Wednesday, January 25, 2017

ice cream pie

You can use this recipe for any kind of ice cream pie.  It just so happens I made two peppermint ice cream pies last month, put them in the freezer and forgot about them! :)  It's just as well- my family has been loving them and they're better appreciated a month after Christmas when the house is not as candy-filled.  Four ingredients and you have an impressive dessert- your kids' eyes will pop out of their sockets.

ice cream pie (pass the peas, please)
1 carton of any kind of ice cream (I used peppermint)
2 pre-made graham cracker pie crust (I used chocolate)
Hershey's chocolate sauce or Nutella
whipped cream

Let the carton of ice cream sit out for about 10 minutes to soften.
Scoop half the carton of ice cream into one pie crust.  Scoop the other half of the carton of ice cream into the other pie crust.  Use a spoon (and fingers) to spread the ice cream evenly into the pie crusts.
Cover with the plastic cover that came with the pie crusts and put into the freezer.
When ready to serve, cut each pie into 8 slices.  Pour chocolate sauce over the top or a big glob of nutella and top with whipped cream. Enjoy!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter icing

My daughter and I made some desserts for a wedding reception tonight to add to a long list of homemade desserts that others have made.  I made chocolate mint fudge and sugar cookie bars.  My daughter made these smooth-as-silk chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter icing.  It's the icing that's special, and the recipe is all hers! 
Erin- if you're reading this, think of this as a buckeye cupcake. :)

chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter icing (my daughter)
46 of your favorite chocolate cupcakes, baked and cooled

3 sticks butter
2 cups smooth peanut butter
4 cups powdered sugar

Melt butter.  Add the peanut butter and blend until thoroughly combined and creamy.  Gradually add the powdered sugar. 
Load a decorator's bag full of icing and go to town!  Add some chocolate sprinkles if you wish.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

greek honey cake

Get your taste buds ready for some good cake.  My daughter and I found this recipe for Greek Fest which is taking place today!  We made two batches of this cake this morning (6:15am) so it's fresh and warm and gooey with an orange essence.  It's going to be a hit.

greek honey cake (
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons orange zest
1 1/2 cups butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
6 eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 cups chopped walnuts (we omitted since we made it for a school project)

2 cups sugar
2 cups honey (We used Turkish honey from Trader Joe's)
1 1/2 cup water
2 teaspoons lemon juice 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9x13 inch pan. 
Combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and orange rind. Set aside. 
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and 1 1/2 cups sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Beat in the flour mixture alternately with the milk, mixing just until incorporated. Stir in the walnuts.
Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool for 15 minutes, then cut into diamond shapes. 
Pour honey syrup over the cake. For the Honey Syrup: In a saucepan, combine honey, 1 cup sugar and water. Bring to a simmer and cook 5 minutes. Stir in lemon juice, bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

world's best lasagna

No joke- I think this really is the world's best lasagna.  Over 10,000 people at allrecipes declared it 5 stars.  My husband is sure it's the spicy sausage I used, which was my idea. :)  My entire family enjoyed this dish and my husband typically doesn't enjoy lasagna, nor two of my kids.  They kept remarking that it tasted like pizza.  My oldest was eating it out of the pan as I was trying to put away the leftovers.

world's best lasagna (adapted by
Note:  I made it simpler and lower in fat.
2 pounds hot chicken Italian sausage (see image below)
1/2 cup onion, minced
1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
2 tablespoons sugar (I used 1 Tbsp sugar substitute)
1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
10 no-bake whole wheat lasagna noodles (see image below)
16 ounces ricotta cheese (I used fat free)
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
handfuls of shredded mozzarella cheese
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a Dutch oven, cook sausage, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned.  Stir in crushed tomatoes, paste, sauce and water.  Season with sugar, basil, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper and half the parsley.  Simmer, covered for 1 1/2 hours.
Combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
To assemble, spread 1 1/2-2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish.  Arrange 5 noodles over meat sauce.  Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture.  Top with a couple handfuls of mozzarella cheese.  Spoon 1 1/2-2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.  Repeat layers and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.  Cover with foil.  To prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
Bake in a preheated oven for 25 minutes.  Remove the foil and bake an additional 25 minutes.  Cool for 15 minutes before serving.