Tuesday, February 26, 2013

pina colada bread

1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup canola oil
2 eggs
1 tsp coconut extract
8 oz crushed pineapple, drained
2 ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp shredded coconut
1/4 cup rum

For the buttered rum glaze-
5 tbsp butter
1/3 cup rum
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray a bread pan with cooking spray.
In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, sugars, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the canola oil, eggs, and coconut extract. Then mix in the bananas, pineapples, sour cream, and rum. 
 Mix the flour mixture into the wet ingredients. Mix well. Then fold in the 1/2 cup of shredded coconut.
Pour the bread batter into the prepared pan. The bread will take about 1 hour, 10 minutes to bake. After the first 10 minutes of baking, pull the loaf of banana bread out of the oven and sprinkle the top of the loaf with the remaining 2 tbsp of coconut. Bake for the remaining 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Allow the bread to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes and then turn out onto a wire rack.
While the banana bread is cooling, prepare the Buttered Rum Glaze. In a small saucepan, heat the butter until melted. Add the rum and the vanilla. Cook over medium heat for about 3-5 minutes. 
Remove the buttered rum from the heat and pour into a smaller bowl. Allow to cool for 15-20 minutes. Once cooled, whisk in the powdered sugar until smooth.
Pour the glaze all over the top of the cooled Pina Colada Banana Bread.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Iced Lemon Bread

1 box yellow cake mix
4.3 ounce instant or cook and serve Lemon pudding mix
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
8 ounces sour cream
6 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3-4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and spray 2 loaf pans generously with cooking spray.
2. Place all cake ingredients in no particular order into stand or electric mixer, beating until well combined, about 1 1/2 minutes. Divide cake batter between two prepared loaf pans spreading evenly. Bake for 45-55 minutes, until golden brown and cooked through. Remove and let cool for 15 minutes before removing loaves from pans.
3. To prepare icing, place powdered sugar into a large bowl. Drizzle in lemon juice stirring until smooth and thick. Should be a good drizzling consistency. Drizzle icing over cakes and let set for 20 minutes for a firm icing. Otherwise slice while still wet if desired.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

red wine cupcakes

Makes 12
Chocolate cupcake:
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
50g dark chocolate (72%) broken into small pieces
1/4 cup boiling water
120g butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup plus 1/8 cup all purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup red wine (I have used both Shiraz and Merlot and both turned out great)
1. Preheat oven to 180˚C. Place liners in cupcake pan cavities.
2. In a medium heatproof bowl, combine cocoa powder and chocolate pieces, whisk in the boiling water until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is thoroughly combined.
3. In a large bowl, cream the butter and granulated sugar. Beat in the eggs until well blended. Sift in flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix until just combined. Alternating, add the chocolate mixture and wine, mix until batter is smooth.
4. Divide batter among cupcake liners, filling them about halfway full. Bake for about 20 minutes for regular size cupcakes – 10-12 for minis. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
*Note: These cupcakes have a flat top when baked, so don’t expect a nice rounded top. That said, they are very moist and tender. Don’t let the flat tops fool you!
Red Wine Frosting:

1 cup Chianti wine plus 4 tablespoons, divided
1/4 cup granulated sugar
225g butter, softened but still cold
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/4 tsp salt
Small seedless red grapes for garnish
1. Place 1 cup Chianti and granulated sugar in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved, and simmer until mixture is reduced to scant 1/3 cup. Allow to cool completely
2. In the bowl of a standing mixer with the whisk attachment, combine the softened butter and confectioners’ sugar. Mix on low speed at first, and then on high until mixture is fluffy. With mixer running, gradually pour in the cooled Chianti reduction. Add salt and beat until well combined. Scrape down the bowl as necessary.
3. Again, with the mixer running, gradually pour in the 4 tablespoons of Chianti one tablespoon at a time until thoroughly mixed. Transfer the frosting to a piping bag fitted with a large french decorator tip. Frost cupcakes and garnish with grapes.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Peppermint Crumble Bars

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 cups white chocolate peppermint candy (like Andes peppermint bits)
  • 1 - 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  1. Preheat oven to 350º.
  2. Use a pastry cutter or a fork to cut the butter, sugar, and flour together until crumbly.
  3. Press a little more than half of the crumble mixture into the bottom of a 9x13 lined baking dish.
  4. In a medium saucepan over low heat, mix 1 cup of the white chocolate peppermint candy and the sweetened condensed milk until smooth. Pour over the crumb crust in the dish.
  5. Sprinkle the remaining crumble and white chocolate peppermint candy evenly over top.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until edges begin to just barely brown.
  7. Let cool completely before cutting into bars.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Old Fashioned Lemon Pound Cake

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 2/3 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 cups cups unbleached flour + ¼ teaspoon salt, sifted
  • 1 Bundt cake pan

  1. Preheat an oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Butter and flour a bundt pan.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugar with an electric beater until the mixture is pale and creamy, about 5 minutes.
  4. Beat in the lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla.
  5. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating until just combined after each addition.
  6. Fold in the flour and salt mixture in 2 batches, mixing after each addition until well combined. Be careful not to over mix.
  7. Spoon the batter into the bundt pan and bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a skewer poked into the cake comes out clean.
  8. Cover the pan loosely with aluminum foil if the crust browns too quickly.
  9. Remove cake from oven and cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
  10. Remove the Old Fashioned Lemon Pound Cake from the bundt pan and place onto a wire rack to cool completely,

Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Bread


  • 1 loaf French Bread, Split Lengthwise
  • 2 sticks Regular (salted) Butter, Softened

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Spread one stick of softened butter on each half of the loaf.
Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes, or until butter is melted and starting to soak into the bread.
Crank on broiler and broil bread for 3 to 5 minutes, watching the whole time. Remove when butter has started to brown and blacken. Don’t under-broil it! The flavor really kicks in when the butter’s color changes.
Slice into strips and serve immediately.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013


8 oz. Thinly Sliced Roast Beef
8 Slices Provolone Cheese
2 Large Green Bell Peppers
1 Medium Sweet Onion
6 oz. Baby Bella Mushrooms
2 Tbs. Butter
2 Tbs. Olive Oil
1 Tbs. Garlic – Minced
Salt and Pepper – to taste
(2 Tbs. Peace and Love)
Slice peppers in half lengthwise, remove ribs and seeds.
Slice onions and mushrooms. Saute over medium heat with butter, olive oil, minced garlic and a little salt and pepper. Saute until onions and mushroom are nice and caramelized. About 25-30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400*
Slice roast beef into thin strips and add to the onion/mushroom mixture. Allow to cook 5-10 minutes
Line the inside of each pepper with a slice of provolone cheese.
Fill each pepper with meat mixture until they are nearly overflowing.
Top each pepper with another slice of provolone cheese.
Bake for 15-20 minutes until the cheese on top is golden brown.
Serve and Enjoy!!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Oven Roasted Asparagus


  • 1 bunch Asparagus
  • 4 Tablespoons (up To 5 Tablespoons) Olive Oil
  • Kosher Salt To Taste
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
After you wash the asparagus thoroughly, stack a bunch together and lop off the tough/thick bottom an inch or so.
Spread out the asparagus in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Pat it as dry as you can, as you don’t want any water to “steam” the asparagus in the oven.
Begin by generously drizzling olive oil all over the asparagus and then sprinkle the asparagus generously with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Roast the asparagus for about ten minutes. The secret here is for the oven to be very hot so the asparagus can begin to brown on the outside without overcooking and getting too flimsy. You want the finished asparagus to still have a bite to it.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Lemon Blueberry Muffins


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup chilled butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 1/4 cups low-fat buttermilk (or you can make your own using 1 Tablespoon lemon juice per 1 cup of 1% milk)
  • 1 Tablespoon grated lemon rind
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar

1. Preheat over to 400 degrees F.
2. Spoon flour into dry measuring cup and level off with a knife. Dump flour into a medium-large bowl and combine with sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg.
3. Add the butter to the flour mixture and cut in using a pastry blender or 2 knives. Make a well in the center of the mixture.
4. In a separate bowl or measuring cup, combine buttermilk, lemon rind, and egg. Stir with a whisk until well mixed.
5. Add buttermilk mixture to the flour and stir until it’s well blended. After that, add the blueberries and fold them in.
6. Prepare a muffin tin by coating it with cooking spray and then spoon the batter into 12 muffin cups.
7. Bake at 400 degrees F for 20 minutes. Remove muffins immediately when done and place them on a wire rack to cool.
8. In a small bowl, combine the lemon juice and powdered sugar. Stir until it’s mixed well and drizzle the glaze over the cooled muffins.