Sunday, August 22, 2010

KC's B-Day Dessert Bar

Wanted to post some pics of the dessert bar I did for KC's sweet 16. Most of the recipes are posted right here on my blog.

Raspberry Limeade Cake

Had a few limes and lemons I needed to use and ran across this recipe. The cake itself is dense and moist and exactly how I like it. It is full of citrus flavor, so we found that the grown-ups liked it a lot more than the kids (the lime zest in the frosting took them by surprise). It would be the perfect dessert for a ladies luncheon or a special occasion.

3/4 c. butter
2 cups sugar
1 T. lime zest
3/4 c. frozen limeade concentrate, thawed
5 large eggs
3 3/4 c. flour
2 3/4 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 c. whole buttermilk

Spray 2 9"cake pans with nonstick cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat butter, sugar and lime zest at medium speed with a mixer until fluffy. Add limeade (don't worry if the mixture looks lumpy). Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix dry ingredients in another bowl, then add them alternately with the buttermilk to the butter mixture until a smooth batter is achieved. Pour into prepared pans and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Raspberry Filling:
1 (10oz. pkg.) frozen raspberries in syrup, thawed
1/2 c. sugar
2 T. cornstarch
3 egg yolks
1 T. fresh lemon juice
1/4 c. butter, cut into chunks

Mix raspberries in a mixer or food processor, then strain. Discard the seeds and solids left over. In a pan combine the sugar and cornstarch. Add the raspberry puree, egg yolks and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat and whisk constantly for 7-8 minutes or until very thick. Remove from heat and gradually whisk in butter until smooth and glossy. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.

Lime Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 (8oz. pkg) cream cheese
1/2 c. butter, softened
3 T. frozen limeade concentrate, thawed
1 tsp. lime zest
5 c. powdered sugar

Beat cream cheese and butter until creamy with a hand mixer. Add limeade and lime zest, beat until just combined. Gradually add powdered sugar, beat until smooth.

To assemble cake, place one cake on bottom of serving dish. Top with raspberry filling, then place the second cake on top. Frost the outside edges and top of cake with frosting. Garnish wit fresh raspberries and slices of lime.

Strawberry Tart

Caution: You could seriously impress someone with this recipe. This tart is a WOW-er. Beautiful AND delicious, but to make it you will need a great tart pan. I found mine at Williams Sonoma for $10.
Be sure to buy a tart pan where the bottom lifts out, like this one above.

Homemade Tart Shell:
1/2 c. powdered sugar
2 c. flour
2 cubes real butter (very cold, not softened)
1 egg +1 egg yolk

Mix powdered sugar and flour. Cut in butter until the dough is in small, pea-sized clumps. Gradually add the eggs and stir until just combined (don't over mix). *I usually make this in my food processor. Press all over the bottom and up the sides of the tart pan. Bake at 375 degrees for about 15-20 minutes or until just lightly browned. Remove from oven and cool.

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
8 oz. Cool Whip
1 c. powdered sugar

Beat cream cheese until smooth. Add powdered sugar. Gradually fold in the Cool Whip. Spread on cooled tart shell. Top with fresh fruit or canned pie filling.

**For this recipe, I covered the top with sliced strawberries, then brushed it with strawberry jam (diluted with a little water to make a glaze).

Enchilada Casserole

This enchilada casserole is very inexpensive to make and goes a long way. It was good served with sour cream, salsa and a big green salad.

1 lb. ground beef
1/2 c. chopped onion
Large can of enchilada sauce
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
Cheddar and Jack Cheese
Corn Tortillas

In a large skillet, ground beef with onions. Drain and add enchilada sauce, cumin and garlic salt. Cook until bubbly. Spray 13x9 pan with non-stick cooking spray. Start with a layer of tortillas, then a layer of meat sauce, then a layer of cheese, repeat layers, ending with sauce and cheese on top. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for about 25-30 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Serve with sour cream and salsa.

Easy Calzones

Here's a quick and easy weeknight meal. Just have to remember to thaw the dough ahead of time. My kids had fun adding their favorite toppings and watching them bake.

1 loaf of Rhodes frozen bread dough (you could also use roll dough if desired)
pizza sauce
mozzarella cheese
favorite toppings (pepperoni, olives, mushrooms, Canadian bacon, pineapple, tomatoes)

Allow bread dough to thaw, then cut in to 6 equal pieces. Using a flowered surface, roll each piece of dough out into a large circle. Top half of the circle with pizza sauce and desired toppings (be sure to leave space at the edges of the dough). Fold the top half of the dough up and over the the toppings. Use a fork and press along the edges to seal. Cut a small slit in the top of each calzone before baking to allow steam to escape. Bake at 350 degrees for about 15-20 minutes or until top is golden brown.

Sausage Breakfast Casserole

Kaycie had a friend sleep over last night, so I decided to pretend to be one of those doting moms and got up early this morning and made a breakfast casserole. This is kind of like a frittata and has simple flavors that even the kids like. We love it with fresh salsa on the side and an orange Julius.

1 tube refrigerated crescent rolls
1 lb. sausage (Italian or country style), cooked and crumbled
1 cup mozzarella cheese
1 cup frozen hashbrowns
7 eggs
1/3 cup milk
salt & pepper (I used about 1/4 tsp. salt and a dash of pepper)

Press the crescent rolls across the bottom of a greased 13x9 pan. Layer on the crumbled sausage, the mozzarella cheese and the frozen hashbrowns. Mix the eggs, milk, salt and pepper and beat well with a fork. Pour the egg mixture all over the top of the rest of the ingredients. Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes (leave it uncovered so that it can brown well). Remove from oven. Cut into squares and serve. Great with salsa on the side.