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Brownie Chocolate Chip Cheesecake

Reviewed: Jun. 15, 2014
I made this cheesecake in a Dutch oven on a campout (see photo). It was a complete hit. The only changes I made were: using a different brand of brownie mix, mixing the mini chips with a little flour as suggested by another reviewer, and adding a topping of sour cream mixed with a little vanilla and sugar. For anyone interested, here's what I did: I mixed the cheesecake batter at home because I wasn't going to have a mixer at the campground. At camp I made the brownie mix and poured it in the bottom of a 12" Dutch oven (with feet - important!) lined with a parchment paper liner trimmed to fit the oven. I baked the brownie part for about 45 minutes with 7 coals on EACH the bottom and the top. I then let the brownie cool for a little bit while I mixed the flour-coated chips into the cheesecake batter and got some more coals going. I poured the cheesecake batter over the brownie crust and baked that for about an hour (started checking it at about 50 min.), this time with 6 coals on the bottom and 8 or 9 on top. At about 40 minutes I had to add a few more coals to the top (but none to the bottom, as I didn't want the brownie to burn). When the cheesecake was set I removed it from the coals and set it aside to cool with the lid slightly ajar, for about 45 minutes. At that point I put on the sour cream topping, sprinkled the top with more mini chips, and placed the whole (now cool) Dutch oven in a cooler with ice. I let it chill in there for a couple of hours before serving. Voila!
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Yost Chocolate Cake

Reviewed: May 6, 2013
The cake recipe itself was great. I was concerned that it might not be quite chocolately enough with just the cocoa powder, so I took a dark chocolate bar and grated it into the dry ingredients before mixing them into the wet. The cake was very moist and everyone loved it. The frosting was very, very sweet--too sweet for me. Again, it wasn't very chocolatey so I actually almost doubled the amount of cocoa powder, but I think when I make this cake again I'll use a different frosting recipe. I did like the frosting consistency, though.
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Banana Sour Cream Bread

Reviewed: Dec. 13, 2012
This recipe made enough batter for two 9x5 loaves plus six big muffins. I followed the suggestion to up the oven temp to 325 and that worked well. It was a little less dense than I expected but maybe that was because I only had 5 bananas on hand. The flavor is very good. Not sure I'm a huge fan of the cinnamon sugar coating but my son liked it.
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E-Z Drop Biscuits

Reviewed: Dec. 1, 2012
I didn't have any cream of tartar so I just made the recipe without. I think these were my favorite drop biscuits ever! Very light and tasty. I actually used this recipe as a topping for a pot pie, and I hate a slimy bottom on a biscuit top. So I dropped the whole recipe onto a parchment-covered baking sheet, flattened it out to the size of my pot pie dish, pre-baked it on the bottom rack for about 8 minutes at 375, then carefully slid it onto the pot pie and baked the whole thing at 350 for about 15 more minutes. The pot pie filling was already hot so the additional bake time is really just to get the biscuit done.
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Fluffy Pancakes

Reviewed: Dec. 1, 2012
I followed the recipe exactly but after pouring the batter into my dispenser I found it was just a little too thick to come out well, so I did mix in about 2 T more (regular) milk. The pancakes were great and I'll make them again. I'm not sure I'd call this four servings, though. Maybe if they're part of a larger breakfast, but if you're just having pancakes this recipe makes about 2 servings.
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Mom's Fabulous Chicken Pot Pie with Biscuit Crust

Reviewed: Jan. 29, 2012
My family LOVED this. I've made it twice, and I've only changed two small things. The first is that both times I've used less half and half than is called for (about half, and the other half 1% milk). Also, the first time I made this I didn't like how doughy the biscuits were on the bottom, so the second time I actually arranged them on a cookie sheet (so they were touching like they would on the pot pie) and baked them separately from the pot pie for about 6 - 7 minutes before putting them top of the filling and continuing to bake the whole thing.
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David's Yellow Cake

Reviewed: Oct. 27, 2011
This cake was great. I did make two modifications based on other reviews: I used 4 whole eggs instead of the 8 yolks, and for each cup of flour (I was using all-purpose) I took out 1.5 Tbs of flour and substituted 1.5 Tbs of cornstarch. I also did sift the dry ingredients twice. The cake came out very fine-crumbed and dense without being too "heavy"--almost like a pound cake. I'll make this again.
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Rolling Fondant

Reviewed: Oct. 27, 2011
This was my first time making or using fondant, and it worked out pretty well. The difficulties I encountered were more because of my inexperience than because of the recipe, which seemed great. I echo what another reviewer said--add the corn syrup AFTER the sugar; mine did stick to the bowl. I don't have a stand mixer so I mixed by hand, which wasn't too bad but be prepared to have very sticky, fondant-covered hands, and be sure you've prepared something to put the mixed fondant down on (or scrape it off your hands on to) when you're done! After chilling I used powdered sugar instead of cornstarch for rolling and it worked fine.
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Blueberry Pie Pops

Reviewed: Apr. 26, 2011
These were THE hit at our Easter picnic. Difficult to crimp the edges of the crusts -- in the ones pictured they must have cut off some of the extra dough. But overall a very fun recipe.
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Corn and Cheddar Chowder

Reviewed: Apr. 4, 2011
Thanks for the tip about it separating! I also waited to add the milk until close to the end. I did add a little more chicken stock (about 1/2 cup more) after the flour to make up for the lack of milk, otherwise the liquid would have been too thick. When you do add the milk be sure to first whisk some of the hot liquid into it, so you're not adding cold milk to the pot (as that can also cause separation).
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Extreme Chocolate Cake

Reviewed: Nov. 16, 2010
I made this cake for my grandmother's 80th birthday, and I've never gotten so many compliments. I used the buttercream as a filling and covered the top/sides with ganache. The cake is very moist and rich--really decadent. I doubled the recipe and that was perfect for a 12" cake (2 layers split into four).
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Chocolate Ganache

Reviewed: Nov. 16, 2010
This recipe was wonderful the SECOND time I made it. DO NOT ADD RUM! When I added the rum the first time, the ganache broke and I had an oily mess. So, at 11:00 at night I had to go out to buy more chocolate and cream. It got great reviews, though!
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