baking, blogging, cooking, DIY, recipe blog, recipes, Uncategorized

Easy, Fun and Festive July 4th

strawberries

Happy July 4th!!

July 4th is one of my favorite “other” holidays to celebrate! It’s fill of food and fun. (What’s not to love about that, right?)  Here’s the easiest thing to make for a July 4th BBQ that is red, white and blue.

You will need to buy Strawberries, a bag of white chocolate melting wafers, and light blue ( dark blue) sanding sugar.

Wash and dry strawberries. In a small microwave safe bowl microwave white chocolate in 30 intervals in the microwave until melted. Stir until smooth.
Dip one strawberry at a time in the white chocolate shaking off excess chocolate. Dip in the sanding sugar then place on parchment paper to dry. Repeat with remaining strawberries and refrigerate until serving. Makes around 24 dipped strawberries.

Enjoy! And Happy July 4th – please be safe- don’t drink and drive! Also be careful and smart using fireworks!

 

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baking, blogging, coffee, recipe blog, recipes, Uncategorized

Let’s Not Monkey Around

I made banana bread recently. It’s 1 of my favorite things to make and also have with my coffee in the morning.  It’s really easy and did I mention, it takes delicious! Here’s the recipe:

1 Stick Butter
3 Large Ripe Bananas
2 Large Eggs
1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
2 Cups All Purpose Flour
1 Cup Granulated Sugar
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a loaf pan with non-stick cooking; set aside.
Add the stick of butter to a large bowl and microwave for 1 minute, or until melted.
Add the bananas to the same bowl and mash with a fork.
Add the vanilla extract and egg to the bowl and use the same fork to mash and stir until no yellow streaks of egg remain.
In a second large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix together with a spatula just until combined.
Pour the batter into prepared loaf pan and bake for 30-40 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center of the bread comes out clean.

banana

baking, blogging, DIY, recipe blog, recipes, Uncategorized

SNEAK PEEK RECIPE IN MY UPCOMING BOOK, “LOVE AT FIRST BITE”

Let’s Be Mermaids Ice Cream

Ingredients
3 c. heavy cream
1 14-oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
green, blue, and purple food coloring
Ice Cream Cones
Sprinkles in desired

Directions
1. In a large bowl using a hand mixer or in the bowl of a stand mixer using the whisk attachment, beat heavy cream until medium peaks form.
2. Fold in sweetened condensed milk and vanilla until totally combined, then divide mixture among three bowls.
3. Add a different color food coloring to each bowl (I used different amounts of pink, blue, and purple) and stir until combined.
4. Layer dollops of the colors in a 9″-x-5″ loaf pan until you run out of the mixture.
5. Run a knife through the mixture to swirl the colors 3 or 4 times and then smooth top.
6. Freeze until firm, 5 hours.
7. Remove from freezer and let soften, 5 to 10 minutes, then scoop and serve.

mermaid ice cream

baking, blogging, coffee, DIY, recipe blog, recipes, social media, Uncategorized

Update on Recipe Book

Love at First cover revised 3-12-19

It’s not that easy to type up a recipe book! It’s a lot of work! I have to get all my recipes in line, look at them, and make sure that they have instructions and ingredients all listed. It’s not like writing a blog post, where I can just type away.

It’s coming along. I hope to have the book DONE by the end of JUNE and then edited, by the end of the summer with it’s release in September.

Stay tuned.

By the way….. IN the book is my fan-favorite recipe “S’mores Bars” which are a really big hit and can be made ANY time of the year.  I just made them the other day for a friend for his birthday and he told me to put it in my “sassy file!”

smores

 

baking, comforting food, cooking, recipe blog, recipes, Uncategorized

Do You Want To Make Fluffy Pancakes?

pancakes

Pancakes.

Pancakes that have the butter melt and the syrup drip onto the plate.

Not just any pancakes, but fluffy pancakes.

Did I make your mouth water yet?

It’s really not that hard to make fluffy pancakes and I am about to give you some pancake hacks, so you can make your own fluffy pancakes:

  1. First you need to use the shake and pour pancake batter. I buy the store brand because simply pancakes are the same, and I spend less money with the store brand than the name brand.
  2. Next you need to add powder buttermilk to the batter in the container before you add any liquid. It’s the buttermilk that makes the pancakes fluffy!
  3. Next add a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar and a teaspoon of vanilla extract to the batter in the container.
  4. Now you add your water.  Don’t follow the directions on the container. I just add the water I want for the consistency of the pancake I like. If you want thin pancakes, you add a good amount of water. If you want thick pancakes you add less water.

Now  you get your griddle on the stove and heat it up and smother butter on it to melt. I put the butter all over the entire griddle.   After the butter starts to bubble it’s time to pour the batter on to it.
Here’s a trick as to when to flip the pancakes, courtesy of my mom: When the pancakes on the griddle start to bubble, you can flip it.

When the pancakes comes off the griddle, I add a pat of butter to each and have the butter melt.  Then serve it with your favorite syrup.  My dad likes to warm up his syrup in the microwave for about 10 seconds.

You can also serve them with fresh fruit or chocolate chips.  I don’t put it in the batter because it makes the batter’s consistency too thick and it takes away from the fluffiness.

However you like them, Enjoy!

 

baking, blogging, chocolate, recipe blog, recipes, Uncategorized

St. Patty’s Day Brownies With A Twist

St. Patrick’s Day is just about here and you will see everyone adding the color “green” to just about every drink and food they make. Not for nothing, but I find that mostly not appetizing.

Instead of making your brownies green, how about we add a little Bailey’s Irish Cream to the batter and also to the frosting?  We can add green sprinkles that look appetizing to top it off.

Here’s the recipe:

INGREDIENTS:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder  and I add about 2 tablespoons of sweetened cocoa.
1 tsp. instant coffee powder 
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
heaping 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips
1/4 cup butter
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup Baileys Irish Cream
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8-inch pan with aluminum foil and lightly spritz with cooking spray; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, instant coffee powder, baking soda, and salt until combined. Set aside. Place butter in a large microwave-proof bowl and melt in 30 second spurts, stirring in between each interval until completely melted. Set aside to cool a bit. Once the butter is warm (not hot!), add eggs one at a time, whisking constantly to incorporate. Whisk vigorously for about 10 seconds to incorporate fully. Add sugar, vanilla, and Bailey’s and whisk until combined. Add the flour mixture into the chocolate mixture, folding until just combined. Coat the chocolate chips with a little bit of flour and then add them to the batter. The flour will help the chocolate chips not sink to the bottom of the pan while baking. 
Pour batter into the prepared pan, using a spatula to smooth out the top. Bake at for about 20-22 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs attached.
Let cool.  You can make a chocolate glaze to go onto the brownies by getting a can of your favorite icing, melting it in the microwave at about 20 seconds and then add about 1 tablespoon of the Bailey’s Irish Cream and stir.  Then pour over the mixture.   This of course is optional.  Then sprinkle the green sprinkles…..  and enjoy! 
You can also top the brownies with just a dusting of powdered sugar instead.
Tip: To cut brownies with clean lines, lightly spray your (sharp) knife with cooking spray
Baily's Irish Cream Brownies

 

baking, blogging, chocolate, crafts, DIY, recipes, Uncategorized

Valentine’s Day Treats

valentines day cakes

Pictured above: Raspberry-filled golden butter heart cakes. ( Not iced…yet)

Golden Butter Cake:

 

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • Baking Spray

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating well after each addition.  Pour into your heart pans which have been sprayed with baking spray.  Bake at 325° until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 21 minutes. Cool 10 minutes. Invert pan onto a wire rack over waxed paper and hit the hearts with a spoon to loosen the cakes to fall out.

Raspberry Filling:

Combine raspberries, sugar, 3/4 cup water, and lemon juice in a saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until reduced, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove saucepan from heat and strain through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl. Pour mixture back into the saucepan.  Mix remaining water and cornstarch together in a bowl until dissolved; add to raspberry mixture. Bring mixture to a boil; cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 5 minutes. Cool filling in refrigerator, at least 30 minutes.

OR… here’s a HACK: Get a can of raspberry pit filling in your grocery store. ( It’s easier and no one will know!)

I then used a small heart cookie cutter to cut a hole into each cake and fill it with the fruit filling. Then I placed the heart I cut out back inside.

Go to my Facebook page tomorrow and see the finished cake!

 

valentines day cookies

Another treat that you can make that is much easier than the cakes, are sugar cookie hearts.  It’s your simple sugar cookie recipe and then frosting is a cinch!  Frosting hack: Get a tub of vanilla or white icing and melt it in the microwave. You don’t want it to be soupy. Melt it at 21 seconds, check and then add 5 seconds until you get a good consistency.  Then I scoop it into a pastry bag and design the cookies. I have heart sprinkles and place those on the cookies.  Oh, how did I get pink cookies? Simply, separate the dough and with half the dough I add some pink or red food coloring and mix.

Check my Facebook page tomorrow for how I created the DIY bags to put these lovely cookies in.