Sunday, March 24, 2013


I got this lovely recipe from my mother so that I could make it for my little sister's baptism back in February.  It is an amazingly good made from scratch brownie recipe!  It makes a lot though so be careful:)

What you need:
1 1/4 cup Butter
4 cups sugar
8 eggs
2 cups flour
1 1/4 cups cocoa
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Whip butter in a large mixing bowl and then add the other ingredients making sure to mix everything well.  Place in a greased cookie sheet pan, bake for 40 minutes.

1 1/2 oz. (squares) unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cup butter
add to butter mixture:
5 Tbs. Milk
1 tsp. vanilla
 Mix in 3 cups powdered sugar

Frost about 5 minutes after the brownies are done!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Passion Bars

Each holiday season Costco gives out a cookbook.  I haven't really tried everything in all the ones that I have, but I did find this gem amongst others that are quite delicious.  Also they are super quick and easy, which is always a bonus in my book!
What you need:
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 pouch Ghirardelli Triple Chocolate Brownie Mix
1 cup peanuts chopped (optional)
Peanut Butter Filling:
1 1/4 cups (14 oz. can) Sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup peanut butter
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease a 13x9x2 inch pan.
In a medium bowl, stir together oil and eggs.  Add brownie mix and peanuts; stir until moistened.  Press half of the brownie mixture into the pan, reserving the remainder for topping.
To make the filling, stir sweetened condensed milk and peanut butter in a medium bowl until smooth.  Spread evenly over the brownie layer in the pan.
Drop rounded teaspoonfuls of the reserved brownie mixture over the peanut butter layer. 
Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the top is set and a toothpick comes out clean.  Cool thoroughly before cutting.  Makes 24 bars!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Carrot Cake

My parents got this recipe out of a cookbook that they bought while in Washington D.C. and made it for dessert this past weekend.  It was very delicious!  So I got the recipe and decided to share it with you! 
What you need:
Softened unsalted butter, for the pan
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for the pan
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. fine sea salt
1 cup superfine sugar
2/3cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups shredded carrots (use the large holes on a box grater)
One 8 oz. can crushed pineapple, well drained (1/2 cup)
1/2 cup (2 oz.) walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
1/2 cup seedless raisins
Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour the inside of an 8 cup fluted tube pan and tap out the excess flour.
Sift the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl.  Combine the sugar, oil, and eggs in a bowl of a heavy-duty stand mixer.  Beat on high speed until the mixture has thickened slightly and is light in color and texture, about 3 minutes.  Reduce the mixer speed to low.  In thirds, add the flour mixture and mix, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed, just until the batter is smooth.  Add the carrots, pineapple, walnuts, and raisins and mix until combined.  Pour into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
Bake until a cake tester or toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 45 minutes.  Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.  Invert and unmold the cake onto the rack and let cool completely. 
 One 8 oz. package of cream cheese (room temperature)
1 cup White chocolate chips
1 pint whipped cream
1/2 - 1 cup Powdered Sugar
Refer to Coconut Cream Cheese cake recipe for instructions on how to make the frosting!

Steak or Chicken Marinade

I love my parents steaks and chicken that they grill!  They always turn out so tender and juicy!  They use a special marinade on them and I thought I would share it with all of you.  Hope you love it too!
What you need:
1 cup vegetable oil
1 medium onion
1 tbs. garlic, diced
1 tbs. fresh sage, diced
2 tbs. worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 tsp. fresh rosemary, crushed
1 tbs. freshly ground black pepper
2 tbs. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
Mix together and pour over steak or chicken and let marinade for at least 1 hour and up to 24 hours.  Do not over marinade the chicken, otherwise it will toughen the meat.  It's best not to marinade chicken for more than 8 hours. 
A note about grilling steak or chicken, let the meat come to room temperature.  It is easy to over cook the outside of meat and still have an undercooked center if you pull your meat directly out of the fridge or freezer and throw it on the grill.  The whole goal of grilling is to have a flavorful, moist and tender meat when you are done.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Chile Verde

This last week my husband and I thought it might be a good idea to finally buy a grill for our four year anniversary.  Well we have been shopping around, but have not bought one just yet.  No worries though because we will be getting one and when we do I will be making this lovely dish along with many others!  This recipe is actually my mother's.  It is very delicious!  Whenever we make fajitas this is something we make to put on top of them!

What you need:
5 lbs. Anaheim chiles
1 lb. tomatillos (outer shell skin removed)
2 large onions, pureed
3 tbs. crushed garlic
3 large tomatoes, pureed
3-5 lb. pork roast
4 cans chicken broth
8 bay leaves
1/4 - 1/2  cup corn starch
5 jalapeno peppers
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Pork Roast:
If you have a pork loin roast, cut into cubes and brown in olive oil.  Season with salt and pepper.  Transfer into chile pot and let finish cooking.  If you have a pork roast that has a lot of fat on it, first boil it in a pot of water until it falls apart.  Drain off water and remove meat, making sure to break into bite sized pieces and transfer to chile pot.  Pork loin is an easy, but more expensive option, so any pork roast is a great way to go and they tend to taste better than pork loin because the fat adds flavor.
How Spicy???
Without jalapenos, this Chile Verde is not spicy at all; in fact it's rather sweet.  With each jalapeno you add to the chile verde, the sauce becomes progressivly spicier.  At 5 jalapenos, the chile verde has some pretty good kick and will make most people sweat.  But it's not too overwhelming and if added to other dishes like beans, the spicy hot mellows out.  You can put in as many or few peppers as you like:)
Grilling and Chile Verde Recipe:
Grill all chiles until the skins are chard.  Once grilled, place in a plastic ziplock bag for 10 minutes or until cooled down.  By placing chiles in a plastic bag, they sweat their skins off and it makes removing skins easy. 
You can use rubber gloves to remove skins and seeds if you don't like the slight burning sensation on your skin.  One other reminder, if you choose to remove skins and seeds without gloves, DON'T rub your eyes with your hands afterwards.  The chile oil does not wash off and can be quite irritating to your eyes!!!
Once the skins and seeds have been removed either finaly chop or place in a food processor and puree.  Place in large pot on medium low heat or if you have a large crock pot, place on high heat.  Add all of the other ingredients to the chile pot and let cook for 3-4 hours.  
When nearing the end of the cooking time remove the bay leaves and mix 1/4 to 1/2 cup corn starch with cool water.  Add to the Verde to thicken the sauce.  The more corn starch you add, the thicker the sauce will become. 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Huevos Rancheros

My husband and I recently went on a little mini vacation, which means that we got to eat out for breakfast.  One of the things that we had for breakfast was huevos rancheros.  They were so delicious!  So I thought I would make them for breakfast at home and share it with all of you.

What you need:

Salsa (I used the tomatillo salsa that I make or you can make your own)
5 oz. Chorizo, casings removed, diced (it's kind of like bacon, but mexican style)
Vegetable oil
Cilantro (optional)
4 corn tortillas, plus more for serving (optional)
1 (16 oz.) can refried beans (optional) I use black refried beans
4 eggs
3/4 cup crumbled queso fresco or grated monterey jack cheese, for serving
sour cream, for serving


In a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook chorizo until browned. 
Add 1 tablespoon vegetable oil to a large skillet.  Place a tortilla in the skillet and cook until light golden but not crisp, about 30 seconds over medium-high heat.  Flip and cook for 30 seconds more.  Transfer to individual plate.  Cook the remaining tortillas, adding a bit more oil to the pan, if necessary.
Heat the refried beans in pan.  Spread the beans on the tortillas.
Add a tablespoon of butter to the skillet.  Working in batches, crack the eggs into the pan.  Cook until the bottoms are set and the edges are golden, about 1-2 minutes.  Turn the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until set, about 1 minute more.  Or you can make scrambled eggs with cheese, which is also very yummy.  Place one egg on each tortilla and put the chorizo and warm tomatillo salsa (or other salsa) over the eggs.  Sprinkle with cheese and cilantro.  Top with a dollop of sour cream!

Monday, April 2, 2012

P.B. Chocolate Cake

I was in the mood recently to try something new and came across this amazing dessert. This dessert was posted on the wood connections blog. Some amazing cookbook that they have called Lemon Poppy had this and let the wood connection post it! The real title of this cake is "Out of this World" P.B. Chocolate Cake. And let me tell you that I'm not a huge peanut butter fan, but this cake was amazing and so I'm sharing it with you!

What you need:

1 cup water
1 cup butter
6 tbs. Cocoa
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup sour cream

Boil water, butter, and cocoa in a small saucepan. In a large bowl layer the flour, baking soda, and salt. Pour the sugar on top of the flour mixture. Pourthe boiling mixture on top of the sugar (this creates a fudge like reaction as the two combine). Add eggs and sour cream and mix until all ingredients are combined.

Grease and flour a 9x13 inch pan or two 9 inch round pans. Bake at 325 degrees for 35-40 minutes in the 9x13 inch pan or for 25-30 minutes in the 9 inch round pans. This cake is very dense and delicious, but is not as good if you overcook it. Start with a lower time and add minutes as needed. It is best to do the finger test before taking it out of the oven. When it looks almost done tap with two fingers on the top of the cake. It should slightly dent in and barely spring back. If not bake a few more minutes. You can also test the cake with a toothpick by sticking the toothpick in the middle of the cake and if it comes out clean then it's done.


1/2 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup peanut butter
4 tbs. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
3 - 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Cream together butter, peanut butter, milk, and vanilla. Slowly add in powdered sugar and cream until light and fluffy. After the cake has cooled off and is no longer hot (about 10-15 minutes) frost the cake and then top it with crushed peanut butter cups!