Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Quick Black Forest Cake
1 (18.25 ounce) package chocolate cake mix
scant 1/2 cup water
scant 1/2 cup oil
1 tablespoon almond extract
1 (21 ounce) can cherry pie filling
1 cup chocolate chips (I used Hershey's Special Dark chips to make it even more chocolatey)
chocolate frosting (I used a storebought one, but homemade is always better if you have time)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Mix together: cake mix, beaten eggs, oil, water, almond extract, cherry pie filling and chocolate chips. Stir until just combined. Pour batter into a greased 9x13 inch pan.
Bake in a 350 degree F (175 degree C) oven for 45 to 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove cake from oven and let cool. While cooling, you can drizzle some of the marachino cherry juice over the cake to soak in.
Combine frosting, about a teaspoon of the cherry juice and about 1/2 teaspoon of the almond extract to taste, being careful not to make the frosting watery. Frost the fully cooled cake. Drain the cherries and decorate the top of the cake with them. Eat within a day as the marachino cherries start to release their juice after a while.
Monday, February 15, 2010
Happy Valentine's day to all. Or in my case, a Happy "Girls Night In" Day. The boy will be back in a bit, but for tonight I was without him, so I used the opportunity to make a thank you dinner for one of my single gal pals. Did I just say "gal pals"? Forgive me, must be the strawberry margaritas speaking.
Anyway, I made a 3 course thank you dinner. It started with these baked crab rangoons. Followed by a Chinese chicken salad with a home made sesame soy dressing and ending with a brookie (brownie cookie, aka cookie in a brownie). While all parts were good, I think the crab rangoons were best. I made 13 rangoons and the 2 of us ate every last one.
These guys are SO easy too. Mix, place in won tons in muffin cups, bake. Done.
I was really afraid that these would be really gross once I opened the can of crab meat. I have never used canned crabmeat before, so I was shocked to open it and find that it smelled a little like canned tuna. Not what you want in your crab rangoon. After I drained it and mixed it with the other ingredients though, it tasted nothing like that smell, and was really good. Just make sure to drain it.
Also, I think this is a great base recipe for a crab dip. Add old bay, maybe replace the green onion with regular onion, add some cheese and bake in a casserole dish and it should be great. Just a thought from a girl who loves crab dip a little too much (what can I say, I am always a Marylander at heart).Baked Crab Rangoons
- 1 (170 gram) can crabmeat- drained well
- 125 grams (a little more than 1/2 package) Brick of Cream Cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
- 1/4 cup Mayo (I used the olive oil based mayo as it is all I buy nowadays)
- 12 wonton wrappers
- Optional: Sesame seeds and/or green onions for garnish
- Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix crabmeat, cream cheese, onions and mayo.
- Spray 12 muffin cups with cooking spray (not too heavily). Gently place 1 won ton wrapper in each cup, allowing edges of wrappers to extend above sides of cups. (I realized it is best not to try to bend the middle parts onto themselves to make it flat, let the insides be bumpy, it firms up better) Fill evenly with crabmeat mixture.
- Bake 18 to 20 min. or until edges are golden brown and filling is heated through. (I then placed them on paper towels for a few minutes to absorb the extra oil and firm up) Serve warm. Garnish with chopped green onions and sesame seeds, if desired.