Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Black Bottom Cream Cheese Cupcakes


For the Filling: 
8 oz. Philadelphia cream cheese, at room temperature 
1/3 cup granulated sugar 
1 large egg 
1/8 teaspoon salt 
1 cup (8 ounces) mini chocolate chips 

For the Cupcake Batter: 
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour 
1 cup granulated sugar 
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 
1 teaspoon baking soda 
Pinch of salt 
1 cup water 
1 large egg 
1/3 cup vegetable oil 
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 
1 teaspoon white vinegar 

For the Topping: 
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips 
1/3 cup granulated sugar
Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F/180 degrees C. Line 20 muffin-pan cups with foil or paper cupcake or muffin liners. 

Make the Filling: 
In a bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese with the sugar, egg and salt until smooth. Stir in the chocolate chips. 

Make the Batter: 
In a large bowl, whisk the flour with the sugar, cocoa, baking soda and a pinch of salt. In a small bowl, whisk the water with the egg, vegetable oil, vanilla and vinegar. At low speed, beat the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients until a smooth batter forms. 

Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups to fill them halfway. Spoon a heaping tablespoon of the cream cheese filling into the center of each cupcake. 

Sprinkle tops with mini chocolate chips and sugar. 

Bake the cupcakes on the upper and lower thirds of preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until puffed and springy to the touch. Switch the pans halfway through baking. Un-mold the cupcakes; let cool on racks before serving. 

Note: 
The baked cupcakes can be frozen for up to 5 days. 

Makes 20 cupcakes.

Sweet and Sour Chicken from my mother-in-law's old cookbook





This delicious recipe for Sweet and Sour Chicken comes from my mother-in-law's old Better Homes and Gardens cookbook. We double it when there are alot of us! We serve it on top of hot, white rice, and toss chow mein noodles and almonds on top. Sooooooo good! When I made it for dinner a few nights ago, I had the chance to use even MORE of my new Mahatma rice! (I am a BzzAgent, and my current BzzReports are for Mahatma Rice.) Boy was I excited, most people think rice is rice, and I am sure some has to do with the way people cook it, but I am telling you, Mahatma rice cooks up fluffy, yet stays together, hot, but not mushy, my goodness it's the best rice ever! I can't believe I never picked up a bag of this (used-to-be-called S and W) stuff!!! I don't know why my Nikon decided to disappear into hiding, so I am sad that I didn't get pictures this time around! Just know that if you come across the Mahatma rice in the store, it's a new name, but it's the best rice ever! :)

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Chicken Parmesan Bundles

This is from the Philadelphia Cream Cheese Facebook group: http://www.facebook.com/LoveMyPhilly.
Doesn't it look absolutely wonderful?! I can't wait to make it for dinner! ♥








Ingredients:

4 oz. (1/2 of 8-oz. pkg.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1 pkg. (10 oz.) frozen chopped spinach, thawed, well drained
1-1/4 cups KRAFT Shredded Low-Moisture Part-Skim Mozzarella Cheese, divided
6 Tbsp. KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese, divided
6 small boneless skinless chicken breast halves (1-1/2 lb.), pounded to 1/4-inch thickness
1 egg
10 RITZ Crackers, crushed (about 1/2 cup)
1-1/2 cups spaghetti sauce, heated

Instructions:

MIX cream cheese, spinach, 1 cup mozzarella and 3 Tbsp. Parmesan until well blended; spread onto chicken breasts. Starting at one short end of each breast, roll up chicken tightly. Secure with wooden toothpicks, if desired.

BEAT egg in shallow dish. Mix remaining Parmesan and cracker crumbs in separate shallow dish. Dip chicken in egg, then roll in crumb mixture. Place, seam-sides down, in 13×9-inch baking dish sprayed with cooking spray.

BAKE 30 min. or until chicken is done (165ºF). Remove and discard toothpicks, if using. Serve topped with spaghetti sauce and remaining mozzarella.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

{Cinnamon-Streusel Coffeecake}


This is originally from the King Arthur Flour website, but after making it several times, I have modified little things here and there. It's delicious!




{STREUSEL TOPPING}


  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (if you use unsalted butter)
  • 1 1/2 cups All-Purpose flour (King Arthur is the best, but I didn't have any on hand)
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted


{FILLING}


  • 1 cup brown sugar, light or dark
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder, dutch-process or natural




{CAKE}


  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt (1 ¼ teaspoons if you use unsalted butter)
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
  • 1 1/4 cups milk (I used whole)
  • 3 3/4 cups All-Purpose flour



  • {DIRECTIONS}

1) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9" x 13" pan, or two 9" round cake pans.
2) Make the topping by whisking together the brown sugar, salt, flour, and cinnamon. Add the melted butter, stirring till well combined. Set the topping aside.
3) Make the filling by mixing together the brown sugar, cinnamon, and cocoa powder. Note that the cocoa powder is used strictly for color, not flavor; leave it out if you like. Set it aside.
4) To make the cake: In a large bowl, beat together the butter, salt, sugars, baking powder, and vanilla until well combined and smooth.
5) Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
6) In a separate bowl, whisk together the sour cream or yogurt and milk till well combined. You don't need to whisk out all the lumps.
7) Add the flour to the butter mixture alternately with the milk/sour cream mixture, beating gently to combine.
8) Pour/spread half the batter (a scant 3 cups) into the prepared pan(s), spreading all the way to the edges. If you're using two 9" round pans, spread 1 1/3 cups batter in each pan.
9) Sprinkle the filling evenly atop the batter.
10) Spread the remaining batter atop the filling. Use a table knife to gently swirl the filling into the batter, as though you were making a marble cake. Don't combine filling and batter thoroughly; just swirl the filling through the batter.
11) Sprinkle the topping over the batter in the pan.
12) Bake the cake until it's a dark golden brown around the edges; medium-golden with no light patches showing on top, and a toothpick or cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, about 55 to 60 minutes for the 9" x 13" pan, 50 to 55 minutes for the 9" round pans. When pressed gently in the middle, the cake should spring back.
13) Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool for 20 minutes before cutting and serving. Serve cake right from the pan.