Tuesday, April 10, 2012

peanut butter pie

This easter my daughter asked for a peanut butter cheese cake.  I came up with this instead, a bit easier but just as delicious.  It has a peanut butter graham cracker crust a bit more effort but better than the store bought pie shell.

peanut butter Graham cracker  crust
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
6 tablespoons butter softened room temperature
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
In a food processor mix together well.  Press in a 9 inch spring form pan. 
Bake about 9-11 minutes or until golden and crisp.  Set aside to cool.

Peanut butter creme
1 pound cream cheese
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1/3 cup whole milk 
1-1/2 cups confectioners sugar
3 cups whipping cream

In a mixer combine softened  cream cheese, peanut butter,milk and confectioners sugar.  Mix til smooth.  In another mixitng bowl preferably metal chill bowl and whipping beater for 10 min in freezer.
Pour 3 cups cold heavy cream in the chilled bowl and whip with chilled beater til stiff peaks form.
Fold in whipped cream slowly just to combine with the cream cheese mixture.  Place in prepared cooled crust springform pan.
Chill about 4 hours or overnight.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Easter Lemon Bread

I love easter time!  The Birds are singing, the tulips are blooming and and its a time of rebirth.  I also love making easter bread for my family which I learned from my husbands grandma when we got married.  This is not typically an italian easter bread, it usually has eggs baked in the dough.  My easter bread has evolved over the years but here is the recipe so enjoy!  I usually serve it with fresh kielbasi or any kielbasi, of course colored eggs and fresh cream butter.  My recipe is for 6 braids so you can make less, but give some to a neighbor, friends they will disappear!

Lemon Easter Bread
7.5 cups all purpose white flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1 tablespoon  salt
3 packages (.25oz each) active dry yeast
2 cups milk
2 cups golden raisins(you may use black if unavailable)
1 cup slivered almonds(save some for top)
6 tablespoon butter softened room temp
6 large eggs at room temp

1 stick butter melted
2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon lemon extract or flavoring
1/2 cup milk
In a large bowl, combine 3 cups flour, sugar, salt and yeast; stir well. Combine milk and butter in a microwave saft pyrex measuring cup; heat until milk is warm between 105-110 degrees 
Gradually add the milk and butter to the flour mixture; stirring constantly. Add 6 eggs, lemon flavoring and 1/2 cup flour; beat well. Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time,raisins and almonds stirring well after each addition. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes.  You may have to add more flour.  The dough may be sticky but still pulls away 
Lightly oil 2 large bowls, place the dough in the bowls and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
Deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into 6 equal size rounds; cover and let rest for 10 minutes.Cut into 3 pieces,  Roll each round into a  roll about 16 inches long and 1  inches thick. Braid the dough pinching at the ends.  Place on greased cookie sheet I use a bakers spray to prevent sticking.  Repeat remaining dough.

preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Place loaf on a buttered baking sheet and cover loosely with a damp towel. Place loaf in a warm place and let rise until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes. Brush risen loaf with  in an egg yolk wash.  Bake in preheated oven about 30-40 minutes til golden on top.  Let cool then glaze and place sprinkles on top if desired.