Dump Cake

April 21, 2014

 

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Don’t let the name scare you away, it tastes much better then it sounds!

I remember years ago at a family holiday gathering someone brought Dump Cake, and I remember it being quite good.  Yesterday when I had a bit of an impromptu Easter dinner of hamburgers, hot dogs and Caesar salad and needed a quick and easy dessert.  Well, I didn’t actually need one, but I am always looking for an excuse to bake and this seemed like a good one.

I had a general idea of what went into the cake, but I went to the web in hopes I may find a recipe.  I was shocked to see Dump Cake is quite a popular item.  There are so many different varieties.  I stuck with the one I remembered.  Every recipe I found for this version was the same.

Dump Cake

1 20 oz can Cherry Pie Fill
1 20 oz can Crushed Pineapple
1 vanilla cake mix
1 cup butter
pecans

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350º F

2. Dump pineapple, juice and all, into a 9×13 baking dish.  (I searched here in Canada, and was unable to find a 20 oz can of crushed pineapple, so I bought 2 and weight out the difference)

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3.  Dump Cherry Pie Fill over the pineapple

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4. Dump (notice where the name comes from?) cake mix, unprepared, right from the box, on top of the cherries

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5. Add pecans, optional

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6. Top with sliced butter

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7. Bake for 45 mins to an hour, or until it is golden brown and fruit is bubbling

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8. Allow to cool, or till just warm and serve with vanilla ice cream.  Enjoy!

 

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This was not quite how I remembered it, but it was very good!  I remembered hers being more cake like, this one was more cobbler like.  The cherry and pineapple were lovely together and the pecans added a nice crunch.  The topping did have a bit of a crunch layer, but underneath was moist.

It was one of those recipes that after the first bite I wasn’t really sure if I even liked it.  But of course I continued to eat I seemed to like it more and more, so much so that I had a second helping later that evening.

I got rave reviews from everyone, so I guess I can call this one a hit!


Successful Raisin Pie!

April 19, 2014

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I think I have mastered the perfect raisin pie!  I made the perfect filling with Gramma’s assistance, she made the crust.  Then I made a great crust (not quite like Gramma, but excellent for me!).  Yesterday I put the two together and got this amazing Raisin Pie.  Yes, there are little bunnies on the top crust, I just didn’t have it in me to make a lattice top.  This just made it that much more of an Easter dessert ;)

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The filling was amazing, and the crust was quite good, very flaky

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Now I just have to learn how to make some more fillings, fresh fruit season will be here very soon.

 


Peanut Butter Cheesecake

April 19, 2014

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Happy Easter everyone!

 

This year for Easter I was asked to bring dessert.  The main request was Cheesecake, it didn’t matter the flavour.  I asked a few people for suggestions, they hummed and hawed but really didn’t give me anything to work with.  With out any input I went with a flavour I wanted! haha. It is hard to come up with a flavour that everyone likes, but most people like peanut butter (I know I do!) and if they don’t, I also made a pie.

* excuse some of my photos, my camera is on the fritz, had to use my phone, some did not turn out that great..*

Peanut Butter Cheesecake

Directions:

While preparing the cheesecake have water boiling for your water bath to bake the cheesecake in.

2 cups cookie crumbs
1/4 cup butter, melted
3 tbsp sugar

 

1. Combine all ingredients and press into the bottom of a spring form pan and bake for 10 minutes at 350º F.  Allow to cool while making the batter

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Cheesecake

3 pkg of cream cheese, 8 oz each, room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup  heavy cream
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
1 heaping cup of peanut butter

 

Directions:

1.  Combine cream cheese and sugar in the bowl of a stand-mixer and cream together until smooth.

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2. Add eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each before adding the next. Make sure to scrape down the bowl in between each egg.

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3. Add heavy cream, vanilla, blend until smooth and creamy.

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4. Add peanut butter and beat until smooth

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5. Pour batter into prepared crust and tap the pan on the counter a few times to bring all air bubbles to the surface. Place pan into a larger pan and pour boiling water into the larger pan until halfway up the side of the cheesecake pan. If cheesecake pan is not airtight, cover bottom securely with foil before adding water.

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6. Bake 45 to 55 minutes, until it is almost done – this can be hard to judge, but you’re looking for the cake to hold together, but still have a lot of jiggle to it in the center. You don’t want it to be completely firm at this stage. Close the oven door, turn the heat off, and let rest in the cooling oven for one hour. This lets the cake finish cooking and cool down gently enough so that it won’t crack on the top. After one hour, remove cheesecake from oven and lift carefully out of water bath. Let it finish cooling on the counter, and then cover and put in the fridge to chill. Once fully chilled, it is ready to serve.

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The next day… As tasty as it looks, had to spruce it up a tad

Chocolate-Peanut Butter Glaze

 

3 ounces seimsweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
3 teaspoons light corn syrup
3 tablespoons heavy cream

Directions

1. Combine chocolate, corn syrup and peanut butter in a double boiler, over simmering water

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2. Stir (with a metal spoon or whisk, NOT wooden, it holds moisture and will seize the chocolate) often until melted and smooth

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3. Add heavy cream (this is where I always get nervous, as soon as you start to stir it looks like it has curdled and is ruined!  Trust me, it will come together (unless you used that wooden spoon), keep stirring!)

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4. While the chocolate is still warm spread on the cold cheesecake

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This cheesecake was delicious!

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Usually I have something to complain about or want to change when I bake, but not with cheesecake.  I will admit to making a good cheesecake.  It was delightfully creamy, yet firm texture.  It had the perfect amount of peanut butter and the glaze on top brought it all together.  Chocolate and peanut butter are a delightful combination.  Thought it did not please all, some were not peanut butter fans, some don’t like cheesecake, others do not like chocolate and peanut butter together (yes my parents are weird!) but of those that ate it said it was great!  Definitely making this one again!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Chocolate Chip Cookie Challenge #6

April 18, 2014

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I have not posted in over a month!  Honestly, I have been baking, but they have been repeats, so I have not been posting.  I need to get back on track!

Lately I have been craving some cookies, homemade chocolate chip cookies.  When I went back to see what number I was on in the CCCC, I was shocked to see that I had not tried a Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe in over a year!!! I guess with my new love of biscotti and also trying to find the perfect Oatmeal Cookie, the CCCC got the back burner.  Time to get back on track!

I found this recipe at The Pinning Mama, it was the picture that did it for me.  I eat with my eyes first and this one pulled me right in.

 {Copycat} Panera Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 c butter, softened
1/2 c shortening
1 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
4 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoon cornstarch
2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 bag mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions

1. Mix butter, shortening and sugars until light and fluffy.

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2. Add egg and vanilla and mix until well combined.

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3. Combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt and mix together.

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4. Mix dry ingredients slowly into wet ingredients and blend well.
If the dough is crumbly, stir in water 1 teaspoon at a time until it just holds together. The dough should not be sticky.

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5. Add in chocolate chips and stir until evenly distributed.

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6. Using ¼ cup measure, scoop out dough and form into a ball. Continue until all dough is formed.

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I got 21

 

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7. Place dough in the freezer for 2 hours or up to 3 months. (I froze mine on the cookie sheet before putting them in the baggie)

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8.  Place frozen cookie onto parchment lined baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees F for 15 min.  I only took 3 out to bake, which is a nice bonus to this recipe!

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Let cool 2 minutes.

 

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I love that they kept their big thick shape and did not fall as they cooled

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Look at the size of these things!!

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Look at the inside! Looks heavenly!

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As amazing as these look, I was not a huge fan.  They were ok, (don’t get me wrong I have eaten many) but had a very odd texture, maybe from the corn starch?  I can’t even describe the texture, just seemed odd, not like any cookie I have had, and I wasn’t big on it.  I think I will try them again, without the cornstarch and see if that makes a difference

Thank you Pinning Mama for the recipe!


Maple Bacon Butter Tarts….again!

March 10, 2014

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I know this is probably my 4th post on these tarts, but they are worth it!

On Sunday, I was headed out-of-town to a baby shower which brought me right past Doo Doo’s Bakery!  I knew I couldn’t just drive by, I had to go in and get some butter tarts!!!  It smelt delicious when I walked in, a few people were having breakfast, not what I was there for though, I headed right to the tart counter.  I saw signs for Plain, Raisin and Pecan.  I was slightly disappointed as I was hoping to be there on a day they had their amazing Maple Raisin Butter tarts.  When it was my turn to order, out of pure desperation I asked “Any chance you have Maple Bacon today?” With a smile she said “Yes“.  Jackpot!!!!  I left with a dozen, 6 Maple Bacon, 4 Raisin and 2 plain.

Look at that crust…

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Big pieces of real BACON!

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Gooey, semi runny filling….heaven!

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I’m just glad I gave up bread for Lent this year and not treats as I usually do.  These would have been hard to pass by.

If you have not been to Doo Doo’s in Bailieboro, you must go.  It will be worth your drive :)


Lemon Poppyseed Biscotti

March 4, 2014

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I have been impressing myself lately.  Usually, I do not stray from a recipe, I do it exactly as is.  This is why I like baking, you follow the recipe and it turns out, it’s a science.  Well, I have become quite adventurous with biscotti.  I have finally found a ‘base recipe’ that I am able to play around with flavours.

This week I had numerous people asking for more biscotti, so I made 3 batches!  I made cherry almond, chocolate and lemon poppy seed.  A few weeks ago Mom asked about making lemon poppy seed ones, I initially shriveled up my nose and thought, ick! Who would make that?  Well it turns out quite a few people d0!  I was looking for a recipe and there were tones, I was pleasantly surprised.  After reading dozens of recipes I figured I would ‘wing it’ and hope for the best.

Lemon Poppy Seed Biscotti

2 1/2  cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup ground almonds
4 large eggs
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tbsp (generous) lemon zest
2 tbsp poppy seeds

Directions:

1. Preheat oven 350ºF

2. In a medium bowl combine flour, baking soda, salt, poppy seeds, lemons zest and ground almond,  set aside

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3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine sugar, lemon juice and eggs.  Beat on high with whisk attachment until it holds a ‘ribbon’ for a few seconds. (approx 5 min)

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4.  Add flour mixture and mix on lowest speed until just combined

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5. Form into 3 even logs

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6. Bake until firm to the touch and golden, mine are usually 35 minutes

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7. Transfer to a wire rack and cool

8. Slice and turn to oven and back until desired hardness, mine were about another 25-30 mins, depends on the day

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9. Cool on a wire rack and enjoy!  Lasts a few weeks in a storage tin.  Tupperware and plastic bags will also work

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For me these were just OK.  Everyone else said they really liked them.  The texture was great, but I found them lacking in flavour but, admittedly in previous post, I am a bit of a lemon freak, when I have something lemony I want a punch of lemon, not a hint.  I think another reason I wasn’t a huge fan is, they really were not that sweet.  That being said, I still ate them! haha.

Next week I will try something new!


Oatmeal Raisin Biscotti

February 22, 2014

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Here we are back at the biscotti!  I really, really wish Mike had not asked me to make those biscotti for him a few years ago, because I just can’t stop!!! It’s not just me, I have a lot of the family hooked as well.  I have been making 2 batches every other weekend.  I have been getting a little more adventurous with my biscotti, now that I have a good base to go with.  This time I wanted to try something completely different, oatmeal raisin!  I was inspired by this recipe Oatmeal and Raisin Biscotti

Oatmeal Raisin Biscotti

2 1/2  cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup ground almonds
4 large eggs
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 cup almonds

Directions

1. Preheat oven 350ºF

2. In a medium bowl combine flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and ground almond, and set aside

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3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine sugar and eggs.  Beat on high with whisk attachment until it holds a ‘ribbon’ for a few seconds. (approx 5 min)

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4. Add oats, mix on low until just combine

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5. Add raisins and almonds, stir until just combined

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6. Form into 3 equal logs and bake until firm to the touch, approx 35 mins

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7. Allow to cool.  Slice and turn to oven and back until desired hardness, mine were about another 25-30 mins, depends on the day

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8. Allow to cool on a wire rack – enjoy!  Stores very well for weeks (if they last that long) in a tin

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These were delicious!!! I really liked the cinnamon raisin combination.  The oats really did not come though as much as I had thought.  Might try grinding them up and use in place of the ground almonds.

I will definitely be making these again.  I stepped out of my comfort zone (straying from a recipe) and it worked!  Very inspired to try more new flavours!


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