Happiness Is…Recipe: Chocolate Cheesecake

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Happiness is my sweet Summer’s 5th birthday.

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Happiness is Friday.  Yes, my sweet Summer totally trumped Friday on my happy list this week.  🙂

Happiness is family coming into town to celebrate my Summer Lovin’s 5th birthday.

Happiness is doing something that you think that you are not capable of doing.  I will be the 1st to admit that I am not crafty.  But, when I made these bubble gum machines, and they actually turned out like I had pictured them in my head, I was beyond happy.

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Happiness is counting down the hours until I get to hold my sweet nephew.

PhotobucketHappiness is having a daddy who is frying the fish for a good ‘ole Princess Tea Party Fish Fry tomorrow night.

Happiness is having a mother who carefully crafted the party dress and birthday t-shirt for our princess.

Happiness is my family.

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Happiness is chocolate and cheesecake.  And, when the two are together.  Wow.  These individual chocolate cheesecakes were so amazing that it is truly a good thing that I delivered the extra ones next door because I honestly think that we would have just continued to eat until they were all gone.  I have continued to dream about them all week.  I am not kidding, either.  If you like chocolate and you like cheesecake, you simply must give these a try.  It is sure to make you very, very happy.

Chocolate Cheesecake

Chocolate Cheesecake

Ingredients

8 ounce package cream cheese, softened

1 cup powdered sugar

3 cups whipped cream (I used homemade whipped cream - 1 pint heavy whipping cream, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1/4 cup sugar)

3 ounce package instant pudding mix, vanilla

3 ounce package instant pudding mix, chocolate

3 1/2 cups whole milk

Instructions

    1st Layer
  1. Mix cream cheese, 2 cups of the whipped cream, and powdered sugar until creamy.
  2. Set aside.
  3. 2nd Layer
  4. Mix vanilla and chocolate pudding mix with milk.
  5. Continue mixing until it thickens slightly.
  6. Set aside.
  7. Preparing the Whipped Cream
  8. In a stand mixer, add the whipping cream.
  9. Start the mixer on low speed, and add the vanilla and sugar.
  10. Increase the speed to medium high and continue mixing until the cream thickens, approximately 10 minutes.
  11. Putting It All Together
  12. Place about 2-3 tablespoons of the cream cheese mixture into the bottom of the individual serving cups.
  13. Add about 1/4-1/3 cups of the pudding mixture to the top of the cream cheese mixture.
  14. Complete the layers with about 1/4 cup of whipped cream.
  15. There should be enough for 10 individual cups.
http://cookingformykids.com/2012/04/13/happiness-is-recipe-chocolate-cheesecake/

Have a happy, happy weekend!

I linked up at the following:

Tidy Mom for I’m Lovin’ It

Alli ‘n Sons for Sweet Tooth Friday

Happiness Is…Recipe: Pioneer Woman’s Knock You Naked Brownies

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Happiness is 4 days weekends.

Happiness is this sweet dog, who we love so much.

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Happiness is watching the littles play in the sandbox.

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Happiness is report card celebration night.

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Happiness is doing crafts with my girl in preparation for a special birthday a week from today.

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Happiness is a field trip with my youngest boy.

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Happiness is ice cream after school.

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Happiness is chocolate and caramel and ooey gooey goodness that comes in the form of chocolate caramel brownies.  When I saw these brownies that are in Food from My Frontier, Pioneer Woman’s newest cookbook, I knew that we must have them.  They are dangerously good.  So good that you need to make sure that there are plenty of people around to share them with so that you will not eat the whole pan.  Yes, that good.  One bite, and you will be very happy.

Pioneer Woman's Knock You Naked Brownies

Pioneer Woman's Knock You Naked Brownies

Ingredients

1 box (18.5 Ounce) German Chocolate Cake mix

1/3 cup evaporated milk

1/2 cup evaporated milk (additional)

1/2 cup butter, melted

30 whole caramels, unwrapped

1/3 cup milk chocolate chips

1/4 cup powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Prepare a 9 x 9 inch square baking pan by spraying generously with cooking spray.
  3. In a large bowl, mix together cake mix, 1/3 cup evaporated milk, and melted butter.
  4. Stir together until totally combined. The mixture will be thick.
  5. Spread half the mixture into the prepared baking pan.
  6. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and set aside.
  7. In a double boiler add the caramels and the additional 1/2 cup evaporated milk, and cook over medium high heat.
  8. When melted and smooth, pour the caramel mixture over the brownie base.
  9. Sprinkle chocolate chips over the caramel.
  10. Pour the remaining brownie dough onto a large cutting board, and use your hands to press it into a square. With a spatula, move the square brownie mixture to the top of the caramel and chocolate chip layer.
  11. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
  12. Remove from pan and allow to cool to room temperature. The original recipe states to refrigerate at this point, but I skipped that step. I allowed it to cool for a few hours on the counter.
  13. Once cooled completely, sift powdered sugar over the surface of the brownies.
  14. Cut and serve.
http://cookingformykids.com/2012/04/06/happiness-is-recipe-pioneer-womans-knock-you-naked-brownies/

Have a happy Easter weekend!

I linked up at the following:

Alli ‘n Sons for Sweet Tooth Friday

Tidy Mom for I’m Lovin’ It

30 Days for Pity Party

Sweet As Sugar Cookies for Sweets for Saturday

Dwell on Friday on Dwell on Joy

 

 

Happines Is…Recipe: Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Brownies

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Happiness is Friday.

Happiness is Pizza and Movie night on Friday.

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Happiness is having a sweet little girl who took care of me all day Wednesday when I was in bed sick.

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Happiness is having an amazing speech and occupational therapist.  So amazing that they brought me to tears yesterday.  More about that tomorrow in Ethan’s Progress Report.

Happiness is watching Summer and Ethan enjoying a lazy day.

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Happiness is having my mother and daddy visit us this weekend.

Happiness is having a sweet husband who came home early two days this week, in the midst of a very busy time at work, so that he could let me rest in bed and recover from my illness.

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Happiness is hearing my doctor say, “You and your husband seem so happy.”  Yes, we are.  When others notice that, and it makes them smile….well, that makes me very happy.

Happiness is watching Gabriel and Ethan play in the morning before school.

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Happiness is peanut butter and chocolate and brownies and especially Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Brownies.  I found a recipe for Peanut Butter Snicker Brownies at My Baking Addiction.  As I have mentioned before, Jamie’s blog is one of the places that I turn when I am craving something sweet.  She has never let me down.  I did not have the exact ingredients, so I improvised a little.  We had the brownies last Friday to finish off pizza night.  And, wow, what a finish.  They were delicious, which made us all very, very happy.

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Brownies

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Brownies

Ingredients

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

2 1/4 cups sugar

4 large eggs

1 1/4 cups cocoa

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

12-15 mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a 9" x 13" pan with foil, and lightly spray with non-stick cooking spray.
  3. In a saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Once melted, add sugar and stir to combine.
  4. Continue heating mixture, until just hot but not bubbling. It will have a shiny appearance as you stir it.
  5. Reduce the heat and allow it to heat a second time, which should make the mixture even shinier.
  6. Crack the 4 eggs into a mixing bowl, and beat them on low speed.
  7. Add in the cocoa, salt, baking powder, and vanilla until the mixture is thoroughly incorporated and smooth.
  8. Add the hot butter/sugar mixture, mixing until smooth.
  9. Add the flour and mix until just combined.
  10. Spoon half of the batter into the prepared pan.
  11. Place an even layer of Mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cups onto the brownie batter, slightly pushing them into the batter. Note - mine had small spaces in between each peanut butter cup. If you want it to be more solid, you can definitely do that.
  12. Top with the remaining batter and smooth the batter to cover the Peanut Butter Cups.
  13. Bake the brownies for 25-30 minutes. The brownies should feel set on the edges, and the center should look very moist, but not uncooked.
  14. Remove them from the oven, and cool completely on a rack before cutting.
  15. Serve with a tall glass of milk.
http://cookingformykids.com/2012/03/30/happines-is-recipe-reeses-peanut-butter-cup-chocolate-brownies/

Have a happy weekend!

I am linking up at the following:

TidyMom for I’m Lovin’ It

Alli ‘n Sons for Sweet Tooth Friday

Dwell on Joy for Dwell on Friday

Ladybird Ln for Weekend Show Off Party

30Days for Pity Party