Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Pumpkin Fudge

Pumpkin Fudge by Better Homes and Gardens Christmas Magazine 2003

3 c sugar
3/4 c butter
5 oz evaporated milk
1/2 c canned pumpkin (use the rest for pumpkin pancakes)
1 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t ground ginger
1/4 t ground cloves
10 oz butterscotch pieces
7 oz jar marshmallow creme
1 t vanilla
1/2 c toasted chopped pecans

1. Line 13x9x2 pan with foil, extending foil over edges of pan. Butter foil; set pan aside.
2. In a heavy 2 qy saucepan, combine sugar, butter, milk, pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. Cook and stir over medium-high heat (#7) until mixture boils. Clip candy thermometer to side of pan. Reduce heat to medium-low (#3-4); continue to boil at a moderate, steady rate, stirring constantly, until thermometer registers 234 or mixture reaches soft-ball stage (20-25 minutes ...bubbles get bigger).
3. Remove pan from heat. Stir in butterscotch pieces until melted. Stir in marshmallow creme and vanilla until well combined. Pour mixture into prepared pan, spreading evenly. Sprinkle with pecans. Score into 1" pieces while warm. Chill. When fudge is firm, use foil to lift. Cut into pieces. Makes 3 lbs.

Store: Place in layers separated by waxed paper in airtight container; cover. Store in refrigerator up to 1 week.

In my opinion: This is the best fudge. It is my favorite. I get tons of orders for this fudge each Christmas.

White Chocolate Meltaways

White Chocolate Meltaways by Family Circle

1 c unsalted butter at room temperature
1 egg
3/4 c powdered sugar
2 1/2 c all purpose flour
pinch salt
2 t vanilla
12 oz white baking chocolate, chopped or white melting disks
2/3 c assorted nonpareils

1. Heat oven to 375. Beat butter in medium-size bowl until creamy. Beat in egg. Add sugar-vanilla; on low speed, beat until well blended.
2. Put dough into cookie press fitted with 1"sawtooth ribbon disk. Press into long strips onto ungreased baking sheets. With floured knife, score strips every 2 inches.
3. Bake in 375 oven 6 minutes, until just browning around edges. Cut cookies along score lines; cool on rack.
4. Melt chocolatein small cup over simmering water, or microwave on high 2 minutes; stir until smooth. Spread 1/2 t melted chocolate on underside of cookie; top with another cookie, flat sides together. Repeat with remaining cookies. Refrigerate 5 minutes to set. Place nonpareils in dish. Dip 1/2" of each end of cookie in remaining chocolate, then in nonpareils. Place on waxed paper; refrigerate to set.

In my opinion: These are good and look very pretty.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Caramel Crunch Bars

Caramel Crunch Bars by Kraft

4 1/2 Graham Crackers
11 oz pkg caramel bits
2 T milk
1/2 c peanuts
1/2 c miniature marshmallows
1/2 c coarsely crushed pretzels
4 squares semi-sweet baking chocolate, melted

1. Line an 8" squarepan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides of pan. Spray with cooking spray.
2. Place grahams on bottom of pan, cutting to fit if necessary.
3. Microwave caramel and milk on high 2 minutes or until caramel is completely melted and mixture is well blended, stirring every 30 seconds.
4. Pour over grahams; top with peanuts, marshmallows and pretzels. Drizzle with chocolate.
5. refrigerate at least one hour. Use foil handles to remove dessert from pan before cutting into bars to serve.

In my opinion: These were good the first day but got chewy and messy after that.

Tomorrow's recipe: My FAVORITE pumpkin fudge. I can't believe I am giving his recipe away.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


Buckeyes recipe from a friend

1 c graham cracker crumbs
4 c powdered sugar
1/2 lb butter
1 c creamy peanut butter
12 oz pkg milk chocolate chips or white chocolate chips

1. Mix first 4 ingredients well.
2. Roll into balls.
3. Dip into melted chocolate.
4 Chill until set. Keep in airtight container.

In my opinion: These were delicious. I can't wait to make them myself.

Tomorrow: Caramel Crunch Bars

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Raspberry Meringue Squares

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
3 large egg whites, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
Generous 1/3 cup raspberry jam
confectioners sugar, for dusting

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 13 x 9-inch baking pan. In a medium bowl, beat butter, confectioners sugar and salt with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. On low speed, gradually add the flour, beating just until incorporated; the mixture should still be somewhat crumbly.
2. Press the mixture evenly over the bottom of the pan. Bake for 14 to 16 minutes, until lightly golden around the edges. Set pan on a wire rack.
3. In a large bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until frothy. Increase speed to medium-high and beat until whites begin to form soft peaks. Add the sugar about 1 tablespoon at a time, and continue beating until the whites form stiff, glossy peaks.
4. Spread the jam evenly over the warm crust. Using a large metal spoon, drop the meringue in large dollops on the jam, and using the back of the spoon, carefully spread the meringue over the crust, making sure to seal the edges.
5. Bake for 25 minutes, or until meringue is golden brown. (The meringue will puff up as it bakes and sink as it cools.) Set the pan on a wire rack to cool completely.Using a large sharp knife, cut into 24 squares. Dust the tops of the bars with confectioners sugar. Store the bars, well covered, in the refrigerator.Makes 2 dozen squares.

In my opinion: These are delicious. I make them with the Raspberry Linzer Hearts which require the egg yolks.

Tomorrow's recipe: Buckeyes

Friday, December 19, 2008


RASPBERRY LINZER HEARTS from Mary Engelbreit cookbook
1 cup walnuts (3 1/2 ounces)
1 cup whole blanched almonds (4 ounces)
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup confectioners' sugar, plus additional, for dusting
2 large egg yolks
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 cup seedless raspberry or blackberry jam

1. In a food processor, combine the walnuts and almonds and process, pulsing, until finely ground. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, beat the butter and confectioners' sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolks. On low speed, gradually add the flour and cornstarch, mixing just until incorporated. Add the ground nuts and mix until just blended. Divide the dough into four pieces, shape each into a disk, and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or until firm.
3. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease two baking sheets.
4. On a floured surface, roll out one piece of dough at a time until 1/4 inch thick. Using a 2 1/2-inch heart-shaped cutter, cut out as many cookies as possible. Place half of the hearts onto one of the prepared baking sheets.
5. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until lightly golden. Let the cookies cool slightly, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
6. Transfer the remaining hearts to the second baking sheet. Using a 1 1/2-inch heart-shaped cutter, cut the centers out from the hearts. Bake and cool the cutout hearts.
7. Dust the cutout hearts with confectioners' sugar. Spread a rounded teaspoon of jam onto each plain heart cookie bottom and cover with the cutout heart tops.
Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

In my opinion: These are fabulous and have a great presentation.

Tomorrow: Mary Engelbreit's Raspberry Meringue Squares

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Luscious 4 Layer Pumpkin Cake

Luscious 4 Layer Pumpkin Cake by Kraft
1 pkg 2 layer yellow cake mix
15 oz can pumpkin
1/2 c milk
1/3 c vegetable oil
4 large eggs
1 1/2 t pumpkin pie spice
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 c powdered sugar
8 oz Cool Whip, thawed
1/4 c caramel topping
1/2 c pecans

1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour 2 9" round cake pans. Beat cake mix, 1 c pumpkin, milk, oil, eggs, and 1 t spice in large bowl with electric mixer on medium until well-blended. Pour evenly into pans.
2. Bake 20-22 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely on wire racks. Meanwhile beat cream cheese on medium until creamy. Add powdered sugar, remaining pumpkin, and remaining 1/2 t spice, mix well, stir in Cool Whip.
3. Cut each cake in half horizontally. Spread cream cheese mixture between layers (not on top). Drizzle with caramel and pecans. Store in refrigerator. 16 servings

In my opinion: This was a fabulous cake. It makes a lot so be sure you have someone to share it with.

Tomorrow's recipe: RASPBERRY LINZER HEARTS from my Mary Engelbreit cookbook

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Snowballs from my book "Christmas Joy"
2 c all purpose flour
3/4 salt
1 c unsalted butter
1/2 c sugar
1 T vanilla extract
1 c finely chopped pecans
3/4 c sifted powdered sugar

1. preheat oven to 325; butter 2 baking sheets. Onto a piece of wax paper, sift the flour and salt. In a medium-size bowl, with the mixer on high, cream the bitter and sugar until light and fluffy. Blend in vanilla.
2. Using wooden spoon, stir in the flour mixture, then the pecans. Dust your hands with a little powdered sugar and roll the dough into 1" balls. Place 2" apart on the baking sheets and bake 25 minutes or just until light brown.
3. Transfer to racks and cool for 15 minutes then roll in powdered sugar. Keep in airtight container for up to 2 weeks. Do not freeze.

In my opinion: These were good. they remind me of Pecan Sandies

tomorrow: Luscious 4-Layer Pumpkin Cake

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Old Fashioned Peppermint Sugar Cookies

Old Fashioned Peppermint Sugar Cookies by DebbieMumm.com

1/2 c shortening
1/2 c butter, room temp.
1 c sugar
1 egg
1 t vanilla
2 1/2 c sifted flour
1/2 t salt

1. Preheat oven to 325. Cream shortening and butter together. Add sugar, egg, and vanilla. Mix thoroughly.
2. Mix sifted flour and salt together. Add flour and salt to egg mixture. Mix well. Cover bowl of dough with foil and refrigerate until chilled (less than 30 minutes).
3. Using a rolling pin, roll out doug to1/4 " thick on a floured surface. Dip cookie cutter into flour and cut out cookies. Place cookies on an ungreased cookie sheet.
4. bake 11-15 minutes. Remove with spatula while still warm. Allow to cool. Decorate with peppermint glaze.

Peppermint Glaze:
1 c powdered sugar
2-3 T milk
1/8 t peppermint extract
1 drop red food coloring
1/2 c crushed peppermint candy

Combine all ingredinets. Mix well. Drizzle over cooled cookies.

tomorrow: Snowballs

Monday, December 15, 2008

Toasted Pecan Cranberry Bark

Toasted Pecan Cranberry Bark

1 c pecan halves
24 oz vanilla candy coating, chopped
3/4 c dried cranberries
1/4 t ground nutmeg

1. Preheat oven to 325. Line a cookie sheet with foil or parchment paper. Place pecans in a single layer on foil. Bake 10-15 minutes or until lightly toasted, stirring once. Place on cooling rack.

2. Melt candy coating. Stir in pecans, cranberries, and nutmeg. Spread mixture 1/4" thick on lined cookie sheet. Refrigerate until cool; break into 1 1/2" pieces. Makes about 3 dozen pieces.

In my opinion: This is a fabulous recipe. It is so quick and uses few dishes. I usually make some and leave in the teachers' lounge as samples and then I get several orders. This is also great to make as a gift for your child's teachers. Don't forget their dance classes and Sunday School teachers!

Come back tomorrow for Old Fashioned Peppermint Sugar Cookies