28 Delicious Thanksgiving (and Thanksgiving Leftovers) Recipes for 2016

Thanksgiving 2016 2

It’s that time again; time for the annual Thanksgiving post. After almost 6 years of blogging, I have accumulated quite a few recipes that work in this category, so I have to cull some out so as to not end up with a post with 50 different additions. ๐Ÿ˜›

Let’s start with entrees. Because…turkey…ham. Yummy. ๐Ÿ˜€

This Orange Marmalade Brown Sugar Glazed Ham is my absolute favorite way to make a ham. The ham turns out so moist and tender with such a delicious sweet/salty flavor you’ll keep coming back for.Orange Marmalade Brown Sugar Ham-001This Sesame Soy Turkey Breast is fantastic if you’re a cook who’s willing to leave the traditional box a bit on Thanksgiving. This glaze can also be used on a whole turkey, a chicken, game hen, you name it.

Sesame Soy Turkey Breast

Sesame Soy Turkey Breast

I know that a lot of families like to serve a pasta dish as one of the main dishes so I’m including our favorite, this Cheesy Sausage And Meatball Pasta Bake. This makes a LOT, so it’s perfect for Thanksgiving, when a lot of people are there, with everyone getting as little bit of each dish.Cheesy Meatball And Sausage Pasta BakeLet’s move on to appetizers; those little bits you put out to keep everyone from storming the kitchen begging for food. ๐Ÿ˜›ย  One of my favorite easy dips (and when I say easy, I mean it) is my White Trash Dip. I know; such a classy name, lol. But it is great for appeasing the hungry mongrel hordes and quick to throw together, which is always a plus on Thanksgiving.
White Trash Dip
I have adored Boursin Cheese for years, but man, that stuff is expensive for the small amount you get. So I started making my own years ago. This is soooo good and always a hit. It’s creamy, great with veggies like celery sticks as well as crackers. If you have any left over, it also makes a great stuffing for chicken breasts.

Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

Ahhhh, side dishes. What would Thanksgiving be without 50 side dishes to serve with the turkey and ham? One of my all time most popular posts here at From Cupcakes To Caviar is my Insanely Cheesy And Creamy Mac And Cheese. This makes a HUGE pan of mac and cheese, so it’s perfect for the holidays.Insanely Cheesy And Creamy Mac & CheeseYou can’t have turkey without mashed potatoes, right?
I was never a mashed potato fan until I made up these Ultimate Buttery Sour Cream And Onion Mashed Potatoes. I totally love these. They are creamy, buttery (boy, are they buttery) and with a subtle tang from the cream cheese.

Ultimate Buttery Sour Cream And Onion Mashed Potatoes

Ultimate Buttery Sour Cream And Onion Mashed Potatoes

If you want to go a little different, you can’t beat these Herb Roasted Potatoes And Root Vegetables. The potatoes and veggies get all crispy on the outside and all soft and tender inside. So, so good.

Herb Roasted Potatoes And Root Vegetables

Herb Roasted Potatoes And Root Vegetables

I was never a cold pasta salad sort of a person until I made up this Chilled Caprese Tortellini Salad a few years ago. It’s great during the holidays for people who may want something a little lighter (and with no meat in it, lol) but still full of flavor.Chilled Caprese Tortellini Salad
I have a major thing for Winter squashes. To me, they stand so far above the ubiquitous Summer squashes. I took one of my favorites here and stuffed it to come up with Squash Stuffed With Sausage, Pears And Cranberries. This is a fantastic addition to the holiday meal or a great light entree on it’s own.

Squash Stuffed With Sausage, Pears And Cranberries

Squash Stuffed With Sausage, Pears And Cranberries

You can’t have Thanksgiving dinner without cranberry sauce, right? While I admit to a secret love for the kind that slithers out of the can with a loud plop, I also love homemade cranberry sauce and make a large batch every year. My Spiced Spiked Cranberry Sauce is a perfect foil for all the rich dishes you’ll be serving. The brandy is completely optional so don’t let that turn you away from it. Spiced Spiked Cranberry Sauce

Now we come to the breads. I’m not normally a big one for breads, but hot and fresh on the holidays? I tend to go for them more at that time. And these Angel Biscuits have become a family favorite. Since they have baking powder in them as well as yeast, they are fairly foolproof, which is great for the less experienced cooks out there.

Angel Biscuits

Angel Biscuits

The rolls I have been making for years are these Oatmeal Yeast Rolls. They are so fluffy and soft; perfect hot spread with butter or later as a mini turkey sandwich (Yes, I know this is a bad photo. The post is an old one, when my photography skills were sub-par, to say the least. The rolls however, are amazingly good)

Oatmeal Rolls

Oatmeal Rolls

I love to make a few loaves of bread for Thanksgiving as well as rolls. They are so good with dinner and make fantastic sandwiches the next day. I particularly love to make my Loaded Baked Potato Bread, The flavors in it go wonderfully with a turkey sandwich!

Loaded Baked Potato Bread

Loaded Baked Potato Bread

Here in the south, a lot of people like to make cornbread to go with dinner, even on the holidays. My Sweet Cream And Honey Cornbread is a favorite. It’s fluffy, not at all dry like so many cornbreads can be, with just a touch of sweetness.

Sweet Cream And Honey Cornbread

Sweet Cream And Honey Cornbread

Then, of course, we have the part of dinner that everyone looks forward to; dessert! And man, you know I have some desserts to share with you! I have to start with the classics, of course, so here is my favorite- my Decadent Extra Creamy Pumpkin Pie. This one is posted with a really good cornmeal crust, but you can use your favorite crust. Just make sure it’s a deep dish one. Decadent Extra Creamy Pumpkin Pie In A Cornmeal Crust
That pumpkin pie tends to be my husbands favorite. Mine however will always be Pecan Pie. I love it slightly warmed with heavy cream poured over it. So bad for me, but so delicious!Deep Dish Pecan Pie

The last few years, my favorite pecan pie has had to vie with this Cranberry Apple Cake. I can’t say enough good things about this cake. It’s absolutely delicious and I can’t imagine the Thanksgiving meal without it now. It’s sweet, tangy, crispy, just a wonderful dessert that I look forward to all year.

Cranberry Apple Cake

Cranberry Apple Cake

If you want a classic (not to mention, heavenly chocolate goodness ๐Ÿ˜€ ) you’ll want to make this wonderful Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake With Chocolate Icing This is a favorite with pretty much all age groups, and even those people who say Thanksgiving should be all about the pies. I’m not even normally a cake person and I love it!

Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake With Chocolate Icing

Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake With Chocolate Icing

If you want to do a different apple dessert, my Worlds Best Apple Spice Cake With Creamy Vanilla Butter Sauce would be a great choice. It’s easy to throw together the day before you need it and then just warm up the sauce when ready to cut and serve. Again, I’m not huge on cakes, which is why if you see me posting one, you know it MUST be good.

Worlds Best Apple Spice Cake With Creamy Vanilla Butter Sauce

Worlds Best Apple Spice Cake With Creamy Vanilla Butter Sauce

Or maybe you prefer a classic apple dessert? I find myself going for this Old Fashioned Apple Crisp all year round, but it’s a delicious choice on Thanksgiving!Old Fashioned Apple Crisp 2

I have a couple of desserts for you that are a bit more elegant, plus not as heavy. The first is one I love; my Elegant And Easy Lemon Almond Cake. This cake is light and filled with the flavor of almond and lemon; perfect for the family members who want a little something for dessert, but don’t want the heavier sweets.

Elegant & Easy Lemon Almond Cake

Elegant & Easy Lemon Almond Cake

The other one is one of my more recent creations- these Skillet Pears With Autumn Spiced Caramel Sauce. These are wonderful if you have a smaller gathering. The pears end up tender and juicy and the caramel sauce is fantastic.Skillet Pears With An Autumn Spiced Caramel Sauce 9

So, what to do with leftovers once Thanksgiving is over? When you tire of just making a plate of leftovers, I have some things you can do with some of them. If the title says chicken, obviously you can sub in that leftover turkey staring you in the face.

We love Mexican food in my house. Yes, I know that much of what we all call Mexican food has been totally Americanized, but it’s still delicious, so who cares? One of my family’s favorites are these Cheesy Chicken (Turkey) And Chorizo Enchiladas. They have the perfect mix of creamy, spicy and cheesy. I make them all year round, but they are a perfect way to use up leftovers.Cheesy Chicken And Chorizo Enchiladas 2

Everyone makes soup after Thanksgiving. But I have one here that doesn’t need to have you simmering stock for hours on end. I can eat a boatload of my Quick And Easy Turkey, Bacon And Cheese Chowder. This is comfort food at its best and it doesn’t have to cook for hours.Quick & Easy Turkey, Bacon & Cheese Chowder

Along the Mexican lines again, I almost always make a pan of White Chicken (Turkey) Enchiladas in the week after Thanksgiving. These are soooo darn good and everyone scarfs them down.

Creamy, Cheesy White Chicken Enchiladas

Creamy, Cheesy White Chicken Enchiladas

You may still have some turkey left even after those (I know I will; I always buy too much!) so my Cheaters Easy Chicken (Turkey) And Dumplings never fails me. It’s warming, comforting and filling and tastes great!

Cheaters Easy, Creamy Chicken & Dumplings

Cheaters Easy, Creamy Chicken & Dumplings

If you have leftover cranberry sauce (and you know you will), make a loaf of my Pumpkin Cranberry Bread. It’s an easy way to use up some of those leftovers and it makes a yummy breakfast or light snack.Easy Pumpkin Cranberry Breadthanksgiving

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Maple Butter Pecan Pie

Maple Butter Pecan Pie

Maple Butter Pecan Pie



I’m totally ready to get started with Thanksgiving and Christmas recipes. Hopefully, you’re totally ready to get those recipes, cause it’s probably the vast majority of what I’ll be posting for a while. ๐Ÿ˜€

I sometimes think to myself that I wouldn’t be as enamored of the holiday season if it fell in Summer. I mean… “let’s go grill out some chicken for Thanksgiving dinner” or “how about we make some nice cold ice cream to serve on Christmas”?? Those just don’t have the same ring to them, even though I’m well aware that it’s only on this half of the world that is deep into Autumn and Winter when Thanksgiving and Christmas hit. But I’m one of those people who gets sad if it isn’t bitter cold on both days. I want cozy, homey, preferably snowy. Plus, cooking a large meal in the oven and making the house a sauna when it’s not cold out kinda sucks.

I already have two pecan pies up here on the blog. But one can never have too many pecan pies, am I right? I rather like pecan pie, obviously. My husband isn’t fond of it. Yet I let him stay around anyway. Go figure.

I wanted to change up this years pecan recipe for the blog. So when I saw this in an old cooking magazine I have, I had to give it a try. I absolutely love real maple anything and I knew from the ingredients in this that it would be good. It came with it’s own pie crust recipe, but I forgot to get some photos of it, so I’ll post that separately next time I use it. Meanwhile, just use your own favorite 9 inch pie crust; even a store bought one is fine if you swing that way.

This was a delicious pie. Nice glazed looking pecans on top (the recipe called for pecan halves, but I prefer chopped. You do you.), a filling that wasn’t overly goopy nor overly sweet, but has a subtle maple edge to it. It IS pecan pie however; don’t go into this not expecting very sweet ๐Ÿ™‚ I love to serve my own piece of pie simply; just the pie, gently warmed, with a small puddle of heavy cream poured over it. Serve this with strong tea or coffee or a glass of milk for the kiddos.

You know the drill… <3

Maple Butter Pecan Pie

  • 9 inch pie crust
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups toasted pecan halves (I used more like just 1 cup because I prefer a higher ratio of filling to pecans)
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten (have them standing by in a large measuring cup)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  1. Preheat oven to 400. Line a 9 inch pie pan with the pie crust; crimp as desired. Gently cover the crust with foil, making sure to press it snugly onto the sides. Dump about a cup or so of either dry beans or uncooked rice onto the foil (you can let these cool afterward and save them in a ziploc bag to use the same way again); spread evenly. Bake the crust for about 15 minutes; until it is set, but not browned at all. Remove from oven, take the foil off and turn the oven down to 325 degrees.
  2. In a medium pot, combine the brown sugar, maple syrup, corn syrup and salt. Cooking, stirring frequently, just until warmed and the sugar has melted.
  3. Slowly drizzle some of the warmed sugar mixture into the eggs, whisking constantly. You want to temper the yolks, but not scramble them by adding hot liquid to it too quickly. Do it nice and slow. When you have about half the sugar mix incorporated into the eggs, whisk the eggs into the pot containing the rest of the sugar mix. Stir in the butter and vanilla extract.
  4. Sprinkle the pecans over the bottom of the crust. Carefully pour the sugar/egg mixture on top of the pecans.
  5. Bake the pie at 325 for 35 to 45 minutes, until the filling is puffed (it will settle back down as it cools) and just off center looks set. It’s ok if there is still some jiggle right in the middle. That will firm as it cools.

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Maple Butter Pecan Pie

Maple Butter Pecan Pie

Caramel Apple Pie Streusel Bars

Caramel Apple Pie Streusel Bars

Caramel Apple Pie Streusel Bars



I am notorious for totally sucking at making apple pies. I add far too much cinnamon and don’t slice my apples thinly enough, leaving some pieces half raw and others too mushy. I also stunk at pie crusts.ย  Well, I used to be anyway. For holidays, I STILL tend to buy Marie Callendars Dutch Apple Pie. Why, if I no longer suck? Cause 1) I’m lazy and 2) I love them, so I keep using the whole “I stink at making apple pies!” excuse. Sooner or later, my husband will catch on that I continue to buy $8.00 pies when I could just as easily make one for half the cost, but for now, when Thanksgiving day gets here, I have a Marie Callendar pie waiting in the freezer. Darlin’, if you’re reading this, I’m lying right here…honest, I still stink at making pies *bats lashes and looks innocent*

But, to be honest, I may just leave that pie in there this year and make these bars. I had originally planned on a bar that could be more hand held and had a double crust. But, as happens with me often, and with a lot of bloggers, it morphed into something different. This is still caramel apple pie, but less hand held bar (even though it was done is a square pan) and more “cut a slab of this bad boy, put it on a plate and smother it in caramel sauce and vanilla ice cream” sort of pie. It CAN be hand held, if you’re on the run, since it’s not drippy unless you put far too much caramel lol. But it’s really more of a plate dessert.

This is more multi-step than I usually do, but none of those steps are difficult. Make the dough for the crust and while it’s chilling, prepare your streusel and the pie filling. Then roll out your dough, put it in the pan, top with the filling, then top with the streusel. Voila… ready to go. You DO need to let this cool until it’s completely cool however. Really, with any fruit pie, you should do that. How many times have you cut a warm pie and ended up with half of the filling oozing out into the pan? Let it cool and if you want it warm, you can nuke it for 30 seconds. Trust me. It will set up firmer and not be an oozing mess. Once ready to serve, cover it as desired in caramel sauce (in my case, about 8 or 9 cups worth) and maybe some ice cream. Eat, Enjoy. Thank me. Oh..this crust makes enough for two, so if you’re not wanting to double up the filling and streusel and make two pans, just freeze the other half of the dough until you need it. It never hurts to have some on hand.

Caramel Apple Pie Streusel Bars

  • Crust- (lightly adapted from Emeril Lagasse)
  • 3 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, cold
  • 2/3 cup solid shortening, cold
  • 6 to 10 tablespoons ice water (the original recipe called for 4 to 5, but that was nowhere near enough)
  • Filling-
  • 5 1/2 cups cored, peeled and chopped (bite sized chunks) apples, about 5 apples. I used a mix of tart and sweet apples
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 cup Kraft caramel bits (found in the baking aisle)
  • Streusel-
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 cups oats (NOT instant)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold
  • caramel sauce for topping
  1. Make the crust- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a 9×9 square pan with foil, using two long pieces, each going in the opposite direction. (line one way, turn pan, line the opposite way, so that all four sides of the pan have a layer of foil) In a large bowl, combine the flour, salt and sugar. Using a pastry blender, cut in the butter and shortening until it looks like small pebbles or peas.
  2. Add the ice water, no more than 2 tablespoons at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add water until the dough comes together when mixed and isn’t sticky, just firm and holding itself together when pressed. Wrap dough in foil or plastic and chill while you make the streusel and filling.
  3. Streusel-
  4. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, oats, salt, sugar and cinnamon. Cut in the butter using a pastry blender or your fingers until it is crumbly with, again, pea sized pieces. It’s ok if some chunks are a bit larger. Set aside.
  5. Filling-
  6. In a large bowl, toss the apple chunks with the lemon juice. In a small bowl, combine the flour, spices and sugar. Pour over the apples and mix well, making sure to stir from the bottom, as the flour will settle. Add in the caramel pieces and stir well.
  7. Put together-
  8. Get your chilled dough. Cut in half and store half for later use. On a lightly floured board, roll the dough out into a square that measures about 2 inches larger than the pan, about 11×11. Easiest way to gauge- just hold the pan upside down over the dough and eye how large it is. If you need more dough, just use some from the saved half. That half can still be used for mini tarts or tassies. Gently (I use a dough scraper) lift the dough up and lay it in the pan. Press gently down into the pans, going up the sides about 2 inches. If it is uneven, carefully cut tiny bits off of the higher areas and use it to patch onto the shorter ones.
  9. Pour the filling over the prepared crust, smoothing top. Sprinkle the streusel over the filling. Bake at 375 minutes until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling around the edges, about 60 to 70 minutes.
  10. Let cool in the pan until completely cool. Cut and serve, drizzling (pouring copious amounts of…) caramel sauce on top of each piece, reheating for about 30 seconds in the microwave is desired.

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Deep Dish Pecan Pie

Deep Dish Pecan Pie

Deep Dish Pecan Pie

I love the whole idea of Thanksgiving. Beyond the obvious loving the meal part (I am a turkey fiend), there is something about the knowledge that on a day when I am sitting down with my family to our Thanksgiving meal, so are millions of other Americans here and abroad. I get a mental image of so many other families saying grace before they eat as they join hands. I think of them laughing as they enjoy the meal, many, just going by odds, laughing over the same lame jokes (oh my gosh, mom burned the pies AGAIN!) at the exact same time. I smile when I think of the kids all over America asking for the 10th time “can we have dessert now?” when all the adults want to do is sit back and catch up with each other over a cup of coffee and a glass of wine. It all gives me chills… the nationwide brotherhood so to speak, the idea that when it comes down to it, we are all one people. I feel the same way at Christmas when I think of so many opening their present early morning as they try not to yawn over the hour (though yes, I know not everyone celebrates Christmas) and on July 4th. So many things join us together as a nation, as a large extended family and Thanksgiving is one of those times.

One of the things I look forward to every year is Pecan Pie. As much as I love it, I can’t seem to bring myself to make it at any other time than Thanksgiving. It just feels wrong. But, so that some of you having a horde of family and/or friends over this Thanksgiving can have a good recipe, I made an exception this year. The things I do for you *she says as she shoves a spoonful of pie into her mouth*. This is a BIG pie. It will easily serve about 12 to 16 people unless you make the slices huge. It’s also not quite as tooth achingly rich as the pecan pie I posted last year. For me, it is a toss up which I prefer. This one is sturdy enough to hold a slice in your hands but it lacks the goopiness of the other. This one isn’t as sweet, but then again, this is ME here… I have no problem with sweet hehe. So what will I do? I’ll make both here. Then I have my sweet gooey pie and my husband has one that’s not as rich, cause he’s a wimp. Either way though, this is fantastic with some lightly whipped cream or as I like it, just with some warm cream poured around it.

You know the drill… ๐Ÿ™‚

Deep Dish Pecan Pie

  • Crust-
  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons solid shortening, such as Crisco, chilled in freezer and sliced thin
  • 2/3 cup ice water (you may not use it all)
  • Filling-
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup white (clear) corn syrup
  • 1 1/4 cups dark corn syrup
  • 6 eggs, beaten well
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  1. For crust- In a large bowl, combine the flour, salt and sugar. Stir to combine. Dump in the shortening and using a pastry blender, quickly cut the shortening into the flourย  until you have a crumbly mixture. You want there to still be some lumps in here, so don’t make it too fine.
  2. Add your ice water, one tablespoon at a time, mixing with a fork after each, until a small piece of the dough holds together in a ball when gently squeezed. When the dough is ready, wrap it in foil and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, but up to 2 days if you’re making the dough ahead of time.
  3. While the dough chills, make your filling. In a medium saucepot, combine the sugars and corn syrups. Bring to a boil over medium high heat and let boil for three minutes.ย  Set aside to cool slightly.
  4. When cooled down, slowly drizzle two cups of the sugar mix into the eggs, whisking all the time. This will temper your eggs and prevent them from scrambling when added to the sugar mix,. When you have whisked in all two cups, then pour the eggs into the saucepot with the sugar mix, again whisking the whole time. Then add in the vanilla and the pecans. Set aside.
  5. Make your crust- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and get out a 13×9 inch baking pan. Flour your working area well. Get the chilled crust, lay down on the work area and press it rather flat with your hands. Then roll out into a rectangle (you may have to help it keep the correct shape by periodically reshaping it as you roll) about 3 inches larger than the pan all around.
  6. Use a spatula to gently pry the dough off of the board or counter and roll it around the rolling pan to transport it to the pan. Gently drape it into the pan and press down into the bottom and edges of the pan. Crimp the top edges as desired.
  7. Pour the filling into the pie shell. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes, then turn the oven down to 325 to finish. Remove form the oven when you can insert a butter knife halfway between the edge and the center of the pie and it comes out clean, about 60 to 75 minutes. The pie will finish cooking form it’s own residual heat. Let this cool completely before you try to slice it or you will end up with a liquidy mess. If you want warm slices, simply reheat them in the microwave for about 10 seconds per slice.

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Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Caramel Pie With Salted Caramel Sauce

Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie With Salted Caramel Sauce-001

I am one of those weirdos who owns enough cookbooks to fill a room. It would be a small room yes, but a room nonetheless. Adding in cooking magazines like those Holiday ones that come out yearly and old issues of Gourmet and Food And Wine, etc etc, as well as paper cookbooks like the ones Pillsbury used to put out monthly (do they even still do that?) I have over a thousand cookbooks. It’s a sickness. Honest. And in our modern era, it’s a sickness that has gotten worse. How? Because now, I can get a cookbook out of the library and if it’s one that I find I’ve put about 10 or more sticky tabs in to save the pages, that means it a keeper. That used to mean that I would have a bazillion overdue books lol. But now it means that I can find the same cookbook on Amazon and buy it, sometimes for as little as 4 bucks with shipping, and tab the hell out of that bad boy.

But a lot of my favorite cookbooks are older ones that have proved to be tried and true. My Fanny Farmer Baking Book is one that I use often as are, surprisingly enough, a handful of the old Pillsbury paper cookbooks. Probably because, back when I was still learning to cook for a family, I found many recipes that went into our traditional holiday routine from them.

Another that I use is an old spiral bound Nestle Toll House cookbook. I was looking through it for inspiration the other day when I saw a recipe for Toll House Pie. It’s one that many home cooks have made… a chocolate chip cookie dough set into a pie shell. Sounded like something I could play with. The first time I made it, I undercooked it. Plus, the recipe had NO vanilla in it at all and far too much butter, to the point where I had to clean my oven because it lefts puddles of scorched butter on the bottom of it.

This time, I did it MY way. I added in some vanilla extract, used less butter, browned the butter for a nutty flavor (on a side note, with the browned butter, this batter was good enough to just eat out of the bowl! OMG, it was yummy!), added some caramel bits and topped the slices with some salted caramel sauce and chocolate sauce. All in all, made that way, it can be either a special dessert for the family or something worthy of guests.

Don’t be tempted to add extra chocolate chips or caramel to this. You know you’ll want to (we ALL do it ๐Ÿ˜› ) but I think that was part of the reason my first pie didn’t cook correctly. There was just too much in it for it to cook through even though it seemed done. Stick to the measurements here.

You know the drill. ๐Ÿ™‚

Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Caramel Pie With Salted Caramel Sauce

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, browned to a golden brown, then cooled to room temp
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup Kraft caramel bits (you can also use whole caramels; just cut into quarters to get the 1/2 cup measure)
  • 1 9 inch pie shell, unbaked (you can use store bought or homemade. I went the lazy route this time and used a frozen shell)
  • A half batch of this caramel sauce or you can use pre-jarred (I used Trader Joes Salted Caramel sauce because it’s amazing and almost as good as homemade) for drizzling…pouring…eating plain…bathing in…whatever
  • Chocolate sauce for drizzling
  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the eggs until foamy.
  3. Add in the flour, sugar, dark brown sugar and vanilla extract.
  4. Blend in the browned butter, then fold in the chocolate chips and the caramel bits.
  5. Spoon into the pie shell and smooth top with a rubber/silicone spatula. Eat what’s left on the spatula. Make sure it’s a lot. You can thank me later.
  6. Bake at 325 for 60 to 70 minutes. The top should be golden brown and dry looking. Let cool to room temp before slicing then use a hot sharp (preferably serrated) knife to get clean cuts. Cut this into VERY thin slices as it’s quite sweet and rich. You should be able to get ten slices from this pie easily.
  7. Top each slice with a (large) dollop of salted caramel and drizzle with chocolate sauce. Sprinkle each slice with a little sea salt if you’re so inclined. If you’re really into overkill and diabetic comas, spoon on some whipped cream too. I won’t judge.

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Lemon Icebox Pie With Honeyed Whipped Cream

Lemon Icebox Pie With Honeyed WHipped Cream 2-001

I know, I know, I just did a citrus pie. What can I say? I’m in a tangy frame of mind. Spring and Summer makes me want sweet tart desserts. Ok, so Fall and Winter make me want sweet tart desserts. So does Christmas. And Groundhog Day. And Thursdays. And…well, you get the point.

I’m not one of those weirdos who says that I would always choose lemon over chocolate, but I do love me a good lemony dessert. I come by that honestly if the love for it can be genetic. One of the only desserts I can recall my mother making was lemon meringue pie. She made an awesome one too.ย  Plus, my dad loved lemon meringue pie. Hmmm, wonder if there is a connection there. maybe my mom learned because my dad liked it? Or maybe my dad loved it because my mom made it? Who knows? I don’t have many memories of the two of them together so I guess it will remain a mystery.

My father would have loved this pie. It’s not lemon meringue but it has all the thing in it he (and I) loved; lemon, creaminess, whipped cream… ok, so my dad would have loved it because it had sugar lol. I’ve said it before- he was a diabetic with an insatiable sweet tooth.

I originally saw this recipe on The Galley Gourmet. Her blog is one of my absolute favorites and one I aspire to be like though I doubt it will ever happen with my lack of photography skills hehe. When I checked out the cookbook she mentioned in her post, I immediately went to Amazon to check it out and ten minutes later, I was 10 bucks poorer. But it’s definitely worth it. The book (Dam Good Sweet) has quite a few tempting recipes in it that I’ll be trying. Being me however, i had to change it up a little. Mind you, it was very very little. All I did was add some vanilla to it because I adore the combo of lemon and vanilla and I made a honeyed whipped cream for the top of it because who can resist the classic pairing of honey and lemon. I was tickled with the results of that idea. The honey whipped cream goes so well with the lemon flavor. I also didn’t freeze it, just chilled it because I’m not big on frozen pies. Anddddd, I used a premade graham cracker crust but I will post the recipe for the crust in the book. Feel free to do it either way. It worked just fine in the premade if you’re feeling as lazy as I was. So go see if you have any sweetened condensed milk and go buy the prettiest lemons you can find. This pie is delicious!

Note- this takes a lot of egg yolks so plan on making some egg white omelets for dinner that night or some meringue cookies the next day. Just store the whites in a covered container. They will last about 3 days.

Lemon Icebox Pie With Honeyed Whipped Cream

  • crust-
  • Premade graham cracker crust OR
  • 14 whole graham crackers
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • Filling-
  • 2 cans sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 1/4 cups strained lemon juice (will take about 5 to 6 lemons)
  • 8 egg yolks
  • zest from 2 lemons
  • Honeyed whipped cream-
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup honey (depends on how sweet you want it. I prefer it only mildly sweet because the pie is pretty sweet on it’s own)
  1. To make the crust-
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Break the graham crackers up into small pieces and place in the bowl of a food processor with the sugar and pulse until they are fine crumbs.
  3. Pour in the melted butter and pulse a few times, until the mixture holds together if squeezed.
  4. Transfer the mixture to a 9 inch springform pan and press onto the bottom and about an inch up the sides of the pan. Set aside.
  5. Whisk the condensed milk with the lemon juice. In another bowl, whisk the lemon zest with the egg yolks for about a minute or so. Pour the lemon juice mixture into the egg mixture and mix well.
  6. Place the pan on a rimmed baking sheet and pour the mixture into the crust. Place into the oven and bake for about 25 minutes or until the center is jiggly, rather like a soft set custard. Remove from the oven and let cool for an hour on a wire rack.ย  Loosely cover with plastic wrap and either chill or freeze for at least six hours.
  7. When ready to serve, make your cream. In a medium bowl, combine the heavy cream and the honey. Start with the 1/4 cup honey if you’re not sure how sweet you want it. You can taste midway through beating and see if you want more. Beat until soft peaks form. Either cover the pie with the cream or serve on the side. Or just take the whole bowl in a closet and eat it. I won’t judge.
Lemon Icebox Pie With Honeyed Whipped Cream

Lemon Icebox Pie With Honeyed Whipped Cream

 

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Key Lime Chess Pie

Key Lime Chess Pie 1

I’ve always had a thing for food culture and food history. One of my prize possessions is the full set of Time Life Foods Of The World cookbooks. The firs time I read one of them was when I lived in Germany and I became immediately hooked. The books are a bit dated now (they were printed in the late 60’s through early 70’s but that is actually part of their charm. But they are a wonderful combination of a cookbook, a travelogue and personal anecdotes from each author. When the internet became a larger part of everyday life, I looked for the books on Ebay and found them. By the time I managed to piece together one set, I had extras and now have almost 2 full sets of the books. I have yet to decide which one of my kids get the books when I die hehe.

One of the things I love about food history is how the things we eat has changed so much and it’s fun to compare. back in the day, people routinely ate things like offal and marrow. I remember my mother, a depression baby, sucking the marrow out of bones and how it grossed me out because I was form a different time period than she. And how many of you have ever had a tomato aspic or jellied beef? Or a Marlborough Pie or Shoofly Pie? Heck, I know many people from the generations younger than myself who have never even had jello or a jello salad. That was such a common place dessert or side dish years back but my theory is that the younger crowd today has far more choices when it comes to sweets so things like jello have fallen out of favor.

One of the things that always sounded interesting to me was Chess Pie. The addition of cornmeal to what would otherwise be a typical custard pie seemed unusual enough to be yummy. But the “normal” chess pie sounded overly sweet, even to me lol. So when I saw a recipe for Key Lime Chess Pie in The Southern Foodie, I knew I wanted to try it. I mean, y’all know me. Turn down something made with lime? Not to mention custardy, aka creamy? yeah right… and I hated Twinkies too.

This turned out pretty good. I was leery at first about the amount of butter used in the crust. I worried it would be greasy. But it seems to have worked, making the crust almost cookie like though a bit less butter would be ideal in my opinion. The filling is nice and tart from the lime but not too tart. The only issue I have is that the directions weren’t very clear on pie pan size. I used a regular 9 inch pan and ended with 1) a very thick crust and 2) too much filling for the pan. So I will say here and repeat in the recipe. Either use a 10 inch deep dish pie pan (hard to find I know), make this in say, a 13×9 inch glass pan or plan on putting some of it into ramekins as I did today.

Key Lime Chess Pie

  • Crust-
  • 1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
  • 11 teaspoons unsalted butter, melted (the recipe called for 12.5 tablespoons but I think a tad less would be ideal with no chance of excessive greasiness. Make your own call there.)
  • Filling-
  • 8 eggs (yes, 8)
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk or cream
  • 1/2 cup Key Lime juice (you can find it bottled with the regular lemon and lime juices at the store)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons cornmeal
  • juice (and zest; my addition there) of one lime
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  1. To make the crust, preheat oven to 350 degrees then combine all the crust ingredients and pat into the bottom of a deep dish large pie pan or a 9 inch pan and a couple of ramekins.
  2. Place the pan in the 350 degree oven and bake for 7 minutes, then set aside to cool.
  3. For the filling, In a large bowl, combine the eggs, sugar, milk (or cream) and key lime juice. Whisk until well combined.
  4. Add the flour, cornmeal, lime juice and zest and butter. Stir to combine.
  5. Pour into the pie shell and bake at 350 until the top is golden brown and the only the very center of the pie is jiggly. The edges and halfway through should look and feel set not liquidy.

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Too Much Chocolate? You’re Kidding, Right?

Fudge truffle Pie With Mascarpone Cream

Fudge truffle Pie With Mascarpone Cream

Is there such a thing as too much chocolate? My husband has joked (ok, half joked) that it’s different for a man, that women are hormonally wired to want chocolate more than males do. I’m not sure that’s true, no matter how many jokes/pins/whatever there are combining women, PMS and chocolate. But I think of it this way. If HE thinks that women have this strange NEED for chocolate, who am I to argue? With that mindset,a ll he does is roll his eyes as I grab the Reeses Cup package from the check out lane or smiles when I talk about how he just must, absolutely must, get me some Fanny May chocolates. I mean… I NEED them, right?ย  Why fight that line of thought? Heh.

This recipe however, come perilously close to too much. When you make it (and you must make it. If you’re female, tell anyone who asks that my husband, who is a medical professional, says that you need this pie. If you’re male, say you’re making it for your wife or sister or mother. Then eat it all yourself.

This pie is like a truffle in a crust. It’s rich, thick, smooth, supremely chocolatey and any other adjectives one can think of that mean “OMG, hand over this pie now and no one will get hurt!”. The mascarpone cream I added to it just adds to the decadence. Yet at the same time it cuts the richness a bit making it easier to fit in 4 or 5 more bites of pie. See? I’m always thinking of your needs here. I’m a pal that way.

No matter how much you love chocolate though, I suggest small slices. This pie can easily serve 12 people. Not to mention, I would guesstimate that a small slice of this has about 12,000 calories. Add some of the Mascarpone Cream and you’ve upped it to about 15,000 calories, give or take a thousand ๐Ÿ˜€

Fudge Truffle Pie With Mascarpone Cream Topping

  • 6 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 1 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 cups whole (or 2%) milk
  • 5 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 4 teaspoons good quality vanilla extract
  • 1 large premade graham cracker crust (feel free to use a deep dish pastry crust, but plan on leftover filling, which you can then eat warm with a spoon; not a bad predicament to be in)
  • Mascarpone Cream-
  • 8 ounces mascarpone
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  1. ย Separate your eggs, putting the whites into a sealable container in the fridge. Save them for meringue cookies or a couple of egg white omelets. After eating this pie, you’ll want to watch your calories for a bit anyway hehe.
  2. Place the yolks in a small bowl or measuring cup. Beat lightly then set aside.
  3. For the filling, in a large nonstick pot, combine the sugar and the cornstarch. Gradually whisk in the cream and milk, then stir in the chocolate.
  4. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly. Continue to cook until it is thick and bubbly. At first it will look like the chocolate just isn’t melting into it but keep going; it all comes together. Just don’t stop stirring or it will stick and burn and burned pudding smells and tastes disgusting and it makes baby kittens whimper..
  5. When it thickens, reduce the heat and cook for a couple of minutes more.
  6. Gradually stir about a cup of the filling mixture into the egg yolks, stirring the whole time you’re combining them. You have to temper your yolks. If you just dump them into the hot mixture, you’ll have chocolate filling with scrambled eggs mixed in. Yum??
  7. Stir the egg yolk mixture into the chocolate mixture. Bring to a gentle boil and cook for another 2 minutes, again stirring constantly.
  8. Take off the heat. Stir in the butter and vanilla extract.
  9. Pour the filling into the crust. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 4 hours.
  10. About ten minutes (or up to a day; no more though) before you’re ready to serve, make your topping.
  11. In a medium bowl, whip the mascarpone until light. Pour in the powdered sugar and vanilla and beat until fluffy and combined. Fold in the sour cream with a rubber spatula. Add in the heavy cream and beat at low speed until the mixture is light, fluffy and looks like a soft custard. If not using right away, eat a spoonful or six then put in a covered bowl in the fridge.
  12. When ready to serve, cut the pie (this slices quite nicely. It’s a firm filling) into small slices and serve either with a dollop of topping on each slice or with the topping in a bowl so everyone can put on how much they’d like.


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When Life Gives You Lemons….

Heck with just making lemonade. Find someone who has vodka and have a party. ๐Ÿ˜› I believe it was Ron White who said that. Don’t care much for the man but I like the sentiment. Though being the weirdo that I am, I’d probably forgo the party and add the lemons to the vodka with some sugar, let it steep for months and make Limoncello. Then sit back with a good book and have a drink. THAT’S a party!

Wow… I’m old. And boring.

Oh well… youth and excitement wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. ๐Ÿ™‚ My teen years, my twenties, even my early thirties, I was so unsure of myself or my importance in the scheme of things and so sure that “omg, I’m nothing! I haven’t discovered a cure for cancer… I can’t even get my son potty trained! I’m a failure!” was the way life would always be. I was fat, not very pretty, insecure and convinced that the world hated me. Now I’m middle aged, fat, not very pretty, still insecure at times (though it’s amazing what age does to that too) and not too worried about whether or not the world hates me hehehe. So long as I have my family, friends and all the people who actually seem to like to read my ramblings (hmmm, same thing as the friends really isn’t it? ๐Ÿ™‚ย  )ย  I think I’m doing pretty good, even on the bad days. They happen… we muddle through them and move on, hopefully a little wiser. So remember that all you young pups. The best years really ARE yet to come.

Damn. This post proves it. I really AM old and boring. *grins*. Love me anyway? ๐Ÿ˜›

Yesterday, I told you that today’s pie would be a lemon one. Bet you’re expecting lemon meringue or something like that. Nahhhhhhh. Much as I love it, that one is everywhere. So how about a Lemon Souffle Pie? Yep… Lemon Souffle Pie. I have been making this for years (again.. you have GOT to get yourself a copy of The Fanny Farmer Baking Book) and this is one I have not changed a bit. It is fantastic just the way Miss Farmer created it. This tastes just like what the name suggests. Basically because it IS just what the name suggests; just in a pie shell. It is light and fluffy and lemony and so darn easy it’s embarrassing. It has enough sweetness to be very satisfying but is light enough to be good served after a heavy meal (like Thanksgiving or Christmas…or even Easter) for those who want something but don’t want too much or maybe prefer something not chocolate (I know… weird people everywhere huh?). So give this a try. C’monnnnn …. don’t let the word souffle scare you off.

Lemon Souffle Pie

  • 1 unbaked nine inch pie crust
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (takes about 2 lemons for that much)
  • zest from one lemon
  • 3 tablespoons hot water
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  1. Preheat the oven to 425.
  2. Prick pie shell over with a fork. Line it with foil and bake at 425 for 6 minutes. Remove the foil and then bake again until it is just lightly browned; about ten minutes.
  3. Reduce your heat to 325.
  4. Put your egg yolks in the top part of a double boiler (I have also done this part in the microwave on 60% power, stirring after every minute. But be careful to keep an eye on it and stir often if you do it that way.). Add the lemon juice, zest, salt, hot water and 3/4 cup of the sugar. Beat the mixture over boiling water until thickened. Remove from heat and let it cool.
  5. In a medium bowl, beat your egg whites & the remaining sugar until stiff moist peaks form.
  6. Pour the cooled lemon mixture into the egg whites until no streaks of white remain. Remember; FOLD… don’t stir. You don’t want to deflate your whites.
  7. Pour the mixture into the pie shell. Write mildly obscene words in the filling with a knife.ย  Make pretty swirls on top of the filling.
  8. Bake at 325 until lightly browned, about 15 minutes.
  9. Let cool on a rack. Serve with ice cream or whipped cream. Or just hold the pie pan really close to you with a spoon and growl at anyone who gets too near.

โ€œCut my pie into four pieces, I donโ€™t think I could eat eight.โ€

I love that quotation. Yogi Berra said that. The man spoke my heart! I love pie. Sweet pies, savory pies, custard, fruit, cream, fly guts (just checking to make sure you’re paying attention), citrus, chocolate. I love them all. Well, except for the fly gut one. You can have my share. Though, me being me, I am now wondering how teenie tiny fly guts would be if they even have guts similar to ours and if spiders make fly guts pie.

Yeah. Uh huh. Maybe it’s time for me to start looking into therapy again.

I have a few hundred favorites however. Apple crumb (I even love the Sara Lee Dutch Apple Crumb one), Key Lime (my favorite Summer pie) Lemon Meringue (reminds me of my dad), well, anything lemon (check back tomorrow for one of those), cherry , mincemeat….ok, I think you get the point. I like pie. And I’m pretty much an equal opportunity pie lover (hmmm, my mind can make even THAT sound obscene. Did I mention that therapy thing?).

So going on my last post’s idea of giving you recipes to get ready for Thanksgiving before you go and pick all the better bloggers recipes because they make foods that make me look like a three year old in the kitchen *sobs piteously*, so that you don’t have to wait until the last minute to figure out what you want to make, I bring you my favorite pie. All time favorite. I’m talking “eat this until it seeps out of my pores and I smell like dessert (Thinking about this, is this really a BAD thing?) and I fall into a coma yet again from too much sugar” favorite pie. I’m saying “I love this pie and if I put it on my Thanksgiving table and the kids eat it all before I get to it, I cry” type of favorite pie. I’m saying…. I’m rambling aren’t I?

Moving on… my favorite pie is Pecan Pie. Go figure… a woman who doesn’t really care that much for nuts and my favorite pie is Pecan. But it is. And this one in particular. I have been making this for many many years now. It originally came from The Fanny Farmer Baking Book (omg, if you ever want just ONE excellent baking cookbook, get this one. Amazon still carries it even though it’s over a 25 year old book. I love this cookbook and want mine buried with me.) and I really haven’t changed it TOO much other than to increase the filling by half to make it deeper and adding a little cream and more vanilla to the filling before baking it. Why? Because more than I love the caramelized sugary glazed pecans (remember that not THAT fond of nuts thing), I absolutely adore the goopy filling in Pecan pie. This one is rich and dark and wickedly delicious. If you have been looking for a great pecan pie recipe, look no further. Try this one. I suggest making it a day ahead of time and letting it cool, then refrigerating it. Then when you want to cut it, cut it cold, then heat each piece in the microwave if you want it warm. I suggest that for most pies actually. They are much easier to cut and you’ll rarely have that first piece that falls apart that is so common with baking pies. So give this a try. Then do what I do when I make this and say to heck with the calories and drown it in a puddle of warm unsweetened heavy cream. Hey, it’s like a twice a year thing!

Wickedly Rich Pecan Pie

  • 1 9 inch unbaked pie shell (use homemade or use store bought but make sure it is a DEEP shell. Crimp the edges up even higher if it is a store bought deep dish with low edges)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup dark corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 6 tablespoons melted butter
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups pecan halves or pieces (I use pieces; make the pie easier to cut and the nuts gets more glazed and caramelized)
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Beat the eggs with a whisk (don’t use an electric beater with this recipe. It adds too much air to the filling) in a large bowl until well blended.
  3. Add the corn syrups (btw, bottled corn syrup is NOT the same thing as HFCS. You may not want to stick a straw in the bottle and drink it but it’s fine to use if you’re someone who worries about HFCS.),ย  the brown sugar, the melted butter, cream and vanilla. Blend well.
  4. Stir in the pecans. I then let it sit for about ten minutes or so before I put it in the pie shell. It gives the pecans time to soak up the filling.
  5. Pour filling into pie shell.
  6. Bake the pie for 15 minutes then reduce the heat to 350 degrees and cook until the pie is done. When you can stick a thin knife in the center and not come out with liquid on it, it’s done. You want it to come out with little tiny bits of goopy filling on it. Pecan pie is pretty precise in how it should be cooked. Too little and it’s runny; too much and it gets granular. Depending on your oven, this will take from 30 to 40 minutes. If it is getting too brown, lightly cover the pie with foil to shield it.
  7. Let cool on rack, then refrigerate until thoroughly chilled. If you want it warmed, slice the pie and heat each piece individually in the microwave.
  8. Cover your slice in a puddle of heavy cream that makes your pie scream at you that it’s drowning.