Pumpkin Tiramisu

The holiday season seems to be in full swing, judging by the 24 hour Christmas music on the radio in my car and the Christmas wreaths for sale outside the grocery store. How is it already Thanksgiving week?! I feel like I say this every year, but this year it seems to have come up faster than usual!

For the first time in many years, I am not hosting, just bringing dessert. Trying to keep the holidays as simple as possible this year. I am making this version of Tiramisu and maybe brownies, made from a box mix. Simple and stress free 😊

Pumpkin Tiramisu

Feeds 4 to 6 people

Ingredients

About 1 Cup of Simple Syrup, plus 2 cinnamon sticks

1 package of Schar gluten-free ladyfingers

4 ounces of mascarpone (you can omit this and double the amount of cream cheese)

4 ounces of softened cream cheese  (very important it is soft! Keep on counter for at least 2 hours)

½ cup of canned pumpkin

1 – 14 ounce of can of condensed milk

½ teaspoon of cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon fresh nutmeg

½  cup of heavy cream

Fresh whipped cream, see recipe below

Directions

Make simple syrup and let cool while you make the pumpkin mixture.

Whip together mascarpone and cream cheese or just cream cheese. Add in the pumpkin, condensed milk, cinnamon, nutmeg and heavy cream. Whip all the ingredients together for about 5 minutes with an electric mixer or standing mixer, starting on low and once there is no risk of splatter, turn on high.

Dip a ladyfinger into the simple syrup and place in a small rectangular dish, like this 6 cup Pyrex. Make a layer of syrup soaked lady fingers and then top with about half of the pumpkin mixture. Top the pumpkin mixture with half of the whipped cream. Repeat.  Sprinkle with a little cinnamon on top if you like. Chill for at least 3 hours. Serve. This can be made the day before and kept in the fridge.

Fresh whipping cream

1 cup heavy whipping cream

2 Tablespoons of powdered sugar

½ teaspoon vanilla

½ teaspoon of cinnamon (optional)

Check out some of my other holiday dessert ideas: Raspberry Lemon Thyme Tiramisu, Boston Cream Pie Cake, Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Mousse Pie and Apple Crisp! For a great hostess gift, make some chocolate bark. What is your favorite holiday dessert?

 

Simple Recipe for Simple Syrup

Do you enjoy fun cocktails, flavored iced coffee or tea in the summer? Then you will love this recipe! It is so easy and you get to control the ingredients!

This is a great basic simple syrup recipe that you can add your own flavor to. I like to add basil, rosemary or thyme for an herbed simpled syrup that can be used in a cocktail with limoncello and vodka or in a dessert like my Raspberry Lemon and Thyme Tiramisu. Add a vanilla bean and you can make vanilla iced coffee. Add mint and you can sweeten your iced tea or make a mojito. You can even add fruit and make a blueberry simple syrup to mix with your lemonade.

Simple Syrup

Ingredients

1 cup of water

1 cup of sugar

Directions

Add water and sugar to small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour into a glass container and allow to cool. Cover and keep in fridge for up to 2 weeks.

If you are adding flavors:

Blueberry Simple Syrup: Add about 3/4 of a cup of blueberries with the water and sugar. Follow recipe above and strain blueberries before pouring into container.

Vanilla Simple Syrup: Add a vanilla bean with the water and sugar. Follow recipe above and strain before pouring into container.

Mint, Rosemary, Thyme or basil Simple Syrup:  Add herbs with the water and sugar. Follow recipe above but allow to cool for 5 to 10 minutes in sauce pan then strain before pouring into container.

Your imagination is the only limit! What is your favorite summer drink?

 

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Mousse Pie

Last week I wrote about the Nutella and peanut butter smoothie my kids enjoyed making. This week it is another chocolaty peanut butter concoction, but this time a truly delectable and yet super easy to make dessert! This is one of my husband’s favorites so I named it after him 🙂

Tim’s Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Mousse Pie

Ingredients

½ cup of heavy cream

8 ounces of mascarpone

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1/3 cup peanut butter

1 1/3 cups heavy cream

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 Tablespoons confectioners’ sugar

6 ounces of chocolate chips

1 pre-made chocolate cookie crust (I like the Mid-el Gluten free crust)

Directions

Chill metal bowl for whipped cream. Whisk together ½ cup of heavy cream, mascarpone, confectioners’ sugar and peanut butter in another bowl. Then fold in the chocolate chips. In the chilled bowl add the remaining heavy cream, vanilla and confectioners’ sugar and mix on medium speed until soft peaks form when you take the whisk out. Fold ½ of whipped cream into peanut butter until combined. Fold the other half in. Pour mousse mixture into the crust and chill in the fridge for about 2 hours.

This is so simple to make! It would be great for Father’s Day, a 4th of July barbecue or any day really. What is your favorite dessert to make?

This site has affiliate links to help support the blog, but as usual, I only link to items I love myself!

 

Strawberry Sauce

Having different sauce recipes in your repertoire to change up meals and desserts can expand your menus tremendously. Sauces are not just for savory dishes. My strawberry sauce is simple and delicious! Strawberries are so tasty and sweet. My kids love them, so when they are on sale, I buy them up! Often that means that they can start to go bad before we have had a chance to finish eating them. With all the amazing fresh fruit and vegetables coming into season, they are more cost effective and much more abundant. Here is this crazy easy recipe that you can use to top pancakes or waffles, ice cream or yogurt or whatever you like!

Strawberry Sauce

Ingredients

16 ounces of fresh strawberries, sliced

2 Tablespoons of sugar (add ½ Tablespoon at a time and taste because it depends on how sweet your strawberries are naturally)

2 Tablespoons of water

1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar, optional (but I think it adds such a great depth of flavor! Doesn’t taste vinegary)

Directions

Add all the ingredients to a sauce pan on medium high heat on the stove. Stir every couple of minutes until the fruit breaks down and it becomes a sauce, about 15 minutes. Serve warm over pancakes or cool and pour over ice cream or swirl in with yogurt. Can keep in the fridge 3 or 4 days in an airtight container.

You can also make this with blueberries, raspberries or blackberries and just adjust the sugar based on how sweet the fruits are. Don’t let those summer fruits go to waste!

There are just so many uses for this sauce. You can make ice cream sundaes, pour this sauce over gf angel food cake or my biscuits for a version of strawberry shortcake.

What is your favorite summer sauce? How do you use it?

Basic Chocolate Bark Recipe

Chocolate Bark is a great recipe to have in your arsenal. It is always a hit, so versatile and incredibly easy to make! You can make it for Christmas, Easter, Valentines Day, 4th of July or on a rainy Saturday. It only takes about 30 minutes (5 to 10 minutes of actual work).

Here is the basic recipe:

Basic Chocolate Bark Recipe

Ingredients

1 – 16 ounce bag of chocolate chips (white, dark or milk chocolate)

Toppings, optional

Directions

Prep a cookie sheet with a piece of parchment or wax paper the same size as the pan. Spray with cooking spray. Prep your ingredients. Pour all the chocolate chips into a glass bowl. Microwave in 30 second intervals, mixing the chips each time in between. It should take about 3 rounds, around 90 seconds total.  Pour the melted chocolate onto the prepared sheet and spread out to about 1/8 inch thick.

After pouring then add your favorite toppings and lightly press in. Place in freezer for about 20 minutes. Break into pieces. Keep refrigerated.

Topping ideas:

Baklava Bark – Add 1/3 cup crushed nuts (pistachios, walnuts or almonds), zest of one lemon and honey drizzled on top.

Holiday Bark – Add 2 crushed candy canes.

Cookies and Cream- Add about 4-6 crushed GF oreos (I like GF Trader Joe’s Os or Glutino cookies)

Trail Mix Bark – Add 1/4 cup of partially crushed pretzels (I like synder’s GF or Glutino) and 1/4 cup of craisins

Smores Bark – add about 1/4 cup of crushed graham crackers (I like Schar’s GF graham crackers) and about 1/ 4 cup of mini marshmallows. If you like, use a culinary torch to lightly toast the marshmallows.

The options are limitless. Bark is a great idea to make alongside your holiday dessert or put them in clear gift bags and give as a parting gift.

If you need some more dessert ideas try my Raspberry Lemon Thyme Tiramisu or Boston Cream Pie Cake or GF Crispy Treats or Chocolate Pudding Pie or if you are feeling adventurous try my Baked Alaska.

Boston Cream Pie Cake

The complaint most often heard about gluten-free cakes is that they are too dry and crumbly. To combat this, whenever I use a gluten-free cake mix I make these changes:

  • Use milk instead of water, if the instructions call for water
  • Use melted butter instead of oil, if the instructions call for oil
  • Add an extra egg
  • Add ½ cup of melted white chocolate

With these changes, you can serve cake to those who are not gluten-free and they will never know! Betty Crocker, Wegmans and King Arthur are my go to gluten-free cake mixes.

Boston Cream Pie Cake

Ingredients

1 yellow cake mix, prepared according to package with my changes noted above

1 package of vanilla instant pudding, prepared according to package pie filling instructions (for Jello Instant pudding this means, using 1 ¾ cups of milk instead of 2 cups)

1-16 ounce container of chocolate frosting (Pillsbury is gluten free)

Directions

Prepare cake using two 8 or 9 inch rounds. Make pudding and place in fridge to set. Once cake is cool and pudding is set place one of the rounds on a serving platter and top with the pudding.

Place second round on top and then cover completely with the chocolate frosting.  Keep in the fridge until ready to serve.

This is a great dessert to entertain with, easy enough for your kids to help with and absolutely delicious!

If you need more ideas to feed your sweet tooth, check out some of my favorite dessert recipes.

Gluten-Free Crispy Treats

Raspberry Lemon Tiramisu

Baked Alaska

Baked Alaska

Check one item off my 2017 Cooking Bucket List! For Valentine’s Day I made Baked Alaska for my family. It is definitely old fashioned and definitely delicious! I scoured the internet and my cookbook collection for recipes to learn the process. Allrecipes.com never fails to provide good recipes, so I used this recipe to make sure I got the meringue right.  Some use pound cake and sorbet and bake the meringue while others use sponge cake and ice cream and use a torch on the meringue. The thought of putting ice cream in the oven, made me nervous, so I decided to go the torch route. Plus that is more fun!

Baked Alaska

Ingredients

1 gallon of Hood Patchwork ice cream

1 box of gluten free chocolate cake mix, plus an extra egg (I like Wegmans GF chocolate cake mix)

8 egg whites

1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar

1/8 teaspoon of salt

1 cup of sugar

Directions

Take the gallon of ice cream out to soften, about 10 to 15 minutes. Prepare a medium sized bowl by lining with plastic wrap, wax paper or parchment paper and spray with non-stick spray. Press the ice cream down into the bowl and cover. Freeze for at least 4 hours.

Make 8 inch round cake according to instructions, adding the extra egg. Cool the cake and cut to size of the ice cream in the bowl if needed. Press cake onto the bottom of the ice cream. Cover and freeze for another 4 hours or overnight. About 10 minutes before you are ready to serve, take the bowl of ice cream and cake out of the freezer and make the meringue. Add the remaining ingredients to a mixing bowl. Whip until stiff peaks form. Turn the bowl with ice cream and cake onto a plate and take the bowl and wrap or paper off.

Frost the ice cream with the meringue. Take a culinary torch and run it over all the meringue until toasted. Serve immediately. Freeze the leftovers.

It was much easier to make than I thought. It does take planning, however. I froze the ice cream in the bowl and made the cake one night. The next morning (day of service) I cut the cake to fit the ice cream and put back in the freezer until after dinner, when I finished it with the meringue.

Working my way through my bucket list. I found cornish game hens on sale this week and put them in the freezer, so a fancy dinner where we will each have our own “little chicken” according to my kids, is coming soon 🙂 What is on your cooking bucket list? What would you love to cook?

For the Love of Chocolate

Having celiac disease or a family member with celiac disease you have to learn how to bake and create desserts that everyone will enjoy if you want dessert. I have discovered how lucky we are that there are so many gluten-free prepared options now! Now, I love to bake from scratch when I can, but that is not always possible. This pie recipe, is one of the easiest desserts to make. It is a great base that you can change as you like. Use pistachio or cheese cake pudding instead of chocolate. The options are endless!

Chocolate Pudding Pie 

Ingredients

About 6 ounces of milk chocolate chips

1 prepared graham cracker pie crust (my favorite is Mi-Del’s Gluten Free crust)

2 packages of Jello instant pudding (I like to use 1 white chocolate and 1 chocolate fudge)

3 ½ cups of milk

Optional strawberries or chocolate sprinkles on top for decoration.

Directions

Melt the chocolate chips in a small bowl in the microwave. Heat for 30 seconds, remove and stir. Repeat until chocolate is melted. Pour chocolate into pie crust and spread to cover. Place in the refrigerator to chill.

In the meantime, prepare each package of pudding according to pie instructions (which means 1 ¾ cups of milk per packet of instant pudding). Take crust out of fridge and pour about 1/3 of white chocolate pudding, then 1/3 of the chocolate fudge in the center and lightly shake the pie, tapping it on the table to spread out the pudding. Repeat until all pudding is used (or just pour in one and then layer the other pudding). Leave as is or top with sprinkles or strawberries. Let chill for at least 1 hour.

Valentines Day is approaching and I’ve been testing some tantalizing chocolate recipes! Stay tuned for my Boston Creme Pie Cake! This Raspberry Lemon Thyme Tiramisu is decadent, light and also perfect for a romantic dinner. What is your favorite romantic dessert?

The Best Recipes of 2016

To celebrate the end of 2016, I’m sharing this list of your favorite recipes from Mamma’s Cooking. Thank you for reading!

1.  Appetizer Ideas for Thanksgiving

2. Rainbow Pizza

3. Cooking Your Thanksgiving Turkey

4. Spoon Roast

5. Gingerbread Cookies

6. Gluten-Free Holiday Treats

7. Holiday Mashed Potatoes

8. School Snack and Lunch Ideas

9. Apple or Pear Crisp Recipe

10. What to do with Leftover Cod

This completes my 31 days of posts! I challenged myself with a post a day in December and I did it! Best wishes to you all for a great celebration tonight and an even better 2017. Look tomorrow for my 2017 Cooking Bucket list.

 

Ice Cream!

There is not much better than an ice cream sundae! Ice cream is also one of the easiest desserts for a crowd. You can make an ice cream sundae bar as fancy or as basic as you want. Make your own fudge sauce or use the bottle of Hershey syrup that you already have in the fridge. Cut up some bananas or just put out a jar of maraschino cherries. Make your own whipped cream or buy a can of it.

Whipped cream is something I love to make. Don’t get me wrong, we buy the Redi-Whip cans sometimes (they are gluten-free!) and have been known to spray it into an open mouth 😉 but I LOVE fresh whipped cream. It is very easy to do.

Fresh Whipped Cream

Ingredients

1 pint of whipping cream

2 Tablespoons of confectioners sugar

1 teaspoon of vanilla

Directions

Place metal mixing bowl in fridge the morning you want to make whipped cream. Take out when you are ready to mix. Pour entire pint of whipping cream into bowl. Start whipping. When it is frothy, add confectioners sugar and vanilla. Whip until stiff peaks form.

Put the bowl out with your other sundae toppings, fudge, sprinkles, cherries and an assortment of ice cream flavors. For our holiday dessert we had Hood Peppermint Stick, Vanilla and Fenway Fudge (all gluten free).

Whether you are running around returning things, doing more shopping or relaxing around the house, this is a fun way to do dessert! Especially would be fun for a kids party. A dessert both kids and kids at heart will love!