Wednesday, November 24, 2010

My Opened Window

Since I’ve started blogging, I’ve tried to think of all the ways that it could be an asset to our family. Since my kids are basically my job these days it’s been a fine balance of writing, brainstorming and bouncing around ideas with my husband and friends. Some of this has taken time away from the kids but I like to think that it allows them to gain some independence plus I can put their butts to work in the kitchen :). I was feeling guilty the other day because I was writing and trying not to be distracted by James throwing dirt over our neighbor’s fence and I started to think that I couldn’t keep up! But, as always God opens windows and the next morning Lucas asked me to make pancakes. For some people that would be totally normal and some wouldn’t think anything of it. But you see, Lucas didn’t ask JUST to make pancakes he asked me to make MY pancakes. “Mommy will you make YOUR pancakes for me?? Please??” My heart melted like butter in a skillet. My big boy had had my pancakes so many times and liked them so much he wanted them…again. I, of course, made them with help from a bunch of tiny little hands and butts on the counters and I remembered why I wanted to start this blog in the first place. I wanted to inspire people by the little things that inspire me, little hands, butts on the counters, experiments and amazing successes. So this Thanksgiving I’m thankful for my blog. It’s allowed me to share my kitchen with others, get my kids involved in their food and it’s helps make our family and friends more united. So here is my pancake recipe in honor of my sweet boy. I’ve tried recipe after recipe and this is by far the best. No fail, fluffy pancakes. Enjoy!

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 1/4 cups milk
1 egg
3 tablespoons butter, melted

Combine all the dry ingredients then add wet. Mix thoroughly (not too much or they’ll be rubbery, no one wants that).

Monday, November 22, 2010

Chocolate Crackle Cookie

My husband and I have a holiday cookie exchange each year, well actually this is the 2nd year that we've had it, but it'll be something we will do every year. So, I go through recipes over and over and try to find the right one for the exchange. I found this on a random search at and this cookie is so good that I can't wait to share it at the party. I'm sharing it NOW! My husband and I aren't chocolate lovers but this is by far the best chocolate cookie we've ever had. Crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside and the sugar crust is the perfect accent the the bitterness of the chocolate. If you haven't ever tried any of my recipes THIS IS THE ONE TO TRY!! This dough does well overnight so if you can mix it up in the evening and bake in the morning that's perfectly fine. You have to chill the dough for 3 hrs so make sure and make it early so you're not waiting till midnight to bake your cookies. The recipe itself is very straight forward and extremely easy. I didn't combine the dry and wet ingredients seperately. I creamed the wet ingredients together and then added the dry on top so I just had to use one bowl. I couldn't tell any difference when I made that change. If you're worried about lumps then you can sift the dry ingredients in. Would love to hear comments on if you liked this recipe! Bon Appetite!


1 1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
1 stick Crisco® All-Vegetable Shortening
OR 1 cup Crisco® Baking Sticks All-Vegetable Shortening
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups Pillsbury BEST® All Purpose Flour
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2/3 cup miniature semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup powdered sugar

PREPARATION DIRECTIONS:1.BEAT brown sugar, shortening and vanilla in large bowl at medium speed of electric mixer until well blended. Add eggs; beat well.

2.COMBINE flour, cocoa, salt and baking soda. Add to shortening mixture; beat at low speed just until blended. Stir in chocolate chips. Cover and chill 3 hours.

3.HEAT oven to 375ºF. Shape dough into 1 1/4-inch balls. Roll in granulated sugar, then in powdered sugar to coat completely. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.

4.BAKE 8 to 10 minutes or until cookies are set. Cool 2 minutes on cookie sheet. Remove cookies to wire rack to cool completely.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Kentucky Burbon Balls

I've been into balls lately LOL! I was watching a show last week on authentic Kentucky foods and a family on there made/sold Kentucky Burbon Balls. They seemed to easy to make! Butter, confectioners sugar, burbon and chocolate??? What could be better :) Ah yes... PECANS! I knew I could pull it off. So, I whipped up a batch last week and had Chris take them to work. They definitely were a hit. Thought I'd share this easy dessert that can be served with coffee after dinner or for a special holiday occasion. Don't be scared by truffles! You can do it! Bon Appetite!

p.s. i think my next endeavor will be to add orange extract and a few TBS of cocoa and make orange/chocolate truffles. mmm.....

1 cup chopped nuts (i used pecans, i like them more than walnuts)
5 tablespoons Kentucky bourbon
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 (16 ounce) package confectioners' sugar
18 ounces semisweet chocolate
1.Place the nuts in a sealable jar. Pour the bourbon over the nuts. Seal and allow to soak overnight.
2.Mix the butter and sugar; fold in the soaked nuts. Form into 3/4" balls and refrigerate overnight.
3.Line a tray with waxed paper. Melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler over just-barely simmering water, stirring frequently and scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula to avoid scorching. Roll the balls in the melted chocolate to coat; arrange on the prepared tray. Store in refrigerator until serving

Monday, November 1, 2010

Chocolate Balls

I wanted to post this recipe mainly because of the title. Chocolate Balls. It made me giggle. If anyone has ever tried to make truffles, they can either end in beauty or disaster so I found this recipe that is "trufflish" and super easy. To be quite honest, I haven't gotten a chance to try these out but it's such an easy recipe that I can just tell they're going to be PERFECT! I AM trying them today so I'll let everyone know how they turned out. We have friends over a lot and these seemed like the perfect, no mess dessert for entertaining. Thank you Costco magagzine for sharing them with me :)

1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 tbs cocoa
1 tsp almond, coffee or coconut liqueur
1 c. chopped chocolate, coconut or nonpareils (sprinkles)

mix condensed milk, cream and cocoa in a saucepan

cook over med heat for 5-10 min stirring constantly until it thickens and comes away from the bottom. remove from heat and add liqueur

let cool and with hands greased with butter, form mixutre into small 1 in. balls. roll the balls over the chocolate bits, nuts and coconut. makes 2 doz.