Dark chocolate is said to be good for you. The doctor may not order it for you, but a small bite would make a body feel good. The Easy Chocolate Fudge recipe can be changed in several ways as indicated in the instructions. This recipe makes five pounds and serves 96. It can be chilled up to a month or stored at room temperature for two days. The cheesecake recipe is loaded with peanut butter and makes an excellent dessert. When you are having a bad day, eat a small piece of fudge to brighten things up. It doesn’t require a whole lot of chocolate, just a bite.
Easy Chocolate Fudge
4 1/2 cups sugar
1 (12-ounce can) evaporated milk (1 1/2 cups)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1, 16 -ounce bar milk chocolate, chopped
1, 12 -ounce package semisweet chocolate pieces (2 cups)
1, 7 -ounce jar marshmallow creme
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
1 teaspoon vanilla
Line a 13x9x2-inch baking pan with foil, extending the foil over the edges of pan. Butter foil; set aside. Butter the sides of a 3-quart heavy saucepan. In the saucepan combine sugar, evaporated milk, and salt. Cook and stir over medium-high heat until mixture comes to boiling. Reduce heat to medium; continue cooking and stirring for 10 minutes. Remove saucepan from heat. Add milk chocolate, chocolate pieces, marshmallow creme, nuts (if desired), and vanilla. Stir until chocolates melt and mixture is combined. Using a wooden spoon beat for three to five minutes or until mixture starts to become thicker. Immediately pour fudge into prepared pan; shake pan gently to spread fudge to edges of pan. Cover; chill for two to three hours or until firm. When fudge is firm, use foil to remove it from pan. Cut into squares. Place fudge in an airtight container. Store at room temperature for up to two days or chill for up to one month.
*Tip: To toast nuts, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread nuts in a shallow baking pan. Bake for five to ten minutes or until light brown, watching carefully and stirring once or twice. Makes five pounds Serves 96.
Chocolate-Peanut Butter Cheesecake
2 cups finely crushed peanut butter-filled peanut sandwich cookies
1/4 cup butter, melted
12 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup whipping cream
3, 8-ounces packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 1/4 cups packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
15 miniature chocolate-covered peanut butter cups, halved or coarsely chopped
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For crust, in a medium bowl combine crushed cookies and melted butter. Press mixture onto the bottom and about 1 1/2 inches up the sides of a 9-inch spring-form pan that has a removable bottom. Bake for 8 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. In a small saucepan cook chocolate and whipping cream over medium-low heat until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth, stirring frequently. Pour 1 1/2 cups of the chocolate mixture into the crust-lined pan, spreading evenly. Chill in the freezer for 10 minutes. In a large mixing bowl beat cream cheese and peanut butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed until smooth. Beat in brown sugar until combined. Add eggs; beat just until combined. Stir in vanilla. Pour cream cheese mixture over chocolate layer in pan, spreading evenly. Bake about 45 minutes or until a 2 1/2-inch area around outside edge appears set when gently shaken. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Using a small sharp knife, loosen crust from sides of pan; cool for 30 minutes. Remove sides of pan; cool cheesecake completely on rack. Spread the remaining chocolate mixture over top of cheesecake. Top with peanut butter cups. Cover and chill for at least four hours before serving. Serves 12 to 16.