Thursday, December 18, 2008

Christmas Goodies #3

Peanut Butter Balls

2 cups creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup unsalted butter (room temp)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
9 oz semi sweet chocolate chips
2 tbls shortening
Line baking sheet with wax paper.
Place peanut butter, butter, and salt in a bowl and microwave till soft. Add vanilla and confectioners sugar and use your hands to mix untill the consistency is of dough. You can add more confectioners sugar if you want.
Roll into balls and place on cookie sheet and refrigerate until firm.
In a double boiler, melt chocolate and shortening. Stir till smooth.
Use the melted chocolate to dollop on top of the peanut butter balls or to coat them completely. Place the balls in the fridge till the chocolate is set.

Christmas Goodies #2

Oatmeal Raspberry Squares


1/2c unsalted butter
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 cups rolled oats
1 cup raspberry jam (or preserves, but I don't like the seeds)

Preheat oven to 350 degress and spray a 9x9 in pan. Set aside.

Cream the butter and sugar (it helps if the butter is soft) untill fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and beat until mixed. In a seperate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt.

Add the dry ingredietns to butter mix and mix untill combined. Fold in 1 3/4 cup of oats. I like to do this with my hands as oposed to using a spoon or spatula, but you can do it however you like.

Press 2/3 of the dough into the bottom of the pan making sure you have an even layer. Spread the jam evenly over the oatmeal base.

Add the rest of the oats to remainder of the dough and mix together. Crumble the mix over the pan to provide a topping. Bake until nicely browned and the jam just starts to bubble at the edges. Let cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes then cut with a clean knife into squares. Let the squares cool an additional 10 to 15 minutes.

Christmas Goodies #1

White Chocolate Drops


12 oz white chocolate chips
1 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup salted chopped nuts (I like walnuts or almonds)

In a microwave safe bowl, heat the chocolate chips on high for 45 seconds. Take out and stir. If the chips are not completely melted, heat for 10 to 15 second intervals until smooth.

Stir in the fruit and nuts. Drop heaping spoonfulls onto wax paper (parchment paper works too). Allow to set in fridge or in room temperature (room temp takes longer).

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Kahlua Chocolate Cake

Courtesy of my mom...I'm not sure where she got it from but it has always been my go-to dessert at Potlucks and dinners. I actually just made the cake tonight as a Christmas Present for a friend of mine and as always, thumbs up and stomach rubbing all around! :)

1 package Devil's Food Chocolate Cake Mix
1 package Chocolate Pudding Mix
2 cups Sour Cream
4 eggs
3/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
1/3 cup Kahlua Liqueur or other Coffee flavored liqueur (optional)
6 oz (usually half a package) of semi sweet mini chocolate chips
--optional sour cream frosting:
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup sour cream
1/4 cup shortening
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
or you can just sprinkle the top of the cake with powdered sugar and garnish with edible flowers, berries etc.
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees
-Combine cake mix, pudding mix, sour cream, eggs, oil, and kahlua and stir together in a big bowl until well blended
-Stir in chocolate chips
-Ladle into well oiled Bundt pan (ladle in big scoops then smooth out the top, but dont compact into the pan, it will settle as it bakes)
-Bake for 45 to 60 minutes, checking often with a skewer (till the skewer comes out clean)
-Let cool for 15 minutes in the pan before inverting onto plate. Let cool for another 10 to 15 minutes before sprinkling with sugar or frosting.