October 31, 2008

Don't be a Chicken

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Nothing really scary today about the post. But I like the title! I want to wish all you tricksters and treaters out there a Happy Halloween! I will be shocked if we get trick or treaters at our home. We live in the boonies. BUT if they do come, I do have candy! If they don't come, then we will eat it. Eventually.I remember when I was young my mom would drive us around the neighborhood to go trick or treating. Back then, the neighbors not only had store bought candy bars, but some of them would have homemade goodies. Those were the good old days. When my kids were little, the only homemade goodies I would let them eat would be the ones their Aunt April would give them. Or their Grandmothers. There was one lady, Mrs. Burnett, who made the best ever popcorn balls. Every year we looked forward to going to her home to trick or treat and get her popcorn balls! I do miss them. She is gone now, but her family is still around. I wonder if any of them has her recipe?

Another thing I remember about Halloween was the movie The Ghost and Mr. Chicken. Don Knotts. What a funny, funny man. That movie was awesome! He also was the one reason I loved to watch the Andy Griffith Show!

Speaking of chicken, I finally made mini chicken pot pies. I had been thinking about it the last few weeks but hadn't gotten around to it. Then the Barefoot Bloggers beat me to it! All this did was push me to make mine even more because all the posts I was reading were making me hungry for chicken pot pie! I didn't use a particular recipe. I just threw some things together that belong in chicken pot pie. I don't have exact amounts, but I will "guesstimate" for you.

HoneyB's Chicken Pot Pie

Boil 2 diced potatoes until tender.

Saute 6 chicken tenderlions salt and pepper. Remove from heat and chop. Return to pan juices. Add 4 cups hot water and 2 teaspoons Better than Boullion, Chicken flavor. Bring to boil, turn to simmer.

Add potatoes, 1/2 bag mixed frozen veggies and bring back to a slow boil. Mix 4 tablespoons cornstarch with 1/2 cup water. Stir into broth mixture and cook until thickened. Cool slightly.

Divide mixture between 4 mini ramekins.


Using Pillsbury Pie Crust (yes, I cheated) roll out according to directions on package. Cut into 4 pieces. Cover ramekins and pinch pleat crust.


Cover crust edges with foil and place on large cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Remove foil from crust edges. Bake another 30 minutes or til crust is browned and filling is bubbly.


Cool slightly, then enjoy!

October 30, 2008

Maple Walnut Biscotti

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Yes. It is supposed to be fall. Not winter! The first photo was October 18, 2008. The snow photo-was October 29, 2008! Say it isn't so? Unfortunately I can't. I knew there was snow when I got up (it was snowing yesterday) so I got around earlier and headed out to clean my car. You can see it was running in the photo! Well, Grumpy got his van cleared off and left for work. I was still cleaning my car. It took me over 30 minutes. The snow was wet and heavy. I then proceeded to get in my car and head to work. No. My car did not want to go. See, it had also rained quite a bit before we got the snow. Although there wasn't a ton of snow blocking my car, there was a lot of wet slippery stuff under the tires. The car wouldn't budge. The tires spun. My co-worker suggested I try cardboard. We have alot of that lying around recently because of some purchases - so I did. Nope. That didn't work either.

So, I have to wait for Grumpy to get home. The snow is supposed to continue throughout most of the day, but by tomorrow its supposed to warm up again. I sure hope so for the trick or treater's sake...but even at that, unless it's cold for the ground to be hard, they'll be walking thru mud to trick or treat. Yuck.


Since I was stuck home I decided to make a few things. In Iron Stef's Taste & Create Blog she mentioned that muffins seemed to be my "thing." Well, they are. Sort of. I get on kicks. Right now I am on a biscotti kick. I am trying to find out how many different kinds of biscotti are out there that I can try! I guess you would say I'm on a cookie kick right now too - thinking ahead to the holidays and Operation Baking Gals.


Today I made Maple Walnut Biscotti. I wanted to make a recipe that had real maple syrup in it instead of the maple flavoring and I found a recipe at We Heart Food. I hesitated at first because it called for cornmeal and I wasn't crazy about the Lennox Almond Biscotti. But, I decided to go ahead and give it a try anyway. I am glad I did! My house smelled lovely and the biscotti tasted great! I also made a maple flavored glaze for the biscotti. Perfect! Below is the recipe with what I did differently. All the ingredients are the same, but my method was a little different than my source. I also made a glaze however I don't really have a "recipe" with amounts but will tell you how I made it.

Maple Walnut Biscotti
Dry:
1-3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Wet:
2 large eggs
1/2 cup pure maple syrup (I used light amber)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Whisk together dry ingredients. Set aside. Whisk together wet ingredients. Make a well in the center of dry ingredients and pour wet ingredients into well. Stir until dry ingredients just come together.
Divide dough into two pieces.


Form into logs on top of parchment paper. Move parchment to cookie sheet.


Bake 25 minutes at 350. Remove from oven and let cool 15 minutes. Turn oven down to 325. Cut into slices and return to oven for 10 minutes. Flip biscotti and bake another 5 minutes. Remove from oven and cool.


Coat with glaze.
Glaze:

I melted 3 squares of white chocolate coating with a capful of maple extract and about a 1/4 of half and half. This made it quite watery. I stirred in just enough confectioner's sugar to thicken the glaze some. I then dipped the bottom of the biscotti in the glaze and spread the glaze with the back of a spoon. I sat the biscotti upright (with glaze on top) until dry. This glaze was delicious!

October 29, 2008

DARING to .......... toss?

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This month the Daring Bakers followed through with a challenge that Rosa of Rosa's Yummy Yums originally was supposed to host with Sher at What did you eat and Glenna at A Fridge Full of Food, but unfortunately Rosa ended up going it alone as Sher passed away suddenly in July and Glenna decided to leave the Daring Bakers. Sher had shared her idea for this challenge and Rosa decided to continue with it in honor of Sher. This month we all made pizza like a Pizzaiolo!


Me, trying to stretch and toss the dough without a disaster of holes. See that hard look of concentration on my face? :)

This turned out to be a great challenge. I was quite nervous with the tossing because the first pizza I "tried" to toss ended up stretching too much and it put a hole in the dough! Therefore, I didn't attempt to toss the pizza in the air (it would have ended up on the ceiling anyway I am sure!). I did however stretch it out with my hands and then put it on the stone.

Amanda putting together her pizza

Our friends Randy & Amanda came over the evening we made the pizza to help us eat it. I had everyone participate in making their own pizzas. :) Even Grumpy (but I didn't take a pic of him making it, he probably would have growled at me - lol).

Randy, busy eating his pizza.

Grumpy with his pizza and his eye on the tv. lol

He probably would be disgusted if he saw this photo here, but hey, the rest of us are here and you all might think Grumpy is never around (and he was here for the MKMW post but I just didn't take his photo!) when I cook for company!


This is the final result of Grumpy's pizza. His looked the best (well, this is the photo that came out the best). My camera was on it's last legs when doing this challenge and I am lucky to have had any photos at all!


You can view the recipe for the pizza dough on Rosa's site. To see what all the other Daring Bakers did with their pizzas (and many were very unique - I was very traditional and we all know why!) check out the Daring Baker Blogroll.

Happy tossing! :)

October 28, 2008

Too much chocolate? Nah.

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This week for Tuesdays with Dorie, Clara of I I Heart Food4Thought chose Chocolate-Chocolate Cupcakes on pages 215-217. At first, when thinking about making these, I intended to bring them to work. That never happened. Nope. Actually, Grumpy ate 4 of them! For the recipe for these yummy cupcakes, visit Clara's blog!

My MIL had one, my friend Amanda and her hubby and myself, I sent one home with Kristina, packed one in Grumpy's lunch box and saved the last two to take to my dad's house to give him and my mom as my "birthday cake" gift! So, the students were out of luck this week. They were just that good!Prior to making these I did some reading to see how others were faring with their cupcakes. Many people were mentioning how dry they were. This of course, made me a little concerned. So, I took great care in stirring and spooning the flour into my measuring cups so as to not make the cake too heavy or dry (it was mentioned maybe the flour was the cause of the dryness) and was rewarded with a nice moist chocolatey cupcake! I love the ganache recipe and will keep this one as a topping for cupcakes again in my future! Grumpy told me this morning that I could make them again and put a cream filling in them. I didn't admit to him that Dorie's "playing around" suggested that. lol I let him think he was being "contributing" to my baking.

To see what other Tuesday with Dorie bakers did with their cupcakes, check out our blogroll!

October 27, 2008

Cinnamon Biscotti and Happy Birthday Daddy!

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Today is my Dad's birthday. Happy birthday Dad! Tonight, my son Justin will be picking me up and riding over to wish him a happy birthday and give him his present. Grumpy doesn't get home early enough tonight.

When Grumpy and I were married, my dad and I danced to Flies on the Butter by Wynonna Judd. If you haven't heard the song and lyrics they are here. There is a tag to this song that says "There's a black-top road, a faded yellow centerline, it can take you back to the place, but it can't take you back in time." For me that hits hard and close. I live just around the corner from that road and so many times I have wished it could take me back in time to when I was young and when my Nanny & Poppy were still here with us. Every morning when I was a little girl, every chance I could get to go, my dad would take me around the corner (and now just down the road) to my Nanny's house where he would leave me and pick up Poppy to go to work. I walk to that road every time I take a walk and nostalgia is so strong. I live back home again, but its not the same. Getting older really stinks, but being happy with your family while they are here is what counts the most.

Tonight, when we head over to Mom & Dad's (or Momma & Poppa's to my kids) I will also be bringing my dad some of this biscotti to drink with his coffee. Mom, she'll eat the biscotti sans coffee. :)

CINNAMON BISCOTTI

2- 1/2 cup Flour
3/4 cup Sugar

1- 1/2 teaspoon Baking powder
1- 1/2 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/2 cup mini cinnamon chips
3 large Eggs
2 tablspoons butter, melted

2 teaspoons Vanilla extract
Cooking spray
2 tablespoons Sugar

1/2 teaspoon Ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 325F.

Combine first 6 ingredients in a large bowl: make a well in center of mixture. Combine eggs, margarine, and vanilla; stir with a whisk. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist.



Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead lightly 10 times. Shape dough into a 16 inch roll. Place roll on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; flatten to a 3/4 inch thickness.

Combine 2 tbsp. sugar and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon; sprinkle over dough.


Bake at 325F for 30 minutes. Remove roll from baking sheet; let cool 10 minutes on a wire rack. Cut roll diagonally into 24 (1/2 inch) slices. Place, cut sides down, on a baking sheet. Bake at 325F for 10 minutes. Turn cookies over; bake an additional 10 minutes (cookies will be slightly soft in center but will harden as they cool).

Remove from baking sheet; let cool completely on a wire rack.

October 25, 2008

Chicken Stir-Fry with Mushrooms (Maon char paset)

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This week's destination for My Kitchen My World was chosen by the new MKMW moderator, Lauren of I'll Eat You and she chose Cambodia. When I found out this was the country, I did some searching via google. The desserts didn't seem to appeal enough to me but the food did! I did a lot of looking around and decided on Moan char paset (of Chicken stir-fry with mushroom).

Of course, par for the course, Grumpy came out in the kitchen with his nose turned up because I was not fixing red meat. Sigh. I as usual, told him if he didn't like it he could start planning meals and cooking himself. That went over really well. I told him to if he would get to the basement and get a steak out of the freezer I would fix it for tomorrow night. I really thought the dish was delicious. Grumpy ate it.....he didn't have much choice, but he did say it was good. He just wants some red meat. Meanwhile I'm thinking of Jessie of The Hungry Mouse and how Grumpy would probably like eating at her house better! Probably.

Maon char paset
Chicken Stir-fry with Mushroom
http://www.khmerkromrecipes.com/

2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
2 Cloves garlic, minced
1 Yellow onion, sliced
½ lb Chicken breast, sliced thin
1 Tablespoon fish sauce
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1 Tablespoon sugar
2 Stalks celery, sliced
2 Stalks green onion, chopped
½ lb Button mushroom, cleaned and sliced
¼ Teaspoon black pepper

Heat up your skillet or wok to a high temperature. When hot, add oil, garlic, onion and chicken. Stir fry until meat is tender. Remove chicken mixture from stove and stir-fry mushrooms and celery on high heat until tender. Pour chicken mixture back into pan. Season with fish sauce, soy sauce, and sugar. Stir well. Add green onion. Sprinkle with black pepper. Serve with rice.


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I would like to thank Jessie of The Hungry Mouse and Kang of Londoneater for two awards bestowed upon me this weekend!


Jessie has created a new award The 2008 Fabulous Food Blogger award and was one of her lucky recipients! I met Jessie through Foodbuzz (where I have met many great food blogging friends!). Jessie created this award because she was "feeling the warmth" of the virtual food blogging community. I would like to recognize two of my blogging friends by granting this award to them. I hope they will pass this on to blogger friends of theirs!


Megan of Megan's Cookin - Meg recently revamped her look and I love it! I also really enjoyed her camping trip expeditions over the summer! She has a great blog, great recipes, and great photos! I hope if you haven't been there that you will go to check it out!

Michele of Life Lightly Salted - I met Michelle through FoodBuzz and I am so glad we found each other. I love the title of her blog and I love her recipes. If you haven't had a chance to check her blog out, please do!



Kang passed on the Excellent Award to me.
The rules of receiving the award is as follows: Please find 5 blogs, of any kind that you love to read. Write a post about the blogs you picked, linking back to them. Make sure you let them know you gave them an award. There are so many deserving blogs out there whom I think deserve this award but I would like to mention 5 that I would like to bestow this on myself!

Marthe of Culinary Delights - I met Marthe through Tuesdays with Dorie. She and I have exchanged a few emails and I was impressed with her making her recent butternut squash dish (butternut squash being a new vegetable to her) and it looked awesome!

Laura of The Spiced Life - I met Laura for my first Taste & Create and I really fell in love with her blog. I now keep up with her on a regular basis and look forward to each post!

Lisa of Jersey Girl Cooks - I love her new blog look and I love her posts. Her Peanut Caramel Spiced Apple cake looks so delicious (amongst other recipes, only natural I gravitate towards the sweets!)

Jessie of The Hungry Mouse - I might learn a thing or two from Jessie about cooking meat! As tonight's post will attest, Grumpy doesn't think I make red meat often enough. Jessie certainly knows how to cook it up and maybe I can learn a thing or two from her! Check her blog out, she does a great job with her step by step photos. Today's post is about Halloween in Salem...love it!

I only know her as Cookie Pie - I'm not even sure how I came upon her blog, but I love it. She is a young mom-to-be who makes some really yummy looking treats! (I may have met her through Daring Bakers). In any case, you really chould go check her blog out!!

Almost Vegetarian Love?

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I was in a soup kind of mood. I did some looking through my allrecipes file and found one that looked good and I happened to have the ingredients (except for leeks so I used onions).

Russian Mushroom and Potato Soup
has a 5 star rating on Allrecipes website. Sometimes you don't know if you can go by the rating or not because people will make the dish, make changes to it, and then give it 5 stars. I was a little hesitant about the dill but decided to make the recipe as it was written anyway to give it a chance (with the exception I did not have leeks readily available so I subbed an onion - but think it would be just as delicious with leeks). I did give it 5 stars myself, but next time I would make some changes to reduce the fat - drastically!

The cilantro on top was only for show. Grumpy actually assisted me in my photo taking this time and he said I needed some green for garnish. I was wishing I had dill, but I didn't so I went with a couple leaves of cilantro instead. Oh, and what a CHANGE in my Grumpy! He wasn't laughing at me for taking photos of my food, he was actually helping me to try and not have a glare! Drat the lighting in this house.

As I expected, when Grumpy found out it was only soup for dinner he gave his usual reaction - "what? no meat?" I came back with, "Its made with chicken broth. Have a couple bowls." he he. I did tell him if he had to have meat with his soup there was a mini meatloaf leftover in the fridge. He ended up eating two bowls of this soup though and no meatloaf. While he was on his second bowl his comments were: You could put this on your menu (talking about me running a restaurant. We always talk that way but I don't know when or how that would happen). That told me he loved the soup. His suggestion, which was my same thought - not so much butter next time. I also would use the fat free half & half. I would definitely try the leeks if they could be found in the grocery, but normally I can only find them in the spring. Of course, I hadn't looked lately, maybe they carry them year round now for all I know! I used Better than Bouillon Chicken flavored this time, - which is why it's almost vegetarian. :) I do have the vegetable flavor also (and the beef!). This stuff is the best out there for broth making!

Below is the recipe with what changes I would make the next time I made it in red.


Russian Mushroom and Potato Soup
Allrecipes.com

5 tablespoons butter, divided (I would cut this down to 1 tablespoon and use it to saute the onions and carrots. I would use butter spray to saute mushrooms as you don't need much butter for mushrooms anyway)
2 leeks, chopped (or onion, depending on what I can find in the grocery) 2 large carrots, sliced
6 cups chicken broth
2 teaspoons dried dill weed
2 teaspoons salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
2 pounds potatoes, peeled and diced
1 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 cup half-and-half (I would go with fat free half and half next time) 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
fresh dill weed, for garnish (optional) (I didn't have on hand but if I did would make a pretty addition!)

Instructions:

Melt 3 tablespoons butter (1 tbsp) in a large saucepan over medium heat. Mix in leeks and carrots, and cook 5 minutes. Pour in broth. Season with dill, salt, pepper, and bay leaf. Mix in potatoes, cover, and cook 20 minutes, or until potatoes are tender but firm. Remove and discard the bay leaf.


Melt the remaining butter in a skillet (or spray skillet with butter spray) over medium heat, and saute the mushrooms 5 minutes, until lightly browned. Stir into the soup.


In a small bowl, mix the (fat free) half-and-half and flour until smooth. Stir into the soup to thicken. Garnish each bowl of soup with fresh dill to serve.

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You see the blog on my sidebar above my favorite blogs? The one titled "I'm not that Smart: Ryan's Bee Tour Blog?" Check it out. This is my cousin (who is actually 9 months younger than my youngest son!) and he is on tour and performing as Leaf Coneybear in The 25th Annual Putman County Spelling Bee! If you visit the Spelling Bee website itself you can view when the shows are (They are in TX right now!) and maybe you will even want to go see the show! :)


October 24, 2008

Pumpkin Bread

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As my recent posts will contest there are two things you can know for certain. I love pumpkin and I love finding new recipes to mingle with my old. Recently I made an old favorite of mine for Grumpy and his daddy to take on a hunting trip with them.


As the aroma of pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger waft through the house it makes me feel some comfort. Baking or even cooking is a way for me to relax. It doesn't matter if the sun is shining or the rain is falling. As long as I am cozy and warm in my home filled with spicy aromas I am happy.

The original recipe calls for a whole cup of oil and 2/3 cup of water. When I made this the very first time I forgot the water. It didn't make a bit of difference and I loved the way the bread turned out so much that I don't bother to add it when I do make it. I use only 1/2 cup of oil and 1/2 cup applesauce instead of a whole cup of oil. It also called for 3 cups of sugar but I used 2 cups granulated sugar and 1/2 cup loosely packed Spenda Brown Sugar Blend.

Pumpkin Bread
adapted from Allrecipes.com

1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
4 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup applesauce
3 cups white sugar
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour 2 loaf pans.

In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, water and sugar until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans.

Bake for about 50 minutes in the preheated oven. Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

October 23, 2008

Taste & Create XIV

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This month for Taste & Create, Min of Bad Girl's Kitchen sat in for Nicole who is on vacation this month. Min paired me up with Iron Stef. I visited Stef's blog quite a few times (she has been blogging for a long time!) and checked out many of her dishes. I finally decided on one that I knew Grumpy would like. Bacon wrapped shrimp. Stef had mentioned she wished she hadn't used thick bacon, so I made sure I bought some center cut (not thick)!


The bacon is marinated in an orange juice (I used mango orange juice) and pepper flake mixure for 15 minutes and then wrapped in bacon, placed in the frying pan and cooked to perfection! Once the bacon is done you take it out and set it on a paper towel lined plate and pour the marinade mixture in the frying pan and reduce it until slightly thick. Yumm! I served these with roasted asparagus. This is a great quick meal when you are tired and don't want to spend too much time in the kitchen!

Thanks Stef for a great recipe and I look forward to keeping up with your blog to see what other delicious meals you are making!

October 22, 2008

Sesame Cardamon Chews

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The picture above is how it is in this home almost every evening. Whether I have the laptop on my lap or if I am just relaxing on the couch. This is what is happening. I have been sitting here reading the TWD posts and making comments, and all along, little Rudy Rut-ton is between my laptop and my belly. His head is lying on my forearm and he doesn't seem to care one bit that his head is moving with my typing! He is so goofy. He is so content to be with mom because she will love him even though he finds everything and anything he can to drag around the house while I am at work. I really think Rudy believes he is a puppy and not a kitten. Never have I had a cat that finds things which I have no idea where he found it - and drags it around the house playing and swatting at it. Most every day before I get home I am wondering what I will find that Rudy has decided to drag out. Today, he found how to get on the counter and into the window sill and got the treats on the floor. He wasn't able to get them open, but he sure as heck tried! I have found other things like winter gloves (I'm actually thankful he found them! lol), small pieces of wood from the basement, Christopher's hackey sacks (which have now become Rudy's toys), and the ceramic halloween figures Grumpy's mom made. I wasn't too happy about those....I'm wondering when he will get into the candy in the Halloween dish? Well, on to my new cookie!

Before I sat down this evening I had spent a couple of hours in the kitchen. I didn't plan to cook dinner because I was warming up meatloaf and mashed potatoes left over from last evening. Since I didn't have to "cook" dinner, I decided it was time to try one of my "earmarked" recipes in one of my holiday magazines.

I wanted something different but good. Something intriguing. I decided to make Sesame Cardamon Chews. The recipe is in the recent Land O' Lakes Holiday cookies magazine. I definitely made the right choice! Ever since the Daring Baker Challenge where we made the Danish Braid I have looked for things I could use cardamon in. I never realized that was probably the spice that I loved in my Chai Tea until I actually used it to cook with myself!

I first toasted brown sesame seeds for the recipe. Then I mixed the recipe up, rolled the dough in the seeds and baked. I have to admit, that cookie dough was divine and when I "accidently" dropped a piece of dough in the seeds, I had to try it and it was even more divine! I could not wait to try one after they were baked. These would probably be great without the frosting but because the frosting also called for cardamon I had to make it! Be forewarned. They are sweet. You won't want more than one....unless you don't frost them! :~)


Sesame Cardamon Chews
Land O' Lakes Holiday Cookies 2008


Printable Recipe

Cookie:

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar firmly packed
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup toasted sesame seeds **

**to toast sesame seeds place in non-stick frying pan on medium heat. Stir continually until seeds start to turn brown. move to separate bowl to cool.

Frosting:

2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3-4 Tablespoons half and half

Directions:

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine butter, sugar and brown sugar in large bowl. Beat at medium speed until creamy. Add egg and almond extract; continue beating until well mixed. Reduce speed to low; add flour, baking powder, cardamon and salt. Beat until well mixed.

Place sesame seeds in small bowl. Shape dough into 1- inch balls. Roll balls in sesame seed. Place 1" apart onto parchment lined cookie sheet. Bake 9-12 minutes or until golden brown (mine took 11 minutes to cook). Cool 1 minute. Remove to cooling rack. Cool completely.

To make frosting: combine all frosting ingredients in medium owl; adding enough half & half (I only needed 3 tablespoons) for desired spreading consistency. Beat until well mixed. Frost cooled cookies, let stand until set.

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I happened to go to check out Matt of Matt's Kitchen and his new post a few days ago and was rewarded with a nice little surprise! I found Matt's blog through TWD and I loved it from the moment I saw it. I believe the first time I came across his blog I left a few comments in a row and had told him I would be coming back to check in on him in the future because I loved his blog. Matt had received the Kreative Blogger Award (much deserved by him!) from Prudy and had passed it on to me amongst others. This is what Matt said:

The Lifes and Loves of Grumpy's Honeybunch
This is another site that, like Prudence Pennywise, is down-to-earth, practical, well-written, and features delicious recipes.

He had compared me to Prudy and I was extremely flattered! Thanks Matt. I in turn want to pass this award onto three bloggers who have caught my eye recently and I check in on regularly!
Jersey Girl Cooks: Lisa has a great blog and she just implemented a new look that I totally love! She talks about where she's been and whats she has done (with food) and I just love reading about them!

Cooking with Christine: Christine is a mom of two young ones who loves to cook and spend time with her family. Sounds like a girl of my own heart. I love her blog.
Test Kitchen Recipes: Nicole is another young mom who loves to cook for her family. Another girl who loves feeding and spending time with family. How can you not love her? Oh, and I have an eye on her Down East Pumpkin bread recipe! :)





October 21, 2008

Do you know the muffin Buzzy?

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No? Yes you do! It's.....me! You all are so kind to call me HoneyB. I love you all for it. However, it is time to confess. Grumpy does not call me Honey. He calls me his version of Honey...let me explain. Its short, I promise! :) Grumpy is a little younger than me. He is also quite the aggravator and joker. So, he thought it was funny to tell me I was an "old buzzard", or that I was "older than dirt." Eh, I don't mind so much and "old buzzard" has turned into Buzzy. Yes, Buzzy, which is his version of Honey. I'm his Buzzy and he's my Grumpy. I won't tell you the name of our cats, however, some of you who know me well, know they aren't extremely kosher names. I am the one who gives them decent names because there is no way I would take the cat to the vet and say what the "real" name was! Grumpy's terms for endearment aren't really endearing - unless you really know him. So, although Grumpy calls me Buzzy he is a keeper. I wouldn't want it any other way. As a matter of fact, whenever he calls me anything but Buzzy I get slightly upset and want to know why!! (This doesn't give my co-workers permission to call me Buzzy - you know who you are....) LOL


Well, on to the muffin I made for Tuesdays with Dorie. This muffin, like my Grumpy, is a definite keeper! It was right up my alley. For one, it was a muffin and secondly, it was Pumpkin! For this week's Tuesday with Dorie recipe, Kelly of Sounding My Barbaric Gulp chose Pumpkin Muffins on page 13. I have found my definite go to pumpkin muffin from now on. Those pumpkin ones I made with chocolate chips? Well, they don't hold a candle next to these. These are awesome! I got up early last Sunday morning and had them all mixed and in the oven before Chris came downstairs. The first words out of his mouth were, "what smells so good?" Oh, don't we all love to hear that phrase? :)


I sent Chris on his way to work and then made Grumpy some bacon and told him that the muffins and bacon were breakfast. He agreed, they were pretty darn good!

I made some substitutions. Because I am cutting the sugar in my life down, I substituted both Splenda and Splenda Brown Sugar blend for the sugars. That is the major substitution I made. I was a little bit worried it might make a difference, but I really don't think it did. I didn't have raw sunflower seeds, but I did have roasted unsalted ones, so I used those instead.

I ate mine with some spiced peach jam that my friend Phyllis made and she had given to me the last time I was at her home. The muffin and jam together were d-e-l-i-c-i-o-u-s! To have a look see at what other muffins were produced from this recipe, check out the TWD Blogroll & enjoy!
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