baking, blogging, Books, recipe blog, recipes, social media, Uncategorized, valentine's day

Happy Heart Day!

 

  • 2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup  unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup  granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together on high speed until completely smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla and beat on high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl and beat again as needed to combine.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. Dough will be relatively soft. If the dough seems too soft and sticky for rolling, add 1 Tablespoon more flour.
  4. Divide the dough into 2 equal parts. Place each portion onto a piece of lightly floured parchment paper or a lightly floured silicone baking mat. With a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough out to about 1/4-inch thickness. The rolled-out dough can be any shape, as long as it is evenly 1/4-inch thick.
  5. Lightly dust one of the rolled-out dough with flour. Place a piece of parchment on top. (This prevents sticking.) Place the 2nd rolled-out dough on top. Cover with plastic wrap or aluminum foil, then refrigerate for at least 1-2 hours and up to 2 days.
  6. Once chilled, preheat oven to 350°F Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Carefully remove the top dough piece from the refrigerator. If it’s sticking to the bottom, run your hand under it to help remove it– see me do this in the video above. Using a cookie cutter, cut the dough into shapes. Re-roll the remaining dough and continue cutting until all is used. Repeat with 2nd piece of dough.
  7. Arrange cookies on baking sheets 3 inches apart. Bake for 13-15 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges. If your oven has hot spots, rotate the baking sheet halfway through bake time. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before decorating.
  8. Decorate the cooled cookies with royal icing. No need to cover the decorated cookies as you wait for the icing to set. You can keep them out for the icing to dry.
  9. Once the icing has set, these cookies are great for gifting or for sending. Plain or decorated cookies stay soft for about 5 days when covered tightly at room temperature. For longer storage, cover and refrigerate for up to 10 days.

ENJOY!

You can get this and more recipes in my best selling book, “Love at First Bite!”

baking, blogging, cookies, DIY, hacks, recipe blog, recipes, Uncategorized, valentine's day

Heart Cookie Hack

Heart pizza

This above is the easiest thing to make! Why?  Because you can do it 2 different ways!

 

  1.  You can make shortbread or sugar cookies from scratch and then cut them into triangle shapes, which means you need to bake it in a circle cookie cake pan.
  2. Or ….  You can buy shortbread cookies that are already in a triangle shape and then just decorate them.

Either way you go…. these are a showstopper plus you can make cookies in letters and spell out how you feel!!

Happy Heart Day! 💗

blogging, crafts, decor, DIY, Freebies, Uncategorized

Cheers To DIY

champagne flutes DIY

I love doing projects and creating stuff.  Valentine’s Day for me is not just about celebrating “love” it’s also my sister-in-law’s birthday and my assistant coach on my cheer team’s birthday.  So, it’s a complete celebration of love and life!

We shouldn’t just be celebrating life and love once a year, but every day!

Above are champagne flutes that are DIY with gold glitter.  They are plastic ( I know, they look like glass, isn’t that awesome!) You can find plastic ones at Target, Walmart, Dollar Stores, etc.   You can always use glass ones if you prefer, but the plastic works so much better.

 

  • Apply Glue. Clean the champagne flutes before starting. Apply a thin layer of glue to the flute, lessening the amount of glue as you move closer to the top. Unless you choose to stay towards the bottom.   **Instead of glue you can use adhesive spray**
  • Sprinkle Glitter on the flute directly, turning it as you sprinkle the glitter.
  •  Apply Mod Podge over the glitter with a paintbrush until fully covered. This will protect the glitter from coming off the flute. You can find Mod Podge in a spray as well.

 

 

 

 

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

A Valentine’s Day Treats

February is the month where we focus on love. Love of ourselves, love of our partner in life, and love of our friends. It’s also the month of chocolate. Now, who doesn’t love chocolate?  Here are 2 recipes from my best selling book,“Love At First Bite”

Raspberry-filled golden butter heart cakes.

Golden Butter Cake:

Ingredients:

  • 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

DIRECTIONS:

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.

Fool-proof Fudge

INGREDIENTS:

1 can Sweetened Condensed milk (14 ounces)

1 cup milk chocolate melting wafers

1 cup dark chocolate melting wafers

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

( you can make your won chocolate, but why when it’s so much easier using melting wafers! You can get them in craft stores or the grocery store )

DIRECTIONS:

Line an 8×8 pan with parchment paper for easy removal of set fudge. Set aside.

In a microwave safe 2 quart bowl, heat chocolate wafers on high for 1 minute. Remove from microwave. Let sit for 1 minute, then stir in the sweetened condensed milk, to combine. If needed, heat an additional 30 seconds. Stir until the wafers are completely melted and chocolate is smooth.

Stir in vanilla extract. Pour fudge into prepared pan. Let fudge cool completely before cutting into 1 inch squares. (You can place in the refrigerator for 2 hours to speed up the process.)

Store in an airtight container. Fudge does not need to be kept refrigerated.

fixes

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.

 

blogging, crafts, decor, DIY, recipes, Uncategorized

Valentine’s Day DIY

There’s a lot of fun stuff you can do out there for Valentine’s Day! Really, the sky is the limit.  I will show you a few DIY gifts you can do that will cost you under $20 to make.

baby plate

Here is a plate you can make for grandma or auntie!  You need a paint marker and then match the color with some paint for glass.  Put the paint in the bottom of your baby’s feet and do one foot at a time.   I would do the feet prints first, and then write the L O E after they are dried.

These are great “goody bags” for any party or for your kids to give out stuff at school to their teachers.  The bags were from Michael’s Crafts, but I have seen some bags just like this a lot of different places, so look around.  Then I take paper arrows ( you can make them as well with construction paper) and write the person’s name on them.  I found these cute felt hearts at Target and tied it to the back of the bag. Then I glued the arrow to the heart. Simple equals Tasteful.

painting samples

You know those color painting cards you get in Home Depot or Lowe’s?  Well, You can use them for your gift tags! All you need is a heart hole puncher, ribbon and a pair of scissors.  These are free, BTW, so the only cost will be the hold puncher and ribbon.

Coming up on the blog on Tuesday, I will have all the recipes you will want to sink your teeth into for Valentine’s Day!  YUM!

blogging, crafts, DIY, recipes, Uncategorized

Valentine’s Day DIY

Don’t look now, but Valentine’s Day is approaching! It’s only 3 weeks away! This can be a really fun day for everyone – and that includes little kids! I used to be a preschool teacher and I loved doing crafts with my class.  This day was really fun!

Here’s a quick little DIY project that you can do with your class or at home.

tic tac toe

This can work in a few ways:

First off, you will need to cut out a heart and draw the Tic Tac Toe board on the heart. Next, you will have to make the hearts.  You can either get these puffy hearts at the craft store and use those, or you can make your own.

You will have to cut out 20 small hearts; 10 in red and 10 in pink.  Then you will need to glue HALF the heart together and leave an open side. Once it dries, you can rip apart some cotton balls and stuff them into the hearts.  You will only need to use 1-2 cotton balls per heart.

Next you will need to glue the heart shut.  Once it dries you can now go ahead and play Tic Tac Toe!