Saturday, December 18, 2010

Peanut Butter Fudge

I got this recipe from my friend Annalise’s blog (you can also see the link on the right). I made it once, loved it so much that I had to make it again. Especially when I was blessed with a quart jar of dark chocolate ganache from my dear friend Betsy!

1 cup sugar

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup milk

5 large marshmallows

Bring to a boil over medium heat in a heavy saucepan until the sugar dissolves and the marshmallows melt. Stir often.

pb fudge 01

pb fudge 02pb fudge 03Remove from heat and stir in:

1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter

1 tsp vanilla

Spread into foiled and buttered 8” pan.

pb fudge 04While fudge cools in fridge, prepare the ganache.

Heat 1/2 cup heavy cream in a saucepan until just simmering. Pour over 1 cup chocolate chips and let sit 1-2 minutes. Stir until smooth and glossy. (If you need to, you can microwave them for 15 seconds to smooth them out)

pb fudge 05

Remove fudge from fridge and smooth ganache on top.

pb fudge 06 Chill for 1-2 hours or until ganache is set.

pb fudge 07Remove from pan and cut into small squares. Store in fridge for up to 1 week.

pb fudge 08

Friday, December 17, 2010

Pretzel Kisses

This is a super quick and easy treat to make when you need to bring something to a get-together or when you have a salty-sweet craving…

Here’s all you do:

Preheat oven to 350.

Place pretzels on baking tray.

pretzel kisses 01Unwrap any flavor Hershey’s kisses (except almond) and place on top of each pretzel.

pretzel kisses 02Place in oven for 2-3 minutes. They should be shiny and an M&M should easily be pressed into the melted Kiss. If not, place back in oven for another 30 seconds.

pretzel kisses 03Quickly press one M&M into the center of each kiss.

pretzel kisses 04pretzel kisses 05     Place in fridge until set.

pretzel kisses 06Remove from tray and serve immediately or store in airtight container in fridge.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Easy Truffles

A friend inquired about a truffle recipe yesterday hoping that I had one that used cream cheese, powdered sugar and chocolate chips. Unfortunately I did not have a recipe. But I did a bit of searching, made a batch this afternoon with a few minor tweaks, and now I do…

6oz softened cream cheese

2 cups sifted powdered sugar

1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

4 oz bittersweet baking chocolate

1 square of unsweetened baking chocolate (optional)

2 Tbsp heavy cream

1 tsp vanilla

Beat cream cheese until fluffy. Beat in powdered sugar. Melt chocolate in microwave until smooth and glossy. Stir in vanilla. Stir in heavy cream (chocolate will thicken). Mix chocolate into sugar/cream cheese using electric mixer.

Chill at least 1 hour until firm. Quickly roll into balls and then roll in desired coatings. Coconut, chopped nuts, cocoa powder, crushed candy canes all make good coatings. Y0u can also experiment with different extracts and stir-ins.

Store in fridge.

truffles 01

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Caribbean Baked French Toast

This recipe was inspired by the French toast my sister and I had at a little cafe in Portland on this month’s Sister Day. We spent a good deal of time discussing how we could recreate it and I believe I have succeeded! Actually, I think I liked mine better…

Being made up, I don’t have exact measurements for everything, so the amounts may need to be adjusted to your tastes/opinion.

Melt 5 Tbsp butter in bottom of glass 9x13 baking dish.

Sprinkle with 1/3 cup brown sugar and some cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.

Toast 1/3 cup coconut and 1/3 cup chopped hazelnuts in skillet on med-high heat until golden brown. Sprinkle on top of brown sugar.

Carribean toast 01

Place thick-cut slices of Italian bread in pan on top of topping in pan.

Carribean toast 02

Mix 4 eggs, 1 1/2 cups milk, 1/2 tsp vanilla, 1/2 tsp rum extract.

Pour egg mixture on top of bread making sure each slice is completely covered.

Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 and let pan set out while oven warms. About 30 minutes is ideal.

Bake for 30-40 minutes until topping is bubbly and tops of bread are starting to turn brown.

Just before it is done baking warm some honey in a glass and stir in 1/2 tsp rum extract.

Serve French toast immediately topping side up, with sliced fresh bananas and the honey-rum syrup.

Carribean toast 03

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Bacon Cheddar Poppers

Having totally made this recipe up and only having made it once, I have already thought of ways I would do it differently. First, I may just leave the jalapenos whole and stuff and bake them. Second, they weren’t very spicy. If I was making them for our family, I may leave a few seeds for a bit more kick. Oh, and I might try using cheeses other than cheddar. Besides that, they were super yummy and super easy to make…

* Half and seed fresh jalapeno peppers. Or you can leave them whole. Just cut off the stem end and empty out as many of the seeds you would like. The more you leave behind, the spicier they’ll be!

* Then mix softened cream cheese and grated cheese together. I did about a 1:1 ratio???

* Mix in some crumbled crisp bacon.

* Stuff bacon/cheese mixture into peppers.

jalapenos 01

* Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes.

* Serve and eat immediately!

jalapenos 02