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My Mishmash Alfredo Pasta Dish

My youngest daughter aka Kiki in our house loves Alfredo!   Anything Alfredo …which is good because it allows me to expand my dinners by trying new things to add to the Alfredo sauces as they simmer.  Add to that it is an inexpensive sauce to make, and well worth the few minutes it takes to whip up.

Last nights dinner was a simple mix of what was n the cupboard…also known as a mishmash of what is in the cupboard and catches my eye :).

Alfredo Sauce

Servings: 4  (I double this when everyone is home)

  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 c cream (I use 18% cream)
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 c Parmesan cheese
  • 3/4 c mozzarella cheese
  • Melt butter in medium saucepan with olive oil over medium/low heat. Add the garlic, cream, white pepper and bring mixture to a simmer. Stir often.
  • Add the Parmesan cheese and simmer sauce for 8-10 minutes or until sauce has thickened and is smooth.  When sauce has thickened add the Mozzarella cheese and stir until smooth. STIR FREQUENTLY to prevent the cheeses fro sticking to the bottom of the pot.While the sauce cooks, boil noodles for 3-5 minutes.
  1. Place pasta on serving plates and spoon sauce over pasta.
    Last nights dinner also included grilled chicken breast left over from the night before, 1/4 c. sun dried tomatoes chopped up and added to the sauce while I was preparing the pasta. ( I always add extra to mine after its ready as I love sun dried tomatoes!)

    The leftovers are always eaten the next day for lunch....if there are leftovers!

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Homemade Rum Cake…Oh Ho ho!

My name is Shellie, and I love the smell of home baking!

The wafting of vanilla as it blends with cinnamon,sugar and flour is a divinity in itself. Mind you, I am not into vanilla scented sprays or candles …just the aromatic smell you have in a room as it comes to life in your stove or in a pot totally embraces you and offers  comfort.  I easily equate it  to snuggling in on a cold night with your flannels and a good book, that one corner of the comfy couch or your favourite chair…a drink at your side as you lose yourself in the adventure or romance before you.  We’ve all done it, yes even the men in our lives have lost themselves in a good story here and there!  Our imagination is what takes us on a road unexplored, a nook in our conscience that allows us to lose ourselves amongst the daily trials and trivialities of every day life.  For a brief time we can forget the trivialities of work or home that encompass our daytime hours, the stresses  before us can be lost as we read between the lines and picture ourselves in the situation, and momentarily find rapture between the pages of what has our attention at that time.

Truth be told I can come up with a dessert for anything…it is my favourite thing.  Dazzle your family or guests with this delicious alternative to heavy cake.  I have to admit I got this recipe offline, and made it one weekend for friends, just for something different….everyone was impressed at my culinary prowess.  They laughed when I told them I had shared my beloved bottle of Captain Morgan with them.  The flavour is not overpowering at all.  I decorated the plates with some caramel and a light dusting of icing sugar (and I mean light…lol) along with a dallop of fresh whip cream and we were all smiling at the end.

I promise I will make this this weekend and post a picture!

Homemade Rum Cake Recipe

Yield: 10 to 12 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes | Bake Time: 50 to 60 minutes

For the Cake:
1 cup chopped walnuts
1¾ cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup cornstarch
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1½ cups granulated sugar
3 tablespoons + ½ cup canola oil, divided
1 3.4-ounce package of instant vanilla pudding
4 eggs
¾ cup whole milk
¾ cup dark rum
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

For the Rum Syrup:
¾ cup unsalted butter
1½ cups granulated sugar
¼ cup water
Pinch of salt
½ cup dark rum

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease and flour a standard Bundt pan (12-cup capacity). Sprinkle the chopped walnuts around the bottom; set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

3. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, cream together the butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the flour mixture and the 3 tablespoons of canola oil, and mix on medium-low speed for a minute or two – the mixture should look like wet sand. Add the pudding mix and mix again on medium-low speed until combined.

4. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, rum, and vanilla extract. Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and beat on medium speed until thoroughly combined, about 2 to 3 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed.  It will be thin in consistency but that’s great, it lends to the moistness.

5. Pour the cake batter into the prepared Bundt pan and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

6. When the cake has about 10 minutes left to bake, start the rum syrup. Melt the butter in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Once it is melted, add the sugar and the water. Boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Turn off the heat and stir in the rum. Once it is mixed in, return it to medium heat for about 30 minutes.

7. When the cake comes out of the oven, immediately pour about one-third of the rum syrup over the bottom of the cake. Pour slowly so it has time to seep into the cake. Let it sit for 5 minutes.

8. Invert the cake onto your serving platter. Using a fork or a skewer, poke holes all over the cake – the top, sides, and around the inside. Don’t be shy – all of the holes ensure that the rum syrup seeps into the cake evenly. Sloooooowly pour the remaining rum syrup over the top of the cake, allowing it to drip down the sides. You want to do this step very slowly in order that the syrup actually seeps into the cake and doesn’t just pool on the bottom of the serving dish.

9. Allow the cake to cool to room temperature before serving. Leftovers can be kept, tightly wrapped, at room temperature for up to 5 days.

(Recipe adapted from Always Order Dessert)