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King Cake…there’s a baby in there somewhere…

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Mardi Gras was 2 weeks ago, I know, but I love a good King Cake anytime. And I love anything that reminds my of New Orleans.

This morning instead of having my protein shake, I cut into the King Cake that I won at a silent auction and look what I found!

baby in the cake

The tiny baby. On the first slice! So, I guess this means a year of good luck..maybe…? (If I had chocked on it, maybe it would bode as bad luck?)

I could do without the beads on the cake, but that’s a minor complaint.

The history and name of King Cake goes back to Epiphany and the 3 Kings. It is made with a brioche type dough and covered in a white glaze with mardi gras colored sprinkles.  My cake had a bit of cream cheese filling and some are more butter and cinnamon filled. For more history here’s a link to Wilipedia’s post.

It’s a tradition that should move into Christmas, instead of fruitcake.

Here’s a place to buy one online at kingcakes.com

If you’d like to bake one yourself, you can’t go wrong with Southern Living’s recipe.

Southern Living King Cake

 

Do you have a favorite King Cake recipe or place to buy one? Let me know.

See’s Candies, I heart you!

See's Valentine's Box

A heart shaped Valentine’s box of chocolates is a cliche, I know. However, if you’re going to buy one, do it right.

See’s Candies makes a delicious assortment of fresh chocolates that will make most chocolate lovers swoon.

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I bought these for my Valentine, and it’s all that I can do not to dive right in!

Warm Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies on a Cold Night

oatmeal choco chips

Mmmmm, soft and chewy and warm from the oven. These cookies have filled the house with their sweet smell and now are perfect with a glass of cold milk.

I had extra oatmeal left over from the baked oatmeal last week, so whipped up these by experimenting with different amounts of flour and sugar, plus only using a small amount of chocolate chips. I know that sounds odd, but too much chocolate overpowers the oatmeal. Look closely, you won’t see lots of chips. If you want chocolate chip cookies, make those… these are soft oatmeal cookies with chocolate chips. I assure you, they do not disappoint. Also, the cinnamon is hard to detect, but it adds a depth to the flavor. Next I might try these with butterscotch chips…

Oatmeal Milk Chocolate Chippers

YIELD: about 3 dozen 2” cookies  PREP: 25 minutes  COOK: 11 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

1 large egg

1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick) softened

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed

1 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups old-fashioned whole rolled oats

2/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/4 cup milk chocolate chips (I used Ghiardelli)

DIRECTIONS:

Add together in the bowl of a stand mixer: egg, butter, sugars, vanilla, and beat with the paddle attachment on medium-high speed until creamed and well combined for 2 minutes. Scrape down the bowl and beat on medium high for another minute.

oatmeal wet ingredients

Combine the oats, flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt, in a small bowl.

Oatmeal dry ingredients

Add oat mixture to butter mix and beat until combined. Don’t over-beat.

Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and use a small cookie scoop to scoop and drop the dough 2” apart on the sheet. You can fir 12 scoops to a sheet.

Chill sheet for 10 minutes in the refrigerator.*

Bake at 350 for 11 minutes. Let cool on sheet for 2 minutes and move cookies to cooling rack.

Let cool and store in an airtight container.

*If you only want to make half a batch, wrap the rest of the dough on plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Any longer and it should be frozen.

oatmeal on cookie sheet

oatmeal choco chippers

 Look closely and you’ll see the chips, just not too many…

Baked Oatmeal is perfect for a snowy morning.

baked oatmeal

When it’s cold, a warm breakfast is just what you need to start the day, and if it’s make-ahead, even better.

Baked Oatmeal is 1.easy 2.cheap 3.delicious. It’s more of a cake, than regular oatmeal, it’s not much to look at, but it’s very satisfying and perfect for a pre-skiing breakfast.

You have all of the ingredients in your pantry and refrigerator. Try adding different fruits, dried berries, or nuts to make it your own recipe. I added frozen raspberries since we still have lots from last summer. Next time I’ll use the frozen huckleberries, and another time I’ll add coconut…

Oh, and it’s gluten-free, too!

Here’s the recipe. Let me know what you think and how you revised it to make it yours…

Ingredients:

1/2 cup applesauce

3/4 sugar

2 eggs

1 cup milk (I used 2%, but any kind is fine)

1 Tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 cups old fashioned oats

1 cup frozen raspberries

topping:

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 teaspoons cinnamon

Directions:

1.Grease a 8″x8″ or 9″x9″ metal pan

2. Mix first 8 ingredients together. Pour into greased pan.

3. Mix brown sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle on top.

4. Cover with foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

5. In the morning, remove pan from refrigerator and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place pan in oven and bake for 35 minutes.

6. Spoon into bowls and serve with warm milk. Enjoy!

Serves 6-8.

 

 

Grapefruit Beer, breakfast of champs….

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I tried Stiegl Grapefruit Beer tonight, and it was really refreshing, delicious and curiously thirst quenching. The grapefruit flavor is right out in front and is the perfect compliment to the beer.

The Stiegl web site describes it as:

“The Stiegl-Radler Grapefruit is a mix of Stiegl-Goldbräu and fruit juice that is invariably natural and has no artificial sweeteners added to it. The grapefruit juice lends this a naturally cloudy appearance and a tangy fruit flavor, creating a succulent and fruity taste sensation with a refreshing finish.”

Sure, it’s not a manly-man IPA, but it’s one that I can drink without grimacing. It’ll be perfect for days on the lake, or after a day of skiing.

Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Giving Thanks for Pumpkin Spice Donuts

I know that pumpkin is everywhere this time of year, and frankly, I’m fine with that.

Today is Thanksgiving and my son’s 20th birthday. I thought it would be great to make homemade pumpkin spice donuts. I had the  recipe around for about a year and I finally bought a donut pan last night. All of the mini donut pans were sold out, so I made regular sized ones from this recipe. (I think it’s better that I make the larger ones, because if I made the minis I’d just keep eating them and thinking that I was just snacking….)

The recipe is very easy, and you likely have all of the ingredients on hand now. I brushed the pan with melted butter and used a zip top bag with a hole in one corner as a pastry bag to pipe the batter into the pan. I got 11 donuts out of the recipe. They turned out light and really good. The batter tasted a bit like flour, but the finished product was yummy.

Check out the recipe at the Blue Eyed Bakers.

Here are my photos taken with my old phone. The photos on the Blue Eyed Bakers site are much prettier, and make my mouth water.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Don’t let your gingerbread men leave home naked..

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There must be, or should be, a rule that all gingerbread men need red buttons to be suitably dressed for holiday functions. The perfect red buttons are Brach’s Cinnamon Imperials. They get just a bit chewy after baking and have the perfect little hot taste to compliment the ginger cookie. Pick up a bag or two before you start your holiday cookie baking frenzy.

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