Ice Cream Cake

My second little man turned five this last week and he was VERY specific about what he wanted his special birthday cake to be.  His request: Chocolate cake with ice cream and cookies inside and sprinkles all over on the top with a big 5 candle to blow out.  I was so glad that I totally nailed it and it was A-MAZ-ING!  I’m excited to try this with different kinds of cake and ice cream combinations.   It was so worth making rather than spending $30 for an ice cream cake at Baskin & Robbins that wasn’t half as good:).

Chocolate and Cookie Ice Cream Cake

1 Chocolate Cake Mix pre made in a round pan***

Cookie Dough Ice Cream

1 Tub Chocolate fudge frosting

Oreos

Sprinkles

This takes a few steps.  It’s easy to make but takes time.  Once the cake is cooled off  place it on some waxed paper on a plate and put in the freezer for a couple of hours.  Take the ice cream out to soften a little bit and then scoop it into the bottom of the pan, that once had the cake in it, so that it’s about 1-2 inches thick.  Smooth it out as best as you can and put it back in the freezer.  After a couple of hours, take the cake and ice cream out of the freezer.  Cut the cake in two with a long serrated knife.  Put one half of the cake on the serving dish. (I crumpled up some Oreos and put it on the dish so the cake wouldn’t stick to the plate)  Put a warm washcloth on the outside of the pan holding the ice cream so that it melts a little bit and can slide out easily.  Plop the ice cream layer on top of the cake bottom and then place the top half of the cake on top of the ice cream.  It looks like a big oreo:).  Cover in a few layers of foil and stick in the freezer for a few hours or over night.     Carefully frost the cake.  It won’t look super neat, but that’s okay.  Cover the sides with cookies to cover the imperfections and cover the top with sprinkles or crumbled up cookies.  Numm Num Num!  Enjoy!

***I used Dark Chocolate Fudge Mix with the high elevation instructions and replaced the oil for applesauce.  Be sure to spray the pan really well so that the cake will slip out easily.  I have a springform pan with a drop out bottom that made it even easier to make.

PS: We did have a big ’5′ candle on the top.  It made my little man’s day to have exactly what he asked for.  :)

Pecan Pie

I’ve always been afraid of making Pecan Pie because I thought it would be too complicated.  I don’t know what I was thinking!  This was easy and SO worth it!  I LOVE Pecan Pie!  I got this recipe from an old neighbor of mine who made the most amazing pecan pie.  I am so grateful she was willing to share her goodness with me:) Oh, and I intended to take a picture of the whole pie, but when I got my camera out there were pieces already missing.  :)

Pecan Pie

Pie crust

3 eggs

1/2 c. Karo syrup (white)

1 c. sugar

1 Tbsp. corn startch

dash salt

1 tsp. vanilla

1 tsp. rum (pineapple juice is a great substitute)

4 Tbsp. melted butter (I omitted this)

1-2 cups pecans (halves and pieces)

Slightly beat eggs.  Add sugar and then the remaining ingredients.  Pour into pie shell.  Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes.  Wrap the pie edges in foil for the first 25-ish minutes to keep it from burning.

Makes 1 scrumptiously awesome pie.

Chocolate Pomegranate ‘muffins’

I was craving chocolate covered pomegranates, but I didn’t want to spend all the time covering each seed.  This was SO good and so easy.  It’s my new favorite pomegranate treat.  My picture is blurry but it looked so pretty in person:)

Chocolate Pomegranate ‘mufins’

1 Pomegranate de-seeded

melting chocolate (I actually used chocolate chips and they worked great)

mini-muffin pan

Spray your muffin pan with oil to help prevent sticking. Fill the bottom of your muffin cups with the pomegranate seeds. You want it just be one-two seeds thick, no thicker than that.  Melt your chocolate and spoon over the pomegranates.  Place in freezer for 20ish minutes.  Carefully flip the pan upside down.  Some will just fall out for you and be ready to serve.  Use a knife to gently wiggle the stuck chocolate edges off the pan of the remaining.  Enjoy!

Caramel Apple Pie Bites

Be careful these are scandalous on a number of levels.  I was making this up, and didn’t keep track of how much of the ingredients I used, so I apologize (kinda) if you end up having to eat some extra carmel or snickers bars afterward.  Enjoy!

Caramel Apple Pie Bites

1 double pie pastry crust (I made mine with THIS recipe)

2 small cans sweetened condensed milk (Find out how to make it HERE)

1-2 Snickers candy bar

1 apple (sour are better) cut into very small chunks

Preheat oven 350 degrees. Roll your pastry dough out on your counter and then use a small cup to cut out circles in the dough.  Gently push the dough circles into the muffin pan.  Bake for APX 12minutes.  Watch them, because I didn’t actually time how long I had them in.  (SO SORRY!  I’ll pay attention next time) You want them to be just slightly browning on the edges.  Let the crust cool for a few minutes and then place one or two of the little apple pieces in the bottom of each pie cup.  Then open up the caramel and spoon a dab in each crust on top of the apple.  You want it to be a full at this point but NOT overflowing.  This is not a lot of caramel, but I promise you will get the effect.  Then cut up that Snickers bar and place a piece on top of each pie.  The caramel settles in nice and smooth, so don’t worry about pushing it in or making it look nice.

 

Rice Krispie Treats

This is the most simple comfort treat that was one of my favorites when I was young.  It’s so easy to make, yet I make it so infrequently that I always have to look up the recipe.  So, here it is in my box of recipes so I don’t have to forget again.

Rice Krispie Treats

5 cups rice krispies cereal

1 bag large marshmallows (not the ultru large, but the regular large)

1/4 cup butter (NOT margarine)

1 tsp vanilla

(opt. 2/3 cup peanut butter – stirred in with melted butter, m&m’s sprinkled on top after set in pan while still somewhat warm)

On medium heat melt butter in a large pot.  Once butter has melted, add marshmallows and stir continuously until they have all melted.  Do NOT let it heat up too much or it will brown or burn and not set well.  Add vanilla.  Once the marshmallows are mostly melted add the krispies and stir until well immersed.  Pour/scoop into a greased 9×13 pan.  Push down and flatten with a greased spatula.  Let it set for about an hour and then enjoy. . . although I always sneak one while it’s still hot and gooey.  Mmmm.

Banana Spice Bread

Looking for the easiest sweet bread in the world to make?  Seriously, there are only two ingredients.  I made this as an experiment and it was so good that I ate it. . . all. . . by myself.   Hmmm, that really sounds horrible, but to be fair to myself I had a little bit every day over a week, because the rest of my family doesn’t like the spice cake flavor.  Man, it was good!  :)I think I’ll try this with other combinations of cake mixes.  Possibilities are endless!  Okay here it is:

Banana Spice Bread

Spice Cake powder mix

4 banana’s mashed

(possible add-ins:  nuts, coconut flakes, dried fruit bits, etc.)

Stir the ingredients together.  Pour in bread pan that has been oiled.  Bake at 400 degrees for approximately 50 minutes or until knife poked through comes out clean.  Done.  Woohoo!

Frog Eye Salad

This is one of my favorite salads of all time.  I’m not sure that it’s fair to call it a salad though, since it’s so naughty.  My mom made this every fourth of July and other special occasions.  When I got older I was baffled to find out that some people don’t like it.  So, if you’ve never had it before, make a small batch to make sure you can handle the goodness.    I guess the texture of the acine de pepe pasta is not for everyone.  My hubby and boys won’t eat it, so when I have an opportunity to make the salad for a party or event I jump at the chance.  Taking home the leftovers is my favorite part:)  So, this post is for those awesome people who love this sweet bit of goodness like me.  I looked online at a few different recipes to see if I could find one that looked the best.  This recipe I have here was on allrecipes.com, so I copy and pasted it with a few changes.  It ended up to be almost identical to my moms original concoction.  Yummm!

Frog Eye Salad

1 cup white sugar

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 1/2 teaspoons salt (divided)

1 3/4 cups drained juice from the canned fruit

2 eggs, beaten

1 tablespoon lemon juice

3 quarts water

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 (16 ounce) package acini di pepe pasta

2 cans mixed fruit, drained and saved

1 can pineapple tidbits, drained and saved

1 (8 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed

1 cup miniature marshmallows

1 cup shredded coconut

In a sauce pan, combine sugar, flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, pineapple juice and eggs. Stir and cook over medium heat until thickened. Remove from heat; add lemon juice and cool to room temperature.

Bring water to a boil, add oil, remaining salt and cook pasta until al dente. Rinse under cold water and drain.

In a large bowl, combine the pasta, egg mixture, fruit and whipped topping. Mix well and refrigerate overnight or until chilled. Before serving add marshmallows and coconut. Toss and serve.

Easter Rolls

I love Easter and it’s so nice to find a way to make it more meaningful.  I want our boys to know what Easter is all about.  I want them to understand the Passover and that because of a perfect mans willing sacrifice of his own life,  death will only be a sting in the eternal journey of a continued life.  He concurred death so that we can too defeat the grave and be free.  I started searching online for something I could cook up with an analogy.  This was the best thing I could find for explaining the resurrection to a 4 and 5 year old.  It went well and the boys really seemed to understand and grasp onto the meaning.  Not to mention they were delicious and made the house smell TANTALIZING!

I copied the recipe from here:  http://growinggourmets.blogspot.com/2011/04/resurrection-rolls-resurrection-cookies.html

She has some great pictures of the whole process too.  However, when I made them I used crescent rolls.

Easter Rolls

1 can of refrigerated biscuits (crescents)
1 package of large marshmallows, (must be fresh; stale ones won’t work)
1 stick butter
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon

Melt butter in a microwavable bowl.  In a separate bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon.

 Have the children each take a marshmallow.  Jesus was pure and sinless which is represented by the white marshmallow.

Now have the children roll the marshmallow in the butter.  After Jesus died on the cross, they anointed his body with oil.

Next, roll the marshmallow in the cinnamon sugar mixture.  This represents the spices that were put on Jesus’ body before they placed him in the tomb.

Take one biscuit and flatten it with your fingers. Wrap the biscuit around the marshmallow and seal it very carefully.  Make sure it completely sealed.  Jesus was placed in the tomb and they rolled a large stone in front of it to seal it.

Roll the ball of dough in the cinnamon sugar mixture and place it on the cookie sheet.  Be sure and place them, seal side down, so the marshmallow doesn’t expand and puff out the top.

Bake the biscuit tombs in a 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes or until browned on the outside.  Remind the children that Jesus was sealed up in the tomb for three days.

Finally, remove the biscuits from the oven.  Let cool slightly and encourage them to break open the tomb.  Where is Jesus?  He has risen!  The rolls taste sweet. Easter is a sweet time because Christ died for us and then three days after the cross, he arose so that we also can have a new life in Him!

No-Bake Cookies

Thanks for hanging in here with me!  I know my posts have been few and far between lately.  Let’s just say, as sickening as it is to admit this, we’ve been eating a lot of hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken nuggets, and sandwiches.  I love this little kicking boy inside me, but man he really throws off our diet and my relationship with the kitchen.  I mustered up enough energy to make some of the easiest cookies around to appease the boys begging. I was shocked to see that I hadn’t posted our favorite no-bake cookies on here!  So, for your chocolate enjoyment here is some goodness that never gets old.  Oh, and my boys really thought it was hilarious when I told them that some people call them Gorilla Poop cookies.  Enjoy and happy baking!   . . . Oh, and it goes great with a scoop of rainbow sherbet ice cream, mmmm.

No Bake Cookies

Boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly:

2 cups sugar

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup margarine

Add:

1 cup peanut butter

5 Tbsp. Cocoa

1/2 cup chopped nuts

1/2 cup shredded coconut (opt)

Then add and stir until blended:

3 cups rolled oats

Cool slightly.  Drop onto wax paper in blobs.  Let cool in refrigerator.

Peach Pie

I love peaches.  I can peaches.  I love pie.  I love using home canned peach pie in the winter.  Yep, not traditional, but oh, so good!  It’s an easy recipe and is great to share with others or yourself.

Peach Pie

Double crust pie dough

2 quarts canned peaches (with liquid drained)

1/3 cup flour

1 cup sugar

1/4 cup butter

Take prepared dough (not baked) and divide it.  Two-thirds of the dough will be used for the bottom crust and save one-third of the dough for the top.  Roll out the bottom crust and place in pie pan.  I cut off all the excess dough and rolled it up, snake style.  Then I wrapped it around the edge and pinched it in how I like it so that it looked uniform.

In a bowl combine drained peaches, flour, and sugar.  Gently stir until peaches are well coated and then pour the mixture into the bottom pie crust.  Cut the butter into small pieces and place on top of peaches.

For the top crust, you can cut it into strips and weave it.  I prefer to use a cookie cutter to make cool shapes on the top.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes, or until crust is golden brown.