matters how you do it, they are delicious!