Archive for the ‘Dessert’ Category

Peanut Butter Balls

May 10, 2015

Submitted by Marcia

1 lb powdered sugar
2 C Graham cracker crumbs (14 whole crackers)
2 sticks melted butter or margarine
1 C peanut butter
1/2 C nuts, chopped (optional)
11 oz butterscotch chips
12 oz semi sweet chocolate chiops

Mix, make into balls, refrigerate until firm. Melt butterscotch and chocolate chips in double boiler. Dip in balls until coated.

Sour Cream Coffee Cake with Chocolate Chips

January 14, 2014

Submitted by Lori
From Cooks Illustrated, 2002
Serves 12 – 16


Note #1: A fixed bottom, 10 inch tube pan (with 10-cup capacity) is recommended, however I used a traditional bundt pan.  The end result of the bundt pan is that the streusel will be on the bottom instead of the top.  Viva la difference!

Note #2:  The Streusel is divided into two parts — one for the inner swirls, one for the topping.

Ingredients for Streusel

3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour ( 3 3/4 ounces)
3/4 cup granulated sugar (5 1/4 ounces)
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar ( 3 1/2 ounces)
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into 2 pieces
1 cup pecans, chopped

Ingredients for Cake

12 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened but still cool, cut into 1/2 -inch cubes
2 additional tablespoons unsalted butter, softened, for greasing the pan
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups sour cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour (11 1/2 ounces)
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar (8 3/4 ounces)
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon table salt
1 cup chocolate chips (I used 60% dark chocolate)

FOR THE STREUSEL (Filling & Topping):

  1. In a food processor, process flour, granulated sugar, 1/4 cup dark brown sugar  and cinnamon until combined, about 15 seconds. (SAVE the other 1/4 cup brown sugar for the next step)
  2. For Streusel Filling: Transfer 1 1/4 cups of the flour/sugar mixture to a small bowl.  Stir in the remaining 1/4 cup brown sugar and set aside to use for streusel filling in the cake
  3. For Streusel Topping: Add butter and pecans to the mixture in the food processor; pulse until nuts and butter resemble small pebbly pieces, about ten 1-second pulses. Set aside to use as a streusel topping.


  1. Adjust the oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 10 inch tube pan (I used a bundt pan) using 2 Tablespoons of the softened butter.  In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, 1 Cup sour cream (save the other 1/2 cup sour cream for the next step)  and vanilla.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in bowl of standing mixer; mix on low speed for 30 seconds to blend. Add butter and remaining 1/2 cup Sour Cream; mix on low speed until dry ingredients are moistened and mixture resembles wet sand, with few large butter pieces remaining, about 1 1/2 minutes.  Increase to medium speed and beat until batter comes together, about 10 seconds; scrape down sides of bowl with rubber spatula. Lower speed to medium-low and gradually add egg mixture in 3 additions, beating for 20 seconds after each and scraping down sides of bowl.  Increase speed to medium-high and beat until batter is light and fluffy, about 1 minutes.
  3. Using rubber spatula, spread 2 cups batter in bottom of prepared pan, smoothing surface, and sprinkle 1/2 cup chocolate chips on top. Sprinkle evenly with 3/4 cup streusel filling (without butter or nuts). Repeat with another 2 cups batter, 1/2 cup chocolate chips, and remaining 3/4 cup streusel (without butter or nuts.)  Spread remaining batter over, then sprinkle with streusel topping (with butter and nuts.)
  4. Bake until cake feels firm to touch and long toothpick or skewer inserted into center comes out clean (bits of sugar from streusel may cling to tester.)  50 to 60 minutes.  Cool cake in pan on wire rack 30 minutes.  Invert cake into rimmed baking sheet (cake will be streusel-side down); remove tube pan, place wire rack on top of cake, and re-invert cake streusel-side up.  [ Note: Because I made the cake in a bundt pan, the Streusel topping was on the bottom.  Works for me ! ]   Cool to room temperature, about 2 hours. Cut into wedges and serve.  (Cake can be wrapped in foil and stored at room temperature for up to 5 days.)

Banana Cupcakes with Penuche Frosting

October 26, 2013

Submitted by Pat
Recipes from Martha Stewart (cupcakes) and Diana Rattray (penuche frosting)


Cupcake Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (about 4 ripe bananas), plus 1 whole banana, for garnish (optional)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a standard 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners.  (Note:  Pat recommends “mini” size cupcakes.) In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  2. Make a well in center of flour mixture. In well, mix together butter, mashed  bananas, eggs, and vanilla. Stir to incorporate flour mixture (do not overmix). Dividing evenly, spoon batter into muffin cups.
  3. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of a cupcake comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan; cool completely on a wire rack.
  4. Pat recommends spreading the tops with with Easy Penuche Frosting (below).
  5. Before serving, peel and slice banana into rounds, and place one on each cupcake, if desired.

Easy Penuche Frosting (from Diana Rattray at

A penuche frosting recipe, made with brown sugar, butter, and confectioners’ sugar.


  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar, more or less
  • hot water, optional


In a saucepan, melt 1/2 cup butter. Add the brown sugar. Bring to a boil and lower heat to medium low and continue to boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the milk and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Cool to lukewarm. Gradually add sifted confectioners’ sugar. Beat until thick enough to spread. If too thick, add a little hot water. Frosts top and sides of a 2-layer cake or a 13×9-inch cake.

Strawberries & Meringue Cream Layer Cake

May 13, 2013


Submitted by Lori
(From Forever Summer by Nigella Lawson)
Serves 8

1 Cup all-purpose flour
3 T cornstarch
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
scant 1/2 Cup very soft unsalted butter
1 cup granulated sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 T milk
scant 1/4 cup slivered almonds
1 1/2 Cups heavy cream
1/2 Cup powdered sugar (Lori’s addition)
1/2 pint strawberries

Preheat over to 400 degrees. (I used 380 degrees, because the first time I made it, it was overcooked.)   Line butter and flour two 9 inch springform pans.

Combine the flour, cornstarch and baking powder into a bowl.

Cream the butter and 1/3 cup of the sugar in another bowl until light and fluffy. Separate the eggs and beat the yolks into the butter and sugar, saving the whites to whisk later. Gently fold in the measured-out dry ingredients, add the vanilla, then stir in the milk to think the batter.  Divide the mixture between the two prepared springform pans.

Whisk the egg white until soft peaks form, then gradually add the remaining sugar. Spread a layer of meringue on top of the sponge batter in each pan and sprinkle the almonds evenly over.

Bake for 30-35 minutes (I baked for 23 minutes; the first time I made it, 25 minutes was too long.) The top of the almond-scattered meringues will be a dark gold. Let the cakes cool in their tins, then spring them open at the last minute when you are ready to assemble the cake.

In a mixer, add whipping cream and powdered sugar and whip. Hull and slice the strawberries; that’s to say, the bigger ones can be sliced lengthwise and the smaller ones halved. Invert one of the cooled cakes on to a plate or cake stand so that the cake crumb is uppermost. Pile on the cream and stud with the strawberries, letting some of the berries subside into the whipped whiteness. Place the second cake on top, meringue upwards, and press down gently, just to secure it.

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

April 23, 2013


Submitted by Marcia

Serves 9

1/4 C butter
1/2 C brown sugar (packed)
1 can (8 1/2 oz) sliced pineapple, drained
1 1/2 C Cake flour or 1 1/4 C all-purpose flour
1 C sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 C milk
1/3 C shortening
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter over low heat in 8 x 8 x 2″ pan. Sprinkle with brown sugar evenly over butter. Place 5 pineapple slices in pan. Place cherries in center of slices.  Measure remaining ingredients into large mixer bowl.  Blend 1/2 min on low speed, scraping bowl constantly. Beat 3 minutes on high speed, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into pan. Bake until wooden pick comes out clean. Invert onto plate. Leave pan over cake a few minutes to drip.  Yum!


Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Loaf

November 19, 2012

Submitted by Sandy
From the Purple Sage and other Pleasures

3 C flour
3 C sugar
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp cinnamon
1 C oil
4 eggs
2/3 C water
2 C canned pumpkin
1 12-oz pkg chocolate chips

Mix together all ingredients except pumpkin and chocolate chips. Blend well. Add pumpkin to mixture and then fold in chocolate chips.  Divide mixture between 2 greased and floured 9 x 5 x 3-inch loaf pans. Bake at 325 degrees fro 1 hour, 15 minutes.

Classic Unsweetened Chocolate Brownies

April 8, 2012

In the beginning, the Lord created chocolate, and he saw that it was good.

Then he separated the light from the dark, and it was better.

Guest Post: Submitted by Pat

(Is it any coincidence that the other most decadent recipe in this blog, the Bombe aux Trois Chocolats, was also submitted by Pat?)

4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped (Scharffen Berger is the best!)
1 stick unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
2 large cold eggs
1/2 cup all purpose flour

Extra butter for pan
parchment paper
medium stovetop pan
wide skillet
lots of ice
roasting pan

Preheat oven to 400 degrees or 375 degrees for convection oven
Butter 8″ pan. Line the pan with the parchment paper, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.

Place the chocolate and the butter in a medium stove top pan. Set pan in skillet of barely simmering water. Melt chocolate and butter, stirring frequently until mixture is smooth.  The mixture should be hot enough that you want to remove your finger fairly quickly after dipping it in to test.

Remove pan from skillet.  Stir in the sugar, vanilla and the salt with a wooden spoon. Add the eggs, one at a time, stirring until the first is incorporated before adding the next. Stir in the flour and beat with a wooden spoon until the batter is smooth, glossy and beginning to come away from the sides of the blow, 1 to 2 minutes.

Bake for 20 minutes, or until the brownies just begin to pull away from the sides of the pan.  The surface of the brownies will look dry.

Meanwhile, prepare the ice bath: fill a roasting pan with ice cubes and about 3/4 inches of water.

When the brownies are ready, remove the pan from the oven and immediately set it in the ice bath. Take care not to splash the brownies.  When brownies are completely cool, remove from ice bath. Remove parchment and cut into squares.

Sour Cream Coffee Cake

April 8, 2012

This guest post is from Danielle, whose Coffee Cake was a great hit at the Philipps’ anniversary bash.  Thank you, Danielle!

Notes from Danielle:

It is already doubled, so if you want to halve it, just halve all the ingredients!

So preheat oven 300 and you will cook for 1.5 hours. If you make half, start at 50 min and should be ready in about an hour, you will have to check it cause I don’t know t he exact time if you halve it, but can tell with a toothpick.

So cream ½ pound butter with 2 cups sugar
Add 4 eggs and 2 teaspoons vanilla
Add 4 cups sifted flour and 2 teaspoons of baking powder
Add one pint of sourcream and 2 teaspoons of baking soda  ( I dissolve the soda in the sour cream)

Put in greased and floured pan (removable bottom) or Bundt

½ cup sugar/mixed with 1 tablespoon of cinnamon
1 cup nuts (pecans or walnuts)
Chocolate chips (about ½ a bag of 12 ounce) or more according to taste

Variations: can sliced apples in the middle
Can put in 10X13 inch pan and use for sheet cake with any kind of icing (choc, cream cheese)
Can mix 1 can of sweetened condensed milk with 8 oz chocolate chips and 2 TBSP butter and teaspoon of vanilla and either use in middle, or for icing…….can add chopped nuts in that chocolate

It’s an easy cake and never fails! Good luck!!!

S’more Bars

April 8, 2012

Submitted by Sandy

(Makes 16 bars)

1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/3 cups flour
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
8-oz package Hershey’s mini milk chocolate bars or 5 Hershey’s milk chocolate bars (1.55 oz each)
3 cups miniature marshmallows

Heat oven to 350. Grease 8-inch square baking pan.

Beat butter & sugar until well blended in large bowl. Add egg and vanilla; beat well. Stir together flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking powder and salt; add to butter mixture, beating until blended. Press half of dough into prepared pan. Bake 15 minutes.

Sprinkle rough chopped chocolate bars over baked layer. Sprinkle with marshmallows; scatter bits of remaining dough over marshmallows, forming top layer. Bake 10-15 minutes or just until lightly browned. Cool completely in pan on wire rack.  Cut into bars.

Bombe aux Trois Chocolats

May 31, 2011

OMG – This was a chocolate lover’s dream cake, made all the more special because it was prepared by Marcia and Pat for Sheila’s birthday.
(Picturing Pat and Marcia in the kitchen preparing this many-step masterpiece….doesn’t it bring a smile to your face?)  No doubt about it, Bunco at Sue’s was a great time:

>> Bombe aux Trois Chocolats Recipe (from Julia Child) (PDF)