here. They are fun to do and this recipe is yummo! They are lots of fun to make with kids too!
1 cup butter (no substitutions), softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Cream together butter and sugar in large mixing bowl until light and fluffy--about 2 minutes. Add egg and flavorings and mix to incorporate.
In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
Add slowly to the butter mixture and mix to combine.
When your dough is made, instead of putting it in the fridge, immediately roll between 2 sheets of waxed or parchment paper until it's about 1/4 thick. Place on a cookie sheet and then put in the fridge. Chill for about 20-30 minutes. This way it chills faster and the bonus is that you don't need to add extra flour to roll it out. Just remove the top layer of wax paper and cut with your desired cookie cutter. Move from the wax paper to another cookie sheet lined with parchment paper for baking with a spatula. Continue until your cookie sheet is full (you can roll out the scraps again between the two pieces of wax paper.)
Bake at 350 for 8 to 12 minutes. The baking time really depends on how you like them and how thick your dough is. If you like them slightly chewy, about 8 to 9 minutes does it --this is what I do. If you like them slightly crisp and buttery, then go for 10 to 12.
Cool completely before icing.
1 pound powdered sugar (about 3 and 3/4 cups)
6 Tablespoons whole milk
6 Tablespoons Corn Syrup
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
A Dash of salt
With a whisk or electric mixer, combine sugar and milk until smooth (no lumps!) Then stir in corn syrup and extract and dash of salt.
You will use this same recipe for both glazing and piping. The way it is right now is the consistency you want for glazing (or flooding). It's smooth and thin. It easily runs off the whisk in a pretty thin drizzle.
To prepare the icing for piping (or outlining) you just add more powdered sugar. Just eyeball it. You can't really mess it up because if it's too thick you just add more milk and if it's too thin, you add more powdered sugar. I add it in small amounts until it's a good consistency. For me it's when it gets to a point where it's relatively hard to whisk by hand. When I pick up the whisk, it still runs off, but in a very slow, thick stream.... also you should almost be able to count to ten when you run a spoon through the middle of it by the time it runs back together.
Take your glazing icing and color to whatever colors you like. I use colored piping icing in decorator bags for adding details after the cookie has been flooded and allowed to dry for about half an hour. For Jack in the above picture I outlined and piped white, then let dry for about 1/2 an hour and then I outlined and flooded the eyes and used a decorator bag with a really small round tip to pipe his mouth. For the leaves below, I piped and outlined them in all orange and some in all yellow. Then I added a little brown and piped on the leaf veins after they had set for a 1/2 hour. Then I got Wiltons food-coloring-in-a-can in green and red and sprayed different colors on them so they looked like autumn leaves. I did the same for the pumpkins in the above picture.
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Toffee Apple Dip
2- 8-oz packages Cream Cheese, softened (or brought to room temperature)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 Tablespoon Vanilla (yes, that's 1 Tablespoon vanilla, love it!)
3/4 cup Toffee bits (found by the chocolate chips in most grocery stores)
In a large mixing bowl, whip the cream cheese, brown sugar and vanilla together until it's combined smooth with no lumps. Stir in the toffee bits.
Serve with sliced apples. Enjoy!
Saturday, October 20, 2012
1 package (10 oz.) frozen chopped spinach , thawed and squeezed dry
1 container (16 oz.) sour cream
1 cup Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Real Mayonnaise
1 package Knorr® Vegetable recipe mix
1 can (8 oz.) water chestnuts (optional)Sliced
3 green onions (optional)
1.Combine all ingredients and chill about 2 hours. Serve with your favorite dippers to your favorite people.
A new serving idea: Hollow out cucumber slices and cherry tomatoes. Fill vegetables with Knorr Spinach Dip and garnish with a sprig of dill.
Here's another way you could serve it for a Halloween Party!! how fun is this!!
Saturday, October 13, 2012
Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese Panini Croutons
Prep Time:10 min
Cook Time:40 min
Serves: 4 to 6 servings.
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup yellow onions, chopped (1 large onion)
1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
4 cups chicken stock
2(28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 teaspoon granulated sugar (helps with the acidity of the tomatoes)
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
Salt and black pepper
1/2 cup orzo
1/2 pint heavy cream
Grilled Cheese Croutons (see below)
In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook over medium-low heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Stir in the chicken stock, tomatoes, sugar, Italian seasoning, turmeric, cumin, curry powder, crushed red pepper , 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper (may add more to suit your taste). Bring the soup to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, fill a medium pot with water, add 2 teaspoons salt and bring to a boil. Add the orzo and cook for 7 minutes. (It will finish cooking in the soup.) Drain the orzo and add it to the soup after that first 15 minute simmer is done. Stir in the cream, return the soup to a simmer and cook for 10 more minutes, stirring frequently. Add more salt and pepper if needed.
Grilled Cheese Panini Croutons
4 (1/2-inch-thick) slices country white bread (I like to use California Sourdough bread)
2 tablespoons butter
Your favorite Cheese, sliced (I used half Pepper Jack and half Medium cheddar)
Heat a panini grill. Or if you don't have one, this is what I do. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. While the skillet is heating; place 2 slices of bread on a cutting board and place the cheese slices over the bread (I like to alternate between the 2 kinds). Place the remaining two slices of bread on top of the cheese. Butter the top sides of your bread. Then place butter side down in your hot skillet.
Or if you have a panini grill, grill the sandwiches on the panini grill for about 5 minutes, until nicely browned. Place on a cutting board, allow to rest for 1 minute and cut into 1-inch cubes.
Sprinkle on your soup and enjoy! YUMMO!
Monday, October 8, 2012
3 large Zucchini, cut in half with the middle and seeds scooped out (save this)
1 pound hot sausage
1/2 pound ground beef
1 green Bell pepper, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 heaping teaspoon minced garlic
2 tomatoes, diced 1 teaspoon dried basil (or 1 Tablespoon chopped, fresh basil) 1 egg 1/4 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 to 2 cups grated Mozzarella Cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice your zucchini in half lengthwise and scoop out the middle (making a canoe) You can also cut them in half or thirds for better serving sizes. Place on a cookie sheet that you line with parchment paper, scooped side up. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 10 minutes.
While the zucchini is cooking, chop up the middle of the zucchini; then saute in a medium frying pan that has been drizzled with olive oil over medium heat for about 5 to 8 minutes, this will remove the extra moisture out of the filling. Set this aside to cool.
In a larger skillet, cook the sausage, hamburger, onion, bell pepper, and garlic over medium heat until the meat is browned and the onion is translucent. Then add the tomatoes and basil; cook about 5 more minutes.
In a small bowl, whisk the egg, then pour into your slightly cooled zucchini filling and stir briskly so the egg doesn't cook. Next, add the breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese to this mixture; stir to combine. Then add this mixture to the meat mixture and stir to combine. (The breadcrumbs help soak up the juice from the tomato and help bind everything together.) This is what my filling looked like...
Remove from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes... something about zucchini, it holds the heat and it's really hot when coming out of the oven and you don't want to burn your mouth!!! Serve with a steamed veggies and crusty french bread! yum!!!
Saturday, October 6, 2012
1 1/2 cups milk
1/3 cup shortening (I used butter flavored Crisco)
4 Tablespoons granulated Sugar
2 teaspoons salt
2 (1/4 ounce) envelopes yeast
2 large eggs, beaten
5 cups flour (might need a bit more)
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/3 cup butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
For the dough:
In a medium saucepan scald milk; add shortening, 3 Tablespoons granulated sugar, and salt. Stir to combine and set aside to cool to lukewarm.
After the yeast is foamy and the milk mixture is luke warm. Add the eggs to the yeast and stir to combine, then add the milk mixture to the yeast mixture. Whisk the cinnamon into the flour and gradually add to the yeast mixture. You may need to add more, you want the dough slightly sticky but not too sticky. Knead for 3 to 5 minutes. I let my kitchen aid do the kneading for about 5 minutes.
Spray another large bowl with non-stick spray, place dough in the bowl and let raise for an hour or until double in size.
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Here and had to give them a try. The cookie recipe itself is very similar to mine that I remembered from my childhood, but these are bigger and have milk chocolate chips and Reese's PB cups on top! I guess you could use those mini-Peanut Butter cups that they have now for baking, but I think the bigger ones cut up just give you more of that delicious Peanut Butter filling that everyone loves...Enjoy! Happy Autumn!
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cookies
•3/4 cup butter, softened
•1 cup sugar
•1 cup brown sugar
•1 cup peanut butter
•2 large eggs
•2 tsp vanilla
•1 tsp baking soda
•1/2 tsp salt
•2 1/2 cups flour
•1 1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
•32 mini Reese’s peanut butter cups, each cut into 4 pieces
In a large bowl, cream together the butter, sugars, and peanut butter until light and fluffy. Next add the eggs and vanilla, and mix to combine. In a separate bowl, whisk together the baking soda, salt, and flour, then add to the butter mixture and combine. Fold in chocolate chips.
Using an ice cream scoop, scoop dough (these are big cookies). Place 6 scoops of dough onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. Use your hand and slightly flatten each scoop of dough. Cook for 10 to12 minutes at 350.
Remove cookies from oven and lightly press 8 cut up pieces of the Reese’s peanut butter cups over the top of each cookie. Return to oven for 2 more minutes. Cool on baking sheet 2 minutes before placing on cooling rack. I think these cookies are best eaten warm. However, the still taste great the next day. Makes 18 cookies.
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Perfect French Fries
• 5 pounds russet potatoes
• Vegetable or peanut oil, for frying
• Sea salt (or any seasoned salt you like!, I used Lawry's)
Peel and rinse the potatoes. Then cut them into sticks by cutting the potato in 4 or 5 vertical pieces, and then cutting each piece into sticks.
Place them in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Allow them to soak, 2 to 3 hours.
When you're ready to make the fries, drain off the water and lay the potatoes on 2 baking sheets lined with paper towels. Blot with paper towels to dry them.
Heat a few inches of oil in a heavy pot to 300 degrees F. In 3 or 4 batches, cook the potatoes until soft, 4 to 5 minutes per batch. They should not be brown at this point! You just want to start the cooking process. Remove each batch and drain on new/dry paper towels.
Once all the potatoes have been fried at 300 degrees F, turn up the heat until the oil reaches 400 degrees F. When the oil's hot, start frying the potatoes in batches again, cooking until the fries are golden and crisp. Remove the potatoes from the oil and drain on paper towels.
Sprinkle with sea salt or your favorite seasoned salt while still warm and dive in!
IMPORTANT: Please be careful when frying with hot oil. Keep the pot on the backburner so little kiddos won't get hurt.
Regular French Fry Sauce
• 1/2 cup ketchup
• 1/2 cup mayonnaise
• ½ teaspoon white vinegar
• Hot sauce, for spice, optional
Measure out the ketchup, mayonnaise, and vinegar into a bowl and mix together with a whisk. If you want it spicy, add dashes of hot sauce to taste. Serve with fries!
Almost Famous 'Campfire' French fry Sauce
• ½ cup mayonnaise
• 3 Tablespoons Bull’s-Eye Brown Sugar & Hickory Barbecue Sauce (or your favorite BBQ sauce, I like Kraft Chipotle BBQ sauce)
• 1 Tablespoon Ketchup
• 1/8 teaspoon salt
Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl. Cover and chill for about an hour before serving.
Green Chili Cheese Sauce for French Fries
• 2 tablespoons butter
• 1- 4oz. can diced green chili’s
• 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
• 2 cups whole milk (add a little more if your sauce is too thick)
• 2 cups shredded yellow Cheddar Cheese
• 1-15oz. can Ricco’s Nacho Cheddar Sauce (found by the Velveeta cheese at Walmart)
• Salt and Pepper to taste
Place a sauce pot on the stove and heat it over medium heat. Add butter and green chilis, heat until butter is melted and bubbly. Add the flour and stir. Cook butter mixture and flour together for 1 minute or so. (This is called a "roux" and it helps to thicken up sauces). Use a whisk to stir as you pour the milk into the pot. Keep stirring until the milk mixture gets thicker. Use a wooden spoon or heat-safe spatula to stir in the cheese and canned cheese sauce. When all of the cheese melts, take the sauce off the heat and add a dash or two of salt and pepper. Pour the sauce over the fries or serve the sauce on the side if you like to dipping better.
This Cheese sauce would be great on nachos, or in chowders! I made a potato, chicken chowder with my left over sauce the next day and it was YUMMO!