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Peanut Butter Fudge - (Makes 16 squares)



4 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups brown sugar, packed

1/2 cup heavy cream

1 cup creamy peanut butter

2 cups confectioners' sugar

1/2 cup peanuts, toasted & chopped



1.  Heat the butter and vanilla in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  When the butter melts, stir in the brown sugar and cream, bring to a boil, and cook, stirring for 2 minutes.  Stir in the peanut butter and mix until smooth.  Remove from the heat and cool slightly.


2.  Transfer the mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  Add confectioners' sugar and beat at medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes, until smooth.


3.  Line a square 8-inch baking dish with buttered parchment or waxed paper.  Pour in the peanut butter mixture, top with the chopped peanuts, and let cool completely.  To serve cut the fudge into 2-inch squares.



Chocolate Bread Pudding with Bourbon Sauce - (Makes 6 to 8 servings)



2 quarts dried bread cubes, cut into 1-inch pieces

4 oz. white chocolate, coarsely chopped

4 oz. dark chocolate, coarsely chopped

3 large eggs

1 quart half-and-half

3/4 cup sugar

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted

Bourbon Sauce



1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.


2.  Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking pan.  Spread the bread in the baking pan.  Sprinkle the white and dark chocolate over the bread.


3.  Whisk the eggs, half-and-half, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, and melted butter together in a large bowl and pour over the bread.  The mixture should look fairly wet and the bread should be slightly submerged when pressed with a spatula.


4.  Bake, uncovered for about 30 minutes, until the bread pudding jiggles like a bowl of jelly.  If only the middle jiggles, it needs more time - the pudding should hold together and jiggle as one piece.  Allow the pudding to cool slightly, then serve with a generous drizzle of Bourbon Sauce.



Bourbon Sauce



1/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter

2 egg yolks

2 to 4 tablespoons bourbon



1.  Heat the sugar and butter in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring until the butter melts and the sugar dissolves.


2.  Place the egg yolks in a metal mixing bowl and slowly pour the warm butter into the bowl, whisking constantly.


3.  Finish the sauce with the bourbon, depending on how strong you want the flavor to be.  If you're not serving the sauce immediately, cover and keep it warm.



NOTE:  If the sauce gets to hot or cold, it will break; if this happens, you'll need to whisk in another egg yolk to fix it.



German Chocolate Cake  - (Makes 1 10-inch layer cake)


Coconut-Pecan Filling Ingredients:

3 cups sugar

1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter

3 cups evaporated milk

12 egg yolks, beaten

3 cups flaked sweetened coconut

3 cups chopped pecans

3 teaspoons vanilla extract



Cake Ingredients:

2 1/3 cup all-purpose flour

11/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 tablespoon baking powder

3 cups sugar

5 large eggs

1 1/2 cup well-shaken buttermilk

1 1/2 cups strong coffee

12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) butter, melted



1.  Combine the sugar, butter, evaporated milk, and egg yolks for the filling in a saucepan.  Cook over medium heat stirring until thickened, 10 to 15 minutes.  Cool for 20 minutes, then fold in the coconut, pecans, and vanilla.


2.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Butter and flour three 10-inch round cake pans.


3.  Sift the flour, cocoa, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and sugar for the cake into a large bowl and whisk to combine.


4.  In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, and coffee.  Stir the egg mixture into the dry ingredients.  Add the melted butter and stir to combine.


5.  Dived the batter among the prepared pans and gently tap the pans on the counter to pop any air bubbles,  Bake until springy and firm to the tough, and a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out mostly dry, about 25 to 30 minutes (for even baking, rotate the pans after 20 minutes).


6.  Let the cakes cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then run a paring knife around the rim of the pans, invert the cakes onto a cooling rack, and cool completely.


7.  Level the cake tops with a long slicing or serrated knife, slicing off the rounded portions on top (discard or eat as a snack).  Using a plastic spatula, spread the coconut mixture on the bottom cake, then place the second cake layer on top.  Frost the top of the second layer, then place the third layer on top of it, then cover the top and sides with the coconut filling.


8.  To serve, cut the cake with a long slicer knife, wiping it off with a warm, wet towel in between slices.



NOTE:  The coconut filling tends to thicken on standing, so don't be tempted to add more coconut up front.



Blueberry Cobbler Lemon Meringue Pie

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