Monday, November 29, 2010

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Cream Pie

This was the first pie gone at our annual Thankful for Pie Night this year. I got so many compliments on this pie. If you don't like peanut butter then you probably won't like this one, but if you's like no other peanut butter pie I've ever had! It is so silky smooth and delicious!

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Cream Pie
recipe by Emeril Lagasse

Sorry for the horrible picture...I really need a new camera!!
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
4 Tablespoons melted butter
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
8 ounces of cream cheese, at room temperature
3/4 cup confectioner's sugar
1/2 cup melted semisweet chocolate, at room temperature (about 1 cup of chocolate chips)
3 Tablespoons milk
2 Tablespoons chopped roasted peanuts (optional)
4 cups heavy whipping cream, whipped until thick, in all
1/2 cup chopped salted peanuts (optional)
1/2 cup chocolate shavings and curls (optional)
1 cup chocolate sauce, slightly warm

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a bowl combine the crumbs, butter and 1/4 cup of the peanut butter. Mix thoroughly. Press the mixture into a 9 inch pie pan. Bake until golden and crisp. about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely

Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese with sugar until smooth. Add the remaining 1/4 cup peanut butter and the chocolate. Beat until smooth. Add the milk and peanuts (optional...I opted to leave them out because I wanted a silky smooth pie, but one day I'll try it with them!) and beat well.

Fold half the whipped cream into the peanut butter mixture and spoon into the prepared pie shell.

Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours.

Remove from the refrigerator and spoon the remaining whipped cream over the entire pie.

Garnish with chocolate shavings, chocolate sauce, and peanuts if desired.


Sunday, November 28, 2010

A family tradition!

We have, I believe, one of the BEST family traditions for Thanksgiving! You know how you eat and eat and eat such good food as turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, rolls, and whatever other sides everyone decides to contribute on Thanksgiving? Well, if you're like our family, we stuff ourselves until we're ready to give up the ghost! Then because we ate like there's no tomorrow we rarely have room for pie (although most of us eat it anyway!:)). So someone in my family, can't remember who...heard this tradition from can't remember who either...and we all LOVED it. So...drum roll please...our tradition that started probably close to 10 years ago is ...


Doesn't the title just send shivers up your spine? So instead of eating pie on Thanksgiving day we have a Thankful for Pie Night on Wednesday instead. That way we're not stuffed with turkey and can enjoy the pie more and eat more pie!!:)

Here's the spread from this year
There were 8 different kinds of pies, a cheesecake, and a pumpkin roll. We might need to re-name it because some of the family doesn't like pie and so we add in just a few desserts as well...but nobody seems to complain!:)

We had Pumpkin pie, coconut cream pie, lemon meringue, razzleberry, apple, peanut butter and chocolate cream pie, pumpkin praline, and key lime pie...along with the pumpkin cheesecake and the pumpkin roll!

I'm excited to get recipes from everyone and be able to share them all with you and you can try them out next Thanksgiving or give them a try now...I think pie shouldn't just be a Thanksgiving Day's too good for that!:)

So...we'll see you tomorrow with a recipe for one of the pies I made. As my hubby always say...I'll give you a hint. It starts with a peanut and ends with a butter and chocolate cream pie!!:)

And I gotta was a WINNER!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

We have a WINNER!!

This was so much fun for us to do. Kyla and I checked out our blog at least 3 times a day to see if we had anymore followers and comments for our giveaway!:) Thanks so much to our may be few but we appreciate you stopping by!

We went to and generated our winner. Kyla was pretty excited that she got to do all that by was almost as cool as Christmas for her. Ok, maybe not, but she enjoyed it!:)

And with that, our winner is

#4 Jolyn!!!

If you'd leave us a comment and let us know what size scoop you would prefer we'll get it out to you ASAP!!

CONGRATULATIONS...and thanks again everyone...can't wait to be able to do another giveaway!!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Dangerous Gingersnap Cookies

This recipe came from Tiffany Felix over at The Bake-Off Flunkie that I posted about a few days ago with a bunch of other cookies I wanted to try. Well, this one had been calling my name these last few days and I just couldn't hold back any longer!! And I'm so glad I didn't. The name says it all!! Once you start eating these soft, mouthwatering cookies ya' just can't stop! They are very, very dangerous!:) But perfect for this time of year!

Dangerous Gingersnap Cookies
(if you go and look at her cookies they were a lot darker than mine ended up being...not quite sure why???)

1 1/2 cups shortening
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup molasses
2 eggs
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ginger
4 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
granulated sugar

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cream shortening, sugar and molasses. Add the eggs and mix well. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Refrigerate the dough for a while if it seems too soft, or in between baking batches. Mine was the perfect dough consistency and I didn't need to do any refrigerating.

Form dough into tablespoon-sized balls or use your medium cookie scoop and place in a bowl full of sugar.

Then roll the cookie around until it is coated in the sugar.

Place on baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes.

Makes about 48 cookies. Turn on your christmas music and enjoy eating a few...ok maybe a dozen!:)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Andes Mint Cookies

Kyla and I cooked these just this afternoon in our kitchen together. I don't think there's anything better than cooking with your daughter! Boy did we have some good conversation. Are all 11 year old girls talkin' fools or is it just mine? You get her going and you can't stop her!:) But I love it!!
Anyway, back to the cookies...these are about the easiest cookies you could ever ask for. And if you love mint and chocolate like our family does they'll be a hit!!

Andes Mint Cookies

1 package devils food cake mix
3/4 cup shortening
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 package Andes Mints

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix all ingredients together. Use your cookie scoop or roll into balls and place on cookie sheet and bake for 6-8 minutes. When you remove the cookies immediately put a mint on top of each cookie. Let them sit for about 5 minutes (you might want to watch them or they tend to slide right off the cookie!) and then spread the yummy goodness all around.

Now wasn't that about the easiest thing ever!! Especially with the help of a cookie scoop!! There's still time to ENTER THE CONTEST TO WIN ONE! GO HERE TO ENTER!

Friday, November 19, 2010

More Cookies!

We've had a kindof crisis over here at the homestead (water leak...floors torn up...mold:(...removing of water heater/furnace...replacing subflooring...NIGHTMARE!!), so I haven't had much time for cooking. Matter of fact tonight for dinner we had noodles with ground beef and tomato sauce and grilled cheese sandwiches! I am ashamed...ok not too much. Sometimes grilled cheese just hits the spot!:) Anyway, since we're giving away a cookie scoop on Tuesday I figured I'd give you some recipes that I've found for cookies. They all look absolutely delicious and I can't wait to try them all (or try again in some cases!) Enjoy looking through and let me know if you try or have tried one or all :) of them and what you think.
Chocolate Peppermint Cookies from My Kitchen CafeAnything peppermint and chocolate just look so pretty and so good!! You wouldn't be able to use the cookie scoop for this one, but isn't it pretty and festive?
Rolo Cookies by Mennonite Girls Can CookI've actually tried a rolo cookie recipe that didn't quite turn out, but it wasn't this one. Rolo's are one of my favorites and so I'm going to have to try these and hope they turn out better! And I believe you'd be able to use the cookie scoop here.
I also LOVE anything orange. If these taste anything like a dreamsicle I'll be hooked!
When I first saw these a few months ago they intrigued me. I'm still intrigued but have yet to try them, but I will soon....PROMISE!!
OK...I have a love/hate relationship with these cookies. My friend Brittony introduced my to these cookies and even brought me some to try (she is THE BEST cookie maker ever-and everything else as well:)!!) Tony loved them and so I tried them and they were a total bust! The peanut butter end was too stiff and didn't really cook and the chocolate half was flat as a pancake...not too pretty, but they were SO dang good I'm going to have to keep trying until I get it right. (Some of the problem might have been that one of my sons (who I will not name:)) put some kind of white powder substance (I'm guessing either baking soda or baking powder or corn starch:)) in my flour bin and since I'm cheap I decided to use it anyway and see how it would come out...MISTAKE!!:))
These look INCREDIBLE!! The only thing better than a warm cookie straight out of the oven would be one with vanilla ice cream on top! This is not your traditional cookie, but I'm going to have to try these!
Gingersnaps also remind me of this time of year, and I'm a big fan of ginger! These look like some soft gingersnaps which is a MUST! The cookie scoop would be perfect for these too! Can't wait to try them!!

I'm going to be posting another one of my favorite cookies tomorrow...ANDES MINT COOKIES...YUMMY!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Peanut Butter Cookies

Since we're giving away a COOKIE SCOOP this week, we thought we'd keep with the theme of cookies! So Kyla tried these peanut butter cookies that I used to make when I was about her age that are really good. If you win (or already have your own) you can use this to make making these cookies so much easier and more fun!! Kyla made these all by herself and they were gobbled up in no time. If an 11 year old can do it...anyone can!:)

Peanut Butter Cookies

1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup shortening
1 cup peanut butter
2 eggs
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 - 3 cups flour
2 Tablespoons cream (you can use whipping cream or even evaporated milk)
1 teaspoon baking powder

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cream sugars and shortening. Add peanut butter and eggs and mix. Mix in cream and dry ingredients. Roll into balls (or if you have a scoop use the medium sized one), and then press flat using a press vertical and one horizontal. Bake for 8-10 minutes.

If you missed the GIVEAWAY...head HERE to enter!

Monday, November 15, 2010

My favorite Cookie! (and a GIVEAWAY for our 100th post!)

Holy Cow!! I can't believe it's already up to 100 posts!! I thought about doing something special like maybe doing a giveaway to one of my 4 readers, but I thought instead I would share with you my favorite cookie recipe! But then I re-thought that and decided I could just do BOTH!! A GIVEAWAY and my favorite cookie recipe, even if I only have 4're odds of winning just skyrocketed!!!:) But first things first...

I have posted this one before, but I honestly go back to it A LOT!! Last night while eating dinner one of the kiddo's started going through what everyone was in charge of for Family Home Evening that night. I heard "Treat-Mom" and guess what...I had not prepared anything, so while we were cleaning up dinner I decided to make these wonderful cookies. They are so easy to make and super delicious. Nice and crispy on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside...the PERFECT cookie (especially warm right out of the oven!)

Anyway, for those who missed the first post of this it is again!

Chocolate Chip Toffee Cookies
3/4 cup crisco
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
2 Tablespoons milk
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1 egg
1 3/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup toffee chips

Heat oven to 375. Mix together crisco, brown sugar, milk, and vanilla. Beat in the egg. Combine and add dry ingredients. Add chocolate chips. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown.

Versatility! That's what this cookie has...I love the chocolate chip/toffee combo, but these are so good with Andes mint pieces instead, or peanut butter and chocolate chips. I found some caramel bits and the store the other day by the chocolate chips and thought that those and some chopped up pecans would be heavenly as well...I'm going to have to try that one and let you know!

Anyway...on to the GIVEAWAY!! Growing up I really didn't enjoy making cookies all that much because I hated to get the dough out using 2 spoons and then having to wait for the cookies and then putting more in etc... Being introduced to this device quite a few years ago I have now become a cookie maker lover!! It honestly is the best thing to have when making cookies!

A cookie scoop!! (from pampered chef!)
They have 3 sizes to choose from...large (approximately 3 Tablespoons), Medium (approximately 2 Tablespoons), and the small (approximately 1 Tablespoon).

Since most of you probably have at least one of these sizes we decided that the winner could decide what size they would like and we'll get it out to you!

We know...not the biggest giveaway ever, we wish we could give away a bosch mixer to one of you 4 readers out there, but...this will just have to do!:)


Just become a follower and leave a comment for this's as easy as that and you're qualified to WIN!!

Spread the would be a HUGE ego boost if we had more than just our 4 readers comment!:)

GOOD LUCK...winner will be announced Tuesday, November 23rd!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Cream Cheese Chicken and Vegetable Soup

After our last Soup debacle (read about it HERE!) I figured I'd go for something I knew would turn out good! I found this recipe and when I read that it had cream cheese in it I knew it would be good...cream cheese makes almost anything better, don't ya think? Anyway, I was not disappointed. Both the hubby and the kids LOVED this soup. It makes quite a bit, so we had some left over, but it was eaten up the next day for lunch, so it's all good! The cream cheese helps make the soup super creamy and gives it a nice rich flavor. I will definately be making this one over and over!

Cream Cheese Chicken and Vegetable Soup
from My Kitchen Cafe adapted by Me!

4 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 yellow onion, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
4 stalks celery, diced
1 cup diced carrots (about 4 regular carrots or a couple handfuls of baby carrots)
6 cups chicken broth
6-7 potatoes, peeled and finely diced
2 cup milk
8 tablespoons flour
1-2 (8 oz. package) regular or light cream cheese
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and diced

In a large pot, melt the butter and add the onion, garlic, celery and carrots. Saute, stirring often, for 3-4 minutes, until the veggies are slightly tender and the onions are translucent. Add the chicken broth and potatoes. Bring the soup to a simmer and cook, partially covered, until the potatoes are tender, about 10-15 minutes. In a liquid measuring cup, vigorously whisk the flour and milk together until smooth. Whisk the mixture into the soup, and cook over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, until the soup begins to thicken slightly. Stir often to ensure the soup doesn't burn. Soften the cream cheese in the microwave until it is very soft/melty. I placed an unwrapped cream cheese on a plate and microwaved it for one minute and 30 seconds at 30% power. Add the cream cheese to the soup in small tablespoon-size pieces. (the original recipe calls for 2 8oz. packages of cream cheese, but I just put in one and it looked-and tasted-good so I left the 2nd one out, but you could most certainly add would probably just make it all the more creamy and delicious!) Let the pieces sit in the soup and warm through then whisk or stir the soup until the cream cheese melts and mixes in well. Add the cooked chicken and heat through. Season with salt and pepper. Serve.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Corn Chowder with Chillies

I can't remember where I found this recipe but I knew when I saw it that it would be something Tony (the hubby) would really like. Well, I finally got around to trying it out last night.

I wasn't familiar with one of the ingredients (the Chipotle peppers in Adobo Sauce), but it was easy to find by the diced green chillies. After I opened the can and started dicing my eyes started watering like I was cutting an onion. I just figured it would have heat like an onion does or something so I kept going. (Usually if it's something that's really hot I feel it in my throat when I'm cutting them and I start to Jalapeno's) Anyway, while it was cooking it smelled really good and looked really yummy, but my son Caleb (who was reading at the counter) had to leave because his eyes were hurting him...I figured he'd just been up too long and was tired!

Well, the time came to sit down for dinner and I ladeled some soup into eveyone's bowls. Caleb came to the table still complaining about his eyes so I looked at them and they were so red and bloodshot! I started wondering if it wasn't from the soup because mine were still watering and burning a little as well. Tony was the first to taste the soup while I was getting everyone some buttered bread to go with it. I knew we were in trouble when I saw him start panting like a dog. His words "It's got a little kick!" And he's not a baby when it comes to this stuff either...he likes some heat and a little kick. Me and the kids...not so much! I decided to give it a try not knowing if he was just messing with me...he wasn't! I took one bite and it was actually really good for the first 2 seconds! Then the heat hit! I'm a wimp anyway, but this was the hottest thing I've ever tasted! The kids all tried it and immediately went to their drinks. So, the kids and I had sandwiches for dinner last night, but Tony ate 2 bowls of the soup!:)

I will definately make this one again...but I will change it up a little. Tony thinks it would be really good with some potatoes in there too, and I would most definately NOT put in the chipotle peppers! Anyway, if you like to have a burning mouth like my hubby give this one a shot...if you actually want to TASTE the soup I'd recommend leaving out the chipotle peppers so you have some taste buds left to enjoy the flavors of the chowder!

So without further ado (sorry about the LONG introduction!) here's the recipe:

Corn Chowder with Chillies
2 slices bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
2 Tablespoons butter
1 1/2 whole yellow onion, diced
4 cups frozen corn or 5 ears of corn shucked with kernels off the cob
2 whole Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce, finely diced (found in the mexican isle)
1 can (4 oz.) diced green chillies
32 ounces low sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream (I used skim milk...trying to watch our calories...and it worked just fine!)
1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
3 tablespoons corn meal or masa (I used corn meal)
1/4 cup water

Add bacon pieces to a pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Cook for a couple of minutes. Throw in diced onion and stir, cooking the onion for 3 to 4 minutes. Add butter and melt. Add corn. Stir and cook for one minute. Add both kinds of chillies and stir.

Pour in chicken broth and cream (or milk). Add salt. Stir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low.

Combine cornmeal (or masa) with water. Stir to combine, then pour into the chowder. Cover and cook for 15 minutes over low heat. If chowder needs more thickening, add another tablespoon of cornmeal mixed with water. Or just use some cornstarch which is what I did, but I'm thinking if you use the cream instead of milk you probably won't have to do this at all.

Serve with your choice of bread or in a bread bowl...or with saltines...and A LOT of milk to drink!!

Let me know if you try this and if your tongues survive!:)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Best Biscuits

I found this one over at The Sister's Cafe. I've never been a good biscuit maker...I think I tend to work the dough too much, so when I saw that you were supposed to mix this one really well I thought I'd give it a go. The sour cream ingredient threw me a bit, but I decided to try it anyway. And it was so easy and they actually turned out really light and fluffy and really good! Try this one out next time instead of buying the ones from the can!!

The Best Biscuits

4 C flour
2 Tbsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp soda
1/2 C butter
16oz sour cream
3-5 tsp water
Mix dry ingredients in a bowl. Cut in butter until there are small well blended pieces. Add sour cream and water, mix well. Knead and roll out to 1 inch thick. Cut with biscuit cutter. Freeze individually on a cookie sheet. When frozen solid, place in a freezer bag to store. (I didn't freeze them I just went ahead and baked them and they turned out really good!) When ready to use, place frozen biscuits on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 425 for 15-17 minutes or until top is golden. Makes 16-20.
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