Mamie & Mom’s Fudge

I grew up eating this delicious fudge thinking it was my Mom’s recipe. It was but she clipped the recipe from The Los Angeles Times newspaper when Mamie Eisenhower was First Lady in the 1950’s. This recipe was also known as Million Dollar Fudge. It really tastes like a million dollars. It’s the creamiest dreamiest fudge recipe you have ever tasted. Easy to make, no candy thermometer needed. You will fall in love with this delicious fudge. My kids and family love this recipe.

Ingredients:

12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

12 ounces German’s sweet chocolate, broken into small pieces, that’s 3 boxes of Bakers German Sweet Chocolate

16 ounces marshmallow cream (that’s one large jar and 2 ounces of the smaller jar)

4 1/2 cups sugar

pinch of salt

2 tablespoons butter

1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) canned evaporated milk

2 cups coarsely chopped nuts, optional

In a large bowl, add chocolate chips, 12 ounces of Bakers German Sweet Chocolate, marshmallow cream (fluff) and nuts. Set aside.

Butter the inside of a 13 x 9″ pan.

In a heavy pan, pour in sugar, salt, add butter and evaporated milk. Over medium heat, bring to a boil. Once the sugar mixture is a hard boil, continue to boil for 6 minutes, stirring continuously. Remove from heat and pour syrup over chocolate and marshmallow mixture. Stir until thoroughly combined. Pour into buttered 13 x 9″ pan. Cool until room temperature. Cut into small squares and store in an airtight container. This fudge is great room temperature or stored in the refrigerator. I have made this recipe every year since 1978. Enjoy!

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Christmas Egg Nog Trifle

Ingredients:

1 box of yellow cake mix, I use Duncan Hines

2 8 ounce dairy topping, like Cool Whip, thawed

2 cans of whole berry cranberry sauce

2 Tablespoons hot water

1 bag of Bits of Brittle Toffee Bits

1 box of instant vanilla pudding

1/2 gallon of egg nog

Christmas sprinkles, optional

Gingerbread man cookie, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Make cake according to package directions. Instead of adding water, use one cup of egg nog instead. Bake in a 13 x 9 pan for 23-28 minutes and cool.

Prepare pudding according to package directions. Instead of using milk, use egg nog instead. Beat egg nog and pudding together on high speed for about four minutes. Put in refrigerator to set. That should only take about 5 minutes but you can do this the day before.

Open a can of whole cranberry sauce. Put in a bowl and add 1 Tablespoon of hot water. Stir and this will become smooth and easier to spread. I just opened one can at a time. Easier for me to keep the cranberry layer even.

Cut up cake into pieces and make that the first layer of the trifle. Use the pudding for the next layer. Spread a layer of whip topping on top of the pudding. Add a layer of cranberry sauce. You will use the entire can for each layer. Next sprinkle on the toffee bits and repeat the layers. For the last layer I added a layer of whip topping on top of the cranberry sauce and covered the whip topping with toffee bits. I used a 1M tip to decorate the top of my trifle. Added sprinkles and a Pepperidge Farm gingerbread man cookie. This can be made a day ahead. Keep refrigerated until read to serve. Enjoy!

Peppermint Pound Cake

I have lost count how many Peppermint Pound Cakes I have baked in over 30 years. I have lost count. This cake is moist, and light on the peppermint flavor. It’s not overpowering at all. I have made these and given them to family and friends as gifts and now they expect them. I hope you enjoy this cake as much friends, family and I do. Happy Baking!

Ingredients:

1 box yellow cake mix, Duncan Hines preferred

1 small box of vanilla instant pudding

1 cup water

1/3 cup oil, I used vegetable

4 eggs

1 teaspoon peppermint extract, not mint, there is a difference

One recipe makes 2 large loaf pans.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour your bundt pan or loaf pans*. I used Bakers Joy.

Whisk cake and pudding mixes. Add water and oil and combine. Put the eggs in one at a time and mix well. Add peppermint extract. Pour into prepared pan(s). If you are baking in a bundt pan, bake 45-55 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Loaf pans will bake quicker and the mini loaf pans will bake in 20 minutes or so. Cool bundt pan about 20 minutes and remove to finish cooling. Do not glaze until cake is completely cooled.

**Peppermint Glaze:

1 cup powdered sugar

2-3 Tablespoons milk

1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract

Peppermint Candy Canes, I like the green and red stripe, crushed

Mix together and pour over poundcake(s). Add crushed candy canes.

*This is a wonderful poundcake that makes excellent gifts. You can usually 6-8 mini loaf pans or 2 good size loaf pans. After glaze is set, wrap in plastic wrap and deliver to your friends and family

**Additional glaze may be needed for individual pound cakes.

Peppermint Patty’s Birthday Cake


Today is my blog’s third birthday. At Christmas time, I always make peppermint pound cakes. This year, I wanted to change it a little and make a layer cake. The peppermint is not strong like hard candy. Very mild and delicious. This cake is named after the character on Charlie Brown Christmas. 


Ingredients:

2 1/2 sticks of butter, room temperature 

3 cups of sugar

5 eggs, room temperature 

3 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup milk, room temperature 

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 1/2 teaspoons pure peppermint extract


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 3 nine inch cake pans with a nonstick flour spray and line with parchment paper. Make sure you also spray the parchment paper too.  


Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy with a stand mixer. Add eggs one at a time and fully incorporate. In a separate bowl, whisk flour, baking powder and salt together. Add extracts to your cup of milk. Alternate flour and milk adding it to the butter/sugar mixture. Make sure you end up with flour, scraping down the sides of your mixing bowl frequently. 
Pour batter into cake pans evenly. Bake for 20-30 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean. Let cool in pan 10 minutes before removing and placed on a cooling rack.  Cakes must be completely cooled before frosting. 


Peppermint Whip Cream Frosting:

1 8 ounce block of cream cheese, room temperature 

1 quart of heavy whipping cream

2 teaspoons pure peppermint extract 

1 3/4 cups powdered sugar

Candy canes, crushed, optional

Place mixing bowl and attachment in refrigerator for 30 minutes. Whip up cream cheese until smooth. Add extracts. Blend well and add powdered sugar. Pour in heavy cream and whip into stiff peaks. Frost and decorate your cake as desired. 
This is a mild and light peppermint taste.  It’s not strong, so if you are expecting it to taste like hard peppermint candy, it will not. It’s refreshing and delicious. Enjoy!  Happy Birthday Peppermint Patty!

Egg Nog Mousse

I love egg nog. I knew when I made my pumpkin mousse that eventually I would get around to making egg nog mouse. This recipe does not disappoint. A light creamy dessert that is perfect for the holidays.

Ingredients:
1 8 ounce block of cream cheese, room temperature

1 cup eggnog

3 teaspoons of cornstarch

8 ounces of heavy whipping cream

2 teaspoons of nutmeg

3/4 cups of powdered sugar

Whip cream for garnish, optional

Nutmeg for garnish, optional

In a chilled mixing bowl that has been refrigerated a minimum of 20 minutes (attachment too) blend cream cheese in a chilled bowl until smooth. Add egg nog and blend until smooth. Add cornstarch and combine. Pour in whipping cream and add nutmeg and whip into stiff peaks. Add powdered sugar. Pour into bowls and refrigerate several hours or overnight until set. Garnish with whip cream and nutmeg.   Makes  6  one cup servings. Enjoy!

St. Nick’s Orange Cranberry Bliss Cookies

I had planned on baking cranberry and white chocolate chip cookies for Christmas. This recipe was inspired by my friend Nick, who was telling me about an orange cranberry cocktail. I thought orange (!)…what a great edition to my upcoming cookies. I thought of using white chocolate chips because my silly friend Lisa does not like chocolate chips.  Lisa and Nick, thank you for being my inspiration on these delicious cookies. I must say, these cookies remind me of a certain bliss bar sold at a popular coffee place. 

  
Ingredients:

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup vegetable shortening, I used the white Crisco

3/4 cups granulated sugar

3/4 cups light brown sugar

2 eggs, room temperature 

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 1/2 teaspoons grated orange zest

1 1/2 cups dried cranberries, I used Craisins

1 bag of white chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

In a separate bowl, combine and whisk dry ingredients. Set aside. 

  
Blend together vegetable shortening and sugars. Add eggs one at a time. Mix in vanilla. Add dry ingredients and mix to combine. Lastly, add orange zest, Craisens and white chocolate chips. Drop by tablespoons and bake 8-10 minutes. Cool cookies completely and store in an airtight container. Enjoy!  

  

Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

What could be better than a slice of cheesecake?  A mini cheesecake that is the size of a cupcake. These cheesecakes can be made with gluten free cookies for a 100% gluten free dessert. Or use regular cookies, I have made them both ways. The cheesecakes can be made several days ahead and top with whip cream right before serving.


Ingredients:

12 cupcake liners*

12 cookies*, I used gingersnap, I found gluten free gingersnaps at my local grocery store

1 8 ounce package cream cheese, room

temperature

2/3 cup sugar

1 egg

3/4 cup plus 2 Tablespoons pumpkin purée, not pie filling

1/2 cup sour cream

1 Tablespoon of cornstarch

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1/4 teaspoon salt

Whip cream for garnish, optional

Nutmeg for garnish on whip cream, optional

Nutmeg, chopped pecans for garnish, optional

 The cookie is the perfect crust for the mini cheesecakes.  
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 12 tins with cupcake liners. Place gingersnap cookies in cupcake liners flat side down.  Mix cream cheese and sugar, blend well. Add egg, pumpkin, sour cream, cornstarch, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice and salt. Mix well. Divide batter evenly into the 12 liners. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes until done. Let cool. Cool completely before topping with whip cream and garnishes. Serve guests without cupcake liners on the mini cheesecakes.


*Recipe yields 12 – 14 mini cheesecakes

You will have leftover pumpkin purée.  I suggest you add it to your pancake/waffle batter for delicious pancakes or waffles. Or use it in a smoothie.