Monday, April 13, 2009

5 Minute Chocolate Mug Cake . .
Last night I cruised the kitchen at 11 p.m. looking for something—anything—sweet. There was nothing. I finally made a bowl of microwave cream of wheat and put extra sugar and butter in it. How pitiful is that? Today in my email was the recipe I needed yesterday! I had to try it out when I got home from work. It is good. I won't call it gourmet, but it is good and when one serving is gone there aren't another 10 pieces of cake to tempt me. Of course I added the chocolate chips. You may think them optional; I didn't.

Splenda is not recommended for baking because the sugar helps the baked goods rise. I may try this with half Splenda-half sugar (and a little more in the way of chocolate chips!) I'll let you know if it is a disaster or a miracle.

The recipe says you can tip it out to eat it. I ate it straight out of the mug and found all the gooey goody is in the bottom of the mug. I think I will tip it out next time so I can get some of the gooey goody in every bite.

4 tablespoons flour
4 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa
1 egg
3 tablespoons milk
3 tablespoons oil
3 tablespoons chocolate chips (optional)
a small splash of vanilla extract
1 large coffee mug

Add dry ingredients to mug, and mix well.
Add the egg and mix thoroughly.
Pour in the milk and oil and mix well.
Add the chocolate chips (if using) and vanilla extract, and mix again.
Put your mug in the microwave and cook for 3 minutes at 1000 watts. The cake will rise over the top of the mug, but don't be alarmed!
Allow to cool a little, and tip out onto a plate if desired.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Coconut Bars .

Here's another of Melisha's recipes from Church Women United. I didn't like coconut when I was a kid, but I'm a real lover of anything coconut now!

1 white cake mix
1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/4 cup sweetened coconut flakes
1/2 cup chopped pecans
2 large eggs

1 - 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 & 1/3 cup Sweetened Coconut Flakes, divided
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Mix the crust ingredients and spread in a greased 9 x 13 pan. Dough will be stiff. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes. Do not over bake.

Combine the milk, egg, and vanilla. Beat well. Fold in 1 cup coconut and the pecans. Spread evenly over the crust in the pan. Sprinkle the top of cake with the remaining 1/3 cup coconut. Cut into squares.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Peppermint Bark Popcorn .

This is great at Chrismas time, but it is pretty and the pinkness makes it nice for a spring or Easter event. Kathryn served it at Bunco in December and I have been intending to get it posted ever since!

• 2 bags microwave popcorn* (use natural/lightly salted)
• 1 lb Almond Bark
• 6oz box candy canes, crushed. (About 1-1 1/2 C total)
• 2 tea. peppermint extract
• 3/4 C semi-sweet chocolate chips
*one bag microwave popcorn has about 10 cups in it, so if you're air-popping, do about 20 cups.

Unwrap the candy canes to crush them. Put the candy canes in a large zip-lock bag and have a whack with a meat mallet or similar tool.
To melt the almond bark, follow the instructions on the package. Or break it up and put it in a glass measuring cup and microwave on 1 min intervals until it's nice and smooth.
When the almond bark is melted, add the peppermint extract.
Place the popcorn in a large bowl and pour the almond bark over it, then stir to combine.
Sprinkle the candy canes all over. Stir it up really well until the candy is evenly distributed. Pour the popcorn out onto a piece of waxed paper, parchment, or foil. Spread it out into an even layer and leave it alone!
While the popcorn is setting, place chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 30 second intervals until melted and smooth.
Drizzle the melted chocolate over the popcorn. You can use a fork, or put it in a zip-lock bag with the corner cut off. Leave it until the almond bark and the chocolate is hardened. If you need to hurry it up, do this whole process on lined cookie sheets you can pop in the fridge.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Snicker Salad .

This is good. It sounds strange, but it's good. It makes its way to a church supper every so often and it always amazes me.

3 red Delicious apples with skin on, chopped
2-3 bananas, chopped
1 - 16 oz. Cool Whip
1 large pkg. instant Vanilla Pudding
4-6 Snicker bars frozen and broken into pieces

Mix dry Vanilla Pudding with Cool Whip. Break Snickers into small pieces and add to pudding mixture. Add fruit to mixture. Mixture will change colors somewhat and become golden.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Cauliflower Salad .

Melisha brings us this recipe from the recent lunch meeting of Church Women United. She sent me three and vouches for them all. One of them I've had several times and if this is as good as the one I've had, it will be worth the tasting!

1 large head cauliflower
2 green peppers, chopped
1 can sliced black olives, drained
1 jar pimentos
1/2 pound Velveeta cheese cubed

Break cauliflower into small pieces, add chopped green peppers, cheese, pimentos, and black olives. Mix together and pour a generous amount of Ranch dressing over the salad. Chill over night.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Parmesan Roasted Asparagus .

One more from the Bunco group. Jeanie brought us this one. It's quick, easy, and wonderful.

2 1/2 lbs fresh asparagus (Jeanie says the fat ones work better)
2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Wash and trim the asparagus stalks. Arrange asparagus in a single layer on a cookie sheet and drizzle with the olive oil. Sprinkle with salt. Roast for 15-20 minutes until tender. Sprinkle with the parmesan and return to the oven for about one more minute.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Deanna's Grape Salad .

This was unbelievably good! Another Bunco group recipe shared. And look how easy! Thanks Deanna.

Red grapes, washed, and separated from the stalks
Softened cream cheese, 1 pkg
Sour cream, 8 oz
1 cup sugar
chopped pecans or walnuts

Mix together and refrigerate

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Cheesy Potato Casserole .

If you don't play Bunco, you should! I've met some great women and gotten some fantastic recipes through my Bunco group. This is one from last night. Barbara brought them and everyone wanted the recipe. Tomorrow the grape salad from the same gathering. Two super yums in one night. Can I stand it?

6 medium potatoes - peel, chop, then cook in water and drain
1 can mushroom soup
1 can milk (measure in soup can)
8 oz light sour cream
16 oz cheddar cheese
1/2 stick margarine, chopped
10 pcs of crisp cooked bacon, chopped

Mix above ingredients. It should be the consistency of light cream. If too thick, add more milk in 1/4 cup increments, then combine gently with cooked potatoes. Spoon into casserole dish that has been sprayed with non-stick spray.
Bake 45 min in 350 oven