Archive for Recipes

Lemon Poppy-Seed Cookies

1-IMG_0028Since we have a plethora of lemons around here, from our lemon/lime tree, I have been searching for new cookie recipes to try out on the cookie lovers at my house.  Last week I tried out this easy recipe for lemon poppy-seed cookies, from the Martha Stewart website.  I did add an additional cup of flour from the original recipe, as the dough was extremely sticky.  This was a trial run for this recipe, and they turned out ever so delicious.  I will definitely be adding these to my cookie recipe arsenal.

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3 ½ teaspoons freshly grated lemon zest (2 to 3 lemons)
  • 8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½cups sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds, plus more for sprinkling

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bring lemon juice to a simmer in a small saucepan medium heat; cook until reduced by half. Add 1 stick butter; stir until melted.

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2.  In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.

3. Cream remaining stick butter and 1 cup sugar.  Mix in egg and lemon butter. Mix until pale, about 3 minutes.

4. Mix in vanilla and 2 teaspoons zest. Mix in flour mixture and poppy seeds.

5. In a small bowl, stir together remaining 1/2 cup sugar and 1½ teaspoons zest.

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6. Roll spoonfuls of dough into 1½-inch balls or use your favorite cookie scoop; roll them in sugar mixture. Place 2 inches apart on baking sheets.

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7. Press each with the flat end of a glass dipped in sugar mixture until ¼ inch thick. Sprinkle with extra poppy seeds.(This is optional)

8. Bake until just browned around bottom edges, 10 to 11 minutes. Transfer to wire racks; let cool completely. Makes about 30 cookies.  Store in an airtight container up to 1 week.

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This cookie is like a little,  lemon shortbread.  It has definitely gotten better with age, and oddly enough we still have a few left in the cookie container.  Amazing!  This is a great recipe to make to send to long distance loved ones, or for your favorite Travel Guy to take with him on his next trip.  Come on over and pick some lemons from our tree and try out the recipe.  Next on my lemon cookie list will be good ‘ol Lemon Squares.  Happy baking everyone!

Have you ever Made Frosting with Flour?

I realized this week that I have neglected to post any recipes recently.  This is probably due to the party planning time, and actual parties in session over the past few weekends.  There is a recipe I have been meaning to share with everyone for a while now.  My Mom has a time-honored recipe for the best tasting frosting ever.

In our house this recipe is called “The Flour Frosting” recipe, and it goes something like this:

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 1/4 Cup Flour
  • 1/2 lb Margarine or Butter, softened
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 2 Tsp. Vanilla

Directions

  1. Mix the milk and flour together in a small saucepan on the stove. Cook on medium heat stirring constantly until thickened. Cool this mixture completely in the fridge.
  2. Beat the sugar and margarine together until creamy.  This is a critical step, the butter and sugar must be smooth and creamy in order for the frosting texture to be smooth and creamy.  There can be nothing grainy going on with the butter and sugar.  If this happens the frosting will look separated, and not taste very creamy.
  3. Add the cooled flour mixture to the butter and sugar, along with the vanilla.
  4. Beat until fluffy, and frost your cake!

This frosting is very creamy and extremely delicious, just a little warning.  It is not really the variety of frosting that you can do a lot of serious Wilton style decorating with.  But you will not be disappointed in the flavor and pure yummyness that this frosting delivers.

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These are my brothers’ birthday cakes from his last two birthdays, both covered with flour frosting.  This frosting is his favorite and he always requests it for his cakes.  It is one of my all time favorites too.

Yesterday I found a recipe similar to my Mom’s on the Tasty Kitchen.  This recipe is called, That’s the Best Frosting I’ve Ever Had.  This is quite similar to my Mom’s recipe, and goes into some additional detail on the mixing directions.

If you are making your someone special a delicious Valentine’s Day treat, try this recipe out.    If you have some cupcakes or a cake to bake this week, try this recipe out.  If you have some graham crackers lying around, and some of this frosting leftover you can put them together for a delicious treat.  You will not be disappointed.  Happy baking everyone.

Oh I had fun making Cinnamon Rolls

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Now I know everyone is busy this week setting goals for the new year, maybe trying to cut back on the sweet treats and what you are eating, but the next time you have a sweet tooth and need a great sweet treat, you need to try this recipe.

Over the holidays I created the cinnamon roll recipe from my Pioneer Woman cookbook.  Oh and what fun I had.  I’m  pretty sure this was the last treat I put together for my 2012 Christmas baking season.  First of all you need to understand the I am a bread-head.  I love anything breadalicious.  Bread, rolls, French bread, sweet breads. ,yum, yum.

I actually haven’t made anything along the lines of a bread recipe since October when we had a homemade pizza party.  So I gathered the ingredients, made the dough as directed, and voila here’s what it looked like after is had risen for about an hour.  Beautiful isn’t it?

1-photo-001Whenever I see a bowl full of poofy dough like this I just want to punch it down and smell the sweet bread flavors, and I did.

Next was rolling out the dough into a semi-rectangle, and adding the toppings.  butter, cinnamon, sugar, butter, cinnamon, sugar.  It was wonderful.

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Then came “The Roll”!!  Starting at one end and rolling as tightly as you can, but uniformly until you end up with your rectangle of dough looking like this…

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This recipe makes two long rectangles for the cinnamon rolls.  The first rectangle I rolled was a little bit loose, and I probably could have rolled slightly tighter.  By the second rectangle I had my system in order and it turned out great.

Then you cut the rolls, place them into your baking pans, and let them rest and rise again.  I used foil pans, since most of these were going to friends and family for a Christmas treat.

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Once they rested, they go into the oven for 20 minutes, frost and you are ready for some seriously sweet noshing.  But make sure you include a good cup of coffee with your treat.  Then it becomes spectacular.

I had so much fun rolling the dough and putting the rolls together.  The texture of this dough was fantastic, and made the assembly process all the easier.

My taste testers here at the house have proclaimed that this recipe must be a new Christmas tradition.  I agree.  I will add this to my annual Christmas baking arsenal for many years to come.

What’s your favorite baking recipe?

>> Photo credit for this post goes to my Travel Man…

The Most Popular Revelings Post for 2012

This recipe was posted over the summer months, and it has been the most popular post on my site for this year.  If you missed out on the taco yumminess you may want to give this one a try.  It’s definitely a great recipe for anytime of the year.  Enjoy!

Taco Salad for a Crowd – Originally posted in May 2012

For the past two or three days it has been over 90 degrees here in So Cal, just a hint of summertime coming our way.  The hot weather calls for some lighter and yummy dinners.  Tonight I made the gang a  Taco Salad.  I called my Mom to find out the origin of this recipe, and we came to the conclusion that I was a recipe that was passed around the neighborhood when we were growing up.  However, I have put my own twist on the recipe, with the help of my daughter Naomi.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. ground turkey or ground beef (whichever you prefer)
  • 1 can of kidney beans (15 oz)
  • 1 pkg of taco seasoning
  • 1 bag of fritos (10½ oz)
  • shredded cheese (we like the cheddar & monterey jack combo)
  • shredded cabbage
  • tomatoes
  • green onion

Directions:

  • Brown the meat, and drain off the grease.
  • Drain the beans and add them to the browned meat.  I like to do this to heat up the beans.
  • Mix in the taco seasoning and the amount of water that is called for on the package.
  • Simmer this mixture until you have cooked off almost all of the liquid.
  • While the meat is simmering;
  • Chop up the tomatoes
  • Chop up some green onions.
  • Chop the shredded cabbage into smaller bite size pieces.
  • Crush the fritos, in the bag, with a rolling-pin.  Open the bag a bit first though to let out the air.
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For the salad assembly: 

  • The layering effect is Naomi’s twist on the recipe.
  • In a large glass bowl layer the ingredients like this:
  • Fritos
  • Meat and beans
  • Cheese
  • Shredded cabbage
  • Tomatoes
  • Green Onion
  • Then repeat the layers for a second time.
  • You can either serve the salad layered, or if your adventurous like me you can toss the whole salad and serve.
  • For garnishments put out your favorite salsa, sour cream, and black olives (that’s ones for you Hilary!)

Variations:

  • This recipe can easily be made with shredded chicken or beef.
  • You could add additional cans of different types of beans (black or pinto).
  • You could flavor the meat with your favorite salsa instead of taco seasoning.
  • Any garnishments that you like can easily be put on top or served with your salad on the side.

This is truly a yummy recipe, and so easy to throw together.  Oh and I like using the shredded cabbage because it does not get soggy at all.  I put out the cabbage when we have just plain old tacos in the shell too.  For this twenty-something household, this salad makes a great big meal and is great for staying on budget.  If you’ve never made this before it’s a real treat.  If you haven’t made it in a while you’ve been missing out like me.  I’m definitely mixing this recipe in with my weekly summertime meal planning.

Are you Ready?

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Presents wrapped, cookies all baked?  Are you ready for tonight and tomorrow?

I have been working on lots of crafts, and baking.  I really can’t share any of my crafting goodies with you all until after Christmas Day.  I don’t want to give away any secrets you know.

My favorite cookies to bake are always sugar cookies, and spritz.  Love the buttery deliciousness of both of these cookies.  The recipes that I use are from a Betty Crocker cookie book.

Nana Joan’s Sugar Cookie-

* This is a recipe that we cooked growing up.  Always a favorite at Christmas time.

Ingredients:

  •  3/4 c. shortening (use part margarine or butter)
  • I highly recommend using only butter.  Butter makes everything better!
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2-1/2 c. flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
Directions:
  •  Mix shortening, sugar, eggs, and flavoring.  Beat until creamy.  
  • Add remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly.
  • Chill the dough for at least 4 hours.
  • For painting the cookies before baking use evaporated milk and food coloring.
  • Bake at 400 degrees on ungreased cookie sheets.
  • Baking time is 6-8 minutes

And the recipe for the Spritz cookie which require a cookie press go like this-

1-DSC01107Spritz Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 C. butter or margarine, softened (I recommend butter only!)
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 2-1/4 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp. almond extract or vanilla

Directions:

  • Heat oven to 400.
  • Mix margarine and sugar in large bowl.
  • Stir in remaining ingredients.
  • Chill the dough for a few hours.
  • Place dough in cookie press, and form desired shapes.
  • Decorate with colored sugar or candies.
  • Bake on ungreased cookie sheets for 5-8 minutes until set but not brown.
  • Immediately remove from cookie sheet.
  • Makes 6-7 dozen cookies.
  • Freeze any extras if you have them.  These freeze well.
  • Great cookie to mail for the holidays.

Oh,  and this is what my sweet baby granddaughter was doing while her mother and I baked our little hearts out last week.

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Wishing you and yours the Merriest of Christmas seasons.  I hope each and every one of you has a splendid time with your families near and far.

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