2010 – A Year FULL of many blessings

“From the fullness of grace we have received one blessing after another.” John 1:16


Our First Christmas as a family of FIVE!

November – Landon & I celebrated 3 years


October – Girls all dressed up to “trick or treat”!

September – My big girl turned TWO!

August – This picture was taken on my birthday…I had the sweetest girls there to celebrate with me!

July – These days were filled watching sweet, sleeping babies

June – Our first picture of our family of 5. This was the day we got to meet TWO sweet baby girls.

May – 1st swim of the year!

April – Easter

March – Baby Shower for the twins! Shortly following this weekend, I was placed on bed rest. The next few months were filled with lots of rest, and many prayers!

February – Celebrating Valentines day at the Melting Pot

January – Brooke’s first snow…not a fan!
Advertisements

Pecan Pie


Need a quick, easy last minute recipe?!? Make this recipe…it is the Pioneer Woman’s Pecan Pie recipe. So yummy!

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! Hope you have a wonderful time with your family this week.

Pecan Pie

Ingredients:
1 unbaked pie crust
1 cup white sugar
2 tbsp. brown sugar
¼ tsp. salt
1 cup corn syrup (i used light)
1/3 cup melted butter
3 eggs, beaten
¼ tsp. vanilla
1 heaping cup chopped pecans

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Lay pie crust in a 9-inch pie plate. Trim and decoratively fold the edges. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine sugar, brown sugar, salt, corn syrup, butter, eggs and vanilla. Whisk until well-combined.

Pour chopped pecans in an even layer on the bottom of the unbaked pie shell. Pour the syrup mixture over the top of the pecans. Allow to stand about 20 seconds to let pecans float to the top.

Bake for 50 minutes, being careful not to burn pecans or crust. (if you need to, lay some foil over the top to prevent burning) Allow to cool for several hours or overnight before serving.

Do-Si-Do’s



If you love peanut butter…you will really like these! They taste very similar to the packaged girl scout cookies…which are wonderful, but not always available. Enjoy!



DO-SI-DO’s


p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 21.0px; font: 15.0px ‘Trebuchet MS’; color: #666666} p.p3 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 18.0px; font: 13.0px ‘Trebuchet MS’; color: #666666; min-height: 15.0px} p.p4 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 17.0px; font: 11.0px ‘Trebuchet MS’; color: #666666; background-color: #eeeeee; min-height: 12.0px} li.li2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 3.0px 0.0px; line-height: 18.0px; font: 13.0px ‘Trebuchet MS’; color: #666666} span.s1 {color: #3d00ff} ol.ol1 {list-style-type: decimal} ul.ul1 {list-style-type: disc}

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup quick cooking oats
  • 3 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, cream together 1/2 cup butter or margarine, 1/2 cup peanut butter, white sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla. Add egg and beat well.
  2. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add these dry ingredients to the creamed mixture. Stir. Add oatmeal and stir.
  3. Drop by teaspoons onto greased baking sheet, and press the top of each mound down with the bottom of a glass (dipped in sugar) to form 1/4 inch thick cookies. Bake at 350 degrees F for 8-10 minutes (8 for a softer cookie), until cookies are a light brown.
  4. To Make Filling: Cream 3 tablespoons butter or margarine with the confectioners’ sugar, 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter, and the cream. Spread filling onto half of the cooled cookies, then top with the other half to form sandwiches.





Peppermint "Mocha" Cake



This last weekend I made a cake for our family Christmas party. I wanted it to taste like a peppermint mocha from starbucks. The Mocha flavor got lost behind the peppermint…so it was more like a chocolate peppermint cake (which is still great!) This is a great ONE BOWL chocolate cake recipe…so easy, moist and best of all….tasty! I think next time I will make a mocha frosting. FIVE days until Christmas?!? I can’t believe it! HAPPY BAKING!

Peppermint “Mocha” Cake
for the cake:
2 c flour
2 c sugar
3/4 c cocoa powder
2 t baking soda
1 t baking powder
pinch of salt
1 c milk
1/2 c canola oil (or vegetable)
1 t vanilla extract (I replaced this with 3/4 peppermint extract)
1 c hot, strongly brewed coffee
2 eggs
In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, cocoa, b. powder, b. soda, and salt
Add the oil, milk, vanilla, coffee and eggs. Beat (or stir) very well. The batter will be pretty thin. Pour into two 9 inch greased pans (you can also just change baking times if you want to bake it in cupcakes, or one larger pan).
Bake at 325 for about 25 minutes…until the top springs back when you press it.
If you are going to frost this cake, you might want to freeze the layers first….it is very moist!
I used cream cheese icing with a little peppermint extract in it. Use the recipe HERE.
For the snowflakes and swirls, I piped melted chocolate onto wax paper. Once they hardened, I placed them on the freshly iced cake. It was a fun project!

Homemade Candies – Sea Salt Caramels & Reese’s Cups



I have been baking up a storm this week! I don’t have much time, but I wanted to post about these two homemade candy recipes. They are both WONDERFUL! The Sea Salt Caramel recipe can be found here from O Magazine. I will post the recipe to the Reese’s cups below! Hope you enjoy them…have a great rest of the week!

Homemade Reese’s Cups
Ingredients:
1/2 c peanut butter
a little less (scant) than 1/2 c powdered sugar
1 1/2 T Butter, softened
1/2 t vanilla
1 1/2 – 2 t salt, to taste (you want it to be salty…this is what makes a Reese’s cup…that salty flavor of the PB and the sweet chocolate)
1 bag chocolate chips (i used a mix of Ghiradelli milk and semi-sweet)
Beat the pb, sugar, butter, vanilla and salt until creamy.
Melt your chocolate down (either using a double broiler or the microwave). Spoon a little of the chocolate into a foil cupcake liner. Roll about a teaspoon of the PB mixture into a ball and pat it down. Gently place the PB patty on top of the chocolate. Cover with more melted chocolate. Let these harden at Room temperature. Remove the foil wrapper and store in an airtight container.

Lemon No-Bake Cheesecake



Here is one of the recipes I used for my last catering job. I catered a lunch for a sweet woman’s 80th birthday party. Her favorite flavors….lemon, peach and mango! So we had Peaches & Cream Cupcakes, Lemon Cheesecake, and Mango Tea. I searched for the perfect lemon cheesecake recipe. I wanted a light and airy cheesecake. Since I had to make 7 Cheesecakes, this recipe was perfect because it is no-bake (except for the crust). It looks pretty too…excuse the horrible picture quality. I didn’t even get a chance to take great pictures of all the food. Hope you enjoy!

Lemon No-Bake Cheesecake
Ingredients:
Crust:
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
6 T Butter, melted
3 T Sugar
Lemon Curd:
1 egg plus 1 egg yolk
1/4 c sugar
pinch salt
2 T fresh lemon juice
1 T butter
1 T heavy cream
Filling:
1/3 c fresh lemon juice
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
3 blocks (24 oz) cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 t grated lemon zest
3/4 c sugar
Pinch of salt
1 1/4 c heavy cream
Instructions
Crust
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine the 3 ingredients completely and press into the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan. Bake for about 8 minutes until the crust is lightly golden brown. Cool.
Lemon Curd
Whisk the egg, yolk, sugar and salt together in a small sauce pan. Whisk in the lemon juice and cook over medium heat. Stir CONSTANTLY (you don’t want the eggs to scramble), until the mixture is thick like pudding….about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the butter and cream. Put it in a bowl and refrigerate until needed.
Filling
Put the 1/3 c lemon juice in a small bowl. Sprinkle the gelatin over the top and let it stand about 5 minutes. Microwave the mixture for 30 seconds and set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, zest, sugar and salt until smooth and creamy. Slowly add the cream and beat until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Add the gelatin mixture and 1/4 c of the lemon curd you prepared earlier. Beat until smooth and airy, about 3 minutes. Pour into the cooled crust and smooth the top over.
For the topping:
You can use a teaspoon and dollop the remaining curd on top of the cheesecake, or you can use a ziploc bag with the end snipped off to create lines. Drag a knife through the curd to create your desired effect.
Refrigerate for at least 6 hours. Enjoy!

The Pioneer Woman’s Pecan Pie

Need a quick, easy last minute recipe?!? Make this recipe...it is the Pioneer Woman’s Pecan Pie recipe. So yummy!
MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! Hope you have a wonderful time with your family this week.
Pecan Pie
Ingredients:
1 unbaked pie crust
1 cup white sugar
2 tbsp. brown sugar
¼ tsp. salt
1 cup corn syrup (i used light)
1/3 cup melted butter
3 eggs, beaten
¼ tsp. vanilla
1 heaping cup chopped pecans
Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Lay pie crust in a 9-inch pie plate. Trim and decoratively fold the edges. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine sugar, brown sugar, salt, corn syrup, butter, eggs and vanilla. Whisk until well-combined.
Pour chopped pecans in an even layer on the bottom of the unbaked pie shell. Pour the syrup mixture over the top of the pecans. Allow to stand about 20 seconds to let pecans float to the top.
Bake for 50 minutes, being careful not to burn pecans or crust. (if you need to, lay some foil over the top to prevent burning) Allow to cool for several hours or overnight before serving.