Friday

Make Hollywood Two Tone Cheesecake



The Hollywood Two Tone Cheesecake recipe was found in a 50-year old cookbook. Much to our surprise, it is one of the easiest to make, and certainly delicious! Be sure to make at least one day ahead of time.

  • 1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 pound cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs (1/2 cup)
  • 3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • OPTIONAL- 1/4 teaspoon Lemon Zest &
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 pint commercial sour cream
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ground cinnamon, to taste


  1. For the crust, combine the first three ingredients and mix well. Press into a greased 9-10 inch springform pan, bringing it up along the sides to about 1 inch from top of pan. Keep the crust in the refrigerator, or cool place, while preparing filling.
  2. For the filling, combine the next four ingredients and beat until smooth with an electric mixer or heavy wooden spoon. Pour into pan, spread until smooth and uniform over the crust.
  3. Bake in preheated oven at 375F degrees for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, place on cake rack, and let stand in room temperature for about 15 minutes. Raise oven temperature to 475F degrees.
  4. About a minute or two before time is up, prepare the second part of the filling, using the final three ingredients (sour cream, sugar, vanilla). Generously sprinkle cinnamon on top before the second filling is applied.
  5. To pepare the second part of the filling, with a spoon, mix the ingredients only until well blended. Pour over the cool baked first part of filling, starting from the side to center by tablespoonfuls. Spread evenly, as gently as possible. The whole top should be covered.
  6. Bake in 475F degree oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let sit at room temperature for 5 to 6 hours.
  7. Store in refrigerator and serve the next day.
  8. Cover with waxed paper before putting into the refrigerator, being careful not to let the waxed paper touch the topping.

Tips

  • To keep the waxed paper from touching the filling, place toothpicks around the edge of the crust.
  • The new press and seal wrap is great for covering the cheesecakes, it sticks to the pan and not the cake.
  • It's a good idea to set out all the ingredients 30 minutes before preparing the cheesecake.
  • Using organic ingredients is a great option, but do NOT use organic sour cream; something they do to commercial sour cream makes the top layer turn out correctly.
  • Putting the cinnamon directly into the top layer batter is also a good option.
  • This cheesecake can be made in a ceramic dish instead of a springform pan. This eliminates the need to remove the pan before serving.
  • The top layer should be applied VERY GENTLY. The bottom layer is still a bit soft, and the top layer runs the risk of mixing into the bottom layer.
  • This recipe is easily doubled or tripled.


  • Recipe by Ruth Reace (adapted from the 1958 Pope Cookbook) - Shared with permission



Wednesday

Dessert Tips 2




  • For fuller flavor and less expense, buy unshelled nuts and chop them yourself. Refrigerate any that are left over. Not only are unshelled nuts cheaper but since they will have more flavor you can use less.
  • Another way to make nuts more flavorful is to toast them and since they will be a bit lighter they won't sink as easily to the bottom of your batter.
  • Eggs are fresh when you submerge them in cold water and they do not rise to the top. Those that do have air in them and may not be fresh.
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  • Bananas that are getting overripe are more flavorful and perfect for cake making. You can cut and mash them up and freeze in a plastic storage bag till you need them.
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  • When buying strawberries buy only the ones that are plump, red, and ripe. Berries that are not ripe will not ripen after being picked and won't be sweet. Wash only right before using to prevent soggy berries.
  • When you melt chocolate it usually retains its shape so don't be fooled and overcook it. Stirring it should tell you when it's melted enough.
  • For a quick and easy homemade pie crust, crush some sandwich cookies and add 3 tablespoons of melted butter or margarine. Cook at 350 for about 7 minutes.
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  • Eggs tend to absorb moisture and air so keep them covered in their original carton in the coolest part of your frig.
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  • Whipping cream is still good to use even if it's days past the sell by date. If it tastes a bit sour to you just add 1/8 teaspoon of baking soda.
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  • Carmel topping is easy and more economical to make at home. Just mix together 2/3 cup of brown sugar, 1 cup of evaporated milk, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Cook until mixture boils and let cool slightly before using.

Monday

Molten Chocolate Cakes

These are delicious mini chocolate cakes. Try serving them with a scoop of ice cream on top covered with a layer of chocolate magic shell.

Sunday

Improve Your Cake Decorating Results With Proper Cake Preparation

Creating a birthday cake for someone special brings joy both for the decorator and the recipient. Yet, achieving great decorating results also requires the fine-tuning of baking skills.

There are many important preparation steps prior to the actual decorating which directly effect how the cake looks. A few decorating tools and attention to the layers will result in a more even tiers and fewer headaches.

Even Layers:

As the layers bake, the outside rim of the pan heats the edges of the layer faster than the center. Since the outside is baking faster, the middle of the cake rises higher, creating a hump. This problem can be avoided by using Magic Cake Strips around the sides of the pans. Once wet, the strips are wrapped around the sides of the pan and pinned in place. The strips cool the sides of the pan and allow the cake to bake evenly.

Layers exceeding 10" need a little extra TLC. Use a heating core in the center of the pan to conduct heat into the middle of the layer. A heating core is a doughnut-shaped metal ring that is greased and floured, placed in the center of the pan, and filled with batter. The batter that bakes inside the heating core is placed in the center of the completed layer.

Even distribution of heat around the pan also effects the baking process. Place the oven rack in the center of the oven and the pan in the center of the rack. Air needs to circulate around the pan to heat it from all sides. Not all ovens heat accurately. If you suspect your oven gets too hot or takes long to cook, check the temperature. A cake baked too quickly in a very hot oven will be overdone on the outside and undercooked on the inside.

If you still find your baked layers have uneven spots, a cake leveler is a handy tool that makes trimming the excess away simple.

Assembly:

Allow the layer to cool for 10 minutes in the pan before inverting onto a wire rack. This gives it time to shrink away from the sides and allows it to come out of the pan without breakage. Invert the layer on to a wire rack and then invert it again. I do this twice to make sure the flat part is face down. If you have any kind of hump and the hump goes face down, the layer will surely crack. Allow for complete cooling before trimming, filling and icing.

Place the layer on a cake board. If you are filling the center with anything besides butter-cream frosting,I recommend you pipe a ring of butter-cream frosting all along the outside of the layer being filled. This prevents the filling from leaking out.

After filling the center, brush away any crumbs with a pastry brush. Applying a crumb coat will keep crumbs out of the icing. If you are decorating with butter-cream icing,you can simply thin it with a little milk for this purpose. Warmed apricot jam also works well. Heat the jam in the microwave and strain it. Apply the jam to the surface with a pastry brush. Now chill to allow for settling and firming of the crumb coat. If you proceed directly to decorating, the filling will bulge out of the sides. Making the sides look attractive is virtually impossible when this happens.

Frosting:

Set the stacked tiers in the center of a lazy susan. Using a metal spatula, heap the frosting in the center. Work it back and forth while turning the lazy susan, but never actually touching the surface. If you drag the spatula, you may pull up crumbs, despite all the preparation. When the top is covered with icing, hold the metal spatula horizontal to the surface and pull it straight across the top. Remove any excess icing from the edges. Dot icing all around the sides with the spatula. The best tool to use for creating evenly frosted sides is a metal scraper. It gives you the best leverage for maintaining a straight edge as you frost. Turn the lazy susan as you hold the metal scraper perpendicular to the sides. Carefully lift any excess icing from the top edges with the spatula. If your icing is not perfectly smooth, allow it to crust for 15 minutes. Come back to it with a large piece of wax paper. Lay the wax paper on top and smooth your hands along the surface, starting from the center and working out towards the edges. Repeat this process on the sides, smoothing one area at a time.

Without a doubt, baking and decorating is very time consuming, but minimizing the mishaps makes it more enjoyable and gives you the best results.

Theresa Happe is a baker, cake decorator, and author of Cake Decorating Corner

a website featuring cake photos with detailed instructions for all occasions, and cake and icing recipes.

Article Source:E-Zine Articles

Monday

MILK BALL MALTS


2 cups malted milk balls
1 quart softened vanilla ice cream
1\4 cup chocolate syrup
2 cups of milk
1\2 cup whipped topping


Crush milk balls in blender a little at a time. When done with all of the milk balls set aside 1\2 cup.

Blend ice cream, chocolate syrup, milk, and crushed milk balls in blender for about a minute or so.

Pour mixture into glasses, top with the whipped topping, and sprinkle with the rest of the cruches milk balls.

Makes 4 servings

Friday

CREAMY COCONUT DESSERT

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup melted butter or margarine
8 oz. softened cream cheese
3 cups cold milk
1 6 oz. pkg. instant vanilla pudding mix
2 cups flaked coconut
2/3 cups flaked coconut
8 oz. whipped topping

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine flour, 1/2 cup pecans, and margarine and mix well. Press mixture into a baking dish and bake for 15 minutes or until golden. Set aside.

Beat cream cheese with mixture till smooth, add 1/2 cup milk and beat, then add the rest of the milk and the pudding mix and beat until all smooth and well blended.

Add 2 cups of coconut and mix well. Pour it over the crust and then spread the whipped topping over that. Put into the refrigerator.

Put 2/3 cups coconut and 1/2 cup pecans on cookie sheet and bake until toasted, coconut will be golden brown. Spread coconut and pecans on top of whipped topping and serve. Keep refrigerated. Serves 6.

Thursday

MACADAMIA CHEESECAKE

  • 8 oz softened cream cheese
  • 1 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 cup whipped cream
  • 1 cup chopped macadamia nuts, plus some for garnish
  • 1 9-in graham cracker crust


Beat sugar and cream cheese till well mixed and then mix in whipped cream and the nuts last. Put mixture into the pie shell and leave in the refrigerator for about 4 hours. Top with additional nuts.

Friday

CHEESE-CAKE COOKIES

  • 1/3 cup lightly salted butter, softened
  • 1/3 c. light brown sugar
  • 1 c. flour
  • 1/2 c. walnuts
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 8 oz. softened cream cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbl. milk
  • 1 tbl. fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Lightly grease 8x8 pan. Cream butter and brown sugar then cut in nuts and flour. Press into bottom of pan, reserving 1 cup for the topping. Bake about 13 min. till it browns lightly.

For filling blend sugar and cream cheese till smooth. Beat in egg, milk, lemon juice, and vanilla.
Spread filling over bottom crust and top that with the remaining crumb mixture. Bake for 25 more min, then chill and cut into squares. Makes about 1 dozen.

CREME DE MENTHE SQUARES

  • 1 1/4 cups sweet butter
  • 1/2 c. unsweetened cocoa
  • 3 1/2 c. confectioner's sugar
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 c. graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/3 c. creme de menthe
  • 1 1/2 c. semisweet chocolate pieces


Heat the cocoa and a half cup of the butter. Stir till blended and remove from heat. Add 1/2 cup sugar, egg, and vanilla. Then add crumbs and press into a 9 by 13 inch pan and cool for an hour in refrigerator.

Melt 1/2 cup butter and combine with liqueur, beat in 3 cups sugar and pour over bottom layer. Refrigerate again for another hour.

Melt 1/4 cup butter, mix in chocolate pieces and put as top layer. Refrigerate till firm about 2 hours and then cut in squares and serve. Makes 24.

Wednesday

MY FAVORITE YOGURT PIE


1 graham cracker crust pie shell
1 small container of cool whip
1 container of flavored yogurt

This recipe is easy as pie! Combine the cool whip and yogurt, mixing well and pour into the ready made pie crust. Let cool and set in frig for an hour or two and enjoy!

You can make this pie a little fancier by adding some fruit on top. So if you've chosen cherry yogurt to combine with the cool whip, you can get a can of cherries and place them on top. Do the same with blueberry, strawberry, or bananas. The variations are endless. Remember you can also use lo-fat or lo-sugar cool whip.

Friday

DESSERT TIPS 1

  • Store unsweetened cocoa powder in an airtight container in a dark, cool place and it will stay fresh for 2 years.

  • Stop the top of your brownies from crumbling when you cut them by turning the cooled brownies upside down onto the cutting board and cut from the bottom.

  • Replace chocolate chips with chunks from a candy bar for chunkier chocolate chip cookies.

  • To make cake batter very fluffy and light let all the ingredients get to room temperature before combining.

  • Place a small cup upside down over the hole of your bundt pan to prevent batter spills inside the hole when you're pouring.

  • Keep oven door closed for the first quarter hour of baking to prevent cake collapse.

  • When baking cake from a mix, use the plastic bag it came in to put over your hand for greasing the cake pan.

  • To crush cracker or cookies, place them into a plastic storage bag and use a rolling pin.

  • To prevent the edges of muffins from over browning, place a couple cups water in a pan on the lowest oven rack and the steam will prevent the over browning.

  • Pecans can be bought in bulk and frozen wrapped in tin foil for about 6 months.

  • Nuts that have been stored at room temperature can become soft after a while. Refreshen them by toasting for five minutes at 350 degrees, mixing occasionally.

Tuesday

MUD PIE

15 crushed chocolate sandwich cookies
1/4 cup melted butter or margarine
1/2 gallon chocolate chip ice cream, softened
1/4 cup chocolate syrup


Stir butter or margarine into cookie crumbs. In a 9-inch pie pan, press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides. Put in frig for 1/2 hour. Spoon half the ice cream onto cookie crust and drizzle half the syrup on top. Using a knife, swirl the syrup and ice cream. Repeat with the remaining ice cream and syrup. Freeze till firm.

Serves 8

STRAWBERRY CRUMBLE

6 cups frozen strawberries
2 large apples, chopped and peeled
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
4 tbs. flour all purpose

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix strawberries, apple, sugar, vanilla, and flour in bowl. Set into large baking dish.

FOR CRUMBLE TOPPING

1 cup flour all purpose
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup almonds, sliced
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 cup brown sugar
4 tbs. butter or margarine

Combine flour, oats, almonds, nutmeg, and brown sugar. Blend margarine until you get coarse crumbs. Sprinkle topping over the strawberry mixture. Bake 25 minutes or till browned lightly. Cool and serve.

Makes 8 servings

LEMON ICE

2 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup fresh lemon juice (takes 1/2 dozen)
5 cups water
1/4 tsp. salt


In a saucepan, combine sugar, water, and salt. Cook over low heat, stirring continually, until sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil and cover for 5 minutes and don't stir.

Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice. Let it cool on table then cover and freeze till mixture appears slushy.

Beat with mixer till smooth without letting it melt. Cover in plastic and re-freeze. Stir it a couple times until froze.

Serves 6 Decorate each serving with some lemon peel or sprig of mint.

Saturday

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