Mocha Eggnog

5 cups chocolate milk
4 cups eggnog
1 cup heavy whipping cream, divided
2 tablespoon instant coffee granules
2-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon rum extract

In a large saucepan, combine the milk, eggnog, 1/2 cup cream and coffee granules; heat through.

Remove from the heat; stir in extracts.

 In a small bowl, beat remaining cream until stiff peaks form. Dollop over eggnog.

Yield: 2-1/2 quarts.


Christmas Crack (Chocolate Saltine Toffee) Recipe

Cooking spray
35 to 40 saltine crackers
2 sticks (1 cup) butter
1 cup light brown sugar
8 ounces semisweet chocolate chips (about 1 1/3 cups)

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Line 1 large or 2 small jelly-roll pans with aluminum foil, spray with nonstick spray and arrange the saltines salt-side down in a single layer. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter and brown sugar together and boil until it turns a caramel color, a few minutes. Remove from the heat and pour over the crackers, covering them evenly.

Put the jelly-roll pan into the oven and bake for 3 to 5 minutes, or until just bubbly, watching carefully. Remove from the oven and pour the chocolate chips over the crackers. When the chips melt a bit, spread them over the crackers with a knife.

Transfer the pan to the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until completely cold. They will form one big sheet. Break up into pieces. Store in an airtight container.

Recipe adapted from Home Cooking with Trisha Yearwood (c) Clarkson Potter 2010

Candy Cane Fudge

1 teaspoon plus 4 tablespoons butter, divided
39 miniature candy canes, crushed (about 1 cup)
1-1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk, divided
4 ounces white baking chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon cream of tartar

1. Line an 8-in. square pan with foil and grease the foil with 1 teaspoon butter. Sprinkle with half of the crushed candy; set aside.
2. In a microwave-safe bowl, combine chocolate chips and 2 tablespoons butter. Microwave on high for 1 minute; stir. Microwave at additional 15-second intervals, stirring until smooth. Stir in 2/3 cup milk. Carefully pour over candy layer in prepared pan. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, in a microwave-safe bowl, combine white baking chocolate and remaining butter. Microwave on high for 40-50 seconds; stir until smooth. Stir in the cream of tartar, remaining milk and candy. Spread over chocolate layer.
4. Refrigerate for 2 hours or until firm. Using foil, remove fudge from pan. Invert onto a cutting board; remove foil. Cut into 1-in. squares. Yield: about 1-3/4 pounds.

Note: This recipe was tested in a 1,100-watt microwave.

Read more:

Peppermint Bark Cheesecake

18  vanilla creme-filled chocolate sandwich cookies, finely crushed (about 1-1/2 cups)
3 Tbsp.  butter, melted
30  starlight mints, divided
4 pkg.  (8 oz. each) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup  sugar
4  eggs
1 pkg.  (4 oz.) BAKER'S White Chocolate, melted
1/4 tsp.  peppermint extract
1 pkg.  (4 oz.) BAKER'S Semi-Sweet Chocolate, divided
2 cups  thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping

HEAT oven to 325°F.

MIX cookie crumbs and butter until blended; press onto bottom of 9-inch springform pan. Bake 10 min.

MEANWHILE, crush 25 mints. Beat cream cheese and sugar in large bowl with mixer until blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing on low speed after each just until blended. Add white chocolate, crushed mints and extract; mix just until blended. Chop half the semi-sweet chocolate; stir into batter. Pour over crust.

BAKE 55 min. to 1 hour or until center is almost set. Run knife around rim of pan to loosen cake; cool before removing rim. Refrigerate 4 hours. Meanwhile, crush remaining mints; chop remaining semi-sweet chocolate.

SPREAD cheesecake with 1 cup COOL WHIP just before serving. Drop remaining COOL WHIP in dollops around edge of cheesecake. Sprinkle remaining crushed mints and chopped chocolate over center of cheesecake.


Thanksgiving Turkey

1 14- to 16-pound turkey
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large yellow onion (about 12 ounces), coarsely chopped
2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch lengths
2 large stalks celery, cut into 1-inch lengths
4 large, fresh sage leaves
3 sprigs fresh thyme
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted (1 stick)

1. Remove the turkey from the refrigerator 1 hour before you plan to cook it. Remove the turkey from its wrapping. Remove the neck and bag of giblets from the main and neck cavity of the bird. Set aside. Trim off the tail and set aside. Pull off any pockets of fat attached to the skin near the opening of the chest cavity and discard. Pat turkey dry with paper towels. Have ready a large roasting pan with a nonstick roasting rack, preferably V-shaped, set in the pan.

2. Thirty minutes before you plan to roast the turkey, position an oven rack on the lowest level in the oven. Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

3. While the oven is heating, sprinkle the inside of the chest and neck cavities with a little salt and pepper. Put half of the onion, carrots and celery inside the chest cavity. Scatter the rest evenly on the bottom of the roasting pan. Stuff the sage and two of the thyme sprigs inside the cavity. Put the third sprig of thyme in the roasting pan. Add the water to the pan.

4. Tuck the turkey wing tips back and under the wings so they lay close to the chest. Cut a 12-inch piece of kitchen twine and bring the legs together, wrapping the twine around the ends (knobs) of the legs to secure them. Tie a knot and trim any extra length of string. Use a small metal skewer or toothpick to secure the neck skin so it doesn't flop open. Use a pastry brush to brush the turkey with half of the butter. Sprinkle the turkey on all sides with a little salt and pepper.

5. Place the turkey, breast side up, on the rack. Roast for 30 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Baste the turkey with the pan juices, and roast an additional 30 minutes. Baste with pan juices. Continue to roast, basting with pan juices after 45 minutes. After another 45 minutes, baste with the remaining butter. Tent the turkey loosely with foil if the breast is browning too much. The turkey is done when an instant-read thermometer registers 165 degrees.

6. When the turkey is done, transfer it to a carving board or serving platter and cover the breast loosely with aluminum foil. Allow the turkey to rest for 15 to 30 minutes before carving to let the juices set. Warm the platter you plan to serve the turkey on.

7. Carve the turkey and serve immediately. Tent the rest of the turkey with foil to keep warm. Remove the rest of the turkey from the carcass later for some fine leftovers.


Crock Pot Maid Rites

3 lbs Ground Beef
1 small Onion, chopped
1 Beef Bouillon Cube
1 Chicken Bouillon Cube
1 1/2 cups Water
2 tbsp Brown Sugar
2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
2 tbsp Worcerterschire Sauce
1 tbsp Soy Sauce
Large Hamburger Buns

Add the first nine ingredients to the crock pot. Stir together to combine ingredients and break up the ground beef. Cook on High for 4 hours. Stir occasionally to combine ingredients as they cook and to keep the beef from clumping together. Serve on hamburger buns.


Red Velvet Espresso and Cream Swirled Brownies

Cream Cheese Swirl Layer
1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
1 egg
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon Gold Medal® all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon vanilla

Brownie Layer
1 box Betty Crocker® Original Supreme Premium brownie mix
Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on brownie mix box
2 teaspoons instant espresso coffee powder
1 bottle (1 oz) red food color

Heat oven to 350ºF (325ºF for dark or nonstick pan). Grease bottom only of 13x9-inch pan with shortening or cooking spray. In small bowl, beat cream cheese swirl layer ingredients with electric mixer on low speed until smooth. Set aside.

Make brownie batter as directed on box, using water, oil, eggs and adding espresso coffee powder and red food color; mix well until batter turns a rich red color. Spread batter in pan.

Dollop cream cheese mixture by tablespoonfuls evenly on top of batter. With knife, cut through mixture a few times to marble.

Bake as directed on brownie mix box or until toothpick inserted in center comes out almost clean. Cool completely, about 1 hour. Cut into 5 rows by 3 rows. Store in refrigerator.


Tater Tot Breakfast Casserole

1 lb bacon , diced, cooked and drained
12 eggs
½ cup milk
32 ounces tater tots
2 cups cheddar cheese , shredded
1 pinch salt
1⁄8 teaspoon pepper

Place cooked bacon in the bottom of a 13 x 9 pan.  Cover with tater tots. Beat eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Pour over tater tots. Top with cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.


Chocolate-Cherry Whipped Sammies

2 Kellogg's® Pop-Tarts® Hot Fudge Sundae toaster pastries
2 tablespoons hot fudge ice cream topping
6 maraschino cherries, well drained and halved
1/2 cup frozen reduced-fat non-dairy whipped topping, thawed

1.  Cut KELLOGG'S POP-TARTS HOT FUDGE SUNDAE toaster pastries in half.  Spread ice cream topping on unfrosted sides of 2 toaster pastry pieces.  Top with cherries.  Carefully spread whipped topping over cherries.  Top with additional toaster pastry pieces, unfrosted sides down.  Lightly press together, making two "sandwiches".

2.  Individually wrap "sandwiches" in plastic wrap.  Freeze at least 3 hours or until firm.


Mississippi Mud Cake

    1 cup butter
    1/2 cup cocoa
    2 cups sugar
    4 large eggs , slightly beaten
    1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    1 dash salt
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 1/2 cups pecans (optional)
    4 cups mini marshmallows

Chocolate frosting
    1 (16 ounce) package powdered sugar , sifted
    1/2 cup milk
    1/3 cup cocoa
    1/4 cup softened butter

Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9x13 inch pan. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Add the cocoa and stir. Remove from the heat. Pour butter mixture into a mixing bowl and add sugar and eggs. Mix until blended. Add the vanilla. Mix in the flour and salt.Stir in the pecans. Put batter into prepared pan and cook for 35 minutes or until done.

Remove from oven and sprinkle with marshmallows.  Cool in the pan on a wire rack.

For the frosting: Combine all of the ingredients and mix until smooth. Spread frosting on cooled cake.  If your frosting is too thick, add more milk.

Read more: