Friday, March 29, 2013

Blueberry Pecan Cake

  • Cooking spray
  • 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons grated orange rind
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 2 tablespoons sifted powdered sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Coat a 9-inch round springform pan with cooking spray, and dust the pan with 2 teaspoons flour.
  3. Place butter in a large microwave-safe bowl. Cover and microwave at high 1 minute or until butter melts. Add granulated sugar, stirring with a whisk. Add eggs; stir well. Stir in buttermilk and next 6 ingredients (buttermilk through baking soda); stir well. Lightly spoon 1 1/2 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Add flour, stirring just until blended (do not overstir). Stir in blueberries and pecans. Spoon mixture into prepared pan, spreading evenly.
  4. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes or until lightly browned and a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Cut into wedg

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Carrot Cake Minis

pkg.  (2-layer size) carrot cake mix
pkg.  (3.4 oz.) JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Instant Pudding
tubs   (10.6 oz. each) COOL WHIP Cream Cheese Whipped Frosting, thawed
cups  chopped PLANTERS Walnuts
 orange sour fruit-flavored chewy candy squares

make it

HEAT oven to 350°F.
PREPARE cake batter as directed on package adding pudding to cake mix; pour into 48 paper-lined mini muffin pan cups. Bake 12 to 15 min. or until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 min.; remove to wire racks. Cool completely.
MEANWHILE, press candies until softened; roll up to resemble carrots.
REMOVE cupcakes from liners; cut cupcakes horizontally in half. Fill each with about 1 Tbsp. frosting. Top with remaining frosting, nuts and "carrots.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Banana Crunch Muffins

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup mashed ripe bananas (2 bananas)
  • 1 cup medium-diced ripe bananas (1 banana)
  • 1 cup small-diced walnuts
  • 1 cup granola
  • 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
  • Dried banana chips, granola, or shredded coconut, optional


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Line 18 large muffin cups with paper liners. Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the melted butter and blend. Combine the eggs, milk, vanilla, and mashed bananas, and add them to the flour-and-butter mixture. Scrape the bowl and blend well. Don't overmix.
Fold the diced bananas, walnuts, granola, and coconut into the batter. Spoon the batter into the paper liners, filling each 1 to the top. Top each muffin with dried banana chips, granola, or coconut, if desired. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the tops are brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Cool slightly, remove from the pan, and serve.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Strawberry Lemonade Mini Cheesecakes

cups  HONEY MAID Graham Cracker Crumbs
cup  sugar, divided
Tbsp.  butter, melted
cups  fresh strawberries, divided
Tbsp.  strawberry jam
pkg.  (8 oz. each) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
pkg.  (3 oz.) JELL-O Lemon Flavor Gelatin
tub  (8 oz.) COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, thawed
Tbsp.  lemon zest

make it

MIX graham crumbs, 1/4 cup sugar and butter until blended; press onto bottoms of 24 paper-lined muffin pan cups. Refrigerate until ready to use.
CHOP enough strawberries to measure 1-1/2 cups; place in medium bowl. Add jam; mix lightly. Reserve remaining berries for garnish.
BEAT cream cheese and remaining sugar with mixer until blended. Add dry gelatin mix; mix well. Stir in COOL WHIP. Spoon about 1 Tbsp. cream cheese mixture over each crust. Top with chopped strawberry mixture and remaining cream cheese mixture.
REFRIGERATE 4 hours or until firm. Garnish with reserved berries and lemon zest.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Fully Loaded Scalloped Potatoes

2 lb.  red potatoes (about 6)
slices  OSCAR MAYER Bacon
Tbsp.  flour
cup  milk
Tbsp.  chopped fresh chives, divided
cup  KRAFT Shredded Triple Cheddar Cheese with a TOUCH OF PHILADELPHIA

Make It

COOK potatoes in boiling water in saucepan 25 min. or just until tender; drain. Cool. Meanwhile, cook bacon as directed on package.
HEAT oven to 350°F. Crumble bacon; reserve 1/4 cup. Cut potatoes into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Whisk flour and milk in large bowl until blended. Stir in sour cream. Add potatoes, remaining bacon and 2 Tbsp. chives; stir to evenly coat potatoes.
POUR into 2-qt. casserole sprayed with cooking spray; top with cheese.
BAKE 30 to 35 min. or until heated through. Sprinkle with remaining chives and reserved bacon.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Berry Breakfast Pizza


  • 1 storebought pizza dough
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 4 tablespoons Cinnamon-Sugar, divided, recipe follows
  • 2 cups mascarpone cheese
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest (from 1 lemon)
  • 2 cups mixed berries


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Using a rolling pin, roll out the pizza dough to a thickness of about 1/4 inch. Transfer the pizza dough to the lined baking sheet and brush the dough with the melted butter. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons Cinnamon-Sugar and bake until golden brown, about 10 to 15 minutes. Cool the pizza crust on a wire rack.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, mix together the cheese, cream, lemon juice, and zest.

Spread the cheese mixture over the cooled crust. Top with mixed berries and sprinkle with the remaining Cinnamon-Sugar. Slice like a pizza and serve.


Cut the vanilla bean in half, lengthwise. Using the back of a knife, scrape along the inside of the vanilla bean to collect the seeds. Scrape vanilla bean seeds into a small bowl. Add sugar and cinnamon and stir to combine. Set aside in a small serving bowl.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Chicken Fetuccine Carbonara

slices bacon, coarsely chopped
tablespoon margarine or butter
1 1/2
cups hot water
2 1/2
cups milk
box Chicken Helper® fettuccine Alfredo
cups cubed deli rotisserie chicken (from 2- to 2 1/2-lb chicken)
cup Green Giant® frozen sweet peas
  • 1In 12-inch skillet, cook bacon until crisp; drain on paper towels. Reserve 1 tablespoon drippings in skillet. Add margarine to drippings in skillet; heat over medium-high heat until margarine is melted.
  • 2Stir in hot water, milk, sauce mix and uncooked pasta (from Chicken Helper box). Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally.
  • 3Reduce heat. Cover; simmer 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in chicken and frozen peas. Cover; simmer 4 to 6 minutes longer or until pasta is tender. Remove from heat; uncover, and stir in bacon (sauce will thicken as it stands).

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Ravioli Alfredo With Peas

  • Kosher salt
  • 2 9-ounce packages mushroom ravioli
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the ravioli and cook as the label directs. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water, then drain the ravioli.

Combine the butter, cream and peas in a large skillet and bring to a simmer over medium heat; cook 1 minute. Add the ravioli, cheese, nutmeg and a splash of the reserved cooking water to the skillet and toss. Add more cooking water to thin the sauce, if needed. Season with salt and pepper. Divide among bowls and top with the parsley.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Donkey Balls

2 pkg of crescent rolls, pref. butter flake
1 16 oz. pkg of Philadelphia cream cheese softened (can use the 1/3 of fat one, but never fat free)
1 Jimmy Dean sauage roll (standard size)
  • 1Take the sausage and cook in pan til browned and lightly crisp. Drain fat in jar, or choose to mix it in for extra goodness in the recipe
  • 2While sausage is cooking, unwrap cream cheese and place in mixing bowl then mix generously with sausage. Can add diced onions or seasoning for extra flavor, but this recipe is good enough to stand without additional ingredients.
  • 3Take crescent rolls and lay flat out taking each individual triangle and cutting them in half (if not careful you may need to knead triangle into small circles for best effect.
  • 4Take a teaspoon of the mixture and spoon a little at a time into each crescent roll then wrap mixture up into little ball making sure that mixture is sealed inside (you do not have to keep it completely covered but it creates less mess eating it that way)
  • 5Place balls individually on each 2 cookie sheets then bake at 350 for approx 8-10 minutes. If you have a particularly fast oven bake at 8 min taking care not to burn bottoms.
  • 6Cool for about 2-3 minutes and enjoy. With 2 pkgs of crescent rolls should make about 48 balls or roughly enough for 8-10 people.
  • 7Warning: Do not expect leftovers as these go very, very fast. Luckily as you can see for yourself they are easy to make. And everyone will think you are just so clever for combining 3 very delicious things together.

Maple Bacon Monkey Bread

tablespoons butter or margarine
tablespoons real maple syrup
cup packed brown sugar
teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)
slices bacon, crisply cooked, crumbled
cans (8 oz each) Pillsbury® refrigerated crescent dinner rolls or 2 cans (8 oz each) Pillsbury® Crescent Recipe Creations® refrigerated seamless dough sheet
  • 1Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 8x4-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
  • 2In medium microwavable bowl, microwave butter and syrup uncovered on High 30 to 45 seconds or until hot. Stir in brown sugar and red pepper until dissolved. Stir in bacon. Evenly spoon mixture into pan.
  • 3Unroll each can of dough into 1 large rectangle; if using crescent roll dough, press perforations to seal. Cut each rectangle into 8 rows by 3 rows, to make 24 pieces per rectangle (48 pieces of dough total). Roll each piece of dough into a ball. Arrange balls over butter mixture in pan.
  • 4Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in pan 5 minutes. Place heatproof serving plate over pan; carefully turn plate and pan over. Remove pan. Serve warm.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Upside Down Turtle Muffins

cup semisweet chocolate chips
tablespoons butter or margarine
cup buttermilk
cup packed brown sugar
teaspoon vanilla
cup all-purpose flour
teaspoon baking soda
teaspoon salt
cup chopped pecans
milk chocolate-covered caramels (from 5.3-oz bag), unwrapped
small pecan halves
  • 1Heat oven to 400°F. Spray bottoms, sides and tops of 12 regular-size muffin cups with cooking spray.
  • 2In 1 1/2-quart heavy saucepan, melt chocolate chips and butter over low heat, stirring frequently; cool slightly. Stir in buttermilk, brown sugar, vanilla and egg.
  • 3In large bowl, mix flour, baking soda, salt and chopped pecans. Stir in chocolate mixture just until combined. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups. Push 1 caramel into center of batter in each muffin cup.
  • 4Bake 14 to 16 minutes or until toothpick inserted 1/2 inch from edge of muffin comes out clean. Cool 1 minute. Turn muffin pan upside down onto cookie sheet to remove muffins. Immediately place another caramel on bottom of each muffin. Leaving muffins upside down on cookie sheet, return to oven about 1 minute or until caramel is soft enough to add pecan halves.
  • 5Place 3 pecan halves on caramel on each muffin. Cool until caramel is slightly firm before serving, about 10 minutes. Serve warm if desired.