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Category: Desserts

Pumpkin Spice Cake

4 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
15oz can pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9×13 pan and dust with flour.

Beat together eggs, sugar, brown sugar, oil, pumpkin, and vanilla. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, sat, and pumpkin pie spice. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Add batter to greased pan and bake 30-35 minutes, or until middle is cooked.

Goat Cheese Ice Cream

2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup milk
4 egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons corn syrup
4 ounces goat cheese

Prepare an ice water bath. Bring the cream and milk to a boil. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together egg yolks and sugar and slowly pour in some of the hot cream to temper the eggs. Pour the tempered egg mixture into the cream and continue to cook for 2 to 3 minutes while whisking, or until the mixture coats the back of a spoon and steam rises from the top. Remove from heat. Mix to combine the corn syrup and goat cheese and then whisk this mixture into the warm cream mixture until smooth. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve and chill over the ice water bath. Freeze in an ice cream machine per directions (usually 25-30 minutes). Transfer to a dish and keep frozen until ready to use. Makes approximately 3 cups.


Fresh Strawberry Topping

1 pint strawberries, cleaned and stemmed
1/3 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Chop the strawberries into desired bite size, set aside about 1/3 of strawberries. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine remaining 2/3 strawberries, sugar, and vanilla. Cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens (about 5 minutes). Remove from heat. In a blender, puree about 1/2 of cooked strawberry mixture. Combine fresh, cooked, and pureed strawberry mixture. Store in refrigerator.

Almond Butter Snickerdoodles

1 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup (about 3 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons smooth almond butter
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
2 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
4.75 ounces white whole-wheat flour (about 1 cup)
1.5 ounces almond flour (about 1/3 cup)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, divided
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

Place the first 4 ingredients in a medium bowl, and beat with a mixer at high speed until well combined (about 2 minutes). Add 1 teaspoon lemon rind, vanilla extract, and egg yolks; beat until well blended.

Weigh or lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flours, baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon salt; stir with a whisk. Add flour mixture to butter mixture; beat at low speed until well combined. Drop half of the dough by rounded tablespoons onto prepared baking sheet. Combine the remaining 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and granulated sugar in a small bowl; sprinkle half of the cinnamon-sugar mixture evenly over cookies. Bake at 350° for 6 minutes; flatten cookies with the back of a spatula. Bake an additional 6 minutes. Cool on pans 1 minute. Remove from pans, and cool on wire racks. Repeat procedure with remaining dough and sugar mixture.

Crater Cookies

1 lb. dark chocolate
1 cup whole almonds
1 cup Rice Krispies
1 cup crunchy peanut butter
1 cup mini marshmallows

Melt chocolate in a double boiler.  Add peanut butter, mixing until well combined.  Stir in then rest of ingredients.  Drop cookies onto wax paper and let cool.

Walnut Balls

1 cup margarine
1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp water
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups ground walnuts

Cream together margarine and sugar in a mixer.  Add vanilla and water.  Blend in flour and salt on low speed.  Add walnuts and mix well.  Roll into small balls and bake on ungreased cookie sheet at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes.  Cool and roll in powdered sugar

Amaretto-Caramel Flan

1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon water
Cooking spray
1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs
2 large egg whites
1 1/2 cups 2% low-fat milk
1 cup evaporated skim milk
3 tablespoons amaretto or 1 tablespoon vanilla extract for plain
Mint sprigs (optional)

Preheat oven to 325°. Combine 1/3 cup sugar and water in a small heavy saucepan over medium-high heat; cook 5 minutes or until golden, stirring occasionally. Immediately pour into 6 (6-ounce) custard cups coated with cooking spray, tipping quickly until sugar coats bottoms of cups; set aside.

Combine 1/2 cup sugar, eggs, and egg whites in a large bowl; stir well with a whisk. Add milks; stir until smooth. Add amaretto or vanilla and mix thoroughly. Divide mixture evenly among prepared cups. Place cups in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish; add hot water to a depth of 1 inch. Bake at 325° for 1 hour or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Remove cups from pan; let cool completely on a wire rack. Cover and chill at least 3 hours.

Loosen edges of custards with a knife or rubber spatula. Place a dessert plate, upside down, on top of each cup; invert custards onto plates. Drizzle any remaining syrup over custards. Garnish with mint sprigs, if desired.

No Bake Cookies

1 3/4 cups white sugar
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup butter
4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
3 cups quick-cooking oats
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, milk, butter, and cocoa.  Bring to a boil and cook 1 1/2 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter, oats, and vanilla.  Drop spoonfuls onto wax paper and let cool until hardened.

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 1/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup finely crushed hard peppermint candies
6 tablespoons granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
Additional coarsely crushed hard peppermint candies, divided
1/2 cup powdered sugar (optional)
2 1/2 teaspoons milk (optional)
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate morsels, melted (optional)

Combine first 3 ingredients in a large saucepan; cook over low heat until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, and stir in 1/2 cup crushed peppermint and 6 Tbsp. sugar. Let cool 30 minutes.

Add eggs to melted chocolate, 1 at a time, stirring well. Stir in extracts.

Combine flour, baking powder, and salt; add to chocolate mixture, stirring until combined. Stir in chocolate morsels. Cover and chill dough 2 hours or until firm enough to shape.

Shape dough into 1 1/2″ balls; place on parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Makes 2 1/2 dozen cookies. Bake at 325° for 12 to 13 minutes or until cookies are puffed and cracked on top. Sprinkle coarsely crushed peppermints onto cookies; press candy lightly into cookies. Let cookies cool 5 minutes on baking sheets. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

Whisk together powdered sugar and milk; drizzle over cooled cookies, if desired. Drizzle with melted chocolate, if desired. Sprinkle cookies again with chopped peppermint, if desired. Let cookies stand until glaze and chocolate are firm.

Espresso Crinkles

4.5 ounces all-purpose flour (about 1 cup)
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar, divided
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
5 1/4 teaspoons canola oil
1 1/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon instant espresso granules
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons light-colored corn syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large egg whites

Weigh or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, 3/4 cup powdered sugar, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl; stir with a whisk. Combine oil and chocolate in a small saucepan over low heat; cook until chocolate melts, stirring constantly. Add espresso granules to pan; stir until blended. Remove from heat. Pour chocolate mixture into a large bowl; cool 5 minutes. Stir in brown sugar, syrup, and vanilla. Add egg whites, stirring with a whisk. Add flour mixture to egg mixture, stirring gently just until combined. Cover; chill at least 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Roll dough into 1-inch balls. Dredge balls in remaining 1/2 cup powdered sugar; place balls 2 inches apart on 2 baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes or until tops are cracked and almost set. Cool cookies on pan 2 minutes or until set; remove from pan. Cool cookies on a wire rack. Makes 2 dozen cookies.

Notes: Lightly coat your hands with flour to make rolling the dough into balls easier. The dough freezes well. Freeze the dough after step 1, thaw in the refrigerator, then proceed with step 2. The powdered sugar coating gives these cookies an appealing cracked finish. Serve with coffee to echo the espresso.

Almond Butter Cookies

3/4 cup butter, at room temperature
8 ounces almond paste (about 1 cup)
2/3 cup sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons almond extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup finely chopped almonds

In a bowl, with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter, almond paste, and sugar until very smooth. Beat in eggs and almond extract until well blended, scraping down sides of bowl as needed.

In another bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir or beat into butter mixture until well blended.  Chill dough 1-2 hours.

Place almonds in a shallow dish. Shape dough into 1-inch balls and roll in almonds to coat. Place balls 1 inch apart on buttered or cooking parchment-lined baking sheets. With a lightly floured fork, flatten balls into 1 1/4-inch rounds.

Bake cookies in a 350° oven until lightly browned, 10 to 12 minutes; if baking more than one pan at a time, switch pan positions halfway through baking. With a wide spatula, transfer cookies to racks to cool.