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Archive for February, 2010|Monthly archive page

Soup – Broccoli Cheese

In Food, Soup on February 28, 2010 at 10:55 pm

I love broccoli cheese soup. As a matter of fact, it is one of the only ways that I will eat broccoli. I especially like this soup at Jason’s Deli. They have the best!

That, actually, might be the downfall of this particular recipe. While it tasted fine, it was not all that and a bag of chips – like I had wanted it to be. I won’t say where I got it (since I don’t want to discredit the source), but I did get it online and that particular blogger had raved about how great this recipe was. I followed it to the t- but it was not great. I will have to try this soup again – perhaps making up my own recipe? I’ll let you know what I find out.

On another note – I made peanut butter truffles again last week, but this time with my own recipe…they were pretty dang good and JC ate about half of them on his own before I finally told him to take them to work and share! They’re not quite perfect yet, so I’ll keep working on that.

In the mean time, here is the recipe for the soup:

Broccoli Cheese Soup

1 can chicken broth (about 1 3/4 cups of broth)
1 small onion, diced

1/3 c. flour
1/4 c. butter
Pepper to taste (I used about 1/2 teaspoon)

2 c. milk (I used 1% with great results)
1 1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese (the sharper the better for flavor – I used sharp cheddar and hopefully next time will have extra sharp cheddar on hand)
1/2 c. shredded swiss cheese
steamed chopped broccoli (the amount of broccoli really boils down to preference – I wanted a lot of broccoli in my soup, so I chopped and steamed approximately 2 1/2 to 3 cups of broccoli florets)

Simmer chicken broth and chopped onion for 15-20 minutes in a covered small saucepan, until onions are soft. Heat milk in microwave for 1-2 minutes. In a separate medium-sized stockpot, melt butter then add flour and pepper. Cook together for a couple of minutes, then whisk in warmed milk. Stir and heat together on medium-high heat until soup starts to thicken. Next add chicken broth and continue to stir until well blended. Add cheeses and steamed broccoli. Serve immediately.

Makes approximately 4 servings (with two adults and three kids, we finished the pot of soup in one dinner serving it in bread bowls, so if you are serving more adults or serving the soup in regular bowls, I would consider doubling according to the number of people)

So here are some of the changes I suggest doing when making this particular recipe – first – I simmered my chopped onion (finely chopped!) in the chicken broth for about a half hour…then did become clear, but they remained a little too crisp for my liking.

Early Christmas Present

In cake, Christmas, Dessert on February 28, 2010 at 10:48 pm

I made this cake yesterday for a church Christmas dinner. It is a white chocolate butter pecan cake, added white chocolate chips and a cinnamon cream cheese filling. It was quite delicious, if I do say so myself.

Superman Luke

In cake, Dessert, Food, Kids on February 28, 2010 at 10:40 pm

My nephew turned four yesterday. I made him a very special Superman cake…it wasn’t perfect, and I am definitely my own biggest critic. But to see his face when he first walked in the room was totally worth it! I’m not sure he even knew that it was a cake; but he was definitely happy with it!

Pecan Pie

In Dessert, Food, Pie, Recipes, Thanksgiving on February 28, 2010 at 10:33 pm

Once again, I used one of Paula’s recipes…love her….this is her Mystery Pecan Pie – it has a layer of cream cheese filling and BOY is it delicious.

INGREDIENTS

Topping:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Pie:

  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 un-baked deep-dish (9-inch) pie shell
  • 1 1/4 cups chopped pecans

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine all topping ingredients in a medium bowl. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, mix cream cheese, sugar, salt, vanilla, and egg until combined. Pour into pie shell. Top with chopped pecans. Pour topping over pecans. Bake for 45 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

I also made a traditional pecan pie…for this one, I used the same recipe that my Great-Grandma used. Her neighbor had a pecan tree that leaned over the fence into her yard. She would ask me to gather the pecans and then help her shell them. This is definitely one of my very favorite holiday desserts.

Paula Deen’s Pumpkin Roll Cake

In cake, Christmas, Dessert, Food, Recipes, Thanksgiving on February 28, 2010 at 10:24 pm

INGREDIENTS

Cake:

  • 3/4 cup cake flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 6 large eggs, separated
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup golden brown sugar, packed
  • 2/3 cup canned pumpkin, packed
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Powdered sugar

Filling:

  • 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
  • 2 tablespoons dark rum
  • 1 cup whipping cream, chilled
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 6 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup English toffee pieces for garnish
  • Additional powdered sugar, for garnish
  • 1 1/2 cups purchased caramel sauce, warmed, for garnish

DIRECTIONS

For the cake: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Line a 15 by 10 by 1-inch baking sheet with parchment paper. Spray the parchment with nonstick cooking spray.

Sift the flour, cinnamon, ginger, and allspice into a small bowl. In a separate bowl, beat the egg yolks, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until very thick. Add the pumpkin to the egg mixture and combine at a low speed until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients and beat at a low speed until mixed. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites and salt until stiff but not dry. Fold into the cake batter, stirring with a spatula, until most of the white streaks are gone.

Spread the batter onto a baking sheet and smooth out. Transfer baking sheet to the oven and bake until a tester comes out clean, about 15 to 18 minutes. While the cake is hot, dust generously with powdered sugar. Loosen the edges and turn the cake out onto a kitchen towel. Fold the towel over the edge of the cake and roll up. Cool completely, edge down, for 1 hour in the refrigerator.

For the filling: Soften the gelatin in the rum. Stir over low heat until the gelatin dissolves. Cool. Beat the chilled whipping cream and powdered sugar in a large bowl until peaks form. Fold in the gelatin and 6 tablespoons English toffee pieces.

To assemble, unroll the cake and sprinkle with 4 tablespoons of English toffee pieces. Spread the filling over the toffee. Start at 1 long side of the cake roll and, using the towel as an aid, roll up the cake to encase the filling. Place the cake, seam side down, on a platter.

Trim the ends of the cake at a slight diagonal. Dust the cake with powdered sugar. Spoon some warm caramel sauce and the remaining toffee chips over the top of the cake. To serve, use a serrated knife to cut the cake crosswise into 1-inch thick slices. Drizzle more sauce on each slice and serve.

I normally LOVE Paula Deen, but I was a little disappointed in this cake. Don’t get me wrong, it was delicious – but I think I was hoping for a little bit more than what it turned out to be. First, it called for Rum…which is fine. I made a special trip to the state liquor store and wandered blindly for a few minutes before asking someone to tell me what I needed. This was actually my first experience with Rum…did you know it smells like cleaning products mixed with gasoline? Anyway, unless you are accustomed to the boozey flavor and appreciate it more than I do, then I suggest leaving it out entirely. It was way too strong, and I, personally, would have liked it better without.

Second, the filling was made with whipped cream, made by yours truly, none of that Cool Whip stuff….I did add extra caramel sauce to the center of the cake before I added the filling and some extra toffee chips…why not? Again, leave out the rum – the filling was pretty good on its own. My complaint about it though is that I kept wishing it had cream cheese….I love cream cheese….and I think I would have liked it more with cream cheese…..

Third, it was Paula Deen’s recipe…but it didn’t call for any butter. Not a stick, not a pad, not a shaving…I think the cake would have been better if it was slightly buttery – and I think it would have been a little more “Paula Deen” if it had at least a tiny bit of butter! Oh well…

Like I said before, it was a perfectly delicious cake. Only, if I’m going to absorb the calories, I’d like to not be left wanting….

I’ll let you know when I find/come up with a better recipe….one with cream cheese, perhaps?

White Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

In Cookies, Dessert, Food on February 28, 2010 at 10:20 pm

I decided I wanted something sweet last night.

Truffles – Chocolate Chip Cookie Flavor

In Dessert, Food, Truffles, Uncategorized on February 28, 2010 at 10:16 pm

Quiche

In Dinner/Meals, Food on February 28, 2010 at 10:13 pm

It’s my aunt’s recipe….bacon, onion & swiss cheese.

Spider Cake

In cake, Halloween, Holidays on February 28, 2010 at 10:05 pm

Happy Halloween! I made this cake for JC’s aunt & uncle’s Halloween Party 2009. The top layer is a white chocolate cherry cake with a white chocolate ganache. The bottom is layers of milk chocolate devil’s food, white cake with cheesecake accents, filled with a bittersweet chocolate ganache. I made the little spiders out of cinnamon chocolate truffles. I also made the little Oreo truffle ghost pops. They were all quite delicious. I am happy to have been a contributor to their fabulous party!

Mummies are the Best

In cake, cupcakes, Halloween on February 28, 2010 at 9:55 pm

I decided to make cupcakes once again for JC to take to his dept. at work. Halloween is pretty huge at our office, so why not add to the festivities?