Sunday, September 30, 2012

Luscious Banana-Brownie Pie

If you have wondered where The Cozy Little Kitchen has been, this month is a busy one for us; but it's also a very good one! 
Mr. Cozy has been on vacation for the past couple of weeks!  In that time we've taken a wonderful trip to Chicago with his family, and my sister got married in the foothills of the Smokey Mountains last weekend!  (That's a whole other post!!!)  It's been a busy and joyous month to remember!

I just wanted to take some time to share with y'all a delicious pie recipe I made recently.  This is a recipe I've been meaning to make for years!  It came out of one of my favorite cookbooks--Keeping Good Company--which is a charming cookbook filled with absolutely delicious recipes and adorable illustrations.  Not to mention, it looks cute on my cookbook shelf!

Back to the pie...YUM!  It starts with a golden crust and filled with layers of brownie, fresh bananas, cream cheese, homemade whipped cream and bits of chocolate toffee bits sprinkled over the top!  It's an easy recipe with a few steps, but all of them are worth it when you have the finished result. 

For the brownie pieces, you can buy 4 brownies at the bakery or just use an inexpensive brownie mix, like I did.  I actually added chocolate chips to the brownie mix to make them a bit richer. 

I recommend making homemade whipped cream for the topping.  It's so easy!  All you do is pour some heavy whipping cream into the bowl of your mixer and add a bit of sugar and dash of vanilla as it's mixing.  Whip on high speed for a minute or so after adding the sugar, or until the mixture is fluffy.  If you mix too long, though, you'll end up with butter.  This extra effort of homemade cream will be what sets this pie apart!

 I made this banana-brownie pie to take to a friend's house, and we devoured it even after the big meal!  It's probably one of the best pies I've ever had!    

 I had to treat myself to a coffee topped with some frothy whipped cream and a dash of cinnamon while I was making the pie....
 Here's some snapshots of my messy kitchen as I was making the banana-brownie pie.  It's a good kind of messy when something so wonderful is at the end of it all!
I'll be back on here soon to share some pictures of the memories we've made the past few weeks!!! 
 Banana-Brownie Pie
1/4 c. Butter
3 oz. Cream Cheese
1 1/2 c. Powdered Sugar, sifted
1/4 c. Heavy Whipping Cream
1/2 tsp. Vanilla
3 Bananas, sliced
1 (6 oz.) can Pineapple Juice
4 Brownies
Cut into 1 in. pieces 
1 Baked Pie Crust
(I used refrigerated crust with egg wash)
1/2 c. Chocolate-Toffee Bits or Chopped Pecans
Whipped Cream, for garnish
(I used homemade.)
Beat butter and cream cheese together until creamy; gradually add powdered sugar alternately with whipping cream.  Stir in the vanilla.  Set this filling aside.
Toss banana sliced in pineapple juice; drain.  Pat sliced dry with paper towels.
I scored my pie crust before I baked it so the crust wouldn't shrink in the pan. 
Spoon half the filling into baked pie shell. 
Arrange banana slices on filling.
Add the cut up brownies around on the bananas.
Top with remaining filling.
Top with fluffy whipped cream and add chocolate-toffee bits or pecans.
Refrigerate until serving.  I recommend no longer than 8 hours.  Enjoy the compliments you'll receive for this decadent pie!
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Monday, September 17, 2012

Sweet Potato Fries at "Inspired By Family" magazine


I'm excited to share one of my favorite savory sides with you all today at "Inspired By Family" magazine! I hope you can check out the recipe, and take a look at all the other insightful and inspiring articles in this month's edition. Hopefully these yummy and healthful sweet potato fries will inspire your next autumn menu!!

Monday, September 3, 2012

The Best Autumn Apple Crisp & Apple Pickin!

Farewell Summer!
What is it about the this time of year--with the cooler nights and autumn in the air-- that causes us to crave the warm aromas of vanilla, coffee, or cinnamon?  There is just something heart-warming about pulling a steamy apple pie or crisp out of the oven!  What a delicious surprise for the hubby after work, the kids as they come home from school, or on a brisk Saturday after a game of family football. A dessert dotted with butter and brown sugar somehow always puts a smile on my face and extra faces in my house!
Here are a few pictures of our fun apple picking afternoon together!  Mr. Cozy and I love doing seasonal things like this. 
Can you tell I was incredibly happy to on the wagon ride out to the orchard?  It was only my sweet husband and I together for the ride!  How romantic. :)
I'm ready to start pickin!!!
I found a perfect one!
After picking some beautiful Jonathan apples (which are my favorite) at the orchard, I decided it would only be the right thing to do for me to make the very first apple crisp of the season!  Friends, this one is truly the Best apple crisp I've ever had!  It's an easy one to make and calls for staple pantry ingredients plus a special one for making it so delicious--yellow cake mix! 
While my husband is usually more of a pie kind of guy, he could hardly keep his fork out of it!!  With a frosty glass of milk and a big scoop of vanilla ice cream, this crumble apple crisp is sure to satisfy your cinnamon-apple cravings.  Hope you can enjoy it in the upcoming season with your family! 
Autumn Apple Crisp
7 c. Diced Tart Apples, about 7 medium
1 c. Sugar
1 Tbsp. All-Purpose Flour
1 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
Dash of Salt
1/4 c. Water
1- 9 oz. pkg. Yellow Cake Mix (I used Jiffy)
3/4 c. Rolled Oats
1/3 c. Butter, cold and cubed
1 heaping Tbsp. Dark Brown Sugar
1/2 c. Pecans, coarsely chopped
1/4 tsp. Baking Soda
1/4 tsp. Baking Powder
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Dice apples into small bits and place in a medium sized bowl.
Add sugar and the 4 ingredients. 
 Stir to combine and set bowl aside.
 In another bowl, dump the yellow cake mix, oats, brown sugar, powder and soda.
 Stir to combine.
 Add the butter and cut into the mixture, with two forks, until crumbly.
 This is what makes it a Crisp.
 Pour the delicious apple mixture into a greased baking dish.
Sprinkle the crumble topping over the apples. 
 Spread out evenly to all the edges.
Bake uncovered for 45-50 minutes or until apples are tender and top is golden and bubbly!
Serve warm with ice cream. 

 When the ice cream begins to melt is when it's the best!
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