Posted by: aubreecheriedesigns | March 12, 2009

Recipe: Killer German Chocolate Cake

killer-german-chocolate-cake-finished-2

Seriously… its awesome. And could kill you. But in an awesome way…

This recipe is modified off a friends recipe. I’d never actually eaten it until just now, but I’m gonna have to say it was a good idea to try the new recipe blind.. I actually was looking through all my notes/books/e-mails (the recipe resource pile essentially) because I bought some cream cheese on sale that I needed to use up. I wasn’t in the mood to try anything complicated, so I decided to give this a try!

killer-german-chocolate-cake-ingredients

Ingredients:
1 box of chocolate cake mix (and whatever you need to make it, probably some oil, water, and 3 eggs)
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1 8oz package of softened cream cheese
1/2 cup of butter or margarine (1 whole stick)
3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup of dessicated coconut (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

killer-german-chocolate-cake-mix

Follow the instructions on the cake box and have that all mixed up. I cheated with mine. It called for 3 eggs and I only had two in the fridge. I’m surprised I had eggs at all, I usually only bake with flax seed as a substitute. So I used 2 tablespoons of cornstarch and 1 teaspoon of baking powder, in hopes that it would rise anyway. But I thought the finished great was perfect even with this modification. I’m not entirely sure how different the cake would be with three eggs instead. I’m sure it’d be very comparable. (Or better I’m assuming)

killer-german-chocolate-cake-pecans

Chop the pecans and then sprinkle them on the bottom of the pan(s). I used 1 cup of chopped pecans. Although I will say, if you measure the pecans before you chop them, you probably won’t have enough.

killer-german-chocolate-cake-coconut

Sprinkle the coconut over the pecans.

killer-german-chocolate-cake-mix-in-pan

Pour the cake mix evenly over the coconut and pecans.

killer-german-chocolate-cake-cream-cheese-and-butter

Melt the butter in a mixing bowl. Add the cream cheese and mix together well. I had pieces of cream cheese still in the mix; it wasn’t blended perfect, but thats okay.

killer-german-chocolate-cake-topping-with-sugar

Then add the 3 cups of powdered sugar. Mix in well. I ended up getting quite a bit of it on myself actually, but that’s usually how it goes when me and powdered sugar get together… haha

Stick this mix in the microwave until it gets a little more runny. Just make sure you don’t let it get too hot.

killer-german-chocolate-cake-topping-on-cake

Pour the mixture slowly over the cake mix in the pan. I did in in rows to try and have even coverage. That actually worked pretty well. I wasn’t expecting success with that, but it came out okay.

killer-german-chocolate-cake-with-dessicated-coconut

Then I sprinkled some dessicated coconut on the top for my own amusement. Seriously, its not at all necessary. I just thought it would look cool and add some texture. So if you don’t have any it won’t affect the actual cake at all.

killer-german-chocolate-cake-three-quarters-baked

Then she goes in the oven! Mine were both in approximately 55 minutes at 350. If you’re not sure, do the toothpick test. (Obviously not where the cream cheese topping is so, that’ll always be sticky, haha).

killer-german-chocolate-cake-finished

I had some right when it came out of the oven, which was definitely worth the burnt tongue. Its still great after its been in the fridge though, so try not to eat it all at once!

Posted by: aubreecheriedesigns | March 11, 2009

Recipe: ‘Special K’ Roast, SDA Style

special-k-roast-finished

I grew up in my family church. Not literally, but you know what I mean, haha. We did everything there and knew everyone. We’d get together a lot and have potlucks, where everyone would bring something and we’d all share. My favorite dish is what we call Special K. Technically its called Special K Roast, but we’re all lazy and already know what we’re talking about when we say Special K. This actually isn’t the best one that i’ve had, but I’ve never quite been able to figure out the recipe of the one I like the most. Try and try again I suppose, haha. BUT this one is still amazing.

And as weird as it sounds, one of the best parts for me is actually making the roast. The smell of the pre-bake batter takes me back to my moms kitchen and me not being able to reach the top of the counter. Now I’m a lot taller than my mom… But sometimes I still cook with her when I go home to visit.

special-k-roast-ingredients

Ingredients:
1 can of Worthington Diced Chick
2 cups of cottage cheese (a normal sized container)
2 eggs
1 cup finely chopped pecans (or pecan meal)
1/4 cup of milk
2 1/2 cups of corn flakes

special-k-roast-fried-chikWhats Fried Chik?

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

This recipe is actually a half batch. I knew that I’d eat whatever I made in a very short time, so I cut it in half. I’d say it would be about enough to feed 4 to 6 at one meal. It lasted me about that many meals. (I won’t lie, I had it for breakfast one day… haha)

special-k-roast-corn-flakes

Start by smashing the corn flakes. As much as pouring them in a bowl and crushing them with your fists is a good anger release, I recommend crushing them in a bag and the pouring it out calmly, haha.

special-k-roast-dry-mix

special-k-roast-wet-mix

Once they’re all properly smashed, pour them in the bowl. Then add the pecans or pecan meal. Actually, I always just dump everything in in whatever order I have things out. It doesn’t really matter.

special-k-roast-mixed-in-pan

Mix it all up and then put into a 9″x13″ pan. Bake for 1 hour.

special-k-roast-baked

Yuuuum :D

Posted by: aubreecheriedesigns | March 1, 2009

Recipe: Homemade Oreo’s

homemade-oreos-finished

So last weekend I was meant to go to a small ‘potluck’ with friends, but I came down with a bit of a bug that seemed to peak that morning. And I was meant to bring the dessert, so yeah. I ended up with all these cookies. I took them to work, but I did eat more than I should have. And that definitely didn’t help the head cold.. haha

homemade-oreos-ingredients

Ingredients:
Cookies:
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter plus 2 tbsp
1 large egg

Cream:
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup Crisco
2 cups powdered/confectioners sugar
2 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 375

Mix together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and sugar.

homemade-oreos-dry-mix

Melt the butter. I usually do this in glass dish in the microwave. Having any clunks of butter in the mix makes it difficult to blend in. But you also don’t want the ‘cook’ the butter or make it boil in the microwave.  So I melt some, pour it out, then nuke the  next bit, pour out what melts, etc. That way you melt the whole block, but without boiling parts of the butter.

homemade-oreos-with-butter

Mix the butter along with the egg into the dry mix. Make sure to get the egg through the whole batter, it might require a little it more time mixing, even if it looks like its blended well.

homemade-oreos-finished-cookie-batter1

Grease up a cookie sheet (spray or some of the crisco). To make the cookies a uniform round shape, I actually used a round tsp measuring spoon. They spread about 1/3, so give it the appropriate space. And as you can see, they aren’t perfect, but as long as they’re all similar, you won’t have problems finding ‘matches’.

homemade-oreos-scooped-batter

Bake those for about 10 to 14 minutes. Keep a good eye on them though. As soon as the tops have ‘cracked’ they’re good to go.

Make the filling while the cookies are baking. Mix the butter and crisco so they are well blended together. I found that challenging with just a fork. But as long as you stick with it, it turns out fine. Add the vanilla once they’re blended.

homemade-oreos-butter-crisco-and-vanilla

Then you’ll want to beat in the sugar until its light and fluffy. I found that didn’t take as long as I thought it would.

homemade-oreos-finished-frosting-and-cookies

The rest should be easy to figure out. Put the filling between like sized cookies and your good to go! I recommend not letting the cookies sit out much if you don’t want them to dry out. If you let them dry out they will be more like real Oreos, but you’ll need a glass a milk/water just to swallow… haha

Posted by: aubreecheriedesigns | February 25, 2009

Recipe: Peanut Butter Oatmeal Breakfast Snacks

oatmeal-pb-and-coconut-snacks-finished

So last week I made Oatmeal Breakfast Snacks, a recipe that I got from a fellow blogger, Food for Laughter. (Awesome blog, she’s great!)

I decided that even though they were pretty awesome the way they were, that i wanted to experiment with some new tastes. (Plus I shared one with a friend who exclaimed “This would be awesome with Peanut Butter!”

Yes, friend… indeed… haha)

So… I essentially added peanut butter, coconut, and walnuts. I have to say…. I’ve seriously enjoyed eating breakfast this week. Its a rare thing when I don’t want to share my food. I definitely haven’t been sharing these… (they keep great, so I’ve been having two eat morning at work for a snack.) Yuuumm. haha

Ingredients:
1/2 cup vanilla soymilk
1/3 cup honey
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp vanilla (pure extract)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup all natural peanut butter
1/2 cup shredded coconut (sweetened is best)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
2 1/2 cups instant oats
1/4 cup flour

Set the oven to 400 degrees.

For the progress photos, go HERE. (It should work.. I’m still learning the ropes on the whole Flickr thing, so bear with me… haha)

Mix all the ‘wet’ ingredients together…Soymilk, honey, vanilla, oil, and peanut butter. (I put the salt in with the soymilk before I added the other wet ingredients actually. Just to make sure it was dissolved and mixed in well.) The peanut butter isn’t going to completely mix. The idea is to make sure there aren’t any large clunks. Small ones are okay.

Then I added the coconut and mixed well. After chopping up the walnuts I added them in as well. I added the oats 1/2 a cup at that time. The first time I made the similar oatmeal snacks I had a lot of dry oatmeal. This took care of that ‘issue’.

Its best to leave the flour for last I’ve found. That way everything else is well combined before the batter gets really tough and hard to manipulate.So yes… mix in the flour and the batter should be good to go.

Roll into balls. Mine are anywhere between 1 and 2 inches in diameter. And they cooked through fine at that size, so thats good.

Stick them on a cookie sheet and bake for about 15 minutes. Okay, I’ll admit I had mine in for a little more than 15 (18 maybe?), but it all depends on the stove I’d imagine. Plus those last three minutes were half spent with the oven door open. So it probably all evens out in the end, haha.

Posted by: aubreecheriedesigns | February 22, 2009

Recipe: Grapefruit Nut Breakfast

grapefruit-w-nuts-breakfast-2

So this is definitely random. And I don’t know if it should really be classified as a ‘recipe’ because there’s no cooking or baking involved. But if anythings its an idea.

I’m almost always on the lookout for some new way to get natural fiber into my everyday diet. And breakfast can be a challenge for me because I have to make it either very fast or the night before. I typically eat breaky at work because I can’t eat too early in the morning without getting sick.

So… I’ve tried a lot of different things. This is what I’m currently doing, and its awesome, I must say.

grapefruit-w-nuts-breakfast

Ingredients:
1/3 can of grapfruit and juice (1/2 fresh grapefruit)
4 tablespoons chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons raw flax seed
1/4 cup oatmeal

Materials:
1 ‘To-Go’ container

I put the grapefruit in first, then the nuts, and then finish it off with the oatmeal. Its a weird texture, but I actually really like it.

I also tried it with mixed citrus and that was pretty good too. I still like the grapefruit the best though.

grapefruit-w-nuts-breakfast_other-citrus

Posted by: aubreecheriedesigns | February 18, 2009

Recipe: Vegan Chocolate Coconut Confections

vegan-chocolate-coconut-confections-finished1

This is an entirely original recipe by me. Its not rocket science though, so I’m not all that impressed with myself. I essentially took what I know from making my favorite cookies and candies and combined it in a way that was completely dairyfree, eggfree, and soyfree. Why? A friend at work had a birthday and he has a bit of things he’s allergic too. And its a personal goal of mine to make sure everyone has something sweet when they realize they’re a bit older than last year.

vegan-chocolate-coconut-confections-ingredients

Ingredients:
1/2 cup of light corn syrup
1/2 cup of white sugar
1/4 cup of cocoa
1 tsp vanilla (real)
1 cup all natural peanut butter (most brands have soy, I used one with just peanuts and salt)
1 cup shredded coconut
2 cups instant or minute oatmeal (the soft stuff)

Coating:
1 dish of water for dipping
1 cup white sugar
1 cup dessicated coconut

Materials:
Stove top pan
Mixing spoon
Small dishes for water and coating mixture

vegan-chocolate-coconut-confections-mix

Start by putting the sugar, light corn syrup, and cocoa in the saucepan. Mix them up. Make sure you get all the cocoa combined in, it took me a while as the corn syrup is a really thick liquid. Turn the burner onto a medium heat. Once the mixture starts to boil, keep it on the stove for just under a minute (don’t let it get too much over that or it’ll harden too fast).

vegan-chocolate-coconut-confections-boiling

Remove the pan from heat and immediately add the peanut butter. Mix it in well. Especially make sure there are no lumps of peanut butter anywhere, it needs to be smooth.

vegan-chocolate-coconut-confections-with-peanut-butter

Add the coconut and mix well. Next add one cup of oatmeal. It’ll start harden quite fast at this point, so its good to get the one cup really well mixed first. Then add the second cup. It was really stiff at this point, but just keep at it.

vegan-chocolate-coconut-confections-with-oatmeal

When the oats are well mixed in start rolling them into balls, about 3/4″ diameters. Put some water in one small bowl, your white sugar and dessicated coconut in the second small bowl.

vegan-chocolate-coconut-confections-coconut-sugar-mix

Dip the ball in water, roll it in the mixture, and then set it in a large container. Once the container is full, put it right in the refrigerator for a couple hours minimum. This helps them all stick together.

Even for someone who eats dairy, eggs, and soy, I thought they were pretty good for not having those things.

Posted by: aubreecheriedesigns | February 18, 2009

Recipe: Basic Granola

basic-granola-finished-2

Its funny what you find is important to you later on in life. I mean, its not like i’ve had all that much time to decide this, but i definitely can appreciate the simple truth that what you think as a child easily changes as you get older.

And so it is with granola. Other than spaghetti and meat balls (fake and meatless of course.. haha) on tuesdays and thursdays, there was no meal I hated more than granola. And I was even a huge cold cereal girl. Seriously… HUGE. I ate at least 6 bowls of whatever we happened to have on hand everyday before school. (I’m still trying to exercise it off.) But for some reason I just didn’t like granola. Probably because it was ‘healthy’. Eeewww, healthy!

So to make a long story, well, longer… somewhere between 3rd grade and what I suppose could be described as ‘adulthood’, I developed my love of granola. I eat it dry, I eat it on yogurt, I blend it up in smoothies (weird, i know… blame Jamba Juice for the introduction…), and sometimes I even eat it with milk (vanilla soy? haha). And here’s my fallback recipe. (Although I always seem to change it up a bit…)

basic-granola-ingredients

Ingredients:
4 cups old fashioned oats
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 1/2 cups sweetened shredded coconut
1 tsp vanilla (not imitation)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 can of frozen juice concentrate (yet thawed. I used apple this time. I’d recommend some blend like apple cranberry, but they only had apple at the supermarket…)

Materials:
Large Mixing bowl
Small mixing bowl
Large baking sheet

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Yes, this recipe requires patience. Can you believe “I” make it? haha

basic-granola-wet-materials

Mix the vanilla, salt, and thawed juice concentrate in the small mixing bowl. Mix the oats, coconut, and nuts in the large bowl. Mix together.

basic-granola-all-mixed

Spread out a thin layer of mix onto the baking pan. I split the batch in two, half on the first baking pan and then the rest the second time.

basic-granola-ready-to-bake

Leave the pan in for about 30 minutes, then pull the pan out. Push all the granola to one side of the pan and the spread it thinly out again. Break up any ‘clunks’ at this point. (Sometimes the fruit juice will be more prevalent in one spot and keep all the oats sticking together. Show it who’s boss.)

basic-granola-raw-and-cooked

basic-granola-turning-over

Another 20 minutes should do it. But to be sure, pull the pan out and let the granola cool about ten minutes. Just taste test it for the right texture. I like mine very crunchy, so if it doesn’t seem done enough, I stick the pan back in. But be careful, if you don’t let the granola cool and you do the taste test, it could fool you. When its warm it’ll seem soft and chewy, but when it actually cools it’ll be a lot harder. So make sure you really let it cool off a bit before you make the call.

basic-granola-done

Posted by: aubreecheriedesigns | February 17, 2009

Recipe: Oatmeal Breakfast Snacks

oatmeal-breakfast-balls-finished

So these are the best little snacks ever! I saw the recipe from the Food for Laughter blog. Which is an awesome blog by the way. Definitely check it out and add the feed, because she’s always posting yummy dishes.

I only adjusted the recipe to not have egg (which didn’t seem to make much of a difference) and I used regular flour because it was all I had. And I added flax seed. But if you read any of my posts, you know I put flax seed in everything, so no surprise there, haha.

I plan on making another batch once I eat through these that’s slightly different with a bunch of nuts and dried fruit in it… Its my new breakfast staple!

oatmeal-breakfast-balls-ingredients

Ingredients:
1/2 cup vanilla soymilk
1/3 cup honey
2 T olive oil
2 tsp vanilla (imitation)
1/2 tsp salt
3 cups oats
1/2 cup bread flour

Materials:
Mixing Bowl
Cookie sheet, baking pan

Set the oven to 400 degrees.

Mix up the ‘wet’ ingredients a long with the salt (make sure it dissolves and is mixed in well).

oatmeal-breakfast-balls-wet-to-dry-batter

Add 2 cups of oats and mix really well. Once you’re convinced all the liquid is combined evenly, add the last cup of oats and the half a cup of flour. Its very thick batter at this point, so keep your resolve strong and push through. Trust me, its worth it… haha.

oatmeal-breakfast-balls-finished-batter

And I should probably admit, I got my hands dirty with this one. Sometimes its just easier to mix/manipulate it by hand.

Roll into balls. Mine are anywhere between 1 and 2 inches in diameter. And they cooked through fine at that size, so thats good.

Stick them on a cookie sheet and bake for about 15 minutes. Okay, I’ll admit I had mine in for a little more than 15 (18 maybe?), but it all depends on the stove I’d imagine. Plus those last three minutes were half spent with the oven door open. So it probably all evens out in the end, haha.

oatmeal-breakfast-balls-balled

They’re super filling and taste awesome. Although they are really dense, so I’d STRONGLY recommend eating them with some sort of beverage handy. I go through a whole water bottle just eating two of them. (Another reason why they’re great for breakfast!) Thanks again to Food for Laughter. Awesome stuff.

Posted by: aubreecheriedesigns | February 16, 2009

Recipe: Potato, Corn, and Carrot Calzones

easy-veggie-calzones-finished1

This is another ‘I’m Lazy’ recipe, just a warning.

I know calzones are usually something with mozzarella cheese and tomato sauce, but this is my favorite twist. Plus its the extra easy version.

I actually ‘made’ the dough with my bread machine. Because the dough for the calzones is more sticky, its harder to do by hand. I think you can buy the dough pre-made too.

Dough Ingredients:
3/4 cup of lukewarm water
1 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoons sugar
2 cups bread flour
2 tablespoons yeast (one package)
1 cup of flour or so for rolling dough

easy-veggie-calzones-dough1

Filling Ingredients:
1 packet chicken gravy powder
1 can sweet corn
1 can potatoes (I know… this just proves how lazy I was…)
1 can carrots

Materials:
Large Mixing Bowl
Cookie sheet
Bread machine (ahh, I love my bread machine) or a fork for mixing? haha
Can opener
Rolling pin

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Mix the dough ingredients all together. If you’re mixing the dough by hand, mix the water and yeast together first and let it sit for a few minutes. Then in a large mixing bowl, add everything but the flour. Mix well. Then fold in the flour. It’ll be sticky, but you can do it. (I didn’t because I used my bread machine, muahahaha) Knead it for about ten minutes. Use as much flour as you need to handle the dough. I had to use a bit just to get the dough/batter out of the bread machine pan.

Let the dough rise under a kitchen towel for about 5 minutes.

easy-veggie-calzones-veggie-mix2

During this lovely little lull, make your filling. To make the one i used, pour the gravy powder mix into a sauce pan with 1:1 water. Keep stirring and don’t turn off the burner until you’ve let the mix simmer for about three minutes. I put that in a medium mixing bowl, drained all the cans of vegetables, and mixed it all together.

easy-veggie-calzones-rolled-dough1

easy-veggie-calzones-veggies-on-half1

Divide your now risen dough into balls. Each ball will make one calzone, obviously. Roll a ball into a flat round shape. Spoon the filling on one half, folding the dough over and crimping the ends like you would a pie crust.

easy-veggie-calzones-moving-to-pan1

Once you have enough on a pan to fill it, put it in the oven. Bake for about 30 minutes. I would check at 20 though to see how they’re doing. I liked mine crispy on the edges.

easy-veggie-calzones-on-pan1

Posted by: aubreecheriedesigns | February 15, 2009

Recipe: Easy Stroganoff with Veggie Meat

easy-stroganoff-with-veggie-meat_finished

So I made this veggie meat from scratch a bit ago and its been sitting peacefully in the freezer. But I got it in my head to make noodles and in the midst of cooking those got the brilliant idea of stroganoff. (Okay, not so brilliant, but it tastes good and was super easy, haha). No peace for fake meat!

It reminds me of ‘academy’ days actually. I went to a boarding school (mixed genders, but still strict I suppose) that didn’t serve meat. What the, what? I know, its weird. But thats why something like veggie meat stroganoff is nostalgic for me….

Also, most normal stroganoff is just something you put over noodles. This is for all the other lazy people out there like me who can’t be bothering storing the noodles and stroganoff in two separate containers. This ones made all at once.

Ingredients:

1 small to medium sized can cream of mushroom soup
1 small to medium sized can of cream of ‘something’ soup (I used celery. But I bet cream of broccoli or anything similar would taste just as good or better)
2 cups whole wheat noodles (2 cups dry)
4 cups water
1 cup veggie meat (I’m sure it’d be tasty with regular meat too. It might even taste better… *gasp*)
Salt and pepper to taste

Materials:
Large stove top pan
Mixing spoon

Bring the 4 cups of water to a boil. Add the whole wheat noodles. It took about 15 minutes before I was happy with the noodles texture. If you don’t use the whole wheat pasta it’ll take a lot less time.

easy-stroganoff-with-veggie-meat_-noodles

Add the cream of mushroom and cream of celery soups. Boil that for about 5 minutes or until you can actually see the rolling boil. Turn the burner down so its just a simmer (you can see the bubbles, but they’re not being tumultuous.) Leave it like that for about 15 minutes.

easy-stroganoff-with-veggie-meat_-with-soup1

easy-stroganoff-with-veggie-meat_cooking1

Add the meat or meatless meat. (Fun sentence, that.) Let it simmer for another ten minutes. Somewhere between adding the veggie meat and turning off the burner to let it all cool I added some salt and pepper. I thought it needed it.. which may be a negative on the recipe. Oh well, haha.

easy-stroganoff-with-veggie-meat_-finished1

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