Thursday, September 16, 2010

Update: Chocolate Raspberry Cream Cakes

I know we never post on this anymore, but I thought I would share a little update on the Chocolate Raspberry Cream Cakes I wrote about in May. At the end of that post, I said that the Devils Food Cake recipe was amazing, but the logistics of cutting out shapes, stacking them and doing the ganache was too much.

Well, last weekend we were having people over to watch the Bengals (Who Dey!) and I wanted to give it another try. So I made the cake recipe I listed before (I cut it in half and it still made 72 mini cupcakes). Then I made the raspberry cream and just piped it on. So we lost the ganache element, but it was still pretty divine. Everyone loved them and said how light and tasty the cream was on top (instead of a heavy frosting). Absolutely wonderful - I'm so glad I found a way to still use this recipe. This time I didn't want to make a big mess and kept it simple, but I think you could still add the ganache too. Maybe put the ganache on the cupcake and then the cream on top, or spread the cream on top and pour ganache over the whole thing.

PS - Brent said I took a guys day and made it "girly." I guess mini cupcakes and pink raspberry cream are a little dainty. Oh well :)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Chocolate-Coffee Cheesecake with Mocha Sauce

I hope you all had a happy 4th of July weekend! We really really missed being in Greenville with the Kruithof family. I made this cheesecake for small group last Wednesday and then group was canceled. I ended up serving it to my family Friday night, and it was still delicious!

The recipe is from Southern Living. I found it online forever ago, and have been holding on to it for who knows how long. Thank goodness for CWC which gives me a reason to make all these things!



  • 3 cups crushed chocolate graham crackers (about 20 sheets)
  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
  • Cooking Spray
  • 4 (8-ounce) packages Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 cup coffee liqueur - I used 1/4 cup espresso
  • 1 teaspoon instant coffee granules
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs
  • 4 (1-ounce) bittersweet baking chocolate squares

1. Stir together crushed graham crackers and butter; press mixture into bottom and up sides of a 9-inch springform pan coated with cooking spray.

2. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes. Cool crust in pan on a wire rack. Reduce oven temperature to 325°.

3. Beat cream cheese and 1 cup sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until blended. Add coffee liqueur, coffee granules, and 1 teaspoon vanilla, beating at low speed until well blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until yellow disappears after each addition.

4. Remove and reserve 1 cup cream cheese mixture. Pour remaining batter into prepared crust.

5. Microwave chocolate squares in a medium-size glass bowl 1 minute or until melted, stirring after 30 seconds; let cool slightly. Stir reserved 1 cup cream cheese mixture into melted chocolate, blending well. Spoon chocolate mixture in lines on top of batter in springform pan; gently swirl with a knife.

6. Bake at 325° for 1 hour or until almost set. Turn oven off. Let cheesecake stand in oven, with door closed, 30 minutes. Remove cheesecake from oven, and gently run a knife around outer edge of cheesecake to loosen from sides of pan. (Do not remove sides of pan.) Cool on a wire rack. Cover and chill at least 4 hours.

7. Remove sides of springform pan. Serve with Mocha Sauce.



  • 1 (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon butter or margarine
  • 1/4 cup strong brewed coffee


1. Cook chocolate morsels, whipping cream, and butter in a small heavy saucepan over low heat, stirring often, 2 to 3 minutes or until smooth. Remove from heat, and stir in 1/4 cup brewed coffee. Serve sauce warm.

Here's the crust and cheesecake batter:

This is the chocolate cheesecake process. You are supposed to put the chocolate batter in lines on top. That was kind of hard with the thick consistency. You can see mine is pretty much random spoonfuls. I think swirling it with the knife mixed it up pretty well though.

Right out of the oven - all puffed up:

The finished cheesecake, making the sauce. I made the sauce a couple hours in advance and just kept it in the pot. I turned the heat on low right before serving to warm it up.


This was a super yummy recipe. It's a fun one to make and serve. I like making fancy cheesecakes...with a name like "Chocolate-Coffee Cheesecake with Mocha Sauce" it sounds like I'm serving something from Cheesecake Factory. It was just the right amount of coffee-flavoring. Not at all overbearing. My favorite part by far was the Mocha Sauce. I kept going back to get more for my cheesecake. Now I have some extra, but I think it will be really good on ice cream. My only complaint was the crust. It seemed really thick on the side and kind of dry. It wasn't a big deal, I just left a lot of mine on the plate.

Brent gave this a "solid 8." Sarah said "No way" and gave it a 9.5 (only 0.5 taken off for the crust). If you like cheesecake, mocha and impressing guests :), I definitely recommend it!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Breakfast Quiches to Go

A few months ago I joined a Bunco group, which has been so much fun! There are 12 girls in the group and you meet once a month, so everyone gets a chance to host once a year. This month I was the host, so I was looking for some individual size appetizers. I decided to try these little breakfast quiches. They are made in regular size muffin trays so they aren't quite mini, but still good for a shower or party.

Here's the recipe:

2 cans (8 oz each) Pillsbury® refrigerated garlic butter crescent dinner rolls (8 rolls each)

1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

3 eggs

1 small onion, chopped (1/4 cup)

1 box (9 oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed to drain

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (4 oz)

Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 16 (2 3/4x1 1/4-inch) muffin cups with cooking spray.

Separate each can of crescent dough into 8 triangles. Press 1 triangle on bottom and up side of each muffin cup.

In large bowl, beat cream cheese with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in onion, spinach, salt and pepper until well mixed. Fold in cheese. Fill each cup to the top with egg mixture (do not overfill).

Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean and edges of rolls are golden brown. Remove from pan. Serve warm.

I don't have that many pictures because it was really easy to make. You just put the Pillsbury dough in the muffin tins (can any recipe with Pillsbury crescents turn out bad??).

Then you mix the other ingredients and pour them in the cups.

I had a little extra of the filling, so I just poured that in muffin cups sprayed with cooking spray. They turned out really well too - and I'm sure they are better for you than the ones with crusts.

The quiche turned out really yummy. I would definitely make them again. I like that they are packed with spinach (a superfood!). I think having a cream cheese base is a nice touch too. The inside part is so good you could certainly make them all without crusts, but Brent said that was his favorite part...

They all were eaten up, so I give them an A+!

Just for fun, here are some other pictures from the party:

Biscuits and Gravy

So I have to be honest. I have always kind of been grossed out by biscuits and gravy, but Cole loves it! So I decided to try the Pioneer Woman's recipe for biscuits and gravy for Father's Day. It was actually pretty simple! She uses canned biscuits, so it's much simpler, and it was actually pretty good... horrible for you... but good!
Here's the recipe...
1 lb. breakfast sausage
1 can (16oz.) canned biscuits
2 Tbsp. flour
1 cup milk
Slice the sausage and cook until cooked through and drain on a paper towel. Then cook the biscuits according to directions on can.
Use the grease left in the sausage pan to make the gravy. Add flour to the grease until it thickens, whisking constantly. The pioneer woman took the grease out of the pan and added a little and then added flour until she got a good balance between flour and grease, adding one or the other until you're happy with the consistency. Let the gravy brown a little in the pan.
Then add your milk. This is another step you have to kind of feel out. It looks like mine is a little too thick, but I was scared of losing the sausage flavor. I probably could have added more milk though. She has step by step photos that you can look at to know how it should turn out. Add salt and pepper to taste. Now you're ready to pour it over your biscuits! And that's it!
So here's the finished breakfast tray. Even though I know it's one of the worst things you could eat, I'd probably make it again- very rarely- as a special treat for my husband. He loved it!!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Product Review: Beaba Babycook

So I know this isnt really what Cooking with Cuties is for, but this is what I spend a lot of time doing.. so I thought I would share it with you mamas. For Christmas my mother-in-law got me a Beaba Babycook to make my own baby food.

I cannot RAVE enough about this product. You can steam and puree the fruits or veggies in the same compartment. Below is a tutorial on how to use the Babycook. Hope you enjoy.

First you add water to the Babycook. The product comes with directions on how much water to add, depending on what fruit or vegetable you are using.
You then cut up the fruit (I used Nectarines) and add it to the Babycook. You turn the switch on to the "steam" icon and wait until the light turns off.
Once the light is off... you take out the fruit in the "basket" it is steamed in. You then choose how much of the water produced from the steam you would like to mix in your fruit. I use all the water because that is where the nutrients go after steaming. Add it back to the fruit.
You then hold the knob on the puree icon until fruit is pureed to desired amount.
Lastly, pour baby food into desired containers. I have been using leftover Gerber Organics containers, along with ice trays. I freeze the baby food in an ice tray and then pop them out of the tray and store in freezer friendly Ziplock bags.

Its as easy as that!! I love love love making Henry baby food.. and its probably because I have this amazing baby food maker.

**I did this review on my own and did not receive anything from Beaba for conducting it.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Some good ones

I have a few recipes that I've tried that have turned out really good and although I didn't photograph my prep (since they weren't supposed to be CWC recipes), I wanted to share them anyway.   I guess I'm learning that I should just go ahead and photograph every time I try something new.... just in case.  I'm sure thats what The Pioneer Woman does!! 

Barbecue Chicken -- I threw this together because I just happened to have all of the ingredients on hand.  I made it exactly as directed and it was wonderful.  The meat was tender and my mini taste testers loved it.  Thats always a good thing!

Linguine with Creamy Zucchini Sauce -- Again, made this just as directed.  I have a plethora of zucchini and summer squash on hand because we've been visiting the farmer's market so often and have been looking for new ways to use it.  We tried this and it was a big hit!  I served it with some garlic bread and didn't even realize we didn't have any meat, but I bet this would be fabulous with some grilled chicken!  Once again, the mini taste testers loved it!

Southern Peach Cobbler -- This was one of our earlier challenges but I never posted the recipe I tried!  This wasn't it, I didn't like the recipe I tried, but I really liked this one!  It was super simple and it turned out great.  I doubled the recipe, made 2 cobblers and brought one to David's grandparents.  Everyone who ate it loved it.

That's all for now!  I'm going to try to photograph everything I cook from now on... just in case.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Honey Grilled Shrimp

After our wonderful cruise, David and I are trying to make spending alone time together a priority.  Of course, we have always known its important, but life happened fast.  3 babies in 20 months can really turn the life you're used to upside down!  Thats what happened for us.  We have started taking Friday/Saturday night to turn things off and talk.  On one of the blogs I enjoy reading she mentioned having cocktails and appetizers on Friday nights.  I thought that was a great idea!  So this past Saturday we grilled shrimp and opened a bottle of Prosecco after the kids went to bed.  It was so nice.

I didn't plan on sharing this shrimp recipe on CWC.  It wasn't really a big deal, I just pulled something up on (big surprise, thats one of my favorite sites!).  But, this was too good not to share.  The shrimp were out of this world!  David and I gobbled them up and he has suggested we make them again several times already.  I've got to buy more shrimp!

Honey Grilled Shrimp


* 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
* 1/4 tablespoon ground black pepper
* 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
* 2 tablespoons dry white wine
* 2 tablespoons Italian-style salad dressing
* 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined with tails attached
* 1/4 cup honey
* 1/4 cup butter, melted
* 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
* skewers


1. In a large bowl, mix together garlic powder, black pepper, 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce, wine, and salad dressing; add shrimp, and toss to coat. Cover, and marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
2. Preheat grill for high heat. Thread shrimp onto skewers, piercing once near the tail and once near the head. Discard marinade.
3. In a small bowl, stir together honey, melted butter, and remaining 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce. Set aside for basting.
4. Lightly oil grill grate. Grill shrimp for 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until opaque. Baste occasionally with the honey-butter sauce while grilling.