Sunday, June 29, 2008

Danish Braid with Quadruple Berry-Rhubarb Filling

Danish Braid with Quadruple Berry-Rhubarb Filling

This is my first month as a member of the "Daring Bakers" group. I joined this group because they only do one challenge a month and it is usually some baking technique that I have not done before. This is exciting for me, as it allows me to stretch out of my comfort zone and improve my knowledge of baking! This month's challenge was a Danish Braid. The actual recipe was not difficult, just a lot of steps and waiting. I made a Quadruple Berry-Rhubarb filling. I made this for my Dad for Father's Day and I think he enjoyed it!


Makes 2-1/2 pounds dough

For the dough (Detrempe)
1 ounce fresh yeast or 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/2 cup whole milk
1/3 cup sugar
Zest of 1 orange, finely grated (I used lemon)
3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped
2 large eggs, chilled
1/4 cup fresh orange juice (I used lemon)
3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt

For the butter block (Beurrage)
1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour

Combine yeast and milk in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix on low speed. Slowly add sugar, orange(lemon) zest, cardamom, vanilla extract, vanilla seeds, eggs, and orange(lemon) juice. Mix well. Change to the dough hook and add the salt with the flour, 1 cup at a time, increasing speed to medium as the flour is incorporated. Knead the dough for about 5 minutes, or until smooth. You may need to add a little more flour if it is sticky. Transfer dough to a lightly floured baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Without a standing mixer: Combine yeast and milk in a bowl with a hand mixer on low speed or a whisk. Add sugar, orange(lemon) zest, cardamom, vanilla extract, vanilla seeds, eggs, and orange(lemon) juice and mix well. Sift flour and salt on your working surface and make a fountain. Make sure that the “walls” of your fountain are thick and even. Pour the liquid in the middle of the fountain. With your fingertips, mix the liquid and the flour starting from the middle of the fountain, slowly working towards the edges. When the ingredients have been incorporated start kneading the dough with the heel of your hands until it becomes smooth and easy to work with, around 5 to 7 minutes. You might need to add more flour if the dough is sticky.

1. Combine butter and flour in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat on medium speed for 1 minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle and then beat for 1 minute more, or until smooth and lump free. Set aside at room temperature.
2. After the detrempe has chilled 30 minutes, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough into a rectangle approximately 18 x 13 inches and ¼ inch thick. The dough may be sticky, so keep dusting it lightly with flour. Spread the butter evenly over the center and right thirds of the dough. Fold the left edge of the detrempe to the right, covering half of the butter. Fold the right third of the rectangle over the center third. The first turn has now been completed. Mark the dough by poking it with your finger to keep track of your turns, or use a sticky and keep a tally. Place the dough on a baking sheet, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
3. Place the dough lengthwise on a floured work surface. The open ends should be to your right and left. Roll the dough into another approximately 13 x 18 inch, ¼-inch-thick rectangle. Again, fold the left third of the rectangle over the center third and the right third over the center third. No additional butter will be added as it is already in the dough. The second turn has now been completed. Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.
4. Roll out, turn, and refrigerate the dough two more times, for a total of four single turns. Make sure you are keeping track of your turns. Refrigerate the dough after the final turn for at least 5 hours or overnight. The Danish dough is now ready to be used. If you will not be using the dough within 24 hours, freeze it. To do this, roll the dough out to about 1 inch in thickness, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and freeze. Defrost the dough slowly in the refrigerator for easiest handling. Danish dough will keep in the freezer for up to 1 month.

Quadruple Berry-Rhubarb Filling
3 c. mixed berries (I used strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries)
1 c. chopped rhubarb
1/4 c. flour
3/4 c. sugar

Toss fruit in flour/sugar mixture. Refrigerate overnight.

Here is what I did with the remaining dough. I rolled it out and sprinkled it with miniature chocolate chips. Then rolled it up and baked it. The finished product resembled a croissant with chocolate chips.

Reference: The Secrets of Baking by Sherry Yard

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Whole Wheat Pita Bread

This recipe was so easy and quick and the result was amazing! I buy whole wheat pitas at the grocery store regularly and these were a) cheaper, b) waaaaay better and c) way healthier! And it was actually a FUN recipe. Watching them puff up in the oven was so cool and being able to add my own herbs to the dough was awesome. The recipe is from

Whole Wheat Pita Bread

4 c. Whole wheat flour
1 T. dry yeast
1 1/4 c. warm water (120-130 degrees)
1/2 t. salt (optional)
Fresh herbs (optional)*I used 2 T. Chives

Preheat oven to 500°F.Sift together 2 cups of flour and the yeast.Add water and salt and mix well.Gradually add in the remaining flour just until the dough begins to clean the sides of the bowl. Once this happens, stop adding flour (so, you might not use all the flour the recipe calls for.).Knead the dough for about 4 or 5 minutes, or until dough is smooth and elastic. (While you're kneading, you can get creative and add in some herbs or spices, but only if you want to do that). Be careful not to over-knead the dough.Form dough into 10 balls.On a floured surface, roll each ball into a 5-6 inch circle, about 1/4 inch thick. (Be sure to sprinkle a little flour on both sides to prevent sticking).Place on a non-stick baking sheet and allow to rise 30 minutes, or until slightly raised.Just before you place the pan in the oven, flip each pita over on its other side.Bake on the bottom rack of the oven for 5 minutes. (The instant hot heat will help them puff up).When the pitas come out of the oven they will be hard, but they will soften as the cool.Store them, while they're still warm, in plastic baggies or an airtight container.Cut the pitas in half crosswise and stuff with your favorite fillings (beans and rice, taco fixings, thick stews, curries - anything goes).Pitas can be reheated in a 350°F oven or in the microwave.

Espresso Shortbread

This is my old trusty shortbread recipe that I've been making for years. I usually bake these at Christmastime with other goodies, but my husband will be home tomorrow after being gone for a week and shortbread is his favorite!

Espresso Shortbread
1 c. Softened butter
1/2 c. firmly packed brown sugar
1 t. vanilla extract
1 t. powdered instant coffee
2 1/4 c. sifted AP flour
1/4 t. salt

Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add vanilla and coffee. Sift together flour and salt; add to butter mixture and beat well. Roll into a ball, place in bowl cover with plastic wrap and chill dough until firm.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Roll dough to 1/4 " thick and cut into 2x5" rectangles. Prick with fork and score middle of each cookie. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool on wire racks.
Reference: Martha Stewart Living

Monday, June 23, 2008

Double Peanut Butter Cheesecake Swirled Brownies

These Brownies are amazingly good! The recipe is from the fabulous baking blonde's blog. She is truly the cookie and bar queen. Check out her blog it is full of goodies! I would write more, but I need to go eat some more brownies.

le Peanut Butter Cheesecake Swirled Brownies
3/4 cup butter, very soft (not melted but softer than room temp)
1 cup sugar
1 TBS vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 oz. unsweetened baking chocolate, melted(I just melted 2 oz. total of semisweet chips)
1 oz. semi-sweet baking chocolate, melted
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder (I used carob powder)
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

Peanut Butter Cheesecake Swirl
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 cups creamy PB
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

5-6 Reese’s peanut butter cups (regular size) cut into 6-8 pieces each (I didn't have these on hand, but wish I did! I just sprinkled some chocolate chunks on top before baking)
IMPORTANT: Do NOT omit the Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. They take these brownies over the top and add the “Double” Peanut Butter taste the title tempts taste buds with

Preheat oven to 350. Line an 8×8″ square pan with foil and lightly coat with PAM cooking spray.

In a microwave safe bowl melt the two baking chocolate squares in 30 second intervals stirring after each interval until smooth and melted after stirring. Do not scorch! Remove from microwave and allow to come to room temperature.

In a large mixing bowl, Beat together butter and sugar until combined. Beat in eggs one at a time until blended. Add vanilla and melted chocolate. Mix to combine. Combine dry ingredients in medium bowl and whisk together. Gradually stir dry ingredients into butter mixture. Do not over mix.

I n separate mixing bowl, beat together cream cheese, peanut butter sugar and vanilla until smooth. Add egg and beat until just combined.

Spread about 2/3 of chocolate brownie batter into prepared pan. Evenly drop 1/2 of cheesecake batter in dollops over brownie batter. Run a knife through both mixtures to slightly swirl.

Dollop remaining brownie batter and cheesecake batter over swirled mixture. Run knife through the brownie and cheesecake dollops (not all the way through the already swirled layer) to create a swirled pattern.

Bake for 40-45 minutes**, or until center is set and a toothpick inserted in the center has a few crumbs stuck to it. Do not over bake or they will harden, if under baked they will be too gooey. Every oven is different so watch and check these after about 35-40 minutes of baking to ensure proper doneness.
**After about 35-40 minutes of baking (with about 5-7 minutes of baking time left, you just need to eyeball it) gently place cut up Reese’s cups over top of almost fully baked brownies. Finish baking until a toothpick inserted in the center has a few crumbs stuck to it. The Reese’s PB cups will melt but hold their shape slightly. Cool completely on wire rack before cutting and serving.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

My friend Lisa gave me a huge bag of chopped rhubarb fresh from her garden! I decided to put it to work in a Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp. The recipe is adapted from one I found here. Of course- I had to mess with it a little :) It was great! A perfectly summery dessert.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

  • 2 1/2 cups rhubarb, pieces
  • 3/4 cup strawberries, sliced
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons fruit juice

    Ingredients for Topping:

  • 2/3 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 5 tablespoons whole wheat flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 5 tablespoons pecans (or walnuts), chopped


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
  • Butter an 8 x 8" pan
  • In a mixing bowl combine and toss the rhubarb, strawberries, sugar, cornstarch and orange juice
  • Transfer mixture to the buttered baking dish
  • Mix the oats, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt in a bowl
  • Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or use your fingers until the mixture becomes coarse crumbs
  • Mix in chopped nuts and spread over the fruit mixture
  • Bake until the topping is golden brown and the fruit is
  • Tuesday, June 17, 2008


    We received beets in our CSA box this week. I remembered seeing a recipe for Borscht in my Barefoot Contessa at Home Cookbook. This recipe is based loosely on hers. The whole family from my steak and potatoes husband to my 2 year old daughter loved this beautiful soup. I think this is one of my favorite colors and the soup was fabulous- it really tastes just like....summer!


    4-5 Beets
    1 1/2 c. Chicken stock
    1 c. vanilla (yes, vanilla) yogurt
    1/2 c. heavy whipping cream
    1 T. white wine vinegar
    1 t. fresh lemon juice
    1 t. black pepper, freshly ground
    1 T. salt
    1/3 c. chopped green onion
    1 T. chopped chives, plus more for garnish
    2 c. chopped cucumber, plus more for garnish

    In large stock pan cook beets in boiling, salted water for about 30 minutes. Remove beets from pan using slotted spoon. Strain cooking liquid and reserve 1 1/2 c. for soup.
    In large bowl whisk stock, cooking liquid from beets, yogurt and heavy cream. Add lemon juice, vinegar, pepper and salt. Remove skins from beets using your fingers and chop. Add beets, cucumber, chives and onion. Chill for at least 4 hours.
    Garnish with chives and cucumber. Serve cold.

    Strawberry Hand Pies

    Mmmmmm....These adorable little pies remind me of the perfect summer picnic! My Mother-in-law sent us home with a huge bowl of fresh picked strawberries, so I had to put them to good use. The recipe is from Good Things Catered, her recipes are always wonderful. what a talented lady- these are awesome!

    Strawberry Hand Pies

    1 recipe sweet butter pie dough (see below if needed)
    3 c. fresh strawberries, hulled and quartered
    2 Tbsp granulated sugar
    2 tsp fresh lemon juice

    powdered sugar for dusting

    2 large eggs, lightly beaten
    Turbinado sugar for sprinkling

    -Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment.
    -In medium bowl, combine strawberries, granulated sugar and lemon juice and set aside.
    -Turn dough out onto a powdered sugar-dusted work surface and cut pie dough in half (rewrap other half and place back in fridge to stay cold).
    -Roll one half of pie dough out about 1/8 in thickness. Using round pastry cutter (or trace knife around small plate), cut out about 5-6 inch rounds.
    -Place round onto baking sheet and place about 2-3 Tbsp strawberry mixture into center.
    -Using pastry brush dipped in a small amount of egg, brush the edge of half of the round.
    -Fold dry edge onto egg brushed half, forming semicircle shape, and press edges together to seal with the tines of a fork.
    -Brush the top of the pie with egg mixture and sprinkle with sugar.
    -Use a small knife to make a 1 inch slit in the top of the pie for steam to escape.
    -Repeat with remaining pastry dough.
    -Place in oven and bake until tops are beginning to turn golden brown, about 20 minutes.
    -Let cool on sheets for 7-10 mins and then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
    -Serve warm or at room temperature.

    Makes 10-12

    Sweet Butter Pie Dough

    2 1/2 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
    2 Tbsp sugar
    1/2 tsp salt
    2 tsp lemon zest
    2 sticks (1 c.) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4 in pieces
    1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    6-8 Tbsp cold buttermilk (whole milk with a dash of fresh lemon juice can be subbed)

    powdered sugar for dusting

    -In small bowl, combine vanilla and buttermilk, stir to combine and set aside.
    -In large bowl, add flour, sugar, salt, and lemon zest and whisk to combine.
    -Use pastry cutter or two knives to cut butter into flour mixture until resembles coarse meal or just until all pieces are less than pea-sized.
    -Add buttermilk mixture and stir in until dough comes together.
    -Transfer dough to powdered sugar-dusted work surface and shape into flat disk.
    -Wrap disk tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour.

    Notes: You can also make the dough in the bowl of a food processor, just be careful not to over process (30 secs should be enough to bring it together.)

    Pie dough may be made ahead and frozen for up to 2 months if wrapped well.

    Monday, June 16, 2008

    Bread Pudding with Caramel Sauce

    I found this recipe on Culinary Infatuation. I wanted to make bread pudding for my Father-in-law for Father's Day. This is a great classic recipe. I didn't think I liked bread pudding, but it smelled so good when I was baking it that I wanted to try it myself! When I made it for my Father-in-law, I made it as written, but substituted rum for the whiskey in the sauce and also used vanilla bean pods in the sauce while it was cooking. Instead of French bread I used a "Beer Wheat" bread-it is a sweet, dense white bread.When I made this for us, I was out of cinnamon and just used 1 t. of pumpkin pie spice. And for our pudding I made my caramel sauce (also below). Both sauces are great with this pudding. I encourage you to try either or...both!

    Bread Pudding
    • 5 cups day old french bread cut into 1 inch cubes
    • 3 eggs
    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 1 tsp. cinnamon
    • freshly grated nutmeg (about 1/2 tsp.)
    • 1 cup heavy cream
    • 1 tsp. vanilla
    • 1/3 cup raisins
    Whiskey sauce
    • 1 cup Heavy Cream
    • 1/2 Tbsp. Corn Starch
    • 1 Tbsp. Water
    • 3 Tbsp. Sugar
    • 1/4 cup Rum or Whiskey
    To make the bread pudding, first preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 8" square baking pan. Combine sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl. Beat in the eggs until smooth, then work in the heavy cream. Add the vanilla, then the bread cubes. Allow bread to soak up custard.
    Place the raisins in a greased pan. Top with the egg mixture, which prevents the raisins from burning. Bake for approximately 25-30 minutes or until the pudding has a golden brown color and is firm to the touch. If a toothpick inserted in the pudding comes out clean, it is done. The mixture of pudding should be nice and moist, not runny or dry. Cool to room temperature.
    To make the whiskey sauce, place the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat, and bring to a boil. Whisk corn starch and water together, and add to cream while whisking. Bring to a boil. Whisk and let simmer for a few seconds, taking care not to burn the mixture on the bottom. Remove from heat.
    Stir in the sugar and the bourbon. Taste to make sure the sauce has a thick consistency, a sufficiently sweet taste, and a good bourbon flavor. Cool to room temperature.

    Caramel Sauce

    1/4 c. butter

    1/2 c. brown sugar

    1/3 c. heavy cream

    1 t. vanilla

    Melt butter in sauce pan over medium heat. Add sugar and whisk until well combined. Add cream and whisk about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and add vanilla.

    Saturday, June 14, 2008

    Best Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

    This recipe is inspired by the Neiman Marcus chocolate chip cookie recipe. My husband's Grandfather loves Oatmeal raisin cookies- so I adapted a great recipe and the result was fantastic!
    Best Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
    1 c. butter
    1 c. brown sugar
    1 c. sugar
    1 t. vanilla
    2 eggs

    2 c. flour
    2 1/2 c. oats (1 blend 1 c. in food processor or blender)
    1 t. baking soda
    1 t. baking powder
    1/2 t. cinnamon
    1/8 t. nutmeg
    1/2 t. salt
    1 1/2 c. golden raisins (reconstituted in hot water and toweled off)

    Blend 1 c. of oats in blender or food processor. Cream butter and sugars, mix in eggs and vanilla. Gradually add dry ingredients. Add raisins. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes.

    Friday, June 13, 2008

    Frosted Brownies

    This recipe is from the Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook. The brownies are cakey and the frosting heavenly! This is the recipe that church ladies everywhere bring to potlucks. I call these church lady brownies...not to be confused with lunch lady bars. I love this recipe, it is no fail. This time I ran out of cocoa powder and used about half cocoa powder/half carob powder for the brownies and only carob powder in the frosting. My husband liked the frosting better with the carob powder, so don't be afraid to use either!

    Cake Brownies
    3/4 c. butter
    1 1/4 c. sugar
    1/2 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
    2 eggs
    1 t. vanilla
    1 1/2 c. AP flour
    1 t. baking powder
    1/4 t. baking soda
    1 c. milk
    1 c. chopped nuts (optional)
    Grease 15x10x1" baking pan; set aside. Melt butter in large bowl. Stir in sugar and cocoa powder until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla. Using a wooden spoon, beat lightly until just combined.
    In small bowl combine dry ingredients. Add flour mixture and milk alternately to chocolate mixture, beating after each addition. Stir in nuts if using.
    Pour batter into pan. Bake at 350 for 15-18 minutes. Cool 2 hours and frost.

    No-Cook Fudge Frosting
    4 1/2 c. sifted powdered sugar
    1/2 c. cocoa powder
    1/2 c. butter, softened
    1/3 c. boiling water
    1 t. vanilla

    In very large bowl combine sugar and cocoa. Add butter, boiling water and vanilla. Beat with electric mixer on low speed until combined. Beat for 1 minute on medium speed. If necessary, cool for 20 minutes or until mixture reaches spreading consistency.

    Asian Chicken Noodle Soup

    This recipe is just what chicken noodle soup should be- warm, comforting and full of goodness! This just happens to have a twist to it. I did not have all of the ingredients available and added some fresh lemon juice, but I will include the recipe as originally written and the changes I've made. It was absolutely fabulous the first time I had it and just as wonderful with a few changes! I received this recipe from my friend Lisa. She is an amazing cook- I'll have to post some of her fabulous trifle recipes soon :)

    Asian Chicken Noodle Soup

    2 T. soy sauce (I used Tamari)
    1 T. mirin (I did not have this)
    1/2 t. dark sesame oil
    1/2 clove garlic, minced (I used a whole clove)
    1 T. fresh ginger (I did not have this)
    1/2 T. sugar
    2 T. rice vinegar
    1/4 t. chile paste
    4 c. chicken broth (I used homemade)
    2 c. water
    2 cooked, shredded chicken breasts
    2 c. Asian stir fry veggies
    3 T. fresh onion, minced
    3 oz. cellophane noodles
    Juice of one lemon (or lime would actually be better!)
    1/4 c. fresh cilantro, chopped (Joe is allergic)

    Boil noodles for 3 minutes, drain, set aside. Mix soy sauce, oil, garlic, ginger, sugar, vinegar and chile paste. Heat broth in medium sauce pan. Add soy sauce mix, chicken and veggies. Heat through, add noodles and lemon juice. Garnish with cilantro.

    Thursday, June 12, 2008

    Sweet Potato Muffins

    These muffins are so tasty and have no oil or refined sugar! I found the recipe at Have Cake, Will Travel!

    Next time I make these, I will definitely add some chopped nuts or raisins. But- I will definitely be making these again. The original recipe calls for nutmeg, which would have been great- but my husband doesn't really like nutmeg- so I omitted it. They were great even without!

    Sweet Potato Muffins

    1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
    1 t baking powder
    1/2 t baking soda
    1/4 t salt
    1 t ground cinnamon
    1/2 t ginger powder

    1 egg
    2 T rum flavoring
    2/3 cup sweet potato purée
    1 t pure vanilla extract
    1/2 cup pure maple syrup

    Preheat oven to 350F, line muffin tin with paper liners.

    Whisk dry ingredients together in a small bowl.

    Combine egg, potato, flavoring, vanilla, and maple syrup, mix well.

    Combine wet & dry ingredients, stirring until well mixed.

    Scoop batter into prepared muffin tin. Bake for 15 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
    let cool on a rack.

    Wednesday, June 11, 2008

    Chicken Crescent Pockets

    This is a quick and easy week night meal that is a great use for leftover chicken. I don't remember where I found this recipe and I've definitely altered it some. This is a great one for picky eaters, too!

    Chicken Crescent Pockets

    6 oz. cream cheese, softened
    2 T. butter, softened
    3 c. cubed cooked chicken
    1 T. chopped fresh chives (or onion)
    1/2 t. salt
    fresh ground pepper to taste
    1 T. milk
    1 T. ranch dressing
    2 (8 oz) cans refrigerated crescent rolls
    2 T. melted margarine or butter
    2 T. freshly grated Parmesan

    Heat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, combine cream cheese and butter; beat until smooth. Add chicken, chives, salt, pepper, milk and ranch. Mix well.
    Separate dough into rectangles mound chicken mixture onto dough. For regular sized pockets, place chicken on one half of dough and fold remaining dough over top. Pinching edges to seal. For jumbo pockets, cover one rectangle with mixture and top with another, pinching edges to seal. Brush tops with melted butter, sprinkle with salt and Parmesan. Bake for 15-20 minutes.

    Tuesday, June 10, 2008

    White Chocolate-Lemon cookies

    This is another of the "cheater" recipes. For another way to prepare this recipe see this post. I love this recipe, it is so versatile and always turns out great...moist on the inside, crispy on the outside- just like every cookie should be.

    White Chocolate-Lemon Cheater cookies

    1 lemon cake mix
    2 T. oil
    2 eggs
    1/2 c. butter, softened
    1 t. vanilla
    9 oz. White chocolate chips
    sugar for sprinkling

    Preheat oven to 350.
    In a medium bowl, beat together the butter, oil and egg. Add cake mix and vanilla and blend well. Fold in chocolate chips or other add-ins.
    Chill for 10 minutes.
    Drop by spoonfuls onto prepared baking sheets,sprinkle with sugar
    Bake for 8 to 10 minutes.
    Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely as they will break easily if moved too soon.

    Sunday, June 8, 2008

    Poppyseed Bread/Muffins

    This recipe is awesome! The recipe comes from my Mom who got it from some small town Nebraska cookbook. I've made this several times and it always comes out beautifully. Whenever I bring this to a potluck, party- etc., the same thing always happens. People are always a little timid to try it. But once someone does- the word is out and soon it has vanished and several people are asking for the recipe!

    Mom's Poppy Seed Bread

    1 White Cake mix (or lemon, or yellow)
    1 lg. box Vanilla instant pudding mix
    4 eggs
    2/3 c. oil
    1 c. hot water
    ¼ c. poppy seeds (which is about the same as 1 small spice container)
    Combine all ingredients and beat for 4 minutes

    Bake 350 for 35 minutes in 2 loaf pans or 15-20 minutes for cupcakes. Check with toothpick before removing from oven. Cover with glaze made with fresh lemon juice and confectioner's sugar.

    Thursday, June 5, 2008

    Chocolate Chip Cookies

    I've always loved the butter Crisco Chocolate chip cookie recipe, but this one is pretty darn good!

    I found the recipe on the back of the package of Sunspire chocolate chips;

    Chocolate Chip Cookies

    2 sticks of butter
    3/4 c. brown sugar
    3/4 c. sugar
    2 eggs
    1 t. vanilla
    2 1/4 c. flour
    1 t. soda
    1/4 t. salt
    1 (9 oz) pkg. Sunspire organic Chocolate baking chips (or about 1 1/2 c. chips)

    Preheat oven to 375. Combine dry ingredients, set aside. Cream together sugars and butter until smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time. Add vanilla. Slowly blend in dry ingredients. Fold in chocolate chips. Bake at 375 for 9-12 minutes. Cool on wire racks.

    Monday, June 2, 2008

    Nutella Cupcakes

    Oh. my. gosh. This is my new favorite recipe! Not only is it easier and faster to make than even a boxed cake mix, but they are so wonderful and elegant as well. This recipe is from the blog Proceed with Caution , which is appropriately titled. I think I could eat my weight in these!

    Nutella Frosted Cupcakes
    • 10 tbsp(140 grams) butter, softened
    • 3/4 cup white sugar
    • 3 eggs
    • 1 tsp vanilla
    • 1 T. oil
    • 1 1/2 cups (200 grams) sifted ap flour
    • 1/4 tsp salt
    • 2 tsp baking powder
    • Nutella, approx. 2/3 c.
    Preheat oven to 325F. Line 12 muffin tins with paper liners. Cream together butter and sugar until light, 2 minutes. Add in eggs one at a time, until fully incorporated. Add vanilla. Stir in flour, salt and baking powder until batter is uniform and no flour remains. Batter will be thick. Fill each muffin liner with batter. They should be 3/4 full. Top each cake with 2 tsp Nutella. Swirl Nutella in with a toothpick, making sure to fold a bit of batter up over the nutella. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely. Makes 12.

    Sunday, June 1, 2008

    Garlic Thyme Chicken

    Here's my recipe for Garlic Thyme Chicken. Poor Joe has been eating a lot of frozen meals this weekend since we were at the hospital all day on Thursday for his surgery and I had 2 weddings this weekend. So when he kindly asked for "real" food tonight, I knew just what to make!

    Garlic Thyme Chicken

    1 Whole Chicken (approx. 4 lbs)

    1 T. salt

    2 t. sugar

    1/2 t. freshly ground black pepper

    1 T. fresh thyme leaves, chopped

    6 garlic cloves, crushed

    4 T. butter, cut into pats

    1 small bundle thyme leaves

    Combine salt, sugar, pepper and 1 T. thyme and rub together in small bowl using hands to release the oil from the thyme onto the salt, sugar and pepper.

    Wash chicken and pat dry. Rub skin with salt mixture. Use remaining salt mixture inside cavity. Place crushed garlic, butter, and thyme bundle in cavity. Bake at 350 for 60-75 minutes or until done. Baste about every 20 minutes. Serve with juices spooned over chicken.

    ***In case you read my personal blog as well and are wondering why I sometimes post the same recipe on both blogs--I only post recipes on eat. make. live. that are either my original recipes or recipes that are just so fabulous that I have to share!

    Grandma Swanda's Peanut Butter Cookies

    These are my Grandmother's famous peanut butter cookies. I guarantee if you make them as written, they will be the BEST you've ever made! Enjoy!

    Grandma Swanda’s Peanut butter cookies

    1/4 c. margarine

    1/2 c. peanut butter

    1/2 c. sugar

    1/2 c. brown sugar

    1 egg

    1/2 t. vanilla

    1 c. flour

    1 t. soda

    1/8 t. salt

    Cream peanut butter and margarine. Add sugars, vanilla and egg. Beat well. Sift flour with soda and salt. Add. Shape one heaping teaspoon of dough into a ball, roll in granulated sugar and press on cookie sheet with tines of fork dipped in granulated sugar. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes. Makes approximately 30 cookies