TRIPLE CHOCOLATE BLISS CAKE -- (Serves 16)
A little taste of heaven. Very decadent, smooth, and absolutely yummy. Nice for the holidays!
1 package chocolate cake mix
1 cup low fat or fat free sour cream
1 package (4 serving size) Jell-O chocolate flavored sugar-free instant pudding
½ cup vegetable oil
½ cup water
3 cups thawed Lite Cool Whip
1 package (4 ounces) Baker’s semi-sweet baking chocolate
6 ounces of raspberries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease 12-cup bundt pan.
Beat all ingredients except whipped topping, chocolate, and raspberries in a large bowl with an electric mixer on low speed just until moistened. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes, scraping bowl down occasionally. Pour into bundt pan.
Bake 50 minutes to 1 hour or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes. Loosen from side of pan with knife and gently remove cake.
Cool cake completely on wire rack. Place on a serving plate.
Reserve 2 tablespoons of the Cool Whip. Microwave the remaining Cool Whip and chocolate in a microwaveable bowl on high for 1.5 to 2 minutes or until chocolate is completely melted and mixture is well blended, stirring after each minute.
Drizzle over cake. Immediately drop reserved whipped topping, by scant teaspoonfuls, around top of cake.
Create a star shape by drawing a toothpick through the middle several times.
Spoon raspberries into center of cake.
Store left-over cake (ha!) in refrigerator.
TUSCAN PASTA -- (Serves 8)
An easy pasta meal for the family. All you need is a nice salad and a loaf of bread and you are all set. Very tasty.
2 cans (14.5 ounces each) Italian-style stewed tomatoes, undrained
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into 1-inch pieces
1 can (15.5 ounces) red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
1 cup water
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
1 jar/can (4.5 ounces) sliced mushrooms, drained
½ cup chopped onion
½ cup chopped celery
4 cloves minced garlic
1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
6 ounces uncooked angel hair pasta broken into halves
Place all ingredients except pasta in slow cooker.
Cover and cook on low for 4 hours or until vegetables are done.
Turn on high. Stir in pasta; cover. Stir again after 10 minutes.
Cover and cook 45 minutes or until pasta is tender.
Garnish with basil and bell pepper strips, if desired.
VEGGIE PIZZA -- (Serves 10-12)
This is a great appetizer to bring to parties. A little bit messy but well worth the effort. Light, creamy taste that’s sure to be everyone’s favorite.
2 packages crescent rolls
1 8 oz package of fat free cream cheese
1 cup reduced fat mayonnaise
¾ package of dry ranch original dressing
Tomatoes (seeds scooped out and let dry a bit)
Roll out crescent rolls and place on 2 cookie sheets. Pinch holes together.
Bake crust 10-12 minutes. Cool.
Mix cream cheese, mayo, and dressing in small bowl.
Spread mixture on cooled crusts.
Top with broccoli, scallions, green pepper, and tomato.
WALNUT MAPLE PIE (Serves 8)
With the weather being so cold, I felt that I really needed something to remind me of home and bundling up in front of the fire. My grandmother used to make this for me when I was little, and it’s just yummy. Of course, she would just die if she ever found out that I use a refrigerated pie crust instead of making my own. Shush!!!!!!!
1 Pillsbury refrigerated pie crust
2 large egg whites
1 large egg
1 cup maple-flavored syrup or pure maple syrup
½ firmly packed light brown sugar (I use Splenda brown sugar)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted
1½ teaspoon vanilla
½ cup chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Line a 9-pie plate with pie crust. Trim crust to ½ inch beyond the edge of the pie place. Fold under extra crust and crimp edge. Line crust with foil and fill pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 15 minutes or until light brown. Cool crust on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Discard foil and lower oven temperature to 35o degrees.
Meanwhile in a large bowl, beat the egg whites and egg just until mixed. Whisk in the maple-flavored syrup, brown sugar, flour, butter, and vanilla just until smooth. Stir in the walnuts. Pour the syrup mixture into the baked crust.
Bake pie for 40-45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. If the edge of the crust seems to be browning too quickly, cover with foil.
Cool on rack for 1 hour before serving.
WHITE CHOCOLATE CRANBERRY BISCOTTI -- (Makes about 2 dozen)
Think biscotti’s too complicated? Not this recipe. This is so easy, everyone can enjoy this Italian favorite.
2 cups flour
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
¾ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 ½ cups Cranberry Almond Crunch cereal
3 squares of Baker’s premium white baking chocolate, chopped
4 squares of Baker’s semi-sweet baking chocolate, melted
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Mix flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl
Beat butter and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Blend in eggs and vanilla.
Gradually add flour mixture, beating well after each addition.
Stir in cereal and white chocolate,
Divide dough in half. Shape each half into a 14” x 2” log with lightly floured hands
Place on greased baking sheet.
Bake for 30 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from baking sheet. Place on cutting board; cool for 5 minutes. Using a serrated knife, diagonally cut each log into 12 slices. Place upright on baking sheet, ½ inch apart. Bake an additional 15-18 minutes or until slightly dried. Remove from baking sheet and cool on wire racks.
Dip or drizzle with melted chocolate. Let stand until set. Store in tightly covered contained at room temperature.
For a different look or taste, instead of dipping chocolate, sprinkle cooled biscotti with powered sugar. Or drizzle with combined 1 cup powered sugar and 2 tablespoons of orange juice. Let stand until set.
WHOOPI PIES -- (Serves many)
Whoopi pies! Everyone’s favorite dessert (well, at least it’s mine!). Brings back fond memories from childhood. Bring these to your next pot luck or party, and you’ll be a big hit. A definite no-no on Weight Watchers, but . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
6 tablespoons of Crisco shortening
1 cup sugar
5 tablespoons (heaping) of backing cocoa
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon baking soda
2/3 cup Crisco white shortening
¾ cup marshmallow fluff
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 ½ cups confectionery sugar
For the cakes:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cream together Crisco shortening and sugar.
Add baking cocoa and mix well.
Add egg and mix well.
Add milk and vanilla and mix well.
Add (may sift these) flour, salt, and baking soda. Mix well.
Drop by tablespoons onto a cookie sheet. Bake for 8-12 minutes.
Remove to cool.
For the filling:
Cream together shortening, marshmallow fluff, and vanilla. Mix well.
Add confectionery sugar and mix well.
Using 2 cooled cakes from above, fill with filling
WINTER SQUASH, APPLE, AND ORANGE SOUP (Serves 8)
Whether you are staying home for the holidays or visiting others, ‘tis the season for this hearty and
tasty dessert, a New England tradition. Enjoy this one.
2 teaspoons of olive oil
2 teaspoons of unsalted butter
2 shallots, chopped
1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and coarsely chopped
2 tart, firm apples, quartered, cored, peeled, and coarsely chopped
4 cups chicken broth
Salt and white pepper to taste
Juice of one orange
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger (optional, but worth it!)
Paper-thin apple slices for garnish
In a large pot, heat the oil and butter, sauté the shallots for about 3 minutes or until translucent.
Add the chopped squash and apples and stir 2-3 minutes. Pour in the chicken broth.
Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low, partially cover, and simmer until the apples and squash are tender and falling apart – about 30-45 minutes.
Puree the mixture in a blender or food processor, in batches if necessary, until very smooth. Return the mixture to the pan and add salt and pepper.
Just before serving, warm the soup over low heat. Then stir in the orange juice and heat through. Add the optional ginger and nutmeg, adjusting the flavor to suit your taste. Garnish and serve.
ZUCCHINI CASSEROLE (Serves 6-8)
3 medium zucchini, cut up
2 medium onions, chopped
2 cups cooked rice
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 teaspoon garlic
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 cups grated mozzarella cheese
1 can (15 ounces) crushed or stewed tomatoes
1. Sauté zucchini and onions in butter until tender.
2. Mix tomatoes and spices.
3. Spoon half of rice in 2 quart casserole dish and top with zucchini mixture, then tomatoes, and then cheese. Repeat again, ending with cheese.
4. Cook for 25 minutes in a 350 degree oven.
ZUCCHINI APPETIZERS (Makes 2 dozen squares)
This is a great appetizer for the summer months – light, yet hearty tasting. Great for summer picnics or pot lucks.
3 cups thinly sliced or shredded zucchini
1 cup Bisquick mix
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ cup finely chopped onion
2 tablespoons snipped parsley
½ teaspoon seasoned salt
½ teaspoon dried marjoram or oregano
Dash of pepper
1 clove of garlic finely chopped
½ cup vegetable oil
4 eggs slightly beaten
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 13” x 9” pan.
Mix all ingredients. Spread in pan
Bake until golden brown at edges – about 25 minutes
Cut into squares or rectangles. Refrigerate any leftovers (yea, right!).