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DESSERT OF THE MONTH 2009

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SUPERBOWL XLIII
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HOST A COOKIE EXCHANGE
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HOLIDAY GIFTS FROM YOUR KITCHEN
LETTER FROM SANTA

HOPE YOU ALL ENJOY THE MONTHLY DESSERTS! 

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2009

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Chocolate Turtle Cake
 
No wonder this is a bake sale winner! Devil’s food cake sandwiches caramel, pecans and, yes, more chocolate in the middle. Yum.
 
1 box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® devil's food cake mix
1 1/3 cups water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 bag (14 oz) caramels
1/2 cup evaporated milk
1 cup chopped pecans
1 bag (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips (1 cup)
 Ice cream or Whipped cream, if desired
 Caramel and chocolate topping, if desired
 Chopped pecans, if desired 
   
   
DIRECTIONS:
  
1. Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Grease or spray bottom of 13x9-inch pan.

2. In large bowl, beat cake mix, water, oil and eggs with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds, then on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour half of the batter into pan. Bake 22 minutes (25 minutes for dark or nonstick pan). Refrigerate remaining batter.

3. Meanwhile, in 1-quart saucepan, heat caramels and evaporated milk over medium heat, stirring frequently, until caramels are melted. Stir in pecans. Pour caramel mixture over warm cake in pan. Sprinkle with chocolate chips. Spread with remaining batter. Bake 25 minutes (29 minutes for dark or nonstick pan) or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Run knife around sides of pan to loosen cake. Cool at least 30 minutes. Serve with ice cream, drizzle with topping and sprinkle with pecans. Store loosely covered at room temperature.

High Altitude (3500-6500 ft): In step 3, bake 30 minutes (34 minutes for dark or nonstick pan).
 
Nutrition Information:
1 Serving: Calories 340 (Calories from Fat 150); Total Fat 16g (Saturated Fat 5g, Trans Fat 0g); Cholesterol 35mg; Sodium 270mg; Total Carbohydrate 43g (Dietary Fiber 2g, Sugars 28g); Protein 4g Percent Daily Value*: Vitamin A 0%; Vitamin C 0%; Calcium 8%; Iron 8% Exchanges: 1 Starch; 2 Other Carbohydrate; 0 Vegetable; 3 Fat Carbohydrate Choices: 3
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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Fudgy Brownie Trifle
 
Easy to assemble, this layered indulgence will wow chocolate lovers of all ages!

1 box (1 lb 2.3 oz) Betty Crocker® fudge brownie mix
 Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on brownie mix box
1 tablespoon instant coffee granules or crystals
1 box (4-serving size) chocolate fudge instant pudding and pie filling mix
2 cups cold milk
1 bag (8 oz) toffee bits
1 container (8 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed

DIRECTIONS:
1. Heat oven to 350ºF. Grease bottom only of 13x9-inch pan with shortening or cooking spray.

2. Make brownie mix as directed on box, using water, oil and eggs and adding coffee granules. Spread batter in pan. Bake as directed on box. Cool completely, about 1 hour.

3. Cut brownies into 1-inch squares. Place half of the squares in bottom of 3-quart glass bowl. Make pudding mix as directed on box for pudding, using milk. Pour half of the pudding over brownies in bowl. Top with half each of the toffee bits and whipped topping. Repeat with remaining brownies, pudding, toffee bits and whipped topping.

4. Cover; refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving. Store covered in refrigerator.


Do-Ahead Tip 
This chocolate pleaser can be made up to 24 hours ahead of time. You also can bake the brownies and freeze them tightly covered up to 2 months.
 
Special Touch 
This fabulous crowd-pleasing dessert is extra-special when garnished with chocolate curls or chocolate leaves.

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L is for Ladybug Cake
 
Make a cake that looks like a ladybug.
 
INGREDIENTS:
 1 baked dome cake (made in a 1 1/2-quart bowl or 6-inch sphere) 
 1 baked cupcake 
 3 cups red frosting 
 12 Junior Mints 
 2 green gumdrops 
 Black shoestring licorice 
 
Directions:
1. Turn the cake and cupcake upside down and frost them with red icing.
 
2. Place the mints on the body for spots.
 
3. Add the green gumdrop eyes and the licorice antennae, and the ladybug will fly away home.

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Flower Power Cake
 
Welcome spring with this easy-to-create garden of beautiful buds
 
INGREDIENTS:
 2 1/2 to 3 cups white icing 
 1 baked 13- by 9-inch cake 
 4 baked cupcakes 
 5 baked mini cupcakes 
 1/4 cup green icing 
 Green gel icing (optional) 
 Candy for decorations, such as spearmint leaves, colored sugar, colored nonpareils, LifeSavers Gummies, sour rings, jujubes, M&M's Minis, and Jujyfruits 
 
Directions:
1. First, frost the 13- by 9-inch cake with the white icing. (Tester's Tip: To avoid dark crumbs in the light-colored icing, we used a white cake and cupcakes.) Arrange the cupcakes and mini cupcakes (you can cut them in half horizontally for thinner flowers if you wish) on top of the cake, wherever you'd like a flower. Cover them with the white icing as well, including the sides.
 
2. Using a pastry bag (or a plastic bag with one small corner cut off), pipe a green icing stem for each flower. If you'd like, you can also add green gel icing grass. Place spearmint leaves along the icing stems, then decorate the cupcakes with colored sugar and candies to create a garden of colorful blooms. You can also pipe on dollops of icing, as we did with some of our flowers.
 

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Snips and Squiggles Cake
 
Decorating cake is as quick and easy as scissor snipping a fruit snack roll.
 
1 cup Gold Medal® all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg
1 cup Betty Crocker® Rich & Creamy lemon or vanilla frosting (from 16-oz container)
1 Betty Crocker® Fruit by the Foot® fruit snack roll (from 4.5-oz package)
  
  
  
1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease bottom and side of 8- or 9-inch round cake pan with shortening; lightly flour.
2. In large bowl, beat all ingredients except frosting and fruit roll with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds, scraping bowl constantly. Beat on high speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into pan.
3. Bake 33 to 38 minutes or until cake springs back when touched lightly in center. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pan to wire rack. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
4. Spread with frosting. Cut part of fruit roll into bite-size pieces with decorative-edged craft scissors (keep paper backing on fruit roll to make cutting easier, then peel off). Cut remaining fruit roll into shapes with craft hole punches (larger, simpler shapes work best). Place fruit shapes randomly over frosting.
 

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Marshmallow-Granola Brownies
 
Here’s a great take-along for picnics and potlucks! One recipe makes a whopping 45 bars.
 
1 box (1 lb 6.5 oz) Betty Crocker® Original Supreme brownie mix
1/3 cup water
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups granola, slightly crushed
2 1/2 cups miniature marshmallows
     
  
1. Heat oven to 350ºF. Grease bottom only of 15x10x1-inch pan with shortening or cooking spray.
2. In medium bowl, stir brownie mix, pouch of chocolate syrup, water, oil and eggs about 50 strokes with spoon or until well blended. (Mixture may be lumpy.) Spread evenly in pan; sprinkle granola over batter.
3. Bake about 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted 2 inches from side of pan comes out clean or almost clean.
4. Sprinkle marshmallows over granola. Bake about 5 minutes or until marshmallows are golden brown. Cool completely for easier cutting, about 1 hour. For 45 bars, cut into 9 rows by 5 rows
 

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Design-Your-Own Kabobs with Fruit Sauces
 
Kabobs let all the guests create their own feast. The assorted meats, vegetables and tantalizing fruit sauces make grilling fun!
 
Plum Barbecue Sauce
1 can (16 1/2 oz) purple plums, drained
1 can (6 oz) frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 small onion, finely chopped (1/4 cup)
1/4 cup chili sauce
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Apricot-Rosemary Salsa
1 can (5 1/2 oz) apricot nectar
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
1 tablespoon chopped shallot
3 medium plum (Roma) tomatoes, chopped (3/4 cup)
2 teaspoons chopped fresh or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves, crumbled
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Kabobs
1/2 lb boneless beef sirloin steak, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 lb Italian sausage links (or smoked sausage such as kielbasa), cut into 1-inch pieces
3/4 lb uncooked large shrimp in shells, thawed if frozen
16 small new potatoes, cooked until tender (about 15 minutes)
16 fresh whole mushrooms
3 medium zucchini or yellow summer squash , cut into 1-inch slices
1 bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 large onion, cut into 24 pieces or 24 pearl onions
 Italian dressing
  

1. In blender, place plums and lemonade concentrate. Cover and blend on medium speed until smooth; set aside. In 2-quart saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Cook onion in butter about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender. Stir plum mixture and remaining sauce ingredients into onions. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer uncovered 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
2. In 2-quart saucepan, mix apricot nectar, apricots and shallots. Heat to boiling over medium heat; reduce heat. Simmer uncovered 3 to 5 minutes or until most of nectar is absorbed. Stir in remaining salsa ingredients except parsley; heat through. Stir in parsley. 
3. Heat coals or gas grill for direct heat. Thread 4 or 5 meat pieces alternately with potatoes, mushrooms, zucchini, bell pepper and onion on each of 8 large (15-inch) or 16 small metal or bamboo skewers, leaving space between each piece. 
4. Cover and grill kabobs over medium heat 10 to 15 minutes, turning and brushing 2 or 3 times with dressing, until meats are done. When done, beef, chicken and sausage are no longer pink in center and shrimp are pink and firm. Serve kabobs with warm or cold sauce and salsa

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Banana Cake with Fudge Frosting
 
Homemade cake and frosting? It doesn't get any better!
 
Banana Cake
2 cups Gold Medal® all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 cup mashed bananas (about 2 large)
Fudge Frosting
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup butter or margarine
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 to 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
  
 
  
1. Heat oven to 350ºF. Grease bottom and sides of rectangular pan, 13x9x2 inches, with shortening. In medium bowl, mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; set aside.
2. In large bowl, beat 1 cup sugar and 1 cup butter with electric mixer on high speed, scraping bowl occasionally, until fluffy. Beat in eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Gradually beat in flour mixture alternately with buttermilk until smooth. Stir in bananas. Pour into pan.
3. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
4. Meanwhile, in 2-quart saucepan, mix 1 cup granulated sugar and the cocoa. Stir in milk, 1/4 cup butter and the corn syrup. Heat to boiling, stirring frequently. Boil 3 minutes, stirring occasionally; remove from heat. Beat in powdered sugar and 1 teaspoom vanilla with spoon until smooth and spreadable. Spread Fudge Frosting on cooled cake.
High Altitude (3500-6500 ft) Use 3/4 cup butter in cake. 
 

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Fluffy Strawberry Pie
 
Fresh strawberries, a touch of lime, real whipped cream and a pastry crust. What’s not to like?
 
Pastry
1 cup Gold Medal® all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon shortening
2 to 3 tablespoons cold water

Filling
3/4 cup boiling water
1 package (4-serving size) strawberry-flavored gelatin
1 teaspoon grated lime peel
1/2 cup lime juice (4 limes)
1 1/2 cups whipping cream
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 pint (2 cups) strawberries, slightly crushed
 Whipped cream, if desired
 Strawberry halves, if desired
  
1. In medium bowl, mix flour and salt. Cut in shortening, using pastry blender (or pulling 2 table knives through ingredients in opposite directions), until particles are size of small peas. Sprinkle with cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with fork until all flour is moistened and pastry almost leaves side of bowl (1 to 2 teaspoons more water can be added if necessary). 
2. Gather pastry into a ball. Shape into flattened round on lightly floured surface. Wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate about 45 minutes or until dough is firm and cold, yet pliable. This allows the shortening to become slightly firm, which helps make the baked pastry more flaky. If refrigerated longer, let pastry soften slightly before rolling.
3. Heat oven to 475°F. With floured rolling pin, roll pastry into round 2 inches larger than upside-down 9-inch glass pie plate. Fold pastry into fourths; place in pie plate. Unfold and ease into plate, pressing firmly against bottom and side. Trim overhanging edge of pastry 1 inch from rim of pie plate. Fold and roll pastry under, even with plate; flute as desired. Prick bottom and side of pastry thoroughly with fork. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until light brown; cool on cooling rack.
4. In large bowl, pour boiling water over gelatin; stir until gelatin is dissolved. Stir in lime peel and lime juice. Refrigerate about 1 hour or until very thick but not set.
5. Beat gelatin mixture with electric mixer on high speed about 4 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally, until thick and fluffy; set aside. In chilled large bowl, beat whipping cream and powdered sugar on high speed until stiff. Gently stir whipped cream and crushed strawberries into gelatin mixture. Pour into crust. Refrigerate about 3 hours or until set. Garnish with whipped cream and strawberry halves. Store in refrigerator. 
 

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Chocolate Mummy Cookies
 
Easy cookie mix jump-starts Halloween cookie fun. Gather the kids and get baking!
 
1 pouch Betty Crocker® sugar cookie mix
2 tablespoons unsweetened baking cocoa
1/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 egg
1 container (1 lb) Betty Crocker® Rich & Creamy vanilla frosting
12 small jelly beans, cut in half 
 Betty Crocker® black decorating gel (from 0.68-oz tube)
  
   
  
1. Heat oven to 375°F. In medium bowl, stir together cookie mix and cocoa. Add butter and egg; stir until soft dough forms.
2. On floured surface, roll dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut with 5-inch gingerbread man cutter. On ungreased cookie sheet, place 1 inch apart. Gather dough scraps; reroll until all dough is used.
3. Bake 7 to 9 minutes or until cookies are just puffed and tops are dry. Cool 2 minutes; remove from cookie sheet to cooling rack. Cool completely, about 15 minutes.
4. Spoon frosting into reasealable freezer plastic bag; partially seal bag and cut 1/4-inch hole in 1 bottom corner. Or use decorating bag with flat tip with 1/4-inch-wide opening (#44). Gently squeeze bag to pipe frosting on cookies for bandages. Attach jelly beans for eyes; use black gel to make pupils in eyes. Store cookies in airtight container.

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Ginger Pumpkin Tart
 
A ginger-kissed cousin to pumpkin pie--you'll love this updated taste adventure.
 
Crust
1 cup Gold Medal® all-purpose flour
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons finely chopped crystallized ginger
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 egg yolk

Filling
1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup whipping (heavy) cream
2 tablespoons finely chopped crystallized ginger
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
2 eggs
 Whipped cream, if desired
  
1. Heat oven to 425ºF. In small bowl, mix all Crust ingredients with spoon or electric mixer on low speed until dough forms. Press dough firmly and evenly against bottom and side of ungreased tart pan with removable bottom, 9x1 inch. Place pan on cookie sheet. 
2. In medium bowl, mix all Filling remaining except whipped cream with spoon until well blended. Pour mixture into crust on cookie sheet. Bake 10 minutes.
3. Reduce oven temperature to 350ºF. Bake 45 to 50 minutes longer or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool completely on wire rack, about 1 1/2 hours. Serve with whipped cream. Garnish with additional chopped crystallized ginger if desired. Store covered in refrigerator.

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Warm Caramel Apple Cake
 
Serve this yummy apple upside-down cake warm from the oven. It's all made easier with Betty Crocker® cake and frosting.
Cake

1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup whipping cream
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
2 large cooking apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced (about 2 1/3 cups)
1 box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® yellow cake mix
1 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1/4 teaspoon apple pie spice
Topping
2/3 cup Betty Crocker® Whipped fluffy white frosting (from 12-oz container)
1/2 cup frozen (thawed) whipped topping
 Caramel topping, if desired
  
1. Heat oven to 350°F. In 1-quart heavy saucepan, cook butter, whipping cream and brown sugar over low heat, stirring occasionally, just until butter is melted. Pour into 13x9-inch pan. Sprinkle with pecans; top with sliced apples.

2. In large bowl, beat cake mix, water, oil, eggs and apple pie spice with electric mixer on low speed until moistened. Beat on medium speed 2 minutes. Carefully spoon batter over apple mixture.

3. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Loosen sides of cake from pan. Place heatproof serving platter upside down on pan; carefully turn platter and pan over. Let pan remain over cake about 1 minute so caramel can drizzle over cake. Remove pan.

4. In small bowl, mix frosting and whipped topping. Serve warm cake topped with frosting mixture and drizzled with caramel topping.
High Altitude (3500-6500 ft): Bake 45 to 50 minutes.

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