Did I ever say “I love my job”?  Heck yes!  Honestly, it’s the best job anyone who loves to cook could ever have…..Part of my job (along with my team) is formulating baking mixes for the home cook.  Our latest project to hit the grocery shelves is Fleishmann’s® Simply Homemade® Muffin & Bread Mixes:
img_5044These amazingly yummy mixes arrived at your favorite grocery store in July.  If you haven’t tried them yet, by all means, add the mixes to your grocery shopping list (especially the Double Chocolate).

In addition to creating mixes my job also entails creating recipes to go along with the newly “inventorized” mixes.  Okay, so this might really be my favorite part, I get to use my imagination and “think outside the box” (ha,ha) when it comes to inventing recipes.

I usually investigate what the “cooking/baking” trend is before I work on this part so that my recipes will be aligned with what’s cookin!  The hottest thing right now in cakes are “crepe cakes”.  These are so extremely yummy and not as filling and sweet as cakes are.  Also, best made a day in advance, but not necessary.

Below is my recipe for Lemon Poppy Seed Crepe cake, I added a little blueberry sauce for color and another flavor profile.  The basic crepe cake and filling recipe can be used for any of the muffin & bread mixes, pictures below:

If you have never made crepes before, you really need to try this, it is very easy (heck, even my non-cooking boss has made these).  The only drawback is time, takes about 30 minutes to actually make the crepes.  For the Triple Chocolate Crepe Cake, I used white chocolate pudding & pie filling, for banana, banana flavored pudding & pie filling, you can change these up and make up your own recipe, how about Double Chocolate Crepe Cake with pistachio pudding & pie filling????  You are only limited by your own imagination!

Lemon Poppy Seed Blueberry Crepe Cake

Yields: 20-24 8 or 9-inch crepes, enough for one cake
Prep time: 10 minutes
Rest time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes

Crepes:
1 package Fleishmann’s® Simply Homemade® Lemon Poppy Seed Muffin & Bread Mix
1 ½ cup milk
4 eggs
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1-2 tablespoons butter, for cooking crepes

Lemon Cream Filling:
1 3.4 ounce Instant Lemon Pudding & Pie Filling
1 cup milk
1 cup heavy whipping cream

Blueberry Sauce:
2/3 cup fresh blueberries
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon cornstarch

Topping:
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
In a blender or bowl of a food processor, combine all of the ingredients for crepes and pulse for 10-20 seconds. Place the crepe batter in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. This allows the bubbles to subside so the crepes will be less likely to tear during cooking. The batter will keep for up to 48 hours.
Lightly butter an 8 or 9-inch skillet over medium heat. Using a one-ounce ladle (or 2 tablespoons) pour batter into prepared pan, rotating pan until batter covers bottom. When the crepe has browned slightly on the bottom, carefully work a rubber spatula underneath it and flip. Cook the second side briefly, just to set the batter. Place cooked crepe on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Repeat with remaining batter.

Combine pudding mix, heavy cream and milk into a large bowl, using a hand mixer whip until creamy. Refrigerate until ready to assemble the cake.

In a small pan combine all blueberry sauce ingredients and heat over medium heat until slightly thick. Remove from heat until needed.

To make the topping, place the sugar into the mixing bowl and add the whipping cream. Whisk just until the cream reaches stiff peaks. Keep refrigerated until ready to use.

To assemble the cake, layer 2 crepes with 2-3 tablespoons of filling, spreading across surface of crepe to within 1 inch of edge. Drizzle blueberry sauce over cream. Repeat until all crepes have been used. Top with piped whipped cream, fresh blueberries and lemon peel (if desired).

img_5059

 

Lemon Poppy Seed/Blueberry Crepe Cake


Frozen Margarita Pie
Ingredients:
Crust:
1 cup finely crushed pretzels (or chopped in a food processor)
¼ cup sugar
Filling:
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
⅓ cup frozen Bacardi Margarita Mix, thawed
2 tablespoons tequila
1 tablespoon orange liqueur
green food coloring, as needed (optional)
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons Bacardi Margarita Mix, thawed
1 tablespoon tequila

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Mix crushed pretzels and sugar together in a bowl, stir in butter until evenly incorporated. Spoon mixture into a 9-inch pie plate, press into bottom and up sides of plate to form a firm, even crust.

Bake curst in the preheated oven until edges are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

Mix sweetened condensed milk, Bacardi mix, tequila, orange liqueur, and food coloring in a large bowl.

Using a hand or stand mixer, beat cream, 2 tablespoons Bacardi mix and 1 tablespoon of tequila, until soft peaks form. Fold whipped cream mixture into sweetened condensed milk mixture. When crust is cooled, spoon filling into crust.

Cover pie with plastic wrap and place in freezer for at least 4 hours.

3 Irish Men Cupcakes
adapted by pinch.my.salt originally adapted by David Leberman

Cupcake Ingredients:
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
6 tablespoons melted butter
½ cup sour cream, or yogurt
6 ounces Guiness Beer
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 ½ cup all purpose flour
½ cup dark cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda

Ganache:
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate
⅔ cup heavy whipping cream
4 tablespoons Jameson Whisky
2 tablespoons butter

Frosting:
1 stick of butter, soften
3 cups confectionary sugar
4 ounces softened cream cheese
4 tablespoons Bailey’s

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cupcake pan with liners and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, mix eggs and sugar until creamy. Add melted butter, sour cream, beer and vanilla. Mix until incorporated. In a separate bowl, add flour, cocoa, baking powder, and soda, whisk until combined. Add dry ingredients into wet ingredients, mix until smooth, about 2 minutes at medium speed.

Fill cupcake liners ¾ of the way full. Bake about 20-25 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out dry.

Let cupcakes cool, about 10 minutes, before transferring to a cooking rack.

While cupcakes are cooking, in a small sauce pan heat cream over medium high heat until its warm, but not boiling. Chop chocolate into small chunks and place in a medium sized bowl. Add butter (in small chunks) to chocolate and butter. Stir until it melts and becomes cool. Add in your whiskey and set aside to firm up a bit, about 10-15 minutes.

While the ganache is cooling, use a small circular cookie cutter, or melon baller, and remove a small portion out of the center of each cupcake. Fill the center with ganache using a small scoop or piping bag.

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and cream cheese until smooth. Slowly add the powdered sugar, about a cup at a time. Once the sugar is incorporated and the frosting is smooth, add in the baileys, mix until completely smooth. Place the frosting into a piping bag or zip lock bag (cutting a small edge) and frost the cupcakes.

Cucumber Vodka Watermelon Jello Shooters
Ingredients:

1 12–16 pound watermelon
4 cups cucumber vodka
4 3-ounce boxes Jolly Rancher Watermelon Jell-O mix
2 1-ounce boxes unflavored gelatin

Preparation:

1. Using a large chef’s knife, cut the watermelon into two equal halves, lengthwise.

2. Use your knife to slice all the way around the perimeter of the watermelon flesh, about an inch from the rind. Be careful not to pierce through the skin, as this will lead to your Jell-O leaking out. Then use a kitchen spoon to scrape out the rest and create a smooth bowl with roughly 1/2-inch red watermelon flesh left on the rind.

3. Line two small, rimmed baking sheets with paper towels in a way that creates a bed for your watermelon bowls. The idea is to create enough support to keep the watermelon bowls from rolling at all while they’re in the fridge. Put one bowl in the center of each tray and set aside.

4. In a large mixing bowl, combine the Jell-O mix and the unflavored gelatin. Add 4 cups of boiling water and whisk until the gelatin is completely dissolved, about 2 minutes. Add the vodka all at once and whisk just to combine.

5. Pour the Jell-O mixture into the watermelon bowls, dividing evenly. Carefully place the Jell-O filled watermelon bowls in the fridge, and refrigerate until set, about 4 hours.

6. When Jell-O is set, cut each half into 1-inch slices, crosswise, then cut each slice into 2–3 wedges, and serve.

Happy Friday and Bon Appetito!

Must Have Boozy Desserts for Any Party


May’s Calendar Recipe – White Chocolate Chip Raspberry Cookies made with Greek Yogurt

One of my favorite things to do at my job is create new recipes using our new products.  Fleishmanns® Simply Homemade® Muffin and Bread Mix, Specially for Greek Yogurt, is one of our newest to hit the market.  I loved creating new recipes for these mixes.  The mixes are available in 3 different flavors, Lemon Poppyseed, Raspberry, and Banana.  The following recipe was created to use with our Raspberry mix.  As always, quick, easy and DELICIOUS!!!

Raspberry White Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yield: 3 dozen cookies
Prep time: 15 minutes
Bake time: 12-20 minutes

1 package Fleishmann’s® Simply Homemade® Raspberry Muffin and Bread Mix
2/3 cups Greek yogurt
1/3 cup butter, softened
½ cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 (12 ounce) package of white chocolate chips
1 (8 ounce) package yogurt covered cranberries or chocolate covered cranberries, optional but yummie

Preheat oven to 375°F.

In a medium size mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar until fluffy. Add yogurt and egg. Stir until well combined. Add raspberry mix and continue mixing just until combined. Fold in chocolate chips and yogurt covered cranberries. Refrigerate batter 15-20 minutes (this prevents cookies from spreading).

Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer cookies to a rack to cool.

Raspberry White Chocolate Chip Cookies

Raspberry White Chocolate Chip Cookies

Buon Appetito!


Lemon Poppyseed Bars

Sometimes you just have to have a refreshing dessert.  As part of my job as an R&D Consulting Chef for ACH Food Companies, I get to “inventorize” (new word) recipes made with our products.  This truly is one of my favorites, next month’s is another.  I hope you enjoy these bars as much as we all did testing and tasting them.  Quick, easy and just delicious!  This would make a very refreshing dessert for your Easter Sunday Dinner.

Lemon Poppyseed GY Bread

This wonderful product is available at Sam’s Clubs and soon to be in a Walmart near you!

Lemon Poppyseed Yogurt Bars

Servings: 36 2-inch squares
Prep time: 15 Minutes
Bake time: 40 minutes

1 Package Fleishmann’s® Simply Homemade® Lemon Poppyseed Mix
2/3 cups Greek yogurt
1 stick butter, softened
4 large eggs
1 ½ cup sugar
¼ cup lemon juice, or juice from 2 fresh lemons
¼ cup all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a medium mixing bowl, blend together softened butter and yogurt. Add lemon poppyseed mix and continuing mixing until combined.

Press mix into an ungreased 9×13 inch pan. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until firm and golden.

In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar and lemon juice until creamy. Add the flour and whisk until incorporated. Pour over the baked crust.

Bake for an additional 20 minutes. The bars will firm up as they cool. Top with powdered sugar, if desired, for garnish.

Photo

Buon Appetito!


For those of you that have been waiting for this one….a wonderful dessert after any meal.  The Raspberry Yogurt Quick Breads are available at Sam’s Club. (Or you can use my basic crepe recipe…see below)

Raspberry Crepes with Fresh Blueberry Sauce

Cream Cheese Filled Raspberry Crepes with Blueberry Sauce

Yields: 12-16 crepes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Bake time: 10 minutes

Raspberry Crepes:
1 package Fleishmann’s® Simply Homemade Raspberry Flavored Yogurt Quick Bread mix
2/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 cup milk
4 eggs
2 tablespoons butter, melted

Basic Crepes:
4 eggs
1-cup milk
1-cup flour
1 teaspoon of sugar

Put eggs and milk in food processor. Pulse several times. Add remaining ingredients. Heat omelet pan. Put enough batter in the skillet just to cover the bottom. Swirl the pan around to cover if you need to. As batter cooks it will become dry looking. Remove and add your filling.

Filling:

2 (8-ounce) packages of cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon Spice Islands® Vanilla Flavoring
½ cup blueberry or raspberry jam

Berry Sauce:
1 package (16 ounce) frozen berries
¼ cup honey
1 tablespoon Argo® Cornstarch

Topping:
Powdered sugar

To make the crepes, combine quick bread mix, yogurt, milk, eggs and melted butter in a food processor or an electric mixer. Mix until smooth. Lightly butter a non-stick 8-inch skillet over medium heat. Using a one ounce ladle (or 2 tablespoons) pour batter into prepared pan,  rotating pan until batter covers the bottom. Cook until lightly brown, about one minute.   Remove crepe from pan and repeat with remaining batter.

To make the filling, beat the cream cheese with the sugar until smooth, add the jam and stir until well combined. Preheat oven to 300°F.

To assemble the filled crepes, place about 2 tablespoon of filling on each crepe in a line. Roll up the crepes and place them in a baking dish, seam side down. Bake for 10 minutes.

To make the berry sauce, combined all ingredients in a small saucepan and cook until heated through, about 5 minutes. Serve over cooked crepes and top with powdered sugar.

Happy March – Cream Cheese Filled Raspberry Crepes with Blueberry Sauce


For those of you who purchased my calendar, here is the one I know you have been waiting for….the perfect cheesecake.  Enjoy!!!

Bailey's Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake
2.25 ounces toasted pecan pieces
1 16 ounce package Oreo cookies
1 stick butter, melted

In a skillet over medium high heat, toast pecans until slightly golden, about 2-3 minutes. Place Oreo’s in a food processor and process until finely crumbled. Add toasted pecan pieces and process for a few seconds. Combine melted butter and Oreo mixture. Press firmly into the bottom of a 9” spring form pan. Bake in a preheated 325° oven for 7 minutes.

4 8-ounce packages of cream cheese
1 1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup Bailey’s Coffee Liquor
4 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon vanilla
1/4 cup flour

In the bowl of a stand mixer cream cheese and sugar together until smooth. Add Bailey’s and mix untiled blended. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing after each addition. Add sour cream, vanilla and flour and mix until smooth.

2 oz. semi sweet chocolate, melted

Pour 1/2 of the cheesecake mixture into the prepared pan. Drizzle 1/2 of the melted chocolate over the cheesecake. Using a knife, swirl the chocolate over the top. Repeat with the remaining cheesecake mixture and melted chocolate.

Bake in a preheated 325 degree oven for 1 hour 20 minutes. Let cake cool in the oven for one hour with the door closed to prevent cracking. Refrigerate overnight…best made one or two days before serving.

Buon Appetito!!!

Bailey’s Marbled Cheesecake