Monday, November 5, 2012

Cheesy Popovers with Chiles

It seems everyone in my family eats chili differently.  My son prefers chili with a side of chips.  Make it regular corn chips or some variety of tortilla chip.  Either way, he's happy. 
Some like oyster crackers...LOTS of oyster crackers. And they don't just sprinkle them on top.  They stir them in. The result is a mushy mess that kind of resembles chili.
My favorite used to be cornbread.  I say "used to be" because that was before I tried these delicious handfuls of cheesy/chile goodness. And you know my favorite part?  They could not be easier to make.  Assemble the ingredients, throw them in a bowl, mix them up good and start filling muffin tins.  And the leftovers (if there are any) are perfect alongside a spanish omelet the next morning!

What's In It:

3 large eggs (Thank you Sylvia, Lucy, Cleo, and Pat!)
1 c. milk
1/4 c. diced jalapenos (I prefer fresh but use pickled if that's all you have.)
1 c. sharp cheddar, shredded
1 c. unbleached, all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt 

How To Make It:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Spray 1-12 cup or 2-6 cup muffin tins with non-stick cooking spray.
Add all ingredients to medium-sized bowl.  Mix well.
Fill each muffin cup 2/3 full and bake 20 minutes or until browned.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Easy Ice Cream Cake

The kids are coming!  The kids are coming!  
A couple of week ago, my daughter and I decided to spend Saturday making Chocolate Zucchini Bread and Low Country Boil.  The bread we'd share...the seafood, not so much.
I decided a dessert was in order.  I wanted it easy.  I wanted it cold.  And, I wanted it irresistable.
I've asked around...this dessert has something for everyone. 
I think it would even be very good with strawberries substituted for the Reese's candies!     

What's In It:
24 ice cream sandwiches (I used plain-old-vanilla, but cookies-n-cream would work as would chocolate chip!)
16 oz. Cool-Whip (And yes, there IS a difference!)
1 jar caramel sundae topping (Again, there is a difference.  Stay with a brand you trust.)   
1 family-sized bag Reese's miniature peanut butter cups, unwrapped and roughly chopped (Strawberries would work here.  Especially the frozen kind.  Thawed, they are soft, sweet, juicy, and perfect for this dessert.)

How To Make It:
If you have one, use a 9x13 glass dish.  This dessert makes an impressive presentation!  If not, you may line your pan with foil and turn the whole thing out onto a serving plate.  I recommend this only if you expect the entire thing to be eaten at one sitting.  If not, it's better to keep it inside the plate for storage later.

Cover bottom of serving plate with a layer of ice cream sandwiches.(You will have a row of whole sandwiches and a row of 1/2 sandwiches underneath.)
Top with 1/2 the Cool Whip, 1/2 the caramel topping, and 1/2 the chopped Reese's miniatures. 
May be served immediately or covered and placed in freezer, if necessary.(If serving later, take out of freezer 5 to 10 minutes before serving for easier cutting.)

© Copyright 2009-2012 Stacye Carroll All Rights Reserved

Friday, June 22, 2012

Sour Cream Streusel Pound Cake

I don't know about yours, but my guy likes nuts.  I know, I know...stating the obvious.  I mean, he's with me, right?  But that's not all!  Mix those nuts with a little brown sugar, and he'll follow you anywhere!  I guess you could call him my "Streusel Stud".
My son loves pound cake, and not just any pound cake.  He loves MY pound cake, and I only make one.  My go-to is always Sour Cream Pound Cake.  Several months ago, I purchased a bundt-shaped cake plate just for him.  I baked a pound cake and presented it to him, with the understanding that when he wants another, he'll bring his plate by and I will fill it.
So what pleases both palates?  A sour cream streusel pound cake, of course!  This cake is a real crowd pleaser.  Boasting 1/2 pound butter and a pound of sour cream, it's one of the moistest pound cakes I've ever baked.

What's In It:
For the Cake:
1 c. butter
2 c. granulated sugar
4 lg. eggs (Thank you Sylvia, Chloe, Pat, and Lucy!)
1 16 oz. container sour cream (Low fat is fine)
2 tsp. vanilla
4 c. all purpose, unbleached flour
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt 

For the Streusel:
1/2 c. chopped pecans(walnuts are good, too)
1 tsp. cocoa
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 c. light brown sugar

How To Make It:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Grease and flour 10-inch tube pan or bundt pan.
Mix streusel ingredients in small bowl, stirring well.  Set aside.
Cream butter and sugar.
Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
Sift dry ingredients together and add to butter/sugar mixture alternately with sour cream.  Mix well.
Add vanilla.  Mix well.
Pour 1/3 batter into prepared pan, spread and sprinkle with 1/2 streusel mixture.
Repeat, ending with final layer of batter.
Bake 1 hour.
Cool in pan several minutes before turning out onto cake dish.
May sprinkle with powdered sugar or drizzle with caramel glaze, as desired. (I serve this cake plain.  It's a good hand-to-mouth cake.)

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Minnie Jackson's Chocolate Kahlua Cream Pie

It's Oscar weekend and, this year, I've actually seen quite a few of the films nominated for "Best Picture".  Knowing that I'm southern, born and bred, it should surprise no one that my favorite was "The Help".  It was also the first movie I thought of when thinking of ways to link The Oscars and food. I did tweak Minnie's recipe, just a bit, by substituting Kahlua for her "secret ingredient".  I do hope it's just as good... ;)

What's In It:
Your favorite pie crust, baked according to directions.(If you have a fabulous recipe, go for it!  If not, I usually use Pillsbury's refrigerated.  Trust me, the crust is not the star of this pie...just ask Minnie)
1 1/4 c. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips(easier to melt)
1/2 stick butter (never margarine)
3 egg whites (Thank you Cleo, Sylvia, Pat and Lucy!)
3 tbs. granulated sugar
1/4 c. Kahlua
3/4 c. heavy whipping cream

1 c. heavy whipping cream
1/4 c. sifted powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla (never imitation)
Chocolate curls or additional mini chocolate chips for garnish

How To Make It:

Melt 1 1/4 c. chocolate chips with Kahlua and butter in double broiler, stirring constantly. Set aside.
Whip egg whites to soft peak stage.
Add granulated sugar and whip until peaks stiffen.
In a separate bowl, whip 3/4 c. whipping cream until stiff.
Gently fold first the egg whites and then the whipping cream into the cooled chocolate mixture and pour into prepared pie crust.  Chill.
Whip 1 c. whipping cream until it just begins to stiffen.
Add powdered sugar and vanilla and continue whipping until stiff.
Spread over top of chilled pie and garnish as desired.
Chill for 30 minutes or until set.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Fruited Sour Cream Pancakes

Living in Atlanta, I am separated from New Orleans by a scant 469 miles and, alas, I've never been to Mardi Gras.  Chalk it up to a lack of wanderlust in my younger years, or assume finances dictate extra money be spent on Little League Baseball or Pop Warner Football.  You'd be right on both counts.  For now, I follow the festivities vicariously.
This afternoon I learned that many revelers cook pancakes on Fat Tuesday in an effort to use up all the milk, flour, and sugar they won't be needing during Lent.  My mind went, immediately, to this recipe.  I've seen them called "Brunch Pancakes" or "Dessert Pancakes".  I just call them "yummy".

What's In It:

1 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese at room temperature (Low fat is fine)
4 eggs (Thank you Sylvia, Cleo, Pat, and Lucy!)
2 tbs. vegetable oil
2/3 c. unbleached flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 3/4 c. pie filling, warmed (Use your favorite!  Unless your favorite is pumpkin or mincemeat!)
1/2 c. granulated sugar
2 tbs. cinnamon

How To Make It:

Mix sugar and cinnamon in small bowl.  Set aside.
In large bowl, beat cream cheese with eggs on medium speed until well blended.
Add flour and salt, mix well.
Add oil to large skillet over medium heat.
Drop cream cheese mixture onto heated skillet, forming pancakes 3" to 4" in diameter.
Cook 1 minute or until bubbles form on surface.
Turn to brown other side, cooking 1 minute or until edges are done.
Repeat until all batter is used.
To serve:  place 3 to 4 pancakes on dessert plate.
Top with pie filling and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Honey Baked Apples

Anyone who ever saw Nancy Reagan shouldn't be surprised to hear she paid attention to what she and President Reagan ate.  She knew the importance of fiber, built menus around chicken and fish, and insisted on plenty of vegetables and fruits.  
Honey Baked Apples not only met many of Mrs. Reagan's nutritional guidelines, they also allowed The President to indulge in dessert.

What's In It:

6 medium to large apples (Fuji, Rome, and Granny Smith are good choices)
3 tbs. raisins (You may use golden if you like, but dark raisins are preferred)
3 tbs. chopped walnuts
1/3 c. honey + more for drizzling (Local honey is always best)
1 tbs. fresh squeezed lemon juice (1/2 lemon usually yeilds 2 tbs.)
1 c. water
Cinnamon stick
Ground cinnamon

How To Make It:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Spray shallow, medium baking dish with cooking spray.
Core apples, peel top 1/3 and place in prepared dish.
Mix nuts and raisins and stuff into apples, dividing mixture equally between them.
In small saucepan, combine water and honey.  Add cinnamon stick and bring mixture to a boil.
Reduce heat to simmer and cook 5 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice.
Remove cinnamon stick and pour mixture over stuffed apples.
Cover dish, tightly, with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes. (Every 15 minutes or so, spoon juices in pan over apples to baste)
Allow to cool 5 minutes.
Drizzle tops of apples with honey and sprinkle with cinnamon just before serving.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Bread Pudding with Warm Amaretto Sauce

Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt had simple tastes in food, favoring "hearty American fare".  A favorite dessert was bread pudding.
I had my first taste of bread pudding just last year.  Not being a big bread eater, the whole idea just never appealed to me.  Then, last year, someone offered me bread pudding swimming in warm amaretto sauce.  I couldn't imagine anything that wouldn't be delicious when suspended in warm amaretto sauce, so I tried it. 
My first bite was accompanied by a cacophony of mixed emotions.  On the one hand, I was thrilled. I couldn't imagine anything tasting this good that didn't include chocolate.  On the other hand, I knew I'd opened a Pandora's box.  I'd never be able to forget that taste.
Research revealed a plethora of recipes.  Giada's got one.  I didn't choose it.  Something inside me can't trust dessert to a size 0.  I read alot of recipes and did a lot of tweaking, and this is what I ended up with.  If you've never tried it before...don't say I didn't warn you.

What's In It:
1 loaf day-old French bread
1 qt. half & half
3 eggs (Thank you Sylvia, Cleo, Pat,  and Lucy!)
2 tbs. unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
2 tbs. almond extract (No imitation)
3/4 c. raisins (Use whatever raisins you have on hand, all are good.  If you are purchasing raisins just for this pudding, though, golden is recommended.)
3/4 c. sliced almonds

1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 c. confectioner's sugar
1 egg, beaten
4 tbs. Amaretto liqueur (May use 2 tbs. almond extract, if you prefer)

How To Make It:
In small saute pan, toast almonds until golden, set aside.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Grease 9x13 baking dish with butter. (You may use baking spray if you prefer)
Tear bread into irregular, small pieces and place in medium bowl.
Pour 1/2 & 1/2 over bread.
Cover bowl and let stand at least 1 hour.
Stir in raisins and almonds.
In small bowl, combine eggs, sugar, and almond extract, mixing well.
Pour over bread, stirring until well incorporated.
Transfer mixture to prepared baking dish, distributing evenly.
Cook 50 minutes, until golden.

Stir butter and sugar together in top of double boiler until both are dissolved.(Mixture will be very hot)
Remove from heat and whisk in beaten egg until sauce cools.
Add Amaretto.

Cut warm pudding into squares.  
Pour sauce over individual serving.
Serve warm.