Easy, Breezy Chocolate Truffles

This past weekend, I was craving anything chocolate, but didn’t want to put forth much effort into making a yummy treat. So, I made these easy, breezy chocolate truffles. And trust me, they are very easy to make.

Ingredients:

12 0z. bag milk chocolate chips

1/4 cup sour cream

2 Tbs. almond flavoring

Powdered sugar

Directions:

  1. In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the chocolate chips on medium for 3-4 minutes, stirring halfway through.
  2. Once done melting, stir until completely smooth.
  3. Mix in the sour cream and almond flavoring and blend well.
  4. Refrigerate for 30-60 minutes.
  5. Roll into 3/4 inch. balls and then roll into powdered sugar.

Enjoy!

 

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Apple Pie Cupcakes

During the fall, I love apple recipes! Apple tarts, apple pies – if it has apple in it, I’m going to eat it. So, what better way to enjoy the season than with these lovely apple pie cupcakes?

Ingredients:

  • 1 box white or yellow cake mix plus box ingredients
  • 20 oz. apple pie filling
  • 1 cup softened butter
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp. milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to the temperature on the cake box. Line muffin tins with paper liners.
  2. Prepare cake batter as stated on box. Fill liners 2/3 full and bake according to the directions. Allow to cool completely.
  3. Use a knife to dice apples into smaller pieces.
  4. Core out the middle of each cupcake and fill with pie filling.
  5. Place the cored piece of cake back onto the cupcake.
  6. Whip the butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla with mixer until fluffy. Gradually add in the powdered sugar and milk until you reach desired consistency.
  7. Pipe the frosting onto each cupcake.

Enjoy!

Churro Cupcakes

Happy Cinco de Mayo! Add these festive cupcakes to your celebration today! (You can thank me later 🙂 )

Ingredients:

Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar, plus 2 tablespoons for dusting
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups milk

Cinnamon Sugar Topping:

  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 (8 ounce) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 5 cups confectioners’ sugar

Directions:

Cupcakes:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners.
  2. Whisk together both flours, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
  3. Cream butter and sugar until fluffy with electric mixer on high-speed.
  4. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated.
  5. Beat in vanilla.
  6. Reduce speed to low.
  7. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of milk, and beating until combined after each.
  8. Fill each cupcake liner three-quarters full.
  9. Bake 20 minutes.
  10. Let cool.

Cinnamon Sugar Topping:

  1. In a small bowl melt butter.
  2. In another small bowl combine the sugar and cinnamon.
  3. When cupcakes are completely cooled, brush melted butter on the tops and dip into the cinnamon sugar mixture.

 

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting:

  1. In a medium bowl, beat butter and cream cheese until light.
  2. Mix in vanilla and cinnamon; add confectioners’ sugar 1 cup at a time until all is incorporated.

Enjoy!

Source: http://www.ladybehindthecurtain.com/churro-cupcakes/

Southern Belle Sugar Cookies

Everyone has a bit of a sweet teeth now and then. So, why not indulge in these delicious sugar cookies?

Ingredients:

1 cup butter

1 cup powdered sugar

1 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

1 cup oil

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

1/2 teaspoon salt

5 cups flour

Granulated sugar for dipping

Directions:

1. In a medium bowl, cream butter, powdered sugar, and granulated sugar together.

2. Beat in eggs until smooth.

3. Stir in the remaining ingredients.

4. Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. Shape mixture into small balls and dip into sugar.

5. Place on baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes.

Enjoy!

A Southern State of Mind

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Raleigh, North Carolina 

Who’s hungry? Check out my favorite places to eat in the state capital.

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42nd St. Oyster Bar and Seafood Grill

A perfect place to get some oysters and seafood!

Source: http://www.visitraleigh.com/listings/42nd-St-Oyster-Bar-Seafood-Grill/58234/?maxshow=10

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Andy’s Wings and Burgers

Want some down-home comfort food? Visit Andy’s! This restaurant is a great spot, located in the heart of the city.

Source: http://www.visitraleigh.com/listings/Andy-s-Wings-Burgers/60098/?maxshow=10

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Carolina Barbecue of Garner 

You can’t visit a Southern city without having some delicious BBQ. No matter what’s your BBQ style, one thing is for sure-this place is delicious.

Source: http://www.visitraleigh.com/listings/Carolina-Barbecue-of-Garner/66241/?maxshow=20

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Cappolla’s Pizza and Grill 

 Grab a slice of pizza and enjoy some Italian food, below the Mason Dixon line!

Source: http://www.cappollascary.com/home

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Baker’s Dozen Donuts 

Anyone with a sweet tooth will love this spot! Visitors can feast upon tasty donuts, before touring around the city!

Source: http://www.yelp.com/biz/bakers-dozen-donuts-raleigh

Homemade Thin Mints

It’s Girl Scouts cookie season and that means only one thing–everyone is craving the different kinds of cookies, especially Thin Mints. Since the cookie season only comes once a year, here is a recipe for Homemade Thin Mints for all year long.

Ingredients:

Cookie:

    • 1 cup  butter, at room temperature
    • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    • 1 cup powdered sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • Âľ teaspoon salt
    • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
Coating:
  • 16 ounces semi-sweet baking chocolate
  • 1 ½ teaspoon peppermint extract or oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Cream butter until light and fluffy, then add the powdered sugar. Mix until combined.
  3. Stir in the salt, vanilla and cocoa powder. Mix until the cocoa powder is integrated and the batter resembles a thick frosting. Add the flour and mix just until the flour is combined.
  4. Form dough into a ball. Knead a few times to bring together, then flatten into a disk between half an inch and one inch thick. Cover in plastic wrap then place in freezer for 15 minutes.
  5. Remove dough from the freezer and roll it out really thin on a floured surface, about 1/8-inch. Cut cookies using 1 1/2-inch cutter.
  6. Place cookies on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the cookies from the oven and allow them to cool completely on a wire rack.
  7. While the cookies bake, make the peppermint coating. Chop the baking chocolate into very small, thin pieces. Place in a glass measuring cup or similar container and microwave in short 15-20 second bursts. Stir in the peppermint extract.
  8. Gently drop the cookies, one at a time, into the coating, covering completely. Place on a parchment and in the refrigerator to set.

Enjoy!

Source: http://theviewfromgreatisland.com/2012/03/homemade-thin-mints.html

Chocolate Chip Danish

About to be stuck inside for a snow day? Savor the day with this sweet treat!

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Ingredients:

  • 1 can Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
  • 1 8oz package cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips

Directions:

1. Heat oven at 350°F. Grease cookie sheet or line with parchment paper.

2. Unroll crescent dough onto cookie sheet and press into about 16×10-inch rectangle. With sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut 1 1/2-inch-long slanted cuts 1 inch apart along both long sides of rectangle, leaving center of dough uncut. Make sure you have the same amount of cut strips on both sides.

3. In medium bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla. Spread mixture onto center of dough. Sprinkle chocolate chips over cream cheese mixture.

4. Braid dough by crossing strips over filling, alternating from side to side. At end, trim off any overhanging dough.

5. Bake 20 to 22 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool and cut into slices to serve.

Enjoy!

Source: http://www.pillsbury.com/everyday-eats/breakfast-brunch/ditch-the-bakery-diy-chocolate-chip-danish?nicam4=SocialMedia&nichn4=Pinterest&niseg4=Pinterest&nicreatID4=Post&crlt.pid=camp.EyjOqlfqCUxF

King Cake

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Enjoy a New Orleans’ favorite-King Cake!

Ingredients: 

1 16 oz. container sour cream
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 oz. envelopes active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1 tablespoon sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
6 to 6 1/2 cups bread flour
1/3 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Small plastic baby
Glaze:
Purple, green, and gold sparkling sugar sprinkles
Directions:

1. Cook the sour cream, sugar, butter, and salt in a medium saucepan over low heat, stirring often, until butter melts. Set aside

2. Stir together yeast, 1/2 cup warm water, and 1 tablespoon sugar in a bowl and let stand 5 minutes.

3. Beat sour cream mixture, yeast mixture, eggs, and 2 cups flour at medium speed until smooth. Reduce speed to low, and gradually add enough remaining flour (4 to 4 1/2 cups) until a soft dough forms.

4.Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Place in a well-greased bowl, turning to grease top.

5. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until dough is doubled in bulk.

6. Punch down dough, and divide in half. Roll each portion into a 22- x 12-inch rectangle. Spread 1/3 cup softened butter evenly on each rectangle, leaving a 1-inch border. Stir together 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon, and sprinkle evenly over butter on each rectangle.

7. Roll up each dough rectangle, jelly-roll fashion. Place one dough roll, seam side down, on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bring ends of roll together to form an oval ring, moistening and pinching edges together to seal. Repeat with second dough roll.

8. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 20 to 30 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

9. Bake at 375° for 14 to 16 minutes or until golden. Drizzle Creamy Glaze over warm cakes; sprinkle with colored sugars, alternating colors and forming bands. Let cool completely. (Don’t forget to place the plastic baby inside the cake before serving!)

Enjoy!

Source: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/traditional-king-cake

Sand Dollar Cinnamon Sugar Cookies

It might be because I haven’t had supper yet or I’m just hungry for sweets, but I can’t help, but love this recipe for Sand Dollar Cinnamon Sugar Cookies! Plus, it’s a perfect way to start our trip, from out of the cold and into the beach air, when our “A Southern State of Mind” series goes to Emerald Isle, NC tomorrow.

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Sand Dollar Cinnamon Sugar Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
2 eggs whole
2 eggs separated
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 pinches of  salt
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
cinnamon sugar
sliced almonds
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and powdered sugar; Mix until very creamy.
  3. Add the 2 whole eggs and 2 yolks only (reserve the whites for later from the egg separation); Beat until well combined.
  4. Add vanilla and salt; Blend well.
  5. Add flour and baking powder; Stir until the dough is very soft.
  6. Form a ball with the dough; Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least two hours.
  7. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  8. Roll out the dough to 1/4″ thick on a floured surface and cut out 2 5/8” circles.
  9. Brush the circles with the reserved egg whites.
  10. Sprinkle each circle lightly with cinnamon sugar and press 5 almond slices into the center of each circle to make a sand dollar.
  11. Bake for 3 minutes.
  12. After 3 minutes, remove the baking sheet from the oven and press the almonds in again, making slight indentations in the circle.
  13. Add more cinnamon at this point too, if need be, to adjust the overall coloring of the final cookie.
  14. Place the baking sheet back in the oven and bake until the edges are golden brown, another 10 minutes.

Enjoy!

Source: http://www.mamamiss.com/2012/07/31/eats-sand-dollar-cinnamon-sugar-cookies/

Bourbon Chocolate Pecan Pie

A classic Southern dish, perfect for any Thanksgiving table!

Bourbon Chocolate Pecan Pie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons cold butter
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons cold water

Filling:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup dark corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup bourbon
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/2 cups pecan halves, divided
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips, divided

Directions:

1. In a small bowl, combine the flour, sugar and salt. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

2. Add water and toss with a fork until mixture forms a ball. Flatten and wrap dough in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

3. On a floured surface, roll out dough to fit a 9-in. deep-dish pie plate and place in dish.

4. In a large bowl, beat the eggs, brown sugar, corn syrups, bourbon, butter and salt until blended. Stir in 1 cup pecans and 1/2 cup chocolate chips. Pour filling into crust; sprinkle with remaining pecans and chocolate chips.

5. Bake at 325° for 50-60 minutes or until crust is golden brown and filling is puffed. Cool completely.

Enjoy!

Source: http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/bourbon-chocolate-pecan-pie?keycode=ZPIN1012