Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Gingersnap Pumpkin Truffles

I have been working on getting this post up for about 5 days now.

My inspiration is gone, I have nothing that I want to write about. Actually, that's a lie- I have a lot to write about, but if I wrote about the men dragging dirt in and out of my house doing construction, and how my yard looks like a dug up dump pit, I would just sound really whiny and negative, and I realize you come here to see and read about food. Not to hear me complain.

On a happy note though, the whole pool house renovation thing we're doing will be done in 1 month, and my good friend Sarah and her husband (who is also my cousin) will be moving and it's going to be the most fun thing in the land to have them living in our backyard! Yay! Personally, I'm excited to have them back there as sort of a security system. Cause we all know when people break in to houses they go to the back of the house where no one will see them. But if they try that move here, chances are sarah and Drew (her husband) will see those robbers don't really stand a chance. Also our new backyard dwellers  have cats. And cats are scary...

I made these truffles last week and they were a huge hit, they taste like fall, and they have pumpkin hershey kisses coating them. Which in my opinion, there is almost nothing better then pumpkin hershey kisses.'s the recipe.

P.S: this makes a toooon of truffles, so feel free to cut the recipe in half, I won't be offended.

Gingersnap Pumpkin Truffles
For the dough:
3/4 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup dark molasses
2 cups flour
1/2 Tbsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp. salt
Milk (enough to make a dough consistency)

1 Bag Pumpkin Spice Hershey Kisses, unwrapped
2 Tbsp. shortening

In an electric mixer, whip together the butter and sugar, until smooth, light and fluffy.
Stir in molasses and mix well.
All at once, add in flour and all 4 spices.
Mix til it comes together, and add milk as needed to form a soft dough that is roll-able.
Roll into 1 inch balls, and place on a wax paper lined plate or cookie sheet.
Freeze for 10 minutes. This will help make the coating set faster.

Meanwhile, place all your unwrapped kisses in a microwave safe bowl, along with shortening.
Heat for 30 seconds.
Stir well.
Do another 30 seconds and stir very well until smooth. You should only have to heat it up twice. Maaaaybe 3 times if your microwave is weak, but be careful. Overheating the kisses is a crime, here.

With a fork, dip each dough ball in the pumpkin deliciousness, completely coat, and remove with the fork allowing excess to drip off. Place back on wax paper.

If you want, you can double dunk the truffles so you have a thicker pumpkin coating, which is what I did.

Keep in refrigerator!


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Key Lime Cake Batter Truffles

I know this is totally not a fall dessert. It's more of a 'thank goodness it's summer' type of dessert...


But I'm pretty sure you'll get over it once you taste these.

I was messing around with this cute little bottle of lime extract I got a few months ago, when the idea for some sort of truffle hit me. Except I had no graham crackers, so a key lime pie truffle type thing wasn't gonna happen.

Have you ever had cake batter truffles?! I made them awhile back- I can't eat less then 5 at one time. They are super.

Why not throw in some lime?

These were refreshing, sweet-but-not-to-sweet, and just so yummy.

I love truffles...they make me weak, they make me lose all self control, and they're so cute!

Key Lime Cake Batter Truffles
yield: 40-50 truffles

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4-1/2 tsp. key lime extract (mine is very strong and condensed, so depending on what kind you have you will need more or less. Adjust to taste.)

1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup yellow cake mix
3-4 Tbsp. milk
Green Sprinkles

1 bag white chocolate chips
4 Tbsp. shortening
4 Tbsp. yellow cake mix

In an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar together.
Add in extract and mix well
On low, mix in flour, cake mix and milk as needed to form a dough.
Throw in as many sprinkles as you want!
Roll dough into little 3/4 inch balls.
Place on a wax paper lined pan or plate and freeze for a few minutes while you make the coating.

In a heatproof bowl, melt white chips with shortening at 30second intervals stirring very well in between.
When chocolate is smooth, stir in cake mix.
Remove truffles from freezer, dip in coating with a fork, and place back on wax paper. Sprinkle with sprinkles!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Swirl Bread

Apple and pumpkin madness is in full swing here at the Drouin home.
I usually am not much of an apple dessert fan- like I like it, but im not nearly as passionate about apple things as I am pumpkin things.
But I'm trying to not bore you by my hundreds of ways I can think of to consume pumpkin flavored things.
Behold, ooey, gooey bread that screams fall.
Also, If you don't have instant yeast in your life/kitchen yet, go get it now.
I used to be so afraid of making bread until I got this stuff.
Order some  HERE  and you will forever love the process of making bread!

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Swirl Bread
1 cup whole milk
1/3 cup water
1/4 + 2 tsp. sugar (Heaping 1/4 cup)
3 Tbsp. Butter
1 tsp. salt
2 1/2 tsp. instant yeast
4-5 cups flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 egg + 1 egg white, beaten well
2 medium apples, peeled and grated

Swirl Filling:
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 Tbsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp. softened butter

Combine milk, water, sugar, butter and salt in a small sauce pan over medium heat until butter is melted.
Pour into mixing bowl and allow to cool a minutes or two.
Add in 1 1/2 cups flour and yeast. Mix in medium until combine well with wet ingredients.
Add cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice, along with beaten eggs.
Mix in 1/2 cup of flour, along with grated apples.
Keep adding remaining flour 1/2 cup at a time until you have a soft dough that doesn't stick to the side of the bowl but is sticky when you touch it.
Spray another bowl with cooking spray, and move dough to greased bowl.
Cover with hand towel and allow to rise in a warm place for at least an hour. I usually heat up a mug of water for a minute and then put the bowl in the warm microwave.
After the hour is up, dump out onto a surface sprayed with cooking spray, and roll into a long and skinny rectangle.
Spread softened butter all over with the back of a spoon.
Combine, sugars and cinnamon and sprinkle over butter.
Roll up dough as tightly as possible and squish ends to make fit into a greased 9x5" bread pan.
Pre-heat oven to 375.
Allow bread to rise for at least 30 minutes.
Cut 3 slashes in the top when risen.
Bake for 35 minutes.
Allow to cool for 5 minutes before flipping out onto a cooling rack.

Caramel Glaze:
4 Tbsp. butter (1/2 stick)
1 Cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup cream
pinch of salt
1 Tbsp. Vanilla
1 cup powdered sugar

Mix butter, brown sugar, cream and salt in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook and whisk gently for 5-7 minutes until thickened. Add vanilla and cook another minute.
Remove from heat and whisk in powdered sugar until you have a thickened, smooth glaze.
When bread has cooled for 30 minutes, place on a plate, and pour caramel glaze all over the top.

It's messy. But so good. We loved it!!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Apple Crisp Trifle

If you read my little blog, you know I love trifle.

But really, who doesn't?!

It is the perfect combination of all the flavors you want....much more exciting than cake or something.

SO, yesterday I got creative (Well, creative is a strong word- more like I was bored), and had a bag of apples in my fridge that needed to be used up....I get bored of the same old apple pie/apple crisp routine, and even though I love apple pie and apple crisp- sometimes you just need to shake things up!

I set out on a venture. An apple crisp trifle venture that turned out SO GOOD. You will love it

I was afraid the crisp topping layer would get soggy, but over 24 hours later (I just had some) and its still nice and crispy! Woo-hoo! Me and my husband were crazy about this dessert!

Apple Crisp Trifle

For the Crisp Layer:
Pre-heat oven to 350.
Grease a cookie sheet pan.

-2 cups brown sugar
-2 cups rolled oats
-2 cups AP flour
-1 cup butter, melted
-1 tsp. cinnamon
-1/4 tsp nutmeg

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients very well with a large spoon. Finish mixing very well with your hands. Pour into a large cookie sheet pan, and bake for 20 minutes. Allow to cool completely.Meanwhile, make the apple layer.

For the Apple Layer:

-1/2 cup butter
-8 tart apples ( I used macintosh) peeled and thinly sliced
-1 TBSP + 1 Tsp. Cornstarch
-1 Cup cold water
-1 cup brown sugar
-1 Tsp. brown sugar
-1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
-1/4 tsp. nutmeg

Over medium heat, melt butter and saute apples. Cook constantly for 6-7 minutes until apples are tender.
Dissolve cornstarch in the cold water, add to skillet of cooked apples and butter. Stir in the brown sugar and spices.Boil for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat and cool completely.

For the Whipped Cream Layer:
1 Package instant vanilla pudding
2 Cups whole milk
1, 16 oz container Cool Whip + 1, 8 oz container Cool Whip

Mix pudding mix and milk together according to package directions.
Fold in cool whip.

On the bottom of a trifle dish, spread a layer of the whipped cream, then a layer of the crisp, and a layer of the sauteed apples, and top it off with the the whipped cream layer. Repeat.

Keep going at lease twice with each layer until you have a beautiful, amazing trifle!



Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The Best EVER Sweet and Sour Crockpot Pulled Pork

Okay you guys. I made this for dinner tonight, and I could. not. stop. eating it.

It was a party in my mouth. I have never had pulled pork so flavorful and just so darn amazing...This is by far the ultimate pulled pork recipe!

Sweet and Sour Crockpot Pulled Pork
2 cups brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup flour
2/3 cup water
1 cup vinegar (white, apple cider- doesn't matter)
4 TBSP. reduced sodium soy sauce
1/2 cup ketchup
1 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 lbs country style boneless pork ribs

Mix brown sugar and flour in a medium saucepan.
Add the rest of the ingredients except for the meat, and turn heat to medium.
Stir constantly until sauce thickens and boils.
Place ribs in crockpot; Pour sauce all over. Ribs should be completely covered.
Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours (which is what I did) or on high for 5-6 hours.
Shred pork with two forks.
I served ours with a greek salad, oven roasted sweet potatoes, and fresh homemade french bread!

You won't be able to stop soaking up the sauce with your bread!

Friday, September 7, 2012

The World's BEST Dinner Rolls

The other night, I made these dinner rolls to go with our dinner. I felt like the wife of the year, because everything for that dinner came out PERFECT. A roast chicken that was so moist and perfectly cooked it melted in your mouth, scalloped potatoes with green onions and canadian bacon that were so flavorful and cheesy, you couldn't help but go back for seconds and thirds, and fresh corn from the neighbor- need I say more?!
But the dinner rolls, oh.....oh my.
We could have made a meal just from those.
My husband said to me in between mouthfuls of chicken he sandwiched in these amazing rolls: 'I'm having these for breakfast tomorrow, and if you want, you can just pack me these rolls with some chicken in them all week; these are incredible. Moan moan, sigh sigh.'
But since I didn't realize when I started to make the recipe that it made 24 rolls, after dinner I sent my husband to the neighbors with some....Today, our neighbor stopped me on my way out and told me (while he was clutching his chest and his eyes rolled in the back of his head) that they were 'the best rolls he ever had.'

So, if you're still sitting there wondering if you should make these or not, I will help you and tell you that yes, yes you should.

They are so soft, sweet, buttery and everything a roll should be.

The World's BEST Dinner Rolls
Adapted from Our Best Bites

2 Cups of whole milk (yes, WHOLE-trust me)
2/3 cup very warm water
1/2 cup + 1 Tbsp. sugar
1/3 cup butter
2 tsp. salt
4 1/2 tsp. instant yeast
8-9 cups AP flour
3 beaten eggs

Combine milk, water, butter, 1/2 cup sugar, butter and salt in a medium sauce pan over medium heat until butter is melted.
Remove from heat and allow to cool for a few minutes.
In an electric mixer, add the butter/milk mixture, 3 cups of flour and yeast.
Mix til combined.
Add in beaten eggs (eggs must be beaten to ensure everything gets evenly distributed so you get perfect rolls!)
1 cup at a time add in remaining flour until you have a soft dough that doesn't stick to the side of the bowl yet sticks to your finger when you touch it.
It will firm up during the rising process, but you want it to be a little sticky so the rolls are soft and light instead of heavy and dense.
Cover bowl with a hand towel and put in a warm place.
Allow to rise 1 hour.

After the dough has risen to twice it's size, turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Cut in half.

Spray 2, 9x13" pans, or a roasting pan (which is what I used) with cooking spray.
Roll one half of dough into a rectangle and cut into 12 equal sized pieces.

Shape each piece into a ball and place in prepared pan.

Repeat with other half of the dough.
Pre-heat oven to 375, and allow rolls to rise 30 minutes.

Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

When you take the rolls out of the oven, immediately rub a cold stick of butter to coat the top of each roll for the most amazing dinner roll experience of your life.

You don't even need butter for these babies- trust me!

Enjoy and Happy Friday!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

White Chocolate Chocolate Chip Raspberry Cookies

Lately, I have had a mad craving for the raspberry and chocolate combo.
These cookies did the job satisfying it! They are SO GOOD!!!!!
I hope you enjoy this little concoction I came up with. If are a lost soul and I hope you get help.

White Chocolate Chocolate Chip Raspberry Cookies
Adapted from:annies-eats

Yield:3 dozen (depending on how much dough you eat.)

1 Cup (2 sticks) butter
1 1/4 Cup sugar
2 Eggs
1/2 Cup dark cocoa powder
2 1/4 Cups flour
1/4 tsp. coarse salt
1 tsp. baking powder
16 unwrapped Hershey's bliss white chocolates, roughly chopped
16 unwrapped raspberry Dove chocolates, roughly chopped

Pre-heat oven to 350.
In an electric mixer, beat together butter and sugar on medium-high for 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down bowl as needed, until light and fluffy.
Add eggs, one at a time until well combined.
With mixer on low, carefully mix in the cocoa powder until well blended.
Add the flour, salt and baking powder, and mix just until combined.
Fold in white and raspberry chunks by hand.
Scoop golf ball sized cookie dough balls onto a lightly greased cookie sheet.

Bake for 9 minutes.
Allow to cool for 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.