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Stuffed Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

Stuffed Strawberries

Valentine’s Day is drawing near and I always get SUPER excited. You see in the Porter House Valentine’s Day for my husband & I is like Christmas for the kids. Yes! Valentine’s Day. A day filled with Love and Romance and Passion and Kisses and Candy and Flowers and Dinner and ok ok you already know. But even though the Porter’s are like that 365, 24/7 …. It’s just something about February the 14. It’s like EXTRA Special. A day designed for LOVE. I know by now you are like Tameca .. the strawberries ??? OK! enough rambling so I guess i’ll move on. Soooo just when you think chocolate covered strawberries were the belle of the ball, thebomb.com, the Pièce de résistance. BAM! The world is introduced to stuffed chocolate dipped strawberries. Talk about a Oh, My Goodness moment. I don’t know who came up with the concept but they got a sure winner with me. #WishingIHadSomeNow

Ingredients

  • 12 strawberries
  • 3/4 c milk chocolate chips (can use semi-sweet)
  • 3 oz cream cheese
  • 2 – 3 Tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • chopped almonds, nuts, graham cracker crumbs (optional for garnish)

Instructions

  1. Rinse and halve strawberries lengthwise. Core out the center but leave the stem on. Dry on paper towels.
  2. Melt chocolate in microwave bowl until melted…stirring regularly.
  3. Line a cookie sheet with wax paper.
  4. Hold strawberry by the stem and dip in the chocolate, covering half of the strawberry. Place on the wax paper lined sheet.
  5. Beat together cream cheese, powdered sugar, and almond extract. Spoon into a pastry bag. Pipe into strawberries. Sprinkle the nuts or graham cracker crumbs on top for garnish (optional).
  6. Enjoy with your Sweetie & a glass of wine or champagne.

Mason Jar Breakfast Parfait

Breakfast Parfaits

I love breakfast but there are times when I don’t feel the desire to whip out the pot & pan. Or when I simply crave something other than my usual “Green Smoothie”. This recipe is a great way to eat on the go & still be healthy. It also makes for a perfect snack.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup low fat Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup granola, any variety
  • 1 cup washed & cut seasonal fruit (blueberries, strawberries, figs, peaches, raspberries).
  • 1 TBSP honey
  • 1 pint size mason jar w/ lid
  • spoon

Instructions

In a mason jar add the yogurt and then fruit. Drizzle honey on top. Add granola last so it stays crisp. (Optional: Sprinkle parfait with a little cinnamon). Don’t forget to grab a spoon.

Homemade Granola Bars

Granola Bar

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ¼ cup brown sugar, packed
  • ¼ cup peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups quick cooking (1 minute) oats
  • ½ cup Rice Krispies cereal
  • 1 cup m & m’s
  • 1 cup chocolate chips, melted (optional drizzle)

Instructions

  1. In a nonstick pan over medium-low heat, melt the butter.
  2. Stir in the honey, brown sugar, and peanut butter.
  3. Bring to a very light simmer.
  4. Simmer for 2 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat.
  6. Stir in vanilla extract.
  7. Stir in oats and Rice Krispies until completely coated.
  8. Press mixture into a 8 x 8 inch pan lined with greased parchment paper. Be sure to press down really firm.
  9. Sprinkle the top with m&m’s and press them into the mixture.
  10. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until firm.
  11. Remove from pan and cut into bars with a sharp knife.
  12. Drizzle on the melted chocolate.
  13. Refrigerate until chocolate has set.
  14. Store in the fridge or in airtight container. (I prefer fridge)
  15. Eat & Enjoy!

Frozen Nutella Hot Chocolate

Frozen Hot Chocolate

Who loves a big cup of cocoa on a cold winter’s day? I sure do. But then there are those times when only a frothy, cold, chocolaty beverage will do. And that is exactly what this recipe is; Pure Nuetella Bliss and the best part of all it is SUPER easy to make & very affordable too. So say buh-bye to those overpriced ones at the coffee house and become your very own barista today!

Ingredients

  • 4 oz milk chocolate chips
  • ½ cup Nutella spread
  • 1 (1.25 oz) packet hot chocolate mix
  • 1½ cup coconut milk, divided (can use other kinds of milk)
  • 3-4 cups ice (may need more or less)
  • whip cream (garnish)
  • sugar (optional)

Instructions

  1. In a double boiler add milk chocolate chips and stir occasionally until melted.
  2. Stir in Nutella until combined.
  3. Stir in hot chocolate mix
  4. Stir in ½ cup coconut milk until incorporated.
  5. Remove from heat and let chocolate cool to room temperature.
  6. In a blender, add the remaining 1 cup coconut milk, chocolate mixture, and ice.
  7. Blend until ice is completely crushed.
  8. Pour into glasses.
  9. Garnish with whip cream and mini chocolate chips.
  10. Add a straw, serve & enjoy!

Easy Blackberry Cheese Danish

Ingredients

for the danish:

  • 1 tube Pillsbury crescent rolls
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries

for the icing:

  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a small bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, flour and vanilla. Set aside.

2. Pop open crescent roll dough and unroll, leaving crescents in rectangles. On an ungreased baking sheet or silpat, lay the crescent roll rectangles together, lining them up width wise. Dough should be almost the entire length of a half sheet pan. Press edges together to even out edges and seal any holes. Cut 1/2 inch diagonal strips up each side of the dough. Carefully spread cream cheese filling down the center of the dough to be about 2-3 inches wide. Top with fresh blackberries. Fold 1/2 inch dough pieces up over filling alternating sides to get a braided pattern. You may have excess dough once you reach the end of the danish, so fold them in as best as you can.

3. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until filling is set and crescent dough is golden in color. Cool before removing from baking sheet.

4. Once danish has cooled, remove to serving platter. In a small bowl, mix together powdered sugar, vanilla and cream to create icing. You may need to add more cream to get the desired consistency. Drizzle icing over danish. Cut into pieces and serve.

*CHEF”S TIP – This recipe is perfect for you to BYOC (Be Your Own Chef). Dont like blackberries no problem just use whatever fruit you like best. The possibilities are endless.

Chocolate Caramel Brownies

Makes 24 brownies

INGREDIENTS:

For the brownies:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
  • 12 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1½ cups pecans, coarsely chopped (optional, I didn’t use any)
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

For the caramel filling:

  • 14 ounces caramel candies, unwrapped
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat the oven to 350˚ F. Line a 9×13-inch baking pan with foil and grease the foil well with butter or cooking spray. In a large, microwave-safe bowl, combine the chopped chocolate and butter. Microwave in intervals of 1 minute at 50% power until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth, stirring in between intervals. Whisk in the sugar, eggs and vanilla until incorporated. Stir in the flour and salt just until combined. Spread about half of the brownie batter in the bottom of the prepared pan in an even layer. Bake for 18 minutes. Remove from the oven (keep the oven on!) and let the brownies cool for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, add the chopped pecans (if using) to a medium skillet over medium heat. Toast, stirring occasionally, until fragrant and light golden brown. Remove from the heat and set aside. To make the caramel filling, combine the caramels and cream in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds at 50% power. Stir. Repeat the process, keeping a close eye on the mixture as it can burn very easily (make sure you use low heat in the microwave). Continue the microwave process until the caramels and cream are melted and combined. Stir in half of the pecans to the caramel mixture. Immediately spread the caramel mixture over the bottom brownie layer. Scoop the remaining brownie batter in spoonfuls over the caramel layer and spread it evenly across the caramel layer (spooning the batter in piles over the caramel will help to get an even layer of batter over the caramel). Sprinkle the chocolate chips and the remaining pecans on top of the final brownie layer. Bake for 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely before slicing and serving. I found the brownies sliced easier once they had been cooled and refrigerated for an hour or two.
Lift the brownies from the pan using the edges of the foil. Remove the foil and cut the brownies into individual squares. Store in an airtight container.

Recipe & Photo Credit is courtesy of: Six Sisters’ Stuff

Jacques Torres’ Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes twenty-six 5-inch cookies or 8 1/2 dozen 1 1/4-inch cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 1/4 cups packed light-brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3 cups plus 2 tablespoons pastry flour
  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 pounds bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or nonstick baking mats; set aside.

2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugars.

3. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.

4. Reduce speed to low and add both flours, baking powder, baking soda, vanilla, and chocolate; mix until well combined.

5. Using a 4-ounce scoop for larger cookies or a 1-ounce scoop for smaller cookies, scoop cookie dough onto prepared baking sheets, about 2 inches apart.

6. Bake until lightly browned, but still soft, about 20 minutes for larger cookies and about 15 minutes for smaller cookies.

7. Cool slightly on baking sheets before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

8. Serve & Enjoy with a cold glass of milk.

Loaded Cookie Dough Dip

Ingredients

  • 8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1/2 Cup Butter, softened
  • 1 Cup Creamy Peanut Butter
  • 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1 Cup Oats (regular or quick)
  • 1 Cup Miniature Plain M&Ms
  • 1 Cup Miniature Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

Instructions

1. Mix cream cheese, butter, vanilla and peanut butter until smooth. Stir in brown sugar and powdered sugar, mixing well. Next fold in oats, m&ms and chocolate chips.

2. Serve with pretzels or graham cracker sticks or your favorite dippers.

Monster Cookies

Monster cookies aren’t anything new. They’ve been around a very long time. They are basically a peanut butter- oatmeal cookie with chocolate chips and M&M candies mixed in. Just imagine sinking your teeth into these chewy and bumpy like texture cookies. You immediately notice the irresistible duo of peanut butter and chocolate and almost instantly there’s that crunch from the m & m’s. So many beautiful things are going on in your mouth that it’s like having a taste overload. Okay enough talking about it. It’s time to BAKE!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups creamy or chunky peanut butter
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 4 1/2 cups quick cooking oats
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup M&M’s plain chocolate candies

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray cookie sheets with nonstick spray, or line with parchment paper or a silpat mats.

2. In a large bowl, combine the peanut butter with the sugars and butter. Use an electric mixer to mix until well combined. Mix in the eggs and vanilla. Mix in the oats and baking soda. Then stir in the chips and M&M’s.

3. Drop the cookies by heaping spoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheets. If you’d like your cookies to look pretty (like the photo), dot a few extra M&M’s and chocolate chips on each mound of dough before baking.

4. Bake 10 to 12 minutes. Do not overbake. Cool for 5 minutes on cookie sheets until cookies are set. Transfer to wire racks; cool completely before storing in an airtight container.

*CHEF’S TIP – These cookie store great in the freezer.

Bubble Up Pizza Casserole

Ingredients

  • 1 pound 96% lean ground beef or ground turkey
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder, or 1 onion, chopped
  • 16 ounces tomato sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 15 ounces refrigerated buttermilk biscuits, buttermilk
  • Add whatever typical pizza toppings you like, green pepper, turkey pepperoni, mushrooms, etc.
  • 1 1/4 cups part skim milk mozzarella cheese, shredded

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. In skillet, brown meat over medium high heat until browned, stirring to crumble. Stir in onion powder, tomato sauce, basil, garlic and Italian seasoning.

2. Add quartered biscuits; stir gently until biscuits are covered with sauce. Mix in toppings of your choosing. Spoon mixture into a 9×13 inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake for 25 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese; bake an additional 10 minutes or until biscuits are done. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Source: Weight Watcher Boards