Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Key Lime Cake Truffle

Summer is here & we all know that Summer= BBQ's! And for BBQ's, I have 2 of my signature dishes that I always make 1) Potato Salad and 2) Baked Beans..(I have sworn myself to secrecy on those recipes, sorry)..and I also find myself using a "borrowed" BBQ recipe from The Pioneer Woman that is a definite crowd pleaser! (It's not what you think, though I wish it were..she didn't call me up & give it to me, we aren't close personal friends...but I do know know, from FoodNetwork! Bahaha!) And I ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS make a dessert! Sometimes it's things that are thrown together & this was definitely one of those times! I had a recipe for a Key Lime Cake & I thought about it & in the words of Sweet Brown: "Ain't nobody got time fo dat!" I love any chance I get to dig out my truffle bowl, its just too pretty when you layer things! So needless to say, this thrown together, not as elegant as it probably could have looked "truffle" was a complete hit! I won't name any names or anything, but let's just say, people were licking the bowl! This is simple, easy-peasy, & will now be a dessert I make for backyard BBQ's with our Army Family! HOOAH!

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I apologize in advance for the state of this picture! I was still in the process of making it so it is shown unfinished..I didn't get an "after" pic because people were already digging into it! lol.

Key Lime Cake Truffle
1 Box lemon cake mix
4 eggs
1 (32oz) Box lime jell-o mix
3/4 c. Orange juice
1 c. vegetable oil

1 pk. cream cheese, room temp.
1 Large tub cool-whip
1 tsp. vanilla extract
lime juice to taste
*optional: a couple of sliced limes for decoration as used in pic*
  •  Bake cake as directed, set aside to cool.
  • Put cream cheese in mixer & cream until smooth. Then put in the cool-whip & other filling ingredients & mix until smooth. 
  • Cut cake into bite size squares & layer in the bottom of truffle bowl. (ADD LAYER OF LIMES AROUND EDGES OF BOWL NOW IF YOU ARE USING THEM!) Add a layer of filling, then cake, & continue ending with filling on top. (I also use some ready-whip as additional topping just to make it look pretty!)
  • Chill in the refrigerator a few hours before serving...

Black Pepper Chicken

I don't know about you guys, but I L.O.V.E me some Chinese Buffet! It never fails, every time I go, I get the same thing! My absolute favorite thing there is the Black Pepper Chicken & their Baked Crab(you know, the one with all that cheese!?). To make things even better, we found a little hole in the wall Chinese place right up the street from us that actually makes it for carry-out orders! However, since dieting, it is SUPER unhealthy because it is breaded & deep fried. So, I decided to make up my own recipe & all I have to say is "MOVE OVER CHINESE RESTAURANTS, THERE IS A NEW ASIAN COOK IN TOWN"! Haha, but no, forrealiooo, this chicken is seriously better than the restaurants & I am so addicted! Mr.Hooah is even a big fan too... So much so, that  we have it sometimes two nights a week! It is MUCH better for you than the deep fried stuff that is then wok-fried with the sauce they use etc... I'm actually Korean for those of you that do not already know that & I feel like I'm getting in touch with my asian roots on this one because I don't know how I pulled it off but I did! This is super yummy & easy! Hope you enjoy!<----- too bad I don't know how to say that in Korean haha!

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Black Pepper Chicken
1 pk. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
1 green or red pepper, roughly chopped
1 onion, roughly chopped
2-4 TBSP. cornstarch in a ziplock bag
1- 1 1/2 c. lite soy sauce (reserve 2-3 TBSP.)
Black pepper (to taste) 
1-2 TBSP. minced garlic
1/4 c. honey (or to taste)
  •  Place chicken in a bowl & pour soy over top, stirring to make sure all of the chicken gets some soy-love. Cover with lid & let marinate for 15mins or so. (I usually do this while I am cutting up the veggies & getting everything else prepped!)
  • When chicken is done marinating, spoon out your 2-3 TBSP's of soy & set aside...then drain chicken with strainer.. now is the time to heat the EVOO in a non-stick pan..Place chicken into the bag with the cornstarch. Give it a few good shakes, making sure chicken is evenly coated & then pour into pan. Cook on med-high heat until the chicken starts to brown a little, then add in your onions, peppers, & garlic...continue cooking until chicken is golden brown & cooked through. 
  • Now lower heat to med-low & add in reserved soy sauce, the honey, & sprinkle black pepper (to taste..I usually sprinkle it around 2-3x). Stirring constantly until the sauce thickens a bit...Let stand at least 5-10 mins for sauce to set.