Recipes

Chocolate Ganache Tart

Tart Shell:

1 c. flour                                                      1/4 c. sugar

1 stick unsalted butter, room temp       1/8 t. salt

1/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder         1/2 t. vanilla

Ganache filling:

10 oz. bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

1/2 c. whole milk

1 c. heavy cream

1 large egg, lightly beaten



Coat tart pan (or mini tart pans) with cooking spray. Whisk together flour, cocoa and salt. Beat butter on medium speed till fluffy, about 3 min. Add sugar and beat till pale and fluffy, about 2 more min. Reduce speed to low. Add vanilla and flour mixture and mix till dough begins to hold together, 1-2 min. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 30 min. Roll out dough to 1/4 in. thickness. Press into prepared pan(or pans). Trim excess dough so it’s flush with pan edge. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Bake shell at 325 degrees on a rimmed baking sheet till firm, about 25 min. Let cool completely on wire rack.

For filling: Place chocolate in bowl. Heat cream and milk in small saucepan over med/high heat till almost boiling/pour over chocolate. Let stand for 2 min. Slowly whisk till smooth. Let stand 10 min. more. Stir in egg. Return tart shell(s) to baking sheet and pour in filling. Bake till set, about 25 min. Let cool completely before removing from tart pan(s). Garnish with fresh whipped cream and raspberries if desired.

No Fail Crescent Rolls

Sweet Rolls

2 softened sticks of butter
3/4 c. sugar
1 egg
2 c. warm milk
1/2 c. warm water
2 rounded T. yeast
1 t. salt
7 c. flour




Combine warm water and yeast in a small bowl and set aside. In a large mixer combine butter and sugar. Add egg and mix well. Add milk and yeast mixture, salt then half of the flour. Mix slowly till well combined, then add remaining flour. Dough will be slightly stick. Allow to rise covered, at room temperature until double the size (approximately 40-60 min.)
Split dough in half or thirds depending on preferred size of roll (half for larger rolls, thirds for smaller rolls). Roll divided section onto floured surface till 1/4 thick into a circle. Using a pizza cutter, cut into triangles. Roll the dough from the long side to the point then space evenly on cookie sheet. Repeat with other divided sections (fills 2 sheet pans). Cover and let rise 20-30 minutes. Bake at 350 for 15-20 min depending on size of rolls. They should be lightly browned on the top. Melt 1/2 stick of butter and brush on tops of rolls while they are still warm. Yields, 4 dozen smaller rolls or 3 dozen large rolls.




Creamy Fruit Pie

No Fail Pie Crust

2 1/2 c. flour                       1/2 t. salt

1 c. shortening

Process the above ingredients until they are large crumbs.

Add:

1 egg, beaten                      1 T. vinegar

1/4 c. water

Mix all ingredients together; divide into four parts. Roll out onto well floured surface and put into pie pan. Poke holes in pie crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until light golden brown.

Let cool before filling.





Filling:

2 t. vanilla                                          3/4- 1 c. sugar

8 oz. cream cheese softened           2 c. thinly sliced fruit (strawberries, peaches, raspberries or blueberries)

2 c. heavy cream, whipped

Beat together cream cheese, sugar and vanilla. Whip the cream separately. Fold or whip both mixtures together. Spread into baked and cooled pie crust. Cover and refrigerate. May be made up to 1 day in advance. When ready to serve top with desired fruit topping.




Ladie’s Luncheon

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I had so many friends help us move out of our old home and into our new home that I wanted to thank them all by throwing a lunch for them! I tried my hardest to keep it simple and CASUAL- so bottled sodas and a simple lunch were the way to go.img_6740

I had all of the salad plates set up with a wedge salad when my friends arrived- iceberg lettuce, crumbled bacon, diced tomatoes, bleu cheese and topped with ranch dressing. The perfect starter for a light lunch.

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As they finished their salads we cleared their salad plates and brought them grilled cheese sandwiches made with cheddar and mozzarella cheeses and spread with an herbed butter- 1/2 c. softened butter blended with 1 tsp. lemon lemon juice, 1 T. diced fresh parsley, 1 t. diced garlic and salt and pepper to taste. The tomato soup stole the show though- fresh tomatoes blended with cream and served hot.

Cream of Fresh Tomato Soup

3 T. olive oil                                                                                        1 T. tomato paste

1 1/2 c. chopped red onions (2 onions)                                          1/4 c. packed fresh basil leaves

2 carrots, unpeeled and chopped                                                    3 c. chicken stock or chicken broth

1 T. minced garlic (3 cloves)                                                             1 T. salt

2 large vine-ripened tomatoes, coarsely  chopped                      2 t. ground black pepper

1 1/2 t. sugar                                                                                        3/4 c. heavy cream

Heat the olive oil in large, heavy bottomed pot over medium-low heat. Add the onions and carrots and sauce for about 10 min., until very tender. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, sugar, tomato paste, basil, chicken stock, salt and pepper and stir well. Bring the soup to a boil, lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 30-40 min., until tomatoes are very tender.

Add the cream to the soup and process in a blender or food processor.

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Serving 14 women was kind of tricky getting us all into the same room but 2 tables held us perfectly and we were still close enough to talk. Putting a tablecloth onto an 8 ft. card table was the perfect solution.

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We ended the lunch with snickerdoodle ice-cream sandwiches- something small and sweet!

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Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies

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SALTED CARAMEL CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

3 c. flour                           1/2 c. sugar

1 t. baking soda               1 c. brown sugar

1 t. coarse sea salt           1 t. vanilla

1 c. butter softened         2 eggs

1 1/4 c. chocolate chips  1/2 c. caramel chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine flour, soda and salt in a small bowl. Combine butter, sugars and vanilla in a large bowl. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate and caramel chips. Bake for 9-11 minutes. Yield 3-4 dozen cookies.

Magic Cookie Bars

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Magic Cookie Bars

2 pkgs. Graham Crackers

1/2 c. butter, melted

1 can sweetened condensed milk

1/2 c. coconut

1 c. milk chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Process the graham crackers in a food processor. Transfer to a bowl and combine with melted butter till fully coated. Press mixture into the bottom of a 9×13 non stick pan. Cook for approximately 10 min. until crust hardens slightly and becomes a light brown. Remove pan from oven.

Pour the sweetened condensed milk evenly over the top of the crust. Sprinkle the chocolate chips all over, then add the coconut. Return the pan to the oven and cook for 15 min. more till edges and coconut become a light brown and sweetened condensed milk is bubbly. Let cool completely before cutting into 3 inch squares.

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Dream Cake

dreamcakeThis cake not only looks good but is light and simple!! The only tools you need to make it are two 8 or 9 in. round cake pans, a cake slicer and a small grater. Sometimes if I’m in a hurry I even make a boxed chocolate cake mix and I think the taste is almost as good. Recipe to follow:

DREAM CAKE

For cake:

2 c. sugar                                         1 1/2 t. baking soda                                    1/2 c. vegetable oil

1 3/4 c. flour                                   1 t. salt                                                           2 t. vanilla extract

3/4 c. cocoa powder                      2 eggs                                                            1 c. boiling water

1 1/2 t. baking powder                  1 c. milk

For cream topping and filling:

4 c. heavy cream                            1/2 c. powdered sugar.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 8 or 9 in. round pans. Combine dry ingredients in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed for 2 min. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour for 30-35 min or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 min; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely. Combine heavy cream and powdered sugar in bowl and beat on high till cream is stiff.

Once cakes are completely cooled, use the cake slicer to divide each round in half.cake cutting toolThese can be purchased at a local hobby or craft store or restaurant supply store. It’s accuracy is worth every penny!

Place the first layer of cake onto cake stand, cover the top with the whipped cream about 1/2 inch thick, leaving about 1/4 inch border so cream doesn’t overflow when other layers are added. Repeat with remaining 3 layers. Once cream is layered in-between each half and on top, spread a thin layer of cream all around the sides, exposing some of the cake.

Optional: Grate a milk chocolate bar on top of the cake.

4 layers of goodness serves 16-20 people. Enjoy!!cake slice