Archive for the 'Desserts & Baked Goods' Category

Potato Chip Cookies

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Potato Chip Cookies 

Who doesn’t love potato chips? They give these buttery cookies from the kitchen of my talented friend Nancy Kistler a delicious salty crispness. Bet they become your favorite way to use up all those crumbs at the bottom of the potato chip bag! Thanks Nancy for sharing your recipe!

Potato Chip Cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cups crushed potato chips (classic style)
1 cup powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the flour and mix until well blended. Stir in the vanilla and chips.

Drop rounded tablespoons of the dough, spaced about 2 inches apart, onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake until lightly browned around the edges, about 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

Place the powdered sugar in a shallow bowl and roll the cookies in the sugar to lightly coat. Store at room temperature, with waxed paper between the layers, in an airtight container.

Makes about 30 cookies.

Cooking Tip: Do not refrigerate or freeze the unbaked dough as the potato chips will become soggy.

From The Southern Pantry Cookbook by Jennifer Chandler.

Photo by the talented Justin Fox Burks. Food styling by Jennifer Chandler.

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Banana Pudding Pie

Banana Pudding Pie

Banana Pudding Pie

As all good true Southerners, I love pie and banana pudding!

I came up with this yummy dessert to marry together two of my favorite sweet treats into one perfect concoction!

Think you’ll agree … it’s a marriage made in Heaven!

Enjoy!

Banana Pudding Pie

For the crust:
2 cups vanilla wafer cookies, plus extra for the pie garnish
1/4 cup granulated sugar
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature 

For the filling:
2 cups heavy cream
1/3 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large egg yolks
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 ripe bananas, peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick

For the whipped cream topping:
1 cup heavy cream, chilled
1/4 cup granulated or powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

To make the crust: In a food processor, finely grind the cookies. Add the sugar and pulse until combined. Slowly add the butter and pulse until well incorporated and forms moist clumps. Transfer to a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Press the crust evenly into the bottom and up the side. Bake until set, about 8 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack.

To make the filling: In a medium saucepan, combine the heavy cream, cornstarch, salt, egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla. Over medium heat, cook, whisking continuously, until the mixture thickens, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and transfer a large mixing bowl. Transfer to the refrigerator and cool completely, about 1 hour.

Spoon 1/2 of the cooled pudding evenly over the bottom of the crust. Create a layer of banana slices, reserving some for garnish. Spoon the remaining pudding evenly over the bananas. Place the pie in the refrigerator to set while making the whipped cream topping.

To make the topping: In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip the cream, sugar, and vanilla until soft peaks form. Spoon or use a pastry bag to pipe the whipped cream evenly over the pie filling. Chill the pie until set, at least 4 hours. Before serving, garnish with the remaining banana slices and extra vanilla wafer cookies.

Serves 8.

Do-Ahead: You can make and refrigerate this crust and the pie filling the day before. Add the whipped cream and garnishes the day of.

Recipe from Simply Suppers by Jennifer Chandler.

 

The BEST Chocolate Frosting

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The BEST Chocolate Frosting

It’s all about the frosting!  Don’t you agree?!

I usually judge a cupcake based on the frosting.  If the frosting is not yummy, it doesn’t matter how moist and delicious the cake part is.

This past week was my husband’s birthday and I wanted to make some cupcakes for the party I was throwing him.

He’s a fan of chocolate so I knew that’s what was on the menu.  Being busy with work, I also knew I needed to take a short cut.  So I used a boxed Devil’s Food Cake Mix for the cake part.  Boxed cake mixes are so tasty and moist that I have no guilt about taking that short cut. (And you shouldn’t either!)

That said … I have yet to find a frosting that I like as much as one that is homemade.

I thought about a ganache or a buttercream … then my daughter mentioned how much she loves my classic Cream Cheese Frosting (click here for the recipe).  That got me thinking … how could I make that yummy icing chocolate?  Well, it’s simple! Just add cocoa powder!  The tang of the cream cheese was a perfect compliment to the richness of the cocoa powder.  It made for a super chocolatey frosting that was delicious on the Devil’s Food cake.

And as the biggest plus of all … this frosting is sooooo simple to make!

Enjoy!

Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1/3 cup cocoa powder

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla until light and fluffy. Add the sugar and beat until smooth. Add the cocoa powder and beat until smooth and evenly incorporated.

Enough for 2 dozen cupcakes or 1 cake.

 

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

I should call this recipe Sarah’s Disappearing Banana Bread!

My youngest daughter can’t not get enough of banana bread.  It is one of her favorite treats to eat … and to make with her momma!

Sarah has the unfortunate curse of being allergic to nuts, and unfortunately most versions of this quick bread are made with walnuts.  She had a wonderful nut-less banana bread last summer we found at the Malibu Farmers Market. Since then, we have been on a quest to re-create a similar version.

Many of the recipes we tried were delicious … but none had the moistness of the one we had enjoyed last summer.  Then one day a friend told me to try adding sour cream to the mix. It was a brilliant suggestion! The sour cream gave the bread that delicious moistness we were lacking with other recipes we tried.

The chocolate chips were Sarah’s idea …  my little sous-chef always knows how to make a sweet over the top!

Enjoy! (But be forewarned … it will disappear very quickly!)

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 5 -inch loaf pan with nonstick baking spray.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and mix until well combined. Add the reserved flour mixture and mix until well blended. Add the bananas, sour cream, vanilla extract, and cinnamon and stir to blend. Stir in the chocolate chips. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about for 60 to 70 minutes.

Remove the bread from the oven and cool in the pan on a wire rack just until cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes. Remove the bread from the pan and place onto a wire rack to cool.

Serves 8.

Cooking Tip:  It happens to all of us.  Some days bananas ripen faster than we can eat them.  If I have bananas that are overly ripe, I throw them in a Ziploc bag in the freezer. That way, I always have ripe bananas on hand to make this bread and I am not wasting food.

Variation: If you are not allergic to nuts like Sarah, add a 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts to the batter for what I’d call a “Chunky Monkey” version!

Freezes well.

Flourless Chocolate Cake with Peppermint Ice Cream


 

One word sums up this dessert … YUM!

The combination of Chocolate and Peppermint is my favorite Holiday treat.

This year we had our Holiday family dinner early since my sisters were in town the weekend before Christmas.  As always, I am the one in charge of dessert. When I was trying to decide what to make, I remembered a Peppermint Ice Cream from Simply Recipes that I had wanted to try.  Being a chocoholic, I decided to pair this frozen treat with a decadently rich Flourless Chocolate Cake.

It was a match made in heaven!  A light dusting of crushed candy canes finished it all off.

Merry Christmas from my kitchen to yours!

Enjoy!

Flourless Chocolate Cake

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus extra to grease the pan
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, plus extra to dust the pan
1/4 cup heavy cream
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
5 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-inch springform pan and lightly dust with cocoa powder. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan, heat the butter with the heavy cream over medium-low heat until the butter is melted. Add the chocolate and stir until melted and smooth. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly, about 5 minutes.

In a mixing bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar, and cocoa powder until well blended.  Stir in the melted chocolate mixture.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until set, about 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool in the pan before serving.

Serves 8.

Peppermint Ice Cream  — from the talented Elise Bauer at Simply Recipes.

 

 

 

Broccoli-Cheddar Cornbread

 

I was first introduced to this yummy cornbread by my friend Dawn Looney. In her usual sweet Southern way, she had brought us supper after the birth of my second child. In her goodie basket was a huge Mason jar full of soup and a tin full of the moisted, most unique cornbread I had ever tasted.

What makes this cornbread so moist is the cottage cheese. It truly makes it stand out from that dry, crumbly cornbread most folks make.  My kids never have been a fan of cornbread … probably because most versions are dry and tasteless. But even with the broccoli, they love this version! Dawn didn’t have cheddar in her recipe … but I couldn’t resist adding it.

Oh … and I have to admit, I stole Dawn’s cute idea of bringing friends a Mason jar full of soup when they have just had a baby, been ill, or just need a happy!  It makes a healthy yet delicious meal that can be served that night or frozen for later. My hearty Vegetable Beef Soup is my go-to for this gift because it is loved by all and is so simple to make. This cornbread makes the meal complete.

Enjoy!

Broccoli-Cheddar Cornbread

2 8.5-ounce boxes corn bread mix (I use Jiffy)
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
4 eggs
8 ounces cottage cheese
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
10 ounces frozen chopped broccoli, defrosted and drained

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease and flour a 9×9-inch baking pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together the corn bread mix, melted butter, eggs, and cottage cheese until well blended.  Stir in the cheddar cheese, onion and broccoli until evenly combined.

Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 45 to 50 minutes.

Serves 8 to 10.

Rustic Peach Tart


I love summer peaches! You know the ones that are so ripe and juicy you have to eat them over the kitchen sink?!

Here’s an easy dessert you can make with this late summer treat.  Don’t fuss over the perfect crust. Instead whip up a rustic version that is meant to look a little rough around the edges.

Depending on what’s in season, you can substitute apples, pears and even blueberries for this peaches.

Rustic Peach Tart 

1 unbaked pie crust (9-inch), homemade or store-bought
4 peaches (about 1 1/2 pounds), peeled, cored, and cut into thin slices, about 1/4-inch thick
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Roll the dough into a 10-inch round about 1/8-inch thick.  Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl combine the peaches, 1/2 cup of the sugar, flour, cinnamon, and salt and toss to coat. Fill the center of the pie crust with the peach mixture in an even layer, leaving a 1 1/2-inch border. Fold the border up and over the apples, overlapping every 2 to 3 inches, to make a rim. Brush the rim with the egg wash and evenly sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar over the rim.

Bake until the crust is nicely browned and the peaches are bubbling, about 30 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool on a rack for 15 minutes before serving. Serve warm.

Serves 8.


Jennifer Chandler

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