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Monday, April 20, 2015

Cinnamon Raisin Scones *taste like cinnamon bun*


My weekly treat for work.  Really wanted something different this time and these were just perfect.  Everyone loved them and some people even had two and said they would eat more but didn't want to make a pig of themselves.  Even my son in law, who hates raisins, like these so that's really saying something.
I think I will save this recipe to my holiday collection because they would be wonderful on Christmas morning just out of the oven.   Oh did I say they are soooooooooooooo easy to make.  I used my food processor to do the hard part.


I adapted  this recipe from  here
Cinnamon Bun Scones

Cook Time: 13-15 minutes
Yield: 12-15 scones depending on size
Ingredients:
1/2 cup toasted chopped pecans
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
3/4 cup milk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4-1 cup golden  raisins (soaked in warm water then drained)

 Glaze:
3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
3 to 4 teaspoons milk

Instructions

To make the scones:

Preheat oven to 425°. Line baking sheets with silicone liners or parchment paper.
In a small bowl, combine pecans, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add butter and mix with a pastry blender or a fork until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. This step I did in the food processor, so much quicker.  Just pulse  dry ingredients a couple of time without the butter.  Add the butter bits and then pulse until you have coarse crumbs.
Combine milk, egg, and vanilla in a small bowl. Add to flour mixture and stir just until combined.
Sprinkle cinnamon mixture over dough. Gently stir until batter is just swirled with cinnamon mixture.
Drop dough by 1/4-cup portions* onto prepared pans. Leave about 2 inches between scones.
Bake 11 to 13 minutes, or until golden brown.
Cool scones on a wire rack for 5 minutes while you make the glaze.
To make the glaze:
Combine confectioners' sugar with 3 teaspoons milk. Add more milk if needed to achieve pouring consistency.
Drizzle glaze over warm scones.
Thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful week and Remember to Find the TIme to DO ALL the things YOU L♥ve.
D♥nna

Monday, April 13, 2015

Frozen Strawberry Yoguart Pie




I made this for Easter Dinner this year.  We had dinner at my grandson's (a first).  Usually we have dinner at our house, but since he has his own place he wanted to cook.  We had ribs, brats and 

This is one of my grandson's favorites, which I didn't know.  It's so easy and makes for a very quick dessert.  It's wonderful during the summer months when you need somethings sweet and cool.

Ingredients:
2 containers  (6 oz. each) strawberry nonfat yogurt

2 cups  thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping

1 ready-to-use  graham cracker crumb crust (6 oz.)
8-10 fresh strawberries 

Directions:

Spoon yogurt into medium bowl. Add whipped topping; stir gently with wire whisk until well blended.     Chop 6-8 strawberries and fold into cream mixture  Fill pie crust.  Top with sliced
strawberries. 
FREEZE 4 hours or until pie is firm enough to hold its shape when cut into slices to serve. Store leftover pie in refrigerator. 

So there you go a quick simple dessert that all will love.    Thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful week and Always Remember to Find the Time to Do All the Things You L♥ve

D♥nna

Monday, April 6, 2015

Spanish Bar cake in the Round




This is the weekly Monday treat for work for this week.  As a kid I grew up in NY and one of my fondest memories is the taste of this cake.  My mom used to buy it at the Local A&P in Smithtown.  It was my favorite.  A while back my daughter made this "down east Maine pumpkin bread"  that tasted very close to this cake.  For months I've thought about this cake but never knew the name of it.  One day while searching on Pinterest, wala there it was.  There are many versions of this out there but after reading reviews and the recipe I chose this one.  The one thing I changed was the oil.  It had called for 1/4 of melted butter which I sub melted coconut oil for.  I felt there was more than enough butter in the icing.  Oh yes I also cut back 1/2 stick on the butter.  
This cake is normally made in a long rectangle but today I jumped outside the box and went with the round.  I also found a good trick to make your cake for further.   Will share that in my next post.
I adapted this recipe from here  



Ingredients:
2 1/4 cups flour
3/4 cups brown sugar
3/4 white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons cocoa
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons nutmeg
2 teaspoons allspice
2 teaspoons ground cloves
1 teaspoons ginger
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
1 cup applesauce
1 cup sour cream
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups raisins, soaked in warm water until plump and drained

Preheat oven to 350°F.Prepare a 8  in. round (this recipe was originally made in a 9x13 pan) baking pan with cooking spray and flour.  Plump the raisins in warm water.
In a large bowl, whisk all dry ingredients together. Add oil, applesauce, sour cream, and eggs. Mix well. Add in raisins and walnuts and stir to combine.
Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 40-45 minutes. Let cake cool completely before frosting.
*can make with or without nutmeg*

Icing:

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups milk (I used 1% with stellar results)
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
20 tablespoons (2 1/2 sticks) butter, cut into 20 pieces and softened at room temperature
Directions
  1. In a medium bowl, combine the sugar, flour, cornstarch and salt. Slowly whisk in the milk until the mixture is smooth. Place a fine-mesh strainer over a medium saucepan and pour the milk mixture through the strainer into the saucepan. Cook the mixture over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture boils and is thick enough that it starts to become difficult to easily whisk. This could take anywhere between 5-10 minutes, depending on your stove, heat, etc. It should bubble quite a bit at the end (be careful of the splatters) and thicken considerably.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a clean bowl and cool to room temperature – this is extremely important! If it is even slightly warm, the frosting won’t beat up properly. I refrigerated my initial mixture overnight. If you do this, make sure to pull it out in time to let it warm back up to room temperature. If you try to proceed with the rest of the recipe and the mixture is too cold, the butter won’t absorb into the frosting like it should.
  3. Once the frosting is completely cooled to room temperature (it should have no hint of warmth at all!), beat the mixture with the vanilla on low speed until it is well combined, about 30 seconds (a stand mixer will work best for this). Add the butter, one piece at a time, and beat the frosting until all the butter has been incorporated fully, about 2 minutes. Increase the speed to medium-high and let the mixer work it’s magic. Beat the frosting for five minutes, until it is light and fluffy. Let the frosting sit at room temperature until it is a bit more stiff, about 1 hour. I suspect if you chill it for an hour or so, it would be stiff enough to actually pipe with instead of frosting with a rubber spatula.
Thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful week and Always Remember to Find the Time to Do ALL the things YOU L♥ve.
D♥onna

Monday, March 30, 2015

Peanut Butter Tandy Cake




Saw this on pinterest the other day and thought, hmmm think I should make this for our Monday meeting.  I've never heard to it before and everyone I've asked has not either.
The end result is that is quite tasty and something I would probably make again.  It's a very easy recipe to do and goes together very quickly.  The time part is waiting for it to cool so you can put the chocolate on top.
 It makes a large sheet cake so this could be great for a party.

PEANUT BUTTER TANDY CAKE 
Ingredients
4 eggs
2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup scalded milk
4 Tbl butter (2 tbls for the cake and 2 for the chocolate frosting)
12 oz Peanut Butter
12 oz Hershey’s Chocolate bars
Preheat oven to 350 Degrees
Butter and flour 15 ½ x 10 ½ pan (I used a Jelly Roll Pan)
In a large bowl, Beat until smooth the 4 eggs and 2 cups sugar.
Add 2 cups flour and 2 tsp vanilla
Mix in the 1 cup scalded milk with 2 Tbl butter
Beat until smooth
Bake 350 deg 20 min
Remove cake from oven. Immediately spread 12 oz peanut butter evenly on top of cake
Cool 3 – 4 hours DO NOT REFRIGERATE
MELT: 12 oz Hershey bars and 2 tbl butter over hot water bath (not boiling).
Cook slightly (only until chocolate is melted). Spread melted chocolate mixture on top of peanut butter.
Cool until chocolate is set. Can now be refrigerated.
Cut in small squares and serve. Enjoy.
Hints:
Start heating milk and butter before starting cake
Bars are easier to cut if you take them out of the refrigerator and let them warm up before cutting.

Thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful week and always remember to Find the Time to Do ALL the things YOU l♥ve.
D♥nna

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Arancini di Riso: Scilian Rice Balls


Last week my sister in law and I went to the movies and then after went to a new Pizza Place downtown.  Pizza was fabulous but we also tried two appetizers, one was just bread the other was these wonderful little rice balls with marinara sauce.  So after having them I of course went on a search for a good recipe.  I've adapted this one from here  .  I think these will become a staple around the holidays, the rice can be made the day ahead along with the sauce, so it would be just a matter of assembling and then frying.  I bet you could form the balls then just do the coating and they would stay together better.  Will try that and let you all know if that is a better way to do them.



3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 cups (15 oz) Arborio rice (the best rice to use is Carnaroli, but it may be hard to find)
4 oz white wine
approximately 30 oz chicken stock
salt
1 egg

FILLING:
mozzarella, cut into ½″ to ¾″ cubes
marinara or bolognese sauce

BREADING:
all-purpose flour
2 eggs, beaten
breadcrumbs
more tomato sauce, to serve
basil leaves, for garnish

Instructions
  1. Make the risotto by adding the rice to the heated oil in a large saute pan, and stirring quickly for one or two minutes. Quickly add the white wine while stirring. With the heat on medium high, begin adding the chicken stock a little at a time, and continuously stirring, until all the stock has been used and the rice is cooked, yet still al dente (I have a risotto recipe here on my blog). Taste; adding salt if necessary. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  2. Add an egg to the risotto and mix well, then refrigerate for a few hours, or overnight.
  3. To make the arancini:
  4. Place some rice in your hand and flatten it into your cupped hand, but don’t make it too thin, or the filling will ooze out. Place a piece of mozzarella in the center of the cupped rice. Next, close the rice around the filling and shape into a ball.
  5. If you’d like to make conical shapes, flatten the bottom of the ball, and make the top more pointed.
  6. Now, roll the shaped arancini in flour, then roll them in the beaten egg, and finally the breadcrumbs. Set aside until all of the rice has been used.
  7. Heat some oil in a deep fryer, pot or wok until it is very hot. Add the arancini, and cook quickly, turning often so they don’t brown too much on one side. If serving immediately, fry for a few minutes, so the cheese will melt in the center. Remove from oil and place on paper towel lined plate or tray. (If you’d like to serve them at a later time, remove them quickly after just browning; then, just before serving, place them on a baking sheet and re-heat in the oven at 400ºF for 5 to 10 minutes.)
  8. Serve plain, or place on tray with a little tomato sauce and garnish with basil. You can also serve them with a little extra sauce on the side.
Here is a shot of the meal, it sure was yummy.  Something that I will make again.
 thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful day and Always Remember to Find the time to do ALL the things YOU love.
Donna

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Cream Cheese and Strawberry Coffe cake


This weeks Monday treat for work.  I was going to make Pecan toffee bars but didn't 'have all the ingredients in the house and didn't want to go to the store today.  I am also make risotto today so I can make  arancini balls for dinner this Thursday.  My sister in law and I went to a new (to us) restaurant downtown called Limestone Pizza and we had them as an appetizer, they were wonderful so of course I have to try and make them.  Of course I will share them with you.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

adapted from here
Serves: 6-8
Ingredients

Strawberry Filling
2 cups fresh strawberries, roughly chopped
1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon lemon juice



Cream Cheese Filling
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1 large egg

Butter Cake & Crumb Topping
2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, very cold and cut into chunks
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sour cream
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8” inch round pan with parchment paper and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Add all of the “strawberry filling” ingredients to a medium saucepan. Cook over low heat for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring constantly until the filling is thickened and strawberries are soft and somewhat broken down. Set aside to cool.
  3. Beat the cream cheese on medium speed for about 30 seconds until smooth. Add in ¼ cup sugar and 1 egg and beat until well combined. Set aside.
  4. To make the cake, combine the flour and sugar together in a bowl. Using a pastry cutter, 2 forks or your food processor, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Measure 3/4 cup of the mixture and set aside. Add the baking soda, baking powder and salt to the remaining mixture and mix well.
  5. In a separate bowl, beat the sour cream, egg and vanilla extract until well blended. Using a hand whisk or a spoon, gently stir in the flour mixture until just incorporated. Batter may be a bit lumpy. Set aside.
  6. Spread the batter in the prepared pan, pressing about 1/2 inch of batter up the sides. Pour the cream cheese mixture over the batter and spread to within ½ inch edge of the batter (so there is a ½ inch border of uncovered batter all around). Spread the strawberry filling on top of the cream cheese mixture. Sprinkle the remaining 3/4 cup crumbs over the strawberry filling. Bake for 50-55 minutes. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes before removing the cake.
thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful day and Always Remember to Find the Time to Do ALL the things You Love.
Donna

Monday, March 2, 2015

cranberry apple crumb cake



This is this weeks treat for work.  Monday's we have our staff, leasing meeting and I always try
to bring a treat.  I have had cranberries in the freezer that I wanted to use up and also had apples that needed to be cooked or of course made into something yummy.  I started out wanting to make
cranberry bars but then decided on this.  It's really very tasty, has just the right amount of tart and sweet and simple to put together.



Ingredients:

Cake:

2/3 cup + 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar, divided
zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup (1 stick) of unsalted butter, melted
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups of all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/3 cup of sour cream
2 small apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
juice of 1 lemon
1 (12 ounce) bag of fresh cranberries, rinsed and dried
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 water

Crumb:

1 cup of all-purpose flour
1/4 cup of light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) of unsalted butter, melted

Preparation:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease a 9″ x 13″-inch baking pan with non-stick baking spray.  Line it with a sheet of parchment paper leaving a generous overhang for easy removal; set aside.
Put cranberry's in a small saucepan with a 1/4 of water and about a 1/4 sugar and a pinch of salt.  Cook until cranberries open and you can mush them.  It will be quite thick.  Set a side to cool.
Using a stand or electric mixer (or mix by hand) mix together 2/3 cup of sugar, lemon zest and butter.  Add eggs, one at a time then vanilla extract.
In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Slowly add the dry mixture into the egg mixture, 1/3 at a time, mixing each time until just moistened, while scraping down the sides.  Add sour cream and mix until combined (do not over mix).
In a small bowl add sliced apples and douse with lemon juice, using your fingers to combine; set aside.
Dollop batter into the prepared pan, using a spatula to spread the batter into an even layer.  Place the apple slices over the top of the batter, then place the cranberries over the apple slices.  Sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar over the top.
For the crumb: Mix flour, brown sugar, salt and butter in a medium bowl with your fingertips until it looks like wet sand.  Sprinkle evenly over the entire batter and bake for 45-50 minutes or until toothpick/tester inserted into the center comes out clean.  Let the cake cool completely before cutting into the pan.  Once cooled, cut into squares and serve.
If you like vanilla ice cream this would go great with it!!

Thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful week and Always Remember to Find the Time to Do ALL the Things YOU Love.
Donna
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