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Canadian Cupcake day!

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Beaver Cupcakes
These treats are quick and easy to make and decorate. So keep the kids as busy as a beaver with an afternoon of fun.
Source: Canadian Living Magazine: July 2008

Portion size 12 cupcakes

Ingredients

1/2 cup (125 mL) cocoa powder
2 eggs
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla
1-1/4 cups (300 mL) sifted cake and pastry flour
1 cup (250 mL) packed brown sugar
1 tsp (5 mL) baking powder
1/2 tsp (2 mL) baking soda
1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt
1/2 cup (125 mL) unsalted butter, softened

Chocolate Icing:

3/4 cup (175 mL) butter, softened
1/4 cup (60 mL) whipping cream
1/2 tsp (2 mL) maple extract or vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups (375 mL) icing sugar
1 oz (28 g) unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled

Decorations:

24 candy-sprinkled dark chocolates, (such as pearls)
24 coloured quins or small candy
12 chocolate-covered cashews
24 blanched sliced almonds
12 small milk chocolate-covered digestive biscuits

Zucchini Pineapple Bread Recipe

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Zucchini Pineapple Bread

Zucchini Pineapple Bread Recipe

“Meals are even more memorable when I complement them with this light garden-fresh bread. The zucchini makes it so moist and tender…and the pineapple lends a delicate tropical twist to every delicious slice.”
TOTAL TIME:
Prep: 15 min.
Bake: 50 min. + cooling
Yield: 2 loaves
Ingredients:
3 eggs
2 cups finely shredded zucchini
1 cup vegetable oil
1 can (8 ounces) crushed pineapple, drained
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup chopped nuts
1 cup raisins, optional
Directions:
1. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, zucchini, oil, pineapple and vanilla. Combine the dry ingredients; stir into egg mixture just until moistened. Fold in nuts and raisins if desired.
2. Pour into two greased 8-in. x 4-in. loaf pans. Bake at 350° for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool.

Originally published as Pineapple Zucchini Bread in Country Woman

Thank you, Skeen for the recipe!

 

Earth Day cookie idea ;)

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Awesome Sugar Cookie recipe

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 egg
2 1/2 cups Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
Granulated sugar or colored sugar

Directions

  • 1Mix powdered sugar, butter, vanilla, almond extract and egg in large bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients except granulated sugar. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
  • 2Heat oven to 375ºF. Lightly grease cookie sheet.
  • 3Divide dough in half. Roll each half 1/4 inch thick on lightly floured surface. Cut into desired shapes with 2- to 2 1/2-inch cookie cutters. Sprinkle with granulated sugar. Place on cookie sheet.
  • 4Bake 7 to 8 minutes or until edges are light brown. Remove from cookie sheet. Cool on wire rack.

Dark Chocolate Cashew Cream Truffles

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Dark Chocolate Cashew Cream Truffles

Dark Chocolate Cashew Cream Truffles
Recipe from Vegan Chocolate by Fran Costigan
“These were really meant to be just a quick experiment in trying out a recipe from Fran Costigan’s new cook book, but then they turned into a pop one…or 3 every night kind of addiction.  Plus, these are seriously the easiest truffles you have ever seen with so many possibilities! I opted for a simple coating of chocolate and dusting of powdered sugar, but crushed nuts or candy canes would probably be perfect for these.”
Ingredients:
For the cashew cream:

1 cup cashews, soaked overnight

2/3 cup water

1/4 cup maple syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the truffles:

7 ounces dark chocolate, finely chopped

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

8 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted

Powdered sugar, for dusting

Instructions:

– To prepare the cashew cream:

– Combine cashews, water, maple syrup, and vanilla extract in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade. Process until smooth. This could take a few minutes, but keep processing until smooth. Pour the cashew cream into a saucepan and set aside.

– To prepare the truffles:

– Line a square baking dish with parchment paper, set aside.

– Heat the cashew cream that was placed into a saucepan over low heat, add dark chocolate and continuously stir until chocolate is completely melted. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Pour ganache into the prepared square baking dish. Refrigerate for 2 hours, then freeze for 4 hours or overnight.

– After ganache has been frozen, remove from pan and let thaw at room temperature for a few minutes until softened. Cut ganache into square pieces. Transfer pieces to a cookie sheet or cooling rack placed over a baking sheet. Pour melted semisweet chocolate over all pieces, coating each piece in chocolate. Allow to harden at room temperature, then transfer to refrigerator or freezer to store.

Hawaiian Vintage Chocolate Cashew Truffles
Recipe courtesy of Emeril Lagasse
SHOW:The Essence of Emeril
Total Time: 5 hr 20 min
Prep: 5 hr
Cook: 20 min
Yield: About 40
Ingredients:
1 cup heavy cream
1 vanilla bean, halved, seeds scraped from pod
1 pound Hawaiian Vintage Chocolate semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 tablespoon Nocello
1 cup cashews, finely chopped and lightly toasted
Directions
In a saucepan, bring the cream and vanilla bean and seeds to a simmer over medium heat. Remove the pan from the heat and remove the vanilla bean. Add the chocolate and whisk until smooth. Mix in the Nocello. Cool completely, stirring occasionally, usually about 30 minutes. Chill the mixture, covered, until firm, usually 2 to 3 hours.
Line a baking sheet with waxed paper and place the chopped, toasted nuts in a medium bowl or baking dish. Using a melon baller, scoop out the truffle mixture to form 1-inch round balls. Roll lightly in your hands if necessary to shape, then roll in the nuts, pressing lightly so that nuts adhere to the truffle. Place truffles on prepared baking sheet, cover and chill until firm, about 2 hours.
Thank you, Skeen for the recipe! xoxo

April Fool’s day food recipe

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How about a sweet treat for you and/or your family?

Ice Cream Tacos

the-best-frozen-treats-in-dallas-including-the-ice-cream-freaking-taco

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 quarts Vanilla and/or chocolate ice cream
  • 1 cup MOUNDS Sweetened Coconut Flakes, tinted*
  • REESE’S MINI PIECES Candy or REESE’S PIECES Candy(optional)
  • HERSHEY’S MINIATURES Chocolate Bars, cut into curls or chopped**(optional)

    Directions

    1. Heat oven to 350°F. Line cookie sheet with foil; grease foil. Foil-wrap several cardboard rolls from plastic wrap, foil, or paper towels

    2. Beat brown sugar, melted butter, honey and flour in medium bowl until smooth. Drop batter by level tablespoonfuls, alternating 4 cookies per prepared cookie sheet. With back of spoon, spread each scoop of batter to make 3-inch circle.

    3. Bake cookies 5 to 6 minutes or until bubbly and deep golden brown. Let stand 2 minutes until set; remove from foil. With flat side to inside, place cookies around prepared rolls; cool completely. Repeat until all cookies are baked and cooled.

    4. Fill cookies with scoops of ice cream; sprinkle with tinted coconut, candies and chocolate curls. Serve immediately. About 14 servings.

    *To tint coconut: Place 1/2 teaspoon water and several drops green food color in small bowl; stir in coconut. With fork, toss until evenly tinted; cover tightly.

    ** To make chocolate curls: Unwrap chocolate bars; hold in hand until softened. With vegetable peeler, peel down side of chocolate piece, forming curls. Place on wax paper-covered tray; refrigerate until firm. Handle curls with wooden picks.

    Source

    There are many different variations of this recipe across the web. Search Ice Cream Tacos, and find the one right for you, or just go buy a box of Choco Tacos! lol 😉

     

     

     

    Clams Casino Recipe

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    I’m not big on clams, except for chowder. 😉 but thought that others might appreciate, and a huge thank you to Skeen! 😉
    Clams Casino
    “Clams casino is a clam ”on the halfshell” dish with breadcrumbs and bacon. It originated in Rhode Island in the United States. It is often served as an appetizer in New England and is served in variations nationally.
    According to legend, the recipe for clams casino was originally developed in 1917 in the Little Casino in Narragansett, Rhode Island, by a maître d’hôtel for a woman of means wanting something special for her guests.  Good Housekeeping Great American Classics attributes the dish to Mrs. Paran Stevens and maître d’hôtel Julius Keller.  She named the dish after the hotel, and word and popularity of the dish has since spread across the United States, including New Orleans, where oysters are substituted for clams. Clams casino remains a very popular dish in Rhode Island, “appearing on almost every menu”.
    Clams Casino Recipe
    By John Mitzewich, American Food Expert
    Clams casino is simply the best clam recipe ever. Whenever bacon and butter appear in the same recipe, you know you’re in for a treat! Not only is clams casino an easy recipe to prepare, it can be made ahead of time and popped into the broiler whenever you’re ready.
    Prep Time: 30 minutes
    Cook Time: 10 minutes
    Total Time: 40 minutes
    Makes 18 Clams Casino
    Ingredients:
    18 medium-sized (about 2 1/2-inches) littleneck clams
    2 tablespoon unsalted butter
    3 strips center-cut bacon, each sliced into 6 equal pieces (18 total)
    3 tablespoon finely diced red bell pepper
    3 garlic cloves, finely minced
    1/3 cup plain breadcrumbs
    1 tablespoon finely grated Parmesan
    1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    pinch of salt
    2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
    lemon wedges
    rock salt as needed
    Preparation;
    Heat butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon and saute until cooked, but not quite crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a plate and reserve.
    Add the red pepper to the bacon drippings in the skillet, and cook for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Turn off the heat and stir in the breadcrumbs, Parmesan, black pepper, and salt. Reserve the mixture until needed.
    Add about 2 inches of water to a Dutch oven, or other heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid, and bring to a rapid boil over high heat. Add clams, cover, and cook for about 5 minutes, or just until the shells open. It’s critical to remove and drain the clams as soon as they open. Allow the clams to cool until they can be handled.
    Twist and pull the clamshells apart, and remove the clam. Place the clam back into the deeper of the two shell halves. Spread the rock salt on a heatproof baking dish, and set the clams on top of the salt, pressing in slightly.
    Divide the breadcrumb mixture evenly over the top of each clamshell, and top with one piece of bacon. Broil on high, about 8 inches from the heat, until the tops are browned and the edges of the bacon are crisp. Sprinkle on the fresh parsley, and serve hot with lemon wedges.

    Spinach and Mushroom Casserole

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    Spinach and Mushroom Casserole
    by  Bev, Virginia
    “If your family is sitting on the fence about spinach, you will want to give this recipe a try! This casserole will melt in your mouth and will convince your family that spinach should be served much more often! This is a “Company Worthy” recipe that will satisfy the most discriminating. “
    Prep: 25 mins
    Cook: 45 mins
    Serves: 4
    Ingredients:
    Cheese Sauce:
    1 tablespoon butter
    1 tablespoon flour
    1 cup milk
    1 cup diced asiago cheese
    1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, grated
    1/2 teaspoon white pepper
    Spinach Mixture:
    1 tablespoon compound butter (Mixed-Herb Compound Butter for Veggies or Meat)
    2 cups sliced onions
    6 cups sliced mushrooms (me no shrooms!)
    10 cups fresh Baby Spinach
    1/4 cup diced sun-dried tomato
    1/2 cup diced asiago cheese
    Directions:
    Preheat oven to 325.
    Cheese sauce:
    In microwave oven melt butter. Add flour and mix till all incorporated. Whisk in milk, nutmeg and white pepper and microwave till thickened. Remove from microwave and stir in 1 cup of the cheese till melted.

    Spinach mixture:.
    Heat butter in a large frying pan.
    Saute onions and mushrooms for 5 minutes.
    Add spinach a couple cup at a time to wilt till all is incorporated.
    When wilted remove the mixture leaving all the juice.
    Reduce the juices till almost gone and then add back to spinach mixture.
    Stir in sun-dried tomatoes and cheese sauce.

    In a oiled casserole dish place 1/2 the mixture in then top with 1/4 cup cheese, layer rest of spinach then top with remaining cheese.

    Bake for 30 minutes.

     

    Thank you, Skeen!

    xoxo 😉

    Basic Crepes

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    Crepes_dsc07085

    Ingredients

    Original recipe makes 8 crepes
    • 1 cup all-purpose flour
    • 2 eggs
    • 1/2 cup milk
    • 1/2 cup water
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 2 tablespoons butter, melted

    Directions

    1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour and the eggs. Gradually add in the milk and water, stirring to combine. Add the salt and butter; beat until smooth.
    2. Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each crepe. Tilt the pan with a circular motion so that the batter coats the surface evenly.
    3. Cook the crepe for about 2 minutes, until the bottom is light brown. Loosen with a spatula, turn and cook the other side. Serve hot.

    Source

    Coq au Vin; Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown

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    Coq au Vin

    Coq au Vin
    Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown
    Show: Good Eats
    Total Time: 13 hr
    Prep: 1 hr
    Inactive: 8 hr
    Cook: 4 hr
    Yield: 4 to 6 servings
    Level: Intermediate
    Ingredients:
    24 to 30 pearl onions
    4 chicken thighs and legs, or 1 (5 to 7-pound) stewing chicken, cut into serving pieces
    Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
    1/4 to 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
    2 tablespoons water
    6 ounces salt pork, slab bacon, or lardon, cubed
    8 ounces button mushrooms, quartered
    1 tablespoon unsalted butter
    2 (750-ml) bottles red wine, preferably pinot noir
    2 tablespoons tomato paste
    1 medium onion, quartered
    2 stalks celery, quartered
    2 medium carrots, quartered
    3 cloves garlic, crushed
    6 to 8 sprigs fresh thyme
    1 bay leaf
    2 cups chicken stock or broth
    Directions:
    Cut off the root end of each pearl onion and make an “x” with your knife in its place. Bring 2 to 3 cups of water to a boil and drop in the onions for 1 minute. Remove the onions from the pot, allow them to cool, and then peel. You should be able to slide the onions right out of their skin. Set aside.
    Sprinkle the chicken on all sides with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Place the chicken pieces, a few at a time, into a large (1 or 2-gallon) sealable plastic bag along with the flour. Shake to coat all of the pieces of the chicken. Remove the chicken from the bag to a metal rack.
    Add the 2 tablespoons of water to a large, 12-inch saute pan over medium heat along with the salt pork. Cover and cook until the water is gone, and then continue to cook until the salt pork cubes are golden brown and crispy, approximately 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the salt pork from the pan and set aside.
    In the same pan, using the remaining fat, add the pearl onions, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and saute until lightly brown, approximately 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the onions from the pan and set aside. Next, brown the chicken pieces on each side until golden brown, working in batches if necessary to not overcrowd the pan. Transfer the chicken into a 7 to 8-quart enameled cast iron Dutch oven.
    Add the mushrooms to the same 12-inch saute pan, adding the 1 tablespoon of butter if needed, and saute until they give up their liquid, approximately 5 minutes. Store the onions, mushrooms and pork in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use.
    Pour off any remaining fat and deglaze the pan with approximately 1 cup of the wine. Pour this into the Dutch oven along with the chicken stock, tomato paste, quartered onion, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, and bay leaf. Add all of the remaining wine. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
    The next day, preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
    Place the chicken in the oven and cook for 2 to 2 1/2 hours, or until the chicken is tender. Maintain a very gentle simmer and stir occasionally.
    Once the chicken is done, remove it to a heatproof container, cover, and place it in the oven to keep warm. Strain the sauce in a colander and remove the carrots, onion, celery, thyme, garlic, and bay leaf. Return the sauce to the pot, place over medium heat, and reduce by 1/3. Depending on how much liquid you actually began with, this should take 20 to 45 minutes.
    Once the sauce has thickened, add the pearl onions, mushrooms, and pork and cook for another 15 minutes or until the heated through. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary, remove from the heat, add the chicken and serve. Serve over egg noodles, if desired.
    Cook’s Note: If the sauce is not thick enough at the end of reducing, you may add a mixture of equal parts butter and flour kneaded together. Start with 1 tablespoon of each. Whisk this into the sauce for 4 to 5 minutes and repeat, if necessary.
    Recipe courtesy Alton Brown
    Thank you, Skeen! xoxo

    Caramel-Filled Chocolate Cookies

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    Caramel-Filled Chocolate Cookies

    Delicate pastry wraps chewy caramel and chocolate in this winning cookie.

    • prep time1 hr 15 min
    • total time
    • ingredients12
    • servings48

    Ingredients

    2 1/2 cups flour Pillsbury BEST® All Purpose or Unbleached Flour
    3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 cup sugar
    1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
    1 cup margarine or butter, softened
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    2 eggs
    1 cup chopped pecans
    48 Rolo® Chewy Caramels in Milk Chocolate, unwrapped (from 13-oz. pkg.)
    1 tablespoon sugar
    4 oz. vanilla-flavored candy coating, if desired

    Steps

    • 1  In medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa and baking soda; mix well.
    • 2  In large bowl, combine 1 cup sugar, brown sugar and margarine; beat until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and eggs; beat well. Add flour mixture; blend well. Stir in 1/2 cup of the pecans. If necessary, cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate 30 minutes for easier handling.
    • 3  Heat oven to 375°F. For each cookie, with floured hands, shape about 1 tablespoon dough around 1 caramel candy, covering completely.
    • 4  In small bowl, combine remaining 1/2 cup pecans and 1 tablespoon sugar. Press one side of each ball into pecan mixture. Place, nut side up, 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
    • 5  Bake at 375°F. for 7 to 10 minutes or until set and slightly cracked. Cool 2 minutes; remove from cookie sheets. Cool on wire rack for 15 minutes or until completely cooled.
    • 6  Melt candy coating in small saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly until smooth. Drizzle over cookies.

    Source

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