It’s Thursday . . .

I’m VERY grateful that our weather has ‘taken a break’ – we had temps. in the 40’s yesterday and now all the extra snow/ice is melting! YAY! Our driveway is clear – we went to pick up my new glasses today and I didn’t have to do the ‘usual’ bundle-up with heavy scarf, heavy gloves, etc – felt nice to just go out hatless/scarf-less/glove-less!

The Yarn Swap went over well Tuesday night – I was happy to ONLY bring home about 10 very small skeins of yarn (mostly baby weight, so they were small); still had a LOT of yarn so I took the rest to the Wednesday Library knit group and STILL had a good amount, so the remainder went to Children’s Village where they teach teens to knit/crochet for charities.

I’m finally in the ‘nothing special’ mode of life (for awhile, hopefully) – that means I don’t have anything BIG/PRESSING to have to do. Got my special needs group newsletter together, just have to fold, stamp & deliver to post office and that will be done. We took delivery of our new washing machine yesterday – that was an ‘adventure’… The delivery guys called us at 6:45 a.m. to let us know they’d be here in around 15 minutes! YIKES! Jump up, change into clothes & quickly proceed to move everything that might impede delivery (that’s stuff sitting on downstairs steps/coats hanging on wall hooks/boxes-stuff around old washer, etc.). Crazy! While they were installing the washer I had to leave for knit group. Husband texted me that they got the old washer OUT but new washer needed new hoses and they couldn’t get the OLD hoses off of the water connections! Ended up having to call a local plumber to come and CUT them off! (Ah, yes – save $$$ on great deal on washer only to then SPEND part of the deal back to plumbers!) Such is life, right? Well, now we have a working washer. This new one is very different: it’s a agitator-less one – it only has a big, huge empty steel drum for the clothes, nothing in the middle that goes up & down! Apparently they made the drum with bumps and that’s what moves the clothes around. Oh – and if you’re waiting for the water to fill you’ll wait a LONG time! You put the clothes in the tub, dump in the soap and close the lid. The washer SENSES how much water you need & then fills it accordingly! WEIRD! (there IS a ‘pause’ button, should you need it) It has all kinds of settings for water temp, times, etc. – gonna take me awhile to get used to this one, for sure!

=============

Peanut Butter Fluff

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 (3.9 oz) vanilla or chocolate
instant pudding mix
1 1/2 C. milk
1 C. creamy peanut butter
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
25 Reese’s mini peanut butter cups
3/4 C. mini chocolate chips

Suggested dippers:
slices of apple, graham crackers,
chocolate graham crackers,
peanut butter cookies

In large bowl mix cream cheese &
dry pudding mix together until smooth
(will take a few minutes). Slowly add
milk  – 1/4 C. at a time, making sure it
is completely incorporated before adding
more. Add peanut butter – mix until
combined. Fold in Cool Whip until
mixture is smooth & creamy & fluffy.
Fold in Reese’s candies & chocolate
chips. Cover & chill at least 2 hours.
Serves 20

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
————————-
Crockpot Crispy Chicken Pot Pie

5 chicken thighs
2 Russett potatoes, peeled/diced
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 carrot, peeled/diced
1 rib celery, diced
1 C. frozen corn
salt/pepper, to taste
1 C. chicken stock (or water)
1/4 C. flour
4 T. butter
1/2 C. heavy cream
1 C. frozen peas

chopped parsley (garnish)
=
cooked biscuits (or) cooked
puff pastry
=
In a skillet brown chicken on both
sides 3-5 minutes on high. Place
potatoes, onion, carrot, celery &
corn to crockpot – season with salt/
pepper. Place chicken stock on top of
veggies; add chicken thighs. Cover
& cook on Low 6 hours (or High 4 hours).

About 15 minutes before cooking time
is done, remove chicken & make a
paste of the flour & butter, using a
fork to mash it together. Add butter
mixture, heavy cream & peas to
vegetable mixture & stir. If your
chicken isn’t crispy enough (out of
crockpot) you can brown it in the
oven on broil a few minutes.
Serve topped with cooked biscuits
or cooked puff pastry. Serves 5

(recipe: dinnerthendessert.com)
———————————–

Good Luck Pork & Cabbage
(crockpot)

4 C. shredded cabbage
2 apples, coarsely chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 C. brown sugar
1/2 C. apple cider vinegar
1/2 C. apple juice
1 tsp. salt, divided
1 (3 lb) boneless pork butt
bottom roast
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 T. vegetable oil

Combine cabbage, apples, onion,
brown sugar, apple cider vinegar,
apple juice & 1/2 tsp. salt in crockpot;
mix well. Evenly sprinkle roast with
remaining salt & pepper. In large
skillet over high heat, heat oil &
brown roast on all sides – place
roast in crockpot over cabbage
mixture. Cover & cook on Low 5-6
hours until pork reaches 160
degrees F. on meat thermometer
& is fork-tender. Serves 6

(recipe: mrfood.com)
———————————-

Ham a la King

1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen puff
pastry shells
1/4 C. butter, cubed
1/4 C. flour
1 tsp. chicken bouillon granules
1/2 C. hot water
1 1/2 C. milk
3 slices processed American
cheese
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. prepared mustard
2 C. cubed fully cooked ham
1/2 C. frozen peas, thawed (optional)
1 (2 1/4 oz) can sliced black olives,
drained
2 T. diced pimientos
2 T. minced fresh parsley

Bake pastry shells according to
pkg. directions. In large saucepan
melt butter; stir in flour until
smooth. Dissolve bouillon in
water. Gradually add milk &
bouillon to saucepan & bring to
a boil. Cook & stir 2 minutes until
thickened. Reduce heat; add
cheese, Worc. sauce & mustard –
stir until cheese is melted. Add
ham, peas (if using) olives,
pimientos & parsley – heat
through. Serve spooned into
baked pastry shells. Serves 6

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————-

Italian Potato Cakes
(uses leftover mashed potatoes)

2 C. leftover mashed potatoes
2 T. diced onion
2 T. Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/8 tsp. garlic powder
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 to 1/3 C. flour
vegetable oil, for frying

In bowl combine potatoes,
onion, cheese & seasonings.
Stir in egg & combine well.
Stir in 1/4 C. flour (add a little
more, if needed, to tighten
up the potatoes – not overly
stiff though). Heat 1/4″ oil
in a skillet over medium-high
heat. Drop potato mixture by
big spoonfuls in oil & gently
flatten out just a little. Fry
2-3 minutes per side until
golden brown. Remove to
a paper towel-lined plate.

(recipe: ninrecipes.com)
—————————

Brown Sugar Pork Chops

4 bone-in pork chops
2 tsp. olive oil
salt/pepper, to taste
3 T. butter
2 tsp. minced garlic
3 T. brown sugar
1 tsp. Italian seasoning*
1 T. chopped parsley

lemon wedges & parsley sprigs;
optional garnishes

Preheat oven 400 degrees F. In large
pan over medium-high heat heat
oil. Season chops on both sides
with salt/pepper. Place chops in pan
in single layer & cook 5-6 minutes
per side or until browned. Remove
chops from pan & place on a plate –
cover with foil to keep warm. Add
butter to pan & melt; add garlic,
brown sugar & Ital. seasoning-
cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
Place chops back in pan & spoon
sauce over top. Place pan in oven &
bake 10-15 minutes until chops are
cooked to desired level of done-ness.
Spoon sauce from bottom of pan over
chops & sprinkle with parsley (if using).
Serve, garnished with lemon wedges.
Serves 4

*If you don’t have Italian Seasoning,
you can substitute with equal parts
dried oregano, dried basil & dried
thyme.

(recipe: dinneratthezoo.com)
————————————–

Crockpot Hearty Italian Beef Soup

2 lb. beef stew meat, cubed
cooking oil
1/2 C. white onion, diced
1 C. diced carrots
1 C. diced celery
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans Italian seasoned
diced tomatoes
2 (15 oz, ea) great Northern beans,
drained/rinsed
2 (15 oz, ea) beef broth
1 (8 oz) can tomato paste
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. onion powder
1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano

For serving:
sliced French bread
Parmesan cheese (garnish)

In large skillet over medium-high
heat add enough oil to coat bottom
of pan. Brown stew meat on all sides
& place in crockpot. Add carrots,
onion, celery, diced tomatoes, beans,
beef broth, tomato paste, salt/pepper,
onion powder & oregano & stir. Cover
& cook on Low 9 hours without opening
lid during cooking time.
Serve topped with Parmesan cheese &
French bread for dipping.
Serves 10

(recipe: themagicalslowcooker.com)
———————————–

Chunky Monkey Brownies

2 C. flour
1 1/2 C. brown sugar, packed
1/2 C. granulated sugar
2 sticks (1 C.) unsalted butter,
softened
2 large eggs
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. mashed banana, (about
1 medium-large banana)
1 (10 oz) pkg. semi-sweet baking
melts
(Hershey) OR 12 oz. semi-
sweet chocolate chips
1/4 C. chocolate chips for top

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. Using
elec. mixer in large bowl, mix
butter, eggs, sugars, salt & vanilla
until well mixed. Add flour, mashed
banana & baking melts (or chips);
stir using a wooden spoon to
combine – spread mixture into
prepared pan & smooth top.
Sprinkle 1/4 C. choc. chips on
top & bake 30-40 minutes until
lightly golden brown & a toothpick
inserted into center comes out
clean. Cool completely before
cutting into bars.

(recipe: americantimesfood.com)

=====================

Hope you are in good health and that
YOUR weather is cooperating, also. It’s
SO nice not to have to worry about what
snow storm is on the horizon for the day –
you can actually make plans to go
shopping without fear of getting your car
stuck or slipping on the roads/parking lots!

Stay healthy!

Hugs;

Pammie

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and here we go – AGAIN!

(Couldn’t resist the cute Groundhog)

It’s Winter in good old Michigan – for awhile we had just a little snow on the ground but last night & today will probably change all that. The weather predictions for last night and today were: 2 inches of snow during the night and another 2 inches before 10 a.m. today. Tonight is my special needs group’s Christmas party and our leader has firmly decided that we are GOING AHEAD – no more cancellations! (We’ve had to cancel this from the second week of December until now). It’s supposed to get down to around 5 degrees F. with wind chills of -2 degrees F. Something tells me that we are DEFINITELY NOT going to have the (originally expected) 150 people coming – we’ll be lucky if we get 30! The food has already been purchased – there are reports that some of the ladies who had volunteered to help serve/clean up have the flu…this is NOT a good sign! Let’s just say-if I was not a leader and one of two people running the group I WOULD STAY HOME! Not looking forward to driving in snow much less driving home later in more (hopefully there won’t be more). I have to be there at 4:30 p.m. and it’s done at 8 p.m. (not counting clean up). I’ve already decided to skip the Wednesday Library Knit Group – that group is fun but I really don’t feel like battling snow in the morning then doing it again 4 1/2 hours later! Such is life, right?

==============

Blueberry Yum Yum

1 (10 oz) pkg. shortbread cookies;
crushed (reserve 1/2 C. for topping)
(poster used Lorne Doone’s)
1/4 C. butter, melted
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 C. powdered sugar
2 (8 oz, ea) tubs Cool Whip, thawed
1 (21 oz) can blueberry pie filling
1 C. chopped pecans

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In medium bowl mix cookie crumbs
(minus the reserved ones) & melted
butter – press into bottom of 9 X 13″
baking dish. Bake 5 minutes; cool
completely.
In large bowl combine cream cheese,
powdered sugar & 1 tub Cool Whip –
STIR by hand. Spread mixture over
cooled crust. Drop dollops of blueberry
pie filling over cream cheese layer & spread
carefully. Sprinkle pecans over pie filling.
Top with remaining Cool Whip & sprinkle
top with reserved crumbs. Refrigerate at
least 2 hours before serving. Serves 10-12

(recipe: southernbite.com)
———————————–

6-Ingredient Bake!

1 lb. ground beef
2 (7.5 oz, ea) tubes refrigerated
biscuits
1 (10 oz) can enchilada sauce
1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained/
rinsed
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
1 C. shredded Mexican cheese blend

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
skillet cook beef over medium-
high heat 5-7 minutes; drain.
Separate each tube of biscuits
into 10 biscuits per tube. Using
a pizza cutter, cut each biscuit
into quarters. In large bowl stir
together beef, beans, enchilada
& tomato sauces. Stir biscuit
halves into mixture & spread
evenly in prepared dish. Sprinkle
cheese on top & bake 25-30
minutes. Let stand 5 minutes
before serving.

(recipe: tasteerecipe.com)
——————————

Crockpot Turkey/Wild Rice Soup
(this is a 1 1/2 day project)

2 C. cooked, chopped turkey (or
a turkey carcass)
8 C. water (NOTE: if you don’t have
a turkey carcass, use 8 C. chicken
broth)
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 C. chopped celery
1 C. chopped carrots
2/3 C. raw wild rice
1 tsp. dried sage
1 chicken bouillon cube (don’t use
if using broth & carcass)
2 T. balsamic vinegar
2 C. baby spinach leaves

NOTE: IF you are using a turkey
Carcass: place carcass in crockpot
(break bones down if needed to fit)
& cover with 8 C. water.
Cover & cook on Low overnight or
8-10 hours. Drain broth into a large
pot (do not discard), pick off meat &
add to broth.
=
Rinse out crockpot & place in chopped
veggies – return broth & meat to
crockpot & add wild rice, sage, bouillon
cube & balsamic vinegar. Stir; add 2 heaping
handfuls of baby spinach to mix (it will cook
down). Cover & cook on Low 8-10 hours
or High 4-6 hours. Soup is done when
veggies have reached desired tenderness.
Serves 8-10

(recipe: cookstr.com)
——————————-

Skillet Nachos

1 lb. ground beef
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes,
undrained
1 C. fresh or frozen corn, thawed
3/4 C. uncooked instant rice
1/2 C. water
1 envelope taco seasoning mix
1/2 tsp. salt
1 C. shredded Colby-Monterrey
Jack cheese
1 (16 oz) pkg. tortilla chips

Optional toppings:
sour cream, sliced fresh jalapenos,
shredded lettuce, lime wedges

In large skillet cook beef over medium
heat 6-8 minutes until not longer pink,
breaking into crumbles; drain oil. Stir
in tomatoes, corn, rice, water, taco
seasoning mix & salt – bring to boil.
Reduce heat & simmer, covered, 8-10
minutes until rice is tender & mixture
is slightly thickened. Remove from heat;
sprinkle with cheese. Let stand, covered,
5 minutes until cheese is melted. Divide
tortilla chips among 6 plates – spoon
beef mixture over chips & serve with
desired toppings. Serves 6

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————-

Buffalo Chicken Pasta Bake

8 oz. penne pasta (2 C.), uncooked
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
3/4 C. ranch salad dressing (wet)
1/3 C. hot sauce
2 C. cooked/shredded chicken
1 1/2 C. mozarella cheese, shredded
green onions, chopped – garnish

Optional sides:
ranch salad dressing
hot sauce
chopped green onions

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 8 X 8″ casserole dish with
nonstick cooking spray. Cook pasta
noodles accordg. to pkg. directions;
drain. In large bowl stir cream cheese,
ranch dressing & hot sauce until creamy.
Add in chicken, 1/2 C. mozzarella
cheese & cooked pasta – stir to combine &
spoon into prepared dish. Combine remaining
two cheese & sprinkle on top. Bake 20
minutes until cheese is melted. Remove &
serve immediately, topped with chopped
green onions, if desired. Serves 6

(recipe: insidebrucrewlife.com)
—————————–

Smothered Pork Chops

4 bone-in pork chops, about
1 inch thick
salt/pepper
1 C. flour
2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. thyme
1/8 tsp. chili powder
1/4 C. plus 2 T. olive oil,
divided
2 medium onions, sliced thin
2 T. butter
1 1/2 C. chicken broth
1/4 C. heavy cream

Season chops with salt/pepper. In
shallow dish/pie plate, combine flour,
garlic powder, thyme & chili powder –
reserve 2 T. mixture. Dredge chops
in mixture, shaking off excess. In large
skillet heat 1/4 C. oil until shimmering.
Cook chops until golden brown, about
5 minutes per side; transfer to a plate &
wipe out skillet. Reduce heat to medium-
low & add 2 T. remaining oil. Add onions &
season with more salt/pepper – cook until
very soft & slightly caramelized, about
15-20 minutes. Add butter, let melt then
sprinkle reserved flour – mix & cook 1
minute. Stir in chicken broth & heavy
cream – bring to a simmer. Allow sauce to
thicken, about 5 minutes. Return chops
to skillet & cook until fully cooked through,
about 10 more minutes. Serves 4

(recipe: caramelizedpotatoes.com)
———————————-

Crockpot Mexican Beef Soup

1 lb. beef stew meat cut into
1 1/4″ pieces
3/4 lb. potatoes, (about 2 medium),
cut into 3/4″ cubes
2 C. frozen corn (about 10 oz), thawed
2 medium carrots, cut into 1/2″ slices
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
2 C. beef stock
1 (10 oz) can diced tomatoes &
green chilies, undrained

Optional garnishes:
sour cream
tortilla chips

In 5-6 qt. crockpot combine
first 12 ingredients. Cover &
cook on Low until meat is
tender, 6-8 hours. If desired,
serve with optional garnishes.
Serves 8 (2 quarts)

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————

No-Bake Pecan/Coconut Praline
Cookies

2 1/2 C. sugar
1/2 C. evaporated milk
1/2 C. corn syrup
1/2 C. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
2 to 2 1/2 C. chopped pecans
2 1/2 C. grated/shredded coconut

Lay out on counter a large sheet
of waxed paper.
Mix sugar, evap. milk, corn syrup &
butter in large saucepan; bring to
rolling boil & boil 3 minutes. Remove
from heat; stir in pecans, coconut &
vanilla. Stir about 4 minutes. Spoon
batter in small dollops onto waxed
paper – let stand until batter has
hardened. Remove from paper &
enjoy.

(recipe: Facebook)

====================

Stay warm (& safe);

Hugs;

Pammie

Good News!

Went back to the eye doctor’s today – they ended up doing another eye exam and it turns out the prescription was wrong – mostly in left eye, but also a bit in right eye as well. The ‘halos’ around everything is because I didn’t get THIS lens treated with non-glare like my old ones; end result – I’m getting NEW lenses (at their expense!) and these will be non-glare coated (at my expense – but that’s ok). I was SO glad to hear that it wasn’t ME! I told the lady doing the eye test that I almost felt like I might be making the wrong choices when they ask you to read the letters in each line. YAY – it’s not me!!!

After that experience husband & I tried a ‘new to us’ restaurant/diner near the eye doctors – can’t say as I’d recommend it (it was recommended to us by someone who lives near there). Husband got a HUGE breakfast, I got a Philly Cheesesteak sandwich – we both agreed: it was so-so, nothing to write home about and probably not returning in the future. Service was great – gotta commend them for that but the food was just ‘average’. Oh well – at least now we know (we’ll be going back to our ‘new’ favorite: Village Place by our house). Our old favorite was Bob Evans but that place closed about 2 months ago – no idea why – went on the website and it just said they were closing a lot of their places – darn.

============

Black Midnight Cake

Cake:
2/3 C. dark cocoa powder (poster
used Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa)
1 C. hot, strong brewed coffee
1 pinch cayenne
1/2 C. vegetable oil
2 C. sugar
2 large eggs
1 C. buttermilk*
1 tsp. vanilla
1 3/4 C. flour
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder

Frosting:
1 C. dark cocoa (see above/cake)
4 1/2 C. powdered sugar
1 1/2 sticks butter, softened
1/2 C. buttermilk*
2 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cut 2 parchment circles the size of
the bottom of your cake pan.
In a small bowl dissolve cocoa powder
& cayenne in hot brewed coffee. In
another bowl, using elec. mixer with
paddle attachment, cream oil & sugar
until well combined. Add eggs & beat
until light & creamy, 1-2 minutes. Scrape
paddle & beat once. Slowly add in coffee/
cocoa mixture, buttermilk & vanilla – beat
until batter is smooth. Scrape paddle & beat
once. In another bowl sift flour, salt, baking
soda & powder; add dry ingredients to wet
& beat on Low speed to incorporate. Scrape
down bowl & mix just until all ingredients
are combined – do not over mix once flour is
in. Butter the bottom & sides of two 9 inch
cake pans & place one parchment circle in
each. Butter the top of the parchment & dust
with cocoa powder, shaking out excess. Pour
batter evenly between pans & place in
center rack of oven. Bake 30-35 minutes until
a toothpick inserted into center of cake comes
out clean. (NOTE: depending on your oven, you
may need to rotate cake pans halfway through
baking time). Do not over bake. Cool pans on
wire racks 10 minutes then carefully invert
onto a rack to cool further.

Frosting:
Sift cocoa powder with powdered sugar in large
bowl. In bowl of a stand elec. mixer or hand
mixer, cream butter until smooth. Add sugar/cocoa
powder mixture along with buttermilk & vanilla &
beat until smooth & creamy. Add additional butter-
milk or whole milk if frosting is too thick. Place a
small dollop of frosting on a cake dish to hold the
bottom layer from sliding – place cake on frosting.
Frost top of that layer; place second cake layer &
frost entire cake, top & sides.

*If you do not have buttermilk:
(this is for both cake & frosting:)
Place 1 T. lemon juice or vinegar in
a 2 or 3 cup measuring cup. Fill cup to
1 1/2 C. mark with milk – stir & let
stand 5 minutes; now you have
buttermilk (cake requires 1 C./
frosting requires 1/2 C. – be sure
to measure out buttermilk for
each use.)

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)
—————————————

Ham, Cheese & Pasta Casserole

2 1/2 C. bow tie pasta, cooked al dente,
accordg. to pkg. directions/drained
1/2 C. chopped green onion
1 C. frozen peas
2 C. chopped, cooked ham
2 C. shredded cheese*
1/2 C. sour cream
1/2 C. mayonnaise
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 C. milk
dash hot sauce
20 butter-type (like Ritz) crackers,
crushed
3 T. butter, melted

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray casserole dish with nonstick
cooking spray. In large bowl whisk
together sour cream, mayonnaise,
mustard, bl. pepper/salt, garlic powder,
milk & hot sauce. In another large bowl
combine pasta, onion, peas, ham & 1 C.
cheese. Pour mayonnaise mixture over
ham mixture & toss – pour mixture into
prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle 1/2 C.
cheese on top. In small bowl toss
crushed crackers & melted butter –
spread over cheese layer on top.
Bake 25-30 minutes. Serves 8

*poster used a mix of cheeses-
you choose your variety

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)
——————————

Split Pea Soup with Ham

1 (16 oz) pkg. dried green split peas
8 C. water
2 large onions, chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped
2 C. cubed, cooked ham (about 10 oz)
1 celery rib, chopped
5 tsp. chicken bouillon granules
1 tsp. dried majoram
1 tsp. poultry seasoning
1 tsp. rubbed sage
1/2 to 1 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. dried basil

Place all ingredients in Dutch oven;
bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer,
covered, 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours until
peas & vegetables are tender,
stirring occasionally. Makes 12 qts/
12 servings.

NOTE: adding only 2 C. cooked ham
adds a ton of savory flavor but keeps
sodium levels under 400 mg. per serving.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————-

Crockpot Apple Cider Pulled Pork

7-8 lb. pork butt roast
3 T. chili powder
1 T. cumin
1 T. salt
1 tsp. thyme (ground)
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. dried mustard
2 C. apple cider
1/2 C. apple cider vinegar
1 (20 oz) bottle BBQ sauce

12 crusty rolls

Place roast in bottom of crockpot. In
small bowl mix seasonings – rub all
over roast, turning to get all sides.
Pour apple cider & apple cider vinegar
over roast. Cover & cook on High 4-5
hours (or Low 8-10 hours). Remove
roast from crockpot & shred meat
using 2 forks. Pour juices out of
crockpot, reserving 1-2 cups in a
small bowl. Return shredded meat to
crockpot along with 1/2 of bottle
BBQ sauce & enough reserved
liquid to keep pork moist. Keep on
Low setting while serving meat on
rolls with additional BBQ sauce
drizzled on top.

NOTE: Make sure leftovers are cooled
completely before covering tightly
& refrigerating or freezing for another
meal.

(recipe: mostlyhomemademom.com)
—————————–

Broccoli/Cheese-stuffed Chicken

3 large chicken breasts
salt/pepper
1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder, divided
1/4 tsp. paprika
1 C. finely chopped broccoli florets
1/2 C. finely diced red bell pepper
1 C. Cheddar cheese
1 T. mayonnaise
2 T. olive oil

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Season both sides of chicken with
salt/pepper, paprika & 1/2 tsp.
garlic powder. Using a sharp knife,
cut a slice through middle of chicken
breasts sideways, creating a pocket
for filling.
Filling:
Place broccoli in a large microwave-safe
bowl & add 2 T. water. Cover with
plastic wrap & microwave 1 minute;
drain any excess water. Add bell
pepper, cheese, mayo, remaining
garlic powder & salt/pepper to dish.
Mix until combined then divide
mixture between chicken breasts,
using a wooden toothpick to secure
if necessary. Heat a large oven-safe
skillet over medium heat & add olive
oil. Sear chicken 3-4 minutes per
side. Cover skillet with foil & bake
in oven 15-17 minutes until a
cooking thermometer reads 165 degrees F.
Let rest, covered, 5 minutes before
serving Serves 4-6

(recipe: iwashyoudry.com)
—————————————

Spicy Black Bean Soup

2 T. olive oil
1 medium red onion, finely
chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T. minced jalapenos
1 T. tomato paste
kosher salt/black pepper
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. cumin
3 (15 oz, ea) cans black beans,
rinsed/drained
3 ‘bean cans’ water
1 quart chicken or vegetable
stock
1 bay leaf

Optional garnishes:
sour cream
sliced avocado
chopped fresh cilantro

In large pot over medium heat,
heat oil. Add onion & cook until
soft, about 5 minutes. Add jalapenos
& garlic – cook about 2 minutes.  Add
tomato paste, stir to coat vegetables-
cook about 1 minute more. Season
with salt/pepper, chili powder &
cumin- stir to coat. Add beans &
3 ‘bean cans’ water* & chicken broth.
Stir soup, add bay leaf & bring to a
boil. Immediately reduce heat to
a simmer & simmer about 15 minutes
until liquid is slightly reduced. Remove
bay leaf & discard. At this point you
can either serve soup ‘as is’ or pour,
in batches, into a blender & blend
to your desired consistency. Serve
with optional garnishes. Serves 4

*I recommend rinsing black beans
before using & then replacing the
original ‘liquid’ that was in the can
with 3 cans of water.

(recipe: delish.com)
————————————-
Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 C. butter, softened
1 1/2 C. sugar
2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
1 tsp. peppermint extract (or
more, to taste)
about 10 drops green food coloring
3 1/4 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
12 oz. dark chocolate chips,
divided

Line one or more baking sheets
with parchment paper. In large
bowl or stand mixer, beat butter
& sugar (scraping sides of bowl)
then beat on Medium 2 minutes,
until light & fluffy. Add eggs &
yolk, pepp. extract & food coloring;
mix well. In separate bowl, combine
flour, baking powder, baking soda,
cream of tartar & salt – mix & add
to wet ingredients – combine until
flour is not quite incorporated. Add
half choc. chips to dough*. Chop
other half coarsely using a knife or
food processor. Add chopped
chocolate to dough & mix until
just combined. Cover dough &
refrigerate 1 hour.**

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Using a 1/4 C. measuring cup,
form balls & shape into ovals
(think more egg shaped than
ball), place on cookie sheets.

NOTE: poster said these are
very LARGE cookies, she only
put 8 cookies per sheet

Bake 8-10 minutes until barely
starting to brown on edges.
Centers should be not-shiny
when you take them out. Let
cool 5 minutes on pan then
remove to cooling rack.
Makes about 20 large cookies.

*Poster reserved about 1/3 C.
whole chips & pushed them into
baked cookies immediately after
removing from oven.

**Chilling is not mandatory. You can
bake them right after mixing. Poster
prefers the texture & flavor after
chilling

(recipe: thefoodcharlatan.com)
=====================

A little later on we have to attend a funeral
visitation for a lovely lady from our church –
she & her husband were married just short
of 60 years – she will be greatly missed.

Hope you are staying warm (it was a ‘balmy’
15 degrees F. when we left for eye appointment).
These are the days when I’m VERY grateful for
a warm house, warm clothes, food in the pantry
and the blessings I’m given every day. The Lord
has greatly taken care of me and my family for
a long time and I am grateful.

Hugs;

Pammie

 

WE HAVE TREE!

It’s not the ‘regular’ one we put up on top of the baby grand piano, but it will do – this is the fiber-optic tree in the dining room (so now nobody can say we don’t have a TREE up!). Managed to finish the ‘green beans’ shopping, found a nice ‘substitute’ for the large Hershey’s Kiss – this is one of those chocolate ‘oranges’ – it comes wrapped looking like an orange & when you open the foil, it’s slices of orange-flavored chocolate. Got the three loaves of bread baked; waiting for the third loaf to cool so I can wrap it & deliver to our neighbors (I only have 2 loaf pans, so had to do the baking in 2 batches). Husband noticed how miserable I was feeling and suggested he go pick up a Jet’s Veggie pizza for dinner (my favorite) so that works!!! He also suggested I start doubling up on taking Vitamin B12 (I had stopped a few weeks ago – no particular reason) so I took 2 just before I left to shop and am feeling a LOT better than earlier! YAY!

Lots of recipes to share and, knowing I’ll be babysitting tomorrow, thought I’d do a double post today, instead.

==============

Cookies/Candy

Perfect Pineapple Fudge

3 C. sugar
1/2 C. Half & Half
2 T. light corn syrup
1 (8.25 oz) can crushed pineapple
(do not drain)
3 T. butter
1 tsp. pineapple extract or vanilla
1 C. white chocolate chips
1 (7 oz) jar marshmallow creme

Line a 9 X 5″ loaf pan with nonstick
foil & lightly butter. In heavy bottomed
3 qt. saucepan, combine sugar, Half &
Half, corn syrup, pineapple & butter.
Bring to boil over medium-low heat,
stirring until sugar dissolves. Continue
cooking, stirring frequently, until
contents reach 236 degrees F. (or
soft ball stage: 234-240 degrees F. on
a candy thermometer). Remove from
heat & stir in extract; stir 3 minutes until
candy starts to thicken slightly. Stir in
chips until fully melted & combined then
stir in marshmallow creme. Pour into
prepared loaf pan & let cool to room
temperature. Refrigerate until fudge is
completely set, at least 2 hours. Cut
into pieces; store in airtight container.
For Firmer Fudge: refrigerate
Makes 2 pounds.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
—————————————
Kiss Me Cookies

1 C. butter, softened
1 C. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. maraschino cherry juice
1/2 tsp. almond extract
6 drops red food coloring
2 1/4 C. flour
1/2 C. chopped maraschino
cherries
Approx. 50 Hershey kisses,
unwrapped

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a baking sheet with nonstick
cooking spray.
In large bowl beat butter, powdered
sugar & salt until well blended. Add
cherry juice, almond extract & food
coloring – gradually beat in flour.
Stir in cherries. Shape dough into
1-inch balls & place 1-inch apart on
prepared sheet. Bake 8-10  minutes
until bottoms are light brown.
Immediately press a chocolate kiss
into center of each cookie (it will
crack around the edges). Cool in
pan 2 minutes then move to cooling
rack to completely cool.

(recipe: Mike Suddaby-Facebook)
—————————————
Pecan Pie Pound Cake

4 sticks butter, room temp.
4 C. sugar
4 C. flour (cake or all purpose)
8 large eggs, room temp
8 oz. cream cheese, room temp
2-3 tsp. vanilla

1+ cups chopped pecans
1+ cups brown sugar

1 jar caramel ice cream topping

Preheat oven 300 degrees F.
Grease & flour a tube pan. In
bowl of elec. mixer, beat butter,
cream cheese & sugar until smooth.
Add eggs, one or two at a time. Add
flour, 1 cup at a time. Add 2-3 tsp.
vanilla & mix well. Pour batter into
prepared pan. Sprinkle top with
pecans & brown sugar – lightly press
into batter. Bake 1 hour 15 minutes.
NOTE: You may want to tent the top
of the pan with foil if it’s browning too
fast or nuts are scorching; increase
heat to 325 & bake another 30 minutes.
Test for doneness with a wooden skewer
(or toothpick). If toothpick comes out
wet, allow to bake a little longer until
toothpick comes out dry/clean. Remove
from oven & allow to cool a few minutes
before removing from pan. When you
invert cake onto a plate, you may loose
a few nuts – turn cake onto another plate
so that the brown sugar/nuts are on top.
Drizzle top of cake with caramel ice
cream topping & cut/serve.

(recipe: americantimesfood.com)
———————————-
Mexican Wedding Cookies

1/2 C. vegetable shortening
1/4 C. water
1 egg white
1 box (15.25 oz) white cake mix
1/2 C. chopped nuts
1/2 C. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
(optional)
1 tsp. vanilla
(powdered sugar – for rolling)

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Place some powdered sugar in
a shallow plate (or pie plate).
In large bowl beat shortening, water,
vanilla & egg white using elec. mixer
on Medium speed 1 minute. Add
cake mix, beat until smooth/no lumps
remaining, about 2 minutes. Add nuts
& choc. chips (if using) – mix to incorporate.
On ungreased cookie sheets, shape dougn
into 1 inch balls & place about 2 inches
apart. Bake about 10 minutes until almost
set. Roll warm cookies in powdered sugar
& let cool. Makes about 4 dozen.

(recipe: southernplate.com)
————————
Coconut Magic Bars

1/2 C. unsalted butter
1/4 C. light brown sugar, packed
2 C. graham cracker crumbs (
about 15-16 full sheets, crushed)
1 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 C. shredded sweet coconut
3/4 C. pecans, coarsely chopped
1 2/3 C. sweetened condensed milk

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large bowl add crushed graham
cracker crumbs & brown sugar – stir
to combine.
In a 8 X 8″ baking pan place 1/2 C. butter;
heat in oven until completely melted.
Remove from oven & evenly spread graham/
brown sugar mixture over melted butter.
In Layers:
Alternate chocolate chips, coconut & pecans –
evenly pour sweetened cond. milk over top &
bake 30 minutes until coconut is lightly
browned. Cool completely before cutting into
bars. Serves 16

(recipe: dearcrissy.com)
——————————
Peppermint Snowball Cookies

1 C. butter, softened
2/3 C. powdered sugar (sifted)
2 1/4 C. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. peppermint extract
red or pink food coloring
3/4 C. Andes peppermint baking chips

additional powdered sugar for coating

In large bowl beat butter & powdered
sugar until light & fluffy. Mix in flour,
salt & extract just until combined. Add
food coloring – a few drops at a time,
until desired color is achieved. Stir in
peppermint baking chips. Refrigerate
dough, covered, at least 30 minutes

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Line a baking sheet with parchment
paper. Scoop out 1 T. dough at a time
& form into a ball; place on prepared
sheet. Bake 7-8 minutes (cookies
should only be very lightly browned
on bottom). Let cool 5 minutes on
sheet. Place some powdered sugar
in a plate or pie tin – Place slightly
cooled cookies in tin & roll around
to coat completely. Let cookies cool
completely. Store leftovers in an
airtight container up to 4 days.
Makes 4 dozen

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
————————————–
Turtle Thumbprint Cookies

1 egg, separated (white beaten)
1/2 C. butter, room temp.
2/3 C. sugar
2 T. milk
1 T. vanilla
1 C. flour
1/2 C. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp. salt
16 (unwrapped) caramels
3 T. heavy whipping cream
1 1/4 C. finely chopped pecans
1 tsp. shortening
1/2 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Using an elec. mixer, beat butter in
large bowl 30 seconds. Add sugar &
continue beating until combined &
creamy. Add egg yolk, milk & vanilla-
beat until well combined. In another
large bowl sift flour, cocoa powder &
salt. Add flour mixture to butter mixture
a little at a time (trying to avoid a cocoa
cloud!) – beat until well combined. Wrap
dough in plastic wrap & chill a few hours.

In small saucepan over Low heat heat
caramels & whipping cream until smooth.

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly grease cookie sheets.
Shape dough into 1-inch balls & roll in
slightly beaten egg white then in pecans
utnil coated. Place balls on prepared sheets
1 inch apart. Using your thumb, lightly
press center of cookie making an indentation.
Bake 10 minutes until edges are set. (If
indentation has disappeared during baking,
use a measuring spoon to re-create the
indentation.) Spoon warm caramel mixture
into centers of cookies & remove to wire
rack to cool. (If caramel has thickened too
much, just reheat on Low until it reaches
a thinner consistency) – be careful to not
overfill cookies.
Once cookies have cooled, melt chocolate
chips & shortening in microwave in 15
second intervals, stirring in between. Drizzle
chocolate over tops of cookies.
Makes 2 1/2 dozen.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)

——————-

Lemon Coconut Cloud Cookies

1 (18.25 oz) box lemon cake mix
1 1/2 Cool Whip, thawed
1 egg
1/2 C. shredded coconut
3/4 C. powdered sugar

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 2 baking sheets with nonstick
cooking spray.
In large bowl beat all ingredients
except powdered sugar, using elec.
mixer – mix well. Place powdered
sugar in shallow dish. Form
heaping teaspoonfuls of dough into
balls & roll in powdered sugar -place
on prepared sheet. Bake 8-10
minutes until light brown around
edges. Let cool 5 minutes then
remove to wire rack to finish cooling.
Makes 24 cookies

(recipe: mrfood.com)
——————————–
Amish Chocolate Pie

1 C. granulated sugar
2 1/2 T. flour
2 T. cocoa
2 egg yolks
1 tsp. vanilla
3 T. butter, melted
1 (10 inch) baked pie crust
1 1/2 C. milk

Toppings:
whipped cream
chocolate shavings

In large saucepan whisk gran.
sugar, flour & cocoa. In medium
bowl whisk milk, yolks & vanilla;
pour milk mixture into flour
mixture. Turn heat to medium &
stir in butter; heat to rolling boil
1 minute until thickened then pour
into crust & smooth top evenly.
(or tap pie on counter to help
settle the filling). Let cool at
room temperature 2 hours then
chill an additional 2 hours. Top
with whipped cream & chocolate
shavings. Makes 1 pie

(recipe: iambaker.net)
=================

Enjoy your day!

Hugs;

Pammie

Published in: on December 21, 2017 at 3:19 pm  Comments (1)  
Tags: , , , ,

Finally – feeling more like the old ‘me’!

I can actually say that I’m finally feeling MUCH better! First thing today I baked a 9 X 13″ apple crisp – had a bunch of apples that were ‘on the edge’, so got that out of the way. A bit later I was getting the ‘itch’ to do some Christmas decorating so now we have a lighted wreath on the outside window, lighted roping on the fire place & secretary, some window decals in the bathroom, kitchen windows & back door. There’s still lots to bring down (no tree yet)  but at least I got a START! (also –  sent text I’m feeling better so now I’m babysitting tomorrow 10:15 a.m. – ?…hoping it’s only 3/3:30 p.m.)

(In my haste to share the recipes I totally forgot photos of my house today:)

The backyard picnic table – Yes, we got about 8 inches yesterday!

My car WAS totally clean before all the snow started!

===============

Lot’s more desserts/candy recipes for ya:

================

Peppermint Swirl Fudge

1 tsp. butter
1 (10 to 12 oz) pkg. white baking
chips
1 (16 oz) tub vanilla frosting
1/2 tsp. peppermint extract
8 drops red food coloring
2 T. crushed peppermint candies

Line a 9″ square baking pan with foil
(extending foil out past rim of pan) &
lightly grease with butter. In small
saucepan, melt chips, stirring until
smooth. Remove from heat, stir in
frosting & extract then spread into
prepared pan. Randomly place drops
of food coloring over fudge – cut
through fudge with a knife to swirl
color. Sprinkle top with candies &
refrigerate 1 hour until set.
Using foil – lift fudge from pan.
Gently peel off foil & cut into 1 inch
squares. Store in airtight container.
Makes about 1 1/2 lb.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————
Pistachio Cranberry Bark

2 C. (12 oz) semisweet chocolate
chips
1 C. chopped pistachios, toasted/
divided
3/4 C. dried cranberries, divided
5 oz. white candy coating, melted

Line a baking sheet with waxed paper.
In microwave-safe bowl, microwave
choc. chips until melted; stir until
smooth. Stir in 3/4 C. pistachios &
half of cranberries – spread onto
prepared sheet & drizzle with melted
candy coating. Cut through layers with
a knife to swirl. Sprinkle top with
remaining pistachios & cranberries;
refrigerate until firm. Cut or break
into pieces & store in airtight container
in fridge. Makes about 1 lb.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————

Easy White Chocolate-covered Pretzels

100 miniature pretzels (or 50 pretzel rods)
16 oz. candy coating or melting chocolate
wafers (such as Ghiradelli or CandiQuik
sprinkles, candies, crushed candy canes,
etc. for topping

Cover a large baking sheet with parch-
ment paper. Set out your toppings that
you plan to use to decorate the pretzels.
Melt chocolate/candy coating accordg. to
pkg. directions. Use a large fork or pronged
dipping tool to dip bottom of each pretzel
into melted chocolate – gently tap until
excess chocolate has dripped off. Scrape
the bottom of the fork/tool against the
bowl before gently placing coated pretzel
on baking sheet. Sprinkle on desired
toppings while chocolate is still wet –
let set until hardened. Store in air tight
container up to 1 week. Makes 15
servings.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
———————————–
Rolo Candy Buttons

24 miniature or square pretzels
24 Rolo candies, unwrapped*
24 M & M’s

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line a large baking sheet with
parchment paper. Lay half of
pretzels on sheet & top each
with a Rolo candy – bake 2-4
minutes until Rolos have softened.
Remove from oven & gently press
1 M & M on top of each Rolo. Chill
10 minutes until chocolate has set.
Store leftovers in an airtight
container. Makes 24 candies.
Recipe can easily be doubled or
tripled.

*Rolo candy: Usually sold in a roll
in the candy aisle:
a small individual
round caramel covered in chocolate.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
—————————-
Chocolate Mint Cream Cheese
Buttons
(candy)

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
4 1/2 C. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. mint extract
several drops green gel food coloring
1 C. heavy whipping cream
10 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Combine cream cheese & 1 C.
powdered sugar in large bowl – use
stand or hand mixer to combine. Add
extract & coloring – mix until combined.
Gradually add rest of powd’d sugar –
mix until combined, scraping down
sides of bowl as needed. Use your
hands to combine ingredients if your
mixer is not up to the task. Line a large
baking sheet with parchment paper. Scoop
out a teaspoon of dough & form into a ball
using the palm of your hands – place on
prepared sheet; repeat with rest of dough.
Using the end of a wooden spoon or a
small measuring spoon, create an indentation
in each ball – NOTE: dust the measuring spoon
with powdered sugar if it sticks.
Chill mints until firm, about 1 hour.

Place chocolate chips in heat-proof bowl or
large measuring cup. In saucepan bring
heavy cream to just a simmer then pour
over chocolate chips – stir once or twice &
let stand 1 minutes. Continue stirring until
chocolate is fully melted & incorporated.
Transfer mixture to a ziplock bag & let set
30 minutes until it has thickened up (think
yogurt consistency). You can speed up the
process by refrigerating BUT keep an eye
on it or it will get very firm. Cut the
bottom corner of bag & pipe into center
of each mint. Chill about an hour until
chocolate has set up. Store in fridge.
Makes 6 dozen

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
———————————
M & M Marshmallow Dream Bars

1 (12 oz) pkg. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 (11 oz) pkg. butterscotch chips
1 C. creamy peanut butter
1 (10.5 oz) bag mini marshmallows
1 C. M & M’s

LIne a 9 X 13″ baking sheet with nonstick
foil. Combine first 3 ingredients in large
microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on High
in 30-second intervals, stirring in between,
until chips are fully melted & mixture is
smooth. Stir in marshmallows until fully
coated & pour mixture into prepared sheet.
Sprinkle top with M & M’s & press them
down slightly. Refrigerate about 2 hours
until set. Cut into bars. Store leftovers in
airtight container. Makes 36 bars

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
——————————–
Maple Nut Fudge

3/4 C. butter
3 C. granulated sugar
2/3 C. evaporated milk
12 oz. white chocolate chips,
chopped
1 (7 oz) jar marshmallow creme
2 1/2 tsp. maple extract
2 C. chopped walnuts

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spread walnuts in an even layer on
a baking sheet; bake 5 minutes then
stir – bake an additional 5 minutes &
let cool. Spray  9 X 13″ baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray then
line with parchment paper. Combine
butter, sugar & evap. milk in heavy-
bottomed saucepan; bring to boil
over medium heat, stirring frequently.
Once at full boil, continue boiling
5 minutes, stirring continuously.
Remove from heat & stir in white
choc. chips (poster uses a whisk
to get out all the lumps). Stir in
marshmallow creme & maple extract;
stir in walnuts & pour into prepared
dish. Let cool completely then cut
into squares. Top with additional
toasted walnuts, if desired.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
——————————–
White Chocolate Cranberry Fudge

2 C. sugar
3/4 C. sour cream (not light)
1/2 C. unsalted butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1 C. white chocolate chips
1 (7 oz) jar marshmallow creme
1 tsp. vanilla (use clear vanilla extract
if you want whiter fudge)
1 (5 oz) bag dried cranberries (Craisins).

Line 9 X 13″ baking dish with foil & lightly
spray with nonstick cooking spray. Combine
sugar, sour cream, butter & salt in a heavy
2 qt. saucepan. Bring to boil over medium
heat, stirring frequently. Continue cooking/
stirring occasionally, to soft ball stage (238
degrees F.). Remove from heat & stir in
choc. chips until fully melted (a few minutes).
Stir in marshmallow creme & vanilla until
smooth & blended. Stir in dried cranberries
until evenly coated – pour into prepared
dish & cool to room temperature. Chill
several hours before cutting into squares.
Store in airtight container.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
———————————

Soft Eggnog Cookies w/Eggnog
Frosting

Cookies:
2 1/2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 C. butter, softened
1/2 C. brown sugar
1/2 C. granulated sugar
2 egg yolks
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. eggnog

Frosting:
1/2 C. (1 stick) butter,
softened
1 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 C. powdered sugar
3-4 T. eggnog
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line rimmed baking sheets with
parchment paper or spray lightly
with nonstick cooking spray. In
medium bowl whisk flour, baking
powder, salt, nutmeg & cinnamon.
In another bowl beat butter until
creamy then mix in both sugars.
Add egg yolks, vanilla & eggnog –
mix until creamy. Gradually add
flour mixture & mix until fully
combined. Roll batter into 1-2 inch
balls & place on baking sheet –
flatten slightly. Bake 12-13 minutes
until lightly browned. Let cool 5
minutes on sheets then transfer to
wire rack to cool completely before
frosting

Frosting:
In large bowl beat butter until creamy
then add vanilla. Gradually add powdered
sugar & mix until combined. Add eggnog &
mix 2-3 minutes until fluffy. Frost on cooled
cookies. If desired, sprinkle tops with nutmeg
or cinnamon.

(recipe: communitytable.parade.com)

======================

I still have LOTS more – will try to post more
often so you can have a CHOICE of ideas for
your holiday gatherings.

Hugs;

Pammie

Cookies & Candy!

Well, we survived the big snow storm yesterday by staying inside, nice & warm. Our snow plow guy, for some reason, never came so our driveway is still pretty impassable. We have a short driveway with a ‘slight’ slope – just enough to make attempting to drive UP it with lots of snow/ice an almost impossible task (not counting we live on a MAIN highway – 45 mph. in front of our driveway) so starting around 4:30 p.m. there is traffic backed up in front of the driveway. I talked with our plow man yesterday around 8 a.m. and he voiced his concerns about having enough room to get a ‘running start’ up the drive with all the traffic – said he’d probably come twice during the day…oh, well…not sure what happened. Since neither my husband nor I have anywhere to go today, that’s OK but I’m hoping he makes it today. Oldest son texted me last night asking if the plow guy came because (if he didn’t) son was going to come over after work and shovel us out. I gently declined the offer because when this text happened it was already 7:30 p.m. and son was STILL at work – he starts work at 4:30 A.M.! As sweet an offer as that was, I didn’t think he needed to do all that – we’re good. (I’m also kind of guessing that might have been a ‘veiled’ question as to when I might babysit again, but we’ll leave that be for now (it’s been a week, today, since I’ve babysat).

LOTS of cookie & candy recipes – will attempt to cram in as many as I can today:

============

 Peanut Butter Snowballs

1 C. powdered sugar plus 2 T.
3 T. butter, softened
1/2 C. creamy peanut butter
12 oz. white chocolate candy coating
sprinkles, for decorating

Line a cookie sheet with parchment
or waxed paper. In large bowl combine
1 C. powdred sugar, butter & peanut
butter, stir until completely mixed &
smooth. Sprinkle remaining powdered
sugar on a clean work surface & form
dough into a log-shape, 12 inches long.
Cut into inch pieces & roll each in your
hands to make smooth balls – place on
prepared sheet & chill 30 minutes.

In medium microwaveable bowl melt
candy coating in 30-second intervals,
stirring until completely smooth. Dip
balls in candy coating then return to
sheet – add sprinkles, if desired while
coating is still wet. Refrigerate until
ready to serve. Makes 24

(recipe: recipelion.com)
——————————–
Grandma’s Millionaire Fudge

3 (12 oz, ea) bags semi-sweet chocolate
chips
2 (7 oz, ea) jars marshmallow creme
4 1/2 C. sugar
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
1 to 1 1/2 C. chopped pecans (optional)

Place a long row of waxed (or parchment)
paper on counter. In large bowl, using elec.
mixer add semi-sweet choc. chips & marsh-
mallow creme.
In a heavy, large saucepan add sugar & milk;
bring to boil – boil 6 minutes, stirring
constantly. Remove from heat & pour over
chips/marshmallow mixture, beating
on medium speed until mixture is creamy &
smooth – be sure to not over beat. Add nuts
& fold in. The mixture will set as it cools.
Using a small ice cream scoop or two table
spoons, scoop fudge & lay  in small mounds
on prepared paper. Cool completely before
moving to a container.

NOTE: The fudge can be poured out in a buttered
sheet pan if you are not able to scoop all the
fudge before it hardens.

(recipe: recipelion.com)
———————————
Old Fashioned Divinity (candy)

3 C. sugar
1 C. light corn syrup
1/2 C. water
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
2 egg whites
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. maraschino cherries – drained/
patted dry
white sprinkles (optional)

Line 1-2 baking sheets with parchment
paper. In 2 qt. heavy pot combine sugar,
corn syrup, water & salt – cook over Low
heat, stirring, until sugar fully dissolves.
Increase heat to High & cook until it
reaches 260 degrees F (Hard ball stage)
DO NOT STIR. While sugar mixture is
cooking place egg whites in a very clean &
dry bowl of stand mixer. When sugar
mixture reaches about 230 degrees F.
start to beat egg whites until stiff peaks
form. VERY CAREFULLY pour hot sugar
mixture in a steady stream over egg
whites while mixer is running at HIGH
speed. Add vanilla & continue to beat
5-10 minutes until mixture is stiff
enough to shape & is no longer shiny.
Stir in cherries, if desired.
Using a small ice cream scoop or a
tablespoon, drop mounds onto parch-
ment paper – top with sprinkles, if
using. Let rest at room temperature
until set. Makes 36

(recipe: recipelion.com)
———————————
Amish Molasses Cookies

3/4 C. shortening
1 C. packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1/2 C. molasses
2 1/2 C. flour
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. allspice
1 tsp. ground nutmeg

granulated sugar – for
rolling

In large bowl cream shortening &
brown sugar. Stir in egg & molasses,
mix well; fold in dry ingredients &
stir to combine. Cover & chill until
firm, 1-2 hours.

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly grease cookie sheets.
Place some granulated sugar in a
pie plate. Roll dougn into small
balls then roll in gran. sugar to
coat – place on prepared sheet.
Bake 9-10 minutes. Leave on
sheet 1 minute until set.

(recipe: amish365.com)
——————————

Peanut Butter Brownie Cups

3/4 C. sugar
1/4 C. unsalted butter, softened
1 T. water
3/4 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 large egg
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 C. flour
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 C. peanut butter chips plus
about 1/3 C. more – garnish
1/2 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips
plus about 1/3 C. more – garnish
3/4 C. creamy peanut butter

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 12 muffin cups with nonstick
cooking spray – or use paper liners.
In large microwave-safe bowl combine
sugar, butter & water; microwave on
High 1 minute until butter melts. Stir
in 3/4 C. semi-sweet choc. chips until
melted. Stir in egg & vanilla. Add flour
& baking soda, stir until blended – allow
to cool to room temp. Stir in 1/2 C. each
peanut butter/choc. chips. Spoon batter
by heaping tablespoonfuls into cups.
Bake 13-15 minutes until top is set & a
toothpick inserted into center comes out
slightly wet. Place pan on wire rack. Centers
of brownies will fall upon cooling – if not;
tap centers with back of a teaspoon to make
a hole. Place peanut butter in small micro-
wave safe bowl. Microwave on High 45
seconds, then stir. While brownies are still
hot, spoon about a tablespoon of peanut
butter into center of each brownie. Top
with semi-sweet & peanut butter chips.
Cool completely in pan. Makes 12 cups.

(recipe: the-girl-who-ate-everything.com)
—————————————
Lemon Sugar Cookies

1/3 C. unsalted butter, room temp.
1 C. gran. sugar
2 eggs
3 T. lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp. lemon extract
zest from 1 lemon
3 1/2 C. flour
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
small pinch fresh ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 C. white sparkling sugar (or
you can use granulated)

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Line 3 cookie sheets with parchment
paper. Using elec. mixer, cream butter
& sugar until light & fluffy, about 2
minutes on High. Add eggs & mix to
combine. Add lemon juice, extract &
zest – mix again. In separate bowl combine
flour, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg &
salt – whisk until well combined. Add
flour mixture to butter mixture & mix until
combined. Place white sparkling sugar in
a flat plate or pie tin.
Using a small cookie scoop, scoop out dough
& form in a ball in your hands – roll each ball
in sparkling sugar, coating well then place on
cookie sheets, 2 inches apart (about 12-15
per pan). Bake 10 minutes. Remove from oven
but leave cookies on sheets – carefully press
down on each cookie using a flat-bottomed
glass so that cookies flatten a bit & outer
edges crackle a bit. Bake 2 additional minutes.
Remove cookies to wire rack to cool.
Makes approx. 40 cookies

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)
———————————-
3-Ingredient Coconut Macaroons

1 (14 oz) pkg. sweetened coconut
flakes (or 5 1/3 C.)
2 tsp. vanilla
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed
milk

Toppers (optional):
whole almonds, maraschino
cherries (cut in half), chocolate
chips

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large bowl combine coconut, vanilla &
cond. milk. Line a baking sheet with
parchment paper. Using either an ice
cream scoop or your hands, make into
balls & flatten on sheet.* Bake 10-12
minutes until edges are browned.
Remove from baking sheet IMMEDIATELY
& allow to cool. Makes about 2 1/2 dozen.

*Poster forms dough by squeezing it in
her hands then flattens (using her finger)
on the sheet.

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)
—————————–
Pepper ‘n Spice Dark Chocolate
Cookies
  (overnight recipe)

1 tsp. black peppercorns
1 cinnamon stick
1 1/2 C. flour
2/3 C. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground allspice
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. ground ginger
pinch ground mace
pinch cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp. pink peppercorns
12 T. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted
butter, softened
3/4 C. packed light brown sugar
1 large egg, room temp.
2 tsp. vanilla

granulated sugar – garnish
spice grinder or clean elec. coffee
grinder
mortar & pestle
2 (11 X 17″) baking sheets
=
Using elec. spice grinder, grind black
peppercorns & cinnamon stick to
medium-fine powder. Sift ground
spices, flour, cocoa powder, baking
powder, allspice, salt, ginger, mace &
cayenne onto a piece of parchment
or waxed paper.
Using a mortar & pestle, (or flat side
of a knife, crush pink peppercorns;
place in bowl of elec. mixer & add
butter & brown sugar. Beat until
creamy & smooth, scraping down
sides of bowl – beat in egg & vanilla.
Add spice/flour mixture to butter
mixture & mix on Low speed until
just combined. Transfer dough to a
piece of plastic wrap & roll into a
1 1/2 inch diameter log. Wrap well &
refrigerate overnight.
=
Position oven racks in top & bottom
thirds of oven
Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment
or nonstick liners.
Using a thin-blade knife, slice cookies
into 1 1/4 inch coins & place on sheets
1/2 inch apart. Sprinkle each cookie
with pinch of gran. sugar. Bake, about
8 minutes, turning sheets from back to
front & switching between top rack &
bottom rack halfway through baking
time until cookies are just firm to touch.
Allow to cool on sheets 5 minutes to
firm up, then use a spatula to transfer
to wire racks to cool completely. Store in
airtight container up to 1 week.

NOTE: refrigerating dough overnight
helps keep dough’s crumbly texture
after baking.

(recipe: cookstr.com)
—————————————–
Chocolate-covered Caramels

1 C. butter
2 1/2 C. packed brown sugar
1 C. light corn syrup
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed
milk
1 tsp. vanilla
pinch sea salt
1 c. chocolate candy melts
(optional: additional melted white
chocolate for decorating/drizzling)

Line a 9 X 9″ pan with foil & spray
lightly with nonstick cooking spray. Place
butter in large microwave-safe bowl;
cover with a paper towel & microwave
on half power until completely melted.
Add brown sugar, corn syrup & sweetnd
cond. milk – stir to combine. Microwave
on High 4 minutes. Remove, stir & heat
4 minutes (you should be up to 12 minutes
total heating time). Microwave for 2 more
minutes & stir; stir in vanilla & sea salt then
pour into prepared pan. Allow to cool
completely at room temp (OR) for a quick
trick, place pan in fridge to speed up cooling
process – about 3 hours cooling – until firm.

Lift foil from pan & lay on flat surface. Using
a sharp knife, cut into squares. In medium
microwave-safe bowl melt candy melts on
half power 2 minutes & stir until smooth.
Return to microwave at half power in
20-second increments if needed until
completely smooth when stirred.

Lay out several sheets of waxed or parchment
paper on counter.

Place a square of caramel on a fork then dip
in melted chocolate – use fork to turn it over
a few times to make sure it’s completely
coated then use fork to life (do not stab)
the caramel from the chocolate. Tap fork on
side of bowl a few times to shake off any
excess chocolate, then transfer to paper
to cool completely – repeat with remaining
caramels. (To speed up cooling you can
line a dinner plate with foil & place dipped
caramels on foil then place in freezer 2-3
minutes).
Optional: Use melted white chocolate to
decorate/drizzle on cooled caramels. Store
at room temp. in airtight container up to
5 days. Makes 36

(recipe: realhousemoms.com)
=======================

There will be more cookie/candy recipes
coming, I’m sure. I wrote out a list of
what things needed doing ‘soon’: bake
4 loaves of breads (neighbors & a church
friend), at least 1 batch cookies (for our
mail lady)and figure out just what
desserts I’ll be making for Christmas
dinner. I see SO MANY recipes each day,
it’s hard to choose!

No, I still haven’t done any more decorating;
I did put up a few small things: Christmas
red candles & holders on the china cabinet
and a few more snowmen in the dining
room but as to dragging down all the boxes,
tree & wreath – not quite yet. I’m getting a
little stronger/better each day – it will get
done – eventually. I’m done with the gift
buying so only need to buy a few stocking
stuffers for the sons and a few candy
goodies to add to a few presents (no,
they are not wrapped yet) but that, too,
will come – in time.

Stay SAFE, warm and remember to take
little time to rest/relax – it can be a very
stressful time of year. Remember to take
out a little time to remember the
reason for the season.

Hugs;

Pammie