Monday, February 25, 2013

Easy Peach Cobbler

This is seriously the easiest and probably one of THE BEST peach cobblers I have had!

The only thing that takes awhile is the bake time but with only 4 ingredients, whipping it up was a cinch!

Make this quick dessert to impress surprise guests or family members! Plus, who doesnt like hot fruity dessserts with melted vanilla ice cream on top.... YUM!

If you don't have everything in your pantry already run out and grab it TO-DAY!!

For the Cobbler:
2 (16 oz) cans sliced peaches, in heavy syrup
1 box yellow cake mix
1 stick butter, cut into small pieces
1 teaspoon cinnamon

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Pour cans of peaches, with syrup, into the bottom of a 13x9" baking dish.
  3. Sprinkle top with cake mix and press down firmly.
  4. Sprinkle the top of the cake mix with the cinnamon and place butter pieces all over the top.
  5. Bake for 45 minutes or until the cake is golden and the peach filling is bubbly.
  6. Let cool slightly and top with vanilla ice cream.

This dessert truly is amazing and can be whipped up fast! The left overs make an amazing breakfast... That is if there are any!
Happy Monday everyone!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Heart Shaped Empanadas de Cajeta

I'm finally putting out a Valentines themed recipe! Phew...
Is it just me or is this year whizzing by? What happened to January? And we all know February is already a short month....
I had all of these grand ideas for Valentines recipes until our entire family came down with the cold/flu. If your family hasnt gotten it yet... Watch out! (And be grateful!)

But if you are looking for a fun recipe, out of the typical pink, sparkly, and chocolate covered stuff... This recipe is for you!

Cajeta simply means caramel, I used a can of thick dolce de leche in this case, and its sandwiched perfectly in between flaky layers of creamy-buttery crust. Plus, they are so cute and tiny they would be the perfect addition to a Valentines basket or as a homemade Valentines treat for your little ones class!

Lets get this party started.... And Happy Valentines Day y'all!

For the Crust:
2 sticks, unsalted butter softened
8 ounces of cream cheese, softened
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 egg lightly beatened with 1 teaspoon water
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
2 Tablespoons sugar
1 can/jar cajeta

In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese and butter until well blended. Scrape down the sides to full incorporate. Add in the flour and salt and mix well. Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface and gently knead, 6-8 times, until smooth. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to an 1/8-inch thickness. Use your desired cookie cutter to make the empanadas. If you want a heart shaped, you will need 2 heart shaped pieces (1 top and 1 bottom) otherwise if you are simply using a circle, you can fold in half for the typical empanada shape. Place the empanadas on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Place a small amount of cararamel in the middle of your dough and place another heart on top. Crimp the edges together with your fingers and then scallop with a fork to make sure it is sealed well.

Place your empanadas in the refrigerator for 20 minutes (this helps prevent leakage). Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Remove from the fridge and brush with your egg-water mixture. In a small bowl, mix together the 1 Tablespoon of cinnamon and 2 Tablespoons of sugar and sprinkle generously over the empanadas.
Bake the empanadas in your preheated oven for 12-15 minutes, until they are golden and cooked through.

Cool slightly on a baking rack! These are best enjoyed warm but are just as good the next day!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Snickerdoodle Scones with Blueberry-Lemon Jam

I have a 2-fer recipe for you! Wait, where are you going? It's not difficult, I promise! And the jam should totally be made ahead of time to make your life easy.... And then you will look like a superhero when you make, not only fresh warm scones, but delicious homemade jam to top it with!

This recipe is SO easy! There's no boiling water for the jars or fancy machinery involed!

So lets get right too it... Yum!

For the Jam:
(makes about 1 1/2 pints)
4 cups blueberries
2 cups sugar
1 (small box) lemon flavored Jell-O
2 teaspoons fruit pectin

For the Scones:
(recipe adapted from Sweet Peas Kitchen)
1/2 cup sour cream
1 egg
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1 stick of unsalted butter, cut into pieces and chilled

Cinnamon-sugar topping:
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Lets start with the jam!
In a large bowl, mash your 4 cups of blueberries until they are almost broken down.
In a medium saucepan, combine the blueberries and sugar and cook over medium until boiling. Once bubbles form, turn down the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes until thickened. Add the box of Jell-O and 2 teaspoons of pectin and stir just until incorporated. Pour immediately into your jars and cover, let cool slightly on your countertop then place in the fridge to thicken (I did this overnight).

Now for the Scones...
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment. In a small bowl, mix together the ingredients for the cinnamon-sugar topping and set aside.
In another small bowl, mix together the 1 egg and sour cream. Place this in the fridge until ready for use.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, cream of tartar, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
Add in your chilled butter and either, using clean hands or a pastry cutter, cut in the butter until crumbly and around the size of a pea.
Fold in the sour cream and egg mixture just until the flour mixture is moistened. Gently pour mixture out onto flour lined surface. Gently fold until the scone dough comes together.
Shape into an 8-inch circle, sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar topping, and cut into 8 triangles.

Place scones on to your parchment lined baking sheet.

Bake for 16-18 minutes or until they are golden brown on the bottom and firm to the touch.
Let them cool slightly on a wire rack.
These babies are best enjoyed warm!!
Don't forget to slather with your delicious blueberry-lemon jam! The tart sweetness of the blueberries is fabulous and you get just a hint of tangy lemon on the back of your tongue. Enjoy!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Pizza Monkey Bread

I know, dinner blog say what? But it IS baking, I promise.. :)

I just had to post this picture of my little man Davin! He is truly my miracle, here's a little background. If you dont mind listening:

Today kicks of the start of CHD Awareness week (it's February 7th-14th). It ends on the day filled with love and hearts... How appropriate!

Anyways, Davin is my 3 year old son who truly blesses my life every day. He's smart, funny, and so very outgoing... Everything we prayed for. When Davin was born we were blind-sided when we found out he had a heart defect. My pregnancy had gone perfect, I had no complaints (besides the uncomfort of sleep) and loved absolutely every second of it.

It wasnt until Davin was born, weighing in at a tiny 4 lbs 3 ounces, that we knew something was wrong. No matter how hard the nurses tried, he wouldn't "pink up". We were so lucky the nurses and pediatric cardiologist caught his defect that day, our son had Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR). In short, his oxygenated blood didn't flow correctly from his heart to the rest of his body. He was medivaced that night and had open heart surgery a short 12 hours after he was born. I haven't cried as hard as a did that night, in my entire life.

Following, our son has had 2 more open heart surgeries to correct the Pulmonary Stenosis that devloped after his initial surgery.

I'm so happy to say that since 2010, and the birth of our second child Julian (who I truly believe was our angel), our little Davin has been stable and required no further surgeries. We go day by day but we are honestly so lucky to have a healthy and active little boy. We don't know what the future holds but plan to cherish every day with him.

I know, serious stuff for a dessert blog right? But if I can touch one person, one heart, and make them feel that someone is out there that KNOWS what they are going through, I feel complete.

So, if you could please take some time this week, go and visit: and donate, and take the time to read other parents and childrens stories. They have truly provided HOPE for my family.

Ok, now on to the recipe. Thank you for bearing with me.

We had this pizza monkey bread for Super Bowl and served it with a side of pizza sauce... So yummy!

For the Dough:
3 1/2-4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon sugar
1 packet active dry yeast
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/2 cups warm water, 110-115 degrees
2 Tablespoons olive oil, plus 2 teaspoons

*If you have a time crunch, store bought pizza dough works well here also!

Combine the 3 1/2 cups of flour, sugar, yeast and salt in the bowl of your stand mixer and combine. While the mixer is running, add in the water and 2 Tablespoons of olive oil. Beat on medium until the dough forms into a ball. If the dough is still sticky, add additional flour, 1 Tablespoon at a time, until the dough comes together in a solid ball.
Scrape the dough on to a lightly floured surface and gently knead until it becomes smooth.
Grease a large bowl with the remaining 2 teaspoons of oil and place the dough ball inside. Cover with a towel and place in a warm spot until double in size, around 1 hour.
Divide the dough into 2 equal portions, roll into balls and place on a greased cookie sheet. Cover again and let sit for 30-45 minutes.

For assembly:
The Pizza Dough
30-40 chunks (about a 1 inch square) of Mozarella Cheese
30-40 pepperoni pieces
4 Tablespoons of butter
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon oregano
Your Favorite Pizza Sauce

Thoroughly grease a bundt pan.

Melt butter and garlic over medium-low and sautee until the garlic is golden in color and butter is completely melted. Remove from heat and add in the garlic salt and oregano. Stir and set aside.

Pull off a "bouncey ball" size of dough and flatten into a disk in your hands. Place a chunk of cheese and a piece of pepperoni into the center and fold into a ball. Roll in your hands slightly to seal. Like this:

Roll the dough ball, into your melted butter and place into your prepared bundt pan. Continue this pattern until you have used up all of your dough. Don't worry, some balls may be smaller and some bigger.
Once you have used up all of the dough, pour any remaining butter over the top of your pizza balls that are sitting in your bundt pan. It will look like this:

Cover this with a towel and let it rice in a warm place for 45 minutes to an hour. It will now look like this:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and bake for 30-35 minutes until the top is very brown.
Let cool slightly and heat up your pizza sauce in the meantime.
Invert monkey bread on to a platter and serve warm with the sauce for dipping.

This monkey bread is a great recipe for parties. The gooey cheese center is so darn delicious! And how romantic would this be for Valentines dinner to dip and feed eachother? (If you're into that kind of stuff) Or as a twist if your first date was to a pizza place!

Enjoy everyone and Happy CHD Awareness week (so much cooler than Valentines Day!)
(Please ignore my non-manicured nails)

Monday, February 4, 2013

Boston Cream Pie

Did everyone watch the Super Bowl yesterday? What did you think? I didn't really care which team won or lost because they weren't MY team (the Packers!). But I thought overall it was a good game! And who am I kidding, all I really care about is the drinks, food, and the funny commercials! Were there any favorites? I thought the Doritos and Oreo ones were the best!

And now that we are passed the Super Bowl, it's on to Birthdays, Valentines Day and most importantly: CHD (Congenital Heart Defect) Awareness Week! For everyone who doesn't know, it is February 7th-14th and shines awareness on the number 1 defect in children; 1 in a 100! I plan on devoting a whole blog as to why that week is special for me so expect a week full of hearts and me oogling over my miracle child!

Anyways, on to this cake! I made it to celebrate my moms birthday and I think it was a HIT! It's impressive to look at, delicious, and can I just TELL you how easy it is? I can? Perfect, lets get to it!

For the Cake:
1 box of yellow butter cake mix

For the Filling:
1 box vanilla pudding mix (3.4 oz)
1 cup cold milk
1 1/5 cups cool whip

For the Ganache:
1 cup dark chocolate chips
2 Tablespoons butter
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 Tablespoons milk

Make the cake according to the instrcutions on the box. It's best to place a piece of parchment on the bottom of the cake pans to insure they do not stick. Let the cakes cool slightly, then invert on to cooling racks to cool completely.

Meanwhile, make the filling. Whisk together the pudding mix and milk, whisking for 2 minutes until it is starting to thicken. Fold in the cool whip and place in your fridge for 5 minutes to set.

Place bottom cake layer, upisde down, on your serving platter. Smear filling completely over the top. It will look like a lot of filling but trust me, you want it ALL!

Press second cake layer over the top and press down gently.

Make the ganache by placing the 1 cup of chocolate chips and 2 Tablespoons of butter into a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 1 minute. Stir the mixture until the chocolate is completely melted. Add in the powdered sugar and milk and stir until smooth and shiny. Quickly pour and spread over the top layer of cake.

Place in the fridge for at least an hour before slicing!

Enjoy! :)