Monday, September 05, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Wing Dip

My friend, Kathleen, brought this to dinner last night, and everyone loved it!

2 (12.5 oz)cans Tyson brand chicken
2 8 oz blocks cream cheese, softened
1 cup wing sauce
1 cup blue cheese dressing

Mix all together and place in 9x13 casserole sprayed with Pam. Spread shredded cheddar cheese on top. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Serve with celery and tortilla chips.

Texas Sheet Cake from Cook's Country

This is  delicious, easy, and serves a crowd. It freezes really well too. I sliced it into serving-size pieces and placed them in cupcake liners. Then I put them into plastic containers and froze.

Serves 24

Toast the pecans in a dry skillet over medium heat, shaking the pan occasionally, until golden and fragrant, about 5 minutes.

2 cups  all-purpose flour
2 cups  sugar
1/2 teaspoon  baking soda
1/2 teaspoon  salt
2 large  eggs plus 2 yolks
2 teaspoons  vanilla extract
1/4 cup  sour cream
8 ounces  semisweet chocolate , chopped
4 tablespoons  unsalted butter
3/4 cup  vegetable oil
3/4 cup  water
1/2 cup  Dutch-processed cocoa powder

Chocolate Icing
8 tablespoons (1 stick)  unsalted butter
1/2 cup  heavy cream
1/2 cup  Dutch-processed cocoa powder
1 tablespoon  light corn syrup
3 cups  confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon  vanilla extract
1 cup  toasted pecans , chopped
1. For the cake: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 18- by 13-inch rimmed baking sheet. Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt in large bowl. Whisk eggs and yolks, vanilla, and sour cream in another bowl until smooth.

2. Heat chocolate, butter, oil, water, and cocoa in large saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until smooth, 3 to 5 minutes. Whisk chocolate mixture into flour mixture until incorporated. Whisk egg mixture into batter, then pour into prepared baking pan. Bake until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer to wire rack.

3. For the icing: About 5 minutes before cake is done, heat butter, cream, cocoa, and corn syrup in large saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until smooth. Off heat, whisk in confectioners’ sugar and vanilla. Spread warm icing evenly over hot cake and sprinkle with pecans. Let cake cool to room temperature on wire rack, about 1 hour, then refrigerate until icing is set, about 1 hour longer. (Cake can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated for up to 2 days. Bring to room temperature before serving.) Cut into 3-inch squares. Serve.

Pesto and Sun-dried Tomato torte

The original recipe came from Epicurious, but it was a little bland. I've made some changes that, I think, make it much better. This recipe make so much that you can do 2 smaller tortes and freeze one for another day. Also, don't worry if your layers don't go according to the directions. It won't matter at all.

5 garlic cloves
1 1/2 cups (packed) fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup pine nuts
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
fresh lemon juice and lemon rind
2 2/3 cups cream cheese, room temperature (about 21 ounces)
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1 1/3 cups drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
1/3 cup tomato paste

Pesto layer
Finely chop garlic in processor. Reserve half of garlic for other layers. Add basil, 1/4 cup pine nuts, 2 tbl olive oil and juice from half the lemon. Process until well blended. Add 1/3 cup cream cheese and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Using on/off turns, process just until blended. Season with salt and pepper. Taste and correct seasonings. Transfer pesto to medium bowl.

Tomato layer
Coarsely chop tomatoes in processor. Add tomato paste and half of reserved garlic and process until mixture is almost smooth. Add 1/3 cup cream cheese and blend well. Add 1-2 tbl olive oil. Add juice of half a lemon, salt, pepper, cayenne. Taste and correct seasonings.

Cream cheese layer
In food processor, beat 2 cups cream cheese and remaining parmesean with remaining garlic and lemon rind until fluffy. Season with salt and pepper.

Spray 6 cup bowl with nonstick spray. Line with plastic wrap, extending plastic over sides. Spread 3/4 cup cream cheese-parmesean mixture evenly over bottom of prepared dish. Top with half of tomato mixture, then 1/2 cup cream cheese-parmesean mixture, then half of pesto mixture. Repeat layering with 1/2 cup cream cheese-parmesean mixture, remaining tomato mixture, 1/2 cup cream cheese-parmesean mixture and remaining pesto. Top with remaining cream cheese-parmeseanmixture. Cover and chill at least 3 hours. (Can be made 3 days ahead. Keep refrigerated.)

Invert torta onto platter. Peel off plastic. Garnish with basil sprigs. Serve with baguette slices.

Makes 20 servings.