Archive for March, 2009

My wonderful husband C’s birthday is next week so this weekend’s dessert is just for him!  He is not a big sweet eater, but he loves his Oreo cookies!  Instead of a birthday cake, he gets a birthday pie…Oreo Pie to be exact.  This is a combination of a couple of recipes that I put together.  I hope he likes it, and I hope you do, too.  You can use a bought Oreo pie crust if you absolutely have to, but a homemade one is SO MUCH BETTER!  It is worth the extra few minutes. Oh, and this recipe will make 2 pies.


1 lb package Oreo cookies (reserve about 6 cookies)

1 stick unsalted butter, melted

8oz cream cheese, room temperature

1/2 cup sugar

8 oz Cool Whip

2 4-serving packages instant chocolate pudding mix

3 cups cold milk


In a food processor, chop cookies until they are fine crumbs.  Combine the cookie crumbs with the melted butter.  Pour half of the mixture into each pie plate and press into the bottom and up the sides to form your crust.  I use a piece of wax paper to do this so it doesn’t stick to my hands.  Chill for 2 hours.

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In a large mixing bowl, mix cream cheese and sugar with an electric mixer until completely combined.  Add half of the Cool Whip and stir together.  Spread half of mixture onto each pie crust.

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In another large mixing bowl, add the 2 pudding mixes and the milk.  Whisk for 2 minutes or until the pudding starts to thicken.  Refrigerate for about 5 minutes and then spread half over each cream cheese/Cool Whip layer.

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Top the pies with the remaining Cool Whip and spread to coat the pudding layer.  One of my pie plates is bigger than the other, so I let the pudding mix show on the biggest pie.  Complete by crumbling the remaining cookies over the top of each pie.  Refrigerate before and after serving.

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Easy Fruit Cobbler

Yes, I have more frozen strawberries to use.  There are only so many smoothies a girl can drink.  This is a quick, easy, DELICIOUS way to use a pint of berries, and it is also great with peaches or blackberries.


1 stick unsalted butter

1 cup self rising flour

1 cup sugar

1 cup milk

1 pint frozen strawberries, thawed & drained


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Place butter in a small casserole dish and melt in the warm oven.

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In a large mixing bowl, add flour, sugar, and milk.  Whisk to combine.


Pour flour mixture directly into the casserole dish with melted butter, then add the strawberries.  There is no need to stir.  Put the dish back in the oven and bake for one hour.  Cool for about 15 minutes and enjoy!  See, wasn’t that easy?

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Come join the fun at the My Baking Addiction and GoodLife Eats Holiday Recipe Swap sponsored by Kerrygold.

I am linking this recipe to Designs by Gollum Foodie Friday!

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Wordless Wednesday


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I have some leftover frozen strawberries that I need to use before I buy more this summer, so I have been looking for a good strawberry cupcake recipe.  Found it!  This recipe makes 24 cupcakes.  The frosting recipe has been doubled for that many cupcakes.  It can be cut in half for 12.  They are yummy and the pink frosting is really pretty!

Strawberry Cupcakes

2 1/2 cups cake flour

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temp

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 large eggs

1/3 cup buttermilk (I used powdered buttermilk.  The conversion chart is on the package.)

1/4 cup canola oil

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup finely chopped strawberries (fresh or frozen & thawed)



Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line cupcake pan with liners.  Sift together flour, baking soda, and salt onto a paper plate.  Set aside.


In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer.  Add eggs and mix until smooth and creamy.

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Add buttermilk, oil and vanilla.  Mix until combined.  Add flour mixture to butter mixture slowly.  Stir in strawberries.

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Scoop batter into each cupcake liner until it is about half full.  Bake for 18-20 minutes.  Remove from pan and cool.

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Strawberry Buttercream Frosting

2 sticks unsalted butter, room temp

3 cups powdered sugar

1 tsp vanilla

4 tsp strawberry puree


With an electric mixer, beat butter until light and fluffy.  On medium speed, beat in sugar 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.  Mix in vanilla.  Increase speed to high and beat until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.  Stir in strawberry puree completely.  The frosting will be a pretty pink.  Frost your cupcakes.

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Here is my recipe for thick homemade chili.  This is a conglomeration of different chili recipes that I have tried.  My husband nor I like to eat beans.  I love the flavor and nutrients they give to chili, but I have never liked the texture, so I came up with a solution.  I puree my chili beans before adding them to the chili.  You still get all the good parts with none of the bad.  Here we go…


48 oz can low sodium tomato juice

2 15oz cans tomato sauce

1 can chili beans (hot or mild)

1 pkg low sodium chili seasoning mix (hot or mild)

1 lb ground beef cooked and drained

1 tsp brown sugar



In a slow cooker, pour in half of the tomato juice.  I freeze the leftover juice for the next batch.  Add the tomato sauce, seasoning mix, beef & brown sugar.  Stir to combine.


Pour the can of beans into the bowl of a food processor.  Process until smooth and then pour into slow cooker.  Combine all ingredients.  Cook on high for approximately one hour then turn the heat to low for 4 hours.

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When the time is up, pour into a soup bowl and enjoy.  I serve mine with a gooey grilled cheese sandwich and saltine crackers.  One of my favorite leftover applications is “frito pie”.  Pour  reheated chili in a soup bowl and top with shredded cheese.  Serve with Fritos Scoops.

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Come join the fun at the My Baking Addiction and GoodLife Eats Holiday Recipe Swap sponsored by West Bend

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Dog Day Afternoon

I think Patches was trying to tell us something after he had been playing for a while.  It was something like, “Stop pointing that camera at me and let me take a nap!” Or it could have been, “Couldn’t you have used something softer to build this deck?  A dog can’t get comfy!”



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This is for the birds!

This IS for the birds, but in a good way.  When I was growing up, my grandmother (now and forever known as “Nanny”) always had bird feeders and still does.  We have always enjoyed watching the birds eat and trying to figure out what kind they are.

Last weekend, my husband “C” and I bought a bird feeder and seed at a home improvement store.  At the time, all we had to hang it from was a short shepherd’s hook.  C came home yesterday and found that the birds were enjoying their meal with one of our big orange cats lurking nearby plotting his attack.  Needless to say, the birdfeeder is now hanging much higher.  We may still move it to a better location, but for right now we are enjoying the bird show.



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Wordless Wednesday







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Black & White Cheesecake Bars

I found this recipe in the latest Martha Stewart Living magazine.  I don’t use a lot of Martha Stewart’s recipes.  I have found in the past that a lot of them seem to be lacking a few instructions.  This one turned out good, except it needed to be cooked about 10 minutes longer than the recipe states, but that may have been because of my oven.  I will list the original recipe cooking time, but be aware that you may have to cook it a little longer for the middle to set up correctly. 


Vegetable oil cooking spray

2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

10 oz (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

2 cups granulated sugar

3 large eggs

2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

8 oz cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup confectioners sugar



Coat a 9×13” baking pan with cooking spray.  Line dish with parchment paper, leaving a 2 inch overhang on both long sides, then spray parchment.


Sift flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt onto a paper plate or in a bowl.  Cream butter and granulated sugar with a mixer until smooth.




Add 2 eggs and 2 teaspoons vanilla, and beat until smooth, scraping down sides of bowl.  Reduce speed to low; add flour mixture.  Increase speed to medium; beat until incorporated.

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Reserve 1 cup of dough; cover and refrigerate.  Press remaining dough into bottom of prepared dish using a piece of wax paper.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 325 and bake until base is set and edges are puffed, about 25 minutes.  Let cool.




Mix cream cheese, confectioners sugar, and remaining egg and 1/2 tsp vanilla in a medium bowl.  Spread over cooled base; crumble reserved dough on top. Bake until filling is set, 25-30 minutes. (Remember, this may need to be extended for about 10 more minutes.) Let cool on a wire rack and then refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.  Using the parchment paper, remove the bars from the dish and cut into small squares.  The bars will keep, covered and refrigerated, for up to 3 days.

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Nutter Butter Truffles

Usually around Christmas, I will make Oreo truffles. They are very chocolate-y and decadent.  The idea came to me that Nutter Butter cookies would be a great substitute for the oreos, so I decided to give it a go.  I must say, I was right!  These are really good!  They are also pretty simple, only containing 3 ingredients.  If you want to try your hand at candy-making, this is a good place to start.  You will need…


1 lb package Nutter Butter Cookies

8oz cream cheese, room temperature

12oz milk chocolate candy coating wafers




Break the cookies in 3 pieces and place in the bowl of a food processer. I have a mini chopper so I did mine in batches.  Process until the cookies are ground into fine crumbs.



Place the crumbs in a mixing bowl along with the cream cheese which has been cut into cubes.  Mix with a hand-held mixer until thoroughly combine.



Picking up about a teaspoon of the mixture, roll it into a ball.  I use plastic gloves for this because the mix can be a bit sticky.  Place on a wax-paper lined baking sheet and chill for at least 30 minutes or until firm. Thanks to my husband for helping with these pictures.  It’s hard to roll with 2 hands and try to snap a photo at the same time.

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When the balls are chilled, it’s time to dip!  Pour the candy coating wafers into a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave on high for 1 minute, then stir.  Continue to cook for 30 seconds at a time until the wafers melt when stirred.  It should not take over two minutes total.  Dip each ball into the coating and place back on the wax paper.  Allow to set up for at least an hour.  Pack in an airtight contain and enjoy!

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