Lauri and Amy have asked about two recent recipes I mentioned making for the holidays. Lauri, here is the recipe for the Gorilla Bread, which is Monkey Bread on steroids, by Paula Deen:
Gorilla Bread-Paula Deen Style
1 cup granulated sugar
1 T ground cinnamon
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 8 oz. package cream cheese
2 7.5 oz. cans of refrigerated biscuits (10 count)
1 1/2 cup coursely chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 350. Spray a Bundt pan with vegetable oil cooking spray.
Mix the granulated sugar and cinnamon.
In saucepan, melt the butter and the brown sugar over low heat, stirring well; set aside.
Cut cream cheese into 20 equal cubes. Press the biscuits out with your fingers into flat circles large enough for the cube of cream cheese to fit inside. Sprinkle each biscuit with 1/2 teaspoon of sugar and cinnamon mixture. Place a cube of cream cheese in center and wrap and seal the dough around cheese. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of the nuts into the bottom of the Bundt pan. Place half of the prepared biscuits in the pan, seam side up. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, pour half of the melted butter mixture over the biscuits, and sprinkle on 1/2 cup of the nuts. Layer the remaining cinnamon sugar, pour the remaining butter mixture over the biscuits, and sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup of nuts. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Place a plate on top and invert. Serve warm. Serves 12 to 15. There will be NO leftovers!
Now for the Chai Tea Mix for Amy. This is every bit as good, if not better than Starbucks! The aroma is wonderful! I hope you either have a good blender or a cuisinart to make this. I doubled it, and gave it to neighbors with two coffee mugs. I saved my specialty flavored cream containers and washed them and dried them, removed the labels and poured the chai tea mix in there for gifting.
This is from the Southern Living Cook 2007 Cookbook.
Spiced Chai Tea Mix
For optimal flavor of this flavor packed drink, be sure your spices are fresh.
2 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
3/4 tsp. ground cloves
3/4 tsp. ground cardamom (optional) I did not use this spice in mine because I didn't have any.
1 tsp. ground allspice ( I use a bit more of this one, as I love it )
1 tsp. ground nutmeg ( also used a bit more of this spice )
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups unsweetened instant tea or decaf instant tea ( I used the Stater brand instant tea )
1 1/2 to 2 cups sugar ( I used 2 full cups )
1 cup nonfat dry milk powder ( I just used the store brand from Stater's )
1 cup powdered nondairy creamer ( also used the less expensive Stater's brand )
1 cup French Vanilla flavored powdered nondairy creamer ( Stater's brand on this as well )
Combine spices and tea in a food processor or blender. Blend 1 to 2 minutes or until mixture becomes a fine powder. Pour into a large bowl. Add sugar to food processor or blender without cleaning it, and process until superfine, about 30 seconds or so. Add sugar to bowl of spices. Stir in milk powder and creamers; blend well Spoon mix into gift jars, if desired.
To serve, stir 2 heaping Tablespoons Chai Tea Mix into a large mug of hot water or milk. Makes 5 1/2 cup mix
Chocolate Chai Mix: Add 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa along with the dry milk powder to the blend above. Follow serving directions. We recommend using milk here.
Chai Shake: Blend 1/4 cup Chair TEam Mix to 1 cup milk, and 3 1/2 cups vanilla ice cream in a blender.
White Chocolate Chai: Add 1/4 cup finely chopped premium white chocolate, such as Lindt or Ghiradelli, to 1 cup Chai Tea Mix. Stir well. Follow serving directions above with 2 heaping Tablespoons per cup of hot milk or boiling water.