Archive for June, 2016

mai tai

Mai Tai

2 tablespoons light rum
2 tablespoons orange curaçao
1/4 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 dash orgeat
1 dash simple syrup
1 tablespoon dark rum
Mint, a pineapple slice, and a paper umbrella for garnish

1. Fill an 8-oz. glass with ice. Pour in light rum, orange curaçao, orange juice, lime juice, orgeat, and simple syrup.

2. Drizzle dark rum on top. Garnish with mint, pineapple slice, and paper umbrella.

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almond buttercrunch

Almond Buttercrunch

3/4 cup butter
2 cups white sugar
1 cup chopped almonds
2 cups milk chocolate chips
1/2 cup finely chopped almonds

In a saucepan over low heat, combine the butter, sugar and 1 cup chopped almonds. Stir constantly until mixture boils, then do not stir or shake. Heat to 300 to 310 degrees F (149 to 154 degrees C), or until a small amount of syrup dropped into cold water forms hard, brittle threads.

Pour onto a large buttered cookie sheet. Immediately press chocolate chips onto the hot candy. As the chocolate melts, spread it into a coating over the candy.

Sprinkle finely chopped almonds over the top; cool, and break into uneven pieces.

Recipe found here: Almond Buttercrunch

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Vanilla Tapioca Pudding

Vanilla Tapioca Pudding

3-1/4 cups fat-free milk
2 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca
2 tablespoons sugar
1 package (.8 ounce) cook-and-serve vanilla pudding mix
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a large saucepan, combine the milk, tapioca, sugar and pudding mix. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat; stir in vanilla.

Spoon into four dessert dishes. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving. Yield: 4 servings.

Recipe found here: Vanilla Tapioca Pudding

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Elegant Orange Blossom Cheesecake

Elegant Orange Blossom Cheesecake

3 cups crushed gingersnap cookies (about 60 cookies)
2 teaspoons plus 2 tablespoons grated orange peel, divided
1/3 cup butter, melted
1-1/2 cups orange juice
1/3 cup sliced fresh gingerroot
4 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup sugar
6 ounces white baking chocolate, melted
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs, lightly beaten

3 cups water
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 small navel oranges, thinly sliced

Place a greased 9-in. springform pan on a double thickness of heavy-duty foil (about 18 in. square). Securely wrap foil around pan.
In a large bowl, combine crumbs, 2 teaspoons orange peel and butter. Press onto bottom and 2-in. up sides of prepared pan.

In a large saucepan, combine orange juice and ginger; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until syrupy and reduced to about 3 tablespoons. Strain and discard ginger.

In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Beat in ginger syrup, melted chocolate, vanilla and remaining orange peel. 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 70-80 minutes or until center is just set and top appears dull. Remove springform pan from water bath; remove foil. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight.

For candied orange slices, in a large skillet, combine water and sugar. Cook and stir over medium heat until sugar is completely dissolved. Add orange slices. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer for 45 minutes or until translucent. Drain oranges on a wire rack; arrange in a single layer on waxed paper to dry.

Remove sides of pan. Top cheesecake with candied orange slices. Refrigerate leftovers. Yield: 16 servings.

Recipe found here: Elegant Orange Blossom Cheesecake

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Fresh Raspberry Pie

Fresh Raspberry Pie

1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 cup water
1 package (3 ounces) raspberry gelatin
4 cups fresh raspberries
1 graham cracker crust (9 inches)

In a small saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch and water until smooth. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove from the heat; stir in gelatin until dissolved. Cool for 15 minutes.

Place raspberries in the crust; slowly pour gelatin mixture over berries. Chill until set, about 3 hours. Yield: 6-8 servings.

Recipe found here: Fresh Raspberry Pie

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Strawberry Parfaits

Strawberry Parfaits


4 cups sliced strawberries, divided
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup fat-free ricotta cheese
1/2 cup (4 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup amaretti cookie crumbs (about 8 cookies)
1/2 cup frozen reduced-calorie whipped topping, thawed
2 tablespoons slivered almonds, toasted

Place 2 cups of strawberry slices and granulated sugar in a blender or food processor, and process until smooth. Set strawberry puree aside.

Combine ricotta and next 4 ingredients (ricotta through vanilla) in a medium bowl; stir well with a whisk. Spoon 2 tablespoons cookie crumbs into each of 4 parfait glasses. Top each portion with 2 tablespoons strawberry puree, 1/4 cup strawberry slices, and 3 tablespoons ricotta mixture; repeat the layers. Drizzle the remaining strawberry puree over each serving. Chill for 2 hours. Top each parfait with 2 tablespoons whipped topping and 1 1/2 teaspoons almonds.

Recipe found here: Strawberry Parfaits

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Sour Cream Peach Pecan Pie

Sour Cream Peach Pecan Pie

Pastry for single-crust pie (9 inches)
4 cups sliced peeled peaches
2 tablespoons peach preserves
1 cup sugar
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
3 large egg yolks
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons chopped pecans
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup cold butter, cubed

Line a 9-in. pie plate with pastry; trim and flute edge. In a large bowl, combine peaches and preserves. Transfer to pastry shell. In a small bowl, whisk the sugar, sour cream, egg yolks, flour and vanilla. Pour over peaches.

Bake at 425° for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the flour, sugars, pecans and cinnamon. Cut in butter until crumbly; sprinkle over pie.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean and topping is golden brown. Cover edge with foil during the last 15 minutes to prevent overbrowning if necessary. Cool completely on a wire rack for 3 hours before serving. Store in the refrigerator. Yield: 8 servings.

Recipe found here: Sour Cream Peach Pecan Pie

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southern cornbread

Southern Cornbread

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for the pan
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup buttermilk (shake before measuring)
2 large eggs

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and position a rack in the middle. Butter an 8-inch-square baking pan.

Melt the butter in the microwave in a microwave-safe dish in three 15-second intervals on high or in a small pan on the stove. Set it aside to cool.

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

In a large bowl, whisk together the buttermilk and the eggs. Add the melted butter. Add the flour-cornmeal mixture and stir just until combined. Pour the batter into the pan. Bake until the cornbread just begins to brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 18 to 23 minutes. Cool for about 10 minutes before serving.

Recipe found here: Southern Cornbread

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Slow Cooker Pinto Beans

Slow Cooker Pinto Beans

Total Time: 13 hr 10 min
Prep: 10 min
Inactive: 8 hr
Cook: 5 hr

Yield:10 to 12 servings

Goes great with Southern Cornbread

1 pound dry pinto beans
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 pound ham hocks, or 1/4 pound streak o’ lean
4 cups water
1 onion, chopped
House Seasoning, recipe follows

Wash the beans and soak overnight in cold water. Drain the beans and dump into slow cooker. Stir in chili powder and oregano.

If using ham hock: Pre-soak ham in a separate pot, for at least 2, or refrigerated up to 24 hours, depending on how salty you want your stock to be. Add ham hock to slow cooker with beans and pour in ham soaking liquid. Add more water until ham hock is completely covered.

If using streak o’ lean: Cut into cubes, brown in a skillet, and place the meat and any rendered fat in the slow cooker with beans. Pour 4 cups water into pot.

Add onion to slow cooker with beans and meat. Stir well. Season, to taste, with House Seasoning, cover the pot, and cook on high until beans are very tender, about 5 hours.

House Seasoning:
1 cup salt
1/4 cup black pepper
1/4 cup garlic powder
Mix ingredients together and store in an airtight container for up to 6 months.
Yield: 1 1/2 cups

Recipe found here: Slow Cooker Pinto Beans

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Chocolate Eclair Delight

Chocolate Eclair Delight

1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup baking cocoa
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 can (12 ounces) fat-free evaporated milk
1 cup fat-free milk
1/2 cup egg substitute
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups reduced-fat whipped topping
1 tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon baking cocoa, divided
9 whole graham crackers, halved

In a large heavy saucepan, combine the first five ingredients. Gradually whisk in evaporated milk and milk until smooth. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. Reduce heat; cook and stir 2 minutes longer or until thickened.

Remove from the heat. Stir a small amount of hot filling into egg substitute; return all to pan, stirring constantly. Bring to a gentle boil; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from the heat. Gently stir in vanilla. Press plastic wrap onto surface of filling; cover and refrigerate until cooled.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine whipped topping and 1 tablespoon cocoa; set aside. Arrange half of the crackers in a 9-in. square pan coated with cooking spray. Layer half of the filling and topping over the crackers. Repeat layers. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Just before serving, sprinkle with remaining cocoa. Yield: 9 servings.

Recipe found here: Chocolate Eclair Delight

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