Archive for October 21, 2014

No-Bake Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

Well, I think it’s time to use more of the pumpkins we grew this year! This is a recipe for some rich, super-delicious cheesecakes…and you don’t have to fool with baking them. I’ve gotten RAVES from everybody that’s tried them so far! (They really ARE wonderful!!!)

I only had 5 small bowls so I had some left overs. I think it’ll make about 8-10 servings.

Getting together all the ingredients.

Getting together all the ingredients.

Crushing up the graham crackers into crumbs.

Crushing up the graham crackers into crumbs.

Adding the sugars...

Adding the sugars…

...and the butter to pulse together for the crust.

…and the butter to pulse together for the crust.

Dividing the crust ingredients between the small bowls.

Dividing the crust ingredients between the small bowls.

Now, to beat the cream cheese til it's light & fluffy.

Now, to beat the cream cheese til it’s light & fluffy.

And, beating in the pumpkin, spice, and pudding mix til they're all well combined.

And, beating in the pumpkin, spice, and pudding mix til they’re all well combined.

Oh yeah...can't forget the sweetened condensed milk! Mmm, so creamy & good!

Oh yeah…can’t forget the sweetened condensed milk! Mmm, so creamy & good!

Now, to fold in the thawed whipped topping and refrigerate the mixture for a while.

Now, to fold in the thawed whipped topping and refrigerate the mixture for a while.

After it'd been in the fridge a while, I spooned it into my small dishes that I had put crusts in and added a little squirt of Whipped cream. And, the final touch...a sprinkle of cinnamon!

After it’d been in the fridge for about an hour, I spooned it into my small dishes that I had put crusts in and added a little squirt of Whipped cream. And, the final touch…a sprinkle of cinnamon!

No-Bake Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

Crust Ingredients:

1 Sleeve Graham Crackers

4 Tbls Butter, melted

1 Tbls Sugar

1 Tbls Packed Brown Sugar

Filling Ingredients:

1 (8oz) Package Cream Cheese, softened

1 (15oz) Can Pumpkin Puree (or 2 cups fresh)

3 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice

1 (3oz) Pkg Cheesecake-Flavored Instant Pudding Mix

1 (14oz) Can Sweetened Condensed Milk

1 (12oz) Tub Frozen Whipped Topping, thawed

Additional whipped topping for garnish, if desired

Sprinkle of cinnamon for garnish, if desired

1. In a food processor, pulse graham crackers til they’re fine crumbs. Add the melted butter and sugars. Pulse to combine.

2. Spoon crust mixture into small dessert cups and pat gently into the bottom to form the crusts. Refrigerate while you prepare the filling.

3. In a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese til light and fluffy. Add the pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, and pudding mix and beat til well combined, scraping sides of the bowl as necessary. Beat in the sweetened condensed milk. 

4. Gently fold in the tub of thawed whipped topping, making sure it’s well incorporated.

5. Put the cheesecake mixture in the fridge to firm up for about an hour or so. Then, spoon the mixture into the bowls, on top of the crusts, Refrigerate til ready to serve.

6. When serving, if desired, top with a dollop of whipped cream (Those handy squirt cans work well!) and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

**RECIPE AND PHOTOS BY RENEE’S GOURMETS**

Pumpkin Streusel Sweet Bread

I love pumpkin and we grew our own this year. I came up with this scrumptious recipe the other day. I used half spelt flour but you can also substitute wheat flour. I’m sure you’ll love it!!!

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder & soda, salt, and spices.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder & soda, salt, and spices.

Cream together the butter and sugars til they're well combined and fluffy.

Cream together the butter and sugars til they’re well combined and fluffy.

Then, one at a time, beat in the eggs. Make sure to beat well after each addition.

Then, one at a time, beat in the eggs. Make sure to beat well after each addition.

Next, beat in the milk.

Next, beat in the milk.

Add the pumpkin and vanilla and beat well.

Add the pumpkin and vanilla and beat well.

Add the flour/spice mixture and stir together. Don't over mix...it should still have a few lumps.

Add the flour/spice mixture and stir together. Don’t over mix…it should still have a few lumps.

In a small bowl, put the topping ingredients except the pecans. Cut in the cold butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives til it resembles coarse crumbs.

In a small bowl, put the topping ingredients except the pecans. Cut in the cold butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives til it resembles coarse crumbs.

Add the chopped pecans to the oatmeal mixture and stir to combine.

Add the chopped pecans to the oatmeal mixture and stir to combine.

Pour the batter into 2 9-inch loaf pans and sprinkle topping over each loaf.

Pour the batter into 2 9-inch loaf pans and sprinkle topping over each loaf.

In the "end result" picture I decided to include the pumpkin "family" that my daughter Hannah made...There's Elliot, his wife Penelope, and their very own lil Punkin Momo. :)

In the “end result” picture I decided to include the pumpkin “family” that my daughter Hannah made…There’s Elliot, his wife Penelope, and their very own lil Punkin Momo. 🙂

Pumpkin Streusel Sweet Bread

1 1/2 Cups Spelt Flour

1 1/2 Cups All-Purpose Flour

2 tsp Baking Powder

1/2 tsp Baking Soda

1/2 Salt

1 1/2 tsp Cinnamon

1/2 tsp Ground Ginger

1/2 tsp Nutmeg

2 Cups Sugar

1/2 Cup Packed Brown Sugar

2/3 Cup Butter, softened

4 Eggs, room temperature

2/3 Cup Milk

1 tsp Vanilla

1 3/4 Cups Pumpkin Puree

Topping Ingredients:

1 Cup Quick Oats

1/2 Cup All-Purpose Flour

1/2 tsp Cinnamon

1/4 Cup Packed Brown Sugar

1/3 Cup Cold Butter, cut in small pieces

1/4 Cup Pecans, chopped

1. Preheat oven to 350 °F. Grease two 9-inch loaf pans or use non-stick spray: set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the first 8 ingredients til well combined; Set aside.

3. In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter, sugar and brown sugar til fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the milk. Add the vanilla and pumpkin, beating well.

4. Stir the flour/spice mixture into the butter mixture til just combined. Don’t overmix…there will still be a few lumps. Divide batter between the two loaf pans. Make the topping (directions below) and sprinkle over the top of the loaves. Press topping slightly.

5. Bake for one hour to one hour 15 minutes or til golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean with maybe a few crumbs.

6. Leave in pans 10 minutes Loosen sides of loaves with a knife then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Topping directions: In a small bowl, whisk together the oats, flour, cinnamon and brown sugar. Cut in the cold butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives til it resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the pecans.

**RECIPE AND PHOTOS BY RENEE’S GOURMETS**

 

Nay Nay’s Nanner Puddin’

I was recently asked to make a “from-scratch” banana pudding…”none of that instant crap”…hahaha! I had always made the quick version before…with that “instant crap”. (Lazy??) And I like the taste of instant pudding anyway. But this inspired me to make “the Real Deal” and, after looking at several recipes, I came up with my own version.

It turned out to be one of the best banana puddings I remember ever having! My hubby gave it a big thumbs up too! So…I guess I won’t be taking the lazy way out any more…

There are quite a few steps I wanted to document, so there are a lot of pictures. (I love pictures! When making a recipe, it’s always nice to SEE what it’s supposed to look like at the different stages!)

Mixing together the sugar, flour, salt, and milk for the custard.

Mixing together the sugar, flour, salt, and milk for the custard.

Separating the egg yolks from the whites.

Separating the egg yolks from the whites.

After cooking the custard, I added a ladle full of it to the beaten egg yolks...

After cooking the custard, I added a ladle full of it to the beaten egg yolks…

...and whisked it in to "temper" the eggs.

…and whisked it in to “temper” the eggs.

Then, I added the tempered egg mixture to the custard...

Then, I added the tempered egg mixture to the custard…

...and cooked it 2-3 more minutes, making sure it was whisked to incorporate everything.

…and cooked it 2-3 more minutes, making sure it was whisked to incorporate everything.

I removed it from the heat and added the pats of butter and the vanilla, mixing everything together well.

I removed it from the heat and added the pats of butter and the vanilla, mixing everything together well.

I then poured the pudding into a bowl and covered it with plastic wrap. (In order to avoid a film on the pudding, place the plastic directly onto the pudding.) I refrigerated it for 2 1/2 hours.

I then poured the pudding into a bowl and covered it with plastic wrap. (In order to avoid a film on the pudding, place the plastic directly onto the pudding.) I refrigerated it for 2 1/2 hours.

After the 2 1/2 hours, I folded in a half container of thawed whipped topping Like Cool Whip).

After the 2 1/2 hours, I folded in half a container of thawed whipped topping (Like Cool Whip).

I made layers, alternating vanilla wafers, bananas, and the pudding.

I made layers, alternating vanilla wafers, bananas, and the pudding.

Deliciiousness in a bowl!!! I always prefer to let it sit in the fridge over night so the cookies are nice and soft!

Deliciousness in a bowl!!! I always prefer to let it sit in the fridge over night so the cookies are nice and soft!

Nay Nay’s Nanner Puddin’

2 Cups Sugar

6 Tbls All-Purpose Flour

Pinch Salt

3 Cups Milk (I used 2%)

3 Egg Yolks (from large eggs)

1/2 Stick Butter, cut into small pieces

2 tsp Vanilla

1 Box Vanilla Wafers (plus extra for garnish, if desired)

4-5 Bananas

8oz Tub Frozen Whipped Topping, thawed

1. In a large heavy saucepan, add sugar, flour, salt, and milk. Put on medium-low heat and cook, stirring constantly til it begins to thicken, approximately 15-20 minutes. (I used my whisk.)

2. In a small bowl, beat the egg yolks. Add a ladle full of the custard to the eggs. Whisk together to “temper” the eggs. Pour the egg mixture into the custard. Continue to whisk and cook it 2-3 more minutes, making sure everything’s incorporated.

3. Remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the butter pieces and vanilla. Pour pudding into a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. (Place the plastic directly onto the pudding.) Refrigerate at least 2 1/2 hours. Then, fold in half the thawed whipped topping. 

4. In a trifle dish or bowl, make layers alternating with the vanilla wafers, bananas, and pudding. Put the other half of the whipped topping on top. Refrigerate til ready to serve. (Several hours or overnight is best.)

**RECIPE AND PHOTOS BY RENEE’S GOURMETS**