Chocolate Mint Truffles

This is a super duper easy no bake cookie that tastes delicious.  You can make these out of Girl Scout Thin Mints or use Keebler’s Grasshopper cookies.  Either way, they are a croud pleaser.  With only three ingredients, these would make a perfect recipe for you to prepare with your kids!

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Chocolate Mint Truffles

Yield: 12 truffles

Prep Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 1 – 1 1/2 hours

Ingredients

10 oz box of Keebler Grasshopper Cookies

4 oz (1/2 block) cream cheese, softened

almond bark (white)

green food coloring

Directions:

1.  Crush the cookies very finely in a food processor or in a sealed bag. When cookies resemble small crumbs, place in a large mixing bowl.

2.  Mix the softened cream cheese into the cookies with a spoon or you can use a hand mixer.

3.  Roll into 1” balls.  Place on a wax paper or nonstick mat lined baking sheet.

4.  Refrigerate for about 30 minutes.

5.  Melt  almond bark and add green food coloring

6.  Dip truffles completely in bark.  I used two forks to kinda roll them around in the bark and then let the excess drip off.

7.  Place back on lined baking sheet and let set.

8.  If  you want to decorate, you can melt some chocolate and spoon over the top

Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.  May be frozen as well.  Take out and thaw in the fridge a few hours before you want to serve them.

Texas Sheet Cake

I don’t know how this recipe got its name, because I think everyone in America has a recipe for Texas Sheet cake in their recipe box. I think the name probably has something to do with the fact that it is baked in a 15 x 10 jelly roll pan instead of the traditional 9 x 13 pan.  I clipped this recipe from a Cooking Light magazine many years ago.  It was in their “Lighten Up” section where readers sent in their favorite recipes and the staff at Cooking Light made them lighter.

My favorite thing about this recipe is how time efficient it is.  Mix up the batter and cook.  While cake is cooking, mix up frosting.  As soon as the cake is done (in only 15 minutes), pour the frosting over the hot cake.  You don’t have to wait for the cake to cool before you frost it.  This means that I can prepare this huge cake in less than 30 minute and be out of the kitchen!

Cake:

Cooking spray

2 tsp flour

2 cups flour

2 cups sugar

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp salt

3/4 cup water

1/4 cup butter

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa

1/2 cup buttermilk

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 large eggs

Icing:

1/2 stick of butter (no margarine please!)

1/3 cup milk

1/4 cup cocoa

3 cups powdered sugar

1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted

2 tsp vanilla extract

1.  Preheat oven to 375

2. To prepare cake, coat a 15 x 10 inch jelly roll pan with cooking spray, dust with 2 tsp flour

3.  Lightly spoon 2 cups flour into dry measuring cups, level with a knife.  Combne 2 cups flour and next 3 ingredients in a large bowl, stir well with a whisk.

4.  Combine water, 1/2 cup butter and 1/4 cup cocoa in a saucepan.  Bring to a boil stirring frequently.  Remove from heat and pour into flour mixture.  Beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended.

5.  Add buttermilk, 1 tsp vanilla extract and eggs, beat well.

6.   Pour batter into pan and bake at 375 for 15 minutes.

7.  To prepare icing, combine 1/2 cup butter, milk, and 1/4 cup cocoa in a medium saucepan, bring to a boil stirring constantly.  Remove from heat and graudually stir in powdered sugar, pecans and vanilla.  Spread over hot cake.  Cool completely on a wire rack.

Snickerdoodles

This recipe comes to me from my mom and the recipe card that it is written on is so old that I can barely read it.  I’m happy to get it into digital format!

A couple of cookie hints:  Use the best quality cookie pans you can afford, and take the cookies out before they are completely done.  They will continue to cook as they cool.  I find many people over cook their cookies which results in a hard, dry cookie. 

1 c shortening

1 1/2 c sugar

2 eggs

2 3/4 c flour

1 tsp almond extract

2 tsp cream of tartar

1 tsp soda

1/2 tsp salt

2 Tbs sugar

2 tsp cinnamon

1.  Cream shortening, sugar and eggs.

2.  combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl, stir together and then add to shortening mixture.

3.  Mix on medium speed until well blended.

4.  Chill dough and then roll into walnut size balls

5.  Mix sugar and cinnamon

6.  Roll each ball into sugar and cinnamon mixture

7.  Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet at 400 degrees for 8 – 10 minutes

Strawberry Gelato

This recipe brings back so many memories.  We made this often when our kids were younger.  I found this recipe in a Cooking Light article on Gelato and have made it ever since.  When you taste it, it is so hard to believe that there are only 4 ingredients!  What I love about this recipe is how nicely it fits into our new “whole-food” approach to eating. 

2 cups sugar

2 cups water

4 pints quartered strawberries

2 cups buttermilk

1.  Combine sugar and water in a large saucepan, bring to a boil, stirring until sugar dissolves.  Pour into a large bowl; cool completely.

2.  Place strawberries in a blender, and process until smooth.   Add strawberry purée and buttermilk to sugar syrup, stir to combine.

3.  Pour the strawberry mixture into the freezer can on an ice cream freezer, and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.