Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Chocolate Chip Toffee Cookies

This is one of the best cookies I have ever eaten! It's actually a chocolate chip cookie recipe I got from my sister-in-law at my bridal shower some 11+ years ago that I just tweaked a little to fit my tastes. The cookies are chewy on the inside and crispy on the outside, just like a cookie should be. They are SO good warm right out of the oven!!

Chocolate Chip Toffee Cookies
3/4 cup crisco (buttered flavor is best, but regular will work too!)
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
2 Tablespoons milk
1 Tablespoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 package choclate chips
1-2 cups toffee chips (I like lots of toffee so I use 2 cups, but you can easily just use one and still get the toffee flavor!)

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Combine crisco, brown sugar, milk, and vanilla. Stir. Beat in the egg. Combine and add dry ingredients. Add chocolate chips & toffee chips. Place on ungreased cookie sheet (I use my pampered chef medium sized cookie dough's the perfect size cookie I think!) and bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. (In my oven 9 minutes is perfect, but adjust time to how your oven cooks.)

Hope you enjoy some ooey gooey yumminess!!:)

UPDATE!! Don't try to double this recipe...I did just that the other day and I left out about 3/4 cup of the flour and they still turned out crumbly and dry!! Just a warning!:)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Lemon Crumb Cake

It was Blue and Gold Banquet time for Cub Scouts last month and Caleb and I decided to make a lemon crumb cake (because it's yellow) and put a sign on top of it for the cake decorating contest. Here's the final product for the contest. (sorry the pictures are a little dark!)
This was a little on the involved side of things. Not hard, just a lot of steps, but it was so worth it! I LOVED the tart lemon flavoring throughout the cake. Perfect for Spring!

Lemon Crumb Cake


2 1/4 cups cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 ¼ cups buttermilk
4 large egg whites (save the yolks for the lemon curd)
1 ½ cups sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla

To Make the Cake
Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.
Whisk together the milk and egg whites in a medium bowl.
Put the sugar and lemon zest in a mixer bowl or another large bowl and rub them together with your fingers until the sugar is moist and fragrant.
Add the butter and working with the paddle or whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer, beat at medium speed for a full 3 minutes, until the butter and sugar are very light.
Beat in the extract, then add one third of the flour mixture, still beating on medium speed.
Beat in half of the milk-egg mixture, then beat in half of the remaining dry ingredients until incorporated.
Add the rest of the milk and eggs and beat well, then add the last of the dry ingredients.
Finally, give the batter a good 2- minute beating to ensure that it is thoroughly mixed and well aerated.
Divide the batter between the two 9" round pans and smooth the tops with a rubber spatula.
Bake for 30-35 minutes at 350 degrees or until the cakes are well risen and springy to the touch – a thin knife inserted into the centers should come out clean
Transfer the cakes to cooling racks and cool for about 5 minutes, then run a knife around the sides of the cakes, and take them out of the pan to cool to room temperature, right side up (the cooled cake layers can be wrapped airtight and stored at room temperature overnight or frozen for up to two months).


1/3 cup simple syrup (you will need more simple syrup to brush on the cake) Simple syrup is one part sugar to one part water. Mix together in a sauce pan and heat until sugar is dissolved.
1 package unflavored powdered gelatin
1 batch of lemon curd (recipe follows)
1 pkg. (8oz) cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup whipping cream

1. Bloom the gelatin in a few Tbs. of water for about 5 minutes. Heat the simple syrup over medium heat and add the gelatin, bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring constantly, until the gelatin is completely dissolved. Set aside to cool.

2. In a chilled mixing bowl, beat the whipping cream until it forms stiff peaks. Transfer to another bowl and set aside.

3. In the mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese and the lemon curd until it is well mixed. Slowly drizzle in the cooled simple syrup, scraping down sides as needed. Add the whipping cream and beat with the whisk attachment until incorporated.

4. Chill the mixture until slightly thickened.

Lemon Curd

2 large lemons
4 large egg yolks
2/3 cup sugar
4 tablespoons butter, cold

1. Zest the lemons and set aside. Juice the zested lemons and strain the juice. In a small mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar until smooth. Stir in the zest and lemon juice.

2. Pour the mixture into a saucepan. Over medium heat, bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and continue to cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Remove from the heat and pour through a strainer into a glass bowl. Stir in the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time. Cool to room temperature then press a piece of plastic wrap onto the surface and chill in the fridge until completely chilled and set.

Vanilla Crumb Topping

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup plus 2 Tbs. powdered sugar

5 Tbs. chilled butter cut into small pieces

1 tsp. vanilla

1. In a bowl mix the flour and powdered sugar. Cut in the chilled butter until small pea sized balls form. Drizzle the vanilla over and mix to combine. Chill the mixture until needed.

Assembling the cake.

When the cake cooled, brush the tops of the cake with the remaining simple syrup. Spread 2/3 of the filling on the bottom half of the cake. Top with the other layer of cake. Frost the top and the outside of the cake with the remaining filling and then press the crumb mixture onto the sides and top of the cake. Dust with powdered sugar. Chill for several hours or freeze to firm up the filling. Dust extra with powdered sugar before serving.

Makes me tired just writing out the directions!! But if you've got the time it's well worth it!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Bacon Swiss Bread

This is one of my families favorites too...I seem to say that with almost every recipe I post!! That must mean we like food TOO much!:) Anyway, I usually make this with something Italian; like spaghett, lasagna, ravioli's, etc.
Try'll like it!

Bacon Swiss Bread
Recipe from Taste of Home
1 loaf French bread
2/3 cup butter, softened (or just use the stuff from the tub like I do!)
1/3 cup chopped green onions
4 teaspoons prepared mustard
7 slices swiss cheese (approximately)
5 bacon strips (approximately)

1. Cut bread into 1 inch thick slices, leaving slices attached at bottom. In a bowl, combine the butter, onions and mustard; spread on both sides of each slice of bread.

2. Cut each cheese slice diagonally into halves; place one half between the slices of bread. Cut bacon in half widthwise and lenghtwise; drape a piece over each slice.

3. Place the loaf on a double thickness of heavy-dut foil. (I just place it on my cookie sheet diagonally so it will fit!) Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until the bacon is crisp.
I was going to give you the nutritional facts for this one...but they are pretty sky just don't worry about it and try to just eat one!!!:)

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


This recipe comes from my good friend Brittony. She told me that she had a good recipe for brownies and then she brought me some and boy were they good. They even passed the hubby's o.k. and he is really picky about his brownies. There was a place where he grew up that had the best brownies...and nothing since then has ever compared to those...until now!! 11+ years of marriage and I have finally found it!!! Anyway, I finally tried out the recipe myself last night and it was so super easy (and I could have just eaten the batter by itself!). Anyway, here's the recipe!


1 cup margarine, softened
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup cocoa powder
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cup flour

Cream the margarine and sugar together. Add the cocoa and continue to cream it all together. Ad the eggs and mix in pretty well. Add the rest of the ingredients. Pour and spread into a greased 9X13 cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes. You want to be able to stick a toothpick in and have it come out with a little bit of brownie stuck to it. It shouldn't come out totally clean. (I cooked mine for exaclty 30 minutes and it was perfect!)

Let the brownies cool and then prepare frosting and frost!

6 Tablespoons butter, softened
6 Tablespoons cocoa powder
2 Tablspoons light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla
2-3 cups powdered sugar (I ended up using about 2 3/4 cups)
2-4 Tablespoons milk (I used 3 Tablespoons)

Cream together butter, cocoa, corn syrup, and vanilla. Add powdered sugar and milk to the consistency that you like it. You can also add mint extract if you want some mint brownies. That is the way Brittony made them for me and they were so yummy, but they are really good plain as well!

They are so yummy warm straight from the oven, but believe it or not they get creamier and yummier after a few days...if you can keep them around that long!!:)

Monday, April 19, 2010

Baked Ravioli's

My kiddo's LOVE ravioli's...but not the canned type...they like the ravioli's you find in the frozen section, and I usually just boil them and then warm up some pasta sauce to go with it, but I found this recipe online for baked ravioli's that I thought I'd try and it was so easy and yummy!

Baked Ravioli's

32 frozen ravioli's (about 1 lb.) I bought a bag of meat and cheese and used both!
1 bottle (26 oz.)spaghetti sauce (whichever flavor you prefer, I used the hunt's four cheese was really good)
3 oz. pepperoni slices (optional...I left this part out)
1/2 cup shredded parmesean cheese
1/2 cup grated mozzerella cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place half of the ravioli in a greased 8X8 baking dish. Pour half of the sauce and mix well. Spread the ravioli so they are evenly spread out. Place pepperoni in a single layer over the raviolis. Sprinkle on the parmesean. Place remaining ravioli in a even layer over the pepperoni. Spoon remaining sauce over the ravioli making sure they are all well coated. Place remaining pepperoni in a single layer on top of the ravioli. Sprinkle the mozzerella on top. Cover dish and bake for 30 minutes.

I just had to throw in this picture of Rhett "eating" his ravioli's. He'd had a long day and I had to wake him up to eat. He wasn't too happy about that and was still half asleep!:) Too cute!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Blueberry Streusel Muffins

Oh....My....Goodness!!  These muffins are out of this world!!  Yummy goodness!

Blueberry Streusel Muffins

1/4 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/3 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 1/2 cups fresh or froen blueberries (do not thaw blueberries if using frozen ones!)
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup cold butter
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Beat in the egg and vanilla and mix well. Combine flour, baking powder and salt and then add to the creamed mixture alternately with milk. Fold in the blueberries.
Fil 12 greased or paper-lined muffin cups 2/3's full. In a small bowl, combine the sugar, flour and cinnamon; cut in butter until crumbly. Sprinkle over muffins. Bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until browned. Cool for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack.

 These were some of the best blueberry muffins I've ever had...really yummy!!!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Breadsticks with Cheese dip!

This is one of my Conference staples!! I don't make this very often, but almost always have it during conference weekend! It is absolutely one of my favorites!!

So first you need to make some breadsticks.


1 Tablspoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons yeast
1/2 cup warm water
2 cups hot water
3 Tablespoons sugar
1 Tablespoon salt
5 Tablespoons oil
6 cups flour, divided

Combine 1/2 cup of warm water with yeast and set aside to do it's magic:). Mix hot water, sugar, salt, oil, and 3 cups of the flour in your mixer and mix until smooth. (This can also be done without a mixer, just takes more arm muscles!) Add the yeast and the rest of the flour and mix in mixer for about 10 minutes. Or if mixing by hand, this is what I used to do before I had my Bosch mixer...Mix the dough until it is all incorporated then let it sit for 10 minutes (use a timer). When the 10 minutes is up come and knead the dough for about 5 minutes, then let it sit for another 10 minutes and then knead for 5 this about 5 times and it will be ready to go!

At this point you could divide the loaf in half and have 2 loaves of bread, but for breadsticks here's what you'll want to do.

Melt about 1 1/2 sticks of butter or margarine in the microwave. Pour enough of the butter to cover the bottom of a large cookie sheet. Next, roll you dough into a rough rectangular shape to fit on the cookie sheet. I usually roll mine out a little larger because of the elacticity of the will pull back in once it's in the pan. When it's ready transfer it to the cookie sheet, I usually fold it in half like you would when making pie crust and transfer it that way. Just be careful because if your dough is too sticky you're gonna have to start over! Once in the cookie sheet I use my pizza cutter to cut the breadsticks. You can make them whatever size you'd like. I usually run my cutter to make about 1" size breadsticks the short way and then one cut up the middle the long way. Now spread the rest of the butter on the top of the breadsticks and then sprinkle with garlic powder, parmesean cheese, and italian seasonings.

Bake in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes or until the top is lightly browned.

Now for the cheese dip. YUMMY!

Cheese Dip

8 oz. (or 1 cup) cream cheese, softened
8 oz. (or 1 cup) sour cream
8 oz. (or 1 cup) Cheese Whiz (I've used off brands of this and it never turns out as good...just a heads up!)
1 can (4 oz.) of diced green chilies

Put cream cheese, sour cream and cheese whiz in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for about 2 minutes and remove and stir. Put back in microwave for another minute and stir. Continue until the cream cheese is melted and incorporated with all the other ingredients. I use a whisk because it helps the mixture become nice and smooth. Once it is smooth and all mixed together add the green chilies and you're ready to roll! It is best served warm with warm breadsticks.

I think I just might go and have one now! Enjoy!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Praline French Toast

It's Conference weekend again! That means I get to bake to my heart's content and be fed both physically and spiritually!! Since I was little it has been my families tradition to sit and enjoy conference together as a family (both on Saturday & Sunday) We make it a fun occasion and play conference related games and win prizes and EAT!! I always get a little homesick around this time of year because this was a time when all the kids and thier families would get together and enjoy the weekend together, but since we've moved a state away we haven't been able to be there with our family...which has been about 8 years now!! We miss them and spending that time together, but I'm glad to say that our family carries on the tradition and my children (for the most part:)) look forward to General Conference!

Anyway...for breakfast this morning I tried out a new recipe I found online. I have to warn you, if you don't like a lot of sugar for breakfast you may want to try this for brunch or something else because it was pretty sugary, but it was really good if you like french toast!

Praline French Toast

1/2 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons maple syrup

French or italian bread sliced 1" thick, enough to cover the bottom of a 9"x13" pan.

1 1/2 cups whipping cream
5 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1. Lightly grease a 9"x13" pan.
2. Make the glaze by melting the butter in a saucepan and then stirring in the brown sugar and syrup. Bring the mixture to a simmer, cooking until the sugar melts. Pour the glaze into the pan, spreading it to the corners.
3. Lay the slices of break in the pan, on top of the glaze.
4. Make the custard. Whisk together the cream, eggs, and vanilla. Pour it over the bread in the pan, pressing the bread down so it is covered with the custard.
5. Cover the pan, and refirigerate overnight or for up to 24 hours.
6. When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
7. Make the topping by stirring together the brown sugar, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Sprinkle it evenly over the bread.
8. Bake the French Toast for 40-45 minutes, until it's bubbly and the top is very lightly browned.
9. Remove it from the oven, and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes before serving. Serve individual slices of bread, turning it over on theplate so the syrupy bottom is on top.

If you like the lots of sugar might try adding some cool whip or freshly whipped whipping cream on top.:) YUMMY!!
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