Thursday, September 29, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Latte

This is wonderful.  Seriously a great drink and made my morning.  I am not a regular coffee drinker.  I adore coffee, but I don't do well with caffeine, so coffee is a treat instead of a daily thing.  Well, this morning, I decided that what those pumpkin snickerdoodles needed was a cup of tea, or better yet, a pumpkin spice latte!
So, I did my norm. . .  looked up some recipes on the internet and made my own.  Now the pumpkin milk concoction is awesome on its own and if you have kids, I think they would love that alone as a warm drink.  Mine were fighting over my leftovers.  So, maybe double this recipe and warm some up for the kiddies?  This makes enough for 2 or three cups of joe, so you will have some leftovers for a second cup, or a cup tomorrow.  And you will want another cup.  I am strategizing now on how I can justify a cookie and latte as my lunch. 

adapted from

  • strong coffee (2 TBSP of coffee per cup of water when brewing)
  • 1/3- 1/2 cup (I did a bit more because I love pumpkin) pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • dash nutmeg
  • 2 cups milk (I used skim but can use almond, rice or even half and half if you dare!)
  • 3 TBSP sugar (I like mine sweet so I used 4 or 5 TBSP, but I have a wicked sweet tooth)
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Brew your coffee.  Combine milk, sugar, vanilla, spices, and pumpkin in a blender or with a whisk until frothy.  Warm over stove or in a measuring cup.  I only warmed what I would need for my coffee in the microwave.  Whisk again to make frothy and do about equal parts coffee and milk concoction.  Top with whipped cream and a sprinkle of nutmeg or cinnamon.    Note: Spices will not disintegrate completely.
*update-  I subbed out 2 TBSP of molasses and 1 TBSP of honey for the sugar and unsweetened vanilla almond milk or the milk.  Still delicious and the kids loved it just as much when I warmed up just the milk concoction!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pasta with Pumpkin Sage Cream Sauce

This was a nice change for the traditional cream sauce.  The sauce was thick and creamy and had a hint of fall spice, a bit of sweetness, and was tasty.  Next time I make it I will add a veggie of some sort, because I am a veggie girl and missed having a veggie in my pasta.  This is a great way to sneak some vitamin packed pumpkin into your kids!  A side note:  my daughter could taste and did not care for the cinnamon in this.  I liked it in it.  So maybe start small and work your way up if you opt to add it.

adapted from Washington Post

  • 1 sweet onion, minced
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 3 TSBP fresh sage, chopped fine, or 2 tsp. dry sage
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon (opt.)
  • fresh grated nutmeg or 1/4-1/2 tsp
  • 3-4 TBSP white wine to deglaze
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup half and half (fat-free works fine)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta according to directions (salt the water).  Heat oil in a large skillet or saucepan over medium high heat.  Add onion and cook for about 8 minutes, reducing heat to medium after about 3 minutes.  Add garlic and cook another few minutes.  Add wine to deglaze or if pan seems dry.  Stir in pumpkin puree, chicken broth, half and half and 1/2 the sage.  Reduce heat to medium low and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until sauce get thickened.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Add nutmeg and cinnamon.  Add about half the cheese and remaining sage and pasta to pan.  Mix.  Top with remaining cheese for serving.

Pumpkin Snickerdoodles

I think calling these snickerdoodles is a little bit of a misnomer.  While these cookies are absolutely delicious, and may resemble the taste of a snickerdoodle, they are very different in texture.  This is far more cakey and less crunchy/chewy cookie.  However, they are still great and I would totally make them again.  I added cream of tartar to the recipe, because a "true" snickerdoodle has cream of tartar ;-)  and I was glad I did.  Also, a side note-- as a lover of chewy and undercooked cookies, these really are not very good unless they are fully cooked.  I underbaked one batch and while we suffered through and ate every last one, they were not as good as the fully baked variety.   These are FABULOUS with a cup of coffee or tea.  I had one for breakfast ;-) So, here is the recipe for this great cookie!

original recipe from
I found it on:

 Yield: about 3-4 dozen cookies


For the cookies:
  • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
For the coating:
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • Dash of allspice


In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cream of tartar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Whisk to blend and set aside.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugars on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes.  Blend in the pumpkin puree.  Beat in the egg and vanilla until incorporated.  With the mixer on low speed add in the dry ingredients and mix just until incorporated.  Cover and chill the dough for at least 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  Line baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.  Combine the sugar and spices for the coating in a bowl and mix to blend.  Scoop the dough (about 2½ tablespoons) and roll into a ball.  Coat the dough ball in the sugar-spice mixture and place on the prepared baking sheet.  Repeat with the remaining dough to fill the sheets, spacing the dough balls 2-3 inches apart.  Dip the bottom of a flat, heavy-bottomed drinking glass in water, then in the sugar-spice mixture, and use the bottom to flatten the dough balls slightly. 

 Recoat the bottom of the glass in the sugar-spice mixture as needed.
Bake the cookies for 11-14 minutes, or until just set and baked through.  Let cool on the baking sheets about 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.  Repeat with the remaining dough.  Store in an airtight container.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Sweet Potato Pancakes

These got lost somewhere in the mix of life.  I even deleted the pictures from my computer, only to realize I didn't post this recipe.  These pancakes were great.  We all really enjoyed them.  Very easy and delicious!  And now you can buy sweet potato puree in the grocery store which makes it that much easier to make them.  No excuses! ;-)


  • 1 1/4 cup AP flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 TBSP brown sugar
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 2 cups milk
  • 4 tsp melted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup sweet potato puree

In a medium sized bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.  In a large bowl, whisk together wet ingredients.  Whisk dry ingredients into wet until combined.  Preheat skillet on med, and use ladle to scoop batter onto skillet.  Let cook until bubbles on top, then turn with spatula and cook until golden brown. 

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Chewy Triple Chocolate Cookies

These are chewy, and very chocolatey!  Normally, cookies after 1 or 2 day lose their appeal and start to taste stale.  These are still excellent 2 days later.  But I am surprised they have stuck around that long.  This makes a lot of cookies, so brace yourself,  and take the chocolate plunge!  Make sure you have a glass of milk on stand by! Found this recipe off, but it is originally from Baking Illustrated.

recipe adapted from Baking Illustrated

Yield: 48 cookies


  • 2 cups (10 oz.) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (1 1/2 oz.) Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 13 oz. semisweet chocolate, chopped (I used a mixture of semisweet and dark because it’s what I had on hand)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. instant coffee or espresso powder
  • 10 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened but still cool
  • 1 1/2 cups packed (10 1/2 oz.) light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (3 1/2 oz.) granulated sugar
  • 2 cups chocolate chunks

Combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.  Whisk together; set aside.
Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over simmering water until completely melted and smooth; remove from the heat.  (Alternatively, microwave the chocolate in 30 second intervals, mixing thoroughly in between, until melted and smooth.)  In a small mixing bowl, combine the eggs, vanilla and instant coffee granules; stir well with a fork to dissolve; set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter at medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 5 seconds.  Mix in the sugars until well combined, about 45 seconds – the mixture will look granular.  Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually beat in the egg mixture until incorporated, about 45 seconds.  Add the chocolate to the bowl in a steady stream and continue beating until combined, about 40 seconds.  Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula.  With the mixer at low speed, add the dry ingredients and mix just until incorporated, being careful not to over-beat.  Fold in the chocolate chips with a rubber spatula.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature until the consistency is scoopable and fudge-like, about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350° F.  Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.  Scoop the dough onto the prepared baking sheets with a cookie dough scoop, spacing the dough balls about 1 1/2 inches apart.
Bake until the edges of the cookies have just began to set but the centers are still very soft, about 10-12 minutes, rotating the sheets halfway through baking.  Cool the cookies on the sheets about 10 minutes, transfer to cooling racks and allow to cool completely.   Cool the baking sheets before baking more batches with the remaining dough.

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes with Apples and Streusel

My family loved these pancakes.  I was concerned because they certainly did not look pretty.  I thought maybe it would be an unsuccessful experiment.  But nope... not pretty, but very tasty! (Sorry about the bad picture, I tried to show both sides of the pancake.) A wonderful fall pancake! It has all things fall in it:  pumpkin, apples and spice.  They are a bit time consuming, but I will be making these again.  They are huge pancakes when you spread the batter, and each of my kids ate 2!  Even my 2 year old.  YUM!


adapted from Annie-eats

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 large egg
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil or melted butter
  • 2 apples, peeled, cored and sliced very thin
  • 3 TBSP butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 TBSP flour
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon


Peel and core apples, then slice very thin.  In a small  bowl, mix streusel ingredients with fingers of fork.  Set aside.
In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and spices and stir with a whisk to combine.  Mix together the buttermilk, pumpkin puree, vanilla, egg and oil or butter in a small bowl.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and whisk together just until combine.  (If the batter is too thick, thin with a little bit of milk until it seems workable to you.)
Preheat the oven to 200° F.  Have an oven safe plate or serving dish ready.  Heat a greased skillet or griddle over medium heat.  Once the skillet is hot, add a ladleful of batter to the pan, spreading batter out with the backside of the ladle to make the pancake larger.   Place slices of apple around the uncooked side, fanning out from the middle.  Let cook until bubbles begin to form on the top surface.  Carefully flip with a spatula and then sprinkle tops with streusel.  Let cook for a few minutes until apples are tender.  Transfer the cooked pancake to the oven safe dish, and place in the oven to keep warm.  Repeat with the rest of the batter until it has all been cooked, regreasing the pan as needed.  Serve warm maple syrup, and/or whipped cream.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Pesto Crock Pot Chicken

I have to be creative with my evening meals because my kids have lots of events in the evenings.  Karate 2x per week, Dance 4x, gymnastics 2x, piano 1x and church 2x... whew!  Because this cuts into my evening meal prep time, I will be doing some creative crock pot cooking.
This was a very tasty dish.  My son said he didn't like artichokes by themselves but they were good when he ate it with the rest of the dish.  My husband said it was "zesty" and "good"....  how are those for descriptive words?  Anyway, it was very good, and my kids all ate it very well, which is the true test! 


  • 3-4 boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 3 oz. cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1 TBSP minced garlic (3-4 cloves)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes drained
  • 1 can quartered artichokes drained
  • 3/4 cup pesto, divided
  • 2-3 TBSP cream
  •  handful parmesan cheese
  • couple handfuls of mozzarella
  • 1 lb. pasta

Place chicken, cream cheese, garlic and wine in crock pot.  Put in 1/4 cup pesto in.  Cover, turn on high.   After an hour, turn the chicken, and stir sauce. Let cook another hour (2 hours total so far).  Cut chicken into chunks.
Add artichokes, tomatoes, cream and remainder of pesto. Let cook for another 1/2 hour, stirring periodically.  Add parmesan cheese and mozzarella to top.  Cover and let cook another 1/2 hour without stirring.  Serve over pasta.

BBQ Chicken Pizza with Caramelized Onions

This pizza is delicious.  It came together in a flash and was probably the best BBQ chicken pizza I have ever had.   Melt in your mouth, the perfect amount of sweetness and savory.  Will be making this again!


  • 1 pizza dough
  • handful of cornmeal for pizza peel
  • 1/4-1/3 cup of favorite BBQ sauce (add as much looks good to you)
  • 2/3 cup shredded chicken (I used leftover roaster chicken from Sam's)
  • 1/2 cup shredded gruyere cheese (or gouda)
  • 1 cup mozzarella
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. butter
  • 3 TBSP fresh chopped cilantro

Preheat oven to 450. Place pizza stone in oven (or spread pizza on pizza sheet).  Slice onion in thin slices.  Add into a small skillet, add olive oil, butter and sliced onions. Cook over med-high until onions are browning and tender and sweet, reducing heat to medium if necessary.
  If using pizza stone, sprinkle pizza stone with cornmeal.  Spread dough and smear the bbq sauce over the dough.  Sprinkle chicken over bbq sauce.  spinkle cheeses over chicken.  Top the cheese with the onions.  Cook for 8-12 minutes, until crust is browning on bottom and top is golden.  Sprinkle pizza with cilantro.  Cut it and enjoy!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Applesauce Bread

A moist bread, full of raisins and cinnamon flavor.  Small chunks of apples would also be delicious in the bread.  Comes together in minutes.

adapted from Plainville Turkey Farms

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 TBSP cinnamon
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups raisins (can substitue chunks of apples for half)
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups applesauce
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • extra cinnamon and sugar for sprinkling (about 2 TBSP sugar-1 tsp cinnamon?)
Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour 2 bread pans or use baking cooking spray.
Mix together all dry ingredients: flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, sugar and salt.  Add raisins and stir to separate and coat raisins.  Beat eggs until bubbles form on top.  Add vanilla, oil, applesauce and sour cream.  Whisk until thick and custard like.  Add wet ingredients to dry and mix until dry ingredients disappear.  Pour equal amounts into bread pans.
Sprinkle top with some cinnamon/sugar mixture.  Bake for 45-60. (I took mine out @ 45 minutes and the center of the loaf there was a tiny bit that was not cooked enough even though my toothpick came out clean)  Cut and enjoy.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Broccoli Casserole

This has been a favorite in our family for a long time.  Super easy, super quick and super delicious.  And it takes care of a starch and veggie in one dish!  Enjoy!

from my mom: Ann

  • 1 box stove top stuffing
  • 1 lb. Broccoli florets (about 2 bunches)
  • 1 can cheddar cheese soup
  • milk (fill  1 soup can with milk)
  • 8 oz. sharp cheddar cheese

Prepare stuffing according to directions.  Steam broccoli until just begins to get tender (about 5 minutes).  Preheat oven to 350.   In a 9x13, place stuffing on bottom.  Top with broccoli.  Mix together cheese soup, milk and cheese.  Pour over stuffing.  Bake for 30 minutes covered and 15 minutes uncovered, until bubbly and beginning to brown.

Oven Roasted Potatoes

These potatoes are wonderful.  My son said they taste like a french fry.  I laughed.  Much more complex in flavor than a french fry and a million times better, but whatever gets it down!  The outside has a bit of crunch and the inside is soft like a french fry though!  Love these potatoes!  A wonderful side dish and super easy!

  • 2 lbs. red potatoes, cut bite size
  • 2-3 TBSP olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2-3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 tsp herbes de provence
  • fresh cracked pepper
  • 4-5 sprigs fresh rosemary

Preheat oven to 400-425 (can cook at either temperature.  Cut potatoes in bite size pieces.  Place on cookie sheet and drizzle with the olive oil.  Sprinkle all spices, salt and pepper over top and toss with hands to coat potatoes with it all.  Place in oven for about an hour, turning every 15 minutes for even browning.

*can use Italian herbs instead of rosemary and herbes de provence and add a couple handfuls of parmesan cheese halfway through cooking for variation.*

Pumpkin Roll

A wonderful dessert.  I was intimidated to make this.  But it is not really that hard, and very pretty.  My brilliant husband didn't understand how I got the filling in there.  It is so nice to be smarter than him in one area!  ;-)
They say the pumpkin roll gets better as it sits, but I think it was pretty good from the start.  Will definitely be making this again! 

adapted from:
  •  3 eggs
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 2/3 Cup Pumpkin
  • 1 tsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 Cup Flour
  • 1 tsp. Baking Powder
  • ½ tsp. Salt
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. Ginger
  • 1 tsp. Nutmeg

  • 1 8oz Cream Cheese- softened
  • 1/4 Cup Butter – soften
  • 1 Cup Powder Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. Vanilla

Beat eggs on high for 5 minutes.  While that is mixing measure out dry ingredients, and whisk.   Stream in sugar slowly.  Add pumpkin, lemon juice and vanilla.  Mix.  Turn mixer to low and add dry ingredients slowly.   Mix until incorporated.
Grease and flour cookie sheet – pour batter rectangular shape (don’t fill entire length of the cookie sheet, it makes it easier to get off later) Bake 350 for 15-18 minutes.

Sprinkle 1/4-1/2 C Powder Sugar on terrycloth towel. I would put more just to ensure that your roll doesn't stick to your cloth. Loosen with spatula and flip on to the towel, break off any crusty ends and eat them, and gently roll with towel and let cool in fridge.  (Make sure entire thing is loose or you will have a catastrophe like I did with my first.) After about 30-40 minutes, unroll, put in filling, and roll back up.  Sprinkle powdered sugar on a piece of wax paper and wrap it tightly and twist the ends of the wax paper and refrigerate. It's really hard to not crack the dough when rolling but if it does don't stress. Also, slightly dampening the cloth helps. It'll all go back together when you put it in the fridge. It is way better the next day after it's been completely refrigerated. Cut into 1 inch slices to serve.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Baked Pumpkin Oatmeal with Streusel Topping


 This oatmeal is delicious.  The best part is the topping so don't skimp on it!  Not too sweet, full of pumpkin flavor.  It is like oatmeal in a cake form.  I suppose you could pour some milk over it as well.  We did just syrup and we enjoyed it very much! 


adapted from


  • 2 3/4 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • packed 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 apple- peeled and cut into small chunks
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsweetened pumpkin puree
  • 3 cups milk
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
  • 2 TBSP softened butter
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 9x9 baking dish with nonstick spray.
In a medium bowl, combine oats, sugar, raisins, spices, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, milk, eggs and vanilla extract. Add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients; mix until combined. Pour into prepared dish. Put in oven.  Meanwhile, prepare streusel topping.  

Bake 30 minutes, then sprinkle the streusel on top. Return to oven and bake an additional 20 to 30 minutes, until the oatmeal feels set and firm and streusel is crunchy looking.
Serve warm with plenty of warmed syrup.

Breaded Chicken Stuffed with Mozzarella

 I cannot believe I did not post this recipe sooner.  It is an old stand-by for me.  I just love the combination of flavors and wanna steal the cheese out of every chicken breast in the pan.  Make sure to spoon the wine over the chicken after you put it on your plate.  It makes the dish.
Originally the chicken also had broccoli and pine nuts in the center, which was very elegant, but I just like it this way better and it is easier.  I have also done it with sun-dried tomatoes and provolone which is also delicious!


  •  2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups Italian bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  • 8 oz mozzerella, sliced
  • 3/4 cup white wine (I like Moscato for this dish)
  • 4 TBSP butter

Preheat oven to 375.  Cut chicken in half lengthwise to make it thinner.  In a large bowl place eggs and whisk.  In a shallow dish place bread crumbs and mix with parmesan cheese.  Dip each piece of chicken in the egg mixture, then into the bread crumb mixture.  Place in baking dish.  Place a few slices of mozzarella cheese in each breast and close chicken around the cheese. 

Secure with toothpicks or bamboo skewers.  Cut butter into pats and place in dish around chicken.  Place in oven, cook for 10-15 minutes and then add wine.  Bake for another 30 minutes or until chicken starts to brown, and cheese is browning and bubbly.

Baked Pumpkin Spice Donuts (Doughnuts) with Cinnamon Vanilla Glaze

So, I bought a donut pan about two months ago and have yet to use it.  My kids love donuts, (what kid doesn't?) and I just have not gotten around to making them.  This was the morning I broke in the pan.
We devoured these as a family. Very sweet and tender.  My husband said they were almost like a mini bundt cake.   The glaze was so good I wanted to like my plate.  How is that for honesty? 

yield: about 10
          ADAPTED FROM


  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 TBSP. milk
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Sift the flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, nutmeg and cinnamon in a small bowl.  Set aside.  Cream together the brown sugar, canned pumpkin, eggs, milk, butter and vanilla extract until the butter is well incorporated.  With your mixer on medium low speed, or by hand like I did, slowly add the dry sifted ingredients to the wet mixture.  Mix until just barely combined.  Be careful of over mixing.
Spray the donut pan with cooking spray.  Put a few big spoonfuls of batter into a sandwich bag.  Cut about 1/2" off a corner and pipe into each donut mold the pumpkin batter.  Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until the exterior springs back when touched.  Allow to cool for a few minutes then dip into cinnamon glaze.

Cinnamon Vanilla Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
1 TBSP. milk
½ tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp vanilla
Mix until smooth and creamy.  The glaze should pour easily from a spoon.  You may need to add additional milk or powder sugar to get the right consistency.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Peanut Butter Brownie Trifle

  TThis is
  dgdfvdfvdf T Peanut Butter Brownie Tri
This is a completely decadent and sinful dessert.   A few bites is enough and it will feed an army.  But it is so pretty and so good.  Just do some squats while it's baking.  Then you can have a few more bites! The pictures did not come out very well, but it is very pretty to serve.

From Taste of Home

20 60


  • 1 fudge brownie mix (13-inch x 9-inch pan size)
  • 1 package (10 ounces) peanut butter chips
  • 2 packages (13 ounces each) miniature peanut butter cups
  • 4 cups cold milk
  • 2 packages (5.1 ounces each) instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cartons (8 ounces each) frozen whipped topping, thawed


Prepare brownie batter according to package directions; stir in peanut butter chips. Bake in a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out with moist crumbs (do not overbake). Cool on a wire rack; cut into 3/4-in. pieces.
Cut peanut butter cups in half; set aside 1/3 cup for garnish. In a large bowl, whisk milk and pudding mixes for 2 minutes. Let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set. Add peanut butter and vanilla; mix well. Fold in 1-1/2 cartons whipped topping.
Place a third of the brownies in a 5-qt. glass bowl; top with a third of the remaining peanut butter cups. Spoon a third of the pudding mixture over the top. Repeat layers twice. Cover with remaining whipped topping; garnish with reserved peanut butter cups. Refrigerate until chilled. 
 Yield: 20 servings (1 cup each).

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Old Fashioned Apple Pie

I love apple pie.  I see it at the grocery store, or club stores and it just looks so good.  So, every now and then I will buy one because I  am too lazy to make a homemade.  And everytime I ask myself, do I really like apple pie?  The reason being, the apples are always crunchy, totally lacking in flavor, the crust is chewy, and it is just gross.  So, several days later, the pie goes into a landfill.  Such a waste of perfectly good apples.

This pie is just the best apple pie ever.  The flavors are superb and it will have everyone coming back for seconds.  I like my apples to almost melt in my mouth.  If you like firm apples, well then, just cook it less, or skip the microwave part.  But, it remains, that the flavors are great.  Go ahead and try it!

You will wonder how the crust for this pie could be flaky and tender, because it rolls out like a dream.  I don't know is the answer, but it comes out flaky and tender every time.

from America's Test Kitchen

  • 12 oz (2 1/2 cups) flour
  • 1 TBSP sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 16 TBSP very cold butter, cubed
  • 3 TBSP sour cream
  • 1/4-1/3 cup ice water

Working in a food processor, pulse together flour, sugar and salt.  Add the cubed butter (right from fridge or freezer) and pulse for 1 second (full second here folks... one-one-thousand)  10 times.  Mix sour cream and 1/4 water to start.  Dump in half.  Pulse a few times.  Add the rest.  Pulse until it just comes together.  (took me 12 times).  Add water by 1/2 TBSP if it seems dry.

Divide in 2 pieces and wrap each piece in plastic wrap.  Put in fridge for at least a 1/2 hour.  (I prepare my apples here) Use flour and wax paper when rolling out to prevent sticking.

from my Aunt Mary

  •  10-12 apples, cored, peeled and sliced thin
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3 1/2 TBSP flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg
  • pinch salt
  • touch of vanilla (opt.)
  • squeeze of lemon juice (opt)
  • 2-3 TBSP butter
  • 2 TBSP milk

Preheat oven to 400.  Slice apples as thin as you can without losing a finger.  I use half Granny Smith and half Gala.  (It will seem like a lot of apples, but after you steal a few slices here and there and cooking in the microwave, they cook down.) If you like softer apples in your pie, put them in a microwave safe dish and microwave for 4 minutes.  This will help them release some juices and help ensure a tender apple.

In a small bowl, mix sugars, flour, and spices.  Squeeze lemon juice and vanilla over apples.  Mix apples with sugar mixture.  Roll out crust.  Place in pie plate and fill with apple mixture.  Put pats of the butter over apples.  Roll top and cover apples.  Cut some slits to vent.  Brush top with milk.  Sprinkle top with granulated sugar.  Bake at 400 for 20 minutes.  Reduce heat to 350 and cook until crust is golden brown and knife goes through apples with ease.  If necessary, cover crust to stop browning but to let the apples continue cooking. Bake at least 1 hour, but usually more.