Friday, March 16, 2012

Buttery Snack Cake with Broiled Coconut Topping

When I got married, my Mom bought me a beautiful “Bridal Edition” Betty Crocker cookbook.  Honestly, I haven’t opened it in 6 years!  It’s one of those that is pretty to look at but not terribly practical for regular cooking.  The other night my husband was desperate for some dessert so we pulled out all the cookbooks and started looking.  This recipe caught our eye and I’m so glad because it is DELICIOUS!  The topping is so yummy and gooey and compliments the cake perfectly.  The cake isn’t super sweet so it’s great for snacking.  Worth a try!


-1 1/4 cup flour

-1 cup sugar

-1/3 cup butter, softened

-3/4 cup milk

-1 1/2 tsp baking powder

-1 tsp vanilla

-1/2 tsp salt

-1 large egg

-Broiled Coconut Frosting (below)


1.  Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease bottom and sides of a square pan (either 8 or 9 inches) or round pan, with shortening; lightly flour.

2.  Beat all ingredients except Broiled Coconut Frosting with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds, scraping bowl constantly.  Beat on high speed 3 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally.  Pour into pan.

3.  Bake 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Make Broiled Coconut Frosting.

4.  Set oven control to broil.  Carefully spread frosting over hot cake.  Broil with top of cake about 4 inches from heat about 2 minutes or until frosting in light brown.  Watch carefully so frosting does not burn.  Cool 15 minutes.  Serve warm or cool.

Broiled Coconut Frosting

-1 cup flake coconut

-1/3 cup packed brown sugar

-1/4 cup butter, softened

-2 Tbsp milk

Mix all ingredients.


Friday, March 2, 2012

Baked Ziti

I love Baked Ziti but never found a recipe that I liked or found easy enough to throw together for a meal.  This one was in Family Circle Magazine and looked so yummy that we gave it a try.  Winner for sure!



-2 Tbsp olive oil

-1 medium onion, chopped

-3 cloves garlic, sliced

-1 can (28 oz) whole tomatoes

-1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce

-2 Tbsp tomato paste

-2 tsp sugar

-1/4 tsp salt

-1/4 tsp black pepper

-1 can (14.5 oz) basil and oregano diced tomatoes, drained

-1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped (I substituted dried basil)

Ziti and Cheese:

-1 box (16 oz) ziti (I used the new smaller Ziti from Barilla and it was really great for my toddler)

-1 bag (8 oz) shredded mozzarella cheese

-1/4 cup grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese


1.  Heat oven to 375 degrees.  Coat a 13x9 baking dish with cooking spray.

2.  Sauce – Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat.  Add onion and cook 4 minutes.  Add garlic and cook another minute.  Stir in whole tomatoes and their juice, breaking tomatoes apart with your hands or a wooden spoon.  Stir in tomato sauce, tomato paste, sugar, salt and pepper.  Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes.

3.  Remove pan from heat.  Stir in diced tomatoes and basil.

4. Ziti and cheese – Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boiling.  Add ziti; boil 10 minutes (or follow directions on box).  Drain and transfer to a large bowl.  Add half the sauce to bowl with ziti.  Stir to coat.  Pour ziti mixture into prepared dish.  Top with remaining sauce and then sprinkle with the cheeses.

5.  Bake at 375 for 20 to 25 minutes, until bubbly and lightly browned.  Cool 10 minutes.



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