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Berry Baked Ricotta Cheesecake Recipe

 Baked Ricotta cheesecake is light, fluffy and not as filling as regular cheesecake

This is one of my favorite recipes with a hint of lemon. A little time consuming but worth every forkful! I often cut this recipe in half and make a small one for just two people.  Enjoy!

Berry Baked Cheesecake Recipe

1- Whole milk Ricotta  Cheese (32 oz or = 2 lb) container or make my homemade Ricotta
2/3 cup white sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
5 eggs
1 teaspoon lemon extract
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt
Suggested fruit: 2 cups of each Blueberries, Raspberries, Blackberries Strawberries

Preheat oven to 300 degrees . Set rack in the middle of the oven. Butter and flour a 9 1/2 inch spring form pan, and tap out excess flour or if you prefer use a piece of parchment paper cut to fit the bottom. Wrap the entire pan in aluminum foil just around the spring form pan outside, to preserve integrity of the pan..... this is in preparation for the water bath. The water should be no more than 1/4 inch below the top of the foil not above the foil. 


Place Ricotta in a large mixing bowl, and beat it as smooth as possible with an industrial mixer, beat with flat beater for 4 minutes..... on stir mode. If you're mixing this by hand using a rubber spatula, it will take at least 6 minutes. 

Stir the sugar and flour together thoroughly into the Ricotta beat another 3 minutes. Stir in the one egg at a time until each egg is well blended around 1 minute per egg, beating a little faster than a stir mode. Blend in the flavorings, and salt.

 Pour batter into the prepared pan it will be medium thickness in consistency not runny or thin. Bake in the center of the oven in water bath (about 1/4 inch of water in your pan)for about 1 to 1 1/4 hours on 300 degrees, until a light golden color. Cook making certain the center is fairly firm, insert a knife in the center to see if the batter is solid. Cool completely. Chill till serving time. 

Serve with powdered sugar, a dab of whipped cream or a puree sauce over the top ( any fruit puree cant be substituted). Top with fresh fruit medley.

Note for crust lovers: If you prefer a crust. Line bottom of this pan with crushed shortbread cookies add 1/2 stick melted butter, dash of cinnamon and mix. Add to the bottom of lightly greased spring form pan.

Triple Berry Puree Sauce

 1 cup red raspberries
1 cup blackberries
1 cup strawberries or blueberries
 1/2 cup granulated white sugar,  
1 Tablespoon Chambord (optional)

 Put berries, sugar, flavoring in food processor pulse puree leaving some chunks, use for topping.

Note: for sugar free I used 3 stevia packets in the ricotta, added to your taste more or less. You can use any sweetener you like to taste.
Topping no sugar I used sugar free spreadable jam. Tossed the fruit in it after I microwaved it for 30 seconds. Adapted to my family with diabetes.

Baked Strawberry Dumpling Recipe

I usually never have room for dessert after a  big meal no less trying to spend more time in the kitchen baking. These were so fast to throw together and full proof delicious!  You won't believe how simple these are. 

 Baked Strawberry Dumpling Recipe

Refrigerator buttermilk biscuits or use crescent rolls (10 or more)
10 Hulled and Cleaned Strawberries or use
 (sliced banana,  wedges of pear, apple,  pitted cherries, sliced peaches and 1 tablespoon of blueberries all work great in the center proceed with same directions)
Garnish vanilla ice cream or whipped cream

Unroll the biscuits. Place a whole piece of the fruit of choice in the center and roll up. Seam down and place in a greased cupcake tin.

Melt 1/2 stick of butter, 1/4  cup sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon. You may need to make more depending on how many rolls you make. I made just 10.
Drizzle over each fruit rolled biscuit.
Bake at 375 until golden brown. Around 12 to 15 minutes. Don't overcook them. 
Place on a plate and serve with ice cream or whipped cream.

Italian Style Jambalaya Recipe

A very delicious casserole and perfect for a picnic or gathering. Something for everyone. You can add as much as you like all in one big pan and this can serve a few or many people depending on how much you would like to make. I left out the shrimp this time because we have some picky eaters. You can add some large shrimp to this for your seafood lovers.

Italian Style Jambalaya Recipe

Sausage 4 or 5 links
Fresh corn shucked 2 or 3 
peppers red and green 2 or 3
sliced fresh sweet potatoes 2 or 3
sliced white potatoes 2 or 3
Olive oil around 1/4 cup or butter

Optional: sliced mushrooms, sliced onions, large shrimp with tails off, chicken breasts boneless or steak boneless

Salt, pepper, oregano, paprika, and chili powder, granulated garlic

In a large casserole dish, add the 1/4 cup oil, sliced potatoes, peppers and corn. Sprinkle evenly with spices. Place the sausage links on top. Bake at 400 degrees for around 1 hour or until everything is soft and sausage is browned. If using shrimp put them in the pan the last 1/2 hour brush with olive oil or butter and season with parsley and chopped minced garlic.

Italian Style Cube Steak Recipe

One of our favorite quick meals. Add some roasted potatoes and corn on the cob for the perfect sides.  Mom used to make cube steaks all the time, she would always know how to season everything to make something plain dynamic.

 Italian Style Cube Steak Recipe

2 pound mushrooms
2 or 3 bell peppers sliced
4 or 5 cube steaks
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup beef broth
4 minced garlic cloves
olive oil
salt, pepper to taste
dried oregano, basil, parsley and rosemary use fresh if you have it
red pepper flakes

In a large enough fry pan to accommodate the amount of cube steaks your cooking, add 4 tablespoons olive oil and saute the garlic, mushrooms and peppers around 2 minutes be careful not to brown garlic.
Add the cube steaks, around 1/2 cup white wine with beef broth and simmer on low heat covered and reduces to half the liquid and meat is fork tender around 40 minutes.
Add all the fresh herb, spices, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes if using at the end.

Funfetti Cupcake Recipe

It doesn't matter what Holiday it is these are fun to make and eat. I love to make these Patriot themed cupcakes for the kids and adults. They are festive and delicious all at the same time. Check out this homemade cupcake great recipe!  We do sprinkles and glitter to match the holiday season!

Funfetti Cupcake Recipe

1 3/4 cups cake flour
1 1/4 cups flour
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter softened
4 eggs
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons almond extract
1/2 cup assorted colored sprinkles

Optional: colored sugars to match the theme of the Holiday or Birthday
Frosting of choice

In one bowl add all the dry ingredients and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl using an electric mixer, cream the sugar and butter together for 3 minutes. 

Add the eggs, milk , almond extract and stir in. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until blended and evenly blended together.
Fold in the sprinkles.
Line your cupcakes tin with papers liners 2/3 full.  Bake 15 to 20 minutes on a preheated oven of 350 degrees until lightly browned on top around 25 minutes.
Cool completely. Frost with homemade frosting or your favorite canned. Sprinkle with colored sugars if you like.

Provolone Black Pepper Biscuit Recipe

A great little starter appetizer! Perfect with your favorite wines! 
"Thanks for stopping by!"
Ciao, Claudia

I love little one bite appetizers and they are the perfect started to any meal when you're entertaining guests!

Provolone Black Pepper Biscuit Recipe 1 cup provolone shredded (use any kind of shredded cheese you like that has a strong flavor)
1/8 cup black pepper
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup butter cold cut into tiny pieces
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon granulated garlic or use fresh
1 teaspoon Italian herbs either fresh basil and parsley or use dry 
meat of choice

Optional: add chopped pepperoni, capicola ham or cooked sausage, crumbled bacon or prosciutto  ( around 1/2 cup.) Suggested vegetables, chopped tomatoes, peppers, olives or mushrooms.

Mix all the dry ingredients. Coat the butter and the mozzarella with this dry mixture. Gently stir in the milk. Roll into balls or drop by tablespoons. Place in mini muffin tins.   Bake in preheated oven 375 degrees  for 25 minutes in the tin or on a greased cookie sheet or parchment paper.

Italian Saucy Sausage Peppers and Hamburgers Recipe

One of my families favorite meals. It's so versatile. When you make this saucy pan of meat it's the start of so many meals. The possibilities are endless and so are the leftovers! If you do have any the next day. Put the meat in the food processor for the perfect bolognese sauce! 

Whatever you feel like eating tonight whether it's a sub sandwich, over mashed potatoes, on top of rice or your favorite pasta you are sure to please everyone in your home with this starter dish of delicious meat sauteed in this awesome sauce!

Italian Saucy Sausage Peppers and Hamburgers 

3 cloves garlic
olive oil
4 Hamburger patties
4 large Sausage links cut in half
2 Peppers cleaned and sliced
Use 2 lbs of pureed plum tomatoes or good grade crushed tomatoes 28 ounces
Italian seasoning
Chopped fresh parsley and basil
Granulated garlic powder

Optional: mushrooms, sliced onions

In a deep dutch oven or extra large fry pan, add 3 tablespoons olive oil and cleaned whole garlic. Saute until garlic starts to brown. Remove from oil.
Add the peppers, meats and saute until browned.
Season with salt, pepper, granulated garlic and some fresh chopped basil and parsley evenly over the top of the sauce.

Add the fresh tomatoes and simmer on low until the sausage is cooked around 35 minutes.

Serve over cooked pasta, in a roll as a sandwich, over mashed potatoes or with cooked rice. If your family has another idea to use this for I would love to hear from you too!

Baked Cauliflower Appetizer Bites Recipe

If you're watching carbs, this is a great way to do it! These little gems are cauliflower with cheese, herbs and spices all baked in mini tin pans. Perfect for brunch, appetizer before a big meal or a great take along to a party! Don't forget to bring your favorite dipping sauce. I bet everyone will ask you for the recipe!

Baked Cauliflower Appetizer Bites Recipe
(I like to double the batch for big gatherings.)

2 cups cauliflower florets steam or microwaved
 (at least 9 minutes in the microwave)
1/2 cup Italian blended cheese
1/2 cup extra sharp cheddar cheese
1 egg
1/4 cup grated Romano cheese
1 teaspoon each chopped fresh parsley, basil and garlic
salt, pepper to taste

Optional: Panko bread crumb ( or use crushed pork rinds for lower carbs) for topping

Long shreds of Parmesan

Grease with oil spray 2 - mini cupcake tin pans (I used around 2 pans that will make 24.) You can use a 12 cup cupcake tin which will make larger patties. If you want to be fancy use small paper liners but make sure you also spray them so this won't stick

Place cooked cauliflower in the food processor and pulse until it resembles rice. Drain in a cheese cloth or heavy duty paper towels.

Put the drained cauliflower in a bowl, add the egg, cheeses, herbs, spices.
Pat into your tins. Sprinkle with panko bread crumbs if using. I like to drizzle a little olive oil on top.  
Bake in a preheated oven at 375 degrees until browning on the sides and set. Around 15 minutes.

Serve with marinara sauce to dip in and sprinkle with parsley and long shreds of Parmesan cheese. Click here for the recipe. 

Slow Cooker Chicken and Broccoli Recipe

I love this recipe. It's easy and tasty. Sometimes that's all you need is something quick, easy and ready on the table after a long hectic day. Boil some rice and viola it's a life savor for a busy lifestyle! Check it out you won't be sorry!

Slow Cooker Chicken and Broccoli Recipe

1 can beef broth
3 cups steamed fresh broccoli 
3 boneless cubed chicken breasts
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
white or brown rice cooked 

Mix in a bowl beef broth, sugar, soy sauce, oil and garlic.
Place the chicken in the slow cooker and toss with the beef broth mixture.
Place the slow cooker on low 4 to 5 hours. In the last 20 minutes, add the cornstarch and cook on high till it thickens.

In the meantime steam the broccoli, cook the rice.

Toss in the broccoli to the chicken mixture and stir.
Place the cooked rice in a baking dish,  pour this mixture over the top.

Note: if you want to put the broccoli in the slow cooker I recommend using frozen florets and add around the last two hours or it will get soggy and too soft. I prefer to make it steamed separately. 
Broccoli can become very strong in taste when cooked in the pot. It's your preference.

Roasted Peppers and Eggplant Parmesan Recipe

Here is a great sandwich with two of my favorite vegetables, roasted peppers and eggplant on a toasted garlic roll! I just love using leftovers for this sandwich. I make roasted peppers all the time and fried eggplant in large quantities. Then I freeze the leftovers for other uses. I take out whatever I need to make sandwiches and have it all ready whenever I want to make a great topping using these vegetables for pizza toppings or in casseroles.

Roasted Peppers and Eggplant
 Parmesan Recipe

red peppers cleaned
eggplant cut in thick slices
tomato sauce
minced garlic
salt pepper to taste
olive oil
long shreds of grated cheese
Italian herb seasoning

Roasted Peppers:

To prepare a roasted bell pepper, cut around the stem, which you may want to keep to use as a cap, scoop out the seeds and discard them take out the white part of the ribs out. If the recipe you are following suggests you peel your peppers, put them under a broiler, turning them often, until they blister, then scrape away the skins (if you've already cut them into strips broil them skin side up). These also can be done on a gas grill, burn the skin on high heat until peppers are soft. Cool remove skins.

Eggplant Parmesan

1 eggplant washed and sliced thick, leaving partial skins on striping effect(for sandwich slices cut much thinner and fry)
1 1/2 cups of seasoned flour
1 egg beaten with 1/4 cup water
seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon of each, salt, pepper, parsley, oregano, garlic powder, basil
1 pinch of fennel seed (about 1/4 teaspoon)
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
oil for frying
grated cheese long Parmesan and Romano blend
shredded mozzarella
favorite sauce

Heat oil in large fry pan. In a large plastic bag add flour and seasonings. Add eggplant slices to the egg mixture,(if you prefer a lighter coating moistened eggplant in plain water and shake in seasoned flour ) shake wet eggplant into the seasoned flour. Drop into hot frying oil about 1/2 inch of oil, fry each piece until golden brown. Spread out on paper towels to blot the oil. 
Assemble roasted peppers and fried eggplant on a buttered toasted garlic bread roll sprinkle with Italian herb seasoning and drizzle with a tiny bit of olive oil. Add the mozzarella some minced garlic, salt pepper to taste and broil on low until the cheese melts just a few minutes. Sprinkle with grated cheese. 

Italian Peppers Eggs and Spinach Omelet Recipe

This is actually a starter filling for many uses. I make lots of this filling to use later in many different ways. Some suggestions would be in stromboli, pizza toppings and in this recipe, a delicious omelet. It also freezes well in a pinch when you want to make a great breakfast the filling is all ready. You can also add cooked sausage or any other meat you like and have another meal in itself making a great sandwich. The possibilities are endless.

This spinach and peppers with some plum tomatoes are great sauteed and in a sandwich. One of my favorite combinations.

Italian Peppers Eggs and Spinach Omelet Recipe

3 cloves minced garlic ( 1 left whole)
1 large bag spinach, escarole or kale
1 bag sweet or hot baby peppers cleaned and seeded sliced or leave whole 
4 plum tomatoes sliced
salt, pepper to taste
cayenne pepper to taste
olive oil to cook with
Italian flavored bread crumbs
grating cheese
3 eggs beaten
shredded provolone or mozzarella
loaf of crusty fresh Italian bread

Optional: mushrooms, olives, leftover cooked potatoes, leftover cooked meats, sausage, pepperoni, prosciutto or any other meat you like.

In a large fry pan add 3 tablespoon olive oil and saute one garlic clove (left whole) for 1 minute turning not to burn. Remove garlic add the spinach cook until it starts to wilt. Add the peppers and tomatoes and cook until they are softened.  This will now be ready to make an omelet. Set aside.

In a clean pan add a few tablespoons of olive oil, when heated add a few slivers of garlic to flavor the oil for a minute then the eggs. Cook on one side then flip. Add the cheese slices to the middle, then some pepper filling and anything else you like. Fold over. Add more filling and cheese. Sprinkle with grated cheese and toasted bread crumbs.

Serve with toasted and buttered Italian bread.

Note: To toast bread crumbs heat 2  tablespoons of olive oil in a pan on low heat. Add 1/4 cup Italian flavored bread crumbs and stir fry until heated and crispy around 8 minutes. Sprinkle on top of vegetable medley.

Italian Meat Stuffed Pepper Recipe

I really love stuffed peppers and make them all kinds of ways. This is a delicious meat stuffed one that seems to be the all time favorite hope you like them too. These have a great flavor that is enhanced by the peppers. I have made them so many ways but these meat stuffed are the families all time favorite. 

Italian Meat Stuffed Pepper Recipe

bell peppers 5 or 6
28 ounce can tomato sauce
2 pounds ground beef mixed with pork or use all ground turkey
2 eggs, beaten
3/4 cup dry Italian style flavored bread crumbs
1/4 cup tomato sauce 
1/4 grating cheese
1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed (optional)
2 cloves of minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 diced tomato
salt, pepper to taste

1  cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup grated or shredded Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
In a large bowl, mix together ground beef or turkey, eggs,  diced tomato,  bread crumbs, grating cheese and sauce. Add oregano, basil, garlic powder and any other seasonings. With a sharp knife halve the  peppers or cut the middle core out and leave whole to stuff. Clean, wash, removing seeds. Place in a greased large baking pan. Stuff peppers with meat mixture. Pour some sauce over each one. Bake at 400 until pepper is soft and meat is cooked and around 35 minutes. Add cheeses to the tops of each pepper and cook around 10 minutes before done.  Continue to bake until cheese is browned. Add more sauce if it begin to dry out.
I like to use orange peppers during the Halloween month and carve them like a pumpkin using this recipe:

Chocolate Raspberry Ganache Cake Recipe

This can be someone's new favorite! The  cake is moist, delicate and oh so decadent. One of my favorites and a chocolate lovers dream that loves raspberry.  If you want a special cake then you found it. I just love how easy this one is to make too! You can even add whipped cream, chopped nuts like pistachio's, shredded coconut or cherries You really can add whatever you like on top. I love it just the way it is. The raspberry really bring this cake to a new level!

Chocolate Raspberry Ganache Cake Recipe

2 cups flour
1 3/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup water
3/4 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup canola oil
3 large eggs

Raspberry seedless jam warmed
Ganache frosting (see below)
Garnish fresh raspberries

Optional: whipped cream and chopped pistachios

Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until evenly blended. Grease a 13 x 9 pan or two 9 inch pans if you want to freeze one. Pour the batter into the pan and bake at 350 until toothpick comes clean in center, 30 to 45 minutes. Cool completely.

Make Ganache:

16 ounces semisweet chocolate (I used Lindt)
2 cups heavy cream heat to boiling in the microwave
In a medium bowl, pour heavy cream over the chopped chocolate and stir until melted

Spread top of cake with raspberry jam.
Top with ganache. Garnish with fresh berries.

Boneless Pork Cacciatore Recipe

 I love pork in sauce, it always makes a great flavored sauce. This one pan easy meal will make everyone happy and it's great served even over a cooked pasta or with rice that will stretch that family budge to feed a large group of people. 

Boneless Thick Pork Medallions

6 to 8 thick boneless pork chops
3 bell peppers sliced
8 plum tomatoes pulsed to a diced size
3 cloves minced garlic
1 can 16 ounce whole tomatoes with basil added pureed in the food processor
olive oil
1/2 cup white wine ( I used Pinot Grigio)
salt, pepper, cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes, oregano, parsley

Optional:  I sometimes throw in a can of mushrooms, peas or cut green beans for an additional vegetable at the end of cooking.  Also I add a handful of finger carrots for sweetness

Saute the pork  until nicely browned on both side in a fry pan and season to taste.

In a large enough Dutch oven transfer the pork to accommodate all the ingredients, add the tomatoes, wine, herbs and spices and garlic ( onion if using) to the pan. Top the with peppers and any other vegetables you would like except peas, add them 1/2 hour before  done.  Either simmer on top of stove around 2 hours on low or place in the preheated oven at 350 degrees until everything is cooked around 1 hour.

Best Olive Oil Rub Chicken Recipe

This is a delicious blend of spices that totally compliment this chicken. Easy to do and everyone always raves about it. Very moist and usually done on the grill in 10 to 15 minutes. You can also pan fry this but I like the healthier version

Best Olive Oil Rub Grilled Chicken Recipe is
one of my favorite ways to prepare meats. I love this chicken the best thing about this recipe is you can add it on top of a salad if you happen to have any leftovers, very tasty and accents your salad perfectly. With summer coming, lighter meals are always a best bet and this one is bursting with great flavor!

Here's the recipe:

3 boneless chicken breasts
1 1/2 teaspoons granulated garlic
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
pinch of cayenne pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
fresh chopped parsley, basil
freshly squeezed lemon juice

Mix everything in a bowl until well combined.
Rub the chicken on both sides.
Preheat grill until nice and hot. Place chicken on the grill, I usually lightly spray with cooking oil.
Grill on both sides 4 to 5 minutes. Make sure the juices run clear. 
When serving top with fresh herbs and a squeeze of lemon juice on top.

Funfetti Sugar Cookie Recipe

These cookies not only taste great, they are fun to eat and all kids love them too! I love the colors and the endless possibilities that can even be added to them. Make someone happy and make a batch, watch them smile!

Funfetti Sugar Cookie Recipe

1 stick softened butter
1 egg
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cream of tarter
1/2 cup colorful sprinkles

Optional additions ( 1/2 cup of any of these : white chocolate chips, coconut and chopped nuts 

Beat and cream the sugar and butter together. Add all the rest of the ingredients except for sprinkles. Fold them in the end.
Refrigerate the dough for at least 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll into balls, place on a parchment paper and bake for around 8 minutes until set. Cool before removing from pan.

Want an easier recipe?  Try using a funfetti cake mix get the recipe here!