Cream Cheese Swirl Heart Brownies

Valentine’s Day only a couple weeks away! I thought I would get in the spirit by making heart brownies. There is nothing better for Valentine’s day than chocolate. OK well maybe diamonds, but who doesn’t love a brownie? These are not just any ordinary brownies. These are extra special for that extra special someone. To make them extra special I made a pretty pink cream cheese swirl and topped them off with a milk chocolate heart!

This recipe is super simple! To save time and energy I started with a box of brownie mix. The cream cheese swirl is made from scratch with some added food coloring. If you like brownies from scratch then definitely start with a basic brownie recipe.

What You Will Need:
1 Box Brownie Mix
(all ingredients listed on the box of brownie mix)
4 ounces of cream cheese (softened)
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
pink or red food coloring
9 milk chocolate hearts
3″ heart shaped cookie cutter
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (325 degrees for dark or nonstick pan). Grease the bottom of a 13 in. x 9 in. pan. In a medium bowl beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add egg and vanilla. Beat until well blended. Add a few drops of food coloring to get desired pink color. 
  2. In a large bowl make prepare the brownie mix according to the directions on the box. Spread 3/4 of the batter into the greased pan. 
  3. Spoon cream cheese filling using a teaspoon evenly on top of the brownie batter. 
  4. Spoon remaining brownie batter on top of the cream cheese filling. 
  5. Cut through the batter several times with a butter knife to create a swirl design. 
  6. Bake 33 to 37 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  7. Let sit for 3 minutes and then make light marks with heart shape. Place milk chocolate hearts in the middle of the hearts. 
  8. Let brownies and milk chocolates cool completely before cutting out the heart shapes.
  9. Cut out heart shapes with cookie cutter. Remove excess brownie scraps around the heart. (These can be for mommy!)
  10. Sprinkle with powdered sugar if desired.

*Note if you do not have a heart shaped cookie cutter, this recipe works great for square brownies as well.

Finished! Time to share these yummy brownies with the ones you love. My girls had a fantastic time helping me make these and they especially enjoyed eating all the scraps! This recipe is so cute to give to friends or to have at a Valentine’s party. I hope you enjoy this recipe. Please feel free to leave me a comment!

Easy and Delicious Supreme Egg Casserole

If you are anything like me then the holidays are all about cooking, baking and time with family. With Christmas only a few days away you may be thinking about what to make for breakfast on Christmas morning. I’ve got you covered! I have an easy and delicious supreme egg casserole that your whole family will love. It is layered with bread, sausage, peppers, onions, spinach, eggs and cheese! It is so easy to prepare and takes very little effort. You just pop it in the oven and it is ready in no time.

This recipe is a good base for experimenting with your own ingredients. You can play around and use any ingredients that you normally like to eat in your eggs. I chose to do spinach and red bell pepper to go with the Christmas color theme. I have made this recipe vegetarian by using mushrooms instead of sausage. Whatever you choose everyone will definitely enjoy this easy and delicious supreme egg casserole.

Ingredients:

1 (8 ounce) package refrigerated crescent roll dough

1 pound ground pork sausage

8 eggs, beaten

1 (12 ounce) package shredded Mexican blend cheese

1 cup chopped red bell pepper

1 cup chopped onion

2 handfuls whole leaf spinach

Directions:
  1. Brown sausage in a large skillet over medium heat until no longer pink. Drain excess oil, crumble and set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
  3. Line the bottom of the baking dish with the crescent roll dough spacing them slightly. Spread the sausage evenly on top of the dough.
  4. Using the same skillet sauté the peppers and onions over medium heat until lightly browned. Add the spinach and heat just until wilted. Place the veggies evenly over the sausage.
  5. In a large bowl mix the beaten eggs with the shredded cheese until well blended. Pour the mixture evenly over the sausage and veggies.
  6. Bake 30 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven. Check that it is fully cooked by inserting a butter knife in the center and if it comes out clean it is ready. Let cool for 3-5 minutes. Makes about 12 servings.

Enjoy!

I hope you and your family love this recipe! Have a wonderful Christmas day. Enjoy all the special time with your friends and family. If you like the recipe leave me a comment! I would love to hear what you think and how your Christmas morning turned out. For a holiday treat check out my cookie recipe http://www.lilposies.com/lizzy-kakes-apricot-filled-cookies/ .

Lizzy Kakes- apricot filled cookies

I recently finished my first batch of Christmas cookies! I am so excited to share this recipe as it is really close to my heart. Lizzy Kakes are a recipe from my Hungarian Great Grandmother Elizabeth. My mom learned how to make these cookies from her and took over when she could no longer make them anymore. I use to make theses cookies with my mom as a kid and now I make them for my family. I make them every year for Christmas as they are a Hungarian Christmas cookie. Not to mention all of the requests I get for these cookies every year!

Lizzy Kakes apricot filled cookies are similar to the traditional Hungarian Kolaches. The concept is the same, but the dough itself is completely different. The traditional Kolaches are more of a cookie texture. The dough is made with cream cheese, butter and sugar. Lizzy Kakes have no sugar in the dough are made with layers upon layers of vegetable shortening. They are filled with apricot preserves and folded up and then sprinkled with powdered sugar.

 

Lizzy Kakes are so delicious and sort of a unique cookie. The layers of vegetable shortening is what makes the dough really soft and flakey with a subtle crisp. The cookies are almost like a pastry rather than a cookie. The gooey apricot filling and powdered sugar on top make these a wonderful and delicious Christmas cookie. They make for great gifts for your family or are perfect for a cookie exchange. Santa will love them too! I must admit though it is really hard to eat just one!

Lets get started!

Ingredients:
1 pound all-vegetable shortening
4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 1/4 cups water
18 oz. jar apricot preserves
1 cup powdered sugar

Mix together 4 cups of flour and  1/2 teaspoon of salt. Add 1/2 a pound of vegetable shortening, 2 egg yolks, 1 tablespoon white vinegar and 1 1/4 cups of water. Mix all of the ingredients together until the dough forms. Divide the dough into 3 sections and wrap each section with plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.

After 1 hour roll out a section of the dough on a floured surface until the dough is about 1/4″ inch thick. With a spatula spread on a thin layer of vegetable shortening all over the top of the dough. Do the same to the other 2 sections of dough.

Fold up the dough and re-cover with the plastic wrap and refrigerate for another hour.

After an hour roll out the dough on a floured surface and spread another thin layer of vegetable shortening. Fold up, cover and refrigerate for another hour.

After an hour roll out the dough on a floured surface and spread one last thin layer of vegetable shortening over the dough. Fold up, cover and refrigerate for another hour or until ready to use. (I like to prepare the dough a day in advance.)

To make the cookies roll out the dough on a floured surface until it is about 1/8″ inch thick. With a pastry cutter or pizza cutter cut the dough into 2 inch squares. Save the corner and edge pieces to re-roll into squares later.

Put 1/2 teaspoon of apricot preserves onto the center of the squares.

Use a little bit of water to wet your finger tips and pinch 2 corners of the squares together and fold down pressing gently to secure.

Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake for 20-23 minutes in a preheated 350 degree oven.

After baking let the cookies cool and then sprinkle them with some powdered sugar.

Enjoy! I hope you will try out this recipe. You won’t be disappointed! Maybe it will become a Christmas tradition of yours. Let me know what you think of the Lizzy Kake recipe or if you have any questions send me a comment! While you are here check out my 5 favorite Christmas traditions. http://www.lilposies.com/5-favorite-christmas-traditions-for-the-whole-family/

 

Delicious Homemade Pumpkin Delights

For my first ever recipe post I am getting a little nostalgic and sharing a cookie that goes way back to my childhood. The Little Debbie Pumpkin Delights cookies is one of my all time favorites! If you’ve never tried a Pumpkin Delights cookie, then you have truly been missing out on one of the most delicious pumpkin cookies ever! Unfortunately these cookies are seasonal and can only be found in the fall 🙁

The Pumpkin Delights cookies are soft and chewy with an ooey gooey pumpkin pie center. They are absolutely delicious! Although, like most processed foods they contain a lot of preservatives and ingredients that are not so good for you. The great thing about making them at home is that you decide what you want in them and you can make them year round!

I made it a mission to replicate the Pumpkin Delights to the best of my ability after I was unable to find a recipe even close. I wanted this cookie to have ingredients I have actually heard of and still taste delicious like the original. My homemade version of the Pumpkin Delight cookie is pretty straight forward with an easy to follow recipe. These cookies are soft and plump and have a gooey pumpkin center. They are basically pumpkin pie in a cookie!

Ingredients:

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup white sugar
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 egg
1/4 cup molasses
1 tablespoon milk

Filling Ingredients:

3/4 cup pumpkin
1/4 cup corn syrup
1 egg
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/8 teaspoon ginger

Directions:

Start out by preparing the dough. Cream together the 3/4 cup of softened butter and 1 cup of white sugar in a large mixing bowl until smooth. Mix in 1 egg, 1 tablespoon milk and 1/4 cup molasses. Stir until all of the ingredients are blended.

In a separate smaller mixing bowl combine 3 cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Mix all of the dry ingredients together and then slowly add the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Stir until all of the ingredients are blended and the dough forms. The dough will be sticky so cover and refrigerate it for an hour.

While the dough is chilling prepare the cookie filling. Combine 3/4 cup of pumpkin, 1/4 cup corn syrup and 1 egg. Blend thoroughly and then add in 1/3 cup brown sugar and 1 tablespoons of cornstarch. Mix in 1/8 teaspoon of salt, 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/8 teaspoon cloves, and 1/8 teaspoon ginger. Cover and refrigerate until the dough is ready to use.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Start out by rolling out half of the dough on a floured surface. Roll until the dough is about a 1/8″ inch thick. Use a pumpkin shaped cookie cutter to cutout the shape. Finish rolling out some more dough to make about 18 cookies. I used a 3 1/2″ inch x 2 1/2″ inch cookie cutter. (Do not use anything bigger than that as the cookies expand a 1/2″ inch while baking.)

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Place the cutout pumpkins 2″ inches apart onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Measure out and put 1 tablespoon of the pumpkin filling onto the centers of the cutout dough.

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Roll out the rest of the dough to make the tops of the cookies. Cut out 18 more pumpkins. To cut out the eyes and mouth I made the cookie cutter shapes from the cardboard of a cereal box and some tape. Any thin cardboard will work. (Note: if the dough starts to get too dry and breaks add a few drops of water and work it into the dough.)

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After cutting out all of the faces gently lift them one by one and align them directly on top of the cookie bottoms. Lightly press around the edges of the shape to seal up the cracks. Don’t worry about pressing them too much just enough so the pumpkin filling doesn’t leak out.

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Bake in the 350 degrees oven for 10-12 minutes. Allow to cool before eating as the filling will be hot!

 

You’re all done! Now its time to enjoy these delicious pumpkin delights! Send me a comment and let me know what you think of this recipe. Hopefully you enjoy them as much as I do. I must warn you though, it’s really hard to eat just one!