Apple-Nut Bread Pudding

8 slices cinnamon-raisin bread, cubed
2 medium tart apples, peeled and sliced
1 cup chopped pecans, toasted
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups half-and-half cream
1/4 cup apple juice
1/4 cup butter, melted
Vanilla ice cream

Place bread cubes, apples and pecans in a greased 3-qt. slow cooker. In a bowl, combine the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add the eggs, cream, apple juice and butter; mix well. Pour over bread mixture. Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve with ice cream. Yield: 6-8 servings.

Recipe found here: Apple-Nut Bread Pudding


Black Walnut Pound Cake

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
3 cups sugar
5 eggs
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup chopped black walnuts

1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
3-3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a large bowl, cream the butter, shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Sift together flour and baking powder; add alternately to creamed mixture with milk and extracts, beating on low speed just until combined. Fold in nuts.

Pour into a greased and floured 10-in. tube pan. Bake at 325° for about 1 hour 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a rack for 10 minutes before removing from pan to cool completely.

In a small bowl, combine frosting ingredients; spread over cake. Yield: 12-16 servings.

Recipe found here: Black Walnut Pound Cake


Pumpkin Cheesecake Deluxe

3/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted
32 gingersnap cookies, coarsely crushed
3 tablespoons brown sugar
6 tablespoons butter, melted

3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
1-1/2 cups canned pumpkin
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup maple syrup
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
4 eggs, lightly beaten
Sweetened whipped cream, optional
Pecan brittle, optional

Place a greased 9-in. springform pan on a double thickness of heavy-duty foil; securely wrap foil around pan. Place pecans in a food processor; cover and process until ground. Add the gingersnaps, brown sugar and butter; cover and pulse until blended. Press onto the bottom and 2 in. up the sides of prepared pan; set aside.

In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in the pumpkin, cream, syrup, vanilla and spices. Add eggs; beat on low speed just until combined. Pour into crust. Place springform pan in a large baking pan; add 1 in. of hot water to larger pan.

Bake at 325° for 60-70 minutes or until center is just set and top appears dull. Remove pan from water bath. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer. Chill overnight. Remove sides of pan.
Garnish with whipped cream and pecan brittle if desired. Yield: 12 servings.

Recipe found here: Pumpkin Cheesecake Deluxe


Spiderweb Candy

1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
6 ounces white baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon shortening
1/3 cup flaked coconut, coarsely chopped

In a small microwave-safe bowl, melt chips; stir until smooth. Cool slightly. Transfer to a heavy-duty resealable plastic bag; cut a small hole in corner of bag and set aside.

In another small microwave-safe bowl, melt white chocolate and shortening; stir until smooth. Stir in coconut. Spoon 2 tablespoonfuls onto waxed paper-lined baking sheets; spread into a 4-in. circle. Repeat four times.

Using reserved melted semisweet chocolate, pipe thin concentric circles an 1/8 in. apart on top of each candy. Beginning with the center circle, gently pull a toothpick through circles toward outer edges. Wipe toothpick clean. Repeat to complete web pattern. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until set. Store in an airtight container. Yield: 5 candies.

Recipe found here: Spiderweb Candy


Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes

1 package chocolate cake mix (regular size)
1-1/3 cups water
1/2 cup canola oil
3 eggs
1 can (21 ounces) cherry pie filling
1 can (16 ounces) vanilla frosting
Chocolate curls, optional

In a large bowl, combine the cake mix, water, oil and eggs; beat on low speed for 30 seconds. Beat on medium for 2 minutes.

Spoon batter by 1/4 cupfuls into paper-lined muffin cups. Place a rounded teaspoonful of pie filling in the center of each cupcake. Set remaining pie filling aside.

Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool completely.

Frost cupcakes; top each with one cherry from pie filling. Refrigerate remaining pie filling for another use. Garnish with chocolate curls if desired. Yield: 2 dozen.

Recipe found here: Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes


Pepperoni Penne Carbonara

3 cups uncooked penne pasta
2 cups chopped sun-dried tomatoes (not packed in oil)
3 cups boiling water
1/4 cup butter
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1 cup chopped pepperoni
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1 cup heavy whipping cream
3 tablespoons minced fresh basil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, soak tomatoes in boiling water for 10 minutes; drain well.
In a large skillet, saute tomatoes in butter for 3 minutes. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer.

Stir in the pepperoni, cheese, cream, basil, salt and pepper. Cook over low heat until heated through. Drain pasta; toss with sauce. Yield: 6 servings.

Recipe found here: Pepperoni Penne Carbonara


Indian Baked Chicken

1 pound small red potatoes, quartered
4 medium carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 large onion, cut into 1-inch pieces
6 boneless skinless chicken thighs (about 1-1/2 pounds)
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) chicken broth
1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Place the potatoes, carrots and onion in a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish; add chicken. In a small bowl, combine the remaining ingredients and pour over top.

Cover and bake at 400° for 1 to 1-1/4 hours or until a meat thermometer inserted into chicken reads 180° and vegetables are tender. Yield: 6 servings.

Recipe found here: Indian Baked Chicken

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