recipes

Holiday 09 November 2020

Popping Up Festive Holiday Fun

(Family Features) During a holiday season that may not quite feel the same for many families, you can add a magic touch to at-home festivities with activities and treats that get everyone involved. Creating decorative holiday sweets allows little ones and grown-ups alike to take part in the fun, and the end result is delicious desserts for all to enjoy.

Start with a main ingredient like whole-grain, freshly popped popcorn. At 30 calories a cup, it’s naturally low in fat, non-GMO and gluten-free for a nutritious alternative to traditional holiday indulgences. It’s a clever way to create artsy representations of the season at hand that celebrate festive flavors like peppermint, coconut, chocolate and other sweet eats.

For example, Coconut Popcorn Snowballs add fun and flavor to wintertime with a coat of sweetened coconut “snow” and candy cane handle while easy-to-construct Holiday Popcorn Snowmen are sure to be a hit with your children. Add to the holiday spirit throughout your home with wintery Jingle Balls that call for colored sugars to create a magical sparkling effect then take the creativity to the next level by encouraging kids to make their own red-nosed, sleigh-pulling team of Chocolate Popcorn Reindeer.

Discover more decorative dessert recipes at popcorn.org.

Coconut Popcorn Snowballs

Yield: 8 balls (4 inches)

  • 2          cups shredded or flaked sweetened coconut
  • nonstick cooking spray
  • 3          quarts popped popcorn
  • 4          tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter or margarine
  • 3          cups miniature marshmallows
  • 1          teaspoon coconut or vanilla extract
  • 8          candy canes or candy cane sticks (about 3-4 inches)
  1. Place large sheet wax or parchment paper over work surface. Spread coconut on paper.
  2. Spray large mixing bowl lightly with nonstick cooking spray and place popcorn inside.
  3. In medium saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Stir in marshmallows until melted and mixture is smooth. Pour over popcorn and mix well until coated.
  4. Spray hands with cooking spray and press mixture firmly to form into balls. Place balls on coconut; roll and press coconut to coat. While holding popcorn balls, gently press candy cane into each ball.
  5. Serve immediately or wrap individually in plastic wrap for storage.

Jingle Balls

Yield: 12 cups

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 12        cups popped popcorn
  • 6          tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 3          cups mini marshmallows
  • 1/2       teaspoon peppermint extract
  • assorted colored sugars
  1. Spray large mixing bowl lightly with nonstick cooking spray. Add popcorn.
  2. Spread plastic wrap on cookie sheet; set aside.
  3. In medium saucepan, melt butter and marshmallows; stir until mixture is smooth. Stir in peppermint extract. Pour over popcorn, mixing until well coated. Let cool 2 minutes.
  4. Spray hands with nonstick cooking spray and form popcorn mixture into 3-inch balls. Gently press colored sugar onto balls. Let sit on prepared cookie sheet until cool and set.

Chocolate Popcorn Reindeer

Servings: 8

  • 8          cups unsalted, unbuttered, popped popcorn
  • 2 1/2    cups mini marshmallows
  • 1/2       cup chopped dark chocolate or dark chocolate chips
  • 2          tablespoons butter or light olive oil
  • 1/4       teaspoon salt
  • 16        pretzel sticks
  • 16        eyeball candies
  • 8          red candy-coated
  • chocolate candies
  1. Place popcorn in large mixing bowl.
  2. In saucepan over medium heat, heat marshmallows, chocolate, butter and salt, stirring often, until smooth. Toss marshmallow mixture with popcorn until well combined.
  3. Scoop 3/4 cup popcorn mixture into ball. Repeat with remaining mixture to make eight balls. Place each ball in paper muffin cup liner.
  4. Insert one pretzel stick on each side of ball to resemble antlers, attach two eyeball candies for “eyes” and one red chocolate candy for “nose.” Repeat with remaining balls. Let cool completely.

Holiday Popcorn Snowmen

Yield: 5 snowmen

  • 1          package (1 pound) large marshmallows
  • 1/4       cup (1/2 stick) butter or margarine, plus additional for greasing hands
  • 1          teaspoon vanilla
  • 10        cups popped popcorn
  • sprinkles (optional)
  • licorice (optional)
  • gum drops (optional)
  • cinnamon candies (optional)
  1. In large saucepan, melt marshmallows and 1/4 cup butter. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Let stand 5 minutes.
  2. Pour marshmallow mixture over popcorn and stir. Butter hands well and form into balls.
  3. Decorate with sprinkles, licorice, gum drops and cinnamon candies, if desired.

Popcorn Board

Holiday 02 November 2020

Delectable Desserts for Holiday Celebrations

(Family Features) With so many traditions and ways to celebrate the holiday season, the options are nearly endless for families looking to spend special moments together. One of the tastiest and most enjoyable activities you can engage in with family and friends is to team up and create sweet eats in the kitchen.

Whether you’re a chocolate lover or prefer traditional seasonal flavors like peppermint and gingerbread, these tasty, dairy-inspired treats from Milk Means More provide heartwarming ways to tingle your taste buds while bringing everyone together.

Cranberry Orange Bread Pudding provides a sweet, fruity, hearty dessert while Peppermint Cheesecake Brownies combine chocolatey goodness with creamy cheesecake and peppermint. Or, for a classic holiday combination, you can turn to Gingerbread Cupcakes with Whipped Vanilla Buttercream.

Find more ways to celebrate the season with sweet eats at milkmeansmore.org.

Peppermint Cheesecake Brownies

Recipe courtesy of Sarah Bates of “The Chef Next Door” on behalf of Milk Means More
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Servings: 16

  • Nonstick cooking spray

Cheesecake Batter:

  • 8          ounces low-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/3       cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2       teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 2          eggs
  • 1          tablespoon all-purpose flour

Brownie Batter:

  • 1          cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2       cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1          cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4       cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4       cup milk
  • 2          eggs
  • 1          teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Topping:

  • 1/2       cup peppermint baking pieces
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Coat 8-inch square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.
  2. To make cheesecake batter: Place cream cheese in bowl of stand mixer. Beat on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Add sugar and peppermint extract; beat well. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour and beat mixture until blended.
  3. To make brownie batter: In medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder and salt until combined. In separate bowl, whisk sugar, oil, milk, eggs and vanilla until well combined. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix until blended.
  4. Pour brownie batter evenly into prepared pan. Carefully pour cheesecake batter over top, spreading evenly. Carefully swirl layers together using knife tip. Bake 20 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle top of brownies with peppermint baking pieces and bake 10 minutes until brownies are set. Cool brownies completely in pan on wire rack before cutting into 16 squares.

Cranberry Orange Bread Pudding

Recipe courtesy of Kirsten Kubert of “Comfortably Domestic” on behalf of Milk Means More
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 65 minutes
Servings: 12

Pudding:

  • 1          loaf Texas toast or day-old bread
  • 1-2       tablespoons softened butter
  • 1 1/2    cups fresh cranberries
  • 6          eggs
  • 3/4       cup granulated sugar
  • 3 1/2    cups 2% milk
  • 1          teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
  • 1/4       cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/4       cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/8       teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2    tablespoons coarse granulated sugar (optional)

Orange Custard Sauce:

  • 3          egg yolks
  • 1/4       cup granulated sugar
  • 1          cup half-and-half
  • 1/2       teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
  1. To make pudding: Cut bread into bite-sized cubes. If bread is soft and fresh, place cubes on half sheet pan and let stand at room temperature overnight to dry out.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  3. Grease 13-by-9-by-2-inch baking dish with softened butter. Place bread cubes in prepared baking pan. Scatter cranberries over bread.
  4. Beat eggs with sugar, milk, orange zest, orange juice, melted butter, vanilla and cinnamon until well blended. Pour evenly over bread and cranberries to coat. Sprinkle with coarse sugar, if desired. Bake 60-65 minutes, or until custard is set and edges of bread are browned.
  5. To make orange custard sauce: In small saucepan, whisk egg yolks with sugar until lightened to pale yellow color, about 2 minutes. Stir half-and-half into mixture until combined. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, 15-20 minutes, or until sauce thickens enough to coat spoon. Stir orange zest into custard sauce.
  6. Serve bread pudding with warm custard sauce over top.

Gingerbread Cupcakes with Whipped Vanilla Buttercream

Recipe courtesy of Megan Gundy of “What Megan’s Making” on behalf of Milk Means More
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Servings: 20

Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2    cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2    tablespoons ground ginger
  • 2          teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4       teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2    cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2    cups granulated sugar
  • 3          tablespoons molasses
  • 4          large eggs
  • 2          teaspoons vanilla extract

Whipped Vanilla Buttercream:

  • 1          cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 2          teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4          cups powdered sugar
  • 2-4       tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 1          pinch salt
  • cinnamon, for topping
  1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat oven to 350 F. Line muffin pan with cupcake liners. Set aside.
  2. To make cupcakes: In medium bowl, whisk flour, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and salt.
  3. In large bowl of stand mixer, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add molasses and beat until incorporated. Beat in eggs, one at a time, then beat in vanilla. Add flour mixture and mix on low speed until just combined.
  4. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups, filling each about 3/4 full. Bake 30 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center cupcake comes out clean or with moist crumbs. Let cupcakes cool 10 minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
  5. To make whipped vanilla buttercream: In large bowl of stand mixer, beat butter on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add vanilla and, with mixer on low, slowly add in powdered sugar, cream and salt, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Once incorporated, whip frosting at least 3 minutes on medium-high or high speed. If frosting is too thick, gradually beat in additional cream. Pipe on top of cooled cupcakes and sprinkle with cinnamon.

Source: United Dairy Industry of Michigan

Videos 09 March 2020

St. Patty’s Minty Shake

(Culinary.net) St. Patrick’s Day may call to mind hearty meals and pots o’ gold, but that doesn’t mean sweets can’t be part of the equation, too. Add dessert to your celebration with this green St. Patty’s Minty Shake, a cold, refreshing way to honor the colorful tradition.

Find more seasonal dessert recipes at Culinary.net.
 

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!

St. Patty’s Minty Shake

Serves: 1

  • 1          cup whipping cream
  • 1/2       teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 2          teaspoons powdered sugar
  • 1/2       cup milk
  • 1 3/4    ounces Baileys Irish Cream liqueur
  • 3          scoops mint chocolate chip ice cream
  • chocolate syrup
  • chopped sugar cookies, for garnish (optional)
  • pistachios, for garnish (optional)
  • mint chocolate candy, for garnish (optional)
  1. Using mixer, whisk whipping cream until soft peaks form. Add peppermint extract and powdered sugar; mix until well blended. Set aside.
  2. In blender, blend milk, liqueur and ice cream until smooth.
  3. Drizzle chocolate syrup inside soda glass. Pour ice cream mixture into glass. Top with whipped cream and garnish with cookies, pistachios and mint chocolate candy, if desired.

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