Lemon Bars

Lemon bars should be sweet, sugary, refreshing and “puckery”…if that’s even a word!  These lemon bars are all of these plus more.  A perfect summer treat and using Meyer lemons really makes them special!  So, what I’m trying to say is this is the best recipe for lemon bars you will ever find.  Ever!

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Ingredients

CRUST INGREDIENTS:
1 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2/3 cup powdered sugar plus extra for dusting
12 tablespoons salted butter, softened
FILLING INGREDIENTS:
4 eggs, room temperature
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup fresh squeezed Meyer Lemon juice (about 4 lemons)
Zest of lemons (I zested two)
¼ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
Instructions:

Crust: Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large mixing bowl with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and powdered sugar, add flour, and salt. Mix until it becomes uniformly crumbly. Line a 9×9 pan with foil or parchment paper. Pat the crust mixture into the lined pan evenly. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or just until the edges turn a light golden brown, remove and set aside.
Filling: In a larger mixer bowl fitted with a whisk attachment, add eggs, sugar, lemon juice, zest and flour. Mix until smooth. Pour onto baked crust. Return to oven and bake for an additional 25-30 minutes. Remove and let cool to room temperature. Place in the refrigerator until set.
Remove from pan and cut into squares or triangles. Dust with powdered sugar.  Store leftovers in the refrigerator until ready to use.mon

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Box Cake

Sometimes you need a quick dessert that looks like a lot of effort.  This is it!  Chocolate chip cookie ice box cake is your ticket!  Chocolate chip cookies, whipped cream, done!  Now, of course you can make homemade cookies and fresh whipped cream but if you need a faster dessert…..use Pillsbury cookies and cool whip!  Of course, a little chocolate curl action on top adds a nice presentation, too!  You can find them at ABC Cake Decorating Supply online! I poured on some homemade salted caramel but jarred caramel would be fine, too!

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I used about 50 cookies and one and a half containers of cool whip.  You can use more/less depending on the size of your cake plate and how many you are serving.

cookies

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The Ultimate Fudgy Brownie

fudgy brownie fudgy brownie fudgy brownie fudgy brownie fudgy brownie brownies-fudgy CANDY hershey

WELCOME TO ANOTHER MONTH OF 2 SWEETIE PIES!! I LOVE THIS DAY! MY BLOGGING BUDDY LIZZY (FROM THAT SKINNY CHICK CAN BAKE) AND I EACH BAKE FROM THE OTHER’S BLOG AND SURPRISE ONE ANOTHER…AND YOU-WITH WHAT WE MADE!!! TRUTH BE TOLD, I LOVE THAT EVERY RECIPE I CHOOSE IS ALWAYS A WINNER AND THIS WAS NO DIFFERENT!!!!  When you need something decadent and chocolatey, Liz always comes through!!! These brownies are everything a brownie should be….rich, fudgy and scrumptious!  Liz added walnuts so that’s an option you may like.  Not a nut lover myself, I tried out some peeps and Sixlet candies.  You can find them at Sweetworks! They have an amazing assortment-you must check them out!!!

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Fudgy Brownies With Glaze

Ingredients:

Recipe adapted from That Skinny Chick Can Bake via the Good Cookie
    • 1/2 cup butter, cut into pieces
    • 9 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
    • 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, chopped
    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 3 eggs
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
    • 1/2 cup flour
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt
    • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (optional)
    • Sixlets candies (optional)
Glaze:
  • 3 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped (I used Hershey’s milk chocolate instead)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 16 walnut halves (optional)

Instructions

    1. Line an 8 inch square pan with nonstick foil or regular foil sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Preheat oven to 325º.
    2. Melt the 9 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate, 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate and 1/2 cup butter in large, microwave safe bowl. Stop and stir at 30 second intervals till melted and smooth.
    3. Stir in the sugar, then the eggs and vanilla. Add the flour and salt and mix till well combined. Stir in walnuts if using.
    4. Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 35-40 minutes or till toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs. Cool completely.
    5. To make glaze, microwave all ingredients in a microwave safe bowl, stopping to stir every 30 seconds till chocolate is almost melted. Stir till mixture is smooth then let cool for about 10 minutes before spreading the glaze over top of chilled brownies. Place half walnuts or Sixlets candies over glaze before it sets. Chill brownies to cut.
Yield: 16 brownies
Total time: 2 hours with cooling times

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Caramel Blood Orange Sea Scallops

caramel blood orange sea scallopsAnother night of orange caramel sea scallops for us because they are just amazing!!!!!  Scallops get cooked in a caramel sauce with fresh orange juice, white wine and some cold butter whisked in!!!  Such a fast dinner to prepare on a weeknight yet it will taste like you cooked all day! This time I stepped it up by using a blood orange and homemade chicken stock since I ran out of white wine. Try this caramel blood orange sea scallops dish soon!!!!

Caramel Orange Sea Scallops

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup homemade chicken stock (or store bought) or white wine
1 large orange, juiced and slice some for garnish (Use a blood orange if you can!!)
1 lb sea scallops (GREAT from Costco)
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon cold butter

Directions:

Sprinkle the sugar into a small saucepan.

Place the pan over medium-high heat and warm the sugar until it starts to melt and color.

As soon as you see it turn brown, begin to gently swirl the pan.

When the sugar is a deep caramel color, about 3 minutes, stand back and add the stock or white wine and orange juice.

It may bubble and spatter, so watch out.

Turn the heat up to high, stir with a wooden spoon, and boil the sauce until it is reduced by half — you should have about 1/3 cup. Pour into a measuring cup and swirl in the cold butter.  Let sit.

In same pan, heat 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil and swirl to coat the bottom. Add the scallops (pat dry first), season them with salt and pepper, add a little more oil if needed, and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes, or until the scallops are firm on the outside and just barely opaque in the center — nick one to test. Pour on the orange caramel sauce and stir.  Serve over pasta!  Season with salt and pepper to taste!

Adapted from Dorie Greenspan

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Perfect Fudgy Brownies

Love chewy, fudgy brownies? Congratulations! You have found the winning recipe. And the best part? They are so easy to make and come together in just a few minutes. No mixers needed, just your microwave and oven!

fudgy brownies

Recipe for Perfect Fudgy Brownies

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
  • 12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  •  1/2 teaspoon salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350º.
  2. Line 9 x 13 pan with non-stick foil.
  3. Melt the butter and 12 oz. chips in microwave until melted.
  4. Stir in sugar.
  5. Add eggs and vanilla.
  6. Fold in flour and salt.
  7. Pour into your pan and bake 30-35 minutes. 
  8. Cool in pan. T
  9. Then refrigerate for cleaner cutting. Remove using foil as handles.

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Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies!

Chocolate and peanut butter is a wonderful combination.  I love how you swirl peanut butter into this chocolate cookie dough, leaving large streaks running through it!!! Grab a tall glass of cold milk and get baking!
chocolate peanut butter cookies chocolate peanut butter cookies chocolate peanut butter cookies chocolate peanut butter cookies chocolate peanut butter cookies

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1 1/2 cups peanut butter chips
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter chips plus 1/4 cup chocolate chips for the tops

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

  • Line two baking sheets with nonstick silicone baking mats or parchment paper. Set aside.

  • Beat butter in a mixer for about 3 minutes.

  • Slowly  add the sugars until creamy.

  • Add eggs & vanilla.

  • Slowly add flour,  cocoa, soda, salt just until combined.

  • By hand, stir in peanut butter chips.  Stir in peanut butter but keep large streaks running through the dough.

  • Chill dough for a few hours or they will spread too much.  Using a small ice-cream scoop, make mounds of dough. Top each with some peanut butter and chocolate chips to pretty them up!!

  • Bake 10-12 mins.  Let cool on sheets.

  • Store, airtight, at room temperature for up to a week

    Adapted from Milk and Cookies Cookbook, makes about 2 dozen

    CHOCOLATE PB

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Lobster and Crab Over Pasta

lobster and crab

Lobster & Crab Over Pasta

Ingredients:

3 ounces king crab leg meat, cooked

6 ounces raw lobster meat

4 Tablespoons olive oil

4 Tablespoons butter

4 cloves garlic, chopped

1 cup chicken stock (I used homemade)

12 ounces pasta (cooked)

Heat olive oil and butter in pan on medium heat.  Add garlic and cook until fragrant.  Turn heat to high and add 1 cup chicken broth. Let sauce reduce for a few mins, lowering heat to medium-low.  Add salt to taste.  Add the lobster and crab and let simmer in the sauce for a few minutes until the lobster is cooked through.  Pour this all over your pasta! Add salt & pepper to taste.

 

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Twix Brownie Ice Cream Sundae Trifle

Talk about putting an ice cream sundae to shame!  Create it in a trifle bowl and that sundae dish won’t stand a chance!!! This twix brownie ice cream sundae trifle will feed a crowd and won’t keep you in the kitchen for hours!!twxi brownie ice cream sundae trifletwxi brownie ice cream sundae trifle

Twix Brownie Ice Cream Sundae Trifle

Ingredients:

Left over brownies, cut into small squares to fill bottom of trifle dish (I used some extras from Fairytale Brownies but a boxed version is fine, too!)

1/2 gallon ice cream-I used vanilla bean but choose your fave!

caramel sauce (I used this homemade version), store bought is fine, too

hot fudge sauce, store-bought

Huge can of whipped cream

1 bag of Twix minis, chopped (use as many as you’d like, save the rest for another treat!)

1 cherry!

Assembly:

Lay brownies in the bottom.  Top with the entire tub of ice cream.  Pour on some caramel and hot fudge.  Mound up the whipped cream and top with chopped twix bars & a cherry. Dive in!

 

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Red Velvet Oreo Brownies

Oreo brownies are delicious but transform them into red velvet oreo brownies and you’ve got quite a dessert showstopper!  I used the new flavor of oreos in this recipe…cookie dough!!!!  BUT, use any oreos you’d like!!!

red velvet oreo brownies red velvet oreo brownies red velvet oreo brownies red velvet oreo browniesRed Velvet Oreo Brownies

Chocolate Brownies -Ingredients:

1 cup (2 sticks) butter

1 1/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder

2 1/4 cups sugar

4 eggs

1 Tablespoon (3 teaspoons) vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 Tablespoon red food coloring

Directions:

Line a 9 x 13 pan with nonstick foil and preheat oven to 350.  In microwave safe bowl, melt butter.  Stir in cocoa and combine well.  Stir in sugar to combine.  Add vanilla and 1 egg at a time, stirring well between each egg.  Add the flour, salt and baking powder to combine.  Add food coloring.  Pour in pan and bake approx 25 mins.  Cool completely. Then top with the frosting below.

Cookies ‘n Cream Frosting

1/2 cup butter, softened to room temperature
3 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
4-6 Tablespoons heavy cream
10 Oreos, crushed (I used cookie dough flavor)

In a mixer, beat butter and sugar until creamy.  Add cream slowly…you want it to be creamy but thick for easier cutting/serving.  Fold in oreos.  Spread over cooled brownies and chill in fridge while preparing the chocolate ganache below.

Chocolate Ganache

8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate (use bar kind, not chips and break into small pieces)
1 cup heavy cream
4 Tablespoons butter, softened to room temperature

Heat heavy cream in microwave until very hot.  Pour over the chocolate and stir until smooth.   Stir in butter until smooth.  Pour over chilled frosting layer and return to the fridge to chill for an hour.  Cut into squares with a sharp knife.

Recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction

red velvet

Chocolate Brownies -Ingredients:

1 cup (2 sticks) butter

1 1/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder

2 1/4 cups sugar

4 eggs

1 Tablespoon (3 teaspoons) vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder
Directions:

Line a 9 x 13 pan with nonstick foil and preheat oven to 350. In microwave safe bowl, melt butter. Stir in cocoa and combine well. Stir in sugar to combine. Add vanilla and 1 egg at a time, stirring well between each egg. Add the flour, salt and baking powder to combine. Pour in pan and bake approx 25 mins. Cool completely and cut.
- See more at: http://hugsandcookiesxoxo.com/?s=brownies#sthash.TCsrM9vG.dpuf
Cookies ‘n Cream Frosting

1/4 cup (60g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 and 3/4 cups (210g) confectioners’ sugar
2-3 Tablespoons (30-45ml) heavy cream (aka double cream, whipping cream)
6 Oreos, crushed
Make Raspberry-Coconut Chocolate Cupcakes

Chocolate Ganache

4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate*
1/2 cup (120ml) heavy cream (aka double cream, whipping cream)
2 Tablespoons (30g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
Directions:

Set out the butter you’ll need for the frosting and the ganache, so they come to room temperature as you prepare the brownies.
Preheat the oven to 350F degrees. Line an 8×8 baking pan with aluminum foil, leaving enough overhang on the sides to lift the brownies out of the pan. Set aside.
Make the brownies: In a small bowl, beat the 2 eggs together. Set aside. Melt the butter in a large microwave safe bowl in 30 second increments until melted. Stir in 1 cup sugar, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, cocoa powder, salt, food coloring, and vinegar. Mix each of those ingredients into the batter in that order. Whisk in the eggs, then fold in the flour until completely incorporated. Do not overmix. Pour the brownie batter into prepared baking pan. Bake the brownies for 22-24 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out mostly clean, with a few small moist crumbs. Allow the brownies to cool at room temperature for 30 minutes, then transfer to the refrigerator to cool completely.
Make the frosting: With a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high until light and creamy – about 1 minute. Add the confectioners’ sugar and 2 Tbsp cream, beating on medium until creamy. Add 1 more Tbsp cream until the frosting is spreadable consistency. You want it to be thick so that the frosting layer stays neat when you cut into the brownies. Fold in the crushed Oreos. Lift the cooled brownies out of the pan and spread them with the frosting. Stick them into the refrigerator as your prepare the ganache. You want the frosting to slightly chill on the brownies.
Make the ganache: Break up the chocolate into small pieces in a medium bowl. Heat the heavy cream until boiling, either in the microwave or on the stovetop. Pour boiling cream over the chocolate and stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Cut in the butter, one small piece at a time, and stir until smooth. Spread over frosted brownies. Chill for at least 30 minutes before cutting.
Cut the brownies into squares, wiping your large knife off with a wet paper towel between cuts so that the layers stay neat. Cover brownies tightly and keep chilled in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

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Olive Orange Chicken

Good news! Even if you detest olives, you will love this sauce. It’s true, just ask my hubby!!! He would never eat an olive but loves this dish. The trick is to remove the olives before serving..unless you are like me and adore olives. Then, by all means, pile them onto your plate!!! Thisolive orange chicken is a winner!!!!

olive orange chicken olive orange chicken

Olive Orange Chicken

1 package chicken thighs

cornstarch for dredging

olive oil

salt/pepper

1 cup chicken broth (homemade is best)

1 orange, half zested and all of it squeezed for its juice (I like to try different fancy kinds of oranges from Whole Foods)

1 onion, diced

1/2 cup olives

1 tablespoon heavy cream (optional)

  1. Dredge chicken thighs in cornstarch, season with salt/pepper and pan fry in batches to brown in a deep pot.  Remove to plate.
  2. To the oil, add your onion and season with salt and pepper cooking a few mins.
  3. Add chicken broth to deglaze pan and orange juice, scraping up the yummy bits.  Pour in the olives and again season with salt/pepper if needed.  Return chicken to pot and cover for 30 mins on a simmer.  Remove cover and cook 30 more minutes.
  4. Remove chicken and shred it off the bone.
  5. To the sauce, add the cream and then I like to run the sauce through a strainer.  Pour sauce over the chicken and if using the olives, take them out of the strainer and place on top of the chicken.

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