Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake

Friday, July 29, 2011

Raspberry Crumb Cake

Submitted by Lisa

Because I live right next to my brothers Raspberry farm, I have access to many FREE raspberries!!  Yay me!  Anyway, I like to try out different recipes using them.  I found this one on www.allrecipes.com  .  I made it last night for a youth group that was coming over to do a service project at my house.

It was a big hit.

Ingredient list:

2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
3/4 cup water
2 cups fresh or frozen unsweetened
1 tablespoon lemon juice

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground mace ( I don't know what that is, and didn't have any, so I didn't use it)
1 cup cold butter or margarine
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup cold butter or margarine
1/4 cup sliced almonds


In a saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch, water and raspberries. Bring to a boil over medium heat; boil for 5 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat; stir in lemon juice. Cool.

Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the first six crust ingredients. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Beat eggs, milk and vanilla; add to crumb mixture and mix well. 

Spread two-thirds of the mixture into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish. 

Spoon raspberry filling over crust to within 1 in of the edges. Top with remaining crust mixture.

 For topping, combine flour and sugar; cut in butter until crumbly. Stir in almonds. Sprinkle over the top. 

Bake at 350 degrees F for 50-55 minutes or until lightly browned.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Sugar Cookie Bars

Submitted by Heather
(Sorry for the dark pictures.  I had to quickly take a shot of these cookie bars at night, because they were flying out of the pan fast.)

Raise your hand if you love those round sugar cookies with half an inch of pink or yellow (or whatever color!) frosting on top.  They seem to be an obsession among certain friends and kids I know, but I have never been able to fully embrace them.  They always lure me into taking a bite, thinking that they're going to be delicious this time.  Some people are going to argue with me that they ARE delicious, but to me they have an artificial flavor that I can't get over.   

Enter these wonderful sugar cookie bars.  They are great for many reasons.  First, does anyone hate how time-intensive sugar cookies are? Oh, I really like to make them sometimes, because I want to decorate cute shapes for the holidays, but sometimes I just want the sugar cookie taste without all the work.  That's why these are so perfect - you make the dough, press it in the jellyroll pan and you're done!  
Secondly, the frosting is really fluffy and delicious.  And if I'm truthful, the frosting is the whole reason for the cookie. Even if you don't love cream cheese, try this frosting.  My friend who doesn't like cream cheese said she actually really liked this frosting. 
And a third reason, as if you need another reason, is that this recipe makes A LOT of cookie bars.  That means you can share the wealth with friends and neighbors and still have enough for yourself.  I mean,you'll still have enough for your KIDS.

Sugar Cookie Bars

1 cup butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
5 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp lemon zest (optional)

Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing after each egg. Add vanilla and mix well. In a separate bowl combine flour, salt, baking soda and stir with a whisk to combine. Add to wet mixture and mix just until combined. Spread on a greased 13 x 18" baking sheet (or a jellyroll pan, which is approx. 12x17"). Bake at 375 degrees for about 14-17 min, until light golden brown or until a toothpick comes out clean (they won't look done so do the toothpick test). Cool completely (sometimes I put them in the freezer to speed up the process) and frost.
Here's what they look like out of the oven.  Not pretty, but with a nice, thick coating of fluffy frosting it doesn't matter.

Fluffy Frosting
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
4 ounces cream cheese (1/2 of an 8 oz block) softened
1 tsp vanilla (you can also use almond extract)
¼ tsp salt
4 cups powdered sugar
3-5 Tbsp milk
food coloring (if desired)
sprinkles (I would say optional, but my kids would say "required")

Beat butter and cream cheese until smooth and creamy. Add vanilla and salt. Add powdered sugar in 1-2 cup increments until combined, then add milk a little at a time (you may not need it all) and beat until fluffy and smooth. Spread over cooled cookie bars.  Dig in!

Source: adapted slightly from the-girl-who-ate-everything.com

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Three Cheese Manicotti

submitted by: Melanie

This year for Father's day I wanted to make something for my husband that he would really like. I chose to make manicotti, because he is always asking me to make it. I really don't like manicotti very much, because it seems like the cheese inside is always cold.

I found this recipe and thought it looked good so I gave it a try. The cheese was nice and hot in the middle and it was really good. Nothing fancy, but it was just what my husband wanted. The next time I make this I may try and add spinach or Italian sausage to it.


  • 1 (8 ounce) package manicotti shells
  • 4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 2 cups ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons dried basil
  • 2 (26 ounce) jars pasta sauce


  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add manicotti and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain. (I only cooked the manicotti for 3 minutes)
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9x13 inch baking dish.
  3. In a bowl, mix 3 cups mozzarella cheese, ricotta cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, garlic, egg, and basil. Stuff cooked manicotti with the mixture.
  4. Spread about 2 cups pasta sauce over the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Arrange stuffed manicotti in the dish, and cover with remaining sauce. Sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese.
  5. Bake 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan, and continue baking 10 minutes, until mozzarella is melted and bubbly. (I baked it for 35-40 minutes)

Friday, July 22, 2011

Barbecue Chicken

Submitted by Melanie

Sunday morning I was leaving a church meeting and the missionaries came up to me and said what time should we be over for dinner? I total forgot that I signed up to feed the missionaries that day. I told them 5:30 would work. I ran home and started looking in the fridge to see what I had on hand to feed the missionaries. I had some frozen chicken, and some canned veggies. So I started looking online to see if I could find any good chicken recipes. I found this one.

I am still getting use to grilling, so I was a little nervous about trying this recipe. I was so glad that I did though! My husband loved it and said that the sauce was tangy and just the way he like it. My chicken also turned out very moist (that doesn't always happen).


  • 2 chickens (or 4 whole bone-in chicken breasts) halved lengthwise (I used boneless skinless chicken breast)
  • 1 1/2 cups Italian dressing, recipe follows
  • 1/4 cup Neelys Barbecue Seasoning, recipe follows
  • 1 cup Neelys Barbecue Sauce, recipe follows


Rinse chicken halves in cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Place chicken in a large bowl or baking dish, coat with Italian dressing and evenly season with Neelys seasoning. For best results, allow the chicken to marinate in the refrigerator overnight. (I marinated the chicken for about 6 hours and it turned out great)

Grilling Outside:

Thirty minutes before you're ready to cook, take the chicken out of the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature. Preheat the grill to a medium temperature, about 275 degrees F preferably over hickory and charcoal. (I used a gas grill and used indirect heat)

Place the chicken halves on grill, meat side down. Cover grill and cook for about 50 minutes.(If you are not using a whole chicken I would cook the chicken for about 5 minutes each side). Brush the chicken with Neelys Barbecue sauce during the last 5 minutes of cooking.

Neely Italian Dressing:

  • 2 tablespoons ground mustard
  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Neelys Barbecue Seasoning
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • Salt and pepper

Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl, except the oil and salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in the oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Yield: 1 1/2 cups

Neelys BBQ Seasoning:

  • 1 1/2 cups paprika
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 3/4 tablespoons onion powder

Add all ingredients to a bowl and stir until combined. Keep in an airtight container for up to 6 months.

Neelys BBQ Sauce

  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 5 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 5 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground mustard
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

In a large saucepan, combine all ingredients. Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer. Cook uncovered, stirring frequently, for 1 hour 15 minutes.

Yield: 3 1/2 cups

Source: foodnetwork.com

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Campfire Cup Cakes

Submitted by Lisa

I remember having something like this when I was a kid.  I was just at girls camp this last week and this was on the menu.  Instead of muffin mix or cake mix, they gave us brownie mix!  Yum!  (If you aren't having a camp fire but still want to try this out, you can use your grill or put the orange halves into muffin tins and use your oven)


oranges (1 orange per person)
prepared mix...either muffin, cake, or brownie

Other supplies:

cooking spray
fire pit or grill with hot coals
tin foil


1. Cut the oranges in half.  Gently, using a spoon, scoop out the orange insides and transfer to a bowl.

2. Fill each orange half only 1/3 of the way full with the batter of your choice ( if you overfill them, they spill over and make a mess)  Also, you will have left over batter most likely, just save that to cook a smaller pan at home of the cake.

3. Wrap the orange with foil leaving the top open to vent
4. Place the wrapped oranges ONTO A GRATE OVER THE COALS.  (we did not do this and they burned)
5.  Once the cakes look dry and done on the top, test them with a toothpick to ensure the centers are done.

***Tips***  These can also be placed inside a dutch oven with the lid on and cooked over the coals.  One site also suggested covering the top of each orange with foil and poking holes in it to vent.

**With the left over orange centers, we forced what we could through a strainer and had it as juice.  You could also use a bit of it stirred into your batter to enhance the orange flavor.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Chic Pea Mash

Submitted by Lisa

I saw something similar to this being made on www.foodnetwork.com.  This is my own version of it.  The kids and my husband were not quite sure they wanted me to mess with the potatoes, but when they tried it they ate all of it...and loved it!  I did too.  I have a child who does not like to eat meat, so I try to squeeze in protein where ever I can!

4 medium potatoes, cubed
2 tablespoons canola oil 
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon salt
Chopped chives
·         1 (12 ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1.     Place potatoes in a saucepan, cover with water, and bring to a boil over high heat; simmer until the potatoes are tender. Drain, and set aside.
2.     Warm oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in onion and garlic, and cook until the onions are soft and translucent. Stir in ginger, cumin, and salt. Cook for 1 or 2 minutes, stirring. Pour in chickpeas. Stir in potatoes. Cook together for a few minutes roughly mashing them together.  When done, add the chives and serve along with a meat and veggie course.  

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Rainbow Cupcakes

Submitted by Melanie

I saw this recipe in the Family Fun magazine and thought it would be "fun" to make. My daughter Sophie loves to help me bake and was so excited when she saw this recipe. It takes a little bit of time to spread each layer, but the end result is so worth it.

-White cake mix (boxed)
-Food coloring (red,blue,green, and yellow) I used Duff color gels from Michael's. They make the most vibrant colors
-cupcake baking cups
-whip cream (optional)


Prepare your white cake mix as directed, then divide the batter evenly among 6 bowls. You can follow the chart below to help you dye each bowl of batter a different color of the rainbow. This batch I only did 5 colors. I left out the orange. You can play around with the colors if you want.

Rainbow Color Drops of Food Coloring
Purple 9 Red and 6 Blue drops
Blue 12 Drops Green 12 Drops
Yellow 12 Drops
Orange 12 Yellow and 4 Red drops
Red 18 Red drops

Use a 16 cup muffin pan, line with baking cups. Evenly distribute the purple batter among the cups, then the blue and so on, following the order as listed above. As you go, gently spread each layer of batter with the back of a spoon to cover the surface.

Bake the cupcakes according to the directions.

Before serving take off the paper wrapping, and if you want add a dollop of whip cream on each cupcake. I think they are better with the whip cream. You can also use a butter cream frosting, both are great!

Source: Family Fun magazine

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Submitted by Heather

These cookies are wonderful!  They're definitely on my list of favorites.  Peanut butter, oatmeal, chocolate...what a great combination in a cookie.  Every time I make them, they bake up nice and thick and have such a delicious flavor.  I used chunky peanut butter, so I think the 'peanutty' flavor was upped even more by the fact that there were chunks of peanuts in the cookie.  My kids loved these and I refuse to admit the embarrassing number of them I ate during "quality control" testing.  
Makes about 32 cookies

2 C. all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 C. butter, at room temperature
1 C. peanut butter, creamy or chunky
1 C. sugar
2/3 C. brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1 C. rolled oats
2 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips or M&Ms or peanut butter chips (I used all three)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silpats and set aside.
2. Whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
3. On medium speed, cream together the butter, peanut butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and beat to combine. On low speed, gradually add the flour until just combined. Stir in the oats, and then the chocolate chips/M&Ms/peanut butter chips.
4. Use a large cookie scoop (3 tablespoons) and drop dough onto prepared baking sheets about 2 inches apart. Bake for 10-13 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly golden. Cool completely on the baking sheet and then store in an airtight container at room temperature.
Source: browneyedbaker.com

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Coconut Tres Leches Cake

Submitted by: Heather

This was a surprisingly delicious dessert.  Why surprising?  Because I'm not usually drawn to coconut desserts.  I think they're fine, but I normally pick something chocolate or even fruity.  And I don't like soggy cake. But I made this cake with my husband in mind, since he loves the combination of cake and milk together. He grew up dumping every dessert into a bowl and drowning it in milk.  No matter what dessert it was, be it pie or cake or even ice cream!  We used to have somewhat heated discussions over the fact that he would plop my homemade cake into a milk-filled bowl without ever appreciating the fine crumb or light texture of the cake.  It was all lost in the milk.  So I threatened making only cake mix cakes from then on out.  No matter, he had to have his milk ON the cake and wouldn't even consider having it on the side in a glass like I had suggested.  We've now reached an agreement that he at least taste the cake before he drowns it.  I just want him to know what he's missing, even though he's blissfully happy with his soggy cake.  Wow, I really went off on a tangent.  And after that whole explanation, I can't believe I even made this cake!

Anyhoo, I bring this up because this is basically a cake soaked in milk.  Not just your run of the mill skim or even whole milk, though.  This is a milk-soaked cake that even a sog-o-phobic can love.  The combination of the whipping cream, evaporated milk and cream of coconut really does something wonderful to the cake.  It's delicious, even though I used a cake mix (gasp!).  It was just such a busy weekend that I didn't have time to make once from scratch.  Next time I'm going to try a homemade cake and I'll probably start with the one that Mel from Melskitchencafe.com suggests, since that is where I got this recipe.  I hope you'll try this cake, even if you think it may not be your kind of dessert.  It may surprise you, as it did me.  And don't forget the toasted coconut AND the bananas.  Both of them added a lot of texture and flavor that took this dessert over the top.

*Serves 12-16

homemade yellow cake recipe

Milk Syrup:
1 can (15 ounces) cream of coconut*
1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

*"Cream of coconut" is not to be confused with coconut milk.  They're very different.  Cream of coconut can be found either in the ethnic food section by the Mexican or Asian foods, or in the mixed drinks/alcoholic beverage section of most grocery stores.

2 medium-size ripe bananas
Sweetened cream (see instructions below)
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut, toasted (spread on a rimmed baking sheet and bake it at 350 degrees until golden brown, 7 minutes, or toast it in a skillet over medium-low heat on the stovetop).

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 

Lightly spray a 9X13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Mix and bake cake mix according to box or recipe instructions.  Remove the cake from the oven and place it on a wire rack to cool completely, 1 hour.

Meanwhile, make the milk syrup: in a blender, combine the cream of coconut, evaporated milk, cream, and vanilla and process until smooth. 

Pierce the cooled cake all over the top with the tines of a fork or a thin wooden skewer. We are talking all over! The more pokes, the more the syrup will soak into the cake. Using a large spoon or ladle, spoon some of the milk syrup over the cake. Let the syrup soak into the cake, then continue spooning the syrup on top until all of it has been used up. When you have finished, not all of the syrup will be completely absorbed and might be pooling on the top but that’s ok because it will absorb as it refrigerates. Cover the cake loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate until all of the syrup is absorbed, 2 hours. Cut the bananas, if using crosswise into ¼-inch slices. Slice the cake and serve it with sliced bananas, sweetened cream and toasted coconut, if desired. 

Sweetened Cream:
Pour 1 cup heavy whipping cream into a large (preferably chilled) glass bowl and beat it on high speed until thickened 1 ½ minutes. Stop the machine and add ¼ cup confectioners’ sugar and ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract. Beat on high speed until stiff peaks form, 1 to 2 minutes longer. Makes 2 cups.

Source: melskitchencafe.com

Monday, July 11, 2011

Peanut Buster Parfait Bars

Submitted by Hannah

I think I have been feeling a bit nostalgic lately. I have made a lot of recipes that we ate as kids and this happens to be one of my favorites probably because it has ice cream in it. Who needs the Dairy Queen when you can whip this up at home. My Grandma Kolberg always had this for us on a hot summer day when all you wanted was something cold. With an oreo crust, vanilla ice cream, peanuts and a chocolate sauce that could be served on cardboard and still taste fantastic, I think this could become one of your favorites also.


1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream, softened
15 ounces of Oreo cookies, crushed until fine like graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup butter, melted
chocolate sauce (recipe below)

Chocolate sauce:
2/3 cup chocolate chips
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup of butter
1 1/2 cups evaporated milk
1 tsp vanilla

Boil all ingredients for 8 minutes in a saucepan, stirring constantly. Let it cool completly before putting on ice cream.


Mix the crushed oreos with the butter. Spread and pat firmly in the bottom of a 9x13 pan and freeze. When firm, put a layer of peanuts over the cookies. Spread softened ice cream on top of the peanuts. I also put peanuts on top of the ice cream and then freeze until firm. When the ice cream is frozen, spread the chocolate sauce over the ice cream and put back in the freezer. Once the chocolate sauce has set on top you are ready to eat.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Banana Pancakes

Submitted by Lisa

I wanted to try something new this morning and had some ripe bananas.  I found this recipe on All Recipes . com.  The kids were a little leery about trying them but with some encouragement they did and liked them.


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed

  1. Combine flour, white sugar, baking powder and salt. In a separate bowl, mix together egg, milk, vegetable oil and bananas.
  2. Stir flour mixture into banana mixture; batter will be slightly lumpy.
  3. Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake. Cook until pancakes are golden brown on both sides; serve hot.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Chicken Panang Curry

Submitted by Heather

We didn't eat too many authentic ethnic foods growing up in Minnesota. We ate "ethnic" foods like stir fry, tacos and lasagna, but they were pretty Americanized.  They were delicious, comfort food type dishes, don't get me wrong.  I loved them (really, I did Mom!).  But when all the salsa in the house was from a jar and the heat factor was "mild", you know we were taking baby steps in the spice department.  I didn't even know what cilantro was!  What a crime!

I didn't discover foods with more authentic spices and heat until my husband and I moved to California.  We lived in the Bay Area, and you really can't escape the amazing array of wonderful ethnic restaurants there.  And the average grocery store is even stocked with all kinds of curries, and Asian sauces and interesting vegetables.  My husband was in heaven.  He loves spicy foods and was thrilled to finally have chances to eat them at every turn.  Not that my cooking was bland before we moved there.  Ahem.  Okay, I was a terrible cook when we first got married, but since there was a lot of room for improvement I learned a lot in California.  

This Panang Curry is the first Thai dish I learned to cook and has been a staple in our house for years.  We all love it, even down to my 6 year old (my 3 year old doesn't eat anything, so she doesn't count).  Give it a try, it's really delicious!

 Serves 6
1 & 1/2  lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced thinly against the grain
2 T. lime juice
2 T. fish sauce (if you're feeling adventurous) or salt to taste (approx 1 tsp)
1 T. brown sugar
1 T. Mae Ploy Panang Curry Paste*
1 14 oz. can coconut milk (NOT cream of coconut)
1 red onion, sliced
2 red and or green bell peppers, sliced
1/4 C. chopped cilantro
2 T. fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced (optional)
rice (I like jasmine rice)

If serving with rice, start rice cooking (a rice cooker is wonderful to have in this situation).  In a small bowl, mix together the lime juice, fish sauce or salt, and brown sugar.  Set aside.

In a skillet over medium high heat, add curry paste with 1/2 can of the coconut milk.  Stir frequently until curry paste is dissolved and mixture is bubbling.

Add the rest of the coconut milk, onions and bell pepper.  Bring to a boil, then simmer for 2 minutes.
Add the lime juice mixture and sliced chicken.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add the cilantro and the ginger.  Sometimes I leave the ginger out if I don't have any fresh ginger on hand, and it's very good without it too.  Stir and cook 1 to 2 minutes more until the chicken is cooked.

Serve over rice and enjoy!

*A note about the curry paste:  I found mine at an Asian supermarket (Super H) here in the D.C. area.  When I lived in NC and needed more curry paste I tried a brand from Harris Teeter, which I did not like at all. In fact, when I first made this dish long ago, I remember looking up curry pastes to see which was the most authentic and/or delicious and Mae Ploy kept popping up in my searches.  So, if you can find it, I recommend Mae Ploy.  In fact, the dish may taste quite different with another kind of paste, but it may still be very good.

Source:  I have no idea.  I have this tattered printout from the 90's and it doesn't have the source.  Sorry!