Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Natty Cakes

I made this cake for one of my oldest and very best friends for her birthday. I even named it after her and it is almost as sweet as her. This is what she said was her favorite cake and this is what I came up with. It reminded me of one giant cupcake. I think it turned out great!


White Cake from Scratch

2 3/4 cups sifted cake flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
4 egg whites
1 1/2 cups white sugar
3/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
1 handful of white chocolate chips (optional)

DIRECTIONS

Combine flour, baking powder, and salt; stir wiht a fork until well mixed. In a mixing bowl, beat egg whites until foamy. Add 1/2 cup sugar gradually, and continue beating only until meringue will hold up to peaks. Cream butter, vanilla and almond extract gradually add remaining 1 cup sugar, and cream together until light and fluffy. Add sifted ingredients alternately with milk a small amount at a time, beating after each addition until smooth. Add meringue, and fold thoroughly into batter. Spread batter into a WELL greased pan of choice. I prefer the deep 9" round pan but a bunt also works well. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes. Cool cake in pan 2 minutes, then remove from pan and transfer to a wire rack, wrap in saran wrap and let finish cooling. If you have time place cake in freezer until frozen, then remove and frost as desired.

White Chocolate Cake - Easy Version

1 pkg white chocolate pudding mix - instant
1 box white cake mix
1/2 C water
1/2 C applesauce (or oil)
4 large eggs
1 C sour cream
1 handful white chocolate chips (optional)

Bake 350 approx 40 min

FROSTING

2 packages chocolate pudding - instant
1 1/4 cup cold milk
Blend well and set aside


WHIPPED TOPPING

you can either use Cool Whip and real whipping cream
2 1/2 C heavy whipping cream
1/3 C powdered sugar (to taste)
1 tea vanilla
Blend until stiff

Top cake with thick layer of pudding and then a think layer of whipped topping. Refrigerate until ready to serve

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Spinach Artichoke Dip

Pretty much one of my favorite things to munch on.

Baked with Parmesan cheese on top

Baked without Parmesan cheese on top


In a sauce pan, combine the following ingredients on med/low heat

8 oz cream cheese
2 Tbl dried onion
1/3 C light Mayo
1/3 C 1/2 & 1/2 (or milk)
1/2 tea lemon pepper
dash of sugar
dash of Tabasco
1/2 tea garlic salt (or to taste)
1+ C Parmesan cheese (fresh, grated)
10 oz package frozen spinach
1 C marinated artichoke hearts (optional)- pureed with an immersion blender then add to pan

Once all ingredients are warmed and smooth use your immersion blender to thin. You can blend this as much or as you like based on your preference. Personally I prefer it a little more on the smooth side. Bring to a slight boil and remove from stove. Pour into oven safe baking dish and top with more Parmesan cheese if you so desire. Bake at 375 for 15 minutes or until golden on top. Serve hot with dry seasoned baguettes, tortilla chips or crackers. Tasty!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Tomato Basil Chicken with Parmesan Noodles

This was absolutely delightful. LOVED it! Will definitely do this little creation again.



Herb Chicken
4 Chicken breasts
1/4 C Dry herbs (rosemary, basil, oregano etc. - I have a few I really like I get at Costco that have combined herbs - anything like that will do)
sliced tomato

Basil Parmesan Sauce
1/3 C light Mayo
1/2 C fresh Parmesan cheese
1 tsp garlic
fresh basil - 1 handful coarsely chopped
1/2 tsp lemon pepper
1/2 tsp seasoning salt
1/2 C marinated artichoke - finely chopped (optional)

Thaw chicken, rinses and pat dry. Then roll chicken in herbs and place in lightly oiled pan. Place sliced tomato on chicken breast and scoop a dollop of basil parmesan sauce on top. Bake 350 covered 30 min and uncovered approx. 10 minutes. Serve on top of parmesan noodles (below).

Parmesan Noodles

Thin Spaghetti noodles
* once boiled and drained toss in
1 Tbl olive oil
garlic salt (to taste)
parmesan cheese (to taste)

YUMMY!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Mini Cakes - Cinnamon and Chocolate

I did these a few weeks ago and loved them. I think it was the pan that made them so great. I am excited to do little min carrot cakes or zucchini cakes with a dollop of cream cheese frosting, YUM! Stay posted, I think this little pan will get its moneys worth.

CINNAMON MINI CAKES
1 1/2 stick soft butter
1 C sugar
3 eggs
2 C flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tea vanilla
3/4 C sour cream
1/4 tsp cardamon (heaping)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tea cinnamon


STREUSEL TOPPING

3/4 C flour
1/4 C brown sugar
1/4 C granulated sugar
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp cinnamon
5 Tbl butter - cut into small pieces

Preheat oven 325. Mix streusel in bowl until crubly, no clumps of butter remain and set aside.

Cream together butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla. Then add remaining ingredients and blend well, add sour cream last. Spoon batter into lightly greased pan (loaf pan, muffin pan or streusel pan shown below. Sprinkle streusel on top about 2 heaping tsp per cup. Bake for 25 minutes or until toothpick come out clean. Let cool in rack 10 minutes then remove from pan.




CHOCOLATE MINI CAKES
1 1/2 stick soft butter
1 C sugar
3 eggs
7 Tbl cocoa powder
2 C flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tea vanilla
3/4 C sour cream
1/4 tsp salt
1 handful of chocolate chips (you can even sprinkle s few on top for an added yummyness)