CARROT BUNDT CAKE WITH CINNAMON CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

2016-02-28 22.33.50_cropCarrot Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese

 

     What, oh what do you do when you’re craving a carrot cake and discover you don’t have enough carrots?  Ugh, this is what happened to me.  I grated every carrot I had and was one cup short.  What to do?  What to do?  Drive to the store?  Nah.  Figure something out.  That’s more my style.  The cake was delicious, and healthier, too!  Less sugar, and I snuck in something that nobody detected.  

INGREDIENTS: 

2 cups grated carrots

½ cup Quick Cook oatmeal

4 eggs

1 ¾ cup sugar

1 cup Canola oil

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

1 ¾ cup flour

¼ cup chopped dates

Optional:  Chopped nuts

 

PREPARATION:

Grate carrots and set aside.  While you’re grating, let your mixer do the work.  Mix oatmeal, eggs, sugar and oil.  Add powder and salt, mixing to incorporate.  Add flour and beat for a few minutes.  Stir in dates.  (Add nuts now if you’re using them).

Pour into prepared pan.

Bake at 335° F  Use toothpick test.

Bundt cake 35-40 min

Cupcakes 21-23 min, depending on how full you fill the pan

9 x 13 I’m guessing about 30 min

8 x 8 or 9 x 9 I’m guessing about 20-25 min

NOTE:  Adding the oatmeal early gave it a chance to soften and become smaller.  Totally undetectable this way.

CINNAMON CREAM CHEESE FROSTING: 

     You can make it a little thicker or thinner by slightly adjusting the addition of half and half.  Cinnamon lovers will rejoice when they taste this.

INGREDIENTS:

4 oz cream cheese, softened

½ stick butter, softened

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp cinnamon

3 TBSP half and half

2 cups confectioner’s sugar

 

PREPARATION:

Mix cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy.  Add vanilla, cinnamon and half and half, mixing to combine.  Slowly add confectioner’s sugar and beat on medium speed until no lumps remain.

NOTE:  Must be refrigerated.

 

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2016

 

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Carrot CakeCarrot Cake (3)Carrot Cake (4)Carrot Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese

 

 

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HOMEMADE GRANOLA

granola

     I love granola, especially if it has cinnamon in it.  This recipe that I came up with combines lots of healthy ingredients.  Eat it by the handful, sprinkle on oatmeal, fresh fruit, yogurt, etc.  Keep a container in your desk for a quick snack at work!  Take it on hikes or camping.  Put some in a baggie and into your child’s pocket when they are going out to play.  Stick some in your car and you can sell it during traffic jams.  (J/K, but I think people would pay!)  Anytime you have a snack attack, this granola is perfect.  Having a party?  Set some out in small bowls.  I guarantee people will love it!  Just wait until you smell it baking.  It’s heavenly.

INGREDIENTS:

4 cups quick oats

½ cup walnuts, chopped or halved

½ cup almonds, chopped or halved

½ cup dried cranberries

¼  cup ground flax seed

¼  Wheat germ

¼ cup Shredded coconut

½ cup olive oil

½ cup brown sugar

½ cup honey

2 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp vanilla

PREPARATION:

    Preheat oven to 275°F

In a large bowl, combine oats, walnuts, almonds, Craisins, flax seed, wheat germ, and coconut.

In a microwavable bowl, blend together olive oil, brown sugar, oil, honey and cinnamon.  Cook until barely bubbling.  Remove, add vanilla and stir to combine.

Pour over oatmeal mixture and stir well.  Spread on large ungreased baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.  Stir, return to oven for another 15 minutes.

Store in airtight container.

Makes a great gift in a pretty jar!

NOTE:  Granola is one of those perfect things to customize.  Change out the nuts, add dried fruit, have fun with it.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2016

Granola (2)

KING CRAB LEGS ON THE GRILL

King Crab Legs on the Grill

 

CHEW WANNA EAT?
KING CRAB LEGS ON THE GRILL

Oh yeah! I’d eat them every day. Crab legs are precooked, just heat and eat! Don’t forget the butter and lemon.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2016

CREAM PUFFS, for Dinner, Dessert, Lunch

CREAM PUFFS_crop

     This is the recipe my mother used when we were kids.  It’s the one I still use today.  It’s easy, and you can do so much with cream puffs.  I once threw a baby shower and served cream puffs instead of cake.  I offered an assortment of ice cream and each guest filled their own puff with ice cream, replaced the cover and drizzled hot fudge or caramel sauce and a plop of whipped cream on top.  The ladies went crazy over them!

 

     Here are some other great ways to fill homemade cream puffs:

          Homemade cream filling

         Lemon curd or any flavor pudding

           Tuna salad, ham salad, egg salad, etc.

           BBQ beef, pork, or chicken

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup water

½ cup butter

1 cup AP flour

¼ tsp salt

4 eggs

 PREPARATION:

In a medium sized saucepan, bring water and butter to a boil.  Sift flour and salt into boiling liquid.  Stir until a ball forms and leaves the sides of the pan.  Remove from heat and cool slightly.

Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition.  Drop by spoonfuls on greased sheet.

Bake at 450° F for ten minutes, then lower oven to 400° F and continue baking for twenty five minutes.  Cool before filling.

NOTE:  You can make mini cream puffs also.  Just adjust baking time.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2016

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TERIYAKI MARINATED PORK TENDERLOIN

Teriyaki Pork Tenderloin

I have had this recipe for over 45 years. It has NEVER let me down. It works great on just about anything, but my very favorite way to use is marinating shrimp and then skewering them. They cook on the grill in no time at all. Please do try this marinade on beef, chicken, fish or pork.

INGREDIENTS:
¾ cup canola oil
¼ cup low sodium soy sauce
¼ cup local raw honey
2 TBSP cider vinegar
3 TBSP onion, chopped
2-4 cloves garlic, minced
About an inch of fresh ginger root, peeled and chopped (You can use 1 ½ tsp of ginger powder, but fresh root is best).

PREPARATION:
Mix all ingredients in the bowl you will marinate your food in. Add the food, turn it over, cover and chill. Shrimp will marinate in a matter of hours. If you’re doing a roast, it will need at least two days to adequately marinate.

You can bake, fry or grill, but we prefer grilling everything.  The secret to great pork is not overcooking it.  It will dry out and become tough.  Cook only until meat reaches 160° F.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2016

 

Teriyaki Pork Tenderloin (3)Teriyaki Pork TenderloinTeriyaki Pork Tenderloin (2)

 

HOMEMADE PEANUT BUTTER

Peanut Butter

     Economical and purely healthy – that’s my favorite.  This peanut butter is a cinch to make, and very delicious.  What better rainy day project for you and the kids than making homemade peanut butter.  It’s great for your dogs, also.  There is no Xylitol in it.  Natural peanut butter without all the additives is very expensive.  This?  Not so much.  Not even close.

Serve it with crackers, sliced apples, bread, toast, English muffins, stir a little in your oatmeal, cook with it.  Gee, the possibilities are endless.

INGREDIENTS:  Makes about 1 ½ cups peanut butter.

2 cups dry roasted peanuts

2 dashes salt

Drizzle of honey (a few teaspoons)

Blend until desired consistency is reached.  You can make it as smooth or crunchy style as you’d like.  Depending on your blender, it can take anywhere from 3 – 5 minutes.  Store uneaten portion in refrigerator.  If you see oil on the top?  That’s what natural peanut butter does.  Stir it and it will be fine.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2016

Peanut Butter (3)Peanut Butter (2)

Peanut Butter (2)

HAM SALAD

Ham Salad (5)

     One of my favorite things to do with leftover ham is to make ham salad.  This is how we like ours, but know that you can customize it to your own liking.  The secret to getting kids to eat it is to tell them that it’s dip.  They’ll love it.  Silly kids, but I do love tricking them into trying something new. 

INGREDIENTS: 

4 cups ham, chopped

1 celery rib

6 – 7 Sweet Gherkin pickles

2 TBSP onion, chopped fine

2 TBSP spicy brown or Dijon mustard

Pepper to taste

1 – ¼ cup mayo

Optional:  Chopped hard boiled egg

PREPARATION: 

Place ham in food processor and chop or mince to your desired size.  Remove to a serving bowl.  In processor, pulse celery, pickles, and onion until finely chopped, and add to ham.  Add pepper and mayo, stirring to combine.  

Serve on bread, crackers, toast points, croissants, ciabatta bread, or rolled in a lettuce leaf.

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HAM SALAD

Ham salad (2)

Ham Salad (3)

Ham Salad (4)

Ham Salad (5)

TEXAS SHEET CAKE, MY FAVORITE

Texas Sheet Cake

     This is the best Texas sheet cake I’ve ever had, and therefore, the only recipe I ever use.  It’s very easy to make, however, I would like to caution you to the fact that the butter, condensed milk, cocoa, and vanilla are all divided, so please pay attention to the prep instructions when adding your ingredients. 

INGREDIENTS:

1 ¼ cups butter (divided)

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa, divided

1/2 cup brewed coffee

½ cup water

2 cups AP flour

1 ½ cups brown sugar

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp salt

1 (14 oz can) sweetened condensed milk (divided)

2 eggs

1 ½ tsp vanilla extract (divided)

1 cup confectioner’s sugar

¾ cup chopped nuts (I like walnuts)

 

CAKE PREPARATION:

In a small saucepan, melt 1 cup butter, add ¼ cup cocoa powder, coffee, and water.  Bring to a simmer, stir well and remove from heat.  (Save the pan, you’ll use it again later.)

In mixer bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.  Mix with whisk until incorporated.  Add cocoa/butter mixture and beat well.  Add 1/3 cup condensed milk, eggs, and 1 tsp vanilla.  Pour into greased 15” x 10” pan.  (A cookie sheet work great.  Just measure it first).

Bake at 350° F for approximately 15 – 17 minutes.  Cake will spring back when it’s done.  Remove from oven and make frosting.

FROSTING:

In the same small saucepan, melt remaining ¼ cup butter, ¼ cup cocoa powder, remaining condensed milk, dash of salt, 1/2 tsp vanilla, and confectioner’s sugar.  Stir over medium/low heat until smooth and no lumps of sugar or cocoa remain.  Add the nuts and pour over warm cake.

Texas Sheet Cake (2)

Texas Sheet Cake Frosting

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Texas Sheet Cake Frosting (2)

Texas Sheet Cake Frosting (3)

Texas Sheet Cake

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2016

 

MONGOLIAN BEEF (ASIAN)

Spicy Mongolian Beef

     This dish is so good, and the fact that it’s inexpensive and cooked in the pressure cooker makes it all that much better.  It cooked in 30 minutes.  I’ve given instructions for slow cooker and wok, also.  Feel free to adjust the spiciness.  For us, 1 tsp of crushed red pepper was perfect.  If you want to kick it up a notch, do it.

 

INGREDIENTS:  YIELD 6 SERVINGS 

1 ½ lbs flank steak, tenderloin, or beef stew meat, sliced in thin strips

¼ cup low sodium soy sauce

1 TBSP brown sugar

1 TBSP sesame oil

1 TBSP hoison

4 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 TBSP)

1 tsp crushed red pepper

¼ tsp ginger powder

1 large onion, sliced top to bottom

½ bunch asparagus, cut into bite sized pieces

3 mini sweet peppers, sliced

 

PREPARATION:

In a small bowl, stir soy, brown sugar, sesame oil, hoison, garlic, red pepper, and ginger powder.  Pour over sliced meat and let marinate for at least four hours.

We like to sear the meat quickly in the pressure cooker.  Add the liquid and meat, cook on High for 20 minutes.  Add the vegetables and cook on Low for 10 minutes.  Serve over rice.  You can garnish with a few slices of green onion and a bit of sesame seeds.

If you’re using a slow cooker, you can add meat and vegetables at one time and cook on High heat for 2 – 3 hours, or low heat 4 – 5 hours, until meat is tender.

If you prefer a wok or large skillet, preheat the wok, add a bit of peanut oil or olive oil.  Cook vegetables first for about a minute.  Add beef and cook, stirring constantly until beef is no longer pink and beginning to brown on the outside.

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HAM AND CABBAGE, New England Boiled Dinner

Ham and Cabbage

If you grew up in New England, chances are you ate this comfort food regularly.  It can be prepared in a slow cooker or on top of the stove.  Here is how I make mine. 

INGREDIENTS:

1 small ham or 2 ham hocks

4 large carrots

5 potatoes

½ head cabbage, cut into chunks

1 rib celery

12 pearl onions or 1 large onion, quartered

1 can chicken broth

1 whole clove

1 tsp thyme

½ tsp pepper

 

PREPARATION:

Cook in a slow cooker for 4 hours on high or 8 hours on low.  If preparing on a stove top, put the meat in a Dutch oven and simmer the meat for about 90 minutes, covered.  Add the veggies and cook until they’re tender.

NOTE:  I don’t use any salt because the ham and chicken broth have enough.

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Ham and cabbage (3)Ham and Cabbage (2)