Sunday, March 11, 2012

Buttery Banana Pudding

Two words: Banana. Pudding. Do you get as excited about it as I do?! Hands down one of my all-time favorite desserts (rivaling pecan pie and lemon bars). I love trying out new ways to make this dessert... but I have to say this version is still my favorite. The butter cookies are a yummy alternative to the traditional vanilla wafers.

What You Will Need:
1 cup heavy whipping cream*
3 tbsp powdered sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 bags Pepperidge Farm Chessmen Cookies
5-6 bananas, sliced thin
1 small box French vanilla instant pudding
2 cups milk
1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk

Step One
Pour heavy cream into a stand mixer (or you can use a handheld mixer if you prefer). Beat on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Add in powdered sugar + vanilla and continue beating on medium-high speed until until it is the consistency of whip cream (about 2-3 minutes maybe). Pour into a separate bowl so you can reuse the stand mixer for step three.

Step Two
While whip cream is finishing up, line the bottom of a 13 x 9 glass dish with 1 bag of cookies, then layer bananas on top. Set aside.

Step Three
Using the stand mixer (I skip cleaning it since you combine everything in a minute anyway), combine the softened cream cheese + sweetened condensed milk, Mix on on medium speed until blended. Fold in whip cream.

Step Four
In a separate mixing bowl, blend milk + pudding mixture with a whisk or handheld mixture until it sets, about two minutes. Fold into cream cheese/whip cream mixture until well blended.

Step Five
Pour the mixture over the cookies and bananas. Crumble the remaining cookies on top. Refrigerate until ready to serve -- I suggest letting it set for at least two hours for better consistency.

*You can substitute in one small container of cool whip if you want to eliminate a step, but if you have the time use the homemade whipping cream -- you won't be disappointed!

Enjoy, y'all! xo


Recipe adapted from Paula Deen.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Good Ol' Chili

Sorry y'all. I am so behind on my blogging! Life has been busy...and I honestly have not being doing my desired share of cooking these days. Nausea and aversions to certain smells haven't really allowed for me to expand upon my culinary adventures.

That's right. You guessed it. Scott and I are expecting! Almost at the 13 week mark...and through the first hoping I am over the sickness blues. With that said you may see some random dishes coming through here because it's all dependent upon what I am craving that day!

It's still cold in Ohio so chili remains on my menu. This is a classic recipe that would be good any way you serve it - frito chili pie style like above, with crackers, on a hot dog (it is almost baseball season), or just by itself. Indulge yourself in one of man's favorite foods:

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 lbs lean ground beef
2-3 small white onions, chopped
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 (14.5 oz) can black beans, drained
1 (14.5 oz) can kidney beans, drained
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes & green chilies
1 (14.5 oz) can beef broth (I substituted an additional beef bouillon cube with a cup of water)
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons fresh garlic, minced
2 teaspoons oregano
1 cube beef bouillon
1 teaspoon cumin
shredded cheddar cheese, avocado & tomatoes (optional)

In a large skillet, over medium heat, warm oil and add beef, onion, salt and pepper. Cook until beef is browned. Drain fat..

Add all remaining ingredients, except for optional items, and stir to combine. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium-low. Cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. 

Reduce heat to low and cook for an additional hour. Stir and serve with shredded cheddar cheese, chopped avocado and sliced grape tomatoes. Yum in my pregnant tum. If you prefer chicken over beef, I've also got an alternative recipe here!