Saturday, December 11, 2010

Brownie Covered Oreos




I found this recipe on Picky Palate.  I love Picky Palate.  If you haven't visited her website yet, I highly recommend you take a peak, especially with Christmas coming up!  She has some yummy treat ideas!  We are huge Oreo fans here, especially my slave driving 17 month old.  So when I saw this recipe I was excited to try it.  It is easy, your fingers get messy, and it really does taste good.  Just make sure you have someone to share them with so you don't consume them all on your own!

Ingredients:1 Brownie mix

1 package Oreos
White chocolate, melted for drizzle (Picky Palate used a Wilton White frosting pen)
White nonpareils Sprinkles (or any kind of sprinkles)


Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Prepare brownie batter according to package directions. Leave in mixing bowl.
3. Spray cupcake/muffin pan GENEROUSLY (you do not want the oreos to stick)
4. Dip Oreos in brownie batter then place in bottom cupcake/muffin pan. 
5. Bake for 12-15 minutes.  *I found that 12 minutes was long enough.
6. As soon as you take the brownies out of the oven run a plastic knife along the edges of the brownies.-This is so the cookies do NOT STICK TO THE PAN!  So it is a very important step :)
7. Let cool for 5 minutes, remove from pan.
8. Drizzle with melted white chocolate and sprinkle sprinkles over the top

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Cranberry Bran Muffins


This is a recipe my mom introduced me to.  It is Martha Stewart, and it sure is good.  I am the only one at our house that will eat Cranberries, so I just froze a bunch of the muffins so I can have a good wholesome bran muffin when I feel like it!

2 cups flour
1 ½ cups wheat bran
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
¾ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. baking soda
1 ½ cups packed brown sugar
1 ¼ cups + 2 TBLS. buttermilk
1 TBLS. butter, melted and cooled
2 large eggs
1 TBLS.  orange zest
1/2 tsp. ginger (zest or powder)
2 tsp. vanilla
1 ½ cups fresh/frozen cranberries

1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Line 2 standard muffin tins with paper liners; set aside.
3. Place flour, wheat bran, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a large bow. Stir in sugar and set aside. 4. Whisk together buttermilk, butter, eggs, zest and vanilla in a bowl.
5. Add flour mixture, stir just until combined.
6. Stir in cranberries.
7. Divide batter between lined muffin cups.
8. Bake until cooked through and golden brown, about 30 minutes.
9. Transfer to a wire rack to cool slightly Turn out.

A Plump and Perky Turkey

A Plump and Perky Turkey
Written by: Teresa Bateman
Illustrated by: Jeff Shelly


This is such a great book.  Perfect for the Thanksgiving Holiday.  It is about a town that can't find any turkeys to eat for their Thanksgiving dinner, so they come up with an idea to lure a Turkey to their town-only to be outsmarted by this fine feathered friend.  What I love most about this is in the end, the town still finds something to be thankful for!  This book is perfect for Thanksgiving! (and it's funny too)

Monday, November 1, 2010

Dinner Rolls

These are the Hub's favorite Rolls.  This is a recipe from my Grandma that I grew up with.  And oddly enough, it is the same recipe we use to make homemade doughnuts (you would never guess it by the taste!).


Ingredients:
2 pkgs. dry yeast or 2 TBLS.
2 beaten eggs

½ cup warm water
1/2 cup sugar
½ cup melted margarine or shortening
2 cups warm water
About 7-9 cups flour
2 tsp. salt

Directions:
1. Dissolve yeast in ½ cup warm water (small bowl).
2. Put the remaining water in large mixing bowl.
3. Add sugar and salt to water in large mixing bowl. Stir until dissolved.
4. Add yeast mixture, eggs, and melted margarine and enough flour to make a batter.
5. Beat well.
6. Add more flour to make a soft dough. Knead until smooth and satiny, 6-8 minutes.
7. Let rise until double.
8. Punch down dough.  Grab dough in fist and squeez up through finger and thumb till you get a nicely formed ball (this is how I was taught.  If you have a different way, go for it). 
9. Place in greased baking dish.  Let rise again until doubled. 
10. Cook at 350 for 25 min.  Brush with melted butter and enjoy!

Hope everyone had a HAPPY and slightly SPOOKY Halloween!!!!  I know we did!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Don't let the Pigeon stay up Late!

By: Mo Willems

I don't know if I could even begin to tell you how much I love these pigeon books.  They are just so funny to me.  I also love the illustrations.  I love funky illustrations that are different but still good.  This is one book (along with all of the other pigeon books belonging to the pigeon "saga") that I would suggest to anyone.  I just think they are so cute and funny.  This particular one is about a pigeon not wanting to go to bed, and wanting to stay up, all while yawning and slowly falling asleep.  This reminded me of pretty much every child out there!  Mine is too young to act this way, but I'd imagine I/we were all a little bit like this at one point in time.

It's so fun having books you can relate to! 

Monday, September 13, 2010

Easy Crock Pot Chicken Burritos

This is a favorite at our house, and is so easy.  True to a crock pot recipe, you just throw everything in, let it cook, then enjoy!


Ingredients:
3-4 Chicken Breasts (uncooked-either frozen or thawed.  Mine are ALWAYS frozen :) )
1 Jar Salsa (Mild, Medium, or Hot, it's up to you)
1/2-1 package of taco seasoning
Optional:  Green peppers, onions, or whatever else you want to add)

Directions:
1. Add above ingredients together
2. Cook in Crock pot on low for 5-6 hours. 
3. When you are ready to serve, shred the chicken using a fork.  Mix altogether. 

Serve with cheese, sour cream, cilantro, tortillas, beans, etc...

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Pomegranate Gelato

I know, I know, it has been a while since I have posted.  But for those of you (if any of you haven't given up on me yet) who haven't figured it out yet, we are expecting baby number 2!  So I haven't been feeling well.  But I have 3 posts ready to be published (almost) that I have been slacking on, so stick with me if you want some good recipes! 

I received some free POM Pomegranate juice from POM recently and decided to use it in a sorbet.  But after looking through ideas/recipes I decided on a Gelato.  It wasn't bad.  Not 100% like a Gelato, but pretty good.  We are big Gelato fans!  It is important to use POM juice with this recipe because from what I have read, other juices will turn the Gelato a grayish color.  So stick with the POM!  This stuff is good, and good for you!
Recipe found on Epicurious.com
Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups heavy cream

1/2 cup whole milk
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups bottled pomegranate juice
1/3 cup pomegranate liqueur such as PAMA  (I omitted this)
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Directions:
1. Whisk together cream, milk, sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a 2 1/2- to 3-quart heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil over moderate heat, whisking occasionally, then boil, whisking, 2 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in remaining ingredients.

2. Transfer to a bowl and chill, uncovered, until cold, at least 1 hour.
3. Freeze in ice cream maker, then transfer to an airtight container and put in freezer to harden, at least 2 hours.
4. Soften gelato slightly in refrigerator, about 20 minutes, before serving.

*can garnish with pomegranate seeds or whatever else you want to add. I ate mine with chocolate chips!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Fresh Peach Pie

If you love peaches (like me), you would love this pie. It makes my mouth water just thinking about it.  Me and the fam just finished it off on Sunday-I made it Saturday-sweets don't stay in our house for long.  The only thing that touches the oven in this pie is the crust, hence the "Fresh" in the "Fresh Peach Pie".  I personally prefer my peach pies like this.  If I am going to have my peaches cooked I would rather have them as a cobbler.  This pie is very good, I especially like to warm it up just for a few seconds and eat it with ice cream-Vanilla Bean ice cream to be exact.  Try it out, let me know what you think.  Oh, ps, this is a SWEET pie!



Ingredients:

5-6 Peaches, sliced (I blanch* then peel mine)
1 Cup Sugar
Water
2 Tbls Cornstarch
4 tsp. Dry Peach Jello
Cooked pie crust

Directions:

1. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of sugar over peach slices.  Let set for 1/2 hour. 
2. Drain juices off peaches until well drained.  Add enough water to make 1 cup liquid. 
3. Add the other 1/2 cup of sugar and cornstarch to the water/peach juice. 
4. Cook in sauce pan until think (over medium heat). 
5. Add 4 tsp. or dry jello. 
6. Let cool. 
7. Combine with fruit and poor into cooked pie shell. 
8. Refrigerate until cold-at least 1 hour.

*For blanching, I slice a criss-cross across the top of the peach, just enough to break the skin.  I then bring a pot of water to boil, turn of heat and add peaches.  I let them sit in that hot/boiling water for about 30 secs, then transfer them to a bowl of ice water for 10-20 seconds.  The peach peel should come off very easily afterwards.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Slacking, but not on purpose.

I had been feeling a little under the weather, and am going to visit family later this week.  But I promise more posts upon my return!  I think that's good reason for my lack of posts lately....I don't think I have even tried something new lately...but burritos are on the menu for Wednesday, that's good news!

BUT I did make this dress while I was slacking.  My Mom tried to talk me through it since I have never really sewn anything and I did this without a pattern.  She wore it once and that's probably all she'll wear it.  This picture is just proof that I haven't been doing nothing (not that I need proof or anything!).


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

White Chocolate Chip Macadamia Nut Cookies

I got these macadamia nuts from Oh Nuts!  months ago and still haven't used all of them (remember this post?).  SO I decided to make one of my all-time favorite cookies, White Chocolate Macadamia Nut.  This recipe was so incredibly good.  After they first came out of the oven, they tasted just like a store bought cookie.  I even froze some then would occasionally stick one in the microwave for about 25 seconds to soften it up and it still tasted just as good.  I sorta wish I had some right now...should have frozen more.
Recipe discovered here


Ingredients:
1 cup butter, softened  (not margarine!  Cookies will turn out to be more "cake-like" with margarine)
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoons baking soda
10 ounces white chocolate (chips or bars cut in chunks)
1 cup macadamia nuts, chopped into chunks



Directions:
Heat oven to 375 F. In large bowl, beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, and salt with electric mixer until creamy. Add eggs, beat well. Stir together flour, and the baking soda; gradually add to butter mixture,beating until well blended. Stir in white chocolate chips and macadamia nuts. Drop by rounded teaspoons onto ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until set. (Edges are golden brown and center is set.) Cool slightly, remove from cookie sheet to wire rack to cool completely.


Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Flag Cake

There really isn't much that goes into this recipe, but I do love it!  It is such a light refreshing dessert.  And you can make any design on front since it is now past the 4th.  We make this cake for Memorial Day and the 4th.  But it can be made at any time!



Ingredients:
White Cake mix
(Eggs, Oil, Water-according to box)
Cool Whip
Blueberries
Strawberries

Directions:
1.  Make cake according to instructions on the box.
2.  Let cool completely
3.  Cut your strawberries and sprinkle the top of the unfrosted cake with some blueberries and strawberries
4.  Cover the layer of berries completely with Cool Whip
5.  Decorate the top of the cake with a blueberry and Strawberry design.
6.  Refrigerate then enjoy!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Chocolate Molten Lava Cake

We went on a Cruise for our Honeymoon about 4 months or so after we got married.  And the food on said Cruisewas tasty and abundant.  I was sick due to being pregnant, so I didn't eat much except for hamburgers, pickles, green jello, and pineapple sherbet.  But hubs got this dessert pretty much if not every night.  So for Father's Day I decided to make it for dessert.  I accidentally overcooked ours slightly (which is easy to do, so be careful!), but it was still decently ooey gooey in the middle.  This is such a good dessert, and it was a lot easier to prepare than I expected.  They cook fast, so if you want to prepare them ahead of time, after baking, cover the ramekins in plastic wrap and/or foil to trap in the heat and keep them moist.  And if they need rewarming before serving, pop them in the microwave for about 30-45 seconds.
  Serve with you favorite Vanilla Ice Cream (ours is Breyer's Vanilla Bean).

Recipe found here


Ingredients:
6 oz. Semi-Sweet Baking Chocolate (or use your favorite 70% dark chocolate bar)
6 oz. Butter (diced, room temperature)
3 Eggs
1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
1/3 cup Flour
Butter for Ramekins



Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350°F
2. Melt chocolate on low flame in a bain-marie (double boiler). When melted, take of flame, and…
3. Stir in diced butter, until it melts.
4. In another bowl, beat eggs and sugar, until it starts to whiten.
5. Stir in melted chocolate and then the flour.
6. Butter 4 individual ramekins, and pour in chocolate batter.
7. Cook for about 10 minutes. (I would cook it for more like 12-14 min.  You want the sides to be firm and the middle to be jiggly-not soupy, jiggly)
8. Tip ramekins upside down onto dessert plates and serve.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Chicken Ranch, and Rice Soup..thank you Picky Palate

I love soup.  I could eat soup all summer long.  If you aren't a summer soup eating person, just save this recipe for the fall.  This makes for a tasty meal.  It has ranch seasoning in it, which wakes up the traditional chicken and rice soup.  It is nice to get some different flavor dimensions.  It is also a quick recipe, so you can make some homemade rolls too and not feel like you have been living in the kitchen all day. 

 
recipe found on Picky Palate
(check it out, she has some pretty great stuff!)

Ingredients:
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 large carrots, peeled and sliced
3 stalks of celery, chopped
3 Tablespoons fresh minced garlic
2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts
3 Cups of cooked rice (which would be 1 cup of dry rice)
64 oz chicken broth (that's 2 cartons-not cans)
1 Tablespoon dry Ranch Dressing seasoning
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
1 teaspoon hot sauce, like Tabasco (optional)


Directions:
1. Heat oil into a large dutch oven over medium heat.
2. When hot, saute onion, carrots and celery for 7-10 minutes or until softened slightly. Stir in garlic and cook for 1 minute.
3. Stir in chicken breast and rice then pour in chicken broth. Stir, then season with ranch seasoning, salt, pepper and add in Dijon and hot sauce.
4. Reduce heat to low and simmer until serving. Taste and season accordingly.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

H is for Hair Fairy

An Alphabet of Encouragement and Insight for Kids (and Kids at Heart!) With Cancer

Written by: Kim Martin
Illustrated by: Wend Boomhower

Have I mentioned how much I love Alphabet books?  Well, I love them lots.  This one was written and Illustrated by 2 people I grew up going to church with.  It is an alphabet about Cancer, mostly giving encouragement and insight (best way to explain it, also written on the cover!).  This is such a good book, and a great one to have in your home or in your classroom, especially if you know someone facing this trial.  Visit the website, HairFairy.org for more information, and to order a book for yourself or classroom!

You will also notice on their website, the "Hair Fairy Project".  What this is, is that on the day a child or young adult loses their hair, Mr. and Mrs. Hair fairy leave a gift, note, and this book for that child/young adult.  I think this is a fantastic project, soo much love and caring goes into this.  Cancer has not affected my immediate family as of yet, but I have seen it in other people's lives.  Anything to make those affected smile or bring hope and happiness is such a wonderful thing.   Donations are gladly accepted.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Spanish Rice, my new Favorite

Sorry, this was a last minute picture, had to make sure I got one before it was all gone!  This rice was fantastic!  We paired it with some Fajitas, and it was soo good.  It seriously was to me better than some of my favorite mexican places.  I have always loved rice when we go out for Mexican.  I usually get no beans and extra rice.  And now that I can make it at home, I can have all the extra rice I want!  I found the recipe here, and added some cummin on my own.


Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups rice

2 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 cup plain tomato sauce*
3 cloves finely chopped garlic *
1/4 of a medium onion*
2 tablespoons oil
4 heaping tablespoons of finely chopped parsley (optional)
Cumin and salt/pepper to taste

Directions:

In a medium sauce pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add in the fresh garlic and onion. Saute for 1-2 minutes until softened. Add in dry rice. Stir for about 5 minutes until rice becomes a golden brown color.

Add in broth and tomato sauce (Slowly into rice, not directly onto hot pan!) Add in the parsley if you're using it. Stir it up and bring to a boil. Once it starts boiling, turn the heat to low and cover. Let it simmer for 20 minutes and fluff with a fork.



*If you don't have fresh garlic or onions on hand you can use the equivalent in powder form. Do not saute the powder, just skip that step and add the garlic powder and/or onion powder when you add the liquids. If you don't have tomato sauce you can use unseasoned stewed tomatoes, or canned diced tomatoes with their liquid. (this was from the website.  I would suggest using fresh garlic mostly because I think it tastes better :) )

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Coconut Pineapple Cake


I found this recipe here while looking on Food Gawker a while ago (a favorite past time of mine), and since my spouse doesn't care for Pineapple, I decided to wait until I was on vacation at my parents home to make it since I knew more people would eat it there.  Troy did tell me I could make it but I should just put pineapple on half the cake...but then that would mean I'd have to eat half a cake!  Which I could probably do, but would probably hate myself for afterward when I saw the effects in the mirror! I made this the other night, and I personally thought it was great!  Try it out for yourself!  It is a great summer treat.

    


Ingredients:

1 (18.25-ounce) box yellow cake mix, plus ingredients to prepare
1 (20-ounce) can crushed pineapple
1 1/3 cups sugar
1 (3.4-ounce) box French vanilla pudding, plus ingredients to prepare
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 cup flaked, sweetened toasted coconut


Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Prepare yellow cake mix as directed on the box as well as the cooking time.
3. While cake is baking, combine the pineapple and 1 cup of sugar (I would recommend ½ cup) in a saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium heat stirring constantly. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
4. Remove cake from oven and using a fork, pierce holes into cake. Pour pineapple mixture over hot cake and set aside.
5. Prepare pudding according to package directions. Spread pudding over cake and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.
6. Whip heavy cream and remaining sugar until stiff. Cover top of cake with whipped cream and sprinkle toasted coconut on top.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Peanut Butter Cookies (Skippy Truffle Cookies)


I found this recipe in a magazine and it has been a favorite ever since.  This is a very rich cookie, so eat with a glass of milk!  It makes about 24 cookies, and I could probably eat them all in one day!


Ingredients:

1 c. Skippy® creamy peanut butter (Any Peanut Butter works, we like Peter Pan, chunky is also good)
1 c. light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 large egg
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips


Directions:
1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, with a wooden spoon, combine all ingredients except chocolate chips until blended. Stir in chocolate chips just until combined. On ungreased baking sheets, using slightly rounded teaspoonfuls, drop dough 2 inches apart. (Do not flatten.)
2.  Bake 9 minutes or until cookies are puffed and golden. (Cookies will be very soft.) Place baking sheets on a wire rack and let stand for 5 minutes. Remove cookies from sheets and cool completely.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Chicken Stew

Found here
Adapted from Giada De Laurentiis
Ingredients:
2      Tbsp olive oil
2      chicken breast, skin-on and bone-in* (~1 1/2lbs), trimmed excess fat
2      stalks of celery, cut into bite-size pieces
1      carrot, peeled, cut into bite size pieces
1      small onion, chopped
2      small gloves of garlic, minced (about 1 tsp)
1      can (14 oz) diced tomatoes, with juice
1      can (14 oz.) low sodium chicken broth
1/2   cup fresh basil leaves, torn into pieces
1      Tbsp tomato paste
1      bay leaf
1/2   Tbsp fresh (or 1/2 tsp dried) thyme
1      tsp Italian seasoning
1      tsp red pepper flakes (adjust to your own taste)
1     can (15 oz) chickpeas, rinsed and drained (I skipped this ingredient since it is not something I usually have!)



Directions: 
1.  Brown the chicken - Heat 1 Tbsp of oil in a heavy 5 1/2 quart saucepan over medium heat.  When the oil is hot but not smoking, brown the chicken breast skin size down first, 3 to 4 mins on both sides, until the pink is almost gone. Remove chicken from saucepan, discard the skins. (I used frozen chicken breast, and did not brown them, I boiled them until they were almost cooked through and it turned out great!). 
2.  Saute the veggies - With the oil from the chicken in the saucepan over medium heat, (add more olive oil to make up to about 2 Tbsp), saute the celery, carrot and onion until the onion is translucent, about 4 to 5 mins. Add the minced garlic to the veggies and stir for a few seconds.  Season the veggies with salt and pepper to taste. 
3.  Add liquid, seasonings and chicken - Stir in tomatoes with juices, chicken broth, basil, tomato paste, bay leaf, thyme, Italian seasonings and red pepper flakes. Put the chicken breasts and any juice came out back the pan, press to submerge. 
4.  Let it simmer - Bring the cooking liquid to a boil and turn down the heat to medium0low and simmer gently, uncovered, until the chicken is almost cooked through, about 25 mins.  Flip over the chicken breast and stir the mixture occassionally.
5.  Add beans - Take out the chicken breasts and let it cool for 5 mins.Add the chickpeas and simmer until the liquid has reduced to stew consistency, about 10 mins. 
6.  Add shredded chicken - Remove and discard the bones from the chicken breast. Shred or cut chicken into bite-size pieces.  Return the chicken meat to the stew. Bring the stew to a simmer.  Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Cowboy Cupcakes

I made these cookies after Easter, and since I am a cupcake lover, I wanted to make a cupcake interpretation of them, so here we go!!!  Use any cake/cupcake recipe you like, or cake from a box (can't go wrong there!).  The recipe I used for both cake and frosting is written below.  Troy and I actually liked these best the day after making them!  Weird, I know.



Cupcake: (Take from my Hello, Cupcake! Cookbook)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
*1/4 cup Coconut
*1/4 cup Oats
*1/4 cup Mini Chocolate Chips
*1/4 (heaping) tsp Cinnamon

Directions:
1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 standard 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake liners; set aside.

2.Whisk together flour, Cinnamon, Oats, Coconut, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl; set aside. Combine milk, oil, and vanilla in a small bowl; set aside.
3.In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Reduce speed to low and add flour mixture, alternating with milk mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture; beat until well combined, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary.  I then mixed in the Chocolate Chips with a wooden spoon.
4.Fill muffin cups two-thirds full with batter. Transfer muffin tins to oven and bake until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer cupcakes to a wire rack; let cool completely before decorating.

Frosting: (found here)
*I cut this in half and it was enough to frost all the cupcakes and then some.

3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature

¾ cup light brown sugar, packed
3½ cups confectioners’ sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
¾ tsp. salt
3 tbsp. milk
2½ tsp. vanilla extract

Directions:
I just added everything into my Bosch (any electric mixer works fine), turned it on for about 2 min, and everything turned out great!

Optional:  (for all of you fellow cocnut lovers out there) Top frosted cupcakes with some toasted Coconut!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream Pie

I found this recipe on the Cake, Batter, and Bowl blog.  I just had to make it, and Troy seemed just as excited.  We love Ice Cream and Oreos, I love Cookie Dough, and who doesn't love pie!?  Now there is no need to worry, this is an egg free cookie dough, so it is completely safe!  Wahooo, just what everyone needs, and excuse to eat more cookie dough!  I made this earlier this evening and Troy has already literally eaten half the pie.  It is a fantastice recipe, one that I will for sure make again! 


Ingredients:


1/4 cup butter, softened
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
1 6-ounce Oreo pie crust
3 cups mint chocolate chip ice cream (or any of your favorite Ice cream), softened
1/2 cup hot fudge ice cream topping, warmed



Directions:
To prepare the edible egg-free cookie dough, mix butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar in a large bowl until creamy; add milk and vanilla and mix until well blended. Gradually mix in flour and salt; stir in mini chocolate chips.

Spread edible chocolate chip cookie dough evenly in the bottom of the Oreo crust. Place heaping spoonfuls of ice cream on top of cookie dough. Lightly press and smooth top with back of spoon. Freeze pie 2 hours or until firm.

To serve, set pie out at room temperature for 10 minutes to soften and cut into 8 wedges. Garnish each piece with warmed hot fudge ice cream topping. Makes 8 servings.

"H is for Hoosier" An Indiana Alphabet

Written by: Author Cynthia Furlong Reynolds
Illustrator: Bruce Langton
Published by Sleeping Bear Press
 
 

Love love LOVE this book!  I got it for Christmas from (I think) my little sister a few years ago.  I am from Indiana, so that makes this book all the more special.  The illustrations are just perfect, and have a way of capturing the feel and beauty of Indiana.  It also is perfect for any "school" aged group.  There is a short easy read on each page, as well as a  more indepth page.  And I know there aren't as many people out there who share the same love for Indiana as I do, which is why I decided on this book to post about because there is a book for EVERY STATE!  Your favorite, least favorite, whatever.  There is also an Alphabet book about Moms, Golf, Basketball, fishing, Halloween, horses....there are just sooo many!  Check them out here!  This is honestly one of my most favorites, if you are a teacher, it is perfect for the classroom!  And if you aren't, it is just as perfect for the home.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Cowboy Easter Cookies (or any other Holiday)

I found this recipe here while looking at pictures of these cookies.  I had these in college and made the husband make them once.  So I was craving them pretty badly.  I LOVE coconut and I think the cinnamon and coconut combination in these cookies is divine!






Ingredients: (I did a half batch and made the cookies smaller-still gave me a decent amount of cookies)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups packed light-brown sugar
3 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
2 cups sweetened flake coconut
2 cups chopped pecans (8 ounces)
(I also added Chocolate eggs to mine, left over from Easter.  You can pretty much add anything to these cookies and they will still be fantastic)



Directions:
1.Heat oven to 350 F.
2.Mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in bowl.
3.In 8-quart bowl, beat butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy, 1 minute. Gradually beat in sugars; beat to combine, 2 minutes.
4.Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each. Beat in vanilla.
5.Stir in flour mixture until just combined. Add chocolate chips, oats, coconut and pecans.
6.For each cookie, drop 1/4 cup dough onto ungreased baking sheets, spacing 3 inches apart. (I did heaping tablespoon sizes)
7.Bake in 350 F oven 17 to 29 minutes (I baked mine for 12-13 min), until edges are lightly browned; rotate sheets halfway through. Remove cookies from rack to cool. 

Friday, April 9, 2010

Another Banana Bread Recipe

I found this recipe here a little while ago, and have wanted to try it, and since we had bananas that were ripe enough yesterday, I did.  It is a pretty good one!
Ingredients:
1/4 cup shortening
1 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 tsp baking soda
3 ripe bananas, mashed
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
Opt. Nuts


Directions:
Cream shortening, add salt. Add sugar and then eggs. Sift flour and soda. Alternately mix in bananas and flour mix to the egg mixture. Pour into greased bread pan. Bake at 350 for one hour.  Makes 1 loaf.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Best Ever Banana Cream Pie (according to me)

The is a recipe that my Mom would use (so if you are a Kohl and are reading this, you already have this recipe, move onto another post :) ).  I love it, and decided it was Eastery enough to have as dessert after our Easter dinner on Sunday.  It is very yummy.  It is more custardy than pudding like, good either way!
Banana Cream Pie

Ingredients:
¾ cup sugar
1/3 cup flour or 3 TBLS. cornstarch ( I use cornstarch)
¼ tsp. salt
2 cups milk
3 slightly beaten egg yolk
2 TBLS. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
2-3 bananas


Directions:
In a saucepan, combine sugar, flour or cornstarch, and salt; gradually stir in milk, Cook and stir over medium high heat till bubbly. Cook and sir 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir a moderate amount or hot mixture into yolks; immediately return to hot mixture; cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add butter and vanilla. Slice bananas into cooled baked pie crust or graham cracker crust (I use graham cracker) and pour filling on top. Refrigerate.  Serve with whipped cream/cool whip.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Pumpkin Choclate Chip Cookies

Who said you could only eat these in the fall!

Super easy, super good!

Ingredients:

1 can (15 oz) Pumpkin
1 box Spice Cake Mix
1 cup Chocolate Chips
opt. Nuts

Directions:
Mix ingredients till well combined.  Drop spoonfuls onto greased cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 for 8-10 min (I had to let them cook for atleast 12-I would do 8 min, then check, then add more time if needed).  And done!  Eat and enjoy the low low fat cookies!!!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Oriental Chicken & Festive Cupcakes

Oriental Chicken
( I got this recipe from a Cookbook my Mom gave to all of her kids Christmas of 2008-best cookbook EVAH!)


Ingredients
3-4 chicken breasts
1 egg, slightly beaten with a little water
Flour
Oil

Sauce:
3 TBLS. soy sauce
3 TBLS water
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vinegar
dash of salt

Directions
1. Cut chicken into cubes or strips (whichever you prefer).
2. Heat oil in frying pan.
3. Dip chicken in egg, then flour. Fry until chicken is lightly browned and crispy.
4. Mix sauce ingredients in a large bowl. Mix well until sugar is all dissolved. Add chicken and gently stir until pieces are well coated. Pour into 10 x 13 pan.
5. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes--every 10 minutes turn all the chicken pieces over.

Serve with rice.
*If you want more sauce, or use more chicken, double the sauce recipe.

St. Patrick's Day Rainbow Cupcakes

I made these little cuties this morning for St. Patrick's Day.  All I did was make cake mix from a box, then seperated the mix into 6 different bowls.  I then colored each bowl with food coloring GEL (it gives brighter, stronger colors than the liquid food coloring).  Next you layer the colors of cake mix batter.  Then cook according to box, frost, decorate, and enjoy! 

Friday, March 5, 2010

Chocolate Cookies with a Peanut Butter Surprise


All purpose flour
 1½ cups

Unsweetened Cocoa Powder½ cup
Baking Soda½ tsp
Unsalted Butter, softened½ cup or 1 stick
Sugar½ cup
Brown sugar, packed½ cup
Peanut butter, ¼ cup

½ cup for the filling
Egg1 large
Vanilla extract1 tsp
Powder sugar, sifted¾ cup
 
1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, lightly grease cookie sheets. 
2.  Combine flour, cocoa powder, and baking soda in a bowl and set aside. 
3.  Cream butter using an electric mixer at medium speed for 1 minute. Gradually beat in granulated sugar, then brown sugar and finally ¼ cup peanut butter until everything is well combined. 
4.  Add egg, vanilla extract and continue beating until well blended. 
5.  Using a spatula or wooden spoon, gently stir in the flour mixture. Shape dough into ¼-inch balls and place them on prepared cookie sheets. 
6.  For peanut butter filling, stir together powder sugar and ½ cup peanut butter until smooth. Shape mixture into ¾-inch balls. 
7.  Flatten each chocolate dough ball and top with a peanut butter ball. Wrap chocolate dough over the peanut butter filling so that it completely covers the filling. Roll dough into balls, then slightly flatted them again, and sprinkle the top with some granulated sugar. 
8.  Bake for about 8-10 minutes or until just set and surface is slightly cracked. Cool cookies on baking sheets for 1 minute before transferring them to wire racks to cool completely
    Recipe found here

    (Sorry the Ingredients are a little unaligned....)

      Sunday, February 28, 2010

      Snickerdoodle Cake

      Seriously sooo good. I found this recipe here and decided to try it out...I sure am glad I did!



      Ingredients
      2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
      1 cup white sugar

      2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
      1 teaspoon baking powder
      1/2 teaspoon baking soda
      1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
      1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
      1 cup white sugar
      1 cup light brown sugar
      3 eggs, at room temperature
      2 teaspoon vanilla extract
      1 cup full-fat sour cream, at room temperature


      1. In a small bowl, combine 1 cup of sugar and 2 teaspoons of cinnamon. Mix together really well and Preheat oven to 325F. Using a spray product like Pam with Flour, generously spray a 9 inch Bundt pan, being careful to cover all the nooks and crannies, as well as the center tube. (Note: If you don’t want to use Pam with Flour, you can just grease the pan with shortening.) Gently dust the entire inside of the pan with the sugar and cinnamon mixture. You should only need about 1/4 to 1/2 cup of sugar, but you want to try and evenly coat the inside surface of the pan, including the tube. Save the remaining sugar and cinnamon mixture and set everything aside.

      2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

      3. Beat just the butter on medium speed for one full minute. Add the white sugar and mix for 3 minutes, until light and fluffy. Scrape down the bowl and blade and add the brown sugar.

      4. Mix for 2 minutes until the mixture looks light brown and uniform in color. Add the eggs one at a time, beating each for 1 full minute. Stir in the vanilla. Add the flour mixture alternately with the sour cream; beat well.

      5. Spread half of the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with 1/4 to 1/3 of a cup of the cinnamon sugar mixture over top the cake. Spread the rest of the batter into the pan and sprinkle any remaining sugar mixture over the top. (If you run out of cinnamon sugar, you can mix just 1/4 cup of sugar + 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon together for the top of the cake. It should be more than enough.)

      6. Bake in the preheated oven for 55 to 65 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely. aside.

      Taco Soup

      I got this recipe from a friend at work, and tweaked it a but to be my own. It is simple and fast, and a good way to rotate through your food storage! It can be as spicy or mild as you like. If you like it spicy, add spicier things-like diced tomatoes with peppers, or spicy taco mix, or hot salsa-or mild everything, it's up to you. Try it out sometime!


      Ingredients:

      2 Cans Black Beans (drained)
      2 Cans Stewed Tomatoes-I use diced (do not drain)
      2 Cans Yellow Corn (do not drain)
      1 lb Ground Beef
      2 Cans Chicken Broth
      5 Tbsp Salsa
      1 Onion Chopped
      1 Garlic Clove minced
      1 pkg Taco Seasoning-I used 3/4 a pkg
      2 Cans of water (I usually omit this, I maybe add 1/2 a can, any more would overflow my pot :) )

      Brown the meat with the Garlic in your pot, drain fat. Add all the ingredients (including liquid in corn and tomato cans)to the browned meat in your pot. Let simmer until frothy and hot (usually about 20-30 min). Add Tortilla Chips, Cheese, and Sour Cream if desired. Enjoy!

      Monday, February 1, 2010

      Stuffed Pizza Rolls

      We had these for dinner tonight, and they were fast, tasty, and satisfying. We paired it with a nice green salad, and add it to our food "rotation". Found the recipe here: Our Best Bites

      Stuffed Pizza Rolls




      1 roll refrigerated pizza dough*
      marinara/pizza sauce
      2 T grated Parmesan cheese
      1 T olive oil or melted butter
      1/2 t garlic powder
      1 t dried Italian seasoning
      mozzerella cheese
      Pizza toppings of your choice

      Roll out dough to 8x12 inches. Cut into 25 (I did 20) squares and place toppings on the center of each square. Fold in corners and pinch bottom to make ure it stays together. Place in pie pan or small casseroe dish. Brush with Olive oil. Mix Parmesan Cheese, Garlic Powder, and Italian Seasoning, then sprinkle over rolls. Cook at 425 for 15-20 min. Dip in pizza sauce. THAT'S IT! So easy, and sooooo good.

      Wednesday, January 27, 2010

      Fried Oreos. Yes, fried

      We forgot to take a picture of the finished product, so I had to go back in my picture archive, and stole these from our trips to the Apple Festival, where I was introduced to these incredible heart stopping American creation. And oh my goodness, these are amazing, especially if you love Oreos...and fried food.

      Fried Oreos




      Ingredients
      1 cup buttermilk pancake mix
      3/4 cup ice water
      1 quart vegetable oil
      1 sleeve of Oreo cookies (14 each)
      2 tablespoons confectioners sugar

      1. Freeze cookies for 3 hours. ( this is purely optional, but just know if you don't you run the risk of melting the filling when fried-which doesn't taste bad, just loses some of the effect)
      2. In a medium bowl, stir water into buttermilk pancake mix with a whisk until thoroughly combined. Batter should be consistency of pancake mix, if not, add more water or mix accordingly. Refridgerate for at least an hour (this helps to keep a cake like texture to the cookies, if the batter is too thing, it wont be AS yummy)
      3. In a 3-quart saucepot or deep fryer, heat oil to 350 degrees F (medium heat on stove top).
      4. While oil is heating, set up a sheet pan with paper towels for draining.
      5. With metal tongs, dip each cookie one at a time into batter, making a coat completely around the cookie.
      6. Place coated cookie carefully into hot oil. Repeat for each cookie. Fry on both sides, turning over once until golden brown.
      7. Remove fried cookie from hot oil with metal tongs and drain on paper towels.
      Note: The cookies inside should be soft throughout, if they are cold and hard reduce oil temperature.
      8. Dust with confectioners sugar.
      9. Let cool slightly (about 2 minutes) before serving

      Wednesday, January 20, 2010

      Peanut Butter Trifle

      Peanut Butter Trifle

      We LOVED this trifle. So yummy, especially if you like the peanut butter and chocolate combination. We have yet to try the original recipe, I didn't truly follow it. There is a link for it at the bottom. Maybe we will save the "original" for another day...

      Ingredients:

      • 21 ounce package brownie mix
      • 10 ounce bag of peanut butter chips
      • 5 ounce package vanilla instant pudding mix
      • 3 oz pkg Chocolate instant pudding mix
      • 5 cups milk
      • 1/2 cup peanut butter, creamy
      • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
      • Whipped Cream or Cool Whip
      • 24 regular sized (about 2 inches in diameter) peanut butter cups, divided

      Preparation:

      Prepare brownie mix according to package directions. Add peanut butter chips. Bake for length of time required by package. Cool completely.

      Cut brownies into 3/4 inch pieces, using sharp knife.

      Coarsely chop 20 peanut butter cups; saving 4 for garnish.

      Combine vanilla pudding mix and 3 cups of milk in large bowl. Beat at low speed for 2 minutes or until thickened. Add peanut butter and vanilla; beat until smooth. Set aside.

      Combine chocolate pudding mix and 2 cups of milk into bowl. Beat at low speed for 2 min or until thickened. Set aside.

      Layer Brownies, pudding, cool whip, and candy (first layer with peanut butter pudding, second with chocolate, then third with peanut butter). You will end up with 3 layers, ending with candy on top of cool whip.

      Refrigerate

      This is not the original recipe. Go here for the original.

      Wednesday, January 13, 2010

      Chocolate Chip Cookie

      I have always been on the lookout for a good Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe, so when I got the baking itch today (and knowing how much the husband loves his cookies), I tried Google again, and found this, seriously an easy super good cookie!!!

      Best Big, Fat, Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

      found on allrecipes.com



      Ingredients

      • 2 cups all-purpose flour
      • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
      • 1/2 teaspoon salt
      • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
      • 1 cup packed brown sugar
      • 1/2 cup white sugar
      • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
      • 1 egg
      • 1 egg yolk
      • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

      Directions

      1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper.
      2. Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
      3. In a medium bowl, cream together the melted butter, brown sugar and white sugar until well blended. Beat in the vanilla, egg, and egg yolk until light and creamy. Mix in the sifted ingredients until just blended (be sure not to over mix). Stir in the chocolate chips by hand using a wooden spoon.
      4. Refrigerate for 1 hr (this helps the cookies not to flatten)
      5. Drop cookie dough heaping tbsp sized at a time onto the prepared cookie sheets. Cookies should be about 2 inches apart.
      6. Bake for 12 to 13 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the edges are lightly toasted. Cool on baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

      A Christmas Book (in Janurary,,,whoops)

      Snowmen at Christmas
      By: Caralyn Buehner
      Illustrated by: Mark Buehner
      This is one of my ALL TIME FAVORITE Christmas book (yes, we are going back in time and are going to bring back the Christmas feeling for a bit). This book (to me) just has the BEST illustrations, the coloring and the feeling it brings just looks like Christmas to me. The last page showing Christmas morning, is the Christmas morning I picture in my mind. At my house, as a child, we always woke up before the sun came up because we wanted to open presents in the dark so we could have the glow of the Christmas tree (once it got light it was fun to see that the shirt you thought was black was actually red or purple :) ). The story is just as cute. There is also another book by the same people called Snowmen at Night (another great book). Check them out! I love them!

      My new FAVORITE Cornbread Recipe

      Golden Sweet Cornbread

      (I took this picture like a week after I made it, but boy was it yummy!) I am a HUGE Cornbread fan. I love to have a hot bowl of Soup or Chili with warm soft moist Cornbread covered with Honey...yummmmyyy!!! Here it the recipe!

      Ingredients

      • 1 cup all-purpose flour
      • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
      • 2/3 cup white sugar
      • 1 teaspoon salt
      • 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
      • 1 egg
      • 1 cup milk
      • 1/3 cup vegetable oil

      Directions

      1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Spray or lightly grease a 9 inch round cake pan.
      2. In a large bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, salt and baking powder. Stir in egg, milk and vegetable oil until well combined. Pour batter into prepared pan.
      3. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.

      Tuesday, January 5, 2010

      A quick cookie (and a family favorite)

      Reese's Cake Mix Cookies



      Ingredients:

      • 1 package Devil's Food Cake mix
      • 2 eggs
      • 8 regular sized Reese's Cups
      • A little more than 1/2 cup oil (I usually just overflow the 1/2 cup a little)

      Preparation:

      Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients (except for peanut butter cups) together, then add Reese's, break into dough. Place tbsp sized balls onto cookie sheet, bake for 7 min.

      That's it! Easy peasy! And oh so yummy!