Mel’s Favorite Fare

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Welcome to my favorite world – pie, gooey dessert bread and candy!
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Candy cane/peppermint pie
1/2 C unsalted butter melted
36 Oreos crushed
Pie filling:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1-1/4 C confectioners’ sugar
1/2 C (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1-1/3 C heavy cream
1 tsp. vanilla (or peppermint) extract
1 3.9 oz. box vanilla or white chocolate instant pudding
3/4 C milk
2 tsp. gelatin powder
2 tbsp. cold water
1/2 C crushed candy cane or peppermint candies
1/4 C mini chocolate chips
For topping:
4.5 oz. white chocolate (or white chocolate chips)
1/4 C heavy cream
For garnish:
1.5 oz. semi-sweet chocolate-melted
crushed candy canes
Crust: In a food processor, grind whole Oreo cookies with filling into fine crumbs and then stir in ½ cup melted butter until evenly moistened. Next, press mixture in bottom and up sides of tart pan. Place in freezer while you make filling.
To make filling: Mix 1-1/2 cups heavy cream until soft peaks form. Add 1/4 confectioners’ sugar and vanilla extract and continue mixing until stiff peaks form. You can use peppermint extract instead of vanilla. it’s up to your taste. Set aside. Beat softened cream cheese and 1/2 cup softened butter until smooth. Add 1 cup confectioners’ sugar and beat until well blended and smooth.
In a small heatproof bowl, dissolve 2 teaspoons of gelatin in 2 tablespoons cold water. Set aside for five minutes, and then heat over double broiler until gelatin has melted. Set aside to cool. Next, stir white chocolate and vanilla instant pudding with 3/4 cup milk until thickens. Now add pudding into cream cheese and butter mixture and mix to combine. Then add 2 cups of beaten heavy cream (reserve leftover for garnish) and mix on low speed just to combine. Add cooled melted gelatin and mix just to combine.
Finally stir in chocolate chips and crushed candy canes. Pour into crust, smooth the top and refrigerate until firm (5-6 hours).
Topping: In a heatproof bowl, place white chocolate chips or finely chopped white chocolate. Heat heavy cream to a gentle simmer, then pour over white chocolate and let it sit for 1-2 minutes. Stir until all chocolate has melted and the ganache is smooth, then spread on top of firmed filling.
Garnish: Melt 1.5 oz. chocolate, transfer to a small Ziplock bag, cut off the corner and drizzle over white chocolate layer. Use leftover of beaten heavy cream to pipe swirls around pie. Sprinkle with crushed candy canes. Store in fridge.
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Chocolate peanut dessert bread
1-1/2 C flour
1/3 C cocoa powder
1 C brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 C unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 eggs
3/4 C sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 C peanut butter chips (or chocolate)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease 3 mini-loaf pans, 1 large pan or muffin cups. In a medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, brown sugar, salt and baking soda. Set aside. In a separate bowl, combine melted butter, eggs, sour cream and vanilla. Pour wet mixture into dry mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in chips.
Evenly pour batter (yes, it will be thick) into prepared pans and place into preheated oven. Bake for about 30-35 minutes if making mini loaves, 50 minutes for large loaf, and about 25 minutes for muffins.
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Slow cooker candy
1 C salted peanuts, not dry roasted
12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 C Dark Chocolate Dreams Peanut Butter
12 oz. white chocolate chips
Into a small 3 or 4-quart slow cooker, add all ingredients. Mix and cook on low heat for 90 minutes. Stir and if not easily combined to a creamy consistency cook on low an additional 30 minutes. Line a mini-muffin tin with liners. Using a cookie scooper, scoop candy into mini muffin liners. Refrigerate for 15 minutes to harden.
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She said, “I choked on a carrot this morning and all I could think of was… a donut wouldn’t have done that.”
If you would like to share a recipe with me, just send it to the J-T or email it to me.
(Melanie Behrens – melb@marysvillejt.com)



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