©Life of a Foodie and Her Family 2008-2013, Lynn Tabor



Boston Cream Pie in a Jar

My daughter's school like to celebrate the teachers that have summer birthdays.  In the past what ever class hosts the teacher luncheon will do a cake.  This year my friend that oversees it asked if I could come up with something.  Usually all the teachers throughout the year will get a single cupcake from the store, a balloon and a card.

I think there were 10 or 11 birthdays so I start looking at cute little desserts in jars.  I settled on Boston Cream Pie in a Jar.  I did change the chocolate layer as I really dislike canned frosting.  I found a great recipe on the Joy of Baking site.

2 (1.4 oz) boxes French Vanilla or Custard Pudding, prepared and chilled according to package directions.  I think I used the larger boxes so that I could have a bit leftover.

1 box French Vanilla Cake Mix, prepared and baked according to package directions.  I split the batter into two 13x9 pans and baked it about half the recommended time one 13x9 pan.

Chocolate Sauce
14 (8 oz) mason jars

Prepare the chocolate sauce while the cakes are baking and cooling and the pudding is chilling in the refrigerator.

24 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into small pieces
2 cups heavy whipping cream
2/3 cup granulated white sugar
2/3 cup light corn syrup
3 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Place the chopped chocolate in a medium sized stainless steel bowl and set aside.

Combine the cream, sugar, and corn syrup in a saucepan and place over low heat. Bring to a boil, stirring often.

Remove from heat and pour immediately over the chocolate.  Let stand until the chocolate has melted, then stir until smooth.

Stir in the vanilla extract.

Store the sauce in the refrigerator in a tightly covered container for up to two weeks. Reheat over simmering water before serving.

Makes about 4 cups. Preparation time 15 minutes.

When ready to assemble cut cake into circles. I used a 2 inch circular cookie cutter.
Start with a heaping tablespoon of pudding followed by a cake round and then a heaping tablespoon or more of the chocolate sauce. Repeat the process again, ending with the chocolate sauce.

I made these a day ahead and kept them in the refrigerator.  I took them out the next morning to warm up since the sauce gets very hard.  I also used a clear Goody Hair band to attach a spoon to the jar.  At school my friend attached a balloon to the jar.

The teachers all said they were great!  Miss V and I got to test one and we both thought they were really good.  As for the jars the teachers know if they return them to the office I will make them another treat for Teacher Appreciation Luncheon.  


Carnitas and Mango Salsa

Last night for dinner and Cinco de Mayo I tried a new version of tacos.  You can find the original recipe at Girl Inspired.

I can't even begin to tell you how wonderful this smelled cooking all day!

2-3 pound pork butt roast
olive oil
1 tsp cumin
1 orange
½ large sweet onion
2 Roma tomatoes
1 yellow bell pepper
1-2 mangos
1 jalepeno
½ cup frozen corn
juice of 2 limes
2-3 cloves garlic
salt and pepper
2 avocados (add just before serving)

For the meat: Brown the roast in a frying pan with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Place the browned meat into the crock pot with about a teaspoon of cumin, more salt and pepper, and one orange (squeezed and then thrown in the crock). Cook the meat on low heat for 8 hours.

Once it's done cooking, pull the meat apart with two forks - it should fall apart easily.

For the salsa: Chop all fruits and vegetables (except for avocados).

Add lime juice, crushed garlic, salt and pepper and stir.

Cover and set in refrigerator for 6-8 hours.

Just before serving, chop avocados and mix in.

Load your meat salsa into baked corn tortillas serve immediately.

For the tortillas I preheated the oven to 375.  Sprayed the tortillas and then hung them over two rungs of the oven rack.  It was a pain in the butt.  I might try a different way next time with a cooling rack and cookie sheet.

Anyway.....that was one of the best tacos that I have ever eaten!  It was light, flavorful, and not dripping with grease.  I am looking forward to left overs!  Oh and I made a black bean salad to go along with it.


Order of the Phoenix Dinner and Movie

Miss V has been asking for a long time to have another dinner and movie night.  She got out her Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook and decided on her menu.

She picked out Molly's Meatballs with Onion Sauce, Fluffy Mashed Potatoes and Buttered Peas.  For dessert she picked out Triple Strawberry Burst Sundaes from Florean Fortescue.

1 lb. Extra-lean ground beef
1/2 cup fresh or dry bread crumbs
1 Large egg
1 Onion, finely chopped
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 Tablespoons oil

Onion Sauce
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 14-ounce can chicken broth

For the meatballs, combine the beef, bread crumbs, egg, onion, parsley, salt, pepper, and nutmeg in a large bowl and mix thoroughly.

Heat the oil in a skillet. From the meat mixture into 1 1/2-inch balls, and working in batches, fry the balls on each side until well browned, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer the meatballs to a dinner plate.

For the Onion Sauce, add 2 tablespoons oil to the skillet and heat. Add the chopped onion and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Add the flour, and stir to combine. Pour in the chicken broth and cook, stirring constantly, until thickened and bubbling. Return the meatballs to the skillet and simmer for 15 minutes. Serve over rice, mashed potatoes, or wide egg noodles. (Serves 6)

Fluffy Mashed Potatoes

6 Idaho or russet potatoes (about 2 1/2 lbs.), peeled and quartered
1 stick of butter (8 tablespoons)
1 cup whole milk
2 teaspoons salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Place the potatoes in a pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer about 25 minutes or until the potatoes break apart when pierced with a fork.
2. Drain the potatoes. Add the butter, milk, salt, and black pepper. Mash with a potato masher until the potatoes are light and fluffy. (serves 4)

Buttered Peas

1 pound frozen peas
1 cup water
1/2 tsp sale
1/4 tsp pepper
2 Tbs butter
1 Tbs granulated sugar

Thaw the peas in the microwave and place into a small sauce pan.  (The cookbook wants you to boil and drain and I think that loses a lot of the nutrition.)

Add salt, pepper, butter, and sugar. Stir until the butter melts and is well combined. Serve hot.

Triple Strawberry Burst Sundae

Place 1 scoop of strawberry ice cream in a dish/sundae glass. Cover with chopped fresh strawberries and strawberry syrup. Repeat layering once if desired.  We even bought three little sundae dishes at Walmart.

The meal and dessert were very yummy!

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