Sunday, January 4, 2015

Super Easy Breakfast


Short and sweet this is a variation of the morning oatmeal I posted a couple of days ago.  This is the healthy one...now if you want a decadent treat toss in a few...you really only need a few....chocolate or carob chips and voila!  Your oatmeal tastes like a Reeses Peanut Butter Cup!!!! Oh Ya!!!


You will need:
1 Banana
1/2 Cup Quick Cooking Oatmeal
14 t. salt
1 Cup Water
1 T. Honey ( I buy local honey; but you use whatever honey is your favorite)
Large tablespoon of peanut butter


Combine oatmeal salt and water in a microwave safe bowl and microwave on high for 2 minutes.
Meanwhile slice your banana.
Top with banana, honey and peanut butter then enjoy!

Yes that's all there is to it! This is a large breakfast for me but perfect for my husband.  For small children this would probably serve two but to make more just double the ingredients!

SPOILER ALERT: ADD JUST A FEW CHOCCOLATE CHIPS AND YOUR KIDS WILL BE IN HEAVEN!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

BANANA PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE BARS

Last year Chiquita hosted a fantastic recipe contest; 8 weeks long with one winner each week taking home a $4,000....yes $4,000 cash prize.  Now last year isn't all that long ago since we are still in the first week of 2015 .... so I thought I'd share another one of my losing recipes from that contest.

Now just 'cause this recipe didn't win doesn't mean it isn't a keeper treat!  My neighbors all round the house are my taste testers and  the results were unanimous; everyone loved it.....yes they do give me REAL feedback when I'm recipe experimenting.....

So anyway.....here is the recipe for Banana Pumpkin Pecan Cheesecake Bars.....it will take you about the same amount of time to make these as it does to type the title!  (New Year's resolution: SHORTER RECIPE TITLES!)


BANANA PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE BARS

24 Pecan Shortbread Cookies divided (3 cups when crushed into crumbs)
½ C. plus 1 T. Butter divided
1/8 t. Pumpkin Pie Spice
2 ripe bananas
1 can pumpkin pie filling (15 oz)
2 T. Orange Zest
1 C. Brown Sugar firmly packed divided
2 eggs
8 oz Cream Cheese room temperature
1 Cup Pecans chopped

Pre heat oven to 350 degrees
Line 13 X 9 baking dish with parchment paper or aluminum foil, extending foil/paper over sides by 2 inches to allow for easy removal from baking pan. Coat with nonstick spray.
Pulse blend 20 (2 1/2) cups) pecan shortbread cookies and pumpkin pie spice until you have just crumbs.
Add 5 tablespoons melted butter and mix well.
Press the cookie crumb mixture evenly onto bottom of baking pan and bake for 15 minutes.
Mix the remaining 4cookies (1/2 cup crumbs), ½ cup brown sugar, 4 tablespoons butter and chopped pecans until crumbly. Set aside.
Blend together the bananas, pumpkin pie filling, orange zest, eggs, cream cheese and ½ cup brown sugar until smooth.
Pour batter over cookie crumb crust and top with pecan/cookie crumble.
Bake in center of preheated 350 degree oven for 45-50 minutes until set.
Remove from oven and cool on rack until room temperature.
Remove from baking pan, fold down the foil or paper and cut into squares.

ENJOY!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Year's Eve Caramel Banana Dessert

I created this Banana Caramel Cream Pie with Ginger Walnut Crust and Caramel Toasted Walnut Whipped Cream Topping for a Chiquita Banana contest.

Everyone that tasted it thought the pie absolutely AMAZING!  No it did not win but that's OK.  I have a new winner dessert that I can make anytime 'cause it's so easy.  In fact I'm going to whip one up for tonight to bring to a New Year's Eve celebration in my neighborhood!

Anyway here it is in all it's winning glory......



Crust:
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 ½ cups crumbled ginger snaps
1/3 cup butter
Pie Filling:
1 box Vanilla instant pudding/pie filling
1 cup Caramel/Dulche de Leche
1 ½ cups cold whole milk
4 bananas
Topping:
½ cup chopped Walnuts
½ cup sugar
1 cup whipping cream
½ teaspoon vanilla
½ cup powdered sugar

Pulse blend 1 cup chopped walnuts and 1 ½ cups ginger snaps until fine crumbs.
Melt butter in microwave for 20 seconds or until melted. Drizzle into walnut/crumb mixture and blend until thoroughly mixed; about 30 seconds.
Press crust mixture into bottom and sides of 8 inch pie plate.  Bake for 20 minutes.  Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
Beat together vanilla pie filling, caramel and cold milk until smooth.
Slice bananas and line pie shell with ½ of the bananas, pour ½ of the filling over bananas, layer on remaining bananas and finish with pouring on remaining pie filling. Smooth with a spatula and refrigerate for 2 hours.
In small sauce pan over medium heat melt the sugar and continue on medium heat until lightly browned.  Do not stir, just slightly swirl pan.
Spread ½ cup walnuts on parchment paper and pour the melted sugar evenly over nuts.  Let cool. (Fill pan with water and return to burner; let sit on cooling burner to melt and any residual sugar for easy clean up)
When walnuts/sugar mixture is hardened and cool, break into chunks and place between two sheets of parchment paper.  Smash with rolling pin or back of frying pan.
In a chilled bowl begin beating cold whipping cream with electric mixer on medium.  When frothy add the vanilla and powdered sugar.  Whip on high until stiff peaks form.
Using a spatula, fold in ½ half of the nut mixture.  Spread whipped cream on top of cooled pie and sprinkle with remaining nut mixture.
Slice with a wet knife; serve and enjoy!