Nutella Hello Dolly Bars

My kids had never heard of “Hello Dolly Bars”, a dessert I grew up baking in the kitchen.  These are often called “Seven Layer Bars, but in the south, we always called them “Hello Dollys”. I decided to twist the recipe slightly and spread the crust with Nutella and call them Nutella Hello Dolly Bars. These are so easy to prepare, and they feed a huge crowd. These are great for Father’s Day weekend, July 4th, Labor Day and fall tailgating. They are also a fun recipe to make with the kids this summer, so enjoy!

Grilled Ambrosia

One of my kids favorite things to eat is grilled pineapple. Recently, I made this Grilled Fruit Salad, and it was devoured before I could turn around. This is an ideal healthy dessert option for Memorial Day, Father’s Day, baby or wedding showers, brunches or a light snack or dessert. Adding the coconut gives it a new twist similar to ambrosia, an old Southern favorite. Tune in as I’ll be on WMJJ Magic 96.5 FM Radio on Thursday at 5:40 a.m and 8:50 a.m and Monday at 5:20 a.m and 8:10 a.m talking about how to make this Memorial day healthier so tune in.

Southern Thanksgiving Dessert-Pralines and Praline Bundt Cake

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I was working in New Orleans last week, and one of my closest food friends took me into a fabulous classic New Orleans candy shop where they were making Pralines, Fudge and other homemade confections. It’s “Southern Candy Makers“, and next time you head to New Orleans, put this stop on the top of your list. It inspired me to try a new recipe with pralines for Thanksgiving. It’s really simple to prepare and my kids loved it for breakfast, a snack, dessert and especially for Thanksgiving.

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Praline Bundt Cake

Prep: 25 minutes

Cook: 1 hour

Cool: 1 hour

Yield: 12 servings

Ingredients

1  cup  chopped pecans

1  cup  butter, softened

1  (8-oz.) package cream cheese, softened

1  (16-oz.) package dark brown sugar

4  large eggs

2 1/2  cups  all-purpose flour

1  teaspoon  baking powder

1/2  teaspoon  baking soda

1/4  teaspoon  salt

1  (8-oz.) container sour cream

2  teaspoons  vanilla extract

Praline Icing

Preparation

1. Arrange 1 cup pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 5 to 7 minutes or until toasted. Cool on a wire rack 15 minutes or until completely cool. Reduce oven temperature to 325°.

2. Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add brown sugar, beating until well blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition.

3. Sift together 2 1/2 cups flour and next 3 ingredients. Add to butter mixture alternately with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat batter at low speed just until blended after each addition. Stir in toasted pecans and vanilla. Spoon batter into a greased and floured 12-cup Bundt pan.

4. Bake at 325° for 55 minutes to 1 hour or until a long wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool cake in pan on a wire rack 15 minutes; remove from pan to wire rack, and let cool 30 minutes or until completely cool.

5. Prepare Praline Icing, and spoon immediately over cake. Sprinkle top of cake with Sugared Pecans.

Praline Icing

Ingredients

1  cup  firmly packed light brown sugar

1/2  cup  butter

1/4  cup  milk

1  cup  powdered sugar, sifted

1  teaspoon  vanilla extract

Preparation

1. Bring first 3 ingredients to a boil in a 2-qt. saucepan over medium heat, whisking constantly; boil 1 minute. Remove from heat; whisk in powdered sugar and vanilla until smooth. Stir gently 3 to 5 minutes or until mixture begins to cool and thickens slightly. Use immediately.

Southern Candy Makers has two locations on Decatur Street. See http://southerncandymakers.com

Recipe adapted from Southern Living Magazine see http://southernliving.com