Sunday, December 27, 2009

Giant Sugar Cookies

(I got the picture off the site, I didn't take it)

I have to admit something slightly unheard of.. I don't like sugar cookies, well at least not the usual type. You know the type that you roll out and cut and then frost. I don't know why it's like a snowball of sugar slamming you in the face, just too much sugar... but I love these sugar cookies. These are not the type that you roll and cut, they are like the ones you might get at a bakery, with the sugar sprinkled on top... oh and I promise these are yummy. One of my five top cookie recipes!

**Found on Martha Stewart Website**

Giant Sugar Cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup sour cream

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees, with one rack in upper third and another in lower third. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda; set aside.
2.Using an electric mixer on medium-high, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 2 to 4 minutes. Add egg and vanilla; beat well to combine.
3.With mixer on low, add half the flour mixture, followed by sour cream, then remaining flour mixture; mix just until smooth. (Dough will be stiff; you may need to finish mixing it by hand with a wooden spoon.)
4.Drop mounds of dough, each equal to about 3 tablespoons, 3 to 4 inches apart,(I did regular sized cookies instead of giant ones.. like a regular spoon full) onto two ungreased baking sheets; sprinkle with sugar. Bake until edges of cookies are just firm and tops are barely beginning to brown, 20 to 25 minutes, rotating sheets once halfway through. Transfer cookies to a rack to cool.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Pork Barbacoa Burritos or Salad

This is pretty amazing! I have had the recipe for a long time but haven't tried it because it seemed like a lot of work, but it was really easy. Basically you just throw the roast in the crockpot and you dump stuff on top and then the time making the dressing which was easy

Pork Barbacoa Burritos or Salad

Tomatillo Dressing

1 package Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix
1 C. Mayonnaise
1 C. chopped Cilantro
2 cloves Garlic
3 Tomatillos (fresh or canned- found on ethnic foods aisle)
1/3 cup Buttermilk
1/4 tsp. Cayenne Pepper
Put all the ingredients into a blender. Blend until smooth.

**I made the rice but I think you could just cook it regular and it would still taste fine if you want to save time from this step**
4 tsp. Chicken Bouillon
4 tsp. Minced Garlic
1/2 bunch Cilantro
1 can diced Green Chilies
3/4 tsp. Salt
1 Tbs. Butter
1/2 Onion, chopped
3 cups Rice (not instant)

Put chicken bouillon, garlic, cilantro, diced green chilies, salt, butter & onion in a blender & puree until smooth. Poor into saucepan & add 5 cups water and bring to a boil. Add rice & simmer for 30 minutes.

**It seems like a long time to cook it so I never tried it, but it actually turned out perfect, I just stuck the roast in the night before at 11 and then it was ready at 5 for dinner the next day and I honestly hardly had to do anything**
Pork Barbacoa
5-6 pounds Pork Roast
1 Tbs. Cumin
1 C. Brown Sugar
12 ounces Taco Sauce
20 ounces Coca Cola

Place roast in a crock pot and add water halfway up roast. Cook on low for 12 hours. Drain out the water & add the remaining ingredients, then cook for 4 more hours. Shred the pork and cook for 2 more hours.
Serve in either tortilla or on salad.

Friday, December 11, 2009

The best ham ever!!!

This really was yummy and WAY easy and believe it or not it was better the next day! It wasn't dry at all!

Maple Brown Sugar Ham in the Slow Cooker

**found on my Kitchen Cafe**

7-8 pound bone-in spiral-cut ham
1 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup all natural maple syrup (yes, please use pure maple syrup and not pancake syrup)
2 cups pineapple juice

Use a 6-7 quart slow cooker. Unwrap the ham and discard flavor packet. Place the ham into the slow cooker stoneware, flat-side down. Rub brown sugar on all sides. Pour on maple syrup and pineapple juice. Cover and cook on low for 4-5 hours. An hour before serving, baste ham with the collected juices from the bottom of the slow cooker. When cooking is done, remove carefully and let it rest on a cutting board for 10 minutes before carving.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


Gourmet Cupcake Platter
Excerpted from 101 Cupcakes in 10 Minutes
by Wendy Paul

Put a twist on the traditional Christmas cookie plate by offering your friends these gourmet cakes. And don't worry about spending hours in the kitchen—they're all a snap to make!

Chocolate Cream
Chocolate cream cupcakes are simple to prepare, yet elegant and full of rich chocolate flavors.

1 box chocolate cake mix
3 eggs
1 cup sour cream
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup grated chocolate, for garnish

Mix together cake mix, eggs, and sour cream until smooth. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-18 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Cool completely on a wire rack. When cooled, cut the top off and pull out some of the cake filling, leaving a solid wall of cake to support the filling. Whip the cream until stiff peaks form and add powdered sugar. Add whipped cream by the spoonful to the holes of all cupcakes and top with cupcake lid. Frost with desired frosting and garnish with grated chocolate.

Frosting suggestion: Chocolate Ganache

1 cup heavy whipping cream
12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chunks or chips

Heat cream in a saucepan until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat and pour over chocolate in a mixing bowl. Stir to mix together. You can pout it over your cakes warm, or allow to cool slightly and be spread like frosting.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup
My neighbor said these cupcakes are sinful. But believe me, they are worth every bite.

1 box chocolate cake mix
3 eggs
1 cup milk
1 bag chocolate peanut butter cups

Mix together cake mix, eggs, and milk. Pour 2 tablespoons batter into paper liners and place a peanut butter cup on top. Fill paper liners 3/4 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-18 minutes or until the cake springs back when lightly touched. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack. When completely cooled, frost.

Frosting suggestion: Peanut Butter
1 cup peanut butter (chunky or smooth)
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
3-4 tablespoons milk or cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine peanut butter and butter in a large bowl, mixing together until light and fluffy. Stop mixer before adding sugar. Add sugar, 3 tablespoons milk or cream, and vanilla. Start slow and mix together, gradually increasing the speed. Mix until smooth and creamy. Add 1 tablespoon milk or cream if frosting is too thick.

Gingerbread Cookie
Feel like you aren't getting enough gingerbread with the holidays? Now you have a new way to satisfy the craving!

1 box spice cake mix
3 eggs
1/3 cup molasses
1/3 cup oil
1/2 cup milk

Mix together cake mix, eggs, molasses, oil, and milk. Pour into paper liners and fill 3/4 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-18 minutes or until the cake springs back when lightly touched.

Frosting suggestion: Orange Cream Cheese

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
3 3/4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon orange extract
1/4 cup frozen orange concentrate

Beat cream cheese and butter until smooth and light. Stop mixer and add sugar, orange extract, and orange concentrate. Start mixer on slow and gradually increase the speed until frosting is fluffy. Frost and refrigerate.

Candy Cane
Make these for any Christmas gathering, and please your friends and family. The white chocolate chunks and crushed peppermint candy add to the taste and texture of the little cake.

1 box white cake mix
3 eggs
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 recipe vanilla buttercream frosting

Peppermint candy for garnish

1 cup white chocolate chunks for garnish

Mix together cake mix, eggs, milk, and vanilla. Pour batter into the paper liners and fill 3/4 full.
Bake at 350 degrees for 15-18 minutes or until cakes are light golden brown. Remove from oven and cool completely on a wire rack. Frost with vanilla buttercream frosting and top generously with white chocolate chunks and crushed peppermint candies.

Vanilla Buttercream

1/2 cup butter, softened
3 3/4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
3-4 tablespoons milk or cream
2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Place butter in a large mixing bowl. Beat until light and fluffy, about 30 seconds. Stop beating before adding sugar to avoid a large mess. Add sugar, 3 tablespoons milk or cream, and vanilla extract. Beat frosting starting on slow, increasing yours peed until frosting is nice and creamy. Add up to 1 more tablespoon milk or cream if frosting is too thick.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Hearty Chicken Noodle Soup

2 chicken breasts
2 cubes chicken bouillon
3 cups chicken stock
2 cups chopped carrots
2 cups chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 cans cream of chicken soup
1/4 cup evaporated milk
4 cups cooked old-fashioned noodles (sold at most grocery stores)

Boil chicken in water. Then cut into bite-sized pieces. Mix bouillon, stock, carrots, celery, and onion. Cook for 20 minutes. Add the rest and heat through.

Hearty Vegetable Soup

1 pound ground beef, cooked
1 can diced tomatoes (don't drain)
1 can corn, drained
3 potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 carrots, peeled and diced
2 stalks celery, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
2 cups water
4 cubes beef bouillon
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
Combine all ingredients in a crock pot. Cover and cook on low heat for 6-8 hours.

Fast Rising Rolls

1/2 cup warm water
2 Tbsp. yeast
1 Tbsp. sugar

6 cups flour
1/2 cup powdered milk
1/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. salt

Make a hole in flour mixture and add:
1/2 cup oil
2 beaten eggs
2 cups hot water
dissolved yeast

Mix together evenly and let sit for one hour. Divide dough in half and roll out into a circle. Brush with melted butter and cut into wedges with a pizza cutter (12-16). Roll up from wide edge. Let rise 15-20 minutes. Bake in 375 degree oven for about 10 minutes. Repeat with remaining half of dough.

*Add orange zest to the melted butter that you brush on top at the end to make orange rolls.

Focaccia Bread

1 1/2 cups warm water
1 Tbsp. yeast
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
3 cups flour
2 Tbsp. melted butter
1 Tbsp. dried basil
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Soften yeast in water with sugar for ten minutes. Mix in salt and flour by hand. Let stand in bowl 10 minutes. Roll out dough into big circle. Spread melted butter on top. Sprinkle with basil and cheese. Let rise for 30 minutes. Bake for 20 minutes at 375 degrees.


This is Katy's recipe and it is heavenly. You'll never go back to cornbread from a box again.

1 cube softened butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 cup cornmeal
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup 'fat-full' sour cream (resist the urge to use light or fat free, trust me)

Grease pan. Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, cornmeal, sour cream and milk. Mix dry ingredients together then add to wet mixture slowly. Bake @ 375 degrees for 25 minutes.

Artichoke Dip

1 8-ounce package cream cheese
1 cup mayo
1 cup sour cream
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 14-ounce cans artichoke hearts

Mix together. Put in small casserole dish and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Serve with your favorite crackers.

Christmas Wassail

1 gallon apple juice
1 can frozen orange juice concentrate
1 can frozen lemonade concentrate
1 cup sugar

Combine in a spice bag:
1 Tbsp. whole cloves
1 Tbsp. whole allspice
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 cinnamon stick

Combine all ingredients in crock pot and let it heat up on HIGH or heat on the stove and simmer for at least 30 minutes.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

French Peasant Bread

1 Tbsp. yeast
2 cups warm water
1 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. salt
4 cups flour
corn meal
melted butter

Combine yeast, water, sugar, and salt in bowl and stir until dissolved. Add flour and stir until blended. Do not knead. Cover and rise one hour or until doubled in size.
Flour hands, remove dough from bowl and place in two rounds on an oiled cookie sheet sprinkled with corn meal. Les rise an additional hour.
Brush top with melted butter and bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and brush again with melted butter. Serve warm.

Favorite Pizza Crust

1 Tbsp. yeast
1/4 cup warm water
3 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. honey
3/4 cup cold water

Dissolve yeast in warm water and let stand for 10 minutes. In mixing bowl, combine flour, salt, olive oil, honey and cold water. Add yeast mixture and knead with dough hook (or by hand) for 5 minutes. Form into a ball and place in oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise about 1 hour.

Divide dough in half and shape each half into a 12" round. Prebake crusts for 10 minutes at 450 degrees before adding toppings. After topping pizzas, bake again for 10-12 minutes. Makes 2, 12" pizzas.

Pumpkin Pancakes and Vanilla Syrup

2 cups Bisquick baking mix
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 eggs
1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
1/2 cup pumpkin
2 Tbsp. oil
1 tsp. vanilla

Mix dry and wet separately, then combine to make batter.

Vanilla Syrup:
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk*
1 cube butter
1/2 tsp. baking soda
Combine all and boil for one minute.
1 tsp. vanilla
*no buttermilk? Make your own by adding 2 tsp vinegar or lemon juice to 1/2 cup milk and let sit for a few minutes.