Thursday, October 16, 2014

Peanut Butter Toffee Cookies

This recipe is mostly like my Peanut Butter Cookie recipe only with a little more flour and milk chocolate covered toffee bits. What could be better than that?? I love Peanut Butter cookies and these don't disappoint, just have a glass of milk on hand. Enjoy!

Peanut Butter Toffee Cookies
1/2 cup softened butter
1/2 cup natural chunky peanut butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups all purpose unbleached flour

1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup toffee bits (I used Heath Toffee Bits)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with  parchment paper and set aside. 
Cream butters and sugars together until light and fluffy. Stir in egg and vanilla. Scrape sides and mix again. In a small bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt, add to butter mixture and mix until just combined. Stir in toffee bits by hand. Scoop dough balls onto baking sheet  (I used about a tablespoon size cookie scoop) leaving lots of room around each cookie to expand. Press down cookie dough balls using a fork. Bake 8 to 10 minutes. Cool on baking sheet 3 minutes and then remove to cooling rack. Serve immediately with a glass of milk! Enjoy!

Molten Lava Cake

I love chocolate.....Loved this recipe. I"m slow posting it but I served for dessert on my wedding anniversary. You know those desserts at restaurants that are individual chocolate cakes filled with molten chocolate? Well this is them!! This recipe is delicious and just what a lava cake should be....ooey gooey chocolaty yumminess. I served mine with raspberries and vanilla bean ice cream. Enjoy!

Molten Lava Cake
  • 4 pieces (squares) Semi-sweet Baking Chocolate
  • ½ cups Butter
  • 1 cup Powdered Sugar
  • 2 whole Eggs
  • 2 whole Egg Yolks
  • 6 Tablespoons Flour
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Spray 4 custard cups with Pam and place on cookie sheet.
Microwave chocolate and butter in large bowl on high for about 1 minute, until butter is melted. whisk until chocolate is also melted.
Stir in sugar until well blended. Whisk in eggs and egg yolks. Stir in flour.
Divide between cups.
Bake about 15 minutes until sides are firm and center is soft. Let stand 1 minute.
Invert cakes on dishes and top with vanilla ice cream and raspberries. You can also drizzle with chocolate syrup if desired.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Pasta with Vodka Sauce

No, I haven't started drinking..... I just went to an Italian restaurant when I was on vacation last year and had pasta with vodka sauce... oh my goodness it was delicious! And when you cook with alcohol, the alcohol cooks out when simmered..... just embarrassing going to a liquor store to buy the stuff when you don't drink. You don't know what to buy! But I found this recipe here and had to give it a try. Of course I tweaked to my taste and ingredients I had on hand, but this was delicious! I served with steak and steamed veggies. Be sure to read the note below the recipe for a delicious way to use up any leftovers.YUMMO!

Pasta with Vodka Sauce

  • 1 pound Pasta(I used the country style noodles, but you can use any that you like)
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 whole Medium Onion, Chopped Finely
  • 2 cloves (to 3 Cloves) Garlic, Chopped
  • 3/4 cups (to 1 Cup) Vodka
  • 1 can (About 14 Oz.) Tomato Puree
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried Basil
  • 1 cup Heavy Cream
  • 1 pinch Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 teaspoon dried Parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon (to 1/2 Teaspoon) Salt
  •  Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste
  • 1 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

Preparation Instructions:
Cook pasta according to package directions, being careful not to overcook.
In a large skillet over medium heat, add olive oil and butter. When butter is melted, add in chopped onion and garlic. Stir and allow to cook for two minutes. Pour in vodka. Stir and cook for three minutes. Add in tomato puree and basil: stir. Let simmer for 5 minutes.
Reduce heat to low and stir in cream. Allow to simmer, being careful not to overheat, for about 3 more minutes. Stir in red pepper flakes, Parsley, salt and pepper.
Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of pasta water in case sauce is too thick. Add cooked pasta to the sauce, tossing to combine. Splash in a little water if it needs it. Stir in Parmesan cheese.
Pour mixture into large serving bowl. Garnish with more Parmesan cheese. Enjoy!

If you have leftovers this is what I did:
Brown 1 lb. hot sausage in a skillet, when all browned remove from skillet onto a paper lined plate. Leave about 1 to 2 tablespoons of the fat from the sausage in the skillet and sauté 1 green bell pepper and 1 red bell pepper that has been thinly sliced. When your peppers are crunchy tender, toss the sausage back in the pan along with your leftover pasta. Stir and cook until pasta is heated through. Serve with salad and crusty french bread. Enjoy!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Di's Tomato Soup

I have a couple of Tomato Soup recipes posted on my blog already, which are both good. One is more Italian tasting and the other is more spicy with Orzo in it. After making and liking both recipes, the next time I made Tomato soup I slightly combined the two different recipes to my desired taste using what I liked about them both and this is the recipe I came up with. I found myself using it all the time. Since my daughter LOVES tomato soup with grilled cheese sandwiches and is starting to cook at home... Yahoo!!! I decided I better post the recipe how I make it. Here you go Sarah! Enjoy!

Di’s Tomato Soup
Olive oil
1/2 cup minced onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 (28 ounce) cans crushed tomatoes
3 cups chicken broth (I use a whole box of chicken broth, almost 4 cups) 
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 Tablespoon dried parsley (you could use fresh if you have it)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper (if desired)
1/2 pint heavy cream

Garnish if desired with:
Seasoned croutons 
Grated Parmesan cheese

In a large saucepan, heat about 1 Tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Then add the minced garlic and onion, saute for about 1 minute. Add the crushed tomatoes and the chicken broth and bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Then add thesugar, parsley, salt, black pepper, italian seasoning, turmeric, cumin, curry powder and crushed red pepper. Stir to combine and let this simmer for about 20-25 minutes more.
This is a slightly chunky soup, if you desire a smooth soup, puree in a blender a little at a time, or use a submersible blender. After blending return to pan.
Then stir in the heavy cream, and heat through. Serve in individual bowls topped with croutons and Parmesan cheese if desired!!  Or serve with grilled cheese sandwiches cut into strips—perfect for dipping. Yummo!

*Note-you can adjust the amount of seasoning to taste… I usually end up adding just a bit more curry and cumin…. Enjoy!