Dessert

Homemade Pudding

1388693156176This recipe came from a Pioneer Woman cookbook and since I have made puddings in the past from the box and not liked the artificial flavor of it, I knew I had to try this one and see if it would satisfy the occasional pudding craving I get. It most definitely did not disappoint, and if you have the patience or foresight to wait til it chills to eat it awesome, if not, it tastes good warm too. This recipe makes 8 servings, I cut it in half for my family of 4 and it was perfect.

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2 vanilla beans or 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • 6 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine (if you want to make it chocolate pudding)

In a medium saucepan, gently whisk together the sugar, cornstarch and salt. Pour in the milk and egg yolks, then whisk until combined. If using vanilla beans, use a small paring knife to split the bean down the middle and use the backside of the knife to scrape out the seeds. Place the seeds in the pan, along with the scraped out pods. If using vanilla extract, just pour it in at this step. Turn the heat up to medium and stir gently for 3-4 minutes. It will seem like nothing is happening at first, but stick with it and soon it will start to bubble and thicken. Let it bubble for about a minute then remove it from the heat. Discard the vanilla bean pods and stir in the butter. At this point you can portion it out and serve immediately with some lightly sweetened whipped cream, or store it in the fridge and serve after it has chilled.

Dessert, Entree, How To

How To: Savory Pie Crust

downloadWith Christmas guests coming I took the opportunity to make a few new recipes, including a chicken pot pie.  I figured a pie crust made out of lard would be the perfect complement and sure enough it was delicious. Even better was the fact that it didn’t require a ton of chilling.

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup lard
  • 1/3 cup ice water

Whisk flour and salt together in a large bowl. Cut in the lard with a knife or pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle in water, 1 tablespoon at a time, blending gently with a fork or pastry blender until all flour is moistened and dough almost cleans the sides of the bowl. Divide the dough in half and shape flattened rounds. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Cookies, Dessert

Cinnamon Roll Cookies

cinnaomrollcookies-7-570x824.jpgI saw this recipe on the website of one of my favorite bloggers but it took me a little while to actually make them. Once I did I knew I had to give them all away because they were seriously addicting. The recipe as posted makes giant cookies so if you want smaller ones, cut the dough into smaller sections. Recipe and photo courtesy of cookiesandcups.com.

Filling

  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Cookie

  • 3/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour

Icing

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk

For the filling, in a medium bowl combine the butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Set aside. In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment combine the butter and the granulated sugar, mixing on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla, cream, baking powder, and salt.  Mix for 1 minute, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary. Turn the mixer to low and add in the flour, mixing until just combined. On a lightly floured piece of wax or parchment paper, press the dough out into a 15×10 rectangle. This doesn’t have to be exact or neat. Spread the filling mixture on top of the dough, leaving about an inch at the edges. Roll the dough up tightly from the long edge. Cut the dough into 10 equal slices. Roll each slice into a ball and place on a lightly floured plate or baking sheet. Place into the freezer for 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Place 5 of the dough balls onto the prepared pan, leaving space for them to spread. Place the remaining dough in the refrigerator while the first batch bakes. Bake for 15-17 minutes, until the edges are lightly golden. Allow the cookies to cool on the pan for 5 minutes, and then transfer to a wire rack to continue cooling. For the icing, in a medium bowl combine the powdered sugar, butter and 1 tablespoon milk. Whisk until no lumps remain. Add more milk if a thinner icing is desired. Dip the tops of the cooled cookies into the icing, or drizzle on top. Allow the icing to set.

Cookies, Dessert

Butter Pecan Shortbread Cookies

Butter-Pecan-Shortbread-Cookies-8I was making a different recipe and had taken extra butter out but didn’t need it so I decided to make this shortbread recipe instead. It was so, so good. Simple in ingredients, but complex in flavor. They aren’t overly sweet either so if you have someone who doesn’t like super-sweet desserts this would be just the thing. Recipe and photo courtesy of houseofyumm.com.

  • 1 cup salted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup toffee bits
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans

In a large mixing bowl add the room temperature butter and sugars. Beat or mix together until combined. Add in the vanilla extract and egg. Mix to combine. Stir in the all purpose flour. Fold in the toffee bits and chopped pecans. Divide the cookie dough in half. Lay a piece of plastic wrap on the counter. Place one half of the cookie dough on the plastic wrap. Using the plastic wrap, roll the dough into a long round shape. Roll it against the counter to get the dough compact and round. Make sure the cookie dough is completely wrapped in the plastic wrap and place in the fridge to chill. Do the same with the second half of the shortbread cookie dough. Chill the cookie dough for at least 2 hours. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Remove the cookie dough from the refrigerator and remove the plastic wrap. Using a large knife slice the cookie dough into 1/2 inch rounds. Place the shortbread cookie rounds on a large baking sheet that is lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Press the edges of the cookies in to smooth out from cutting. Bake the cookies for about 12-14 minutes until cooked through. Cookies will be slightly golden on the outside. They will not spread much or rise. Store the cookies in sealed containers at room temperature.

 

 

Cookies, Dessert

Coconut Pecan Oatmeal Chewies

Oatmeal-Coconut-Pecan-Cookies-aI started out wanting to make Anzac cookies, but the recipe I found called for desiccated coconut which I don’t have so I decided to sub shredded coconut. After a little research I realized that there is a big difference between desiccated and shredded coconut so I decided to add pecans and make a new cookie! I have started dipping my toe in the recipe creation pool and this was my first attempt. I’m proud to say that these turned out delicious! Chewy, not too sweet, and just the right size. I’ll definitely make these again.

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 stick butter, salted
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1/4 boiling water
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda*

Combine all your dry ingredients into a bowl. Melt your butter and corn syrup in a saucepan over low heat, then mix together the boiling water and baking soda and add it to the butter/syrup mixture. Mix into the dry ingredients until the dough comes together. You want it to be scoopable but not too wet. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes or until brown.

For high altitude baking, use 3/4 teaspoon of baking soda.

Bars, Dessert

Pecan Chewy Bars

Pecan-Chewies-2These bars are so simple and come together so quickly, but they are so good. Like crazy addictive. I am seriously considering making these instead of pie at Thanksgiving next year.

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, well beaten
  • 2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

Preheat the oven to 300°F and lightly spray a 13×9-inch* baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Melt butter, add sugars, and blend well by hand. Add beaten eggs, stir well. Add flour and stir until all lumps are gone. Add pecans and vanilla. Pour into the prepared baking dish. Bake approximately 40 to 50 minutes being cautious not to over cook. They will still be jiggly in the middle.

*I used a slightly smaller rectangular baking dish because I wanted them to be slightly thicker, but use whichever you want.

Dessert

Instant Pot Cheesecake

Instant-Pot-Cheesecake-ImageWhen I got my Instant Pot I knew you could make desserts in it, and since I love desserts, I knew I would be using that feature. What I didn’t know is that the sealing rings in the lid of the Instant Pot holds odors like nobody’s business so unless I wanted pulled pork smelling cheesecake I would need to buy more sealing rings. As I don’t currently have any other sealing rings, I ended up making this cheesecake recipe in the oven with a water bath and it turned out beautifully. I am going to post the instructions for the Instant Pot method here, but if you don’t have one, it makes a delicious 6″ cheesecake in the more classic manner also. Recipe and photo courtesy of mybakingaddiction.com.

  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Challenge Dairy Unsalted Butter, melted
  • 16 ounces Challenge Dairy Cream Cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • cherry pie filling, optional

Tightly wrap the bottom of 6-inch springform pan in foil and spray the inside of the pan with non-stick cooking spray. In a small mixing bowl, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter. Press the crumbs into the bottom of the prepared pan. Place pan in freezer for 10-15 minutes. In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add sugar and mix until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each before adding the next. Making sure to scrape down the bowl in between each egg. Add in the flour, heavy cream, and vanilla and mix until smooth. Pour batter into prepared pan. Cover the top of the pan with a piece of foil. Pour 1 1/2 cups of water into the Instant Pot and place the trivet in the bottom of the pot. Create a “foil sling” by folding a 20-inch long piece of foil in half lengthwise two times. This “sling” will allow you place and remove the springform pan with ease.Place the cheesecake pan in the center of the sling and carefully lower the pan into the Instant Pot. Fold down the excess foil from the sling to ensure the pot closes properly. Lock the lid into place and make sure the vent is closed “sealing”. Press the “Manual” button and cook on high pressure for 35 minutes. When the Instant Pot beeps, hit the “Keep Warm/Cancel” button to turn off the pressure cooker. Allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes and then do a quick release to release any pressure remaining in the pot. Carefully unfold the foil sling and remove the cheesecake from the pot to a cooling rack using the foil sling “handles”. Uncover the cheesecake and allow it to cool to room temperature. Once the cheesecake has cooled, refrigerate it for at least 8 hours, or overnight. Before serving, top with pie filling and whipped cream if desired.

*If you are baking this in the oven instead, simply put your wrapped pan in a 9×13 pan with water in it and bake it for about 40 minutes in a 350 oven. There should still be a slight wobble in the center, just turn off the oven and leave the door cracked so it can finish baking for about 10 minutes.