a little of each

A family's cookbook

Bittersweet Chocolate Sauce June 2, 2013

Filed under: Desserts — alittlemoreofeach @ 3:49 pm
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Nana made this every January for Peter’s birthday. Peter would then savor it by the spoonful or over ice cream for the next few months. From a February 1954 issue of Woman’s Day magazine.

 

Ingredients

8 squares unsweetened chocolate

2 cups sugar

1 (14 ½ oz) can evaporated milk

2 Tbl strong black coffee

pinch of salt

1 tsp vanilla

 

Directions

Melt chocolate in top part of double boiler over boiling water; add sugar and mix well. Cover; cook over boiling water for 30 minutes. Add milk, coffee, salt, vanilla; beat until smooth and thick. Serve hot.

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Aunt Kittie’s Pineapple Sauce

Filed under: Desserts — alittlemoreofeach @ 3:47 pm
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Mix together in a small pan ½ cup of crushed pineapple, ½ cup granulated sugar and ½ cup water. Boil for 15 minutes and then chill.

 

Vanilla Sauce for Gingerbread

Filed under: Desserts — alittlemoreofeach @ 3:45 pm
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January 5, 2017. Today is my dad’s birthday. He would’ve been 68. Should’ve been. Instead he died nine years ago, and it still stinks. I try so hard to remember him outloud. I don’t know that I believe that it keeps him alive, but I will do anything to create him as a full person in the girls’ minds and memories. So we talk about him, how he loved to bake and how they’ve inherited that. How he loved the Boston Red Sox and umpiring and playing golf and the Beatles. I sing Yesterday to them as a (depressing) lullaby and Blackbird. And I tear up. Every single time.

I also talk to them about nutmeg, my dad’s “secret” ingredient. I get to use those irony quotes because it was a secret from no one that he loved nutmeg and would put it in any recipe he thought needed a little special something. It often worked. But sometimes he’d be a little heavy-handed with the powerful seasoning. If someone mentioned, “Maybe there’s a bit too much nutmeg?” he’d take it personally and pout just a bit.  So nutmeg is my dad. After he had his stroke and was in the ICU for nearly two weeks, my sister would bring in whole nutmegs and hold them under his nose. To connect with him, to remind him that we are here, to try to bring him home. As powerful as nutmeg is, it wasn’t up for that job.

I make this dessert because of the nutmeg. It is the star. The gingerbread is nice enough (and often comes from a box – shhh!), but the warmed vanilla sauce with its specks of nutmeg and velvety texture is heavenly. I acknowledge that it could be straight out of a 1960s-era Good Housekeeping cookbook and maybe not the prettiest thing ever plated. But it’s comforting, and it connects us, and it brings me home for just a minute.

 

Ingredients

½ cup sugar

2 Tbl cornstarch

1 cup boiling water

2 Tbl butter

1 tsp vanilla

nutmeg, to taste

 

Directions

Mix sugar and cornstarch in a saucepan. Stir in boiling water and simmer for five minutes or until thickened. Add butter, vanilla and nutmeg. Serve warm.

 

 

 

Creamy Velveeta Fudge

Filed under: Desserts — alittlemoreofeach @ 3:37 pm
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Don’t let the name fool you or gross you out – this is a wonderful, creamy fudge.

 

Ingredients

1 stick butter

8 oz Velveeta cheese

½ cup baking cocoa

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 lbs confectioners sugar

 

Directions

Melt butter and cheese on low heat. Sift in cocoa and sugar; stir well. Add vanilla and optional nuts. Press into a 9 x 13 pan. Cool and cut into squares.

 

 

Peanut Butter Fudge

Filed under: Desserts — alittlemoreofeach @ 3:33 pm
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Before we realized chocolate was bad for dogs, this was a favorite of Kippy’s, our malamute. When you opened the refrigerator to get a slice of fudge, she would sit next to the fridge at full attention until we gave her a little sliver.

 

Ingredients

1 large Hershey’s chocolate bar

2/3 cup chunky peanut butter

1 stick salted butter

 

Directions

Mix all ingredients in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Heat until all ingredients have melted and the mixture just starts to bubble. Pour into an ungreased pie pan and refrigerate to harden.

 

Jen’s variations:

Dice up some caramel squares and add them to the still-warm mixture in the pie pan.

Add some miniature marshmallows to the still-warm mixture in the pie pan.

Line bottom of pan with diced nuts and pour fudge on top.

 

 

Apple Bars

Filed under: Desserts — alittlemoreofeach @ 3:23 pm
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Ingredients 

Crust:

2 cups flour

½ cup sugar

½ tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

1 cup butter, softened

2 egg yolks

 

Filling:

4 cups Golden Delicious apples, peeled and thinly sliced

¾ cup sugar

¼ cup flour

1 tsp cinnamon

 

Directions

To make the crust, combine all the crust ingredients in a mixer; the dough will be very soft. Divide dough in half and place one half in an ungreased 9 x 13 pan. For the filling, mix the sugar, flour and cinnamon together; add the sliced apples and mix until coated. Spread evenly on top of dough. Crumble remaining half of dough on top of apples. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

 

Lemon Squares

Filed under: Desserts — alittlemoreofeach @ 3:21 pm
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Ingredients

1 cup flour

½ cup butter

¼ cup powdered sugar

2 eggs

1 cup sugar

½ tsp baking powder

¼ tsp salt

2 tsp lemon zest

2 tsp lemon juice

 

Directions

Mix one cup flour, butter and powdered sugar. Press into an ungreased 8 x 8 pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Beat eggs, sugar, baking powder, salt, lemon zest and juice together until light and fluffy. Pour over hot crust and bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Cool completely and cut into squares. Makes 16 bars.