Saturday, December 4, 2010

Christmas Cookies!

Now those sprinkly things just make things worse
'Cause it makes them taste better than they did at first
And they're absolutely impossible to resist
Some disappear to who knows where
But I make sure I get my share
And those kids just stand there waiting for the ones I miss.
- George Strait

I started making Christmas cookies when I was probably about 12.  I always make them for my mom's coworker's kids and my nephews.  I know that their families are always busy and might not have the time to make cutout Christmas cookies.

Finding the right sugar cookie recipe is a task.  I'll let you in on my secret, Land O Lakes has the best sugar cookie recipe.  Sometimes you'll see it in magazine ad's around Christmastime.

I made two batches because I will be gone this week.  I colored half green and red and left the other batch plain.  I have collected different cookie cutters over the year.

Here's the recipe:

1 cup, softened (I accidently used a 1/2 cup of butter, which is 1 stick of butter & they turned out great.)
1 cup sugar
1 egg
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking powder
Mix the butter, sugar and egg in a large bowl and beat until creamy.  Add the vanilla to the mixture. Add the flour, baking powder and orange juice(this is the secret ingredient!). Mix well. If the dough is dry, add more orange juice.  If you would like to color your dough, divide your dough and add food color and mix with a fork in a seperate container. After the dough is colored, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm.
Preheat your oven to 400°F. Roll out cookies and cut with cookie cutters.  You may have to work with your dough so that it can be cut with the cutters. Put cookies 1 inch apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake for 6 to 10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack and enjoy.

I hear that Santa loves these cookies!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Amazing Apple Pie

Tidy Mom is having an amazing giveaway! Love the Pie Party!  There are great prizes such as a Lucky Leaf Pie Basket, Wilton Pie Baking Tools (I want that!), and much more.  Go to her site and see what she's giving away and look at the delicious pies while you're at it.


 I entered this pie in the Oklahoma State Fair's Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crust contest.  It didn't win but I can say that I have one of the top 25 pies in the state!  The apples that I used came from my grandpa's apple tree.  This year was our best crop to date! I probably made 3 apple pies.

½ cup unsalted butter
3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
¼ cup orange juice (can be substituted with apple juice)
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup light brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
7 small gala apples peeled, cored, and sliced thin
Lemon juice
1 Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crust
1 9-inch pie crust in pan

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Cut and slice the apples and cover them in lemon juice so that they won’t brown.  Toss them around with the lemon juice in a bowl and cover evenly.

Melt butter in large saucepan.

Stir in flour to make a paste.  Add orange juice, white sugar and brown sugar.  Bring to a boil.

Reduce temperature and let simmer for about 2 minutes or so.

Add vanilla, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice to the mixture.

Drain the apples into a colander so that the liquid will go into another bowl.  The left over liquid can be used for another pie or dessert.

Place the apples in the pie crust.  Put parchment paper or a pan liner on the cookie sheet if the pie bubbles over in the oven.
You can cover the pie with a lattice cut with either a knife or a pastry cutter, or the whole crust with slits for ventilation.  Brush on eggs whites and sprinkle on sparkling or granulated sugar.

Bake for 30 minutes with a greased pie shield or aluminum foil around the edges of the pie. Then remove the pie shield and bake for another 15 minutes.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Fall Morning Pancakes

This morning is a perfect fall morning.  When I woke up and let the kitties outside, I wished for some of that homemade goodness called breakfast.  All week I had ate bagels that I got in Tulsa. (Freshest bagels that I've ever had!)  I new that Tasty Kitchen had a pancake recipe.  I'm all for making different kinds of pancakes.  That's one thing that I like to try.  I haven't went out on a limb to make different kinds of soups or stuffings that I see on the internet, magazines or on tv.  But every once in awhile, I love to try something different.

For this recipe, I didn't have much milk.  So they turned out thicker.  I used 2 tablespoons of brown sugar instead of corn syrup.  I also added 1/4 tsp of ginger and pumpkin pie spice.  These pancakes had the same consistency of what my mom and grandma always made, cowboy bread.  Cowboy bread is where you make the batter and then spoon it onto the skillet but these isn't any spices or sugar in it.

I put butter and Griffin's pancake syrup on top!  I enjoyed it with a cup of coffee. :)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Waste Not - Uses for Items You Need to Use

Yesterday, well this weekend I had some milk that I needed to use before it spoiled.  Sometimes I'll go throw a half gallon of milk and then there's times that I won't even touch it.  I think we all go through that at times.  So what I made was cornbread and then in the afternoon I made some banana pudding.  There's always uses for the milk if you just think about it.  My mom made pinto beans to go with the cornbread and the banana pudding was a great dessert.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Pumpkin Pie Pockets - A Wonderful Fall Treat


  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 can (15 oz.) LIBBY'S® 100% Pure Pumpkin

  • 1 can (12 fl. oz.) NESTLÉ® CARNATION® Evaporated Milk

  • Directions

    Mix sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger and cloves in small bowl. Beat eggs in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk. I put the whole can but since we are putting the pumpkin mixture in the pocket mold, you may want to only add half of the can of evaporated milk.  To thicken the pumpkin mixture back up, I added 3 tablespoons of flour.
    Cut your pockets out.  Put your bottom crust in the bottom of the mold and then put 2-3 tablespoons in the bottom crust.  After you have done that, place the top crust on the mixture and then close the mold.  You may want to spray the mold with nonstick spray, so that it's easier to get the crust out of the mold.

    Place the pocket pies on a cookie sheet.  I sprinkled cinnamon sugar on top of them.  You can also brush on egg whites so that they will be golden brown and shiny when you take them out of the oven.

    Bake at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes.

    Since I used the Pillsbury refrigerated pie crusts, it made 7 pocket pies.  You can use a homemade crust also.  Here is the recipe for the original pumpkin pie,

    Saturday, September 25, 2010

    Kitchen Measuring Equivalents

    Sometimes we don't always have the right pan for what the recipe calls for or the recipe may call for a pint of milk(yes, that may be a very rare example).  How are you going to figure this out?  I hope these tips help you out!

    Baking Pan Equivalents
    10" x 3 1/2" Bundt = Two 8" x 2" Rounds

    10" x 2" Round = 9" x 9" x 2" Square

    Standard 12-Cup Muffin Tin = 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" x 2 1/2" Loaf
    "                                           = 9" x 1 1/2" Round
    "                                           = 8" x 8" x 1 1/2" Square

    9" x 2" Round = Two 8" x 1 1/2" Rounds
    "                     = 10" x 15" x 1" Jelly Roll
    "                     = 8" x 8" x 2" Square

    Measuring Equivalents
    1 Tablespoon   = 3 Teaspoons
    1/8 Cup           = 2 Tablespoons
    1/4 Cup           = 4 Tablespoons
    1/3 Cup           = 5 Tablespoons plus 1 Teaspoon
    1/2 Cup           = 8 Tablespoons
    2/3 Cup           = 10 Tablespoons plus 2 Teaspoons
    3/4 Cup           = 12 Tablespoons
    1 Cup              = 48 Teaspoons
    1 Cup              = 16 Tablespoons
    8 Fluid Ounces = 1 Cup
    1 Pint               = 2 Cups
    1 Quart            = 2 Pints
    4 Cups             = 1 Quart
    1 Gallon           = 4 Quarts
    16 Ounces       = 1 Pound

    Monday, September 20, 2010

    What Would You Do With These?

    Yes, peach season may be over, but imagine all that you can make next year with these fresh peaches.  I love to make peach cobblers and peach pies.  Oh, not to forget about peach ice cream. 

    Brownies with Berries & Cream Cheese Icing

    Baking doesn't have to be hard! I used my left over blueberries and strawberries(that went with my Berry Pie).  The brownies were made with a boxed mix.  I did make this dessert extra special by whipping up some cream cheese icing.  After making so many Italian Cream Cakes, I can make the icing in my sleep.  This isn't the same recipe for the cream cake icing, but this was easy to serve with the brownies and berries.

    Here's what you'll need:
    1/2 stick of soften butter, room temperature
    1/2 stick of cream cheese, room temperature
    1 cup powdered sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract.

    Here's how:
    Mix together your butter and cream cheese with a hand mixer or stand mixer.  After everything is combined, put the powdered sugar in with the mixture and then add the vanilla.

    Hearty Bison Chili

    It's starting to be cooler weather! What is better than chili on a cool night?  This recipe is great to make and then freeze so that you will have it on hand.

    1 12 ounce bottle of Shiner Bock or any dark beer
    2 pounds ground bison
    6 cloves garlic, minced
    2 large onions, diced
    1 28 ounce can crushed fire-roasted tomatoes
    1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
    1/4 cup New Mexico chile powder
    3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    2  tablespoons fresh lime juice
    2 tablespoons honey
    4 teaspoons minced canned chipotles in adobo
    1 tablespoon ground cumin
    1 1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon dried oregano
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    fresh ground black black pepper, to taste


    Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a heavy Dutch oven on medium-high heat until simmering.  Add bison; cook about 5 minutes or until no pink remains, roughly breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon.

    Remove meat with a slotted spoon to a small bowl.  Season with 1 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Set aside.

    Dreain liquid from pot, and add remaining olive oil.  Add onion and saute over medium heat until translucent and soft but not browned, about 6 to 8 minutes.  Add garlic, saute 1 minute more.  Add chile powder, cumin, oregano and cinnamon, and cook gently, 1 to 2 minutes.

    Pour in beer, and let cook down a few minutes, stirring.  Add tomatoes, honey, chipotles and remaining salt, and return bison to pot.  Cook at a lazy simmer, 45 minutes.

    Let chili cool completely, then refrigerate overnight.  Reheat over low heat, and stir in lime juice and cilantro just before serving.

    Spoon chili into bowls, and top with your favorite fixings.

    The lime juice and cilantro at the end is optional.  I like to open a can of kidney beans, rinse and drain them and add them to the chili.  Not everyone likes chili beans.

    Summer Berry Custard Pie


    3 eggs
    1/2 cup sugar
    pinch of salt
    1 1/2 cups of milk
    2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
    1/2 cup blueberries
    1/2 cup slicked strawberries
    1 (9-inch)


    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

    In a medium bowl beat together the egg, sugar and salt until the mixture becomes pale. Slowly beat in the milk and vanilla.

    Cover bottom of the pie crust with the berries. Pour the egg mixture over the top, bake until center is set, about 40 to 45 minutes. Remove from oven and cool to room temperature before serving.

    This recipe would be really good for breakfast, brunch or a very light dessert after dinner.  A dollop of whipped cream would be delicious on top of the pie!

    Sunday, September 19, 2010


    Hello everyone!  I decided to make a baking and cooking blog.  Since I have a pretty new kitchen, I can't stop baking! Here is the renovation that took place in the kitchen,  I think my family really loves that bonus.  So far in my new kitchen I have made a couple of Italian Cream Cakes, double chocolate cookies and some apple pies.  Everyday I am thankful for my new stove and microwave! We moved the new microwave to on top of the stove, so I have more counter space! That 2-3 feet of extra room feels more like 20 feet!

    I hope that you will continue to follow my journey through baking and cooking.