Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Mama's Chocolate Chip Cake

I love going "home" to visit my mama, and I feel especially lucky when I get one of her home cooked meals. I don't know what it is about moms, but somehow they always cook it better than we do! Anyway, despite the both of us trying to eat healthier, she made this scrumptious chocolate dessert. We couldn't walk away from it and had to give the rest away to my in-laws just to stop ourselves!

I hope you enjoy this as much as I did... and the bonus is that it's so super easy. I can't promise it'll be as good as my mama's, but I'm sure it'll come close ;)
-Allison Y.

Mama's Chocolate Chip Cake

1 package yellow cake mix with pudding
1/2 cup sugar
1 package instant chocolate pudding (3 oz.)

3/4 cup water
3/4 cup oil
4 large eggs

1 carton sour cream (8 oz.)
1 cup chocolate chip morsels

vanilla ice cream (optional)

Preheat oven at 350 degrees. Spray a 12 cup bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray. In a large bowl, mix with wire whisk: cake mix, sugar, and instant chocolate pudding. Add water, oil, and eggs. Stir. Next, stir in sour cream and chocolate chip morsels. Pour into the bundt pan and bake for one hour or until a tooth pick come out clean. Serve with vanilla ice cream.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Banana Muffins

I continually buy bananas and let them turn brown before I ever get a chance to eat them. Instead of throwing them away this morning, I used two medium-sized bananas to make these little muffins. Luckily, I had all the ingredients needed in my cupboard, which is a rarity! I can't wait to have one with my coffee tomorrow. Hey moms, this would be a good back to school breakfast treat next week! :)


Allison Y.

Banana Coconut Muffins

Adapted from
Gourmet Magazine

1 1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 very ripe bananas, mashed (about a cup)
1 stick butter, melted
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut

*This recipe calls for a muffin tin with 8 muffin cups. My tin holds 12 muffins, but I did not use them all. To prevent your muffin tin from warping, put a few tablespoons of water in each of the cups not in use.

Preheat oven to 375. Grease the bottom and sides of your muffin (or cupcake) tin, or line muffin cups with paper liners.

Whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Whisk together bananas, butter, sugar, nutmeg, sugar, egg, vanilla, and 1/2 cup coconut in a large bowl until combined well. Then, fold in flour mixture until flour is just moistened.

Spoon batter into muffin cups and sprinkle with remaining coconut. Bake for about 20 minutes or until muffins are puffed and golden. Transfer muffins to a cooling rack until ready to serve.

*These are best served warm with a little with a smear of butter.

We Want Morzo Orzo!

This side-dish was recently served at a potluck cookout, and I didn't rest until I got the recipe (thanks Trish!). I ate more than my fair share and even took some home. The good news is that the orzo in this recipe goes a long way, so plenty was left for the other guests to enjoy!

We were hunkered down waiting for Hurricane Irene to storm through town.
I made this Friday night to last the whole weekend. Wes loved it, so it's husband approved... even without any meat!

Happy eating!
Allison Y.

Orzo, Pine Nut, and Feta Salad
Courtesy of Gourmet Magazine

1 pound orzo - I found this pasta at Walmart.
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup olive oil
2/3 cup pine nuts, toasted - The bag I bought was already toasted, but you can toast your own in the oven at 350 for 5 to 10 minutes.
1 1/2 cups feta, crumbled
1 cup thinly sliced scallion greens

Cook orzo according to package directions in salted water. Drain well in a colander.

Meanwhile, whisk together lemon juice, oil, and salt and pepper to taste in a large bowl. Then add hot orzo and toss. Cool orzo completely. I put mine in the fridge to speed up the process. Finally, toss the orzo with pine nuts, feta, and scallion greens. Season with salt and pepper. Serve cold.