Gasparilla Cookbook

Brownies 


Good morning! I hope you are having a great week so far. If you live in the Tampa area then you know that Gasparilla is right around the corner and these brownies happen to be from the Gasparilla cookbook!

It is a super easy recipe and they are quite delicious. Perfect for your pirate festivities or a casual ladies night in! Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 4 1 ounce chocolate squares unsweetened
  • 1 stick margarine
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 well beaten eggs
  • 1 cup sifted all purpose flour
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Melt the chocolate and margarine over hot water and blend. Gradually add sugar then eggs and beat well. Add flour gradually, mixing just until it disappears. Add nuts and vanilla. Pour into two 8 x 8 2 inch pans which have been greased and paper lined. Cook 25 to 30 minutes at 350. Cut each pan into 16 squares. Let stand for 5 minutes before turning out to cool. Makes 32.

 

The Life of the Party

Bananas Foster 


Are you looking for a perfect dessert recipe for the holidays? Well I found one easy one for you…bananas foster. This classic and delicious dessert is a favorite amongst everyone. 

Who doesn’t like bananas and some rum?! Anyways, here’s the recipe below and the ingredients you’ll need. Most of them you should have at home as well. Enjoy! 

Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar 
  • 1/4 cup banana liqueur 
  • 1/4 cup dark rum 
  • Dash of 151 rum 
  • Dash of cinnamon 
  • 4 firm bananas, sliced 
  • Vanilla ice cream 

Steps to make the bananas foster: 

Melt the butter in a skillet. Stir in the brown sugar. Cook until melted and well blended. Add the banana liqueur, dark rum, 151 rum, cinnamon and bananas. Cook until the bananas are warm and softened; do not let bananas get mushy. 

Scoop the ice cream into dessert bowls and top with hot banana mixture. Serve immediately. 

The Life of the Party

Pina Colada Muffins 


Happy Saturday! Hope you all are enjoying your weekend. As we are approaching summertime, I thought what better snack to have around then pina colada muffins! Super easy to make and delicious. 

I know I’ll be bringing some to the pool with friends along with real pina coladas 😉 

Here is what you’ll need: 

1 (2 layer) package yellow cake mix

1 teaspoon coconut extract 

1 teaspoon rum flavoring

1 cup flaked coconut 

1 cup chopped nuts (macadamia or pecans) 

1 cup of drained pineapple 

Prepare the cake mix according to the package directions. Stir in the coconut extract, rum flavoring, coconut, nuts and pineapple; do not overmix. Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups 3/4 full. You can also bake it in mini muffin pans. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes. 

Yield: 30 regular muffins or 8 dozen mini muffins 

Capture the Coast

Fish and Bubbles Party Mix


It’s that time of year again, when the birds start chirping and the smell of summer lingers in the air. This is personally my favorite time of year because the weather is perfect and there are plenty of birthdays and events to celebrate. My Birthday is in May and since it is around the corner I want to share this amazingly fun and easy recipe with you.

Now I don’t know about you, but I often have great intentions of channeling my inner ‘Martha Stewart’ and making a fabulous dish, only to find myself in the checkout lane 5 minutes before the party. Well, if you can relate, then this is the perfect recipe for you. It is super fun and easy. Plus kids love to help make it and everyone enjoys diving in to devour it. So the next time you need to whip up a quick snack, try this party favorite. You can find this recipe in the Tampa Bay Junior League’s very own, Capture the Coast cookbook, on page 47. Enjoy!

Capture the Coast, pg 47

5 cups crispy corn and rice cereal, such as Chex

3 cups Cheerios

4 cups fish-shaped cheese crackers

2 cups fish-shaped pretzel nuggets

2 cups “M & M’s” Chocolate Candies

1 cup peanuts 1 ½ cups pecan halves or pieces

1 cup (2 sticks) butter

1 cup packed brown sugar

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.  Combine the cereals, crackers, pretzel nuggets, peanuts and pecan halves in a large bowl and mix it well.  Bring the butter and brown sugar to a boil in a saucepan.  Boil until frothy, stirring constantly.  Pour over the cereal mixture and toss to coat.  Spread evenly in a large roasting pan.  Bake for 10 minutes and stir.  Continue baking for 45 minutes, stirring once or twice.  Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature.  Add the chocolate candies and toss well.  Store in an airtight container.

The Life of the Party

White Truffle Mashed Potatoes


Good evening! A great way to end your weekend is with this amazing white truffle mashed potato recipe. It takes some time to make but is worth every minute of it. You can find this lovely recipe in the Junior League of Tampa’s Life of The Party cookbook, pg. 67. 

What you’ll need: 

2 pounds of Yukon gold potatoes, peeled, cubed 

1 cup of milk or half and half 

3 tablespoons of butter

Salt to taste 

Pepper to taste 

3 tablespoons of white truffle oil 

Cook the potatoes in salted boiling water in a saucepan until tender and easily pierced with a fork; drain. Spoon into a large mixing bowl. Add the milk and butter. Beat until very smooth. You may add more milk if necessary for the desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper. Fold in the truffle oil. Serve immedietly. 

To prepare in advance, spoon in a baking dish and let it cool. Chill, covered, until ready to bake. Add a small amount of additional milk. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until heated through. Refrigerate after opening. 

Yields 8 servings 

This was my first time making these potatoes and I can’t wait to make them again! One mishap, I forgot to peel them but the recipe still turned out just as yummy. 

The Life of the Party

Double-Chocolate Shortbread Cookies


Double-Chocolate Shortbread CookiesThe Life of the Party, Page 116

We don’t believe there is such a thing as too much chocolate, which is why we included these delectable cookies. As a part of a dessert tray or enjoyed with a cappuccino, they are a rich treat. They make a festive presentation when cut into shapes.

Ingredients:

1 ½ cups flour

¼ cup cornstarch

¼ cup baking cocoa

¼ teaspoon salt

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

½ teaspoon almond extract

¾ cup mini chocolate chips

  
Directions:

Combine the flour, cornstarch, baking cocoa and salt in a bowl. 

  
Beat the sugar and butter in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Mix in the almond extract. 

  
Add the flour mixture and beat until well blended. Fold in the chocolate chips. 

  
Shape the dough into a disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill until firm. Roll out ¼ inch thick on a lightly floured surface. TIP: Instead of making everything a mess with flour, I use two pieces of saran wrap with the dough in the middle. Then, use the roller on top so the dough does not touch the roller and stick. Pell back the saran wrap when you’re ready to use the cookie cutters. 

  
Cut into rounds using a 2-inch round cookie cutter. Or use a festive shaped cookie cutter. Place about 1 inch apart on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Bake at 325 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until set and firm to the touch. Cool on wire racks. 

   
 Yield: 2 dozen

Gasparilla Cookbook

Cream Cheese Cookies


 

The Gasparilla Cookbook

Cream Cheese Cookies

I signed up to make these thinking all cookies are easy to make. Boy was I wrong. You definitely need something more advanced than a hand mixer and don’t try to pull a short cut (like I did) by not going out a buying a pastry cloth. Honestly, I had never heard of a pastry cloth until I read this recipe and I had no idea how important of a step that was going to be. They tasted great, but they weren’t the prettiest cookies I’ve ever made (haha).

½ pound butter or margarine

6 ounces cream cheese

2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 tablespoons sugar

Thick jam

Powdered sugar

Cream butter and cheese until light. Add flour, baking powder and sugar. Mix until smooth. Roll out about ¼ inch thick onto a floured pastry cloth and cut with 1 ½ – inch cookie cutter. Make a slight depression in the center and fill it with ½ teaspoon of jam. Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet for about 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool and sift powdered sugar over the cookies. Makes about 60 cookies.

 

Savor the Seasons

Melon Manchego Wraps


Melon Manchego Wraps

Do you need a quick appetizer that is both delicious and impressive? Melon and prosciutto is a classic Italian treat, but add in some Manchego and its even more delicious.

This recipe is easy and there’s no cooking involved! Simply cut the fruit and cheese to size and wrap with the prosciutto.  A couple tips, however: I found that the Manchego cut to ½” slices was still overpowering the melon, so I’d suggest thinner slices if your knife skills can handle it.  Additionally, I’d suggest wrapping just the middle of the melon/cheese with prosciutto, which means you need a skinny piece of ham.  I used larger pieces, which covered the whole melon slice, and it would look much prettier if the other layers are visible.  Personally, I don’t enjoy dates, so I left the dates out of some of my wraps and they were especially delicious with just the ham, melon and cheese.

This recipe is a great option if you need a quick appetizer- and it would travel well! It would also be ok to assemble ahead and leave at room temperature for a couple hours.  Try them and enjoy!

The recipe:

 

Melon Manchego Wraps

Savor the Seasons, page 32

 

“This refreshing summer treat brings together savory prosciutto and manchego cheese with sweet melons. Substitute the melon with sliced dates and apples or other seasonal fruits of your choosing.”

 

8 dried pitted dates

3oz Manchego cheese, cut into 16 ½” inch thick slices

16 cantaloupe slices

8 slices prosciutto, cut into halves lengthwise

 

Cut the dates into haves lengthwise. Place a date half and a slice of Manchego cheese on each cantaloupe slice.  Wrap with a slice of prosciutto, securing with wooden picks.  You may substitute 2 Granny Smith apples for the cantaloupe, if desired.  Slice the apples into 16 wedges and sprinkle with lemon juice to prevent them from turning brown.

Yield: 16 servings

Uncategorized

Bunco Jumble


Bunco Jumble

This is a delicious sweet and salty snack that you can be creative with to make your own. Feel free to add mini cookies, graham cracker bears, popcorn, candy corn or pecans. The possibilities are endless!

1 box mini Ritz peanut butter sandwich crackers 1 cup dry roasted peanuts
12 oz bag mini pretzel sticks or twists
1 cup sugar

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup light corn syrup
2 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
10 oz package mini or regular M&M’s chocolate candy

Combine the sandwich crackers, peanuts, and pretzels in a large roasting pan.

Heat the sugar, butter and for syrup in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

Stir in the vanilla and baking soda.

Pour over the cracker mixture, stirring to coat well.
Bake at 250 degrees for 45 minutes, stirring the mixture every 15 minutes.
Remove to waxed paper to let cool completely. Add the chocolate candies. Break up the mixture into small pieces as necessary.

Uncategorized

White Chocolate Party Mix


White Chocolate Party Mix

This is a great dessert for a party favor. Change the coloring of your packaging and M&M’s to reflect the season you are celebrating.

1 pound white chocolate

3 cups rice Chex cereal

3 cups corn Chex cereal

3 cups Cheerios cereal

2 cups pretzel sticks

2 cups dry-roasted peanuts

1 (12-ounce) package “M&M’s” Chocolate Candies

Melt the white chocolate in the top of a double boiler set over simmering water, stirring frequently. Combine the cereals, pretzels, peanuts and chocolate candies in a large bowl. Pour the white chocolate over the mixture slowly and stir gently until evenly coated. Spread the mixture on waxed paper and let stand until cool. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

IMG_4848IMG_4850IMG_4849IMG_4851