Archive for ‘Dessert’

November 8, 2013

Granny Pansy’s Baked Apples

by Sandy Pollock

Baked Apples a la Granny Pansy

Granny Pansy, there will only ever be one like her. She was sassy and confident and took nothing from no one, and just happens to have some super amazing granddaughters :)!

SCN_0001(My uncle Keith, Granny Pansy, my adorable Dad!)

She made this dish a lot, but when I think of this dish I go back to a very specific memory with Granny. Once a year, just before Christmas, she would have us (me and my sisters) over to the house and we would spend the day making Christmas crafts and eating baked apples. We glittered and glued and painted and ate until we could do no more. It was at this point that she would send the four of us back home covered in glue, sparkles, and brown sugar!  It was awesome and a time I will always and forever cherish. Will still adorn the family tree with some of the crafty decorations we made with Granny Pansy back then.

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½ cup sugar
1 cup water
6 apples
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon cinnamon

IMG_8407Preheat oven to 375F

In a saucepan over medium heat combine 1/2 cup of sugar with 1 cup of water. Heat until sugar dissolves.

Pour this syrup in the bottom of a 9 x 13 inch casserole dish.

IMG_8411Core the apple, but don’t go all the way through to the bottom. (This will help keep sugar filling in the apple.)

IMG_8413In a medium bowl, mix the brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon thoroughly.

IMG_8416 Divide the mixture equally between the 6 apples. Place filled apples in the casserole dish.

IMG_8424Cook for 45 minutes to an hour, or until a knife can be easily inserted into the apple. Let cool for 5 minutes.

IMG_8440Serve with vanilla ice cream.

Baked Apples a la Granny Pansy

Serves 6

½ cup sugar
1 cup water
6 apples
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 375

In a saucepan over medium heat combine 1/2 cup of sugar with 1 cup of water. Heat until sugar dissolves. Pour this syrup in the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch casserole dish.

Core the apple, but don’t go all the way through to the bottom. (This will help keep sugar filling in the apple.) In a medium bowl, mix the brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon thoroughly. Divide the mixture equally between the 6 apples. Place filled apples in the casserole dish.

Cook for 45 minutes to an hour, or until a knife can be easily inserted into the apple. Let cool for 5 minutes. Serve with vanilla ice cream.

November 6, 2013

The Great Cannoli Casserole Challenge!

by Crystal Cook

The Casserole Queens were recently in the Kansas City area to present at the 2013 Hen House Market Holiday Celebration! We are big fans of the Hen House Market and all the terrific folks of Kansas. Everyone is always so welcoming and they truly makes us feel like royalty.

In preparation for the event, our dear friend Jasper Mirabile, the owner and proprietor of  Jasper’s in Kansas City AND one of the nicest guys you’ll meet, had us on his weekly podcast. It was just on the heels of National Cannoli Month and Jasper was still on a cannoli high! During the entire month of September, Jasper was on a mission to spread his love of the cannoli by hosting events at his restaurant, going on local TV and radio shows, as well as holding a cannoli recipe contest for his guests. The grand prize you ask? Well, cannoli’s for a year of course! Oh, and did we mention that Jasper’s also displays the world’s most expensive cannoli, designed by cake designer Cary Iennaccaro? It’s true, and the value is over $26,000. It features an antique diamond necklace from Tom Tivol Jewelers. Now that is one dazzling cannoli!

So naturally,  it comes to no surprise that while we were on the show, Jasper challenged us to create a Cannoli Casserole! We were nervous about creating a cannoli casserole for a man who loves the cannoli so, but we accepted the challenge and think he will be proud of the end result.

We walked into the challenge knowing that we needed to capture all the flavors of the classic cannoli, but still work within our beloved 9 x 13 inch casserole dish. We made certain to have all the traditional ingredients present and accounted for, but also switch it up a bit (as we like to do) to make this version our own. You’ll see that we replaced the crunchy cannoli outer shell with a scrumptious chocolate chip cookie base, infused with traditional cannoli flavors of orange, chocolate, and ricotta cheese. Then, we perfected our casserole-friendly cannoli by adding a sweetened ricotta cheese mixture on top, with toasted almonds and Maraschino cherries – super tasty and easy to whip up!

Challenge complete.

Enjoy!

Intro

cookie bar

Final

CQ Cannoli Bars

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup whole-milk ricotta, at room temperature
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
  • 1 recipe Cannoli Cream (see recipe below)
  • 5 maraschino cherries (more if you love’em)
  • ½ cup sliced almonds, toasted
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Spray a 9×13-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and ricotta on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the sugar, orange zest, and vanilla; beat until blended, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. On medium speed, add the egg and beat until blended. On low speed, add the flour until mixture comes together. Pour in the chocolate chips and continue mixing until just incorporated.
  4. Pour cookie dough into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with the spatula
  5. Bake cookie bars for 45 minutes or until the top of the bars are light golden brown and the edges start to pull away from the pan
  6. Allow bars to cool completely
  7. Frost the top of the cookie bars with the cannoli cream (recipe follows)
  8. Top with cherries and toasted almonds 

CQ Cannoli Cream

  • 3 cups whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 2 ounces chocolate chips
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the ricotta cheese, confectioners’ sugar, and orange zest – until smooth.
  2. Stir in chocolate chips until incorporated evenly into cream

jasper

JASPER J. MIRABILE JR.

Chef Jasper J. Mirabile Jr. of Jasper’s commands the helm of his family’s 59-year-old restaurant, consistently rated one of Kansas City’s best Italian restaurants. In addition to running the restaurant with his brother, Mirabile is a culinary instructor, founding member of Slow Food Kansas City and a national board member of the American Institute of Wine and Food. He hosts many famous chefs on his weekly radio show Live! From Jasper’s Kitchen on KCMO 710 AM and 103.7 FM, authored two cookbooks and sells a line of dressings and sauces.

October 8, 2013

Miss Elsie’s No-Bake Candy!

by Sandy Pollock

Small towns and small town churches are great places to grow up. I was raised in Hargill, Texas and attended the Hargill First Baptist Church every Sunday (whether I wanted to or not).

My mom played the piano, my sister led the singing, and the elegant and amazing Miss Elsie taught my Sunday school class. I was about 5 years old and Miss Elsie was simply magic to me. She was kind and gentle and the bearer of stickers and happiness. I miss and think of her often.

Miss Elsie was an AMAZING cook and I could spend many days on this blog recreating some of her dishes (her chocolate pie and cabbage rolls are the stuff of legends), but today, I’m sharing her no-bake candy that she made for us kids.  It’s a sugar-on-sugar extravaganza with an accent of peanut butter — super sweet and super awesome! We all LOVED it. Not sure where the original recipe came from, but here is how my beloved Miss Elsie made it.

Enjoy!

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4 1/2 cups of powdered sugar

1 1/2 cups powdered milk

1 cup light corn syrup

1 cup peanut butter

IMG_7329Combine everything in one bowl

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IMG_7344Roll into bite size balls

Miss Elsie’s No-cook candy

4 1/2 cups of powdered sugar

1 1/2 cups powdered milk

1 cup light corn syrup

1 cup peanut butter

Mix all the ingredients. Roll into small balls and place on wax paper to harden. Eat them with your face.

September 18, 2013

For the Love of Ramekins: Pot de Crème

by Crystal Cook

Have I ever told y’all about my deep affection for ramekins? If not, you’re about to find out.

Ahh ramekins…the oh-so-versatile dish that is a must in any kitchen. Perfect for individual sized meals and desserts, ramekins also have a number of other uses. In fact, ramekins help you organize recipe ingredients so that you‘re ready to go once the oven is fired up (professional chefs refer to this practice as mise en place). You can also use them for condiments at the dinner table like dipping sauces, toppings, or fresh sea salt or cracked black pepper. (Yes, I am in love!) I am constantly finding ways to use them since my friends and family tease me about the sheer amount of ramekins that I own. I admit, it may be excessive, but you never know when a gal might just want to whip up some Pot de Creme! Am I right?!

Which brings me to this tasty post. Pot de Creme is one of those crazy simple recipes with an end result that feels so indulgent. It takes less than 10 minutes to whip up, and requires only 5 simple ingredients. The only potential drawback you could possibly find is that it takes time to set in the refrigerator (about 2 hours). But I don’t even find that to be a negative, since I love things that you can prepare before hand. You can’t be a “hostess with the mostess” when you’re all stressed out. I like having more time with my company to do the things I want, like enjoy a glass of wine!

So let me show you how easy this really is!

5 simple ingredients: Milk, Vanilla Bean, Egg, Sugar & Dark Chocolate.

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Cut the bean lengthwise and scrap out the good stuff!

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Pure heaven!

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Add milk and vanilla bean to a saucepot and scald. To do this heat over med-high heat and remove pot from heat right before milk comes to a boil or reaches 180F.

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Place the remaining ingredients in a blender.

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Pour milk into a blender along with the sugar, chips, and egg. Blend for 1 minute.

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Pour into 6 ramekins and chill for 2 hours in the refrigerator or until set.

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Garnish with favorite toppings. We used our caramel sauce, berries and powdered sugar – but we have even more suggestions in the recipe below!

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Voila!

Pot de Crème

3/4 cups milk

1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped lengthwise

2 tablespoons sugar

1 cup chocolate chips

1 egg

6 (3-4 ounce) ramekins

Garnish suggestions: powdered sugar, caramel sauce, berries, mini marshmallows, chocolate covered espresso beans, cocoa powder, shaved chocolate.

Method:

1. Add milk and vanilla bean to a saucepot and scald. To do this heat over med-high heat and remove pot from heat right before milk comes to a boil or reaches 180F.

2. Pour milk into a blender along with the sugar, chips, and egg. Blend for 1 minute and pour into ramekins, chill for 2 hours in the refrigerator or until set. Garnish with favorite toppings.

January 27, 2013

National Chocolate Cake Day! How to make a Chocolate Cola Cake

by Sandy Pollock

I would like to start by saying you’re welcome.

Chocolate Cola Cake has been around forever. We had it a lot when I was a kiddo, but at some point it disappeared from my mom’s dessert rotation. Well, friends, it’s time to get our chocolate back on! There are tons of recipes for this dessert out in the world, but this version comes from my mom’s cherished recipe box (enough said).

This cake is decadent, with a ganache-like chocolate frosting poured hot over dark rich chocolate cake to create a deliciously gooey top layer. And it is crazy easy to make.

IMG_5968

Chocolate Cola Cake

1 cup cola

½ cup oil

1 stick butter

2 cups flour

2 cups sugar

3 tablespoons cocoa powder

½ cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 eggs, beaten

1 ½ cups mini-marshmallows

1 teaspoon vanilla

IMG_5973

Pre-heat oven to 350 F. In a medium size saucepan bring to a boil the cola, oil, and butter.

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In a medium size bowl, add the flour, sugar, and cocoa powder. Pour cola over the dry ingredients.

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Mix well. IMG_5978

Add Buttermilk, soda, eggs, and vanilla.

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Mix well.

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Stir in marshmallows.

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Pour into a prepared 9 x 13 inch casserole dish and bake for 40 minutes or until cake is set and a toothpick, when inserted into the center of the cake, comes out clean.

IMG_5996

Time to make the frosting! This icing is the bombdiggity. It soaks into the cake and makes this gooey sweet layer at the top that is something to write home about.

IMG_5993

Chocolate Frosting

½ cup butter

3 tablespoons cocoa powder

6 tablespoons cola

1 pound of powdered sugar

½ cup chopped nuts (optional)

IMG_5994  In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring the butter, cocoa powder, and cola to a boil.

IMG_5997In a large bowl, add powdered sugar. When cola/cocoa mixture has come to a boil, pour over the powdered sugar and whisk to incorporate.

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Pour icing over the warm cake immediately. (As it cools, the frosting will start to set up and won’t spread easily.)

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IMG_6008This is what it will look like after a few minutes. It may not be super pretty, but the beauty is that all that amazing chocolate frosting is soaking into the cake and making this gooey yummy topping.
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Do you see the top layer? Well do you?

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Chocolate Cola Cake

 1 cup cola

½ cup oil

1 stick butter

2 cups flour

2 cups sugar

3 tablespoons cocoa powder

½ cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 eggs, beaten

1 ½ cups mini-marshmallows

1 teaspoon vanilla

Pre-heat oven to 350

In a medium size saucepan bring to a boil the cola, oil, and butter.

In a medium size bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and cocoa powder. Pour cola mixture over the dry ingredients in the bowl. Mix well.

Add Buttermilk, soda, eggs, and vanilla. Mix well.

Stir in marshmallows

Pour into a prepared 9 x 13 inch casserole dish and bake for 40 minutes or until cake is set and a toothpick, when inserted into the center of the cake, comes out clean.

Chocolate Frosting

½ cup butter

3 tablespoons cocoa powder

6 tablespoons cola

1 pound of powdered sugar

½ cup chopped nuts (optional)

In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring the butter, cocoa powder, and cola to a boil.

In a large bowl, add powdered sugar. When cola/cocoa mixture has come to a boil then pour over the powdered sugar and whisk to incorporate.

Pour icing over the warm cake immediately. (As it cools, the frosting will start to set up and won’t spread easily.)

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