Ciao! My name is Yolanda and I'd like to welcome you to my Blog! I have always had a love for cooking, baking and eating. This blog is mainly a place for me to record and share precious family recipes from those living and deceased as well as delicious recipes that my friends have given me throughout the years.


Sunday, April 28, 2013

Haley's Corn Casserole

It was finally beautiful weather out, so my husband and I invited my family and his parents over for a barbecue.  Jimmy grilled some barbecue chicken, I made a delicious salad (that I will share in my next post) and I also made an amazing corn casserole.  I tend to always buy corn on the cob when we are grilling out, but then I remembered my friend Hailey's Corn Casserole that she brought to my friend Diana's memorial day party last year.  She was kind enough to share the recipe with me! It was a huge hit at my family barbecue and not to mention super easy and quick to make!  It will surely be a regular side dish I make when I just do not feel like having corn on the cob.
Please Click Here for Printable Version
* 1 (14-16 oz) can of Kernel Corn, Drained
* 1 (14-16 oz) can of creamed corn
* 1 box of Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
* 2 Eggs
* 1 stick of Butter
* 1 Cup of Sour Cream
* Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
* In a large mixing bowl, put the drain can of corn, can of cream of corn, Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix, and 2 eggs.  Mix well with a spoon.
* Melt butter in a small bowl and pour into the corn mixture.  Stir well.
* Butter a 13x9 casserole dish and pour the corn casserole mixture inside.
* Spoon dollops of sour cream over the top
* Swirl the Sour Cream into the mixture with a spoon or spatula.
* Bake for 45-50 minutes until lightly golden brown on the top.
* Serve hot/warm (the texture inside should be super moist! Cakey yet creamy!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Grandma's Cherry Squares

My grandma Vito was not much of a cook, but she was a great baker.  Most of my baked good recipes come from her recipe cards and are goodies she would make us growing up.  Her cherry squares are one of those treats that always remind me of her.  She still makes them once in a while when she feels like it.  These cherry squares are loaded with cherries and nuts, so when I was little I use to pick the nuts and cherries off and she would tell me that I am missing out on the best part.  The older I got I learned to love every part of the cherry squares, even the chunks of cherries.
Please Click Here for Printable Version.
* 1 cup of shortening (CRISCO)
* 1 cup of Granulated Sugar
* 1 tsp. of Vanilla Extract
* 2 large eggs (beat 1 at a time)
* 2 cups of All Purpose Flour
* 1 cup of chopped Walnuts
* 1 can of Cherry Comstock Filling

* Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
* Cream shortening, sugar, vanilla and eggs (one at a time)
* Add flour
* Mix Well
* Spray a 9X9 inch pan with cooking spray
* Spread 3/4 of the mixture into the pan
* Spread the cherry filling over the mixture
* Sprinkle the chopped walnuts on top
* Drop remaining batter in dollops across the top of the filling
* Bake for 40-45 minutes at 350 degrees, until top is lightly golden brown
 * Cut after cooled into squares!
~*~Tip~*~ If you would like smaller squares, just spread out smaller dollops on top

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Ricotta Amaretto Cheese Cake

        I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter. I know I did! My family takes turns hosting each holiday and Easter has always been my mom's holiday.  We had 28 all together this year which included, my cousin's new Vietnamese family, my in laws, grandmothers, siblings, and many cousins.  We also has a fun Easter Egg Hunt before the rain came down for the kids. 
        For food, my mom made marinated lamb, stuffed pork tenderloin, chicken cutlets, green beans, salad, corn, and gemelli pasta with homemade sauce.  In addition, we had an array of desserts, including a bunch of candy and cookies my cousin Michael brought back from Vietnam to share and a deliciously creamy Ricotta Amaretto Cheesecake.  Every Saturday I watch the cooking show "Ciao Italia," and one episode she made this cheesecake.  I adjusted the recipe just a little, one way being that I added a caramel drizzle topping with cookies instead of the lemon sauce with berries she added on her show.
Original Source: Ciao Italia
Please Click Here for Printable Version
Ingredients for Crust:
*50 small (1-inch) Amaretto Cookies (believe it or not I bought mine at Marshals, but you can try any Italian import store or Italian section of your grocery store).
*3 tablespoons Unsalted Butter, melted and cooled

Procedure for crust:
*Whirl the cookies to a powder in a food processor 
* Add in the butter to evenly coat them.
* Wrap a large sheet of Aluminum Foil around the outside of the pan
* Pat the crumb mixture in the bottom of a 9 1/2 x 2 1/2 inch spring form pan and set aside.
Ingredients for Filling:
* 2 3/4 cup Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese
* 1 1/4 cups Mascarpone Cheese
* 1/2 cup Sour Cream
* 1 cup Granulated Sugar
* 3 Large Eggs
* 1/4 teaspoon Salt
* 2 1/2 tablespoons unbleached all purpose Flour
* 1 teaspoon Pure Almond Extract
*1/8 cup Amaretto Liqueur

~*~Optional~*~ Caramel Topping
* In a stand mixer or by hand with a hand held mixer, beat the ricotta cheese with the mascarpone and sour cream.
*  Beat in the sugar and eggs one at a time.
*  Beat in the salt, flour, extract and the liqueur.

* Pour the batter carefully into the prepared pan.
* Place the pan in a larger pan and carefully pour boiling water into the larger pan until it is about 1-inch up the sides of the spring form pan. 

* Bake on the middle oven shelf for 50 minutes.
* Turn off the oven and allow the cake to sit in the oven 50 minutes longer.

* Remove the cake from the larger pan and carefully remove and discard the aluminum foil.
* Allow the cake to cool for 30 minutes.
* Cover the top of the cake loosely with wax paper and refrigerate several hours or overnight.

* When ready to serve, allow the cake to come to room temperature. Unlatch the spring form pan rim and carefully remove it. Place the cake on its base on a serving platter.
* Top with whatever you wish! I put Caramel topping in a ziploc bag and cut a small piece of the tip off and decorated the top with it and then placed the extra Amaretto Cookies I had around the cake for a beautiful presentation!