Saturday, January 2, 2010

Pumpkin Crunch

Recipe courtesy Paula Deen

Pumpkin Crunch


1 (15 oz.) can fresh pumpkin
1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 c. sugar
3 eggs, beaten
1 box yellow cake mix
1 cup chopped pecans
2 sticks butter, cut into pieces


1 (8 oz.) pkg. softened cream cheese
1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon


In a large mixing bowl, whisk together pumpkin, evaporated milk, cinnamon and sugar until well combined. Add eggs and mix well.

Pour mixture into a 9X13 baking dish prepared with a non stick spray. Sprinkle cake mix evenly over entire top. Sprinkle nuts evenly over cake mix and top with butter pieces. Bake at 350º F for 50-60 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Prepare frosting while cake is cooling. In a large mixing bowl using a hand mixer, whip cream cheese until light. Add in whipping cream and continue to whip until fully combined and thickening. Add powdered sugar and cinnamon and whip until smooth.

To Serve: Scoop out a slice of the pumpkin crunch and top with a dollop of the cream cheese frosting, or frost the entire pumpkin crunch with the frosting.

P. F. Chang's China Bistro Lemon Pepper Shrimp

P. F. Chang's China Bistro Lemon Pepper Shrimp

1 lb medium raw shrimp (31/40 count), shelled and deveined
½ cup cornstarch
1 cup vegetable oil
4 thin lemon slices, each cut into quarters

1 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 Tbsp chopped garlic
½ tsp minced ginger
1/3 cup soy sauce
¾ cup water
2 tsp cornstarch
¼ cup dark brown sugar
2 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp coarse grind black pepper

1 tsp vegetable oil
2 large green onions
1 cup bean sprouts

Make sauce by heating 1 tbsp oil in a wok or large saucepan over medium heat. Saute garlic and ginger in the hot oil for about 15 seconds being careful not to burn the garlic. Add the soy sauce, then dissolve cornstarch in the water and add the mixture to the pan. Add brown sugar, lemon juice and black pepper and bring mixture to a boil. Simmer for two minutes then remove it from the heat.

Coat all the shrimp generously with cornstarch. Let the shrimp sit for about five minutes so that the cornstarch will adhere better.

Heat a cup of oil in a wok or large skillet over medium heat. Add the shrimp to the pan and saute for 3 to 4 minutes or until the shrimp starts to turn light brown. Strain the shrimp out of the oil with a slotted spoon or spider and dump oil. Replace shrimp back in the wok along with the lemon slices, saute for a minute, then add the sauce to the pan. Toss everything around to coat the shrimp thoroughly. Cook for another minute or so until the sauce thickens on the shrimp.

As the shrimp cooks, heat up 1 teaspoon of oil in a separate medium saucepan. Cut the green part of the green onions into 3-inch lengths. Add those green onion slices and bean sprouts to hot oil along with a dash of salt and pepper. Saute for a couple minutes until green onions begin to soften.

Build the dish by pouring the green onions and sprouts onto a serving plate. Dump the shrimp over the veggies and serve!

Sam Choy’s Wahiawa Pineapple Cheesecake

   I came across this recipe and thought, "Great!! And it's Fancy, served on a bed of creme anglise and a drizzle of caramel sauce!! Sweeeeeet!!" I love making cheesecakes and experiment with new flavors and combinations. When I came across this one I knew it was a winner for two reasons...One, Sam Choy! and Two, I love pineapple flavored cream cheese. So here's the recipe...

Sam Choy’s Wahiawa Pineapple Cheesecake
Makes one 9-inch cheesecake, serves 8

Macadamia Nut Crust:

1 cup macadamia nuts
cup sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted


3 1/2 (8-ounce) packages of cream cheese
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
pinch of orange zest
pinch of lemon zest
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups sour cream
4 large eggs
1 pineapple, diced small

Soften the cream cheese, sugar and zest together in a power mixer or food processor. Add the cream, sour cream, and eggs one ingredient at a time, mixing well, and scraping the bowl down before adding the next ingredient.

Assembly and Baking:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease the cake pan and lay a circle of parchment or waxed paper on the bottom. Pack the crust in the bottom of the pan and bake for 5 to 10 minutes until very lightly brown. In a towel, squeeze some of the juice out of the pineapple. Pour half of the batter filling on top of the pre-baked crust. Stir the pineapple into the rest of the batter. Pour the rest of the batter into the cake pan, and smooth the top. Now it's time to make the caramel swirl in the cake. Using a squeeze bottle, take 1/2 cup of the caramel sauce and swirl on top of the cake batter. To achieve more of a swirl, take the tip of the knife and gently swirl the caramel. Bake in a water bath for 1 hour and 15 minutes to 1 1/2 hours. Test with a skewer or paing knife to see when the cake is done. Let cool, and then chill for at least 3 hours.

Serve each piece on a bed of creme anglise and a drizzle of caramel sauce.

Caramel Sauce:

2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
3 cups cream

Make caramel from sugar, water and lemon juice, and remove from heat. Scald the cream. Slowly add cream to the caramel. Bring back to boil just enough to melt all the sugar.

Créme Anglaise:
Makes 2 cups

4 eggs yolks
1/3 cup sugar
1 cups milk, heated
1 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise, or 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon unsalted butter at room temperature (optional)

In a heavy, medium saucepan, whisk the egg yolks over low heat until they are pale in color. Whisk in the sugar 1 tablespoon at a time, then whisk until the mixture reaches the consistency of cake batter.

Whisk in the milk and vanilla bean, if using, then stir continuously with a wooden spoon until the custard coats the spoon and a line drawn down the back of the spoon remains visible. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Strain through a fine-meshed sieve.

If the custard is to be chilled, press a sheet of plastic wrap directly onto the surface to prevent a skin from forming, or dot the top with bits of butter. Chill the custard for up to 2 days.

Note: If the custard begins to overheat and the egg yolks are forming lumps, remove it immediately from the heat and whisk briskly to cool the mixture. Push the custard through a fine-meshed sieve with the back of a spoon to remove the lumps. If it has not sufficiently thickened, return it to heat to complete cooking.

Crab Cakes

Crab Cakes

2 tablespoons canola oil
One half medium onion, finely diced (1/2 onion)
1 stalk celery, finely diced
1 pound lump crabmeat
Two thirds cup mayonnaise (2/3 cup)
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons chives, finely minced
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
5 cups panko bread crumbs
Salt and pepper, to taste
One half cup flour (1/2 cup)
3 large eggs, beaten
Diced tomatoes, for garnish
Chives, for garnish

Heat oil in a sauté pan. Add onions and celery and sauté until onions is translucent. Remove from heat and set aside.

In a large bowl, mix crabmeat, mayonnaise, mustard, chives, parsley, and 1 cup panko with the onion/celery mixture. Add salt and pepper to taste. Form into 2-inch diameter cakes.

Roll cakes first in flour, then in beaten eggs, then in the remaining 4 cups of panko, each time shaking off excess. Heat oil, and sauté the cake cakes until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Arrange on a platter and garnish with tomatoes and chives.

Apple Crisp

Apple Crisp

Apple Mixture

8 cups Granny Smith apple slices
1½ cups brown sugar
1 cup flour
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

Peel and core apples. Slice into 16ths. Mix all of the ingredients together. Sprinkle over the apple slices. Mix well and place into glass custard cups. Top heavily with streusel.


1½ cups butter
1½ cups granulated sugar
3 cups flour

Mix butter and sugar until partially creamy. Add flour slowly. Mix until crumbly. Do not over mix. Top apple mixture heavily with streusel. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes, until golden brown. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

Crispy Shrimp Won Tons

Crispy Shrimp Won Tons

½ pound shrimp
¼ cup chopped green onions
2 tablespoons minced onion
1 tablespoon minced carrots
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons shoyu
1 tablespoon sesame oil
2 eggs
1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch

For Deep Frying:

1 egg
10 ounces (1 package) won ton wrappers
Oil for deep frying

Peel and devein the shrimp. Chop them very fine. Chop the green onions, peel and mince the onion. Peel and mince the carrots; chop the cilantro. Crack the eggs into a bowl and whisk to mix.

Put the chopped shrimp, green onion, onion, carrot, cilantro, shoyu, sesame oil, 2 eggs and cornstarch in a bowl and mix well. Set the shrimp mixture aside.

To make egg wash, crack 1 egg into a bowl and add 1 tablespoon water; whisk well. Set the bowl of egg wash on the counter next to the stack of wonton wrappers and the bowl of shrimp poke.

Using a teaspoon, place a 1 teaspoon of shrimp poke in the center of 1 wonton wrapper. Brush egg wash on two adjoining edges of the wrapper and fold it over, forming a triangle. Crimp the edges of the wonton with a fork. Repeat until you have filled all the wonton wrappers.

Heat oil in a deep fryer or heavy pot to 350 degrees. Deep fry the wontons until they are golden brown. Remove from the oil and drain on paper towels. You will probably have to do this in several batches. Do not crowd the oil.

Dip in honey wasabi aioli to serve.

Honey Wasabi Aioli:

1 ½ cups Best Foods mayonnaise
2 tablespoons honey
1 ½ tablespoons wasabi powder
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon sesame seeds (black or white)
1 teaspoon shoyu

Whisk or blend all ingredients. Refrigerate.

Starbucks White Chocolate Mocha *Clone

Starbucks White Chocolate Mocha Clone

2/3 cup whole milk
6 tablespoons white chocolate chips
Freshly brewed coffee (strong) to fill mugs or shot of espresso
Whipped cream

Desired garnishes:

cinnamon or white chocolate shavings

Add milk and chocolate chips to saucepan or double boiler and heat until chips are melted and milk is hot. Meanwhile make coffee or espresso. Pour half of milk mixture in coffee mug and fill rest of mug with coffee saving enough room for a dollop of whipped cream. If desired, garnish with a sprinkle of cinnamon, or chocolate shavings. Makes enough for 2 small mugs.