Friday, December 30, 2011

Auntie Gayle's Ambrosia Salad

Ambrosia Salad 

My Auntie came and stayed with us the first Christmas we had lost our Mum. Mum passed in October on the 15th, so not a lot of time to absorb any of the shock. What I will never forget about that Christmas is Auntie Gayle cleaned my oven, did all my laundry and made this kick ass salad! Thanks Auntie Gayle!

6-8 oz maraschino cherries (drained then quartered)
6 oz mandarin oranges (drained)
8 oz pineapple (chunks drained)
20 oz pineapple (crushed, drained)
15 oz fruit cocktail very cherry (drained)
16 oz sour cream
8 oz cool whip
3 1/2 oz instant vanilla pudding or seasonal pudding
2 cups marshmallows or fruity marshmallows or seasonal marshmallows
3/4 cup flaked coconut (optional)

Drain & quarter cherries first. Then drain & squeeze the crushed pineapple. Then you drain & add the remaining canned ingredients and stir in the pudding mix, sour cream & cool whip. Add the marshmallows last and stir them in gently.
2Chill then serve.

Chocolate Glaze for Cake or Flexible Decor

Chocolate Glaze for Cake or Flexible Decor

Serves: 1

Total time: 25 min     Prep time: 10 min

3 tbsps heavy cream
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 tbsps water
  1 1/2 ozs cocoa (powder)
  1 1/2 tsps gelatin (unflavored, 14 sheets of sheet)

1In a large saucepan, combine cream, sugar, 1/2 cup of the water and the cocoa.
2Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer whisking often until very thick like hot fudge sauce- 8-10 minutes from beginning of simmer.
3Watch carefully so miixture doesn't boil over.
4Remove pan from heat.
5While mixture cools, bloom gelatin in 1 1/2 tablespoon of cold water.
6Melt the bloomed gelatin over very hot water or in the microwave.
7(If using sheet gelatin, soften for 5 minutes in cold water, wring out gelatin and whisk into chocolate mixture).
8Whisk gelatin into chocolate mixture and strain the glaze through a medium sieve into a metal bowl.
9Let glaze cool at room temperature until thick but still pourable, about 5-10 minutes.
10Pour glaze over your cake or shape into decor  (this is very delicate for decor, you must shape but leave final ornament to harden, but is quite flexible)

Friday, December 16, 2011

Caramel Turtle Sugar Cookies

pouch Betty Crocker® Sugar Cookie Mix or your sugar cookie recipe (the mixes are quite good for baking with your kids)
Butter and egg called for on cookie mix pouch
  tablespoons all-purpose flour for rolling
  caramels, unwrapped
 tbsp cream
  cup hot fudge topping
  Pecan halves
  1. Make cookie dough as directed on package, stirring in flour. Roll dough into 1-inch balls; place about 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake at 375°F 9 to 11 minutes or until set. Cool 1 minute; place cookies on cooling rack.
  2. Microwave caramels and milk uncovered on High 1 minute to 1 minute 30 seconds, stirring once, until caramels are melted. Caramels will continue to melt when removed so do not over heat. Dip one side of each cookie at an angle into caramel mixture to coat top half; spread if necessary. If caramel thickens, add up to 1 teaspoon additional milk and reheat.
  3. Spread about 1 teaspoon fudge topping on top of each cookie. Place pecan half on topping. Let stand about 15 minutes until toppings are set.
Makes 3 dozen cookies

Friday, December 9, 2011

Betty Crocker Raspberry Ribbon Slices

Raspberry Ribbon Slices 

Raspberry Ribbon Slices
Photo from our Betty Crocker recipe pamphlet. These cookies are delicious and we only modified one twist to add cherry preserves and almond extract! Enjoy
With a LOT of help from Betty Crocker we are pulling up to speed, our Christmas baking. Use your favorite fruit preserves that you made this summer and a time-saving shaping technique for a melt-in-your-mouth holiday cookie.Or purchase your fave, I love Dalfour cherry preserves! If you use the Dalfour remember to add a touch of almond extract to your dough!
Makes 3 dozen

pouch Betty Crocker® sugar cookie mix( this mix is amazingly delicious)
Butter and egg called for on cookie mix pouch
 tablespoons all-purpose flour
 tablespoons seedless raspberry, apricot or your favorite jam 
1/2 tsp almond extract if cherries are used
 cup powdered sugar
 to 3 teaspoons milk
  1. Make cookie dough as directed on package, adding flour; blend. Divide dough into thirds. Shape each third into 12-inch log. Place logs 3 inches apart on 2 ungreased cookie sheets.
  2. Bake at 375°F for 15 to 18 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Cool 5 minutes. Using handle of wooden spoon or finger, make depression about 1/2 inch wide and 1/4 inch deep lengthwise down center of each roll. Fill indentations on each roll with generous tablespoon jam. Cool; place on cooling rack. Cool completely.
  3. Mix powdered sugar and just enough milk for drizzling consistency; blend. Drizzle icing over cooled logs. Cut each roll diagonally into 12 pieces.
Makes 3 dozen cookies

Monday, December 5, 2011

Scottish Shortbread Grannie Walker Style

This time of year conjures up one big family secret after another with each of us wondering how did "she" get her shortbread to be so "melty" She being any one of our Aunt's, my now deceased Mum and Gran's and of course my sis banging her head wondering how I make mine so melt in your mouth super yummylicious! I decided to post Gran's recipe with my couple of secret bits and I am not even going to tell my sister!


  • 1 cup (250 mL) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) superfine sugar
  • 1 Pinch salt
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) vanilla bean paste (keeps shortbread from colouring)
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) rice flour (the big secret!) You can use cornstarch too!
  • 1-3/4 cups (425 mL) all-purpose flour


Line rimless baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
In large bowl, beat together butter, sugar and salt until fluffy and almost white. Stir in vanilla then rice flour. Stir in all-purpose flour, one-third at a time. Form into 2 flat rectangles. Make sure to stir where it says stir or else you will not achieve the "melty" results
Between waxed paper, roll out rectangles to generous 1/4-inch (5 mm) thickness. Cut out 1-1/2-inch (4 cm) circles, bells or even stars! Place, 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart, on prepared pans, re-rolling scraps and chilling dough between cutting.  I use cornstarch and flour mixed for rolling on the waxed paper. Use gingerly!!! Refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes. I put a halved drained maraschino cherry on my rounds and then sprinkle with berry sugar (many use glaced cherries but I like the maraschino) You can get fancy with sprinkles etc should you wish!
Bake in top and bottom thirds of 275°F (140°C) oven, rotating and switching pans halfway through, until bottoms are light golden, about  30 to 40 minutes. Let cool for 2 minutes on pans on racks. Transfer to racks to let cool completely. (Make-ahead: Layer between waxed paper in airtight containers and store at room temperature for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 2 weeks.)