Bakery Brownies

Notes: We made this without the nuts, just because we didn’t have any. Everyone loved these brownies. Next time I’ll try them with nuts.

Servings: 24 | Total Time: About 1 hour


  • 2 sticks butter, plus extra for greasing the 9×13 dish.
  • 8 oz bittersweet chocolate (I used the Ghirardelli chocolate bars you find in the baking section)
  • 5 eggs
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 TBSP vanilla
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 6.38 oz flour, or 1- 1/2 cups if you don’t have scales
  • 2 – 1/2 cups toasted chopped pecans or walnuts


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease a 9×13 inch glass baking dish.
  3. 1n a medium saucepan, melt butter and chocolate over low heat, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and set aside.
  4. In a stand mixer using paddle attachment, beat together the eggs, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy, 5 to 7 minutes.
  5. Turn mixer to low. Beat in melted chocolate. Add salt and flour and beat just until combined. Gently fold in nuts.
  6. Pour batter into pan. Bake in center of oven until puffed and almost set, about 45 minutes. A toothpick inserted will be slightly moist. Remove and cool slightly before serving.

Recipe Origin:  Printed originally in the LA Times. Recipe here.

The Best Apple Crisp Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes | Cook Time: 30-40 minutes | Total Time: 40-50 minutes | Yield: 1 apple crisp


  • 6 Cups peeled, cored, and sliced apples or other fruit (can use pears or whatever)
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 5 TBSP cold unsalted butter, cut into bits, plus more for greasing the dish
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans or other nuts (optional) – I don’d add this most of the time
  • Good quality vanilla ice cream


  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Go get your food processor off the shelf and plug it in. (This is the hardest part of this recipe.)
  3. Toss the fruit with 1/2 tsp cinnamon, the lemon juice and 1 TBSP brown sugar.
  4. Lightly butter an 8 or 9 inch square baking dish.
  5. Pour in fruit mixture and level out with a spatula. Don’t mash it.
  6. Combine all the other ingredients- including the remaining 1/2 tsp cinnamon and almost 2/3 cup of brown sugar (and the nuts if you are using)- in the container of a food processor and pulse a few times, then process a few seconds more until everything is uniform.
  7. Spread the topping over the apples and bake 30 to 40 minutes, until the topping is browned and the apples are tender. Serve hot, warm, or at room temp.

Notes: INSANELY GOOD WITH VANILLA ICE CREAM. Original recipe called for 1/4 cup shredded coconut, which I can’t stand. This is also good cold.

Recipe Origin: From Mark Bittman book The Minimalist Entertains.

Grape Salad

Disclaimer: I think this is weird. My husband loves it. So, since it’s not all about what Mama likes, here it is:

Prep Time: ? minutes | Cook Time: ? minutes | Total Time: ? minutes | Yield: ?


Grape Mixture

  • 1 (8oz) sour cream
  • 1 tsp.vanilla extract
  • 1( 8oz) cream cheese (softened)
  • 2 lbs red seedless grapes
  • ½  cup sugar
  • 2 lbs white seedless grapes

Topping for salad

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup  chopped toasted pecans


  1. Toast pecans and let cool.

  2. Mix brown sugar and pecans and sprinkle on top of grape mixture.

  3. Spoon grape mixture into a large bowl.

  4. Keep in refrigerator until ready to serve and top with the brown sugar topping at serving.

  5. The grape mixture can be made the night before and kept in an air tight container in the frig.


Can substitute fat-free or low fat sour cream and cream cheese. When mixing the cream cheese and sour cream, I use the food processor even though the person who gave me the recipe said to use a mixer. I have never cut the grapes in half, but it might work!  Can use a trifle bowl to make it pretty.

Recipe Origin: Church luncheon

Real Banana Pudding

Prep Time: ? minutes | Cook Time: ? minutes | Total Time: ? minutes | Yield: Might make 2. Can’t remember.


  • 1/3 Cup Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. Cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp. Nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp. Salt
  • 1 1/2 Cups Half and Half
  • 2 Egg Yolks
  • 1 Tbsp. Unsalted Butter
  • 2 tsp. Vanilla
  • 3-4 Bananas, sliced
  • 24 Nilla wafers, coarsely crushed
  • Whipped Cream, for serving


  1. Whisk together sugar, cornstarch, nutmeg and salt in a medium saucepan, then whisk in half and half and egg yolks.
  2. Place over medium heat and cook, whisking constantly, until pudding thickens and begins to boil, 5-8 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and add butter and vanilla.  Whisk until butter has melted.
  4. Transfer pudding to a bowl and refrigerate until cold, about 3 hours.
  5. In your preferred serving dish create two sets of layers using the bananas, 1/3 of the pudding and Nilla wafers.
  6. Top with the remaining 1/3 of the pudding.
  7. Before serving, top with whipped cream and additional banana slices and Nilla wafers, if desired.

Notes: My very favorite Banana Pudding is the one served at the St James Episcopal Rotary meetings. If anyone ever finds that recipe out for me, please let me know!

Recipe Origin:

No idea