Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Triple Chocolate Caramel Fudge Delight

I haven't blogged in FOREVER...the fast pace of life keeps getting in the way.  But I made a cake today that looks scrumptious and lots of folks have asked for the recipe so I decided to post it here.  This cake came about by accident, but this is what I did:

I used a Betty Crocker Triple Chocolate Fudge cake mix and prepared it per the directions on the box. I made two 8" round cakes {i know, i know...i should've made the cake from scratch too, but I didn't have time for all of that. I actually made these last night so they were cool and ready to be frosted when I finished the icings today.}

Then I made buttercreme icing following this recipe:

2 sticks of butter at room temperature
2 cups of crisco shortening
1 tsp butter flavoring
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 pounds powdered sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp meringue powder

~Using a mixer, mix butter, crisco and salt together to incorporate (abt 5 minutes on low).
~add extracts. mix well together. add about 1 pound of powdered sugar and the meringue powder. mix well.
~add 1/2 cup of powdered sugar at a time and mix until you get the consistency you want.
~Use immediately or cover and refrigerate.

Then I made the caramel icing following this recipe:

2/3 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup milk
16 oz box of powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla

~Melt butter.
~Add brown sugar.
~Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
~Add milk. Bring to a boil stirring constantly.
~Add powdered sugar and whisk quickly.
~Pour and spread over layer cake.
~Cover and store remaining icing in the fridge.  When you get ready to use it, place in a small sauce pan and heat over low, stirring constantly until it is liquid consistency again.  You may need to add a LITTLE milk, but only as a last resort.

I put caramel icing between the layers. Then i put buttercreme over the whole cake. When i did this, bits of the chocolate cake were being picked up in the buttercreme and it didnt look pretty.  I decided to reheat some of the caramel icing (it had set up by then) and drizzle it over the buttercreme. While that was still warm, I put some chocolate chips in a baggie and smashed them with a hammer and then I sprinkled them on top.
The whole concept for this cake was an accident, but it sure looks good! I didnt get a taste of the cake yet as I made it for a function Helen was hosting, but I can just about guarantee that it is super rich!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Irmy's Egg Rolls

Several years ago, we were fortunate enough to enjoy some wonderful egg rolls made by a friend, Irmy Fonville. Since that time, none we have eaten have compared. Since I have started cooking, Reese has been enouraging me to ask Irmy for her recipe. I finally did, and made them last night. They were quite a hit. I got her permission to share her recipe here.

Irmy's Fried Egg Rolls

1 medium head of cabbage, shredded
4-5 medium carrots, grated or shredded
2 chicken breasts, cooked with S & P, then finely chopped
chicken boullion granules, to taste
1 tsp sugar
3 tablespoons oil for sauteeing veggies
oil for frying
1 can bean sprouts, drained and cut up finely
1 pkg (30 count) Lumpia wrappers, frozen

- Heat oil over MED heat in a pan. Add onions and cook until translucent. Add chicken boullion, salt, pepper & sugar. Add chicken and stir for about 10 seconds. Add cabbage and carrots.
- Cook on MED for 10-15 minutes, or until veggies are tender.
- Remove from heat.
- Add bean sprouts to veggies.
- Let cool completely.
- Remove Lumpia wrappers from freezer about 1 hr before ready to cook.
- Place a small amount of cooled filling in middle of wrapper and fold/roll per instructions on package.
- Heat oil to 375 degrees and place several egg rolls to fry until golden brown (it only took me about 10-15 sec). Drain on paper towels.
- Serve hot.

*The egg rolls do not keep their crispness when refrigerated after being fried, but they still taste good.  This recipe makes 30 egg rolls, so best used when making large quantity....but can be halved.

I served them as a side with sweet & sour chicken, steamed rice, and egg drop soup. They were so good that Reese wants me to make more for our Alabama/Auburn game get-together.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Loaded Potato Soup & Yeast Rolls

It's been  F O R E V E R  since I've been able to blog, due to problems we've been experiencing with our laptops.  Thankfully, one of my sisters had an extra one just lying around and was willing to let me borrow it (Thanks, Helen!!).  So, it's time to share another recipe. Tonight for dinner, we had loaded potato soup and homemade yeast rolls.  The soup was delicious, and the rolls weren't too bad for it being the first time I have ever made them.  The recipes are as follows...

Loaded Potato Soup

8-10 potatoes (based on the # of ppl eating), washed, peeled, & diced
1 small onion, finely chopped (optional)
1 can low sodium chicken broth
1 cup milk
crumbled bacon bits
3/4 cup shredded cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
S & P as desired

Boil potatoes in salted water until soft, about 7-10 minutes, adding onion in the last 5 minutes. Pour off some of the water (but set it aside until you know if you'll need it).  Add chicken broth and milk (and potato water if needed or to desired consistency) and simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. (**Dont worry if its too thin...you can always add instant potatoes to thicken it up a bit**)  Add bacon bits, shredded cheese, and sour cream. Stir well. Remove from heat and serve.  Can top with a dallop of sour cream and a sprinkle of bacon bits & cheese.

Yeast Rolls

3/4 cup small curd cottage cheese
2 Tbsp butter
1/3 cup water
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour, divided
3 Tbsp sugar
1 pkg active dry yeast
1 tsp salt
1 egg

In food processor, process cottage cheese until smooth. Combine in a small saucepan with butter & water.  Heat over LOW heat until butter melts, stirring frequently.  Set aside to cool for 15 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine 1 1/4 cups flour, sugar, yeast & salt. Make sure cottage cheese mixture is lukewarm. Add to flour mixture with egg; beat until smooth. Stir in remaining flour to form a stiff batter.  Cover & let rise 30 minutes until doubled in bulk.

Spray 12 muffin pans with nonstick baking spray and flour. Stir down batter with 20-25 strokes. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. Let rise uncovered for 20-30 minutes, until batter fills cups. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Bake rolls for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.  Brush with melted butter and remove from pan. Cool on wire rack or serve hot.  Makes 12 rolls.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Stuffed Shells

This is a recipe I got from a friend (Thanks, Tish!) after she brought it to dinner one night at our LIFE group.  It was quite delicious when she made it and Reese really enjoyed it. I have been wanting to try it out, so when I was making the menu for this 2-week period, I added it (even tho it means we are having 'Italian' dishes like 3 times in 2 weeks).  It is a very tasty dish! Even the boys, who "don't like cheese", enjoyed it, and it's a great way to get them to eat their spinach!  :)


10 oz frozen, chopped spinach, thawed and well drained
16 oz cottage (or Ricotta) cheese
1 cup shredded Mozzarella (divided)
1 red pepper, chopped (optional)
1 egg white
1 envelope of Italian dressing
20 jumbo macaroni shells, cooked, drained and cooled
1 jar/can (26 oz) spaghetti sauce

- Heat oven to 400 degrees. Mix spinach, cheeses, pepper, egg white, and dressing mix until well blended; spoon into shells, about 1 heaping tablespoon in each.
- Spread 1/2 of spaghetti sauce in bottom of 13x9" baking dish. Arrange shells, filled side up, in baking dish; top with remaining sauce and mozzarella. Cover with foil.
- Bake 40 minutes, or until heated thru, removing foil after 30 minutes.

Since the boys "don't like cheese", I only put the extra mozzarella on half the dish.

~ Serve with hot, crusty, garlic bread and a fresh green salad.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Chicken 'n Dumplings

Skylar's 'special request' for the menu this week was chicken 'n dumplings. I had never made them before, but I knew that my mom had made them with flour tortillas before (and I just happened to have some on hand), so I searched the internet for a recipe. I didn't find one I liked, but I did modify/blend a few of them to come up with this...


3 lb chicken
S & P as desired
1 can cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1 cup sliced carrots (optional)
1 cup sliced celery (optional)
1/2 cup chopped vidalia onion
5 flour tortillas, cut into squares resembling dumplings
32 oz container of chicken broth (in addition to stock from cooking chicken)

- Boil chicken & veggies with salt & pepper until done (or combine all in pressure cooker and pressure for 20-25 minutes). Save stock.
- Let cool and debone chicken; tear or chop and set aside.
- Add cream of chicken to chicken stock and bring to a boil.
- Drop tortilla squares in boiling stock/soup a few at a time. Add extra chicken broth as needed to ensure plenty of fluid (tortillas will soak up fluid as they "swell" into dumplings). Boil for 4-5 minutes.
- Add chicken and veggies and mix well.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Chocolate Chip Bars

Skylar was home from school today due to a fever. He was pretty bored and I was determined not to let him just watch Disney/Nickelodeon all day. We decided to bake.  I had a recipe for chocolate chip bars I had been wanting to try out, so that's what we did.  The recipe comes from the back of a bag of Hershey's chocolate chips. We just followed the 'pan recipe'.

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 cups (12 oz pkg) Semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

- Heat oven to 375 degrees
- Stir together flour, baking soda, and salt. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla in a large bowl with mixer until creamy. Add eggs; beat well. Gradually add flour mixture, beating well. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts, if desired.
- Spread batter in greased 15-1/2x10-1/2x1 inch jelly-roll pan. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool completely;cut into bars (* I used a pizza cutter...made it super easy to cut straight!).

Makes about 4 dozen bars

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Chicken Cacciatore

I got this recipe from a friend in our LIFE group. She made it one night when we had Italian, and Reese loved it. Priscilla got the recipe to me about a month ago and Reese has been waiting for me to make it. It's fairly easy and pretty yummy.

5-6 boneless chicken thighs (or in may case, 3 can of premium chicken breast chunks)
bay leaf
8 oz mozzarella cheese, cubed
16 oz  cheddar cheese, shredded
a big can of Durkey fried onions ( i used generic brand)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can of cream of celery soup
1/2 cup chopped celery or 1 tsp celery seed
1/2 cup chopped onion or 1 tsp dried onion
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
8 oz spaghetti noodles

- Boil chicken in water with Bay leaf, then pick meat off the bone (not shred it)  [*okay, so here is where i 'cheated'. i used canned chicken and just used a knife to cut the chicken chunks into smaller pieces.]
- Save water and boil noodles in it [well, i just boiled my noodles in salt water since i didn't cook the chicken]. Drain water.
- In a large bowl, mix all ingredients except fried onions and cheddar cheese.
- Pour mixture into a 11x13" baking dish.
- Top with cheddar cheese
- Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
- Add fried onions and bake another 5 minutes, or until onions are brown.

This makes alot, probably about 8-10 servings.  I served it tonight with steamed broccoli.